Answer: Suffering has a special role in our lives; it develops us. During its history humanity went through many phases of evolution developing societies and families, and all this was due to suffering.
This follows from the fact that we emerged from the shattering, from the one shattered soul called Adam HaRishon. Therefore we find ourselves more and more shattered in order to be able to correct ourselves more and more.
This is why from generation to generation, even from year to year, and in our time already from day to day, new phenomena, deficiencies, personal and general problems, and a crisis of humanity and society are revealed in the world. Previously these problems didn’t exist and suddenly they have arisen seemingly from beneath the earth, but this is exactly what moves us forward.
Suffering develops us, but to what extent?
The correct response to suffering, first of all, is to understand its purpose. Otherwise, we are like animals in a field running away from blows but suffering reaches them again. People rush through life until they die without reaching anything good.
And what is really the purpose of life? Is it just to escape from suffering the way we do? What is its meaning?
We rejoice giving birth to children, but they grow up and leave home. We study so much in order to get a profession, and then work all our lives and are left with nothing, because everything ends with death.
A person looks for some compensation for his continuous suffering. Even our pleasures are a way to escape from suffering. Obviously this is not the purpose of life. Actually the greatest suffering eventually revealed to the person in the modern world is the realization that with all our intellect, high level of development, strength, and technical capabilities, we don’t understand anything about life.
Why do we live, for what purpose? This is completely unclear. Suffering keeps us alive because we are afraid of death and we invest a lot of efforts in order to somehow distance ourselves from this moment. Although eventually we agree with the inevitable and humbly surrender to the current until we die.
It means that the greatest suffering is that a person doesn’t feel that he is the master of his life. He doesn’t know what he is living for and what the benefit of it is. Therefore young people don’t want to get married, have children, and get a profession, but are attracted to drugs, trying somehow to fulfill themselves.
Now, we do a thorough audit of our lives, and against the background of the unfolding crisis we still want to understand the meaning of life and its essence. The suffering from the meaninglessness of life becomes overwhelming, and this is the result of our high level of development. Previously people didn’t even think about this.
A hundred years ago there wasn’t less suffering, but the question about the meaning of life never arose. And today this question even torments children who don’t understand why to study and obtain a profession. The spiritual development has reached such a level that a person must know whether he should live and why. Therefore, antidepressant and drug use are so prevalent.
We need to make a big effort to uncover the source of the common suffering of man, i.e. teach them how to fulfill this common empty desire. Above the usual desires for food, sex, family, money, honor, and knowledge, an additional question arises, what do I need all this for? Why do I need food, sex, family, money, honor, and knowledge?
All these fulfillments are a kind of a drug with which I fill and soothe my desire to enjoy. So why chase fulfillment, isn’t it easier to just take a pill? This approach kills a person.
Shopping centers are crammed with a variety of products and all kinds of clothes. People go somewhere, fly, travel; they just don’t know how else to fill themselves, what other “drugs” to take in order not to feel suffering. But suffering still comes.
Therefore in our time the wisdom of Kabbalah is revealed, and I hope very much that it will help humanity to understand that it is not enough to soothe ourselves with all kinds of “drugs” in the form of food, sex, family, money, honor, and knowledge. It’s time to reveal the true, original source of suffering and begin to fill it with real fulfillment.
The real fulfillment doesn’t lull us to finish the material animalistic death. This suffering raises us upward and instead of the earthly death, we find an eternal life. Let’s hope that humanity will understand what opportunities are opening for it.
But all this is due to suffering, therefore we must not soothe it, but appreciate it. After all, in it is the foundation of life. The correct management of suffering and its fulfillment in every moment is an engine for the correct development that leads to the eternal life.
From KabTV’s “A New Life” 6/23/16