Audio Version Of The Blog – 02.20.15
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In the News (from SvobodnayPressa): I saw a program about how humanity drastically changed in the 60’s as advanced technology forced many countries to develop computers in order to run the state.
With the growing affluence these states focused their energy on entrainment that led to the growth of a mass consumption society that kept the economic prosperity growing. Thus the developed countries began to produce more than was actually needed and eventually encountered a crisis in over production and in leisure time: there was a need to keep people occupied somehow.
The USSR collapsed since it didn’t manage to cope with people’s need to develop and to keep them occupied. The West found the answer in the form of entertainment and recreation (mass tourism, social networks, etc.) since a person has to be kept occupied by different experiences and impressions that alternate very quickly.
The ideas of the French writer Jules Verne about advanced technology didn’t come true: instead of settlements on Mars and free energy man received diet Coke and the Internet. Technology has developed in a new direction, in the direction of social relations. Not only didn’t we reach Mars, but perhaps we have never reached the moon either…
The West has learnt the importance of managing society. Computer technology and entertainment were integrated into social management technologies. Social technologies allowed people to establish their personalities in different scientific ways. Neither the Pentagon nor Silicon Valley are the ones who destroyed the USSR, but rather the Beatles who presented an attractive picture of the West and forced the young people in the USSR to hate their country.
My Comment: The idea is true, but it isn’t fully understood and perceived yet: Instead of searching for new technologies in order to change man and his society, the technology of man’s correction by the Upper Light will come along. Humanity is already feeling its way trying to see where it can put its foot in order to make the right step forward…
A Progress Trap
Noam Chomsky: “10 Strategies Of Manipulation” By The Media
The Movement Towards Integration
The High Priest is the highest point, the highest intention through which a person communicates with the Creator. In our world, he was chosen by the great assembly.
The hierarchical division of the people of Israel began from the time of Moses. After he received the Torah and brought the people into the wilderness, his father-in-law Jethro taught him how to correctly organize the hierarchy of the people.
Before then people always were in a circle, gathered around Mount Sinai and feeling that they were equals. In the Exodus from Egypt, they needed to work in three lines, correctly integrating their egoistic desires, arranged according to a hierarchy with an altruistic intent that had to be circular. This was because even though it was directed toward the Creator, it was derived from the center of the circle. How was it possible to integrate these two things? For this, Jethro gave Moses a method for correctly handling the people.
People must yearn to become round in their intention but not in their mutual compliance with movements toward the Creator. The equality can be only in intent because from the start the desires are not ours. They are given to each one of us from above.
Jethro suggested dividing the people into tens, hundreds, thousands, and so forth. Each of the twelve tribes went to its camp. All kinds of unifications and connections between them were prohibited. For example, it was not allowed for them to marry others from another tribe. Each tribe had to keep to itself, but simultaneously, they had to advance together.
The correct combination between individuals and a single unity was revealed through choosing ministers for tens, hundreds, and thousands, while the High Priest was chosen from the tribe of Levi, which was composed of Levites and Cohens only.
In this way Jethro established and arranged hierarchical work with the ego because he had been a servant of Pharaoh. However, because he precisely knew the entire system of Pharaoh he could be an intermediary between Pharaoh and Moses.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 5/21/14
Following Wise Jethro’s Advice
But, Every Small Matter, They Shall Judge Themselves
Question: Where are we today? The people of Israel left Egypt, received the Torah on Mount Sinai, understood that they had some kind of task, a mission, and what was next? What kind of task has been placed before us today?
Answer: Our actual task today is to develop the people of Israel in the land of Israel so that they will know what they must do to sustain themselves and continue to exist.
When our people will ensure their existence, they must explain why they exist, for what higher purpose. Only if we carry out this higher purpose and yearn to bring all of humanity to adhesion with the Creator do we merit being connected with Him.
This knowledge must reach the people, and we will attract the Light that must illuminate us when we go to meet it through our yearning to connect and provide an example for the entire world. However, if we don’t connect, then that same Light will illuminate us through its backside.
If we are not ready to approach this Light, it will be revealed to us in an opposite way, and as a result, we will experience terrible misfortune such as wars, disasters and another holocaust like we passed through 70 years ago.
We see from day to day how the world situation is developing and becoming worse. Everyone in the world is beginning to talk about anti-Semitism as if it were a normal phenomenon. No one is ashamed anymore, and no one considers it to be bad. England, Scandinavia, and Spain, essentially all of them, are recognized as being openly anti-Semitic, as if it were self-evident.
