Entries in the 'Israel Today' Category

When Will The Holy Land Be Ours?

933Question: In the Torah in Bereshit, it is written that Abraham asked the Creator: “How will I know that I will inherit it?” And the Creator answered him: “You shall surely know that your seed will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, and they will enslave them and oppress them, for four hundred years. And also the nation that they will serve will I judge, and afterwards they will go forth with great possessions.”

Can we rely on the primary sources written thousands of years ago to say today that this is our land?

Answer: The laws of nature are absolute and they must be applied. Therefore, what was said three to four thousand years ago is coming true today.

Remark: In the Midrash, it is written that Israel will not return to their land until they are all in one bundle. But we are back.

Answer: No. Our physical return does not mean anything. Absolutely nothing! This is not the return that should be. Therefore, Kabbalists believe that there is actually no return yet. We have arrived here, we are on this land, but it is not sacred and not ours.

Our land will be a desire in which we can unite because “land” – “Eretz” from the word “Ratzon” – “desire.” And these are not stones under your feet but hearts that will unite together.
From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel” 11/25/19

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To Become One Nation

626Baal HaSulam, The Nation: These loose ties—language, religion, and history—are important values, and no one denies their national merit. However, they are still completely insufficient to rely on as a basis for the independent sustenance of a nation. In the end, all we have here is a gathering of strangers, descendants of cultures of seventy nations, each building a stage for oneself, one’s spirit, and one’s leanings. There is no elemental thing here that unites us all from within into a single mass.

To this day, we have failed to build a country, a nation, or a society. The world does not understand it. And the Jews themselves, those living in Israel, see it as strange.

All values based on language, religion, and history do not reach their hearts because they do not touch the foundation of the Jewish people, the foundation of the land of Israel. Therefore, the land rejects everything that does not correspond to its spiritual root.

Thus, the people of Israel will have no choice but to accept the true laws of nature of this land, i.e., the laws of bestowal, love, and relationship above our egoism. And then, we will begin to really feel that we live on our own land, create our own society and state. Only in this case, will everyone start to accept and approve of us correctly.

Remark: If you had said this a year ago, you probably would have had to convince people that there is a strong division in the nation. But now there appears to be such discord between the right and the left that we cannot even choose the head of government. And this conflict is only growing every year.

My Comment: In general, we live in a very interesting period of history when we begin to understand that we have no other choice but to create a nation and a state according to the laws of our nature, our common soul. After all, our roots come from a broken soul—the so-called “soul of Adam.” And so, until we start to restore it, to connect all the fragments together, we will not be able to create anything.

Question: Are you talking about some kind of emotional relationship between people?

Answer: Yes. There is nothing else.

We must create the right connections between us, and then we will become a nation. When by restoring the connection we understand how to build a state,  we will be able to create it. Everything must begin with the search for how to become properly united as one nation.
From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel” 11/25/19

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Education First, Then Unification

632.4Baal HaSulam, “The Nation”: This is why I said that we must establish for ourselves special education through widespread circulation, to instill in each of us a sense of national love, both from one person to another, and from the individuals to the whole, to rediscover the national love that was instilled within us since the time we were on our land as a nation among the nations.

This work precedes all others because besides being the basis, it gives the stature and successes to all the other actions that we wish to take in this field.

Most important is the education and upbringing of those people (fragments of the broken soul) who come to Israel so that they understand what their main mission is. Living on this land, they must realize that their task is to unite in spite of all the differences, of which are huge among the Jews so that above all so-called transgressions, love will be formed.

Remark: In principle, Baal HaSulam is saying that mass media need to work on the uniting people and not on separating them as is the case today.

My Comment: Most important is not even unification but education. Unification will happen when people understand who they are, what their nature is, and what state they should come to.
From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel” 11/25/19

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“If Peace With The UAE And Bahrain Is Good, Where Are The Trumpet Sounds?” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “If Peace with the UAE and Bahrain Is Good, Where Are the Trumpet Sounds?

