Audio Version Of The Blog – 06.01.14

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Decision-Making Technology

Dr. Michael LaitmanOpinion (Vasily Klucharev , PhD, Dean of the Faculty of Psychology of the Higher School of Economics, Moscow): “We make decision only to activate (satisfy) the neurons of brain areas associated with obtaining pleasure.

“Biologists have found that pleasure and desire to get it are connected with the structures of the brain, rich in dopamine, the pleasure centers in the brain.

“Scientists implanted electrodes in these areas of rats’ brains and found that by pressing a pedal, the animal was engaged in self-stimulation for hours. The rat rejected food and endlessly stimulated its brain – and died from exhaustion. Similar behavior has been observed in humans.

“In ordinary life, we activate brain structures rich in dopamine, visiting restaurants, earning money, falling in love.

“Our senses send information to the brain neurons that are activated in proportion to the expected pleasure and make the decision to buy or not to buy this product – that is, how to command the motor areas of the brain that triggers our muscles.

“People around us influence our opinion, causing a change in the activity of the pleasure center. If our opinion matches the others’ opinion, it activates the center, and if it does not match, this inhibits its activity. It seems that we like to have a shared opinion, and I do not like being different.

“It turns out that the group with which we identify ourselves regulates the operation of our pleasure centers, changes our opinion, supporting the similarity of our views with the social norm and suppressing disagreement.

“We think that we understand why we make decisions, but in reality, we are not aware of the real causes of our behavior. We cannot guess the motives of our conduct, remaining under the illusion that we control our behavior. Therefore, it is difficult for us to accept the idea that our actions are just a means of activation the group neurons of the brain.”

My Comment: Behind the physiological pleasure center, there is the spiritual root, which determines all our actions. Overall, we came to Kabbalah through science.
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Shouting For The Unattainable World

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What do the four properties of mercy, charity, truth and peace mean in terms of our attitude to the group and to the world in general?

Answer: The Inner Light in the first nine Sefirot is called mercy. How can we visualize it? Our intentions to treat our neighbors humanely represent the first nine Sefirot.

When acting inside these properties, we become similar to the Creator in a certain way. Mercy is similar to bestowal, the quality of Bina. Hessed (the property of Abraham) is the first prerequisite to it.

Charity (alms) is Malchut. Let’s say, our will to receive is more or less ready to adhere to bestowal. To the degree our will to receive (Malchut) supports the first nine Sefirot and is ready to accept their illumination, it obtains the alms.

Our will to receive just cannot achieve anything on its own. As a result of buying the first nine Sefirot and influencing them, it receives the “backlight.” Malchut obtains the first nine Sefirot from her neighbors. Each one of us has egoism of his or her own; we understand what others want and we use their desires. We fill their desires with the help of our own egoism.

Let’s say, I am Malchut; your desires are my first nine Sefirot. I work with them and fulfill them. What I fill them with is called mercy.  By allowing me to act in this way, my Malchut receives illumination. This “backlight” is called charity.

Truth means that after completing any action, we clearly understand that our work is just a deception and that there is no truth in it whatsoever. We keep recognizing this fact over and over again. In other words, truth always unveils the general Light called the Surrounding Light (Ohr Makif) to the souls.

Eventually, the general light should become a part of the first nine Sefirot and Malchut. It shows the true state we are in and the extent to which we have to be corrected. When the truth illuminates, I feel very bad, even though it doesn’t shine in its final, eternal stage, but is only a bit higher than my current level as the Surrounding Light that I have to pull inside myself.

It illuminates the darkness of my corrupt desires. This explains why the truth is so tough for us in this material world. Nobody wants to admit or hear it.

Peace that shows us that we are not able of doing anything at all shows up last. We are trying to achieve completely unreal things! All our actions (charity and mercy that we exercise with others and ourselves) are nice and wonderful, but they do not allow us to merge with the Creator. They cause no peace! Only disagreements!

So, truth and peace bring us to an understanding that all we can do is shout. There is no alternative since we are asking for something that is beyond our nature. We don’t know what that is, but we have no other options except this plea. This is how we are correct ourselves.

It’s very important to keep in mind that all these things imply interactions between us and from these actions we reveal the spiritual vessel. the Higher world, a new reality. Now physicists acknowledge that other dimensions and cosmoses, “included and linked universes” in which we dwell in a different form exist and depend solely on the levels of the human cognition.

