Michael Laitman
Founder and president of Bnei Baruch Kabbalah Education & Research Institute

Is It Better Not to Have Expectations at All?

Tis but a day we sojourn here below,
And all the gain we get is grief and woe,
Then, leaving our life’s riddles all unsolved,
And burdened with regrets, we have to go. …
O unenlightened race of humankind,
Ye are a nothing, built on empty wind!
Yea, a mere nothing, hovering in the abyss,
A void before you, and a void behind!
– Omar Khayyam, The Rubaiyat, #3 and #424

Omar Khayyam, a man who delved deep into the pursuit of meaning, concluded that everything he once cherished and lived for amounted to nothing. His realization echoes throughout his body of work, and it highlights the futility of his endeavors.

When we expand this perspective to encompass any person, it could be argued that recognizing life’s inherent nothingness is a significant tragedy. However, it also gives us mental readiness, understanding that every journey has a beginning and an end, and ultimately, everything is indeed nothing.

So, what then is “something”? It boils down to living in positive connection among each other, collectively acknowledging that the true meaning of life lies in acceptance. If we accept the given circumstances, we become satisfied with our lives.

But what if the desire for more persists? Wanting more is no virtuous pursuit. The essence of human life lies in understanding its limitations, reconciling with them, and not demanding more for ourselves. It is about trying to help others, accepting help in return, and thereby, existing.

Joy and happiness emerge as byproducts of this kind of existence. Ultimately, we come to realize that it is fruitless to expect anything more out of life.

Where does the Creator, i.e., the upper force of love and bestowal, fit into this picture? We find the Creator in the satisfaction we derive from the comforts we acquire in their measured and limited existence. Acknowledging and agreeing with the Creator’s design, without demanding more, then becomes our source of joy.

When we recognize life’s limitations, embrace them, and find contentment in the simplicity of existence, we discover true fulfillment. The Creator, then, is present in the agreement with the given circumstances and the rejection of surplus demands.

About the Author
Michael Laitman is a PhD in Philosophy and Kabbalah. MSc in Medical Bio-Cybernetics. Founder and president of Bnei Baruch Kabbalah Education & Research Institute. Author of over 40 books on spiritual, social and global transformation. His new book, The Jewish Choice: Unity or Anti-Semitism, is available on Amazon: