Rabash, “Shlavei Sulam,” 1985/86, Article 21, “Above Reason”: The envy that he feels toward the friends when he sees that they have better qualities than his own, it motivates him to acquire their good qualities, which he doesn’t have and of which he is jealous.
Thus, through the society, he gains new qualities that he adopts by seeing that they are at a higher degree than his, and he is envious of them. This is the reason why now he can be greater than when he didn’t have a society, since he acquires new powers through the society.
I envy my friends in a good way. I do not want them to be worse than me; I want to rise to their degree myself. And to do this, I need to be integrated into them.
I do not compete with them in studies on the basis of envy. We are talking about a property of bestowal, getting closer to the Creator, and that is why I have to learn from the friends how to become more giving. I will not manage without being integrated into them.
Thus, spiritual envy is opposite to the material one. Material envy places a person in the “black list” of those without whom my life would have been calmer, but spiritual envy prompts me to join him in spite of my nature, my desire. I need to “embrace” him internally, so he helps me rise to the same degree. Thus, spiritual envy awakens a greater internal effort due to which I break my egoism and turn it into a “lever” for advancement.
It turns out that envy in a group is a great force that comes from the friend whom I envy; the force that helps me rise above my egoism and connect with the friend.
But apart from that, I also need the power of the group that will help turn the destructive potential of envy into creative.
After all, at the beginning, my envy of the friend is so terrible that it is similar to hatred. He causes a negative, bad feeling in me because I feel that he is higher than me. Thus, he reveals a new “hollow,” an emptiness, a lack, a need for something in my desire. And as a result, I envy him; I hate him because he is better; he has an addition that I don’t have.
Thus, the friend forms a desire in me and pushes me to advance only if I use my new need correctly. How can I turn it into bestowal, into correct fulfillment, the same as he has?
First of all, we need some closeness, some relationship, unity. Otherwise, I will not be able to see anything in him and will have nothing to envy. That is why we are called friends because we are linked.
Besides that, I need to recognize that addition in him, which I lack myself. A strong need is formed within me, and I treasure it. It is very important not to erase his addition and my new desire against the inner background of perception, but on the contrary to start working on it, so that it becomes the same that my friend has.
So, all this is done by means of the group’s opinion. You will not manage without it; neither will you manage without a friend. Both these factors affect me and play a crucial role in advancement.
As a rule, I feel envious of individual friends, not of the group as a whole because it is “blurred” in my perception and not directed exactly against my egoism so I could aim at a particular property.
Well, next I make the actions possible for me, and then the Light, the Creator, completes what has been started… The Light always “finalizes” our endeavors.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/7/13, Preparation to St. Petersburg Convention, “Principles for Building a Better Environment,” Lesson 4