Entries in the 'Egoism' Category

Is It Possible To Avoid Suffering?

laitman_567.01Question: If we could experience the suffering that people experience during natural disasters or wars, would we have the possibility of choosing our path more correctly?

Answer: No, in this case, a person simply obeys and submits to blows; this is not choice. Nature is specifically interested in the conscious choice of the next level of development; otherwise, it is not human choice.

The transition from the still to the vegetative level and from the vegetative to the animate level happens under the influence of the blows of nature, and a person in our world is a result of that development.

Presently it is up to us to move consciously to the next level, the level of speaking in a completely different manner, and therefore, the method of the wisdom of Kabbalah comes to us in the form of a system of information. Because precisely after the developmental states of still, vegetative, and animate (where we are today), there is a conscious tendency in us to rise above the personal self.

We are in an intermediary state. For example, between the level of the still and the vegetative there is the intermediary stage called corals, between the level of the vegetative and the animate there is the level of the “dog of the field,” and between the level of the animate and Adam there is the level of the ape. So between the level of the Adam of our world and the level of the Adam in the upper world there is the Kabbalist.

A Kabbalist is a person who, on one hand, includes within himself the beastly properties of this world that are characteristic of a person in our world and, on the other hand, the characteristics of the next levels of the upper world.

The ascent of a Kabbalist to the upper world doesn’t happen under the influence of the instinctive forces of nature; it happens consciously. Therefore, the wisdom of Kabbalah teaches us about freedom of choice, work in a group, and how to create a special state within and around us for the purpose of being changed.

Apparently by ourselves, we take ourselves out of a state in which the ego manages us and we rise to the next level in which we balance the ego through the good force that is revealed in us opposite to the ego. In this way, we exist with two forces, both a negative egoistic force and a positive altruistic force.

In the nature of our world, the altruistic force doesn’t exist, so we must attract it. And then we exist in the connection, in the balance of these two forces. This will be our next state called the middle line.

I hope that we will consciously, using freewill, come to the right decision, and that we will reach this state without world wars.

Question: If we make the right choice, will we avoid an apocalypse and natural disasters?

Answer: Yes, this is so even if at least a small part of humanity will understand that the only way to prevent natural disasters is to follow the method that is given to us in the wisdom of Kabbalah. We need to recognize that there is no other way out.

Question: What is the reason for giving blows to humanity if this is not useful for development anyway?

Answer: The accumulation of suffering brings humanity to a state in which it, nevertheless, begins to think about what to do, meaning that the sufferings balance the human ego.

For example, if a child doesn’t want to go to school, his parents begin to limit his pleasures: They take away his ball, after that his bicycle, and so on until they don’t leave him any choice but to agree to go to school.

But even in this situation, freedom of choice exists, the possibility of choice remains. We are always found under some limitation; choice is possible not only when there is unlimited freedom.

This is the manner in which the possibility to choose spirituality, between reward and punishment, exists in us. Therefore, it is our obligation to understand all the conditions and circumstances that bring us to the unique situation called “freedom.”
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 7/10/16

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When Desires Disappear

laitman_565.01Question: What differentiates freedom in the spiritual world and the corporeal one?

Answer: Freedom in the corporeal world is freedom from all our egoistic necessities: food, sex, family, knowledge, power, and wealth. We see that more and more, man wishes to be free from these things.

Question: Is that possible? Can a person be free from the desire for sex, for food?

Answer: Food, sex, and family are three types of animate desires of the physical body. I see that today man is trying to free himself from them. Young people aren’t particularly interested in gourmet dishes, they’re satisfied with a quick hot-dog on the go and that’s all.

Sex is a relative notion for them. According to polls, many people don’t even want to burden themselves with it. Family has long ceased to be a necessity, something that society needs, and society even encourages this attitude.

The animate desires are followed by the human desires: wealth, power, fame, and knowledge. Young people are losing the desire for these things too, relatively speaking. Wealth comes and goes. And not only wealth, everything goes somewhere. Now we are undergoing a period of transition that will soon end, and a completely different value system will be presented to us.