We explore cognitive modifications and strive to learn to reveal a new type of cognition. This is what the wisdom of Kabbalah is about. This process is not connected with our corporeal body whatsoever, nor is it linked to the inanimate, vegetative, or animate levels.
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From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/25/14, Writings of Baal HaSulam

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Holiday Commemorating the First Similarity with the Light

Dr. Michael LaitmanFrom Rabash’s Article “The Duty to Convey the Story of Exodus from Egypt”: The Book of Zohar explains why one shouldn’t eat matzah during the year, but only during Pesach. It is similar to the king who appointed one of his subjects to be a minister and on the day of his appointment dressed him in luxurious clothes.

Later, the subject took off these beautiful clothes. He was wearing them only for one day when he took a position of a Minister to celebrate the event. Afterward, every year he commemorated his appointment and dressed in his festive, solemn clothes. This example explains why we eat matzah only during Pesach to honor the exodus from Egypt.”

Each spiritual root has a corporeal branch. The entire universe represents a single will to receive, “something out of nothing.” Besides it, nothing has ever been created. The Light impacts the matter and leaves its imprint on it.

Only because of its imprint and due to the four stages of HaVaYaH can we explore the Light. If we manage to change our desire, we will attain the Light that created the matter and left its imprint on it.

Exiting from the egoistic forces (Klipot) is just one of the stages that lead us to the attainment of the Light. If we manage to achieve this stage, we will detach from our nature that was made out of nothing and begin connecting with the imprint of the Light that is present inside the desire. We will learn what the Light is, what It does, how did It create everything, and what happened to all fragments of the Creation long before this world and man emerged.

In other words, we rise to our root and learn that there was a special point called the “exodus from Egypt” in the program of creation of the desire and in the Light’s impact on it. The desire stops sensing only itself and is no longer confined to its nature; it goes out and begins feeling the Light, its origin, the Root.

From this moment on, the desire has already established a mutual connection with the Light and they begin acting as partners. The upper root that allows us to approach it and work together with it is very important since it is the point where a Man (Adam)—(Domeh) the one who is similar to the Creator—appears. It’s like a birth! That’s why the exodus from Egypt is called a spiritual birth of every individual soul. This explains why we honor this state.

There is a correlation of the spiritual root of the material branch that is imprinted in the categories named world, year, and soul. This world was made as a projection of the spiritual world, that’s why for each spiritual action or event, there is a corresponding material branch in this world. This is why we celebrate the entire spiritual process that we go through in the branches; it is called a yearly cycle.

All our traditions are a material reflection of spiritual actions that we hope to attain and implement. Exiting from the will to receive and attaining the very first sign of the similarity with the Light, i.e., spiritual birth, is called the exodus from Egypt. It is the initial step for all of us. This month is called the first among all other months. It denotes the beginning of the spiritual growth of a human being.

By all means, we advance for many years before arriving to a sensation called Egypt and realizing that it’s impossible for us to stay at this level. Although this state is very hard to reach since for that we have to experience more pressure, undergo unpleasant sensations, acknowledge that we are unable to exercise self-control, and divulge our slavish dependence on our egoistic nature.

The fact that we live in this material world is of great help to us. It’s a spiritual state in which we completely depend on the will to receive, and thus have no connection with the Light. This step allows us to experience material sensations. It seems to us that we live in the materiality, at the last level of sensations that manifest inside the will to receive.

Due to materiality, we can organize our lives in a way that we get a chance to exit from it and begin sensing spirituality.
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From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/13/14, Writings of Rabash

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An Action With Thousands Of Years Of Consequences

Dr. Michael LaitmanFrom Baal HaSulam’s article “Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot,” Item 15: Yet, we must thoroughly understand the sublimity of that man, made by the hands of the Creator. Also, his wife, to whom the Creator has administered greater intelligence than him, as they have written (Nidah 45) in the interpretation to the verse, “And the Lord made the rib. Thus, how did they fail and become as fools, not knowing to beware of the serpent’s slyness?”

A vessel that was split into the first nine Sefirot (Adam) and Malchut (Hava – Eve) brings up numerous questions. It’s not clear how this vessel intended to receive for the sake of bestowal if they lacked the will to receive. How could they possibly try the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge?

Before anything else, they were supposed to reveal their will to receive, investigate it, and only then start using it. How could this entire story happen? Their sin looks vague.

In this world, we go through reincarnations, generation after generation, for thousands of years to learn something, to acknowledge our insignificance, powerlessness, limitations, inability to see what’s ahead of us, and our incapability to correctly analyze the path behind us or understand the present. We are flawed in absolutely everything!

For how long should we study before we make correct decisions? We cannot reach this stage on our own; rather, we can achieve it solely due to the Kabbalists who structured our learning process and our desire to join them and learn from them.

