“Fatal Despair” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “Fatal Despair

Long before the pandemic hit the world, the US was already on a downward trend. According to a story published by David Leonhardt in The New York Times under the title “Life Expectancy, Falling,” “During the second half of the 2010s, life expectancy [in the US] fell on a sustained basis for the first time since the fighting of World War II killed several hundred thousand Americans.” Echoing this topic, the magazine Science News stated in an essay titled “‘Deaths of despair’ are rising. It’s time to define despair,” that “Since the 1990s, mortality had risen sharply.” However, according to Science News, the spike in mortality was not indiscriminate; it affected mainly the “middle-aged, non-Hispanic white people, especially those without a college degree.”

According to both stories, which relied on publications by Princeton University economists Anne Case and Angus Deaton, the reasons for the declining life expectancy were what the researchers dubbed “deaths of despair.” Such deaths are caused by several factors, all of which are social rather than medical. Among these factors are lack of structure and meaning in life, broken or poor social ties at work, loss of connection to the church or community groups, high divorce rates or not marrying at all, drug and substance abuse, alcoholism, and suicide.

As Leonhardt writes, “It’s hard to imagine a more alarming sign of a society’s well-being than an inability to keep its citizens alive.” While I understand that educated people may be less susceptible to fatal despair, since they have more distractions to fill up their minds, the profound crisis that has struck the American society is pervasive. I have no doubt it will affect everyone in America, and far beyond its borders. As Case and Deaton note, the crisis is not in the ability to live, but in having no reason to do so.

Humans are not animals. We cannot settle for having a place to sleep and food to eat from day to day. As humans, we contemplate the future, reflect on the purpose of our lives, and on our freedom to steer our lives where we want, assuming we know where we want to steer it.

Also, as developed social beings, we live in complex social systems that constantly influence us, just as we influence the systems. When any member of society is in crisis, it spreads from person to person much like a virus. Countless studies have shown that when people around you are happy, your chances of being happy are far higher than if people around you are depressed. This is true even if you don’t interact directly with those people. Therefore, when a sense of meaninglessness spreads through the society, it must be treated on a social level since it is, in fact, an epidemic.

The problem, as Case and Deaton already noted, is lack of meaning in life. Therefore, this is the issue we must tackle if we are to heal society. The longer we wait, the more the depression will spread and take its toll. Already, millennials find most things that excited their parents tasteless. And without a purpose in life, they’ll fall into the same quagmire that is ruining their parents’ generation.

To stop the spread of fatal despair, therefore, we must give people a lasting purpose. Such a purpose must be greater than one’s worldly life, since people have already given up on finding worldly goals worth chasing. We need to show people that human existence has a purpose, that it is possible to feel truly alive only when we look outside our personal shell and begin to examine the world and the people around us. When we begin to connect with others, we find meaning in everything we do. Suddenly, our every action and thought has an impact—positive or negative—and each one of us matters, since we all influence each other.

Only when we see the world through a broader perspective can we understand how important each of us is to humanity. When we work to improve society, rather than selfishly amass wealth, power, and possessions, then everything we do, say, or think becomes important to everyone around us, and to those who will come after us.

Life is not valued by how much we manage to accumulate, but by how much we impact society. Those who solidify society, who make it resilient and animated, are those whose lives become imbued with meaning, which continues after their years on Earth have ended.
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“Israel’s Startup: Light Unto The Nations” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “Israel’s Startup: Light Unto the Nations

Behold the glittery world of Israel’s booming tech industry of recent years. Young people, mainly between 25-35 years old, have suddenly become ultra-wealthy as their startups become “unicorns”, privately-owned companies with a value exceeding a billion dollars.

This phenomenon is not the sideshow of a lucky few. Today, it is considered one of the main engines driving the Israeli economy forward. These new rich have become a role model for many young people and the dream-come-true of the Israeli Jewish mother: the high-tech entrepreneur who makes a fortune.

With the money that the young high-tech entrepreneurs receive, they buy apartments and luxury vehicles, invest, initiate and are freed from economic worries. But they do not stop engaging in regular life by going on permanent vacation. They also do not stop working just because of the huge additions to their bank accounts. The reason for this is that money is not the main driving force for their work.

Their source of attraction to the industry is the exciting competition, the pleasure of the game and of creation, the joy of invention and innovation. These are the things that fill them with utter satisfaction, and economic gain is only a nice bonus, albeit a welcomed one, but not one that will fundamentally change their occupation. We can understand them.

Technology is an intriguing and interesting field, and in a sense it is as if they feel like the industry gives them a spark of divinity—able to create and change the world, upgrade life and influence society through a few taps of the keyboard.

The tech field today does have the power to generate tremendous change, and for the Jews, all the more so. Therefore, it is not by chance that Israel is positioning itself as a world leader in this industry.

The Jewish mind is built for innovation. If we explored the Jewish mind through brain imaging, it would not show any special areas that are exceptional, and yet, it is wired differently: it has a tendency to combine contradictory discernments into one, the ability to combine the opposites in one whole, harness plus and minus to the same cart.

