When Will This Iron Wall Fall?

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Why do you and your central group have a religious appearance if you keep explaining that it doesn’t assist spiritual advancement? It would be better to assume a more secular look in order to become closer to people and the world, wouldn’t it?

Answer: I don’t think it should bother people. Our students come from different backgrounds, and we don’t tell anybody what they should look like. And if the public are familiar with our society already, they should know that we do not convert people into religion or force them to observe any religious rituals. They yearn to reach the root of their soul and come to us to transform their soul, to uncover the spiritual world.

We deal solely with the correction of the soul since the purpose of the wisdom of Kabbalah is the revelation of the Creator to the created beings. And revelation occurs only in the corrected soul. As to a person, he or she usually keeps following those traditions that they are accustomed to.

Nonetheless, Kabbalah was passed to us through the people whose background was in Judaism. After the destruction of the Temple, the people fell from the spiritual dimension, and Kabbalah was replaced with religion that is below in our corporeal world. But over the course of all these centuries and parallel to it, from Rabbi Shimon and further on, Kabbalah was passed on from one Kabbalist to the next along their chain. This is how it has finally reached us as a method of correction.

When Will This Iron Wall Fall

Kabbalah wasn’t related to religion that remained below. It continued to live among Kabbalists in the same way as it did before the fall of the Temple. There has always been a gap, an iron wall, between Kabbalah and religion.

As to us, we receive Kabbalah as it was before the destruction of the Temple, and that is why it has nothing to do with modern religion. We deal with correction of the soul. But at the same time, before the destruction, the Torah and commandments were followed by the people in intention and action alike, as one whole. There was the Temple and ritual service in it with all the necessary attributes. The same pertained to every person, according to his or her root as Cohen, Levy, or Israel.

The branch and the root were unified and viewed by people as one whole. But later on, the branch ended up below, in this world, having lost its tie with the root, and the root remained above, cut off from the branch. This is what is regarded as the exit of the people of Israel into exile when religion was all that remained for them.

But today, we need to ascend to where we came from, and let’s hope that when we do, we will comprehend what our duty is and return to the original state of complete and wholesome fulfillment of the Torah and commandments as spiritual actions. I don’t know how it will look; it is possible that physical actions will not be necessary any longer or they will be performed only by the people of Israel.

Baal HaSulam writes that even in the fully corrected society, every person may adhere to his or her religion since religion is cultural traditions. We don’t know any of it yet, and we should focus only on one thing: the correction of our souls.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/20/2011, “Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot

Related Material:
The chain Along Which The Light Is Passed On
Keeping Your Religion
Correcting The Nations Within Myself

The Difficulty Of Conveying Through Words

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Why do we experience such difficulty finding words to convey our message to others?

Answer: If we were able to sense the spiritual definitions, we would find simple words capable of reaching the heart of any person.

We have to develop the method of correction in order to bring the entire world to adhesion with the Creator. To do this, we need to sense spirituality. After all, only when sensing something do you begin to understand, which gives you the ability to express it through words. A sensation comes from the depth of the desire, from its force, aspiration, and necessity to fill it.

There are no smart or stupid ones. Everything depends only on the desire! In our world there are people who can express their thoughts in a very beautiful and poetic way. This is impossible in spirituality where the depth of sensation and internal pain determine everything.

Our problem is that we are blocked by our mind and we do not care about the correct sensations. These sensations depend on our connection with the world, with the society. After all, you have to find words in order to convey the unity among all! Kabbalah is a science which expresses the unity of souls.

If we do not aspire to connect with one another, we can’t express anything through our words. We take what is written in the books and convert it into slogans and ready-to-use stereotypes that are not clear even to us.

Therefore, everything depends on the degree of our connection with the society, with the group. If this connection exists, if a new sensing Kli (desire) emerges, even if it is yet unable to perceive a lot, this already gives us the ability to speak an easy language which is close and clear to people.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/11/2011, Writings of Rabash

Related Material:
What words Cannot Convey
Revealing The Words Of The Zohar
How Are Words Born?

