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Answer: We are talking about returning to bestowal, to the state that preceded the breaking of the vessels. Bestowal means that I calculate my every action not in my desire but in the desire of the other. It is said about this: “Make your desire as His desire.” That’s what it means to love, to bestow, to try to neutralize one’s own desire, to become included in the desire of the other, to take his desire as if I am he and to try to fulfill it.
What exactly does the other person want? He wants to make money, to succeed in life, to get rid of someone, to use someone else, etc. Of course, I do not help him in this. No, being in the property of bestowal to some extent, I “integrate” in the other; I feel his properties and want to correct them. So, I have to make sure that he is corrected like me. I have to ask for him.
And I ask for correction for him; I want to carry his bestowal in everything. I accept his properties, intentions, desires, especially the bad ones, and correct them: I ask for correction for him. He is unable to ask himself, unable to understand that this is wrong, unable to “see the baby,” i.e., to look to the future. And I become the “head” for him.
That is why the letters of the word Israel (ישראל) make up the expression the “head for me” (LiRosh – לי ראש). I am doing spiritual work for the other, instead of him, I raise MAN—a request for correction—like the first-born and raise him to our common parent Partzuf Aba ve Ima. And from there, I get twice for myself to move into adulthood (Gadlut), which will allow me to form the genuine property of bestowal upon the other. And based on this property, I will start to bestow.
That’s what the action that we are talking about is. All this is also included in the correction on Rosh HaShanah. The New Year is in essence the peak, the result of the completed degree and ascent to the next one.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/4/13, Lesson on the Topic: Rosh HaShanah
Today, a special condition has developed in the world caused by the fact that the spiritual and the material are converging. And to the extent that our actions are consistent with the current stage, we influence our own destiny.
Over the past two thousand years, this has not happened. The period of exile of the people of Israel lasted until now, which it had to pass through by suffering. Baal HaSulam says that a premature exit from the Egyptian exile after two hundred and ten years, instead of four hundred, became the root of all subsequent exiles.
Either way, you need to go through all the stages of the path. The breaking itself, the destruction of the Temple, defines this situation, where you are not the master but the dependent who is to experience everything through whatever comes to him.
And the people of Israel have experienced, lived through, these two thousand years until it came to their end. Today, a new, opposite stage, a new birth begins. The crisis (in Hebrew: Mashber) is birth. And so it is the time to rise to our feet.
The first time in two thousand years, our current actions, both material and spiritual, based on physical strength and the power of intention, determine our destiny. And it is determined in two ways: either carrying out the development in its time or speeding it up, one of the two. It was not like that previously, this “fork” appeared just now.
That’s why the world manifests its “round,” interconnected nature, and we discover that we are broken at the level of humanity, the people of Israel, everyone and all people. This period began with the first wave of Aliyah, the return to the land of Israel about 130 years ago, which was a sign of the new times. And now we have to get to work, knowing that the fate of the world is directly related to our efforts on the path of corrections.
And so today, during the Jewish New Year (Rosh HaShanah), when the attributes of judgment (Dinim) take effect, we have nothing to fear. If I am afraid that I will be exposed as an egoist, I have to understand that I finally have the opportunity to repay. I can carry out corrections, can ask for forgiveness, not just beat myself on the chest and shout nice words, but really wish to get rid of bad qualities.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/4/13. Shamati #122
Question: Integral education is learning about the mutual interconnection of everything. Can we teach in our environment by way of example that there is no black and white, rather everything is variegated? Could it be that this method will awaken those around us to think integrally?
Answer: The idea is that we can think integrally, yet we cannot ourselves be integral.
What does it mean to think integrally? How can I make decisions that do not disrupt the equilibrium of the world, that are only for its good? For if they are not intended for the good of some part of the integral system, then they will only bring harm. How can I make decisions today to carry out some activities to create companies, to realize investments, create new kinds of products?
Today I can no longer do this. The world has become so interconnected that if I don’t take its integrality into account but simply implement any economic, financial, technological, manufacturing, cultural, or scientific activity, then I cause harm. Therefore, what has been done from that moment in which close to a century ago the world began to discover its integrality, is that we have been harming ourselves because subconsciously, within the soul, we have no feeling of integrality.
