Entries in the 'prayer' Category

Write A Prayer

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: When you are “being stewed in the same juice” with the group, you start feeling hate toward the friends. How do I apply a “spiritual mind” to this specific point in order to rise above hate? What exactly should I do?

Answer: You wish to find a solution to the issue at the level where you are and don’t understand that the problem emerged in order to drag you to another place. Do you wish to resolve it or get rid of it? You have to move yourself to another place until you discover hate and resentment once more, and you will have to move yourself from that point as well.

In the end, in order to rid ourselves of hate, we have to correct our mutual connection each time. Sometimes, it can be done with the help of a shared meal, a joint action, some artificial change, and, at other times, by studying together; or, perhaps, time will accomplish this.

However, the most reliable means is a prayer. When you are in a state of inspiration, when you feel hate and simultaneously realize that you must rise above it, try to write a prayer, and let the group read it every day as an act of unity. It will work.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/29/10., “Come unto Pharaoh – 2”

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Let Your Heart Knock On The Creator’s Door

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How can I think about the correction that The Book of Zohar brings us if I feel negative emotions such as hatred?

Answer: Prayer is whatever the heart feels. If there is hatred in my heart now, then this is my prayer, “I want to hurt my enemy.”

In order to correctly use the force that’s hidden in The Book of Zohar while reading it together in a group, I must first prepare my heart so it will desire the same thing the Creator desires. In reality, the Creator responds to every prayer, meaning the desires in our heart. That is why our world is so bad!

However, on the other hand, it is written that He responds only to the prayer that has gone through “the gate of tears.” So does He really respond to every desire, even the whim of a baby or the machinations of a villain?

Yes, say the Kabbalists who have revealed the system of our relationships with Him. A thief who has set his sights on some object, or a criminal who goes out “on the prowl” and is ready to kill someone, also desire to succeed and their prayer is also accepted. After all, we are talking about the desire of Malchut of the World of Atzilut, and everything beneath it, including our world, belongs to it.

Why, then, do we say that the desire can ascend into Malchut, or it can not ascend? The matter is that we draw a division into two types of desires:

– Some aspire in the same direction as the Creator’s will. Then they unite with the upper desire and are perceived as abundance from Above.

– Some do not match the Creator’s will. They also evoke the same response from Above as the positive desires, but are perceived by the negative desires negatively, as a negative reaction. This corrects a person, leading him down a lengthy, difficult path of suffering instead of the short, easy path where his desires coincide with the Creator’s desires.

That is why it is best for us to prepare for the right prayer and to use it when turning to The Book of Zohar. A person cannot sit at the lesson without any desires. One way or another, he desires something, and if his desire has been prepared ahead of time and aspires in the right direction, then he advances easily and quickly while reading The Zohar.

Besides, we have to remember that we are in the group, which helps us to strengthen our prayer. Thus, if a person’s thoughts are not aimed at the goal, then he takes an adversarial position in relation to the group and feels what seems like a negative reaction from Above even more.

Therefore, our entire work amounts to preparing for the lesson, that is, for reading The Zohar and other Kabbalistic books. Once we are at the lesson, it is difficult to change anything because a person’s heart is already tuned to a specific desire.

That’s why it is so important what thoughts I have when going to sleep and how I prepare for the lesson in the morning. These minutes play the decisive role. And we shouldn’t forget about the physical preparation so the body won’t fall into slumber.

Rabash writes the following in Article 36 in Writings of Rabash:
It is written, “He who hears the prayer.” Why does it say “the prayer” in the singular tense? Doesn’t the Creator hear all prayers? The matter is that we have to raise just one prayer: to restore the Shechina from the dust.

To pray for the restoration of the Shechina from the dust means to desire the revelation of the Creator, the quality of bestowal and love for the neighbor inside me in order to become similar to the Creator in this regard. If we all aim our efforts in one direction, then we are knocking on the gate that will definitely open.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/7/10, The Zohar

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An Intention Without An Intention

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: If our primary goal is to achieve an inner connection, then why do we still have to start from a physical contact which the upcoming convention may help us establish?

