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How does a convert get a Jewish soul?

by Mrs. Sara Esther Crispe

  

Library » Jewish Identity » Conversion | Subscribe | What is RSS?


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There is an interesting difference between when a convert receives a Jewish soul, and when that soul is actualized as a Jewish soul.

According to Kabbalah, a convert is one who's soul possesses a latent Jewish spark, was born to a non-Jewish mother, and therefore must undergo the process of a Torah conversion in order for the Jewish spark to be actualized as a Jewish soul. This “non-Jew” is born with a potentially Jewish soul, yet it is not revealed at this point or accessible.

This means that this person is not Jewish, but has the ability to become a Jew through a proper conversion process. Once this person chooses to undergo a conversion, and accepts to live according to the dictates of the Torah, it is then that the soul is revealed and accessible, and from this point on, the “Jew” is revealed.

This is also why, interestingly enough, the date that the convert immerses in the Mikvah, the ritual bath, is the moment that the Jewish soul is revealed within the body. This process of emerging from the water is compared to a birth process, in which the baby bursts forth from the water-filled environment in which he was contained. The baby existed beforehand, but reaches completion and attains independence at birth. So, too, the convert contained a Jewish spark beforehand -- a spark which blossoms and matures upon conversion.

See also If a convert is supposed to be Jewish, why wasn’t he born Jewish? and Why should I choose an Orthodox conversion?


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Torah
Torah is G–d’s teaching to man. In general terms, we refer to the Five Books of Moses as “The Torah.” But in truth, all Jewish beliefs and laws are part of the Torah.
Mikvah
A ritual bath where one immerses to become spiritually pure. After her menstrual cycle, a woman must immerse in the Mikvah before resuming marital relations.
Kabbalah
Jewish mysticism. The word Kaballah means "reception," for we cannot physically perceive the Divine, we merely study the mystical truths which were transmitted to us by G-d Himself through His righteous servants.