Suppose that I know what my family is: my wife, children, parents, and relatives. I feel all of this; within me, I have a representation of my family. And therefore if they ask me to do something for them, I automatically describe to myself if this will be for their good or will it cause harm, for within me there exists a representation of the family.
The same thing is relevant to the world as well. Suppose that I am the manager of some large corporation or the president of some nation. What kind of decision can I make today, because no matter what I do it affects the entire world and comes back to me, to my nation, to my family? No! It’s best to sit and do nothing.
We see what is happening today in the management of the nations, the businesses, and so forth. Gradually it’s as if everything is failing, disappearing because people feel that their decisions will be incorrect in every circumstance. They are beginning to feel the lack of information more and more: Where am I, what am I doing? This feeling will grow all the time. The person will begin to feel that he is lost.
We must understand the integrality of the world as without this we cannot exist. And the Wisdom of Kabbalah explains it. Therefore we will be needed because only we can reveal to the world its true structure: The mechanism of the structure of all kinds of simple decisions even to maintain and strengthen the family in the right way, to educate the children properly, to regulate the relationships within the family between a husband and wife, relationships between families, in society, and so forth.
For the crisis has already reached the person himself, he no longer lives with his wife and children, not with the parents, and so forth, rather only with himself. Therefore we are found in crisis. And so it is also in Scandinavia. People simply know how to subjugate themselves to be satisfied with what there is. They don’t see anything else; so what can a person do? He can enter more deeply into his shell like a snail and sit quietly.
We must show that we have a solution. First we must highlight the problem, reveal it, explain it correctly, and after this, show that it is possible to solve it, that it is impossible for us to wait, otherwise from the side of nature, terrible blows will land on us. Then people will listen to us.
From the Stockholm Convention “Joy In Unity” Day One 8/30/13, Lesson 1
How can you verify that we are advancing correctly? It is clear that a person is too fond of himself and always evaluates himself in terms of his egoism subconsciously. We are not able to verify the correctness of our path objectively.
The only opportunity for us to change is by acquiring a situation like the guest and the Host, by feeling a special treatment from the Host which transforms us from enjoying the fulfillment to beginning to enjoy the One who gives the fulfillment. That is, we rise above the desire and the Light that fills it, which are directly connected to each other in the natural, physical form and move on to the level of the relationship between the guest and the Host.
The guest is not the desire to enjoy itself, but a new property built inside of it which is familiar with the Host, understands Him, and feels His attitude. There is a desire and fulfillment, and above them, their mutual relationships are suddenly revealed. That is, the “2nd floor” is built between the Creator, not His actions, but the Creator Himself and the created being, where the image of the Creator is formed.
Then a conflict breaks out on the 1st floor between the vessel and the Light and the relationship between the Creator and the created being on the 2nd floor. Therefore, the created being feels an inner contradiction. Every time my desire changes, my attitude towards pleasure changes. I am starting to see it in a new way, and according to this I have to choose the correct goal.
So, I am given the first starting point. If I want to establish a relationship between myself and the Creator on the 2nd floor and not on the first, then I should please Him as much as He attempts to please me. The reason for my creation is His love for me, the desire to bring me pleasure. And how can I do the same thing for Him in return?
I need to explore this, to try to find out how I can please Him during my life: What He wants, what He seeks, what will make Him feel good. It is hard to figure out because if I do something to bring pleasure to the Creator and feel it, then I will receive more pleasure than I can bear. I would be so corrupted by selfish pleasure that I would never be able to get out of it, to rise above it to the 2nd floor .
Therefore, beginning with the first man, Adam HaRishon, we are provided with help in this world. Kabbalists tell us that in order to reveal the relationship between the human being and the Creator, I need the correct environment in which I can perform such actions that will bring Him pleasure. After all, the environment is desire and pleasure independent and unrelated to me. I do not feel it. And if I can fill a foreign environment that is outside me: the still, vegetative, animate, and human, then I will bring pleasure to the Creator. It is a very simple principle.
