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The Jerusalem Post published my new article “Trump’s America Can Be Good For Jews“
But only if they choose to reexamine their attitudes towards their own Jewish identity.
The election of Donald Trump for president has exacerbated the split in American society, but even more so, the inner contradictions of its Jewish citizens. Of the over 70% who voted for Clinton, most feel angry and downright frightened of their upcoming president and the wave of anti-Semitism they are experiencing. Other Jews who voted for Trump for his pro-Israel agenda, argue that the supposed rise in anti-Semitism since the elections is merely putting the focus on something that was evidently widespread before, albeit in different form, as in the case of American campuses which are awash with neo-liberal, politically correct thinking. They understand that anti-Semitism exists both in the hard right and the hard left, and so do not believe either choice would have secured their safety. And then there are the Jews who are themselves split in half between their American liberal upbringing and values, and their inclination to do what is best for the state of Israel. These differences can be easily solved, if we step back and see what is truly at stake.
An American Jewry in Decline
Jews who are protesting Trump may claim that their resistance to this change is actually an upholding of their Jewish values; however, what we must see is that American Jewry was about to disappear thanks to the period of affluence, acceptance, and equality that had brought about assimilation, intermarriage, and low birthrates. Surveys show a very grim portrait of the health of the American Jewish population, as Jack Wertheim, Professor of American Jewish History, puts it, with rapid assimilation sweeping through every branch of Judaism except the Orthodox. Its ties to Israel were also fraying. It is the recent elections that brought the entire liberal system to a halt, in the aim of turning back its destructive route in terms of the economy and utter instability the world had come to, but also shocked the basis of the Jewish community which was happily losing its identity in return for its success. For Jews, the election brought out the ancient conflict between being successful individuals and a people that remain faithful to their roots.
Throughout history Jews have been going through the same pattern, assimilating in part into a foreign culture, be it Greek culture in the days of the Maccabees, that of Spain before the Spanish expulsion, or 1900s Germany before the rise of Hitler. In these and many other cases, our people realized in terrible ways that becoming part of the herd was always rewarded with a great surge of anti-Semitism that would force them back into their Jewish identities and their own culture.
For centuries Kabbalists have known the reason for this terrible backlash. They understood that Jews, divided as they may seem, actually hold within them an ancient promise to pave the way for unity and peace for all of humanity.
American Jews who are struggling with the election results are now facing this same historical conflict between fighting for their place in a foreign culture and seeking new answers within their own heritage that could truly transform reality. I urge them not to wait for anti-Semites to label them as Jews, but rather know that they are the ones who hold their future in their own hands, as well as the future of America and the world at large. It’s not about Trump or Bannon, or any of the repercussions we are seeing as a result of this election. The key to calm, peace, and to the values they wish to uphold is within our Jewish identities and connection to the state of Israel. For within our people is an ancient wisdom and capacity to become the example of the relationships we all want to see in modern societies.
The Outcry of Our Sages
In the early 1900s, Rabbi Kook and Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag (Baal HaSulam) tried in vain to warn the leaders of the great Jewish communities of Eastern Europe of the terrible outcomes of their exile, both physical and spiritual. My teacher, son of Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag, Rabbi Baruch Ashlag, told me of the times he had visited Israeli Prime Minister David Ben Gurion together with his father. He witnessed his father’s attempts to convince the prime minister of the necessity to unite the different factions of the Israeli society, which was divided even then and of the importance of achieving the correct relations with our Arab neighbors. He explained that the method that would allow this to happen exists deep within the Jewish Nation, in the authentic Wisdom of Kabbalah; that it is our only hope of achieving peace amongst ourselves and with the rest of the world, and by that, become a light unto the nations.
Unfortunately, Ben Gurion never accepted these recommendations as guidelines to his path, and we suffer the results to this day.
As we now step out of the neo-liberal crisis, we find ourselves in a world that is searching for a cure for its deep divisions and strife. This dire need humanity has come to is of no coincidence; neither is it a coincidence that Israel and Jews have always been put at the center of all misfortunes in the world. The reason is that Jews have the power to heal and prevent these crises by modeling and transmitting the inclination to be “as one man with one heart” and to “love your neighbor as thyself” to the rest of humanity by their own example. But they must first discover this truth about themselves. Kabbalists have tried to explain again and again that it is the lack of this understanding that keeps the nations of the world demanding of Jews to change their ways, as it is written, “No calamity comes to the world but for Israel (Yevamot 63). This is the reason for the seemingly unfounded hatred, which ironically, is forever keeping Jews from running away from their unrecognized role.
