“Chip Crisis Chipping Away At Our Delusions Of Independence” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “Chip Crisis Chipping Away at Our Delusions of Independence

The production area of SK Siltron CSS, a silicon wafer plant being expanded by South Korean semiconductor manufacturer is seen in Auburn, Michigan

Despite trying to resume normalcy after two years of intermittent lockdowns and vaccine and mask mandates, reality seems to have different ideas for humanity. The latest is a shortage in those silicon chips called “semiconductors,” which operate not only computers, but most everything that modern civilization uses. The semiconductor crisis, aka the “chip crisis,” has become a threat to the global economy and a menace to the stability of society. Since we did not want to learn over the past two years, now a new threat will show us that unless we strive to connect with one another positively, we will seriously hamper, if not altogether lose our comfortable way of life.

At his car dealership in Stoke-on-Trent, England, Umesh Samani, who is also the chairman of the Independent Motor Dealers Association, laments the computer chip shortage. He tells the BBC that all his customer wants is a white, standard model, manual transmission VW Golf, but Samani cannot say when it will arrive.‎ It could be many months, or he fears even a year until delivery. According to Mr. Samani, manufacturers often tell him the computer chip shortage is to blame.

The chip crisis is hurting everyone. According to Reuters, “The White House held a classified briefing … with some U.S. lawmakers on the dire risks to the American economy from semiconductor supply chain issues as it pushes Congress for $52 billion in funding to subsidize production. White House National Economic Council Director Brian Deese told reporters ‘The best estimates are the lack of available semiconductors probably took a full percentage point off of GDP in 2021.’”

Worse yet, the trajectory is negative. “Russia’s war in Ukraine could see the production of neon, a critical gas in advanced ‎semiconductor manufacturing, fall to worryingly low levels at a time when the world is ‎already grappling with a chip shortage,” reports CNBC. At the same time, there are those for whom the crisis is a serendipity. McKinsey & Company, for example, one of the largest consulting firms in the world, explains on its site how “semiconductor companies can take different paths to capture new opportunities as demand ‎continues to outstrip supply.”

McKinsey’s approach is the traditional capitalistic approach. Yet, what had worked for decades is not working anymore. The lesson we should learn from the multiple concurrent crises is that we must wake up fast from our delusions of independence, as we are totally interconnected and interdependent.

It is not new. We have been connected and dependent on each other for many decades now. The difference is that until recently, we could pretend as though we weren’t and get away with it. We fought against each other on every possible level: physical, economical, political, and social. At the same time, we traded with each other as if there were no struggles and no rivalries.

Today, however, the dog-eat-dog attitude has chipped away at our ability to maintain systems running. Just as denying vaccines from those who could not afford them caused mutations to spread around the world, denying semiconductor chips from other countries, either by a sales ban or by destroying plants or the supply chain of vital minerals, will backfire on anyone who employs such tactics.

Chips are essential for anything from microwaves to supercomputers. Without them, we will not be able to grow or cook food, manufacture new cars, use elevators to get to our apartments, build life-saving medical devices, computers, and planes and rockets. In short, chips are simply too critical to be able to allow any one country to deny them of others.

When we become too selfish, we throw the system off balance. Instead of wishing to support one another and benefit from each other’s success, we strive to dominate and oppress one another. When we become like that, every means is fair game.

The problem is that in a war, everyone loses and the result is a global crisis where everyone suffers. If we do not understand this message through one crisis, another, more crippling one comes along and conveys the same point. If we do not understand it through the second crisis, a third, more forceful one manifests.

This is learning nature’s way, the way of pain and suffering. We can learn of our interdependence and its resulting obligation to cooperate and form a balanced society by teaching ourselves. If we accept the inexorable fact of our mutual dependence, we will learn to work with it in a way that truly benefits everyone, and not only the most powerful, while the rest of humanity groans in pain and seeks to overthrow them in a revolution that will only increase the suffering of humanity.

“Passover And The Israeli Society” (Times Of Israel)

Michael Laitman, On The Times of Israel: “Passover and the Israeli Society

It’s Passover. Besides being the holiday of freedom from enslavement, there is a custom to wear something new on Passover. It is one of those times in the year when we try to bring something new into our lives. Indeed, there is a lot we would like to renew in the Israeli society. Division is deepening, hatred between the factions of society is intensifying, corruption and violence abound everywhere, divorce rates are soaring and families that still survive are struggling, and the relationship with our Arab neighbors is (literally) explosive. And while everyone wants to become prime minister and promises to solve everything, the reality proves that no one has any idea. So what novelty can we offer ourselves that will really make things better?

