Audio Version Of The Blog – 09.04.17

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The Opportunity To Choose Your Destiny, Part 1

laitman_760.2Question: At times, certain events occur in life that feel as if someone orchestrated them, and sometimes they seem like absurd accidents. In the East there is a concept of karma, and there is a proverb in Arabic saying: “What has been prescribed from above, one cannot escape.”

Is our destiny truly predetermined, like a movie that was filmed in advance, or is it possible to change it?

Answer: The entire script of life is already written in advance, but the person himself determines in what form it will come down on him. After all, man is given freewill, unlike inanimate matter, plants, and animals who are under the control of “blind fate,” namely the absolute higher governance on the part of nature.

Nature pushes everything in existence forward through the process of evolution according to Darwin’s theory or some other program. A human being, unlike everyone else, can take destiny into his own hands. If he does not do this, then he lives like animals under the full control of nature, unable to influence his fate in which everything is pre-assigned.

By instinctively reacting to all occurrences of one’s life, a person does not introduce anything new from himself. If we exhaustively studied all of our systems, psychology, physiology, and all our properties, then we could calculate our decisions and reactions to every situation in life.

It is like a machine whose behavior is known in advance. Therefore, it is not the machine that is in question here, but the external influences it receives, the forces acting on it. What happens to a person depends only on them and nothing depends on the person himself. This means that we cannot say that he defines his destiny. This is how 99.99% percent of humanity operates in this world.

Yet, there are people who are able to take fate into their own hands and react not instinctively from their ego and natural properties, but by rising above their nature and even working against it. This is a completely different behavior if compared to all other, ordinary people.

In other words, it is possible to exit this mechanical determinism. It is not simple, but it is possible, and not on account of the person himself, but with the help of a special force that exists in nature, which is called the Light that Reforms. This force starts to act on us when we want to rise above our nature, since within nature we are all robots operating inside a machine.

However, if we attract the special force to ourselves, which starts to develop us, we acquire an additional, higher nature of bestowal, unification, and love. It will be an addition to our personal qualities and the program of our lives. The program will change because the inputs have changed since I am asking for a new program and want to go along a new path in order to rise to the next level, the next degree of life.

I do not want to just drift along the instinctive current that carries me from the day of my birth until the day of death, but to go through my life in another way: to be under new governance and to react differently to it in order to reach different results. As a result, I escape my destiny and prior nature and transform myself into an active element of my new fate.
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From KabTV’s “A New Life” 7/25/17

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To Whom Do We Pray?

laitman_562.01Question: If the Creator does not exist in the sense interpreted by religions and we create Him, then to which Creator do we direct our prayers?

Answer: It is to the one that you create, to the one you are addressing.

Question: From Kabbalah, I hear that if you do not pray for what you need, you are harming yourself. Is this true?

Answer: Yes. On one hand, if you ask for something for yourself, you only harm yourself because you are demanding egoistic fulfillment. But on the other hand, you are corrected; everything is forgiven, like a little child.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 3/12/17

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Newsmax: “Maintaining Spirit of the People Key to Harvey Reconstruction“

Newsmax, with 12 million readers, published my new article “Maintaining Spirit of the People Key to Harvey Reconstruction“:

Even though I spent last weekend in Germany at a convention with my European students, I followed closely the unfolding catastrophe in Houston. The reports in the media and the stories I heard from my students out there were heartbreaking. This event is undoubtedly a trauma that will stay with people for years to come.

At the same time, I think that as a society, the worst thing that Texans can do for themselves is to assume a passive, victim attitude. The reconstruction should begin as soon as possible, and the first thing to reinforce is the people’s spirits.

Money can be recouped, property can be rebuilt, but no one can mend a broken spirit except for the people whose spirits were broken. I saw the reports of Houstonians rescuing each other from flooded homes, and this is exactly the right spirit. However, it is one thing to feel empathy for your neighbor during a crisis, and an entirely different thing to feel it on a day-to-day basis, yet this is what people really need.

Today’s American society is so fractured that even the worst flooding in U.S. history did not quench the divisiveness altogether. Kenneth Storey, for example, a substitute Tampa University professor, was fired after tweeting “hopefully this will help them [Texans] realize the GOP doesnt [sic] care about them,” adding that he is “only blaming those who support the GOP.” But I don’t believe that even one of the first responders, Cajun Navy volunteers, and countless other good Samaritans who plucked people out of flooded homes and submerged cars asked the stranded, desperate people for whom they voted before helping them to safety.

And yet, unless residents and authorities alike make a conscious effort to maintain this solidarity, it will vanish as soon as the water dries. Regrettably, it is not genuine unity, but instinctive empathy that emerges during crises. Had it been real, it would have been there prior to the storm, as well.

Glenn Thrush of The New York Times pointed out that Harvey offers President Trump “an opportunity to recapture some of the unifying power of his office.” It would be wonderful if Trump could focus on unity and solidarity, but I don’t think Houston residents should wait for anyone. Shelters are normally stressful places. Thousands of strangers huddling together for weeks with no privacy and with less than minimal facilities for maintaining civil life is hardly a recipe for happiness.

