Good Environment – 05.29.11

My Good Environment – Dr. Laitman’s Advice for the Week

Bestowal Brings Joy

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Why is it said that an act of bestowal always brings a sensation of joy?

Answer: If a person cleaves to the upper one, this adhesion must bring him joy since he enters the perfection of the upper one. This is not simply a good mood, but rather a sensation of being filled with perfection and eternity, belonging and dependency, of touching upon something perfect and infinite.

This sensation is experienced by a person who has a connection with a higher degree consisting of the teacher, the group, and the Creator. The more he values them, the more he feels perfection. But then the question arises: How does he use this feeling? Maybe he is simply looking for a pleasant sensation in order to appease himself? Or perhaps he is using this feeling to ascend and bestow in return?

That is, it’s important whether he is using his connection with “the teacher, the group, and the books” to acquire the spiritual vessel called “faith” or to fill oneself. If he is looking for an egoistic fulfillment, it is an impure desire, Klipa, that wishes to cling to sanctity and draw out the Light from it.

However, one has to go through such impure states as well, feel them acutely on the path, and try to overcome them. Ultimately, I have to attain that there is nothing besides the single authority: the authority of the Creator. It means that the Creator is “good who does good”; He fills my entire world, all of my desires, my entire heart and mind. I have to always feel that I’m under the Creator’s rule, and He fills me. I shouldn’t allow a Klipa (my impure desires) to torment me.

There are people who derive pleasure from such self-criticism. Or they are so used to it that they can’t come out of this state. However, this is a very bad state, and it brings no advancement.

A person thinks that suffering helps him to advance and that one day suffering will end. But it will never happen. Progress takes place specifically by virtue of us aspiring toward joy, goodness, and happiness from performing good deeds—toward the upper degree, toward faith. This is called faith in the upper one, when a person feels that he belongs to perfection, meaning connects to the upper one.

So ask yourself: Are you trying to cling to the upper one to receive pleasure from it or are you looking for inspiration and joy that can help you acquire the ability to bestow?
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/29/2011, Shamati #40

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We Are Invited To The Feast

Dr. Michael LaitmanBaal HaSulam, “The Peace“: It is said in Masechet Avot (Chapter 3, Item 16): “He (Rabbi Akiva) would say, ‘All is in deposit, and a fortress spreads over all of life. The store is open and the shopkeeper sells by deferred payment; the book is open and the hand writes. And all who wish to borrow may come and borrow, and the collectors return regularly, day-by-day, and collect from a person knowingly and unknowingly. And they have what to rely on, and the judgment is true, and all is ready for the feast.’” …From the beginning of Creation, all people have reservations, and the Thought of the Creator necessitates them to come to the feast, knowingly or unknowingly.

“The feast” is the end of the correction of Malchut of the world of Infinity, which has to become filled with the Light of Infinity. This state is predesigned; it exists. We are in it and only lack the instruments, the vessels, to feel it. This is what we are talking about: their correction and tuning.

Thus, “all is ready for the feast.” It is ready, and the Creator is waiting for the “guests,” meaning our corrected desires, which is what we should care about. Everything is a derivative of this feast: the Lights of NRNHY and the vessels of KHB-ZON that descend from Malchut of Infinity by the ladder of spiritual worlds. The initial and the final forms, that is, the first and the third states, beget the second state in which we exist. They define our path in between them, all our corrections.

Hence, we should concern ourselves not with the initial and the final forms, but only with our contribution, our participation in the process. We should try, in the most effective way possible, to enter the sequence of these actions and hasten our development, making it maximally productive, intensive, and focused.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/29/2011, “The Peace”

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Fundamentals Of Kabbalah – 05.29.11

A Virtual Lesson on Fundamentals of Kabbalah
Download: WMV Video|MP3 Audio

How To Talk About Spirituality

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Book of Zohar, Chapter “Truma (Donation),” Item 24: Due to the Dinim in her, Malchut is called Efer [ash] and Efron. Efron means “our Efer.” From the moment Malchut rose to Bina, Bina is called Efron as well. At that time Bina divides into two—GAR, upper AVI, are Samech, corresponding to the six Sefirot HBD HGT, each of which comprises ten. From the Chazeh down she is established as Partzuf YESHSUT, which includes the four Sefirot NHYM, and it is Mem….

