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Convention in Stockholm, Day 1, Lesson 1
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Convention in Stockholm, Day 1, Workshop 1
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Question: The term “groups of ten” cannot be grasped by my group, and we don’t talk about it. There is a kind of collective agreement that the group of ten and the group are two different things and that the group of ten belongs more to dissemination. But when we discuss dissemination no one talks about the groups of ten. Why does this happen?
Answer: On the whole I don’t know what the difference between the group of ten and the group is.
A group of ten is a collection of people who can connect and then separate.
A group, however, is more organized, fixed, and connects people. It creates certain conditions around it: It has a building, a certain kind of work, a group is more stable, solid, and versatile.
A group of ten can be organized spontaneously, in order to clarify a certain problem for example. If ten friends who are not in a hurry to get to work now get together, they form a group of ten.
I believe that the groups of ten shouldn’t be fixed. Different members in my group, in the global group, in another group can be members of my group of ten. This morning it is one way and in the evening it can be different, etc. This means that the group of ten is a method of getting together, in order to ascend, to solve a specific problem, to pray, and to form an intention. When people are about to go out to perform a certain activity they gather, and this gathering can also be called a group of ten.
A group of ten is called Minyan in Hebrew, and it stands for a Sefira. It is customary to pray only in a Minyan, (in a group of ten people).
This means that in order to turn to the Creator, we have to be at least ten people. When the group is smaller than that, its prayer is not accepted since one person cannot raise his personal egoistic desire to the Creator. When he annuls it in order to connect to others and they do the same with regard to him, a collective desire is created among them, a common intention.
Let’s suppose that a circle is made of ten people. In this circle all the ten, by annulling themselves one before the other, create a common desire called a “raspberry ball.”
Such a group of ten has a special attribute, since the spiritual levels are in an identical relation to each other, and the group of ten on the first level is equal to 1 on the next level. So in order to ascend from one level to the next, we have to establish such a connection that all the ten people will be as one. This is the whole idea of the spiritual work. So a group of ten is called Minyan stemming from the Hebrew word meaning numbered.
The ego throws each of them backward and then they connect internally against it, yearning to unite. This means that the “raspberry ball” is the sum of the efforts to connect (Σ).
It turns out that each one feels that he is in the circle in the group of ten, detached from himself and connected to the others. Psychologically I have ascended, flown, exited myself, but in fact I have not exited myself to some space and am not flying somewhere meditating. I am together with the others in a special volume of the collective efforts and our common yearnings.
It is in this state that the yearning for the Creator is created. Our collective inner efforts (the next circle) are not just efforts, but MAN, a prayer to the Creator.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/25/13, Questions and Answers with Dr. Laitman
All of reality except for us is found in a state of rest and waits for our work. Everything is seemingly evolving and changing at every moment, yet without any free choice. The result of the cooperation between the Light and the Kli that is found opposite to it, is projected, extended, and evolved downward, and influences the world more and more.
The link between the Light and the Kli in the meantime is created without our participation, without an attempt to establish a proper link between them. And if we don’t link them correctly, then these two lines of force will evolve further and further downward, in parallel to each other, and will influence us who are found between them.
The entire world is found in a field between these two forces, plus and minus: still, vegetative, animate, and speaking (humanity) and within it also Israel. The positive and negative forces evolve further and further from above to below, meaning they are revealed one against the other with greater and greater intensity, where the minus and the plus are made more opposed to each other.
And if we, with our free choice, cannot link and complete them in the right way, then they will descend to an even lower level and cause more and more trouble. As if there was a -10 tension opposite a +10 tension, and this becomes -100 opposite +100; that is, the opposition between them is made much greater. Therefore the troubles grow and become greater, and then we have no choice, and they oblige us to make some kind of link between the plus and the minus.
If we create a link like this, then the entire nature of the still, vegetative, animate, and all the nations of the world, also merit a more balanced supervision, which is to say a quiet life. There is no longer such strong opposition between the minus and the plus, rather the opposite; there is something that links them together. The positive force supplies intention and the negative force supplies desire, and if we combine intention and desire correctly, then all of of creation will enjoy the fruit of this covenant. That is how it works.
