And The Lord Appeared To Him By The Oaks Of Mamre

Dr. Michael LaitmanRabash, “And The Lord Appeared To Him By The Oaks Of Mamre”: He asks, why the oaks of Mamre and not in some other place? And he replies, it is because Mamre gave him an advice about his circumcision. When the Creator told Abraham to circumcise himself, Abraham went to seek advice from his friends. …

Mamre told him, “Remember the day that the Chaldeans threw you in the furnace, and that famine that the world experienced … and those kings that your men chased, which you struck, and from whom the Creator saved you and no one could harm you. Rise up and do as your Master commands.”

Every person is a small world, and just like an element of a holographic picture, each contains all the qualities of the world. The only difference is that for every individual, these qualities exist within us in different combinations.

Malchut of the World of Infinity split into a multitude of parts (souls);  every part contains all the qualities, but with some desires of the soul presented more strongly and some weaker. The first correction of egoism lies in cutting off all the desires to receive pleasure for oneself. This action is called a covenant with the Creator (in goal) or circumcision (in action). In other words, in order to ascend to the quality of bestowal (the degree of Bina), man performs a circumcision of his desires to receive, separating them from the desires to bestow.

Man is governed by three souls: animate, intelligent, and guiding. One governs him through his feelings, one through his mind, and the third weighs which direction he ought to strive to. These souls animate us, and everything depends on which of them prevails. In the end, we have to make use of all the forces at our disposal, regardless of which makes the decisions and which governs the rest of our properties.

As every person passes through the stages of the ego’s correction, he checks whether his “body” (desires) is prepared to make the decision to join the degree of Bina (bestowal). That is when he acquires a Kli, a spiritual vessel, the desires of bestowal, and performs the correction of “circumcision” cutting off, as it were, the egoistic desires from himself.

He sees that his other desires do not agree with the Creator. He has no strength to correct them, but he is strong enough to cut them off (as it is written, “from the edge of one’s heart”). Afterward, at subsequent degrees, he will even be able to correct them so that they would willingly join the actions of bestowal and help him ascend even higher.

This force or property called Mamre, which man finds within himself, is his preparation (friend) that helps him achieve the property of bestowal.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/6/10, Article, “And The Lord Appeared To Him By The Oaks Of Mamre”

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The Zohar Is The Most Powerful Weapon

Dr. Michael LaitmanIt is written that it is prohibited to study the Torah without intention because thereby one doesn’t draw the Light that Reforms and immediately turns the “potion of life” into the “potion of death.” This point of choice is our only choice in life. Hence, when dealing with The Book of Zohar, the only weapon against evil or egoism, we should try to use it correctly.

Obviously, we can’t push the “red button” that would lead the world to harmful irreversible results, but we might step into the states of suffering, which had already happened in the past (see “Introduction to The Book of Zohar,” Items 70, 71). This is why before reading The Zohar, a person should review a supply of Kabbalistic aphorisms, adages which impress him, which help him to start awakening from the animate level (desire for oneself) to the human level (aspiration toward unity, bestowal, and love).

The human level amounts to the desire to unite with the others. The corrected system of souls is called “Adam” (man). As soon as this system breaks and crumbles into multiple pieces, each of them turns into its solely animate part. The human level (equivalence to the Creator, “Adam” comes from “similar to the Creator”) appears in us only when the broken parts (souls) begin to unite and experience a unified desire.

It turns out that the souls live not within themselves but in the connection among them. It is called life “above reason,” that is, in the relationships among the souls, in mutual bestowal. The sum total of these relationships of bestowal is the Creator who connects us. This unifying force that is dawning in the distance is called “The Surrounding Light.”

Thus, the Creator is the force that actually unifies us, and the Surrounding Light is its manifestation from afar. There is nothing but the Light and the desire (Kli). We assign various names to them, but ultimately, there are only these two forces.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/6/10, The Zohar

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In The Beginning God Created Community

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe story of the creation of Adam shows his creation and subsequent division and multiplication. Biologists maintain that sustainable existence of the biosphere is possible only if bio-geochemical cycles are closed. Otherwise, living creatures will quickly consume all resources and will be intoxicated by byproducts of their vital activities.

