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Mutual guarantee (Arvut) is the general law of creation, as well as the particular law of any human being. If we constantly check ourselves for compliance with this law, we will not be mistaken and will advance to the goal of creation in the shortest possible way. If I stop checking myself for mutual guarantee, I will immediately stumble, fall, or lose the way, and I will have to return to the connection of mutual guarantee again to be sure that I am moving in the right direction. To the extent I feel a lack of mutual guarantee in myself and make an effort to achieve it, pray, and include myself in the group, I advance and elevate myself from the path of suffering to the path of light.
The law of mutual guarantee and my attitude to unification determines all my advancement and the extent to which my path will be right and straight without looping and falling. A fall becomes as fast as the pinch of the devil, just one second is enough to wake up and take a step forward. I fall and wake up, fall and wake up, with great speed, thousands of times daily.
Therefore, one must feel how the law of mutual guarantee operates within the whole of creation right now. We exist in the corrected system even now, but we simply cannot see it because we judge from our flaws; therefore, we see the system as corrupted. Each time, we must see the system more and more corrected by becoming more and more included in mutual guarantee, and this is all our work.
The test is how much I humble myself in front of society. If the group has accepted some condition for its advancement, I can agree with it or not; but until I share the opinion of the group, I will not fulfill the law of mutual guarantee, and therefore will not be directed to spirituality, to the purpose of creation, to the goal of life, to the Creator who is in the center of the group. Therefore, I must constantly check to what extent I agree with the group, with the teacher, with what the Kabbalists write, and in this way direct myself toward correction more accurately. In essence, this is the correction.
Mutual guarantee is the iron law of the spiritual system. It is realized in us at every moment, each time returning us to bestowal, to faith above reason, in direction toward the goal, forcing us to include ourselves in the group and humble ourselves before the ten. All this is included in the law of mutual guarantee. Mutual guarantee is the common name for the total of the conditions we must fulfill in order to become one man (Adam) in the system of Adam HaRishon.1
Bestowing to a person is more important than directly bestowing to the Creator. Love for one’s neighbor as for oneself precedes the love for the Creator. Love for the Creator arises to the extent that we realize love for a neighbor, it comes from the upper light that fills the corrected Kelim. It turns out that all our work is to fill the created beings.2
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/16/19, Writings of Baal HaSulam, “The Arvut (Mutual Guarantee)”
1 Minute 0:55
2 Minute 42:17
Remark: Looking at our life, we see that it’s not so often that we choose something in it. Maybe it seems to us that way, but even from recent studies on this topic it shows that birth, death, character traits, and even political views are determined by society or are genetically defined. It turns out that nature leaves us no choice.
The greatest Kabbalist of the 20th century, Baal HaSulam, wrote an article on this subject, “The Freedom,” where he describes four factors that influence our development and determine our choice. The first factor is called the “basis of a person” or his hereditary information.
Remark: Baal HaSulam says that ideas, thoughts, and opinions all lose their previous form and at birth go to people in the form of properties. We do not choose these. They are inherent to nature.
The second factor is more interesting: the unchanging properties, which is that each foundation contains properties that change and others remain unchanged.
My Comment: A person is born with certain traits, with a certain character. Within this framework, he can change something, but he can’t change the framework. We even see such inclinations in our own experience and in our lives that can’t be changed.
Remark: Baal HaSulam gives an example that wheat will always grow from wheat.
My Comment: Yes. Nothing else will work. Under the influence of the environment or some other influences we can change certain internal qualities of a grain, but nothing other than that. It depends on what environment the grain is placed in.
Question: This is the third factor when the properties set by nature can change under the influence of the environment.
For example, if a person who is stingy by nature is placed in a certain environment where there is wealth, then it is entirely possible that this property in him will change to the extreme opposite or will not develop at all.
The fourth factor that determines the developmental stages of creation is external influence: climate, global warming, crises, etc. Suppose if we live in a normal society and everything is fine, then it’s stable. And if the global crisis begins and problems arise, then, quite possibly, it will change.
How do these four factors affect a person?
Answer: Simultaneously and sometimes in incomprehensible combinations. We don’t clearly understand what is happening here.
All we need to clarify is how dependent we are on them, and in what state at every moment we can act upon them selectively, with a certain direction, for a specific purpose.
Of utmost importance is how we can identify what is desirable to receive from ourselves or from others. For example, receiving from children, from upbringing, and how to influence them each moment, at what level, etc.
Question: So is the environment the only factor that we can change?
Answer: Yes. However, this is not about the usual environment. First, we must set the ultimate goal, understanding what we want to get from our actions. Maybe we will invest a lot in education and in the end get nothing but a zero depending on what we concentrate on, what we want to change.
Here you need to understand where the border of our capabilities is, what we have the most optimal means for, and how we can approach a person so that he himself takes part in his changes. Everything here depends not only on us, but on the object itself and the environment.
From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 2/4/19
Question: What is unique about the quality of bestowal?
Answer: We cannot understand the quality of bestowal in the sense in which it exists, outside of us. Within us, we can understand it only above the quality of reception. Only in this way can we attain anything based upon the comparison of one to the other. Thus, by creating purely negative qualities within us, the Creator gives us an opportunity to gain completely opposite positive qualities by rising above the negative ones.
Question: If one places fulfilling the friend’s needs above one’s own, is that a degree of bestowal?
Answer: Of course! The more one fulfills the needs of the friends, the greater is one’s degree of bestowal.
Question: With what can we fulfill a friend?
Answer: It doesn’t matter. What’s most important is what your thoughts are aimed at, your intent: to fulfill the other or yourself? What are you thinking of, where is your heart? Do you want to bring joy to the Creator by fulfilling a friend, or do you want to fulfill yourself while the Creator or a friend are not on your radar?
Question: Are you trying to say that the correction consists of the fact that instead of, as a regular person who’s constantly calculating, consciously or not, how to get pleasure at each moment, one would make calculations putting the needs of others above one’s own?
Remark: This is utopian! It is unclear how to even approach this.
My Comment: This is what we have the group and the methodology for, to begin working on it.
Question: The group is a tool. What about the goal? How can I know that this is what the Creator wants of me?
Answer: Firstly, the Creator wants only one thing of us, for us to become like Him. Secondly, in order for us to become like Him, the Creator put us in this world and brought us to the group saying: “Take it. Start working according to the method: from the love of friends to the love of the Creator. Only in this way can you become like Me.” Note that love of a friend must be greater and must precede love of the Creator. All the sources write about this. It is exactly how we must act if we wish to reach the Creator.
From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 2/7/19
Richard S. Hirschhaut, Director of the American Jewish Committee (AJC) in Los Angeles, meets Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman to discuss the benefits coming out of the unity between Jews.
There is a general law of nature that draws people to a broader and broader connection. Today, we can observe it in the global trend of total interdependence between all realms of human engagement. However, we also can see that the relations between people became very tough, and on the contrary to the large system, small elements of this system have an inner sense of personal independence.
Less, but very similar problem appeared 3,800 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia. It was a deep crisis of human relationship well-known as the Tower of Babel. Atop of that crisis, Abraham collected a group coming from the representatives of the nations of ancient Babylon and called them the people of Israel (“directed to the unifying force of nature”). The specifics of that group was an ability to consciously connect above the growing rejections.
From history, we know that the Jews dispersed and went into exile, and now they connect only when there is an external pressure on them manifested in anti-Semitism and hatred. However, if today, the Jewish people implement the method of connection that they received from Abraham, both Jews and the whole world will benefit from it, and humanity will receive a chance to come out of the crisis with joy and happiness.