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Menorah, or the seven-level picture of the world

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And you shall make a menorah of pure gold. The menorah shall be made of hammered work; its base and its stem, its goblets, its knobs, and its flowers shall [all] be [one piece] with it. And six branches coming out of its sides: three menorah branches from its one side and three menorah branches from its second side. Three decorated goblets on one branch, a knob and a flower, and three decorated goblets on one branch, a knob and a flower; so for the six branches that come out of the menorah. And on [the stem of] the menorah [shall be] four decorated goblets, its knobs and its flowers. And a knob under the two branches from it, and a knob under the two branches from it, and a knob under the two branches from it; so for the six branches that come out of the menorah. Their knobs and their branches shall [all] be [one piece] with it; all of it [shall be] one hammered mass of pure gold. And you shall make its lamps seven, and he shall kindle its lamps [so that they] shed light toward its face. And its tongs and its scoops [shall be] of pure gold. He shall make it of a talent of pure gold, with all these implements. Now see and make according to their pattern, which you are shown on the mountain.

Exodus  25:31–40, the Complete Jewish Bible

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Before the course starts we have to tell about the 7-level model, or system of the universe. Thus, we are getting a little ahead of ourselves, because this topic will be considered in the Lesson 2 (Tribe of Yehudah). But it is necessary because the 7-level system will be used throughout the course from the very beginning.

More precisely, the overall structure of the universe is organized in accordance with the model of the menorah, which was established in the Mishkan (Tabernacle) set up in the Sinai desert by the direct order and drawing of God, as described in the Book of Shmot (in Christian editions of the Bible — the Book of Exodus): “Now see and make according to their pattern, which you are shown on the mountain” (Exodus 25:40).

This model — 3 legs and 7 branches:

(We often see the menorah with one leg but the most authentic ancient drawings depict three legs.)

Three Legs of the Menorah

First of all, we will give a general drawing — the image of the menorah. This drawing is somewhat schematic, but sufficient for our illustrative purposes:

1 2 3

The menorah’s three legs, which are numbered in this figure, correspond to three basic principles of the “dense” world. The meaning of these three legs will be clearer if you place them in the form of the equilateral triangle:

Everything happens for a reason
Everything becomes materialized Everything evolves

We will now call these three points:

נשמה (Neshama):
soul, purpose, mission
גוף (Guf):
matter, embodiment, form
עוז (Oz):
energy, efforts, program

These are the three “pillars” the world stands on, three bases of the universe:

  1. 1. Everything has a purpose, that is, the idea and meaning. This is the first pillar.
  2. Everything that exists serves as the material. In particular, the past is the material for the present, and the present is the material for the future. In the “dense” world everything becomes materialized, i.e., it is shaped. This is the second pillar.
  3. The world is an evolving developing system. The third pillar is a program for the achievement of the purpose and the energy released for this process.

These three concepts make a single phrase:

efforts to materialize the purpose.

Seven Branches of the Menorah

Let’s consider now the Menorah’s system of branches and number them from 1 to 7:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Each branch of the Menorah corresponds to a certain level of the Universe and has its own function. We will formulate them now, and for clarity let’s “put” the menorah “on the left side”. Thus, the general definitions of the levels are as follows:

Idea, meaning, project     7  
System, structure     6  
Plan, program, word     5  
Dialogue, time, prophecy     4  
Economics, recourses, energy exchange     3  
State, emotion, imagery     2  
Action, practice, experience     1  

Note that the central level here is the level 4. The remaining levels — the menorah’s branches — are paired: the 7th level corresponds to the 1st, the 6th level corresponds to the 2nd, the 5th level corresponds to the 3rd.

And now we will describe these levels in more detail.

