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The content is based on talks given by Dr. Michael Laitman and is written and edited by his students.

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The Opposite World

239There is a spiritual reality above our world, which we do not feel and do not know, but we want to reach it. The difference is that in our world everything happens between egoistic desires, each of which pulls toward itself. But in the higher, spiritual world, the opposite is true and everyone tries to do something for the benefit of others. This is the opposite reality, the opposite world.

Try to feel what the light of faith is as if we are in its stream, it envelops us from all sides and transports us from state to state. In the light of faith, we begin to see other dimensions: not just top-bottom, right-left, front-back, that is, three-dimensional coordinates, but in an infinite number of dimensions, a round, integral world that has no end.

This is a world that exists above time and space. Even conventional science discovers that we do not exist simply in our galaxy but in a much more complex system. We need to develop our senses in order to experience the true reality.

In fact, we are eternal creatures! We just do not feel it now, trapped in a small, cramped cage called “this world.”
There is no place in the whole universe worse than this world where we live. So, let’s disagree with that, let’s wake up, look a little higher!

You just need to escape the ruling of the egoism, which seeks to snatch more and more for itself. By doing this, on the contrary, we steal the true life from ourselves.

It is said about this: “The dead are free.” If egoistic desire dies and I cease to demand for myself, then I become free. My eyes suddenly open, all sensations that were not there before because they were blocked open, and I feel the upper world. To do this, you just need to rise above your egoism through our unity, and from this unity ask the Creator to give us the power of bestowal so that we can unite with each other and merge with Him.

There is no need to try to overcome your desire. We can never go against it. You just need to ask the Creator, and everything will happen. We want the Creator to reveal the property of bestowal within us—this means that He will reveal Himself. Then a person will become like the Creator.

There is no need to be afraid that we are distant and detached from the Creator because even now we are in adhesion with Him, and we simply do not feel it. The embryo in the mother’s womb does not understand that it is inside the mother. In exactly the same way, a person is inside the Creator, but does not realize it. Studying Kabbalah and joining the ten brings us to an awareness of where we exist.

Even now, we are all inside the Creator, and we must, first of all, calm down. Whatever happens, we are inside Him. And from this state, let us continue to develop the feeling of closeness to the Creator, the desire to merge with Him, with our soul and heart, with all our thoughts. Nothing changes in reality except for the awareness of a person who gradually learns where he is.
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From the Lesson for Women 10/24/20

“Are Coronavirus Masks REALLY Effective?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: Are coronavirus masks REALLY effective?

Masks are a very interesting phenomenon in this pandemic. Common health guidelines consistent worldwide include keeping our distance from each other, maintaining personal hygiene and wearing masks, and masks in particular serve mostly in order to stop our spreading the virus to others.

Why are masks so interesting?

It is because many people wear masks as a protective measure to not catch the virus from others, but masks work mostly in the opposite direction: they prevent the virus’ spread from the person wearing the mask to others.

If we view the coronavirus pandemic as nature sending us a lesson in human relations, then the long-term mask wearing conditions worldwide can be seen as a lesson for humanity in mutual responsibility and consideration. It is similar to how we raise children by telling them to behave fairly and kindly because it is ultimately good for them to do so, but in a broader context, they learn how to relate positively to each other.

Humanity has yet to become aware of how nature is operating behind the scenes: that it is raising us to become increasingly connected, and that it ultimately wants us to realize our connection harmoniously. For the time being, we feel this tightening connection as intensifying pressure and stress, and we suffer a lot from it. If we, however, enable a fundamental shift in our attitude to our increasing connection—from intending to benefit ourselves alone to intending to benefit others—then we will literally experience a new world. We will feel how our tightening connection is an opportunity for us to undergo this fateful egoistic-to-altruistic attitude shift, and by doing so, we will feel ourselves exit our narrow self-serving individual corners, and enter into a great new harmonious world of peace, love, unity and perfect connection among us all.

Mask wearing can also illustrate a filtered-down example in our current lives of four stages of attitude shift that the wisdom of Kabbalah describes; stages we traverse in order to discover our perfect connection to each other.

Receiving in order to receive: I wear a mask solely with the thought of protecting my own health. This is the most egoistic of the four stages.

Bestowing in order to receive: I wear a mask with the understanding that I protect others from myself—for instance, if I am an asymptomatic carrier—but by doing so, I also hold the intention that I will ultimately protect myself by doing so. In other words, I care about others because I care about myself. This is still egoistic, but it has an element of altruism laced within.

