What Would It Be Like To Live In A Perfect World?

perfectNo one has the slightest idea of what will happen to the economy a second from now. Experts create the most complicated models to try and predict the future based on past experience, but even the most precise statistic is just a slight distraction from the uncertainty that weighs down on us. More and more, the leading economic analysts conclude their articles with a hint: as long as the global markets are uncertain, we shouldn’t bet on the future.

What’s really the problem? Why don’t we know what will happen to the systems that we have created? Experts say: “The problem is a combination of too many factors.” However, there is a clearer explanation: the system can no longer continue working by the principle of the circular firing squad. Today, in the age of turbo-globalization, you can’t sneeze without the entire system vibrating back at you. Alan Greenspan, the head of the US Federal Reserve System said: “The main reason for what is happening is human nature, which does not fit the boundaries of the economic models.” He said this back in September 2007. He also admitted that using regulation to fight crises has never been effective.

The problem is not that the unpredictable human nature makes us act for the sake of our narrow personal interests. This is what happened in the past, but today the situation has changed dramatically: we have all become an integral system, one whole. This is why all the old methods aren’t helping us.

Life demands that we bring our nature to equivalence with the new reality. Instead of repeating old mistakes, let’s use successful, time-tested models as an example. There are many wonderful examples of integrality and true reciprocity.

For example, take the human body. It completely depends on the altruistic behavior of its cells. Each cell works for the benefit of the organism, keeping only what it needs to continue performing its function. In fact, we are speaking about a precise regularity: every natural system depends on the proper interaction of its parts. As soon as one cell starts harming the organism instead of benefiting it, the rest of the cells unite to help the organism and return the system to balance.

And we are no exception. Baal HaSulam – the great Kabbalist of the previous century – writes that we need to treat the laws of nature with caution: “Every person who breaks the laws of nature deviates from the goal that nature has set for him, and hence nature will punish him.” This brief description of the mechanism of the modern crisis was written over half a century ago.

There are no appeals in nature’s court. And we are far from following nature’s laws. We live by the motto: “Get rich, be bold – no matter at whose expense.” This is what our inner voice whispers to us, and we gladly obey it.

This is where the problem lies. Imagine what will happen if one cell suddenly “changes its mind” and starts caring only for itself. Doctors have a simple name for this: cancer. Hence, the present crisis is a symptom of an illness that needs treatment.

As soon as humanity became a single system, it immediately started being governed by the corresponding laws. We are no longer “forgiven” for the things that we could get away with before. Continuing to live the old way is like jumping off the roof of a skyscraper and hoping for the best. The rules of the game have changed: now, instead of using one another, we have to take care of everyone. And until we dare to do this, the crises will continue afflicting the planet.

There is an effective method that can help us to ease the process of changing – social opinion. Everything will become much easier when communication channels, the press, mass media, and the internet will explain to people that we are all part of one system where one individual’s loss is everyone’s loss, and everyone’s gain is the gain of every individual.

The way million of dollars are being poured into the economy today is like pumping a critically ill person with pain relievers. Instead, we must fundamentally change our very approach and replace the “I” that currently stands at the center of our worldview, with “the society.” However, this society won’t be a bubbling mass of separate elements, but a family.

Just imagine: everyone around you are your closest relatives. You sincerely wish for all of them to be happy and you help them all, and they feel the same way about you and help you. In addition, we receive all the assistance necessary to maintain such a lifestyle from the financial institutions. This way we attain balance between us and with nature. It’s because the laws operating in a loving family are the exact same laws that we are now breaking – the laws of a single, integral, and perfect system.
(Written by the Bnei Baruch publishing dept. manager).

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How Egoism Compares to Kabbalah

You Are Welcome to Help YourselfEgoistic religion: Nature and Science, the two most quoted science magazines, have published synoptic articles on the origin of religion (“The Origin and Evolution of Religious Prosociality” in Science, and “Religion: Bound to Believe?” in Nature). This topic became popular again after the release of Richard Dawkins’ book, The God Delusion. Dawkins supposes that the spread of computer and biological viruses is similar to the spread of religious ideas: that their spread is based on an egoistic mechanism, and this is why we are so susceptible to religious ideas.

Altruistic religion: Canadian psychologists Ara Norenzayan and Azim Shariff of the University of British Columbia went even further. In an article published in Science magazine they suppose that the value of religion must be tied to the stimulation of positive behavior and personal example, and with people’s egoistic need to constantly display their high moral qualities, trustworthiness and willingness to sacrifice their personal interests for the benefit of society.

Kabbalah: These ideas are surpassed by Kabbalah, which allows man to ascend entirely above his egoism and to make it “absolutely useful” to society, by giving everything and receiving only what is necessary in order to live and bestow. In this scenario the reward is not what one receives from society, but comes from the Creator – closeness with the Creator. This is what gives one the energy and inspiration to work wholeheartedly for the benefit of the society.