In fact, they are right, after all, we have not transmitted the method of correction to the world. We have not carried out our obligation.
Comment: The problem is that not everyone believes that this is really our obligation, our function.
Answer: It is necessary to listen to what the sages, the Kabbalists, say. We have no other choice. We will never attain the truth as long as we have not corrected ourselves and have not attained revelation. So we cannot sit and wait until the truth becomes known to us. It will never be known to us if we don’t advance toward it.
We welcome everyone in this world to connection and a simple unity. We are not required to wait until the heavens open and we see the spiritual world. Sit in a circle with others and in 20 to 30 minutes you will see how you begin to feel this higher power. In the center of this circle, in the center of our connection, we feel the origin of a unique force.
This is possible and this must be done quickly among all of the people of Israel! The problem is that it is not for nothing that these people are called “stiff-necked.” In spite of it all, you must not despair, for the people of Israel in relation to the entire world are like the Cohens and Levites among the people of Israel.
Although we are not ready to be Cohens and Levites, the people of Israel who yearn to be Yashar El (straight to the Creator), will be required to become them, since the world will require this from us.
The moment that we begin to seriously realize this task together, and the moment we begin to carry out this unification of the people of Israel, the entire world will settle down. Everyone will look at us and say, “See what they are doing! We will wait. They have initiated something special.”
The nations of the world will feel this because within them are the roots of the shattering due to the sin of Adam HaRishon with the tree of knowledge, and if Israel begins to correct this sin, then the nations of the world will feel this, “Oh, they are making this correction! We didn’t even know that it was possible to correct this at all and come closer, whereas the Jews are doing it!”
The nations of the world will immediately change their attitude towards us. We will begin the correction and it will be known immediately to the entire world. We don’t even need to advertise anything about it. Not long ago, I published a large article in the largest American newspaper, The New York Times and, after that in the English newspaper The Telegraph and in the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera. However, in the future, there won’t be a need to advertise anything. The nations of the world will write about it themselves because they will feel it themselves.
However, if we don’t bring them this correction and don’t carry out our task, the anti-Semitism, which we are now witnessing, will continue to grow. So, come. Let’s cross the wilderness quickly and reach the land of Israel.
From KabTV’s “The Torah Chapters with Shmuel Vilozni” 2/2/15
Gathering In The Land Of Israel
The Secret Plan Of The Jewish People
Time To Justify What Was Received In Advance
Question: If we want to talk with the wider public about the subject of the family, from what is it preferable to begin the conversation in the introductory lecture?
Answer: It is absolutely preferable to begin the conversation with an explanation about the nature of men and the nature of women, for this provides a certain foundation. But it is worthwhile to open the explanation about their nature from a distance. This is a very serious topic.
First of all, one must explain that a family is not built on love, but on mutual respect, completion of each other, friendship, and mutual help, yearning to understand the other, and the main and most important thing upon which the family is built is mutual concession.
A true connection between a man and a woman is built on mutual concession. In no way or manner do we correct the partner; we don’t try to talk about his faults; rather, we accept him as he is and try to become someone who completes him.
A person is an egoistic entity who is directed towards self-benefit within himself. When someone else is next to him and he cannot exploit him at every moment for his own benefit, it is as if he accumulates electrical charges and then sparks begin to “fly” between them, for the other is also an egoist.
Can we exist together in peace in a situation like this? For a particular period, when love dazzles us, we are full of happiness and ready for anything. Yet when this passes and the veil of love falls from our eyes, I notice that I am living next to an egoist like me, even though I thought that everything would be for me and for my sake and things would be good and pleasant with my other half. Yet suddenly everything is the opposite. So it is necessary to arrange everything differently, not under the influence of the insanity of love that stupefies us, but with the sanity of knowledge.
How can we co-exist peacefully? So gradually we bring people to begin to discuss the complicated relationship between them neutrally, discussing them only as physiology.
They must not look at a particular family, but generally clarify what a family is, what a human being is, and this will take them away from themselves, will take them outside, since if there is a problem like this for everyone, they are talking about a general problem. They lower the internal tension between them and move to philosophy, where they talk generally and discover the nature of a man and woman.
They are similar in some ways and different in some ways. They are similar in that they are both egoists, and they are different in that the ego is expressed in a different way in each of them according to each of their hormonal and psychological systems.
After that we can go on to the next problem, the problem of marriage. Marriage is a covenant; it is a complementary covenant: I need her and she needs me.