Question: What are the letters The Zohar talks about?

Answer: A letter is a symbol. The forms of letters symbolize the forces that are connected together. We have to give them a form to use it to describe these forces.

There are no forms in spirituality. However, in our world I can use letters to explain spiritual properties. Let’s say, the letter “Samech” (o) is round which indicates its property of mercy, bestowal. Its numerical value (Gematria) is 60. Sixty is 6 x 10 (six Sefirot, each consisting of ten). Thus, it’s possible to explain what 6 is, what 10 is, what “round” means, and what property we represent in the form of the round letter “Samech.”

There is nothing like this in the spiritual realm. However, to explain something to each other it’s necessary that we have a common language. If it were not for language as the communication between us, there would be no need either for letters or any other symbols.

Indeed, in spirituality, meaning in my inner sensation, I don’t need to draw any forms for myself. There are no images in my inner sensation; there is only a sensation in the desire, receiving an impression. However, when I want to say what my desire is, how much it’s impressed, from what, by which opposite properties, then the left and right sides, above and below, and various colors appear. Then, I need all these aspects.

Why does an artist paint a picture? He feels that he simply must express his or her inner sensation, delight, and inspiration and convey them to other people. A picture is only an external expression, to some extent reflecting his inner feeling and desire to share it with others.

People who don’t understand think that an artist simply threw on to the paper or canvas all his inner impression and inspiration. If we are talking about a weak earthly impression, that’s still possible.

However, it’s impossible to communicate a spiritual impression. That’s why it’s forbidden to portray spirituality in the form of paintings and statues because you will not be able to express your inner impression. Yet, it’s allowed to illustrate spiritual properties, states, and processes in the form of letters and diagrams because in them you depict not your inner impression, but only the symbols of impression.

This is called a language, when we connect among ourselves through external symbols, each of which, according to our agreement, may awaken in us a corresponding inner impression, and pass it from one to the other. Nonetheless, each human has a different impression because we are different from each other.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/26/2011, The Book of Zohar

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Back To School

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Owing to the crisis, the world is beginning to realize the necessity to unite. Is this desire higher in relation to the previous desires?

Answer: No, it isn’t. It’s about approaching our positions, which in effect will assist us with connecting people to ourselves. Indeed, this awareness is being felt more strongly with each passing day. Scientists, sociologists, psychologists, and even politicians talk about this. However, so far, the issue is limited to educated specialists associated with this problem.

In principle, it’s clear that the main problem in the world is our inability to get along, to agree among ourselves to stop excessive consumption and pollution of the environment. We have to be united by mutual agreement. Such a conclusion can be made by ​​every intelligent person, but still it’s nice to hear about it and read similar materials. At least, experts have come to that.

Nonetheless, they are not capable of more; they cannot find a solution, and herein is the main problem. After all, the solution is brought by the Light, the force of correction, and they don’t know what that is. They only understand that the situation is critical, that egoism destroys everything, and that it is the source of all problems. They realize that we need a problem-free world, where all people are united and live a normal, modest life without excessive additions because of which we empty and pollute the Earth.

Eventually everybody will understand this. Millions of people around the world raise their heads anxiously: Soon, they will have nothing to eat. They will agree to anything only to have food. They will agree to unite. However, once again they will fail to connect if the people from the human degree of development don’t come and explain how to accomplish this.

It’s done in the following way: Everybody begins to study, learning about the crisis and its solution. Even if people don’t yet understand the underlying principles, they will have to get in touch with the primary sources not related to their degree. Then, the Surrounding Light will influence and enable people to connect to a higher level.

It’s a must. When Baal HaSulam writes that we should sit on the school bench and start reading books, he doesn’t mean Marx’s Capital, or articles by Lenin or other socialists. He refers to his works, such articles as “The Mutual Guarantee,” “The Giving of the Torah,” adapted in such a way that any person can understand their message.

These materials come from the Kabbalistic source and talk about unity and equality. They are being given to the world by the people with the point in the heart, and this is enough for “illumination” that will inspire and encourage the masses to truly and correctly unite, not as it was in Soviet Russia or Israeli Kibbutzim (communities).
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/26/2011, “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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A Proper Attitude Toward The Light: Entrance And Exit

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe creature develops in different ways and on different levels. Overall, there are five of these levels. However, each level divides into another five, those divide again, and so till infinity. The key in this whole process is one simple action, as it is written: “The expansion of the Light and its departure make the vessel worthy of its task.”

