The Exactly Opposite Calculation

Dr. Michael LaitmanWhile researching nature, we study many phenomena that take place in front of us and inside of us. To bring them to a common denominator, we can say that any species and any part in nature takes care of its own existence. And the more it takes care of itself, the higher is the level of its development. That is how the vegetative level of nature originated from the still level of nature, and the animate level came from the vegetative, and man came from the animate level of nature.

We understand from the science of Kabbalah that this did not happen by itself, but by means of Reshimot, the “developmental genes” that are successively realized one after another within the framework of the initially fixed model.

All of this exists inside the aspiration for self-benefit. The program instilled in all of nature’s elements places one task before us: What should I do to feel good? Be it realization of evil, conscious progress toward goodness, force, speed, connection, feeling, or mind: According to its potential, every species aspires to goodness and detaches from evil. That is our nature.

On the still, vegetative, and animate levels this nature is a "one way street”—urging us to act directly for our own benefit. But on the human level there is one more special action. Man is able to feel the neighbor, and therefore, he is willing to give something to his neighbor with the expectation of later receiving reward and pleasure. We have learned different ways to use the neighbor which don’t exist on lower levels.

On the still, vegetative, and animate levels there is only reception. But man also knows how to bestow to the neighbor in order to receive benefit for himself. Moreover, interaction with the neighbor is meant to eventually bring him much more benefit than regular reception. Otherwise he is simply unable to receive anything directly. But one way or another, in both cases, he acts for his own sake.

In principle, direct reception is a primate method for man. As a child grows up, he receives upbringing whereby we teach him to interact with the world, and usually that means learning how to use the neighbor in a way that avoids being harmed and that enables him to receive self-benefit at the end. This is human upbringing. If things are the way they are, then it’s best to take the neighbor into account. After all, often we wish to simply take, conquer, and steal without leaving a trace behind.

That is how our world is and that is why we only perceive what we receive inside of us. Our desire is limited and eventually it brings us to feelings of emptiness and despair.

But there is also another, opposite possibility—bestowal, where the tendency is away from myself, upwards, towards the neighbor, as well as away from myself, downwards toward myself, and then upwards toward the neighbor. In the first case I bestow for the sake of bestowal (Bina, Hafetz Hesed), and in the second case I receive for the sake of bestowal (the degree of love). This is called an exactly opposite calculation and it only exists in a human being.

Thus, we have two possibilities: reception with auxiliary bestowal or bestowal with auxiliary reception.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/23/11 on Global Education

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Coming Out Of The Illusory Lie

Dr. Michael LaitmanBehind every word or phrase of The Zohar, we have to try to recognize forms of connection between man and his environment. In essence, this is exactly what The Zohar describes. There is nothing more in reality besides the forms of connection between a person and those around him.

Even now, when I see people and the walls of this room in front of me or hear the noises coming from outside, all of these are forms of connection between us. There is nothing besides these forces connecting us, which are forces of desire which appear this way to me in my earthly perception of reality.

In the same way, if we try, then we will begin to imagine other kinds of our connection, other forces which don’t operate inside reception, but inside bestowal among us. Then we will see that in reality, there have never been egoistic connections between us. We felt them like in a dream so that based on this illusory connection, which is opposite to the true one, we would recognize the true connection, the only one that exists in contrast from the illusory life—the desire to enjoy with all of its power.

After all, this desire existed only in order for us to transform it into the desire to bestow. The Creator supports it in this artificial form, but it does not have any real essence of its own. Only the force of bestowal exists in the world.

That is why The Zohar describes all the varieties of the force of bestowal to us, which we reveal in all the various forms, as well as the forces of reception standing opposite them, being the basis upon which the forces of bestowal are revealed in the process of man’s inner war.

This is the only thing we have to think about while reading The Book of Zohar, making efforts so the revelation of these spiritual levels will help us and will become revealed in us so we will include them inside of us.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/23/11, The Zohar

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Moments Of Your Life

Dr. Michael LaitmanWe have just been reading The Zohar for over half an hour. I ask you, during all of this time, how many moments did each of you yearn for the arrival of the Light that reforms, expecting something to happen? It is written that the angels asks a person after he dies, “Did you study the Torah and did you await salvation?”

How many moments did you spend in exertion, trying not to miss out and to "catch" something very important, like a goalee guarding the gate, or a hunter chasing prey? Were you passionately anticipating it, the way you might feel before a long-awaited date with your beloved? How long did you remain in this state? How many times did you return to this aspiration again?

Only these moments count in life. They are summarized and they determine the speed of life. The other moments don’t really exist….
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/23/11, The Zohar

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Friends Of My Point In The Heart

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: A part of me really wants to go to the Convention, but another part of me opposes it so strongly that I don’t want to see anyone. What should I do?

