The Stages Of Spiritual Work

Dr. Michael LaitmanOne’s work must be as far from the body as possible. We can discern different stages in the work:

First a person aspires only for fulfillment, whether in this world or in the world to come.

Then, besides thinking about the fulfillment itself, he starts to think about “who is he dealing with,” who does this fulfillment depend on? He then begins to connect the fulfillment with the source of fulfillment, the Giver. He starts to have an attitude toward the Giver because the fulfillment depends on Him.

At the next stage a person starts to respect the Giver for the fact that he is Giving, for His quality of being Giving, rather than for the pleasure that he receives from Him.

That is when he reaches an inner divide: On one hand he feels that fulfillment is important, but on the other he aspires to become similar to the Giver. Is the fulfillment important because it gives him energy for work, or because of the fulfillment itself? Where exactly does he get his energy and what is his goal: fulfillment or a connection with the Giver?

In this manner he gradually reaches a state of thinking only about equivalence of form between him and the Creator. However, this is also not so simple. Equivalence of form is not the same as the desire to give pleasure to the Giver. The aspiration to reach equivalence of form still involves a consideration for oneself. Even though I desire to give, to delight someone else, and to love, it is still something that I want; I am present in this consideration.

Yet, isn’t the same thing true for giving pleasure: Won’t I be giving it? Or perhaps there is someone who will do it better than me? How well can I do it without receiving anything in return?

We see that the work involves many levels. It encompasses five entire worlds where a person reassesses his entire motivation and principles: For what sake is he willing to make efforts? What fulfills him, and what is his attitude to the Giver? This is what causes his state to change and helps him rise from one world to the next.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/5/10, Writings of Rabash

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When Spirituality Becomes Our Life

Dr. Michael LaitmanIntroduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot, Item 3: This sensing force in the Animate is very limited in time and space, since the sensation does not operate at even the shortest distance outside its body. Also, it does not feel anything outside its own time, meaning in the past or in the future, but only at the present moment.

Atop them is the Speaking, consisting of an emotional force and an intellectual force together. For this reason, its power is unlimited by time and space… .

This is so because of its science, which is a spiritual matter, unlimited by time and place. One can teach others wherever they are in the whole of reality, and in the past and the future throughout the generations.

In reading these books, we are amazed by the immense wisdom of the Kabbalists who wrote them. They can write thousands of stories for us about the spiritual world since this world is open for them. They simply tell us what they see.

A Kabbalist sees the world from stem to stern; he sees all of its inner forces and connections. He takes some section of it and begins to explain it to us. Every one of his descriptions reflects unimaginable wisdom and is an amazing discovery for us. We are amazed at how he could know about these things. However, he doesn’t require special intelligence for this; he simply sees this picture in front of him because he has changed his nature.

Therefore, if we think that we will be able to attain what is written by using our brains, by systematically arranging everything in our minds, this is a big mistake. This will not help us. We need to rise to a spiritual level, and then what Kabbalists talk about will become a part of our lives. We will understand naturally that things are just as the Kabbalists described and they cannot be otherwise.

We read the articles and books in order to draw the Light that Reforms. And when we return to the Source, all these concepts will “enter” into us and become obvious for us. They will occur within our spiritual body.

Thus, we shouldn’t despair that we can’t grasp all this material with our minds. We need to desire inner change so that all this becomes our own nature and then no words will be required! Just like it is natural to me to see rocks, plants, animals, and people around me, I will see all of spiritual reality just as clearly. When the spiritual world will be revealed to me, it will cease to be a “science” for me; it will just become my life.

Don’t worry, no one will test us on this knowledge and demand us to memorize it. This will not help anyway. Let nothing remain in our heads from what we read; holding one intention is all that matters. The rest is not important, even if I forget what I had learned one second before. It is essential to never forget about the goal and the right attitude to the studies.

From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/27/10, Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot

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The Path To Ultimate Harmony

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Creator created only one state called the “World of Infinity.” All the changes taking place occur solely within us, and although we exist in the World of Infinity, we perceive only ourselves.

Once, in my perception, I was unified with all the souls and perceived the World of Infinity as boundlessness, eternity, and perfection. Then, my condition and perception changed, and I started to feel that I exist in a dark, defected world full of pain, problems, disorder, pressure, and restrictions. I felt worse and worse until I reached the lowest degree where I found myself in this world, the surrounding reality, together with other people similar to me.

