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Medium published my new article “Rethinking Evolution”
For many decades, we have been taught that evolution is random, that mutations just happen and the ones that contribute most to the survival of the species remain while the others disappear. But science is gradually accepting that evolution is not random but directional.
Researches in one study, for example, which focused on a small, flowering weed called thale cress, stated that “It turns out that mutation is very non-random and it’s non-random in a way that benefits the plant. It’s a totally new way of thinking about mutation,” they concluded.
Another study, which examined hemoglobin mutation that protects against malaria, found that it appears more frequently in people from Africa, where malaria is common, than in people from Europe, where it is rare. “Mutations defy traditional thinking,” said the lead researcher. “The results suggest that complex information that is accumulated in the genome … impacts mutation, and therefore mutation-specific origination rates can respond … to specific environmental pressures.”
If we look even deeper than the apparent phenomena, we will find that the environment, too, is evolving in a specific direction: toward increasing integration. We are evolving toward a state that already exists, though we have not perceived it. It is a state where species separate from one another, but in harmony with all of creation.
Earth is a balanced system. Its parts are in perfect harmony among them, which guarantees the survival of Earth’s plants and animals. On the face of it, there should not have been evolution. If everything is perfect and harmonious, there should not have been any changes in the species.
The reason that evolution still occurs, despite the balance among all creations, is that underneath all of creation lies a desire for constant improvement of one’s personal state. The more evolved a creation is, the more intense is its desire. In humankind, this desire manifests as egoism and narcissism, as a craving for control, to be superior, even Godlike. In the animal kingdom and in plants, it is expressed in a constant effort to strengthen oneself against one’s natural enemies, but not in a desire to dominate and control. Therefore, on every level besides the human level, the balance remains, though it is dynamic and evolving.
In humanity, the main “evolution” is in our perception, not in our bodies, although physical changes happen in us, too. As our understanding of the world evolves, our perception of reality changes and becomes more aligned with the interconnected world around us.
Because nature is utterly integrated and all its parts are inextricably intertwined, human society is also growing more interconnected and interdependent. Accordingly, settlements have grown over the centuries from nomadic clans to sedentary towns, to cities, countries, and empires.
Along with the growth in the size of settlements, we have grown increasingly interdependent economically, in provision of our food supplies, education, and in every aspect of our lives. Now, the whole world has become connected to the point that even entire countries, including superpowers such as China or Russia cannot sustain themselves alone. Globalization has made the whole world one village, but one whose residents are reluctant to accept their neighbors and constantly clash with one another.
The development of human society toward increased integration is no coincidence. Because we are living in an integrated universe, where everything is interconnected and interdependent, we, too, are being developed in that same direction. This is why for all our efforts to supersede others, in the end, we are still dependent on everyone else, and no country can maintain its preeminence indefinitely. Against our will, we are being dragged into cooperation.
But our evolution toward an interdependent society aims higher than society itself. It is intended to reveal to us the interdependence of all of creation, that everything is harmonious and all the pieces of creation complement one another. The final outcome of our evolution is complete awareness of the universe where we exist on all its levels: physical, mental, and spiritual.
If we voluntarily direct ourselves toward cohesion and cooperation, we will advance toward the final goal more quickly and less painfully. It is like swimming downstream as opposed to trying to swim upstream, which is what we are doing now. It is hopeless and painful.
The shore that awaits us down the stream is serene and peaceful. If we swim toward it, by voluntarily increasing our cooperation and mutual consideration, we will reach that pleasant riverbank quickly, pleasantly, and easily. If we resist, we will still get there, since we cannot go upriver, but we will get there only after we are exhausted, defeated, and tormented.
My new article on Linkedin “Killing ISIS’ Leader Will Solve Nothing”
On Thursday, February 3, a US counterterrorism raid in northwestern Syria killed ISIS leader Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi. Al-Quraishi had led the group since the death of its founder, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was killed in another US raid in 2019. I have to admit that I only found out about this today. Normally, I know what is happening in the world, but in this case, the killing makes so little difference that the story completely escaped me. Also, we have no idea who will follow him and what he might do, so I am not at all sure that eliminating al-Qurayshi at this point in time was wise.
In general, terror groups do not just pop up; behind every terrorist organization are powerful countries that use them for proxy wars. In the past, countries fought each other and killed tens of thousands of people. Economies were ruined and the devastation was disastrous. Today, countries use proxy paramilitary armies, which we call “terrorist organizations,” to fight for them.
On the one hand, it is better to fight proxy wars than to start an all-out war. On the other hand, we cannot consider terror a positive development. We should aspire to live without both.
In the past, it was hard to imagine a world without wars. But since the end of World War II, the Western world has in fact been living without war on Western European or North American soil for nearly eighty years now. Likewise, while today it is very hard to imagine a world without terrorism, it is not impossible to achieve. Just as the West resolved never to fight again because it realized what war can do, the world will eventually come to a point where it resolves not to allow terrorism, and for the same reason that the West abolished war.
We will get there when all of humanity resolves to correct the heart of the evil in this world: human nature.
There are two ways we can get there: The first is that nature will force us to recognize each other, to take each other into consideration and eventually even develop concern for one another. The second way is to develop this sensitivity toward each other voluntarily. In either case, we will have to develop care and concern for one another.
Realistically, the road to this ideal state will probably consist of a mixture of the two possibilities. Nature will probably force us to approach each other a little, to become a little more considerate through natural blows or violence, and as we approach each other we will realize that this form of relationship is preferable to hatred and distrust.
Subsequently, we will fall back into our mean ways, and nature will again painfully remind us of our interdependence. Eventually, the pain will have etched itself deep enough into our collective memory that we will not return to violence and self-centered views.
We can also make the journey shorter and less painful by reminding each other before we suffer further blows from nature or from people, but that depends on our willingness to listen. The choice is ours. Human society will have a happy end, but the question is whether our way there will be happy or whether we will let suffering lead us to the happy end.
Answer: Egoism shows us how opposite we are to the Creator, and it helps us a lot in this.
Question: When I find that my selfishness does not allow me to annul before the ten and see them above myself, how can the ten help me in this?
Answer: It is already helping you by showing you how selfish you are. And then you can only annul yourself in front of them and pray for help, from both the group and the Creator.
Question: How does one keep a balance between selfishness and the greatness of friends?
Answer: Keep it up so that all egoism gradually begins to work for unification, for the Creator.
From the International Convention “Rising Above Ourselves” 1/7/22, “Adhering to the Friends” Lesson 3
Answer: If we are in the state of descent and concealment, then we ourselves need to hold on with the help of the friends. And when I am not in a descent, I need to think about the ways I can support my friends.
This is how we work gradually, alternately, in waves: I for the friends, friends for me, and so on. We always position ourselves in such a way that all our negative and positive states mutually add up, and we advance straight to the goal.
From the International Convention “Rising Above Ourselves” 1/9/22, “Working in Mutual Responsibility” Lesson 6
At that time, we must ask the Creator to give us love between us in which, according to the law of equivalence of form, He Himself will be revealed. This will be the revelation of the Creator to the created beings.
Question: How can we rise above foreign thoughts if they constantly come back and try to distract us from the lesson?
Answer: This is actually wonderful! This means that you are given the opportunity to make another small correction every minute. It is impossible to enter the same river twice. Every time it is new conditions and new corrections.
From the International Convention “Rising Above Ourselves” 1/8/22, “Going with Faith above Reason” Lesson 5
Rabash, Article No. 31, “Concerning Yenika [Nursing] and Ibur [Impregnation]”: …meaning that he cancels self-love, called Malchut, whose original essence is called “will to receive in order to receive,” and enters the vessels of bestowal, called Bina.
Answer: It means entering the quality of bestowal. Can someone understand at least a little of what bestowal means? That is, to feel someone’s desires so that a yearning awakens in me to fulfill not my own desires but the desires of another.
And I need my desires only to fulfill my neighbor. That is the way we need to work. Then we will begin to become like the Creator and feel what He feels, that is, the upper state.
From the International Convention “Rising Above Ourselves” 1/7/22, “Annulling before the Friends” Lesson 2
Question: Should we stop associating ourselves with our body and individuality and associate only with the Kli (vessel), meaning the “I” that is us?
Answer: Of course. Why should I always feel that I live in an animal, and this animal commands me, a man? It is as if a donkey is sitting on my head and riding me, and I follow its instructions, and so I exist. I also spend my whole life and energy serving this donkey.
And then what? Then the donkey dies, that is, my body, and there is nothing else, just pointless suffering, for what? Therefore, you must think about how to make your life more efficient.
From the International Convention “Rising Above Ourselves” 1/6/22, “Approaching the Creator Through the Network of Connections Between Us” Lesson 1
Michael Laitman, On Quora: “What is love?“
Love is our most exalted connection with everything outside of us, which harmonizes us with nature and its laws.
Love is a means to become like nature, which is a quality of love, bestowal and connection. It exists outside of us. There is no love in individual beings.
Love is the exclusive quality of nature that is given to us, and with the help of such a quality, we can elevate ourselves from the animate degree of existence to the human degree. In Hebrew, the word for “human” (“Adam”) comes from the word for “similar” (“Domeh”), and a human is considered one who becomes “similar to the most high” (“Domeh le Elyon”). In other words, becoming a human means becoming like nature’s quality of love, bestowal and connection, which is outside and opposite to our inborn animate qualities.
Based on “Kabbalah Express” with Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman on December 6, 2021. Written/edited by students of Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman.
Question: What is the correct education of boys?
Answer: The correct education is the realization of a man in his corporeal and spiritual manner so as to become an absolutely perfect element and fully realize what is inherent in him by nature, that is, to ascend and become similar to the Creator.
To become a common integral element of nature is what is inherent in us. Does anyone know that? No. This is what we need to study and reveal.
From KabTV’s “Close-Up, Generation of “Lady Gaga”” 3/10/10