Standing at the Crossroads
The Jewish people have never been able to escape their historical mission. Paradoxically, it was the enemies of Jews that kept Judaism alive. But it doesn’t have to be that way forever. This election brings the possibility for change from a path that may have seemed comfortable for the time being, but was effectively bringing American Jews to extinction and the world to utter chaos. At this critical crossroads, we must choose to break the ancient pattern that makes sense to a western liberal rationale, but is actually illusionary and detrimental to the Jewish soul. By opposing Trump, Jews are not opposing racism or hatred, they are merely trying to go back to a system which allowed them the liberties to escape their destiny. They must choose to reconnect to Israel and to the true destiny that it holds as a light unto the nations. This is the only way they will ensure that Trump’s presidency steers away from the far right and unto the middle path, becoming an historical opportunity for reshaping the failing relationships and attitudes of the past, bringing about security, well-being and prosperity for all.
Michael Laitman is a Professor of Ontology, a PhD in Philosophy and Kabbalah, an MSc in Medical Bio-Cybernetics, and was the prime disciple of Kabbalist, Rav Baruch Shalom Ashlag (the RABASH). He has written over 40 books, which have been translated into dozens of languages.
From the Jerusalem Post, 11/24/16
My only interaction with Fidel Castro was a meeting and conversation with his daughter Alina Fernandez Revuelta on June 7, 2007 in an interview on radio WQBA 1140 am Univision in Miami, in relation to the publication of my book Your Goals in Life in Spanish. Alina fled from Cuba and for many years has been exposing the actions of her father and his brother.
Answer: No. I want to answer only those questions that you ask.
Question: How is the ego divided among seven billion people?
Answer: The ego is divided into five levels of egoistic desire: zero, 1, 2, 3, and 4. All of humanity exists within this and advances toward the goal of creation by gradually reaching the recognition that the ego is evil.
Question: If multitudes of people would begin to long for development and self-awareness, would the crisis end?
Answer: Certainly, in fact, there is no crisis; it is just an illustration of our situation.
Question: How is the work of the Kabbalists projected onto the external world?
Answer: If a Kabbalist succeeds in attracting people to think and ponder their fate, freedom of choice, and ascension to the next level, this is reflected well in all of humanity. They would all experience less pressure and get more possibilities for thinking and making the right decisions.
Question: How many people must reach unity between them to prevent a third world war? What quality must be in these souls?
Answer: There must be 600,000 souls like this and their quality must be such that they long for full mutual connection between each other, as is described in the wisdom of Kabbalah, like a flock of birds or a school of fish.
Question: In the future, will an altruistic global government be established instead of organizations like the United Nations, which has become only a window display?
Answer: Without a doubt. This was written about in “The Last Generation.”
Question: Can it be said that all the millions of people in the world who have achieved familiarity with the wisdom of Kabbalah are the first signs of the Last Generation?
Answer: Without a doubt. These people are also called the “new generation”; the “Last” generation on this level and the “New” generation on the next level.
Question: In any case, the physical world in which we are living will end. Can we expect that there will be something good next?
Answer: In due course we can expect the next level of development. We were once on the level of the still, after that on the level of the vegetative, then on the level of the animate, and now we are on the human level; the next level will be a spiritual level. That is how we move forward. On the spiritual level, many levels and sub-levels also exist, all the way up to the world of infinity.
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 7/10/16
Answer: Of course, this is a group facilitator in which a person discovers the force that corrects him, the Creator.
The teacher is more of guide than a mediator; the student cannot be closed only on the teacher because he would lose his incentive to develop. He should passively cling to the teacher. This is first.
Secondly, the student always receives the Upper Light through the teacher; it is an absolutely precise hierarchal process from the upper to the lower. The upper turns upward with the request of the lower, receives the portion of Light, and passes the lower his portion. This is a fixed structure from Adam to the present day. This hierarchy is essential and so my students will also advance through me because I preceded you.
Those who come after you and will be your students will receive the Light through you. All this is explained in part fifteen of Talmud Eser Sefirot. The upper always rises to the top, receives a double portion due to the lower, and then transmits it to him. So the hierarchy is required.
