Audio Version Of The Blog – 9/22/20
Listen to an Audio Version of the Blog
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Man is always inside the Creator, as an embryo is inside the mother.
One just needs to feel WHAT the Creator “is telling him”—this is the highest state!
If we grow up, nature won’t have to punish us. We would participate in our own development, would be fully responsible for each other, and we would find a true goal in mutual guarantee. The essence of man is not to be free from nature, but to consciously align with it.
As a result of the impact of the coronavirus, we will inevitably start thinking of our interdependence and begin realizing our mutual responsibility.
Baal HaSulam: “Nature, as a competent judge, punishes us taking into account our development.”
How to protect them? The virus reminds us that we’re completely dependent. It carries information that allows the biosphere to maintain systemic balance. When we don’t create the right connection between us, the virus does so on a biological level—forcing us to care about others.
Suddenly I fell into a dangerous dependence on other people. True, they depend on me too, but that doesn’t make it any easier on me. And if others are not conscious not to infect me, I will get infected from them, it’s almost impossible to protect oneself from it. And all my loved ones are also in danger.
Currently, disseminating the method of correction of man and all of mankind may seem to us a heavy burden. But as we advance, we’ll understand that this is what gives pleasure to the Creator, and if we feel Him as great, then we will gladly bear this burden and feel no heaviness.
Lesson after lesson, gathering after gathering, we will feel more and more that there are a vast number of people, humanity, that our group has to lead. Like a locomotive that pulls the whole train of many cars to the goal.
We are given a chance to become Adam, similar to the Creator, and pull all of humanity towards correction. This is our work, thus we are called servants of the Creator. This is a very high privilege, a special and honorable mission. If a person neglects it, he gets replaced…
On the eve of Rosh Hashanah (New year), I would like to wish everyone what we lack the most—connection, closeness between us, love. This always saves our people, it is in the codex, in the record, in the chromosomes of the nation itself.
There is no sense of the Creator, no faith, so no one to stop me. I cannot act differently because if the Creator does not rule over me, then I’m under the control of the evil inclination—egoism! Thus, I ask the Creator to rule over me. This is my main request!
“Let me feel You and I will change!” This is exactly what one should say to the Creator, this is the right request and true remorse. For what was the reason I committed the crime? Because there was no sense of the Creator called Faith.
Did I do anything? I didn’t do anything, it was all the Creator. And He did it on purpose, so that I would know what I need to correct. I take this evil, the crime that has now been revealed, and begin to correct it. My whole aspiration is forward, not backward…
We don’t bring up the past or apologize for it. I must realize not what happened earlier, but the fact that I do not seek correction now, nor demand the Creator’s help in this. I want to move forward, not dig into the past, shedding tears about what I did…
“Let me feel You and I will change!”—this is what one should say to the Creator, this is the right request and remorse. I commit crimes because there is no sense of the Creator, no faith, and no one to stop me. I cannot act differently because if the Creator does not rule, then it’s the evil inclination!
Rosh Hashanah (New year)—time to ask the Creator for forgiveness for our sins. I feel that I do not have a sense of importance or greatness of the Creator, for this I repent. After all, if I felt the Creator as great and important I would have behaved differently. My only lack is the feeling of the Creator…
People, and the whole world, do not understand how the upper governance of nature (the Creator) transitions us to a new mode of relations through quarantine, by restructuring of society, production, trade, through limiting (normalizing) consumption in balance with nature…
From Twitter, 9/22/20
My Thoughts On Twitter 9/21/20
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From My Facebook Page Michael Laitman 9/22/20
One cold, rainy evening in February 1979, as I was doing my usual delving into Kabbalah books with my friend Chaim Malka, I realized that it was hopeless. “Chaim,” I said, “we are going to find a teacher right now.” We got into the car and drove off to Bnei Brak, an Orthodox city where I had heard that people study Kabbalah. As the rain poured down the windshield; I drove almost blindly, in zero visibility. But I was driven from within; I had to keep going.
Once inside the city, we had no idea where to go. Suddenly, I saw a man standing on the sidewalk waiting to cross the street. In the pouring rain, he was the only one around. I rolled down the window and hollered through the torrent: “Where do they study Kabbalah around here?!”
The man looked at me nonchalantly and said, “Turn left and drive toward the orchard. At the end of the street you’ll see a house across from it; that’s where they study Kabbalah.”
