Everything we do in this world for the sake of living in it, and all our discernments, which eventually bring us to the question of life’s meaning, gradually narrow down, like a cone, until we reach the very peak, meaning the intention: What do we want from all of this? Intention is the most important thing there is.
In the material world the intention arises naturally and is determined by a person’s nature, his desire. Therefore, we don’t pay attention to it. Only if we suspect that someone is lying to us do we begin to ask about his intention. That is, the behavior we see might differ from the concealed intention.
But if we act simply, without deception in the material world, then the act and the intention always go together. However, in the spiritual world it is always opposite. First of all, it only seems to us that we are doing something in spirituality. In the material world, the world of actions, we are simply used to the fact that the more we do, the more we advance, such as when we build or create something. We can end up with good results or bad, but the results are achieved through actions.
It is written about the spiritual world, “The end of the action lies in the initial plan.” This can be explained in the following way: that only after the actions do you begin to think and understand what happened. Actions eventually bring us to the understanding that they do not produce anything, that the only operating and creative force in the spiritual world is the Light, while all we have to do is ask it to act instead of doing something ourselves.
A person thinks that through his spiritual work, with his own efforts, he can do good deeds, that by virtue of inner pressure and concentration, he can find bestowing intentions within himself, attain a good attitude and love for the neighbor, spiritual aspirations. He thinks that if he pressures himself more, then there, inside he will find the spiritual forces and will reveal the spiritual world.
But the work is actually opposite: It lies in demanding an action from above, the Creator’s work, as it is written, “Call upon those who search for You!”
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/4/12, Shamati