Answer: What else can be done if you still don’t have the correct intention? You should perform actions without the intention! You will be like a child who is running back and forth. His actions are similar to our deeds that lack intention. However, gradually, a child becomes smarter and adds an intention, meaning sense to his actions.

The same can be said in regards to our actions and the convention itself: Whatever is in your power, do it! Not doing anything is the worst thing of all. You are unable to add the intention to your actions? But if before every action you admit that you can’t add the intention to it, it will become your intention! It will become a prayer.
From the 4trh part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/10/10, “The Love for the Creator and Love for the Created Beings”

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What Prayers Reach The Creator?

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Rabash writes that the Creator “hears the prayer of every mouth.” But you say that the prayer has to be internal. So what prayer does He hear?

Answer: A prayer is a desire that actually reaches the Creator. There are only two forces in the world: the forces of reception (attraction) and bestowal (rejection). And there is a law of the equivalence of form: In the degree of their similarity, the forces (objects) grow closer, and in the degree of their difference, they grow apart.

Since the Creator is an absolute will to bestow, He “expects” from us equivalence with Him, where the will to receive would desire to become similar to Him and also become the force of bestowal. To ensure this, He placed His spark, “the point in the heart,” the initial point of the quality of bestowal, into the will to receive, our nature. And we must cultivate it.

The Creator responds only to a prayer for this. All other kinds of prayers don’t reach Him. The Creator hears the prayer of everybody who is asking for the force of bestowal. The Creator is the law of bestowal, so he reacts to no pleas but those asking for the ability to bestow. And if we don’t ask for it, He sends us even greater suffering so that we may realize for what we should be asking.
From the Lesson on Rabash’s Article, 9/17/10

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Wishing You A Good Record In The Book Of Life

Dr. Michael LaitmanKlipat Noga is a state of “half good/half evil,” and it’s a very fragile and stressful state. It is as though a person is standing on the edge between performing a grave crime or, on the contrary, a very good deed should he receive help. However, he swings back and forth unable to lean one way or the other. It’s as though he is split in two without the strength to perform a final choice, not knowing on which side of the scale to place a final, determining grain.

On one hand, he is unable to reject his ego which is the enormous desire to enjoy and his entire egoistic “possession.” On the other, he understands that if he does not free himself from it now with help from Above, he won’t be able to pass to the other side and enter the spiritual world. In this manner, he stands on the threshold not knowing on which side to step. He is like a knight at a crossroads. This is a state where one needs to make a choice.

Here, only the group, only the Upper Light can help a person finally make up his mind and pass himself over to the hands of the Upper One, transitioning to bestowal through faith above reason. The prayer here is not about help since this would mean that a person has already made a decision. The prayer is about the state in which he is unable to choose. This state is the beginning of the year or the beginning of a new change.

On one hand, we feel that we are wicked, and on the other, we lack the strength to reject all these egoistic qualities and states. We are unable to imagine how it is possible to live without them or how to make a step in order to rise above it. Only the Upper Light that comes to us during this state helps us make a choice and elevates us to faith above reason (bestowal over reception). It is then that the New Year begins for us, and this is called “a good record in the Book of Life.”

The Upper Light, the Creator, puts His signature in the book of life for us and guarantees to a person that from now on that person will proceed by the good path. Before this, one should do all that is in his power to bring himself to this choice. The direct translation of a “New Year (Rosh Hashanah)” is a “beginning of changes” or a “head of changes.” They need to occur often for us and always be for the better: toward the Creator who is “good and does good.”

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/8/10, “Letter 67”

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The Main Witness

Dr. Michael Laitman with studentsThere are two states in the advancement toward the spiritual goal. The first state is when a person has the sensation, the force, and the support of the group and the Creator. A person feels the importance of the property of bestowal, and this pushes him to draw closer to the Creator.

He has the sensation and the desire; the Creator shows him that it’s worthwhile to work on the spiritual goal. A person feels that there is a reward, meaning that he does not depend on faith: the property of bestowal within him. The sensation rouses love of friends and of the Creator.

