The First State is their presence in Ein Sof, in the Thought of Creation, where they already have the future form of the End of Correction.
The Second State is their presence in the six thousand years, which were divided by the above two systems into a body and a soul. They were given the work in Torah and Mitzvot in order to invert their will to receive and turn it into a will to bestow contentment upon their Maker, and not at all to themselves.
The Third State is the end of correction of the souls, after the revival of the dead. At that time, the complete correction will come to the bodies, too, for then they will turn reception for themselves, which is the form of the body, to take on the form of pure bestowal. And they will become worthy of receiving for themselves all the delight and pleasure and pleasantness in the Thought of Creation. And with all that, they will attain strong adhesion by the force of their equivalence of form with their Maker.
On the whole, we go through these three levels. Along the way, our desire to receive is increasingly revealed to us, and accordingly is corrected, first by “restriction,” and then by the attribute of Bina, then by the attribute of Hochma, until it reaches the level of Keter.
Now we are about to start the second phase Baal HaSulam speaks about, the system of the worlds of ABYA in order to eventually reach the third phase and to return to Ein Sof (Infinity).
In the meantime, however, we are in “our world,” which means on the lowest level of perception of the shattered desire that was created after the descent from the world of Ein Sof. We can say that this reality is imaginary; we can say that we are living in a dream, but one way or the other, it is from this reality that we begin to wake up.
When we wake up, we don’t discover anything new, but only what is inside us. By working correctly on our desire to receive, we discover deeper and more internal layers time after time, and thus we grow. These layers are divided into the levels of the worlds of BYA, Atzilut, etc. all the way to the level of Ein Sof. They are all revealed in our desire to receive. Now our desire to receive is small, like a baby’s, but then it begins to grow, is dyed in different colors, and takes on different attributes regarding the inner force called the Creator that revives us.
I don’t know who He is or what He is, but I want to attain Him. After all He is inside me, He is the source of all my powers and I want to attain this root inside me. In order to do that, I have to resemble Him. Since I don’t really attain the Creator himself, since it is impossible, but rather attain His attributes, His attitude, the actions He performs on me. If I perform the actions that He performs, I will understand Him, according to the principle of “from Your actions we shall know You.”
This is the attainment. I cannot enter the Creator, but I can perform actions that are identical to His and by them I understand who He is, how He thinks, and what He wants.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 6/28/12, “Introduction to The Book of Zohar”