The only problem is that I cannot bring pleasure to someone else because I only think about myself. That is my nature. But no matter what, I have to try. And if I want to bring the other person joy for the sake of delighting the Creator, the entire process has to be on the 2nd floor because it does not depend on my own enjoyment.
From the Preparation for the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/26/13
Baal HaSulam, “The Peace”: Because the purpose is undoubtedly built over all the laws of nature, none excluded, just as the clever worker would not add or subtract even a hairsbreadth of the necessary actions to attain the goal, he who alters even a single law harms and damages the purposeful aim that the Creator has set, and will therefore be punished by nature. Hence, we, too, creatures of the Creator must not pity him because he is desecrating the laws of nature and defiles the purpose of the Creator.
We live within a complex of forces of the laws of nature. From the world of infinity each being smaller than the previous one, they close the spiritual space in order to construct this world in its center, the place in which a person has free choice and from which he can begin the way toward his correction.
If we don’t abide by these laws that are active within the “spiritual worlds,” the Sefirot, Partzufim—then, how can we rise to the level of the Creator? The ascent is possible only through keeping the Mitzvot or, in other words, through keeping the laws of nature. These are the same thing.
This is not talking about the physical laws of nature here: cutting down trees and drying up rivers, pollution, and destruction of the nature of the still, vegetative, and animate. Rather, the main thing is that we need to begin to be in balance with the spiritual nature, with the bestowal and love coming toward us.
In the past, until we reached a stage of correction of the self, we had no ability to destroy nature. Until the nineteenth century and even until the twentieth century, we used it without causing damage, without violating the ecology. However, after that, the Creator approached the world in order to show us that the world is global, that everything among all the levels of nature is linked with the level of Adam (man), and now, first of all, it is up to the person to correct himself.
The solution is not in limiting or reducing the utilization of the nature of the still, vegetative, and animate. Rather, this is speaking about the correction of the person on his level. By means of this, he corrects the relationship with all the rest and even between everything and the Creator. That is how we rise “from love for thy neighbor to love for the Creator.”
Certainly, there exist many laws linked to the nature of the still, vegetative, and animate, yet our service to the Creator is to resemble the Creator, for otherwise, if we don’t correct our speaking level and our relationship toward the Creator, we will not know how we need to relate to nature. Here, we must correct our ego. We cannot dictate for people the laws of conduct for every given state and arrange clear guidelines for all events. It is impossible to dictate to every person how it is up to him to behave from morning to night in order to build the right relationships with the nature of the still, vegetative and animate, with the environment.
It is only if the person will correct himself with the characteristic of bestowal, with “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” To this degree, he also will correct his link with the nature around him. Then, all the levels in nature will be included with him and will be corrected through him.
By themselves, they are not prepared to be corrected. There are a multitude of malfunctions, and as of today, we don’t know what the forms of their correct functioning are. However, then we will see that they are functioning differently. Even on the level of the still, we will see natural characteristics that we haven’t seen until now.
So, first of all, the person needs to correct himself and not the stones, the plants, and the animals. The goal of creation is to resemble the Creator, and we have something with which to practice: the relationships between us. Specifically for this, there was the shattering, the Babylonian exile, and population growth to seven billion human beings. Precisely in this way, we will correct the damage.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/2/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam
In the News (from the University of Southampton): “Researchers at the University of Southampton have proposed an answer to the long-running debate as to how stable the Earth system is.
“The Earth, with its core-driven magnetic field, oceans of liquid water, dynamic climate and abundant life is arguably the most complex system in the known Universe. Life arose on Earth over three and a half billion years ago and it would appear that despite planetary scale calamities such as the impacts of massive meteorites, runaway climate change and increases in brightness of the Sun, it has continued to grow, reproduce and evolve ever since.
“Forty years ago, James Lovelock formulated his Gaia Hypothesis in which life controls aspects of the planet and in doing so maintains conditions that are suitable for widespread life despite shocks and perturbations. This hypothesis was and remains controversial in part because there is no understood mechanism by which such a planetary self-stabilising system could emerge.”
My Comment: Kabbalah studies the system of the universe, both in general and in the particular form. The laws of nature that Kabbalah reveals are immutable in all the worlds, which are the levels of the ratio between matter (desire, the property of reception) and energy (the Light, the property of bestowal).