Idea, meaning, project / action, practice, experience

The 7th level is responsible for the purpose of existence of every thing created by the Creator for this project. Here the strategy is defined and projects and subprojects are named. This is a plan with the lowest density, the level of the highest abstraction. The main work at this level is to find and name the main purpose and meaning of the project.
The 1st level is responsible for the action. This is the level of realizing and materializing of the purposes that have been identified on the 7th level. Therefore, they work in the pair 7 — 1. The main purpose of the work at this level is a physical action in the real world in particular circumstances. It's all kinds of direct activities.
    7  
    6  
    5  
    4  
    3  
    2  
    1  

 

System, structure / State, emotion, imagery

The 6th level is responsible for the database on the all knowledge of what is, was and will be in this world. All information is systematized and structured here. The main work at this level is to achieve the far-reaching vision as much as possible, to separate the primary from the secondary issues. That is, to build a system of values, ideology, world view.
The 2nd level is responsible for the channel setting, for feelings. Emotions are shown and the attitude towards everything that happens in the world is developed here. The main work at this level is to filtrate, control and set up the channel state, to purify by separating essential from insignificant. Thought and feeling, knowledge and sense work in the pair 6–2.
    7  
    6  
    5  
    4  
    3  
    2  
    1  

 

Plan, program, word / economics, resources, energy exchange

The 5th level is responsible for planning. Decisions are made about what needs to be done, the process management program is developed here. The main work at this level is to define the sequence of actions, to formulate objectives and allocate responsibility.
The 3rd level is responsible for the use of resources. Everything one needs for the implementation of the plan adopted at the 5th level is verified and organized here. The main work at this level is to save the energy balance in the process of energy exchange, and more importantly, to create conditions for the development, maintenance and growth of opportunities. The 5th and 3rd levels also always work in the pair.
    7  
    6  
    5  
    4  
    3  
    2  
    1  

 

Dialogue, time, prophecy

The 4th level is responsible for the dialogue between all participants of the project and for the flow of time in all aspects. This is the place of the Divine Presence (Shechina) and the point of the closest contact. The main work at this level is the interaction of everyone with everyone, preferably on an ongoing basis. This is the man’s interaction in 4 directions: with himself, with other people, with the World, with God. All metaphysical interactions, including the prophecy, happen here.     7  
    6  
    5  
    4  
    3  
    2  
    1  

 

According to the described above menorah model everything works: individual, couple, family, group, community, nation, humanity.

It is crucial that all these 7 levels of the Universe are equally important and significant. Without any of them the system doesn’t work!

Density and color

Each level can be compared with a certain density, a kind of “degree of materiality”. The least dense level is the level 7, the most dense — level 1:

      7  
      6  
      5  
      4  
      3  
      2  
      1  

In addition, you can compare the seven levels of the menorah and the seven colors of the rainbow: it’s easy to use and easy to understand. We will use these colors throughout the course and begin with a simple table that defines the key question of each level:

For what?     7  
What guides us?     6  
Who is responsible and what are they responsible for?     5  
With whom and when do we interact?     4  
What is the interest of every participant?     3  
What and where does it hurt?     2  
What exactly should be done?     1  

Complete Table

Finally, we present a summary table, which explains in more detail the meaning and objectives of each level:

 №  Name of the level Heart of the level Work of the level Key question
7 Things in existence, insight Idea, purpose, project, meaning Project and agreement development, matching of objectives with the intention For what?
6 The higher system of concepts Database, archive; morality, ethics, scale of values, laws; structure Information analysis; systematization of ideas; formation of attitudes; development of the world view What guides us?
5 Process management program Proposal, plan, power hierarchy, word Planning and adjustment of tasks, formulation Who is responsible and what are they responsible for?
4 Mutual Dialogue Dialogue contact, mutual understanding; time Coordination and decision-making, diagnostics, receiving a blessing and a prophecy; dialogue of a man with himself, dialogue a man - humanity, a man — the World and a man — God With whom and when do we interact?
3 Management Economics, resources, efforts, energy exchange, rhythm Organization of business; creating conditions for the maintenance, growth and development of opportunities. What is the interest of every participant?
2 Imaging system Emotion, sense of mission, filters Setting of the psycho-emotional channel and control of it What and where does it hurt?
1 Actions in the real world Circumstances, the visible point for efforts Practical activities What exactly should be done?

