Listen to an Audio Version of the Blog
Download: MP3 Audio
Listen to an Audio Version of the Blog
Download: MP3 Audio
Pharaoh will remain in Egypt. We need to escape from Egypt and Pharaoh’s vessels. We do not work with the desire to enjoy itself, but we fight against it. It puts on the brakes or even shifts into reverse, but we want to break out from it, ahead of it to carry out the work of the Creator outside the borders of Egypt.
The battle that we fight during all the ten plagues of Egypt creates our vessel. I work above the desire to enjoy, which holds back the point in the heart, and this battle is called: “I labored and I found.”
My attempts to get away from egoism create the derivative, which is my new vessel. The same will be repeated on the next degree: Every time I build a more flawless, accurate, and finer vessel. After all, the desire to enjoy is the same, but my job becomes more refined and more precise, aimed at more internal clarifications. That is why, each time, a new vessel is created, more selective and of higher quality.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/25/12, “The Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”
The Book of Zohar, “Naso,” Item 172: “The image of man,” like a man who includes all forms, the three faces, lion, ox, and eagle that are included in mans’ face, on the side of Malchut in him. Since a man includes Zeir Anpin and Malchut.
The form of a man is what we establish in the connection between us, until we have the form of the first man. Everyone’s exertion in the connection forms this new image called Adam HaRishon, “the first man.”
First man was created from above during the descent of the worlds, and was like a prototype, an angel, because it was created without our exertion. Together with our exertion, it turns from an animal into a man.
We see the same thing in the process of evolution: We have reached the full end of the animal development, and now we need to rise to the next level called the “Human Being.” So the wisdom of Kabbalah is being revealed, and there is a crisis in every aspect of our lives, and there are the right conditions to build the form called the human being by our exertion. It is because it is built only by the connection between everyone with the help of the integral education.
Before there was no such thing; Adam HaRishon was only a first example, like the levels of still, vegetative, and animate nature during the descent from above and the shattering. We have fully developed on the levels of still nature, the vegetative, and the animate. It was the right development in the light form of egoism. Now we need to start to put together the image of man, both inside us and throughout the world.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/24/12, The Zohar
Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 102: This is why it is written that all who learn Torah Lo Lishma, their Torah becomes a potion of death for them. Not only do they not emerge from concealment of the face to disclosure of the face, since they did not set their minds to labor and attain it, the Torah that they accumulate greatly increases their concealment of the face. Finally, they fall into concealment within concealment, which is considered death, being completely detached from one’s root.
This is what happens if a person doesn’t make an effort through the environment, through the study and all the means he has, in order to reach the revelation of the Creator, which means to discover the attribute of bestowal and love of others inside him, in order to arrive through the love of the created beings to the love of the Creator. He has to focus on that so that the result of his study will be the revelation of the attribute of bestowal upon others, no matter how artificial and meaningless it may seem to him at first and contrary to his own nature.
At first he refuses to hear about it and to agree to it. But if he returns to it time after time, despite all the obstacles, and performs all the requirements as required and determined by nature, by the Creator, as a result of the crisis, and all the other conditions that are revealed to him, he gradually agrees that the goal of the study is to reach self-negation.
It is a very special action, not the kind we imagine at the beginning of the way. But to the extent that the changes occur in us along the way, we discover new definitions each time, what—restriction, the other, connection, mutual guarantee, Creator, the attribute of bestowal and love, etc.—mean. We already begin to understand what “the potion of death” and the “potion of life” mean and why the Torah brings such opposite phenomena. Thus we gradually begin to clarify the right way and direction.
A person often falls into situations in which he does not see how wrong he is. But “what one’s mind doesn’t do, time does.” The only way out is to advance as “an ox to the burden and a donkey to the load,” to go on studying day after day as it says: “Do anything but leave!” He doesn’t understand what is happening: The ego is given to him from above and so are all the conditions he is in; everything is done by the upper force.
He exerts himself, does something, but so far he doesn’t understand what is going on. The main thing is not to leave, but to at least perform the simplest actions mechanically. If he can somehow carry on this way, then he should be happy that he manages to do at least this.
So we should respect anyone who makes efforts to go through each day and to participate as much as he can, as much as he is allowed from above. It is an essential condition to come to this place, to this state. Afterward there is already the work of clarification: Why, what for, what will I get from it, why am I participating in this, what is the desired outcome that I expect?