The Era Of Change

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe process of development of the egoistic desire, where the desire to bestow operated very gradually, has brought man to an absolutely broken state. The still, vegetative, and animate nature, as well human society, the entire reality is now a deplorable sight.

We are in a very dangerous state, in a contradiction to the entire reality. On one hand, reality seems to be something enormous, global, interconnected, and whole, but on the other, human society on earth seems to have turned into an invasive  cancer, a harmful mold which consumes and destroys nature by covering the entire Earth with its waste and excrement.

We are discovering that we are absolutely opposite to nature, so we will have to realize in the near future that there is no other solution but to attain balance with it. And this can be realized because the two opposite forces of reception and bestowal have already been revealed in us, and they are ready for us to begin using them in a balanced manner. Only then will we begin to rise together as humanity from the still to the vegetative level of our development.

Until now these two opposite forces were developing us without our consent. Finally, they have brought us to the first free choice, and now we begin to develop on our own by evoking the force of bestowal for it to determine our development above the force of reception enrooted in us.

Before, the force of bestowal was concealed inside, and it was gradually growing like rising dough, or on the contrary, it enticed from afar: “Come this way; there is something here; there are pleasures waiting for you here.” Now we will be choosing the bestowing desire on our own as the force that we should be following in our development. Bestowal will not be helping the receiving desire, but the receiving desire will follow the bestowing desire.

We must keep making this decision over and over above our egoistic desire which does not stop increasing. As we ascend, both forces, bestowal and reception, will keep growing and emerge equally in us to give us the opportunity to have free choice. We will feel like we exist in the middle between them. In Kabbalah, this place is called “Klipat Noga,” and this is the way we will advance.

On every point of my path, my choice consists of revealing the equality of these two forces in me and preferring the giving desire to the receiving one. Bestowal must determine my direction so that the receiving desire would develop specifically in this way. By doing this, the receiving desire takes the form of the bestowing desire, the form of the Creator. And when the receiving desire is similar (“Dome” in Hebrew) to the Creator, then it is referred to as “man” (“Adam”).

And we will use these two forces the same way. The receiving desire will be constantly growing, and the bestowing desire will grow as well in order to give it a new form. In the end, we will return to the same place where we began our descent, the world of Infinity, where both of these desires exist together perfectly incorporated. We also achieve their absolute adhesion through our choice, as we act from below upward, until the entire receiving desire acquires the full form of the bestowing desire. This will become the end of correction, the completion of our development.

We live in a special time, a new era. What is new about it is that now, through our choice, the desire to bestow must reign above the desire to receive pleasure. This is called “to develop in faith above reason.”

Every day we are joined by more people whose previous mixing of desires have been completed. Gradually, they come to their first free choice: to go from the still to the vegetative degree, to emerge as a spiritually growing being from a still being.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/18/2011, Writings of Rabash

Related Material:
The Focal Point Of Freedom
The End Of The Slave Generation
What Has Changed Today?

Keeping Your Religion – Laitman Unplugged

The Current Situation Is An Exercise From The Creator

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Eventually we have to realize that we want to unite but cannot do so. But why do I keep forgetting about this?

Answer: You aren’t forgetting about it. Baal HaSulam has an article called “The Wondrous Quality of Remembering” which explains how it’s impossible to remember and then forget something. It’s simply that Reshimot are surfacing and passing in me.

Therefore, you shouldn’t be sorry about something you forgot from the past or something new that emerges that you don’t want. You have to accept every state as a working exercise and realize it. I need everything I have. I see myself after something has surfaced in me and I begin working from that point.

No matter what desires or thoughts awaken in you in order to confuse you with these unexpected “surprises” or infinite repetitions, they won’t go away until you realize them to the end, until you decide that this thought is not fit and you do not want to focus on it, or that it is desirable and you do want to realize it until the end. Nothing goes away until you make that final analysis.

