Listen to an Audio Version of the Blog
Listen to an Audio Version of the Blog
One should be careful that the desire to receive is corrected by the intention to bestow so that the pleasure and joy revealed in the desire to receive would be with the intention of giving pleasure to the Creator by the fact that one is experiencing pleasure.
The Creator’s goal is to give His creations pleasure. Therefore, one must consider the fact that by experiencing pleasure he will give pleasure to the Creator. Thus, he strives to be in the power of the Creator, to be able to enjoy with the Creator, which will bring Him contentment.
By changing our desire, we change the feelings. I should feel joy at having received a feeling from the Creator, no matter which, even the worst. With the help of the group, I can rise above it and begin to change my attitude to what is happening. “My sons have defeated Me.”
The Creator always gives me certain desires; each moment is a new world, a new state. Every second I strive to become closer to the Creator, more giving, more connected to my friends and through them to the Creator, where we turn into one man wanting to adhere to the Creator.
A person able to control his desire partially or completely is a Kabbalist. He receives a desire from the Creator and asks for the power to change this desire. He can always change the world in which he lives, the reality, from the very bottom of the spiritual ladder to the top.
By working together on our nature we accumulate efforts between us and try to adhere to each other. Everyone wants to adapt themselves to others, treat each other with love, so we build a mini-system of the Creator between us, a system of devoted connections and later of love.
The connection begins with unfounded hatred. From there one must come to brotherly love, as one person with one heart. We must assemble the system of the common soul and achieve full interconnection where everyone seeks only to fulfill others. This is how the common soul works.
We need to learn not to depend on emotions but to follow reason, that is, to engage in the science of Kabbalah, the science of connection. As various feelings arise in us from plus to minus, the main thing is to try to advance above all these emotions to complete unity called love.
Our task is to be between the plus and the minus, between the egoistic nature made by the Creator (the evil inclination, corrupt beginning) and the upper light that we attract by our efforts (good beginning). We exist between the evil and the good beginnings, and do our work.
The difficulty of caring not for myself but only for the Creator is in feeling that I leave the whole world, but in return do not feel the Creator. If I were to feel the Creator, I would be ready to leave everything to connect with Him. Therefore, the main thing is to achieve the feeling that the Creator fills the whole world.
The revelation of the Creator manifests itself from His alternating concealments and revelations in order to discover that there is no other authority besides Him. There is no space free from Him. I am a black dot from which this can be revealed. This state is called adhesion, the goal of development.
From Twitter, 12/1/20
There is a phenomenon that after many years of studying the wisdom of Kabbalah, a person suddenly discovers that he has lost all the desire for spirituality, all motivation, the entire urge that he had before, and he does not know where to get strength from. He does not even have the strength to ask the Creator to give him strength to yearn for spirituality.
And besides, he should take care of having the power to overcome his desire to receive pleasure and use it for the sake of bestowal. Therefore, the work proceeds in two stages that alternate with each other.
Sometimes I fight my desire to receive pleasure in order to overcome it and perform actions of bestowal. And sometimes I fight for the very desire for spirituality because it disappears, I become as if dead in relation to the spiritual, and I do not want to either ask or receive help.
We have to work on both of these states, and this is called digging the wells of Isaac. Inside the desire to receive pleasure, which is called earth, wells must be dug, symbols of the feeling of lack, the desire to achieve spirituality after which these wells will be filled with water, the waters of the Torah, the light of Hassadim.
I am digging a well because I want to acquire the desire for spirituality, the desire to attain the Creator and merge with Him, the need for bestowal. There is a simple land before me, and I want to turn it into a spiritual field. Therefore, I perform actions within the egoistic desire, I want to unearth it and open the voids in it in order to reach heaven, the spiritual world, from this earth. This is the work of Isaac.
I dig my desire to receive pleasure in order to understand how to use it for actions of bestowal, for love of friends, and through them love, for the Creator. I want to extract from this desire the desire for bestowal, love, unity. We have no other material than this, and it must be brought to correction.