Less than a month after the normalization agreement with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain has also joined the peace train. I am all for it; peace and normalization are always better than war and animosity. But to be honest, I don’t see that the rest of the world is so excited about it, and I think this shows how isolated we are in the world. Despite the fact that Israel has established connections with countries who were previously enemies, no one is cheering, no one is sounding the festive trumpets. For all our efforts to be accepted, Israel, and Jews (though they may not recognize it), are excluded from the family of nations.

Wherever Israel appears, it is unlike any other country, and so it is with regard to Jewish presence anywhere. It is time we asked ourselves why this is so; it is time we understood that the way the world relates to us depends on us and not on them.

Wherever Israel appears, it is unlike any other country, and so it is with regard to Jewish presence anywhere. It is time we asked ourselves why this is so; it is time we understood that the way the world relates to us depends on us and not on them. The nations will welcome us when we bring to the world something that not we, but they consider worthwhile. Until then, whatever we offer them — advanced technology, developed agriculture, innovations in medicine, and brilliant novelists, actors, and filmmakers — the world will only hate us more. We will not receive an ounce of gratitude until we bring them what they really want from us. They do not express it, but we must figure it out and do it nonetheless.

But that something is plain to see: In a broken world, splintered by hatred, we — Jews and the State of Israel — have to bring correction to the world, Tikkun Olam, through unity. The world will accept nothing less from us.

We hate the idea, but we are not like everyone else. If you don’t believe me, ask anyone who isn’t Jewish and they will tell you that they feel that there is something special about Jews. Some hate us, some like us, but most everyone senses that we are different, and they’re right. No other country or person has to justify their existence, but we Jews do, as a nation, as a country, and as individuals. We should recognize it, since otherwise the nations will tell us this the way the Nazis told this to us eighty years ago.

No nation attracts more attention than the Jews, since no other nation is expected to set an example to the whole world. We are judged by a different standard because we are expected to be more virtuous than everyone else, more loving, caring for each other, and with more mutual responsibility toward each other than all other nations.

For saying this, some Jews have accused me of being antisemitic. But denial gets us nowhere. Instead, we must roll up our sleeves and get to work, because the whole world is waiting, and it is becoming increasingly impatient.

The demands of the nations from the Jewish people are not some fabrications of sick minds; our own sages told us throughout the ages that we must be a role model nation, “a light unto nations.” Rav Kook, the leader of religious Zionism before the establishment of the State of Israel, articulated this message poetically and succinctly in his book, Orot HaKodesh: “Since we were ruined by unfounded hatred, and the world was ruined with us, we will be rebuilt by unfounded love, and the world will be rebuilt with us.”

As just said, we need to unite not for our own sake, but to set an example to the world. In the days before the ruin of the Second Temple, there was a period when we were so united that people from the nations flocked to Jerusalem to see the miracle. The book Sifrey Devarim details how gentiles would “go up to Jerusalem and see Israel … and say, ‘It is becoming to cling only to this nation.’”

Similarly, The Book of Zohar (Aharei Mot) wrote about our hatred for each other and the importance of our unity for the rest of the world:

“‘Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to also sit together.’ These are the friends as they sit together and are not separated from each other. At first, they seem like people at war, wishing to kill one another … then they return to being in brotherly love. …And you, the friends who are here, as you were in fondness and love before, henceforth you will also not part from one another … and by your merit, there will be peace in the world.”

The book Kol Mevaser also stresses the importance of unity for the people of Israel: “This is the mutual guarantee on which Moses worked so hard before his death, to unite the children of Israel. All of Israel are responsible for one another, meaning that when all are together, they see only good.”

Therefore, we need to realize that we will have no peace or peace of mind until we make peace among ourselves. Until we rise above our deep-seated hatred for each other and unite in order to serve as an example to the world, the nations will treat us as pariahs.