All of the negative egoistic forces, all the wicked (Nebuchadnezzar, Amalek, Hitler), which collectively are called “Pharaoh,” have no free choice. Therefore, there is nothing to curse or blame them for; rather, it is necessary only to understand that nobody can correct the situation except those who have free choice, that have a natural inclination towards correction of the world.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/20/13, The Zohar — Introduction
The entire world is my outer vessel. There is nothing in the world besides one person, and all the rest are my parts that are presented before my eyes as strangers that I must elevate and evaluate, because in this way I will reach the form of bestowal.
The expression of bestowal is with love. We bestow to whom we love. If you love someone, you think about how to do something good for him all the time. Look at how a mother doesn’t divert her gaze from her baby and only searches for what else can be done for him. This is an example that nature gives us.
Therefore, when we go out to disseminate, we realize our personal correction very rapidly, appropriately, usefully, and directly. It is up to us to feel that solely and only with these people will we discover the Creator, and not inside us. All of our inner desires that exist now will need to be rolled up, contracted.
Only this eternal aspiration remains in its pure form, net, without any calculation, when it comes directly from the point in the heart. And we say that all the rest of our desires are to be contracted, we must rise above them. The efforts directed outside of us, together with the external desires, this is what will become our soul.
To that degree that we begin to take care of people and feel their advancement, we begin more and more to be concerned about their success even to a much greater degree than our own personal advancement. This is like foster parents who invest more love and concern in their adopted children than they would in their own children because they are afraid that they will not love them and they try to win their love. And whereas their own child can sometimes be punished because we think that they can bear everything; with adopted children they need to increase attention throughout their lives relative to their own children.
Thus when we go out to the general public and invest our efforts in them. The further that these people seem to be, the more we receive the Light that Reforms.
From the moment that we open a channel of bestowal to the external world, there is nothing more important than dissemination. With this we are assured that everyone is prepared to attain the spiritual world! If not dissemination, then only uniquely chosen students would be able to reach the discovery of spirituality. Solely and only thanks to the channel of dissemination being open can we receive them all, and not necessarily here, rather in the entire world. Everything now depends only on the person himself.
Without dissemination we have no possibility of turning to parts of our soul. Our soul is found outside, in the entire world around us: in the still, vegetative, animate, and human. We need to correct only the person, and all the rest of the parts of nature will be corrected together with us because they are without free choice. This free choice is not in the people around you rather it’s within you and in how you utilize the opportunity that is given to you and begin to disseminate this method to implement it.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/04/13, Shamati #121 “She Is Like Merchant-Ships”
In the News (from the Economist’s Club): “(…) America’s ever-increasing rates of severe mental disease (which have already been very high for a long time). The claim that the spread of severe mental illness has reached “epidemic” proportions has been heard so often that, like any commonplace, it has lost its ability to shock. But the repercussions for international politics of the disabling conditions diagnosed as manic-depressive illnesses (including major unipolar depression) and schizophrenia could not be more serious.
“It has proved to be impossible to distinguish, either biologically or symptomatically, between different varieties of these conditions, which thus constitute a continuum – most likely of complexity, rather than severity. Indeed, the most common of these illnesses, unipolar depression, is the least complex in terms of its symptoms, but also the most lethal: 20% of depressed patients are estimated to commit suicide. …
“A massive statistical study, conducted from 2001 to 2003 by the US National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), estimated the lifetime prevalence of major depression among American adults (ages 18-54) at more than 16%. Lifetime prevalence for schizophrenia was estimated at 1.7%. There is no known cure for these chronic diseases; after onset (often before the age of 18), they are likely to last until the end of the patient’s life. …
“All of this suggests that as many as 20% of American adults may be severely mentally ill. In view of disputes over the significance of available data, let’s assume that only 10% of American adults are severely mentally ill. …
“Comparative epidemiologists have repeatedly noticed something remarkable about these illnesses: only Western countries (or, more precisely, societies with monotheistic traditions) – particularly prosperous Western countries – are subject to prevalence rates of this magnitude. Southeast Asian countries appear to be especially immune to the bane of severe mental illness; in other regions, poverty, or lack of development, seems to offer a protective barrier.”
My Comment: This is not just the Western way of life, but the indication of the ultimate form of egoism, which forces us to correct it as “help against it.” The very same egoism exposes itself to show us exactly that the problem is in it. And it also reveals the method of its correction: “Methodology of Integral Education and Upbringing” or the “Methodology of Integral Development.”
