INTRODUCTION FOR INVOKING ANGELS
My first contact with God and angels was when I was ten years old. I lived on the north side of Chicago and was experiencing my very first infatuation. She lived across the street and her name was Carole. An ten year old’s “love” can be all consuming. I remember clearly one day absolutely needing to tell her something, but she was not home and I could not find her anywhere. So I did one of those impulsive moves that can somehow affect one for the rest of their lives. I called out to the great, mysterious unknown and made my bargain: “If there really is a God, I promise I will believe in you forever if you help me find Carole right away!”
Now, over fifty years have passed since that moment and it still rings clear in my mind. It so happened that only a few minutes after my rash (but heartful) commitment, a friend (angel) walked up to me and said, for no apparent reason, “David, I just saw Carole at ….” This was a terrific lesson for me; I was dumbstruck! But at that point, getting to Carole was more important than enlightenment. So I did not stop to ponder my awe, but ran to meet my beloved.
While Carole is long forgotten, my promise to continue to “believe” sits in my heart. I have found a way to work with this promise after many decades, and it has not turned out as I would have imagined. As the reader will discover in this book, I have a much different view of God and angels than what I read about in most books. But it has turned out to profoundly influence the direction of my life and the work that I do.
More than thirty years had passed after that initial encounter when my wife, Shoshana, and I moved to the Old City of Jerusalem, in the mid-eighties, on a serious spiritual quest. While living and studying in the Old City for many years, we frequently experienced a curious event that most residents there take for granted. Almost every time we would discuss the need to meet someone or to invite someone to a meal, strangely and almost miraculously, within hours, the phone would ring with that person calling—or we would run into that person on the street the same day. In fact, this happened so frequently, any time someone’s name came up in conversation, we simply assumed that an imminent meeting with this person was inevitable.
Everyone experiences events like these and other curious, more subtle events throughout our lives. We can approach unique phenomena with scientific curiosity, but these kinds of events do not easily lend themselves to evaluation, repetition or measurement—each of which is a necessary component of the scientific method. Yet, we know they happen, we experience marvelous encounters—as if some force were operating to bring people together—and something deep inside of us is comforted in a strange way each time one of these experiences manifests in our lives.
People who live in Jerusalem say that the city has a mysterious kedusha, a word that means “sanctification” or “holiness,” for this kind of wonderful interaction seems to occur far more often than in most other places in the world. I came to realize, however, that it seemed to happen more often in Jerusalem because we who lived there were far more aware of and prepared for any mystical experiences. We were more aware because we immersed ourselves in biblical and other studies many hours every day, and we discussed the written and oral religious tradition on a regular basis.
We all have had the experience of learning a new word, and then suddenly discovering that the word seems to be everywhere. We learn a new skill, such as painting, and then we start seeing colors through new eyes. We learn to play a musical instrument, and from that time forward we hear all music with new ears. The same phenomenon occurs when we engage deeply in certain types of studies. In the Jewish world, the study is Torah and all the commentaries. Immersed in these studies, one begins to see the world in a new light; a world filled with new mysteries. Included in those mysteries are realms beyond our ordinary reality and supernal worlds filled with supernatural energies. They are not “real” in the ordinary sense that we can measure them to meet scientific criteria; but they are real on some other level—they speak to us, guide us, protect us, caution us; they are voices and visions that appear clearly in the mind’s eye.
There are many names and descriptions of supernal characters that show up in spiritual literature. There are thousands of them that fit into many different categories. One of the most popular categories is the realm of angels. A wide variety of angels are described in Christianity and Islam, as well as Judaism. Moreover, they are not limited to Western tradition. There are many angels described in Tibetan Buddhism and Hinduism. Indeed, angels can be found in a wide variety of traditions.
This book is not designed to be a dictionary of all the different angelic characters that exist in a multitude of traditions, but rather to introduce to the reader ways to invoke and work with specific characteristics that are connected with well-known angels. We therefore will only discuss a select number of angels that have been described extensively in the literature of Western tradition.
The reader should know that I have considerable skepticism when it comes to fanciful ideals about invisible beings who affect our lives. Anyone who has seen my writings in my book, God is a Verb, knows that I do not subscribe to the idea that God is a father figure who runs the creation, but is rather a process that is continuously in motion. I will write more on this later.
In the same spirit, my approach to angels does not delve into realms populated by critters with wings and halos. I have instead a deeper and much more subtle relationship with angels. As the reader will discover, I have an ongoing interaction with angels that evokes certain characteristics in a way that continuously informs my life. This is not a skill that is unique for selected individuals, it is instead something that every human being can access and develop if one so wishes. Come and see for yourself how to invoke angels for blessings, protection and healing, and discover a new way to experience this world of ours.