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A Simpler Interpretation Of The Secret Of Life

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe only thing we have to correct is our relationship with the upper force that controls everything and manages life, as it says: “There is none else besides Him.” There are four languages that speak about the relationship between man and the upper force: Pshat, Remez, Drush, and Sod (Torah, Mishnah, Talmud, and Kabbalah).

They belong to the four levels of the desire: still, vegetative, animate, and speaking, and accordingly the clarification is in four ways. In this case there is already an opposite division in which the wisdom of Kabbalah is the simple interpretation and not Sod (secret) in which everything is revealed to a person. So we need the language of Kabbalah in order to be sure that we advance correctly.

It is an essential precondition, but it isn’t enough since the wisdom of Kabbalah can be perceived incorrectly. But at least a person learns from the right sources, which provide him with the right approach to the writings, although there are people who try to extract some secrets, mysticism, abstract knowledge, blessings, and remedies.

But still it is very important to stick to the language of Kabbalah and to the Kabbalistic approach and study conditions, since it is different from the ordinary study of different sciences. Here we are totally dependent on the source, which passes us this spiritual knowledge. If the source is real and reliable, we advance gradually according to our exertion and the positive external conditions in order to eventually attain the opening of the eyes.

We study about ourselves and about our nature by starting to feel a little what bestowal is, the force that is opposite from us. Then by the balance of these two forces, the force of receiving and the force of bestowal, we begin to feel the creation. Thus we attain the Creator by His actions upon us.
From the 1st part the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/27/12, Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”

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Exile And Lo Lishma

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is the difference between exile and the state of Lo Lishma?

Answer: A person feels that he is in exile after having been on a high level, and so he can understand that now he has descended into exile. Exile is a descent, after a person has understood something, felt something, has been in contact with the Creator, now he feels that he is detached from all this at least to some extent.

The levels of the forefathers: Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, about whom the Torah tells us, are the levels of understanding, attainment, the feeling of bestowal, the attributes of the Creator, His revelation. While the descent into the exile in Egypt is already the hardening of the heart, which is felt after a person has attained a state called the “forefathers” (the most initial state).

While Lo Lishma is the initial level of a person who studies and tries to rise above all the states he feels, he is still in his egoistic intentions. He dreams about attaining bestowal and feels the value of this attribute and wants to detach from himself. But he wants this detachment for himself too, feeling how good it will be. This feeling of yearning for bestowal but still acting for his own good is called Lo Lishma.

But it is on condition that he values bestowal not because it helps him detach from the corporeal troubles or in the hope of receiving some spiritual reward or achievement. He wants to be in bestowal because this is how the Light operates on him. A person doesn’t even know what it means to be in bestowal. But new attributes are born in him and such vessels and inclinations are stabilized, which force him to value bestowal. He doesn’t even know where it comes from, but it is the result of the influence of the Light that Reforms.

Then this inclination becomes more and more conscious and a person begins to hold on to it by himself. Eventually he reaches a state in which he only wants bestowal, by cutting himself off from all personal interests.

In order to do that, a person must go through the hardening of the heart many times and encounter many obstacles. He is shown that there are things in life that are dear to him and from which he cannot detach himself, to what extent he still worries about them and cannot ascend above his egoistic love for some people or passions for different phenomena. At the same time, he sees to what extent he cannot ascend above his hatred towards someone or something.

The Light helps him clarify this, and eventually by much work and praying, a person tries to ascend above all that and nearly reaches bestowal. Then the upper Light completes this level for him, as it says: “I have labored and I found.”

The main thing is to hasten his advancement by intensively working in the group. Everything depends on the environment.
From the 1st part the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/27/12, Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”

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Unemotional, Systematic View Of Anti- Semitism

Dr. Michael LaitmanWhatever happens to humanity is a result of the collision between two forces: the force of bestowal and the force of receiving. There is nothing but these two forces. So it is useless to fight anti–Semitism directly, since it is clearly a natural phenomenon. It stems from the shattering of the vessels, as a result of which sparks of bestowal penetrated the desires to receive and are now opposed to one another, and so this hatred has to exist.

It was revealed even before the shattering of the vessels, but not to such an extent. History and the system of upper forces show us this in the confrontation between Jacob and Esau, the confrontation between Balaam and Balak and the Israeli nation. It is clear that this phenomenon is above nature, which means that its root precedes the creation itself.

