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The mission of the nation of Israel divides into several stages. First we rise to the degree of the end of correction ourselves. This is why we came out of the state of Babylon and then fell into the state of Egypt, and 400 years later received the method of correction while standing “beneath Mount Sinai.” Next, we rose to the level of the First Temple, which is essentially the particular end of correction for this group.
However, this is not yet the end of the world’s development, which is why we descended into exile and then rose to the level of the Second Temple, and finally, went into the last exile on the level of the nations of the world. Altogether, considering the intermediate phases, this was our fourth exile.
All phases of this path remained in our Reshimot, and thus, today we must finally correct ourselves. We will thereby rise to a level that is even higher than before since we mixed with the nations of the world, which will join us in the process of this final ascent. That is how we rise to the level of Israel’s correction and the level of the general correction.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/17/11, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)”
A letter from my student: My friends called me early this morning saying that they heard reports on the radio and television that the Occupy Wall Street movement has been closed down and the police carried out a nightly raid on Zuccotti Park (also known as the Freedom Plaza), “cleaning out” the occupants from the territory.
This made me scared: Could it really be that we’ve been “cut off” from being able to disseminate materials? It turned out that it was true: the protestors were disbanded by the “broom” that was supposed to remove just bums and drug-addicts from the square. But apparently, they went into a rage.
To be frank, the drug-addicts and bums interfered with the movement, despite the cleanliness of the actual “occupants.” They smoked up the park so bad, you could get high just from walking by. We watched the veil of thick, milky white fog above the park. Our women, who were giving out flyers, breathed in so much pot smoke that they left there feeling sick. They were literally nauseous.
Bums and drug-addicts are also people, and everyone likes to eat for free, while the park had enough food for everyone. Everyone could receive three very nice meals a day, even the people just walking around, having nothing to do with the protests. And generally speaking, life in the camp was not bad at all—people feed you, clean up after you, and entertain you, the press interviews you, people bring you free clothing and money, and much more. You can’t see or get anything like it for free anywhere. And most important, you’re together with people! That’s why everyone is there—for the feeling of belonging and unity, the feeling that someone cares about you….
But all of this “communism” ended and the affluent, local residents rejoiced that the “mess” is finally over. Last night the police attacked the camp, and it was not smart to put up any resistance, to say the least. Of course, everyone was offended because they threw out all the belongings of the camp’s inhabitants, including a library of 500 rare, old and new books, tents, our time-tested table which we kept in the library, and much more.
Cleaning is cleaning, and it was thorough, in a police kind of way. They don’t beat around the bush—there wasn’t much time till the morning. If they waited for everyone to finish packing up and leaving, they wouldn’t have seen the end of it, and it’s more difficult to get a dirty job done in broad daylight….
Bloomberg, the city mayor, justified the cleaning by the fact that the occupants created unsanitary conditions in the park, which annoyed the park’s owners and also deprived regular citizens from the opportunity to enjoy the area and the chess games as before because lovers of this ancient intellectual game used to peacefully sit in the park and it was their place for socialization and recreation.
In the afternoon I managed to make my way to Wall Street and look at everything with my own eyes, when people left their workplaces and were on the way home. At 5pm things looked completely different already, compared to the quiet and order that the police had set up in the morning. The park was filled by thousands of people, occupants who returned to the square feeling hurt, offended, and angry.
This mass, consisting of different people that united into a single “body” over the last two months, rang out with outrage and scandal. “This is what a police state looks like! We will overcome!” and so on. These were no longer separate declarations of small groups and half-crazed fanatics, but one loud voice of a wounded creature whose home has been destroyed and who has no one to complain to.
A mass of people also crowded around the park to support the occupants, or just to watch what was happening. TV station and police helicopters hovered above the buildings, illuminating the crowd. The projectors from different sides of the street made the whole event look like a theatrical show unfolding on stage. And the police weren’t very aggressive, as if they’ve done their job and now they can rub their hands together. And at the end of the day, aren’t they the 99%? After an hour on Wall Street and hanging around the crowd, it became clear that “no one was going anywhere.”
The bums and drug-addicts probably won’t come back to the park. But the occupants are already there, along with those sympathizing with them. And we’re not out of the picture either: Today we managed to give out a few hundred flyers. The weather is unusually warm and the park is beautiful, resembling a golden and ruby colored forest… As if the Creator has put up “level 2 decorations” for us, like in a computer game. And I think we’re taking a sharper turn—“the 99% and us. Together!
What will happen on Wall Street and all the cities in America tomorrow is unpredictable for now. But one thing is clear: we HAVE TO UNITE if we want to go through this second level without losses, with the right calculation, and to give everyone who has “occupied” us (and it’s really so) a way to the Light and fulfillment.