Bestowing in order to bestow: I wear a mask purely with the thought that I do not want to infect others with the virus. In other words, “bestowing in order to bestow” is an intention to not want to do any kind of harm to others.

Receiving in order to bestow: In addition to wearing a mask in order to not harm others, I think about what I can do in order to bring goodness and benefit to others.

In the wisdom of Kabbalah, these four stages describe much higher states of spiritual attainment than the filtered-down examples presented here. However, they offer a small taste of a path toward positive connection that lies ahead of us. We can thus relate to mask wearing as an exercise in our positive attitudes to each other, and by doing so, improve our connections and the world we live in.

Photo by Pille-Riin Priske on Unsplash.

“Disinfecting Our (Social) Environment” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “Disinfecting Our (Social) Environment

It will take a while but in the end, we will understand that vaccines aren’t the cure for Covid. It is with good reason that the virus keeps changing, that it keeps affecting us in different ways, and that its impact is growing more severe. SARS-CoV-2, aka the “novel coronavirus,” is no ordinary virus. It is the first “spiritual virus” in the sense that it is created by, and feeds on the spirit among people. The more anger, struggles, and rejection thrive among us, the more virulent and violent the virus will become. It thrives in an atmosphere of hatred.

Since the emergence of the virus, tensions have increased throughout the world. Social tensions within countries have become violent clashes; international tensions have intensified; and at least one war has already broken out—in the Balkans. These are treats for the virus. The hatred makes it impossible to beat.

The only way to disinfect the world from Covid-19 is by disinfecting our social environment from hatred. Hatred is the real pollution, and pollution creates diseases. Athletes often use the Latin phrase Mens sana in corpore sano, which means “a healthy mind in a healthy body.” What is true for an individual is just as true for society. If we want to be well physically, we must heal our bodies, as well as our environment, and that includes our social environment.

Just as we wouldn’t want to live in a dirty environment, in a city where the streets are filled with trash, we shouldn’t live in a dirty social environment, where people’s thoughts of one another are, well, trash. Currently, we pay no attention to the quality of our social environment. As a result, the trash comes back to haunt us. If we want to heal our bodies, we must heal our bodies, our environment, and our social environment equally.

Heart Or Money?

273.02If we treat each other well, and especially if we love each other, then there can be no needy, poor, or sick people among us.

This means that the problem is only in the fact that there is no love between us. We shift the care for people in need to the government. We are ready to donate some money, but we do not put our heart into this, we cannot worry about people who are strangers to us.

This is why we will never be able to get rid of poverty and diseases! Even if we spend billions of dollars all over the world and organize all kinds of organizations and ministries that will take care of the needy, provide them with money and everything they need, there will still be poor, sick, and unfortunate people.

It is because we want to be free from caring for them. We ask: how much do I have to pay to avoid being asked to love? I am willing to pay a hundred dollars a month to be left alone. However, this is not what the Torah requires of us, it requires a heartfelt attitude.

Therefore, even in the richest countries poverty, crime, and human suffering will remain. Look what is happening to our world with all its progress and abundance. If we treated each other with love, we would live in paradise. Yet, we are not ready to be integrated with the others with our feelings, but only to pay money in order to be left alone. This does not solve the problem because the Torah requires a human heart.

Nature requires us to love each other. This is not someone’s idea and invention, after all, we are inside nature and its laws. These laws act on us more and more harshly, are driving us into a corner and demanding more and more stringently that this condition be fulfilled: complete connection between us, all the way up to love.

We will have to fulfill this condition anyway, if not now, then later. We will die and be born again until we fulfill the requirements of nature while living here in this world.

In fact, the goal is to achieve adhesion with the Creator and become like Him. Yet, it can only be realized through practical actions that are available to us, which are expressed in love for one’s neighbor as for oneself.

To the extent we hate each other, we are distancing from the Creator and do not feel Him. As soon as we begin to come closer and connect with each other, we will feel each other and feel the Creator between us. After all, this is all one single nature and everything depends only on our distancing or rapprochement.

The Creator wants us to know Him, and therefore we must go through all the states from complete separation to connection, in all possible forms. This is how we learn our own entire nature. Our egoism is so multifaceted that it generates an infinite number of different types of hatred. Yet, as we begin to get closer to the Creator, we begin to feel and understand Him and connect with Him.

Attainment always consists of two parts: mutual hatred and mutual love. According to the difference between love and hate, we begin to feel the Creator. One cannot be attained without the other because we are created beings and we attain everything only in the contrast of opposites.
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From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/12/20

Movement Toward An Integral World

621Question: Now the next wave of coronavirus is beginning all over the world. Many countries are getting ready for the second lockdown and for Israel it is already a fact. Economies are collapsing, the world is renewing itself. How can people survive in the new world?

