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Home > Culture and Society

Kabbalah... with Britney and Madonna

The greatest meeting of minds since David Beckham and Jonny Wilkinson did that advert together.

5 December 2003

Madonna: Hi Liíl Britney

Britney: Hi Madonna. Why are we here today?

Madonna: A good question, missy. Itís time for you to be initiated into the secrets of Kabbalah.

Britney: Isnít that weird Jewish stuff?

Madonna: Britney! I hope you respect the Jews.

Britney: I do. I love all the people of the world. Why canít we have peace?

Kaballah Madonna: Maybe the Kabbalah can tell us! Kabbalah means Ďtraditioní, and itís a bundle of Jewish teachings passed down by word of mouth.

Britney: I didnít like that mouth thing we did. It made me feel dirty.

Madonna: Donít worry, dear. Youíll like it more when you grow up.

Britney: So itís a Jewish tradition, like passover, or bagels?

Madonna: Yes. However, gentiles have taken parts of the tradition for themselves. The hermetic humanism of the FlorentÖ

Britney: ?

Madonna: Some people once believed in Jesus, but they tried to think about deeper things. They wanted to know how the universe worked, and how its nastiness can be made better.

Britney: So no more kittens have to die?

Madonna: Thatís right. They wanted to see into the twinned souls of man and the universe, then restore this fallen world. They used tools from everywhere! They looked at myths, and maths, and alchemy, and what
the Jews believed.

Britney: Neat!

Madonna: Yes, it was rather. But evil priests thought it witchcraft, and drove it underground. Was that fair?

Britney: No, that makes me sad.

Madonna: But the knowledge lived.

Britney: Cool! Will you teach it to me?

Madonna: Thatís what weíre here for, sweetie. Now, look at the picture. See how there are three columns? On the left, form. On the right, force. They integrate in the middle.

Britney: Hit me one more time?

Madonna: Formís the shape and order of things: a ballís roundness, the logic of language, the law. Force is the energy that fills form: mass, or lust. Reality is their interaction.

Britney: Thatís deep! I bet Christinaís never had a thought this deep.
Madonna: No, nor Mandy Moore either.

Britney: So what do the little circles mean?

Madonna: Those are sepiroth. They represent stages in the form and force relationship. Imagine reality, the moment, as a lightning zipping down through them, top to bottom. Do you see the top one?

Britney: Kuh Ė Ket Ė Kether? Whoís that in the picture?

Madonna: Thatís me!

Britney: Omigod! You were soooo cute!

Madonna: AhÖ never as cute as you. I was undifferentiated then, just potential, nothing real, but with a universe within me. Thatís Kether, the oneness before all.

Britney: Like God?

Madonna: A lot like.

Britney: Iíd like to thank God for giving me the opportunity to meet you, Madonna.

Madonna: Youíre very kind. Now look at Hokhma. Here, Iím singing Borderline. This is pure energy Ė maybe Iíve released bigger, better singles, but itís my first blast of power, the force of me.

Britney: So that might be some demos I made after the Mickey Mouse club?

Madonna: Yes, I suppose. Itís difficult to conceive of your prehistory though. ĎBabyí feels so complete.

Britney: Thanks! Buh Ė bih Ė Binah?

Madonna: Correct. This is the Papa Donít Preach video. Itís about pregnancy, and Binah is the womb of reality, the place of potential form. Reality comes when Hokhma impregnates it with energy. That then leads us down and across to Chesed, and the world. The illustration is from my American Life single. Do you see how Iím dressed as a revolutionary?

Britney: Iím not really allowed to talk about politics. I love my country.

Madonna: This is the sephira of change, and the energy needed to change. It gives inspiration, and a vision beyond oneself. Chesedís spirit drives a Napoleon, or a Lenin.

Britney: I love the Beatles. My mom cried when George died.

Madonna: Its complement is Gevurah. Youíll see that image is from Iím Breathless.

Britney: Pardon me?

Madonna: The soundtrack to Dick Tracy?

Britney: Iím sorry. Itís not ringing a bell.

Madonna: Never mind. Tracy is a lawman; my single, Hanky Panky was all about punishment, spanking. Gevurah shows us order and restraint; it keeps things as they are. Chesed and Gevurah are at odds and in balance. Itís difficult to explain, my sweet, perhaps because youíre not yet a woman of grand experieÖ

Britney: Is it like when you reinvent yourself as a more adult performer, perhaps with an ríníb edge, but you have to make sure that you donít alienate your core demographic?

Madonna: You are a fine pupil, Britney, wise beyond your years.

Britney: Thanks! This stuff is so cool. So whatís that in the midd Ė ohmigod I love that album!

Madonna: That is The Immaculate Collection, my magnum opus. Tipheret is the Great Work, and the integrated individual. Weíre descending into personhood. If we were ascending, we would perfect and lose ourselves in meditation here. This sephira needs much thought, and you will have to find your own Great Work.

Britney: I have a clothes line coming out this Fall.

Madonna: Perhaps that is your destiny, rosebud, perhapsÖ Onwards!

Britney: Netzach is your dirty album. I donít like your dirty album.

Madonna: Not even a little?

Britney: I sometimes get a little tingle when I think about it.

Madonna: Listen to that tingle! Erotica stands here for lust, drive and hunger, the raw, wilful materials of creativity.

Britney: So whatís Hod?

Madonna: Reason and order. Look at my new book, The English Roses Ė there are Kabalistic lessons in it, but it stands here mainly for language, the rational structures that contain will.

Britney: That makes sense. Itís like the little voice that tells me not to let Fred touch me.

Madonna: Listen to that voice.

Britney: Yesod and Malkhut?

Madonna: Yesod is the world seen magically, the relationships under the surface of life. I have made Missy Elliott like me through this power, and I made you kiss me; soon, it will let me rule the musical world once more. This is where ĎInto the Grooveí and ĎHollywoodí come together, and where our mystic union takes place.

Britney: Ugh. Thatís kind of creepy.

Madonna: Ah! You have so much to learn, primrose.

Britney: Iím scared.

Madonna: Letís end. Malkhut is the workaday world, dull reality for the pitiable mass of humanity.

Britney: So that pictureís fromÖ

Madonna: Material Girl.

Britney: Uh. I get it. Whatís next?

Madonna: Enough for now, my sweet. Next, I will explain the Klippoth, the vicious, empty side of the Sepiroth. I shall be using my Movie career to illustrate.

Britney: O.K. See you next time Madonna!

Madonna: See you next time, Britney!

Two worlds collide: Kabbalah and essential oils.

See also: 'Jewishness and world interaction'

Comment on this article: letters@thefridaything.co.uk

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