Question: How can I measure how important the goal is to me?
Answer: The goal is as important to the same degree that you value the environment as the means to attain it.
For example, suppose I want to be healthy and to achieve that I have to take medicine. How much am I willing to pay for it? Exactly as much as my desire to be healthy will allow. No matter what I pay for, the price is determined by the degree of the importance.
Question: Money is a precise yardstick. But how can I know how much I am paying on the spiritual path?
Answer: You can measure this in relation to the environment. To the extent it is more important to you than yourself, that is how much more important the spiritual goal is for you than the material goal. To what degree are you included in the group, how much are you willing to invest in it, how much higher than you are the friends, how much do you value them in order to invest time and energy to acquire them? This is what is written, “Buy yourself a friend.”
This is the yardstick: The aspiration to put everything you have into the group, which is like a treasured purchase. For example, you want to buy some stocks at the market or an auction piece at Sotheby’s. How much are you willing to pay? That is how we make the measurement, except that our competition is held between egoism and the spiritual goal. Give it a try sometime.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 2/22/11, Writings of Rabash