This World Will Evaporate Like Smoke

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What becomes corrected in the connection with the neighbor, by the fact that I now love him, but literally a second later I already hate him?

Answer: Inside the connection with the neighbor, this world—the world of separation and its perception—is annihilated. I, who am an egoist, and this world that divides us vanish from my consciousness and sensation when I reach the right connection with the neighbor.

After all, the world is your sensation when you feel only your self. If instead of this you start to feel the neighbor more, then this world gradually disappears. Instead of it, you begin to feel the Upper World.
From the lesson in Moscow on 1/14/11, The Zohar

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Freedom Is Only When You Love

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: When we are in the common system of souls and attain the Creator’s level, do we still remain cogwheels in this system?

Answer: Yes, when we are in this system and similar to the Creator, we still remain cogwheels. However, each one of us gains absolute freedom because when spinning together with everyone according to the desires of all the others, precisely through this one feels total freedom.

If I love them and spin only for their sake, with all of their qualities, then I am absolutely free. Of course, from the egoistic point of view this appears opposite. But if I treat them altruistically and with love, then this is precisely so. That’s because I don’t have any other desires besides spinning for their sake. If I have this opportunity, then I am free.
From the lesson in Moscow on 1/14/11, The Zohar

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The Absolute Yardstick Of Progress

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Would it help our spiritual development to know exactly where we are on the scale of the inanimate, vegetative, animate, and human levels? What does our progress depend on? What instruments could help us determine where we are? And how can we change?

Answer: All of this is determined the moment a person comes to the group. He can begin evaluating himself only in relation to the environment: How much does he aspire to his friends, to the common desire of bestowal, to feel everyone as one desire?

This common desire is the Soul that was created. And if we attain it as one whole, then in it we will feel the quality of bestowal, the Creator. It was precisely in order to enable measurement, attainment, and control over our state that the common soul, creation, and desire were divided into an infinite multitude of parts. Every part of the desire, every person thereby received the opportunity to imagine the other parts as united, depending on his aspiration to this state.

If this person or part begins to work to unite with all the other parts, seeing them as perfect and receiving from them the right aspiration forward, the motivation, the importance and value of spiritual development, then he gains absolutely clear abilities to measure his state and to receive help from outside.
From the lesson in Moscow on 1/14/11, The Zohar

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One’s Choice Lies In Greater Effort

Dr. Michael LaitmanShamati #187: In order to make the right choice, one must choose that which obligates him to increase his efforts.

Plants, animals, and other organisms that do not develop by their own efforts see a picture that is set in advance. We, on the other hand, must rely on the help of books and a teacher in order to build our future state on our own and to imagine it in the group. What is it like? What should the relationships between us be like?

Then each one of us will aspire to become more similar to these relationships and we will constantly build the Creator out of ourselves, inside ourselves, and outside ourselves. We will do it ourselves. We have to create Him on our own, imagine him ourselves, choose Him, and design this future form among us. That is why we are considered similar to the Creator. Just as He created us, so we create Him. It says in The Book of Zohar that we “make” the Creator.

A person’s work amounts to this search for the perfect model. And it is built in the group. That is why the Creator broke creation into many parts so we would have the opportunity to build Him. After all, our ideal state is Him. We have the opportunity to work, making efforts and continuously building ourselves in a more ideal form, in bestowal, through consolidation in spite of our egoism. That is how we form the new state. We simultaneously form Him and ourselves by adding our current state to the desirable next state.

This is our spiritual work to reveal the Creator. We ourselves “draw,” reveal, and research Him: What is that ideal state called “the Creator”? By conducting the search we arrive precisely at this ideal, where the quality of bestowal and the quality of reception become fully revealed. They mutually complement one another, never becoming annulled and never losing anything. That is how the ideal picture called “the world of Infinity” is created, being the unlimited state of the whole creation.

As Baal HaSulam says, the choice of progress forward always lies in greater effort. As clearly as possible, we must discern two opposite qualities which make up all of nature: the quality of reception and the quality of bestowal, and we should try to combine them together. This mutual combination, their maximal participation will give us the following picture, the next level. They come together in the middle line by means of the screen.

Every subsequent level that we build is called “the presence of the Creator.” Once we build it, we discover new flaws and new lack of similarity. Once again there is overbalance to the left side, the left line of egoistic desires which disturb unity, harmony, and the integral picture. Then we must once again build the surrounding environment that will help us establish balance between the right and left lines, making the middle line from them that combines these two forces of nature.

The choice always lies in maximally using them—in greater effort.
From the lesson on 1/17/11, Shamati

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The Reality Of The Upper Worlds

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is our reality like in the worlds of BYA (Beria, Yetzira, Assiya), when we ascend along the degrees of these worlds to the world of Atzilut?

Answer: Presently I perceive everything in my desire which is entirely egoistic, aimed only at self-gratification, and disconnected from all the spiritual forces and the Creator. I have no spark of bestowal and live the life of a beast. Such a state is called “this world.”

When I begin to scrutinize which of my desires I can elevate to correction, it means I am in the worlds of BYA. That is, I can annul myself before the group, receive the strength of my friends, unify with them to some degree, and achieve the mutual guarantee, unity, and wholeness like one man with one heart.

To the extent I am able to do this, I rise to Malchut of the world of Atzilut. Elevating my desire, changing it for the better, means that I ascend. I connect to Malchut together with everybody and then in our collective desire (Kli) called Shechina where we are all united together as one man with one heart, we receive the revelation of spirituality, the Creator.

It follows that the worlds of BYA are states in which I scrutinize myself while studying and working in the group where I have the opportunity to connect with the friends to at least some small extent.

