Question: What is nature, and what does it mean to be in balance with it?
Answer: We exist in nature. A huge number of parameters influence us, such as temperature, pressure, various vibrations, all kinds of waves, radioactivity, and others. We must exist in balance with all these natural phenomena.
This is the physical law: A body that exists in a state of balance with its environment is in its most comfortable state. If the temperature, pressure, or other parameters rise even a little, I feel bad. If they drop a little, I also feel bad.
This is how I am created in this nature: I can exist in nature within certain boundaries, and within these boundaries, I must make myself equivalent to the surrounding nature. That is why in winter, I need to dress warmly to be in balance with nature, and in summer, it’s the opposite, and so on.
This pertains to the part we can see, but there is also a part of nature we can’t see. It consists of the laws of desires, laws of our desired development, that is, moral laws. Man must conform to these as well, to be in balance with them.
We don’t know these laws. We think that we’re so good in this world if we give donations, help the poor, don’t bother anyone, pay our taxes, help old ladies across the street, or whatever you can imagine. Is that not enough?
Not only is that not enough, it doesn’t count for anything at all because I only do what I think and understand with my egoistic mind. In order to do what I need to, I must study nature itself and to aspire to be similar to it.
This law of similarity is the only law I need to obey. Every day I change, grow, and become someone else. It follows that every day, at all times, I must correct and adjust my balance with nature.
To that end, we first must learn the demands that nature or the Creator (it doesn’t matter what we call it) presents to us, the extent to which we conform to these demands, and how to achieve balance. This is what the wisdom of Kabbalah speaks about: What the surrounding nature is, what we are, in what sense we do not correspond with nature, based on what parameters, and how can we achieve balance with them. That is what the entire wisdom amounts to.
From the Sunday Virtual Lesson Series 7/31/2011
Answer: There is a purely psychological effect: When a person lives in a certain environment, he wishes to justify his existence in it. But if he has an additional environment, that means he is not entirely loyal to the one in which he exists, and therefore the environment perceives him as “not one of us.”
For example, this is apparent from people’s reaction to the Pollard case, and from my contact with many American Jews. They are very critical of Israel because it would be more comfortable for them if it were different, more attractive to Americans. The prevailing opinion among them is, “Israel is not acting right!” Not to mention their love and support of Obama…. And what about his Jewish advisers, who are bothered by Israel’s very existence in the context of their global plans….
Generally speaking, I suggest you look at history, at how America closed itself off to emigration of European Jews, indirectly sending them to the gas chambers. Yet President Roosevelt was known as ‘President Rosenfeld’ because of the great number of Jews in his administration, and Bernard Baruch, Roosevelt’s financier and adviser, was known as the ‘unofficial president.’
A while ago there was a documentary film about the history of television, called “The President of the Jews” which showed a full blown conflict between Bernard Baruch, the State Department, and Jews in the Treasury Department and the courts. Finally, the State Department created additional bureaucratic obstacles, such as a requirement to present a certificate of good behavior from the German police.
See: Human Smoke: The Beginnings of World War II, the End of Civilization, Nicholson Baker, 2008
Page 83: “Millions of strong, courageous European refugees could settle, proposed Baruch, in a place to be called the United States of Africa—a large nondenominational republic assembled from pieces of Kenya, Tanganyika, and Northern Rhodesia… ”
Also see: American refugee policy and European Jewry, 1933-1945, Richard Breitman, Alan M. Kraut, 1987
Page 233: “Baruch would be more likely to consider colonization of Jews on some undiscovered planet rather than Palestine.”
With regard to the protest movement in Israel, we have to give people an explanation of what stands behind the demands they are advancing to the government today. In essence, we are giving them sensible, real concepts so they would understand the essence of their slogans.
What’s the point of simply screaming about equality? After all, it can only be relative, limited.
What’s the point of screaming out slogans of unity if we are egoists and hate one another? It follows that we have to unite above our egoism, and for that we need an exalted goal. It’s similar to how during times of war, when we wish to save ourselves, we feel closer together, even though this is not real unity yet.
What’s the point of becoming all emotional about mutual guarantee? What does it mean? A bank guarantee? No, it means that in our society, everyone is soldered together into one and it’s impossible to avoid this. Then, unwillingly, out of having no other choice, to avoid slitting each other’s throats, we create a dependence called mutual guarantee.
