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The world depends on the observer’s qualities–thus Kabbalah gets one out of #depression by helping to see their partner as beloved.
#Governments can’t control their economies, sovereignty is disappearing but they cannot solve problems together, nationalism is on the rise
Everyone has good and bad qualities. Smart people focus on and see only the good in others. #Kabbalah says we must also correct the bad.
Labor means, first and foremost, working on oneself. That is true human labor. Let’s leave everything else to the #robots.
From Twitter, 6/27/17
The Jerusalem Post published my new article “Comment: Between Dershowitz And Stone, Dershowitz Is Pointlessly Correct“
To change people’s feelings about Jews, we must approach with honesty the trope that if anything goes wrong, it’s the Jews’ fault.Share on facebook Share on twitter
Screenwriter, film director, and producer Oliver Stone is a cultural icon. He has won multiple Academy Awards and has contributed to the making of dozens of iconic films that have helped shape our views on war, love, politics, and other weighty matters. Oliver Stone is also an antisemite.
Alan Dershowitz is a lawyer, an author, a gifted speaker, and a cultural icon in his own right. Alan Dershowitz is also a staunch supporter of Israel. When Dershowitz heard that Stone had blamed Israel of meddling with the recent US election, he challenged Stone to a debate about whether or not there was truth to his statement.
Mr. Dershowitz has been making the case for Israel for many years, and his support is heartwarming and impressive. In 2005 he conducted an epic debate with Jewish Israel basher Noam Chomsky at Harvard University, and he works tirelessly to support Israel on every front.
Still, judging by the exponential growth in antisemitism in the US and around the world in recent years, these efforts have had zero impact. However reasonable the arguments, they will never taper antisemitism because hatred needs no reasonable arguments to justify itself.
Jew-Hatred Makes No Sense
Throughout history, Jew-hatred has worn different attires at different times. Jews have been accused of poisoning wells, baking matzos with the blood of Christian (and now Muslim) children, warmongering, usury, slave trading, conspiring to dominate the world, and spreading disease (from the Black Death to Ebola). Jews have also been accused of manipulating the media to their needs, disloyalty to their host countries, harvesting organs, and spreading AIDS.
Moreover, Jews are often accused of conflicting “crimes.” Communists accused them of creating capitalism; capitalists accused them of inventing communism. Christians accused Jews of killing Jesus, while dissidents of the church accused Jews of inventing Christianity. Jews have been labeled as warmongers and cowards, racists and cosmopolitans, spineless and unbending, and countless other contradictions.
Clearly, Jew-hatred is irrational and deep.
To change people’s feelings about Jews and the nation state of the Jews, namely Israel, we must appeal to their feelings, to their hearts, and not to their minds. To do that, we must address the old trope to which Dershowitz referred in the post I mentioned earlier: if anything went wrong, it’s the Jews’ fault.
Hatred from Without and from Within
As is evident by the irrationality of Jew-hatred, the Jews are not an ordinary nation. Since its inception, its most prominent proponents have been the target of aggression and enmity. Abraham was thrown into a furnace after his own father, Terah, brought him to be tried by the king. Terah did not protest the verdict. Joseph was thrown into a pit full of snakes and then sold to slavery by his own brothers after they relinquished their initial plan to assassinate him. Moses was chased by his adopted grandfather, Pharaoh, and was often criticized by his own people.
After Moses, when the people of Israel were established as a nation, they suffered internal conflicts that were just as bad, if not worse, than the enemies they encountered from the outside. The First Temple was ruined due to idol-worship, incest, and bloodshed. Even before it was ruined, the Hebrew kings Ahaz and Hezekiah both looted the Temple and handed over its treasures to foreign kings.
At the time of the Second Temple, Hellenists—Jews who wanted to install the Greek culture and belief in Israel—hated their brethren so fiercely that they fought them to the death instead of the Greeks.
In the end, self-hatred inflicted the ruin of the Second Temple and an exile that lasted two millennia. Worse yet, Tiberius Julius Alexander—commander of the Roman armies that conquered Jerusalem, ruined the Temple, and exiled its people—was an Alexandrian Jew whose own father had donated the gold and silver for the Temple gates. In fact, before Tiberius Alexander stormed Jerusalem, he had obliterated his native community of Alexandria, causing “the whole district [to be] deluged with blood as 50,000 corpses were heaped up,” according to Jewish-Roman historian Titus Flavius Josephus.
