Entries in the 'Kabbalah Study' Category

Why Isn’t Kabbalah A Leading World Religion?

254.02Question: If the main idea of all world religions is to unite people with some common idea and raise them to a higher power, why has the science of Kabbalah not become the leading world religion in these 6,000 years?

Answer: The science of Kabbalah appeared 6,000 years ago, and the foundations of religions 3,500 years ago in Ancient Babylon. Christianity arose about 2,000 years ago and Islam 600 years later.

The science of Kabbalah is not a religion. You do not need to believe in it, you just need to realize it. The reason for the emergence of religions was the concealment of the science of Kabbalah.

Kabbalah does not affirm anything unfounded; it encourages a person to reveal and find what it is talking about. This is a science that is called Hochmat a-Kabbalah (the wisdom of Kabbalah) that is, wisdom. It consists of no sacred acts, passes, or anything else.

It does not say that you must believe. You must come to a state called faith. But faith is a state of bestowal, of rising above one’s egoism, not the faith that religions speak of.

That is, Kabbalah has absolutely nothing to do with them. So, it doesn’t matter who you are or what you are. Nationality and gender do not matter. The main thing is the desire to know where you live and what for. Kabbalah does not divide people into any signs. Whoever desires comes and engages in it.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 2/2/20

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Kabbalah—The Only Method Of Revealing The Creator

laitman_214Question: Why is there only one truth and it lies in Kabbalah? Why aren’t there any other different paths to discover the spiritual world?

Answer: Egoism is created as opposed to the upper light. There is nothing besides the Creator (light, quality of love and bestowal) and the created being (quality of reception, self-concern, sensations in oneself).

Thus, all that is needed is to build the right connection between them for egoism (desire to enjoy) to acquire the form of the Creator. It is as simple as one plus one, nothing more. Thus there cannot be many methodologies.

By its nature, the method of Kabbalah is very rigid and categorical. It says: “Do this, and that’s it!” Therefore, we cannot offer it in this way to others. For now, we have to soften it, structure it, place it in some socially acceptable parameters so that it feels more palatable, like a bitter pill with a sweet coating.

Question: But all other methodologies come from the Creator too: “There is none else besides Him.” There are about 3,800 various spiritual practices. Is this a game on His part for the whole humanity to come closer to Him?

Answer: There is an enormous number of different souls that approach their final correction differently. However, their final correction will still happen with the help of the method of Kabbalah.

They must necessarily acquire a screen over their egoism and become similar to the Creator. But for now, they are not drawn to it. There are so many religions, faiths, philosophies, and mystical practices out there for them.

Question: So, in order to establish a connection with the Creator a person must “dress” his desire—acquire a screen on his egoism?

Answer: Yes. As in technology: there should be a plus, a minus, and a resistor between them. Otherwise, a short circuit will occur.
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From the TV Program “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 3/25/19

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The Essence And The Root Of Unity, Part 2

laitman_258Kabbalah Does Not Operate with Numbers

Comment: Kabbalah, as a rule, speaks of some kind of qualitative condition. For example, historians write that three million people left Egypt, of which 600,000 were men, and the rest were women and children. But Kabbalah doesn’t operate with numbers at all. Gematria is a qualitative quantity.

It is possible that it was not three million people that left Egypt since this figure means a certain qualitative quantity.

My Response: A certain pattern exists in which the potential states of spiritual forces, described in the primary sources, must materialize at least once.

Historians and archaeologists look for this via their own sources, measure it by their standards, weigh it in grams and kilograms, translate it into kilometers, and therefore, they do it a bit differently.

Question: How should we use such information? Suppose I read that several thousand years ago there was an exodus from Egypt. But I’m not a historian and I’m not interested in this. How can I use this for my own good?

Answer: We are talking about the ascent above our egoism, which is performed by a group of people who strive for this. In our time, as well as in those days, this is accomplished via the same actions, efforts, and unification among people called mutual guarantee.

It makes no difference whether you existed 3,000 years ago and thus rose from egoism, meaning “exited Egypt,” or today where you do it in a group of people, in the ten, whether here or at the other end of the world. After all, we have many groups that work in different countries and speak different languages.
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From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis of the Development of the People of Israel,” 3/24/19

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laitman_570The Uniqueness of the Kabbalistic Approach

Question: There are many methods for studying historical processes. There is philology (comparing texts), and genetics, and archeology. What is the Kabbalistic method? What makes it so unique? How do Kabbalists explore historical processes?

Answer: We base everything upon Kabbalistic sources and nothing else. All these sources are known from Adam through Abraham, then Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Aaron, Joseph, David and further, up to the Kabbalists of our day.