In that house by the orchard, I met my teacher, Rav Baruch Shalom HaLevi Ashlag (RABASH), the firstborn son and successor of Rav Yehuda Leib HaLevi Ashlag, the greatest kabbalist of the 20th century, who was known as Baal HaSulam (author of the Sulam) after his Sulam (Ladder) commentary on The Book of Zohar.
During the next twelve years, I served as RABASH’s personal assistant and became his prime disciple. I studied with him three hours in the morning and two hours in the evening with everyone else. I also studied with him while we were alone as I took him on his daily outings to the beach or to the park. I studied with him every other weekend when the two of us spent weekends in each other’s company, and I studied with him when he was hospitalized for a month on two occasions. I asked him all the questions that I could about spirituality, whether during lessons or while driving, or at any other opportunity. I asked him because I needed to know. I knew he was the last of the Mohicans, the final link in a lineage that goes back millennia, and I knew I would have to keep that teaching going. I recorded every lesson and took notes of his words. I absorbed from him everything I could, the outer and the inner meaning of the words, so I could pass them on when the time came.
After some years, when RABASH told me that I needed friends with whom to practice spiritual work, I brought him forty students. To them he started writing his priceless essays about one’s progress from a regular person to a kabbalist—who knows the innermost subtleties of human nature and one’s relationship with the Creator.
The essays of RABASH paved the way not only for his students, but for all of us, every single person. Now these essays are a lighthouse that shows the way to anyone who wants to achieve spirituality. They teach us how to relate to one another and how to relate to the feelings and states we discover within us along the way. RABASH, much like his father in his own way, was a pioneer, a trailblazer of endless courage, compassion, and love for humanity.
After his demise in 1991, people asked me to start teaching. RABASH had encouraged me to teach while I was still with him, so when people approached me I consented and formed a study group we called Bnei Baruch (sons of Baruch). Indeed, we aspired then and aspire now to merit the name and be my teacher’s spiritual children.
Today, as we commemorate the 29th anniversary of his passing, it is my hope that we will continue to merit the name Bnei Baruch, to walk in his path of love and unity, and to spread the authentic wisdom of Kabbalah throughout the world to every thirsty soul.
“And once I have acquired a clothing of love, sparks of love begin to shine within me, the heart begins to long to unite with my friends, and it seems to me that my eyes see my friends, my ears hear their voices, my mouth speaks to them, the hands embrace, and the feet dance in a circle, in love and joy together with them. And I transcend my corporeal boundaries and forget the vast distance between my friends and I … and it seems to me that there is no reality in the world except my friends and I. After that, even the ‘I’ is cancelled and immersed, mingled in my friends, until I stand and declare that there is no reality in the world but the friends” (RABASH, Letter No. 8).
The Times of Israel published my new article “The lesson that ignorance about the Holocaust should teach Us”
A survey that was recently quoted in USA Today found that almost “two-thirds of millennials, Gen Z, don’t know that 6 million Jews were killed in the Holocaust.” Worse yet, the survey found that “in New York … nearly 20% of millennials and Gen Zers incorrectly believe that Jews caused the Holocaust.”
It doesn’t matter what story we tell the world. Even if the facts are right, and in this case they are, the world evidently doesn’t listen. If organizations that profess to exist in order to commemorate the Holocaust are doing so poorly, then why do they exist at all?
The most telling data that I find in this survey is that in New York, nearly 20% believe that Jews themselves caused the Holocaust. It is an indication that education about Jews in the most “Jewish” city in America is totally off the mark.
We must tell the truth. If we hide the truth about Judaism, it will only intensify antisemitism, Jews will be blamed for the wrong things, and the end will be the same as in Germany.
And the truth is simple: Jews are different from all other nations. They have a huge moral debt to the world. They owe the world to be an example of uniting above hatred. Jews hate each other more than they hate their enemies. In fact, the majority of Jews don’t hate their enemies, but they sure hate one another.
But there is a good reason for it: Jews hate each other because their task is to be role models, an example of unity above hatred. This is the meaning of being “a light unto nations.” At the foot of Mt. Sinai, we inaugurated our nationhood when we vowed to unite “as one man with one heart.” Immediately after, we were told to shine the light of that unity to the nations. And in the final moments of our unity, when the Temple was already ruined, Rabbi Akiva bequeathed us with the ultimate motto of altruism, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” This should have been our legacy. But look where we are now.
