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The Essential Opposition

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: I relate to the Creator with respect and awe. He is great and grandiose in my imagination, whereas the friends, the “others” among whom He is revealed, are the opposite. It is as if we lower the bar. They seem less important. How do we solve this problem? How do I increase the value in my eyes of the “electricity” that already has been revealed within the world Kli, the unity, on the background of the greatness of its source?

Answer: As the sages say, you cannot show children that our love for them is absolute. It will only spoil them. Parents who show unconditional love to their children bring their children to circles (Igulim) instead of straight lines (Yosher), instead of law, mercy instead of justice, and this is not good.

Therefore, we simply cannot imagine the Creator is good that does good. He conceals Himself behind very specific and rigid views of the relationship with us that appear to us as ranging from the very unkind to the quite cruel.

We need to take into account both extremes, the two sides of the same coin. On the one hand, He is good and that does good, and on the other hand, I find it as bad. So, how can I connect these two opposing extremes?

The goal of creation is to benefit His creatures, and this is attained according to corrections that the creatures make and only at the end of development. Baal HaSulam writes about this in the article, “The Essence of Religion and its Purpose.” If I adopt this approach, if I realize this during my process of investigation, then I will understand why everything is arranged in this way. I understand the Creator is like a loving father. From love, He must pressure His child in order to lead him toward the good.

Specifically, the idea here is how to clearly identify the problem, the contradiction between the Creator who is good and that does good and the troubles of our world, for I see that the troubles are just increasing, becoming more acute, and pressing more and more strongly on humanity. Until recently, it was as if times were good, and everyone hoped for a brighter and good future, for the “American Dream,” but today, this is no longer serves as a benchmark, and soon we will be happy not to live there.

Why do we need this opposition, this contradiction? This conflict is specifically designed to create internal dissonance in me: How can it be that power of nature, the good and who does good, the absolute power beyond all limitations, locks us into such serious disasters?

I begin to examine and investigate this conflict and search for a solution to the problem. Maybe, the Creator doesn’t exist, and everything is at the mercy of blind nature, and I must fight against it.

However, in reality this approach doesn’t solve the problem. After all, the Creator and nature are the same thing. It follows that I have not changed anything. I only have changed the words but I am left facing the same unsolved problem. The condition is still ongoing and becoming worse, and in any case, I must search for a way out.

Therefore, ultimately, I can solve this conflict only if I will understand that I don’t need to change anything except myself, and here is the key point: Do we need to change ourselves or not? Do we worship through all kinds of physical actions, actions that have been written down, and wait for these to bring us everything good, or do we correct ourselves, and from these, our corrected Kelim, it will be good for us.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/12/13, Shamati #3The Matter of Spiritual Attainment

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The Goal Of The Human

Dr. Michael LaitmanBaal HaSulam, “The Teaching of Kabbalah and Its Essence”: And the most important thing in this whole diverse reality is the sensation given to the animals—that each of them feels its own existence. And the most important sensation is the noetic sensation, given to man alone, by which one also feels what is in another—the pains and comforts.

Of all of creation, the human is the most developed regarding his desires. How can we know about them? This is according to his movements and actions, all of which essentially constitute the expression of his inner desire.

Look at what a mess the human makes in the world. On the other hand, animals don’t change anything but only move in order to fulfill their desires, and with the vegetative level, there isn’t even enough desire to move. Therefore, it follows that the human is motivated by the greatest desire. He wants to change the world and himself and not just move and grow. This is what he uses the powers found within him for.

Thus, the human is the center of creation, the creature that was developed at the end of creation and for whom the entire creation was developed. Therefore, we must understand: All of the reality of the still, vegetative, and animate is intended to serve the human and to be useful to him only in order to attain the goal.

What is the goal? The human must reach that higher power that created him. It is concealed from the human as a result of the law of equivalence of form, and a person must change himself in order to reach the similarity of properties according to the law of equivalence of form, and he will fully reveal this power that created him. This identification and approximation is called adherence which is revealed as complete connection. This is what the human being must reach.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/14/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam

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The Work In The Heart

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is the method of the internal work? How can I feel thankful to the Creator and joy when serious interferences and even blows keep coming? How can I truly justify Him without deceiving myself?

Answer: If a person is by himself, there is nothing he can do. He cannot understand and clarify his state correctly and reach the right decision if he doesn’t do it through the group. He has no tools, no instrument that analyzes things by which he can do that.

The group is the only source through which he can understand correctly the problems and questions that stem from above, from below, from the outside, or from the inside, and see all these states correctly, which means that I arrive at a certain solution and then I act. I can act only through this mechanism.

I cannot think about myself. If I am alone, I always think from inside my shattered ego. So, I must convey my thoughts through this instrument, through this mass, called the group, and only then will I have a chance to hear the questions correctly and respond to everything that happens to me correctly.

