Cohen’s evocative “There is a crack, a crack in everything….” makes reference to Jewish mysticism and the shattering of the vessels. According to the Kabbalah, “Light” is the living power of creation. These sacred Judaic doctrines explain that when God created the world the vessels were filled with light, a divine essence without end, limitless and infinite. The world was simply not strong enough to hold this divine light and the vessels cracked, splintered and broke apart releasing creative life force out into the universe.
Humanity is fraught with the inescapable knowledge that ultimately all things must come undone, all things will fall apart and that our own existence is destined to disintegration. We are by nature flawed, we are inherently broken and therefore the pursuit of perfection and permanence is an unattainable notion. To accept this state is to embrace the human condition of impermanence, one that is in constant flux, evolution and change.
Impermanence is one of the essential doctrines to be found in Buddhism. The doctrine states that all existence is evanescent, transient and inconstant. All temporal things and events, whether material or mental, are compounded objects in a continuous change of condition, subject to decline and destruction, that come into being and ultimately dissolve into nothingness. All life forms embody this flux in the natural aging process, the cycle of repeated birth and death, nothing is immortal, and everything decays.
As the cracks appear, the center cannot hold, things break apart and new forms are activated, energized, able emerge and take hold. Out of darkness, a metaphysical transformation is ignited allowing the light, the power of creation to once again arise.
In constant interplay the cycle of existence is in continuum; darkness and light, redemption and hope, creation and destruction, life and death…
As Leonard Cohen stated “that’s where the light gets in… and that’s where the resurrection is and that’s where the return, that’s where the repentance is. It is with the confrontation, with the brokenness of things.”