We Need To Think About The Future!

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: The years 2008 through 2009 showed the world stumbling into a crisis, the like of which had not been seen until now, and it was clear that those practices and methods that had worked in the past don’t work now. Independent observers, economists, speak about this more and more. We are entering a new kind of era. Where are we going and why doesn’t what worked before, work now?

Answer: Ten years ago, there already were some people in the world who understood that a crisis had begun.

If we look at the past from a greater distance, from the second half of the last century, representatives of the Club of Rome began to speak about an end to the egoistic development of humanity. Their view was based on this: The earth had completed its task, all of its resources were no longer being renewed, and this could not continue. We need to think about our children and in addition, about their descendants.

After this, ecologists took the stage to protect the ecological condition of the earth and claiming that it is impossible to continue this kind of contamination. The oceans and the air are polluted, trees are cut down, etc. It follows that we are not just depleting the contents of the earth, but are polluting it with industrial wastes so that for hundreds and even thousands of years this will remain the primary condition. The earth cannot process it, and it will not go away.

For example, the problem of plastic is an immense problem that doesn’t seem to have any solution. It cannot be so easy to live like this in the present, for although we think that humanity is wise, it is necessary in spite of it all to consider the future!

Why do we behave like this? After all, ultimately nobody will profit from this. We see that this only adds “green paper” to particular bank accounts, but  generally, nobody gets anything.

Gradually, the crisis has passed into a parallel form. It began with the development of a crisis in the family. The number of divorces reached 50%, then there was a crisis in science. People stopped continuing with it, and most space programs have closed. The crisis between fathers and sons began to gain momentum. Humanity is on drugs, depressed, suicidal, and in complete chaos.

Ultimately, we came to a financial and economic crisis. We confuse these two crises, linking them together, but basically, this is not so important. What is important is that all of the crises are crises of mutual relationships between us. The most recent financial crisis particularly revealed the deterioration of the irrational and egoistic relationships between humans, for finance is that system through which we are linked.

If not for the present system of buying and selling, if we didn’t need to profit from each other, people would not be interconnected. Therefore, the financial crisis is the last in a long chain of crises about which we can do nothing except uncover all the defects and flaws of modern society.

Moreover, society had to reach them. Throughout all of the history of humanity, we acted according to our nature. An ego that constantly grew evolved from generation to generation, so humanity developed evolutionarily. This doesn’t exist in the plant world or in the animal world, only in humans.

Therefore, we are found in what is called progress all the time; it is only conditionally called progress. Now, we have finally reached awareness that we are found in a deep crisis, but what else can be done and what is its nature? Humanity has not yet decided definitively. We are standing at that point.
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From KabTV’s “Through Time” 3/17/13

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What Is Hateful To You, Do Not Do To Your Fellow Men

Dr. Michael LaitmanThere are two principles: Hillel said, “That which you hate, do not do to your friend,” and Rabbi Akiva said, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” The first principle refers to Bina, which is divided into two parts:

  • One is neutral, the main thing for it is not to harm anyone. I always watch myself in order to be a “good boy,” seemingly to “hover over the earth,” not involving my ego. I have no shirt? Well, I don’t need it. I live in the “forest,” away from everyone, and don’t communicate with anyone. Thus, I follow the principle, “That which you hate, do not do to your friend.” Beware of causing any harm to others, just as I would not want to be harmed by them. These are the first three Sefirot of Bina.
  • This brings me to the “continuation of the original phrase,” to the seven lower Sefirot of Bina, to the vessels of reception. Now, I check myself on the subject of “short weight”: Perhaps I, in some way, deprive others? Perhaps I do not contribute to the good that they could receive? This still does not touch my “main egoistic capital.” I am not ready yet to sacrifice something of myself, but already feel the need to assist others. While I do not correct my desire to receive, I already add something to the desire to bestow. Due to the previous stages of correction, I begin to recognize opportunities to benefit others: “Ah, he can earn here, and this will bring him good.” And I contribute to these opportunities. This is the transitional phase that will lead me to true bestowal.