All of this happened exclusively within me, in my subjective perception of reality. Outside of me nothing changed. It is as if by removing my glasses, I see nothing outside of me, but as soon as I put them back on, I begin to perceive another world. This is how our properties changed from the degree of the World of Infinity to the degree where we perceive only our world that has nothing of the World of Infinity.

However, we can return to the state called “the World of Infinity” where all exists in the ultimate harmony, eternity, and perfection, and where the Light, that is, “Good that Does Good,” dwells. How can we achieve it? We have to attain the perception of this state by awakening it in ourselves. The World of Infinity is hidden within us behind numerous layers of concealment. Gradually, by moving from a greater to a lesser concealment, we discover the World of Infinity.

The stages we undergo while coming back to awareness of Infinity are called the worlds or concealments ("world" — "Olam" comes from concealment — "Olama").  Eventually, the concealment disappears and we rise above it. This is what it means to ascend the degrees of the spiritual ladder, the degrees of the worlds, and to rise above the concealment to perceiving increasingly more.

How do we do that? We evoke a state called the “World of Infinity” by reading The Zohar together. This Book describes our connection with the World of Infinity, and it arouses that desire within us.

From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/2/10, The Zohar

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From Illusory Freedom To The Truth

Dr. Michael LaitmanA question I received: Wherein lies my freedom? I always choose what’s best for me anyway. And if I don’t want to, suffering will force me back to the path of Light, correct?

My Answer: We exist below the dividing line called the Machsom; this is the border separating us from the spiritual world. This corporeal world is located beneath it, and above it, there is the spiritual world. Here, in our world, we live like animals, meaning that we are motivated by our instincts one hundred percent. Biologists, physiologists, geneticists, and physicians confirm this, concluding that a human being is totally programmed and controlled by internal and external systems.

So where does the desire come from? Does it come from emptiness accidentally? It only seems to us that life is governed by the rule of chance because we don’t see the source of and the reason for what happens in life.

Yet, we discover that nature is a closed system. The more we explore it, the more we become convinced that nature is global, and that we are its integral part. Nothing can escape the power of this common law called “nature.” In its Gematria (a numerical value of a word), the word “nature” is equivalent to the word “Creator.” Nature is the law, and by exploring it, we see that all laws are interconnected, precise, and invariable, which leaves us no freedom of choice.

If we look at the complete picture of nature, its whole sphere, we will see that it is governed by a singular law. We constantly make mistakes because we think we are above nature. So instead of studying its laws and following them, we keep trying to reform nature to fit our desires. Hence, our life is a strand of failures. The human ego is the only defect in the entire reality, and it is the cause of corruption to everything else.

However, along with our world, there awakens within us a tiny desire for spirituality called the point in the heart. If we follow this point and go beyond the parameters of this world, we enter the world governed by the Upper laws. All laws, in this and the Upper Worlds, are called the Creator or nature.

In other words, we are governed by the laws, as Above, so below. However, by ascending from one type of laws to the other, we perform the act of free will. We are not free to be above nature’s laws, but we choose in what nature we wish to exist, meaning that we can switch from the path of suffering to the path of Light. We are not free to refuse, yet we do have a choice to agree and see life as good or disagree and suffer.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/2/10, Shamati #38

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The Zohar Is Revealed In The Connection Among Us

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “VaYetze (And Jacob Went Out),” Item 252: But Jethro was not so toward Moses, since Laban was a sorcerer, and he did all his deeds against Jacob with witchcraft. And because now Jacob did not wish to be detained there, since the Creator told him, “Return unto the land of your fathers,” he did not wish to be detained and forsake the commandment of his Master. This is why he did not ask his permission.

There are two kinds of forces. On one hand, there are the forces that prevent us from uniting, called “help against,” which appear to oppose our unification. On the other hand, there are the forces that promote unification. We need them both. We have to recognize the seemingly negative forces, all these “wicked” within us (Laban, Esau, and others) as well as the seemingly positive forces (Jacob, Isaac, and others) against them.