Answer: First, we have to understand that we really are living in a new world, which in the end will be drastically different from the previous one. After all, we are transferring from the physical world to the virtual world. There are technical, moral, ethical, and other prerequisites for this.

In the future, everything will depend on the moral efforts of people, how much they will understand and realize their good attitude toward each other. It may seem impossible, but this is exactly the world we must come to.

We are talking about the correction of our egoism, about an aspiration of a person to be closer to others and act for the benefit of all. From the former divided world, humanity is moving toward becoming an integral, unified whole. Nature makes us that way. We must understand this tendency and correspond to it to some extent.
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From KabTV’s “Kabbalah Express” 9/27/20

In The New School Year

630.2Question: In the new school year, hundreds of millions of children went to school like in “battle” conditions: they have to sit with masks, separate from each other, not play with each other, and not get close to each other.

It is the same tragedy both for teachers who have to restrain the children and for the parents.

What would you wish for teachers?

Answer: To learn from children how it is incomprehensible to children that they cannot get close to each other, it is so incomprehensible to us how to relate to each other correctly. We do not have these properties, these sensations. How can I feel the other so that I can approach him correctly, so that by my correct approach I destroy this virus?

Question: What else would you wish for teachers?

Answer: To understand the nature of this virus, where it comes from, and accordingly, to educate children to have the right attitude toward each other, and the virus will disappear. Explain to children that we can fight this virus only by our good relations.

We do not lose anything by this! We win for sure! Let us try!

Teachers have always taught children to be good, to be close to each other, to interact with each other correctly. So, explain to them that the virus comes as a result of improper interaction, distancing,  and harming each other.

Let’s try to make the virus go away. Let’s eradicate it.

Question: What would you wish for parents?

Answer: In this case, I would like to wish parents to learn from their children.

Question: That is, children come from school and teach their parents?

Answer: At least they could tell their parents what is going on. First, in their relationship with each other. How the virus trains them to act this way. And then, as a result of this, perhaps we will indeed see good statistics.

Question: What else can you wish for parents?

Answer: To undergo the same education as the children. Everyone needs to be trained. Everybody is the same.

Question: That is, a parent should feel almost equal to the child?

Answer: Of course.

Question: What would you wish for children?

Answer: I do not know what can be asked of children at all. To listen to what their elders tell them, at least in this respect because otherwise, there will be still bigger problems, still bigger restrictions in their playing with each other, in visiting each other, in getting close to each other, and so on.

That is, let’s make it so that we stop thinking about what distance should we keep between each other, stop walking around with muzzles like vicious dogs, shying away from each other.

To do this, we just need to change our attitude toward each other and make it good. Let’s start getting used to it. It’s not that hard. Let’s set an example for each other. And we will see how it goes.

Question: Do you want this message to be heard in the classroom, in the teacher’s room, and at home?

Answer: And in the world.

The message is very simple: Everyone should be friendly to everyone like they are to themselves. After all, it is written: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Take an example from this.
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From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman” 8/31/20

Dialogue With Yourself

568.01Question: It is no secret that 95–99% of the time we spend in internal dialogue with ourselves. Scientists claim that, on the one hand, this is bad because a person spends a huge amount of energy on it. On the other hand, without such reflection, it is impossible to absorb the experience that a person gains throughout his life.

How can one stop this internal dialogue?

Answer: There is no need to stop it. On the contrary, it is this internal dialogue that promotes the growth of a man in a human being. The only thing we need to do is to check from where we get additional fueling, from what sources, books, television, etc.

I am in favor of a person always rechecking what affects him, what sources of scientific, sensory, technical, or other information can ultimately form him and affect him in the correct way.

And the most important thing is the environment: friends, colleagues, and acquaintances. One needs to check out well with whom one communicates so that he can develop under the right influence that shows him the way to good connection with others. Whatever it is, this is what wins.
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From KabTV’s “Kabbalah Express” 9/27/20

How Can You Force Yourself To Listen To Another Person?

565.02Question: What advice can you give about how to force oneself to listen to someone else? Let us say that as a boss, I understand that I have to listen to my subordinate, but I do not want to. Can I force myself to do this?

Answer: Only if you love him or are afraid of him.You must receive either positive or negative feelings from him, but positive ones are best. In other words, either you are afraid of him and it is more profitable for you to listen to him, or you love him and listen to him because it is agreeable to you.

