Baal HaSulam, “600,000 Souls“: There are three periods in a person’s spiritual growth:
1. The spark of the soul that alternately flares up and dwindles;
2. A particular soul, when a person perceives himself as part of 600,000 souls, the common soul;
3. Coming close to perfection, the common soul, because his egoistic desire has been fully corrected and no longer poses an obstacle. This enables him to become completely unified with the common soul of Adam.
There is a point here that is difficult to explain, similar to the principle of uncertainty in quantum physics. The fact is that there aren’t “many creatures,” but one single creation. Every person who perceives himself as creation is that creation, while everyone else in relation to him are not independent creatures, but parts of his own soul.
Therefore, even though it seems to us that there are billions of other creatures in existence, in spirituality, a person attaches all these parts to himself and in relation to his free choice, they are all at the end of correction. He is the only part that can be deemed as existent, from his perspective.
However, it is precisely in this separated form that he is considered non-existent and he has to attach himself to spirituality, to the common soul! He has to accept all the other parts which seem “foreign” to him as if they already are in the spiritual world.
He has to understand that “every person judges others to the degree of his own corruption,” and in fact they are already in the final, corrected state, while he is the only one who is not. So who is called creation, the only one that exists? It is precisely the one who isn’t yet “created” and still needs correction.
When we acquire the spiritual vision, we will see the world in this way. Baal HaSulam describes a very high state here. When it says that only one soul exists, it doesn’t mean that everyone just unites into one common soul, but that there are no separate souls in existence in all of reality.
This is a temporary illusion we have as a result of the three coordinate axes (time, motion, and space) through which our picture of the world is refracted. When these axes disappear and we stop being dependent on them, we will ascend above them and will see a reality where only one creation exists.
To achieve this we have to correct our egoistic desire, which is what evokes this illusion in us that there is a reality existing in time, motion, and space on the level of this world.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/26/10, “600,000 Souls”