The "Bread Of Affliction"

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “VaYetze (And Jacob Went Out) – Part 2,” Item 219: When the Creator wished to bring them closer to Him, He gave them the degree of bread of affliction. The bread of affliction is King David, of whom it is written, “For I am afflicted and needy.”

King David is the Nukva. When she receives the illumination of the left from Bina, she is at the same level as ZA, the fourth leg of the throne, Bina. At that time, the Nukva is attached to Bina and does not mate with ZA, her husband. Hence, she is poor and without light, and she is called “the bread of affliction,” since the Hochma does not shine without Hassadim. At that time, it is written, “For I am afflicted and needy.” And this degree of the Nukva is her first degree.

It would seem that abundance exists in the Light of Hochma. However, what good does it do you if you can’t use it? Without clothing it in the Light of Hassadim, it only brings you darkness. It is preferable not to have the Light of Hochma before you receive the Light of Hassadim. All of your abundance reveals itself within the Light of Hochma to the extent that the Light of Hassadim is present.

Hence, abundance is measured only by the degree of the Light of Hassadim in the spiritual vessel (Kli). Hochma can shine only to the extent of the presence of Hassadim. This explains why “the bread of affliction” implies that you already have the Light of Hochma, but still lack the possibility of its revelation since you are in need of the Light of Hassadim, that is, you experience the absence of bestowal and love.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/30/10, The Zohar

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Spiritual Assembly Line

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Worlds of ABYA, through which we ascend upward like a ladder, emerge in a manner that the upper spiritual object (Partzuf) selects the “lightest” (those least damaged during the breaking) Reshimot (informational records). The upper Partzuf thereby corrects these Reshimot, giving birth to the next lower spiritual object. Similarly, at some level I choose Reshimot that I’m now able to correct, and they become my new reality, my world. It is like putting on a sharper pair of glasses, where I begin seeing a lower layer of these informational records.

The Light from Above begins to reach not only my lightest Reshimo, but because I have already realized it and created my new spiritual Partzuf according to its data, then through it, the Light begins to penetrate deeper, into the records of the next Partzuf. Thus, layer after layer the desire becomes fit to receive the influence of the Upper Light. The upper Partzuf constructed at the previous level serves as a lens, a magnifying glass that focuses the Light on the lower layer of informational records.

The records of one layer are selected and serve as the foundation for the spiritual Partzuf;  through it the Light transmits more deeply and opens informational records related to the next lower spiritual Partzuf. Hence each time, the formation of the upper spiritual Partzuf gives the Upper Light an opportunity to adapt to the lower layer of the will to receive, thereby coming in contact with it. Until then, they simply don’t perceive each other since they are too distant from one another in their attributes.

However, the upper Partzuf that is emerging becomes an adapter between the Upper Light and the informational data located in the next lower layer. Thus degree after degree, the correction takes place. Everyone who finishes a correction passes the entire package of Reshimot on to the next spiritual object selected, separating out that particular record. And after having completed one’s correction, whatever is left to correct is passed one step further.

This is how we should perform our work in spirituality: We select the lightest Reshimo-desire and work with it. As for the rest, we shouldn’t worry because it will become revealed later.

From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/29/10, “Preface to the Sulam Commentary

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Answers To Your Questions, Part 8

Dr. Michael LaitmanWhat is the Purpose of Creation?
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Question: What does it mean, “it is fit to receive its reward from The Whole” or until all 613 desires are corrected? How can 613 desires correct themselves if only the Creator can correct them? The group exists for a long time, and the “World Kli” has been pleading for correction. So why doesn’t the Creator perform the correction?

My Answer: Ask Him for this!

Question: Regarding the issue of the 613 commandments, there is only one commandment: Love thy neighbor as thyself. Do any of these 613 commandments have a name? What kind of commandments are they? Or are they all equal to “Love thy neighbor as thyself,” yet have different forms, Lights, and degrees of correction?

My Answer: All of them are the corrections of egoism. Ultimately, a person reaches the property of “Love thy neighbor” in its full measure.

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Question: Does it mean that all of reality, everything, can be changed in a split second?

My Answer: Only if you seriously desire it!

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Kabbalists On The Purpose of Creation, Part 11

Dr. Michael LaitmanDear Friends, please ask questions about these passages from the great Kabbalists. I promise to answer them. Commentaries in brackets are mine.

Why Did the Creator Place the Burden of Creation Upon Us?

There still remains room to ask: “If the purpose of the Torah and the entire creation is but to raise the base humanity to become worthy of that wonderful sublimity, and to cleave onto Him, He should have created us with that sublimity to begin with, instead of troubling us with the labor in corrections by the method of Kabbalah.”

