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The usual claim students have regarding the teacher is that he doesn’t give them enough attention, which they feel that they deserve. But the matter is the lack of vessels on the part of the students, as a result of which they cannot absorb more and so they don’t feel that they receive even more than they need, but on the other hand, they cannot manage to wake up by themselves.
The teacher should not come to wake up the students. It won’t help, since they receive the awakening from Above. I go to a place where people are awake and ready, and then I can help them organize and connect more strongly. But first they have to make their own efforts.
A student doesn’t understand that he doesn’t have the vessel to receive what the teacher gives him. You don’t have to wait for me to come and wake you up. It is impossible to wake it up that way if you haven’t prepared a deficiency in advance. The moment you are ready for that, of course I will come.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/27/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam
The upper force controls and manages everything and below it there are “ministers,” forces that sustain all of reality. Reality is man, one soul, in which the Creator’s action, His thought, the active force exists.
This force is divided into many parts, into individual forces that operate on several levels and which seem to be opposite from one another on different levels, so the created being feels that this action is performed on him as if without any order. This is intentionally done so that we will be confused by the apparent disorder and will have an impression that is opposite from the truth, as if there is no Creator in reality, but only the created being’s force or some additional forces. We may think that the Creator exists, but His leadership is bad and has many flaws. Besides, the existing force seems to be aimed as if against the Creator and that everything doesn’t come from Him, in order to raise us above our corporeal reason.
But if a person really desires to see the King as the upper manager and to discover this above his own nature, then his perception is corrected and he discovers that everything is already ready for this correction. He fights in order to purify his vessels and to bring them to a state of to bestow in order to bestow by guarding the King, and at the same time corrects his vessels so that they will be to receive in order to bestow.
In the first war he acquires the force of faith, and in the second war he acquires the Light of Hochma, the understanding of the system, its plan, the reasons, and the goals by working with his vessels of receiving. Thus he learns how to understand and feel the upper Providence, by crowning the Creator as the one who rules above all the forces. It is because all these forces, both His ministers and those who seem to be His enemies, different criminals, murderers, and robbers, unite as a result of this war and as a person attributes them to one King.
He understands that the war is not against the forces that are hostile to him, but against himself, in order to discover the Creator in all these forces. This is the essence of all the wars.
Although we hear that “there is none else besides Him” and that He is good and benevolent, we have to go through all the levels in order to really feel that. We still have a long way to go in correcting ourselves through all the states that the Creator presents to us, by teaching us the art of understanding and the attainment of the system of His forces through them, so that we will be able to understand and to feel Him. To feel Him according to the rule of “from Your actions we shall know You.” Thus we gradually become more like Him.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/27/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam
Question: How can the desire to receive work in order to bestow?
Answer: It can if it has an intention of in order to bestow. In that case it gets a desire from someone else and that enables it to bestow.
Keter created the desire to receive, Hochma. At the end of this phase the desire felt a spark of bestowal, made it is main part, and now wants only to bestow.
Thus Bina was created, and its first three Sefirot (GAR of Bina) are similar to Keter. Just as in Keter, the red point (in the drawing) determines the essence of Keter so does bestowal determine the essence of Bina. As a result, the created being becomes similar to the Creator and follows His examples: Keter created Hochma, so Bina, too, took its lower half, the seven lower Sefirot (ZAT of Bina) from Hochma.
The question is whether it is receiving or bestowing when the lower part of Bina receives the Light of Hochma.
On the whole, it is about the action of the point itself, which feels bestowal by this action.
In the same way a mother feeds her baby and is happy for him, which means that it is possible to fill the vessels of receiving and by that to bestow.
Question: So how do the vessels of receiving in our case turn into vessels of bestowal?
Answer: After they are “restricted,” they are filled with the Light of Hassadim, this is already to bestow in order to bestow, Lishma (for Her Name). Then we can use them even to receive in order to bestow. Thus they become vessels of bestowal, since to receive in order to bestow is pure bestowal. This is the only way the created being can bestow.
