Entries in the 'Ruach' Category

The Light Is Revealed From A Black Point

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “Lech Lecha” (Go Forth), Items 158-159: Nefesh is a low awakening that clings to the body (Guf), like candlelight, whose bottom light is black, clings to the wick, …it becomes a throne to the white light atop it, for it hovers over the black light. And that white light corresponds to the light of Ruach.

The white light becomes a throne to a hidden light, and it is not seen or known that it hovers over the white light. It corresponds to the light of Neshama, and then it is a complete light. Thus, there are three lights one atop the other in a candlelight: 1) The black light that clings to the wick, below all the others; 2) the white light over the black light; and 3) the hidden, unknown light over the white light.

Similarly, a man who is complete in everything has three lights one atop the other, NRN, as with the candlelight.

The Zohar teaches us how we can develop and enhance the connections between us after we attain the first spiritual contact. If we cling to the point of union, it awakens new properties and sensations in us by expanding and revealing itself even more. When this happens, it means we’re ascending spiritual steps. Nothing else changes. We simply go deeper into the connection between us and begin to sense that all organs and elements of the system are unified, that all souls are tied into one.

Everything is aimed at one goal which is bestowal to the Upper Force. Within this aspiration we sense that we receive from Him. This begins with the sensation of the connection between souls and is called Malchut of the World of Atzilut, which is one point. Later this point is unveiled through bestowal to the Upper Force (to the Creator, Zeir Anpin). However, without bestowal it remains just a point.

We have to reach this very first contact by connecting together in one black point (Malchut) and start to bestow to the Creator from there. Then Malchut receives the property of bestowal from the Creator and nine Sefirot are unveiled within it. The Creator (the spiritual reality) can be sensed only to the degree that we bestow to Him.

The revelation of Malchut (the system of our souls) to Zeir Anpin (the Creator) is all that The Zohar tells us about. The Zohar teaches us how to develop connections by adding new, emerging forces to the very first spiritual point called Abraham. This is how a person uncovers spiritual organs and reveals the forces of the Upper World within himself. Instead of dry narration, The Zohar becomes an entire world and its power is unmatched by our limited reality.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/27/10, The Zohar

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Starting The Long Journey Upward

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter ”Lech Lecha (Go Forth),” Items 146-150: He said, “When a man goes to sleep on his bed, his soul departs from him and goes up, as it is written, ‘At night my soul longs for You.’”…

Afterwards, she walks and roams and rises according to her degree.

That Nefesh that was rewarded with rising appears before the King and adheres with a desire to be seen, a sublime craving to see the pleasantness of the King and to visit His palace. This is a man who always has a share in the next world.

What is the soul (Nefesh)? When I desire to unite with the others and feel how through this aspiration I connect with similar desires of the others, the place of our oneness and unity is called “Nefesh” in relation to me. Everyone may feel it differently, but for me Nefesh is the first spiritual step. If I can later strengthen this connection despite my growing egoism and obstacles, I can attain the next spiritual degrees: Ruach, Neshama, Haya, and Yechida. But the place of my very first contact, my desire for unity to occur, is called Nefesh.

I have to create a place for all of our desires to come together! And when everybody is there (and so am I), when I have connected them with my effort (and they have given me the opportunity to enter and join them), there, in the place of my exertion and my oneness with all the others, I will finally undergo all the spiritual states that The Zohar tells us about.

All I need is to desire this connection and feel as if I’m already in it, which will indicate my entering the state of Nefesh. The Zohar tells me about what happens next, in this oneness. There is only one relationship which experiences ups and downs, various adventures, and spiritual states. The Zohar doesn’t discuss anything else. As a matter of fact, The Zohar talks solely about the spiritual world since spirituality can be found only in our oneness.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/27/10, The Zohar

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Where Is The Entrance To The Spiritual World?

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “Lech Lecha (Go Forth),” Item 153: NR are not two separate degrees from one another. Rather, they are one degree, and they are two that are conjoined. And there is one that is superior who governs them and clings to them, and they to her. And she is called Neshama.

The Zohar tells us how, after achieving the first spiritual contact, we intensify this connection and see the subsequent manifestations of spirituality in it. Then we feel not only the first degree of unification called Nefesh (N), a state of rest (Nefisha), and the ability to maintain ourselves in this connection, but also the common great life, which is revealed from within the point of our first contact as another higher, deeper dimension called Ruach (R).

If we do not reach the first contact, the place of our unification, we will not reveal the entrance to the upper dimension (the quality of bestowal). Yet, when we establish this contact among us, the Upper Light begins to affect it. It reveals it, and we enter a completely different dimension through it: the spiritual world.

