Sunday, September 24, 2017

Global Paradise

We no longer suffer from a lack of external resources, but, from a lack of love.

Over this Rosh Hashana, I have come to realize that we are now living in a vastly different kind of time period than we had in the past. The past was marked by a scarcity of resources basic to human life. Food, medicine, distance, lack of information were just a few examples of the often seemingly impassable barriers of the day. They were real and formidable obstacles. Only a few could live comfortably, as resources were relatively scarce and hard gained. Such situations often lead to oppression, slavery and even seemingly benign forms of upper classes taking advantage of lower classes. All sorts of cultural norms and religious doctrine formed around legitimizing and perpetuating class hierarchy.    

This generation seems to be the very first in human which has access to enough resources to transform our planet into an earthly paradise. We have plenty of food, medical know-how, instant global communication, swift shipping systems, renewable energy resources, (hopefully soon) basic universal income, etc. Our seeming problems can, with the right cooperation, become wonderful opportunities. For example, our problem of rising ocean levels can be coupled with the new Israeli desalination technology to provide water for very large populations. Plus, we can create extensions of the ocean into mainland areas of large continents; a measure which can have so many benefits. Among these benefits are a balancing of the sea level, sparing of coastal cities and islands, making desert and wilderness areas habitable,  an influx water and fish into new areas, an expansion of habitable area for aquatic life and for terrestrial life  living symbiotically with aquatic life. Such measures may have profoundly positive impacts on economies, as new construction projects, towns and cities, fishing areas and resorts dot the globe.

Whereas yesteryear’s barriers to crafting our planet into a paradise came both from what was external to us and what was internal to us, today’s barriers are truly internal only. The only real barrier seems to be the human heart. It’s about where people are spiritually and psychologically. We no longer suffer from a lack of external resources, but, from a lack of love. Do we love each other enough to help each other? Though a great start, there needs to be ultimately something more than simply, we all share the same set of problems and can only lift ourselves out via cooperative efforts. That kind of attitude is much too superficial to last, as it mostly reeks with self concern.

This harks back to the wisdom which our sages offered that the exile of the Jewish people was primarily a result of an opposite of love. In the first century, Jerusalem had sufficient resources to avoid the problems which led to the Jewish people becoming a landless nation. It was internal politics and infighting which led to the problems and elicited an unfortunate Roman response. Had the local population been more sensitive to each other and really considered their situation, Rome would not have attacked Jerusalem, sacked the Holy Temple and chased the Jewish people from their homeland.

Though I seem to be merely repeating an old message, it carries particular relevance for us today. Years ago, people were able to hide behind the excuse that the world appears as it does because there just isn’t enough resources to go around and it had little to do with who they were personally. Today, the rug has been pulled from right under this excuse. All necessary resources are present and can easily get around. The only barrier seems to be human heart itself. We need to ask difficult questions on the personal level and on the societal level, such as, “Will the selfish edge of politics and financial greed give way to the better side within each of us, to the call of our souls?”

Soon before passing out of public life, the late Lubavitch Rebbe reported to the world that the messianic age can easily happen, “Now!” We just have to really, really want it. Back then I certainly trusted him, but, it sounded to me like something of a  miracle. I couldn’t see how the earthly dots could connect to make such an event neatly possible. Today, with internet and so much further technological progress, I so clearly see it. However, the human heart and soul still has to want it! We have succeeded in changing the outer world. Now we need to change our inner worlds.

Perhaps, many of us really do want it.  But, are we reeking with this wanting so desperately, to the point that it just overflows into meaningful actions!

I know that I am. That’s why I write!


Sunday, September 10, 2017

Chai Elul - T'Shuva M'Ahava

I present the following lively happy melody. Please use it for Weddings, Bar/Bat Mitzvahs and all manner of celebration! 

Please do not "sell" recordings of this melody - except for sincerely charitable purposes.

This melody emerged in the midst of prayer/meditation on Shabbat, Chai Elul 5777. The context of the prayer/meditation was a beseeching to be more spiritually connected to my Creator and to discover my Saintly Mentor and spiritual community; within the context of Judaism. 

Wednesday, September 6, 2017


Late in day in cafe’,
 As he watched, she eyed her watch.
Her hint was taken.


In Jewish mystical teachings, what's male is more related to space and what's female is more related to time.

What's male, tends to be a cosmic echo of God's Infinity. Therefore, he’s lured to the expansive - as in the expanse of space.

What's female tend to be a cosmic echo of God's Oneness.  Therefore, she’s lured by unified form - as in the looping cycles of time.

Their relationship with time is the inverse of their relationship with space. He seeks outer expansion in a burst; maximum space in minimum time! She seeks to draw materials over time into a localized area; maximum time in minimum space!