In my previous column, I mentioned more of the countless cases where Jews turned against their own people. It turns out that we are unique not only in the relentless, irrational hatred we suffer from without, but also in the profound odium that Jews feel and display toward their own brethren. This begs the question: What is it about Jews that makes them the object of such pervasive loathing?
Who Is a Jew?
The book Yaarot Devash (Part 2, Drush no. 2) writes that the word Yehudi (Jew) comes from the Hebrew word yihudi, meaning united. When Abraham the Patriarch first established his group, he did so on the backdrop of an outburst of egoism in the Babylonian Empire where he was born. The book Pirkei De Rabbi Eliezer (Chapter of Rabbi Eliezer) describes how the builders of the Tower of Babylon “wanted to speak to one another but did not know each other’s language. What did they do? Each took his sword and they fought each other to the death. Indeed, half the world was slaughtered there, and from there they scattered all over the world.”
To help the Babylonians, Abraham developed a method for connecting people. He realized that selfishness was intensifying faster than people could contain it. Therefore, instead of trying to restrain their egos, Abraham suggested that they shift their focus to connection. In this way, he hoped his countryfolk would rise above their egoism and connect.
Although Abraham was expelled from Babylon (having survived being thrown into the furnace), he continued to circulate his views as he wandered toward the Land of Israel. Gradually, writes Maimonides in Mishneh Torah (Chapter 1), Abraham, together with his wife, Sarah, gathered tens of thousands of people, all versed in uniting above their egos.
This special characteristic of Abraham’s students—to make unity and brotherhood the means as well as the end—became the essence of Judaism. This is why Old Hillel told the man who wanted to convert: “That which you hate, do not do unto your neighbor; this is the whole of the Torah” (Shabbat, 31a), and why Rabbi Akiva asserted, “Love your neighbor as yourself; this is the great rule of the Torah” (Jerusalem Talmud, Nedarim, 30b).
We became a nation only when we vowed to be “as one man with one heart,” and immediately after, we were commanded to be “a light unto nations”—to circulate our special unity to all. Just as Abraham intended to do in Babylon, when he wished to spread unity indiscriminately, we were commanded to be a light unto all the nations—to spread unity throughout the world.
Therefore, our nationhood consists of two tenets: 1) to be united as one man with one heart, 2) to share the method for achieving unity with all of humanity. If we do not abide by these two rules, we are not Jewish.
Since these two principles have been the essence of our peoplehood since its inception, any accusation that the Jews are inflicting harm upon the world, such as the trope that Dershowitz mentioned—that if anything goes wrong, it is the Jews’ fault—is a (usually unconscious) statement that the Jews are not Jews. In other words, they are not projecting unity and brotherhood, but rather the opposite.
In some cases, the sensation of antisemites that Jewish egoism is the problem is so intense that they can even verbalize it. German philosopher and anthropologist Ludwig Feuerbach wrote in The Essence of Christianity: “The Jews have maintained their peculiarity to this day. Their principle, their God, is the most practical principle in the world—namely egoism.”
If this is what we are projecting, is it any wonder we are hated? We may have given ourselves amnesty from the “verdict” of being “a light unto nations,” but the nations have never given this to us. Their accusations, the high moral standards by which they judge Israel and the Jews, their admiration and their fear speak for themselves. It will not help us if we try to be like them; they will not accept us as such. We have been, are, and always will be expected to be a beacon of unity, “a light unto nations.”
Until we unite above our hatred just as our ancestors did millennia ago, we will continue to be the world’s only pariahs.
No compelling argument, conclusive proof, or hard evidence will convince the Oliver Stones in the world that they are wrong. In their hearts, they know that they are right—that Jews are to blame for every bad thing that happens. For Mr. Stone, that bad thing is the election of Donald Trump as president. But even before Trump was elected, Stone found reasons to dislike Jews, proving once again that hatred will cling to any pretext to justify itself, regardless of objective truths.
Therefore, if we truly want to oust antisemitism, we must do the thing we want the least: unite with our brethren to the tribe—our fellow Jews—above all of our disputes, alienation, and hatred.
In my regular column in Jewish Business News, my new article: “Will The US Become A Nation Of The Idle Young?”
At a time of high unemployment and reluctance to work, basic income contingent upon nurturing solidarity is paramount.
