Entries in the 'Israel' Category

“What Are Your Reasons For Supporting Israel?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: What are your reasons for supporting Israel?

I support Israel for a single reason: that Israel becomes a source of the world’s connection. Through the special connection that Israel has the potential to bring—a connection above people’s innate divisive drives (“Love covers all transgressions” [Proverbs 10:12])—the world can elevate itself to another level of existence, both corporeally and spiritually:

Corporeally, this means that all human conflicts and natural disasters would cease. We would feel a life filled with happiness and confidence as a result of the balance with nature that such connection would yield.
Spiritually, it means we would rise to a new dimension of eternity and perfection. This is due to awakening the force of connection and love dwelling in nature to reveal in our newly-created connections.

Therefore, I support Israel for this sole reason.

Today, it is very sad for me to see the contrary, how Israel is the source of all of the world’s problems (“No calamity comes to the world but for Israel” [Yevamot 63]). That is, the more that the people of Israel fail to apply efforts in the direction of connection—connection above our differences for the sake of positive global connection—the more the world sinks deeper into division and conflict. It is as Kabbalist Yehuda Ashlag (Baal HaSulam) writes in item 69 of his “Introduction to The Book of Zohar,” that “they cause poverty, ruin, robbery, killing and destruction in the whole world.” Why? It is because the people of Israel possess the method for the correction of human nature, i.e. correction of the egoistic, self-centered drive to benefit at the expense of others, which is growing rampant in our era. The more the ego inflates without an effective form of regulation—the connection above differences that the people of Israel have a method and a role to realize—the more problems and crises abound in the world.

Moreover, the more the nations of the world feel problems in their lives, the more they feel hatred toward Israel. This is because they subconsciously feel that the people of Israel are the source of their problems and are holding something significant away from them. Anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism thus rise due to the people of Israel’s failure to implement the role required of them in the world.

Therefore, the people of Israel need only come to the realization that they hold their own as well as humanity’s life and well-being in their hands. By starting to tilt the scales toward connection, they will bring harmony to themselves and to the world, whereas by continuing to tilt the scales toward division through their indifference and rejection of their role, they will continue inviting problems to the world and hatred to themselves.

It is thus my hope that the people of Israel will acknowledge their role and start making efforts to connect sooner rather than later, because if things keep developing as they currently do, then not only will the elimination of the State of Israel become a reality, but we will experience wars and major suffering on a global scale the likes that we have never seen before.

“Do You Support The Existence Of Israel? Why?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Do you support the existence of Israel? Why?

I support the existence of Israel as a source of the world’s connection. Through the special connection that Israel has the potential to bring—a connection above people’s innate divisive drives (“Love covers all transgressions” [Proverbs 10:12])—the world can elevate itself to another level of existence, both corporeally and spiritually:

Corporeally, this means that all human conflicts and natural disasters would cease. We would feel a life filled with happiness and confidence as a result of the balance with nature that such connection would yield.
Spiritually, it means we would rise to a new dimension of eternity and perfection. This is due to awakening the force of connection and love dwelling in nature to reveal in our newly-created connections.
Therefore, yes, I do support such a nation’s existence.

Today, it is very sad for me to see the contrary, how Israel is the source of all of the world’s problems (“No calamity comes to the world but for Israel” [Yevamot 63]). That is, the more that the people of Israel fail to apply efforts in the direction of connection—connection above our differences for the sake of positive global connection—the more the world sinks deeper into division and conflict. It is as Kabbalist Yehuda Ashlag (Baal HaSulam) writes in item 69 of his “Introduction to The Book of Zohar,” that “they cause poverty, ruin, robbery, killing and destruction in the whole world.” Why? It is because the people of Israel possess the method for the correction of human nature, i.e. correction of the egoistic, self-centered drive to benefit at the expense of others, which is growing rampant in our era. The more the ego inflates without an effective form of regulation—the connection above differences that the people of Israel have a method and a role to realize—the more problems and crises abound in the world.