Since the formation of the Jewish people in the ancient times of Abraham, the Jewish mind was designed to bring spiritual solutions to the world when they are needed: to unite hatred and love and tie them together into an exciting creation, the pinnacle of human society’s development. But in the meantime, until this goal has fully matured, the Jewish mind dabbles in high-tech. Not just in software creation, but in development and research in order to strengthen the Israeli nation as a high-tech power so that we are on firm footing in all areas, especially militarily where protection and the ability to attack are necessities in order for us to continue to survive as a small country.

In saying this, I am not suggesting that all members of the nation sit in front of a computer screen. Rather, we can anticipate that in the near future approximately 30% of society will work in high-tech, while the rest will engage in other professions essential to society, such as medicine and engineering, agriculture and teaching.

It is also worthwhile to prepare for the smooth integration of an influx of new immigrants to Israel in advance. There is no doubt that their contributions will benefit the high-tech industry and give it momentum. When the time comes, when the State will prosper even more in fulfilling people’s needs, we will identify and discover the one main thing we still lack: spiritual meaning—to know who we are, what we live for, what our role as a people is in relation to the world. These will be the questions that will float naturally to the surface when the ceiling of material development is reached. A clear answer to those questions will give us complete meaning in life.

Our goal is to become a united society, a spiritual power, a “light unto the nations.” If we anticipate developing such a tendency as this, then we will make an eternal fortune. The fruits of such an industry will provide new impetus and intellect to propel us to discover and realize a whole new phase in human development: a millennium of peace.
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“What Is Today’s Most Important Unreported Story?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: What is today’s most important unreported story?

Humanity began its development in ancient Babylon. That is where egoism had flared up in humanity for the first time. Back then, together with the upshot of egoism, the wisdom of Kabbalah started becoming revealed. It is a wisdom that speaks of how to tame egoism and bring it to balance with nature. However, since humanity did not take this path, but continued developing egoistically, the wisdom of Kabbalah was concealed until the end of humanity’s development. This is what was written about it even over 5,000 years ago in the ancient sources.

In our era, through all kinds of formations and problems, humanity has reached the end of egoistic development. We now see how erroneous and incorrect egoistic development has been. Now we once again merit seeing the end of the path that we began back then, when we failed to accept the method of how to achieve balance with nature. After 5,000 years, we have reached the maximal growth of the ego, and see the extent to which we erred throughout the course of our development. We thus find ourselves in the same state that we were in back then: The wisdom of Kabbalah is again becoming revealed, and with its help, we can regain balance with nature—but this time on the maximal level of our egoistic development.

In the past, we were able to balance our development and start gradually developing together with the growing ego, balancing ourselves with nature in mutual love. However, we wanted to take a different path, and we thus built the Tower of Babel. Sources allegorically narrate on how we wanted to “reach the heavens” egoistically, and that is when people stopped understanding each other, progressed in hatred toward each other, and settled in different countries around the world.

Today, we see that this did not help. We nevertheless belong to a single humanity, one group that has settled all over the globe. However, we are still the same small system, the same Babylonian civilization, only we have grown to reach the size of eight billion people. This does not matter, since we are nevertheless obligated to carry out the law of balance with nature of which the wisdom of Kabbalah speaks. This is why Kabbalah is so in demand today and why it is now becoming revealed to everyone: in order to show humanity how it is really possible to achieve balance with nature, and a peaceful and harmonious life.

Based on a Q&A with Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman on September 9, 2006. Written/edited by students of Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman.

Guarding The Transition

747.02Question: Why did the priests not enter first when they went to the land of Israel? They waited until the entire army had passed and then they completed the transition.

Answer: The most important thing for them is to keep the border because it should be that all the people go through dry land. As was the crossing of the Red Sea, so it is here when crossing the Jordan. After everyone had passed, the functions of the priests were fulfilled at the moment and the waters closed again.

Comment: In some ways, this is similar to how Moses told Pharaoh that he would take everyone and wait until everyone came out.

My Response: But there was an exit from Malchut to Bina through Zeir Anpin—to the intermediate state of “desert.” Here there is a transition to Bina, to the property of bestowal.
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From KabTv’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 7/5/21

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The World Is Facing Decline In Birth Rate

961.1In the News (NewYorkTimes): “All over the world, countries are confronting population stagnation and a fertility bust, a dizzying reversal unmatched in recorded history that will make first-birthday parties a rarer sight than funerals, and empty homes a common eyesore. …

“Demographers now predict that by the latter half of the century or possibly earlier, the global population will enter a sustained decline for the first time.

“A planet with fewer people could ease pressure on resources, slow the destructive impact of climate change and reduce household burdens for women. ”

My Response: It will be good for everyone. We will start thinking about the things we need to get rid of, what we need to stop producing, what is excessive. What is humanity occupied with? Production. So we will not produce what is not necessary.

Consumption will decrease and the birth rate will decrease accordingly. After all, in any family, when they want to have a child, they still plan: “Can we afford it or not, how will we cover the costs?”