He’s more wide-eyed, as he faces the expanse of space. She's more attuned, as she flows with the rhythms of time.

He conquers to reach across the expanse space. She magnetizes opportunities, as they ebb along towards her along tides of time.


To Heal an Ego

When has ever a butterfly gloated,
  “Just look at my gorgeous colors”?

 Never! She instinctively knows,
   They’re not her doing or possession.

 When has ever a man gloated,
   “Just look at my amazing intelligence”?

 Only if he’s ill with the delusion,
   That he actually created himself!

Then build him a sacred temple,
~ A comedian’s stage!  
N’ write him a ponderous pompous bible.
~ A comedian’s script!

N’ use his prophecies as wood,
 To feed the fires of comedy routines,

Until all egos laugh themselves,
 Free, out from their prisons of delusion!



What's Your Happy Song?

Remember: The world awaits your "Happy Song"!

It's that song which emerges by exposing what already simply is ~ that reservoir of happiness which God smiles into your soul.

It's a song which can take many and varied forms ~ though its essence remains the same.

For some it's singing,
 for some playing instruments,
   for some  writing,
     for some studying,
       for some healing,
         for some advocating,  
           for some leading,
             for some preaching and
               for some teaching.

Unfetter your heart and follow the lead of your soul’s bliss ~ for wherever she leads, your happy song awaits!!!


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

God’s Smile

In our depth of depth,
There’s a layer of happiness,

One which needs no...

- excuses,
- because ofs,
- accomplishments,
- goals met,

    ~ or ~
- possessions.

It's simply God's own happiness,
 Smiling its way into our very souls.


Sunday, August 27, 2017

Multiple Universes?

I want to preface this essay by declaring that I cannot know for sure whether what I am about to write is correct. This essay merely represents the closest I can get to a possible answer. I leave it to those far greater than myself in the teachings of the Ari z”l to determine whether in fact God has allowed me to arrive at the correct conclusions.

In my last essay I dealt with the issue of whether multiple tzimtzum bubbles can exist in the Infinite Light. I explained that I didn’t think so because...

  1. The tzimtzum process is designed to craft the very first and most ultimate female entity out of the Infinite Light. Only one ultimate feminine entity can be formed from all that’s feminine within the Infinite Light - as there’s nothing left to form another one with; certainly not one on equal stature.
  2. No exact duplicates can exist in spirituality because of how space functions on that level. and since the tzimtzum bubble is the first expression of empty space, some rarified notion of space certainly exists there (though certainly not of the sort we are accustomed to).

However, my answer to this question does not answer an almost entirely separate question whether multiple physical universes can co-exist. Normally, I would not expect Kabbalah to offer a clue about the answer to such a question, except that the work “Etz Chaim” opens with an explanation for why God created His creation which seems to point in the direction of an answer, once given careful consideration.

“Etz Chaim” explains that God created His creation in order to allow expression of His Holy Names, Attributes and Appellations. For example, one of His Attributes is Compassion.  But, if there’s nobody with whom to display compassion then what’s of what meaning is this particular Attribute?  It’s as if something is lacking in His Holy Names, Attributes and Appellations unless they’re somehow allowed practical expression in the physical world. This can be compared to a human who is full of great potentials, but is barred by life circumstances from expressing them.  Such a person is said to have not had the opportunity to self-actualize or to attain self-realization. Indeed, this is a very psychologically painful state to remain in indefinitely. Similarly it’s as if by creating a physical world God has crafted an arena for self-actualization or realization.

Can one physical universe suffice to express all His Holy Names, Attributes and Appellations? I would have thought so. Perhaps, there are ways to thread into expression all these Holy Names, Attributes and Appellations through the course of a single version of human history and destiny. Being a master chess player, given enough time the Creator would have found a way to fit it all in. After all, He’s omnipotent, all capable!

However, I see a clue that He might have chosen a different path. It’s from the Torah Codes. It’s curious that the Torah Codes are so accurate from hindsight. So many famous peoples and events have been found coded there. Most poignantly, their coding is usually discovered in areas of the Torah scroll which seem to somehow match the central subject of their lives - the main details historians would take note of. However, to make future predictions based on these codes seem a lot trickier. Why? I think it’s because they contain multiple tracks for human destiny whose manifestation depend on how humans will use their free will. Therefore, they will also contain possibilities which will never play out in our world.

Kabbalah regards the Torah scroll as a single long Name of God. If there are multiple tracks for human destiny which never play out then it’s as if this Holy Name is lacking expression and so much of the Name’s potential is simply suppressed. Therefore, it would make sense for there to be multiple physical universes; enough to allow for all the coded tracks of human history and destiny, as coded in the Torah scroll, to fully play out.  

