As a person climbs the spiritual ladder, he simultaneously descends into his ego. Suppose I have discerned and corrected only the thinnest, surface layer of my desire. At this level, I have connected with the group, realized the importance of the goal, and drew the Light that Reforms onto myself. However, in order to ascend to the first spiritual degree (one of 125), I need to undergo two more stages.
The second layer of desire is revealed to me finally, and here, I am much worse or “coarser.” Here, I condemn, ignore, deny, and despise. Compared to this state, I was previously as a little child; now, I am being rejected more strongly. What for? It is done to provide me with an opportunity to attain greater unity and draw stronger Upper Light.
This is how I advance time after time, disclosing greater and greater egoism. No matter how high a person may rise, the evil inclination always precedes him. He is prepared for it, of course. Yet, during the descent, nothing helps, and he falls into “minus Infinity.”
In truth, descent is not really a descent, but a state of ascent that you are not yet ready for. It is as if you are transferred into the championship team because your coach knows that you have the capacity to join the top players. The necessary conditions are provided for you. Now, you just have to exert your best effort and take your position next to them as an equal.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/22/10, “The Agenda of the Assembly”