1. There is a candle, which is a vessel into which oil is poured,
2. There is oil,
3. There is a wick.
When these three conditions unite together, it becomes possible to rejoice for the light they produce.
These three conditions that are necessary for the light also reflect our structure. We consist of the will to enjoy, which acts egoistically.Therefore, when we look at the world, we see that it is full of suffering and problems.
No one acts honestly, everyone harms one another, and I can’t understand why the Creator (if He even exists) has created such a bad world. I would have made it much better if I were Him! I look at everything through my evil, egoistic desire, and that is why I see evil all around.
However, if I begin to override my confusion by thinking that the Creator is good and does everything well, whereas I feel evil only because I am bad, then all of these thoughts and desires collide inside me and contradict one another. This is called the “wick” (Ptila) because I discern where is the “waste” (Psolet) from my desire and what is bad about it.
The desire is a vessel and there is a “wick” inside it that is produced by overcoming the desire. These discernments (Birurim) give rise to the fuel (Beirut), meaning the oil – the Light of Hochma.
These three components are also present in the human soul, which desires to figure itself out and light up like a candle. They are also present in the regular candle, which is a symbol of the soul.
The vessel or desire was egoistic by nature, wanting “for its own sake.” That is how I was born. With the help of studying Kabbalah in the group, I create a “wick” that can light up because I begin to fight back and discern who is the Creator and who am I. The “oil” is the result because this state gives rise to the “fuel.”
I wage a struggle: I want to attain bestowal, but I am incapable of it. I dash forward, but my nature pulls me back. Pharaoh does not let me come out of his power. However, that is how I discern myself and the Creator, as well as the kind of system through which I can be connected to Him.
And after overcoming this a person merits the Light of the Creator that illuminates his soul, called the Light of Hanukkah. This is the revelation of the Upper Providence, carrying goodness to the creatures.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/1/10, Writings of Rabash
I always have some kind of attitude to what is happening to me, to my environment, my loved ones, and the world. If I attach the Creator to that attitude, then I delve into discernments of why it is happening, for whom, whom will it benefit, and so on.
As I do this, I am inducted in an entire war for every state! If I discern these states “inside knowledge,” it is called a “Greek” approach, meaning according to my mind, feeling, understanding, and all my notions. Alternatively, I can advance by “faith above reason” and search for the force of bestowal, wishing to see everything from this point of view. In that case I do not want to receive knowledge and understanding into the desires that awaken in me, but I want to come out of myself with the help of these desires. I want to step to the outside, enter others, and there receive all the knowledge and fulfillment by faith above reason, inside the Kelim of bestowal.
The fulfilment I am able to receive inside myself is called “this world.” What I can receive on the outside, coming out of myself to the outside, is called the Upper World. I am fighting for this approach which I want to maintain, and this is called the war of the Maccabees against the Greeks. The Greeks are just a symbol for all rational thinking that exists in the world, the human mind, the scientific approach. The Maccabees are above this because they personify the work of the priests (Kohanim) that belong only to bestowal.
A person must always wage this war until he ascends above the battlefield. In this war you have “spies” whom you send to the “market,” meaning to the place (desire) that is ruled by “multiple authorities.” Among your thoughts and desires, some are still ruled by “many,” which sometimes pull you in one direction and sometimes another, all for the sake of their egoism. This continues until just one power is established in all of your desires! When it does, it means you leave the “market” and enter your “house.”
The market turns into the house and the “spies” leave there, as it is written, “Until the last foot leaves the market.” You remain alone with the Creator, together with Him, in adhesion, in your desire or house.
In the spiritual world we do not shift from one place to another. There exists only one place or desire. However, you change it and build it by changing your attitude so it goes from being a “marketplace” to a “house” in which you light a candle, “praising the miracle” (Persuma de Nisa).
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/1/10, Writings of Rabash
The first and most important question is: Do we have free will at all? Or, do I go through life as a mechanical toy moved by the key in the back or like a puppet on strings?
Indeed, we are totally controlled by the instincts and our actions are programmed. Even though we think we are free to make decisions and pick our path, it is just an illusion. Everything can be predicted by checking combinations of internal and external data: Reshimot (spiritual records, genes), background, habits, and all other conditions.
In other words, there is no instant in life when a person would be making an independent decision, and frankly, based on what would he decide? If he is programmed with all the informational data, a person simply makes a calculation like a machine.
