Envy Is The Main Engine Of Progress

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: What is a correct effort?

Answer: Our level of spirituality is outside of the boundaries of the spiritual realm. Our level is unique because of the possibilities it offers and is much more important than all other spiritual levels, since only at our stage does the miraculous combination of the desires to receive and to bestow exist. No other levels have this.

Only at our level, playing as children, can we become more intelligent and mature. It is similar to a child in this world who doesn’t have developed senses, an intellect, any understanding or knowledge of the way big systems around him work, and yet, all of a sudden the child becomes intelligent. In other words, a child runs these systems unconsciously without any idea that they even exist, without a clue which particular state he is supposed to achieve. He doesn’t know or see anything; all he does is play because he is driven by his natural instincts to grow up.

We lack this kind of natural aspiration; other than that, we are just like children. We have all the means that allow us to attain this desire. If we are permanently warmed up by our surroundings and if it kindles our envy, lust, ambition, and a desire to be better than others, we start aspiring to some goal that is yet unknown to us. We have no clue what we want to receive; however, it seems to us that others have something that we don’t.

We already have all qualities and desires that were given to us by nature. All we need is to organize these qualities and desires correctly, to build a system of relationships between us so that our friends keep inspiring us with the greatness of the goal, and we are worried that others are already ahead of us.

Later, they show me an example of how to help each other, suggesting that this attitude is extremely important and leads to spirituality. Envy is the main thing here! Our egoism is ignited by envy and suffers greatly. If we tightly connect ourselves with the surroundings and happen to understand that there is nowhere to run, then even though envy is a negative sensation, by nature it doesn’t push us behind, but rather, pulls us ahead and leads us to success.

Getting this desire is already a success. The desire is not ours. We receive it from the group as a reward for not running away from them, but rather for bowing our head in front of them and clinging to them. All these methods can be purely material to the extent that we can even pay money to our friends for the desire we receive back from them, as Rabbi Zushi who hired street musicians so that they would inspire him. Or, we can cook a meal for our friends, thus inputting our exertions so that they eventually influence us back.

We receive a spiritual aspiration from our friends, but, in fact, it is still a desire for material success, since all we want is to become more significant, smarter, better in everything. No matter how much we try, we just cannot think of spirituality since we are still in egoism, at this side of Machsom. However, it is already strong enough to attract the Light that Reforms.

It turns out that at this level we have a chance to work and influence the next step that is above us and to attract the Light from there as a magnet that draws things that are in another room through walls.

Really, how can the Light influence us if we are not adapted to it? We are opposite to the Light as if we are in anti-worlds. And yet, everything is set up in a way that the transition between the two stages, between us and the closest spiritual step from which we receive the sparks of the Light, is just a hindrance. The Light can impact us and change us in accordance with its nature, with the desire of the Upper level. So, we can agree with It and start entering this higher level, as a fetus enters a mother’s womb, and then grow first to a small state and then to a “big state” (Ibur – Yenika – Mochin), until we completely merge with it.

That’s why we should value the state we are in at this time and use the level that is called “this world” correctly: all of humanity, our loved ones, our neighbors, our studies, our groups. There is nothing we actually need more than that. We already have all essential things at our disposal; we just have to organize them correctly.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah lesson 11/27/13, Writings of Baal HaSulam

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