But along with this, one also knows that it is possible to feel the world, reality, from a higher and broader perspective, above isolation and individualism, but only through a connection with others.
When this occurs, he begins to sense a world parallel to this one. No one argues that we are all individuals, unable to move like hammered-in nails, but it doesn’t need to disturb anyone because we are building a level of connection above it.
Question: Will a person still feel lonely then?
Answer: A person will not feel lonely because he will be expressing his individuality in connection with others. These two levels—the personal, individual level, and the common, integral level—will exist parallel to each other and will support one another.
Then, the personality of each individual will begin to be expressed even more brightly and distinctly, but this will not lead to negative consequences and loneliness. If each is created with their own unique qualities, then when these qualities are expressed even more brightly, it will only be of benefit to others and never to their detriment.
Two of the most important milestones in child development is the emergence of personal individuality and, above it, mutual interdependence. As it is said, “Love covers all transgressions.” In this context, a person uses his individuality with the goal of correct connection with others.
Nature builds us in such a way that if we use my individual qualities for connection with others with the intention to fulfill them, and others do the same with respect to us, then this is a point where we are not just connecting mechanically as cogs in a machine, but are creating a perfect system.
When we correctly connect to this system, we begin to feel the one who is spinning us—the upper force of nature. And then we begin to interact and spin in harmony with this force; in other words, we achieve union with it.
Question: Why does this painful sensation of loneliness appear within us at this point in time? What does this stage of human evolution mean? This did not exist to such an extent earlier in history.
Answer: We completed our “linear” evolution and now must add to it “circular,” integral development. With all the individuality and uniqueness of each, we must discover how to correctly use our special abilities for positive connection between us and build a perfect system. This is the final stage of the program of creation.
From KabTV’s “A New Life” 4/4/17
Answer: Daily life flows by itself. What is in it? A person needs to make a living and raise a family, all of this being an additional encumbrance to the study.
For a person who studies Kabbalah, the attitude toward daily life becomes completely different. His perception of reality changes. He begins to understand that everything comes from the Creator and passes over and through him purposefully to the surrounding world so that he will be able to connect the entire world and himself with the Creator, with the one and only force that manages creation.
In other words, in all a person’s thoughts and feelings, in all that he says and does, the Creator is found. It is nature that motivates a person in such a manner. Only a point in the heart is given to a person, which seemingly has no connection to the internal and external nature at all. But with the help of this point in the heart, he can go out from the physical world, divert his attention from everything, and contemplate everything from the side.
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 1/29/17
Comment: 240 immigrants recently drowned on their way to Italy. According to statistics 5,000 immigrants drowned last year. This means that the immigrants are still infiltrating Europe. Despite the limitations that Europe has set, they keep flowing in.
Answer: Thousands of emigrants from the Middle East and Africa are crossing the European border daily, and it is impossible to stop that flow.
It is a wave of history. It is the way it should be until Europe truly begins to colonize Africa and the Middle East in a kind way, restoring the correct mutual relations between people there, opening universities and schools, supplying necessities, and teaching locals so that they will be able to establish the correct developed society.
But how can the Europeans do that if they themselves are egoists? They colonized Africa in a wrong way; therefore, they reap such results.
Question: So you are in favor of a different sort of colonization via education?
Answer: I am only in favor of training and educating people locally, in favor of creating a proper kind society in their motherlands where they should live and feel good, and will not immigrate to Europe.
Question: Do you believe that it is possible to restore places that are totally ruined like Syria and Lebanon?
Answer: If the West invests resources and energy in this process and realizes that this is indeed the way they should position themselves, then it is certainly possible.
It is much costlier to try to adapt the immigrants to the conditions in Europe than to help them rebuild their lives in their natural home. There, it is at least hundred times cheaper, than any action taken in Europe.
From KabTV’s “News with Michael Laitman” 3/27/17
“Amen” is translated as “truth,” “verity,” and expresses our inner agreement, the inner decision, to do some action with all our strength.
Therefore, the people are obliged to say “Amen” before the entrance to the land of Israel. This is an agreement with those conditions without which they can’t enter, because to enter means to rise to the correction of completely new egoistic desires and intentions that are now being revealed.
At every stage the people repeat “Amen” because every time they enter into a completely new correction.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 11/21/16
Preparation for the Lesson
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Preparation for the Lesson for the Italian Convention
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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “Preface to the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” Item 5
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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “The Essence of Religion and Its Purpose”
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