Only the ego rules inside me, in my mind and heart. I never can solve anything correctly. I say this based on my personal experience. I constantly need the group, the friends, my students, who may be on a much lower level than me, but it makes no difference. After all, they are many, and only when I pass the thoughts and desires that come to me or that I want to express through them, can I be sure that I do something right. This is exactly how I work and not any other way.

When I come to the lesson, I don’t know what the subject is and I don’t care. If I don’t feel the group, incorporate in it, and pass all the questions and answers, this whole analysis, through you, I will never be able to act correctly because my ego is not completely corrected yet. New egoistic attributes that are revealed in me guide me every moment, and it will be that way until the end of correction.

So, everything must be conveyed through the group, just like the students of Rabbi Shimon who wrote The Book of Zohar conveyed all the states they had been through only through the group and on each level turned them from absolute hatred to absolute love.

There is only one answer to your many questions: Solve everything and convey everything through the group, including what you hear and what you want to say. It isn’t you that wants to say something, but us. It isn’t you that wants to hear, but us. Then, you will succeed in doing things correctly.

There is no other instrument! You have no right to listen by using your own ears and feel in your heart and see by using your eyes; this is how animals feel and see the world. You do everything together, which means that there is the inner concept of the group inside you. You discuss everything together, and also consult one another.

Every day, except for the lesson, I take part in short, five to ten minute long group meetings. However, the lesson is also a group meeting for me. I feel the people. I try to connect to them and feel them. Do you think that you are just among some audience sitting before a lecturer during the lesson? If so, why should we gather in the first place?

The subject of the lesson isn’t so important, but the fact that we gather here as one is. The students of Rabbi Shimon wrote about how difficult it was to gather during the lesson and how much they hated one another and couldn’t look at one another, and  then gradually by their work on themselves, they reached the state of love! Can you imagine from what a low level to such incredible heights!

We are still very far from the state of the real hatred that they felt and barely managed to restrain themselves from burning one another and thus managed to reach the love they write to us about in The Book of Zohar.

What is The Book of Zohar and the Torah? What do Kabbalists actually reveal? They reveal what we can reveal by connecting. What is the spiritual ladder? It is the levels of an increasingly stronger connection of the one vessel that existed before the shattering. It is the reconstruction of this vessel and putting it together back into the same form, but by its own efforts. Putting together all the desires, all the thoughts of the group, into one whole is the correction.

Gradually, in this correction, in this connection between us, at some point, the Creator will begin to be revealed. First unconsciously and through some inner urges and movements more and more clearly. The Creator has no image. He will be revealed in the connection between you as you connect.

We should constantly remember this and develop the idea, and then we will succeed. If you keep rejecting this idea, then you are wasting your time and energy.
From the Talk about Group and Dissemination 10/21/13

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The Dalai Lama

Dr. Michael LaitmanOpinion (His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama):All the world’s major religions, with their emphasis on love, compassion, patience, tolerance, and forgiveness can and do promote inner values. But the reality of the world today is that grounding ethics in religion is no longer adequate. This is why I am increasingly convinced that the time has come to find a way of thinking about spirituality and ethics beyond religion altogether.”

My Comment: The concealment of the Creator, the power of love that manages the world, is due to our egoism, which is the opposite to the property of the Creator and therefore it does not feel Him. The revelation of the Creator can only happen as a result of a change in our egoistic nature, from everything for oneself to the altruistic nature everything for the sake of others, according to the principle, “Love thy neighbor as thyself.”

The call for the change of a person is found in all religions, but they cannot implement it because our nature can be changed only under the influence of the Creator, the Light of Ohr Makif, on it. Kabbalah allows this (See Baal HaSulam’s article, “The Essence of Religion and Its Purpose“). This article also speaks about ethics…

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Signs Of Success And Failure

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What are the signs of success or of failure in the internal work, and what is its revelation in our sensations and in the external work?

Answer: We cannot say what is in our favor and what is not because, for the time being, we operate from our ego, wanting everything to work out exactly the way we want it to without any problems. It is a natural, egoistic urge.

However, we should understand that this is actually impossible. Only great problems, sufferings, interferences, and clarifications can push us out of the ego. All the questions that you ask me refer mainly to this state.

“Why do we have problems in the group, in the family? Why do we encounter different interferences when we begin to engage in dissemination, in integral education? We don’t know what to do!”

Of course, these questions come up because we must correct all this. They come up along the way. Do you see them as external obstacles? They are not external and not foreign, but they are your inner interferences that are revealed in  now.

However, you shouldn’t pay attention to them. You should work only on connection despite the influence of the impediments and external blows. You should leave them and engage in inner unity. This is the only way you will overcome them.

As for signs of success or failure in the internal work, if you yearn for connection and unity, despite the interruptions—or actually thanks to them—it is a sign of success. However, if you suddenly begin to draw away from one another, then there is nothing good about it.