The “novelty” we need is actually to return to our roots, the roots of our people, the basis on which our nation was established. Any nation can live however it chooses. We, too, chose a long time ago, and as long as we stick by our choice, we are happy. When we veer off from it, this is when trouble begins.

Our choice began when Abraham, the father of our nation, wanted to understand what was going on around him. He was an inquisitive man, and in Babylon, where Abraham had lived, people’s egos were flying through the roof. People stopped understanding one another and became violent and belligerent, as the book Pirkei de Rabbi Eliezer writes, “half the world died there by the sword.”

Abraham realized that existence is possible only through complementarity and connection among people, that otherwise people will destroy one another. He understood that nature had created us different not so we would fight against each other to the death, but so we would complement one another and benefit from our connection.

Abraham explained what he had found to everyone around him. People who sympathized with his ideas joined him and formed a community that Maimonides referred to as “the people of the house of Abraham” (Mishneh Torah, Chapter 1). That was the origin of the Jewish nation. As time went on, our leaders and sages polished the teaching but remained true to the principle of differences that complement one another and thereby create a stronger bond than was possible had it not been formed by rising above disputes. King Solomon articulated this principle in the verse, “Hate stirs up strife, and love will cover all crimes” (Prov. 10:12).

The principle of unity above division and dispute is unique. Until then, and since then, humanity’s default behavior was that when there is a dispute, a fight erupts and the winner imposes its way and will on the loser.

Because Israel were the only ones who had conceived a different conduct, and for some of the time even carried it out, they were commanded to spread the information about their way to the rest of the world. They committed to the law of unity at the foot of Mt. Sinai, where and when they committed to unite “as one man with one heart,” and they were promptly commanded to be “a light unto nations,” namely to set an example of unity and love of others.

This is our ancient root, the choice that had made us into a nation. Until we return to it, we will not know peace and happiness in our country.

Since those ancient days, we have deviated very far from our core principle. To return to it, we must facilitate an educational process that will put us back on track toward unity above division. We should not suppress our differences or hide them, but determine that above our different political, social, cultural, and all other differences, we place a canopy of unity, that unity is the supreme value, and everything else is secondary to it.

Just as the children of Israel were redeemed from Egypt when they united under Moses, just as they achieved their nationhood when they united as one, we must realign ourselves with our ancestors and become an example of unity for all the nations.

Passover symbolizes passing over from enslavement to freedom. It is time we freed ourselves from hate and liberated it by wearing something new for Passover: love of others, the motto of our nation.

“Is Freedom Of Expression For Sale?” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “Is Freedom of Expression for Sale?

Space seems to be too small for Elon Musk, the richest man in the world. After making private space travel a reality his next goal is to conquer the information planet. The business magnate has offered to buy Twitter for $43 billion because he believes in its potential as a global platform for “freedom of expression.” Will it truly make the world freer, more open?

The battle for Twitter’s management has probably just begun. Musk’s proposal and statement have rattled the nerves of the members of the company’s board of directors, who are already taking steps to prevent the billionaire from taking over the popular network.

If at one time social media, and the media outlets in general, tried to keep up appearances as platforms for pluralism and freedom of expression, it is now clear that free speech is for sale, and that whoever controls the shares, controls the information.

People read a newspaper, scroll through the networks, listen to all kinds of narratives, and then believe that they select their world view. This is ludicrous, because free speech and free press do not exist in reality and never have. The narrative has always been determined by the one who pays, who orders the “news,” sets the agenda, and wants to influence public opinion. That’s how it has been and that’s how it will be.

In fact, it is to the credit of Musk and other rich people fighting for control today that we understand there is no freedom of speech. We understand with greater clarity who is pulling the strings and making the decisions behind the scenes. Whereas in the past, the control centers used to be anonymous, now everything is transparent, and we clearly know which newspaper and which network belongs to whom.

The next step to be expected is that all the wealthy will join together and have full control in one hand. Even if tomorrow President Biden dominates the media, or former President Trump, who is currently banned from Twitter, were to return to accelerated activity on social media, or a thousand other leaders were to take their place, it would change nothing. There are vested interests above them with capital flowing out of their hands, and they are the controlling shareholders. Therefore, there is no realistic hope for freedom of expression.

