The Zohar, Chapter “Yitro (Jethro),” Item 199: His forehead is big but not so much, its lines are five—three across from one side of the forehead to the other, and two are not across. He is confrontational, especially in his home, all his actions are quick, he seems good but he is not so. He praises himself with what is not in him. … He is lenient in his speech, but nothing more, pushes himself where he does not belong, and one who collaborates with him should be careful of his greed, but will succeed with him.
The Zohar is telling us about how complicated we are inside. Every time we reveal new qualities inside of us, which may be good or bad and which constantly come to replace one another, we must use them to discern all of our opportunities to realize ourselves in the current state, to discover all of our weaknesses and limitations. That is how time after time, a person attains himself more, and that means he attains the Creator, as it is written, “I will know You from Your actions.”
When all is said and done, our entire path is the path of self-attainment, the attainment of ourselves. In essence, the entire science of Kabbalah explains to a person who he is—the Creator’s doing. Therefore, you don’t need anything more: To the extent you understand how the Creator created you, what He created in you, why, and in what form, that is how much you will attain Him.
Therefore, when reading the descriptions of these images of man, we have to understand that not one of them becomes erased. All of them complement one another through their qualities, which are similar or opposite to the Light, and in the end they attain the image of the Creator.
Besides, we have to understand that it is talking about a person who advances in spirituality and this is how he sees himself for now, with his positive and negative qualities compared to the Light, the Creator. But the person himself is judging himself, and he discerns these qualities himself. Another person would see them differently because “every person judges to the extent of his own flaws.”
If a certain picture appears before him now, it only seems to him, but does not exist by itself in reality. The only picture that exists by itself is the image of the Creator. But these images are depicted inside a person by his inner qualities.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/16/11, The Zohar
The Creator created one desire that was initially in total oneness with the Light that conceived it, in adhesion sustained by the power of the Light. This is the first and, on the Creator’s part, the absolutely perfect state, only the creature doesn’t feel it. That’s because this state was created by the Creator, and it lacks the creature’s awareness of it. Essentially, there is no creation in this yet; there is only something which was created and exists because of the force that begot it.
Thus, the created being needs to undergo a long process in order to gain self-awareness, and there are several stages on this path. First, it seems not to exist at all, as “existence from absence” (Yesh Mi Ain). However, in the end, the creature is set to become “existence from existence” (Yesh Mi Yesh), meaning like the Creator.
The creature overcomes this discrepancy, from “Yesh Mi Ain” to “Yesh Mi Yesh,” gradually, by its step-by-step development, thereby finally acquiring a second nature: the nature of the Creator. However, to achieve this, it has to act independently in order to attain itself: what the creation, “Yesh Mi Ain,” and the Creator, “Yesh Mi Yesh,” are and how they differ.
It has to constantly assess these two states by either agreeing or disagreeing with them, that is, by declaring its wishes, having received free will. Thus, the creature moves ever closer to the form of the Creator and accepts it not because it is more pleasant and beneficial (meaning, not because of its natural egoistic striving), but because it does, in fact, acquire the Creator’s properties, the attributes of pure bestowal.
Attainment, on the whole, is possible only by way of equivalence of form. Otherwise, nothing can be attained, and neither the Creator nor His qualities can be comprehended if one doesn’t possess the same. Therefore, in order for the created being to attain the Creator completely and become identical to Him, the Creator divides the state that he shares with the created being as one into multiple parts, consecutive states, and various desires and thoughts.
It could be visualized as construction blocks or as a puzzle, but not as one or three-dimensional, but rather as construction blocks of numberless dimensions. Any part of this puzzle has an infinite number of sides with which it links to all the others so that nobody has anything of his own, but always his upper part connects to the upper one and his lower part connects to the one below him.
They are all connected in such a way that nobody has anything belonging to himself except one: the very central point at the Tabur (navel). It is the place where everyone decides how he can participate independently, with his own attainment and awareness, and attains this interconnection where he unwillingly finds himself in order to give all his strength and desire to sustain this bond.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/15/2011, Writings of Rabash
When I begin reforming my relationships with the entire world, with all other souls, and with the friends in the group that study with me, I suddenly discover that there is only the Creator and me, and nobody else. In other words, there are my friends, the world, the still, vegetative, and animate nature, people, and souls, and all of which are, essentially, the manifestations of the Creator as pertains to me.
After all, the Creator cannot show Himself to me as the Light without the vessel (Kli) since I will have nothing with which to perceive Him. Therefore, the Creator divides creation into two parts: the creation itself, its soul, and the other desires besides this creation which are properties of the Creator.
