Sunday, February 5, 2012
Love and Life as Cause and Effect
Let's summarize some of the principles that we present in "God as Love" as inherent to the soul of Judaism.
1- God's Love is the cause and effect of His Creation, and in our finite and limited understanding we are able to conceive the Creator through what we perceive as His Creation. What we make out from the Creation is our creation and not His. This is important to remark because many people "blame" God for the choices and actions that we make and do instead of taking full responsibility for the consequences of our deeds. We have learned long time ago that we, as most of animal species, are designed to live by caring for each other as the premise to survive in the material world, and we also know that this "caring" is nothing but Love. This is the real and tangible Truth, not for those who know it but deny it, reject it, and even fight against it. How is this possible? Why some of us can deny something as evident and obvious as Love, our true Essence and identity?
We probably must ask the question in a different way. Why some selectively acknowledge and experience Love in certain aspects of their lives --with family, close friends, beliefs or ideologies-- and not in other circumstances? Like the people who are kind with some and cruel with others who don't represent a threat or danger for them, as it happened with Germans and Jews in the first half of the XX century. What is the root of this irrational selective hatred? Is it ideology? Is it mental illness? Is it possible to submit Love to ideology? Should we call insane those who "love" their families while hating others irrationally? These people hate at the expense of Love in the same way that some kill at the expense of life. We need to be alive in order to kill, as we need to have Love in order to be able to hate because Love is the Essence that sustains life, as the material manifestation of God's Love in His Creation.
2- Love does not cohabit with anything different from its ways and attributes. In this sense we define Judaism as "the ethics of Love", because the Written Torah and the Oral Torah, both as one, contain the ways to completely fulfill the cornerstone of Judaism: "Love your neighbor as [you love] yourself, [because] I am the Lord." (Leviticus 19:18) and there are ways and attributes to love our fellow human beings that we learn from God by our awareness of His Love in His Creation. It is fundamental to know and experience God's Love in order conceive and approach our Love in the material world. We love because of God's Love, and we do it emulating the way He loves us and His entire Creation. This explains that the goodness we pursue for ourselves individually must be the same goodness that we pursue for others. This includes the Talmudic warning that we must not do to others what we consider unpleasant to us, which implies a direct contradiction to doing good for our sake and simultaneously doing something unpleasant to others, as it happened by Germans against Jews and others during the Nazi regime.
3- Love is the awareness of our connection and relationship with God. The more we are aware and mindful of God's Love in His Creation, the more we know Him and the more we love Him. The more we think, feel and act in Love's ways and attributes, the more we are connected to God. The term "Commandment" in Hebrew literally means "connection", and our Sages explain that we fulfill God's Will (His Commandments) as the means to be connected to Him. This makes perfect sense because by our good actions we manifest our closeness to Him. In this context, doing the opposite is to separate from Him, and this is what we mean when we say that Love does not cohabit with anything different from its ways and attributes. The Creator is always with us, regardless what we may believe, think, feel or do, because we are creatures emanated from Him; and it is us who make the choice to "separate" from Him.
3- Love, as the material manifestation of God's Love, is our true Essence and identity. In this awareness and realization, Love is also the ways and means to redeem our consciousness from the negative approach to life and its negative results that we see in the world. The Creator endowed us with free will for us to experience real and total freedom, and in this knowledge we are entitled to make positive choices in order to harvest positive effects. God is not responsible for our actions, we are. If we know what Love is, then we also know our true freedom and Redemption. Let's be mindful that it is up to us, individually and collectively, to redeem ourselves and fix the damage we have caused with a negative approach to life and the world. This is our responsibility and not God's. In this sense, it is our duty to manifest the Messianic era and the Redemption that our Prophets announced.
Maimonides and other Jewish Sages share the same view about "the end of times". As we often say, we were responsible for the destruction of the First and Second Temples of Jerusalem, and it is also up to us to build the Third Temple as a final and perpetual place in our Land as well as in our consciousness. In the same way that we have allowed negative thoughts, emotions, feelings, passions and instincts in our consciousness, we are perfectly capable to direct them in a positive direction and purpose, which are Love's ways and attributes as cause and effect of goodness. Ego, along with all aspects of consciousness, is a driving force that also must be directed in Love's ways and attributes.
4- Love is inherent to life, and life is inherent to Love. This principle is derived in a deeper way from the first mentioned above. In the same way that God's Love conceived us, we are materially conceived by, through and for Love as our Essence and identity. We know that life is the purpose of Creation. In Jewish liturgy we recite every morning "You [God] are the life of all worlds" and in our consciousness of being alive we must say "the world was created for me", as our Sages teach us. We must approach life as we approach Love, as Essential as simple, because there is nothing complex about Love. We care for each other just because this is part of how we love. Love defines itself by its ways and attributes which all are about goodness.
Our Sages relate simplicity to humbleness and complexity to haughtiness, and we can conclude that the simpler we are the easier we approach life. The less we have to worry about what we believe, feel or possess, the easier we live. People too attached to their complexities in every level of consciousness find more difficulty to adapt to simpler conditions or environments. Humbleness and simplicity are the vessels for God's blessings which are His Love. Love flows easier with simplicity, and usually is either rejected or conditioned by complexities, which are mostly derived by ego's materialistic fantasies and illusions.
From the Book's Foreword
Let's reexamine our ancestral memory, intellect, feelings, emotions and passions. Let's wake them up to our true Essence. Let us engage in the delightful awareness of Love as the Essence of G-d. The way this book is written is to reaffirm and reiterate its purpose, so it presents its message and content in a recurrent way. This is exactly its purpose, to restate the same Truth originally proclaimed by our Holy Scriptures, Prophets and Sages. Our purpose is to firmly enthrone G-d's Love in all dimensions of our consciousness, and by doing it we will fulfill His Promise that He may dwell with us on Earth forever. Let's discover together the hidden message of our ancient Scriptures and Sages. In that journey, let's realize Love as our Divine Essence, what we call in this book the revealed Light of Redemption in the Messianic era.