The wisdom of Kabbalah says that all of nature is a desire for pleasure, a desire to receive fulfillment. This desire developed over billions of years from the still, to the vegetative, to the animate, to the level of the speaking. In the course of development, a person passes through the same stages of the still, vegetative, animate, and speaking.
Throughout all these stages, humanity passed from one stage to another, from one area to another. Life was created somewhere in Africa and from there wandered somewhere in the east, and after that moved to Europe…
And today, we have reached a particularly unique stage. Now Europe is found at the center of the world, and according to its mixture and integration, it has become a kind of modern Babylon. It sets the tone for the world: culturally, scientifically, and technologically. Despite the fact that America seems separate from Europe, it is in fact the same civilization. Thus, we need to speak about Europe as the center of the world. In a general way, what happens in Europe influences the entire world.
There was a time when humanity spread from ancient Babylon over the face of the earth. It existed there as a community of an immense number of different tribes who were united by a common area by means of a relatively common culture and level of existence. Today, the same thing is happening in Europe.
This is a huge number of people, a nation, if it is possible to say this, which is composed of a large number of tribes, peoples, and nations who as a whole are united by a particular culture, uniform level, comprehension of the world and mentality. Even though they are different from each other, they have, generally, the same common pattern. And this pattern has gradually spread throughout the world.
Europe is the origin and the spirit of modern existence. But it is itself passing through very painful changes, for our whole world is changing, and not only in a technological sense, but also because the desires found at the base of our system have changed lately in a particular, qualitatively acute form.
Throughout millennia, humanity was developing in a simple way through increasing desire. People wanted more: to earn more, to get more, to expand more, to enjoy. They simply wanted to fulfill these desires. In general, they developed quantitatively and, practically, very little qualitatively.
But today a very complicated transition is taking place towards new desires. We have gradually drifted from the traditional direction of development that leads to wealth, fame, power, and knowledge. Humanity no longer searches for these things that formerly interested and fulfilled it. Today it is passing through a passive, “amorphous” existence, because it is found in a transitional stage.
In our spiritual changes, sometimes we are found in great ascent and after that find ourselves in descent, indifference and even despair. And so we cannot do anything, we don’t want anything. And after that again something “explodes” from within, and again we are drawn in some kind of direction, and again we are filled with energy. With us these states transform very rapidly, and in humanity, in its development, they change very slowly.
And today we are passing through that stage. We have been found in it for quite some time: It is expressed in nihilism, denial, apathy; it originated in the years after the Second World War, in the fifties and the sixties. From that time, these phenomena received new forms: an increase in the number of divorces, people not wanting to establish families or to give birth to children, wanting to be alone, and abandoning their parents. There is no sense of a community that once provided for the family, a group of people who were connected by a feeling of family. This also is lost.
As a result of this, a person is found in a state of confusion. And this is felt in particular in Europe as the most developed part of humanity.
But in a fundamental manner, this process is only a transition to a state in which we search for meaning. People have lost pleasure, lost desires, lost the urge for the former fulfillments. There is nothing to do here. There is simply no urge! It is difficult to compel people.
You yourselves at work, at home, at various events, probably meet people like this: a little disappointed, empty, and indifferent. Various communications media, advertisements, try to arouse them all the time for something: sports, soccer, shopping, and so forth. All this looks exciting, but in fact it is not. A person is attracted to this only because he needs to fill himself with something.
Moreover, this process in Europe has added to other processes. You see, in principle, the unified force of the Light influences all of us. To the same degree it influences the mental and moral level, all the levels. And as a result of this, we feel a collective descent.
However, the crisis has influenced not only the family, education, and culture. The most important thing for us at the moment is the economic, financial crisis. You see, the economy, finances, have always connected people. If people were not dependent upon each other economically with the need to earn money in order to exist, they would not have organized into cities, peoples, nations, and all kinds of associations; they would not have had the incentive to do so.
What, in principle, stimulates connection between us? We need to make a living, to exist, to enjoy, and to develop in a shared form. And when there is a crisis, the financial, economic gap between us already becomes a basic, fundamental separation, and it represents the most significant transition to the next stage.
And here, the role of Europe is very important: Europe is found at the focal point of events today and can show the whole world the right approach to a solution to problems, with which, sooner or later, everyone will need to contend.
From the European Convention in Germany 3/22/13, Lesson 1