There are two forces: the Creator and a created being, “something from something” and “something from nothing.” The force “something from something” has already awoken in some people, a spark of the Creator, and so they are hated by other people (the vessels/desires) in which there is no such force.

There is nothing to blame or to justify them for; it is simply a natural phenomenon that we should accept, just like a sunset. So there is no logical solution to it; there are many Jewish organizations that fight anti-Semitism, but it doesn’t help. After all, how is it possible to fight a natural phenomenon? It was created before us, from the contrast between two forces and it comes from Above, spreading into the world this way.

As long as the group that carries the sparks of bestowal doesn’t fulfill them, it will be hated by everyone else. It is because it is like a thorn among everyone else, alien and strange. If the Israeli nation wants to resemble the other nations externally, nothing will help. This inner spark, the Reshimo (spiritual gene), doesn’t disappear, and so it can always be identified in those who have it.

When they went to exile, to live in other countries, the Jews usually tried to resemble those around them, but it should be the other way around. They will not achieve anything by trying to resemble the others. On the contrary, by that they will ignite even greater hatred towards them. The hate will disappear only if they correct themselves when they reach the state Baal HaSulam calls “altruistic communism,” which means achieving a corrected form of society. Thus they will serve as a model for all the other nations who, in the meantime, are sinking deeper into the general global crisis for which there is no solution.

This is the mission of those who carry the sparks of bestowal. It isn’t only those who clearly belong to the Jewish nation by birth. As a result of the integration of the desires during the shattering, the sparks of bestowal penetrated everyone, but in some of the people they are revealed more openly and in others less. Eventually, these sparks will awaken and be discovered in everyone, since all of humanity needs to reach correction, regardless of race or color: black, white, red, or yellow.

Any person in whom this spark is lit is attracted to the revelation of the goal of creation, which means to be in contact with the Creator. It is in this connection that the secret of life and of Creation is revealed. If we follow the call of this spark and establish the connection between us in order to be one whole, then it is expressed in the world in the form of altruistic communism, as each one has a standard of living that is equal to others and everyone is connected.

On the corporeal level, people will only worry about the basic necessities, and we will direct all our other forces to connection and to spiritual ascent. Thus we will be able to show everyone else that the solution for the crisis is in equality.

Equality is not in being like all the other nations in their current form, as the sparks of bestowal are trying to adapt themselves to the needs of the egoistic desires into which they have fallen. On the contrary, we have to correct ourselves before all the nations and then draw everyone to the spiritual level.

Only in this way will we be able to correct all the hatred that divides our vessels. We need a systematic perspective of this problem and not an emotional one. It is a very important question since here in this world we cannot see the whole revelation of the shattering and understand what has to be done in order to correct them.

It is a waste of time and energy spent senselessly. We have to understand that the choice is in our hands, and the correction depends on us, on all those in whom the sparks of bestowal have lit up. All the others, who belong to the nations of the world, are not to blame that the force of the shattering speaks from them. It is only us who are the reason for the whole crisis since we don’t hurry to perform the correction. Let’s hope that we will be able to correct all this quickly.
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/27/12

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Know The World You Live In

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: When does a person begin to see the upper “roots” of the “branches” that are in this world?

Answer: First we have to say that by attaining the “roots,” a person doesn’t detach from the “branches.” His view simply begins to expand in waves, from the point of this world in increasingly growing circles. To the extent of the expansion, a person connects more strongly to what is happening in the roots, and understands the phenomena of this world better. In his ascent from the bottom up, he first understands what is happening to him here, and then in a more abstract way he understands the upper.

On the other hand, the attainment is different from the understanding: first a person attains the upper phenomenon, and then in it he understands its parallel in this world.

Baal HaSulam speaks about it in “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah“: The lower is studied from the Higher. Thus, one must first attain the Upper Roots, the way they are in spirituality, above any imagination, but with pure attainment. And once he has thoroughly attained the Upper Roots with his own mind, he may examine the tangible branches in this world and know how each branch relates to its root in the Upper World, in all its orders, in quantity and quality. And a person also sees how all the branches are connected.

On the whole, the attainment and the understanding influence one another. At the same time, the connection between the “branches” and the “roots” are very important, and it isn’t by chance that great Kabbalists devoted their time to study this world. It helped them in studying the upper world. They were scholars, “encyclopedists.” Rav Kook read books in the library thoroughly and Baal HaSulam learned wave theory, etc.

