A Scale For Measuring Spiritual Concepts

newworld Our work is to rise above assessment by the principle of “sweet versus bitter” to assessment by the principle of “truth versus false.” After all, the Creator is called Truth.

The word “truth” (Emet) consists of the letters: Alef-Mem-Tav. Alef and Tav are the first and last letters of the alphabet, symbolizing desires on two different ends of the spectrum. Mem, which is in the middle, is the quality of Bina, which we can use to connect these two ends and reach correction, the Truth.

The only way to find out what is true and what is false is within a group of Kabbalists, an environment. Inside oneself, an individual doesn’t have any ability to do this, since he possesses only one parameter – the ego. In order to perform a measurement, one absolutely needs another parameter, which is outside of him.

After studying for a long time and performing many clarifications in the group, a beginner Kabbalist begins to feel that he exists in a general, global system of desires, among other “points in the heart.” In relation to this particular environment, he has an opportunity to acquire new sensuous concepts: drawing closer to or further away from it, a feeling of its global system, his inclusion in it, the need for its support, and a realization that it is the place where he will reveal the Upper World and the Creator.

However, in the meantime, the interaction of two forces – myself and the environment, is formed inside me. The environment will increase in weight in order to counteract my “I” – the ego. A new system of governance will arise, which will be outside of me, and which I will begin to consider and see as the salvation, the lever that can pull me out of my state – this world.

I measure “myself versus the environment,” and as a result of my measurements, I acquire quantitative and qualitative degrees of measuring spiritual relationships and forces. I thus build a linear scale: I am on one end, and the group is on the other. Using this scale, I can already examine, measure, and depict the Upper World.

From the relationship of “myself and the group,” a spiritual cell forms in me, and I can measure all of reality above me through that cell. That is how I build a soul inside myself.

The Method Of Climbing Up The Spiritual Ladder

method Everything occurred in the four stages of expansion of Direct Light, in the initial HaVaYaH, as it is written, “I did not change My HaVaYaH.” This is the model that contains all the forces, desires, and Lights, and from there onwards, there is a development of a ladder of degrees, worlds, concealments, Partzufim, and Sefirot, with all the inanimate, vegetative, animate, and human levels.

The whole revelation of this HaVaYaH occurs only in the sensations of the created being inside itself, in its attainment of itself. Every degree of development and revelation of the HaVaYaH, of a continuously greater perception of the self, has the same details as the initial HaVaYaH that is in the Malchut of Infinity.

The difference between the levels is only the “coarseness” of matter, which becomes less and less spiritual as it descends. However, to the same extent, it also becomes more and more perceived by itself.

The levels draw further away from the Light, since the desire to enjoy becomes more and more revealed, until it reaches the lowest degree – our world. However, all the worlds, all the degrees from Malchut of Infinity to our world, contain the same details without exception, which are connected with each other and exist one beneath the other. This is why we have an opportunity to rise from our state to a higher one.

The lower level is incapable of understanding the Upper Level until reaching its level. (Incidentally, that is why we shouldn’t judge other until we are in their shoes; each person judges others according to his own egoism). However, when we aspire to become similar to the Upper One and imagine him, we are like children who strive to become adults, and that us how we rouse Ohr Makif (the Light of Correction) upon us, which reveals the Upper Degree to us.

Therefore, when we imagine ourselves to be more bestowing than we are in actuality, we thereby rouse the Light of a higher degree on ourselves. We cause a higher degree to draw us closer to itself and to raise us to its level.

All the degrees exist parallel and simultaneously, and their nature differs only in regard to matter, the intention of bestowal. Because of this, we always have an opportunity to rise to higher degrees. That is the whole method of revealing the Creator – the science of Kabbalah.

The Book Of Zohar Lesson And Selections – 11.15.09

The Book of Zohar Virtual Lesson, Lesson 2
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Selections from The Book of Zohar
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Searching For Hidden Connections Within The Book Of Zohar

Laitman_2009-11-06_Zohar_tv_8214_wA question I received: You explained that while reading The Book of Zohar, I must find forces described in it within myself. However, how can I do this if I do not know what “maid,” “lady of the house,” “wife,” “man,” and other words mean in the spiritual sense.

