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Question: In what way is the congress in the North different from the one we had in the Arava desert?
Answer: We already spoke about it yesterday in the workshop when we spoke about how our feelings change as a result of the workshops and our attitude towards them. We saw that each time the beginning is more difficult—it is harder to come to the workshop—but the entrance and the connection come more quickly and our impression grows and becomes clearer and more stable.
It is the same when it comes to congresses, since a congress is a kind of a workshop, but more complex since it is made of more parts, and we have to relate to it accordingly.
Of course, it is harder to get ready for the coming congress and to the impression we should receive from it compared to the Arava convention, in which we felt as if we were leaving Egypt and coming closer to Mt. Sinai. There was something of the legend there, a kind of an adventure. Today we are facing routine work: We are coming to a new place, we fix what is necessary, we have lectures…the previous impression is missing, it has been changed to a “standard procedure,” into routine.
This is good since this is how nature provides us with a more mature attitude so that we will try to penetrate our feelings and to be impressed by more profound things.
We say that in the Arava we attained the level of Shoresh (the root level) of our vessel. The fire burned in us and we felt like heroes looking forward to an adventure. Now we’ve moved on level one or two, the desire is also “thicker,” and our attitude should be more serious. There is no room here for the “airy” euphoria, to the childish impression anymore; we should search for all this inside, in the depths of our feeling and understanding. That’s what’s important.
Today we must attain the connection under difficult conditions, without the first impression, with a desire that is thicker. We have to be thankful for having received a thicker desire. Apparently we’ve managed to do something in the past and now we should attain a much stronger impression than before that isn’t childish but much more mature.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/02/12, “Questions About the Congress of Consolidation in North Israel”
Question: How should a woman, studying Kabbalah, maintain a balance between the material and spiritual life, and is it necessary? Should she simply turn away from everything material and aspire just to spirituality?
Answer: I don’t understand why it applies to women. Why doesn’t this apply to any person? First of all, it doesn’t matter whether it is a man or a woman.
In no case we should turn away from the material life. Kabbalah is not in favor of monkhood or seclusion. We must think about this world, about the essentials for living, this is stated in Kabbalah. A person should provide himself with everything he needs, rather than hope that “maybe someone will help.” He needs to have his place and normal, reasonable income. It is a must! And we have to take care of this first of all, instead of relying on others, waiting for help.
From a Talk During the Meal in Toronto 6/19/12
Question: Yesterday in the workshop I felt inspired by the hopes of all the friends about the coming convention that will take place in a few days in the northern part of Israel. In the next few days, we will try to keep the motto “knocking with repentance!” Today, however, I feel that I am in a completely opposite state, and that I don’t have the demand I had yesterday. I feel as if the carpet has been pulled from under my feet.
Answer: I think that such changes shouldn’t occur from one day to the next but from one moment to the next. A moment ago I was so adhered to the goal, and I yearned for it with such intensity and energy and a moment later it is totally the opposite, as if it had never happened.
What is going on? What is this wonder? To what extent do our desires change? There is no problem here; this is the creation. We are like a TV screen on which we are shown what we see and we don’t see what we are not shown. I am not the one who projects the film, and whatever is projected is not up to me.
The question is how can I become the one who projects the film if I want to see and not the one I am being shown? I don’t want to be in the life I am being shown in this movie. I want another movie!
Question: But can I project this movie, how can I prepare myself correctly from this moment onwards?
Answer: The problem is that I can change my feeling towards the movie that I am being shown only if I reach its real form. I am constantly being sent new Reshimot (reminiscences), signals, new pictures, which constantly come to me from Ein Sof (Infinity). It is a very long way, and in the meantime, I respond to them like an animal yearning for good feelings and escaping the bad ones.
If I don’t want to advance like an animal, like the pictures and the feelings that come to me in which I am in this three-dimensional space that determines my life, if I want to advance quickly and smoothly, I have to identify with the One who projects the movie to me. I have to connect to Him, to His plan, to agree with the process, to agree with what He sends me, and to understand that what he sends me and what I see are two opposites.
