Audio Version Of The Blog – 06.26.14

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The Narcissism Epidemic

Dr. Michael LaitmanIn the News (from Global Research): “We are living through a chronically tense and, in wealthy parts of the world, a desperately self-indulgent era. Advertising teaches that fulfillment comes with compulsive consumption. News media trivialize history and turn current events into a competition of spectacles and personality cults. Addicted to fads and the quick fix, frightened of the future and cut adrift from the past, millions of people flee from imagination and look for meaning in pre-digested realities.

“Societal narcissism has reached the epidemic level. Capitalism has turned self promotion into a growth industry, with success often resting on the ability to project a ‘winning personality’ and often false image. Relentless self-promotion, whether by conservative demagogues or their liberal counterparts, meshes neatly with an idealization of powerful people who represent what the narcissist seeks.

“The abdication of responsibility to various bureaucracies has meanwhile promoted character traits consistent with a corrupted culture, and this in turn has accelerated the excesses of corporate capitalism. The result is a kind of mass neurosis. Images of a ‘good’ and a ‘bad’ parent, objects of love and hatred, are formed early, internalized, and become part of the self-image of children. But rather than fusing into a super-ego that also contains social values and self-confidence, these early images often melt into a harsh, punishing super-ego.

“The decay of older traditions of self-help has eroded competence in one area after another, leaving the individual dependent on the state, corporations, and other bureaucratic structures. Narcissism is the psychological dimension of this dependence. Popular culture feeds on narcissistic fantasies, encouraging delusions of omnipotence while simultaneously reinforcing feelings of dependence and discouraging strong emotions.”

My Comment: Overdeveloped egoism is incurable. It will continue its mutations and bring us to complete cultural degeneration. The only obstacle in its path will be continuous integral education.

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Stand Guard Over Love Day And Night

Dr. Michael LaitmanRabash, Letter 24: You know what Baal HaSulam said, that from the relationship between man and man one learns how to behave in the relationship between man and the Creator. This is so because the Upper Light is in complete rest, and it is necessary to always evoke the love, “Until the love of our wedding pleases.”

That is, it is shown to you from above that you have to keep awakening the love of the Creator in this way and that you must always stand guard, all day and all night, when you feel a state of day or feel a state of night.

It follows that you must evoke the heart of the friends until the flame rises by itself. By that, you will be rewarded with awakening the love of the Creator upon us.

It is known that in analog systems, all of their parts are absolutely linked with each other, as in the human body where the life of every cell depends upon the cells around it. This cell lives solely and only thanks to the sustenance that it gets from outside.

So a person cannot live alone either. If he throws himself into a forest and wants to live like a hermit detached from the whole world, he shouldn’t complain later that he cannot satisfy all of his needs. After all, we get everything required for life from the environment.

From the Shevirat HaKelim (shattering of the vessels) we see even more clearly how much each one of us is not personally ready to attract and receive any illumination, neither from the Light that Reforms, nor from the Light of fulfillment of a person who is already corrected. For all correction is in connection with others.

After this, connection is realized and exists to a particular degree, then it is possible to speak about fulfillment. So the only thing that we require is to be concerned about connection. This is because the inclination to connect is an inclination towards the Creator who is revealed within the connection.

Everyone must awaken the heart of the friend, provide him with an example of how he can himself be awakened and can yearn for the friends. It is necessary to awaken and ignite envy in each other’s heart, an inclination towards respect, and to use all means that will influence a person so that somehow he will push him forward towards connection.

We need to see our lives as a sequence of moments that come from the Creator to show us new observations all the time by placing us into new situations where we awaken our environment. For we have no other work besides awakening our environment with the goal of discovering the Creator within our mutual connection.

Serving the Creator becomes more and more concrete and concentrated in a very limited area. So Rabash writes that “all day and all night,” meaning in both of these situations, the good feelings and the bad feelings, we must understand that the Creator is giving us an opportunity at every moment to awaken the friends to mutual connection between us.

Only according to the manner in which I awaken the environment does the environment awaken me. I have no power to connect with the friends myself and I have no desire to ask for it. I get it only to the degree that I awaken them to connection. All of our work begins from this.

I cannot turn to the Creator by myself, I cannot yearn for connection, and I cannot yearn for correction. This is possible only through my awakening the others. Certainly, we first work on this within our inner circle. But we go out to external dissemination with the goal of awakening people so that they will also begin to move towards that point of connection.