Nature has already instilled this connection into the system, but humanity is still not aware of that. On our part, we already feel and understand that everyone are in “one pot” and we don’t have any other possibility besides observing the integral law of mutual guarantee.
However, mutual guarantee requires us to first of all be responsible: Every person bestows to others and depends on them. It’s the same as in a family: I depend on the children, and they depend on me. We are connected by the force of love and interdependence, for good or for bad. And now let’s make this unbreakable connection between us good and pleasant, so it will open up the future to us. No matter how you look at it, we are already in this situation, so let’s make it desirable.
If I am sorry about the fact that we depend on one another, then it’s easier for me to leave everyone and run away. But we are rising to a different level: We want this connection, and even if it wasn’t there, we would still build the mutual guarantee among us from zero.
In Kabbalah this is called “as one man with one heart.” If our demonstrators want that kind of unity—go ahead, it’s all yours. However, first it is necessary to explain everything to them. In mutual guarantee, every person receives the necessities and gives everything else to the society, and without that bestowal, society cannot exist. That is the meaning of mutual guarantee. This is how we have to take care of others.
Comment: Some of the protestors have clear demands. By “social justice” they mean free education, normal rent prices, care about the general well-being, accessible medical service for every person, a worthy salary for doctors, and transparency of the government’s actions….
Answer: Very well. However, this requires the whole nation to rise to a level where people will understand how the legislative and executive powers operate, how laws are passed, and how they are implemented in life. Every person has to understand what it means to analyze a situation, make decisions, and realize them in practice.
Go ahead, involve the nation. That is how problems used to be solved once, “by everyone.” However, millions of people cannot get together for a meeting, and that’s why people have given a mandate to separate representatives or accepted the power of the “lord,” throwing the weight of responsibility off their own shoulders.
If we want to raise people to intelligent decisions of a social, national character, we have to introduce the corresponding upbringing. Today it’s not enough to have just knowledge about the structure of the government. A person has to be part of the decision-making process within the framework of the mutual guarantee and unity among everyone.
If you want justice—go ahead: Unite as it requires. Only then will you be able to analyze and understand the situation. Only then will you grasp and carry out the law of justice.
Baal HaSulam, “One Commandment”: I say that the first and only commandment that guarantees the achievement of the aspiration to attain the altruistic intention is to resolve to not work for oneself, apart for the necessary works—to merely provide for one’s sustenance. In the rest of the time, one will work for the public: save the oppressed, and every creature in the world that is in need of salvation and benefit.
In these stern but precise words, Baal HaSulam explains to us how the world should exist. We have entered this path already: The world is interconnected in all its parts and is experiencing a global crisis.
Almost a hundred years ago, Baal HaSulam wrote that humanity became one family in which all people depended on each other. We did not notice it then, but today, we clearly see it and, after many crises and with a great delay, become aware of the situation. Tremendous efforts will be demanded from us to correct the flaws and especially that terrible form of human relationships, natural for us today.
Until now, reading these words of Baal HaSulam, we perceived them as something fantastic and unreal. Why didn’t he disclose a half, a quarter so that it would not appear so nightmarish and unacceptable to us, so that it could be digested by adding a variety of spices? However, a very severe picture, opposite to our nature, is unfolding before us, and it sets its strict condition: “Whether you like it or not, here will be your place of burial or your eternal life. One or the other. The choice is yours.”
In our world, we have to implement the principle of “love your friend as yourself.” Everything that is entrusted to us is focused only on this action: to acquire practical, complete, perfect bestowal, flowing from each person to the entire world. And for himself, a person should get as much as he needs for his existence. According to his degree, he chooses the necessities and gives the rest to others.
In our time, we asked Rabash, how we could test ourselves in this calculation. He gave wonderful advice: If you were glad to get rid of the necessities, it means that is it. If you desire nothing for yourself, no water, food, or shelter; if you want only to perform bestowal, as an angel, as the force apart from the body, and you are happy about that, then you have come to the correct decision, and you can receive the necessities from the world.
In this case, you will not overdo it and will get only the vital things because you are not glad to receive them. On the contrary, you would get rid of them, but you cannot because you need them to perform bestowal. You do need food, water, clothes, a home, and things like that.
This is a very difficult condition, and of course, people immediately want to “push it aside.” We do not see life in this existence: It is better to die. How can I perform bestowal to everyone and take only the necessities? Where is life then? How can we satisfy our ego? After all, it did not disappear.