This is about looking at everyone through my attributes, and it seems to me that someone is wrong, poor, or weak. I do not see objectively what is really going on. There is no objective perspective! I see everything through my current attributes, and therefore I cannot trust them at all. If I relate to everything through them, I will never be able to ascend.
I have to examine things and reach a state in which I will have no way to judge something, but only raise it to the next upper level, to the Creator. This is why I am given different options such as the right line and the left line, which actually lead me to the middle line. So by engaging in integral education we don’t descend to a person’s problems, but rather raise him to the connection with others.
The Torah, “Exodus,” Mishpatim, 23:7: Keep thee far from a false matter, and the innocent and righteous slay thou not; for I will not justify the wicked.
Shun falsehood and the truth too, since it’s all subjective and a person must examine this correctly. There is no truth or lie here, not righteous or wicked, and not rich or poor.
It only seems this way to you, and you have to raise it to a balanced state in order to see that everyone is equal. You have to see that you cannot judge since the answer is always on the next level. It’s the upper level that determines the lower level and which provides it with all the troubles, so ascending to it is the solution.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 5/24/13
His friend asked: “How can I be sure that you will dwell with me?” Then, he took the most valuable belongings and brought them to his friend and said: “Here is a guarantee that I won’t ever part from you.” Similarly, the Creator wished to dwell with Israel. He took His precious Shechina, lowered Her to Israel and said: “Here is my pawn; it shows that I will never part from you.”
Even though the Creator was removed from us, His pawn is still with us since Shechina accompanies us in exile. We preserve His jewel, and when the time comes, He will ask us to return the pawn, and then He will come back and remain with us. Nevertheless while Israel is still in exile, Israel keeps the Creator’s pawn and will never abandon it.
The Creator made a desire to receive. He developed it with the help of the Upper Light and fulfills it endlessly. All other states exist only in the creation’s perception. The Creator stopped acting at the four stages of direct Light. He stopped at the stage of Malchut of the world of infinity. By acting this way, He “handed” Himself to the creation, and later on the creation started to act in order to attain the Creator, its Maker.
Therefore, all His actions are associated with creation. The Creator has given Himself as a “pawn” to creation by filling it with feasible revelations, love, and Light. The creation’s task is to attain the perfect potential state that can be achieved between the Creator and the creation. The entire development is just about this process.
That’s why it is said: “I, HaVaYaH, do not change” and “the Light is constantly in the state of an absolute stillness,” meaning that the Creator has already done His part of the work; He has settled Himself forever in the creation and merged with it infinitely. However, the creation has to perform several actions on its own in order to completely sense the One Who created it, Who fulfills it, with Whom it adheres, and then discover the “pawn” that the Creator left in it. So far, the pawn is hidden inside the creation and is waiting for the creation to disclose it, for its readiness to reveal the Creator by obtaining similar qualities to Him.
The entire concealment exists only when we look at it from the creation’s point of view. When we say that “the Creator is in concealment,” it is just words; in fact, the “ball” is in the creation’s hands. According to actual laws, the properties, and conditions that were passed to the creation by Him, everything depends only on the lower.
Of course, it is not in our power to change the basis of creation nor can we alter the original HaVaYaH. Our task is to rise to infinity in accordance with the same laws. At the same time, the speed and nature of our elevation depend solely on us. We can act freely within the boundaries of the law that defines the relationships between the Light and the desire until we finally find the Creator inside us; realize that He is already present, and that He waits for us to reveal Him. So, on one hand, everything happens in accordance with the upper laws, which is why we study the chapter called “BeHukotai”; however, we are the ones who are supposed to reveal the Light.
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/19/13
Baal HaSulam, “The Love for the Creator and Love for the Created Beings”: …the Israeli nation was to be a “transition.” This means that to the extent that Israel cleanses themselves by keeping the Torah, so they pass their power on to the rest of the nations.
Question: Upon what does the power of the Light that is conveyed by us to the rest of the world depend?
Answer: It depends on the upper and the lower. First of all, the upper has to “line up” with the lower. Prior to other nations’ awakening, we obtain a chance, an arousal, a “tool”… This is what the current period is about; we should adapt to other nations. We have to recognize, comprehend, and feel them, we have to organize ourselves correctly, and make educational materials available to them… In short, we should do everything that is needed to take good care of the world. Everything depends on us.