New Life 1268 – Concern For Social Issues In Israel

New Life 1268 – Concern For Social Issues In Israel
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi

Israel is in an existential crisis, with hungry enemies on every side. Security is top priority and has pushed social issues involving the elderly, the ill, and the poor aside. The coronavirus has put social issues back in the forefront of life so Jews have an opportunity to model the principle “love covers all crimes.” The hatred of the nations of the world is what makes Jews unite since we only have the force of connection when we face war, fear, and threats.

Israel is unique in that its destiny is to provide an example of unity and concern for others to the whole world. Unity is the law of nature and Jews determine the relations within the single system between the still, vegetative, and animate levels of reality. We must show the world how to rise above the force of separation with the force of connection into a state of “one man with one heart.”
From KabTV’s “New Life 1268 – Concern For Social Issues In Israel,” 7/20/20

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“A Peace Treaty Is Great, Now We Need Peace” (Times Of Israel)

The Times of Israel published my new article “A Peace Treaty Is Great, Now We Need Peace

40 years after the peace treaty with Egypt, and 26 years after the peace treaty with Jordan, Israel signed another peace treaty with an Arab country: the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Unlike the former two treaties, this treaty seems poised to create a warm relationship with a country that is ready and willing to conduct full and warm diplomatic and trade relationships, with embassies, investments in technology, and tourism. And in the absence of territorial and refugee related disputes, the road to successful implementation of the agreement seems smoothly paved.

But for all the merits of a peace treaty, there is a big difference between peace and a peace treaty. A peace treaty will last just as long as the parties have an interest in keeping it. It relies on narrow calculations, enough of which have piled up between countries to sign an agreement that will benefit those interests. But when the interests no longer hold, nothing will maintain the peace.

The Hebrew word for “peace” is shalom, from the word shlemut (wholeness). This is interesting because wholeness does not imply lack of hate, but rather inclusion of hate under the governance of love. We can think of it this way: We cannot even want to unite with someone before we feel the pain of separation from that person. Likewise, in order to build love with someone, we need to want it, and we cannot come to want it unless we first feel that we hate that person and want to get rid of the hatred and turn it into love.

When a positive feeling first awakens toward someone, it is still not love; it is enchantment. By nature, enchantment is intense yet momentary. If we want to keep feeling love after the enchantment is gone, we have to work on it and rise above the disenchantment and other negative feelings that surface in us toward the previously admired person. If we succeed, this will be the beginning of love. From here on, the evolution or devolution of the love will depend on our willingness to transcend recurrent spells of hatred and rejection by building love that is stronger than the manifested hatred.

It turns out that the intensity of the love depends on the intensity of the hatred that precedes it. When you have reached a state where the hatred between you has exposed itself to the fullest and you still managed to cover it with love, then you have achieved a state of shlemut, namely wholeness, peace. You felt the most intense hatred yet you chose love over it. From here on, nothing can divide between the loved ones; they have attained shalom, peace.

And what is true for people is equally true for nations. The peace treaty with the UAE has no reason to fail. As said earlier, we have common economic interests and no reasons for disagreements. But to achieve true, solid, and lasting peace in the Middle East, the neighboring nations will have to rise above tremendous amounts of hatred.

I know that in the end, peace will win. All of creation is moving toward increasing unity, so eventually all nations will have to transcend their belligerence and choose peace. The only question is how many innocent people will have to suffer until that happens.

People think that making peace requires making concessions. I don’t think so. If you make concessions, you will forever wait your turn to take over everything. But peace, as we just said, means wholeness, and wholeness means that each person must feel fully satisfied. This is possible only if all the people feel that they are sharing a common goal that is greater than either their individual ambitions: the goal of unity.

While each person remains in his or her religion or faith, people will want to unite above these differences. And just as greater hatred forms the basis of greater love between people, greater division forms the basis for greater unity among nations. When nations make wholeness their utmost goal, they learn to value both their individual perspectives and the ability to unite with other perspectives to create a common whole. Then, and only then there will be peace. And when that happens, the strongest connection will be with those who are currently the worst enemy.