By the way, Kabbalists have never been interested in the history of the people of Israel. They only thought about how to elevate the Jewish people to their heights, the foundation of which was laid down in the spiritual world, so that this ascent can serve as an example for all humanity.

Remark: This approach is unique in a way that all primary sources, such as The Book of Zohar, the Pentateuch, the Scriptures, the Prophets, the Talmud, the Mishnah and others, and the spiritual conditions of one person or all humanity, including the people of Israel, are described.

According to Kabbalah, there is a pattern that all spiritual states must materialize at least once. However, they may not correspond to the scale of events, nor the time of their implementation.

Therefore, historians and archaeologists, while conducting their research, often see that the scale and dates of the events described in the same Torah don’t correspond to the indicated time.

My Response: Indeed. In this regard, the concept of “Armageddon,” which we associate with terrible events at the end of the world, is very indicative. In fact, this word comes from the name of the little hill “Har Megido.”

Kabbalah does not mean physical objectification of any phenomena or objects, but their spiritual state. And in a spiritual form, all this has great importance, for example, the Temple. Look at how many cubits (length from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger), as indicated in the Torah, the Tabernacle should be made of along with other things.

At the material level, this is all very small and insignificant. However, when they are given spiritual greatness, then multiplying one by the other, they truly give a great higher power.
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From KabTV’s “Systematic Analysis Development of the People of Israel,” 3/24/19

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Psychological Training Or Kabbalah?

Laitman_049.01Question: I recently returned from a trip to Asia where I studied a state of being without thoughts. In this state I began to get to know people and realized that I was able to feel them, see what they want, and what I want to give them.

When I began to practice this further, I started to feel this wonderful internal state being generated between us, which was transmitted to everyone who was nearby. Is this what you are talking about when you speak about inner light?

Answer: No. It is not the same. You talk about psychological states, and I talk about spiritual ones.

First, when you study Kabbalah you will see that it is not the same.

Second, in order to feel what you are experiencing, you need not rise above egoism, above your nature. Such psychological training helps you somehow feel others on a deeper level and nothing more. It is not the way out of egoism, and is not what Kabbalah discusses.

There are many techniques in our world that attract people. I am not telling you to stop doing what interests you. At the same time, engage in Kabbalah and you will see what technique will really help you get out of your egoism, out of our nature.
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From KabTV’s “Fundamentals of Kabbalah,” 1/26/20

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The Wisdom Of King Solomon: “Do Not Grab A Dog By The Ears”

laitman_583_04Proverbs, 26:17: A passerby who becomes embroiled in a quarrel that is not his is like one who grabs a dog by its ears.

Question: Does it mean that a person fiddles with his fate?

Answer: Of course! If you meddle in someone else’s quarrel, you cause anger in the other person at the level of a dog.

We know that it is best not to interfere. The best thing is to let the person sort out the situation he is in without any wisdom or advice; otherwise, you will become an enemy to both.

Question: Let’s say there is a quarrel. What should a person do?

Answer: An outside person does nothing. Leaves them alone and steps aside.

The police or someone else that is supposed to smooth things over, this is their business. An individual has no right to interfere.

Question: Is it because he does not know who is right and who is wrong?

Answer: He has no right to meddle at all. Otherwise, those states will not find their solution.

Question: King Solomon said that the quarrel is within me. What kind of quarrel exists inside a person?

Answer: A constant one, because the person is created from two desires: egoistic and altruistic ones. But a true human is one within whom there is a constant battle between good and evil, one who specifically incites his good to evil.

The evil constantly rises, wants everything for itself, and so on. A person, however, if he wants to educate himself, always develops good in himself and is constantly in this internal battle.

Therefore, all these proverbs are built on the revelation of evil in a person, but to the extent that he tries to reveal the good in himself.

Question: That is, the evil is in me, the egoism is within me, all the time; is this my nature?

Answer: Yes, and you ask the Creator to give you a good nature in addition to it so that you could balance these two natures. You can say: “I ask the Creator to remove this evil nature from me.” No. This is unwise.

You should ask to be given a good nature so that these two natures would exist within you in balance. One should not be bigger than the other, and the positive one should not be above the negative.

The middle line between them is an amazing state. And I am constantly in this balance. I stand on two legs above them. Only then can I absolutely fully feel both the minus and the plus and all nature below me.

Question: Is a person who includes his own nature and the nature of the Creator a harmonious person?