It isn’t by chance that we are in a material, corporeal world and it is from here that we ascend the spiritual levels. Although the information about this world, which scientists found and expressed, didn’t serve in attaining spirituality, they still helped a person connect all the parts of the general picture into one.

But today we are “standing firmly on the ground,” and we, on the contrary, only have to “push our head above the clouds”…
From the 1st part the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/27/12, Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”

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Don’t Miss Your Chance!

Dr. Michael LaitmanThere are special times and periods in spirituality, “happy moments” so to speak, which we can’t predict or bring back. They come occasionally, every once in awhile and don’t depend upon us, but on the relations between Zeir Anpin and Malchut of Atzilut.

Imagine two cylinders, one inside the other. In each of them there is a little slot and in the middle there is a lamp. When the two cylinders turn, their slots sometimes coincide and then a beam of light emerges through the slots and can be seen on the outside.

 Don't Miss Your Chance!
It’s the same with Zeir Anpin and Malchut who cooperate in special situations and sometimes “shimmer” for a person. This is called a “time of good will.” It comes from Above and to every individual in his own special manner, since we are all different and we all belong to different parts of the general system, going through different internal and external states.

To sum up, as a result of the shattering of the vessels, the connections between us are excellent and confused, and so there are many different conditions. But at a certain point there comes a “good time” to a person and then it’s very important that he seizes it and fulfills it.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/26/12, “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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To Feel The Desire Of The Teacher

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What does it mean to be your disciple?

Answer: The issue here is not with me. We’re talking about a law that acts in the system of connections between the souls. We need to connect these souls in the correct system with the correct connection. The connection itself already exists; we only need to identify with it, to connect to it, to clean it from all our litter, to infuse into it the force of love from our desires.

And therefore, a “disciple” is called one that participates in this, one who performs this work. He works on the connection with me according to the principle of “Make yourself a Rav,” and with the friends according to the principle of “Buy yourself a friend.” And towards all the rest, he works according to “Judge each person to the scale of merit.” And all this is in order to attain the connection with the upper force.

Question: How can the advancement on this path be examined?

Answer: Only according to the degree of annulment. Otherwise, your examination will be egoistic. A person needs to nullify, remove his internal “partition” that interferes with connection, not to engage in anything “behind the back,” secretly, but to frankly look for the point of adhesion through which he will be able to receive the supreme wisdom.

Each one should manage this list by oneself. Ideally, you have to know what I want, even without asking many questions. By means of this clarification, you have to nullify your ego in order not to deal with your corporeal desires and indulge in them. And then, when you feel what my desire is, you execute it.

And it’s not important whether I know about it or not, or if others know it or not. You simply do it and by this acquire connection, through me, with a system that is more superior, with the Creator.

Question: In general, we disdain you, even without understanding it…

Answer: It’s natural, whether you want to or not. A moral should be learned from this: Understand your relationship to the Creator. Maybe for you it’s not obvious, but it can’t be that you will treat Him better than me.

For this the teacher and the group are in front of you; the Creator is hidden, and you can “practice” on them in self-analysis: “Who is smarter in my eyes: me or them? Who is greater: me or them? Do I want to bend them down according to my plans, so that I behave in a way that’s convenient for me? Or nonetheless, I bend my head down and do whatever is good for them? How much do I nullify my opinion in front of them?”

All the work is in this. You were given a “practice facility,” where you can do all the preparation. If you don’t want to do these preparatory exercises, then it’s a pity for you to waste your time, better go and enjoy life…
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/26/12, “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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The Food Crisis

Dr. Michael LaitmanOpinion (George Monbiot): “Never mind the economic crisis. Focus for a moment on a more urgent threat: the great food recession that is sweeping the world faster than the credit crunch. You have probably seen the figures by now: the price of rice has risen by three-quarters over the past year, that of wheat by 130%. There are food crises in 37 countries. One hundred million people, according to the World Bank, could be pushed into deeper poverty by the high prices. …

“There is plenty of food. It is just not reaching human stomachs. Of the 2.13bn tonnes likely to be consumed this year, only 1.01bn, according to the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organisation, will feed people.

“I am sorely tempted to write another column about biofuels. From this morning all sellers of transport fuel in the United Kingdom will be obliged to mix it with ethanol or biodiesel made from crops. The World Bank points out that ‘the grain required to fill the tank of a sports utility vehicle with ethanol … could feed one person for a year.’

