Why Suffering?

Dr. Michael LaitmanBaal HaSulam, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)”: But because of the descent of human nature to the lowest degree, which is the self-love that unrestrictedly rules over all of humanity, there was no way to negotiate with them and persuade them to agree to take upon themselves, even as an empty promise, to exit their narrow world into the wide spaces of the love of others. The exception was the Israeli nation because they were enslaved in the savage kingdom of Egypt four hundred years in horrible torments.

Our sages said, “As salt sweetens meat, agony polishes man’s sins.”

Question: The people of Israel suffered throughout its history and I don’t see how that helped. After all, correction is made by the Light, what do torments give us?

Answer: Indeed, that is how this is presented and we are guided by what we see. Each one of us has our own “eyeglasses” and nothing can be done.

You think the Egyptian exile was a period of physical suffering, but in my eyes it was a spiritual revelation of evil. You consider it to be Pharaoh’s attack, but I regard it as an outbreak of the evil inclination. Egyptians tormented you externally and me, internally. Under a hail of blows, you ran away from the geographical Egypt, and I from inner Egypt. The spiritual aspect is so strong that I experienced the Egyptian exile, not externally, but mainly as internal woes. The led me out of Egypt to attain the world of Atzilut. For you, it was enough to get rid of the Pharaoh’s physical oppression, from external enslavement.

The same distinction is characteristic of the contemporary world. In the current troubles and problems, I see an appeal, a trigger needed for us to move to the goal. You  perceive them as a curse rather than a means for advancement. You want to avoid them, and I, on the contrary, say that we should not be running away from them, but rather should self-correct so that instead of ills, we would feel comfortable, benevolent, and secure in the future world.

Today, when the process strives to attain the overall redemption, it becomes all the more clear that there is no place to run. This means that if the Jewish people don’t start the process of self-correction, they will face miseries on all sides, economic, emotional, and  physical predicaments, whatever, in Israel and in America and elsewhere.

The safest place is the land of Israel. Its people will have to fight physically, but mostly internally. That’s why we have to spread Kabbalistic knowledge in Israel, and above all we have to disseminate the methodology of integral education. After all, it depends on the extent to which we are able to transfer the Jewish people facing problems as conventional battles to a spiritual battles.

People must understand that if fight internally to unite, we will “soften” and “sweeten” negative forces. They do not  destroy them, which is impossible, but turn them into good and useful. Unity will allow us to get stronger, thus making our enemies retreat. We won’t have to battle with them and they will stop fighting with us. On the contrary, they will come to us to learn the ways to unite.

After all, separation will affect them even worse than us. In Israel, it leads leads to political conflicts; in other areas, every day dozens and hundreds of people are killed, and the chaos will only continue growing.

So, if we want harmony and peace, we have to start here. We have no choice. And it makes no sense to  dwell upon the physical afflictions of Jews in Egypt. In this case,  you don’t understand this, and all the other catastrophes that befell Jews throughout history, whether it is the inquisition, pogroms, or the Holocaust. Of course, this cannot be explained from our current level since we don’t see the entire reality or the whole system to understand what is happening or its causes.

In short, it is a qualitative deficiency and we are at a very important, crucial phase.

In general, subconsciously the nations of the world press the people of Israel to teach them the methodology of correction. And the pressure can take on various forms.

But what is surprising: Before the nations of the world will come to Israel, they will be fight and have conflict with each other. However, we can already see around whom the whole “plot” revolves. Israel is almost invisible on the map; nevertheless, it is the true center of events, and with time, this fact will appear more clearly.

Ultimately, the current processes obligate the Jewish people to unite, to give an example to the world, to bring all to global unity, and to raise humanity.

This is the simple “scheme.” However, in our world it is implemented in multi-billion dollar investments, requires huge resources, and directly affects millions of people, turning this world into an arena of uncontrollable trade.

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