In the meantime, it is not real bestowal, not self-denial for the sake of the other. For example, I have earned five thousand dollars last month, and only two thousand is sufficient for me. The question arises: If I follow the principle of “that which you hate, do not do to your friend,” must I give three thousand dollars to the other?

The answer is no. After all, I do not work with the receiving vessels, do not forgo my own, but I remain fully in the property of mercy (Hassadim) and just contribute to the good of others. I have a good heart, and I am ready to help others, but not at my own expense. Thus, I work with egoism on level 0, level 1 and partially on level 2 of Aviut (the “thickness” of desire), but not in the desire of AHP that belongs to levels 2, 3, and 4.

The upper part of my vessel, my total desire to enjoy, is the vessels of bestowal (248 desires), and the lower part is the vessels of reception (365 desires). The vessels of bestowal are in the state of Hafetz Hesed (HH), in the property of mercy, and want to bestow in order to bestow, but the lower vessels receive in order to bestow. Accordingly, in the first part, I carry out “purification,” and in the second part correction, becoming similar to the Creator by properties. Here, I already form my human likeness: the human image, similar to the Creator.

In general, this corrected desire with the altruistic intention is called the “soul.”

Thus, Hillel’s principle belongs to the upper part of the vessel, and Rabbi Akiva’s principle to the lower part. Of course, in any case, I work with my egoism and must overcome it. However, the work according to the first principle does not require me to suffer losses, give up my assets, and this is their fundamental difference.

It is important to remember that we are talking about a person who wants to adhere to the Creator (C), and that is why he asks: “How can I achieve adhesion? How can I enter the upper world, spirituality?” These questions first push him in the vessels of reception, to the left line, and then bring him to Hillel’s principle. Afterward, this decision leads him down again and lets him work with his egoistic desires.

What Is Hateful To You Do Not Do To Your Fellow Men
This path is described in the example of a convert who goes to a sage to ask advice. First, he asks Shamai to teach him to love the other as himself, but is refused because it is impossible to reach the goal at one go. Then, he goes to Hillel and asks him to explain the entire Kabbalistic method while he is standing on one foot, that is, to describe the means of advancement by one rule. In response, Hillel formulates the principle of “that which you hate, do not do to your friend,” that is, he clarifies what actions are needed for this.

Thus, according to the law of creation, the principle or adhesion with the Creator is divided into two parts:

  • “That which you hate, do not do to your friend”;
  • “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

If I consistently advance according to this order, I eventually reach love for the Creator.

Question: Following the principle of “that which you hate, do not do to your friend,” I carry out physical actions. How can I combine this with the correct intention?

Answer: The same principle works in our world, in the spiritual world, in ordinary life, and among the friends. No matter in what environment I am, I must stand at the level of this environment and try to behave in the same way as I would want them to behave toward me. Consequently, in the group, I follow the friends’ desires and their goal, and at work, I adjust my attitude to the desires of my colleagues. And I do so everywhere.

I put myself in the situation of the other and thus measure my attitude toward him, and this is already bestowal. Indeed, I do not wish evil to myself, and hence, I for sure will bring good to the other.

This is more than an exercise; this is already an action, correction. It is not important whether I act egoistically. It cannot be otherwise. My actions always stem from egoism. However, with this approach, they draw to me the Light that Reforms, and then I change. That is why it is said that the heart follows the actions. First, I act according to Hillel’s saying, and then the Light comes and corrects me.

Question: So, could we say that the criterion of my advancement is the measure of love for the other that I attain?

Answer: Of course, how could it be otherwise? Spiritual degrees are different precisely in their measure of bestowal.

Question: Over the past four to five years, I only was able to understand that I am not good. The only thing I can do is to try not to harm others. Nothing more.

Answer: If you are thinking about how not to cause harm to others, you have gone a long way. The very acceptance of this thought in your head is a great achievement.

