Question: Does the Creator hear the plea of a person who is asking to raise him to the next degree because he wants to avoid pain?
Answer: Certainly! The Creator hears any prayer. Just ask! But don’t bother Him on trifles as the regular "folks on the street" do. We see that those prayers remained unanswered: People have been begging in vain for millennia.
However, if you wish to rise to the next degree from your present egoistic state, from your egoistic will to enjoy, from all the conditions set for you by the Creator, which are not up to you, and you beg to ascend, the Creator immediately hears and gradually transforms you.
Obviously, you beg from your egoistic desire in an attempt to escape suffering, have power, be recognized, and so on. Yet it doesn’t matter what goals you place before yourself. If you always ask for a higher spiritual degree and visualize it in your mind, in your egoistic desire, in a certain albeit false way for now, then it is called “Lo Lishma (not for Her name),” and thereby you advance.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/23/2011, “Introduction of The Book of Zohar,” Article “The Donkey Driver”