There is, for example, a picture that you can see in black and white or in white and black, negative and positive. Here too, I have to change my perception, but for us it isn’t just black and white, but forms that are opposite in many different properties of perception. I have to want to perceive the picture in the way the One who sends it sees it. The picture comes to the three-dimensional screen I am in, and I can’t feel it the way He depicts it, the way He sends it to me. He sends me a picture that is filled with goodness and delight, since He is good and benevolent, while I see it as the absolute opposite in my perception, my desires, and my thoughts.
In order to see it in its real form, I have to change my perception, my attributes, and my desires to the opposite. This is possible. I have another connection with Him besides this picture, and through the picture, I can connect with Him.
If I take this picture, as a whole, the whole world, everything that is before me, and want to connect it all and to attribute it to the One who projects this movie, I connect with Him and can demand that He changes my attributes.
Thus, with the help of the world, by arranging it correctly according to this method, I connect with the Creator, and He performs this change in me. Then I see that the picture changes, and I understand what I have to do. The main thing is to accept this change for the first time. From now on you already know how to proceed, you have a way; you have the right approach. Let’s hope that we will be able to fulfill this first action.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/01/12, The Zohar
Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Book of Zohar,” item 15: When you examine the above three states, you will find that one completely necessitates the other in a way that, if one were to be cancelled, the others would be cancelled, too.
If, for example, the third state—the conversion of the form of reception to the form of bestowal—had not materialized, it is certain that the first state in Ein Sof would never have been able to emerge.
It is because the perfection materialized there only because the future third state was already there, as though it is in the present. And all the perfection that was pictured there in that state is like a reflection from the future into the present. But if the future could be cancelled, there would not be any present. Thus, the third state necessitates the existence of the first.
The whole plan, including the initial part, the middle part, and the final part couldn’t exist without the future form. It is said: “The end of the action in is the initial thought,” which is true according to every plan and every action—the future form is mandatory and in itself determines all the details.
The beginning is only the point of the created being, which is separate from the Creator. In the future form, the created being should be like the Creator, when he rises to the level of Adam, the “human” level, stemming from the word Domeh (similar.) This determines the process: to get from the beginning to the end, we must start our development from the end to the beginning. That means that “the end result of an action lies in the initial thought.” An “action” is already the end, the final and complete form, from which we know how to approach things. It is the only way the spiritual work takes place.
In our world we assume that we operate differently, but it isn’t so. It simply seems that way since half of our actions and thoughts are concealed. It seems that something new is going on, that I am doing something, but in fact I don’t see what is going on behind the scenes where everything is arranged for me, where the future form determines the current form from which it is supposed to stem.
It seems as if I go through some process of development and that I can affect it according to my desire and my plan and to obey the desire of those around me. In the meantime, I simply don’t see that everything is predetermined and programmed.
The future form determines everything there is and everything that there will be, and only our attitude affects the feeling, the manner according to which we accept what is happening.
So we don’t need to think about the actions themselves at all. Our intention is the action. Our attitude towards what is going on is the one new element we can add on our part according to the principle of “Thou hast hemmed me in behind and before.” The Creator holds everything in His hands and all the created being has to do is to change his perception of reality as he accepts it as good, in equivalence of form, or in the form of suffering.
Question: How can it be that although the final phase already exists we still have to make our own independent efforts?
Answer: Our independent efforts are necessary only so that we will want to format new internal values for the new perception. If you waste your energy in order to change the world, it only means that you are foolish. You don’t need to change the world in the present but to contact the future. Animals do it instinctively, and man developed this ability when he climbed down from the tree.
After all, it is impossible to advance without knowing the future. Ancient pagan beliefs were intended only to connect to the future. Today we simply don’t understand them and that actually the customs, the dances, the rituals, and even the martial arts were designed not in order to harm someone but only to “lock” the future upon ourselves.
Man has always faced the problem of contacting the future and of feeling it. If I shoot an arrow from a bow, for example, I only have to capture the moment in which I actually hit the target, feel the future moment in which the arrow already reaches the target. That’s enough. This is called “living the future,” being in contact with it. Then by that feeling I can arrange my actions on my way to it.
But we have not been developing in this direction for quite a while since the growing ego has deprived us of the natural perception that was in our basis and we lost contact with it.
If I don’t know the future form and don’t connect to it, I don’t act; it is a sign that my desire isn’t clarified yet. So there is nothing to cry about—I have to aim all my actions towards the connection with the future.