Moreover, the more the nations of the world feel problems in their lives, the more they feel hatred toward Israel. This is because they subconsciously feel that the people of Israel are the source of their problems and are holding something significant away from them. Anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism thus rise due to the people of Israel’s failure to implement the role required of them in the world.

Therefore, the people of Israel need only come to the realization that they hold their own as well as humanity’s life and well-being in their hands. By starting to tilt the scales toward connection, they will bring harmony to themselves and to the world, whereas by continuing to tilt the scales toward division through their indifference and rejection of their role, they will continue inviting problems to the world and hatred to themselves.

It is thus my hope that the people of Israel will acknowledge their role and start making efforts to connect sooner rather than later, because if things keep developing as they currently do, then we will experience wars and major suffering on a whole new level of egoistic relations the likes that we have never seen before.

“Does The State Of Israel Have A Right To Exist? Why Or Why Not?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Does the State of Israel have a right to exist? Why or why not?

According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, there is a program that runs through nature’s and humanity’s development, which guides us all to a state of complete unification, eternity and perfection at the end of our development. In this process, the State of Israel has been given a right and ability to exist, however on a very specific condition: that the people of Israel fulfill a key role in the process.

What is the role of the people of Israel? It is to pioneer a method of unifying above division among each other—i.e. to reach what is described as “love your neighbor as yourself” (Leviticus 19:18) and “love covers all transgressions” (Proverbs 10:12)—in order to become a conduit for unity to expand worldwide—i.e. to be “a light unto the nations” (Isaiah 42:6).

According to our role, to bring unity to the world, we have been doing the opposite until today. We are unaware of the duty we have toward the world, and due to the lack of awareness and efforts to unite, we experience increasing division among each other. As a result, we become a source of the world’s problems, conflicts and separation.

Therefore, if the people of Israel fail to develop from this moment onward in a unifying direction, then the period of the existence of the State of Israel will come to an end. If the people of Israel in the State of Israel, in the land that we have been given, fail to motion toward serving the world with a positive example of unification, and continue developing in the opposite direction, then the State of Israel will have no right to exist. Then, as has taken place before in history, the Jewish people would become pressured to exit this land and disperse around the world. Moreover, according to the exponentially-growing hatred toward the Jewish people and the methodical delegitimization of the State of Israel unfolding from one day to the next, I think that the decision to eliminate the State of Israel could very well happen soon.

“Why Can’t Palestine Recognize Israel?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Why can’t Palestine recognise Israel?

The people of Israel alone determine the attitude that the nations of the world have toward them. The nations of the world have no free choice in how they perceive Israel. According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, Israel are people with free choice, because it was the people of Israel who were granted the ability to rise above the egoistic human nature—the desire to enjoy at the expense of others—that runs on autopilot within each and every person. If the people of Israel make the choice to rise above the divisive egoistic drives and unite, then an abundance of goodness will flow out to the world through them. Likewise, if the people of Israel fail in making that choice, letting egoism continue to grow unabated, then no agreements will help them: it will be bad for them and for the world.

Free choice is the choice to connect among each other and by doing so, reveal the upper force—the force of connection and love—here in this world. If we fail to make that choice, then the negative side of the force of connection and love—division and hatred due to egoistic desires growing without any effective regulation—will ripple out to all humanity in depth and width. This is the root of any positive or negative attitude toward Israel from the nations of the world.

Today, since the people of Israel are not making any effort to realize their unifying role in the world, then anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli sentiment—including denial of the State of Israel—grows in order to pressure the people of Israel to fulfill their duty in the world.

Wiping Israel Off The Map?

Dr. Michael LaitmanFrom My Facebook Page Michael Laitman 8/8/19

Tisha B’Av, Rising Above the Straits (Jewish Boston)

Jewish Boston published my article: “Tisha B’Av, Rising Above the Straits

We Jews, the bearers of the tenet “love your neighbor as yourself,” must rise to the challenge, put down our internal disputes and unite above them.