Once we became a nation, we immediately started facing disputes. The more we united, the more the hatred grew. But that was the whole idea, or as The Book of Zohar (BeShalach) describes it, “All the wars in the Torah are peace and love.”
Finally, King Solomon formulated the way that Israel must work with hatred: “Hate will stir strife, and love will cover all crimes” (Prov. 10:12). But it wasn’t for our own benefit, but for the benefit of the world. The Book of Zohar articulated the impact of Israel’s efforts to connect on the world. In the portion Aharei Mot, The Zohar writes, “‘Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to also sit together.’ These are the friends as they sit together, and are not separated from one another. At first, they seem like people at war, wishing to kill one another … then they return to being in brotherly love. …And … as you were in fondness and love before, henceforth you will also not part from one another … and by your merit, there will be peace in the world.”
If we focus our efforts only on remembering the past, the future will bring us many more catastrophes to commemorate. People don’t care what happened to us. They are already saying “Hitler was right,” and “We will finish Hitler’s work.” And these are people who do know what happened there.
We should remember the past only in order to know what we must do in the present: to unite and be a role model of unity to the world. Our overt hatred for each other is the reason why antisemites blame us for causing wars. They have a gut feeling that it’s our fault, and even though they cannot rationalize it, they are basically correct because if we aren’t showing the way to unity, the world has no one else to pave the way to peace, so it blames the wars on us.
Here, for example, is a quote from a book written by one of the most notorious antisemites in Russia, certainly in his time. Vasily Shulgin was a senior member of the Duma, the Russian Parliament, before the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. In his book What We Don’t Like about Them, Shulgin analyzes his perception of the Jews and what he thinks they are doing wrong. He complains that “Jews in the 20th century have become very smart, effective, and vigorous at exploiting other people’s ideas.” But all of a sudden, he takes a sharp turn from the trite canard and declares, “[But] this is not an occupation for teachers and prophets, not the role of guides of the blind, not the role of carriers of the lame.”
The only way we can be teachers is by example, and the only example we can give is unity. As long as we hate one another, the world will hate us. If we rise above it, it will lift us on its shoulders. If we don’t, it will extinguish us.
My new article on San Diego Jewish World “Covid19, Jewish divisions: somber prospects for 5781”
PETACH TIKVAH, Israel — 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 anti-Semites 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 which puts in jeopardy the continuity of a vibrant Jewish life now and for generations to come. In 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 amplifying 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!
New Life 1142 – Integration For Peace
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Nitzah Mazoz
Global education for peace requires the daily practice of every citizen. First, we need to learn what peace actually is and how human egoism impacts it. Then we need to explore ourselves, our own limits, and our motivations. When we make efforts to unite, we discover the differences between us, and the way to rise above them all.
Smaller groups need to connect before integrating them with other groups to form larger, connected groups. When every detail is aimed at benefiting others through the realization of the method of connection, peaceful integration occurs.
From KabTV’s “New Life 1142 – Integration For Peace,” 7/23/19
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The Most Active Part of Society
Question: America was originally established for emigrants. The first Jewish settlers were the Sephardi. Already in the 20s of the 20th century about six thousand Jews lived in America. In a short time, they achieved full equality in rights. And the process of their assimilation and Americanization began.
Interestingly, the following phenomenon has been observed throughout history: Jews always become more American than Americans, more Russian than Russians, more Spanish than Spaniards. Why does this happen?
Answer: First, despite the fact that the Jews have their own religion, they practically did not have their own language. They came to America from all over the world. Some spoke Yiddish, some Arabic, etc. That is, there was no common base for everyone. Therefore, they could not have much contact with other groups of immigrants.
On the other hand, Jews were the most active part of society, which immediately began to settle in places, open their schools and other institutions necessary for the existence of their community. They very energetically set about to establish themselves as a people living in America and at the same time to develop various types of business.
Therefore, as the most active part of the population in any country, and even more so in America, they have shown themselves as pioneers in all spheres of activity of the new American society.
From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel” 11/18/19
The Future Of American Jews
Again About American Jews…
Could It Be That Pharaoh Was A Jew?
Remark: There are several Jewish wisdoms that are said to change the future of our children.
The first one: “’Experience’ is the word a person uses to call their own mistakes.”
My Comment: Yes. Experience has to come, be born, from one’s own mistakes. If there are no mistakes, there is no experience. It cannot be that a person reaches any correct conclusions if he did not make mistakes.