Example

Further, in each chapter of the course we will find examples of how the 7-level system “works”. For now, we will limit ourselves to one simple example: developing a business in programming. However, this example is not difficult to reformulate so that it will describe another project or plan: construction of the school or creation of the non-governmental organization, getting an education, emergence of a new state, etc.

  1. So, let's suppose we want to set up a software development company. To have something to talk about, we need the goal and idea of the project: what are we going to build, what's this for? The company name, the name of the future business is usually chosen at this stage. All future founders must agree on the goals and objectives of the joint activity. If the purpose is chosen incorrectly or inaccurately, the business simply will not work. This is level 7: idea, purpose.
  2. Having agreed on the goals, we must have a clear understanding of the area of work, in which we are going to act. In this case, the market for future software products must be carefully analyzed. We must understand what programming technologies will be used, how to solve the problems we are going to face. Most probably, specialists who have specific knowledge in this sphere would be needed. And we will require either detailed advice or involvement of them as staff members. There is nothing to talk about as long as we don't understand how exactly to solve set tasks, what technologies and methods we have for that. This is level 6: system, structure, knowledge.
  3. When preliminary “survey”, work on data collection and analysis of the situation have been done, it's time to start work planning: draw up plans for specific activities. In the case of business at this stage business plans, work plans for production of necessary software products are developed, a work schedule is planned, managers are appointed and responsibilities are distributed. This is level 5: plan, program. A mistake at this level is fraught with business failure and makes it necessary to re-examine the situation (maybe there is something we haven't taken into consideration) or even redefine the goals (maybe we are going the wrong way).
  4. And finally, all this “survey” has been carried out, the work has been planned. The most important factor of the central level of the menorah is getting involved: time! The system has “spinned”, the process has started. And, of course, right here all levels of dialogue become active. The work is coordinated with the Lord. First of all, a business receives a blessing “from above”, berakhah, if the intended business corresponds to God's plan, otherwise God makes His adjustments. Under normal circumstances of the 8th Day the dialogue with God is obvious and frank. Then each participant “should talk to himself/herself” in order to understand whether he/she is fit for such a job, whether this is the right job for him/her, whether he/she has really understood the essence of problems and can solve them. Then participants are talking constantly to each other, discussing the current tasks, checking schedules of work. Сompany managers communicate actively with the outside world: look for investors, advertise the product, communicate with potential customers. This is level 4: dialogue, time.
  5. The work plan developed at the symmetrical 5th level can only be implemented if the appropriate resources are available. In this case, these are finance and people, and also, of course, premises, computers, etc. It must be taken into account interests of all parties: employees, investors, potential clients — and, of course, of God. This is level 3: resources and economic base required to implement the project.
  6. Knowledge and data collected at the 6th level by themselves are insufficient for successful development of the firm. People are not robots, they need emotional interest, faith in success, the intuitive sense that they are on the right track. Level 2 (emotion, imagery) provides this. At this level the company receives its logo, symbolism, at this level anniversaries of the company's founding are celebrated, staff parties are organized and so on. Here the company can become a cohesive team. Or not to become — and then this mistake of the level can “break up” the entire system.
  7. Of course, all the previous levels are very important, but at some point, the programmer has to actually sit at the computer and write a specific program: the one for which we started the entire business. We need the practical work, the practical efforts to implement the goals identified at the symmetrical level 7.

We emphasize: the system is nonlinear! Symmetric levels 7 and 1, 6 and 2, 5 and 3 operate simultaneously and in concert. There is no point in the purpose without the willingness to work practically, knowledge (left brain) must always be accompanied by the imagery (right brain), it is impossible to plan activities without resources. Time processes to be run at level 4 are not final, although they are caused by the other levels; they are continuous.

And let's remain again: all 7 levels are necessary and important. Failure at any level disrupts the whole system, and the above-mentioned example illustrates this.

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