The Only Thing That Can Justify Getting a Divorce

The Only Thing That Justifies Getting a DivorceA question I received: A few months ago I started studying Kabbalah with the Ari Online classes for beginners. I am proud to say I have already watched twenty two lessons! I’m now beginning to understand that I need a group and a teacher in order to gain a better perception of the study material (I already have the books). The problem is that my wife is opposed to my studies, and our relationship is very uneasy at the moment, although I am doing everything I can to save our marriage. I have registered for the Congress that will be held in the United Kingdom from the 7th to the 9th of November, but my wife is absolutely against me going. She believes that family bonds are much more important than my studies, or my “hobby,” as she likes to call it. What should I do? How can I explain to her that I need to study Kabbalah and attend the Congress?

My Answer: If she sees that you love her, but you also have something else that’s important to you in this life, then she has to come to terms with it and accept it with love. If she doesn’t, then what kind of a friend and companion is she, if she egoistically wants to dominate over your entire life? It is written, “A man can sacrifice everything in this world, except his soul,” because one’s soul belongs to the Creator, and he is obligated to return it to Him (to grow close and adhere to Him through equivalence of form). This is the only case when a man would be justified in getting a divorce – if staying married will mean that he has to live in this world in vain.

Test yourself and the Creator, for He is one, and everything comes from Him. If you are serious about the path you have chosen (and I emphatically stress this point) and are willing to leave your wife for it, and if you have explained it to her and she still doesn’t concede, then she’s not the right life partner for you.

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The Book of Zohar. Chapter “The Letters by Rabbi Amnon Saba”

The Book of ZoharThe Book of Zohar. Chapter “The Letters by Rabbi Amnon Saba” (abridged)

Letters (forces and properties that the Creator governs) come to the Creator (reveal themselves). Each letter (property) tries to prove that it is the most fitting to achieving the goal of creation (merging with the Creator). But the Creator replies (reveals) to each letter its deficiency (its corresponding impure, egoistic force, which impedes the analysis of man’s properties and their correction).

22. Rabbi Amnon Saba said: “When the Creator thought to create the world (the system of governance of the souls), all of the letters (properties of the future creation – man) were still concealed.

The Letter Tav
23. All the letters of the alphabet (the forces that govern the world) began approaching the Creator in reverse order (because this is the order of the souls’ ascent from below upwards). The last letter of the alphabet, Tav, entered first and said, “Master of the world! It is good, and also seemly of You, to create the world with me, with my properties, for the word EmeT (truth), which is Your property, ends with the letter Tav. That is why it is fitting to begin the universe with me.” But the Creator answered that it also ends the word MaveT (death), because before the end of correction the world cannot stand on truth alone, but on its connection to other properties.

The Letter Shin
24. The letter Shin appeared before the Creator and said: “Maker of the world, it befits the world to be created with me, for Your own name Shadday begins with me.” The Creator replied: “You are fine, handsome, and truthful, but since the letters (properties) of the word Sheker (falsehood) took you to be with them, I cannot create the world with your properties.

The Letters Kuf and Reish
25. From the aforesaid, it follows that whoever wishes to tell a lie will succeed if he first tells the truth as a base on which the lie will then grow and start to act. And so it is in the word Sheker: although the letter Shin is a letter of truth, the other letters – K and R – are falsehood.

The Letter Tzadik
26. The letter Tzadik appeared before the Creator and said: “Master of the world, You should create the world with me, for Tzadikim (the righteous) are marked by me. And You are called a Tzadik (righteous one).” But the Creator replied, “But the impure, egoistic forces cling to you.”

The Letter Peh
27. The letter Peh entered and said: “Master of the world, it would be good to create the world with me, for the future liberation of the world is inscribed in me, as the word Pedut (liberation, redemption from egoism, from evil) begins with me. The Creator answered her: “Though you are fine, the word Peshah (transgression) begins with you and is secretly denoted by you, like a serpent that strikes and hides its head in its body (such is the shape of the letter Peh). So a sinner bows his head, hiding from others’ eyes, but stretches out his hands to sin.