We have just entered the period of time called “Bein ha-Metzarim” (“Between the Straits”), which begins on the 17th of Tammuz and ends on the 9th of Av (Tisha B’Av), during which we commemorate the destruction of the First and Second Temples. This special time could never be more pertinent than now. The ruin of the temples, in fact, symbolize the shattering of our human relations—a true reason for mourning—but we can also find joy in the situation if we recognize it as an opportunity to rebuild ties of unity between us.

Repairing the current political divide in America, especially during the already exacerbating campaign climate of the 2020 election, has nothing to do with Trump, specific members of Congress, or either side of the political spectrum. The problem is much wider and deeper. The divisions are between American Jewry and the Israeli nation, between Muslims and Jews, and within U.S. society as a whole. The myriad aggravations signal an urgent imperative for change in human relations that Jews must initiate and lead by rising above all the divisions that separate us.

Why must Jews lead the charge? It is because the Jewish people possess precisely what America and the world desperately needs: the key for a cohesive and harmonious existence. Jewish unity must now be our first priority. It is the historical purpose of Jews to demonstrate unity within their ranks as a model of corrected social relations for others to follow.

We became a nation at the foot of Mount Sinai only when each person present accepted the condition of being “as one man with one heart.” In the centuries that followed, Jews practiced principles of connection enabling them to rise above their differences for the creation of ideal social cohesion and unprecedented human development. It was only during the long exile that followed the ruin of the Second Temple that this unity was forgotten.

Therefore, why should we mourn the destructions of Tisha B’Av at this particular time?It is because, since the 16th century when the great Kabbalist, the Ari (Rav Isaac Luria), declared the opening of the process of correction for all humanity, our negligence in repairing the shattering perpetuates the destruction. By delaying this process we block the building of the Third Temple, meaning the correction of the shattering in our connections. Our state of shattered connection is what’s truly considered the ruin of the Temples, a state in which we have lost consciousness of ourselves as a single entity.

Thus, there is both great joy in our opportunity for correction that the shattering brings us while, on the other hand, there is sorrow over our fragmentation under the forces constantly emerging to damage our connection. Our state is a manifestation of the principle that, in spirituality, we always encounter two opposites in the same place in order to advance.

Now is the time to be proactive. We Jews, the bearers of the tenet “love your neighbor as yourself,” must rise to the challenge, put down our internal disputes, and unite above them. As King Solomon stated: “Hate stirs strife, and love covers all crimes” (Proverbs, 10:12). This is the true and positive call to action that we should take from this special period of reflection. It is the one act that will guarantee our safety and happiness in America and wherever we live.
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Tisha B’Av: It’s Been Nearly 2,000 Years Since The Destruction Of The Temple, How Come Jews Still Mourn It Yearly On Its Anniversary? (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Tisha B’Av: It’s been nearly 2000 years since the destruction of the temple, how come Jews still mourn it yearly on its anniversary?

According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, the mourning at Tisha B’Av shouldn’t be about the ruin of the First and Second Temples that took place in the past, but the sorrow should be in relation to the failure of the Jewish people to make moves in establishing the Third Temple.

How does this work? Firstly, we need to understand that the wisdom of Kabbalah doesn’t relate to corporeal depictions in the Torah, but according to the language of root and branch, relates to the inner processes of human correction that are presented through its writings. Therefore, the meaning behind the establishment of the Holy Temples is the establishment of a united people above division. That is, using the method of correction that guides people to connect on a basis of “love your friend as yourself,” a group of people known as “the Jews” reached a state of spiritual unity (the Hebrew word for “Jew” [Yehudi] comes from the word for “united” [yihudi] [Yaarot Devash, Part 2, Drush no. 2]), and this is what the Torah describes as the construction of the Temples.

The ruin of the Temples that Tisha B’Av symbolizes means the detachment of the Jewish people from their spiritual unity “as one man with one heart,” and their exit into a state of exile, i.e. a state of dispersion from their spiritual unity.

