For information on translation rights please contact Michele Hutchison,
In Step by Step, Geert Kimpen, the author of the successful novel The Kabbalist, recounts his personal method of turning dreams into reality by following the Kabbala’s Ten Laws of Creation. His long harboured dream of becoming a writer came true via this ten-step approach and he hopes readers will be able to use his friendly, light-weight guide to fulfil their ambitions too.
He was looking for God.
He made an astonishing discovery.
He found him.
I grew up in a bookshop. It was one of those old-fashioned shops with a copper doorbell and giant glass display cases in which masterworks of literature were lined up back to back. A shop that smelled of books and polished wood. My father’s admiration for writers was boundless, and incidentally, they often came to the shop. He watched them breathlessly when they left the shop with a parcel of brown-paper-wrapped books, you could almost imagine him kissing the floor they’d walked on. I inherited this admiration. When I was a little older and could help in the shop, I hero-worshiped the learned gentlemen in the same way. How happy these people must be, able to create a world from nothing! They could breathe life into paper with words, they could conjure up a story from nothing that would transport their readers. Storytellers were magicians, high priests of the word. At night in bed I dreamed of writing just one book in my life. If only I could become a writer.
But as so often happens with childhood dreams, mine faded. It had been foolish to think that I would ever call myself a writer. My dream became an irritating memory which reared its head from time to time and which I silenced with all my might. But dreams are like weeds, they always come back.
'If you only had a day left to live, what would you do? If you don’t do it today, you’ve failed.'
from The Kabbalist
According to the Kabbala there is nothing that isn’t God. God is the universe, all the stars and planets, every tree, plant, bush, each animal and every human being. ‘The divine spark’ is in everything that exists. God is not something ‘personal’ but a creative, intelligent force present everywhere. It is as concrete as the gravity that effects everything. You don’t see gravity but you certainly notice its existence.
According to the Kabbala, before the Big Bang there was a gigantic sea of light and energy. In this ocean of light, the light drew back until it was just a black speck so that it could get to know itself better. That single point was injected through a stream of light and that implosion led to the Big Bang. All matter comes from that one injected speck, therefore. Everything that exists has been made from this divine building material. That’s why there is nothing that is not animated by God.
Because God is so omnipresent, the Jewish Kabbalists don’t have a word for God. When we give something a name, we define it and we reduce it to what it is. The word chair contains the definition of what a chair is.
In the Hebrew Thora (the first five books of the Old Testament) there’s not a single word for God; instead there are ten different names. The ten names are not names but characteristics. These are the ten characteristics with which ‘God’ created the universe. Characteristics such as ‘longing’, ‘power’, ‘beauty’ or ‘leadership’. These ten characteristics form ‘the tree of life’ and are the tools of creation.
When we decide to make those characteristics our own, and link them to our wish or life’s mission, we can create everything that we want to.
These are the ten laws of creation, in other words-
We are here, according to the Kabbala, to fulfil our dreams. This is the meaning of life. We have all been born with certain talents and a certain life purpose. It is up to us to develop these talents to the maximum and to unite their growth with our life purpose. It is our duty, the Kabbalists say, to get the most out of our lives, to have immeasurably vast dreams and to realize them in this world. Kabbalists want to get everything out of life. They are ambitious and always want more, bigger and better. The word 'impossible' doesn’t exist to a kabbalist.
Kabbala means 'to receive'. Kabbalists want to receive everything in life, but then with the intention of giving everything back to the world, in turn. The system of Kabbala is based on a creative spiral of giving and receiving. Through wanting to get everything out of your life and to fulfil all of your dreams, you’ve got infinitely more to give than somebody without dreams or goals. The more you have, the easier it is for you to give, and to give more. This is our purpose: wanting to receive an infinite amount and wanting to give an infinite amount. In this way, everyone who deploys his or her talents will work together to create paradise on earth…
All dreams come into being out of a secret longing. Something gnaws away at us. We are stimulated, we feel restless. We know that we have to do something with our lives, that a change is necessary. Often we can’t describe it in concrete terms. We don’t have the exact words to describe the dream. And we certainly don’t have any idea as to how to approach it, how we can turn this dream into reality. But the journey has begun. A dream has awakened within us, it has aroused us. The first thing we need to do is make our dream clearer.
Now we’re going to go in search of YOUR dream. The one, big dream that you may have kept buried for years. The dream that you dismissed as ‘childish nonsense’. This dream for which you’ve invented so many excuses but have never tackled… because you have a mortgage, or because your partner doesn’t support you, or because your children are too young, or because you are too old… all those reasons we think up to chase away our dreams. We are now going to kiss the dream awake. We’ll put all the excuses to one side, we only have to dream for the moment – the one beautiful dream that will make your life complete. This dream is the reason you are here. Perhaps you have many dreams, but we’re looking to pick out the biggest, the most urgent. We can fulfil the other dreams later. A big, concrete dream. A dream that is only for you. You can be egotistical now. It can be a dream that brings you fulfilment. You can’t wish it for your partner, your children or those most dear to you. They need to bring their own dreams to life. It’s about your dream, something that makes you bigger as a person. A dream that doesn’t harm anyone, a dream that will ultimately make the world a better place. A dream that gives you a light, happy feeling when you think about it.
If you’ve found your dream, link it to a higher aim, something that will make the world better. Only then will you find the energy and the persistence with which you can achieve it.
Be as concrete and detailed as possible. You get exactly what you wish for. Describe it as precisely as you can here:
Congratulations! You’ve now put your dream into words. Words have creative power. It has been written that ‘in the beginning was the word’. The creative process has now begun. The seed has been sown, the seed that you will nurture until it grows into a powerful tree of life.
Now say your wish out loud. Just to yourself at first. Then to those closest to you. Then to other people you meet. Words have creative power! In its essence, your dream has already been realised…
For information on translation rights please contact Michele Hutchison,
This book deserves the kind of attention the Celestine Prophecy got, the surprise hit at the beginning of the nineties. The Kabbalist is a world-class book which wears its wisdom lightly, and touching the soul at its deepest.
- Haagsche Courant
Geert Kimpen (b. 1965) was born in Belgium and followed the director’s programme at the Amsterdam College of Arts. Since 1990, he has been living in the Netherlands where he writes for the theatre, cabaret, and television. Kimpen wrote columns for an esoteric magazine, co-operated on Eric Woolfson’s script for the musical Gaudi, and wrote the monologue, De verliefde componist (‘Composer in Love’) on Hector Berlioz. The novel was already published in the Netherlands, Belgium, Slovenia, Denmark, Germany and Portugal. Many more countries will follow.