First, I dig a hole in my will to enjoy, the desire to work with my desire for the sake of bestowal. And then this hole is filled with water and becomes a well, which allows me to work properly with the earth, with a common desire.
If we want to build a house, then first we need to dig a hole for the foundation. And the same thing happens in spirituality; you need to dig in the ground, that is, in the heart, and clean out all the dust from there. It means to extract all egoistic intentions from your desires. And then you can start building in this place, that is, add intention to the desire for the sake of bestowal and erect a building. When the heart remains empty without any filling, then the time for building comes.
Man must from his desire for his own sake extract intention. The Creator deliberately placed egoistic intentions into our desire, as if driving construction piles. And we need to pull them out and fill the remaining holes with water to make a well. We will get fertile land and can build on it.
The desire remains the desire to receive pleasure, and our job is to replace the egoistic intention in it with bestowal. If there is an intention for the sake of bestowal, then one can already use the desire and construct buildings from it, the steps of bestowal, our forms similar to the Creator.
It is possible to separate the egoistic intention from the desire only through the group, uniting with friends. Alone, it is impossible to change the intention or even come close to it.
We unite and dig our common desire together, like building a house on stilts together, the wells are dug, filled with concrete, and a house is erected on these columns.
We find that all our intentions are egoistic, for our own sake. And so we want to dig them out of the ground, out of our desires, and put intentions in their place for the sake of bestowal.
There are many stories In the Torah related to wells. It tells of how Abraham opened wells in the desert near Beer Sheva, then about the wells of Isaac. The meeting with the future bride also takes place at the well. The hero drives away villains from the well, removes a heavy stone from it, and gives water to everyone.
This symbolizes a person who, due to acquired intentions for the sake of bestowal, can move a stone (heart of stone) that clogs the well, and then everyone can enjoy the water in the well.
So, the Torah speaks about working in one line and in three lines, about different spiritual levels, but this always happens by a well filled with water.
A well filled with water, that is, with the light of Hassadim, turns into a well with living water. The light of Hassadim can give strength to the earth and grow crops.
To dig a well means to receive the intention for the sake of bestowal within a corrupted desire, which is simply called earth. We need to find a place where the well should be. Feel the lack and start digging the ground until this groove in the ground begins to fill with water, the properties of Bina, that is, with our aspirations to work not for ourselves but for the sake of bestowal.
When the intention for giving fills this whole hole within the desire to enjoy, then we can use this water to irrigate the earth and revive crops, to water animals—donkeys, camels, or people—and gradually come to corrections. Digging wells is the beginning of spiritual work.
From the Daily Kabbalah 11/21/20, weekly chapter “Toldot“
Striving for equality is a characteristic of all of nature: the inanimate, vegetative, animate, and people. All of them strive to achieve equality. This is how a common force acts to lead us to absolute unity.
We exist within this field, but we need to feel nature, the whole desire to receive pleasure, and the network of our connections together with the Creator, who dresses in it and is revealed there.
Therefore, equality cannot be established from above. Equality is already the result of correction when we have all the data obtained from the feeling of a common connection and the forces acting between us. And this will happen soon.
Baal HaSulam describes the laws of nature in a corrected society when the forces of nature dress in the matter of this world. Light comes from above and dresses in all the desires, even the most material ones. While this may seem unrealistic, a Kabbalist clearly sees this future state and is not afraid to tell us about it.
Baal HaSulam writes that one cannot perform any material actions until we are able to perform them in an internal, spiritual, soul form, within the desire. If you can fulfill this in your desire, then you can act with your hands but not vice versa. Otherwise, we will begin to build Communism on the Soviet model or kibbutzim.
