Dr. Laitman received his PhD In philosophy and Kabbalah from the Moscow Institute of Philosophy at the Russian Academy of Sciences, and his MSc in Medical Cybernetics from the St. Petersburg State Polytechnic University, in the faculty of Biological Medical Cybernetics. In addition to being a scientist and a researcher, Dr. Laitman has been extensively engaged in Kabbalah for the past thirty years. He has published thirty books on Kabbalah and numerous publications on Kabbalah and Science.
Dr. Laitman was the disciple and personal assistant to Rabbi Baruch Ashlag, son of Rabbi Yehuda Ashlag, author of the authoritative Sulam (Ladder) Commentary on The ZOHAR. Dr. Laitman follows in the footsteps of his mentor's mission in life - promoting the dissemination of the wisdom of Kabbalah throughout the world. Laitman's scientific method provides individuals of all faiths, religions and cultures the precise tools necessary for embarking on an inspiring path of self-discovery and spiritual elevation focusing primarily on inner processes that individuals experience at their own pace.
In 1991, after his mentor's demise, he founded the Bnei Baruch Kabbalah Education & Research Institute. Bnei Baruch is a non-profit organization that welcomes people of all ages and lifestyles to engage in the rewarding process of studying Kabbalah. The organization charges no fee for any of its diverse activities.
Bnei Baruch produces daily live TV broadcasts of Kabbalah lessons and programs for various channels throughout the world. Bnei Baruch also broadcasts live daily video and audio Kabbalah lessons over the Internet with simultaneous translations from Hebrew to English, Russian, and Spanish.
The organization established and sustains the largest, most extensive content site on Kabbalah, hosting more than half a million unique visitors, with more than 2.5 million page views a month, as well as a Newsletter in five languages with 28,000 subscribers. Available on the site are authentic Kabbalah texts in twenty-two languages, and a comprehensive web-based media and text archive, all of which is provided gratis.
Today, Dr. Laitman's thirty years of research into the science of Kabbalah is recognized among renowned scientists and researchers in hard science that adhere to the classical scientific paradigms. In the framework of his scientific and educational program, Laitman participates in international conferences alongside scientists from the world over. He is the founder and the president of the Ashlag Research Institute (ARI), established to research interconnections between the sciences of our world and the science of Kabbalah.
Dr Laitman is a member of the World Wisdom Council, a think tank organization headed by Prof. Ervin Laszlo in conjunction of the Club of Budapest. Prof. Laszlo was one of the first representatives in the area of systems philosophy and general theory of evolution, and published nearly 70 books translated into as many as 18 languages.
*Note: The title "Rav" was given to Dr. Laitman by his students in respect for his teachings and his dedication to spreading the wisdom of Kabbalah throughout the world. Rav Laitman was not ordained as a rabbi by a rabbinical school and does not serve as an orthodox rabbi.
Question: How can Kabbalah help confront the economic crisis?
Michael Laitman: Well, in terms of application, it's very simple and it applies to everything that we have in this world.
First of all, by studying the force that exist around our world, which is this kind of conclusive or inclusive force of nature, which is what we call God, but it’s actually a physical nature force, but one that is higher than our own nature because it is all about love and giving. And that’s why we don’t feel it because we’re opposite from it.
But when we begin to come closer in our nature to that, and that’s what Kabbalah teaches us, then we begin to employ that power on ourselves. It gives us a chance to permeate it. And then, it’s expressing all of our actions in family and education of children in the way we perform our jobs and in the professions that we study to.
And I learned a lot of things through it because we learn how this force kind of dresses in matter, how it acts in the inanimate, in the plants and animals and people. It helps us understand all of life systems, political systems, economical systems, psychological ones, human relations, family relations, how to have a better education where culture comes from, say, now, for example.
Now, in my current visit to New York, I met with psychologists, musicians. Just today, we met Moby, politicians, and people who really engage in every area of human engagement. And I find that it have a lot to talk to them about. And I see that they got something to say to them and they have something to add to me. And with my experience in all the places in the world that I’ve come to and engage with people, we, later on, have a lot of work with people from all walks of life and any fields of expertise.
This comprehensive knowledge about the force of nature, which Kabbalah adds to us, we can add it. It’s like a spice that you add to every way of life and especially to education. Because our problem is that if we could educate just a single generation in the right way, they would educate their own kids correctly in the right way. And Kabbalah explains how we can approach education in a way that brings them up as good people.
And I’m very happy that; actually, precisely, because of the current crisis that is affecting the whole world, people are finally beginning to be more attentive and to understand that the main problem is human education, to stop using our egos so wildly like, for example, the financiers and all those folks.
And I can see that it produces good results, actually. Let’s hope that we will see our children and grandchildren having a better life as a result.
Michael Laitman: Our whole world should behave basically as it does. You just have to add a few corrections to it.
Kabbalah says that before we have now coming to the state in the evolution of our egos over the generations and now that we’ve evolved to a state where we’re all kind of closed in together. It’s like cogwheels all tied together, working together. And that’s the state of the whole world right now and it will be even more so.
So we need to learn what is a cybernetic closed system, what kind of laws apply in it, by which formula we have to manage our lives right now. The result is, and that was my first profession, biocybernetics. In such a system, you cannot succeed if you have no consideration of the entire system.
But how can I be considerate of 7 billion people? It’s very simple. What we learned from the science of system biocybernetics and from the wisdom of Kabbalah, you have a very simple formula. Every person, every business in the world from this stage onwards can succeed only on condition that it works without any surplus profit, only when it needs to sustain itself in a kind of normal way. Only in this way can we move forward.
I’m hopeful that, at one time, economists will understand it and, especially, those who are in business just because they won’t have a choice.
Because either we learn it out of troubles and crisis or we will see using science and Kabbalah, both of which speak of the same thing. But there’s a very basic simple formula.
You have a business, you got to pay your employees, you got to pay your insurance, you got to pay your own salary, you got to pay for pension and for holiday, for whatnot, and for vacations but that’s it, not more than that. Leaving nothing that is surplus profits. The rest will come back to you in a negative way.
That’s the law of closed systems, which humanity, today, is kind of emerging into. You’re going to have to learn it in the coming years and let’s hope we learn it not out of troubles but just by obtaining it, perceiving it.
Recorded on: May 7, 2009.