The New York Times – http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/16/nyregion/police-begin-clearing-zuccotti-park-of-protesters.html?pagewanted=1&ref=global-home
Question: A convention in the Arava desert will be held this weekend, which will be attended by several hundred men from Israel to unite, to crystallize the inner force of mutual guarantee between us, and to become the nucleus for unification at the December convention. How can we do this?
Answer: Indeed, there has to be a special inner nucleus in which all the points will gather into one. This point is surrounded by a more passive part—the women of Bnei Baruch, and the widest circle is the external world.
On the inside, all of our friends from the whole world merge together. Why men? Because that’s the nature of creation: They are the ones who need correction to attain love and unity, whereas women reach this differently. Then, when we attain the desired state, we will be able to pass it on to others.
Question: How should women support men at this convention?
Answer: They have to think about our success. We need this support as without it we will have a very hard time. It’s exactly the same as how “the sons of Israel came out of Egypt by virtue of the righteous women.”
Women are a very powerful part of the common system and their support is simply indispensable. When a woman worries about a man, this gives him great forces, a great impetus to realize her yearnings. Without women’s support, we will not succeed.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/16/11, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)”
When a person already exists in a reality where “there is none else besides Him,” he must connect everything that is awakened as a disturbance with the concept of “one.” Then he will begin to see that he has really entered the spiritual world and included himself in bestowal, Bina, above himself. He, she, I, or anyone else no longer exist. Everything is merely one concept.
This “one” is neither the Creator nor the creature, but the only reality that exists, where everything connects into one. I can no longer say that he and I, and a connection between us exist. This is why we need to direct all our efforts, our purpose, and our true life toward the revelation of this only reality, the one soul.
When a person constantly tries to raise himself to this level of reasoning and feeling, the perception of his “I” in all his hopes and aspirations, and all his inner desires, he goes through a certain number of exercises, until he sees that everything he has outside of this “one” is only summoned to help him, to push him to connect with this “one,” and establish his place there.
It is written about it: “Habit becomes a second nature.” Thanks to habit, man begins to feel that he exists in another reality, and he makes decisions, reasons, and wishes in accordance with it. The higher reality where he includes himself determines and dictates everything to him.
His body and his entire corporeal life begin to connect to this One. In the end, he sees that there is nothing getting in his way. On the contrary, everything is helping him enter the true reality.
The entire world we perceive, everything connects and merges with this One whole. Then, we really discover that there is only one soul in the universe. The so-called “600,000 souls” are the yet uncorrected parts of one’s soul that one is not able to connect to the common concept for now. But later they too connect to him to strengthen and support this One single concept.
From Lesson 1, Israel Arvut Convention, 11/11/2011
Question: How should we prepare for the convention in the Arava desert, in order to arrive there with the right demand?
Answer: We know that the correction of the world happens in stages. The men have to perform the correction first, those who feel the true desire to connect and understand that mutual guarantee can only be in the connection between us. The women join this more passively.
So we are going to a place where we will have no disturbances from foreign thoughts and desires. There we will try to lead an attack aimed at the connection between us. I recommend that only the men will assemble in all our centers because if all the men in the world try to connect now, it will be the right preparation for the December convention.
Then we will move on to the next stage of preparation. By December, we will acquire more forces in order to add the men who can’t participate in the spiritual work with us now, and the women too.
Now we are consolidating the nucleus, and in December we will unite the external circles. The purpose of the December convention is for the part of humanity that takes part in the convention together with us to become an internal force that awakens the others towards connection and mutual guarantee.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/15/2011, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)“
The Book of Zohar was intended not for us to study it, but rather for us to demand correction from it. In makes no difference where a person is, in what situation or mood, how much he understands, and what his attitude to life is. It doesn’t matter what kind of person he is. If he opens the book, he should ask for some clarification, for advancement. One asks for understanding, and another, possibly, for a better life.
We have to understand that this is all not very important in comparison to the request to attain the goal. But I don’t know what the goal is. Just like it is in life: If I were able to read The Zohar when I was two years old, I could have asked for something good that may have seemed like the goal of life to me. But what would I have asked for, some toy?
This means that I don’t have to ask according to my desire: to feel good, happy, or the opposite. Grown ups for example, eat something and enjoy it. For me it is sour or salty, but they enjoy it. They do things that I don’t see any pleasure in and don’t understand why they want it in the first place, and so on.
If we are talking about the true state that I should attain, neither actions, nor fulfillments, nor any other criteria help me decide what to ask for. Kabbalists say that by reading The Book of Zohar you can ask for whatever you want. But I don’t even know what I want because I would rather not have these desires. Yet I have no choice.…
A person must approach the reading of The Zohar with a request for what the book itself wants to bring him. This is surely the right thing to do. It’s like being a smart baby who understands that he should ask to be a grown up, clever, strong, healthy, and successful, according to how The Zohar sees it.
So let us try to ask for this, and let The Book of Zohar do whatever it wants with us!