The Letter Ayin
And the Creator also said to the letter Ayin that it would be unfitting to create the world with its properties, for within it lies the property of Avon (crime, sin), although Ayin tried to object, saying that its properties are contained in the word Anavah (humility).

The Letter Samech
28. The letter Samech appeared before the Creator and said: “Creator of the world, it would be good to create the world with my properties, for within me is Smicha (support) for the fallen, as it is written: ‘The Creator supports (Somech) all who fall.’” The Creator replied: “That is why you are needed in your place; do not move from it.” In other words, you must only act as support for the fallen.

The Letter Nun
29. The letter Nun entered and said to the Creator: “It would be good for You to create the world with me, for Norah Tehilot (great praises) is written with me. The Creator replied: “Return to your place, for you are the reason that the letter Samech returned to its place. And rely on it for support. For the letter Nun exists in the word Nefilah (fall), which must be corrected by the letter Samech. This is the reason why it needed to return to its place – so as to strengthen the lower ones, instead of being the basis of the world.

The Letter Mem
30. The letter Mem entered and said: “Master of the world, it would be good for You to create the world by me, for You – Melech (King) are called by me.” The Creator replied: “That is so, but I shall not create the world by you, for the world needs a King. Also, for the same reason I shall not create the world with the letters Lamed and Chaf that form the word MeLeCH.”

The Letter Chaf
31. The letter Chaf descended from the Kisseh: “Creator of the world, with my properties I merit to become the basis of the world, for I am Kavod – Your Glory.” The Creator answered: “I will not create the world by you, for your properties exist in the word Kelayah (destruction) and in the word Kalah (bride).”

The Letter Yod
32. The letter Yod entered and said: “Maker of the world! It would be good to create the world by me, for Your Holy name HaVaYaH begins with me.” The Creator replied: “It is sufficient that you are inscribed in My Name, in Me, and all of your aspirations are to Me, and you should not be uprooted from it all.”

The Letter Tet
33. The letter Tet entered and said: “Maker of the world, it would be good to create the world with me, for it is by me that You are called Tov (Good).” The Creator replied: “I will not create the world by you, for your goodness is concealed from the world. Your goodness has no part in the world that I wish to create, and will only be revealed in the world to come. And since your goodness is concealed within you, the letter Chet is opposite from you, and when you join together, the word CHeT (sin) is formed. This is why these two letters are not recorded in the names of the holy tribes.”

The Letter Zayin
34. The letter Zayin entered and said: “Maker of the world, it would be good to create the world by me, as Shabbat is preserved with me, for it is written: ‘Remember (Zachor) the day of Shabbat, so as to keep it.’” The Creator replied: “But weaponry (Klei Zayin) is made by you.” Having heard that, the letter Zayin left Him.

The Letters Vav and Hey
35. The letter Vav entered and said: “It would be good to create the world with me, for I am a letter from Your Name HaVaYaH (YodHeyVavHey).” The Creator replied: “Vav, both you and the letter Hey should be content to be contained within My Name. This is why I will not create the world with your properties.”

The Letters Dalet and Gimel
36. The letters Dalet and Gimel appeared before the Creator. However, the Creator told them right away: “Both of you help Dalim – the poor, and for as long as they exist on earth, there is a need for Gomel Hesed – to treat them with mercy.” Therefore, you cannot part, and it is enough for you to aid one another in this way.

The Letter Bet
37. The letter Bet entered and said to the Creator: “Maker of the world, it would be good to create the world by me, as by me You are blessed. For Bet is Berachah (blessing).” The Creator replied to Bet: “Of course, I will create the world by you, and you shall be the basis of the world!”

The Letter Aleph
38. The letter Aleph stood outside and did not enter to appear before the Creator. The Creator said to it: “Why do you not come to me like all the other letters?” Aleph replied: “Because I saw all the letters leaving your presence without the desired answer. And besides, I saw You giving this answer to the letter Bet. And You cannot take back his gift and give it to me!” The Creator replied: “Although I will create the world by the letter Bet, it is you who will stand at the head of all the letters, and all of My Unity shall be through you alone.”