These conditions derive from Adam and Eve’s approach to the sin (tasting the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge.) At that moment in time, the sin was activated. For thousands of years, we ponder what happened. We do it until we get corrected. We should apply the damage that was once revealed in our roots to ourselves in order to clarify and mend it.

Our huge work throughout many thousands of years is a challenging process of realization of the truth that states that there is nothing we can do except plead for the Surrounding Light (Ohr Makif) to raise us above our nature. It’s a cumulative process that takes tremendous amounts of energy and affliction. The latter is meant to cover and compensate for the damage and make up for the lack that wasn’t sufficient at the time of the calculation.

They were sure that they were acting for the sake of bestowal, but in fact they were acting egoistically. One criterion was missing in their understanding, and so their actions went one hundred percent wrong. It’s an invisible difference that was hidden from them, the one that we gradually keep unveiling until we reach final correction (Gmar Tikkun).

In fact, the only thing that we have to clarify is the difference between what we understand in our current state compared to the way the Creator regards the same thing from His level. For that, we have to transition from “something out of nothing” (Yesh mi Ain) to “something out of something” (Yesh mi Yesh).

The element that was initially created, when “something out of something” created “something out of nothing,” is exactly what we actually learn during the entire developmental process. “Something out of nothing” has to step over the abyss between the creation and the Creator and merge with Him.
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From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/25/14, Writings of Baal HaSulam

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Only The Light Of The Creator Is Missing

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How do we reach a request that the Creator will control our desire for pleasure?

Answer: In fact, it is possible to reach this only through work with your environment. Before Abraham, the process of true correction had not yet begun, rather the shattering continued. The twenty generations from Adam until Noah and from Noah to Abraham were designed for revealing the evil. From the times of Abraham and on, the revelation of evil also continued, but this was evil in relation to connection.

There is no other method. The soul of Adam HaRishon was shattered into many parts that were scattered in thousands of directions, and their entire correction is in their connection. So only our inability to be connected in the face of all the attempts to do this is called evil. The power that opposes unity is called the evil inclination. If we feel that the correction of the world depends upon this, it follows that this is the only thing for which it is necessary to yearn.

We are already behind schedule by just about one century since the first Aliyah to the land of Israel; in that period this problem began to appear. All of the troubles of the first settlers and all of the wars were caused by the fact that the first pioneers of the Bilu movement who immigrated to the land of Israel called themselves by the first letters of the song of the prophet Isaiah: (Isaiah 2:5) “Beit Yaakov Lechu Venilcha” (“O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk”), but they cut off the end of the sentence, “in the Light of the Creator.”

That is, they intended to establish a common Kibbutz in the nation of Israel and this was the reason for all of their failures. It was necessary only to add the Light of the Creator to this, as the prophets wrote.

The essence of Passover is connection in the readiness to become a people. Beginning from Babylon, the desire for pleasure grew in one family. Ultimately its ego rose up so much that it separated between them and transformed them into strangers to each other; Pharaoh entered and lodged between them, as well as the Egyptians and the evil inclination.

Even though they discovered the evil inclination between them, nevertheless they wanted to connect; yet they were not ready. This means that the Pharaoh dominated them; the Egyptians subjugated them and didn’t allow them to unite. In spite of all this, they yearned for connection with all their strength and so they understood that they had to break away from this condition, to rise above the Egyptians that were among them, from the forces of separation.

The reception of the power to rise above their separation is called the Exodus from Egypt. If we in our world group accept the power of unity that will connect us, then this will be called the Exodus from Egypt. Everything is measured only according to the level of connection that the power of the Creator is said to give to us.

When the Light arrives, that is, its power is revealed in us, this means that the Creator is helping us and we are getting the possibility to connect. The right form of connection that we attain is comprehended by us as the revelation of the Creator to the creatures. According to this form, we feel the Light.

Indeed, the Light is something that we want very much and is now revealed in our desire for pleasure because according to our yearning for unity, we acquire its form. This means that the Creator is preparing His revelation that will bring us from exile to redemption.
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From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/30/14, Shamati 41

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What Is Time?

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is time? Does it exist by itself or only within? How do you explain time?

Answer: I can see time when I look at my watch. I sense time when I contemplate my life and think that it elapses rapidly, when I ponder about things that happen to me, and when I reflect on consequences and emotions.

Our will to receive, the basic material we are made of, feels past, present, and future. It recognizes time as changes that take place in our desire to be pleased. In other words, time depends on the sensations that take place in our will to receive. If not for those sensations, we would have no perception of time whatsoever.