Everything that happens within this connection is called the spiritual world. First it seems to us that attaining this universal connection between people promises us a good life, safety, and pleasant sensations. However, that is not all! Within this common point, an entrance into the spiritual world is revealed.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/27/10, The Zohar

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The Upper World – Here And Now!

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: If we don’t really understand the state of having to unite together as one man with one heart, then what should we focus on or imagine while reading The Book of Zohar?

Answer: There is nothing more than this. We live in a world that contains all the exact components that enable us to come together physically or virtually in order to join our aspirations to reveal the Creator while reading The Book of Zohar.

Our world is identical to the spiritual world in every detail with the only difference being that the spiritual world is a world of forces while our world is a world of material objects that are the results of spiritual forces. Every level is an imprint of the Upper Level, and in this manner they descend from Above downward, from the World of Infinity to our world along 125 levels. The only difference between the levels is their matter, which becomes increasingly less spiritual during the descent. However, every level consists of the same details.

"Ascent" means the revelation of a greater connection between the world’s components. Everything that is happening in our world today is pushing us toward this. What do you lack? A connection between people. Inside this connection you will reveal the spiritual level called "Ruach," and when you attain a greater connection you will reveal the level of "Neshama."

Right now the connection between us is egoistic. You have to start turning it into a real, spiritual connection. Whoever desires to reveal the Upper World in this lifetime must first and foremost understand that this revelation takes place according to the laws of nature.

Therefore, Kabbalah advises people not to invent their own methods, but to heed the advice of Kabbalists.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/27/10, The Zohar

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Spiritual Ascension

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “Lech Lecha (Go Forth),” Item 96: Three Degrees NRN. The most hidden is given to the wise at heart. Three degrees cling to one another—Nefesh, Ruach, Neshama.

All of The Book of Zohar and the entire wisdom of Kabbalah speak about spiritual degrees. However, what is a spiritual degree? What is ascension? What do we ascend in? In the corporeal world, a greater fulfillment of the desire to receive pleasure (in terms of food, sex, family, wealth, recognition, and knowledge) is considered to be an ascent. This is material “ascension” since it is dictated by the aspiration to receive egoistic pleasure.

In contrast, spiritual ascension is greater bestowal to others. A spiritual force is the force of bestowal, whereas a material force is the force of reception. This shows that the science of Kabbalah speaks about ascensions in bestowal.

Where can I actualize, verify, experience, and perceive this ascension and be certain that it is real? I can do this in the group. This is why the Creator broke the connections between the souls. He gave us a perception of this reality called “this world” and a diversity of numerous similar creatures that we call “people.” However, in essence, they are all souls who have lost the sensation of spirituality and live solely in the corporeal world. Thus, instead of experiencing our spiritual vessel, which is the will to bestow, we feel the material desire that paints a reality for us where we live in our bodies in this world.

What are we left to do? In our present state, we must start yearning for bestowal and mutual guarantee. Then, we will become equivalent to the nature of the spiritual degrees that the wisdom of Kabbalah speaks about, and we will be able to ascend the steps of bestowal.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/21/10, The Zohar

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The Spiritual Liver, Heart, And Brain

Dr. Michael Laitman A question I received: Why does a liver in spirituality correspond to the state of an embryo when there are more important organs, such as the brain and the heart?

My Answer: An embryo represents the smallest desires, which are just beginning to develop. They are also called “liver.”

When these desires develop further and become bigger, they are called “the heart.” When they develop even more, they are called “the brain.”

This is always the same ten Sefirot, which become revealed in a more developed, deeper, richer, and more complex form, following the sequence: liver -> heart -> brain.

Their material branches in our world also possess the same qualities. For example, you might sever a liver, but even if a part of it remains, the liver will always be restored and grow. Doctors say that it is similar to a snake: You can cut off its tail and it will grow back. That’s because a liver corresponds to the first level, called “inanimate” or Nefesh.

You can’t do the same thing with the heart because it already corresponds to a completely different level – Ruach. This organ is already independent; while a liver, on the other hand, nullifies itself and carries out its work mechanically. In contrast, the heart works autonomously, participating on its own, and therefore it belongs to the level of Ruach.

The brain is even more advanced and belongs to the degree of Neshama (soul); it is connected to spirituality. The brain does not act by simply submitting to its nature, like the liver or the heart. Rather, it is connected to the Upper Level. In other words, it receives instructions and nourishment from spirituality, working as a receptor for spiritual information.