Answer: You have to make your free choice. You should understand that both parts of you, like all of the thoughts and desires that awaken in us at every moment, come to us from the Creator. These are conditions which are set for us; it is not the actual me.

What makes the decision is not my body, which gets sick and does not want to go to the Convention, and not my mood either. We act like a mechanism where all of the internal electrical signals are controlled by the upper force according to the program leading us to a certain state.

Life, death, and all of the states in between are determined from above and there is nothing accidental about any of it. Therefore, in every state I have to detach myself and look at this “mechanism,” meaning my body, its mood, and everything in it, from aside. The purpose of this is to see that this is the Creator’s work and to understand what He wants to give me right now, and to what state does He want to bring my “donkey” (Hamor, donkey means Homer, matter). Then I will understand how to work with it and will not identify myself with this “donkey.”

The more times a day a person is able to detach from himself in this way and look at himself from aside, like at a body in which some kind of forces are being awakened, without identifying himself with it, but rather using it as a means to attain the goal, the faster he will reach success. That is also how we should treat the friends in every regard. Don’t look at their faces or personalities, but at their inner desire in the pure form, which does not depend on anything external. This is the friend of my point in the heart.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/22/11, Preparation to the WE! Convention

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You Can’t Live Without Women

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Why does society have a dismissive attitude to women? Why do men consider women beneath them?

Answer: This attitude results from the fact that a woman cannot attain spirituality on her own. She depends on a man for this.

Our common soul consists of the male and female parts where the female part, Nukva, is the desire for fulfillment. In our world this is expressed through the fact that a woman needs a home, that she has to give birth to children and take care of them. Her children encompass her entire life. That is why she depends on society to a greater extent than a man. She needs stability and confidence in tomorrow.

In other words, a woman feels more unsatisfied and this is a premise for her spiritual development, although it is perceived as weakness in our egoistic world. In spiritual motion everything is opposite because the greater the desire, the more a person advances. We, the creatures, depend only on desire. And if this desire is oriented the right way, then this is the key to success.

Therefore, unless the men absorb the women’s desire, they will not be able to advance toward spirituality.
From the lesson on 3/5/11, Writings of Rabash

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Joy Is A Sign Of Bestowal

Dr. Michael LaitmanYesterday while watching our TV channel I saw a broadcast of the cultural program that was held at the big Convention in Israel last fall. It included performances by different groups and special dances of different nations from all parts of the world where people came from to attend the Convention. There was a huge audience and a very special atmosphere, making it impossible to take your eyes away from the TV screen. I had to watch it until the very end.

I didn’t see any disappointed or dejected faces there because every person was influenced by the common inspiration and the entire hall was filled with joy, hope, excitement, and inspiration. And it wasn’t even because any special spiritual revelation was taking place there, but simply because the mood of the society influenced every person in this way. Every person that was part of it felt happy and joyful at that moment.

That is the power of social influence and it is the only thing we lack in order to advance at every moment in time. On the path we cannot demand any revelation other than the revelation of bestowal, meaning the correction that enables me only to bestow, to connect to others and not to demand anything else, like Bina which does not desire anything for herself (Hafetz Hesed).

The Creator demands for us to become the same as Him: To bestow for the sake of bestowal, and then to receive for the sake of bestowal. That is why our advancement always happens “above knowledge,” meaning we cannot ask for any other quality or fulfillment to manifest in our sensations besides the quality of bestowal. Moreover, I don’t even care whether I will be given the opportunity to bestow. I don’t expect anything in response form the Creator besides the very aspiration for bestowal which will always develop in me, more and more.

The world does not understand this attitude yet and we, too, are only gradually coming closer to being able to hear and understand what is the essence here. But there is no other way to go. All of humanity has already entered this process of correction and we have to understand that there’s no way back. We cannot stop history. The whole world is undergoing very swift development in the direction of this new quality – the quality of bestowal that will begin to rule the world.

That is why Kabbalists say that we don’t have any other means besides organizing an environment that will support us on the path to the goal and will give us strength, inspiration, and joy. We cannot receive all of this from the Creator and especially not from ourselves, but only from the society.

That is why our dissemination should emphasize inspiring events such as, for example, the cultural programs at the Conventions. This means “joining the good,” which is our motto of choice. The more programs like this we will have, which convey joy, unite, and might that has been acquired, the greater is the life force that this will give to every person.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/21/11, Preparation to the WE! Convention

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 03.23.11

Lesson on Topic “Preparation for the WE Convention,” “The Need for Love of Friends,” Lesson 3
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The Book of Zohar — Selections, Chapter “Yitro (Jethro),” “The Tablets Were the Work of God,” Item 364, Lesson 7
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Talmud Eser Sefirot 3, Part 9, Lesson 13
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Topic: The Principles of Global Education, Lesson 6
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