However, for the cycles to be closed, there must be a community of microorganisms of different species that share bio-geochemical functions among them. Some microorganisms use resources from the environment and supply it with products of their vital activity, while others use these products and return, as their waste products, the original resource back to the environment. No microorganism can close the cycle by itself as it would be a perpetual motion machine.

It is even more obvious in the chemical pre-life stage. There is no single organic molecule that could persistently self-replicate and maintain homeostasis in the environment. Only complex organisms consisting of  a large number of different molecules that have established “mutually beneficial cooperation” or symbiosis are capable of achieving this.

Thus, it is obvious that the first living species was not a single microorganism but a polymorphous community characterized by the active exchange of genetic material. Diversity, symbiosis, task-sharing, and information exchange – rather than the qualities that evolved from a single, organic molecule – are the primal qualities of Earth’s life. Today it is becoming clear that community rather than a single, microbial species stood at the beginning of life’s development on Earth.
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A Physical-To-Spiritual Force Converter

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Creator fills the connection among our souls with Himself. Being closer to the other souls means being closer to the Creator and having an ability to begin perceiving Him filling our interconnection as Light, bestowal, and love. Instead of being momentary, this desire to unite with the other souls should be constant and always growing. If it lights up only occasionally and immediately subsides, it isn’t sufficient. We must strive to sustain and accumulate such states continuously.

Granted, a person cannot achieve this through his own efforts. Man is not able to control his desires and this is why he is given a group. The desires get renewed in a person in two ways simultaneously: according to a chain of informational records (Reshimot) and due to the influence of the environment. A person does not determine anything by himself.

Our error lies in the fact that we listen to our ego that tempts us to affect it by force, thereby pushing us in the wrong direction. The right direction is to induce ourselves but solely through the group. Only through the group can I impact my soul, while on my own, I have no means to reach it directly. My soul resides in my connection with the others, and only through this connection, in this indirect manner, am I able to affect myself.

Can I affect my genes or chromosomes and change something in myself with my own hands? Of course not! But there is a device – the group – with the help of which I can do it. So, I manipulate this device by my leverage: I apply simple corporeal actions and thereby affect my environment. In its turn, the environment can affect me on the spiritual level. The essence of this miracle is an opportunity to keep transforming myself till I become equivalent to the Creator.

Through my physical actions in this world, I influence the other bodies. Others, through these bodies, are able to affect me, my spiritual properties, that is, my soul. I myself cannot impact my soul no matter how much I’d like to. It is a very simple mechanism whose principle is that only connection among us leads to the revelation of the Creator.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/6/10, Article, “And the Lord Appeared Unto Him by the Oaks of Mamre”

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Full-Fledged Participants In The Upper World

Dr. Michael LaitmanA question I received: If the Creator is a closed system of nature with firm unchanging laws and man exists inside this system, then how can he change anything in it?

My Answer: This is an incorrect assumption. Man does not change anything in this system. Heaven forbid we were able to change the Upper system of nature! We would end up corrupting it just as we do our own lives. Therefore, we are given a very limited part of the total reality. This narrow scope is merely a black point known as our corporeal world, and look at what we’ve done with it! So how do you intend to govern the Upper system? We should be grateful that we’re not permitted to change it.

However, to the degree that we become similar to the Creator, we will exit our narrow, black enclave and become full-fledged participants in the Upper World. If we acquire the strength to follow the same laws and actions as the Creator, He then will hand the power over to us. There won’t be any division of power between us for His purpose is our adhesion with Him, meaning our complete equivalence to Him.

From the TV Program “Kabbalah for Beginners: The Creator” 7/5/10

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A Means Of Last Resort

Dr. Michael LaitmanCorrection begins with the realization of evil, as it said: “I created the evil inclination and Torah as a means for its correction.” If the evil that the Creator purposefully created was not revealed, who would want to correct himself? The sensation of evil and suffering pushes us to change. At first, we want to change everything on the outside; we want to change the entire world. Later, we do agree that we need to change ourselves. Every person, nation, and society, and our entire civilization as a whole needs to go through this change.