If there is no difference in our sensations, no delta between feeling better or worse, we don’t notice the flow of time. If our sensations were always the same, time would stop. That is, time for us is a result of fluctuations that happen in our sensors. No change, no time. How is the preceding minute different from the next? They vary due to the processes that take place in our desire to receive. This is what we call time.

Time is the difference between the quantities of pleasure that we experience in our prior state compared to our next state. Our sensations keep changing. This explains why things that happen to us in the past, present or future are important from our egoistic point of view. We explore the states that our desire to receive pleasure experiences. The alternating states are imprinted within us as time.

The will to receive is the matter of creation. It is a sensor that feels fullness or emptiness. It measures the state that it goes through according to the sensation of fulfillment that is compared to its previous state and by evaluating the quantity of pleasure in both of them, thus forming a notion of time.

Time is a measurement tool of fulfillment that is present inside the will to receive. We want to be delighted so we develop a sensation of the future and look back into the past to learn how to organize ourselves in order to achieve the desired goal.

We organize our fulfillment; that’s why time splits into various phases for us.

We strive to know our future and learn from our past, but all of it derives from our desire to be pleased. While the desire to receive develops, its various shapes form a sensation of time in us.

According to its developmental stage, the will to receive splits into the following phases: inanimate, vegetative, animate, and speaking. Humans are the only ones who sense time, i.e., recognize the past, present and future. These phases are different for humans from the point of view of their sensation of fulfillment.

We feel various kinds of time internally. There is time that keeps track of hours, yet there is another type of time, which we simply feel inside us. Time can be measured by billions of years or it can be split into brief moments. We measure time according to the degree of its importance to us and to the extent of our involvement in it.

A sensation of time and its essence are two totally different things. Perception of time depends on our internal individual experiences, whereas astronomical time is calculated based on the movement of planets, although it is still quite relative.

The entire universe is a will to receive inside which we watch processes that take place at inanimate, vegetative, animate and human levels.

So it means that all of them happen inside us. The entire reality is inside us; it is a product of our perception. If our perception of reality changes, notions of time, movement, space, and the whole universe, its entire picture that we live in will also change.

That’s why we have to ask ourselves a question: “What is our life? What is the reality in which we exist? Is it relative? Can it be changed?”
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From KabTV’s “A New Life” 4/17/2014

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The Third Temple – Correction of Humanity

Dr. Michael LaitmanAnd the fire on the altar shall burn on it; it shall not go out. The Cohen shall kindle wood upon it every morning, and upon it, he shall arrange the burnt offering and cause the fats of the peace offerings to [go up in] smoke upon it. (The Torah, “Leviticus” “Tzav,” 6:5)

In fact, there was no need for firewood to keep the fire on the altar for all resided Heavenly Fire. In the First Temple its shape resembled a lion, in the Second Temple – the dog.” (Moshe Weisman, “The Midrash Says,” Chapter “Tzav.”)

Spiritual fire needs no fuel since it burns on its own; nothing can influence it, neither rain, nor wind.

A lion signifies the complete purificantion of all ten Sefirot; a dog stands for a partial correction of the first three Sefirot, Galgalta ve Eynaim.

When we don’t use AHP, it remains outside, and then it is called “the evil dogs” that bark and don’t allow people to do their work correctly. At the same time, they urge us to start doing at least something.

Without the negative, there is no positive. This explains why at the time of the Second Temple not all desires were fit to be used for purification purposes; rather, only the easiest parts. This situation promoted an aspiration to return to the level of the First Temple.

Since there is a general plan of development in accordance to which both Temples had to be destructed, nothing could be achieved. At this time, we are facing the construction of the Third Temple.

The Third Temple is the correction of the entire humanity when all egoism is brought to the altar, burned completely, and united around the Tabernacle of the Ark of the Covenant.

There are several circles in achieving the unity: the most central one—Cohens, a little less central and more external – Levites, then the people of Israel, and then the nations of the world. This division is defined not by somebody’s ethnic background, but by the strength of one’s aspiration to the center of unity after the final shattering and mixing of the common soul took place. Those with the strongest aspiration to unity are called “Cohens” (Priests), those whose desire to unite is a little weaker are called “Levites,” etc.
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From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 12/6/13

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 06.01.14

Preparation for the Lesson

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Workshop

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“The Book of Zohar” — Selected Excerpts, “On the Night of the Bride,” Item 138

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Writings of Baal HaSulam “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” Item 56

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Writings of Baal HaSulam “The Mutual Guarantee” 

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