In reality, you are not required to live like an animal, grazing in the pasture and demanding nothing else. On the contrary, you must become a human, meaning to release your entire huge ego for the benefit of others, to put it in the service of others.
What will I get in return? How can I act to bestow? My egoistic desire is like a machine that can run only on fuel. I can make the whole world happy, but what is there for me? For a good reward, I will give people everything I have. But what is the payment?
We have to understand that Kabbalah is a science, physics of the spiritual world and does not deal with fantasies. Fuel has been prepared for us, and the reward is such that it is worth working for bestowal and fulfilling the entire world.
Our reward is the revelation of the Giver. There is nothing greater in the world, and this is what we will get. This means that we must work for the sake of the attainment of Him.
This is the highest reward of all: to be in the adhesion and perfection with Him, at His degree. As if He frees a place for me next to Him, and I look at others from the height of my degree: “Unhappy, how miserable and low they are. Of course, I help them, what can I do?”
This attitude is called Lo Lishma, and it is natural at the beginning. The key is to start and not to be lazy. But as a result, we become imbued with complete bestowal because this is the only law that we need to perform.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/29/2011, “One Commandment”
When we are reading The Book of Zohar, we always ask ourselves the same question: Why do we need this book? After all, it’s totally incomprehensible and speaks about some magical, unrealistic things and actions that sound like commandments we’ve learned from this world, and about people, animals, or landscapes, such as rivers, hills, or mountains.
We have to understand that The Book of Zohar has to become the revelation of the upper world for us, and our lower world is merely an imprint of the upper one. Suppose I am building a tower from a piece of clay, pour plaster into it, and then it hardens taking the shape of the tower. Next, I lift this cast off, and I get a patrix and a matrix, a stamp and an imprint.
The upper mold is the upper world, and the mold that remained on the ground is the lower world. Thus the upper and the lower worlds correlate with each other. Hence, although we are speaking about the lower world and all that is happening in it: the hills, seas, roads, animals, people, or sun and moon, we should still constantly remember that they point at its projection: the upper world.
The Zohar describes the upper world, while the lower world is its imprint. What in our world is regarded as the desire to receive pleasure, in the upper world is the desire to bestow. As we seek to enhance our desire to bestow and to reach spirituality by unifying during our studying together with the group, we will become not the individual points scattered throughout the world, but make a certain, albeit material, form, part of our lower world. This is our group in the lower world.
But in fact, there is such a group in the upper world, and we are already there, in mutual bestowal and oneness, in a completely correct state since the initial (1) and the final (3) states already exist in Infinity. We should think solely about how to draw the force, desire, and means from the state where we are corrected, in order to actually reach it, to make it real—to ascend to that upper dimension in our sensation and understanding, in our life.
Therefore, here in this world, we must get to feel our unity and visualize our being in the upper group, above, as fully corrected, in unity and mutual bestowal, in our higher state. Besides, as we desire that from Above, from that very upper degree, the Light will expand to us, affect, and pull us up.
Thus, The Zohar speaks of our upper state by using the words of this world, the language of the branches. And I, while reading it, should constantly think about my being in total union with the group, in mutual bestowal, since that’s where I find the upper world.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/29/2011, The Zohar
In order to reveal The Zohar, we have to reach the state that is suitable for revealing it. The upper Light is at absolute rest. The Creator is simply concealed inside of creation because creation is unable to be in a state where the Creator would be revealed in it.
Therefore, the changes can only happen inside of creation. Creation has to change so it will attain the conditions for the Creator’s revelation, according to one law: equivalence of form.
As soon as we attain any measure of equivalence with the Creator’s quality, we reveal Him. The minimal quality in which we reveal the Creator by becoming similar to Him is attained when we unite with one another with a minimal connection.
How is this possible? Above the force of repulsion that separates us from one another, above the hatred and the unwillingness to unite, we try to awaken a desire inside of us, a persistent need to unite in our internal aspirations, in mutual bestowal, to create a state that expresses the quality of the Creator—mutual connection, bestowal, and unification at least to the smallest degree.
But even if we are unable to make this happen, we have to desire for it to happen. Then the force concealed in us, the Creator, will help us, will bring us closer together, and will build the state of unity inside of us, making it come true.
In essence, there is nothing else for us to think about other than to try to reach unity between us from the repulsion and hatred, and to reveal the latter, we also need constant persistence and aspiration.