First, it is necessary to educate a person in love for one’s neighbor as for oneself. According to the steps that we reach in relations between people, it is possible to build a society that supports this. But the whole construction goes from the inside out.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/26/20, “Connecting the World in the Last Generation”
We do not enter the upper world, we build it. It does not exist ready-made. The only thing that is ready for us are the conditions for us to make it. We build the spiritual world out of our will to receive by making a restriction, screen, and reflected light on it. With this reflected light we build the upper world.
The higher our reflected light rises up the degrees, the better we will be able to portray what the upper world is. Before that, it does not exist. Everything exists only in our desire: either for the sake of reception or for the sake of bestowal. Beyond that, there is our upper source that we cannot say a single word about because it does not exist in our desires and intentions.
What is revealed in our desires and intentions is called the Creator (Bo-Re)—come and see. We build the upper world out of our desires that aspire to mutual bestowal to each other. And this is called “soul.”
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/25/20, “Work With Faith Above Reason”
Where is the guarantee that in the society of the future leaders will not take more for themselves than everyone is entitled to and will not destroy all good initiatives like it happened in the Soviet Union?
The future society is an open society in which there is no coercion, no dictatorship from above. Everything is managed only by friends. Therefore it is not possible that the same thing would happen as it did in Russia.
Kabbalists, who understand the processes taking place in society and are credible in the eyes of society, will be at the head of it.
The society of the future will strive to establish the same standard of living for everyone. There is no fear that one will work hard and the other will be lazy. Everyone will work as much as they can give to society and will find the right role for themselves.
In such a society, there will be no need to force people to work because a person will see that by investing in society, he is investing in the upper, future world, in the correction of his soul. Therefore, he will not need encouragement or punishment—he will welcome any opportunity to benefit society, feeling that this benefits himself personally. For him, there will be no difference between him and society.
The goal of the corrected society is to “love your neighbor as yourself.”
There will be no money in the future world, so then how can we measure how much effort a person has invested in society? How can we check this? We will reach a state where we will all feel ourselves inside a common system that connects us, and within it, we will see how much each of us has invested. And accordingly, we will help everyone become even more involved in society in order to rise with it.
Gradually, the system of connections between us, called the Shechina, will be revealed to all of us, and we will need to raise it to the heavens.
Such a society will be built entirely on bestowal, and reception in it will exist only in order to be able to live and bestow. A person will perceive an opportunity to bestow as a reward.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/26/20, “Connecting the World in the Last Generation”
My new article on Linkedin “At the Mall Today, in the Morgue Tomorrow”
Corona deniers abound in every country. You can see them demonstrating against government initiated lockdowns, walking around maskless, bragging about their carelessness and indifference to the harm they can inflict on others by infecting them, and packing public places as if it’s 2019. So what if more than a quarter of a million Americans died and countless others suffer from post corona complications that no one can explain, heal, or say how long they’ll last? So what if my “freedom of expression” jeopardizes someone else’s life? In a free country, I’m free to do what I want, right?
Wrong. We’re free to do what we want as long as it doesn’t inflict harm on others. When it comes to Covid-19, irresponsible behavior in public doesn’t fall into that category; it risks other people’s health, and possibly their lives.
I would like to suggest an idea to authorities that wish to contain the plague: Start a campaign and title it, “At the Mall Today, in the Morgue Tomorrow.” Take security camera footage of people in public places, how they have fun and hang out with each other carelessly, how they disregard safety precautions, don’t wear masks, don’t keep the required distance, and don’t avoid contact. Two weeks later, go over these data and cross-check them against registrations of new confirmed Covid cases. I’m sure the results, despite all the privacy laws protecting personal data, will show sufficient evidence that Covid is very real and people do suffer the consequences of their actions.
There is no intention to revenge inconsiderate behavior, but simply to prove that the danger is real. This act, as cold as it may seem, may save numerous lives by exposing the truth that so many people are trying to deny: Covid is real, and it is here!
