Entries in the 'World' Category

The Black Illumination Of Malchut

Dr. Michael LaitmanOn one side we have the World of Infinity which is absolute pleasure in all regards: attainment, understanding, feeling, eternity, and perfection. And on the other, we have this world where a deficiency has to be felt in everything.

However, in order to give us an opportunity to exist in it somehow, a concealment of the World of Infinity is performed. In this world we feel the deficiency in a form that is not so tragic despite the fact that infinite abundance is concealed from us. The World of Infinity seemingly decreases itself, one degree after another, creating five levels (five worlds) of concealment on itself. We are situated below all these worlds and thus don’t feel how much we actually lack.

Yet to the extent that we develop, we grow and rise in our egoism. Gradually the Light is revealed to us more and more thereby causing us to experience a greater and greater deficiency and evil. Therefore, if we don’t make ourselves similar to the Light, we will continue to feel worse and worse. It is no surprise that the modern world experiences such cataclysms. After all, the growing ego is making us more and more opposite to the Light.

The difference (Delta) between the desire and the Light becomes more tangible, and as a result, we suffer more. If there was no concealment of all these worlds, we would be unable to tolerate ourselves altogether since we would perceive ourselves in relation to the Light of Infinity. The disparity between us would be so great that it would be impossible to tolerate such a horrible sensation.

Maybe you have already experienced this sensation, and if not, one day you will since everyone needs to go through it once in his lifetime. It is called the “illumination of Malchut,” a feeling of absolute pitch darkness in front of you, something terribly frightening. This is the revelation of the Delta (difference) between the point of our world and Infinity, allowing us to feel this horrible darkness just slightly.

However, all 125 degrees of concealment which separate us from Infinity are created precisely in order to allow us to tolerate our state. Behind all these screens of concealment we feel confident, like a baby next to its mother, unable to do anything on his own yet feeling protected by her. Similarly, we feel protected by all these screens of concealment; otherwise, we would be unable to tolerate the pressure of the Upper Light.

The Light would be perceived as darkness! It is the so-called “Pulsa DeNura,” the blow of Light, when the Light is greater than the Kli is able to accept. It is a very unpleasant sensation since we constantly need to be in balance with regard to all the influences, the good and the bad ones. Even if goodness is given in abundance, if it exceeds the capability of our Kli, we are unable to tolerate it. We know that everyone prefers warm weather to cold weather, but when it is too warm, it also is not good, and it is no better than the freezing cold.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/13/10, Shamati #34

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The World Is The Degree Of Connection Among The Souls

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Does the death of the ARI mean the death of Messiah ben Joseph (Messiah Son of Joseph)?

Answer: We are speaking about souls! What does the death of a physical body have to do with this? The soul can operate in the common system without revealing itself in this world. There are many souls like this. The body in our world is one of the external consequences of the soul that helps other souls.

Connection among souls is the only reality. We see and understand certain connections among souls whereby we work together and convey knowledge and feelings to one another. However, there is another type of connection whereby the souls are unable to feel their true state, and hence perceive their connection as a picture of this world.

What is the difference between this world and the spiritual one? In the spiritual world, the deep inner connection among our souls is revealed to me. Conversely, when I am unable to reveal this inner connection, I see it in its external form as this world, which manifeststs to me in a very unclear, uncertain, and blurry manner.

World (Olam) is a degree of concealment (Alama). I exist in the common system of souls, but the concealment affects me and presents this system to me in the misleading form of this world. Yet, it is the same system! Nothing else exists besides the single structure of Adam HaRishon, the system of connected souls. We are all parts of it. However, instead of perceiving all the souls and the network that connects them, we perceive this world.

This is why this world is called the last degree, meaning that it is completely cut off from our actual perception. It is similar to what happens during the loss of consciousness when a person lies with his eyes closed and sees hallucinations. However, I exist in the same system. I am just unable to perceive it and hence, imagine it in a distorted form, as is written, “Every person judges according to their own flaws.”

But once the true picture becomes revealed to me, I will be shocked at how everything is different from the way it initially appeared to me. There are no worlds separated from one another; there is one single structure which we reveal as we correct our desires. There are five levels of their correction, and according to this we reveal the five states of reality: the five worlds and 125 degrees.

This is what we live for because the Creator never created another world. Some parts of the common soul are already corrected and function actively, while the rest are still broken up and do not perceive the proper connection among all the souls. This is why we should understand our obligation to perform the correction, our duty to others, ourselves, and the common system which supports them and which we call the Creator.

From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 8/5/10, “Introduction to the Book, Panim Meirot uMasbirot

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Step Out Into The Universe!

Dr. Michael LaitmanWe experience the world within our desire to receive pleasure. Everything we are able to perceive through our five sensory organs, such as sight, hearing, taste, smell, and touch, results in the picture we observe from within. This is the reality we perceive.