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/15/2011, The Zohar
The Book of Zohar, Chapter “Pekudei,” (Accounts),” Item 844: In this palace stands Dumah. He is standing above, in the third palace of the Sitra Achra, and below in the first palace. It is he who grips the soul when she is repelled from the holy palace by the appointee, Tahariel. Dumah stands at the gate of the first hall of Kedusha, to grip the soul and draw it into the palaces of Tuma’a. Also, there are several instigators of law and sentencing with him.
Suppose I am in a courtroom where different forces operate, and I am told about them: “This one can help you, this one is for you, and that one is against you.” I am constantly thinking about how they can help me improve my situation.
At the same time, as I hear about all these forces, I don’t think about how they interact with each other. It doesn’t worry me. I only think about how to solve my problem and to win the trial.
This is how we should read The Book of Zohar: to constantly want that all the forces it talks about will help us advance, succeed, and attain revelation.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/15/2011, The Zohar
Question (from the Hebrew blog): Last year, while studying Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, I was granted the revelation of the Creator in my heart. His teachings continue to illuminate my path and fill my heart. I turned to faith, began to put on tefillin (phylacteries), and try to fulfill the commandments, as I understand them.
Once, I came to your class in Haifa before Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement) and was very surprised by the fact that before such an important day as the Day of Atonement, you completed the lesson without saying a single word about keeping the commandments.
I was hoping that at least at the end of the lesson they would read a prayer. But even this did not happen. Don’t your lessons and the method of transmitting our holy Torah include prayers and performing the commandments? It is important to note that I really enjoyed the lesson. I would like to know whether it is possible to talk about such exalted matters without including the direct interpretation of the Torah and the fulfillment of commandments.
Answer: I address all the citizens of the country and the world, and that is why I do not present my explanations in the framework of customs so as not to scare people away, but to attract them towards the main commandment: “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”
Baal HaSulam, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)” (abridged version): And you evidently find that the giving of the Torah had to be delayed until they came out of Egypt and became a nation of their own so that all their needs were provided for by themselves….
The Exodus from Egypt is not just an escape from the domination of the evil inclination, although in itself this is also a great achievement. A person must really escape from his ego like he would from fire. No matter what, he is ready to sacrifice himself to the end. “I would rather die than live.” At the same time, bestowal upon others seems worse than death.
The second condition is to become a nation. It isn’t enough to escape my own egoism, I also have to agree to connect with others and to take care of everyone. I actually serve them, and my reward is that they allow me to do so. On the way to achieving this goal no one will lack anything. This means that I stand before the level of Bina.
However, while they were still mingled with the Egyptians…permeated with self-love. Thus, the portion that is given into the hands of foreigners will not be secured for any person from Israel because his friends will not be able to provide for those needs….
This is what causes a person pain and why he escapes from it. As the prisoner of the ego (self love), which is called Egypt, he cannot take care of others and so he decides to escape.
But here it turns out that in the material sense, everything is fine. Imagine that you have all the food that you need and that you live in the most fertile place. It turns out that you can do fine in life, in your egoism. Until now you have been pushed by suffering, and here, when you must escape from that to bestowal, it’s as if you are held back from the front: “But you can manage within your ego too.”
Then you go back to work, but it’s now work on the next level. Previously, you escaped physical sufferings, and in order to get rid of them, you were even ready to connect. This is why people connect when they have no choice in times of war or disasters. At a certain point, connection seems to be good, but suddenly it isn’t seen as good anymore.
You rise to the next level and you are told: “It isn’t worth it; you will live just as well in the corporeal world too.” This resistance from the front prevents you from yearning for connection egoistically. There are plenty of societies that connect wonderfully because of personal interests, but it isn’t the same with us.
If a person resists the braking force each time and nevertheless wants to reach connection, he develops a new desire that isn’t aimed towards himself. He falls and rises again and again, continues to study, to work in the group, and to draw the reforming Light, until he completes the second degree.
Now he is ready to connect only in order to bestow upon others. A direct attitude towards bestowal is revealed in him which he places above all personal interests.
Then the third degree comes. It’s when a person is with everyone else, feels good being with them, and bestows to them, forgetting about himself and his troubles and connecting to the friends, to eternity and perfection. And then it transpires that he still needs a reward, but of a higher quality. So it turns out that he is exchanging a cow for a donkey, meaning exchanging this world for the next world. Then a new form of resistance appears: It turns out that you have to act for the sake of the Creator.
Thus a person moves on to a qualitatively higher level of self-detachment. Now he isn’t interested in himself or the group, but in the Source, in the abstract idea, abstract in the sense that he has no connection with it.
It’s impossible to hold on to bestowing to the Creator: The Creator doesn’t know about me, and I cannot reach Him. So how can I form a vessel of such high bestowal? For this there is a special system which we will talk about later.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/13/2011, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)”