Fame and power always go together, but they have long ceased to be the same thing that they once were with the great rulers. Regarding knowledge, science does not feel by any means that it is the summit of humanity’s ideals, of attainment.

Question: Then what remains?

Answer: Nothing. Values are being reassessed such that nothing from the past remains. The next stage is a search: Is there anything of value in our lives?

Our development unfolds at a rate and in a direction such that all the desires are starting to appear empty to us.

From our new level of development, we see that they are not important, that they do not fulfill us, there are no special qualities in them. Suppose I have a great meal and spend the night with someone. With whom? Anyone at all. All of this is losing meaning very quickly.

Remark: Many people think this way, “I want it, I just can’t get it…”

Answer: A person can get anything. But youth today do not want to waste their time attaining it; whereas, in the past, young people would give up their whole lives for it! Decades of hard work, studies, employment, savings, and everything else, for what?! Now they understand that there isn’t anything that is “worth it.”

Why should I study, work, get married, have kids, and create a family? In order to pass it all onto my children, and they will live the same way? And then what? There is no point to any of these actions. Today people are becoming convinced of that.

Question: Then what is the choice, how do I know that I am on the right path?

Answer: Kabbalah says that a person has to rise above these types of desires, the egoistic animate ones (food, sex, and family), and the human desires, which exist in us in addition to our animate degree (wealth, power, fame, and knowledge). When no desires remain and a person gradually becomes convinced that this is not what matters to him, he is faced with the question: What, then, is the meaning of life? What is it for? I do not want to be forced to be in these desires. Then why should I exist?

That’s when he faces the question about the next form of desire: Is there something higher than this? Is there an ideal that makes living worthwhile?
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 7/2/17

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On The Ashes Of Egoism

Laitman_109Question: The meaning of life is sought after by those who have lost interest in the pleasures that life offers. Do you gather around yourself those who are disappointed in what is offered to man as a gift from the Creator?

Answer: Such disenchanted people make up 70% of all of humanity today. People use drugs, sedatives, and sleeping pills; even pets are depressed, not to mention small children. Not only do we constantly feel depressed, but we have forgotten how to admire, rejoice, and accept everything with a smile.

Question: Do you want to lead the disappointed even farther away from earthly pleasures? Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to cure them from their lack of interest?

Answer: What could they be interested in? Our egoism is burned out. It does not exist anymore. If there had been interest in food, sex, family, knowledge, honors, fame, and wealth before, it is all slowly fading away today. Talk to the new generation under 30 and you will better understand this.

They just continue to live because it is necessary to exist, but they are generally neither interested in higher realms nor anything else. Even sex does not really excite them. They need very little from life in general.

We see that they are not planning to marry and they do not want to leave their parents. Buying a house is not worth it; it is not worth chasing after anything. I have my own corner and that is enough. This is a result of what they feel, that our world has nothing to offer them.

Question: But how can earthly egoism burn out if it is said, “One who has filled one measure wants two?”

Answer: The concept of “has filled one measure, wants two” refers to spiritual egoism; earthly egoism gradually fades. We observe this in all of life’s occasions. A person does not attain fulfillment. He or she is ready to experience anything, if only to feel fulfillment, even in battle or in death—no matter what—if only it could be genuinely great.

We are no longer fulfilled with the material pleasures of life; we are looking for something else.

Remark: But you always say that our whole history is the constant growth of egoism…

Response: Yes, until now, egoism was developing but now it has started to cave in and burn out. We are at a very serious point in history. If, in the past, a person ran after pleasures, one desire would end and he would immediately rush to the next. Now, the current generation does not want anything—give them a smartphone and that is enough.

According to statistics, this is happening all over the whole world.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 4/23/17

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Open The Books Of Wisdom

laitman_527_04Now, distinguished readers, this book lies here before you in a closet. It states explicitly all the wisdom of statesmanship and the behavior of private and public life that will exist at the end of days. It is the book of Kabbalah, where the corrected worlds are set. (Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Building the Future Society”)

Question: Why should Baal HaSulam, the great Kabbalist who wrote Talmud of Eser Sefirot and “Introduction to The Book of Zohar” deal with earthly problems? What’s the point?