In such a state, a person makes a covenant about love of friends and the Creator forever, for the future. What is this covenant with? It can’t be the Creator because in a state of descent, when one will distance himself from the Creator, he won’t feel His closeness, and the Creator won’t bind him.

That’s why the covenant has to be made with the group that can be felt in a state of descent as well. Through the group, we reach the agreement with the Creator: To always go by the path of bestowal to the Creator and the group. The group is a guarantee of the covenant. By making a covenant the entire group pledges to support each other and always hold the intention to bestow. They receive the Creator’s help to the extent of their connection.

The second state comes after some time, when the state of excitement and connection is replaced by indifference, inability to feel any importance of the goal, the Creator, or the reward for a good attitude toward the friends and the Creator. A person is unable to think about love, connection, and bestowal.

A) If a person does not receive support from the group, he falls, thinking that the Creator is unimportant and that there is no fulfillment or reward. He might leave the path altogether.

B) If the connection with the group awakens and attracts him, he is unable to drop everything and remembers the covenant that he has made. In a state of descent, the importance of bestowal vanishes since the reward disappears. And here a mutual guarantee, covenant, and connection with the group have to come to one’s aid.

In this way, a person returns to the covenant, to the state of goodness, love, and connection. He remembers that he has to go by faith above reason, above his current state of indifference as though the sensation that once gave him strength does exist and is even stronger!

In this way, a person wants to go by “faith above reason” (bestowal over reward). He then understands that he can receive strength from the Creator. And this brings him to a prayer.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/5/10, “What is the Matter of My Making A Pact in the Work”

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Digging The Tunnel From Two Sides

Dr. Michael LaitmanFrom Rabash’s article “Who is He Who Causes Prayer?”: A person must say: “If not I, who will help me, and if not now, then when?” Therefore, it is forbidden to slow down even for a moment, and we cannot await a more appropriate time to begin engaging in spiritual work.

This means that we should always be ready to turn to the Creator with an appeal and to constantly clarify and refine it, until it receives a reply.

However, after one’s action, one should believe that it is not man who calls out to the Creator, but on the contrary, the Creator summons him. And the reason for their closeness comes from the Creator rather than from man…Thus, before praying, one must first thank the Creator for summoning one in order to bring one closer to Him.

In this manner we establish ourselves directly along the line, where the Light spreads out to us in all of its stages. And if I remember, understand, feel, and hold onto the thought that spiritual awakening comes to me from the Creator, it means that I already have an initial connection. With the help of this initial spiritual awakening from the Creator, I can appeal back to the Creator with my own request.

Thanking the Upper Force for the awakening that it sent to me means to enter into the first contact with it, choosing the only correct direction to the Creator: from all directions, a “full 360 degrees.” Making the choice of this direction is the first action that we are able to carry out.

This is similar to the parable about the King’s son who dug a tunnel under his father’s house in order to take a pound of gold from the father. And this tunnel was from two sides – from the inside and from the outside because the father, in turn, was also digging a tunnel toward him with the desire to give sooner.

In other words, the Creator first gives us an awakening, and a prayer is born inside us. However, this prayer will not be a simple request; a real desire will be revealed in us, and in response to this desire we will be given the force of bestowal from Above.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/28/10, Article, “Who is He Who Causes Prayer?”

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The Speaking Heart

Dr. Michael LaitmanA prayer, a plea for correction, is the most natural desire, but the problem is that our heart does not want what is needed. Our desires are corrupted, and so we read articles by Kabbalists to learn what request we should form in our hearts.

First, we need to correct our desires. When a sensation of the Creator is revealed in the very first, minor, corrected desire, we will know exactly what we should ask for in order to draw increasingly closer to Him. For this reason, the sages of the Great Assembly (Anshei Knesset HaGedolah), all of which were great Kabbalists, wrote a prayer book for us so that everyone could at least read about what a corrected heart should ask for. When we open a prayer book, we need to remember that we are reading about the very elevated states which we need to achieve.

