Entries in the 'Commandments' Category

So That The Heart Would Truly Love a Friend

laitman_933Rabash, “According to What Is Explained Concerning ‘Love Thy Friend as Thyself’”: Our sages said: “Disperse the wicked; better for them and better for the world.” In other words, it is better that they do not exist. However, it is the opposite with the righteous: “Assemble the righteous; better for them and better for the world.”

Initially, there were no righteous. The righteous are our corrected qualities. At every level when we enter a new degree, the old righteous fall, and the new sinners rise, and we turn them into righteous again.

“What is the meaning of “righteous”? It is those who want to keep the rule, “Love thy friend as thyself.” Their sole intention is to exit self-love and assume a different nature of love of others. And although it is a Mitzva [commandment] that should be kept, and that one can force oneself to keep, love is still something that is given to the heart, and the heart disagrees with it by nature. What, then, can one do to make love of others touch the heart?”

It is impossible. Only the upper Light can make such a correction for us. It is not within our power since it requires two forces: one that is uncorrected and the other that is the power of correction, which we do not have. We do not even know exactly how or what should be corrected.

This is why we were given the 612 Mitzvot: they have the power to induce a sensation in the heart. However, since it is against nature, that sensation is too small to have the ability to keep love of friends de facto, even though one has a need for it. Hence, now he must seek advice on how to actually implement it.

The advice for one to be able to increase his strength in the rule, “Love thy friend,” is by love of friends.

This speaks about the fact that there is bestowal and there is also reception for the sake of bestowal.

Question: Are the work in the tens, the workshops, and the studying all directed at only one thing: to attract the Light that reforms?

Answer: Yes, we do not need anything else. The Torah is the upper Light that corrects our egoistic desires and turns them into altruistic. The correction of an egoistic intention into an altruistic one is called observing a commandment.
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From KabTV’s “The Last Generation” 4/18/18

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Commandments—The Laws Of Connection Between Us

laitman_943Question: Should there be laws against empty talk or gossip in a group advancing toward the goal?

Answer: All the commandments only speak about the internal connection between us. In our world, however, they are described in the form of mechanical actions: a certain way of eating, washing hands, and other corporeal actions that a person performs with his body when working in the field or with animals, etc. In reality, all these desires either facilitate or impede our connection. We have to understand and realize them correctly.

Therefore, the revelation of our various qualities along the path to our unity, some of which are for and others against the connection, is necessary in order to align ourselves correctly. This way, we observe all the positive and negative commandments, understanding what to use for connection and what to abstain from, and we reach the goal.

This is the observance of the commandments, which is carried out with the help of the upper force called the Light, or the Torah.
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From KabTV’s “The Last Generation” 4/8/18

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Can One Keep The Mitzvot Alone?

laitman_963.8Rabash, “What Does the Rule, “Love Thy Friend as Thyself,” Give Us?”: …one cannot keep all 612 Mitzvot alone.

I would say that a person alone cannot observe a single commandment. Being alone, he is incapable of generating the property of bestowal. After all, he has no connection with the Creator. Only with people like himself, therefore we need physical interaction with friends.

Remark: We are in a new time frame, a virtual one. This was not the case with Rabash.

My Comment: It is even better. If people really strive for each other, their physical disunity pushes them further toward inner rapprochement.

Question: Why is it arranged so that a person cannot keep the commandments alone?

Answer: Speaking from a systemic point of view, the common soul called Adam broke into many parts. When the parts separated by egoistic distance (egoistic forces) try to get together above egoistic forces, they begin to attain the property of connection, up to the property of love. There is no other way.

Adam is a desire that does not exist by itself. Only after this system (the desire) broke apart can one say that within it two opposite properties are being created: the egoistic one that pushes all the parts away from each other, and the altruistic one that suddenly begins to appear among them.

Initially, when all parts of the system were assembled together, they possessed the property of commonness supported in them by the upper Light, the Creator. Therefore, after they disintegrated, in each of them remained a point of commonness, and it turned out that they all consist of two opposite properties.

Now, if some part raises the property of connection above the property of separation, to that extent it becomes closer to others, until it is integrated in the same system, in the same image.

Question: Therefore, the system is especially created so that a person cannot observe 612 commandments alone. What is the benefit in this?

Answer: The benefit is that a person feels the need for the Creator and his friends. After he is disappointed with his animal state and wants to rise to the level of Adam, he can succeed in it only if he really engages in his connection with others and draws the Creator to it.

Question: Does a person need to understand each commandment?

Answer: This is not only unnecessary, but also impossible. One is unable to do so. Everything happens automatically.

