Question: It is written: “Do not trust yourself until the day you die.” Then what does Arvut (mutual guarantee) mean if I can’t trust myself or the friends?
Answer: Obviously, I cannot trust myself. But this doesn’t refer to the friends. The group is not an assembly of people that just came to the lesson. The group is their inner unity between the souls.
The Creator created desire (the will to receive pleasure, Kli) regarded as “the world of Infinity,” where the souls reside. These souls are mutually connected into one collective system, one soul, filled with the Light of Infinity.
But this system is blocked from you by the concealing screen, a filter, through which you see it somewhat corrupted or broken. Within, it is perfect and filled with the Light of Infinity, but presently you see it as distorted. Further on, behind the next filter, it seems even more corrupted to you.
In total, from the first state, the world of Infinity, to the last one, our corporeal world, there are 125 such degrees or filters, concealments from the state of Infinity. Therefore, you look at the group with your corporeal vision and think: “Who are they, anyway? I am not lower than them! Are they really unified? No, they aren’t. Do they really wish to unite? No, they don’t. Do they truly understand something? Give me Rabbi Shimon’s group; there, I will agree to be a baby in their arms! And these… Who are they to me?..”
But this is incorrect. Everything is determined by your attitude to the friends. If a person “penetrates” through them, wishing to connect, not with what these corporeal bodies, which are in concealment, represent and understand, but rather treats them as the group that resides in Infinity in complete union, then the job is done: He adheres to this perfect state.
So could Rabbi Yossi Ben Kisma not be without his beginner disciples. Do they desire spirituality in any small degree? That is enough for him to enter the spiritual state through them, where they are all one, as one man with one heart, although they themselves are not aware of it yet.
This is called the environment, the group. However, I myself reside in the place where I can imagine myself. Then, I visualize myself against the ideal, perfect environment from which I can receive anything. And only through it do I gain the strength.
Therefore, the group is not a physical assembly of men, but rather my inner spiritual property.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/24/10, “Perfection in Life”