Is there a way out of this limited perception into a broader one, which is not restricted by the physical body and its five sensory organs? After all, our vision of the world and our self is dictated by our animate body. It all depends on perception. Perhaps, there are countless forms beyond the body, but our body filters them allowing us to feel only what it is able to process. It means that we will never be able to experience the ultimate reality. If this is the case, then maybe we will see it is the true reality after the body dies? Yet, how is this possible if our five sensory organs die with it?

Kabbalists tell us that we are unable to perceive the entire reality because it is experienced “within myself” and thereby limited to only partial perception called “this world.” However, we can shift into the “outer” perception, the one outside the body. There is a force that changes our range of perception, where it is possible to experience reality outside of myself. In other words, instead of focusing on myself, I focus on the others and put them above myself.

When we are reading about the outer reality, it influences us in such way that we gradually begin perceiving it. It is called, “labored and found.” We must exert effort in order to obtain this new perception. After a few months of such laboring we start noticing changes occurring within us, and how different our perception of others becomes.

The most effective way to advance in this process is through a group reading The Zohar, regardless of how well we understand it. What counts is our desire to be affected by it, which will gradually help us start experiencing the outer reality.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/23/10, 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 World To Come Will Come In The Next Moment

Dr. Michael LaitmanWe are inside a system of souls that are interconnected and exist in a corrected state, which was initially created by the Creator. It is written, “The end of the action is in the initial plan.” The Creator does everything with His Thought. He had a plan, and it all came true.

We have to attain the same state through our own work. Why? It is in order to be able to differentiate all the nuances, qualities, and components of that state. We have to feel that we own, sense, and attain it.

That is why we are in the same state, but totally unconscious. What should we do? We should ask for consciousness. I want to see, discover, and feel where I am! Which state in the world I feel is similar to the spiritual state that the Creator made? That state is the connection among people who aspire toward Him.

Right now the corrupted connection among us gives me a sensation I call “this world.” I experience our connection this way because I feel only myself. I am entirely immersed in myself. However, if my senses start to work in the opposite fashion, from within to the outside, then I will feel the true reality where I exist.

This change of the sensation “from within to outside” takes place gradually, along 125 levels, by virtue of our work, our efforts, and our request for it to happen. Where do I implement this entire process in order to avoid living inside illusions, getting confused, and making mistakes? I do it in the group and in my current state. That is where I have to implement it in practice.

This is exactly what I ask for. Everything is very tangible and simple: There is a group in which everyone aspires to attain a connection among them. This is what we ask for while reading The Zohar. Why? Because by reading this Book, we awaken our true connection with the force that rules us, the force called “the Creator.” Then our expectations have a chance of coming true, even if they are inauthentic and artificial. Concerning this it is written, “We will do and we will hear.”

This attitude to our state, to the studies, and to what should happen is called “intention,” and our work is man’s inner work, the work of the Creator. The use of this system through a book and through the force that rules inside us is called the science of Kabbalah.

These are all phases of revealing the Creator to the creation. What is the meaning of “the revelation of the Creator?” It is the revelation of the force of bestowal inside us. That is why the Creator (Bo-reh) means “Come (Bo), See (Reh).” At the end of the day, we are doing the Creator’s work, and that is the entire science of Kabbalah.

From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/4/10, The Zohar

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From This World Into The Next

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Zohar, Chapter “VaYetze (And Jacob Went Out),” Item 88: It is written, “A Psalm of David, when he fled.” He said the psalm while fleeing because previously he thought that the Creator would punish him for his sins in the next world. And when he saw that He wished to avenge him here in this world, he was happy and said a psalm.

“This world” and “the next world” are two spiritual degrees because we exist in the Upper Light and see our qualities around us against this Light. This determines the reality we perceive.

Consequently, any state we experience is a state of concealment of the Upper Light which hides from us behind our egoistic qualities. It is revealed only to the extent that our qualities become similar to it. It follows that each of our states is called a “world,” (Hebrew “Olam” from the word “Olama” or concealment), that is a measure of concealment that we attain.

Therefore, “this world” and “the next world” are two degrees. One is what I feel and observe at this moment or what I can verify, investigate, and study. The other is a state to which I aspire, a measure of concealment that I want to reveal and attain. That is what the Kabbalists refer to as my next world.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/23/10, The Zohar

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Always Strive For Perfection

Dr. Michael LaitmanA question I received: If I sense everything that happens in my regular life from “within,” is it a sign of my advancement as a result of reading of The Zohar?

My Answer: No. There is no such thing as “regular life” when you read The Book of Zohar. I have an embryo of the soul, the point in the heart, through which I stay within the Upper system that The Zohar describes.

How can I sensibly and rationally connect all these properties (the three lines, ascents and descents, and spiritual actions) with this tiny point in which there is nothing? This is exactly what I am striving for. How can I stay with them, sense them, and experience them at the level of ZON in the World of Atzilut?

I don’t expect anything from this world (from myself or my group friends) in the way that I perceive them or the entire world within my five senses. Why do I need it? This world doesn’t exist; I only imagine it within my ego (the desire to receive). If I climb to a higher degree of bestowal and “faith above reason,” I’ll perceive everything in a totally different way.

