The “desert” I enter when I exit egoistic bondage is the group. To be in mutual bestowal and feel pleasure from the fact that you bestow to everybody is a true “desert” and “bread of affliction” (Matzot, unleavened bread) for me.
If I could receive egoistic pleasure from bestowal, I would gladly give in order to receive. But I cannot give “in order to bestow,” without any personal benefit. I am unable to act this way; I cannot move a finger “on the fuel of bestowal.” I don’t receive any sustenance from this, so how can an engine work without fuel, without electricity?
Egoistic reception gives me enormous energy of all kinds, calories, joules, watts, but bestowal gives nothing. I move my hand to receive, but as soon as I discover that it is bestowal, I freeze and can’t move further. At that moment when, amidst the action, I find out that it is aimed at bestowal, I freeze, motionless, and cannot do a thing. You can scream to me, “Come on! Do it! Just one more step!” but I can’t take it.
Therefore, we are unable to see the beauty of the spiritual world and start desiring it from our Egypt. Only the group imbues us with the paramount importance of spirituality; it deceives our ego making it believe that it will feel good in spirituality.
Since we are internally connected and influence each other, I accept this lie just like I used to accept the lies of the corporeal world that promised me pleasures, manipulating my pride, lust, and ambition. I suddenly start desiring spirituality so strongly that I am ready to abandon all my egoistic possessions, the “blossoming cities of Pithom and Ramses” filled with pots of fish and meat and flee to the desert with one sack of flour on my back.
Hence, all our work lies in convincing each other that the spiritual world is the best thing that can be out there. This is so even if in relation to our current egoistic desires, spirituality is an absolute desert and bread of affliction.
So, don’t despair in the states of descent since they are authentic states that are supposed to come before the breakthrough. On one hand, I realistically evaluate the situation and realize that I don’t wish to bestow; I hate and resent it. Yet, it is so important that I want to reach it no matter what and see life without spirituality as worse than death. This attitude in me is generated by the society.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/31/10, “This is for Judah”