Even if there were hope for free speech, what free truth could the media tell us? That there are wars here and there? And what could anyone do about it? Could they give advice on how to get out of the trouble? Could they tell the world about its good future?

In the meantime, no leader, newspaper, or network can possibly succeed in bringing the world closer to peace and reconciliation. On the contrary, everyone is only looking for their own personal interests. Therefore, we cannot yet bring ourselves to admit the simple truth: that a good future can only be found when there are cordial bonds between people. The wars that intensify now with the rising of egoism or self-interest have no future to offer; in fact, all they can promise is our destruction.

To step out of the cycle of wars and endless fighting, Twitter and other similar media need to disseminate the viability of peace and mutual reconciliation between all. They could play an important role in positively shaping public opinion and the perception of reality of society through examples from the past and present about the benefits of upgrading human relations. So far, this goal looks as distant as space.

“Peace With Israel’s Enemies Begins And Ends Within” (Times Of Israel)

Michael Laitman, On The Times of Israel: “Peace with Israel’s Enemies Begins and Ends Within

Every so often, news of the rabid antisemitism that fills the pages of K-12 Palestinian textbooks remind us that nothing has grown milder on the other side. On the contrary, the Palestinians are openly teaching their children that killing Jews and Israelis is their sacred duty. Even the EU, not exactly the most pro-Israel body in the world, “passed a motion condemning the Palestinian Authority for drafting and teaching new violent and hatful materials using EU funding.” The motion “Deplores that problematic and hateful material in Palestinian school textbooks has still not been removed and is concerned about the continued failure to act effectively against hate speech and violence in school textbooks and especially in the newly created study cards.”

Recently, matters have deteriorated to the point where Gazan 4th graders are taught arithmetic by counting shahids—Muslims who died killing or attempting to kill infidels, namely Jews. To 10th graders, Gazan schools teach that Jihad (holy war) is every Muslim’s personal duty. I have no hope for any moderation on the part of the Palestinians.

However, I have complete confidence in our ability to change the situation regardless of the Palestinians’ intentions. Israel should work on two levels. On the material level, we should withhold funds from them and limit food supply. The “arithmetic” should be simple: If you teach your children to murder us, we will treat you like the enemy that you are.

However, this alone will not work, perhaps only in the very short term. What will work is what we do among ourselves.

The way that Palestinians relate to us reflects our relation to each other. It has always been this way, and it will always be this way. Israel prospers only when it is united. When it is divided, foes attack it and destroy the country. If we were united, the Palestinians would not even contemplate including anti-Israel materials into their textbooks since they would not harbor anti-Israel sentiments.

Therefore, on the spiritual level, we must unite our ranks. The dozens of political parties that fight against each other in the current Israeli political system reflect our internal division. We cannot have twenty parties fighting one another for the throne and groveling before our enemies in order to get their support. It only emboldens them and adds contempt to their loathing.

If we want Palestinians to stop antisemitic incitement in their schools, we must teach our own children and ourselves only to love one another. No excuses will help us.

We may not see the connection between how we relate to one another and how they relate to us, but the two are nevertheless directly connected. When we stop reasoning in order to excuse ourselves from caring about each other, and try to come closer above our differences, we will see a revolutionary change in the entire world toward us.

Loving others, especially if they are different from us, is the basic tenet of our nation, the bedrock of our peoplehood. Until we exercise it, we will not know peace.

You will find more on this topic in my books Like a Bundle of Reeds: Why unity and mutual guarantee are today’s call of the hour, and The Jewish Choice: Unity or Anti-Semitism, Historical facts on anti-Semitism as a reflection of Jewish social discord.

What Information Does The Creator Transmit To A Person?

509Question: What information can be deemed as objective so that it can be trusted? Is there any such information at all?

Answer: It is outside of a person and within the image that a person discovers in the Creator. There one begins to live, so to say, according to concepts.

Question: And what information does the Creator carry?

Answer: The Creator brings to man the understanding of man.

Question: So a person starts to understand who he is?

Answer: Yes. We cannot and do not attain the Creator Himself. We attain everything within ourselves in some of our feelings regarding each other.

Question: So it turns out that all this truth and correct information is incomprehensible in our egoistic and earthly conditions?

Answer: Certainly not.

Question: Do you mean we have to break away from egoism nevertheless?

