Audio Version Of The Blog – 07.15.16

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The Jerusalem Post: “Beyond Black And White In America”

My article recently published in the Jerusalem Post and Ynet.

Civilians Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota; Dallas police officers Michael Smith, Lorne Ahrens, Michael Krol, Patrick Zamarripa, and Brent Thompson; civilian Delrawn Small in Brooklyn, New York; Michigan courthouse bailiffs Joseph Zangaro and Ron Kienzle have all died this week (at the time of writing this column) in encounters between law enforcement and civilians. Many more have been wounded. Is it not time for a social Marshall Plan to heal the American society?

“We’re hurting… we are heartbroken,” said David Brown, Dallas Chief of Police “All I know is that this must stop, this divisiveness between our police and our citizens.” Brown, who has become the “face” of the tragedy of the clash between law enforcement and civilians in America, knows what he is saying. He has lost his only son, brother, and partner to violent incidents involving police officers and civilians.

In many ways, Brown’s pain stricken face reflects what many Americans feel these days. Since the beginning of the year, 509 people have been killed by police. The American society is growing increasingly violent, and mounting racial tensions, primarily between African-Americans and law enforcement personnel, have reflected that trend with painful clarity.

An Interracial Volcano

Fifty-two years ago this month, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act, and stated that “those who are equal before God shall now also be equal in the polling booths, in the classrooms, in the factories, and in hotels, restaurants, movie theaters, and other places that provide service to the public.” And yet, the racial tensions never fully healed, and today have resurfaced with new ferocity.

Officially, all people—of all races, religions or sexes—are equal in the eyes of the US government. There is even an African-American president. But if you venture away from where tour guides would normally take you, you will discover a different America. Poverty, crime and drug abuse can be seen in broad daylight, and gang wars are routine. In these “hoods,” a sense of insecurity and oblivion take over. This can hardly be the equality that Lyndon Johnson had envisioned when he signed the Civil Rights Act into law.

And yet, the sense of discrimination and injustice within the African-American communities expresses a much deeper process than the government’s attitude toward people based on the color of their skin. All over the world, people are becoming increasingly isolated and self-centered, to the point that today the majority of the population shows at least several symptoms of pathological narcissism. This trend is separating people and communities, and causes hatred and sectarianism. In recent years, intensifying clannishness has erupted and its violent gushes claim ever more victims who fall prey to hatred. If we do not reverse this trend, it can easily result in the outbreak of some form of civil war. America already tasted civil war on the grounds of civil rights for blacks; it should be wise enough to avoid another such trauma.

Nature vs. Nurture

Numerous indicators point to the fact that the self-centeredness rooted in human nature has become too intense and uninhibited to contain. Racism and anti-Semitism are on the rise, social inequality is increasing, economic gaps are widening, and violence and terrorism are spreading throughout the world. Man’s inclination, which is evidently “evil from his youth,” is quickly destroying the foundations of human society.

The solution to this crisis lies not in waiting for the government to sign more laws, but in tapping into the forces that create our evil tendencies toward each other, and changing them at the core. If we look at our education system we will find that it is geared toward unabashed competition. It indoctrinates us into the “survival of the fittest” mindset. But nature does not work this way. Since all parts of nature are dependent on each other for their sustenance, unrestrained competitiveness is, by default, an unsustainable approach.

In nature, the emphasis is on harmony; in humans, the emphasis is on hegemony. If hegemony wins, all of us will lose.

Just as there is a force that separates us from each other, there is a force that connects all parts of nature, including humans. The goal of education should therefore be to introduce the connecting force into the human society. If the separating and connecting forces can exist harmoniously within humanity, we will find peace in our lives. And since our ill-will toward each other is already rooted within us, we need to focus on nurturing the force of connection.

There are many ways to go about introducing this force into the human society, but the key element in building positive connections over our alienation is simply the efforts that we make toward it. In a way, we need to introduce a sort of “positive discrimination.”

Just like violence induces violence, kindness induces kindness. Positive actions invoke the positive force that already exists within us and stir it into action. And just as the separating force makes us see the world as hostile and fragmented, if we activate the connecting force, we will see the world as amiable and connected.

If these words seem unrealistic or naïve, it shows how compelled we are to see the world through our own ill-will.

All the More Reason to Hurry

In 2008, African-Americans had high hopes that the first black president would make things better for them. He didn’t. He couldn’t have. A government can make laws and attempt to enforce them, but it cannot change human nature. This is why the solution to all forms of racism is education and not tougher law enforcement, especially when eradicating racism is not among its goals.

Since the Obama administration came into office, and especially during its second term, the President has engaged extensively in admitting immigrants from North Africa and the Middle East into the US. Unlike African American communities, which are predominantly Christian, the new arrivals are by and large devout Muslims who have no wish to Americanize their way of life and values, which they consider an abomination. Without an intention to assimilate, it will be impossible to integrate them into the local society. In all likelihood, the Muslim migration into the US will ignite even worse religion-based conflicts than we have already seen.

