Audio Version Of The Blog – 9/11/20

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“Nineteen Years And Very Little Learning” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “Nineteen Years and Very Little Learning

On Tuesday morning, September 11, 2001, America suffered the worst blow to its pride since Pearl Harbor. On that fateful day, nineteen years ago, nineteen terrorists hijacked four passenger airliners. They crashed two airplanes into the Twin Towers in NYC and destroyed the World Trade Center, roared a third airliner into the Pentagon (headquarters of the U.S. Department of Defense) and set its western wing on fire, and flew the fourth airliner toward Washington D.C. In that last plane, the heroism of passengers, who fought against the terrorists, prevented an even greater disaster as they caused the plane to crash into a field in Stonycreek, Pennsylvania. Three thousand lives were lost, 25,000 people were injured, and countless more suffered and still suffer from substantial health consequences in what became the single deadliest terrorist attack in human history.

America missed a chance to change its future for the better because it did not see that its heydays were behind it, that they crumbled together with the collapse of the Soviet bloc, which kept America on its toes. Now, smug and complacent, it was decaying and declining, but it could not see it yet. Today it can, but I am not sure it’s not too late.

It left not only America, but the whole world in shock. No one perceived America as vulnerable, certainly not on its own territory, and in its most sensitive and essential spots. Anyone who was old enough to understand a news bulletin will never forget where they were when they learned what had happened.

To many people, the collapse of the towers meant much more than the grief over lost and ruined lives. It implied that the 21st century was going to be very different from its predecessor and that it did not bode well for America.

The US did everything it could to prevent another 9/11 (nine eleven), as that day became known. It tightened airport and airplane security, and launched a massive manhunt in Afghanistan, where Osama Bin Laden, leader of al-Qaeda, the organization that carried out the attacks, was hiding. In 2011, after nearly a decade of frantic searching, Bin Laden was found and killed.

The security measures did help, and a second 9/11 did not occur, and not because terrorists did not try to carry one out. But as for the American way of life, nothing really changed. Any event, especially a traumatic one, brings people together. For this reason, even the most tragic circumstances can yield positive results and build a more robust and cohesive society.

For a while, America came together. The people stood behind the president when he launched the campaign against Bin Laden and when the government introduced increasingly stricter security measures. But the unity did not last and did not go anywhere positive.

The things that were hurt the most in the attack were America’s two most prized assets: money and military power. So money was poured in abundance to restore the military deterrence and to reconstruct the WTC, but nothing was done to nurture the budding sense of family, the feeling that “We are in this together, all Americans, as one nation.” Nothing was done to water the shoot, and it withered and died. Today, we are witnessing the final stages of its disintegration.

America missed a chance to change its future for the better because it did not see that its heydays were behind it, that they crumbled together with the collapse of the Soviet bloc, which kept America on its toes. Now, smug and complacent, it was decaying and declining, but it could not see it yet. Today it can, but I am not sure it’s not too late.

Writer Robin Wright eloquently articulated the sensation that America is coming apart in a recent column on The New Yorker: “The United States feels like it is unravelling. It’s not just because of a toxic election season, a national crisis over race, unemployment and hunger in the land of opportunity, or a pandemic that’s killing tens of thousands every month. The foundation of our nation has deepening cracks — possibly too many to repair anytime soon, or, perhaps, at all. The ideas and imagery of America face existential challenges … that no longer come only from the fringes. Rage consumes many in America. And it may only get worse after the election … no matter who wins. Our political and cultural fissures have generated growing doubt about the stability of a country that long considered itself an anchor, a model, and an exception to the rest of the world.”

Robin’s intuition is dead on; there is no mending to the fissures. But there isn’t meant to be. People will only grow further from each other over time since this is the trajectory of the evolution of the ego, and no country cultivates the ego like America.

A solution will be found only if people decide that the unity of the nation is more important to them than the victory of their own view. At the moment, I don’t see it happening. I hope and pray that America will prove me wrong and the American people will rise above their numerous conflicts and bridge the deep chasms in their society. However, without understanding that cancelling the other side also cancels them, I don’t see what will be the impetus that will drive them to save their country from collapse.

“Rosh Hashanah, Will It Get Worse Before It Gets Better?” (BIZCATALYST)

My new article on BIZCATALYST “Rosh Hashanah, Will It Get Worse Before It Gets Better?