This is also evident from looking at the activity of the organs. The liver cleanses the blood, and blood belongs to the inanimate level. That is the liver’s function: to cleanse the body of waste, or to function as a “janitor.”

The heart already provides the whole body with the force of life and movement. That is why it’s called Ruach – the spirit of life. However, this is still not life itself, but only its spirit. Life itself comes from the soul – Neshama.

Preface To The Science Of Kabbalah. Items 6 – 9

ptichaPreface to the Science of Kabbalah (“Pticha”). Items 6 – 9, summary:

6. The five phases of the desire’s development from the Creator to its completed form comprise all of creation. Subsequently the desire is divided into different parts, but each part also consists of all these parts (according to the principle of a holographic image).

The Worlds of Adam Kadmon and Atzilut are still not separated from the Creator through their qualities. Hence, when the soul ascends to these worlds from our world, it merges with the Creator.

7. In the World of Beria, just as in phase 2, the desire to bestow is manifested. Therefore, when the soul is there, it feels independent from the Creator. Nevertheless, this does not make it separate it from the Creator, because it desires to bestow just as He does.

8. In the World of Yetzira, just as in phase 3, the desire to receive is manifested. However, this desire is still insufficient to separate the soul from the Creator.

9. In the World of Assiya phase 4 is manifested – the fully developed desire, called “the body.” It is completely separated from the Creator and feels absolutely independent. The Light inside it is called Nefesh – still, because the desire has no movement of its own.

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The Book of Zohar. Chapter “The Eighth Commandment”

The Book of ZoharThe Book of Zohar. Chapter “The Eighth Commandment” (abridged)

228. The eighth Commandment is to love an outsider (anyone who seeks correction) from another nation, who desires to come under the wings of the Shechina (qualities of Bina in Malchut), Malchut, who takes under her wings (protects from one’s own egoism) those who separate themselves from the other, impure (egoistic) side, and draw near her (with their qualities), as it is written: “LET THE EARTH (desire, Malchut) BRING FORTH A LIVING (bestowing) SOUL AFTER ITS KIND (according to its corrected desire).”

229. One might say that the soul of Haya (the last correction of Malchut) exists in Israel (the aspiration for spirituality) and is ready for anything (by means of faith above reason). He specified, “After its kind” (any qualities) refers to both Israel (one who aspires toward spirituality) and to an outsider (one who has just begun the path). Like chambers and passages (different qualities in Malchut) between them, the same exists in the land called Haya, under the wings.

230. The right wing (the quality of bestowal) of Malchut has two passages (conditions), which are split from this wing in two so as to let in two nations that are close to Israel. And under the left wing (the quality of reception) there are two additional passages, called Amon and Moav. And they are all called the souls of Haya (they are all corrected together).

231. Each wing contains a multitude of closed chambers and halls (separate conditions of correction). From them, spirits (Light of the level of Ruach) emerge and are divided among all the outsiders, called Nefesh Haya (Light of the level of Nefesh), but each “after his kind.” And they all come under the wings of the Shechina, but no further.

232. However, the soul of Israel (the general intention to bestow) stems from the body of that tree (the source of Light, Zeir Anpin), and from there the souls fly off (the Light descends) to this land (the desires undergoing correction, Malchut). Therefore, Israel (the intention to bestow) is the darling son of Malchut, and is sustained by her womb, and not by the wings that are on the outside of the body. Moreover, the outsiders have no part in the Holy Tree (ZA), especially not in its body. They refer only to the wings of Malchut, and no further. The outsider (the new desire undergoing correction) is under the wings of the Shechina, and no further (is protected, but not yet in her). The righteous among the outsiders also refer to the outer side (not yet fully corrected, existing under Tzimtzum Bet – the Second Restriction), and not to the inner. It is hence written: “LET THE EARTH BRING FORTH A LIVING SOUL (Nefesh Haya) AFTER ITS KIND” (not yet complete).

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The Book of Zohar. Chapter “The First Commandment”

The Book of Zohar.The Book of Zohar. Chapter “The First Commandment” (abridged)

189. BERESHEET BARAH ELOKIM (In the beginning the Creator created) is the first commandment, the root and foundation of all creation, called “fear of the Creator” or RESHEET (beginning), as it is written: “Fear of the Creator is the beginning of wisdom.” It is also written, “Fear of the Creator is the beginning of knowledge,” for this fear is called “the beginning.” And it is the gate (the first property) that leads to faith (the property of bestowal). And this Mitzva (law of the universe) is the foundation of the whole world (all other laws are derived from it).

