The Group Is The Place Where We Meet

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: If we advance only by virtue of the environment, then when will our choice come from our own altruistic intention, Lishma?

Answer: We have to attain perfection, and it contains two parameters:

1. On one hand, I am independent and equal to the Creator in every way,
2. On the other hand, I am similar to Him in every way.
In that case, I am independent and perfect.

It turns out that independence and perfection have to unite and bring me to the final state. But how can independence and equivalence exist together? How can I reach perfection by elevating both of these qualities, which are opposite to each other?

To enable this, the Creator had to add a third factor to the two already existing ones (Him and me). This third factor will be the place of our meeting, the place of revelation. It is where I will reveal my independent self and the Creator opposite from me.

It is necessary to create a “territory” where we will be able to be partners, opposite but equal and united. This territory is called the sum of the souls, the Shechina, Malchut. After the breaking, we as well as the Creator are outside of the boundaries of the sum of the souls, and now we must meet there. We do this to the degree we are able to participate in this process and reveal one another.

That is why creation was broken. It broke into many disparate parts, which are the degree of creation’s independence, meaning its separation and detachment from the Creator.

We have to use this situation, which is why Baal HaSulam writes that we have to keep every person’s uniqueness. After all, it will never be duplicated in anyone else. Every person must be independent and special.

But on the other hand, we must give every person the opportunity and help him reach equivalence of form with the Creator. By means of one’s uniqueness, by having an inimitable combination of qualities and desires, a person develops them in order to direct them toward bestowal. That is how he reaches equivalence with the Creator.

This similarity is actualized by way of uniting with others. Why isn’t it done through uniting with the Creator? It is in order to preserve independence. When working before the Creator, a person nullifies himself, whereas in relation to the group, he can play the decisive role, similar to the Creator.

The place of our meeting is the territory of the group, which was artificially created and divided into parts. We come there in the middle line and unite. There we actualize the Zivug of HaVaYaH and Elokim, the unity of judgment and mercy.

However, if a person does not think about these three elements: him and the Creator, uniting in the group, then he incorrectly imagines the realization of the goal of creation which awaits him.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/12/11, Writings of Rabash

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The One Thing That’s Up To Us

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How can we increase the force of being able to overcome when a greater egoistic desire is revealed?

Answer: All of a person’s qualities, no matter what they seem like to him, from the best to the worst, become revealed in the framework of the common system of souls that advance toward unity according to the program of creation. Therefore, we cannot attribute any of a person’s personal manifestations to his own account. Like a cogwheel or an integral part of a system, he has to reveal a specific collection of inclinations, desires, and states inside of him.

No matter what happens inside a person, he should not place any bets on it. After all, he does not determine what happens to him now because it is determined by the common system which goes through different states. Thus, you can stop worrying about the current state because you cannot do anything about it. It is woven of thousands of factors that are outside of you. As for the future state, it’s also pointless to think about it because it also doesn’t depend on you, but is determined by the needs of the system that has to take a step forward.

In essence, the only thing I should think about is how I will take this step. What is it about this step that depends on me? It also contains things that are not actualized by me, but by the upper force, and that aren’t illuminated by me, but by the Upper Light. A person goes through analyses and reaches a point where he really can realize himself. Then he sees a very clear and precise action, like pressing a button.

This is a person’s task: At every moment in time to discern the only action that depends on him and to realize it. As he makes this analysis he also discerns many other things, and as a result, by pressing the button, he activates the system and starts to perceive it, accept it, and become part of it.

In other words, a person starts to attain the system as a whole. Therefore, he is not a lab rat that finds the button of the feed box in a labyrinth. On the contrary, by making efforts in different states, he attains the conditions, the causes, and the essence of what happens.

When reaching the button, he will undoubtedly press it. But the entire matter here is the analysis; this is the true asset.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/12/11, Writings of Rabash

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Meeting Behind The Borderline

Dr. Michael LaitmanLove for the Creator is like love for the most unattractive woman in the world because I love the very property of bestowal which is enclosed in Him. This is not because it brings pleasure to my desire to enjoy, but because this property is above my egoistic properties, and I respect and value it more than anything else.