Therefore, alongside the three branches of government—legislative, judicial, and executive—there needs to be a fourth entity, whose purpose is to establish a sound social basis for mutual connection. Such a system should incorporate educators and facilitators of all religions, denominations, cultures and races, who will help facilitate a multicultural society whose highest value is unity above differences.

Even a short-term educational campaign to increase people’s awareness of our inherent connectedness will help us see that we must learn to unite. This effort will invoke our sense of connectedness and will help us see the world through connected eyes, rather than our current, self-absorbed perspective.

The battle against racism is raging everywhere. We have not yet lost, but we have got to act fast, and with resolve, before the rifts grow too deep and wide to bridge.
From The Jerusalem Post – Israel News 7/11/16

Purposeful Movement

laitman_558Question: I saved money in a bank for 20 years, but due to unforeseen circumstances, I lost everything. Does this have spiritual significance?

Answer: There is a meaning to everything. Everything that happens in the world is done according to a higher calculation, “There is none else beside Him” (Deuteronomy 4:35).

More than that, this calculation is not carried out by a God in the form of an old man sitting above and calculating on paper who deserves what. Rather everything is done and actualized within the general network through which we are linked.

We are all in a universal ego and our common connection within it determines the personal fate of each one of us. So the more that we push the world toward the right mutual relationships, we assure ourselves a correct, secure, and comfortable progression toward the revelation of good, the realization of the true goal of life.
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 3/27/16

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Who Achieves Spiritual Attainment?

laitman_938_04Question: Have any of your students reached a level of spiritual attainment? If you cannot speak about this, how could this knowledge harm us or them?

Answer: You don’t need to know anyone who has achieved spiritual attainment; it is simply up to you to learn from those people who are working in the framework of our group; they are destined to raise you to the level of spiritual attainment.

When you enter into that system, the higher dimension, you can also see everyone else. Then you will know who is there and on which levels.
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 3/20/16

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Man And Woman — A Magnet Between Them, Part 2

Laitman_511_01Question: What determines a person’s desires? Different men like different women, and different women like different men. Why does it happen this way?

Answer: It is less apparent in animals because they feel exactly what is the most suitable for them. A male chooses the healthiest female capable of giving birth to healthy offspring. And females also choose a mate on the same basis: the strongest and the healthiest that can produce healthy cubs and protect the family.

Actually, people unconsciously are guided by the same principles. And although it seems to us that this isn’t so and we hide behind nice words, but our attraction to each other is mostly due to just that.

And since there are all four levels in every creature: still, vegetative, animate, and human, all people are divided into four types according to their character: sanguine, phlegmatic, choleric, and melancholic. It also influences the choice of a partner.

In human society, this choice is affected by many factors: education, habits, and belonging to a specific nation and culture. And therefore the natural, indigenous desire of a person is greatly disguised. If we strip off all external influences, each one will choose a woman that his body requires who is also suitable to him in character.

A suitable partner is someone who completes me. That is, I would feel that I would be fine with her. After all, we are going to live together for a long time, unlike animals that meet only for a short time in order to produce offspring.

A man and a woman create a family in order to spend a life together, which includes everything: education, culture, work, creating a home, and raising children and grandchildren. It binds us in such forms of connection that we don’t select a partner according to the inner call of nature and according to natural instincts.

We follow the generally accepted opinions, standards, and fashions that varies in each generation. Throughout human history, it was believed that an attractive woman should have a full figure and be short in stature. And today, on the contrary, everybody likes tall thin ones. These are external qualities, but the internal requirements for a woman have changed too.

In the old days, a woman was only required to be able to do housework, to cook, clean, take care of children, and bear children. And today, her education, profession, cultural and educational level, social status, and the ability to integrate into society are important. These requirements have changed dramatically over the past century.

And they are not natural because although we are all different, we are measured with the same criteria. Therefore it works differently for each one, depending how close or how far they are from it. Each person is rich internally and has his own taste, unique opinion and views on everything. And we are driven into a very narrow frame and converted into a homogeneous mass.

In every class at school out of 15 girls five are valued and the rest are viewed as second-class citizens because they don’t conform to the standards and fashion. However, this never happened before.

There were no such stringent standards, and each one was measuring to his liking according to his heart. Some liked fuller-figured women, some liked thin ones, some liked tall ones, and some liked short ones, according to the internal program of each one. Also, a man likes a woman that reminds him of his mother, meaning is similar to her.

But today society is so tied to the generally accepted standards that it doesn’t allow a person to realize his inner, natural aspiration correctly. And this is the basis of all problems of our society because people meet, get married, have children, and then realize that they one they chose is not one that suits their inner desire. We act according to the models imposed on us by society and therefore we are unhappy.
From KabTV’s “A New Life” 4/5/16

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What Is A Person Responsible For?

Laitman_049_01Question: Why is a person responsible for approaching the Creator if he is basically not responsible for anything?

Answer: A person is not responsible for anything except adhesion with the Creator since he was created for this. Therefore, all of his actions in this world to which he doesn’t respond by attempting to get closer to the Creator are useless and aimed completely in the opposite direction from the goal of creation.