We could explain that by the words of our sages: “One who eats that which is not his, is afraid to look at one’s face.” This means that anyone who feeds on the labor of others is afraid (ashamed) to look at his own form, for his form is inhuman.

Because no deficiency [deficiency refers to feeling not pleasure but shame from Him] comes out of His wholeness, He has prepared for us this work, that we may enjoy the labor of our own hands. That is why He created creation in this base form. The work [correction of one’s egoistic nature] lifts us from the baseness of creation, and through it we reach our sublimity by ourselves. Then we do not feel the delight and pleasure that comes to us from his generous hand, as a gift [in shame, as we are the created ones, unequal, and unable to return the love we discover as coming from Him], but as owners of that pleasure [having merited it].
– Baal HaSulam, “The Love for the Creator and Love for the Created Beings

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Weekly Torah Portion Lesson – 07.02.10

The Book of Zohar, Weekly Torah Portion “Pinchas,” Selected Excerpts
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Let’s Agree With His Plan

Dr. Michael LaitmanDo you remember the story about the good magician? It says that stones, flowers, and animals were unable to give the Creator a sufficient desire for the fulfillment that He wanted to bestow upon them, or to return His love and bestowal. Only man can understand Him, feel Him, and be like Him. That is why the two are able to attain unity with one another.

We have to attain the same kind of unity among us, just as this man (who incorporates everyone within) did with the Creator. We have to understand that unity is the best thing that can possibly be, and it is the reason why the Creator broke us into parts – in order for us to unite among ourselves. He tells us: "If you can become such great, beloved friends that you unite as one man with one heart, then you will be able to understand and feel Me, and join Me!"

Clearly, this requires tremendous work. The Torah talks about how the angels (meaning the forces of nature) did not understand the Creator’s plan before creation developed to the final, fourth phase. Understanding comes only at this final, human level, as it is written, "This field has been sown for me." This means that everything is done for man’s sake, but it is impossible to understand the final goal until the desire develops to this level. That is the meaning of the verse, "Do not show a fool a job half done."

Angels are forces inside us which are still underdeveloped and don’t understand the Creator’s plan or the need for this development. Two points – the beginning and the end of creation – are already set in advance and they determine everything that will happen on the path between them. If we unite these two points, the initial point and the final point, then we will immediately reveal the Creator’s entire program from beginning to end. It will be clear, along with all its details. Then we will only have to implement it in practice, but we won’t have any questions or doubts about what is happening.

Nevertheless, there is just one small addition that occurs inside this program: It is called our freedom of will! This is the necessary effort that comes from man himself, where man has to understand and desire of his own accord to become part of the Creator’s higher program.

So let’s agree with the program, just like the angels listened to the Creator’s explanation and agreed with it.

From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/1/10, Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot UMasbirot

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I Came, But No One Was There!

Dr. Michael LaitmanIf people are not united with one another, then the Creator does not see them. It’s as if they don’t exist, even if it is all of humanity.

The Creator does not see each person individually, separate from others. He only sees the connections among people, and He only considers the quantity and might of these connections. That is why the Creator said, "I came, but no one was there!"

The same thing is true inside us: Our decisions do not arise inside the actual neurons of the brain, but upon the connections between the neurons – in the synapses (a synapse being the place where two neurons make contact).

It is precisely these contacts, connections, and chains of connections in our brain that constitute the basis of our thinking, the "human being" in us. That is to say, a person’s essence is not present in the actual elements of his system, but in the connections between the elements.

However, the outcome of these connections is found elsewhere: It is not present in the actual matter, but towers above it. It lies on a different, higher level of reality.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/1/10, Article ”You Are Now Standing All of You Today”

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The Picture Of Our Reality: How Is It Built?

Dr. Michael LaitmanA question I received: Why is it more and more difficult to study The Zohar? Not only do I not feel that I am progressing, but also that I’m regressing. I open the book and feel as if an even greater burden falls on me.

My Answer: Imagine a person who is burdened by a huge problem and is constantly thinking about it. Even when he is performing various other duties, his heart and mind are fixed on the problem. For instance, a woman who goes to work and must leave her sick child at home, will only think about him.

When your heart acquires a desire that is able to think anti-egoistically, you will be able to understand that The Zohar is talking solely about unity. Gradually, you will develop a need for it. Then, it will come as a sensation. After all, everything we feel is the connection (the Upper World) or the lack thereof (our world). This is how the picture of the world is built.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/30/10, The Zohar

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 07.02.10

Shamati #38 The Fear of God is His Treasure
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Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” Item 62
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The Book of Zohar – Selections, Chapter “VaYetze (And Jacob Went Out),” Item 258
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