But the most importantly, you should understand is that the implementation is not in your connection to the teacher. You should fully trust the teacher and follow his advice, but the fulfillment is in the group.
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 6/9/16
Answer: Kabbalah explicitly points out that at the end of days of the world, before it starts to approach its correct completion, global integration, there will be a period when Islam becomes the strongest religion or the strongest world movement.
It was written about this in Kabbalah thousands of years ago! Ideological wars will be fought continuously, with military actions accompanying them. After all, a sword is depicted on the Islamic flag for a reason.
Question: Where does the popularity of the religion of Islam come from?
Answer: Its popularity is due to the fact that Islam unites all its supporters and conforms to the masses. This religion has a set of all possible variations in order to join any environment or movement. Therefore, Islam is very broad.
One can say that Christianity is also very fragmented. Indeed, but it is an older religion. Gone are the days of the Crusades, the religious wars that raged once in France, Germany, and England, between Austria and Spain, and so on. Everything was over very quickly because science was developing in those places affected by the Inquisition, in parallel to it and while fighting with it.
It is different with Arabic mentality. Islam primarily is a religion of the poor, unpretentious inhabitants of the deserts and regions such as Oceania, Indonesia, and Africa. It addresses the simple, unassuming, very narrow-minded people. It can tell them a lot with this respect. After all, what do they need to observe? Namaz and practically nothing else.
On the other hand, they receive worldwide support. Today no religion and no movement has the power to resist this because they are decrepit. Precisely on this background the modern Islam appears.
We must understand that this is not the Islam that for centuries was in a state of slumber in the Arabian, North African, and Asian deserts, right up to Afghanistan and beyond. This is a different type of Islam.
The real Islam is Sufism that speaks about unity and equality and is a reflection of Judaism.
However, today Sufism is completely crushed and is not popular. Sufis were forced to leave Arab countries and move to other places. I met with some in America, the Netherlands, and England. Unfortunately, the Arabic Kabbalah called “Sufism” disappears. On the surface rises the aggressive spirit of conquest, supported by a special ideology that wants the world to accept Islam by any means.
Question: Does it have to be this way from Kabbalah’s point of view?
Answer: No. The wisdom of Kabbalah describes the historical path of all nations and religions. In the wisdom of Kabbalah, it is written that even Judaism denied and rejected the wisdom of Kabbalah and became a religion that froze its adherents, Christianity will gradually fade, while Islam, which was dormant for many years from the 6th century AD until today, must specifically “flare up” today, and after a certain amount of time will fade like the rest of the religions.
After all, none of them is involved with discovering the upper world, so developing humanity cannot get any satisfaction through them. We are already coming to this.
In the future we will see that all of the religions will disappear and instead of them humanity must discover the true state of the universe, meaning its relationship and connection with the upper force in the form of absolute attainment.
From KabTV’s “News with Michael Laitman” 9/26/16
Torah, Deuteronomy 12:21: If the place the Lord, your God, chooses to put His Name there, will be distant from you, you may slaughter of your cattle and of your sheep, which the Lord has given you, as I have commanded you, and you may eat in your cities, according to every desire of your soul.
If a person lived far from Jerusalem, and in the past, living 100-200 kilometers from the city was considered a great distance, he did not have to travel there in order to pay his tithe to the Jerusalem Temple or to donate a lamb, because he could pass it to the local representatives (the Cohens) at the place where he lived. And they, in turn, passed it to Jerusalem.
At that time, everything was very well organized locally: services, education, development, and schools. Everyone had to learn to perform certain obligations to society, to pay taxes, and all this was recorded by public servants – the Levites and Cohens.
Therefore, it was not necessary to go to Jerusalem to deliver something to the state treasury. Everything was available locally.
From the spiritual point of view, we all are in the general system, and through its power center, the Upper Light is revealed and dispersed to the entire system. However, a person does not have to be in the center of this system, it is not even his place. His place is where he is and from where he must be properly connected to the system that surrounds him in order to create an integral connection with it.
Question: What does it mean “in thy gates”?
Answer: Gates mean these conditions, according to which you connect with the common system: You affect it and it affects you; you give it everything so that it would function correctly, and it supplies you everything necessary to exist in it. Gates are the power of your internal connection to the common system of souls in order to organize a common soul – Adam.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 7/6/16
New Life #786 – Virtual Reality
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Yael Leshed-Harel
Humanity has always looked for ways of making our grey life brighter.
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