A person should not poke around in his soul, there is no need to do it. It will manifest itself only when it really takes a definite form.
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From KabTV’s “The Last Generation” 3/15/18

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The Basis Of “Love Thy Friend As Thyself”

laitman_962.2It therefore follows that the rule, “Love thy friend as thyself,” is built on 612 Mitzvot. In other words, if we keep the 612 Mitzvot, we will be able to achieve the rule, “Love thy friend as thyself.” It turns out that the particular elements allow us to achieve the collective, and when we have the collective, we will be able to achieve the love of the Creator, as it is written, “My soul yearns for the Lord.” (Rabash, The Social Writings, “What Does the Rule ‘Love Thy Friend as Thyself’ Give Us?”)

If we take the commandment “Love thy neighbor as thyself” and interpret it in relation to the inanimate, vegetative, and animate nature, and most importantly, to a person in all life circumstances, we will reach all 612 commandments, which are summarized in the 613th. That is why there is no 613th commandment as such; it is a result of implementing the other 612 recommendations.

Remark: The world believes that one needs to fulfill all 613 commandments. Kabbalists, however, say that there is practically only one commandment: “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” All the others are attached to it, they are a part of it.

My Comment: It is written in many Kabbalistic sources, including The Book of Zohar.

In fact, we need to organize ourselves into a human society that would lead us to some kind of system, regulating each other’s relations based on the same commandment: “Love your neighbor.”

To do this, we have to study Kabbalah and learn to fulfill this commandment at every moment, in all circumstances, wherever we are. So gradually we will implement the 612 recommendations.

The Book of Zohar says that all the commandments of the Torah consist of 612 councils and 612 fulfillments. If I follow the advice correctly, then I get a certain portion of the upper Light, which corrects me.
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From KabTV’s “The Last Generation” 3/15/18

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To Come To The Commandment Of Love

laitman_249.01Question: Can we depict our three-hour morning lesson as one big prayer that includes 612 commandments? We are constantly turning between them in order to come to the commandment of love for our neighbor.

Answer: Yes, consistent fulfillment of the commandments means that we climb the degrees of Jacob’s ladder.

The constant expansion and deepening of egoism in us happens to ensure that we implement connection with each other at greater and greater levels. Every time egoism increases, we perform the commandment of connection on it, up to the love for each other.

Question: Are there 613 commandments at each degree?

Answer: Of course. But we don’t need to consider this because we are originally created this way; our soul’s vessel consists of 613 parts.

In performing 612 advices (Eytin), I receive the influence of the upper Light, which corrects me. It is called Pkudin (from the word “Pikadon – deposit”). In this manner, I constantly fulfill and correct, and again fulfill and correct.

Question: Does the division between 612 commandments and the 613th commandment also exist at each degree?

Answer: Yes, because the 613th commandment does not exist on its own, I am incapable of fulfilling the commandment of love. I cannot be forced to love the other. If I, by fulfilling 612 commandments, receive the upper Light upon my desires, then I become loving and bestowing.
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From KabTV’s “The Last Generation,” 3/15/18

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Actions And Commandments

laitman_571.01Baal HaSulam, “The Teaching of The Kabbalah and Its Essence”: Indeed, there is a common opinion that the prime goal of religion and the Torah is only the cleansing of actions, that all that is desired concerns observing the physical Mitzvot (commandments), without any additions or anything that should result from it. Had that been so, those who say that studying the revealed and practical actions alone is sufficient would be right.

Yet, this is not the case. Our sages have already said, “Why should the Creator mind if one slaughters at the throat or at the back of the neck? After all, the Mitzvot were only given to cleanse people.” Thus, there is a purpose beyond the observance of the actions, and the actions are merely preparations for this purpose. Hence, clearly, if the actions are not arranged for the desired goal, it is as if nothing exists. And it is also written in The Zohar: “A Mitzva (commandment) without an aim is like a body without a soul.” Hence, the aim, too, should accompany the act.

The physical actions convey nothing on their own. Clearly a person can do them, but he may not be aware of with what motives. Then what? What is achieved by these actions?—That is what’s most important. It is called an intention.

Question: It is written in The Book of Zohar: “A commandment without an intention is like a body without a soul.” What does this mean?

Answer: If any physical action is performed without the correct intention of uniting for the purpose of revealing the Creator, then this action is dead, like a body without a soul.

Question: Baal HaSulam writes that there are only two laws or two commandments: reception and bestowal. It follows that there is an interaction in human society that consists of two actions: either I receive or bestow. They have to be properly balanced. How should we understand this? What does properly balanced mean?

Answer: It is quite easy to balance: bestowal for the sake of bestowal is the quality of Bina and reception for the sake of bestowal is the quality of Keter.

Question: How can we know how much to receive from society and how much to give to it?

Answer: Do it so that it would be solely for the benefit of the society, for the sake of bringing it to the similarity with the Creator.

Question: And who decides that?

Answer: You decide. You have to integrate yourself into society in order to absorb all of its desires and raise them to the Creator. You have to become an intermediary link, a channel of connection between the society and the Creator.