To the degree that each one of us succeeds in awakening the friends, his inner circle, and the whole world, which is the outer circle, to this degree he will himself receive a desire to connect with them and will reach a place where the Creator is revealed.
From the preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/24/14

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Spiritual Yoga

Dr. Michael LaitmanIn realizing the integral method, we distinguish two circles: The inner circle is us, people with the “point in the heart” who are managed by a Reshimo, a spiritual spark, that belongs to a connection with the Creator, and the outer circle is the main mass of humanity, the level of the nations of the world.

We have an inner struggle, all kinds of negative and positive discharges, because internally we are in constant Brownian motion, with annihilation, with all kinds of problems of spiritual growth, while among the masses, there is no growth.

They come to integral learning only because it is good for them to be in a collective like this. A person goes to work recharged in his circle. He has an excellent mood and normal pressure, and the problems with the boss and in the family are significantly reduced. It’s kind of a spiritual yoga.

Millions of people in the world practice yoga in the morning to calm their nerves, and then they go to work. Who benefits from this? Not the nation, not the person himself, and not society.

Integral circles should be a morning exercise for the general public. The whole nation will sit together in circles and look at each other with love.

We want to add even more pleasure in life to people so that they will be relaxed, will not fight with each other, and will be freed from tensions. Everything will be okay for them in the family. The closer that they come to the Light, the more orderly and flourishing their lives will become. They will have no contradictions with the Light.

Adam (man) is a yearning for the Creator, and with the general public, this level has not yet been discovered. This is because they are on the level of the beast in which there is no contradiction. There is no second line that causes a need to create a third line. So, they evolve according to another principle that is different from ours.

If we and our inner world have changed within the past twenty or thirty years, their image of the world will change within a few months because they have no inner struggle with opposites. They have no collision of two worlds, the upper and the physical. They don’t have problems like we do: struggles and scrutinies. They put themselves under the influence of the Light that is conveyed through us, and it will be good for them.

They don’t need twenty or thirty years to be changed. A month or two is enough for them. We sit, we talk, we dance, we smile at each other, and this is all. With this, they become similar to the Light, and we must bring them to this state of equivalence that exists on their level.

For a human, there is not a full, natural instinct as there is with an animal, in order to be similar to the Light that comes close to him directly as it does with a child. We need to add this, and then they will combine together with us into a single whole.

After this, Reshimot, spiritual sparks, for attaining the Creator will be discovered in them, and then a huge mass of people will appear that will summon the Upper Light, which will be immeasurably larger than what we can summon.
From the Sochi Convention 6/10/14, Lesson 2

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A Basis For Shared Connection

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: We have a huge world group, but each one in his country or in his region doesn’t know what the others are doing. There is no cooperation between the groups so that we can carry out the same thing in parallel.

Answer: It could be that this isn’t bad. A more rapid scrutiny of all kinds of different questions is happening.

It is impossible to carry out something as an order. When you feel the necessity for each other, then this will happen. But the imperative will appear only from the need to increase the spiritual intensity of your mutual cooperation. You will feel that you cannot advance forward without feeling the other groups.

Certainly it is possible to adapt to this artificially, but the feeling of a necessity must still come from within. You can begin to work together, and after that you will see.

For example, when we organized a large dissemination activity in Israel, we began to feel how much all of our groups were necessary. We began to join them to a common work and they all went out together to the same activities, each in his own region. From this we began to feel closeness. We began to think: “How can we still connect?” Then we began to organize a convention.

We dedicated an entire evening to this. We sent buses all over the country at our expense, we brought people to us. We fed them for free, both physically and spiritually. We organized workshops, joint activities, and we prepared a nice artistic program. We began to feel that we were involved with one shared enterprise and we felt ourselves as one whole.

So first of all, you must share the same work: you with yourselves and other groups with themselves. This is because in the beginning you need to create a common basis, and only after, can you send one group to another group and exchange experiences.

Question: In this connection many contradictions appeared with us regarding what love of friends is.

Answer: You don’t have any love of friends! You are now thinking about love for them because everyone says that without them you will not get what you want. But if you could get it, you would not remember them at all! We should really look at things. Therefore, it is necessary to develop mutual participation throughout.
From the Sochi Convention 6/10/14, Lesson 2

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The Angel That Kills and Revives

Dr. Michael LaitmanFrom Rabash’s Article “A Blessing Does Not Dwell in Things That Can Be Counted”: It is essential to know and believe that everything is given to us by the Creator: a vessel, desire, an aspiration to bestow, and the Light, the force that one receives to act for the sake of bestowal.