If we want to beget any quality or reaction either for or against reception, for or against bestowal, or for or against intention, in any form, we must evoke in that form, in these details of perception, development and its halt, the reception of the Light and its exit, an opening and a closure. Then, through these two opposite actions, we will receive the correct impression: a new desire.

In other words, I want to rise from desire No.1 to a higher quality desire No.2. I want to change my quality, become wiser, more giving, a better observer, more sensitive. Then, I only need to evoke one action: Let the Light spread through me and then abandon me. This action will cause qualitative changes in my desire, which will make me understand more, feel more, and notice more things compared to what I noticed before.

All my actions must be very targeted to send a precisely aimed impulse that evokes the entrance and the exit of the Light. Thus, I determine the speed of my development. When I want to attain a new detail on the spiritual degrees, ascend the ladder, elevate my quality, this can only be done through the expansion and the exit of the Light. This is the way a better and higher vessel is built, one worthy of its new purpose.

Therefore, we see that we are capable of constantly raising ourselves. Naturally, we use external factors: the force of the Light and the force of desire. However, we are the ones who activate them.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/25/2011, “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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Intercepting The Initiative From The Light

Dr. Michael LaitmanInitially, we must understand that the creature is desire. In fact, desire is the only means, the tool available to the creature; it is a sense organ, a sensory element, something allowing it to sense its own being and reflect upon it: “Why do I exist? From where did I come and through what? What is life? What is my fulfillment, and where is it going?” All of it manifests in desire.

The Creator, the upper Light, created merely a shapeless point, “existence from absence,” which we have to develop since, in line with the program of the Creator, the creature has to ascend to His height. This point is the entire creation. It’s opposite to the Light, and this property is enough. Thus, it’s called a point.

During its development, the point has to experience various types of opposition to the Light, emanated from the Light. The Light projects itself onto this point and in this way, creates in it reverse forms.

Thus, it was only one point that emerged as “existence from absence.” Its other properties appear as “existence from existence” and take their origins from the Light. This point is evolving in the properties that are projected by the Light and opposite to it. From its opposite state, the point learns the degrees of similarity to the Creator, which it is able or not able to reach. Thus, it reveals the Light.

This point of the desire to receive undergoes a long, grand, multifaceted, gradual development. If the Creator is the desire to give pleasure, the creature, inevitably, is the desire to receive pleasure.

For the creature to have an opportunity to express itself, it has to define the form of its desire to receive. How is it done? It’s by cyclic development: Every time desire acquires its form, receives fulfillment in that form, after which the fulfillment departs, leaving the form empty. Then, the creature decides how to use it.

Previously, the Light determined the conditions of pleasure for the creature. Now, to the contrary, the creature receives pleasure in giving pleasure to the Giver. In this way, the creature turns reception into bestowal.

So, the Light creates desire and its form; it also brings fulfillment to desire. Later, the creature finds out that it needs to become empty, to be deprived of the Light. The creature cannot bear it; shame prevents it. Then, it asks for strength from the Light itself, in order to get rid of it. The Light, which awakened the sense of shame in the creature, agrees and gives strength to the creature. Then, the creature demands internal changes and corrections from the Light and advances through these demands.

Even if everything comes from the upper force, from the force of the Light, that is primary relative to the desire to receive, at the same time, it’s the creature that begins to decide what it wants and intercepts the initiative, gains supremacy. That’s why the period of development begins from a sense of shame and, below, is credited to the creature.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/25/2011, “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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Kabbalists On The Approach To Studying The Wisdom Of Kabbalah, Part 6

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

The Importance of the Intention during the Study

Before the study one must clarify the goal with which he now intends to study the Torah, meaning to clarify his intention.
– Rabash, The Rungs of the Ladder, “What Is Torah and Work on the Path of the Creator”

One needs to exert great effort before engaging in the study so that the study would bring him the Light of the Torah that Reforms.
– Rabash, The Rungs of the Ladder, “What Is Torah and Work on the Path of the Creator”

The purpose of the study of  the Torah is to come to feel the Giver of the Torah. Such a disciple is called “Israel.”
– Rabash, The Rungs of the Ladder, “What Is Torah and Work on the Path of the Creator”

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