Answer: Of course. He is then called “Adam,” i.e., “similar to the Creator,” because all one’s inner properties that are opposite to the Creator also resemble the Creator.
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From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman,” 12/16/19

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“The Meaning Of Purim” (KabNet)

KabNet published my new article: “The Meaning Of Purim

Purim, which takes place on the 14th of Adar, is the holiday of opposites. It connects between happiness and despair, concealment and revelation, Mordechai and Haman, exile and redemption.

Purim (which stems from the word “Pur” [“lot”]) is the ideal spiritual situation, the final correction (Gmar Tikkun). It is a state where a person’s desires are corrected with the intention in order to bestow, and one becomes united with all desires, thus filling one’s desire with the Creator’s revelation (i.e., the revelation of the quality of bestowal and love that connects among all desires).

THE SPIRITUAL MEANING OF PURIM

Megillat Esther (The Book of Esther) describes forces that unfold in the person. These forces are what a person attaining spirituality discovers in connection with the Creator. They manage everything taking place in everyone’s lives, and have been given the names Mordechai, Esther, Haman, as well as many others.

The story of Purim unfolds before the construction of the Second Temple, soon before the Aliyah (ascent) to the land of Israel. It depicts the final battle before the final correction (Gmar Tikkun). At this stage, the people of Israel, the innermost desire within the person that aspires to spirituality, live calmly and peacefully in the kingdom of Ahasuerus.

Mordechai, the spiritual desire that wants only to adhere to the Creator (the quality of bestowal and love), lived happily and the kingdom was at peace.

The people of Israel represent the majority of the desires that want to go straight to the world’s leader to learn the law of the universe (the word “Israel” comes from the words “Yashar Kel” [“straight to God”]).

Indeed, in the beginning of the story, the narrative suggests that there is something wrong: “There is one nation that is scattered among the nations.” This passage can also be read as “There is one desire that is scattered among the desires.” It is this nation, Israel, the desire for spirituality (a desire of bestowal and love), that is supposed to be united against all other nations, which are desires for self-gratification. The strength of the desire for spirituality (Israel) comes only from its unity, so when it is dispersed, it signifies that the person has not yet fulfilled his destiny, for only the people of Israel (the united desire for bestowal and love above all other desires) can lead the other nations (all other desires for self-gratification) to the common goal, adhesion with the Creator.

The evil Haman, who represents the egoistic desires in the person, wants to exploit the situation for personal gain. He eventually wants to overthrow the king from his throne. Haman believes that the fact that the people of Israel, the Jews, are dispersed testifies to their weakness, confusion and lack of faith. Therefore, he finds the situation to be a rare opportunity to eliminate the Jews from the face of the earth, as they are the sole force that stands between him and exploiting the Creator.

What Haman fails to understand, however, is that the Jews are dispersed for a reason: The Jews’ dispersion (i.e., the dispersion of the small amount of spiritual desires among the large amount of egoistic desires) is in order for all desires to acquire the form of bestowal and love, i.e. that spiritual unity comes in integration and perfect balance with all desires, and not in separation to them. Indeed, we will see the truth of it when at the end of the story, all people reform. The meaning is that all the desires in the person, called “people,” accept the spiritual desires that leads to confidence and happiness, called “Israel.”

The Israel in a person (the altruistic part) is limited. That limitation can only be overcome by the evil Haman. That is why we need to find the Haman (the egoistic part) within us.

“As An Atheist, What Do You Think About Kabbalah?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: As an atheist, what do you think about Kabbalah?

Kabbalah differs from atheism and religions in general in that it facilitates a clear attainment of the Creator, so that you will feel Him like you feel a friend of yours, and even more. There is thus no room in Kabbalah for belief in something others have told to you. Instead, you have to attain yourself, the entire world, and all the souls, and inside them – the Creator in His entirety.

Atheism is a belief that the Creator does not exist, whereas religion is a belief that the Creator does exist. In contrast, Kabbalah is the revelation of the Creator, through researching Nature inside yourself or inside your perceptions.

In this regard, Kabbalah is similar to other sciences. However, the other sciences reveal the world within the senses that we already have, whereas Kabbalah does it in an additional sense – the soul, which you first have to develop inside you. In any case, just like any other science Kabbalah speaks only about the things that are present in one’s senses! It is not interested in anything that’s imperceptible and that cannot be researched, repeated, and tested, and considers these things unreal. This approach makes it a science by definition. See the definition of Kabbalah in Baal HaSulam’s article “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah” – “Kabbalah is the method of revealing the Creator to a person in our world” – to every person and to everyone together.

