Revealing The Book Of Zohar: We Are Black Dots In An Ocean Of Light

war2The following discourse took place while we were reading the “Preface to the Sulam Commentary” at the Daily Kabbalah Lesson:

I am a black dot in an ocean of Upper Light. My entire existence is connected to this Light, and I assess myself with respect to it. I discover that He is good and bestowing with respect to me. Conversely, I am the receiver who wants to devour and use Him. I learn that our two natures, that of the Creator and the creature, are polar opposites. And when I compare myself to Him, I discover that there is an abyss separating us, because everything that exists in Him exists in me in the opposite form, like an imprint of a seal. And I am overtaken by shame! He is bestowing and full of love, while I am receiving and full of hatred…

This shame is unlike anything I have ever felt before – and it is the true creature. I have never sensed such a profound awareness of myself. I begin to regard His bestowal as good, and my reception as evil. But where is this measuring scale coming from? It didn’t exist in the Light! This is the true creature. It feels independent and separate from the Giver, and therefore, it realizes that it is opposite to Him.

This goes on until the creation comes to feel that it can no longer remain in this state; it cannot justify itself, and for this reason, it performs a restriction and expels the Light from itself.

This is Malchut of the World of Infinity, which suffers because it cannot be like the Creator – it cannot love like He does. That is why all the development following the First Restriction (Tzimtzum Aleph) ultimately brings us to love – to the same attitude as the Creator has for us. Everything stems from the action of the First Restriction, so much so that the decision to perform the restriction drives the whole universe and leads to its final correction.

Therefore, the sensation of shame was that “Big Bang” from which the whole universe had come into existence and traversed its entire path, down to our world and back up above.
The driving force of this development, causing reality to unfold from above downward and from below upward, is that very sensation of shame that was felt by Malchut of the World of Infinity. There is nothing else. It is like the Big Bang from which the universe was created and continues to expand evermore to this day.

All this transpires in the Malchut of the World of Infinity, which contains all nine preceding Sefirot.

When Can We Count Our Spiritual Pennies (Efforts)?

pennyThrough the study of Kabbalah, we enter the second, concealed part of reality, which is 99.9% of what exists, because our world compared to the Upper World is like a tiny grain of sand in relation to the whole universe. We want to penetrate into this concealed dimension, which is operated by completely new forces, qualities, and laws, unknown to us today. We can be “born” into this new world, or in other words, we can give birth to the sensation of this world inside us.

But how can we reason about it today, before ever being born there? After all, your birth in the spiritual world means that new qualities will surface in you. Their emergence will be caused by the Light, which causes new qualities to develop.

For now, all of this is concealed from us. We can’t see which qualities and senses will enable us to reveal the stages of our spiritual advancement. All we can see is the efforts we are investing, which just keep disappearing somewhere, like pouring water into a broken bucket. At the end of the day, it’s as though we didn’t do anything!

This is why it is written in one Kabbalistic text: “Great wealth is built one penny at a time.” But where are these “pennies” being collected? Show them to me! Well, the reason we can’t see them is that the collection of our efforts will only be revealed to us once we enter the next dimension.

And even though we disagree with this arrangement, we demand revelation. Thus, even though we are in concealment, we still advance, and eventually we develop and start demanding the right things from ourselves. After all, we have been provided with all the means needed to attain the Upper, Eternal World: the Light, the correct environment, the books, and a teacher. Now we just have to place ourselves beneath the influence of these means, so they’ll influence us in the best possible way.

In Kabbalah, The Milestones Of The Path Are Unseen To the Eye

immerse-into-the-waters-of-bestowal-and-you-will-become-pureA question I received: There’s a problem with studying Kabbalah: it’s not obvious what you should be doing. Other methods give you different exercises for the body or the mind, but in Kabbalah, it’s completely unclear what you should be doing from a practical standpoint. Should you just study and that’s it?

My Answer: You’re right. In this method, a student cannot clearly see what he should be doing. The reason for this is that he is learning the art of bestowal, which is an intention that is unseen to the eye. Your physical body does not participate in this at all, only your heart does.

But what is the heart? It is a collection of all your desires. In Kabbalah, you have to penetrate inside your heart and learn its qualities. You have to see what attitude is coming from your heart towards yourself, other people, and the Creator. You have to expand your heart and work inside it as if it were a laboratory where you direct, connect and intermix different forces, desires, and thoughts in various ways. This is something a person gradually learns to do, and that is how his heart expands with the help of the Upper Light’s influence.

In other methods, everything is obvious. You have physical cues that you can clearly see. But when starting out in Kabbalah, you cannot see anything! This is why it is called “a hidden wisdom,” and the initial period of studying is called “the period of concealment,” because we do not see how we advance, what enables us to advance, and we are unable to tell if we are simply standing still.

But there is a way to check whether you are advancing correctly.  You must ask yourself if you are demanding anything for yourself other than unity with other souls. One’s entire spiritual work is in no way connected to one’s physical actions, but rather, it hides in the internality of things. In other words, we are working with forces that control matter from within, and this is why we don’t yet feel them. We do affect our matter, but only through forces that are concealed from us.