This destruction and detachment is a necessary state in the process of humanity’s development. Why? It’s because we need to reveal the force of our shattered connections as a preparation to correct those connections. Therefore, on one hand, we need to resist the destruction before it takes place, and hold onto our connection as much as possible. On the other hand, since the destruction took place, we need to see that it could not take place in any other way. We thus enter a period of preparation until we are worthy of reconnecting on a new level, i.e. worthy of correction. This explains the laughter of Rabbi Akiva, a great Kabbalist, after the destruction of the Second Temple. Rabbi Akiva saw how it became possible to establish a much greater connection, one not just for the people of Israel, but one that includes the whole of humanity—the complete and final correction. In other words, he saw that the scene was set for the establishment of the Third Temple.

Therefore, if we work on developing our connection, everything should become more corrected without further destruction, wars and so on. If the people of Israel can use and spread the wisdom of Kabbalah, then we can correct ourselves and live in an upgraded harmonious reality.

However, if we fail to implement the method of correction to rise above our divisive drives and establish a new, heightened state of unity in our times, then we experience many delays and enemies on the path, such as the foreboding trend of anti-Semitism. For that reason, the people of Israel suffer from not wanting to accept the method of correction—to correct their connections to be “as one man with one heart” in “love your friend as yourself.”

Therefore, we don’t need to cry about what happened, since everything that happened in the past was necessary and there is nothing we can change about it. What we need to cry about is the fact that we fail to build the new Temple, i.e. a new movement to unite above the growing division of our times, because that is in our hands to establish—the Third Temple—and our idleness in doing so brings about myriad forms of suffering in the world, and also negatively rebounds on the people of Israel in the form of rising anti-Semitism. Therefore, there is no sorrow in terms of what happened, but sorrow in terms of what we’re failing to implement.
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Michael Laitman And Prof. David Patterson Talk – The Responsibility Of Being A Chosen People

Prof. David Patterson, Hillel A. Feinberg Chair in Holocaust Studies at the University of Dallas, Texas, meets with Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman to discuss the reasons for anti-Semitism and the role of Jews in the world.

As author of the book, Anti-Semitism and Its Metaphysical Origins (2015), Prof. Patterson mentions that one of the main reasons for anti-Semitism is the secretiveness of Jewish culture and the ability of the Jewish people to communicate with God, which the Jews hide. Moreover, Prof. Patterson states how this divine ability is what makes the Jews a chosen people, separate from other nations of the world.

Dr. Laitman elaborates on what it means to be a chosen people: i.e. it is to convey to the people that they are chosen. This can be done by showing an example of a loving attitude, according to what is written, “love your neighbor as yourself” (Leviticus 19:18). If so, still, why Jews? It stems back to the origins of Jewish people.

The group of Israel (from the words “Yashar Kel” [“straight to the upper force”]) as a collective of 70 nations, was gathered by Abraham around the principle “love covers all crimes” atop of the great crisis in ancient Babylon called the Tower of Babel.

According to Abraham’s teaching, there are two forces operating reality: continuously evolving human ego (“negative”), i.e. ego as the desire to enjoy at the expense of others, and the force of connection between people (“positive”). Apparently, by connecting these two opposite forces and setting “positive” above “negative” it is possible to reveal Godliness, a single force of love and bestowal, called in Kabbalah “the Creator.”

After the Jews left Babylon, the human ego continued evolving. They thus revealed the unfounded hatred between them and could no longer cover it with love. Therefore, Jews lost their connection with the upper force, forgot their method of connection, and dispersed all over the globe.

Because of the current global crisis in every area, the world requires the method of connection above the ego, revealed by Abraham, and the Jews, even if they are unaware of it, are the carriers of this method. From now onward, the people of Israel have to reactivate their connection and show an example to humanity: to be the so-called “light unto the nations” (Isaiah 42:6): to teach and share an educational method for everyone to be able to learn how to live harmoniously in today’s world. If the Jews fail to fulfill their role, anti-Semitism will rise even more, but if they succeed, the entire world will receive an opportunity to reveal the sublime upper force of love and bestowal through their unification, and live a new life of happiness, confidence and perfection.