On the other hand, to bestow in order to bestow doesn’t mean that it is real bestowal. It is only the preparation for actual bestowal, and this is the process of the correction of the vessels.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/24/13, Writings of Rabash
Question: How do I make a covenant with the Creator if I don’t know Him?
Answer: The question is: Why is it only the groom who signs the wedding agreement (Ketubah) and not the bride? Is there a kind of one-sided commitment here? The same happens when a person signs an agreement with the group or with the Creator.
This means that my signature on this contract is enough since the agreement of the other side is certain. So, only the one who hesitates and is unsure has to sign, and thus, he is obligated to sign the commitment.
There is an upper force, and in order to reveal it, there must be a lower force. The force of the upper is bestowal and the force of the lower is receiving. The force of the lower must attain wholeness in its deficiency in order to connect to the upper force that is eternally whole.
Unless I connect with 10 people, I cannot be called a spiritual “unit,” and, unless I connect with 100 people, I cannot be called a second spiritual “unit,” which means to rise to the second spiritual level. The counter only counts the additional zeros, and this is considered a leap to the next level.
In order to be adapted to the whole upper force, I at least must attain the connection of the first 10. This means that I must connect to 10 people since according to our inner nature, we attain the first, minimal measure of bestowal, #1, by the connection of ten people as one heart and one mind. Now, I have the first force of bestowal.
If I can connect to 100 people in a similar way as one heart and one mind by totally annulling myself, I attain the second force of bestowal, the second spiritual level. Thusly, I must go through 125 levels.
In order to connect with them, I sign a mutual contract. We must be connected so that each one will forget about himself and connect with everyone as one whole. It is impossible to do this alone and we must help one another. We must provide everyone with the greatness of the goal, connection, warmth, and positive examples. In order to do that, we sign a contract, and this is called a covenant.
Each of us goes through states of “+” and “-,” and we need the minus in order to rise to the plus, to “straighten” ourselves. This is possible if, while I am in a state of “minus,” the society intensifies my intention. My minus grows and the plus also grows; they constantly increase. After a small plus, there is a big minus, and after a big plus there is a minus that is twice as large.
This is why I never can overcome the minus that I receive and it always knocks me to the ground. I may be totally thrown off track, and I may continue to work, but without any inspiration and thought. When I fall into such a state, into such a minus, the society has to intensify my intention.
It is a good thing that I have received such a minus since I need a greater minus; I must reach its full measure to fill my measure. The question is how to turn it into a plus. In order to do that, I need an intention! If my deficiency and the society’s intention connect, I can change the minus to the plus each time and, thus, constantly rise. This is called making a covenant.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/25/13, Writings of Rabash
Opinion (Oxfam): “The world’s richest 100 people earned enough last year to end extreme poverty for the world’s poorest people four times over, Oxfam has said.
“The charity said an ‘explosion in extreme wealth’ was hindering efforts to tackle poverty, in a briefing released ahead of next week’s World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
“Releasing The Cost Of Inequality: How Wealth And Income Extremes Hurt Us All, Oxfam said the net income last year of the 100 richest people was 240 billion US dollars.
“In contrast, people in ‘extreme poverty’ live on less than 1.25 US dollars per day, and the charity called on world leaders to commit to reducing inequality to levels last seen in 1990.”
My Comment: No charities can correct the situation, and what arrives to the starving population does not contribute to its development, but rather leads to its degradation because it is not accompanied by integral education. So, even if all the rich had shared with all the poor, the world would not have become better. On the contrary, it would have become worse.
Until we eliminate the root cause of our problems— our egoistic nature—all of our actions, being egoistic, will always bring a negative result. The only problem is that the action is far removed from the result and we do not see their connection. We need to initially combine help with integral upbringing, not just education, and then we would attain the development of humanity, which would be capable of establishing itself in a new world.
Opinion (Daniel Gros, Director of the Brussels-based Center for European Policy Studies): “At high-level gatherings of the European Union elite, one often hears the following type of statement: ‘Europe must integrate and centralize economic governance in order to defend its social model in an age of globalization.’ …
“But the claim that only deeper EU integration can save the ‘European’ social model from the onslaught of emerging markets is not true. Yes, globalization represents a challenge to all EU member states; but it is not clear how more integration would help them to confront it. More European economic governance is not a panacea.