“While 100m tonnes of food will be diverted this year to feed cars, 760m tonnes will be snatched from the mouths of humans to feed animals – which could cover the global food deficit 14 times. If you care about hunger, eat less meat.”

My Comment: But if we could establish equal reasonable allocation of the necessary food, no one in the world would have felt hunger or lack; Earth can feed billions more people with coordinated organization of people, but more people will suffer from hunger in the uncorrected state of society in order to come to its correction.

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Becoming The World’s Spiritual Superpower

Dr. Michael LaitmanBaal HaSulam, “Exile and Redemption”: Hence, I hereby propose to the House of Israel to say to our troubles, “Enough!” and at the very least, make a human calculation regarding these adventures that they have inflicted us time and time again, and here in our country, as well. We wish to start our own policy, as we have no hope of clutching at the ground as a nation as long as we do not accept our holy Torah without any extenuations, to the last condition of the work Lishma, and not for oneself, with any residue of selfishness…

As long as we do not raise our goal above the corporeal life, we will have no corporeal revival because the spiritual and the corporeal in us cannot dwell in one basket, for we are the children of the idea. And even if we are immersed in forty-nine gates of materialism, we will still not give up the idea. Hence, it is the holy purpose of for His name that we need.”

Of course, the Israeli nation can exist only if it is in mutual guarantee. This is the basis and the foundation of our nation by which we will be able to determine the right form of our state since otherwise we will not be able to exist. This cannot be if we don’t have the intention to bestow Lishma (for her name).

Only then will we be able to be prosperous and secure in our state; it all depends on the inner intention, which determines all the other aspects of life. So, Baal HaSulam says that we should not think about a corporeal revival, and, what is more, try to be like all the other nations since we exist on a totally different basis and not according to the principles of the other nations.

The nations of the world live according to the laws of the desire to receive, and so, they know how to arrange their corporeal life in this world. They feel themselves and understand one another. The Israeli nation, however, doesn’t. We must have only a spiritual revival, and if we keep and fulfill our spiritual mission, our corporeal life will work out. We will not need to worry about it since if we attain the spiritual level, there will be such a balance of forces between the corporeal world and the spiritual world that it will determine the level and the form of our corporeal existence.

So, the only thing we need is spirituality: A solution that is as internal as possible. Everything else will work out automatically as the projection of the internality on the externality.

The same thing happens with regard to our entire global Kabbalistic group called “Israel,” which stands for the yearning to the Creator, Yashar El (straight to the Creator). If we want this group to grow and serve as a source of this knowledge by existing as a spiritual superpower, then we first must take care of our inner quality, and in addition, invest our power in dissemination as well.

However, the main thing that determines our success is the connection among us. We must go out into the world and be impressed by it so as not to lose our connection with it, to disseminate the method of Kabbalah and mutual guarantee in it. However, first, it must stem from our concern for unity and connection, for mutual guarantee among us, in order to focus this on bestowal Lishma, which means in order to bring contentment to the upper force.

As for Israel, we must yearn straight to the Creator since it is the internality that determines everything. So, here too, in the land of Israel, we first must worry about attaining the inner force. Once we have it, no one will be able to harm us.
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/26/12

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To Believe Or To Play

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How is it possible to determine that the Creator is the one who arranges the problems between the friends if He is concealed and we don’t see Him?

Answer: There is none else besides Him. We simply need to believe that and act accordingly until He is revealed. Then we will see that it is so.

How do I act in a spiritual manner? When I work on closeness, I need to act that way, as if I am in front of the Creator. Do I believe that? No. I don’t believe it.

Religious people believe that they pray to the Creator. We don’t behave like that. We try to perform acts of bestowal as if the Creator is within us. The Creator is the attribute of bestowal, and we imagine that He, as it were, is in us, and in this way we act.

In this way we invite upon ourselves His acts of the Surrounding Light, until He really is revealed, is clothed, and acts on us.

Thus our acts are called a game since we play at it as if we were already in the upper world, like small children who play at being grownup, and in this way we attain all of His attributes. But if a child doesn’t play at this, he becomes an adult, and will be older, but still a child.

Thus, in comparison to various other methods, we don’t just see ourselves in our future state, but want to realize it now. Thus there can’t be such a situation that next to me there exists another group, and I wouldn’t want to come in contact with it. How could I imagine a future world, my next level, if at the same time, I wouldn’t want to be connected with another group? Is that the future?
From a Virtual Lesson 11/11/12

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