I have to learn from the example of Rabbi Shimon and his students since we want to connect and to be like them, to sit among them. They felt hatred or love toward one another. We have to reach these contrasting discernments.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/24/12, “The Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”
Question: Why can studying the Torah incorrectly be harmful, and even “the potion of death?”
Answer: The incorrect study of the Torah is the wrong use of the system that was designed to perform a gradual correction of the desire to receive. Instead, it draws the part that is meant to be corrected away from correction. Thus, it prolongs the way and fills it with sufferings, which brings the Creator, who loves us, a great deal of sorrow. Thus, this path is undesirable.
From the point of view of a person’s ego, this path is also undesirable since it brings about sufferings. But if we speak about the form of bestowal and value it with regard to the Creator, we have to see how much He suffers.
If we didn’t participate in the system of correction, but were corrected by it unconsciously, instinctively, like the still, vegetative, and animate nature, then there would not be reward and punishment for us. The system wouldn’t change with regard to us, but would push us in one direction by its rigid, absolute laws, like a train moving on a track.
But because a person is on a level that he himself participates in this process, he has to become more sensitive to the influence of the system on him. So he learns to understand this system and grows feelings towards it, which means towards the Creator who is on the other side of the system. “From Your actions we shall know You” and we connect to Him.
It is impossible to attain any discernment this way, not even the smallest one, if you don’t go incorrectly at first. The point is only that a person should constantly try incorrectly only in potential but not in practice.
It is said: “There isn’t a righteous in the land who did good and didn’t sin.” So the mistakes have already been prepared for me every step of the way, and I must sin. But I prepare myself, try, and am careful and afraid to sin, which means that I am afraid to break away from the feeling of “there is none else besides Him” who is “the good and the benevolent.” I am afraid that I will stop yearning for love and bestowal, that I won’t be able to rise above my desires, above my instinctive thoughts, which means above my animate level.
I need self-clarification, self-recognition; I constantly ride my donkey (hamor), my egoistic desire (homer) (which has the same root in Hebrew), and I compare what I feel and what the donkey thinks to what I would like to feel and how I would like to think. Thus I discover my donkey together with the human in me.
“God shall save man and beast,” and thus I advance. My mistakes bring me to my successes and help me advance. My mistakes and successes are revealed in me as the left and right lines. In this case, they are both legitimate and they complement one another correctly, since without mistakes, I wouldn’t discover new discernments and wouldn’t understand where I am.
I have to sin and to do Mitzvot (commandments), since there cannot be one without the other; everything begins from the recognition of evil. But it could be better if I discovered this evil in the Light. The Light comes and helps me see the dark, and not the darkness revealed first when I don’t understand that it is darkness and by a long path of suffering advance towards the Light.
This is why Kabbalists and the Torah give us advice as to how we should prepare ourselves for the right revelation of the sins, for the revelation of evil.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/24/12, “The Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”
Baal HaSulam, “Letter 52”: It says, “Call Him when He is near,” which means when you call the Creator asking Him to bring you closer to Him, you should know that He is already close to you. If it weren’t so, you would surely not call him… And it is clear that when one knows this, he grows stronger in pouring out his heart, since there is no greater privilege, as the King of the world is listening to you. Like the sages said: “God yearns for the prayer of the righteous,” because when the Creator yearns for a person to get close to Him, great longings are evoked in a person and he yearns for the Creator. And it turns out that a prayer and hearing a prayer go hand in hand, until they become a whole measure and acquire everything… and pay attention to these things, which are the fundamental elements in the ways of the Creator.
We have to find a direct wave that goes to the Creator and back from Him in order to feel that we are on the same channel of contact with Him, as it says “I am for my beloved and my beloved is for me.” Everything that happens in me comes from Him, and if I want to answer Him correctly, I have to connect to Him and to find the right answer in Him as to how I should answer Him.
On the first wave of connection that initially comes from Him, I have to see how to answer Him correctly on the same wave, so that everything will end in Him. Thus I receive my form from the Creator; He constantly teaches me, and I constantly ask Him to show me how I should be, how to answer Him, and how to respond.
If a person continuously works on this point, it turns out that he only has this one point of detachment from the Creator, the one point in which he feels that he doesn’t belong to the Creator. It is from that point that he wants to reveal the Creator as the one who builds different attributes, questions, and appeals in a person by stabilizing different external and internal conditions for him.