Answer: This is not an earthly problem! There is a desire created by nature, the Creator. It must pass through certain stages of development. Now we are at a critical point that turns all our development from egoistic to altruistic. And this is what Baal HaSulam writes as an absolute practitioner.

Kabbalah is a practical science because it is realized in people who live in our time or lived in other generations.

Kabbalah is intended only for people who exist in our world, not for certain souls who after death revolve in some vast spaces on higher spiritual levels. All the higher spiritual levels exist in people. Therefore, Baal HaSulam writes for people. And the Kabbalist does not have a greater aspiration than to come to people and teach them to properly realize themselves in accordance with the laws of nature.

Question: Do you mean the people with a burning desire to discover the meaning of life?

Answer: Naturally. And the rest will simply not hear our plea. Their egoism is still at the animate level; they care only about their corporeal existence. This is neither bad and nor good. So there is no need to address them. They need to be given their minimal requirements, and they will be very happy to receive their universal income, computer, Internet, TV, and couch. They will have a free rations delivered to their home and even what they order themselves: pizza, cola, or a computer, everything. And they do not need anything else. Can you imagine such happiness?

Question: Isn’t that an illusion of happiness?

Answer: But everything they want is on the Internet from the sciences of our world to a striptease, a television series, and football.

So do not go to them. We need to wait until this stage of development is over because a person can be treated only in accordance to what he wants. After all, a person is a desire to enjoy.

But there are people who cannot stop at this. They have a “virus” inside them that does not let them be happy from being filled with material goods.

They need to reveal the ultimate power that governs them, the highest principle, the program of human development, and its purpose: For what do I exist? What is happening in my life? Why is it so? They are interested in connection with the governing force. It is to such people that you can appeal.
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From KabTV’s “The Last Generation” 5/15/17

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The Era Of Stress, Part 4

Laitman_051Question: The main thing in the cause of stress is the never-ending desire to receive. But is there something wrong with the desire itself, doesn’t it lie at the very basis of life? Without it, there would be no fulfillment in life.

Answer: What is wrong is not the desire itself, but the attempt to fulfill it at the expense of others. We are in a constant competition with each other throughout our entire lives, measuring our success relative to others.

We all exist in one system and there was a time when we were connected to such an extent that we felt ourselves as if we were one person. There were many people in the world, but egoism was so minimal that we felt no difference between us. That is how it was in primitive societies. Then the desire to receive began to grow and we began to make distinctions: this is my family, that is your family, and over there, that is his family.

Before that happened, people lived as one commune, as if under communism, where everything belongs to everyone equally, like in a tribe. But then we began to distance ourselves from this unity: here is my wife, my children, my cave. Distinctions and divisions started to be made with respect to professions as well, as it is written: “Go and earn from each other.”

Our egoism is growing non-stop. That is why competition began and we started judging who is more successful and who is less. This is how we have been advancing until the present day. But now competition has grown to worldwide proportions because mass media affects us by showing the entire world to us on our television and smartphone screens.

They obligate us to compete with the entire world, showing us how everyone is more successful than we are. It is not surprising that people are gripped by depression.

Question: You think that the desire to be first is bad? But it is responsible for making the individual strive to be successful.

Answer: It is a bad desire. The person needs peace and happiness, not outstanding achievement.

Stress means that the external influences on the individual’s egoistic desires are greater than he can bare, that although a person is driven to fulfill the desire to receive pleasure, he is still unable to easily achieve the goals that are set before him. The difference between the desire for pleasure and the ability to acquire fulfillment for it creates a stressful state.

It is obvious that an average person will never be able to acquire all that he sees in the media. We are constantly living in a state of low-grade, chronic stress due to all the potentials for pleasure that are shown to us on the screen: clothes, sports, beauty. This relates to women and men equally.

Stress affects us on many levels. Ultimately, we will reach disillusionment and we will see that the condition is hopeless; we will leave this race for pleasure and reassess our values. Eventually everyone will realize this. Then we will see that we need to take a different route and search for pleasure in a completely different place.