That is how he makes his situation worse. About this it is said: “To sit and do nothing is preferable.”
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 3/20/16

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Jews In The Diaspora

laitman_430Question: There are many more Jews in the Diaspora than in Israel. What is the role of the Jews in these countries? How much and through what can they influence the development of the state taking into account the mission and role of the Jewish people?

Answer: This depends only on Jewish education, not the usual and traditional education, but Integral Education, which is to merge with each other, and to show Israel and the world the methodology of unity it needs. It is written in the Torah: As it is written in the Torah: “For they shall all know Me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them” (Jeremiah 31:33).

Question: In the past, in many nations, especially in Europe, America, and the Soviet Union, the Jews were assimilated and renounced their Judaism, they intentionally forgot it, etc. What is the harm and benefit of the assimilation of the Jews in the various nations?

Answer: Of course, this happened according to the laws of nature. To the degree that we are separate from each other, we assimilate, and when we assimilate, we bring part of our spiritual foundation to other societies, to other people. In the future it will be revealed how Jewish spiritual foundations spread among the peoples. In addition, it is impossible to forget that we also lost the ten tribes who blended in with other people 2,500 years ago.

Comment: It is possible to divide the Jews who live in the Diaspora into several categories: those in whom Judaism has been internally awakened in them, meaning a yearning to attain the meaning of life, those who are interested in where they came from but define themselves as Russians or Americans and the likeaccording to their cultural affiliation, and those who deny the fact that they are Jews and don’t even think about it.

Answer: Actually, a person defines himself as a Jew either according to his spiritual affinity, or only according to nationality, or he believes that according to where he is living and his cultural affiliation he is Russian, American, and so on. This is natural, he can easily blend in among the other peoples, and they won’t even force him to come out as a Jew, so we cannot determine who is a Jew and in what category he belongs.

The Jewish people are not a people in the direct sense of the word “people.” They were not created on a genetic basis like the rest of the nations. Instead they were founded by the gathering of completely separate and different people living in ancient Babylon. Abraham is the one who gathered them and he began to consolidate them into a single group above all differences, according to the principle: “love covereth all transgressions” (Proverbs 10:12). Under this slogan, Abraham wanted to gather all the inhabitants of Babylon. Because the same situation exists in modern civilization as was in ancient Babylon, we need to reach a state of love above all differences in any case.
From KabTV’s “A Talk About the Independence Day” 4/30/16

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New Life 498 – How Do We Fight Islamic Terrorism?

New Life 498 – How Should We Fight The Islamic Terror?
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Yael Leshed-Harel

A wave of Islamic terror is washing Europe, shocking the world and hurting practically everyone: Muslims, Jews, and Christians. Europe is unsettled; there is a feeling that the ground is shaking and there is a terrible sense of instability and insecurity. Why is this happening and will it advance the world to a new place?

The current terror wave in Europe leaves no room for doubt, the world is advancing toward a new state of living under a growing existential threat. But if we try to understand its essence, we will discover that terrorism has a very simple goal, to rule. Once it is accepted, things quiet down and become tranquil and secure, and if it isn’t accepted, life becomes unbearable.

The Time of Islam

If we look at history, each of the three major religions had its era of flowering, prosperity, and success and then a gradual decline: initially with Judaism, then Christianity, and today Islam. Just as Christianity wanted to conquer the world in the past, so does Islam want to do today.

Until the State of Israel was founded, the Muslim part of the world was asleep for centuries. And just as the Jewish people began to resettle the land of Israel, around it, the Islamic center was developing and the Islamic awakening spread like wildfire sweeping the Muslim countries all over the world. The reason for this is that by existing and building our state, our nation, and due to the fact that we are supposed get closer to the correction of the world according to our method, the wisdom of Kabbalah, we spur a great resistance, both religious and non-religious, that is aimed primarily against Israel.

After the first uprising against Israel and the Jews, the Islamic aggression turned against the western world as we see today. According to the plan of correction, as a result of this war, both the Muslims and the Christians will feel that the reason for the conflict and for all their troubles and problems are the Jewish people, and then they will unite and begin to act together against us so that eventually their accusing finger will be pointed at us; we will always be guilty.

The Jews Are Both the Problem and the Solution

We do not have to engage with the Islamic problem; we only need to manage ourselves since the problems begin and end with us, or to be precise, with the connection between us. At the moment there is nothing we can do about it, but as soon as we begin to connect, the uniting force, the good, will spread all over the world and will give humanity a clear feeling of what is good, what is bad, and what kind of society we have to build. They will begin to see and realize that it is actually the connection between all of mankind that leads to global happiness and prosperity.

The whole world suffers because the Jews don’t set an example for the world as to how we should behave, how we should connect, and how we can reach a state of balance with the world. But if the Jewish people feel obliged to connect, to be as one man in one heart, the Light will flow through us to the whole world. In a couple of years all of humanity will understand that and will unite forces and turn to Israel, either in a nice and pleasant way or in a very bad way.
From KabTV’s “New Life 498 – How Should We Fight The Islamic Terror?“ 1/13/15

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 07.15.16

Preparation for the Lesson

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Writings of Rabash, “Rungs of the Ladder,” “But the More They Afflicted Them”

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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “The Essence of Religion and It’s Purpose”

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