Answer: The fear of being hungry, ill, or old and the fear of death are the fear of the defeat of the ego. The fear of lack of filling, of lack of fulfillment, is already on a higher level, but it is still an egoistic fear, but can we fight it; why was it given to us?
It is impossible to run away from fears, starting from the most primitive fear of death and all the other fears that turn into awe. They were given to us so that by running away from them, since we will have no choice, and by seeing that there is nowhere to run and that we cannot compensate ourselves, we will suddenly discover: “If I rise above them, if I live in a system of bestowal and love, outside myself, I will not fear anything. It may well be that if I exit myself, which means my desires and my thoughts, I will be able to imagine that I don’t exist, since I have no desires or thought about myself. What do I have? I have thoughts about others, about everything that isn’t me. So this is probably a good thing. By that I don’t suffer from anything. But if I don’t suffer, I don’t feel anything either. So it may well be that by getting rid of myself, of my fears, I will have to be full of the sufferings of others and to live in such fears. Thus I will get the feeling and will be able to fill them.”
This means that all these thoughts are essential in order to push a person forward. He mustn’t get rid of them; he mustn’t avoid them, but on the contrary, only try to aim them correctly.
We are constantly managed by fear until the end of correction, Gmar Tikkun—it is either fear about ourselves or fear about others, which depends on how distant the people I fear for, worry about, and feel concerned about are from me; this is how a person’s height is measured.
In what sense? If we say that everything is connected in one single system, then I think about those who are closest to me since I depend on them, and I think about those who are distant from me not because I depend on them but because I simply think about the system and maybe about the Creator since I can already operate on Him through this system. I can bring the system to a state in which He can be revealed and thus cause Him pleasure, etc. This means that I become an active partner sharing His work in the world.
There are always worries, sufferings and fears, and that’s good. By their intensity, I measure my degree, my spiritual ascent—to what extent I turn the fear into advancement.
At the same time, don’t think that when you are advancing spiritually your fears change drastically. You can be given the simplest mundane fears although you may be on a high spiritual level.
All this will continue until you complete the correction. How else can a person be pushed forward if not by fears? Fear is a feeling of a desire that is not full.
From a “Talk During the Meal in Toronto” 6/19/12