The speed of realizing your desires and thoughts depends on your willingness to tolerate and ascend above them by working with faith above reason. In other words, it depends only on how included you are in the environment.

Question: Why do I have to tolerate this?

Answer: Because you are obligated to not run away from these desires, but to preserve them and analyze them, rising above them.

For example, I get some unpleasant thought. Then I become included in the study and the group, keeping a distance between myself and the disturbance that worries me. And I decide for myself that one is more important than the other. And I keep going that way until this bad thought gets discarded to the very bottom and disappears. That is how I analyze it. After that it keeps happening over and over again until I “trample” it completely.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/21/11, Writings of Rabash

Related Material:
Lower Your Head And Take As Much As You Want
Faster Than Time
What Is More Important: The Speed Or The Depth Of The Analysis?

Kabbalah And The Seven External Sciences

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe science of Kabbalah talks about the spiritual world and the forces operating in nature. These forces influence the matter of our world, creating various images in it, which results in an entire universe with everything filling it: still objects, vegetation, animals, and people. But we see all of this on the screen in the reverse part of our brain, and that is why it seems to us that this is in front of us. That is how we imagine reality.

That is why the science of Kabbalah is separated from this entire false picture, even though this picture is what helps us to attain the depth of creation, its intentions, and the Creator’s character. Yet in essence, the science of Kabbalah teaches us how to go from this external picture to the inner, true state where only two forces remain—the force of the Creator and the force of creation.

Of course, each of them divides into many more parts, particular forces and actions. But in essence it is talking only about forces: the will to receive, the will to enjoy, and what happens between them. This makes up all science.

If a science talks about the interaction of these two fundamental forces, then we have the science of Kabbalah. And if it talks about various results from them on different levels of matter—still, vegetative, animate, and human, then we have the sciences of this world.

Of course, these sciences are true because they give us knowledge about the external behavior through which the action of these two inner forces is expressed. But these sciences are very limited and we can only rely on them within the boundaries of our narrow world.

It turns out that the science of Kabbalah, which explains the two fundamental forces operating in nature, is the basis for all other sciences. And that does not include just the natural sciences that study nature and the external world, such as physics, chemistry, biology, and zoology, but also those belonging to man directly, such as music, dance, and art.

All of this is also part of the “seven fundamental external sciences” because it gives us knowledge about man’s abilities to perceive and sense his world.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/21/11, “Introduction to the book Panim Meirot uMasbirot”

Related Material:
The Science About The Nature Of Bestowal
Everything Is Relative In This World
What Is The Formula Of Inspiration?

Lower Your Head And Take As Much As You Want

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Where do we get the strength to tolerate the corrections?

Answer: From the environment. A person by himself does not have the strength to move forward one inch. If the group gives you the realization of the goal’s importance, indicating how lowly and despicable the current state is, then you will have the forces to awaken from this state to a better, more advanced state.

Stated differently, bestowal becomes better in your eyes even though it seemed worse to you before. You used to think, “Why do I have to bestow and unite with the friends? This is repulsive to me. I am incapable of it.” But the friends show you that this is development. You see that everyone aspires to this and then envy, a passionate desire, and pride move you toward the same thing. And then you are already able to do it.

However, this is so only on the condition that you can lower you head before the environment. To do this you are provided with everything that’s necessary. You have the force of self-rejection, but if you don’t use them, there’s nothing you can do. You have been brought to the group and told, “Take it.” That is where your free choice begins: To take it or not?

“To take it” means to annul yourself, to lower your head. Go ahead, do that and you will advance forward. The smaller and more humble you feel in relation to the friends, the more you will need their help. Then you will be able to receive from them the realization of your own lowliness and the Creator’s greatness in order to advance forward according to this.

If, however, you do not lower yourself before them, then you remain a “rooster” with your head held high, and will remain on the animate degree.
From the 1stpart of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/21/11, Writings of Rabash

Related Material:
The Current Situation Is An Exercise From The Creator
Plant Yourself In Fertile Soil And You Will Grow
Who’s More Important?

