Spiritual qualities are given different names: Nefesh (soul), Ruach (spirit), Neshama (soul). We begin to join the spiritual world by receiving the level of Ruach.
Nefesh, is the level of the inanimate of Holiness, when a person cannot move by himself. He comes to the lesson and thinks that everything is fine, that nothing more is required of him: today is the same as yesterday and tomorrow will be the same as today. He doesn’t explode and doesn’t feel sorry that he remains in the same state, but is rather happy that another day has gone by and that everything is fine. He accepts the daily routine.
But it is also an achievement if a person is in the group, trying not to interfere with its advancement, ready to join everyone, and to support it. He supports what the others are doing. But doesn’t show any special initiative; he doesn’t have the level of Ruach. There is no new force growing in him. And so he is called Nefesh de Kedusha (of Holiness).
But he still comes to the lessons and studies. I wish the whole world were on the level of Nefesh of Holiness. Nevertheless, this is called “spirituality” of the level of Ruach. Ruach means that a person already has something he can add. He doesn’t agree to remain on the level of the still nature. If he sees that nothing has changed since yesterday and that it won’t change tomorrow, then for him it is like being dead.
It isn’t just a state of motionless still nature, but a feeling of death, which means that it is the worst state. And so he asks himself, what else he can add. In the meantime, the only thing he can add is his actions. Baal HaSulam says in the article “The Freedom” that a person has no other means to change his state but by choosing the right environment.
A person who chooses a stronger influence of the environment is praiseworthy. It is through this that he can advance and not thanks to good deeds. He cannot do any good deeds, since we are not the masters of our actions. But thanks to having chosen a good environment that can influence him strongly, he begins to move.
In order to start moving by yourself and turning from the inanimate into the vegetative level, to rise from the level of Nefesh to the level of Ruach, to become a spiritual person, I have to constantly evoke those around me and to choose an increasingly stronger environment that will influence me more and more strongly and help me become more spiritual.
By such actions I constantly add from myself to the group and it constantly influences me and I yearn for spirituality, for bestowal, more and more. It turns out that I add to bestowal and finally I attain the next level that is called Neshama.
I act towards all the others and am influenced by them through the group that influences me. Thus, with its help, I constantly influence myself and raise myself. The environment serves as a lever to raise me higher and higher.
I rise through the environment and I want to start evoking myself, to connect to it in the most efficient and practical way. I want to increase my hold on spirituality so as not to be passive under its influence and wait for it to change me, but I want to bestow upon the environment myself, to make it stronger, so that it will influence me more strongly. Then we connect with the environment and raise one another to the spiritual world, this means that I attain the level of Neshama.
The main thing here is not to relax so that “each day is like the other.” There must be constant renewal, every moment, if not, then you will immediately fall to a state of death. It isn’t so easy to rise from the state of death. It is impossible to do it by one leap in order to return to the previous state. It is impossible to return to the same state. We have to make a correction: a new birth and new growth, everything anew.
But if a person doesn’t feel that he has to rise anew, it means that he doesn’t even feel his death, but that he has actually lost his consciousness.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 12/28/13, Writings of Rabash