The difference between the worlds of BYA is the degree of our connection according to which we can elevate our pleas to Malchut of Infinity and achieve correction. But we always remain in the worlds of BYA, only we bring about their ascent, together with us, to the world of Atzilut.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/1/2010, Talmud Eser Sefirot

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The Masach Gets You Through The Machsom

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is the difference between the Masach (screen) and Machsom (the barrier separating us from spirituality)?

Answer: Crossing the Machsom is equivalent to receiving the first anti-egoistic screen. Such barriers exist between all levels, but we simply call them degrees.

The very first spiritual degree, “Machsom,” is so unique because the person has no idea of what bestowal is. However, after reaching it, he already begins to picture bestowal a little; he sees an example of the Upper One and imitates Him. The person already has some connection with the Creator. In contrast, when he rises to his first degree he has to break through this “barrier” while being totally blind.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/1/2010, Beit Shaar HaKavanot

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Coming Out Of The Fog Into The Light And Kindness

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Why do they say that the Creator is concealed? Aren’t His actions manifested in every part of the Universe?

Answer: The revelation of the Creator implies that I feel the upper force, its cause, the entire network of acting forces, the way this network operates, and the results of its influence. I attain the entire totality of creation in the infinite dimension.

The only question is to what degree I attain it. I can either be without glasses, or I can wear the reading glasses, or distant vision glasses. Everything depends on the level of my perception.

The attainment of the spiritual world means that this reality becomes transparent for me, and through it I see the entire system of forces, which operates in the whole world. I understand the reasons behind the forces which act and move everyone of us and also why we react in a certain way.

I can observe this process from different angles: time, motion, place, life cycles of souls, from the beginning of creation to its end. A person reveals all of this. However, in the beginning, he sees this picture very vaguely, then increasingly more clearly until it becomes completely transparent for him.

At that point, you change your attitude to what is happening. You understand that your neighbors or anybody else cannot be blamed for your problems. It becomes clear to you that the entire universe is governed by a single law: the general law of nature called the Creator.
From the Introductory Lecture “Why the Creator is Hidden” 12/14/2010

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Kabbalists On The Torah And Commandments, Part 21

Dr. Michael LaitmanDear Friends, please ask questions about these passages from the great Kabbalists. The commentaries in brackets are mine.

The Torah Develops the Recognition of Evil in a Person

If one engages in Torah and Mitzvot [by studying Kabbalah in order to reveal the Creator, which is the only reason the Torah was given], even for one’s own pleasure [selfishly, for self-gratification, and not in order to reach love of others], still, through the light in it, he will feel the terrible inferiority and depravity in the nature of reception for oneself. At that time, he will devote his heart to retiring from this nature of reception and will completely dedicate himself to working only to bestow contentment upon his Maker. Then the Creator will open his eyes and will show him a world that is utterly perfect.
– Rabash, The Rungs of the Ladder, “There Is an Appointee Above Who Strikes Him and Tells Him, ‘Grow,’ in the Work.”

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Honor Your Father

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Why when we pronounce the Tetragrammaton, the four letter name of the Creator (HaVaYaH– יהוה), in Hebrew, do we say “Yod-Khey-Vav-Khey,” replacing the sound “h” with “kh”?

Answer: There is nothing special about it; the people do it just out of respect for the Creator. This is also customary in the wisdom of Kabbalah. You don’t call your father by his first name, do you? Rather, you address him as “father,” and in a similar manner, you address the Creator.

But in truth, all of the names that we attribute to the Creator are manifestations of the Upper Light relative to us. We regard them as “Boreh,” the Creator, because the word “Boreh” consists of two words: “Bo” (come) and “Reh” (see). In other words, you do not name Him, but rather the occurrence you experience within your properties (Kelim, vessels). The Light that works on you evokes in you certain sensations, and you assign names to them.

After all, what does “the merciful Creator” mean? I feel that now He is treating me particularly so, with such compassion. But whether He is really merciful is unknown to me. All I know is that to me, for instance, He has shown mercy. Therefore, all the Creator’s names are my reaction to the Upper Light’s influence upon me.

Additionally, “Elokim” is Bina;HaVaYaH” is Zeir Anpin, and “AdniMalchut. These are phenomena that are revealed to us from the upper system. What we call “the Creator” is the manifestation of a certain force that is upper relative to us, not what sets this force in motion. The Creator’s essence, Azmuto, cannot be revealed to us.

In short, “a judge has only what his eyes can see!” When you get to know the Creator, you will find names for Him yourself since it is we who name phenomena manifested by the Upper Light.
From the Introductory Lecture in Netanya 12/12/2010

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Connecting For The Sake Of Ascending

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How can we connect the opposites?

Answer: Opposite things can only be connected through resistance which opposes both of them. It is not important what the resistance consists of; it exists and it is the only thing that can connect the two opposite phenomena.

For example, two people, a husband and wife, do not get along with each other. They turn to a specialist, a psychologist, and he connects them. How? He does not agree with either of them; he is in the middle.

Such a judge must be within us: I do not connect two opposite things without a third one because the direct connection between them is impossible. And if I try to do this, then I get a short circuit, causing destruction.

This is also related to the connection between husband and wife. Due to the growth of the egoistic desire, they feel themselves to be opposite to one another, and between two opposites there has to be a higher connector.

Zeir Anpin and Malchut (ZON) of the world of Atzilut connect only under the condition that they ascend into the Partzuf Aba ve Ima. Before this, there is no connection between them since it only forms due to the ascent, the attainment of the Creator.

In the future, family will only exist due to the higher spiritual goal, and for the sake of attaining it, spouses will support each other.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/10/10, Talmud Eser Serifot

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