However, before anything else, one has to act. In other words, before acting, one should tell himself: “Nobody will help me except myself.” After that, one has to say: “If the Creator doesn’t build a house, all exertions of those who are building it are useless.”

The main job is to make the correct efforts, i.e., preparing one’s need of the Light that Reforms (our half-coin or the six weekdays before the completion of the work.) They are all about the ascents and descents, since only by going through ups and downs can one make clarifications.

The strength of the vessel is measured by the difference between the descents and ascents. We are obligated to do our best while being in both states: descents and ascents. We cannot run away or hide from the descents. Both these states are essential and desirable. All we can do is just try to convert descents into ascents, rather than waiting for mercy from heaven to do it for us.

If one is directed correctly, one starts shaping a vessel and builds one common desire together with one’s friends, a desire to reveal the Creator for the sake of pleasing Him, i.e., discovering that the Creator rejoices in our efforts.

We can exert in all sorts of states, during the ascents and descents and variations thereof. That’s why one should always say: “Nobody can help me except myself,” since each of the states consists of sensing and reason. Our job is clarifying both of them through our connection with others and attaining one common property, the Light that has to be revealed.

These efforts will make a basis for our next step. At each level, there is a division into “Nobody will help me except myself” and “There is none else besides Him,”  and we must try to connect both principles and make it one, as it is said: “The Angel kills and revives, and brings salvation.” Our impressions collect together, adhere to a particular step, and in the end, salvation comes.

Every single time we decipher the same words and properties at a higher level with a deeper understanding. This process makes our explanation of the words “salvation,” “kill,” and “revive” more internal. All these concepts climb the spiritual ladder and go from the state of receiving to the level of bestowal.

With the help of downfalls that are called “death in the work” and recoveries that are called “ascents,” we cultivate our future salvation, i.e., we approach perfection.
From the Preparation for the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/3/14

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From The Other World To Reality

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Does studying Kabbalah seriously interfere with a person’s religious beliefs?

Answer: If a person is religious, Kabbalah does not prevent him from keeping his habits, traditional customs and the culture of his people. But he can no longer blindly believe in the other world that contains the reward of heaven and the punishment of hell, since Kabbalah will show him how to reveal the Creator in this life. One contradicts the other.

He gradually stops waiting for the reward that awaits him somewhere after death in another world. With difficulty, this image disappears and all his expectations shift to the present and revelation in the here and now! The entire focus shifts from the other world to this world and to this life.

In this way, his attitude gradually changes towards the “future world” and the Creator as the reality that he approaches and plans on revealing in this life. This is his goal, his purpose in life, and why he lives and carries out the advice of the Kabbalists.

For this reason, it becomes difficult for a person to remain in his previous religious environment, because he feels that he no longer relates to it in spirit. Those people still believe in reward after death and all their actions are determined by this. They even view reward in this life differently, which is why he feels different from them, and differences create distance.

But this does not lead to some kind of depreciation of religion, because this form eventually must bring the whole of mankind to Kabbalah and the actual attainment of the Creator and the Light. Kabbalists respect every faith. Religion was founded by Abraham, and will exist for as long as people need it and until they become ready to attain the Creator.

As they ripen, they will go from religion towards actual revelation, gradually changing their goal. We are forbidden to rush this process of development and can only show the possibilities that mankind has before it.

And of course, the first people to come to Kabbalah will be the nonreligious people, because they feel a greater lack of satisfaction than the religious people. A secular person thinks that he controls his life, and suddenly it is revealed that he does not have any freedom. This humiliates him and forces him to either forget or turn to Kabbalah.

Meanwhile, a religious person still thinks that he has a Creator who will take care of him, and for this reason, he will close his eyes to everything he can, and become an even bigger fanatic in order to protect himself from doubts and emptiness.

He will hate Kabbalah even more for opening his eyes to the fact that there is only one goal – the revelation of the Creator. But he is still better protected from shocks until this lack of satisfaction comes to him from nature, the Creator, and will speak within him. Then he will submit to Kabbalah.
Excerpt from the lesson “Body and Soul,” 11/30/2010

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