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Kabbalah: The Root of All Sciences

The Reshimot Surfacing Today Demand Spiritual Ascent of All HumanityTwo questions I received on Kabbalah as a science:

Question: On one hand it says that Kabbalah only talks about the Upper Worlds, but on the other hand it says that Kabbalah is a science about all of reality. If Kabbalah speaks only about spirituality and not about electrons and other such things, then it would be pointless to hold discussions with scientists, such as Dr. Jeffrey Satinover! After all, Kabbalah talks about the reality that is above matter, before it’s perceived within our senses.

My Answer: Kabbalah talks about the Upper World and the descent of the forces into our world. This is why it is the foundation of the sciences of our world. Recently scientists have begun to understand issues that border the two worlds. When these people – such as Dr. Jeffrey Satinover – receive a positive impression of Kabbalah, they then help us to popularize it.

Question: You are certain that Kabbalah is a science and that a Kabbalist attains it by conducting an inner research of the world. Is it possible that this research is actually the subjective science of a specific individual, who revealed it as a result of a specific path? Would it be correct to say that Kabbalah isn’t a science in and of itself, but only when a person realizes it in practice? What do you think of those who constantly study but don’t advance toward the truth in action? How does Kabbalah regard this?

My Answer: You lack the basic knowledge from the articles: “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” Kabbalah as a Root of All Sciences,” and “Preface to The Book of Zohar”. It’s impossible to explain all of this here. If you really want to know rather than to just negate, you’ll find the answers there.

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Advice to Students: Study, Connect, and Disseminate

adviceQuestions I received on the spiritual path:

Question: I have been studying Kabbalah for a pretty long time (4+ years) and have been doing dissemination from the very beginning. From my first lesson and to this day, whenever I am especially impressed by something in the lesson (or by news of some great dissemination going on), I feel a clear physical sensation that is unique and that I never feel in any other situation. It feels like a wave of energy (like electricity) is going through my body, and is sort of a nice feeling. However, it always leaves me puzzled – I don’t know if this is normal, what it means, and how to relate to it. I know that spirituality is not supposed to be reflected in corporeality and shouldn’t be confused with it, but I’ve wanted to ask you this for a long time. What does it mean, and how should I relate to it?

My Answer: Gradually, everything will reach balance. You just need to alternate studying with dissemination.

Question: Would you please elaborate on how to measure one’s efforts? I may think that I am exerting a lot of effort where others might look at me and say that I’m not. And in which area should the efforts be made: dissemination or study?

My Answer: If you are always thinking about spiritual advancement, this means that you are making the necessary efforts.

Question: How do you explain it when a person who wasn’t sleepy at all before the lesson starts falling asleep during the lesson?

My Answer: This happens because the material you study does not coincide with your spiritual or physical interests and desires.

Question: I am on the path of suffering, but I never part with the book Shamati in English. What else should I do to make sure that everything I’m going through won’t be a waste?

My Answer: Study, connect to others, and disseminate. In particular, during the period of suffering, or in other words, while you still haven’t evoked the Upper Light upon you, you should focus most of all on dissemination together with the friends.

Question: I have been studying Kabbalah for two years and I have already had several descents. Right now I am in a state of a descent, which started a week and a half ago. It brought me to an environment of people who are not interested in spirituality. Now my depression is telling me that I need to go back to studying. How can I live with this?

My Answer: This is the Creator’s way of pushing you towards Him, because the descents also come from Him. You need a group, a thorough reading of the Shamati materials, and constant studies with us. Otherwise you won’t make it!

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April 2005 Congress Intention Book – section, “Intention of the Group”

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What Is the Machsom?

By Developing One's Desires, Kabbalah Also Develops One's MindA question I received: What exactly is the Machsom? I wanted to find a precise definition in Talmud Eser Sefirot and other technical studies, but couldn’t manage to find it. In fact, this concept doesn’t seem to exist in any article or book by Baal HaSulam or Rabash. So, my questions are:

1. Is it a technical Kabbalistic term (like Masach, for instance)?
2. If it is, why don’t the greatest Kabbalists of our generation mention it?
3. If it is not, why do you use it, and can the Machsom be explained by another non-technical term?

My Answer: The Machsom is a word that Rabash often used during our private conversations. In his public talks he used it rarely, because he never talked about the practical crossing of the Machsom. There are rare instances when it is mentioned in the text. Here’s one such instance:

תשמ”ה – מאמר כ’ 1984/85 – מאמר 20

אנו צריכים לדעת, שיש שני מפריעים, שעומדים נגד האדם ולא נותנים לעבור את המחסום, להגיע לאהבת ה’, היות שהאדם נולד עם רצון לקבל לעצמו…

Rabash’s 20th article from 1984-1985:

We have to know that there are two obstructions standing before man, preventing him from crossing the Machsom and attaining love for the Creator, because man is born with the will to receive for himself…

I advise you to look for it in the texts on your own. I’m sure that there are other instances, although they are rare.

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