“The Creator” (Boreh) derives from the Hebrew words “come” and “see” (Bo and Reh). In other words, if the created being connects with the Kli that is seemingly outside of it, thereby it expresses its attitude toward the Creator, and in this vessel, the Light appears. All of this gives the creature an opportunity to perceive the upper (relative to itself) force.
Then, the creature begins to understand the Creator’s “language,” the conversation that the Creator is having with it. Sometimes, it seems to the creature that this “external” Kli is above it and at other times, that it is below it. At times, it views the world as an empty vacuum where there is nothing at all. However, if the creature realizes that it is the Creator who makes this empty space for the creature to fill with its desire to bestow on its own, it receives room for work.
In this void, there is a lack of the Light of faith, the Light of bestowal, Hassadim (Mercy). If the creature is able to fill this empty dimension with the Light of Hassadim, consequently, it joins the Creator and can find there the Light of Hochma (Wisdom) as well.
There are opposite states when the Creator allows the creature to feel itself fulfilled. First, you feel that you stand before an enormous Light that is outside of you for now. This sensation is given to us in the first nine Sefirot (Tet Reshinot). You have to make a restriction on it, lift your inner boundary so that you can receive the Light (in the Nikvey Eynaim), and work in the three lines in order to measure the fulfillment that stands before you with your screen, or to discern to what extent you can receive it in order to bestow.
Thus, we advance, undergoing various states, while not always being aware of them. However, they unfold only when we don’t forget that there is only a single Light and a single vessel that is divided into many parts for our sake, which we have to gradually incorporate into ourselves with the intention to bestow.
On this path, there are two stages for us. The first one is the rung of Bina (Hafetz Hesed) where a person cannot really connect with the others for now and only learns to resist his or her egoism, rise above one’s desires over one’s “evil inclination” that is being revealed to them, and obtains the Kelim of GE (Galgalta Eynaim).
Later on, a person starts working with the “unification of the property of mercy and the vessel” when even one’s desires to receive that are included in him are used solely to bestow.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/15/2011, Writings of Rabash
Question: During the lesson on The Book of Zohar, millions of viewers look at strange letters, hear strange words, and expect something they can’t define. Is this what you call a scientific method?
Answer: First, a regular person lives according his instincts and understands everything naturally. This is how he was taught in his parents’ home.
Second, a person who studied the sciences of this world knows how to relate to nature based on scientific knowledge he obtained. This is an engineering approach. For instance, a mechanic, an electrician, or a specialist in any other area received appropriate education, can do manual or intellectual work, has a set of tools for the job, and thereby forms his attitude toward nature.
He isn’t allowed to work with something unfamiliar, but only after his knowledge and experience have been checked is he accepted to a job in a specific field. Suppose a person studied mechanics and now can repair engines or more complex devices. He uses the acquired knowledge in his work, but he is more or less aware of what he is dealing with.
Third, a scientist is a person who discovers something which was previously unknown, phenomena that couldn’t be predicted in advance. Sometimes, he may feel, guess, and be prompted about something, but he has no clear internal definitions for it. This is what we call discovering new phenomena in nature.
At this point, a question arises: How can I find new phenomena? I need to tune myself to them, but what does “to them” mean if they are new? Should I anticipate certain results, discoveries, and events that may take place, or should I not?
Hence, science has two parts. There is theory where hypotheses are made and are later explored through research. Thereby, new phenomena are revealed. This is the major part of science which is built on the examination of the ideas scientists have regarding expected discoveries. Without this, it is impossible to advance.
However, there are also scientists who search in complete darkness. They have no preliminary theories, hypotheses, and ideas about possible findings. Kabbalah is a science, and we utilize it in all the above-mentioned forms: as regular people, the specialists who study it, and as scientists who in some way can visualize phenomena that may be.
Herein lies a problem: In all our studies, beginning with regular people as in our world and up to great scientists who don’t know where they are going and what they will find in nature, and at all of these levels in the science of Kabbalah, there is an unpredictable part you know nothing about.
What is unknown? You don’t know which property, what phenomenon you actually will find within because you don’t have this property. You can’t even imagine it.
After all, you will discover it in the Kli (vessel) of perception that you build, while the phenomenon is the vessel itself. You can’t pre-experience what exactly will unfold within you since you have never felt it before, don’t possess any intuition, and can’t even guess at it. It is a new Kli. The impression, the sensation, is totally new.