Relative to what else can I measure absolute, unconditional love? In our world, we love something that gives us pleasure. However, this is not love. We love the pleasure, but not the one who gives it to us. Although I connect this pleasure with you and as long as you keep bringing me treats, I love you, all my love will end as soon as you stop doing that. This means you were not the one whom I loved.

Independent love can appear only in opposition to something. Therefore, the entire universe is built on this principle: There is pleasure from which we have to disconnect and above which we have to build our attitude to the One who gives this pleasure.

Meeting Beyond the Borderline

For this purpose, the point in the heart is given to us. It is opposite to egoistic desire. We have to grow it with the help of a group, meaning with the same points in the heart. Then, the Light corrects our point, and we begin to sense love through it in opposition to the hatred which we feel in our desire.

However, in the middle between them, there should be a dividing line: detachment from the desire to receive pleasure and the ascent above it. This means that you cling to the Creator; you identify yourself with Him, rather than with your ego. You build from the matter of desire something different, sublime, and opposite.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/30/10, “The Wisdom of Kabbalah and Philosophy”

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Remote Control For The Soul

Dr. Michael Laitman"Introduction of The Zohar," Article “The Donkey Driver,” Item 85: …The donkey driver who is leading the donkeys behind them is the assistance to the souls of the righteous, which is sent to them from above to raise them from one degree to the next.

…Hence the Creator sends a high soul from above according to the merit and degree of each righteous, and it assists him on his way…. This is called “the impregnation of the righteous’ soul.”

Question: When do we merit the impregnation of the righteous’ soul?

Answer: It happens when we desire to ascend. There is no problem; the ladder of the degrees does not change. The forces that operate on the degrees are constant.

Everything is accessible; everything is waiting for the launch signal. And we are the ones who launch this system.

There is nothing we should be waiting for. Push the “buttons,” pull the “levers,” and everything will start working. You need to launch this mechanism. It is under your control, so go ahead!

This is why the “when” depends on a person. It is whenever you want it.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/11/11, The Zohar

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A Challenge For The Imagination

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How can we calibrate our attitude so as to aim it towards the goal?

Answer: You have to do it according to the principle, “Israel, Torah, and the Creator are one.” “The Creator” is the root to which we strive. The “Torah” is all of the means that help us along the way, including the teacher, books, group, and study. And “Israel” is the point in the heart, the initial spiritual desire.

Question: In order for me to solve this equation, what needs to be concealed and what needs to be revealed to me?

Answer: You need to imagine the corrected state where we are all connected and every person perceives the whole instead of himself. It is written: “The general and the particular are equal.”

The common force of love and bestowal reigns inside our oneness and fills everyone in equal measure. This force is called “the Creator” or “Nature.” This is what you have to see as the final goal. At the end we must arrive at this image.

This is why we are working on discerning the notion of "the group." The group is essentially the same system in which we awaken the same force. That force is already present inside the system; we just don’t perceive it yet. We must reveal this force which fills the group, strengthens it, manifests in it, and corrects it. This is the force called “the Creator” or the concealed Light that hides in our unity.

When we strive to grow in our world, we essentially reveal the same force. This is because we have the same direction, although on a corporeal level. “The Creator” is the common force that unites all the parts of creation.

Question: Still, there are too many unknowns in this equation.…

Answer: You have to keep searching and trying, over and over again. That is how you will awaken new sensations. There is no other possibility for doing it.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/11/11, Writings of Rabash

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It Is All Inside Our Connection

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How does the revelation of truth relate to the revelation of the interconnected system of souls?

Answer: It is one and the same. Mutual connection is the truth. The network of our ties is called “the vessel” (Kli). The Creator imprinted Himself on the matter of the will to enjoy and placed His stamp onto its entire thickness. Now, inside me, there is a hollow space with a carved image.

This image is comprised of the connections between desires that the Creator fills in if they are corrected. In this case, their network becomes Him. The integral network of these points is called “Malchut of the world of Infinity.”

Gradually, the Creator conceals Himself and abandons the system of souls, which triggers the descent of the worlds. As He is disappearing, the souls feel more and more opposite to each other, transitioning to the reverse side (Sitra Achra) where the connection is corrupted, depleted, and takes on an egoistic nature. As a result, we find ourselves in the corporeal world, and instead of mutual connection, instead of the Creator who fills us, we experience void and detachment from each other.

