The Indefatigable Growth Of Egoism

Dr. Michael LaitmanEgoism is created in us specifically so that we, through developing it, will achieve the possibility of free will and will begin to use it in spite of ourselves. Then we will attain the Creator.

The ego’s property of unlimited growth is an incredible attribute that does not exist in nature.

If I want something and taste it, I will want twice as much; if I consume twice as much, I will want four times as much, and so on. I constantly need to double my pleasure otherwise I cannot feel it as a pleasure.

This means that the Creator’s force is within the ego, and it keeps growing. This does not exist in the other levels of nature, but it does in our egoism. In man, in the fourth phase of development, after the the still, vegetative, and the animate levels, there is the Creator’s spark that is actually concentrated in the ego, which keeps growing exponentially.

Question: If a person enjoys the fact that others feel bad, does that mean that it is a real egoism?

Answer: Yes, when the filling is at the expense of others, I feel great pleasure. At the same time, my egoism exits my internal frameworks. A lion, for example, that devours a certain animal is satisfied and has no need for anything else. A man who devours one, looks for something else to devour.

This means that very big desires emerge in us and constantly demand renewal and are insatiable. On the contrary, the more you try to satisfy them, the hungrier you feel. If you satisfy the double egoism, you are four times as hungry, and so on, and it is impossible to do anything with such a bottomless pit.

Question: Does this apply to all of mankind?

Answer: It applies to all developed people. An underdeveloped human being is like an animal, like a baby, whom you give something and he is satisfied. A developed man, on the other hand, wants the whole world, and even that is not enough for him.

The desire to receive everything at the expense of others is a special kind of egoism. We can see the competition between rich and famous people, like artists, for example, who burn with envy of each other.

Question: But the Creator has created all that. How is that supposed to bring us closer to Him to reach His attributes?

Answer: It happens in a very bitter manner when a person begins to realize that he will attain no pleasure, will not be satisfied “till death do us part between me and my sack of gold.”

Question: Do you think that a kind, good hearted, gentle, honest person is an underdeveloped person?

Answer: Yes, he is not egoistically developed enough yet. But today, this can happen very quickly.
When a person begins to understand that there is no point chasing new fillings because they don’t satisfy him anyway, he begins to look for a substitute on a higher level and reaches the wisdom of Kabbalah.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 2/26/17

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Blitz Of Kabbalah Tips – 1/22/17

Laitman_632_4Question: Is the reason that we don’t feel the Creator clearly because the ego manages us?

Answer: The Creator manages us through the ego.

Question: How is it possible to learn to bestow?

Answer: It is only in a group, only in a group of Ten and not in any other way.

Question: Why do we call the higher power the “creative mind”?

Answer: It is because this “mind” creates creation through its thoughts. There isn’t anything else. The highest force in nature is the power of thought.

Question: Who or what is the Moshiach (Messiah) according to the wisdom of Kabbalah?

Answer: The Moshiach is the power of the upper Light. The upper Light can reveal itself as very many types of forces. What is called the Moshiach is the force that attracts us from the ego, from the word, LiMshoch, to extract. It is said that the Moshiach will come on a white donkey (Hamor), meaning an absolutely white Light from the characteristic of bestowal. The word Hamor is derived from the word Homer (Substance). The meaning is that all of our substance, the ego, will become illuminated and become altruistic.

Question: How does the wisdom of Kabbalah relate to people who predict the future, experts in numerology, astrologers, Urim and Tummim?

Answer: The wisdom of Kabbalah doesn’t relate to them in any special way.

Question: Is it possible to reduce the ego through studying the wisdom of Kabbalah? Or is it only possible to develop it?

Answer: Develop it! Without the ego you could not do anything. On the contrary, you require an immense ego that will elevate you to the heavens, and you will constantly correct it.

Question: According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, is it possible to explain the fact that three of the presidents of the United States, Clinton, Bush and Trump were born in the summer of 1946, just like you?

Answer: Many other people were born in that year.

Question: Oleg from England asks: “What else would you want to do and realize in your life?”

Answer: I would like to correct Oleg from England.
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Congress: Joining The Common Flow

laitman_939_01Question: How can desires be added together? Even for bricks, we need cement. What connects us together since we are so different?

Answer: We all are egoists, but each has a point in the heart, and we want to connect them into one big point. This is our aspiration to the Creator.

At that, our egoism remains below, and our aspirations to the Creator are above.

If we rise above our egoism to a certain level, then there the spiritual potential called a Kli (Vessel) is revealed; that is, the tension between the aspiration to the Creator upward, and the aspiration to ourselves downward.

We form our Kli depending on this potential. However, the question arises whether this Kli is enough to reveal the Creator in.

Question: Does it mean that the bigger the rejection is, the greater the potential? That is, by and large, it tears me apart.

Answer: Not only you, but the entire group. If you are in the ten, then there should be ten such states. Then the Creator will be revealed in them. The main thing is the common point (red color in the drawing), the Creator. We constantly need to hold on to it.

Question: So, is the potential much more vivid for those who come to the congress without desire, with great doubts, but then overcome them?

Answer: Of course. Therefore, we need all people: with different potentials, with different desires; the main thing is that they can join our common flow.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 2/19/17

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The Vicissitudes Of The Book Of Zohar

laitman_923Question: How was the Book of Zohar written and how long did it take?

Answer: Ten Kabbalists, the authors of The Book of Zohar, wrote in a cave called Idra Raba, which exists until this very day.

According to The Book of Zohar, one of the authors spoke, another explained and clarified, and a third wrote down what was said. They had no disagreements because they were as one single desire, one single soul. They described all the possible states of all the individual souls that ascend and connect into one soul called Man, Adam, in a hundred of volumes.

The Book of Zohar was concealed for a long time and was discovered by chance. Its pages were found in a market. It turned out that they were used to wrap different food products. Whatever was found became accessible to the public. The attempt to find the other volumes did not yield the desired results. In the middle of the 1940’s, The Book of Zohar was revealed by Baal HaSulam, and he began to write his commentary on it.

This is a very special book considering its origin and its fate, in the vicissitudes of the people associated with it, and with what happened to the people who had it because there was only one copy of The Book.

2,000 years have passed since it was written, and still anything associated with The Book of Zohar is yet to be explored: where are its hidden parts and what happened to them. We are yet to discover all that and to explain it. I am sure that everything will be revealed with time.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 2/5/17

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 6/29/17

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 6  

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Audio Version Of The Blog – 06.28.17

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My Thoughts On Twitter, 6/27/17

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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

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JPost: “Comment: Between Dershowitz And Stone, Dershowitz Is Pointlessly Correct“

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.
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Jewish Business News, “Will The US Become A Nation Of The Idle Young?”

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.

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Alone In A Crowd Of A Billion, Part 4

laitman_938_03The method of integral education does not prevent a person from developing his or her inner individuality, rather it allows a person to do so. No one invades this inner world.

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.
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From KabTV’s “A New Life” 4/4/17

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