Question: In fact, bestowal for the sake of bestowal also is egoistic because in the end, I wish good to the others just because I wish good to myself. This only provides me with a more comfortable life.

Answer: Then, why has humanity not adopted this principle yet? The problem is that it is repulsive to our nature, which demands that others feel bad. We see how entire countries wallow in silly conflicts, the basis of which is primitive pride. This costs a huge amount of resources, billions in investment, a lot of nerves and troubles. Yet, nevertheless, on the whole, the world acts egoistically, and nothing in it could be called “bestowal for the sake of bestowal.”

Question: I suppose that “bestowal for the sake of bestowal” is something naïve, abstract. What is it in reality?

Answer: It is an action directed against the will, against my egoism. It requires that I bow my head, feel the other, stand in his place, “tried myself on” him, and him on myself. Here, you need a very deep understanding of psychology.

The principle of “that which you hate, do not do to your friend” comprises half of the entire method, half of the correction of the soul. Having implemented it, I rise to the level of Partzuf Abba ve Ima of the world of Atzilut, I obtain the Lights of Hassadim. They contain the illumination of Hochma because I cancel my egoism.

In order not to cause harm to the other, I must stop myself, work on myself. I do him a favor — only not at my expense, without giving away my possessions, but by compromising and agreeing for his benefit. In our world, these actions are thought to be generous and benevolent, and we even think that we are able to perform them altruistically.

Anyway, with the right approach, with the help of the Light that Reforms, they gradually guide me along the way. Each time, my desire to bestow grows while I pursue my own interest, seek reward, but the Light brings me to the true payment.

I repeat, we must perform actions, the Light will follow the actions, and changes will come after the Light. In the beginning, I purify my vessels from the egoistic intention. Thus, even my most evil offences turn into the category of oversights. Then, I proceed directly to correction, building my human resemblance from clean “material.”

Thus, “that which you hate, do not do to your friend.” This is the entire method, and if you take this path, it will lead you to the goal.
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From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/30/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam

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An Unavoidable Path

Dr. Michael LaitmanBaal HaSulam, “The love of the Creator and the Love of the Created Beings“: The immediate phase after “love your friend as yourself” is adhesion. 

The commandment of the love of others brings us to the level of the love of the Creator. It is a safe path with all the opportunities, states, and means that we need. It is impossible to escape it by different excuses like saying that we didn’t know or that we couldn’t act since everyone has received what he needs.

The correction of “love thy friend as thyself” includes all the other corrections and is the most hateful one because it is opposite from our nature, yet we have no choice but to understand that it is our only basis. As long as we don’t discover the need for this correction, we cannot get on the path that leads to the goal.

Question: How can we bring contentment to the upper one by treating others well?

Answer: Essentially, it is the same thing. Imagine that all the created beings, all the people are the “Creator’s sons.” This is what it says in the sources. So if you do good to the son, you certainly bring the father contentment.

Once the Creator said to Jonah the prophet that He cannot just abandon the great city of Nineveh with 250,000  inhabitants despite their sins. The message is clear: “If you treat them with love and save them, you will bring Me contentment.”

The Creator has no vessel (Kli) to receive contentment from us, so the means for that is the entire reality that spreads between us, between each of us and the Creator. And in this reality other people come first.

So the dissemination of the method of correction and worrying about the whole world are the most precious actions that we were allowed to perform and we have to focus on them. Of course we first have to correct ourselves in order to know how to relate to the world.

The calculation is as follows: “I do everything in order to bring the Creator contentment. I express this desire by worrying about the world or more accurately, by worrying about people. The still, vegetative, and the animate levels of nature will also join their correction. In order to take care of people, I have to correct myself and so I have to start by correcting myself.”
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From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/02/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 06.06.13

Preparation to the Lesson

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Writings of Rabash, Come Unto Pharaoh-2

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Talmud Eser Sefirot, Vol. 3, Part 10, “Histaklut Pnimit,” Item 14, Lesson 53

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Writings of Baal HaSulam The Love for the Creator and Love for the Created Being,” Lesson 8

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