There we will also compete to receive fulfillment, but differently. The one who brings the biggest benefit to others will be considered more successful. Pleasure from bestowal to others is much greater than egoistic fulfillment and does not lead to any stress.
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From KabTV’s “A New Life” 7/27/17

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Laitman_198.jpgQuestion: We exist within an immense system of nature that constantly develops and grows the desire to receive pleasure within us, while also having a hidden goal of bringing us to complete despair. What specifically is the cause of this despair?

Answer: We come to despair as a result of our own nature—egoism, the desire to receive pleasure—because if our actions stem directly from this desire, then we drive ourselves to stress, complete hopelessness, global crises, and wars.

Human nature itself is bad because it constantly pushes us to achieve the unattainable. As a result, we all have to continuously compete with everyone else and this causes stress.

Question: Why are these goals unattainable?

Answer: Because egoism wants everything that the eyes see. And if everyone wants to get what they want, then each person has to build their success on the failure of others. It is impossible to do it otherwise.

Everyone wants to rise higher than others, to be the king of the world, for others to be his subordinates. But he is not the only one in the world; there are eight billion other egoists just like him, and each one wants the same thing. The result is that I constantly need to protect my place under the sun. This is what our lives have become.

Question: Does that mean stress was pre-programmed into the system of nature?

Answer: Our egoistic nature is the sole reason for all our misery and suffering. But if we were able to pacify our desire for pleasure… . But it is impossible to pacify it, other than perhaps through the use of narcotics. But then the person is completely disconnected from his life.

And so a question arises: Why is everything built in this way? And here the science of Kabbalah explains that stress has a cause: to bring a person to the awareness of the evil of his own nature, which only pushes him to seek pleasure. A person’s drive to receive pleasure has no limits; this desire would swallow the entire world. And if there were several worlds, then all those as well.

That is why we live in stress. Our abilities are limited, life is short, and there is nothing that will help.

In practice, we see that our egoism harms only ourselves; it is because of it that we are sick, that we die. We suffer terribly and it’s all for nothing. That’s why it is written that “a man’s foes shall be they of his own household,” in other words, in your own body. Egoism is within my body—and it is my greatest adversary.
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From KabTV’s “A New Life” 7/27/17

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The Law Of The World’s Management, Part 1

laitman_229All our reality is entirely subjected to law, and according to the wisdom of Kabbalah, is controlled by the only law of the upper force called nature. We also call this higher power the Creator because it indeed created the entire universe.

The nature of this force is to act solely for the benefit of its creations; that is, it is absolutely good. But if we don’t see it, this is only because we do not understand the Creator.

Kabbalists, that is, people investigating the upper nature, reveal its complete goodness. And even ordinary researchers of nature see that although everyone devours another one in it, it is all subject to special laws and ultimately benefits the general development of all created beings.

Modern science reveals that nature is global and integrated, and everything in it is absolutely interconnected. Nothing can come out of the framework of this integral system. Like in a healthy human body, all its cells and systems work in harmony preparing it for a higher goal that is above ordinary bodily existence. We find this law in all forms of nature and on all its levels.

It turns out that knowledge of these laws is the key to our successful existence. After all, if inanimate matter, plants, and animals act according to instincts, that is, they feel the orders of nature and perform them unconsciously, in humans, it is much more complicated.

We do not know how to act. Our instincts are not strong enough to guarantee our correct behavior while being guided only by them. And all this is because a human is a social being, and this is where all our difficulties emerge from. After all, in everything that relates to the social order, instincts no longer work. They are no longer regulated by nature.

Desires for food, sex, and family are more or less understandable and do not cause us problems. But in everything that concerns society, that is, in the desire for wealth, power, and knowledge, we are very much confused. Internal instincts do not tell us how to properly act in them.

Desires for food, sex, and family belong to the animal level, and therefore, we can rely on them in our natural instincts, which are also inherent as in all other animals.

But with respect to purely human desires, we have to find the right direction for our development; otherwise, both money and power, and knowledge turn out to be the cause of all our troubles. It is due to the profound development of our mind that we invent the weapons of our own destruction.

In all of his previous centuries old history, man developed instinctively, like an animal. Our egoism always pushed us forward and everything was quite simple. After all, development went in a natural way, step by step, from one formation to another: slavery, feudalism, capitalism, as egoism grew.

