A person goes through several phases before he reaches his first spiritual correction, the equivalence of form with the Creator. The word “place” is often used in reference to the Creator. Why is the Creator called “place”?
A place is a desire. A place that has received the attribute of bestowal is actually the Creator’s image. So, all the intentions, all of a person’s work, should be aimed at the same place: in order to correct his desires so that they should be in order to bestow. The image of the Creator that is revealed in the corrected place, which means in the corrected vessels, is already the result of the influence of the two lines.
The first phase of a person’s correction is when he stops thinking about himself and already begins to understand and to feel that the correction is fulfilled only though connection. A person already understands that he must be in a group that is considered one with regard to the Creator. Gradually, he understands the concept of connection and doesn’t see himself as a separate part from the group, as being cut off from the general. As it is written: “…for I the Lord dwell in the midst of the children of Israel.”
Thanks to his work in the group in order to attain mutual guarantee, the friends’ thoughts, and the influence of the Light that is drawn by our collective efforts, a person reaches this state when he begins to look at everything from the center of the group. Then, he feels a new hardening of the heart, and he must reach the right “place” over and over again. After a while, he understands that he has undergone a change that didn’t seem important before. The public opinion, the state of the group, becomes very dear to him.
The people in the group become important and dear to him, and he begins to worry about them more than about his own children. It is because he feels the family on the corporeal, physical level, while he feels the friends on the spiritual level. He understands that he has an obligation to his family, but he begins to fully enter the hearts of the friends, wants to live there, and to guarantee them all the best. Eventually, the state of the friends determines and dictates all his thoughts and actions, and determines what he worries about, like a mother who only worries about her baby, and everything that she does is for him. This is how a person begins to treat his group.
Gradually, the concept of the Creator is cleared in the group according to a person’s efforts to arrange and to picture the general vessel, the corrected place, the one general heart and mind, and the pain that he feels at the moment since he cannot reach such unity, and according to such efforts, the Creator’s image starts to become clear to him in this one unified group.
The Surrounding Light influences him through his yearning for the center of the group, for the desire to see that everyone is corrected and delighting the Creator who is revealed according to a person’s efforts in the group. Thus, a person gets closer to the Creator through the group.
At the moment, we don’t understand how a person can lose himself in the group and at the same time, feel that he exists, that he acts and operates. From the perspective of his ego, his self totally disappears, but, from the perspective of bestowal, it actually grows until a person rises to the level of the Creator that is revealed in the group. Baal HaSulam says, “It is natural that, when the Light of the general illuminates, the individual is nullified with regard to his own self and he doesn’t feel himself,” but he does feel the general and the Creator in it!
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 1/12/14