It is written, “A thousand enter a room, but one comes out to the light.” So what can we do to make sure at least a dozen people succeed, or a hundred people? Indeed, our ideal result is nothing less than one hundred percent.
Take a regular person off the street. He lives a decent life, but suddenly he begins to get bombarded by all kinds of problems and misfortunes: conflicts with his wife, kids getting out of hand, health issues that the doctors can’t seem to fix…. Everywhere he turns, he discovers evil. Things keep deteriorating and there’s no solution in sight.
Admittedly, everybody else appears to be in just as dire straits and that makes it all more bearable. After all, man always checks himself in relation to others both in joy and in sorrow. When any given misfortune befalls everybody, it makes it easier to endure. We all come from the same soul and no one can judge himself in a vacuum, separate from others.
We all compare our state with the general prosperity or misery. I am incapable of sensing myself exclusively, for without the human environment, I fall back to the animate degree. And if there aren’t animals around, I’ll revert to the vegetative degree. If you abandon a human being in the woods without animals, he will invariably become like the vegetation that is his environment.
So then, today we exist at the very stage when the crisis is enveloping the whole world. Sure, the media mitigates the situation by showing us that people everywhere are hurting. This appeases us for a time so that the next blows will be harder and penetrate deeper until they become unbearable. But for the time being, I look at others and remain content with my own lot despite all the problems that are besetting me. Other people’s suffering allays my vigilance; the upshot is that the evil will break through into my consciousness only after it becomes too much to bear.
How can we remain in a state of helplessness when it becomes a matter of life and death? That’s when the suffering clues you in that its arrival is not accidental but purposeful. The chain of Reshimot (informational genes) leads you to this thought.
However, we don’t want to lead humanity down this path filled with pandemics, natural disasters, world wars, and so on. We want to bring humanity to the recognition of evil today while people are still finding comfort in the misery of others and empty hopes.
How do we do this? This brings up the issue of understanding the governance: You see that it is sweetenting your life, but at the same time you see the stick it’s preparing for you in the event you fail to recognize this governance in its true form in real time, through the prism of mitigated suffering.
Such is the path of the Torah, and such is the path of suffering for all of humanity. It’s all in your hands.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/16/12, “The Study of the Ten Sefirot”