Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot“, Item 107: Hence, after one attains the illumination of the face in such a measure that each sin he had committed, even the deliberate ones, is turned and becomes a Mitzva for him, one rejoices with all the torment and affliction he had ever suffered since the time he was placed in the two discernments of concealment of the face.
…has now become a cause and preparation for keeping a Mitzva and the reception of eternal and wondrous reward for it.
From this we learn that the more I have suffered, the more I am rewarded now. So does that mean that it is worthwhile to suffer in order to receive a greater reward later? That’s what it sounds like in our language, in our egoistic perception. The past is not erased; the correction is in turning it from sorrow to delight. Instead of a vessel that has suffered from darkness, from lack and emptiness, from wars, from diseases, from pains, which mean from lack of filling, we now feel a filling and in it we feel a reward and love.
Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 108: This is similar to a well-known tale about a Jew who was a house trustee for a certain landlord. The landlord loved him dearly. Once, the landlord went away, and left his business in the hands of his substitute, who was an anti-Semite.
What did he do? He took the Jew and struck him five times in front of everyone, to thoroughly humiliate him.
This is about the ego and about the point in the heart in a person, about how the ego dominates a person now and beats the “point in the heart” called “Jew” (Yehudi), which stems from the Hebrew root “unity” (Yehud). This point wants to unite with the Creator and suffers because it cannot do so. This means that it receives blows from its ego.
Upon the landlord’s return, the Jew went to him and told him all that had happened to him. His anger was kindled, and he called the substitute and commanded him to promptly give the Jew a thousand coins for every time he had struck him.
The Jew took them and went home. His wife found him crying. She asked him anxiously, “What happened to you with the landlord?” He told her. She asked, “Then why are you crying?” He answered, “I am crying because he only beat me five times. I wish he had beaten me at least ten times, since now I would have had ten thousand coins.”
In the earthy representation of this story, this seems coarse and egoistic, but we understand that the Torah tells us about a person’s internal world. Whoever understands this interprets it correctly.
“A person is a small world,” in which there are two opposite sides: a point in the heart and the heart itself. The heart hates the point in the heart that yearns for unity with the Creator.
The greater the desire to receive that is revealed in us, called the cruel egoistic heart, the more strongly it seizes the point in the heart and doesn’t let it advance. The point in the heart makes different attempts to escape it and to advance, and so it suffers from its domination and from its own slavery, from the tormenting exile. The tension and the struggle between them constantly grow and the point in the heart feels more and more pain since it cannot unite with the Creator.
This creates a vessel and so the filling arrives, which is called “upon the Landlord’s return.” The reward is felt in the same sufferings, in the same empty places that were created during the exile. This means that it isn’t the desire to receive itself that becomes in order to bestow, but the struggle against it
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/25/12, “The Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot”