Question: You have mentioned that social Internet communication networks match the natural laws of development. Indeed, Facebook is phenomenally successful: It has half a billion users. It is becoming a vital attribute of modern life. Why does man enjoy virtual communication so much? What is so special about it?
Answer: Our nature is the desire to receive pleasure, to fulfill ourselves, to feel, to understand, and to hear something new. As we see, today’s television offers thousands of channels, but if you go on the Internet, it has absolutely everything you want, an infinite amount of information. And all of it derives from our desire to enjoy.
If this desire can find its fulfillment, it’s good. But if we cannot fulfill it, we develop Internet communication networks in such way as to receive greater and greater fulfillment. This goes on until, gradually, we realize what’s what, and then all that doesn’t completely satisfy our ego, our evolved desire, gradually loses popularity and expires.
Even the ego itself can see that it benefits from being connected to others. Although it’s still a long path, yet little by little, not only individuals but entire countries that used to hold each other as rivals start realizing that today they don’t have much choice. We can’t fight forever, or is it worth doing so until we destroy each other? And we can’t but agree that it’s better for us to establish certain ties and communicate. Thus life teaches us to unite.
Therefore, Facebook is quite an exemplary phenomenon. It is accessible to anybody in the world who wishes to be visible, from a president of a country to a porter. As an example, the President of the United States Barack Obama has 17 million “friends” on Facebook. And anyone can do the same. It’s good because to a certain degree, it meets the demand to reach internal connection. And I think that it will teach us how to develop more internal ties to replace the physical, material ones.
From a TV program “Ask the Kabbalist” 1/20/2011
Question: If the realization of evil occurs due to the lack of unity, then how does a woman experience this realization if she doesn’t do any practical work in uniting? How exactly should she feel unity?
Answer: This is just like within a family. How can you explain the entire family life in detail and what the relationship between the husband and wife means?
A man and a woman are two images that compose all of humanity, and together they have to create the image of a single soul. This is why the group must consist of male and female parts which have to unite with each other in their work and mutual support.
There should never be any insistence if a husband or a wife does not wish to partake in this. There is no coercion is spirituality, therefore, there shouldn’t be any pressure. But in the group the mutual help from both sides should resemble simple family dynamics.
Without women it’s impossible to advance because they are the carriers of natural desire and, therefore, are closer to nature. Without men it’s also impossible to advance since they’re the conductors of this upper energy that’s passed on to the female part. It means that we depend upon each other in our spiritual development just as we do in our corporeal life.
Our connection in the group should be like a connection in the correct family unit, where we complete each other. We already see families in all parts of the world where the wife, the kids, and the husband are all taking part in this process. We’re organizing virtual schools.
I would like for the women to be a lot more active. I don’t understand why the women’s part of the groups suddenly quiets down, becomes less active, and exists along with the men but slightly beneath them. I don’t understand this.
I have many women helping me with translations and with processing the materials. I have more faith in them then I do in men because women are more devoted to their work and they won’t let you down. For this reason the women’s group should be “heard” more.
From Lesson 3 in Moscow 1/16/2011
Question: From the Kabbalists’ point of view, what is the role of religion and other practices in the modern world?
Answer: Religions originated from the concealment of the upper world from us. Everything is concealed from us: the present, the future, what will happen tomorrow, what happened before our life, and what will happen after it. Religion is based on the lack of knowledge, on faith in something.
Kabbalah has nothing to do with it. It is a science. It absolutely does not operate with the notion of faith. It is a method of developing an additional possibility to perceive the world that surrounds us. But at the same time, Kabbalah expresses its opinion on events around the world, the reason for the development of beliefs, convictions, and religions.
In our world there is a total of 3,800 different methods, convictions, beliefs, religious practices, and so on. They appeared because we do not know what is happening and we exist in an unpredictable world. We do not see a connection between us. We do not see the reasons behind the events or what is about to happen to us around the corner. We do not know anything.
This is why people develop a need to somehow find out, or if that’s impossible, then to at least protect themselves, get some kind of insurance, a guarantee, if possible. And here arises the possibility for such religious methods. Essentially, these are psychological practices that provide us with comfort.
Naturally, there will not be a place for religions once we reveal the upper world. And this is why religions usually are not very fond of Kabbalah, the real Kabbalah, which works as a science because it reveals the things that were unknown to people.
But on the other hand, religions are necessary. They have appeared in us and exist in human society so that people would develop, so that they would think that something bigger and higher exists. Religion is a preliminary action, a preparatory stage, to begin to enter the upper world. For this reason, after several thousand years of different religious practices, there comes the time when people develop the need for an actual understanding of the world because nature simply does not leave them any other possibility.