39. The Creator made the Upper Letters, which refer to the Bina, large, and the lower letters that refer to Malchut – small. Therefore it is said: “Beresheet Barah” (in the beginning He created) – two words that begin with Bet, and then Elokim Et (the Creator Himself) – two words that begin with Aleph. The first set of Aleph and Bet are letters of Bina, and the second set of Aleph and Bet are letters of Malchut. And they mutually affect one another with their properties.

The Letters by Rabbi Amnon Saba” – full commentary

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Hello from the Black Sea Resorts – 2

Hello from the Black Sea - 2Here’s a letter I received from my student about the newspaper dissemination event at the Black Sea:

Dear Rav,

I just got back from Sochi where I participated in the dissemination of our newspaper Kabbalah Today. I’d like to tell you about my impressions from talking to people while giving out newspapers. As you extend your hand to give someone a newspaper, people already know you and say things like: “Give me one, I want to read it,” “We already know Kabbalah,” “Thanks, but we already have a copy,” “We already read it yesterday.” You suddenly realize that most people you see already know about Kabbalah, have read our newspapers, accept and agree with it, are interested in it, perhaps they don’t understand everything because of the complexity, but they support it and recommend it to others. And you suddenly find that you’re surrounded by a society where everyone knows about Kabbalah!

Here are some more responses I got: “Give me three copies, because I had to give mine to a friend,” “Where can we buy your books?” “Do you have other books, because we already read this one?” “What do I need a newspaper for? I’m reading the books,” “When is the next issue coming out? We’ve already read this one.” One woman told a group of teenagers who were walking past our newspaper, “Take a copy, read it!”

One time I saw two men with our newspapers looking for somewhere to sit down. I thought to myself, “What a shame! They’ll use the newspapers as something to sit on,” but no – they sat down, read for a while, then carefully folded their newspapers and put them in their pockets. Another time I saw a boy of about fourteen years old walking down the street and reading, with his eyes glued to the newspaper even as he was walking. I saw all kinds of people – white, gray, black, dressed or half-naked, with long hair or with no hair at all, wearing crosses and covered in tattoos – and they all opened up the newspaper, read it, and then carefully folded it back up and took it with them wherever they went!

After a day of giving out newspapers, I walked along the boardwalk to gather up any copies that people may have thrown out. But out of 1500 newspaper that I gave out, the number of copies I found lying around didn’t even come up to ten, and five of those were carefully folded up and placed somewhere where others could find them. Then I looked at the beach and – wow! Almost every person had our newspaper!

The strange thing is that when you start disseminating (at 7:30AM), you keep looking at your watch to check how much time is left, but at the end of the day (11:30PM), despite the scorching hot sun that beat down on you all day, you feel like you don’t even want to leave.

One of the guys who was with us, Kolya, managed to make a few rounds every shift, checking up on all of us, taking pictures, giving moral support, bringing us cold drinks, and cooling us down with an ice cream cone!

And don’t forget that all of this is happening right by the sea. After a day of dissemination, we jump into the water. The impressions are simply beautiful – the water here is crystal clear, warm and not very salty…

I was there for a week, but felt that it was too short. It was so difficult to leave. In fact, it’s even easier to leave a congress. On the way there I drove from Moscow making three stops to rest, and the trip just dragged on and on. The trip back was a breeze – I was so excited that I drove for 25 hours straight, only stopping for gas a few times, and didn’t even think about sleeping!

But the most important thing is that this dissemination event probably won’t happen again next year, because there will be new events waiting for us! So this is a once in a lifetime chance that every person has for himself and for the GROUP! It’s only here right now! I’m grateful to the Creator and the Group for giving me the strength to rise above all the obstacles, and for giving me such a priceless gift – a chance to participate, to go through this, and to be a part of it!

P.S. Right now this dissemination event is at its halfway point – it will still keep going for the rest of August and all of September. Everyone who was able to has already been there. But it’s still too early to relax! We have to put everything we have into this until the very last day! The team is replaced by new people every 7-10 days, and then everything happens again like it’s the first time! The vacationers who still have to receive our newspapers are only now booking their tickets.

So let’s keep up the pace!

L’Chaim Gelenzhik – Sochi – Crimea!

