For thousands of years, our development continues on the inanimate, vegetative, and animate stages, which are not simple at all since they are based on the shattering of the first spiritual entity (Man), meaning the split souls. Since the moment they were shattered, each broken element includes all others in it. Each particle acquired a chance to live: to receive and to bestow, to consume and to discharge.
All forms of existence emerged from two forces, receiving and giving. The desire for pleasure in its pure form cannot subsist on its own. It needs some force that acts against it, meaning that it requires the desire to bestow.
This is how matter (desire) develops until it reaches a human (speaking) phase, which in its turn also starts to progress. The human level of advancement needs special “treatment” in that it requires a higher intensity of spiritual power. That’s why a specific group of people called “Israel” transpired; the direct translation of the word “Israel” is “Yashar-El,” “straight to the Creator.”
After exiting Babylon, this group of people descended to Egypt in order to absorb additional, powerful desires while still being in a state of immense aspiration; it was called the “Egyptian exile.” After getting an additional portion of the desire to receive, this group was granted a chance to work with it in order to transform it into the desire for bestowal.
While in Egypt, the group acquired additional desire, and along with the additional desire, the group exited Egypt, received the Torah, and rose to the level of the First Temple. However, it ws destroyed and fell; the Second Temple was constructed, but it again was destroyed. As a result, the group descended to the depth of the last (current) exile where we are all at this time.
The degree of the fall that happened during Egyptian slavery equals the level at the time when the Temples existed. All of the above happened to make us drop from our prior height and reach the final shattering (exile) that continues to this date. The downfall we are currently in is so deep that we simply cannot fall any lower. From here, we can rise together with other nations and complete our correction.
Each spiritual action triggers material consequences in this world. Thus, we are obligated to continue working in this material realm during the whole period of exile. Exile means separation from spirituality and the inability to produce any spiritual actions. However, since we act materialistically and pursue egoistic desires through our bodies rather than souls, we still fulfill preparatory work that is associated with the period of exile.
The last exile is coming to an end and we all have to transition to freedom. The difference between exile (Galut) and deliverance (Geula) is only in one letter “Aleph,” which stands for “revelation of the Creator.” This means that we have to attain the upper world to reach the state at which the Creator fills the whole universe.
The reality we live in today will stay intact. All we will do is add the upper Light, the power of bestowal, to our prior sensations and thoughts. They will fill the whole world in which we will discover the upper reality since we will obtain different corrected properties.
At that point, we will understand the essence of the preparatory work that we did previously by fulfilling material commandments since we were incapable of doing anything else while we were still in exile. Thus, after we manage to return to the physical land of Israel, our present day task is to rise to the spiritual land (desire) of Israel.
It is said: “Each action leaves a mark.” This applies even to material actions since we build spiritual acts on top of them. Prior generations were supposed to fulfill material work in this world, whereas our duty is to pursue spiritual activities. That is why we concentrate only on spiritual work: human intentions and desires, attitude to concealment and revelation, and the property of bestowal that we’re about to acquire.
From the 2nd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/30/12, The Zohar