Audio Version Of The Blog – 4/29/21

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“Why Preserve Earth?” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “Why Preserve Earth?

As the climate crisis escalates and extreme weather is growing increasingly frequent, experts are seriously pondering how close we are to the point of no return. CBS News reported on April 26 that according to Professor Timothy Lenton, a global leader on the climate crisis, “the West Antarctic ice sheet may have already passed a tipping point.” CBS News also spoke to other experts and reported that “their message was unanimous: Changes are happening faster than what was expected and the chance of hitting tipping points in the climate system, which just a decade ago appeared remote and far off, now seems much more likely and more immediate. ‘This is why I have been raising the alarm,’ Lenton said. ‘In just a decade the risk level has gone up markedly — that should be triggering urgent action.’”

Over the past several decades, we’ve tried countless tactics and ploys to curb emissions, decrease pollution, and diminish our exploitation of the planet. None of them worked. Moreover, we are not only exploiting our planet, we are exploiting all of life on the planet, and we are exploiting each other. The mistreatment of others that characterizes us is evident on all fronts, which means that the problem is far more systemic and deeply rooted than switching to renewable energy, for example, or curbing deforestation.

In my view, however, the question is not whether or not we hit, or are close to hitting the tipping point. I believe that the question we should ask is not whether Earth is doomed and we’re doomed with it, but rather why are we here in the first place. The universe we live in has been around for fourteen billion years or so. Earth has existed for approximately 4.5 billion years, and life on Earth began a few hundred million years after Earth was formed. We have evolved from atoms into molecules, from molecules into unicellular creatures, and from unicellular creatures to the countless forms of life on Earth in the water, on land, and in the sky. Finally, in the last few hundred thousand years, humankind has emerged. Gradually, we have become the rulers of the planet, exploiting its soil, flora, and fauna, polluting the air, the soil, and the water, and depleting Earth’s resources as fast as we can in order to gain power and wealth. Is this why we are here, to do all this harm? Perhaps, if we knew the answer, we wouldn’t be doing the inconceivable damage we are inflicting on the planet every second. The question of our purpose in being here is therefore the key question we must answer. If we know the answer to it, we will resolve all our problems and save the planet.

Over the past several decades, we’ve tried countless tactics and ploys to curb emissions, decrease pollution, and diminish our exploitation of the planet. None of them worked. Moreover, we are not only exploiting our planet, we are exploiting all of life on the planet, and we are exploiting each other. The mistreatment of others that characterizes us is evident on all fronts, which means that the problem is far more systemic and deeply rooted than switching to renewable energy, for example, or curbing deforestation. The problem that causes all our plights is us, or more accurately our nature—human nature. Unlike any other being on this planet, we are exploitative, mean, and abusive to each other, to all living creatures, and to the planet we call home. In fact, we are so heartless that we cannot restrain our greed even when we know that our doing will ruin the future of our children and grandchildren. Instead of a home to live in, we are handing down to them a planet-size pile of trash. What good parent would do that? None, of course, but we are not good parents.

Yet, not all is lost. In the first lockdown that was imposed nearly all over the world at the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak, multiple examples of nature’s resilience from around the world proved that Earth is much stronger than we thought, and can recover even from prolonged human exploitation. Therefore, if we solve our one problem, human nature, the rest of nature will quickly recover and planetary balance will be restored.

Changing human nature may seem impossible, at first, like pulling oneself out of a swamp by one’s own hair. However, we can learn from nature how to do that. In nature, things change according to their environment. Adaptability is key to the survival of any species. If we create an environment of friendliness, mutual responsibility, and caring, our nature will adapt to its environment and will become likewise. We needn’t change ourselves, but only our superficial behavior. Then, if all of society behaves kindly, people will become genuinely kind. Just as living in a cruel environment forces everyone who lives there to be cruel, even if they are not cruel by nature, the opposite is just as true.

Once we make our social environment friendly and considerate, our nature will become friendly and considerate. Once we become friendly and considerate, we will stop being exploitative. Once we stop being exploitative, we will stop abusing each other, other living beings, and the planet as a whole. It turns out that to save ourselves and our planet, our sole focus should be on changing our social environment from hostile to friendly, from abusive to considerate. Everything else will quickly follow.