Based on this, there should be a universe where Adam and Eve don’t eat from the fruit, where Noah’s generation turns out saintly, where the tower is not built, where Sodom welcomes guests, where Esau’s a saintly person and patriarch of the Jews - marrying Leah, where the Jewish sojourn into Egypt doesn’t degenerate into slavery, where the golden calf doesn’t happen, where the spies bring back a wonderful report, where Moses leads the entry into the Land of Israel, where Joshua finishes up his conquests, where monotheism reigns during the period of the Judges, where Elimelech doesn’t settle in Moab, where a Jewish King is requested properly, where King David acquires Bathsheba without scandal, where an indiscretion doesn’t happen with Pharaoh's daughter on the night of the Temple’s dedication, where the kingdom doesn’t split, where King Solomon’s Temple still stands, where all Jews return with Ezra...and so much, so much more...

The free choice in each of these events and in so many more, obviously set humanity’s future in a unique direction which limit our physical universe to follow along certain tracks of history and destiny. The presence of multiple physical universes would theoretically allow all these tracks coded in the Torah scroll their own unique opportunity to play out and thereby, bring completion to a central Divine Name - the Torah scroll itself.

I am aware that this idea opens up a Pandora’s box of questions. It’s not the intention of this essay to answer all these questions, but merely to introduce the idea along with the reason for it. However, there is one question which I would like to address in this essay because it really got to me as I was thinking over the multiple universe idea. Where would all these universes be placed on the Lurianic cosmic diagram?

Though it’s overly simplistic, but just for the sake of this essay, this diagram conceives of the universes laid out like an archery target. The higher spiritual universes are the outer concentric rings and our physical universe is the bull’s eye in the center. The outermost ring, being most closely placed to the Infinite Light, is conceived as being the most spiritual. Then the ring placed right inside the outermost ring, the second ring, is seen as less spiritual. Then the same for the third ring in and so on and so forth for each successive ring, until reaching our physical universe, placed right in the center - the furthest away from the Infinite Light.

In addition to the concentric circles, there’s a line of light, entering from the top of the circles, which brings in a fresh flow of light from the Infinite Light into the various universes. This line is like a spiritual spinal cord bringing in life-giving energy into all the realms in descending order. First, it feeds the highest universe. This universe receives the most spiritual of the light. Then it works it’s way down to the second universe, which receives what remains, siphoning off what’s appropriate for it’s own level. Then the third concentric universe receives what remains and siphons off as appropriate for it’s own level...until reaching our physical universe. Our physical universe is the bottom feeder of all the universes, receiving only the coarsest, least refined, of the spiritual lights. Yet this level is what’s good for it. Had it received more, it would not be able to handle it. This distance from the Infinite Light is very valuable because it is what’s needed to have creatures with free choice.

Since the diagram come off as addressing uses space to describe placement of the various universes, spiritual and physical, in relation to each other, for the sake of consistency and simplicity, I will deal with the placement issue as one of space.

There is a principle, which I have seen mostly used in Rabbi Ashlag’s school (but I also saw Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan employ it as well), that on the spiritual level spatial closeness and distance is defined by similarity and dissimilarity. Two entities which are similar are said to be close. Two entities which are dissimilar are said to be distant. It’s a lot like psychological closeness and distance. Two people who are neighbors can be distant and two people on different ends of the planet can be close. So what happens spiritually if two entities progressively become the same? Based on this thinking, we have to say that they eventually merge into one entity, a single identity. There’s no longer a “two” to speak of. Similarly, two entities which are exactly the same to begin with can never even begin to emerge as distinct. In spirituality, exact duplication does not exist. Only a “difference” can produce something which is a number “two”.

However, it seems to me that this dynamic is how closeness and distance work between entities within space. But, it’s likely that this is not what space itself is. Space itself is a container of sorts. Space is a container for entities. Time is container for events. Since entities and events occupy the same exact container, space and time are one; neatly fitting in with Einstein’s model.  

The more spiritual a universe is, the more spiritual it’s version of space will be too. Along with being spiritual, also comes being less limited; i.e. more flexible. This additional flexibility of space, allows for entities which are dissimilar to more easily find ways to separate from each other and for entities which are similar to more easily find ways to group together. By contrast, physical space, which is much more limited, does not always provide easy ways for similar entities to gather and for dissimilar entities to part. Therefore, similar entities can sometimes be far apart, while dissimilar entities can sometimes find themselves grouped together.

Imagine a huge fish tank in a public aquarium which is lined inside, near the glass, with a huge net. Various friendly species of fish swim around, each segregated in their own schools. In such a massive tank, there’s enough room for each specie to have its own “group space”. Now all the fish are scheduled to be transported off to another aquarium for display. The aquarium staff starts pulling up the net to gather the fish for transport. As the net closes in slightly, the various schools are still intact. Then a bit tighter, they’re still intact, but the gap between the schools narrows. This process continues and continues, until right before hoisting the net is so tight that the members of the various schools are literally mixed up with each other. A carp may now be skin to skin with a mullet.