Life Is A Balance Of Good And Evil

laitman_232.06Opposition parties and trends want to destroy their opponents, but they do not understand that they cannot exist without each other. One should not destroy the other, but rather connect correctly in order to create, by mutual concessions, a place for a third force, which is common to both of them for the Creator.

By my willingness to make room for someone else, I force the Creator to reveal Himself.

This is the only way to achieve pluralism. These are not just beautiful words, rather this must come from the understanding that this is how nature works, and we will not survive otherwise. Everyone is obliged to give place to other opposing currents, respect the opinions of others, and not against one’s will, but out of the awareness that this is how the world is built.

We will never be able to destroy the opposite point of view because by destroying the enemy, we are destroying ourselves as a result. I must take care that the enemy exists because in this form he helps me uncover my opinion.

All of nature exists on the opposition of plus and minus, creating life in all possible forms. Therefore, I must be ready to accept everyone, from the most left to the most right, from opponents to allies, because this is a consequence of the development of human society. All I need to know is how to make the right mosaic out of all these forms in order to see the true humanity in it.

In this form, it comes from the side of nature, which creates all sorts of qualities within it, from which we can know the creation and learn how to exist well and happily. Otherwise, we will fight continuously, like little children. We do not live; instead we are just busy trying to hurt each other.

I have no right to think about destroying any current; after all, I am not the Creator. This desire is a sign of corruption, disagreement with the Creator’s program.

There is room for everyone, but only if we do not destroy each other. This means that even the angel of death turns into a holy angel. He does not cease to be the angel of death, but with his help, the holy angel rises and the two exist against each other.

If one current destroys the other, then it itself has no basis for existence. Therefore, it must make sure that there are opponents. One cannot be without the other.

The world is based on a balance of good and evil, and good people exist because there are bad people. It cannot be otherwise. Both exist in order to create a place for the revelation of the Creator—the source of both of them.

If we descend from the human level to the biological level, we will see that our body has many systems designed to destroy cells and purify the body because without this the body cannot exist. Life is an interweaving of good and evil. The body is a dynamic system that maintains balance all the time, and this is called life. As soon as the balance is disturbed, the body dies.

Anything in the world exists to maintain its opposite. Initially, there cannot be just one side but one can be more noticeable. All systems already exist, and there is room for everything, only some can be revealed to us more and others less, according to our nature. Our task is to balance all these systems, and their final balance will mean the end of correction.

At the end of correction, all evil and all good are revealed, and we see that what seemed to us as evil was actually good. This is when we reach perfection.

The coronavirus and other problems awaiting us will lead to such an explosion of hatred that humanity will begin to destroy itself. Therefore, we need to convey to people that in our society, in the environment, in the system of Adam HaRishon in which we exist, there is nothing superfluous that can be destroyed and removed from the world. We just need to organize the correct mutual connection between all the opposite parts.

This makes everyone wiser. One understands the other, the opposite opinion, and realizes that it is impossible without it because they support each other.

Imagine that all the 150 countries that exist in the world suddenly realized that they need each other: They all need Russia, America, China, Japan, Europe, and Africa. Then how the world would have changed, how much would it have saved in resources, money, and the costs of weapons and the military.

We will soon see that without implementing this principle, the world is simply rolling into an abyss. We will find ourselves increasingly dependent on each other, but we will not be able to unite.

Everyone should understand that any phenomenon has a place in the world. All the opposite movements and forces need each other and must treat each other well because the upper nature obliges us to this.

Therefore, it is necessary not to destroy and eliminate the enemy, but rather to exist together against each other. It is in the correct opposition that the possibility of existing at the upper degree is revealed to us. In fact, this is why the opposite forces are revealed in order to oblige us to rise to the next degree.

There again the opposing forces will be revealed, which, if we treat them correctly, will raise us even a degree higher—to their cause. Thus, we will rise until we discover that the cause of everything is the Creator, for whom good and evil mutually support each other, and there is no good without evil and no evil without good. In general, good and evil disappear, and everything merges in the Creator.

We all have different opinions, and we do not change our opinions to someone else’s, like two people sitting in the same car and arguing which way to go. We cannot find a solution this way. The only solution is to reveal the Creator through mutual concessions, and He will already show us further direction. This direction is not the one indicated by one of us or the other, but the one that is generalizing all our opinions.

This is why the Creator is called generalization. He will lead us in His direction where all our opposites are connected into one whole, where there is no opposition and everyone is equal, everyone is good and is in love and unity.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/3/20, Love Covers All Transgressions

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Black And White And Everything In Between

laitman_207Who is my opponent? Didn’t the Creator create him, doesn’t his power come from above? By acknowledging his right to exist, I acknowledge the Creator. All my work is to reveal the Creator through adhesion with Him. But the Creator is a collection of all aspirations, desires, qualities, which I organize correctly, collecting the image of the Creator in this mosaic.

The Creator has no image and form besides the one that I will collect from all the details that He created and provided to me. Therefore, just to destroy any phenomenon in the world is the greatest crime.

Let’s detach ourselves from our emotions and judge objectively: How can all the forces in the world, which, of course, come from the Creator, be combined into one system called Adam, human? Of course, all forces must be included in this system from the most negative to the most positive ones, from the left to the right, from black to white, all the minuses and pluses, and everything in between, like in our body.

If we do not fall under the influence of our emotions and we think reasonably, then it will become clear that there is a place for everything. This is the answer to the question of how to solve today’s problem in the world when some people hate others. After all, we see what unrest is taking place in America and Israel where the opposing sides want to destroy each other, erase each other from this world, without leaving even memories.

And this is very bad. We must take care for everyone to have a place. Neither one nor the other can exist without such pluralism. If you shoot wolves, the sheep will also die of disease. If the flies would be sent to destruction, the harvests would be ruined. It’s forbidden to do this. Nature is organized in such a way that although different forces are opposed to each other, they create a place for perfection with their correct combination.

Perfection is the result of the right connection between everyone. There is no good without evil, and evil exists only to reveal good. And we need to build the same relationships between people in human society.

The upper force entrusts us to explain this to the whole world; this is why it brought us to this organization, supports us, and gives us strength. We just need to try to understand it better and better every day in order to match this process and the upper program more and more.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/3/20, Love Covers All Transgressions

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“From Political Bickering To A Policy Of Unity” (Times Of Israel)

The Times of Israel published my new article “From Political Bickering to a Policy of Unity

A few years ago, an Israeli TV documentary told the story of a small village in Israel that had a population of 120 families, and six(!) shuls. Why six shuls if there are only 120 families? Because the families—all of whom from the same cultural background and daven the same way—can’t stand each other. When the interviewer asked a resident if, having so few people, it occasionally happens that there aren’t even ten people at the shul (the minimum number for service) to conduct a proper service, the man admitted that it happens. And what do you do then? asked the interviewer, “I drive to the nearby settlement and daven there,” said the man. Why go to another settlement to daven, who use different prayer books and songs than the ones you’re used to, if you have five shuls right here in your own village to pick from, and that daven exactly like you do? asked the interviewer. “I won’t go in any of them,” said the man resolutely.

A few days ago, a famous Arab-Israeli woman was interviewed on Israel TV and told an interesting story. She was invited to partake in a panel of several people at a Jewish town to discuss hatred and political tensions. The timing for the discussion was perfect since it was the 9th of Av, the date when the Temple was ruined 2,000 years ago because Jews hatred their own brethren. At the height of the debate, she finally said to her hosts, “You hate each other! Jews are hating Jews! You are discussing the ruin of the Temple on the 9th of Av, and still a Jew hates a Jew and wishes him death (reference to online death threats and death wishes to Israeli politicians)! If you hate each other, how will you love me?”

