A question I received: What specifically should I do when I feel a “hardening of the heart“?
My Answer: Without extra emotions, try to clarify this state: Who does this, why, how does He control you and organize your environment? Don’t fall; try to be in control of the situation that you are in so that you are able to create a point of contact with the Creator. Also, as the Creator told you, “Let’s go to Pharaoh because I hardened his heart,” now you may demand from Him. Now is precisely that moment when you may demand help from Him. After all, this is why He brought you to Pharaoh.
The Creator will never answer you while you are in a state where you feel well and everything around you is illuminated. You will not receive anything in such states! After all, while you are in such states you do not need Him. You can thank the Creator for His kindness, but all this is just complete egoism.
When will the Creator hear you? He will hear you precisely during your bad states (the Gate of Tears, Shaar Hadmaot). Otherwise, at present, why does He exist and why did He bring you to such a state? Only in such states do you really need Him! They are all given to you only in order for you to grab onto the Creator’s hand. You are small, and you stand beside Him and say, “Did you harden his heart? Now help me! I am scared! I don’t want this! I don’t know what to do! Have pity on me!”
And what does the Creator say? He says, “I hardened his heart because I wish to be revealed to you. I want you to see My greatness. I will become great through Pharaoh!” The Creator can be great in your eyes only under the condition that you are afraid of your ego, Pharaoh. You don’t know what to do with it and you are subjugated by it. Then, if the Creator can rescue you from this state, you will begin to respect and value His power and greatness. In this manner, we learn who the Creator is.
Pharaoh gives us the measure of the Creator’s greatness and power. For example, Pharaoh weighed you down with a weight of 20 lbs. and the Creator released you from it. Then you evaluate the Creator’s strength to be 20 lbs. directly against Pharaoh. After all, the Creator, the Light, has no form. Your desire (Kli) gives Him form. This is how you advance. Therefore, only such states are positive.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/7/10, The Zohar