We are about to celebrate the Jewish New Year, a Rosh Hashanah like no other. Synagogues across America and the world are adjusting their services to the Covid-19 restrictions limiting physical gatherings. Besides the loss of lives, individual members and entire congregations have been deeply affected by the pandemic’s economic blows, wreaking havoc in rippling waves, which have fueled antisemites to blame Jews for the creation and spread of the virus. A somber future looks like the most realistic scenario, but this can definitely be changed if only we will see our fate as a single, seamlessly-shared project.

The opposite is happening now. Within American Jewry, division, self-hatred, and bickering signal an internal fragmentation that puts in jeopardy the continuity of a vibrant Jewish life now and for generations to come. Israel, politics, who is considered Jewish, these topics and more are igniting burning clashes within our community.

Interestingly, Covid-19 arrived without paying attention to who is religious and who is secular, left-wing, or right-wing. Meanwhile, we fail to look at the big picture which is the threatening crisis caused by a virus that disregards no one. Covid-19 appeared and halted regular life with the clear purpose of making us reflect on ourselves and our egoistic perspectives toward others and our surroundings.

How can we grasp a global view when we are so busy with quarrels and fights?

Sadly, we enter the holiday season with blinders on, preoccupied with getting back to the routine and to our usual power struggles, caring only about our personal interests.

It’s high time for us to stop in our tracks and take a firm hold on the new year as a unique opportunity for introspection and change. Rosh Hashanah, from the Hebrew “Rosh Hashinui,” marks not only the beginning of the Hebrew calendar but also symbolizes renewal—a time for inner evaluation of our thoughts toward others and the intention behind our actions.

We are currently ruled by our intellect that immediately makes calculations about how to best pursue egoistic relationships for self-benefit, stirring up separation and conflict. The time has come to be inspired by a higher, more comprehensive, and steady mindset, one that will help us to open our eyes and recognize our exhausting and fruitless struggles in life and choose change instead.

How is such a meaningful transformation possible? Through the power of nature—a force that works consistently to unite all the details of reality, that embraces and connects us all as one, that transcends our limited and selfish views—profound change is assured.

Our problem is that we are currently in a state opposite to nature where everything works in balance. Due to our lack of integration with the larger system in which we live through our broken relations with each other, nature will continue to amplify the impact of the pandemic until we react and unite. Our lives are already ruled by closures, restrictions, uncertainty, and every successive blow will be even more painful than the last until we make efforts to improve the connection in our human relations.

However, there is no need to wait for the situation to get worse. Things can get better if we will begin to ask what the root cause of the coronavirus is, learn from life what is essential for us to exist, and approach one another in a healthy and considerate way. Like the round and connected natural world around us, nature is trying to teach us to live in harmony and peace out of a desire to do good to others, implementing the ultimate Jewish tenet, “love thy neighbor as yourself” and transforming our hearts.

We awaken the force that propels a positive change when we take a step toward connection when we get closer and reduce the huge gaps between us. We may do it either against our own will or proactively with open hearts. We do not even need to erase the negative feelings and disagreements between us, but only to rise above them in the spirit of, “love will cover all crimes.” (Proverbs 10:12)

In a nutshell, the power of love we activate through the connection of our hearts, above everything tearing us apart, is precisely what will sweeten our fate as Jewish people and as individuals, keeping us strong and healthy. Happy Rosh Hashanah!

“Social Life In A Changing Job Market” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “Social Life in a Changing Job Market

Think about it, a reality where you need two breadwinners to sustain a family simply makes no sense. Both parents stay out most of the day, and by the time they get home they are exhausted and barely have energy to dedicate their attention to their children. And in families with only one breadwinner the situation is of course much worse, both because there is only one parent to raise the children, and because single parents often have to work two jobs just to provide for the basic needs of the family.

We are living in transformative years. We can stream through them easily and joyfully if we come together and emerge on the other side as a united and caring society. Or, we can experience them as painful and oppressive, and still eventually realize that they were only for our sake. Either way, the coronavirus will make us learn to care.

This is an unnatural and unhealthy situation whose outcome is a generation of neglected children, abandoned by their captive parents who are struggling to keep a roof over their children’s heads and put bread in their mouths. But the biggest oddity about this miserable state is that we’ve come to think of it as “normal” and even “desirable.”

