Baal HaSulam, “The Wisdom of Kabbalah and Philosophy“: The reason is that although this love is merely a consequence of the gift, it is still far more important than the gift itself. It is like a great king who gives an unimportant object to a person. Although the gift itself is worthless, the love and the attention of the king make it priceless and precious. Thus, it is completely separated from the matter, being the Light and the gift, in a way that the work and the distinction remain carved in the attainment with only the love itself, while the gift is seemingly forgotten from the heart. Therefore, this aspect of the wisdom is called the “Formative Wisdom of Kabbalah.” Indeed, this part is the most important part of the wisdom.
The King is very cunning: He gives me a gift and arranges everything so that in this gift I will feel His attitude towards me and feel shame as a result, since I don’t feel the same towards Him. He takes care that I will decipher it correctly, that I will “read” the situation and will not erase the shame inside me, but instead, the shame will help me resemble Him. When I receive love from Him, when I feel the gap between His attitude to me and my attitude to Him in my shame, I thank Him, although the shame burns like fire. It is this feeling that helps me build myself.
In fact, the shame can turn out to be the right deficiency. If I don’t want to erase it, it is already the right attitude, and now above this deficiency, I have to build my attitude towards the Creator. This means that the shame mustn’t disappear. On the contrary, it should grow, and I should try not to extinguish it, not to cover it, not to cover it up, but rather to turn it into such love, just as I feel it from the Creator and even more than that.
Why is it more? Because love is taken for granted by my ego. Everyone needs to love me. If I receive a gift of $20, I will forget about it after a short while. But if someone takes $20 from me, I will resent it, as if I had lost $200,000. This is the egoistic approach: I always deserve the gift and the harm is unacceptable. If someone says something good about me, I am satisfied until I forget about it. But if someone says something bad about me, I will not calm down until I repay him.
So feeling shame before the Creator doubles the love and helps me build a vessel of bestowal that matches my ego. Otherwise, I will see that only receiving gifts of love from Him is not enough for my ego. I simply must have the shame, the force that doubles the force of love, by allowing me to develop a greater deficiency for bestowal and to fulfill it.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/16/12, “The Wisdom of Kabbalah and Philosophy”