Moreover, transcoding our inherent nature will reveal to us realms we cannot conceive right now. As long as we are concentrated only on ourselves, all we see is ourselves. But the purpose of our being here is to grow far beyond ourselves, to grasp all of reality, to understand on the deepest level why we exist, why there are life and death, creation and destruction, and how everything is connected. Only if we start thinking of each other will we stop thinking of ourselves, and only if we stop thinking of ourselves will we start perceiving the world around us as it truly is. This is why the one question we should ask in order to secure our lives, the well-being of the planet, and even our happiness is “Why are we here?”
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“What We Can (Or Can’t) Learn From Whales” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “What We Can (or Can’t) Learn from Whales

Many years ago, when I was a university student at the Medical Academy in Leningrad (today’s St. Petersburg), there was a special project that the academy conducted in the Black Sea. It had to do with communicating with dolphins and trying to learn their language. The project didn’t amount to much, and the lesson was learned.

We must focus our communication efforts on our own relations, on creating healthy, balanced, and considerate relationships among us. This will help us, and will help the whales, much more than learning the meaning of whale-sound A compared to whale-sound B. It is ourselves we need to study and correct, not them!

A few days ago, a student told me that a project is underway in Israel to try to learn the language of the whales using high-tech equipment, linguistics, and Artificial Intelligence. He asked me what I thought about it. I told him about the experiment in Leningrad and concluded that it, too, would not amount to much.

If we want to learn from nature, it is not in order to communicate with animals, but in order to understand the matrix of nature, how it operates, to understand the secrets of creation and the mechanism of the creative force that makes it. I realize that it’s impressive to see how whales communicate, but then what? Where does it lead us? Will it teach us how to communicate with one another? No, it won’t. And if we cannot communicate with one another, what good does it do us to see how well other species communicate?

We must focus our communication efforts on our own relations, on creating healthy, balanced, and considerate relationships among us. This will help us, and will help the whales, much more than learning the meaning of whale-sound A compared to whale-sound B. It is ourselves we need to study and correct, not them!

All of nature is already operating according to the law of balance, where life and death, growth and decay, giving and taking are balanced and mutually supportive. Only humans seek only to take, take, take, and give nothing in return. And because we are the only being that’s egocentric and destructive in all of creation, it is so vitally important that we focus on our own communication, our own relationships with one another, that we learn to care about each other!

Once we learn this, we will also understand all of creation, how to communicate with other species, and how to support the thriving of all life on Earth. If we look up, to our higher selves, to being connected heart-to-heart with all the people, we will be able to contribute to all other species, and our existence here on Earth will have a meaning and purpose, and will benefit all creations.

“What Are Individual Consciousness And Collective Consciousness, And How Are They Different From Each Other?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: What are individual consciousness and collective consciousness, and how are they different from each other?

According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, defining individual consciousness and collective consciousness depends on transforming our inborn natural qualities into a new mode of perceiving reality.

Those who transform their perception of reality into one that is above the inborn egoistic mode of perception, where we want to enjoy for self-benefit alone, perceive reality as a single force of love and bestowal that connects all parts of reality.

Those who do not transform their perception of reality into one that is above the ego, instead perceive reality through much more limited self-serving filters.

Reality thus becomes modeled in us according to our desires and their transformation, or lack of.

There is a major difference between the two modes of perception, and the wisdom of Kabbalah is unique in that it describes the need, the process and the method for transforming our qualities in order to shift from one mode of perception to the other.

Based on KabTV’s “Meetings with Kabbalah” with Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman on March 29, 2019.
Written/edited by students of Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman.

“The Secret Of The Book Of Zohar” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “The Secret of The Book of Zohar

This Thursday evening, we will celebrate LAG ba Omer, the 33rd day of the Omer count, which begins the day after Passover and ends forty-nine days later, on the eve of the holiday of Shavuot. The 33rd day is very meaningful for several reasons, but one in particular captivates millions around the world: On that day, nineteen centuries ago, was the conclusion of the writing of The Book of Zohar, the seminal book in the wisdom of Kabbalah.

When Rashbi and his ten completed writing the book, they realized that humanity was not ready for it. In order to use this book of love correctly, humanity needed to feel how deeply it is immersed in hate. At that time, even though they themselves were in constant flight from the Romans, who wished to kill them, they knew that as a whole, the world had not revealed how hateful human nature really is. As a result, in yet another selfless act, they concealed the book that they had written so arduously.

There is a good reason why this day is celebrated as a great day for humankind: The Book of Zohar was written in a special way and for a special purpose. It was concealed for a reason and was later revealed for just that reason. And these days, we are living out this reason.

Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai (Rashbi) was a great kabbalist. He attained the highest degrees of spirituality and his name is mentioned countless times in the Mishnah and the Gemarah, the fundamental books in Judaism. However, Rashbi’s uniqueness is not in his superior spiritual attainment, but in his relentless efforts to share it with humankind. The spiritual world is the complete opposite of ours. While our world is based on egoism and destructive competition, the spiritual world is the negative image of ours, consisting of pure love and giving. This is why The Book of Zohar stresses, “Everything stands on love” (VaEtchanan, Item 146).

The basic unit in the spiritual world consists of ten subunits. These subunits are unique, and often contradicting expressions of love and giving, which complement each other to form a strong and stable structure called Partzuf. These subunits of love are called Sefirot, from the Hebrew word sapir [sapphire], which unite into the basic spiritual unit, called Partzuf. Subsequently, Partzufim [pl. for Partzuf] join together and build the entire spiritual world. Because the Sefirot are expressions of love and giving, and they form all that exists in spirituality, the entire spiritual world is one of love.

Because our world consists of pure egoism, or as the book of Genesis tells us, “The inclination of a man’s heart is evil from his youth” (Gen. 8:21), we are completely disconnected from the spiritual world. In fact, we’re so opposite from it that we cannot grasp it with our senses.

But Rashbi, who dedicated his life to connecting humanity with this world of love, had found a way to bridge the chasm. Together with his son, he assembled eight keen disciples who were willing to dedicate themselves to this noble task as he was, and together, the ten of them formed a semblance of a spiritual Partzuf, which, as just said, also consists of ten Sefirot.

But the process was not easy. Rashbi and his disciples were human, and therefore inherently selfish. Forming a ten did not make them a spiritual Partzuf. They had to overcome their egoism in order to become similar to a spiritual Partzuf, which was a long and gradual process. But as they learned to become more spiritual, loving, they put their experiences down in writing, and thus wrote The Book of Zohar.

No one had done this before them, and no one has done it since. Bit by bit, they opened up their own egoism, prevailed over it, and wrote about it in allegories and in the language of Kabbalah. At the end of their spiritual journey, they had transformed their nature entirely from hatred to love, and shared it all with us in this magnificent book. This is why The Book of Zohar is so important to humankind, especially today, when hatred is overtaking every aspect of our lives.

In the portion Aharei Mot, Rashbi’s ten gave us a glimpse into the process of feeling the hatred and transforming it to love that they had experienced. They wrote, “‘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 each other. At first, they seem like people at war, wishing to kill one another. Then they return to being in brotherly love.”

But Rashbi’s ten did not stop there; they also shared why they made all those efforts. In their words, “And you, the friends who are here, as you were in fondness and love before, henceforth you will also not part … and by your merit there will be peace in the world, as it is written, ‘For the sake of my brothers and my friends let me say, ‘Let peace be in you.’’” Indeed, they wrote The Book of Zohar not for themselves, but for the rest of the world to find peace and love.

However, when Rashbi and his ten completed writing the book, they realized that humanity was not ready for it. In order to use this book of love correctly, humanity needed to feel how deeply it is immersed in hate. At that time, even though they themselves were in constant flight from the Romans, who wished to kill them, they knew that as a whole, the world had not revealed how hateful human nature really is. As a result, in yet another selfless act, they concealed the book that they had written so arduously.

Over the centuries, humanity has revealed deeper and deeper layers of its nature, that indeed, it is all evil. When enough evil was revealed, The Book of Zohar was revealed once more. However, it was still not time for everyone to get to know it and be able to use it for its purpose: transforming hate to love.

Only now, since the end of the 20th century, our acknowledgement of our nature is sufficient for us to truly need this book of love and giving. This is why the greatest kabbalist in modern times, Rav Yehuda Ashlag, wrote the complete Sulam [ladder] commentary on The Book of Zohar, which explains every word in it, so we can all benefit from it and be able to transform ourselves the way Rashbi’s disciples did back when they wrote it.

Indeed, LAG ba Omer marks a very significant day in the history of humankind, when a rope was thrown to humanity to pull it out of the quagmire of hatred and into the pool of love that is the spiritual world.
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Names Of The Creator—The Measure Of Spiritual Ascent

95Question: What should one do if, for example: for you, the Creator is good, but for me, He is terrible. Does it mean that the Creator is totally different for us?

Answer: Of course. The Creator is different for each person and at every single moment.

Kabbalah explains this very simply: the upper light is at absolute rest. There are no changes in it, but it pressures the whole creation, and each element of creation calls the Creator by different names.

What is more, we do not randomly call the Creator the good that does good, evil, stubborn, or whatever names we may give Him. They simply indicate the way we perceive Him. That is, it is necessary to make corrections here.

