Entries in the 'study' Category

My Contribution

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What can I give the group during the study?

Answer: Your participation and aspiration to the goal, which has to be as strong as possible. This is the force of mutual guarantee by which we strengthen the group.

This is especially so during the study because that’s when we are able to unite and attract the Light that Reforms.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/7/10, The Zohar

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Let The Light Continue Its Work

Dr. Michael LaitmanStudying Kabbalah provides us with a connection to the Upper World. The split between our and the spiritual worlds is an abyss, a barrier, an iron wall, which is impossible to move. Only the Upper Light is able to break it.

Therefore, we cannot connect to the Upper, spiritual world other than by studying authentic primary sources: the writings of Rashbi, the Ari, Baal HaSulam, and Rabash. Only due to this will the Light that Reforms come to us.

We need to constantly study their writings, thereby giving the Light an opportunity to continue its work. You will feel that the unity we achieved at the convention will spread out from its beginning to the ten Sefirot, and it will obtain fulfillment. I expect this to occur very soon, and in regard to every participant of the convention.

We have yet to feel what kind of mutual inclusion into each other we have achieved, the men, women, and even the children. Each of us acquired a broader, multi-layered, and complex Kli (vessel), in which one can already prepare himself to receive the Light.

Now, after the convention, if we all live in one theme by studying the works of the Kabbalists at the lessons, we will be connected to the Light that they contain. In addition, we will unite with all the friends who are going through the same material as we are, the same day, during the same 24 hours. Nothing can unite us more than daily presence at the lessons.

Because we will draw continuously new portions of the Surrounding Light every day, what was born between us at the convention, that for which we laid the foundation, that seed which we sowed into the ground, will continue to develop, and it will give its ten Sefirot. We will feel the Upper Light, the revelation of the Creator, in them.

We are now at the threshold of this. It is an accumulative process, as it is written: “Penny after penny accumulate into a big account.” Unity that arose at the convention, a connection that took place between us is a great achievement. It is the beginning of a new stage of our spiritual development.
From the Talk during the Closing Ceremony, World Kabbalah Convention 2010, 11/11/10

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Format Yourself For Spirituality

Dr. Michael LaitmanAs your intentions while reading The Book of Zohar get more correct, you will begin to uncover spiritual pictures within them. You won’t sense the corporeal images, but rather the entire development of events within yourself: in your desires, sensations, intentions, and attitudes.

The picture must fall together within you since spirituality is all that occurs within desire. In accordance with the correct intention, the will to receive begins acquiring spiritual forms. Intention “paints pictures” within the desire, formats it so that it takes these forms. Everything The Zohar describes will be perceived in the will to receive as if it is happening directly to it.

For example, my computer has a software program that opens text files in “Word” format. But if someone sends me a “.jpg” picture or an “.xls” chart, I won’t be able to open them in “Word.” Even though they contain very important and useful information, I can’t extract it. Hence, I must first obtain a new program, download it into myself, my will to receive (my “hard drive” or “computer”), and then it will be able to receive the data transmitted to me in its format.

Essentially, this is exactly what we are doing while studying Kabbalah. After all, what is the wisdom of Kabbalah? You acquire the new program for your will to receive or your vessel of perception (Kli). Having formatted it anew, you are able to perceive new images and information.

Previously, your program was working solely for reception, and now a new program has been “downloaded” into you, the program which understands what it means to bestow. It means new values, new relations between desires, intentions, and attitudes, new meanings of ascent and descent, right and left lines; everything acquires a new value and meaning. This new program changes everything.

In this case, what is left of the old? What is left is the will to receive but the connection between all its parts is implemented now with the new formula: how much a person gives to another, not how much he receives from him.

Then, since I am programmed so that all my desires perform in mutual bestowal to each other, I understand the incoming information of bestowal in any format that it comes (“text,” “video,” or “audio”). I can open and comprehend what it is, and every message is clear to me.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/3/10, The Zohar

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Everyone Has To Cultivate His Soul

Dr. Michael LaitmanKabbalah deals with the correction of the soul. Everyone has a soul, but a hidden one. It is the desire to know the purpose of life. When this desire awakens enough so as to lead a person to the place of studying Kabbalah, it means that the soul has started to unfold. Such an individual feels the need of the wisdom of Kabbalah. Otherwise, he will not be able to cultivate his soul, and it will remain a mere point, which will trigger the pressure of the driving forces experienced as suffering.