Question: Is it only possible when the Creator reveals Himself to a person?

Answer: How else can you interact with the society? Only in order to help it.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 3/18/18

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Spiritual Meaning Of Mitzvot

281.01Question: There is a Mitzva of washing one’s hands. What is this action from the spiritual point of view?

Answer: This action symbolizes the cleansing of a person’s egoistic hands with which he tries to grab everything for himself. By washing them, he as if corrects his egoistic intentions and does not use them anymore. This is called “washing one’s hands.”

Question: That is, if I perform this action in spirituality, it corrects me. What about corporeality?

Answer: In the corporeal world, it is a reminder to a person that he must abandon the egoistic use of his desires.

Question: If a person washes hands with this intention, does this give anything to him?

Answer: Nothing! People should not get confused. As it is written: “You shall not make for yourself a graven image” in absolutely everything.

You can do whatever you want: eat, drink, behave as you please, as long as this is good for people, and then you will come closer to the upper world. The only condition is the rule “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 7/9/17

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New Life #848 – Jewish Burial

New Life #848 – Jewish Burial
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Nitzah Mazoz

Summary

According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, the attitude to life and death does not relate to the physiological body but to the spiritual body.

A Jewish burial is quick and simple in order to emphasize that the soul is important and the body is not.
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From KabTV’s “New Life #848 – Jewish Burial,” 4/13/17

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Are We Guarded From Above? Part 9

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How does a Mezuzah (doorpost) symbolize the spiritual force that protects the soul?

Answer: A Mezuzah has four components, which together represent the entire HaVaYaH: Yod-Key-Vav-Key, in other words, the upper system. A person, wishing to resemble the Creator, enters this system of complete HaVaYaH. It is then his home, the mother’s womb, in which he develops.

The system HaVaYaH symbolizes the loving attitude toward us from this upper force, the Creator. Attaining love of others, we resemble the Creator who loves His creation and unite with Him in a mutual embrace.

Question: If He loves me, why does the Creator not embrace me now?

Answer: Because you do not correspond to Him, you disregard Him, you are opposite to the upper force of the system, and therefore undesirable.

The Creator relates to everyone with love, but His goal is to bring everyone to attainment of the upper force, in order for all to know the Creator, to reveal Him and become equal to Him. In this way we stop being puppets without free will, not understanding anything in our own lives, and raise ourselves to a higher level, eternal and absolute.

Question: But what is the purpose of the commandment to put a Mezuzah in the doorway?

Answer: It has to remind us that there is the upper force on which we are dependent and we need to resemble it, behave as it does. As it is merciful, so we should to be merciful, as it is compassionate, so we should be compassionate. In the end, all is very simple.

Question: So the Mezuzah symbolizes the force of love and positive connection between us?

Answer: Just as any other commandment in the physical world, it directs us to the need to follow it spiritually, internally.
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From KabTV’s “A New Life,” #819, 01/26/2017

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Dr. Michael LaitmanJudaism obligates Jews to follow many commandments: blessings, Kashrut (keeping kosher), Mikveh (ritual bath), prayer, in addition to multiple other actions. Judaism is considered the most complicated and an extraordinarily difficult religion.

All of it is in order for us, day by day, moment by moment, to remind ourselves by these action about the connection with the upper force and the need to constantly maintain it.

Question: Are you saying that this connection, love between people, guarantees us protection from above?

Answer: “Love your neighbor as yourself” is a great law of the Torah and represents the height of human development. There is nothing higher than that because this is how I include myself into the other person and do whatever he or she needs. Love is the law of an integral system, by which all its elements have to be connected.

Question: How does that protect me?

Answer: This is how I, or rather the single element of the system that I represent, follow the laws of the integral system. Naturally, this provides protection for me. I can never protect myself. I safeguard myself only through my ability to correctly unite with others because in reality I am connected with everyone and receive sustenance from them. In essence, they determine all my states because we are interdependent.

I am joined by connecting bonds with a multitude of others. If these connections are negative, then I suffer until I finally die. However, if from my side, these connections become positive, then in return, I receive a positive reaction from the system. Even if other people toward whom I act with kindness do not intend to respond to me in like manner, the upper force, functioning within the system, will influence them in such a way as to make them relate to me correctly.

In this way my actions begin to be in harmony with the force filling the entire system. My attempts to love my neighbor make me similar to the upper force. I tune into this force and by doing so, obligate the system to protect me. Resembling the upper what can be safer? I enter the upper almost as if I am entering a mother’s womb; is there a safer place than that?

The upper will protect me because I annul myself, my egoism, and become similar to it. I don’t think about myself, but act only according to the wishes of others. As a result, I become similar to the upper and enter it in the most minimal form. But even in this minimal form, nonetheless, I am within it as an embryo inside the mother. Where else can you feel more protected?
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From KabTV’s “A New Life,” #819, 01/26/17

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