Each of us feels that he is special and unique, as if he were the only one existing in the world and the whole world is intended for him. As generations develop, every person stands out more and more, egoism grows and requires a person to become more self-sufficient and to feel that he is the center of the world. Envy, fear, and conceit force us to act in a way so others will think we are higher than they. We are only willing to give this up if we have no choice or are too lazy because in order to achieve anything we have to lead an endless battle. However, the desire and urge to affirm oneself above everything still burns in a person.
We see that only the sensation of one’s own exclusivity invites people to “climb on top one another,” to step on each other, building up the human pyramid from the rulers on top to the smallest ones down below. Everything depends on how much a person stands out with his exclusivity, as well as the conditions and qualities he was born with and which he received from the environment in the process of his development.
One way or another, eventually people attain something in human society only by using the quality of their own exclusivity. This quality comes from the Creator: He is One, and therefore every one of us, who has separated from the common desire that was created by the Creator, also feels singular.
We are like a holographic picture where each part contains the whole. We used to be one soul, similar to the Creator, but then it broke into parts and now each of its pieces contains the single form of the common soul, but in the opposite form due to the breaking. There is an integral form of the initial soul concealed inside of me, and therefore, pressured by the force of the breaking, I feel whole and demand the whole world and the Creator to be at my disposal. Who or what can have any importance besides me?
As a result, our self-expression in this world is built only on the quality of exclusivity which operates in every person. Where do I aim all of my desires, thoughts, and abilities? At becoming even more unique and exclusive. Every person advances down this path according to his own forces, qualities, and speed, and also to the extent that the environment spurs him on.
The most important thing is: For whose benefit do I use my “I,” all of my qualities, and in general—my exclusivity? If I am unique in the world, then whom am I acting for? Eventually a person makes the decision that correctly using himself means serving the world just like the Creator. That is when he becomes human, similar to the Creator, and the world turns into a meeting place of the Creator and creation. There they unite and merge with one another, serving all the souls.
From this we see that the quality of exclusivity can play a dual role: at first a person strives to conquer the whole world like Napoleon and to use it as he sees fit, in opposition to the Creator, but in the end he reveals the need to change and acquire similarity to the Creator. Exclusivity can be used either for one’s self or for the sake of the neighbor. This is what determines a person’s place on the spiritual ladder.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/17/11, “Peace in the World”