But today the time has come when our ego finished its development and ceased to be the engine of evolution. It seems to admit that it reached its top and there is nowhere else to go. Therefore, everything comes into the process of stagnation: science, production, young people not wanting to get married and have children. There is a general fatigue because inside a person feels that he does not have an answer to the main question: “What do I live for?”

After all, throughout all the past millennia we knew what direction we were developing toward and our egoism did not require more than possible. It had very real needs: a good family, a profession, children, and money and we developed according to these requirements. But today our desire to enjoy has stopped its linear growth, and that’s the problem.

In fact, this process began five hundred years ago, in the Ari’s time: the desire ceased to simply grow and it began to “wind up.” All parts of the desire relating to inanimate, vegetative, and animate nature have evolved to a certain level and must begin to unite in the correct form.

That is, now we need to get connected. If we connect correctly with each other, then we will achieve the property of bestowal, which is the property of the Creator, and therefore, we will reveal the common force of nature between us. This power is revealed precisely in the properly corrected connections between us.
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From the Convention “The Future Begins Here” In Europe, Day One 8/25/17, “The Laws of Guidance Over the World,” Lesson 1

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The World At The Crossroads, Part 7

laitman_431.02Baal HaSulam began to disseminate the wisdom of Kabbalah back in the 1920s, immediately after his arrival to the land of Israel. He hoped that this would save Europe from Nazism and World War II.

At that time, several other Kabbalists warned that it was urgently necessary to begin disseminating the wisdom of Kabbalah, otherwise humanity faced a catastrophe.

Even earlier, 500 years ago, the great Kabbalist the Ari announced that the world had entered “the era of Mashiach” (the final stage of correction). Therefore, it is clear that our duty is to spread the method of correction everywhere.

After all, it means that the fruit has fully ripened for correction and any delay in cutting it off and using it correctly leaves it to rot, which leads to terrible miasms and mutations in society.

The form of the fetus changes only with the correction of its core, that is, the external social system changes only in accordance with the egoism of society. If we start working on this egoism and do not allow it to grow freely, taking onmore and more sophisticated forms, then society itself will build the best external structure.

Question: Does it mean that we do not need to try changing the social structure for correction?

Answer: Of course not! We must start from the inside. Egoism embedded within, determines the social structure. When egoism changes, people rebel, destroy the old structure and create a new one. If we correct egoism, they will rise, break the outer shell of the obsolete system and build a new one, more kind, and suitable to the level of development of their egoism.

All the development of humanity was due to the growth of egoism. If we begin to ennoble this egoism with all sorts of corrections, then society will be corrected accordingly. This is the only way: from internal corrections to the external ones.

The correct social education should give an understanding that unity is salvation from destruction. The wisdom of Kabbalah provides a practical method for unification that can improve the existing social order and protect us from Nazism coming to power, which will inevitably lead to self-destruction.

For example, if Americans do not resist the growth of internal hatred now, they will destroy themselves without any external war. The Nazi regime will give rise to the hatred of everyone for everyone—blacks, whites, Arabs, and Latinos—and will divide everyone according to very clear criteria.

It will not be as blurry as it is now, between Democrats and Republicans. Everyone will be sorted according to color and race. The Americans will finish with their country, without external invaders. A small addition of hatred inside the country, and it explodes.
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From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/21/17, Lesson on the Topic: “Europe at a Crossroad”

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115.06Question: Why does Nazism and fascism inevitably lead to war, as we see from history?

Answer: It cannot be any other way! One can ask why can’t Nazism stay within its own country? However, if this unity is based on egoism, it inspires its leaders to subordinate someone else. Egoism laid the foundation of the fascist system and obliges people to fight. It is like a mafia!

Question: Democracy based on egoism also causes negative consequences, but why exactly does Nazism lead to war?

Answer: Nazism unites people and democracy does not. Liberalism lets each one do whatever he wants. Although this is also temporary at its final stage democracy leads to unity and in an egoistic form. Then egoism + unity creates a big force that requires its realization and wants to subordinate and conquer others.

This is a natural sequence of development of egoism: feudalism → capitalism → pseudo-socialism (democracy, liberalism) → Nazism. It cannot be in a different way because we must come to unification.