When we understand this, it will be clear to us that the essence of our nature is reception: I always want to receive from the partner. That is how we begin to teach people the fundamentals of the wisdom of Kabbalah.
There is no provocation here! I want clean clothes, dinner to be ready, a tidy dwelling. And my partner wants to see a man in the house, a husband, and a father with everything that is involved with that. Is it possible to satisfy the demands of the partner? Do we want to do that?
Since in general both of us are working, we have children, particular obligations after work (the bank, shopping, and so forth), is it objectively possible to demand from our partner the fulfillment of all of our demands?
If we see the list of mutual demands, then we understand that, in fact, we never knew each other. I didn’t understand what she wanted from me; after all, this is not my nature. She never told me anything; rather, she expected that I would guess it by myself.
That is how we show people that the problem in a family is that we are egoists—each one of us sits and waits for the other to fulfill him, even when he doesn’t say anything to him about this. So he is constantly hurt in anticipation of when his partner will finally understand him.
This way is completely wrong. Let’s not begin from approaching each other from a distance according to the list of demands: I concede – she concedes, I do something for her – she does something for me. Even if we see each other’s lists, we cannot hold onto them.
Let’s do this more simply: We begin to concede and to please each other, we transform into friends who help each other. I think about what to do for her, she thinks about what to do for me; we begin to play a game called, “the method of mutual concessions.” This is a game, but we enter it. Each one thinks about how to give to the partner what he would now want to get from me.
If we communicate in a format like this, then we begin to educate and to internalize within us this habit of mutual connection, and as a result of this something called “mutual love” is created between us. This is not the same love where we kissed by starlight, but love that appears on a basis of mutual concessions. We build it in ourselves and then we create something shared, not “he” and “she,” but something called a “family” or a “couple.”
The main thing here is to show the partner that even though I am boiling with anger and disagreement with him, I make an effort to turn to him calmly, as if nothing happened.
The concessions are carried out through rising above my ego. And I don’t hide this in order to teach the other, to provide him with an example. And if one of the partners is not ready to rise above himself, the other must help him.
The person must transform into someone who includes within him at least two images. One image is that at the present time I am hating my other half. Yet on the other hand, in spite of that, I relate to her correctly, well, nicely, and then she sees that I am rising above myself.
We must play with this. We have no other choice for saving the family. The ego has grown. If not now, then in a few more years people will not be able to live with each other. They must enter into this image and experience it so that an impression from it will remain in them.
After that we give them homework: until tomorrow don’t say a bad word to the other, rather smile and get pleasure from the inner ascent and the struggle with oneself.
After all they get pleasure, first of all from subduing themselves; and second, through this they connect with others, which gives them additional pleasure that they didn’t experience before. In other words, they get a spiritual component here.
A family is a mass that is created following mutual concessions, and as a result of them they produce a connection that is called “love.” Love is created only when we understand how it is up to us to complete each other and try to do that.
What does “And you shall love your friend as yourself” mean? I take her desires and try to fulfill them. She takes my desires and tries to fulfill me.
But we don’t talk to them about this; rather, we simply bring them to mutual concessions, to actions according to the wisdom of Kabbalah in the framework of the family.
Gradually our former nature disappears somewhere inside and on it is built a layer of a new mutual relationship with each other, which becomes our common achievement, a possession, a family treasure. After that, from it love is born. This is called true love: “And you shall love your friend as yourself.”
From A Talk on “Family” 5/28/14
Concessions Are A Sign Of Strength Not Weakness
A New Era Of Family Relations
A Strong Connection On The Basis Of A Double Ego
Baal HaSulam, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)”`: With this collective responsibility, each member of the nation was liberated from worrying about the needs of his own body and could keep the Mitzva, “Love thy friend as thyself” in the fullest measure, and give all that he had to any needy person, since he no longer cared for the existence of his own body, as he knew for certain that he was surrounded by six hundred thousand loyal lovers, who were standing ready to provide for him.”
I will succeed in attaining mutual guarantee on condition that I will feel personal security. This security comes from the environment that shows me that it is concerned about me so much that it neutralizes in me any need to think about assuring my existence. So I depend upon the environment. The main thing is to find an environment that will influence me with the power of mutual guarantee, for through this they neutralize my ego and force me to forget about myself and to love others.
This means everything is found in the hands of the society that can transform me into a lover of all people, only if I want it. It is possible to take the most cruel and unruly person, and if all of us surround him with mutual guarantee, he will be forced to reach love of others.