My Answer: We start with simple meanings of words known to us from our corporeal world. While The Book of Zohar is concealed from us, it can still become a spiritual teacher for each of us. Everyone is able to envision basic material images and actions by using our preexisting understanding of those concepts. Meanwhile, The Book of Zohar elevates us above corporeality and pulls us into the spiritual realm.

We are unable to understand the connections made between the Upper World and our material plane that were created by the authors of The Zohar – Rabbi Shimon and his disciples. They were able to create a connection between the two worlds, and our role is to see the Upper World through concepts that we already understand. However, we must make a great effort for that to happen – to start seeing the spiritual forces behind the common words that belong to this world.

This is what we call a “miracle” (Segula). We don’t know how the system works to connect us to the Upper World and we don’t understand the connection between what we imagine and the actual spiritual meanings of what we read.

Question cont’d: Should I be looking for that connection myself?

My Answer: You should be looking for your true state of being and trying hard to sense the Upper World, like a child trying to become an adult. Play this game according to the rules that are given to you by the Kabbalists – and you’ll succeed!

Although we visualize images in The Book of Zohar as material things and are unable to free ourselves from those associations, we are also unable to understand what those images mean in the spiritual world. However, our effort to understand will eventually lead us to be able to sense spirituality.

The authors of The Book of Zohar created a system for connecting with us on a material plane that transforms our “child like” efforts into a true state of being. This is what makes The Book of Zohar so great and unique.

(From the TV program, “Opening the Zohar,” November 6, 2009)

The Evil Inclination Is Not What You Think It Is

connect Until I discover the evil within me, there is nothing for me to correct. However, the real evil inclination has nothing to do with the notorious vices – the desires to steal, lie, kill, and whatever else you can think of. None of them pertain to the evil inclination.

There was a time when we were one soul, united “Cogwheels,” but we then became broken and separated. This separation, the hatred for others is the real evil. The evil inclination is my lack of desire to unite with others in one heart and my unwillingness to love my friend as myself. This is the evil that must be discovered and corrected. It’s not easy to correct the evil!

The Light that returns to the Source must work me over good before I can begin to feel within me, the evil inclination that Kabbalah speaks of. However, once I do feel it to its fullest extent, I will immediately demand correction.

At first I expose and correct the “rupture” between myself and the group, and to the degree that I acquire the quality of bestowal, I overcome the rupture with the Creator. By aspiring to love my friends (their aspiration toward the Creator, their points in the heart) in spite of the evil within me, I reveal just how deeply I am immersed in self-love.

When the problem is brought to light, solving it isn’t difficult – I ask for the Light, and it corrects me.

5 Minutes Of Light From The Daily Lesson: The Power Of The Environment

Moments From The Daily Lesson: Analog

Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 11.15.09

Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson
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Writings of Baal Sulam, Letter 41, 1927, pg 125
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“Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” Item 25, Lesson 10

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“The Wisdom of Kabbalah and Its Essence,” Lesson 10
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A Desire Develops After We Receive A Taste Of It

It All Comes Back to YouA question I received: In the posting, “Use Each Instant Of Your Life To Move Aheadת” you wrote that a person must demand an award from the Creator for each of his deeds in order to accelerate revelation of the Upper World. But how can I develop this demand if I don’t have it?

My Answer: No one initially has the desire for the Upper World because the Upper World is opposite to us and therefore we cannot feel it. A desire develops only after we “taste” something and then lose that sensation. We then feel the need to run after it. Intensity of this aspiration for the desirable is called a desire (passion).

In Kabbalah this law of development of desire is formulated as “The expansion and disappearance of Light.” This is what creates a desire for it.

So the most important question is: How do we draw the influence of the Light upon us? The answer is: Through the environment – the teacher, the books, and the group.

Related Material:
Laitman.com Post: Preparing Yourself To Approach The Creator
Laitman.com Post: The Creator Speaks To Us In The Language of Sensations
Laitman.com Post: Disturbances Are The Problem – The Group Provides The Solution
Laitman.com Post:We Have The Right To Make A Demand Of The Creator
Baal HaSulam Article: “Disclosing a Portion, Covering Two”
Video: What Do You Get From Kabbalistic Books? (5:24)