“In fact, it is not even clear which European social model needs to be saved. There are enormous differences among EU members in terms of the size of their public sectors, the flexibility of their labor markets, and almost any socio-economic indicator that one can think of. The common elements that are usually identified with the ‘European’ social model are a quest for equality and a strong welfare state.
“But neither of the main problems confronting Europe’s social-security systems – slow economic growth and aging populations (a function of low fertility) – can be addressed at the European level. …
“The key to ensuring the future of Europe’s social-security systems, and thus its social model, is faster growth. And, again, it is difficult to see how more Europe would improve the situation. The obstacles to growth are well known, and have existed for a long time without being removed. The reason is quite simple: if there were a politically easy way to generate growth, it would have been implemented already.
“Moreover, most national policymakers have a tendency to blame ‘Brussels’ for all of their difficult choices, thus creating the impression at home that the economy would improve if economic affairs could be managed without EU interference. More integration is preached at the European level, but implicitly portrayed at home as an obstacle to growth.
“This double-speak on the part of national political elites is perceived as such by voters, whose trust in both national and EU institutions is naturally declining. The claim that Europe needs more integration to save its social model has long lost credibility. Integration is irrelevant to that question, and, in those areas where deeper integration really would benefit Europe, it appears to be the last thing that national leaders want.”
My Comment: It is necessary to look at the pressure put on us by objective natural forces of our development. No problem can be resolved internally within a country but only through their complete integration. But this assumes a preliminary change of general thinking from egoistic to integral thinking. This can be achieved within a few months by the method of integral education, which was not done before the formation of EU. But of course, the claim that integration will not save the EU is a profound mistake.
Rabash, Letter #29: But a person doesn’t have a need to bring waste from the outside, as is the case with fertilizing a tree. It must translate impurities from the world to the revelation, meaning, inside his feeling.
Question: What is “waste” for me and what is “fertilizer”?
Answer: It depends on your choice. You are given the ability to decide whether you prefer to eat from waste or good things from bad things? And you always choose something from the two possibilities, but gradually tip the scale in the direction to bestowal. You don’t have the strength to completely annul reception, but anyway, you advance in the right direction.
In your vessel, Kli, there are always three parts. In the upper part you can work for the sake of bestowal, in the middle part restriction reigns, and in the lower part is something that you want for yourself.
Question: This means that if the friends create an obstacle for me, then they give me “fertilizer”?
Answer: It depends on your meaning of “obstacle.” If the friends show me how much they long to recognize the greatness of the Creator, for a higher level, for adhesion, for Gmar Tikkun, for unity and connection between them, for the revelation of the Light, then for me it can be an obstacle since this approach is hated by the ego, but it can also be a motivation that pushes forwards.
The upper shows the lower the Light, His bestowal, and the lower, by feeling this, must clarify if for him this is food or waste. It is written, “Straight are the ways of the Lord, in them the just walk, but sinners stumble in them.” I can decide that bestowal for me is specifically the Light that pulls me forward. I want to adhere to it and overcome myself in order to do this, even though it is not simple to receive it as food. And then, in this case, I am called “righteous.” But if I don’t want it, then I am called a “sinner”.
For example, today in the lesson there were many people sitting there without a good mood. And I was very happy about that. Because that is how a disease is discovered. It is very good. Now what is left is to bring the treatment. But they don’t think so. They feel sick.
This means, the question is: It depends on how a person decodes what he receives. There is no evil in the world, but everything depends on how we interpret what happens. For me, the Light, the force of life, can be either food or waste. The tree, naturally, receives fertilizer from the animals, as a good thing, and we have to choose, because from the beginning the “fertilizer” that arrives from the upper doesn’t look good to us. This thing doesn’t look good to me to the extent that it looks like “excrement” and not like a treasure….
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/25/13, Writings of Rabash
Question: It is said that it is not the smart one who learns in Kabbalah. Then, why do you always ask whether we understand anything we learn in The Study of the Ten Sefirot? Isn’t The Book of Zohar enough for those who only have to feel? Can smart people really study?
