thoughts of the morning

I was wondering this morning, about relating to humanity as a single entity, and what it would be like to be humanity's psychologist. How would you define the emotional age of humanity, with which syndromes would you claim it was afflicted?

I think humanity as a whole is still pretty young, at least intellectually and emotionally. It's hard to tell whether we're suffering post-traumatic stress (PTS) or if we're just a big unruly teenager. I'd compare us to those rogue (orphaned) elephants in Africa who go around causing chaos, killing people and raping rhinoceroses. (what's the plural form of rhinoceros? merriam-webster says it's rhinoceros, rhinoceri, or rhinoceroses) There's a lot wrong with the world right now, but we aren't sure what. Every time something gets under control the common subconscious offers up a more dangerous nightmare. We just got over fear of thermonuclear annihilation and now we've got global warming--something that might already be intractable. Our fate might already be sealed. [To answer this we have yesterday's Torah from Reb Elimelech m'Lizhensk] Our (global messianic) hopes are the hopes of an orphaned child dreaming of a father-king/mother-queen who will return to right all the wrongs that s/he has suffered.

On a smaller scale, the Jewish people are in their early middle age, or mid thirties. They've reached a point with they've stopped focusing on the bigger picture and started worrying more about their own offspring, they've gone into hibernation as far as lofty goals are concerned, instead focusing on the more immediate needs. This isn't good or bad, this is simply where we are, we aren't grandparents with no concern for ourselves, only our future, we certainly aren't teenagers off to save the world from itself with our limited intellect. I think we need to be a little more grandmotherly, and start to put real effort into the ones getting left behind, and the larger community. [To speak to this issue we have massive kiruv efforts, the seeds of massive aliyah efforts, and those who are forever toiling to bring our message (however they might define it) to the masses.]

I don't know how well I've thought this all through, it's pretty murky to me. It's just an interesting thing to think about.. Can we stretch our minds large enough to fit all of humanity in there? Can we leave our own bias behind and assemble enough knowledge to speak knowledgeably on the topic? I know my own attempt here is childish in it's limited viewpoint, I recognise so much ignorance in the little that I think I know.

Keep in mind that all of this, everything around you, is what HaShem has placed there so that you may grow and expand. (as the Baal Shem Tov made apparent) As much as things may be broken on the outside--in the world at large--it's the broken things inside you that they highlight that are your first priority to fix.

Rebbe Nachman says (I think I read it in Likkutei Sichot years ago) that the goings-on of the world play out in our personal relationships. So much so that if we isolate ourselves, then we go insane because all of the conflict of the world carries itself out in our heads.

Through our daily routines we not only can experience the reality of the world at large, but through them we may also affect global change by changing the immediate realities of the world in our vicinity.

[This is well beyond karma.]

Life is a combination of knowing the whole world was created solely for you, and knowing that you are naught but dust and ashes. Who are you to affect and change the world? Who else was it created for? it was created for you. for you to change and fix. Before you think that the world needs your fixes, your changes, remember that you are dust and ashes.

It is only for your sake that the world was created, that through changing and fixing it, you will be the one who benefits from it--not the world. The world doesn't need you, you need the world. You need the world because it is your only way to God. As Rebbe Nachman says, the whole world is a narrow bridge.


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