Along with the prayer book, we need a wise mentor who will teach us how to make our heart desire what the prayer talks about. After all, the point is not just to repeat the written words, but to reach a sensation deep in our hearts. A person’s heart should utter all the words of the prayer.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/1/12, Article, “The Importance of the Prayer of the Many”

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The World Is Built By Our Prayers

Dr. Michael LaitmanPeople think that prayer relates to religion and religious people, and that it is removed from regular, secular people. But that is not true! All of our external garments, physical bodies, and objects surrounding us in this world are expressions of desire. There is nothing but desire, which creates all these clothings for itself.

Therefore, without being aware of it, we determine our entire lives with our desires, including what state we will enter in the next moment and how we will experience this reality! Whether we want it or not, we are all always praying, or asking for some kind of fulfillment for our desire. We do it completely unconsciously. I don’t have to pray for someone or something intentionally. Desire comprises our entire inner essence, and my sensation that I lack something is called prayer.

We want something at every moment. That is how we influence reality, which contains nothing but desire and the force of desire. This means that at every moment I want something and I pray for it. Our desires connect with one another and control the entire universe, continually producing new pictures and new states for us.

We build this world with our prayers! Therefore, the only thing we need is to change our requests, despite the desire of our heart. Then we will reveal a new world because the whole world is the sensation inside my desire.

The science of Kabbalah is named after the word “Kabbalah,” reception, because it talks about what you will receive the next moment. Only you determine what the next moment will be, what you will receive and feel in it. Will you be able to change your vision of the world, directing your desire in the necessary direction (which is called prayer)? If you change your prayer so that instead of desiring what you desire now, you desire the right thing, then you will change the entire picture of the world and all of reality.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/12/10, “The Importance of the Prayer of the Many”

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The Prayer Of The Stony Heart

Dr. Michael LaitmanEveryone knows what prayer is. It exists in all the religions and cultures. People turn to each other with prayer begging for something. Prayer can be directed at people or at the Upper Force (however a person imagines it).

Prayer contains great power because when a person feels that he is in a dead-end situation, a true prayer for help bursts forth by itself. This is a natural reaction that we call prayer, a plea, or a cry. There is also a prayer of gratitude that pours out of the heart. This action awakens enormous inner reserves of a person and brings about healing, the ability to overcome obstacles that seem insurmountable.

However, in Kabbalah “prayer” is not just any plea, but a request for correction, for attaining the goal of creation. Prior to our fall from the sensation of the Creator, we did not have prayer books because people felt the Creator and every person turned to Him from the heart, according to the verse, “A person’s soul teaches him. “Every person knew what he needed to discern and what he needed to do in order to come closer to the goal, to unite with the Creator and attain equivalence of form with Him.

This was the case before the destruction of the Temple because the entire nation lived in the higher sensation and felt what it needed to ask for. The sensation in people’s hearts was essentially the prayer. People lived by the principle, “Whatever one feels in one’s heart is what one speaks.”

People felt in their hearts an aspiration for bestowal, love for the neighbor, love for the Creator, and equivalence with Him. This was felt by the heart and therefore words were not needed. Expressing this verbally is often done for us, in order to hear ourselves and to understand what our heart feels.

This was a time when we were in a corrected state. However, then the Temple was destroyed in our hearts due to the general fall of people from “love for the neighbor” to “unfounded hatred for one another.” Thus, we stopped being similar to the Creator and lost equivalence of form with Him. Therefore, He disappeared from our sensation and we started asking for things for our egos instead of our own correction!

We ask for things that are requested by the new desire that has taken over us, our egoism. And what can egoism possibly want? It wants to feel good and for others to feel bad since then it will feel even better compared to them!

That is how our new heart, “the stony heart,” operates. Obviously, we don’t attain the true prayer until we correct our desires. But on the other hand, we still have to know what the true prayer has to be in order to understand it at least with our mind (if not with the heart), and to advance in this direction by correcting our qualities.

That is why Kabbalists composed a prayer book for us, so we would know what to ask for.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/12/10, “The Importance of the Prayer of the Many”

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