Answer: When you break away, you begin to understand that this truth is also not yet attainable.

Question: Where is it then?

Answer: It doesn’t exist. Really, it doesn’t. We still can’t escape from ourselves in any way. We attain the Creator only to the extent of equivalence to Him in the heart, in  feelings, and in the mind, which help us somehow complete the image that we always want to see and draw in ourselves.

Question: Which is the image of Him as loving, kind, and doing good?

Answer: Yes but these are still limited things. Everything is relative to a person and we can’t escape from ourselves anywhere. No matter how we imagine all this, the real truth is unattainable.

There are still degrees, worlds, and elevations that still need to be attained, they are imaginary, transcendent, and negative, which we will have to reveal.

Question: In principle, is it  good for a person that there are all these worlds and secrets before him?

Answer: It’s so exciting as we move forward! The Creator Himself is already there without any connection with us. And at the point when you feel that it’s Him there but without me, it suddenly gives you such strength and perseverance to achieve since it shows us that it is probably surmountable.

Question: Is that what you call life?

Answer: Of course!
From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman” 3/27/22

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You Need To Hurry Without Haste

538Question: There is a World Slow Day that was invented by the Italians. Now it is celebrated in 90 countries around the world, including in Paris, London, and Washington. The president of The Art of Living Slowly, notes that, “‘It’s an occasion to take a little time for yourself and remember that if we’re always rushing, we end up taking the wrong road.” The day promotes slowing down to live better. 

How do you feel about living so leisurely?

Answer: It depends on the people and not on whether or not to introduce a holiday.

Question: Can I get under this stream?

Answer: Yes, absolutely. Absolutely. The influence of the environment on a person is well studied.

Question: What is a leisurely life for you?

Answer: I already think that I live slowly. Nobody drives me anywhere; I’m my own boss. The only thing is that I still have responsibility for thousands of people.

Question: And does the slowness immediately disappear at this moment?

Answer: It is already changing its form, even its function and its content. It turns into a leisurely responsibility. This means that I must not rush, but at the same time understand that I cannot just stop and allow myself to think and rest as much as I want. I have to take into account those people who somehow depend on me.

Question: And the rigid life schedule remains?

Answer: Yes! It’s above everything. I believe that slowness is when a person has everything correctly distributed. It can be at great speed. That is, the whole day is absolutely filled, but he knows what he must do this at every moment of time, and he fully relies, if necessary, on his extraneous forces. And so he relates to life as the implementation of mandatory procedures.

Question: Tell me, please, should an ordinary person live leisurely?

Answer: Any person is obliged to live slowly; that is, he is obliged to make his life, the lives of those around him, the life of the country, the state, and the world such that it obeys a very clear understanding of the goal and the steps to achieve it.

Question: What goal should such a leisurely person strive for?

Answer: To achieve true slowness because any haste leads to incredibly undesirable results: a person immediately instantly limits his analytical abilities and decisions and slides into haste and makes irrational decisions.

Question: What specific goal should a person set?

Answer: To constantly be at a certain pace, like a train: move, move, move, without slowing down or adding speed. All the time. This is the right attitude toward life.

Question: What is your goal as a leisurely person?

Answer: To achieve the maximum possible disclosure of the Creator for me, the maximum possible dissemination of the science of Kabbalah, and the maximum possible distribution of this knowledge among my students. That’s pretty much my goal.

Question: What about an ordinary person?

Answer: I think that in principle, everyone should gradually approach these same questions. And then for an ordinary person the goal will be to achieve a correct understanding of life and the world.

Question: What is it?

Answer: To reveal it. And that’s it. That is, when the disclosure of life and the world coincide with the desires of a person, with his goal and what he realizes.

Question: What is a person led to?

Answer: To reveal the inner force of the world that created our world, that created us, that controls everything, why, how it does it, and how I can work with it on this together.

Question: That is, to become an accomplice in this process?

Answer: Become an accomplice in this whole thing. It’s to be an accomplice.
From KabTV’s “News with Michael Laitman” 1/31/22

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Egoism Is The Driving Force

115.05Throughout our lives we develop thanks to egoism, which pushes us from generation to generation. Every time I want something new: this, that, and other things. Look at children, they are on the move all the time. This is how our egoism develops: grab this, learn that, try this.

Although we clash with each other, fight, kill, and steal, we are controlled by our nature, and therefore, no matter what, we are moving forward. This is how humanity has come to this day.

