“Modern Time Plagues” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “Modern Time Plagues

We have not yet recovered from one plague and the next one arrives. A giant dust cloud from the Sahara Desert reached the states along the US Gulf Coast affecting air quality. The phenomenon is not uncommon, but its size and strength is unusual, according to NASA. The record-setting dust storm came at the same time as information of a locust swarm’s invasion in South America, destroying up to 80% of the crops in their path. And all this is happening while the coronavirus pandemic is spreading ever faster. Nature’s signals are unequivocal; we just need to learn how to read them in order to shift from helplessness state to hopefulness.

After long generations of development, nature now requires us to mature and ask ourselves, what we are living for, what is the point of our existence, do we want to continue to carry on with daily life without understanding what we should do, and for what purpose.

We are definitely experiencing times similar to the ten plagues of ancient Egypt. More maladies are forecast to arrive. Without considering the impact of other environmental factors that already put food sufficiency at risk, the UN estimates that the coronavirus crisis alone could double the number of people suffering acute hunger to 265 million globally by the end of this year.

When people face incomprehensible blows and take a surface look at them, end of-time theories emerge. The magnitude and frequency of disasters are certainly perceived as a worrisome “perfect storm” to people. However, such epidemics and other natural calamities occur in order to lead humanity to examine its course of action toward nature and rethink its goals above a mere existential life.

After long generations of development, nature now requires us to mature and ask ourselves, what we are living for, what is the point of our existence, do we want to continue to carry on with daily life without understanding what we should do, and for what purpose. Nature wants us to answer these questions and grow. Until now, we have advanced unconsciously like small children, led by a selfish desire to receive for ourselves, running after futile pleasures to the detriment of others.

The human egoistic approach contradicts the perfect balance of the entire natural system. Therefore, nature pushes us from behind until we become aware and understand the program that controls creation. It is a sort of inner “software of nature” that operates every aspect of our planet. We need to crack that system’s code, penetrate it, and take an active part in managing the entire reality.

Once we understand how this program works, adjusting our attitude toward one another, fixing our relationships, we will positively affect the whole system. Above all natural egoistic tendencies, we must learn to build bonds of connection, consideration, mutual responsibility, and love. By merely thinking in the direction of mutual consideration, all of nature will begin to calm. We will bring balance to all mankind, to the whole earth, and to the entire universe, since thought is the most powerful force in reality.

Thoughts work similar to a magnetic field. We do not see the forces operating behind that field but they exist and influence each other. Likewise, we humans positively affect others through our thoughts about how to increase connection.

Nothing happens by chance or without purpose. The world is enduring tremendous challenges. Even though they are usually perceived as unbearable, we can see their positive side if we realize that these blows help us accelerate the process of connecting. They are aimed at uniting us, at revealing how we depend on each other to survive and prosper. But we should not wait for disasters to awaken the sense of unity among us. By fixing our human relations and our interaction with nature, we will be able to avoid these blows and feel wholeness and benevolence from nature.
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“Anti-Semitism And Pandemics” (Times Of Israel)

The Times of Israel published my new article “Anti-Semitism and Pandemics

Be it a plague or a war, a flood or an earthquake, a revolution or a financial meltdown, in the end, there is always one culprit: the Jews. In America, too, many already blame COVID-19 on the Jews, as is the case with the riots engulfing the tormented country.

In the 1950s and ’60s, the Jews stood shoulder to shoulder with the blacks in their fight for equal rights. No one remembers and no one gives them credit. Now, too, they stand shoulder to shoulder with the protesters. No one will remember and no one will give them credit.

The Jews donate to various charities and NGOs more money than any ethnic or racial group. But what do people say? “First they stole it, now they’re giving us the crumbs to buy our gratitude.” Of course, not everyone says it, but a great many do, and an even greater many tacitly agrees with them. It’s always been like that and it’ll always be like that until we learn what fundamental flaw we Jews have in our approach.

Jews are the only nation that has ever been tasked with bringing peace and love to the entire world. We gave the world the most altruistic motto ever conceived, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” yet we display the complete opposite of it: internal enmity and odium. We may sympathize with strangers’ pains, but we loathe our own coreligionists. And even though they don’t verbalize it, deep down, this is what Jew haters hate about Jews: that Jews hate each other.

When we became a nation, we were given a task: Unite “as one man with one heart,” and thereby become “a light unto nations.” For centuries, we have been trying everything to avoid our vocation. We talk about morals, ethics, justice, but we refuse to talk about love.

Morals are a miserable surrogate for love. Just as a mother doesn’t need morals to tend to her child because her love guides her, if we cultivate love among us we won’t need morals, and we will treat each other beautifully. Then, and only then will non-Jews say, “Now we respect them.”