Our future is the attribute of bestowal and I have to express it by different means. When it is clear to me how I have determined my future form, I ask for its correction and then I discover it.
Accordingly, now too, if I imagine the group correctly, it shows me the future in which I am totally connected to it in all my attributes. This is my first spiritual level. On the next level I will be given a greater egoistic desire, I will draw away from the friends again, I will begin to disrespect and hate them even more in order to reunite with them after I overcome these interruptions. This process continues until we become like Rabbi Shimon’s students, united above the burning furnace of hatred.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/1/12, “Introduction to The Book of Zohar”
On June 28, 2012, the Mutual Responsibility Toronto group successfully organized the first round table in Toronto. The topic of the roundtable was “The relationship between people in light of the global crisis.”
The discussion began at the central roundtable that was attended by:
Ryan Dyment (the Zeitgeist Movement, Toronto), Executive Director of the Institute for a Resource-Based Economy, which distributes materials that help one understand the dependent nature of the modern economy, a holistic view of the future of humanity and its relationship with the environment;
Trey Winney, a senior organizer with Occupy Toronto;
Barbara Elizabeth Mercer, author, poet, and visual artist who since 1962 has completed work for TVOntario, CBC, the Canadian Opera Company, and the National Ballet of Canada, among others;
Julian Edwards, active member and spokesperson for Mutual Responsibility;
Eric Hellman, communications coach, writer, and consultant, whose past projects include co-coordinating the Sustainability Roundtable at the UN-Habitat World Urban Forum (Vancouver), co-organizing the first Spirituality at Work conference in Toronto, organizing the UN International Day of Peace event at the World’s Fair, and co-founding the first Blue Box recycling program and the Recycling Council of Ontario;
Tom Cooper, Director of the Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction.
Patrick Legault, representative of Mutual Responsibility, Toronto.
After the central roundtable answered and discussed questions from the audience, all the participants participated at the roundtables discussions by answering two questions:
Impressions from the roundtable participants included:
In the News (from the MailOnline): “Racism is hardwired into the brain, and people can be prejudiced without knowing it, say scientists – and it operates unconsciously.
“The same circuits in the brain that allow us to see which ethnic group a person belongs to overlap with others that drive emotional decisions.
“The result is that even right-thinking individuals make unconscious decisions based on a person’s race.
“Brain scans have proved that interactions with people of other ethnic backgrounds set off reactions that may be completely unknown to our conscious selves.
“The finding may force researchers to think about racism in entirely new ways.
“It’s possible, the researchers say, that even right-thinking, ‘egalitarian’ people could harbour racist attitudes without knowing.
“The chemicals involved in perceiving ethnic backgrounds overlap with those for processing emotion and making decisions, according to new research.”
My Comment: It is impossible to rebuild the brain; humanity will suffer from its nature; we can blame it for all our evil inclinations, and thus the solution is possible only in the correction of our egoistic nature. It can be changed only with the force that has created us and that develops us, our egoism.
Today, we have reached the height of egoistic development, and that is why we can reveal the finiteness of our development. We face a dead end that can become the point of our birth in new qualities. This birth if pre-programmed. Only that path towards it is not programmed; it can be through sufferings or conscious, like with a stubborn child. Only the transformation of our very nature will change us and our whole life. First, we need to recognize that human development is negative!
Question: In ancient Greece, the birthplace of the foundations of psychology, four types of people were distinguished according to their individual characteristics: sanguine, phlegmatic, melancholic, and choleric.
In modern psychology, the branch dealing with diagnostics of individual qualities is very broad. A person wants to know about himself and his properties in order to maximize his potential.
Why don’t we use, let’s say, 16 types of individual properties in the integral methodology, instead of only four?
Answer: Because these are egoistic qualities corresponding to four types of egoism. But there is one more, the fifth one, which all of the other ones come from and which doesn’t have its own shape. Indeed, this corresponds to a four-level structure of human perception and his soul. But all of that is related to egoism.
While egoism was still at work, we really could divide people into these types, and make calculations with respect to their zodiac signs. Up to this day, many magazines publish all kinds of divination.