Why Are Jews Considered Smart?

Laitman_049.01Remark: You said that in order for a person to become an aristocrat, it takes the upbringing of many generations.

My Comment: This is no longer the case. Today, people have a lot of free time to devote to learning. Several generations of people who study a lot and for a long time will grow up to be completely different people.

Why is it believed that Jews are smart? In fact, they are not smarter than others. But they have been propagating the study of the Torah and Talmud for several thousand years.

There was not a single child who would not learn how to read, who could not read and write, and did not study these books all the time. These books laid out judicial laws, all sorts of problems that needed to be resolved. This was their intellectual training.

I am sure that within 100 to 200 years we will see that humanity will become the same. The fact is that whatever one nation went through in 2,000 to 3,000 years, others will go through in 200 years.
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From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 3/24/19

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Book Week And The People Of The Book

laitman_526Israel is celebrating book week. It is clear that the publication and consumption of books increased dramatically over the last year. Despite the popularity of smartphones, it is evident that many new books were written and published. More and more people buy and read books.

Books will never die. Of course, it is very convenient to work on a computer preparing and editing texts and drawings. However, in order to get a full impression from a literary work of art, it must be in print. A book has a spiritual root that combines “the book, the author, and the story” (Sefer-Sofer-Sipur).

A book is not necessarily a printed volume. It can be a scroll or a carving on a stone, but it can never be on a screen because such text is not a work of human hands. A book is written by a person who has put an effort into its pages, into print. When I hold a book in my hands and read it, I feel that it belongs to me and I personally connect with its content.

I cannot, however, connect with a computer screen; it has no spiritual root. A computer, a screen, or a tablet do not exist in nature, but a book does. A book is created from natural materials in order to preserve knowledge and make a record of it in nature. I can never have the connection with the computer screen the way I have with a book because once the computer is turned off, everything disappears. The feeling comes from the spiritual root that is present in a book. There is an association between the person’s spiritual root and that of a book, which ensures our connection. Nothing, however, connects me with a computer. If you compare the impression received from the same work in a book format versus the computer screen, you will find that the printed text has a much greater effect on you.

The spiritual root of a book is connected with the root of the soul, and we can feel it. When I read a book, my soul unites with the spiritual root of the book and receives fulfillment. One can never get such fulfillment from the computer. A modern person cannot understand this because he has long forgotten printed books and lives in a virtual world. Computers are made of plastic, which breeds plastic knowledge and plastic hearts.

One does not print a text on the computer screen because a moment later, the screen will show something else. The text appears and then it disappears—it is not there. But if I pick up a book, it contains the thoughts and the desires of the author forever.

You must hold a book in your hands and read it letter by letter because it is an expression of the spiritual root. Thus, technology can further develop, but the book is eternal because it contains a spiritual root. Reading a book brings a certain pleasure, which is unachievable when reading from a screen. By reading from a screen, we obtain knowledge, but from the book we get the feeling.

The book unites the book-the author-the story (Sefer-Sofer-Sipur). There is a writer and his story conveyed to us in a book. A reader receives knowledge from the author and it becomes a part of him. Through the narrative, the author is able to deliver his story from inside the book, and share the root of his soul with a reader. There is no other way to convey an inner impression from one person to another.

Scientific knowledge, tables, and information can be transferred via the computer. But an emotional book that awakens love in one’s soul, a feeling of unity, is incomparable to a computer.

The people of Israel are called “the people of the book” because they were the ones who gave the world its main book that talks about the purpose of this world, about the structure of the entire system of the universe. There is only one book and all the others are its consequences, its small branches. The book of Torah explains the existence of the entire system of the world and our mission in such a system.

If I read a Kabbalistic book now, I am influencing its author although he died two thousand years ago because I am using the result of his work. Through our connection, through the unity in our hearts and souls, through my desire to influence the author, I have an impact on him. I elevate his soul as he elevates mine.
From A “Talk About ‘The Week Of The Book’,” 6/13/19

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