Rabbi Akiva said, “Love your neighbor as yourself; that is the great rule of the Torah!” Why is love for one’s neighbor a great rule, the foundation that categorically divides us into two halves: animate and human? If I love myself, then I am an animal, and if I love my neighbor, then I am human. As an animal, I only feel this material life, but when I begin to love others, I feel the Creator and the spiritual world.
Spirituality is felt inside the force of love that is called my spiritual vessel or Kli. Right now my vessel is egoistic love, the desire to love myself. The world I feel today is felt inside this desire. In this egoistic reality, I reveal only that which is good or bad for me.
I reveal the world and the entire diversity of its shades only in relation to myself. All of the colors and sounds in the world depend on what is useful to me and what is harmful. I am afraid of one thing and I desire something else. I repel one thing and attract something else. Every influence is revealed inside my senses, which operate in relation to my love for myself. Therefore, I don’t see anything that does not pertain to my self-love; I simply don’t perceive its existence.
The fact is that I am facing infinity, but I don’t feel it. In relation to me it seems not to exist at all because it does not make me feel good or bad. Egoistic love determines the volume of the universe that I feel. Thus, out of the entire World of Infinity, I feel just a tiny sphere, my world.
When I start to come out of myself, then in my previous desire I feel what is good for others. In other words, I start to love my neighbor. This is called the Upper, spiritual world. When I reveal it, I reveal an entirely different universe.
If I tune out of egoistic thoughts about myself, even in a purely material sense, and start to think about my friend, then I will feel a completely different world, with completely different problems and solutions. When I reveal what is good for someone else, then in relation to me it will be called the Upper, spiritual world. That person will see the same thing as his material, egoistic world, but when I desire to dress into his reality and reveal his world from within him, it will turn into my spiritual world.
This exercise enables me to come out of myself and feel the Creator. I will feel Him inside of you, as it is written, “The Creator dwells inside His nation.”
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/26/10, “Matan Torah”
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