But we see that this is nothing we can really work with. Why do we relate to a fact that has outlived itself? We have become different people, and we no longer have that. Outwardly, each corresponding temperament manifests itself, of course, but there is nothing we can do with it today.
If before you could pick a pair according to the sign of the zodiac, try to select a couple according to astrology today. Would you get happy marriages from that? No. If you give some advice to a sanguine and other advice to a choleric, would they be happy? No. So why do we need this old classification?
It used to be correct about the older active egoism that was linear, individual, and directed towards self-needs.
But now I no longer have my personal needs. I don’t want anything. They went up to the next level where I feel some need, but can’t tell what it is. I don’t see where to find the source of fulfilling my needs. I get into some kind of sexual perversion or spend time somehow, in order to forget myself. In addition to that, I get into drugs, terror, or something else because I don’t see the source of pleasure.
And it can come to me only through the integral society when I place myself into it. Thus, I must enter the integral society and then in there, in its heart, I’ll find the source of my fulfillment. But today, a person is still not at the level where he realizes that.
From a “Talk on Integral Upbringing” 5/24/12
Question: A member of our organization, a very emotional adult, developed sleep problems. He went to see a specialist and was prescribed a medication called Ritalin. I was simply shocked by this. His problem is that he does not express himself enough, according to his nature, and the doctor limits his self-expression even more.
Should this impulsive, naturally vocal person still be given a place in the organization for him to realize himself?
Answer: If you help him properly set his mind towards group work, he will feel such strength from it, such a warm organization, that he will have no problem restraining himself, so other people will have no problem actively participating in the discussion. This happens automatically; every person becomes its balanced particle under the influence of the common field. Thus no pressure or limitation is needed here.
We understand that specialists have no other tools at their disposal; they automatically prescribe Ritalin, and this basically is the essence of their profession, if it may be called so today.
People need to be put together in a circle, given a proper intention, attitude, and instructions; you need to watch them to make sure that they behave in an undulating manner in relation to the group, going up and down. Everyone moves similar to the way you churn cream to make butter: above the group – beneath the group, above the group – beneath the group.
And suddenly a new body appears between them, which has an absolutely new life of its own. And as they feel themselves in it, they begin to feel that this new thing is the next stage of my development, I am in it. Instead of associating myself with my body, I associate myself with this something common we have all begotten together, and there I am no longer sanguine, choleric, phlegmatic, or melancholic, I simply include everything in me. I am all the qualities put together.
From a “Talk on Integral Upbringing” 5/24/12
The desire to receive cannot be spurred without the “bridle and the reins” of its rider. It must be under someone’s control, like donkey that is given a sack of grain, blindfolded, and directed in one direction. Only then can the desire to receive work.
Our advancement and our correction occur only by the Light. The Light manages us by sometimes increasing its pressure and sometimes letting us feel some freedom. But we have to feel and understand where exactly this freedom is given to us. It’s possible that where we think that we are free, we are not free at all. If we understand where we can react and in what way exactly, then we fulfill our participation in our independent development.
But before we can do that, we have to discover how the Light constantly creates and revives our desire to receive by directly managing it and keeping it on a short leash. All its actions are meant so that the desire will be impressed by the Light’s actions upon it, and instead of just feeling good or bad, it will begin to find out: “Why do I feel good and why do I feel bad, why does one feeling change into the other feeling, what is required of me, and how can I avoid the bad feeling and draw the good feeling?”
This means that I have to know what’s good or bad for me, and what the plan is of the One who changes my feelings from one extreme to the other. How can I find and perceive Him, how can I discover His plan and understand His intention? On the whole, all these egoistic questions stem from the fact that I feel bad in this life since otherwise the desire to receive wouldn’t be evoked. The bad feeling is a feeling of deficiency that requires a filling.
At first I just don’t feel as good as I did before. Then it becomes less and less pleasant, until finally the level of pleasantness comes down to zero. Then it becomes worse and worse, until it becomes unbearable. This means that the states I am in can be very different ranging from very bad to very good.
Thus the Light plays with my desire to receive and brings about changes all the time, so that the desire will learn about itself and about the different fillings. After having perceived enough internal discernments, a person can stabilize his attitude towards the One who summons them and want to discover Him. This is because He is the source of all the good and evil in the life of the desire to receive. Thus we advance.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/18/12, Shamati #8