The purpose of our life is to discover and develop our soul in order to establish a connection with the Creator. Hence, it doesn’t matter what natural capacities a person possesses. Some gravitate toward sciences, others to culture and education; one needs a primitive mechanical job, and another philosophy.

There are lazy, agile, and smart individuals. But there is absolutely no connection between all these corporeal characteristics and the development of the soul. Kabbalah says: “Not the wise one learns.” I myself value knowledge and a scientific approach, but I have seen how it can tangle a person. Therefore, there are no restrictions; the key is the desire!

Only the point in the heart matters, which is nurtured by the force of the Light and is not one of the corporeal properties of man. There is absolutely no relation between natural capacities, habits, education, or success in correcting one’s soul.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/1/10, Kabbalah Learning Approach

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"Special Effects" On The Path

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Let’s say a person is on the path of spiritual attainment and is studying Kabbalah. He is surrounded by the world where all kinds of things are happening. Yet you say it doesn’t matter; we should keep following the path and not get disturbed for these are merely “special effects” to divert us from the main destination. But why, if a person doesn’t fall for it and keeps going toward the goal, are these “special effects” still necessary?

Answer: They are needed for you to work them out: to rise above them and unite with the goal. These “special effects” and all that is created in the world are to aim you at the destination, lift you up, make your trajectory sharper, and hasten it. They are there to aim you at the goal at a greater precision and promote your advancement toward it.

Question cont.: What about the situation where someone puts a knife at my throat? Should I just tell him: “I am sorry, but I am in a hurry: I have a Kabbalah lesson to attend”? You say that you fear nothing and neither should we because everything is for our best, isn’t it?

Answer: Yes, it is done solely for this purpose. A person can feel it when he is working on himself in order to try to build within himself the image of the Creator. He sees that all these images that are being created by him, for him, within him, and outside of him, are solely for him to correctly assemble the image of the Creator within. And the image of the Creator is His qualities; it’s not a picture, but a character, where the character is the property of bestowal and love.

From talks with Vladek Zankovskiy

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Jacob’s Ladder

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe general and the particular connect and plug into each other. Hence, those who are coming to us today, by uniting with us,  are able to use our experience of inner work and receive our understanding.

We witness how easily the new generation learns to use all modern devices, cell phones, and computers, which we had discovered and developed with such hard effort. But the young come to the plate ready to easily gobble it all up without paying any attention to us.

It is the same in spirituality: Those who come study Kabbalah will be able to achieve even greater success than we did since they “stand on our shoulders”! The first obstacle on the path is disappointment in one’s own capacity and ability to feel joy in descent. This discernment is possible solely with the assistance of the Upper Light, and not in dealing one on one with it, but rather in working through the group.

That is where the breaking between us unfolds, which I need to correct. I have to become a bestowing one in regard to this breaking, but I am incapable of it. Then, the Light comes and gives me an opportunity to connect with the others, and within them to find the Creator so I may bestow to Him.

This predicament has to unfold before me in all its depth, and I have to expect salvation from this innermost point. Such is the picture we should visualize, and then we will certainly find ourselves standing before the spiritual ladder leading upward.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/6/10, Shamati #42

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How Can You Help A Friend?

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: How can I help a friend acquire the right intention?

Answer: When a beginner first comes to Kabbalah, he does not see, hear, or feel what it is talking about. He is immersed in his own thoughts and desires. He sits down and studies together with everyone like a baby who was just born and does not perceive anything or understand what kind of world he is in. Or it can be compared to a sick person who has lost consciousness.

I remember myself after a car accident when I lay in bed unconscious. Sometimes I would slightly regain consciousness and hear voices on the outside. Sometimes I could even reply to them, but I did not see anything or react in any way. This is similar to a person who comes to study Kabbalah: He is present and not present. He needs time and care from others, the way people take care of someone who is seriously sick or a baby. This kind of care can help him to advance slightly.

If the assistance does not help, then the person has to be left alone and given time to gradually make order for himself. This may take him several months or years until he begins to hear Kabbalah rather than himself.

When does a person really start to hear for the first time? It’s when he feels that unity with others opens up spiritual sensations for him and that this is exactly where the entrance to the spiritual world lies.