Question: Do you think reason will prevail?

Answer: Everyone already has it, every family.

Only in animals everything is built on instinct, but another chain works for them: less food causes them to have a lower birth rate. Automatically. They do not think that it is necessary to give birth less, they have it instilled within their nature: less food, lower birth rate.

Question: Can you say that over time, we will become more conscious?

Answer: No, it is the same egoism that controls us and urges us to either give birth or not to give birth.

Question: Will it now lead us to the fact that predominantly we will not give birth?

Answer: People do not want to take care of others. Egoism is growing to such an extent. Why should I invest in these children who will not even thank me later? They just leave the house calmly as if they do not owe me anything, and I would like to demand at least something from them.

Everything revolves around egoism. Even if my children give birth to grandchildren, it still requires some kind of participation from me. I am not going to be the kind of grandparent who is burdened with the new generations.

Rabash said very simply about the attitude of children to their parents: “Close your mouth and open your pocket.” That’s it!

Comment: And it will get more and more drastic. In addition, the future is not particularly promising. In addition: “I want a quiet life.” And the birth rate will fall…

My Response: Everything will be fine. This is an auto regulated system by nature, no one else. Or call it “The Creator.”

Question: And what does He want?

Answer: He wants to create the most suitable conditions for our correction, for our self-correction.

We are at a crossroads: which part of our correction will the upper governance take upon itself and which part of our correction will we consciously take over.

So far, I do not see any movement toward this, no inclination on the part of humanity that realizes it should be different, more sociable, more ready to accept the challenges of nature consciously, and somehow address this, set these tasks for itself.

I do not see that research centers are created, as is usually done in humanity, to study this phenomenon: what is happening to us, to humanity, to society, to the family, to children and parents? There should be a lot of such institutions, different ones in every nation, in every group, in every country. We have to study all this.

We must produce all kinds of research on this topic. Instead, I see that not only statesmen are not concerned about this at all, I am not talking about them at all, they are only interested in their place, but even society, men, women, and families. There is no pressure, no challenge from society to create such research centers.

I have not even seen serious public research on the topic of the pandemic, really serious ones, not medical, not strictly specific, but concerning society, family, children, and so on. I do not see that they are engaged in this or that they are concerned about it.
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From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman” 6/10/21

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Forced To Live

238.01Baal HaSulam, “The Freedom“: …we exist in the world as beings with a “self,” where each of us regards himself as a unique entity, acting on its own, independent of external, alien, and unknown forces, and in what this being—the self—becomes revealed to us.

If it does exist, we are bound to reveal it above all other attributes and develop only that one, because all the rest will necessarily be realized against our will.

Where is my “I”? Once I define it, I will be able to hold on to it and understand when it can be free.

And what can this give me? If I reveal that I am absolutely not free and that I am somehow controlled by some global management or aliens that hover above me in a spaceship and control me, will this change anything in me?

Will I behave differently? No. I can only discover that I act according to someone’s wicked desire. So what? It does not matter at all because I will continue to act the same way I do.

That is, all our work boils down to determining who is actually influencing us, who controls us.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah” 5/12/19

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When Will Hatred Disappear?

600.01Comment: Gulnara writes to you: “It is very difficult to unite people of different nations and faiths. I think it is impossible. They unite during difficult moments, but then, when the difficulties pass, they hate each other again. National hatred and faith exist in people just like blood flows through their veins. It is very difficult to correct people. We have gone too far to be able to fix this.”

My Response: This is true. However, we all have the single upper force, the one Creator. Therefore, we can still unite, unite in Him! Then we will not have any opportunities to escape and hide. Only in this way will we be able to reach our single root and find the right connection between us in it.

Question: Is this what a person should discover and start aiming toward?

Answer: Yes.

Question: Is it our task to tell people about this?

Answer: This is, in principle, the solution to all our problems.

Question: Then there will be no multitude of nations but only one, the nation of the Creator, right?

Answer: Yes, just humanity.

Comment: Humanity.

I think we are getting closer to it. Of course, we still need some blows and disappointments.
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From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman” 7/1/21

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Why Does Knowing The Structure Of The Soul Develop It?

962.6Question: What is the connection between knowing about the upper world and the development of the soul? Why does the information that we acquire about the structure of the soul develop our soul?

Answer: It is because spiritual knowledge is an indication that I receive the upper light that changes me. It is not like what I hear from a teacher at school or at university, because what I hear from a teacher cannot impact me in any way.

To the extent that the upper light enters me and changes my attributes, I begin to perceive these attributes. After all, I do not immediately understand what is happening to me, but only as a result of the changes that take place in me.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah” 6/16/19

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Daily Kabbalah Lesson – 7/29/21

Preparation to the Lesson

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Lesson on the Topic “Ibur (Impregnation) and Yenika (Nursing)”

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Writings of Baal HaSulam, “The Peace”

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Selected Highlights

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Audio Version Of The Blog – 7/28/21

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