Similarly, the newly introduced limitations of space have made it difficult to maintain the natural order of what’s similar remains together and to remain distant from what’s dissimilar. So, as the universes become progressively less spiritual and more physical, new limitations are imposed on the nature of space to the point where the space narrows in its flexibility - often grouping together the dissimilar and separating out the similar.

Each universe is an entity immersed in the space of the universe above it. Accordingly, the immersed universe’s external membrane must follow the rules of the kind of space it finds itself in - though it can have its own more limited spatial rules within and under its own skin. Earlier, it was briefly stated that duplication cannot exist in highly spiritual space. This is because on that level, space is so flexible that what’s similar will really group together far away from what’s dissimilar. The more similar entities become, the closer they’ll group. If two entities become so similar that they turn into full duplicates, they simply merge into one entity. First, because the space itself flexible enough to allow for this. Secondly, higher levels more closely mirror the seamlessness of the Infinite Light than lower levels do. So, cosmic patterns which allow entities to become seamless with each other really exist on such levels. Therefore, multiple universes cannot exist on such higher levels.

Once it’s clear that multiple identical universes cannot co-exist on higher levels, the only option is for them to exist on lower levels. Besides being the only option, it’s what makes most sense for the manifestation of the various possible tracks of human history and destiny - thereby, self-actualizing and realizing everything contained in the Torah in the Torah’s capacity as a Divine Name.

One may ask, “Why didn’t the Creator simply make the higher universes just slightly different, just enough so they can distinctly co-exist?”

If they’re even slightly different from each other then they can’t serve as links in the direct chain in the realms leading from the Infinite Light down to physical universes, giving each distinct physical universe identical starting conditions. It’s very important that the multiple physical universes start off as being the same. Otherwise, the conditions for human free choice don’t exist evenly; to allow His Holy Names, Attributes and Appellations proper manifestation in physical reality - which is His clear zone of fulfillment.

Why not try to satisfy the desire for arenas allowing multiple tracks for human history and destiny to play out by creating multiple earth-like planets inside of a single universe? As conditions need to be even and equal, the stars, planets and zodiac signs need to be identically positioned in each universe - as they have their effect on human temperament and tendencies towards behavior, which are factors crafting each human’s free choice. So, multiple earth-like planets within the same universe won’t serve the purpose of providing arenas for multiple tracks for human history and destiny to play out. Therefore, only a full set of physical universes will fulfill this goal.

Everything between the properties of the highest of spiritual universes to the densest of physical realm is a gradual evolution, a spectrum between the extremes. Along this spectrum there are many middle realms whose properties reflect that they are middle stages along the way. Space in these middle realms exists as a middle ground between highly spiritual space and physical space.

I would envision somewhere along this middle ground, but very close to the physical realm there is as a realm which actually allows for duplicate entities, but, keeps them very close - not merged, but almost as if they’re merged. Similarity and dissimilarity still affect proximity. However, it’s not to the point of forcing actual merger. A universe with such a level might exist just one spiritual step above the level where our physical universe began to cosmically differentiate. It might be viewed as the universe which directly contains the physical universes.

This level is thereby, able to contain multiple identical universes, all of them physical, in the same closely knit area with very uniform conditions - so the same, that King David can emerge in two or more of them and grapple with the exact same quandaries.

So why aren’t these identical universes shown on the Lurianic cosmic diagrams? Truthfully, the Lurianic cosmic diagrams are like a family tree. Let’s say identical twins want to chart their family tree to King Solomon. They wouldn’t necessarily include each other in the diagram. Why? They are lateral in relationship to each other. Only vertical relationships are relevant to tracing ancestry. Similarly, the Lurianic diagram is the physical universe’s own family tree back to the Infinite Light. So, only ancestor universe levels are important for such a tracing - not identical twins, triplets, quadruplets or quintuplets....

So, truthfully, a Lurianic Kabbalist living on a duplicate universe would place his/her physical universe in the exact same place where we place our universe on our own versions of the diagrams. There’s no contradiction at all. There’s room for both to share the same place because one realm up from the physical universes, duplicates can co-exist in very close proximity to each other. Though really nearby, they seem like they occupy the exact same space on the Lurianic diagrams because the fabric of space is much more flexible.

For example, in three dimensional space one item can be placed right on top of another. But when viewing the same situation from the perspective of two dimensional space, with a dimension is lost, we have no choice but to say that the two items somehow occupy the same space. The same applies to us looking at the Lurianic diagrams. Somehow in our limited space, missing some spatial flexibility, it appears like all physical universes occupy the same space on the diagrams.