Thankfully, the coronavirus is forcing us to reconstruct our world. We are rebellious, contentious, but it will bend our arms and force us to comply. Covid will shatter the economy however hard we might resist, force us to provide for those who have been struck by the collapse, and will obligate us to start thinking also of each other rather than only of ourselves. We will have to, or the collapse will hit us, too.

Covid will leave very little surplus for indulgence in things we once thought were necessary, but it will not leave us empty handed. On the contrary, it will show us what we’ve really had all along but did not notice: each other. The virus will teach us the obvious — that nothing matters more than caring family and friends, and nothing makes us happier than having them around. It will make us reconstruct our lives and put people at the center of our attention rather than money, which is how it should be because only when we see other people, and they see us, we can be happy.

The world is producing and will continue to produce abundant food and the rest of life’s necessities. There will be no shortage of them. The only question is how fast we will learn to distribute them among everyone and guarantee that everyone is fed, dressed, lives in a proper home, and gets proper education and health care. When we learn that and act on that perception, the only thing that we will still need to do is learn how to relate to one another favorably, which is what we have neglected to do for the past several decades. And this learning will finally make us happy.

We are living in transformative years. We can stream through them easily and joyfully if we come together and emerge on the other side as a united and caring society. Or, we can experience them as painful and oppressive, and still eventually realize that they were only for our sake. Either way, the coronavirus will make us learn to care.

My Thoughts On Twitter 9/11/20

Dr Michael Laitman Twitter

When I have faith above reason, the force of bestowal, I enter it and start to gradually build myself. This is called spirituality: the degree of Bina above the degree of Malchut, when we want to think, feel, understand, and see everything according to the following degree above myself.

All degrees, all states already exist in reality. We have to make efforts in order to enter them. I lead myself to the degree of faith, Bina—and those who are outside of me, the group and the Creator, are more important than myself. I see, feel, and hear what happens in the friends, and not inside of me. This is already a spiritual sensation.

Above reason is to act in the will to bestow, for the sake of unity, according to spiritual definitions. In the material world each person exists on his own—there is no unity, since each one looks out for himself. But through unity and mutual bestowal, I feel reality and through it I look at the whole world.

I want to see everyone with different eyes, not my own, but the eyes of the ten. And the same for sensation, in the heart and mind—in everything I strive to attain the collective perception, in order to see the world not as one person, but as a ten.
A ten is a spiritual structure in which the spiritual state is revealed.
From Twitter, 9/11/20

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I Have Enough Time For Everything

631.4Question: Do you personally have enough time to complete your plans? Or are you one of those people who at the end of the day say: “If I could just add a few more hours, it would be good.”

Answer: No. I have come to a state where everything that I want works out and things that I don’t want, don’t work out. And to me, the things that I could not do are as normal as the things that worked out.

Question: I know that you are a very busy person. You have a busy schedule throughout the day. But I have never heard you say that you are running out of time.

Answer: No. I have plenty of it.

Remark: I am always running out of time.

My Reply: So, you are a bad organizer.

Remark: But I am trying.

My Reply: Trying is one thing but performing is another.

Remark: I always want to do more. It does not work.

My Reply: It means that you are taking upon yourself too much, and that is why you do not have time. And even if you had time, you could make a mistake. You can not do it this way. You should leave time for everything, for rest, for thoughts, etc. and not be like a driven horse.

Remark: By the way, my rest is fine. I always have enough time for rest, but for work, I realized that the indicator is agreeing with what is.

My Reply: Agreeing with the passing of time and with what is happening.

Remark: Probably, if I had more time, I would have done some needless nonsense.

My Remark: Undoubtedly.
From KabTV’s “Management Skills“9/2/20

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546.02Two Currents: Animal and Spiritual

Comment: The current situation in America is very similar to what it was 500 years ago in Spain or before the Second World War in Germany. Today, more than 50% of marriages are mixed [a Jewish and non-Jewish person]. Assimilation is very great. In addition, more than half of the Jews living in America have never been to Israel.

My Response: The fact is that there is an animal (material) life, which is lived by all the peoples of the world, including modern Jews.

But there is a special force of nature that runs above them, directing everyone, both Jews and non-Jews, to one common denominator, to one common goal: connection among themselves. Moreover, the Jews should lead this movement, followed by the nations of the world, together achieving the force of unity, love, and mutual understanding.