Our accomplishments on this path and our readiness to take care of others balance out other nations’ sense of detachment and hopelessness. They don’t see any solution to the situation they are in, which they were led to by the normal course of development. And we need to help them understand the natural development is in fact an egoistic type of advancement. By no means should we blame or scare anybody, we should simply explain to them the ongoing unavoidable phase of evolution.
Today, we have hit a deadlock: There is no need to advance anymore, people don’t care about advancement any longer, nor are they as active as they used to be previously. Everything is approaching the final stage.
Therefore, our egoistic development inevitably comes to an end, this fact doesn’t allow us a chance to escape or run away. All we can do is to “stretch” the very last portion of our path. In the meantime, evil forces mount up and augment. On top of it, we should elucidate the causes of our current situation.
At this point, we should bring up the topic of nature. On one hand, nature “cultivates” our egoism, on the other hand, the closer we come to the peak of egoism the more it manifests. Egos were growing throughout the entire history of humankind, whereas nature acts as a “round” integral system. That’s why we do not progress as “singles” or selfish individualists, but similar to other live cells, we tend to unite and form collective “conglomerates.” We should be ready to contribute to each other and cooperate as do the organs of one body.
Thus, nature develops two approaches in us: individualism and conformity. Eventually, we will unite in this global world, whereas nature demonstrates its “roundness” and integrity. As a result, a collision happens. Regardless of our unity, we continue taking advantage of our neighbors. At the same time, we acknowledge that we should “love our neighbors.” The difference between these two states manifests as a world crisis (∆). It’s caused by the fact that the evil in us confronts nature.
Overall, they are two opposing forces that nature provokes. There is only one solution to this situation: to instigate a benevolent unity among us. Exploiting our neighbors is also a kind of unity, but it’s negative. That’s why on one hand, the world became global, and on the other hand, it plunged into a crisis that was caused by our detachment, although by now the world should have become global and united as nature.
Baal HaSulam, Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot, Item 100: The Zohar tells us that we should not even consider that the Creator wishes to remain in Providence of concealed face from His creations. Rather, it is like a person who deliberately hides himself, so his friend will seek and find him.
Similarly, when the Creator behaves in concealment of the face with His creations, it is only because He wants the creatures to seek the disclosure of His face and find Him. In other words, there would be no way or inlet for people to attain the Light of the King’s countenance had He not first behaved with them in concealment of the face. Thus, the whole concealment is but a preparation for the disclosure of the face.
This is clear to a person who can face this concealment, who focuses all his attention on revealing the Creator. The Creator is constantly before us, but there is the picture of the fictitious world between us. A person seems to see and feel different events in this life that appear to him and that seem to be operating in different directions. In fact, however, they all have one purpose: on the one hand, to evoke a person, and on the other hand, to make him face difficult problems and questions which he has to solve.
We behave in the same way with children, when we give them a game and call it play , that is, to solve a certain problem. It turns out that a child needs to be given a certain obstacle that he should overcome and a little push so that he will move forward. The desire to advance and to solve the problem should be ignited in a person, which means that he should be pushed forward and he should be given some kind of a resistance.
He takes the urge to advance and the force of resistance and processes it internally into the right urge and resistance and thus receives the vessels to reveal the wisdom if it is about this world, or the vessels to reveal the Creator if we speak about the spiritual work.
The more we advance, the trickier these exercises become. We cannot say that they are getting harder, but rather that they are getting deeper. We have to constantly identify these exercises in the Creator’s game with us as He draws away, thus summoning anger in us, disappointment and repulsion from the friends and from the spiritual work.
On the whole, these exercises belong to the group and to the spiritual path, while in our ordinary life there are hardly any such exercises. We should understand that they will grow and spread. The depth and the severity of their threat will continue to grow and eventually we will find ourselves at the foot of a high mountain.
Here everything depends on our preparation, on the mutual guarantee between us that will help us to constantly identify the opportunities we are given, in the form of clarions to advance correctly. The solution is only in connection. Then a person can decipher every step correctly, get constant support and help, and reach the revelation of the Creator quickly.
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/8/13