You simply don’t understand how all this works. We must focus ourselves correctly so that you will feel interruptions all the time, in every direction, that you will be beaten by your new attributes and your feelings. It is impossible to manage without them because this is the matter that you must correct and above which you must constantly rise.

Suppose someone acts against you or says something that is not objective and is unpleasant; suppose someone wants to leave the group, or you have a personal feeling of descent, these are all the attributes above which you immediately must unite. Then, these attributes will be fulfilled in you and will become part of your corrected state. Then, when you add a few more such actions to this state, you already will be able to approach the Machsom (barrier).
From the Talk about Group and Dissemination 10/21/13

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A Struggle That Is Both Physical And Spiritual

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Are the interferences in dissemination a sign of our correct advancement, and is the great enthusiasm we get after these actions a sign of success?

Answer: Your unity and connection above the obstacles is a sign of success. At the same time, you don’t have to regard them as obstacles, but as forces that must be corrected since these are your inner problems, which you see as external, and you relate to them incorrectly.

However, this doesn’t mean that you must forgive everyone for everything. You must work internally on the interferences that are revealed as you attempt to connect, while externally, you somehow must get rid of them. You shouldn’t kiss the hands of your enemies under any circumstances, thinking that they lead you to spirituality. On the level of this world, you must work exactly like everyone else. If, at the same time, you can get rid of the interferences that come up, then you should do. You shouldn’t let people think that they can take advantage of you. However, it all depends on the external conditions.

Besides, everything should be done gently so as not to stain the good reputation of the wisdom of Kabbalah. We must consider the circumstances each time and decide how to act in the best possible way. However, in any case, we must act in every possible way.

King David, for example, who wrote the book of Psalms, reigned for forty years and fought for forty years, but his war was both spiritual and physical.
From the Talk about Group and Dissemination 10/21/13

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Thank You For My Envy Of You

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is envy in a group? How does one work with jealousy of friends?

Answer: This condition will continue for a  time, because jealousy, one of the main egoistic characteristics, is corrected over multiple levels. Therefore, it will not disappear quickly and you must work on it methodically.

But, specifically work on it and don’t kill it, don’t nullify it because thanks to jealousy, you advance. Envy is simultaneously both motivation and interference. It doesn’t let you rest and you have to use it properly.

If I am jealous, I strive forward, and if I move forward, I am grateful for this characteristic in me and for my friend for awakening the jealousy in me. Everything depends on how I make the attainment of the goal the most important thing. If jealousy helps me in attaining the goal, then why should I hate this characteristic? On the contrary, I need to welcome it. I am glad my friend awakens this characteristic in me. Otherwise, I would remain as undeveloped as before.

Question: Jealousy, like everything else in nature, has its pros and cons. I understand that the negative is reception and the positive  is bestowal.

Answer: The negative is when you want to destroy the jealousy, and the positive is when it can help you rise upward.

At the point when you are jealous, you must advance forward with the help of this envy: learn more, show more. If you don’t want to eliminate the person who invites the jealousy in you, but rather, thank him internally for developing this feeling in you, then you advance forward.

Question: How does a Kabbalist behave when he feels others’  jealousy toward him?

Answer: He tries to suppress the jealousy through love. Above all the negative revelation, he builds love, like a father for his child. Therefore, as it is written, “Love covers all transgressions,” and he takes the force to build this from connection in the group.

Question: In other words, when I feel hatred, I immediately yearn for the center of the group?

Answer: If you were in the center of the group, you would not feel hatred, but since you feel it, it is a sign that now a greater portion of ego is revealed in you up to burning hatred as with the students of Rabbi Shimon. It pushes you out from the center of the group, and you have to force the action on yourself, on the others, to again gather everyone together in the center.

If you feel burning envy, it is a sign that all of you lack love.
From the Talk about Group and Dissemination 10/21/13

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What A Result!

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is more important in dissemination: the act itself or its result?

Answer: The answer doesn’t depend on us; it depends on the action itself. The action is the effect of the influence of the Upper Light first through your efforts in the center of the group and then through your efforts in working with the public.

You work with both these points. If, at the beginning you try to enter the center of the group to find the Creator there and to work within this center, then you connect to this source; you preserve it within you. Then you go to the public to connect to it; you ask them questions, give them explanations, and constantly think about how you pass the Upper Light to them so that they will wake up, so that they will feel it, and maybe now, even unconsciously, implicitly, it will begin to operate on them.

Your intention to pass, as a conductor, the Upper Light from the source, from the center of the group where the Creator is revealed, to the external group, is called an act, the spreading of the Light in the network between all the souls.

If you do this, then the results don’t depend on you. Let them be revealed, not even with the first attempt but from the second or third time. You will see how it works.

You will see it according to how people will begin to change, how your audience will feel hunger for these meetings as they will long to come and again, connect, “Here there is more warmth! I am recharged here, enriched, energized!” They will feel it inside. They will need it like oxygen. That is the result.
From the Talk About Group and Dissemination 10/20/13

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