Answer: Interestingly, spiritual advancement doesn’t depend on the knowledge we accumulate. This is clear and certain. The point is that apprehension and comprehension, knowing, comes when I put effort into unity, into the desire to connect with our neighbors, and getting outside ourselves, when we convince ourselves that the visible picture around us is in fact my world, part of my soul, and my enemies and adversaries are the most useful and closest to me.
In turns out that the opposite is true. On one hand, our advancement depends on it.
But on the other hand, we see that the Ari started to explain Kabbalah as if it were science in the contemporary meaning of the word. It was the Ari who opened the era of correction to us; it starts with him. In the 16th century, he added a scientific nature to Kabbalah; he started to present materials in a scientific way and for the first time ever he accurately described the structure of spiritual worlds, Partzufim, Sefirot, Lights, vessels, laws, degrees, etc.
After the Ari, several Kabbalists wrote such books, then, Baal HaSulam appeared and continued the same trend; based on the Ari’s books, he wrote The Study of the Ten Sefirot. It is a full tutorial with precise definitions and responses to numerous questions. In addition, he wrote a commentary to The Book of Zohar using scientific terminology.
Why do we need this? Maybe, it’s indeed enough to read the Torah with all those stories of exiting Babylon and Egypt and other events of ancient history? Yet, it is obvious that we have no clue about what exactly is described in them. When materials are presented in a scientific way, it becomes very clear to us that we are dealing with the process of approaching the Creator; whereas, when reading the Torah, we simply cannot locate our place in all these stories, nor can we sense the need for our internal changes or determine the means to do so.
This way of presenting materials was very good for the period when people were seeking the Creator through affliction. We should keep in mind that in the era of the Torah, the Prophets and Holy Scriptures, the Creator could be attained as a result of pretty simple efforts, as it is said: “Eat bread and salt, drink water, sleep on the ground, suffer, and engage in the Torah.” If one read the source, the Tanakh, following the above conditions, wanting to come to the Creator through the reading, one attained Him.
But then the egoistic desire “jumped” to the next level, and from this stage on, the former method of revealing the Creator became impossible. That’s why Kabbalists started to search for a different form of presenting materials—in the form of Mishnah and Talmud. These books speak of the same things that are described in the Tanakh, but this time in the context of laws. Things that the Torah explains in the form of morality were framed in the Talmud as a rigid structure: We take and give; if we take something, we owe the same thing back, thus, we either go through afflictions or are entitled to a reward.
In principle, the wisdom of Kabbalah talks about the laws of interconnection between the vessels and the Lights. The power of the Light of Infinity (Ein Sof – ES) is unchanging, although there are five spiritual steps. At the first stage, the Light goes through without any filters (directly) and is called Yechida. At the second level, the Light goes through a specific “filter” that lowers it to the level of Haya. At the third step, two filters lessen the Light to the level of Neshama, and so on and so forth until it reaches the level of the Light of Nefesh.
When we go deeper inside, we start “playing with numbers,” with technical specifications. If one wants to talk about spiritual steps, he has to explain in detail what state he is talking about, what level, what desires, what screens, what Light. One has to use numbers that show me what he is talking about.
Vague definitions do not work. The same applies to modern day technologies; it requires ever greater accuracy in measurements settings. So, whether we like it or not, the scientific language of Kabbalah is closer to us, although we still cannot tell what’s behind it.
Let’s say, yesterday you were in one state, and today in another.
-“What is the difference between these states?” I ask.
-“Yesterday I felt a little better, although not quite well.”
– “I don’t understand. Give me more details, exact figures and more precise characteristics, the encoding that I can translate inside myself and feel the same. Give me the exact data instead of vague impressions.”
We have to unite with the general system, but how? How can we unite if there is no channel of connection that works at the ultimate frequency and that provides an ideal exchange of information?
Consequently, we have to become experts and know our “TV sets” properly, then we begin understanding the entire system. The system is ours. It is us!
The question is: What are the methods of acquiring this knowledge?
The way of achieving it is to nullify our personal understanding. This is called “faith above reason.”