Therefore, while reading The Book of Zohar, we have to try to constantly think about the network of connection among us, which already exists, but it exists in mutual dislike, the lack of the importance of unification. And we have to desire for it to transform to its opposite form—unification between us. When our unification becomes at least somewhat similar to the Creator, to the Light, then the Light will start flowing through it, which is called the revelation of the Creator to creation.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/1/11, The Zohar
Opinion: (Yuriy Tchaikovsky, The Zigzags of Evolution): When the body is stressed, it activates the genetic search mechanism. The genetic system cuts out and stitches fragments of genes until it finds an option which produces an antibody that can bind the invading antigen. The adjustment process takes about two days. Created in this way, the antibody intensively propagates (clones itself) to fight the infection and is stored until the end of the life of the organism.
This occurs in four steps (stages):
This targeted selection is done by an antigen itself. It is as if the gene is at the tailor’s shop, where it acts as a fit model to produce a new garment that is subsequently put into mass production. The result is the formation of an antibody that is completely opposite to the antigen.
The formation of an antibody may even result in the production of an artificial antigen. In this case, a new piece of genetic information is born, which has never existed in nature before.
In the articles “The Giving of the Torah” and “The Mutual Guarantee,” Baal HaSulam explains that the rule of “love thy neighbor as thyself” is the formula of our correction. We can correct ourselves only in the connection with others.
Conversely, without this connection, you have no opportunity, no place for correction. What can a person deprived of the connection with others do? This is exactly why the breaking occurred and the evil inclination was created so that above it, we would extend our threads to one another. This is all that is required of us.
In the first stage, we unify as Hillel, the sage, taught: “Do not do to the friend what is hateful to you.” And then we move on what Rabbi Akiva advised: “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” Thus we reach the end of correction and realize ourselves according to the Thought of Creation.
“The Torah,” the method of correction, is given to us if we agree to become as one man with one heart. With this method, by working in a group, we can demand correction from the upper force, the Light, or the Creator.
Essentially, the process of correction can be called attainment of the mutual guarantee, which is a certain connection between all souls. “Souls” are the giving desires in people. If people forge a bond and desire to bestow to each other, the form of this connection is called “mutual guarantee.”
There are people in the world whose desire lights up with a spark, a seed of altruistic desire. If they unite to blow these sparks up in each and all together, if they support and help each other to grow the sprouting forces in order to tie them together, then they form a system that fulfills the conditions of guarantee. In this interconnected, integrated system, all of them are as one man with one heart, according to the condition on which they had received the method.
Thus they reach the property of mutual guarantee, and in it, the upper force is revealed. It was specifically this force that gave them the desire, planted the sparks in it, and presented them with the method of correction that enables the friends to become similar to it in properties. It is revealed in them precisely according to the magnitude of this equivalence.
Hence, in the collective work to correct the world, some people wake up before the others. These people aspire to correct themselves, to achieve the unification and guarantee, a fusion between them, and merge with the upper force accordingly. They are aspiring directly to the Creator (Yashar El) and want to realize their desire in their relationship, as well as all together before Him. This is why they are called Israel; they are special and must lead by example, as an education force for the rest of the world.
In all other people this spark, the impulse to bestow, does not emerge from within. Only sorrows of life will make them realize the necessity of self-correction, but even then, they cannot do without those who are called “Israel,” those who attain some degree of connection, who implement the method of correction. That is why at the end of the article “The Mutual Guarantee,” Baal HaSulam quotes the Bible that the sons of Israel must become the “kingdom of priests” and a “holy nation.” Priests do not have possessions: They only nurture the people, assist, and organize it.
Thus we, those yearning toward the goal of creation, have to understand that by transforming ourselves into bestowal to each other, we are merely preparing ourselves for the real job, for bestowal to the world. This is our destiny, and for this we were awakened before the others.
From the 5th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/27/2011, “The Peace”
In the News (from nytimes.com): “Europe’s debt crisis, as well as natural disasters and political uprisings, are prompting investors both big and small to seek out investments that promise to protect their portfolios in the event of economic Armageddon.”
My Comment: Previously, diversification was meant to protect investments from a market collapse, but since today they are certain everything will collapse, they are seeking how to make money on it.
They use the insurance principle: They pay in the event of a collapse from the funds accrued specifically for this. Give egoism a chance, and it will be happy to profit from its own death.