190. There are three types of fear, two of which have no real basis, but one does. If man fears that his children may die, or fears illness or bodily suffering, or fears for his material well-being, this kind of fear (even if constant) is not the basis or root, for only desirable consequences constitute the cause of fear. This is called “the fear of punishment in this world.” But there is also another type of fear: the fear of punishment in the world to come, in hell. These two types of fear – the fear of punishment in this world and in the world to come – do not constitute true fear.

191. The true fear is the fear of the Creator, for He is great and almighty, for He is the Source of everything, and all else is nothing compared to Him. Man should concentrate all his attention on attaining this kind of fear.

192. Rabbi Shimon started to weep, wailing, “Woe if I reveal and woe if I do not reveal: If I reveal the means of attaining fear, the sinners will know how to work for the Creator for their own sake (without exiting their egoism, and hence they won’t correct themselves). And if I do not say how to attain fear of the Creator, it will not reach my friends (those who do wish to exit their egoism). Wherever there is true fear (which allows one to act above one’s egoism, not for his own sake), opposite it and correspondingly below stands an evil fear, which strikes and prosecutes. It is the scourge that whips the sinners (punishing them for their sins. This is why he is afraid to reveal it, for the sinners may learn how to avoid punishment, and punishment constitutes their correction).

193. But he who fears the punishment by whippings, the true fear of the Creator cannot descend upon him. Instead, evil fear overtakes him in the form of fearing punishment by whipping.

194. Therefore, the place that is named “fear of the Creator” is called the beginning of knowledge. This is why this Commandment is included here. And it is the foundation and source of all the other Commandments of the Torah. And whoever observes the Commandment of fear of the Creator, thereby observes all the others. But he who does not observe the Commandment of fear of the Creator, does not observe the other Commandments of the Torah, for this Commandment constitutes the foundation for all the others.

195. Therefore, it is written, “IN THE BEGINNING” (signifying fear) THE CREATOR CREATED THE HEAVENS AND THE EARTH. For whoever transgresses FEAR, transgresses all of the Torah’s Commandments (laws of the Upper World, which are based upon bestowal). And his punishment is the evil scourge – the evil fear that whips him. Further in the Torah, the words, “AND THE EARTH WAS UNFORMED AND CHAOTIC, AND DARKNESS WAS UPON THE FACE OF THE DEEP, AND THE SPIRIT OF THE CREATOR” refer to the four punishments of the wicked.

196. WITHOUT FORM refers to strangulation. CHAOTIC refers to stoning – the stones that fall into the great deep to punish the sinners. DARKNESS signifies burning. THE SPIRIT OF THE CREATOR refers to beheading.

197. The spirit of the Creator means beheading, for the scorching wind (Ruach Se’ara) is a flaming sword – punishment for whoever does not observe the Torah and Commandments that are mentioned after the Commandment of fear, called “foundation,” as it includes all the Commandments. This is because after the word BERESHEET (BEGINNING), which signifies fear, and further it is written WITHOUT FORM, CHAOS, DARKNESS and SPIRIT – the four penalties of death.

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We Raise the Entire Universe Up to the Creator

We Raise the Entire Universe Up to the CreatorA question I received: By disseminating Kabbalah you ascended spiritually and enabled Rabash to ascend even higher. This is why during his life Rabash did everything to make sure that you would continue to disseminate Kabbalah once he is gone – this was the purpose of his life. Before his death Rabash instructed you to continue disseminating Kabbalah. Does your dissemination of Kabbalah today play any role in Rabash’s afterlife?

My Answer: All the souls are absolutely interconnected. Even in our world studies already reveal that every one of us knows everyone else through a sixth acquaintance. Baal HaSulam explains that all the souls in our world go through correction over the course of 6,000 years, in the form of one Partzuf:

  • At first, during the first 2,000 years, the world, common soul, Kelim Chabad are corrected with the Light of Nefesh;
  • Next, over the second 2,000 years, the world, the common soul, Kelim Hagat are corrected with the Light of Ruach;
  • Finally, over the last 2,000 years (and we are living at the end of this period), the world, the common soul, Kelim NHY are corrected with the Light of Neshama.

By correcting ourselves we receive the smallest Light – Nefesh, but due to our correction in the first souls (the forefathers, the great Kabbalists of the past), our corrections reveal the greatest Light – Neshama. The Kabbalists of the past prepared all the conditions for our correction, but it is we who correct the broken (devoid of a screen, of the intention “for the sake of bestowal”) and the mixed (Bina and Malchut) Kelim (desires). Hence, we and our actions are the most important in the process of creation’s development. We raise the entire universe up to the Creator!

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