A person depends on the environment one hundred percent. But his work is to obligate the environment to influence him with the help of the power of mutual guarantee. To the degree that he does this, to that degree he becomes sensitive to receiving the power of mutual guarantee from others and in that way he reaches love of others.
But this is a closed circle. Even the best environment will not be able to convey the power of mutual guarantee to a person if he has no sensitivity. We recognize in ourselves how much we are insensitive to external influences. In childhood our parents tried hard to influence us, but we discounted them. So from his side, a person must influence the society, and to the degree that he does this, he becomes more and more sensitive to the influence of the society.
The influence must be mutual. We cannot take ordinary people and surround them with the power of our mutual guarantee because they will become even greater egoists. We must educate them so that they will understand that this works only like this: Me– towards the society, and the society – towards me. But if the group influences me and brings me the power of mutual guarantee, then it changes me and directs me towards love of others.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/28/14, Writings of Baal HaSulam
Friends Who Will Never Disappoint You
The Wonderful Attribute Of Mutual Guarantee
The Best – For The Friends
Like A Bundle of Reeds, Why Unity and Mutual Guarantee Are Today’s Call of the Hour, Michael Laitman, Ph.D.
Chapter 1: A Nation Is Born
The Birth of the People of Israel
UNITY—AND THEREBY, EQUALITY
Today, our only hope is to unite, because unity, as we will see below, is the direction of the force that drives all of life. Our challenge, therefore, is to learn how to unite. It is possible and plausible, but in a time of crisis, it will require recognizing life’s force and generating a mutual effort to cooperate and collaborate so we can live by this law’s dictates.
It should be noted, however, that unity does not require parity or similarity. Rather, it requires disparity, over which to unite. Today, for example, there are quite a few denominations within the Jewish religion, as well as unaffiliated Jews. Jewish unity would mean that without changing our customs, without converging into a single denomination, we would unite and learn to appreciate, and eventually truly care for one another.
If that may seem impossible, consider a family with several children. In a normative family, each child has his or her unique character. More often than not, those characters clash, as our memories of our childhood quarrels with our kin testify. We often think of our brothers and sisters in such terms as, “If he/she weren’t my brother/sister, I would never want to be around him/her.” But just that fact that we are together with our very different kin proves that when there is love, we can unite above the differences.
This is precisely what we need to do—unite above our differences. In that way we will intensely feel both our diverse, often opposite qualities, and the unity that rides above them. When that happens, we will be able to use our differences to the best, as each of us contributes perspectives, ideas, and modes of action that no one else can, thus forming a stronger whole. Just as our bodies need the different organs to work together to keep us healthy, we need to remain different, and unite above the differences for a common goal of realizing the role of the Jewish people—to bring the light of unity to the nations.
Following Abraham’s departure from Babylon, returning to our previous topic, the city continued to cultivate self-centered abandon. And while there is nothing wrong with pleasure and enjoyment, when it is utterly self-centered, it is eventually self-defeating. The real purpose of life, Abraham found, is to become similar to life’s singular force, to experience oneness and unity with all. Our sages call that unity and oneness, Dvekut [adhesion], and what they mean by that word is that we should eventually acquire the Creator’s qualities and become similar, or even equal to Him.
To quote the words of Rabbi Meir Ben Gabai, “On the part of the Dvekut [adhesion] with the forces of the Great Name and His qualities, you cleave unto the Lord your God, for He is His name, and His name is Him, for you are related and similar to Him, and Dvekut with Him is the real life.”[i] Likewise, the Holy Shlah wrote in Toldot Adam [The Generations of Man], “Our sages said (Sotah 14a), ‘And you who cleave unto the Lord,’ cleave unto His qualities, and then he is called Adam [man], as in, adameh la Elyon [I will be like the most high].”[ii]
In the 20th century, Baal HaSulam elaborated extensively on the term, Dvekut, defining it as “equivalence of form,” meaning acquiring the “form” (qualities) of the Creator. In his “Introduction to the Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” he wrote, “Thus, [the soul] will be fit to receive all the abundance and pleasure included in the Thought of Creation, and will also be in complete Dvekut (adhesion) with Him, in equivalence of form.[iii]
In the “Introduction to the Book of Zohar,” Baal HaSulam adds, “Thus, one buys complete adhesion with Him, for spiritual adhesion is but equivalence of form, as our sages said, ‘How is it possible to cleave unto Him? Rather, cleave on to His qualities.’”[iv]
In time, as mentioned above, Abraham’s group grew into a nation, and the need for a new method of unity arose. Abraham’s teachings held as long as everyone in Israel could be taught. But by the time the people of Israel went out of Egypt, they numbered 600,000 men and some three million people altogether. It was impossible to teach all of them in the same manner that one learns from a teacher.