We’ve always been a nation of many views. And if you look at our history, you’ll find that when we succeeded in maintaining unity above differences, we thrived, and when we let the differences become unbridled hatred, we suffered.

Today’s Israel is at a crossroads. The differences among the various factions of the nation are gaining traction, and voices of unity are hardly heard. As always, divergence is our springboard for growth, but only if we unite above it. It is always a thin line to walk, and if we’re unaware of it, we’ll trip, and the very existence of Israel will be at risk.

Our motto has always been that hate stirs strife, and love will cover all the hatred (Proverbs 10:12). It is not an easy model to follow, but today we have no choice. Our international status will continue to deteriorate and our internal strength will continue to decline until we realize we have no other choice but to choose unity above all differences.

If we stall, the world will decide that the League of Nations’ declaration of a Jewish state in 1947 was a mistake. If we hurry and unite, the world will understand why Israel attracts so much attention—since it was meant to show how opposites can unite and cover their hate with love.

What we need right now is to shift from political bickering to a policy of unity among all factions. This is our most urgent need, especially today when hatred scares us even more than Covid, and is certainly more dangerous.

Polar Star

laitman_229There is fear that intense protests in Israel will end in violence and turn into civil war. But in fact, this war has been going on since we started returning to the land of Israel. After all, we are not corrected; therefore all our actions are very egoistic. Our egoism is evident in them so brightly that they turn out worse than those of all the nations of the world.

In the uncorrected state, we are the quintessence of all evil in the world, and in the corrected state, we will become the opposite, the quintessence of all good. And so it is written, that rising, Israel rises above the rest, and falling, falls below all. After all, we are an extract of the greatest desire to enjoy of all the nations of the world. This is why Israel stands out from all other nations.

Until people know what they really need to do, it will be impossible to calm them down. It is necessary to give them a method of correction so that they understand what needs to be corrected and what our mission assigned to us from above is.

If you do not give it to people, they will start killing each other. The inner flame will flare up so much that they will go out every day to beat or even kill each other, which was the case in the time of the Temple.

The main wars were not with the Greeks and Romans, but between the Jews themselves. And there is nothing new in today’s riots; it is again revealed what was two and three thousand years ago—the war of egoism that does not want to give way to anyone , until it reveals its insignificance and asks for correction.

Extinguishing the irritation and anger can only be done by revealing the true cause. Otherwise, it is impossible to ease the tension, hatred, and conflict of forces. They can be dimmed for a week or two, but in fact, nothing will change if all the cards are not revealed. And it is good that such a flame is burning inside people; it just needs to be directed and shaped correctly.

The riots and unrest that we see today on the streets of Israel are caused by the absence of a middle line, a lack of methodology, a program, an ideology that would connect different poles: the desire to receive of the creation, which is in contradiction with the desire to give of the Creator.

The two opposites must come to work together, to balance, to connect, to embrace, and to love. But there is no understanding among the people today that we need these two forces and only need to combine them correctly. And the right connection is possible if we have a goal in front of us, a guiding polar star to which we must precisely come together.

Let us move toward this goal together. These two opposing forces must find what they have in common. This means that both should rise above their egoism and find what unites them, only in this form. And this should be the case not only in Israel, but in the whole world. There is already unrest in America and then it will spread to all continents.

The polar star is the connection of all the forces of nature together in order to manifest one force that unfolds in the connection between us if we can unite over all differences. This force unfolding in us, gives us a sense of true reality instead of this material world. And then we begin to live in the upper world, called so according to our feelings, in a world that is eternal.

The blows received from the coronavirus will eventually cause all of humanity to bow, calm, and quiet down, realizing that there is an upper force at work here that will not allow us to do what we want, neither right or left. We will have to surrender to the influence of a third force from the higher degree.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/30/20

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