Therefore, the bigger and stronger the environment, the more it accelerates a person’s development and influences him, forcing him to move faster on his own.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/31/10, The Zohar

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Everyone Has A Soul

Dr. Michael LaitmanIf a person studies Kabbalah only in order to obtain knowledge, without the desire to correct himself, then it will be of no use because the purpose of studying is to draw the Light that Reforms. This is why Kabbalists hid their texts in previous centuries. At that time mankind did not feel the need for the Light of Correction so there was no reason to give people a Kabbalah book. They would see nothing but dead letters or empty cells in it. That is why Kabbalah was banned. If a person doesn’t have the correct desire, Kabbalah will do him no good. In fact, it will only harm him since he will be studying it mechanically and will remain in the same material dimension he has always known.

If so, why  then do we disseminate Kabbalah among the masses, including those who don’t yet have a spiritual desire, the “point in the heart”? The truth is, one’s desire includes all dimensions. The collective spiritual vessel includes all souls, all people, even those whose Reshimot for spiritual correction haven’t surfaced yet. The difference is that they can’t start the correction right away because they still don’t feel the need to attain a spiritual goal.

Nevertheless, everyone has a soul! All people are integral parts of Malchut of the World of Infinity. We are able to attach all of these souls to ourselves and thereby include them in our circle. Thus we will project upon them the Surrounding Light that we draw.

The Surrounding Light may not impact them as strongly as it does us. It influences our spiritual Reshimo directly, but their spiritual Reshimo hasn’t been revealed yet and therefore the Light influences it indirectly. Nevertheless, it draws them toward correction and integrates them in our collective spiritual organism.

Therefore, the work we are doing is not in vain. Baal HaSulam wrote that the dissemination of the science of Kabbalah among the masses is “the call of the Messiah’s horn.”

From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/11/10, “Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot

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Want A Million Dollars? Here You Go!

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: I am an ordinary person and just want to live in peace. I get life’s blows from time to time but never think about the purpose of life. I see people studying Kabbalah and it does them good. But I just want to live in peace. Do I have to study Kabbalah too?

Answer: Yes, you do. It’s because the wisdom of Kabbalah will tell you how to attain a peaceful life. You don’t have to seek the Creator, the future world, or the spiritual worlds. But someone who does seek those will receive them. If you wish solely for comfort, you will have it.

Since the wisdom of Kabbalah leads a person to harmony with all, everyone will receive what they wish from such a state. It is called “Man” (manna) that “sustains in the desert” (the empty will to receive), and everyone obtains the desired taste in it.

You desire a peaceful life? Here you go! If you wish it the other way around, a life full of adventures, you will get it as well!

Question cont.: What if I want a million dollars?

Answer: A million dollars is a sensation of pleasure, not the amount of “green” paper bills. You will receive pleasure equal to that of having a million dollars for it merely measures to what degree we are filled.

From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/10/10, A Lesson On Current Events

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The Correct Order Of Studying

Dr. Michael LaitmanWhen a person comes to study Kabbalah with the question, “What am I living for and why?” it is necessary to explain to him the following:
1. What this desire is that has emerged in him and what kind of fulfillment it demands;
2. What is human nature (the
ego, the source of evil), how to correct it, and that this is our only free action (freedom of will).

To accomplish this it is necessary to study Baal HaSulam’s articles with him, especially “The Freedom” and “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah,” which explain that the revelation of the Creator to the created beings is the means to attain the goal of creation. Other articles by Baal HaSulam help a beginning student form an integral picture of existence: the worlds, the beginning, the development, the goal of every element of creation, evil and suffering as the force of movement, and so on.

When a person has the general picture, he goes on to discern: How does advancement and correction take place? He learns that the soul is the main creation which was broken by the Creator and then becomes corrected by us. To accomplish this one already needs the articles of Rabash. Their purpose is to put a person into his place inside the society in order to discern the breaking and what needs to be corrected. How do you correct the breaking of the souls?

That is why we are studying together using Kabbalah books, in particular, the books of Baal HaSulam because they are able to give our generation the force, the Light that Reforms and corrects us until we reach the level of the Source.

It is not necessary to go through this material in order because a person goes through different states. A beginner finds himself in the middle of the study process, but that doesn’t matter. What counts is that he is working together with everyone because we are all inter-included and intertwined in our souls and desires.

Therefore, it is not so important which article you begin studying, but it is best to have a clear order of study which is directly aimed at the goal.

From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/9/10, “Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot

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