Question: Is it possible that a person does not make mistakes?
Answer: No. A person cannot do the correct thing if he has not made a mistake in it before.
Question: Does he have regrets that he made mistake?
Answer: It is this regret that produces a correct action.
Question: Do we pass this experience to our children?
Answer: You want to pass it to your children, but they must make mistakes.
Question: Will they have their own experience?
Answer: Of course.
Question: Does it mean that our experience will not help them?
Answer: There is no need. Each generation must make mistakes and come to the correct conclusion and thus move forward.
Remark: That is, everyone has absolutely their own experience. It is the experience of mistakes.
My Comment: Without this, you do not receive clear information, data, sensations, anything, if you did not experience it in all these situations.
Remark: Quote: “If you accidentally got angry, give the anger a chance to stay overnight—just keep quiet until morning.”
My Comment: From our life, we see that this is good. This is called “the one who shuts his mouth during the conflict with the other.”
Question: How can a person do that?
Answer: Through exercises.
Question: What happens in the morning? Will I not be as angry as I was before with this person?
Answer: No, on the contrary, maybe you will be grateful to him.
Remark: Quote: “There are two methods to rise above your neighbor: the first is to rise above yourself, and the second is to put down your neighbor. It is not advisable to use the second method. Rather than digging a pit for someone else, throw these forces at creating a hill for yourself.”
My Comment: It is always worthwhile to rise above yourself. You are growing in this way. Thus, there is no need to pay attention to the other, even from the egotistic point of view. Instead, rise above yourself to some new, more perfect state.
Question: Is it possible to rise above myself at all?
Answer: Of course, every minute.
Remark: Usually, we do something very different, we put down the other.
My Comment: You use the other in order to rise above yourself by accepting his point of view.
Question: Is this called that I annul myself?
Answer: I annul my previous self in order to make an upper one out of myself.
Question: This quote has an interesting ending. It says that if you use the second method, that is, put down the other, you are building a hill for yourself. Does it mean a grave mound?
Answer: Of course.
Question: In other words, if you put down the other, is this in fact your death?
Answer: Yes. On the contrary, rise above others, use this opportunity. Use the other, his criticism, his attitude toward you, let go of yourself, bend down, and then you will rise above yourself.
Remark: Quote: “Do not be too sweet or they will eat you up. Do not be too bitter or they will spit you out.”
My Comment: I say what I think is right. This is what I have “on a platter,” as they say, this is what I give you. You choose: is this sweet or bitter for you, or you can throw it away altogether. Let people see that this is who I am.
Question: What about the fact that people want to see you sweet and you are bitter? A person needs to follow somebody. They are looking for someone to follow.
Answer: Well, it is not necessary to follow me. In any case, I am like this, I will not change! I believe that what I say anyone can understand.
Whether he agrees or not is up to him but at least he will understand. I speak my opinion, I do not alter myself to his opinion so that he will listen to me or respect me and make sure that he is right. I do not do that.
From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman” 6/22/20
Work On The Mistakes
For The Benefit Of Others
An Example Of A Happy Life
Round Table: The Obligation to Listen to Others
Question: An important point in the round table methodology is the obligation to listen to others. Why is this so important?
Answer: How can we come to a common opinion if we do not compare ourselves to others and others to ourselves?
It is very difficult to listen carefully to another person. But this does not mean to always take it critically and try to check what it is suitable for you and what it is not.
Listening means disconnecting from yourself, making a copy of yourself the way you are today, and starting to perceive the other within yourself, as if entering him, and then comparing. This is a very long process. One minute is not enough here.
Listening to the other, I enter into him, get used to him. I need to feel what he feels, why he thinks this way, why he solves this problem in his own way and not the way I do.
Question: It’s a lot of stress to listen to someone. There must be some motivation for this. Let’s say that if a person brings me useful information, I am ready to listen to him. But this is not always the case. What can motivate me to listen to someone else, especially if I don’t agree with him?
Answer: You want to come to the right solution to the problem. This is the most important thing for you, more important than whether you agree with him or not or who is right or wrong. You must find the right solution to the problem, regardless of its source.
From KabTV’s “Management Skills” 7/9/20
Guide For Round Tables, Part 6
Guide For Round Tables, Part 5
Guide For Round Tables, Part 4
Preparation to the Lesson
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Lesson on the Topic of “Memorial Day for Rav Baruch Shalom HaLevi Ashlag (Rabash)”
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