This is why people are right when they demand, “Tell me what to do! Give me work that I can see, and for which I will be rewarded in proportion to my efforts! I need some kind of milestones on the way, so where are they?” Yet, a person has to search for new criteria of advancement, based on ones that aren’t physical, but spiritual. He has to find some kind of indication of bestowal.

For example, even though I do not receive anything, I still come to the lessons and participate in the work. I accept the advice of Kabbalists in a manner called “above reason,” and I study according to this advice. I open up a book, which I was told contains the Light of Correction. I don’t even know what this Light is, but I want It to influence me! I want to place myself beneath this waterfall of Light! Let this Light change me and cleanse me of all the external peel or covering (Klipa).

If you are looking for spiritual changes inside yourself, then the presence of this desire is the way to tell whether you are advancing or not.
(From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson)

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A Government For The People

The Remedy for the Global CrisisA question I received: In the society of the future, if everyone works for everyone’s sake, then all the excess will go to the government treasury. But this means that everyone will be working for the government. So how will this system be any different from the system we have today, which forces everything away from everyone?

My Answer: Society and the government will be one whole, whereas today the government is a means of enriching and giving power to a small part of society.

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The Way Out Of The Dark Basement Is To Bring In The Light

mans2520relationship2520with2520the2520creator2520is25A person who’s searching for spiritual development feels as if he is sitting in a basement, in absolute darkness, and he wants to escape from there. Yet he has nowhere to run. He has to bring the Light to the dark basement he is in.

The entire humanity is in that basement, and any attempt to escape will be punished. However, the punishment does not come immediately. It seems as though you receive an opportunity to escape, to come outside, but then a painful blow comes your way. And this goes on until you learn to see the connection between your attempts to escape and the blows.

This is not simple. We are in a global, integral, confined system, where the punishment for your offense does not come right away. In fact, the punishment seems to come from a completely different place. This happens to us so we will gradually discover that the entire universe is a single system, in which we exist eternally.
(From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson)

The Other Souls Are A Focusing Prism For Seeing The Creator

ourA question I received: How can I see where I am with regard to the spiritual world?

My Answer: When you are searching, when you want to ascend, advance and reveal the spiritual world, you have to know where you are relative to it. You have to discover this inside your qualities, through the distance or time that separate you from spirituality. It’s like someone who is ill: he has to know the cause of his illness and what stands in the way of him being healthy. In our case, we must come to understand that we need the Light that returns one to the Source.

Then we will quickly understand that contrary to what we once thought, it is impossible to advance individually. You can only advance by being connected with others. Actually, the only way to advance is toward the connection with others. Through this connection, you will reveal the quality of bestowal – the Creator. So, the real difficulty is in how to connect yourself, with others and with the Creator, so you are all together.

Usually, people are able to grasp the benefit of desiring a connection with the Creator, because He is the source of everything that exists. But people are immediately turned off when they learn that there is a condition of loving others, separating them from the Creator.

The unity of souls is the focusing prism. You will be able to see the Creator through this prism by gathering all the souls within you. Otherwise, you won’t be able to obtain the focus needed to reveal the Creator.

You are separated from the Creator by the broken vessel, which is the souls that you must unite. Yet, you also don’t understand that this is your salvation; that this is what will allow you to understand who the Creator is. This is only possible through this focusing prism. It is a system that connects all desires and aspirations toward the Creator. When we connect all of them together, we discover Him within.

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Our Intentions Make All The Difference

The Sciences Are Subordinate to the Wisdom of KabbalahOur entire life is determined by our intentions. For example, take the following three cases:

1. You planned your actions in advance and murdered someone
2. A person accidentally died as a result of some event
3. You killed someone in battle during a war

Even though the action that took place is the same, we don’t judge it by the result, but by the intention. So, the intention makes all the difference.
(From Part 3 of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson, on “Introduction to Talmud Eser Sefirot”)

All The Spiritual Worlds Are Inside You

The Special Power of KabbalahA question I received: What is the system of Klipot?

My Answer: All of one’s uncorrected desires are called ”Klipa,” and all of one’s corrected desires are called “holiness.”

There is nothing besides you. Everything on the outside only seems external. In actuality, these are your inner sensations, which for the time being, you experience as external. When you attain the World of Atzilut, and then the World of Adam Kadmon and the World of Infinity, you will discover that there are no worlds; everything is incorporated inside you.

However, is a person isn’t making efforts to gain a connection with the Light, then there are no worlds between him and the Light. A person “unravels” these worlds himself. That is to say, through his connection with the Light, he creates the degrees of concealment between him and the Light. These degrees of concealment are called “worlds.” And if the concealment is no longer present because the person has made himself entirely similar to the Light, then the concealment disappears and there are no worlds.

The worlds are something that exists in a fixed manner. They exist inside you in the form of concealments that don’t depend on you; then they are called degrees from above downwards. Alternatively, you can create them yourself, in which case they will be called the degrees from below upwards. Either way, all of this is inside you, and there’s nothing on the outside. It’s simply that our inner structure divides our sensation into “me” and “the world around me.”
(From Part 3 of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson, on “Introduction to Talmud Eser Sefirot”)