In truth, I constantly feel the Creator. After all, there is nothing else for me to feel since there are only He and I. However, in the present reality, I perceive Him according to my current egoistic state of existence.

The purpose of the process is to find the truth, the authentic state, after having stripped ourselves of all the covers. Finding the connection between us anew, at some point, I will see that it ties not the people, but the souls or desires. It is in the nature of this connection, its essence, and might that the Creator is revealed to us. There is no other reality but integral, mutual connection. It permeates everything, and we are made so that we can feel nothing but it. We are inside it.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/3/2010, “The Creator and Israel Went Into Exile”

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Decorating The Bride

Dr. Michael LaitmanWritings of Rabash, “What is the Feast of the Groom”: The “bride” signifies work during the time of exile, when the Creator’s face is concealed. It is when the forces of disunity rule over a person.

Kabbalists try to explain a simple principle to us in different ways. Creation as a whole is called “bride.” This is the “matter” of the desire, which we must raise to the height of the Creator in order to unite with Him, revealing the Good who Does Good.

When we discover problems in our murky matter, we have to understand that we shouldn’t nullify it, but “sanctify” it, meaning correct it. That is how we continuously ascend higher with its help. Precisely the additions of Aviut from the matter that become revealed in us build the levels of the spiritual ladder for us, one after the other.

This is a cyclical process which requires a simple action. Just like in a computer, everything is determined by the choice of two positions: “yes” and “no,” “0” and “1.” By consolidating many actions like this, we can reach any analysis, express any quality and any form of interaction between the Creator and creation, between the force of bestowal and the force of reception.

Thus, the only thing remaining for a person to do is to accelerate the time. On one hand he sees that the bride is ugly, but on the other hand he understands that the egoistic desire distorts the true picture. This desire is horrible, casting a person away from the goal and throwing him into a descent.

However, by studying the “bride” through the prism of the desire for bestowal, a person sees that if he “sanctifies” his egoism, then he will be able to “decorate” and “beautify” it, the way it is customary to adorn the bride before the wedding. Then the corrected desire will lead a person out to the level of the “groom.”

Various situations arise in this process. Sometimes we do not agree to accept our egoistic desire, seeing how ugly it is. Sometimes on the contrary, we understand that we have to accept and correct it, to decorate it by making efforts.

In the end, as we advance by faith above reason, placing bestowal above reception, we reach the “feast of the groom.”

As a whole there are three states on this path:

1. The forces of disunity, the Shechina in exile, the beginning of the analysis.
2. During the period of spiritual exile we work on the bride, “dressing her up” and “decorating” her.
3. The “feast of the groom.”

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/10/11, Writings of Rabash

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Building The Temple Below

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “BeShalach (When Pharaoh Sent),” Item 332: It is a Mitzva [commandment] to build the Temple below like the Temple above, as it is written, “The place that You have made for Your dwelling, O Lord.” This is so because the Temple must be built below, and to pray a prayer within it everyday, to serve the Creator, since prayer is called “Work” [service].

The Temple below means Malchut where we have to create a corrected desire (Kli – vessel). A prayer means to raise an appeal (MAN) for correction.

The connection of the lower one with the upper one was due to Malchut’s ascent to Bina, and then Bina’s descent into Malchut. As a result, there are two Temples: Malchut and Bina below are the Temple below, while Malchut and Bina above are the Temple Above.

“The Temple must be built below, and to pray a prayer within it everyday” means to connect Bina and Malchut together when we try to create such a state in the group, in our desires. After all, where else can I express my attitude toward bestowal? It is possible only in connection between us.

Then, when I realize that I am totally unable to do anything, I raise my prayer, and for that reason, the Temple Above is being built. We need to do this “everyday,” that is, in the states of ascent when we have some strength, we have to try to perform this work with all our energy.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/3/2010, The Zohar

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 01.12.11

Writings of Rabash, Shlavei HaSulam, “What Is it That it is Written and You Should Return to Your Hearts”
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The Book of Zohar — Introduction: “The Donkey Driver,” Item 90, Lesson 4
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Talmud Eser Sefirot 3, Part 8, Item 59, Lesson 32
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Writings of Baal HaSulam “The Quality of the Hidden Wisdom – in General,” Lesson 1
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