Suppose that in ten years most countries in the world are bound to achieve unification, each within itself. The development of egoism is such that it demands unification either by a natural way, which is Nazism, or by the way of the Light, which means building the society of the future based on mutual bestowal.

One way or another, there must be unification. On the axis of development of humanity, marks have already been set, and of course[v10] , they are different for each country and each nation. However, if this is about developed (egoistically) countries, then they are given a certain period during which they must achieve internal cohesion—either through egoism or above it.

The basis of any society is egoism, around which, like around a fruit’s stone, an external social order is dressed: feudalism, capitalism, socialism, or Nazism. The external form is the result of the internal development of egoism and it changes together with it.

In the beginning, it corresponds to its core, but egoism continues to ripen. Therefore, at some point in time, the external form must change in order to correspond to the new form of the inner core.

We do not feel how the egoism hidden within us changes and what forms it undergoes. We notice only the external manifestations in society, like a child who suddenly learns to talk or to do something new because he has developed internally.

Common inner egoism develops, and therefore, the external form of society must change in accordance with it. Any social system is a direct consequence of the form of egoism concealed within it. If we correct the egoism, then obviously, the external form of society will change along with it. Having received the method of correction, society itself will build new social relations due to the changes in the egoism.

Therefore, it is useless to try to build socialism, communism, Nazism, capitalism, and so on. Instead, it is necessary to work on correcting the egoism inherent in people and then they themselves will build a society that is suitable for their internal qualities.

In the meantime, while the external form does not correspond to the inner core, wars and revolutions will continue. This is how it works; the inner egoism of society determines its external form and its social order.
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From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/21/17, Lesson on the Topic: “Europe at a Crossroad”

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115.06Beginning with the very first shattering—the so-called sin of Adam, “the first man,” which was planned in advance—humanity gradually began to realize that the reason for all its troubles was the separation caused by human egoism.

Although egoism was relatively small then, it still took a long time prior to Abraham’s arrival before they began to unite to overcome the crisis that had erupted in Ancient Babylon.

The broken ego that had divided the people showed them how destructive separation was and that there was no other solution besides uniting.

After Abraham had revealed that unification is the path of correction and had begun to explain it to the others, those who understood him formed a group, which was later called the people of Israel, which means directly to the Creator, or Yashar El. This group held on to unity as the only means of achieving salvation for the entire human race and, in general, for all of creation.

It took a lot of time—from the first man Adam all the way to Abraham—before humanity was ready to learn that unity is salvation. At first, the connection was natural and all the people lived together as one. But then suddenly separation began to develop and they felt how destructive it was.

They were able to compare how much better it had been living with the natural connection that had existed between them while egoism was still relatively small and the great state of egoism that led to many problems such as separation and arguments. It all ended in ruin. Therefore, they agreed to work for unity so that “love covered all crimes.”

However, it needs to be clear that the crimes being committed were small then and egoism was small too, so it was not as difficult for them to unite as it is today. But at that time, they already understood that there are two ways to the final unification, which humanity must eventually achieve.

After all, this is the purpose of creation, pre-programmed in the original design. But you can come to it in two ways: by the Light or through suffering. They had managed to understand this back then and had begun to implement Abraham’s method.

It is clear to everyone that egoism spoils our lives and that we need to do something about it. Every nation has its own way. There are methods of reducing egoism through special education as well as all kinds of oriental practices such as Confucianism and morality-based traditions. Religions also urge man to be humble and calm and they try to tame egoism by promising him heaven or hell.

All these methods worked for a while but, in the end, people are leaving religion. Egoism grows so fast that morality and religion are no longer able to restrain it. And the method of Abraham is a general method of correcting egoism, directed not at its destruction, but at its correct use. This method belongs to everyone, as Abraham said, “Who is for the Creator, come to me!”

That is, we need to unite and within this connection we will reveal the upper force that will support us and lead us forward, returning us to the purpose of creation and its foundations. This is a very special method that is only realized if people are ready for it. And, at the end of our development, everyone will be ready for it.
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From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/21/17, Lesson on the Topic: “Europe at a Crossroad”

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