Question: Has the world already entered the period of Egyptian plagues, or do they still lie ahead?
Answer: They lie ahead. And yet, we shouldn’t compare previous stages of development with those that await us. In truth, the material nature of our path gets gradually replaced by the spiritual one.
Try telling your ancestors who lived a few centuries ago that you have everything yet are not satisfied with life. To them, you live a fabulous life. In your home, there is a device in the wall that makes water run when you turn it on. You have a button that when pressed, makes the light shine brighter than day. And you have a screen that shows you a full view of the entire world.
People would simply not understand what you lack. And you, amidst all this abundance, don’t know what to do with yourself. The rich interior of your home and your world signifies how empty you are within.
Therefore, Egyptian plagues are not corporeal but internal troubles. Time after time, you discover the lack of inner fulfillment; each blow reaches deeper and deeper into a complex, multi-layered desire. However, these plagues take place very quickly, penetrating a person’s inner feelings. On the outside everything stays calm; one does not need to be ill or physically suffer.
Of course, if we don’t take advantage of the Light, the plagues will arrive in the form of corporeal misfortunes. The principle is simple: If we advance ourselves and the world in the spiritual direction, the plagues will be taking more of a spiritual form. If we fail and the world doesn’t choose spirituality, it will experience them in a material form.
In the Writings of The Last Generation, Baal HaSulam writes that there may even be world wars, followed by enormous suffering. But we must try to undergo these blows internally. The Torah and the method of Kabbalah provide man with an opportunity to make the entire analysis very quickly by completing it internally, without involving the corporeal world.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/24/10, “Perfection in Life”