Change Your Attitude To The World

laitman_543.02Comment: People tend to use good feelings and altruistic love.

My Response: Indeed, people have this quality. It is clear that they want to use everyone for themselves. But that doesn’t mean we should do the same.

If I want to rise above animal life and not exist only for the number of years that I have been given in this animal body, if I want to reach the level of perception of eternity, perfection, all of nature now, before my body ceases to exist, then I must change my attitude to the world.

Even for purely egoistic reasons, I should do it.

Question: How many years should it take before a person changes his egoism to altruism?

Answer: This depends on the person and the time in which he lives. In our time, it can be quite fast, 5 to 15 years—but these are years! They are still years.

What do you want? Why are they given to us? Imagine that your life is coming to an end. What did you live for? To feel all the good and the bad? And then what?—With no one and not for anyone.

So you need to use the years to achieve exactly the goal with which you remain onward.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 4/19/20

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Merging With The Ten

laitman_530Question: The Creator is between us. Do I need to ask the Creator to correct me or to correct the whole ten, the whole world ten? Does the Creator hear me wherever I am or only when I am in the ten?

Answer: The Creator feels the created being only to the extent that he resembles Him.

The Creator’s attribute is bestowal, while a person’s attribute is receiving. In this state, a person does not feel the Creator. We can see that on ourselves.

If a desire to reveal the Creator appears in a person, he can fulfill this desire only if he creates the right conditions for that, such as being in a group and working seriously on the connection with the friends.

If a person unites with the friends in the group, he will begin to feel the Creator through the ten. A person actually feels the connection with the Creator to the extent that he merges with the ten, and not in any other way.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 12/1/19

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Man—The Violator Of Harmony

laitman_752.2Baal HaSulam, Introduction to The Book of Zohar: We must not ponder the state of rest of the beings in the world besides man, since man is the center of creation, as will be written below in Item 39. All other creatures do not have any value in themselves, but to the extent that they help man achieve his wholeness. Hence, they rise and fall with him without any consideration of themselves.

Question: If the fall and crisis occur at the level of inanimate, vegetative, and animate nature, then this nature falls together with man? Where is the role of man in this? Or is he just in this environment and reaping the benefits?

Answer: Man is in this environment as the organizer of this fall. Nature itself is integral. Its inanimate, vegetative, and animate levels are interconnected and are in perfect harmony.

And man violates this harmony with his egoism. It is him who we must correct and then connect with all of nature in the same general integral picture, to complement each other in peace, in harmony with each other, and with all levels of nature. Nature’s forces push us to this.

If we quickly understand this and do everything we need, then there will be no viruses and no problems. And if we push, inflate, and only indulge our egoism, then nature will inevitably cause all kinds of problems with its sharp reactions.

These problems will show us that we must annul ourselves, unite between us, not abuse nature, which will still lead us to equilibrium but by pressure, crises, and blows.

But I hope that people will nevertheless learn and hear what the wisdom of Kabbalah says about this. And then we really straighten up.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 5/10/20

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My Thoughts On Twitter 7/1/20

Dr Michael Laitman Twitter

Egoism is the foundation of the nature of our world. Hence we are unable to imagine the law of nature’s operation, which is not based on egoistic relationships on all degrees (still, vegetative, animate and human). It’s easier to imagine the end of the egoistic world than its correction!

Businessmen are interested in what is lucrative: what will be in demand tomorrow. The most in-demand thing in business now is to eliminate products that are not vitally necessary for the populace. Closing down unnecessary businesses is the most successful business!

In the impoverished chaotic world, nations will invest everything into expanding their military capacities. Instead of growing closer to one another, nations will think about how to keep enemies at a distance. It is impossible to think differently in the egoistic world. What we need is a solution for how to break free of egoism—the only evil.
From Twitter, 7/1/20

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“For All The Pain, COVID-19 Is Not A Punishment” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “For all the Pain, COVID-19 Is Not a Punishment

Every day, I get emails and phone calls from people telling me that only six months ago, life smiled at them, and now they’re at a loss. Their world has crumbled and they see no future. It’s heartbreaking. With every passing day, humanity is feeling more and more helpless, agitated, and disoriented. People are afraid that they will not be able to feed their children.

Just as the virus mandates that we think about not transmitting the bug to others, we have to start thinking about others when it comes to food, water, housing, and power supply.
But what is happening is not some punishment from above; it is a calling to unite, to think about each other rather than ourselves. Only if we work together, we will be able to guarantee our future. Acting alone and worrying only about ourselves, as we have done for so long, will only exacerbate the situation. The longer we stall, the more people will join the circle of scarcity.