The Creator is the absolute. If I feel that He is evil, it means that I have evil properties.

Therefore, I interpret all His positive impacts on me as evil. On the other hand, if I resemble the Creator, I feel His impact on me as good. It all depends on the extent to which I resemble the Creator.

Thus, the names of the Creator express the degree of my spiritual attainment, my spiritual compatibility with the Creator. The more I advance and the more I ascend to the Creator and resemble Him more and more, I speak of Him in a more positive way.

We can depict this as a scale on which there is a 100% compatibility with the Creator (plus), a 100% incompatibility with the Creator (minus), and in the middle, there is the neutral state (zero). Depending on where

I am on this scale, my properties are either more opposite or more similar to the Creator.
Usually, we are born and start our path in a neutral state: a little down, a little up, a little down, a little up, and so on.

Question: So, you want to say that from “the good that does good” I can come to “the evil and most terrible”? Can there be such an amplitude from the most negative perception of the Creator to the most positive perception?

Answer: This is the only amplitude there can be. Before I ascend to the level of complete correction, I am at the complete opposite level. Life is full of surprises.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah” 2/24/19

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Break The Vicious Circle

220Humanity in its development has advanced to the current level and now begins to understand that everything that society imposes on us, in principle, is to our detriment. We litter the environment, kill our life, disconnect from the family, from our children.

Instead of working a few hours a day and getting only the necessities of life, a person works twelve hours a day. For what? Only to produce what is considered valuable by society, otherwise, he will not respect himself, how he will look at his neighbors, and how his children will look at him.

It turns out that it is a vicious cycle created by us, which makes us much more unhappy than animals.

Question: A person is a desire to enjoy, he is drawn to what, as it seems to him, makes sense. He runs after some wrappings and thinks that in this he will find something, but in the end he finds nothing. What, in principle, is he to blame? And what is it all for?

Answer: So that we are disappointed in our natural, thoughtless, selfish development, and see how all this leads us to complete destruction. Look what families, children, and homes are now! All the most ordinary, natural, healthy, and normal suddenly disappears somewhere, distorts, and breaks. We cannot enjoy even such simple things.

We have invented all sorts of values and standards for ourselves, and we chase them. And as a result, we get depressed, which today is the first problem in the world, and we use drugs, otherwise we will not be able to keep up with this pace or this life in which I hate everyone, including myself.

Everyone needs a personal psychologist. Children at the age of twelve or thirteen leave home, break away from their parents. Where are they, what’s wrong with them?

Now a generation is growing that cannot get anything from us. We have nothing to give them. Baby animals are always raised by their parents. In this respect, we are the same animals. Who will bring up our children? What skills will they be able to acquire on their own? Imagine what kind of suffering they will have to go through in life before they find the correct algorithm of behavior.
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From KabTV’s “Close-up” 8/19/09

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Individual Phenomenon

232.05Question: Can we say that faith above reason is associated with collective consciousness? Or is it still a purely individual phenomenon?

Answer: You can. But the fact is that even if I, together with others, form some kind of common system, some kind of dipole, it is still a bundle, and we still remain individualists.

Each of us is getting out of ourselves to connect with the other while maintaining our individualism. We cannot destroy it. We can reduce it, rise above it, and work with egoism in the opposite direction, but it still remains. Faith above reason exists as faith above reason because egoism remains, and we rise above it in altruism.
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From KabTV’s “Meetings with Kabbalah” 3/29/19

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Marxism And The Wisdom Of Kabbalah

025.01Question: To what extent is one of the main assumptions of Marxism justified from the point of view of the wisdom of Kabbalah, that “An idea that gets a hold on the masses becomes a material force”? Does Marxism have perspectives in a changing situation?

Answer: Certainly, when an idea gets a hold on the masses, it becomes the power of the masses. This has already become the power of the fist, coercion by this side or another. So, there is no connection or relationship to spirituality and the wisdom of Kabbalah.

The connection between Marxism and the wisdom of Kabbalah is only seen in a very inconsequential coincidence between the opinion of Marx and the state of a society that is beginning to develop through mutual cooperation with each other.

Marx also thought that everything depends on the education of the society and in no way did he call for revolutions that could lead to victory and could change something in a way like that.

Only a proper society can be changed and it must be educated like a small child is educated. A society is generally like a small child that can achieve good results through a proper education. And if not, it could create problems for you for generations.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah” 2/3/19

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 4/29/21

Preparation to the Lesson

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Lesson on the Topic “The Approach to Studying the Wisdom of Kabbalah”

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Selected Highlights 

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