Once people realize that there really is a problem, that the 270,000 odd Covid deaths were real people who are not with us anymore, they will be more open to contemplate ways to resolve the situation. This is when we need to start talking about mutual responsibility, solidarity, interdependence, and all those beautiful and true ideas that seem so insubstantial to people until interdependence hits them in the face because they or someone they love was infected by a careless person.
We need to realize, and start acting accordingly, that there is one basic rule to all of nature: All beings are one system, one entity. Just as there is no such thing as one organ being sick but the rest of the body is healthy, there is no such thing as one person being sick and the rest of humanity is healthy. A sickness anywhere is a sickness everywhere. The fact that we don’t feel it doesn’t mean it’s not true; it means that our senses are flawed, that we are sick with alienation, and that in order to heal the rest of our illnesses, we must first heal the condition of alienation.
If we work on this together, we can change reality. We can learn to feel each other, feel our connectedness and our mutual dependence. We can discover the benefits of mutual responsibility and solidarity, but first we must make a joint commitment to do it. When we are sick of isolation and loneliness, we will be able to heal ourselves from our senseless pride and start connecting. When we are sick of alienation, we will be able to see that alienation is our real sickness.
My new article “The Fountain of Eternal Youth” appeared in Medium.
Throughout centuries, countless methods and treatments have been created that claim to stop or diminish the aging process, as people experience deep physiological, psychological, and social changes associated with growing older. Israeli scientists claim to have found the secret to looking and staying younger forever. Even if that turns out to be possible, it means nothing without exploring the subject from a deeper level, one that answers the most important question of all, “What do I live for?”
Scientific research from Tel Aviv University and Shamir Medical Center in Israel placed a group of healthy 64 year-old people in hyperbaric chambers and supplied them with sessions of high levels of oxygen for three months. Scientists responsible for the experiment claim that the therapy delayed the aging process, “reversed” it, and transformed those individuals’ performance to levels similar to people 25 years younger.
Aging scares and troubles most of humanity. Since the natural aging process relentlessly brings a person closer and closer to the end of life and to the unknown, it can also involve anguish. Old age and death are not necessarily a pleasant thing, but everything that happens in nature has a definite purpose and benefit that we may not realize. So it would be ill-advised to run to tamper with or change any natural state.
It is far wiser for us to go hand in hand with the natural aging process and learn to adjust comfortably to our situation, instead of artificially fighting the natural phenomena of getting older. People age; it happens naturally. The question is whether we as a society behave properly with people throughout the entire lifecycle process. We must scrutinize, “Are the elderly busy and feel that society needs them?” Indeed, a healthy society should consider their contributions as important!
If I did not have my daily teaching schedule, I would happily go out and clean the street. I would gather friends who live in my neighborhood and offer them to clean with me around the buildings. Why not? It’s healthy to move outside, breath fresh air, make a physical effort and in the process be in the company of others. Upon finishing this joint activity I would sit down together with my friends on the neighborhood’s bench and drink coffee. Any self-respecting community leader can offer such a social enterprise and many others to its elderly residents. Our senior citizens have a lifetime of experience and wisdom to share as mentors and help those just beginning their path.
And if the example of cleaning seems to someone as not worthy or dignifying, the problem is within the person himself. It is important to train all members of society to take care of the environment and serve the community. From this principle it is clearer that society must be properly educated in order to respect and appreciate old age, to give it a place, to devote thought to it. Society’s right attitude should be to discover how much it needs its senior citizens. Ask the children, they understand this well because this premise is naturally built in them.
Grandparents, parents, and children should maintain bonds of connection that flow from generation to generation, giving birth to a spirit of youth within the elderly among the family. The elderly already understand that one should accept life as it comes and have learned how to strive to be above all worries and project such attitudes to grandchildren. The youngest ones receive so many invaluable gifts from grandparents, an example of love that is unconditional, simple warmth without calculations.