COVID-19 is the ideal catalyst of mutual responsibility: If we don’t wear masks and keep our distance, we will not only risk catching the virus; there is even more of a chance that we will transmit it to others. Just as the virus mandates that we think about not transmitting the bug to others, we have to start thinking about others when it comes to food, water, housing, and power supply.

We have to teach ourselves and others about our interdependency, that we are tightly connected and dependent on everyone, including people that for one reason or another we currently hate. We are all in this together, the whole city, the whole country, the whole world.

If too many people get sick, food production and supply chains will be hampered and hunger will drive people into far worse desperation than we have seen so far, and we have seen a lot. If every community, city, state, and the whole country pulls together, to see that every American gets the basic needs, just the staples, because they understand that we are all in the same boat, it is enough to set the country off to a new, good future. And then we will see that for all the pain that the coronavirus has inflicted, it is not a punishment, but a lesson in mutual responsibility.

“Hunger In The United States Of America” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “Hunger in the United States of America

When speaking of hunger, we are used to thinking of countries in South Asia, or Yemen, Syria, or in Latin America. This is no longer the case. Thanks to COVID-19, hunger is now a real threat in the U.S., as well.

Today, every American must rise above color, race, ethnicity, or class, and simply pitch in.

“A wave of hunger is expected to hit Minnesota families over the next six months,” states Frank Vascellaro on CBS Minnesota, a phenomenon not seen there since The Great Depression, as families are already diluting milk to make it last longer. But it isn’t just Minnesota that’s hurting from the COVID-19 crisis. All across the country, children are going hungry. According to a new study by the nonprofit organization, Hunger Free America, child hunger has soared across America during the current health and economic crises, “with 37 percent of parents nationwide cutting the size of meals or skipping meals for their children because they did not have enough money for food in the last month.” Considering that the report was published on April 10, matters are probably even worse by now.

The worst thing about the hunger crisis is not that it is happening because of an enemy from without, but simply because of absence of mutual responsibility.
I have warned countless times that there will be massive job losses and people will need immediate solutions. Now it is happening as we speak. Hunger is the worst crisis that can be; a person will do anything to feed his children. If you want to devastate a country from within, don’t fight it, starve it. This is what is happening today in America.

The worst thing about the hunger crisis is not that it is happening because of an enemy from without, but simply because of absence of mutual responsibility. There is plenty of food, but it is not going where it’s needed since the people who need it can’t afford it. In such a case, the authorities should take over and guarantee that every child and every person gets food.

Once this is taken care of, authorities must engage every American in sessions that inform them about the current crisis, why people are not getting food, why they cannot find a job, and what they can expect going forward. Every resident must know that finding a job is no longer a personal problem; it is a social crisis impacting the whole world. And since the whole world is connected, a crisis in one place soon migrates to every other place.

When people grasp that everyone in society is dependent on everyone else, they will begin to change. You will begin to see more acts of mutual concern, more construction of community services established by the community and for the community. The government, for its part, must encourage and support these initiatives as they are the basis of the new society that will emerge—a society of mutual responsibility. There will simply be no other choice, no other way to survive.

Today, every American must rise above color, race, ethnicity, or class, and simply pitch in.

“Learning Nature’s Teaching Method” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “Learning Nature’s Teaching Method

In the early 1930s, my teacher’s father, the great Kabbalist and illustrious thinker, Baal HaSulam, wrote a groundbreaking essay titled “The Peace,” where he outlined how humanity can achieve peace and what will happen if it doesn’t. Among other things, he articulated nature’s way of tending to its creations, how it rears them until they become independent. In his words: “Let us take the making of a human being as an example: The love and pleasure of the progenitors are its first reason, guaranteed to perform their duty. When the essential drop is extracted from the father … nature has very wisely secured a safe place for it, which qualifies it to receive life. Nature also gives it its daily bread in the exact amount. Nature has also prepared a wonderful foundation for it in the mother’s womb so that no stranger might harm it.

The coronavirus has given us the chance to practice mutual responsibility. All we have to do is obey two laws: wear masks and keep our distance. If we did that for just a few weeks, we would be rid of the plague.

“It tends to its every need like a trained nanny who will not forget it for a moment until it has acquired the strength to emerge into our world. …Then, too, nature does not abandon it. Like a loving mother, it brings it to such loving, loyal people it can trust, called ‘Mother’ and ‘Father,’ to assist it through its days of weakness until it grows and can sustain itself. As man, so are all the animals, plants, and inanimate; all are wisely and mercifully cared for to ensure their own existence and the continuation of their species.”