Right now we are entering such a degree of resistance of nature that it will obligate us to attain it. We will find ourselves in such an unpredictable state, where we will not know what will be happening the very next moment. It is impossible to exist this way. We see that we are already destroying the family unit, we do not want to have children. Humanity is already moving towards a state where there will be nothing but drugs to get away from reality.
In other words, we are coming to a state where we must see the entire picture. Only then will we have the energy to have a reason to live, create, exist. Today we do not have a bright tomorrow of this kind. We have come to a level which is followed by nothing else but the revelation of the next degree, the next dimension.
From Lesson 3 in Moscow 1/16/2011
Question: How do we raise the value of the goal in the group, the importance of the morning lessons, assignments, and the interaction of all group members between themselves?
Answer: There isn’t another question or problem except for the one single issue that Rabash describes in all of his articles. Baal HaSulam merely outlined it as he didn’t have such a burning issue regarding the groups. He had with him only five or six individuals.
When I first came to Rabash, he also had six or seven students his age. I was 33 while they were over 70. “How do I advance like this?” I asked him. He replied: “It won’t work for you; you need a group.” So, I started giving lectures, leading discussions, and brought him about 40 young men. Our entire work likes solely in unifying our yearnings for the Creator, towards the revelation of a singular force of Nature. The work is grounded on unification.
Alone, you cannot disclose anything. All you have is a mere point in the heart, which is your desire for the Creator which has been evoked in you. You must place the group between you and the Creator. As a result, it will become that “platform” where you feel the Creator. You cannot experience Him in any other way! Otherwise, this dimension remains empty for you, and you cannot fill it up and feel its fulfillment. Therefore, all our work lies solely in this.
“Quarrels” in the group? It’s very good that you have them. But they should be not for the sake of reconciling and relaxing afterward. They are needed to invite the Creator! It’s the only reason why He instills all the problems between you. Nothing else!
There are “quarrels” of other types, which are not connected with relationships between the friends, but rather with family, children, lesson schedules, group development, and the circulation of Kabbalah. That is another story; it is our regular life.
But our internal relationships, common work in building interconnection that is destined to reveal the force that fills the space between us, this can be done only with His help. This force manifests in two different ways: It either transforms our desires by unifying them and making them common, or it fulfills our collective, transformed desire. But it is still common!
From Lesson 2 in Moscow 1/16/2011, “A Prayer of Many”
Answer: It’s very simple. As soon as I feel there are some problems between us, specifically between us, I can immediately call on and directly draw the upper force which will make peace and harmony between us, as it is written: “He who makes peace in heaven makes peace between us.” I as if can make or force Him; I can understand why it is occurring between us and why He does it.
Generally speaking, you can make claims to Him only so that you get corrected. As to what happens between us, I should say: “All of this is my fault, and no one else is to blame in any way.”
Suppose I feel tension, some kind of conflict, between you and me. It is not because you are corrupted. Sages say that everyone who judges another does so in the degree of his own egoism, in the extent of his own corrupted nature. Looking at you, I always see you as bad when, in fact, it is my own reflection in you.
Therefore, I must always demand correction. Until I see you as perfect, I am not transformed. And all of this pertains only to our interconnection, the goal of which is to come to the Creator.
One can feel this only when he enters the group which enthusiastically works with this, understands that this is where the purpose of its existence is contained, exists solely to work out within all possible interactions, and comprehends that while doing so, it transforms all of creation and plows the soil for others.
After all, we are part of the integral system, its root, the “cap.” Today, we are the groundbreakers in the new generation that will be the first in mass to unveil the upper world. In other words, we lay the groundwork for the rest of humanity.
What takes place among us should be treated creatively, as in a laboratory. We should view ourselves as experimenters and relate to ourselves, to egoism that arises in us, as if it’s something supplementary or foreign that we should experiment on. We should treat it just like the Creator does: from the side.
As soon as I start treating my egoism as something aside, having fully risen over all problems that will have appear in me, then will I exit Egypt. And afterwards, I start unveiling the Creator, but not all at once since it’s not that simple. In the beginning, I am in the process of the correction of my desires. This is regarded as “forty years of wandering in the desert,” but it is something totally new. In truth, I battle with egoism in the desert in order to conquer it and create between us the property of bestowal, the attribute of Bina.
From Lesson 2 in Moscow 1/16/2011, “A Prayer of Many”