The Soul’s Correction Comes First

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Can a Kabbalist abide by two ideologies simultaneously and be religious at the same time as being a Kabbalist?

Answer: No, he can’t. Kabbalah takes the upper hand over religious ideology. A Kabbalist can carry out all sorts or religious customs as a result of his upbringing, culture, and the traditions of his nation. And I think it’s good to do so. I do not look down on religion.

However, this should not replace Kabbalah because the most important thing for a person is to attain revelation of and adhesion with the Creator. Anything that interferes with this should be removed from this path. What interferes isn’t religion itself, but the false conception of it, thinking that it can replace the attainment of the Creator, that instead of spiritual revelation it’s enough to carry out some kind of material actions, to pray according to written words, and to think that this is sufficient.

This is completely not so. It is written that “Everyone must know the Creator from the smallest of them to the greatest of them.” We have to attain adhesion with Him. Everyone says they agree with this because that’s what is written and it is impossible to argue with it. It’s clear to everyone that we have to attain “the Creator’s work” and to bond to Him. It is also written that the main rule of the Torah is to love your neighbor as yourself. However, people everywhere only talk about this, but do not actually make it happen.

No one even knows what adhesion with the Creator means, how to come closer to Him, and how to become similar to Him. The problem is that religion has replaced the science of Kabbalah after the breaking of the Temple, when the nation of Israel fell from the spiritual level to the material level and all that remained for the people to do was to carry out just physical actions as a tradition in order to commemorate the previous spiritual actions.

Now we have to learn to ascend back to the spiritual level and add the attainment of the Creator to these national traditions. Religion seems to stop a person, telling him that it’s sufficient to make just the mechanical actions that are carried out by religious people.

However, many source texts say that it’s not enough to make just the material actions, that the Creator does not care how you slaughter an animal—in a kosher manner or not, and that the commandments were given in order to correct the creatures by them. This means that the action has to be supplemented with the right intention.

The intention is the most important thing, in fact, it is the person himself. What is important are his thoughts and desires, rather than the actions. A religious person usually does actions by habit, having been raised from childhood to make them without thinking. There is no correction in doing so.

That is why we want to supplement tradition, the customary way of life, or what is called religion, which we perceive as a nation’s culture or tradition, with “the Creator’s work,” meaning the inner work of a person whereby he corrects his desires in order to become similar to the Creator. Adam, man, means similar.

Every person, secular as well as religious, has to understand that Kabbalah can add something to his life. It adds the revelation of the Creator, the upper force that controls everything. And when you see it, understand it, and feel it, then you understand how to go forward without making mistakes, both in this world and in the “world to come,” the spiritual world that becomes revealed to you.

We do not attain the revelation of the Creator by religious actions, but by uniting with others. However, these actions do not become canceled. They are simply like a branch symbolizing the spiritual root, and a person can remain in that culture. This is a custom that does not interfere with one’s advancement, but neither does it help him. It simply reminds you that spiritual actions exist, and that is why it was preserved throughout the years of the exile.

The Creator does not care about your physical actions. He only cares about the intention you put into them.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/20/11, “Introduction to the book Panim Meirot uMasbirot”

Related Material:
When Will This Iron Wall Fall?
The Chain Along Which The Light Is Passed On
On Cultural Differences

Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 02.21.11

Writings of Rabash, Shlavei HaSulam, “What Does It Mean the World Was Created for the Torah”
Download: WMV Video|MP3 Audio

The Book of Zohar — Introduction: “The Ninth Commandment,” Item 233, “The Tenth Commandment,” Item 237
Download: WMV Video|MP3 Audio

Talmud Eser Sefirot 3, Part 8, Item 88, Lesson 49
Download: WMV Video|MP3 Audio

Rav Yehuda Ashlag, “Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot,” Lesson 5
Download: WMV Video|MP3 Audio

“Ask The Kabblist” – 4

Download: WMV Video|MP3
To send a question for the program, please click here.