Correction is possible by great sufferings that cannot even be described since it requires the full recognition of evil in each individual property in order to refuse to receive in each one and to move on to the path of bestowal. This path is impossible since a person cannot bear such sufferings.
Therefore, the advancement is usually somewhere in the middle, between the path of sufferings and the path of the Torah (the path of the Light), between “I shall hasten it” and “in its time,” along what is called “Derech Eretz (the path of earth).” A person advances as he is pushed from behind by the sufferings or drawn forward by the Light. He cannot be on the same path all the time.
It’s impossible to move to the path of the Torah from the beginning, unconditionally, but to the extent that we try to do it—especially by actually building the Shechina, which means by building the connection between us in mutual bestowal, according to our exertion and our responsibility for others—then, to that extent, we leave the path of suffering and advance towards the goal along “Derech Eretz,” along the middle road.
It isn’t that the “middle line” is better for our spiritual ascent, but the “middle road” is a compromise between the two roads on which we should remain. The only choice is to strengthen our society so that it will influence everyone. We should see the friends as the area where the Creator will be revealed, the attribute of bestowal. Thus I see my soul and not myself.
A person can check himself and his advancement according to how he worries about the friends and the group so that the revelation will take place in them, like a mother who worries about her babies. Then one can be sure that he understands what advancement means, that he knows what to add to it, and that he can actually fulfill this in this world now and bring his intention to wholeness.
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/4/13