Is there really any unknown factor that could be selected freely? It is unknown in relation only to us; therefore, we think that we can choose freely. In reality, everything is completely predetermined, as it is Nature.
Your only freedom is in choosing to agree with Him, and in a way, to start walking ahead of Him. If you rise to His level and equalize with Him in qualities, He will allow you to decide before and for Him (as He does). And that is when it will be as it is written: “The righteous decides, and the Creator carries out.”
Until then, there is no use in talking about some freedom.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/26/10, “The Freedom”
Excerpts from people’s letters sharing their impressions of the last convention: “I participated in the convention virtually. On the second day, during the lecture “The Purpose of the Group,” after numerous inner efforts and unity, I, like many others, hit the “membrane” that the Light was beaming behind.
I didn’t get disappointed by it (deep inside, I had suspected that breaking through the Machsom wasn’t going to be that easy). At that moment, I realized that whatever was taking place was not a dream but reality. I didn’t have doubts from the very beginning, but I’ve gained even more confidence, and my strength got renewed.
I am standing in front of the “membrane” looking at the Light glowing behind it… It is so hard to match the Creator’s qualities. I let it go. Later, I feel an iron grip of egoism on my throat, and again, back to our goal, with all that I have.
I am still a total ignoramus about the terms in Kabbalah, but I am trying. We will break through. I am with you with every fiber of my soul. Le’Chaim!”
Proof that Our Generation Has Reached the Days of the Messiah
Rashbi and his generation, the authors of The Zohar, were granted all 125 degrees in completeness, even though it was prior to the days of the Messiah. It was said about him and his disciples: “A sage is preferable to a prophet.” Hence, we often find in The Zohar that there will be none like the generation of Rashbi until the generation of the Messiah King. This is why his composition made such a great impact in the world, since the secrets of the Torah in it occupy the level of all 125 degrees.
Hence, it is said in The Zohar that The Book of Zohar will be revealed only at the End of Days, the days of the Messiah. This is so because we have already said that if the degrees of the students are not at the full measure of the degree of the author, they will not understand his intimations, since they do not have a common attainment.
And since the degree of the authors of The Zohar is at the full level of the 125 degrees, they cannot be attained prior to the days of the Messiah. It follows that there will be no common attainment with the authors of The Zohar in the generations preceding the days of the Messiah. Hence, The Zohar could not be revealed in the generations before the generation of the Messiah.
– Baal HaSulam, “A Speech for the Completion of The Zohar”
Our entire history is nothing but development in the material body in this world, but now we have to build our spiritual body and do so ourselves. In our world, I was born from the father and mother who raised and educated me until I became an adult and started living independently. In the spiritual world, I have to do the same. And here, too, we have a spiritual father and mother (Aba ve Ima), a spiritual environment that develops us. However, we need to arrange it with our own desire.
The question is where to get such desire? For this, we are given a spiritual spark, “the point in the heart,” a tiny desire for spirituality. With its help, we can evolve nurtured by the environment, a Kabbalistic group, and the Upper Force that is called Aba ve Ima (father and mother).
We have them, and we are yet to find them. They can also be called the Creator who works on us by means of two forces, Hassadim and Hochma (mercy and wisdom). The force of mercy assists us, and the other force burdens our path, similar to how we teach a child by giving him difficult assignments.
These two forces, “help” and “help against us,” come to us and teach what needs to be done while we move forward. If we arrange our evolution so that we will be able to advance at the speed that depends solely on us since there is no time in spirituality.
We will begin to uncover these forces that act in Nature, the Father and Mother, the positive and negative ones. When we ascend to the first spiritual degree, we already start perceiving ourselves as eternal and complete. After all, we don’t depend on our body anymore. We start perceiving everything in bestowal, outside of ourselves. I connect and bond with all, and they become my spiritual vessel.
In the corporeal world, I always received into myself to the extent that I was able to, and as soon as I was filled, I lost the sensation of pleasure. In contrast, the spiritual pleasure is defined by how much I will pass to another and he to the next one.
This is how we all pass this fulfillment to each other. Therefore, it is an endless stream of unending pleasures. It is what we call the sensation of eternal life.