If suddenly we say: “Let us develop not with a natural egoistic force, but with an altruistic one, opposite to it,” where can we get the desire, strength, and energy for the realization of altruism?

For the realization of egoism, I have the energy, I want to receive. But to give, where will I find such a desire in myself? Can I think of others? Of course not.

I can only think about the other to the extent that I understand my dependence on him. As a result, I think only about myself and can do good for others if I clearly know that it will be good for me.

Human nature is the most common everyday egoism at any level. Look at how atoms, molecules, the valence of elements, and everything else connects, how larger substances combine into an organism and how it works.

Even altruism inside the body in which each part thinks about the other is necessary for the whole system to work; otherwise, no organ will live. Thus, there is altruism in our world also, but it is animalistic altruism.
From KabTV’s “Close-Up. Gene of altruism” 9/19/10

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Who Is The Host In The House?

963.6Question: Which family model is closer to the spiritual roots: Eastern or Western?

Answer: The model closer to the spiritual roots is when the man is in charge outside and the woman inside. And we see it. The woman is responsible for taking care of the house, she is the hostess. The man, in principle, is not.

Comment: But he is trying to limit the woman.

My Response: No, in a good family the man does not do that. I have observed it in both Eastern and Western families. In the end, nature anyway leads people to look for compromise. And indeed, where the woman works, she commands.

The man does not even interfere because he is not created for that. And vice versa, when we are talking about strictly man’s duties—going out of the house to hunt or to work, going after a mammoth or after money, it does not matter what, that is, everything concerning outside the house—the woman gives him  greater freedom there.
From KabTV’s “Close-Up. Siamese Twins” 9/19/10

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Little Secret Of Jews

65Question: Does the discovery of The Book of the Zohar and the fact that we are studying it indicate that a new cycle of development has begun in humanity?

Answer: According to Kabbalah, since the end of the 20th century humanity has entered a special period when it is obliged to change the paradigm of development from reception to bestowal. We must fully implement the principle of “love your neighbor as yourself.”

However, we have neither the strength nor the desire for this. We are guided only by the need to avoid suffering. If, along with this, we open The Book of the Zohar, then a person will be able to change so much that while in our world he will feel himself as if he is in paradise.

Today, there are many comments and explanations on this book available in every language. There are about two million people around the world who are studying within the system of the international KabU education centers. Therefore, we have the experience to explain to everyone the essence of The Book of Zohar.

In the past, we were promised a bright future and we will really be able to implement it because there is a force in nature that can change us. The communists did not know this, but the Jews had it as their little secret. Today they tell everyone about it.

The time has come when humanity must realize that it must change itself, otherwise it has no future. Therefore, The Book of Zohar is now revealed and we can use it. I am sure that all of us will be happy.
From KabTV’s “Close-Up, Gene of Altruism” 9/19/10

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The Path That Turns An Egoist Into An Altruist

608.02Today there are many different methods. But why doesn’t any of them evoke such internal resistance as Kabbalah does? Because it is the truth and it must be revealed.

Kabbalah acts against the ego. It says that our problem is egoism that needs to be corrected by rising above it. We must not just love each other, not just treat each other well, not change something in nature or in ourselves or somewhere else; it is also necessary to recognize the highest level of nature, which is called the Creator and to reveal Him for oneself, to take Him as a role model, and shape yourself into His likeness.

It means making something completely opposite out of yourself and leaving your interests to start doing everything for the sake of others, to turn yourself into their servant, as it were, when you begin to love everyone and to treat them with absolute care.

Their desires become your desires; their worries become yours, and for you this is the only thing that exists in life. For what purpose? In order to rise to the level of the Creator.

Here we see a lot of hurdles in front of us. The very first hurdle is to reveal the Creator. If I do that, it will be easy for me. Then I will gladly give myself to others because my reward will be eternity, wholeness, and absolute happiness.

Question: But, will I continue to act out of egoistic motives?

Answer: No. Along the way your likeness to the Creator will change you because He gives without any egoistic actions. You will start out as an egoist, but gradually, while working to bestow on others in order to reach the Creator, you will suddenly discover the quality of completeness within bestowal itself and discover that bestowal and love in themselves bring you such fulfillment that it is worth it to engage in them.
From KabTV’s “Close-up. Partnership Agreement” 4/7/10

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