Question: Psychologists advise managers to listen to their subordinates for a few minutes a day. A worker needs to be listened to; this is even more important to him than the salary. But to listen to someone for a long time is against our nature. What is the solution here?

Answer: We must correct ourselves and then it will work out. “Love your neighbor as yourself” is the general correction of all of mankind and of each of us. If we yearn for this, then we will naturally feel it in all relations between us.
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From KabTV’s “Communication Skills” 8/14/20

Man’s Inner World And Development

566.01Question: It is believed that the inner world of a person includes his thoughts and experiences as well as various feelings and emotions. These make each person an individual and define his character. What does our inner world include from your point of view?

Answer: Everything that originates inside of a person. Once he becomes a part of the world around him or has a connection to a higher source, everything that he absorbs and generalizes within himself is his inner world.

Question: The development of feelings is a conscious process. What should we do with emotions that arise unconsciously as reactions when interacting with other people? Can they be managed?

Answer: I believe that the most important thing is to stick to the right society that studies our inner world and its development, and to advance along with it. Otherwise, a person has no basis for moving forward.

Question: Do you think that there is a technique by which a person can control their own qualities and feelings, and change themselves?

Answer: No. No way! A person cannot develop correctly on his own.
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From KabTV’s “Communication Skills” 8/7/20

“The Latest Scheme To Divide Israel – Cantonize It” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “The Latest Scheme to Divide Israel – Cantonize It

The latest whim among those who want to see Israel disintegrated is to split it into cantons. “It makes perfect sense,” they exclaim, “We will be like Switzerland!” And why not? Those who want a liberal lifestyle will live in the Tel-Aviv canton, those who want an Orthodox lifestyle will live in the Bnei Brak canton, and so on and so forth. Everyone will have their way and we will all be happy.

The divisions between us will not vanish; we will never agree. But they must not deter us from striving for unity despite them. If we strive for unity as a value in itself, a worthy goal we must achieve, even if only so as to serve as an example, we will find that our rejection of each other is but the reason and the impetus to form unity and solidarity. Without the hate, we’d have no need to build love. Without rejection, we’d have no need to forge connections. And without connection, we are not a nation.

If we do that, we might as well pack up and leave now. We didn’t come to Israel to live in separate tribes; we came here to reunite the Jewish people. We can’t expect 2,000 years of exile not to leave its marks on all of us, but if we don’t want to revive our common identity, we might as well leave now because it defies the purpose of our coming here, and the meaning of being Jewish.

Jews have never been similar to one another. Our forefathers were outcasts from various tribes, and believed that only when we rise above our differences we can achieve true unity. King Solomon called this motto, “Love will cover all crimes” (Prov. 12:10), and RASHI explained that Rabbi Akiva’s motto, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” is the great rule of the Torah.

In other words, we weren’t meant to let our separateness remain, but to rise above it and unite. The whole world consists of separate nations that have no idea how to unite. They fight each other to death; they’ve been through two world wars; they are well on their way to another one, and no one knows how to prevent it. The only way this can be stopped is if people find a way to unite above their inherent and immutable differences.

We, the Jews, were the only ones who ever attempted it, when we first formed the nation, and the only ones who succeeded, albeit for very short periods and with countless clashes in between. Nevertheless, that successful attempt, or perhaps better defined as “effort,” has earned us the mission to be “a light unto nations,” to show the way to forge unity among different and hostile peoples.

Subconsciously, this is why the nations voted in favor of establishing a Jewish state in the land of Israel in 1947. The Holocaust was certainly an impetus, but we shouldn’t be so naïve as to believe that countries that wouldn’t let in pleading Jewish refugees before and during World War II had suddenly become philo-Semites when it ended.

Despite its innate dislike of Jews, the world has given us a sovereign state, a chance to reestablish our nationhood. And since our forefathers were aliens who united, when we are not united, we are aliens. If we embrace our alienation and divide the country into cantons, we will admit that we are unable to connect, the nations will feel that we have given up on the effort to unite and set the example of unity above hate they so desperately need, and that will be the end of the State of Israel.

The divisions between us will not vanish; we will never agree. But they must not deter us from striving for unity despite them. If we strive for unity as a value in itself, a worthy goal we must achieve, even if only so as to serve as an example, we will find that our rejection of each other is but the reason and the impetus to form unity and solidarity. Without the hate, we’d have no need to build love. Without rejection, we’d have no need to forge connections. And without connection, we are not a nation.