Everything is stabilized primarily by the initial and final states of the system (the plan of creation). The system is static. The progress of the transition from the initial to the final state is only relative to the object that attains it: the human being.
In the News (from CNNMoney): “The U.S. has more than 2 million missing households, thanks largely to 18 to 34-year-olds stuck living with the parentals.
“The share of 18 to 34-year-olds living with their parents rose from about 27.6% before the Great Recession in 2007 to above 31%, where it remains today, according to an analysis by Trulia, a real-estate website. Millennials have contributed to the sharp decline in household formation, which likely will take a while to return to normal.
“Until recently, hedge funds and private equity firms drove the U.S. housing market’s recovery, buying a shrinking pool of foreclosed and distressed homes to rent. It seemed like a lucrative investment, given that rents were rising while homeownership fell to record lows.
“But as big investors turn into landlords, it’s worth asking if any considered how long it could take before junior finally gets a place of his own.
“Rents for single-family homes have now risen slower than property prices. This comes as investors flood the market with homes for lease, but it also comes as fewer young adults — generally a key market for rentals – create homes of their own.”
My Comment: The crisis will force us to live a rational life in everything. For the meantime, we do not feel it yet, we are still consuming past supplies….
As we know, it all depends on the environment and the environment of humanity as a whole is nature: still, vegetative, and animate. It is in its environment that we live and, perhaps without noticing it, are in a very clear and strict dependence on it.
Nature supplies us with all the necessities of life. Due to it, we breathe, drink, eat, and live. We are a part of it, I would say, the most sensible and sensitive part. It is enough for at least one parameter to go beyond its natural range and then we do not know what to do.
In short, we are highly dependent and the problem is that if the laws of nature are followed instinctively on the still, vegetative, and animate levels because of their identity with it, the human being who developed has found himself beyond these levels in transition from the animate stage to truly human.
This situation is very dangerous. On the one hand, the same laws of the still, vegetative, and animate nature act on the human, but on the other hand, the laws of human nature relating to the degrees of similarity to the Creator begin to affect him. As a result, people experience the effect of the Creator getting closer to humankind.
If a person does not balance these influences every time, then they are perceived as very unpleasant, adding up to the path of suffering, paved by the action of the laws of nature, which, leaving no choice, push us to equilibrium whether we want it or not.
Although the still, vegetative, and animate nature is included in the human degree—although it rises and falls with it—the Creator, the Upper Light, the higher, round, integral, global world, the one and unified, constantly is getting closer to the human being, and this presence is felt by us in the form of a complex of modern problems.
After all, we discover our own nature and every time it does not get along with our surroundings. As before, we live in still, vegetative, and animate nature, but we can no longer cope with it because we have not yet understood the aspect of human nature, the degree of the Creator, the property of bestowal, of love. We do not associate ourselves with bestowal and love, with globality, with general interconnection. We do not want this, and as a consequence, we suffer more and more.
Thus, Baal HaSulam writes in the article, “The Peace,” about the necessity of a careful attitude toward the laws of nature. Of course, he primarily means the nature of the fourth stage, the human degree. However, we can study it on the basis of the previous levels: still, vegetative, and animate.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/2/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam
Answer: I don’t think that we have to split into groups of ten during the preparation for the convention. We have to unite and to forget about the groups of ten during the preparation. This means that we should work in the groups of ten only when we have workshops but not the rest of the time.
When I read such questions, I fear that a strong connection in the groups of ten will divide you into groups of ten and not let you see others as your best and closest friends.
We have split into groups of ten only because it is easier to communicate more closely with one another in these groups and to feel the others more personally. But on the whole, we also have to be close to ourselves and to the friends all over the world.
If we could include all the friends around the world in these groups of ten, we would do so. I would sit with Germans, French, and South Americans today and with Australians and North Americans tomorrow, etc.
I don’t think that we should unite more tightly in the group of ten, and if this is the case, we should constantly change them. Otherwise the result is egoistic unity: “I have grown used to them, we understand one another well.” What do we need this for? Moving forward is based on overcoming the general lack of understanding from which you are trying to escape.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/25/13, Question and Answers with Dr. Laitman