All of these forces work either “for” or “against” our unification. And it is up to us to decide who will win and how. It is then that we discover that all must be as it is described in the Torah, and thus reveal its whole narrative. Where? It’s revealed in the connection among us, as we work with the forces of disunity and those of connection.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/1/10, The Zohar

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A Transparent Reality

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe purpose of Kabbalah is specifically to help us attract the Light that Reforms and feel the world as good. We only need to become similar to the Light.

I and other people around me currently exist in a certain frame of the motion picture called life. When I draw the Light upon myself, I transform this picture into a good one, filling it with light, goodness, confidence, and eternity. Accordingly, I develop in a pleasant way.

One can certainly say that wanting to change our fate for the better is an even greater form of egoism than that of an ordinary life. And that is correct: we aspire for a good life since the purpose of creation was to delight the created beings. Yet, the means to achieve this is to rise above our egoism.

Therefore, our first and foremost task is to clarify how Kabbalah defines our freedom of will. Let it explain what depends on us in particular. Everything else we can investigate out of curiosity as a nice addition, but it is essential to clarify what we can really influence to change. Otherwise, when we look back on our lives, we see that we were unable to change a thing. Did we make our life that way, or did someone else?

We don’t do anything but draw that Light that Reforms everything. All the actions performed by a person are not in his control whatsoever. The only power one has is how he will see them, from what angle: egoistically or for the sake of bestowal. This alters the entire picture for a person.

This is the only freedom we have! There is a force in the world which is waiting for us to desire its influence in order to change our nature, our qualities. It is in our power to draw it and make it change us. Then we’ll see the whole world as good; at that moment the world will change. Everything will turn upside down!

Right here and now we will see the spiritual world instead of this material one. As if through a transparent reality, we will see the spiritual world through all these manifestations of desire, all these people, and everything that surrounds us. We then will understand what is really going on and why everything is spinning around us this way. We will be able to justify this state and recognize it as good. We will see the connection of all that is happening right now with a sublime and beautiful purpose.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/2/10, Shamati #38

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Answers To Your Questions, Part 10

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Attainment of the Purpose of Creation Rests Upon the Whole of Mankind
Questions about the post “Kabbalists On The Purpose Of Creation,” Part 7

Question: Kabbalah maintains that the spiritual laws are rigid and unchangeable as the laws of nature are in our world. Yet it also states that, contrary to these laws, a spark called “Ner Dakik” (fine and small illumination) descended under the Machsom (barrier separating us from spirituality) and begot the entire material reality. How could it be that the spiritual law was violated?

My Answer: There are two natures, two worlds; the upper one controls the lower one.

Question: Quote: “When it comes to the correction of the soul, no corporeal abilities or talents determine success.” Some of your students are very talented and participate in almost every dissemination project. Also, there are those who have a hard time working even an hour per day. Often  this makes me depressed and even fearful because it’s impossible to attain the goal even with such efforts. How can I use this state and not fall into despair?

My Answer: The spiritual success depends on the effort put forth to create the desire for the property of love and bestowal. It has nothing to do with one’s corporeal faculties given by nature at birth.

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What Do You Need For The Medicine To Work?

Dr. Michael LaitmanA question I received: When I take medicine, I don’t need to have a special intention. If the study of Kabbalah is supposed to be the medicine for our egoism, why do I have to observe so many different conditions in its study in order for it to work?

My Answer: When you take regular medicine there are also many restrictions and conditions, such as to take it before  food, in the morning or the afternoon, to take it with a glass of water, and so on.

Medicine is not just the pill that you swallow. The entire sum of conditions surrounding it is also part of the medicine. The medicine won’t work unless you observe these conditions.

When you take the medicine, you influence your body in order to make it healthy and to restore the complete operation of all its systems within the right connection with one another. We correct our soul in the same way. We have to give it medicine, the Light that Reforms and brings us to goodness, to the proper, good way of functioning. “Good health” for the soul means that it is completely connected with the other souls. Through their unity, as one, they become similar to the Creator.

It works the same way as in a body where a disease means that one of the body’s systems loses the proper connection with the others. The cure is when the right connection is restored.

In the same way, our souls return to being together. Just like you have to observe certain conditions when taking a chemical medicine, in Kabbalah it works the same way. You need the right books, the group, and the teacher, and all the inner conditions (your intentions), which the Kabbalists described in their books. Otherwise the medicine for curing the soul, your correction, won’t work.

From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/5/10, Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot

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