Correction cannot begin without the need for it. In other words, I need to feel that I’m miserable without correction. This is why we must develop and cultivate our egoism, experience in it various blows and problems such as emptiness, loss of hope and fulfillment, and be completely unable to change it. We search for ways to change the world until we discover that the evil in us is to blame for everything. Then, seemingly by accident, we discover Kabbalah.

However, someone had to prepare it for us in the form of books and websites because our nature, confined in the desire to receive and fill itself, is incapable of contact with the Upper World and directly feeling the Creator. In order to do this, we first need external methods: a teacher and books.

Usually this knowledge is passed from one person to another through people who have already acquired the connection to the spiritual world. This connection with the spiritual world has to be already present in our world. Otherwise, we, being complete egoists, would never be able to even think of the spiritual world. We would search for a way to free ourselves from suffering only on the level of this world.

This is why it is necessary to circulate the wisdom of Kabbalah. The people who feel empty in this world will discover it as the method of absolute fulfillment. Then, the following two conditions of the beginning of correction will be carried out: 1) people feel bad, and 2) it is revealed to them that there is a method which will make things well. Gradually, people will begin to correct themselves and realize the purpose of their creation.

Our generation is still revealing the first condition. People are looking at different methods and techniques in order to fulfill themselves. Sometimes they even turn to drugs and alcohol, but gradually, this passes. Soon, even the desire for drugs, violence, and fanaticism will disappear. People will feel and understand that they are not able to fill their inner emptiness this way.

The desire for pleasure changes. It rises to the next level, and it is impossible to continue as before. People can no longer find comfort in drugs. They begin to search for a deeper solution. But we need to develop until we reach the state when people will be left with no other solution but the wisdom of Kabbalah.

We can shorten their search by spreading this method so everyone will understand more quickly that we have to reveal the Upper Force that governs us. Only this can help us.

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Kabbalists On The Purpose Of Creation, Part 14

Dr. Michael LaitmanDear Friends, please ask questions about these passages from the great Kabbalists. I promise to answer them. Commentaries in brackets are mine.

Why Did the Creator Place the Burden of Creation Upon Us?

The primary foundation upon which this entire construction stands is His Supreme desire for man to complete himself along with all that was created for him, and that itself [perfection that he himself attains] would be his merit and reward. Merit – since he engages and toils in order to reach this completion, and when it is attained he will enjoy the fruits of his own efforts and his part of his own work. Reward – since he will finally be complete and will sense pleasure in its goodness for all of eternity [reaches liberation from death].
– Ramchal, Da’at Tvunot (Knowledge of Wisdom), Item 14

“If the purpose of the creation of the worlds is to delight His creatures, then why did He create this corporeal, turbid and tormented world? Without it, He could certainly delight the souls as much as He wanted; why did He bring the soul into such a foul and filthy body [egoistic desires]?”

They explained it with the verse, “One who eats that which is not one’s own, is afraid to look upon one’s face.” It means there is a flaw of shame in any free gift. In order to spare the souls this blemish, He has created this world [such a state, sensation], where there is work. They will therefore enjoy their labor, for they take their pay from the Whole, in return for their work, and are thus spared the blemish of shame.
– Baal HaSulam, Talmud Eser Sefirot, Part 1, "Inner Reflection," Chapter 1, Item 6

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Answers To Your Questions, Part 12

Dr. Michael LaitmanWhat is the Purpose of Creation?

Questions about the post
“Kabbalists On The Purpose Of Creation,” Part 8

Question: Quote: “To correct all of the deficiencies of creation.” What are these deficiencies of creation? Didn’t the Creator create everything in perfection? How can imperfections derive from the Perfect One?

My Answer: The concealment of the Creator gives us an opportunity to complete what is hidden. In other words, to become like Him, revealing Him solely to take an example of what we should be like.

Question: Quoting Baal HaSulam: "All the souls and worlds that were destined to be created, emerged filled with all the delight and pleasure and the gentleness He had planned for them, in the final perfection that the souls were intended to receive at the end of correction.” If everything is already perfect and exists in its corrected state, then where do we and the distorted picture of the world that we see come from?

My Answer: It is the result of the Creator’s concealment relative to us, which is given to us as an opportunity to complete ourselves.

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