In a nutshell, aging should not be a scary prospect. Instead of thinking that we have nothing else to contribute, the golden years should open a plethora of opportunities for new attainment when we realize that the most important aspect of a rich and meaningful life is found in human connection. Precisely the questions: “What is the meaning of life” and “Why do I live” are the gateways to a boundlessly better world.
With the knowledge that the answers to those questions can be found in our human relations, in our connection, and in actions that have lasting benefit to others, we transcend our corporeal life. We understand that there is a colossal mechanism surrounding our life and our world that surpasses existence in our temporary physical body. This reckoning prepares us in great depth to enter the wide, eternal world, a higher level of existence beyond the limits of time and space.
My new article on Linkedin “He Who Comes to Kill You, Kill Him First”
Our sages wrote, “He who comes to kill you, kill him first” (Midrash Rabbah, 21:4), and “If one comes to kill you, kill him first” (Midrash Tanchum, Pinhas, Chapter 3). A few days ago, the top Iranian nuclear scientist, Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, considered the mastermind of Iran’s nuclear program, died after his car was apparently ambushed in a district east of Tehran. Although most fingers point to Israel, I wouldn’t rule out the possibility that this is a feat of American forces. Either way, I am wholly in favor of it. A person who dedicates his life to the destruction of others should be eliminated. This is not only Jewish ancient law, as just stated, it is the reasonable thing to do in the eyes of every sensible person. Fakhrizadeh devoted his life to developing an atom bomb that would destroy the state of Israel and kill its people. This makes his killing a classic act of self-defense.
There are reports of some Jewish organizations that denounced his killing. Even if their words are mere groveling to powerful anti-Israel forces whom they wish to placate and propitiate, such a position proves that they have no wish for the existence of the State of Israel.
A decision to take someone’s life, even if he is your worst enemy, does not come easy. It requires months, if not years of deliberation and weighing of all the options. But once it is clear that only eliminating that person will stop the progress of a plan for genocide, even if only temporarily, it becomes justified to kill him and disrupt the ploy.
In the case of Iran, it is obvious that its goal is to use nuclear weapons to destroy Israel. It is also obvious that they do not have any plans to arrest or slow down their efforts to build such weapons. Therefore, eliminating the Iranian chief nuclear scientist is a wise and required move.
In fact, even considering the possible Iranian response, such as attacks on embassies or using its proxies in the Middle-East to attack Israel, I have no doubt that the costs were calculated and the right conclusions were drawn.
It is true that Israel is in danger now, but when has it not been, when Fakhrizadeh was alive? Israel has been in danger since the first Hebrews left Babylon following Abraham and decided to build a new nation on the basis of love of others, opposite from the rest of the world.
The latest incident does not change anything in the big picture. All it does is buy Israel time to get a grip on its role in the world: unite its ranks and set a model of solidarity above disputes.
If the people of Israel unite among themselves above all their differences, they will become the role model that the world desperately needs. This is the only circumstance in which the nations will consider Israel’s existence as legitimate, and even desirable. Internal solidarity and mutual responsibility are the only cures to the hatred against us. They are our only true defense against nuclear bombs, as they will neutralize the hatred that creates them.
But until we wise up and rise above our hatred, targeted operations are required in order to give us more time to complete our task. The only questions are how much time can we buy, and how much longer can we take until we wise up and do what we were intended to do in the world.
Question: It is widely believed that if you don’t love yourself, no one will love you. A slightly less discussed opinion is to love others, you need to love yourself. And even less discussed, but perhaps more valuable: to love yourself, you must first love others.
How to love yourself?
Answer: There is only one way out: try to do to people what they want or what is really important to them. Show people how to find happiness. This will be your happiness and the happiness of all; a person cannot disconnect himself from others. It is necessary to make sure that by showing or drawing people to happiness, you see your happiness in it.
Question: That is, literally to love others regardless of yourself?
Answer: Yes. From this you will understand that this is self-love.
From KabTV’s “Kabbalah Express” 11/6/20