Answer: A person himself has to check whether he is advancing or not. How can he do it? By examining if during the study he experiences ascents and descents in his connection with the others and rejection thereof. Now I only need to know whether I am connected with the others and try to reveal the images that we study in The Zohar, the images of the Creator, within this connection.
Do I aspire for it? Yes, I do. How strong is my aspiration? How many times during the lesson did I leave and come back to these thoughts? How many times during this work did I feel concerned about the others so that they, too, hold this intention? Then, their collective thought will also act upon me so that even if I leave these thoughts, I will immediately return to them. It is actually good to have as many of these quick exits and entries as possible.
For this reason I need the support of the group, and I have to constantly hold the thought about the connection. This is my entire work. These signs help me evaluate my progress. If I stop thinking about the connection and never return to these thoughts again, I don’t advance.
Hence, don’t ask, but rather examine yourself.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/5/2011, “Introduction of The Book of Zohar,” Article “Yitro (Jethro)”