Studying the Concealed Torah Is Preferable to the Revealed Torah
It is easier to draw the light in the Torah [the only Light that can correct us] while practicing and laboring in the wisdom of truth than in laboring in the literal Torah. The reason is very simple: The wisdom of the revealed is clothed in external, corporeal clothes, such as stealing, plundering, torts, etc. For this reason, it is difficult and heavy for any person [who reads these “material” stories] to aim his mind and heart to the Creator [essential condition] while studying, so as to draw the [Upper, correcting] Light in the Torah.
It is even more so for a person for whom the study in the Talmud itself is heavy and arduous. How can he remember the Creator during the study, since the scrutiny [described in the Talmud] concerns corporeal matters, and cannot come in him simultaneously with the intention for the Creator?
Therefore, he [Chaim Vital] advises him to practice the wisdom of Kabbalah [instead of studying the Talmud], as this wisdom is entirely clothed in the names of the Creator. Then he will certainly be able to easily aim his mind and heart to the Creator during the study [of Kabbalah], even if he is the slowest learner. This is so because the study of the issues of the wisdom and the Creator are one and the same, and this is very simple. [This is why the study of the internal essence of the Torah, the wisdom of Kabbalah, is the only possible way for masses to reach correction and to reach the purpose of creation.]
– Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to The Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 22
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