Thus everything is done on the Creator’s account, and the person is only the point that separates and discerns that. From that point, a person turns to the Creator asking what he has to do next and how to respond. He always remains on the one point of discerning. It turns out that everything a person has comes from the Creator.
So we should constantly try to discern that everything that speaks inside me is only the Creator, and the way I intend to respond to that is also Him. Thus I discover that “There is none else besides Him.”
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/24/12
Studies (from RBC.ru): “Back in the XX century, the broad consensus among American business leaders was that making people work more than 40 hours a week was dangerous and expensive. The increase in working hours increases the risk of injury and the percentage of rejects. Productivity should grow through the introduction of new technologies and modernization. When manufacturers reduced the work week, their businesses become more productive and profitable. …
“Research has shown that workers engaged in intellectual labor are productive for not even eight hours a day, but six hours. …
“Research by the US military has shown that losing just one hour of sleep per night for a week will cause a level of cognitive degradation equivalent to a .10 blood alcohol level. …
“Each person in a modern civilized society ought to live, using the benefits of civilization itself. Otherwise life is meaningless. We are afraid of the end of the world, knowing that we ourselves are to blame for those disasters that our nature has prepared in response to our disrespectful attitude. A person should have time for himself.”
My Comment: Soon, a complete restructuring of our attitude to work will take place—to work as necessary to provide reasonable needs, about two hours a day, and the rest of the time will be dedicated to the process of correcting our nature from egoistic to altruistic by the method of integral education.
In life we are accompanied by two opposite desires: the desire to form new relationships and a desire to free ourselves from connections. Only through other people and close relationships with them does a person reveal himself and the outside world. This is why the environment is so important.
Contact with others early in life is digested by a child and later forms his inner world. These contacts become our foundation, the standard of human interactions. Every new relationship that later emerges on our path of life is built and evaluated based on this standard.
Conclusion: If we did not perceive our surroundings, we also would not perceive ourselves. To perceive oneself and to perceive one´s environment are the same thing. Nature or evolution constantly pushes us toward this. Connections grow and reach a qualitative change—the transition from a linear, egoistic, individual development to its integral and global level.
Meanwhile, we find ourselves connected in a net of connections of everyone with everyone. In addition, we reveal that all of nature, every little element of it, is connected through all types of connections with all elements—to the extent of the infinite and complete formation called Creation.
Question: In each group, there are friends who are more motivated and some that are less motivated. Should the stronger friends initially organize by themselves so that others become attracted to them and do not fall under the influence of those who skip workshops, etc.?
Answer: Everyone in the group must be equal. Everyone has times when he is moving forward more purposefully and times when he is moving less so. Being in a permanent system, a person is equal to all others, even if it takes several years before he begins to understand where he is and begins to participate in the events, to understand the studied material a little. This happens in different people in different ways, but in any case, it should not affect the general movement forward.
On the contrary, you should spare a person. Does he come, participate, study? He could be rough, may not understand the need to participate in all the events because this feeling has not been yet been revealed in him. He is told, but he does not hear, he turns a deaf ear. You need to wait. The most important thing is that he does not cause harm, then everything is fine. If he is harmful, then you may think about dismissing him.
From the Novosibirsk Convention 12/9/12, Lesson 6
Question: In India there are these teachings that purposely create a state of chaos in a person’s soul in order to later exit this state to a new level of spirituality.
Answer: We do not create chaos. It comes to us on its own to the same extent that we wish to create a correct example of connection between us. The chaos is within a person because the transition from one level to another is like an overload on a computer.
Thus, this transition is felt as chaos, as it were, like an erasing of everything that came before and the appearance of something new. However, this is not deletion but simply a renewed organization to a new level, introducing a new frequency; suppose, from one cycle of frequency, I go to another the next one, which is more powerful, more broad.
If a person is inclined to connection, to resemble unified nature, then all kinds of new feelings, opinions, and knowledge arise in one, including the necessity to attain greater integration. There is no destruction here. On the contrary, there is the revelation of greater forces, but they are revealed in such a way to give a person a new mission, like a small child, who by resolving it, grows. Therefore, they seem to us as the opposite, scattered, chaotic.
But it is not chaos. All of this appears only so that we will rise to a new level and will see that everything is exactly in an orderly movement. Thus our perception constantly becomes refined.
From KabTV’s “An Integral World,” 11/26/12