Both currents run one above the other: below is the animal and above it is the spiritual. If we don’t understand or engage them, it doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. On the contrary, we suffer from not knowing about the forces of nature that control us.

Therefore, if we begin to understand, and in our time this is already available through the science of Kabbalah, the internal method of development of both Jews and other peoples, then we will understand the plan of creation, the plan of human development, why it was created in this way, and what happens to the Jews overall.

As Einstein said, “We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them.”  We need to ascend to a higher level.

For more on this topic, read my books Like a Bundle of Reeds: why unity and mutual guarantee are today’s call of the hour, and The Jewish Choice: Unity or Anti-Semitism, Historical facts on anti-Semitism as a reflection of Jewish social discord.

From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel” 8/12/19

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The Habit That Sets The Rhythm Of Life

630.2Question: One of the rules of time management is the need to instill good habits. For example, exercise, never be late, put a thing in its specific place after using it, etc. What would you advise to acquire as a habit that helps in life?

Answer: Work by a schedule.

Question: Why is that so important for a person?

Answer: In order to have time for everything, to set the right priorities, what to leave time for, what not, and not to drive yourself into those frames that you cannot fulfill.

Let’s say today I plan to read a book, film a clip, work on Twitter, and hold meetings with my group. All this must be sorted out somehow.

Question: If someone looks at this life, they would say: “What for? This is not freedom! You work like a robot.”

Answer: I believe that by doing this I fulfill my mission, and because of that I am happy and free. What does freedom mean? Running down the street like a dog?

Comment: No. Isn’t freedom doing what you want?

Answer: That is not freedom. What are you going to do if you do not know what you want? If you do, then you make up a schedule of upcoming affairs for yourself and fulfill it.

A person should be puzzled by how full his schedule is and how well he is doing it. In addition, the day planner should indicate the time allotted for rest, and, perhaps, for physical exercise, sports. In general, everything should be considered when planning. Otherwise, you will not be able to do anything.

Question: So, do you think that rest is necessary for a person?

Answer: Of course, and first of all, a change of scenery.

Question: How much time should you spend on yourself?

Answer: As much as needed to be ready for the necessary work. Maybe I need to rest five hours for this, and another one needs half an hour.

Question: How long does a person need to be alone with himself?

Answer: This is also determined by each person, depending on the essence of his spiritual, sensory, and creative work.

Question: Do you recommend putting this into the plan?

Answer: If a person needs it. How else is a schedule drawn up and a person’s life rhythm set? Only from those needs that he considers necessary to fulfill.
From KabTV’s “Management Skills” 7/2/20

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In Order To Avoid Doing Nothing

628.4Comment: There is an opinion that a person should not have free time. Everything must be planned in advance.

My Response: If everything is planned in advance including rest, this is not called “free time.”

Question: Does it mean that a person should take care that he does not have free time?

Answer: This is in order to avoid doing nothing when one simply does not know what to do with oneself.

Question: So, should free time also be planned? You are a person who strictly adheres to a plan.

Answer: Let’s say I can write in my diary that I will lie on the couch for five hours straight, looking at the ceiling and thinking. In principle, this should be planned. And if not, then I always have some store of the things that need enhancement.
From KabTV’s “Management Skills” 7/2/20

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The Function Of The People Of Israel

254.02Remark: Baal HaSulam, answering the question of what the whole world expects from the return of the people of Israel to their land, wrote: “It is not in other teachings, for in that we never innovated. In them, we have always been their disciples. Rather, it is the wisdom of religion, justice, and peace. In this, most nations are our disciples, and this wisdom is attributed to us alone.” [The Writings of the Last Generation & the Nation]

My Response: Indeed, until recent times we were disciples of other nations and did not succeed in other sciences. Our only occupation was spiritual exaltation. And only during the last 100 – 150 years, when we had moved away from the inner part of the Torah, were we lost in the other sciences, in business, and so on.

Thus, in our time, everything has turned upside down. We learn from the peoples of the world all kinds of philosophies and religions, and from us they learn sciences.

This is why we need to restore the correct correspondence between us and other peoples, becoming, as it is said, the light for the peoples of the world. We must reveal to them what the science of Kabbalah actually brings, how it is possible to reach an understanding of the world in which we exist, and how to come to its correction.
From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel” 12/09/19

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