The Light of Infinity enters each of us, but he takes from it only what is necessary to sustain corporeal existence and passes this endless Light further. If we exist in such a form, we experience ourselves in the World of Infinity, unrestricted and fulfilled by the entire Light of the Creator.
This is what the wisdom of Kabbalah wishes to bring us to, and this is why it is called this way (“Kabbalah” means receiving in Hebrew). It teaches us how to receive fulfillment and experience eternal and complete life here and now, in this lifetime.
From Lesson 1, World Kabbalah Convention 2010, 11/9/10
Freedom of will lies only in strengthening our environment so that it influences every one. This is in our hands. There is absolutely nothing else that we are able to change in this life.
You entered the Convention hall and felt a powerful tension. This is because a common desire that was there influenced you. Everyone burned with an enormous desire to reach the might that would enable us to make a leap up, and this affected you.
So, why are you not able to organize your environment so it would influence you the same way now? There are many thousands of people participating in the daily lesson with us, so why are we not able to influence one another?
We have the same connection, and we are in the same common field. Does it matter that much that we are not sitting in the same hall, in the same physical space? Is this the only problem? Why do we lack that common joy and enormous happiness?
We simply lack preparation. Several months before the Convention, we all waited for this day with hope, fear, trepidation, and worry. We read and listened about it, memorized special songs. We all prepared ourselves for this event.
It took an enormous amount of money, time, and physical effort. Of course, when all of this gathered in one place and exploded at the same time, it led to an impressive result. Everyone who was there as well as those who followed this event behind a screen received this strong impression. Why are we not able to continue the same way?
We achieved this degree, this elevation of the spirit, with our common work from below (Itaruta de Letata, awakening from below), and now it is ours. We bought it; we paid for it. So, why are we not able to hold on to our possession?
We need to remember that we have kept this attainment after the Convention because “one is elevated, not lowered in spirituality.” Everything I have attained is now mine, but now I am being swamped with a new, uncorrected desire that obstructs anything that happened previously because it reveals a new height to which I need to rise. I need to regard this new mountain as a means to ascend.
So, let us understand what happened to us. We did not fall; we acquired an opportunity to ascend. Then, we will see a precise goal before us, and we will simply need to combine our strength. After all, this is the only action that can enable us to ascend, only through joining together.
We unite even more strongly in the group, and this will mean that we are ascending. The Light lifts me; I myself do not need to do anything. I just need to connect with others more strongly than ever. Then, the Light will lift me to a new height, a new degree.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 11/23/10, “Body and Soul”
We are unable to work with the desire for pleasure in its pure form. When coming near it, we see that it is not intended to work for bestowal at all. So what can we do with it considering that it has the opposite nature?
It turns out that we don’t have the possibility to receive for the sake of bestowal, and that means we cannot give any pleasure to the Giver. There is a barrier standing between the Creator and the creation, blocking all of creation’s efforts to attain mutual bestowal.
Our only way to go is to combine qualities. How can we do this? We have to elevate Malchut and include it inside the quality of Bina.
Our work is built upon the same principle: A person in relation to the group is like Malchut in relation to Bina. By becoming part of the group, one nullifies himself similar to how Malchut nullifies herself before Bina.
It doesn’t matter what kind of people make up the group and whether they have already attained the spiritual quality or not. By rejecting himself, a person receives the Upper Light through them. He does not receive it from their external qualities, but from their inner essence which is already corrected in some regard.
Thus, the group is an inexhaustible means, pure Bina. By nullifying myself, I can receive anything through it. If I am small then I receive a small influence of Surrounding Light from the group. If I am great, then I receive a great Light from the group, which corrects me. With my attitude to the group I determine what the group is for me.
This does not depend on the friends. They may be total beginners who just encountered Kabbalah, yet by bowing down to their spiritual desire, I penetrate and tune into their corrected state even if they haven’t started correcting themselves.
We are all in the final correction already and therefore with my attitude to the friends I can awaken and revive any of the intermediate forms leading there. Everything depends on me, not on them. I myself determine the level on which I will activate this structure called “the group.”
Then love for friends becomes love for the Creator. The right attitude to them is the right attitude to Him. I cannot step away from my friends and give the Creator anything more than what I give to them.
The group is the means which helps to “form” itself, to give itself the form of bestowal. By funneling my desires through the group, it’s as if I modulate them and then I address the Creator the right way,
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/1/10, The Zohar