Like all sciences, Kabbalah uses the scientific method or instrument (even though scientists find it difficult to agree with this because they are used to researching the world only through the animate body). The scientific method assumes that:

  • Every scientific statement must be proven by experiment.
  • Every scientific statement can be proven wrong.
  • It is pointless to discuss an idea that cannot be verified in practice. For example, here is a scientific opinion about G-d’s existence: Immanuel Kant showed that it cannot be proven that G-d exists as well as that He does not. The very notion of an unattainable and almighty G-d is not subject to experiment, because if G-d is almighty, then he’s able to control the outcome of the experiment. People don’t accept G-d through evidence, but through faith. Hence, the idea of G-d is beyond science. Any question that asks “Why is so and so this way?” can be answered, “Because it’s G-d’s will.” (This is how religion compelled people to answer all questions, and therefore it slowed down scientific progress.) Kabbalah allows one to reveal the Creator and His actions in practice. However, it is just as indifferent to the things that cannot be verified in practice as the earthly sciences.
  • Every scientific statement must be logical and not contradict the laws that are already known. Usually, the old laws become particular cases of the new laws.
  • Every scientific statement must indicate its “weak spots”; it should mention which of it constituents are subject to doubt and objection.

“Who Is The God Of Kabbalah?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Who is the God of Kabbalah?

God in Kabbalah means the general force of nature, where other than this force, nothing exists.

In and of itself, we consider God as an abstract concept and cannot discuss something existing outside our perception. No one has ever felt it. This state of God, also called “the Creator,” in no way can be perceived by us, and therefore, this force is called “Atzmuto,” i.e., “His essence.”

Everything that we attain and what is possible for us to attain are the actions of the upper force in relation to us. The wisdom of Kabbalah deals with revealing these actions in relation to a person.

We call this upper force “the Creator” because He created the human being and all of our qualities, within which we feel our world and can explore the Creator through our senses. We can explore why He created us with such qualities, limitations and abilities, and what He wants from us.

By making progress in such an exploration, we begin to attain the Creator. We do not attain the essence or “self” of the Creator (Atzmuto), but the Creator in relation to us. It is written about this, “We will know You by your actions.” We explore the Creator’s actions, how He created our world and all other worlds, as a system of connections between Him and us. This system of connections in degrees that cascade down to us is called “worlds,” and this system influences us at every moment of our lives.

By studying this system, these worlds, we study the Creator and ourselves, both our nature and the nature of the Creator, and we progress to the understand of what states we connect to Him with. We can change our behavior and our actions in accordance with this in order to raise ourselves to higher connections, to be connected directly with the Creator.

In other words, we can see what kind of reactions our actions produce in Him and, conversely, what reactions His actions produce in us. We can reach an absolutely complete, open and two-way connection.

When we begin to attain this opportunity, to reveal and achieve it gradually, we naturally change our behavior in accordance with what we reveal, and we enter a completely different stage of our development where we begin to undergo changes in becoming more and more similar to the Creator.

At the same time, our world and we ourselves radically transform, and our state becomes increasingly reliable, convenient and true.

“Is The Esoteric Kabbalah Even Approaching Legitimacy?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Is the esoteric Kabbalah even approaching legitimacy?

Kabbalah is not a form of esotericism.

People want to label Kabbalah as esoteric or mystic, and connect it with blessings, curses, charms, and many other phenomena. These labels became linked with Kabbalah because there was a prohibition on the study of Kabbalah in the masses for 1,000s of years since humanity’s spiritual desire still hadn’t ripened. In the 16th Century, when the Ari (Kabbalist Isaac Luria) lifted the prohibition on the study of the wisdom of Kabbalah, claiming that the time had come for Kabbalah to be revealed to humanity, he also mentioned the prohibition on the use of charms and blessings, since they have nothing to do with Kabbalah.

Kabbalah is a science that teaches the law of reality, of which we are a part. Through this science, we discover those rules and the spiritual world, which is the reason for everything that happens here with us. They are collective rules, which encompass the laws of all the sciences in our world.

Kabbalah is not another belief or an imaginary view of life. Instead, it offers precise and clear laws that depict the structure of the upper worlds.

It is when we study Kabbalah that we first acquire knowledge of the world outside our own. We discover the higher, spiritual world, and then we gradually attain the ability to affect it. Through tests and experiments, we learn how to do it, and then we enter the comprehensive reality.

At this point, we begin to work not from within our own bodies, but from our souls, which are our true essence. The human being is not the physical body that is replaced at the beginning of each new life. The human being is the soul that we currently do not sense.

The purpose of creation is that we will act from within our souls, from the upper world, and live at the highest degree possible, rather than in the lowest (our world), which is at an animal level. By discovering our souls, we attain contact with the upper world, and thus achieve a whole, complete, eternal and blissful life.