I have no desire to deal with this world. All I want is to rise and merge with the Upper One! However, I exercise a realistic approach and I don’t abandon this world. But I study The Book of Zohar as well as the rest of the wisdom of Kabbalah in order to reveal the Upper reality rather than to pull it down into this world. It will never happen. Never will the spiritual world clothe into the material one.

On the contrary, our material world will rise to its roots: the spiritual world. Through this material world I’ll eventually see the Upper World, but first I have to perceive spirituality. That’s why I have to detach myself from all my worldly possessions since at this point I am learning about perfection, spirituality, and the Creator.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/10/10, The Zohar

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This World Is Just A Starting Point

Dr. Michael LaitmanThe Creator did not create our material world. It exists only in our imagination because we are within the boundaries of our egoism. The moment we transition to bestowal and begin to acquire bestowing desires, the Upper reality (in which we in fact exist and develop) will reveal itself to us.

The lower layer of this material world will continue to exist for it has to constantly provide us with the freedom of choice in attaining spirituality. In this world we go to work or go to buy groceries, yet we know that we have a permanent place of residence, our home and family. The same thing applies to spirituality: There is a place where we permanently exist. We climb and descend spiritual steps, but the lowest level of existence (our world) is always guaranteed to us.

This world is illusory and doesn’t exist anywhere except in our imagination; it’s a basic point that allows us to act on our own for the sake of bestowal. The Creator shows all of us the same movie, thus allowing us to exist within the same reality. That is the reason why the most advanced Kabbalist and the most feeble-minded, silly person perceive the same material world.

It goes without saying that an intelligent person sees our world a little differently and understands more, but in general all of us see the same picture. It makes no difference whether a person possesses specific properties because it doesn’t have anything in common with spirituality.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/26/10, The Zohar

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Shaping Our World View To Bestowal

Dr. Michael LaitmanA question I received: Why do 90% of the obstacles I get pertain to my physical body (I’m hungry, I’m tired, and so on)? After all, corporeality is far less important than spirituality and contains only a small spark of life.

My Answer: You’re asking why we weren’t given the opportunity to work with spiritual desires, lights, and screens, instead of the corporeal ones. But to the extent that you begin to view the world in waves of bestowal, you naturally stop noticing this world. It stops being the determining world for you. You continue to exist in this world and connecting with people, but without this world being connected to the spiritual world, it loses its meaning. It is merely a consequence, a reflection, of the spiritual worlds that project reality to you.

There is a special technology that projects three-dimensional, holographic images in the air via laser beams. They make all kinds of figures appear in empty space. In a similar fashion, this world is presented to you in illusory images, for this world is but an imprint of what exists in spirituality.

It is our egoistic desire that projects this world for us. For the time being, it can only exist in this form that does not disappear until the very end of correction. Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai could be sitting here with us and he would be seeing our corporeal world despite being fully corrected himself. Indeed, this world will only disappear from our senses following the general, final correction.

This world pertains to the general desire to receive pleasure. It is an egoistic desire, yet it is not against the Creator. It is simply a desire to lead an animal life and receive pleasure.
Therefore, it is not considered criminal and does not require correction. You simply need to use it like an animal and shape it into a desire to bestow – the soul.

From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/26/10, The Zohar

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The Window Into The New World

Dr. Michael LaitmanMan is born loving only himself. This is our nature, and we can’t do anything about it. We always live inside it and cannot step out of it. All our actions are only for our own sake; otherwise, it is impossible to move forward. Therefore, I need a foreign force which would act against my nature and change it.

All my thinking and energy keep working for the purpose of filling and comforting myself. But there is one point in me that is pushing me to step outside of my nature, rise from the animate level, and reach the Creator, that is, to attain the human level. Only this point in me belongs to the human level, the level of the Creator since “man” is similar to the Creator.

I belong to the material world entirely, but this one point in me belongs to the spiritual one. If it doesn’t awaken, a human being lives solely in this world and doesn’t suspect anything more; he is satisfied with this materialistic life. If, however, this point is awakened in his heart, he feels uncomfortable in this world and strives to rise from it. He is influenced by two forces: One pushes him from behind out of the material world, and the other pulls him from the front, from the spiritual world.

Without renouncing oneself (one’s egoism) and rising above one’s nature, it is impossible to reach adhesion with the Creator. I have to decide which nature I wish to be related to: to the nature of the Creator or that of the creature, that is, to choose bestowal or reception.

Since giving is opposite to our nature, there is only one means to move from the material to the spiritual: a Kabbalistic group. The group has immense power because we work together and everyone annuls the egoistical desire that prevents him from fulfilling the purpose for which man is born. The purpose is to become similar to the Creator. The Creator is the force of bestowal, love, and annulment of self. This is why I need the group as an external foreign force that works as a lever which allows me to turn my nature around.

In order for this force to be great and invigorating, the group must be united and strong within itself and burn with the desire to fulfill the spiritual purpose. Then, everyone in it can use this power and step out of the enslavement of egoistic love.

From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/20/10, Article “The Purpose of the Association –2”

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