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Michael Laitman, PhD

The Teachings of the East

Q: In one of your talks, you said that Kabbalah is the only method that allows us to come out to the spiritual worlds and to perform the correction of the world by ourselves. But there are other systems, such as Buddhism, Yoga, and sophism that speak of various means of enlightenment to develop cosmic awareness and states of nirvana, or Samadhi.

I’ve read many of your books, and I think most of the Eastern teachings speak about the same thing, only in a different language, which stems from the differences in culture and psychological differences. But many sages from India and China, such as Buddha, Osho and others climbed very high in their spiritual development. How do you relate to those facts? Can you analyze in depth the common elements between the teaching of the East and Kabbalah and the differences between them?

A: I don’t know any teachings but those of the Kabbalah. The difference between all the teachings and the Kabbalah, as I understand it from the perspective of the Kabbalah, is that they are built on the nullification of desires, or at least on their complete suppression, whereas Kabbalah states that the Creator can be sensed precisely by expressing the desire for Him (and certainly not by nullifying it), only by inverting the aim of its use.

Perhaps they are very similar on the outside, but there simply is no other method to attain the spiritual world. The sensations of all other methods are built on the suppression of one’s desire to enjoy. A person who suppresses his ego feels in that passive state something that seems spiritual.

That is why there appears to be some resemblance in the description of the approach, but in truth, there is an enormous difference in the expression of the ego and its treatment. To a Kabbalist, who is in the spiritual world, the roots and differences between the various beliefs and faiths are very clear. Therefore, I recommend that you make an effort to enter the spiritual world and see for yourself. Until then all methods will seem alike.

Which way should a person choose to advance? That is an individual choice. Kabbalah shows you nothing beforehand, while other teachings may present some magical hints and enticements.

The ultimate choice will depend on the degree of the development of the soul of each person. If it has developed to the point of needing actual correction, that person will choose Kabbalah.

Q: I recommend that you read the book, “Dao and the Tree of Life” by Eric Yudlev. In it, the author analyzes all the eastern teachings and how they relate to Kabbalah.

A: In order to compare two things you need to know both. Perhaps the author knows the system of the Dao, and, like researchers of other teachings, has come to far-fetched assumptions. However, those are not the result of the revelation of the Light of the Creator, because attainment means the revelation of the Upper Light in the “middle line.” That can be developed only through Kabbalah.

Q: Are other teachings harmful?

A: Kabbalists forbid nothing. They are certainly not in favor of burning or banning books. They think that the faster people go through the other paths, the faster they will understand that Kabbalah is the only true path. Therefore, the more people are exposed to various beliefs, and compare them to the wisdom of Kabbalah, the better.

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