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Photo album of dissemination efforts in Sochi

Is Atheism Compatible With Kabbalah?

Is Atheism Compatible With Kabbalah?A question I received: I have been very curious about this for a long time. We say that Kabbalah is not religion, or does not require a particular belief system, yet atheism is now considered a religion among many and it is one of the fastest growing, though that may be a contradiction in terms, as many consider religion a system of belief in God. In any case, we have said Kabbalah study is secular, so my question is – can an atheist be a Kabbalist, or does Kabbalah require a belief in God? After all, in Kabbalah the idea is to become like the Creator.

My Answer: Kabbalah differs from “everything else” (religion or not) in that it facilitates a clear attainment of the Creator, so that you will feel Him like you feel a friend of yours, and even more. Hence there is no room in Kabbalah for belief in something others have told to you. Rather, you have to attain yourself, the entire world, and all the souls, and inside them – the Creator in His entirety.

Atheism is a belief that the Creator does not exist, whereas religion is a belief that the Creator does exist. In contrast, Kabbalah is the revelation of the Creator, through researching Nature inside yourself or inside your perceptions.

In this regard, Kabbalah is similar to other sciences. However, the other sciences reveal the world within the senses that we already have, whereas Kabbalah does it in an additional sense – the soul, which you first have to develop inside you. In any case, just like any other science Kabbalah speaks only about the things that are present in one’s senses! It is not interested in anything that’s imperceptible and that cannot be researched, repeated, and tested, and considers these things unreal. This approach makes it a science by definition. See the definition of Kabbalah in Baal HaSulam’s article “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah” – “Kabbalah is the method of revealing the Creator to man in our world” – to every person and to everyone together.

Like all sciences, Kabbalah uses the scientific method or instrument (even though scientists find it difficult to agree with this because they are used to researching the world only through the animate body). The scientific method assumes that:

  • Every scientific statement must be proven by experiment.
  • Every scientific statement can be proven wrong.
  • It is pointless to discuss an idea that cannot be verified in practice. For example, here is a scientific opinion about G-d’s existence: Immanuel Kant showed that it cannot be proven that G-d exists as well as that He does not. The very notion of an unattainable and almighty G-d is not subject to experiment, because if G-d is almighty, then he’s able to control the outcome of the experiment. People don’t accept G-d through evidence, but through faith. Hence, the idea of G-d is beyond science. Any question that asks “Why is so and so this way?” can be answered, “Because it’s G-d’s will.” (This is how religion compelled people to answer all questions, and therefore it slowed down scientific progress.) Kabbalah allows one to reveal the Creator and His actions in practice. However, it is just as indifferent to the things that cannot be verified in practice as the earthly sciences.
  • Every scientific statement must be logical and not contradict the laws that are already known. Usually, the old laws become particular cases of the new laws.
  • Every scientific statement must indicate its “weak spots”; it should mention which of it constituents are subject to doubt and objection.

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Children, Souls, and the Point In the Heart

Dr. Michael LaitmanFour questions I received on children and Kabbalah:

Question: My children are six, five, and four years old, and they all love Kabbalistic graphs and charts. I draw these graphs for them on А4 printer paper with colored markers, and explain to them what it means in simple words, relying on material from the books Kabbalah Revealed and Kabbalah for Beginners. Maybe we could create a colorful children’s book with charts and graphs that includes simple explanations? Maybe we can even create a coloring book where children will have to use different color crayons to draw the Kli, the Light, the screen, and so on?

My Answer: I warmly welcome these ideas, and can’t wait to see the books!

Question: Do all Bnei Baruch children really have a point in the heart?

My Answer: No, not all of them.

Question: Then should they be studying the wisdom of Kabbalah?

My Answer: Yes, because it will help them avoid the long path of suffering.

Question: Are all the problems and misunderstandings that I have with my children caused by the fact that I only see the opposite side of their souls? What I mean is that their souls have “passed” through me, and now I see their AHP, but not their GE?

My Answer: You are only connected with your children on the animate level, and not on the spiritual level.

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Buy this book: Kabbalah For Beginners
Buy this book: Kabbalah Revealed: The Ordinary Person’s Guide To A More Peaceful Life