Yet, if used correctly, these conditions can form bonds that would not form under normal circumstances. If I were there, I would invite people to sit together in a circle, because a circle makes everyone equally important, and over coffee, I would suggest that we all share our most optimistic vision for a life after Harvey. Afterward, I would ask, “What would it take to accomplish these visions?” I have no doubt that with some mutual responsibility and care, most people’s visions are achievable. But without solidarity, these visions will be wishful thinking.

Our daily routines and everyday hardships make us forget a very important fact: We are all dependent on each other. Other people manufacture the food we eat, and other people employ us or we employ them so we can all support ourselves and our families. Our self-esteem depends on other people’s appreciation of us, and our mood depends to a great extent on the mood of the people around us. What we know is what we are told or shown, and what we think is intimately connected to what others around us think. In short, we are interdependent physically, economically, intellectually, and emotionally. Yet, how many of us feel that our connections with people around us are positive and constructive?

Apocalypses such as Harvey are game changers. They are opportunities to rethink everything and lift society to a completely new level of connection. The state of Texas can and should use the bane of the storm as a societal boon that will make Houston a role-model city in America.

My own students and friends are planning to go to the shelters as soon as conditions permit and engage with people to encourage them and help them connect with one another. If I could, I would go there myself and do the same. Since I cannot, I’m offering a free download of my book, “Completing the Circle,” containing connection games, ideas for conversations that help people connect, and lots more. If Texas lets this opportunity for change pass, it will make the next disaster even worse.

A couple of days ago, one of my students, whose family in Houston is still stranded, wrote me these positive words: “We are Texans! Texas can get thru [sic] anything; we just gotta keep on working hard & together.” Yes, togetherness is the key to all of our success now and always.
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My Thoughts On Twitter, 9/2/17

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Maintaining Spirit of the People Key to Harvey Reconstruction @newsmax #HurricaneHarveyRelief

From Twitter, 9/2/17

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How Can We Resemble The Creator?

laitman_255Question: Do I have to learn the Creator’s attributes if I want to resemble Him? What are those attributes?

Answer: The Creator’s attributes are love and bestowal and so we have to learn to love and to bestow.

I do not mean that we have to love and bestow like we do in our world where I choose whom I want to bestow unto and whom to love as long as it gives me pleasure. Rather, it is about love and bestowal in the spiritual sense.

This means that I ascend from inside myself without taking into account any desire, attribute, or intention that I have because I only have one goal: to fill the other with pleasure. The other refers to a total stranger who does not give me any pleasure in return (like my small child or a family member does).

I am absolutely indifferent to the other one. And even more, if he is indifferent to me, this is one thing, but if I hate him? Then this is an even more serious test. Then I must correct my hatred for love. There are two phases in our ascent and in resembling the Creator. The first is an ascent toward love and bestowal unto those whom I treat in an ordinary manner.

The second is an ascent toward “love thy enemies” as the greatest possible love. The first phase is called GE, or a state of smallness and the second phase is called AHP or a state of greatness of the soul.

Question: Is there an action of courage in spirituality?

Answer: I do not want to speak about specific attributes because then I would have to explain what courage, tranquility, humility, patience, rage, or domination mean in spirituality. All our attributes are essential in order to reach the resemblance of the Creator.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 4/2/17

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The Principle Of The Influence Of The Book Of Zohar

laitman_526Question: According to what I understand, reading The Book of Zohar without understanding its content is not a scientific approach; the Reforming Light is a new phenomenon that has not yet been discovered by science. How does the mechanism of the influence of the Light work?

Answer: I can say only one thing: modern science and higher modern science are not prepared to discover the principle according to which The Book of Zohar operates. It is truly an unscientific approach and I confirm this as a scientist.

Science in our world works within the five physical senses; therefore, it cannot be involved with what is found outside of them. We perceive only what enters into our senses, and what is outside of them is as if nothing exists for us. But there is a vast world that we are not aware of and don’t feel because we were created in such a way that we are not prepared to feel it.

The Book of Zohar is involved with expanding the absorption of our senses and makes it possible for us to perceive additional information that we call the upper world.

This is not science, I agree. I was also involved with science in my first professional biocybernetics, and so I understand what you are talking about.

But like The Book of Zohar, the wisdom of Kabbalah also says from the start that it is a different science. If in ordinary science we are involved in an attempt to discover the world around us, so the wisdom of Kabbalah opens inner abilities in us and we perceive the world around us more deeply and wider.

In other words, there is a science that determines the characteristics of a person within which are found what he perceives and investigates. And there is a science that is the wisdom of Kabbalah, which develops the characteristics of the person and investigates what is perceived in the extended characteristics.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 2/12/17

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New Life 871 – The Stages Of The Method Of Correction

New Life 871 – The Stages Of The Method Of Correction
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Tal Mandelbaum ben Moshe

Summary

Why is the recognition of evil an essential phase in the process of the correction of our desires? What are the means we can use in this process and what is the goal that we all aspire for? We have to change our internal attributes in order to change the picture of our reality.
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From KabTV’s “New Life 871–The Stages Of The Method Of Correction,” 6/22/17

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 09.04.17

Preparation for the Lesson

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Preparation for the Convention “All As One,” in Georgia, “Arvut

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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” Item 103

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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Peace in the World,” “Rewarded—I Will Hasten It, Not Rewarded—In Its Time”

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