Kabbalistic wisdom tells us that when we pray to the Creator, we have to have a list of reasons why He should listen to us. In other words, we need to ask ourselves a few important questions: What have I done that has made other people feel better because I exist? What of myself have I shared that might allow my prayer to be answered? If I don’t have anything to offer, then why should the Creator even listen to me?
The universe is a mirror, reflecting back to us what we put out. Today, be aware of opportunities to extend your Light to another person, because in so doing, you will allow the Light to be reflected back to you in equal measure.Read More
When do we usually pray to the Creator? Typically, it is when we are in pain, when life is difficult, when a relationship ends, when a job we hoped to get falls through. When we are comfortable, on the other hand, when everything is settled and fine, we tend to forget the role the Creator plays in our lives.
In the Bible, when the Creator says, “Remember Me,” it is a call for us to remind ourselves of the Creator in times of goodness and gladness and not only in times of sorrow. We may currently be at a high point in our life, but let’s not forget that the reason we’ve reached that point is because the Creator allowed it and not because of our own “superb intellect” or our ability to “cut great deals.” After all, how many of us know people of equal intelligence and ability who are just as professionally connected as we are and who never quite make it?
The truth is that our position in this life is dependent on what we have done in our prior lifetimes and what kind of...Read More
Any difficulty, challenge, or negativity that we experience in our lives is there either to help us grow or to cleanse us.
I’ve said this a hundred times, but I’ll say it again: Without pain, we cannot grow. When we exercise and lift weights and stretch ourselves physically, our bodies become stronger. We understand and accept this.
But when it comes to inner strength and “building” our soul, there are times when we want it for free, when we don’t want to do the heavy lifting that is required for true spiritual growth. Other times, we feel we have really extended ourselves and we think ”Ok, can I just relax now?” or “Ok, where is my prize?” At these moments, we better reconsider our goals because the strength and Light that we build within ourselves is the true reward of spiritual work.
The key is the certainty that whatever is in our lives at this moment is the very best for our process and growth.Read More
The kabbalists tell us that there is a deeper reason and meaning behind everything that we read in the Bible. For example, the first of the Ten Commandments given to Moses on Mount Sinai opens with “I am the Lord your God who brought you out of the house of bondage, out of the land of Egypt.”
According to the kabbalists, there are many secrets that emerge from this single statement. We learn, for example, that each of us is a slave to something and that real freedom is available to us only through the Light of the Creator.
How, though, are we slaves? Some of us are slaves to business. Some of us are slaves to power. Some of us are slaves to constant thoughts of: “Where am I going to be? How am I going to be remembered? How am I going to establish myself in this world?”
“Out of the house of bondage” means several things. First, it means that with spiritual tools and the appropriate consciousness, we can learn to free ourselves from the bondage of our own...Read More
The ending of chaos will not come if we love our girlfriend but at the same time treat our coworkers disrespectfully, or if we love our brother but hate our neighbor who has more than us or is better looking than us or seems to get all of things that we believe we deserve.
No, we don’t need to like and be liked by everyone, but we do need to be able to show human dignity to everyone, even if we don’t agree with them and even if we feel we have less than they have.Read More
Every time we fall, every time we try and fail, every time a project doesn’t work out, we need to remember that whatever happened did so only to show us that there is another rung that we need to ascend on our spiritual ladder.
When we finally carve out for ourselves a groove, a comfortable place where we feel things are working out and we are happy and satisfied, we should certainly appreciate the Light in our lives, but we shouldn’t feel so proud. Because you know what? When things seem easy and life is running smoothly, it just means that we have reached a plateau in our spiritual growth. Eventually, however, we will need to move up again.
With this understanding, we can choose to embrace the difficulties that the universe puts in our path, knowing that these apparent difficulties are actually opportunities to grow our soul and to become the person we are meant to be.Read More
The Bible tells us to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”
But how are we supposed to love somebody or something that we can’t physically relate to? How can we love God? We don’t see Him, really. We don’t feel Him, really. We don’t feel His embrace on our body, really.
But what we can do is feel each other’s embrace. We can feel the love of those around us. We can feel the energy of our family, our friends, of all the people in our lives.
If we can learn to be a part of one another and to love one another, then we can do what this verse is telling us, because a spark of God exists in each and every person. To love the Creator with all of our heart and soul and mind is really to love our fellow humans—even though to act in this way runs counter to our normal selfish ego-nature that doesn’t want to share and be a part of others.
For example, we may wake up one day and think to ourselves, “Oh heck, I...Read More
Sometimes we go to the Creator and we say, “I’ve given charity. I’ve been a good person. I’ve helped people. Please, I need a favor over here.” But you know what the Creator’s answer is when we come forward with this approach?
The Creator’s answer is: “Really? You’ve given charity? Where did you get the money to give the charity? Who bestowed that blessing on you in the first place?”
Any time we go to the Creator and explain how good we are and therefore how much we need to be helped by Him, the answer is: “You aren’t whoever or whatever you think you are. You are what I made you. You are where I put you. Now use what you’ve been given to create a space to be closer to your spiritual roots.”
As human beings, we work really hard to accomplish things in the belief that once we achieve whatever we consider to be success (in finance, wisdom, honor, or whatever), then we have finally “made it.”
But have we really “made it?”
We learn in Kabbalah that it...Read More
There are many types of prayers and many ways to pray.
For example, we have what we consider "intellectual prayers." Intellectual prayers are written prayers; they have specific words that appear in a specific order. Kabbalists are familiar with specific intellectual prayers that, when combined with the right intention, can unlock the gates of the Upper Worlds and allow the prayers to be taken by angels to the Creator.*
There is also what is known as "prayers of the heart." When we pray from the heart, we are saying, “Listen, God, I know I probably don’t deserve it, but I have no other solutions. Please, God, help me… help my child… help my family… Please help because I am lost and I don’t know how to find the Light.”
In the Bible, when Moses’ sister, Miriam, had leprosy and Moses said with all his heart, “El na ra fa na la” (meaning “Heal her now”), those few simple words were the sum total of the prayer—and the end of the illness.
My point?...Read More
Disharmony need not exist. If something happens to you or if you are in an uncomfortable situation, try to turn it around, not just in your moments of discomfort, but at all times. Each and every one of us has the power to prevent wars and natural disasters. We are all a part of the Light energy, and we all have the power to respect turn that which is dark into Light.
This is what it means to be spiritual. We need to use the tools available to us—from whatever spiritual path we are on and whatever our course of study—to advance the cause of unity, not separation; the cause of human dignity, not humiliation and shame; and the cause of respectful treatment for our fellow beings.
We are all a part of this purpose.Read More