Question: The school teacher told me that one plus one is two. I believe him, but then start checking it out. Do we apply the same method here?
Answer: No. In Kabbalah, a person acquires new properties and “weighs” everything on a new “scale”; we have to use a different type of intellect than previously. By changing internally, we transition to another sphere, into a different space, a new dimension; we have to use a spiritual arithmetic. Now, one measures and compares everything by its quality, rather than quantity; one plus one does not always equal two. It is an opposite world with a totally different “system of calculation.”
We begin acting in a completely different plane of reality that is still hidden from us. Why is it hidden? It is because it doesn’t correspond to our current sensations or intellect. It makes it impossible to apply conventional mathematics to the spiritual world.
It means that the one who is prone to changing one’s own properties is able to study, as opposed to the one who is smart and clever. As a result, our modified qualities “dress” into a new type of intellect. A person changes his desire and receives the “revelation” into it. This is an intellect of a higher level.
One shouldn’t be “smart.” On the contrary, a person has to cancel his current understanding and go against it in order to receive a new type of consciousness. One has to be smart enough to cancel one’s present understanding.
How do we do that? We have to understand only one thing: We need to depend on the correct environment and over and over again continue receiving its integral mind instead of having a mind of our own.
In this world, this approach looks totally unacceptable, whereas in spirituality, everything is exactly as it is described above: We unite with our very special group. The Creator brought us here and told us: “Unite with your friends.” We neutralize our mind and sensations and start uniting. How possibly can we agree to this? It is so hard to bow our heads and “loose ourselves” in the group.
We are brought to this state from Above, although we are still concerned whether we are capable of self-annulment. That is the question. Do we accept the destiny that is offered to us by the Creator? Do we run away from it? Do we continue using our energy in spite of everything that goes on with us and manage to put our mind aside?
Kabbalah is a difficult labor. It’s an exertion that influences our nerves, habits, and desires. It has nothing to do with the amount of knowledge.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/22/13, The Study of the Ten Sefirot
Question: What is the meaning of the words of the Creator: “I wish they would leave me and my Torah would uphold”?
Answer: This means that man makes the wrong efforts, in the wrong place, at the wrong time, and for the wrong reason. There are many conditions that must be joined together.
And in addition to this, one must be patient, to understand that it’s an accumulative process to which all our efforts are added, which then bring us results. It’s comparable to a meter, in which there are spinning wheels, and at a certain moment, suddenly the number on the display changes and a “1” appears instead of “0.” And then again the wheels spin for a long time until outside again the number changes to “2” and so on.
We must understand that weeks or months could go by until the meter changes to the next number. But the weeks don’t pass if at that time we don’t invest efforts. Here the person begins to understand that he has no strength or desire, that he isn’t able to do anything, and just wants to leave everything. The body pulls him to empty matters, and the main thing is not to feel his state as being a difficult one.
We already understand how this happens. Here the person needs to find himself support, “Support of the Light.” This means the friends who help each other. Our weakness is that there is no mutual help, and everything is built only on it. Strength is only in connection, and if the connection stops, then no one will have strength.
The Light illuminates from the other side and slowly increases my desire to receive by just one gram, and I immediately fall. I am ready to forget everything, lie down and do nothing, just to be left alone. At least from a physical standpoint it is forbidden to let ourselves fall in this way. The environment should put pressure on me, they should call me if I don’t arrive at the lesson, and they should wake me at home.
I must make these arrangements with my environment so that it will work on me. Also at home, I build such a system that won’t let me miss the morning lesson. I do the same with the friends. I prepare myself in such a way that my conscience will suffer if I don’t arrive at a lesson.
But I must prepare all of this in advance and not at the time of descent. I must worry in advance for something to commit me to arrive for the lesson even when I lack strength. I arrange everything in this way so that I can’t stay home; otherwise, what will my family say? I can’t make excuses each day that I don’t feel well. And the friends would begin to call and ask what happened to me, where did I disappear to, and it would embarrass me.
If I receive a burdening of the heart, then only these measures will work on me. In those moments, I myself am not able to do anything, but I feel that I prepared support for myself and so it also stands in my favor.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/7/13, “Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”