However, cautions Baal HaSulam, when we grow, we must assume responsibility and start behaving more and more considerately toward each other, care for one another and for all of nature. The more we resist nature’s lessons, the more insistently and painfully it teaches us. And the lesson that nature teaches us, wrote Baal HaSulam almost a century ago, is to build a society based on giving rather than receiving. Because we are reluctant, he added, “humanity is being fried in a heinous turmoil, and strife and famine and their consequences have not ceased thus far.”

However, nature’s lessons do not have to be harsh. Baal HaSulam writes that “The wonder about it is that nature, like a skillful judge, punishes us according to our development. For we can see that to the extent that humankind develops, the pains and torments obtaining our sustenance and existence also multiply.”

In conclusion, writes Baal HaSulam, “You have a scientific, empirical basis that nature has commanded us to obey with all our might the rule of bestowal upon others in utter precision, in such a way that no person among us would work any less than the measure required to secure the happiness of society and its success. As long as we are idle performing it to the fullest, nature will not stop punishing us and taking its revenge.”

Finally, Baal HaSulam warns, just a few years before World War II broke out, that “besides the blows we suffer today, we must also consider the drawn sword for the future.” Therefore, he adds, “The right conclusion must be drawn — that nature will ultimately defeat us and we will all be compelled to join hands in following its dictates with all the measure required of us,” namely “to obey … the rule of bestowal upon others.”

Nature’s gradual teaching method ended in Europe’s destruction and the death of tens of millions of people, since they would not listen. Now we are seeing the escalating cycle of hate becoming an ominous whirlpool that’s threatening to drown the entire world once more, and the cost will be much heavier than even the previous world war.

In The Writings of the Last Generation, Baal HaSulam writes that a third, nuclear world war will happen if we do not take upon ourselves the commandment of building a society of giving and mutual responsibility. Judging by the escalation in hate crimes and international tensions, it is easy to see his prediction materializing. But nature is a skillful judge; it will treat us according to our actions. If we choose mutual responsibility now, we will avert nature’s harsh lessons.

The coronavirus has given us the chance to practice mutual responsibility. All we have to do is obey two laws: wear masks and keep our distance. If we did that for just a few weeks, we would be rid of the plague. But can we? Do we care enough about others to help the world get rid of the bug? The coronavirus is a test of our commitment to each other. If we fail, nature will provide a far more stringent, and far less sympathetic, teacher. And if we keep failing, Baal HaSulam’s prediction will come true.

“COVID-19 And The Anxiety Epidemic” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “COVID-19 and the Anxiety Epidemic

Of all the scares that COVID-19 has wrought, probably the most fearful one of all is uncertainty about the future. During the lockdown, the country experienced a staggering rise in anxiety. On May 4, William Wan of The Washington Post reported that “The country is on the verge of another health crisis, with daily doses of death, isolation, and fear generating widespread psychological trauma.” The anxiety eased by about 40% a month later, as the country began to roll back lockdowns, reported the Medical Express, but now that the number of cases is rising once again and states are reissuing stay at home orders, anxiety is bound to rise again.

American authorities at all levels must draw a clear plan that will secure basic livelihood for every person, and enhance the social ties of individuals into communities.

With all that has been going on in America over the past few months, uncertainty about the future is the last thing the country needs. Since this anxiety stems from a real fear that people will have no job and no way to make a living, there is only one way to deal with it: American authorities at all levels must draw a clear plan that will secure basic livelihood for every person, and enhance the social ties of individuals into communities.

People must know what is going to happen to them, to their children, and to society as a whole. Therefore, as soon as possible, authorities must initiate open virtual sessions that explain how all the systems work. People have to know that contagion is not limited to viruses; we are an integrated society and affect one another on every level. The closing of one small business has a negative impact on many people who are seemingly unrelated to it: suppliers, delivery personnel, accountants, manufacturers, property owners, etc.

The same chain of infection that applies to COVID-19 applies to everything we do, say, or even think. If it is positive, we are transmitting positivity. If it is negative, we are transmitting negativity.

Likewise, one person’s depression affects not only that person’s kin and friends, but the friends of the friends, friends of the kin, healthcare workers, coworkers and the people they know, and so forth. The same chain of infection that applies to COVID-19 applies to everything we do, say, or even think.

If it is positive, we are transmitting positivity. If it is negative, we are transmitting negativity. Only once people internalize this, they will begin to feel responsible for one another, and that responsibility will pull them out of their down and mobilize them into constructive action.

In the near future, travel and tourism will drop sharply, as will sports and entertainment, trade in accessories, and countless other industries that thrived until a few months ago, leaving tens of millions out of work. These people will need help fast, and the only things that will help them are 1) basic sustenance, 2) grasping our mutual connectedness, and 3) enhancing their social ties and connection to the community.