This is how we advance in the wisdom of Kabbalah. Even in something small and simple, there is nothing that we might know in advance. Therefore, our approach when we read The Book of Zohar is correct. I expect the Light that Reforms to come and reform my Kelim, my desires. For example, I can’t see anything without my glasses. There is something before me, but I need a device to see it. I put my glasses on and see something new.
Hence, while reading The Book of Zohar and looking at the “dead” letters and text that doesn’t make any sense to us, we must approach it as scientists of the highest degree who are about to discover something unprecedented to them.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/15/2011, The Book of Zohar
Answer: If a person found himself in a great disaster and was told, “Read this text for half an hour and there you will reveal how to get out of the disaster,” then you can imagine how he would spend that half hour. Would it be difficult for him to concentrate on it? What kind of pressure and hope would he feel in trying to penetrate inside the text, to understand what is being required of him, what he can find there, what kind of salvation is there, and how it will arrive….
Everything depends on the environment, on how much it “warms up” this inner attitude to The Zohar’s text. All other Kabbalistic texts are beneficial to a smaller extent with regard to their text’s influence on the reader because when reading them we can involve the mind and feelings, and somehow connect them to ourselves.
The Torah, in turn, is perfect, pure, unattainable, “in the heavens.” What does “pure” (Tmima) mean? No one touches it. It is the upper Light. We only wait for the results from it that will manifest in us.
Only the group can give me this attitude to reading The Zohar so I would passionately wish to receive a result from it. Otherwise it won’t happen.
We have already gone through this state when we just began reading The Zohar. During the first few months people were so inspired that this common excitement influenced every person and every person felt the surrounding illumination to some extent, feeling the power of The Zohar’s influence upon him.
Now this inspiration has waned because at first we received it from above, whereas now we have to develop it ourselves. Nothing happens by itself in nature. You receive an initial awakening and then it is taken away so you would add it from your own end, so you would complete the space that has been emptied of inspiration from above with your own efforts.
If we don’t add to it ourselves, then we cannot keep the intention for correction over the course of 45 minutes while reading The Zohar, and we just wait for the lesson to be over. If we don’t awaken a person, if we don’t stimulate the inner vibrations in him so he would feel like a sick person facing the only means of salvation, the only opportunity to be healed and saved from disaster, then of course it is difficult for him to keep the intention and to grab on to the text. In essence, he blames us because we do not let him feel the vital necessity of this, meaning the importance of the goal.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/17/11, The Zohar
Answer: In The Writings of the Last Generation, Baal HaSulam writes that we must become such a vivid example of the corrected society that the whole world would be attracted to us. We will create a system of upbringing and the correct mechanism of relationships so that the world would clearly see what it is. Kabbalah conventions and children’s successes are also wonderful models of what is possible. We will demonstrate to the entire world that it is good, and the world will desire to join in.
Our example is not in some specific place. It is everywhere; it is virtual. We are creating a virtual, spiritual state without borders and material attributes. In it, everything is built and founded on the inner connection between people, and all the rest is added based on the same principles.
This is what should draw people to us: a unique interconnection where we find a spiritual phenomenon, the Light, an eternal and perfect life. It gives a person assurance and an understanding of where he is.
Our state is nothing like the states of the world with their borders, armies, governments, ministries and agencies. No, ours is entirely virtual and spiritual.
Question cont.: What do we nevertheless demonstrate on the outside?
Answer: Don’t worry about it. We offer simple, open information to the world, and it will be received in the right way.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/15/2011 on An Integral World
Answer: The only thing that doesn’t change is the intention toward the right goal which he sometimes tries to create. Besides this, everything else changes and nothing remains. You lose everything besides the right intention if you have created it. Everything else only seems to belong to you, including your existence, and it is given to you only to create the intention.
This world and the spiritual world are not taken into account. Only the intention remains which we can create as a result of our efforts. This is the spiritual vessel, the soul.
In that intention you see the eternal reality, meaning yourself. What is the true reality? It is the degree of your revelation of yourself in the upper Light, in equivalence to it, in becoming identical to it. All of this becomes revealed only in the intention, and nothing remains besides it.
There is nothing besides the intention. This means that nothing else exists in reality. Everything else is imaginary and only seems to exist right now in order for you to attain the intention. After all, you have to live inside something. Who creates the intention? It’s the person whom you now perceive as yourself, living and existing in this world. Why do you need this? It’s in order to form the intention.
When you complete creating your intention from the beginning of the ladder of the spiritual degrees and until its end, then this entire world, this entire reality disappears because in reality it did not exist. It only seemed to exist to you in order for you to develop the right intention.
Now understand how important is the activity you are engaging in—the creation of your eternal image, the human who is similar to the Creator.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/17/11, The Zohar