Descents show me that I will never realize the importance of the Creator alone; I will never come out of my egoism and find forces inside myself. However, every descent teaches me differently, by illuminating different weaknesses, qualities, and phases in me. The descents are followed by ascents, but at the end, one way or another I always discover my powerlessness.
At first I want to satisfy my egoism, which is called “knowing how many angels there are in the sky.” Then I switch my focus to the Creator, wishing to “catch” Him, to see the spiritual world. It seems to me that the door to changes has to open up in front of me rather than inside of me.
And finally, I start to understand that the changes have to happen inside of me. I catch the thread of the answer to my question: The redemption has to come from outside because I am certainly unable to do it by myself.
This work is done with the help of descents and ascents until a person comes out to the threshold of truth, having understood that everything depends on him, on the change in his perception. The Light gives you the forces to do it; you will not find them inside of you.
One’s demand is still egoistic, but he already lowers his head before the Upper Force so it will change him. Then he gradually agrees with the fact that everything comes from Above.
At the next stage a person understands that he has to acquire the quality of bestowal instead of the quality of reception. His demand is egoistic, but it is already a step forward.
After that he works with the environment in order to elicit the Light that will raise him to the spiritual treasure. As he learns about the notion of the group, he makes himself dependent on it, still hoping to derive benefit for himself.
After that the Light really does bring a person back to the Source. That’s because he built everything correctly and only one parameter remains to be changed: the intention, the end result—whose benefit does he want to attain?
That is how we reduce the path: By turning to the Creator through the group with the right request.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/5/11, Writings of Rabash