The solution was found at the foot of Mount Sinai. There, at that pivotal point in the history of our people, the most fundamental tenet of our Torah was given, and is given still today, each day and each moment. That tenet, as Rabbi Akiva put it, is “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
At the foot of Mount Sinai, explains the great scholar and interpreter, RASHI, we received the Torah, the laws by which we are to unite, because there we agreed wholeheartedly to do so. In his words, “‘And Israel encamped there’—as one man with one heart.”[v] From that moment on, unity has been the prime asset of the Jewish people, the means by which we attain the Creator, acquire His qualities, and obtain Dvekut, equivalence of form (qualities) with Him.
Midrash Tanah De Bei Eliyahu writes, “The Lord said to them, to Israel: ‘My sons, have I lacked anything that I should ask of you? And what do I ask of you? Only that you will love one another, respect one another, and fear one another, and that there will be no transgression, theft, and ugliness among you.’”[vi]
In time, unity became so crucial as to supersede any other commandment in terms of its importance. It became the one and only key to Israel’s spiritual redemption and salvation from its enemies. Midrash Tanhuma writes, “If a person takes a bundle of reeds, he cannot break them all at once. But if he takes one at a time, even an infant breaks them. Likewise, Israel will not be redeemed until they are all one bundle.”[vii]
In the same spirit, Masechet Derech Eretz Zutah writes, “Thus would Rabbi Eleazar ha-Kappar say, ‘Love peace, and loathe division. Great is the peace, for even when Israel practice idol-worship and there is peace among them, the Creator says, ‘I wish not to touch [harm] them,’ as it is written (Hosea, 4:17), ‘Ephraim is joined to idols; let him alone.’ If there is division among them, what is it said about them (Hos, 10:2)? ‘Their heart is divided, now they will bear their guilt.’’”[viii]
And yet, for all that has just been said about the importance of unity, when we look around us it is evident that the majority of people neither wish to unite, nor find any benefit in unity, certainly not with their neighbors, as the tenet dictates. To understand how such a tenet became so paramount to the existence of our people, and now to the entire world, we need to examine the evolution of reality from a different viewpoint than the one science usually takes. We need to look at reality as an evolution of desires. When we view reality as such, the reasoning behind the preeminence of the desire to unite, and the consequent acquisition of the quality of the Creator, will become crystal clear. Therefore, the evolution of desires will be the topic of the next chapter.
[i] Rabbi Meir Ben Gabai, Avodat HaKodesh [The Holy Work], Part 2, Chapter 16.
[ii] Rabbi Isaiah HaLevi Horowitz (The Holy Shlah), Toldot Adam [The Generations of Man], “The House of David,” 7.
[iii] Rav Yehuda Leib HaLevi Ashlag (Baal HaSulam), The Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah” (Ashlag Research Institute, Israel, 2009), 155.
[iv] Rav Yehuda Leib HaLevi Ashlag (Baal HaSulam), The Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Book of Zohar” (Ashlag Research Institute, Israel, 2009), 432.
[v] Rabbi Shlomo Ben Yitzhak (RASHI), The RASHI Interpretation on the Torah, “On Exodus,” 19:2.
[vi] Midrash Tanah De Bei Eliyahu Rabah, Chapter 28.
[vii] Midrash Tanhuma, Nitzavim, Chapter 1
[viii] Ithak Eliyahu Landau, Rabbi Shmuel Landau, Masechet Derech Eretz Zutah, Chapter 9, items 28-29 (Vilna: Printer: Rabbi Hillel, 1872), 57-58.
Like A Bundle Of Reeds—A Nation Is Born, Part 2
Like A Bundle Of Reeds—A Nation Is Born, Part 1
Lesson on the Topic: “Preparation for the Congress”
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Writings of Rabash, “Steps of the Ladder,” Item 21
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Writings of Rabash, “Steps of the Ladder,” Item 29
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The Book of Zohar, Selected Excerpts — “Spiritual Attainment,” Item 155
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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Preface to the Sulam Commentary,” “Rosh-Toch-Sof, Peh Tabur, Sium“
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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to The Book of Zohar“
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