Question: How does love change from stage to stage? What are the types of love?
Answer: What is considered to be love in our world is not considered to be love in Kabbalah.
Earthly love is narcissism. All of our emotions enter into it, and the love spoken of in the wisdom of Kabbalah is already love in itself, for regardless of whatever negativity that we feel within our ego toward the source of love, we love it in spite of this feeling.
This is not masochism. Rather, it is suppression of the ego in opposition to which it is possible to love, and if not “in opposition,” then this says that we love ourselves, our ego.
Therefore, all the types of earthly love—toward a child, toward a husband, toward a wife, no matter toward whom or what—all this is narcissism.
In this manner, detachment from earthly love takes place throughout the length of all 125 levels, and only to the degree that we reject our ego is it possible in this degree to reach a neutral characteristic, after that to the characteristic of bestowal, and after that, to the characteristic of love, which is to receive in order to bestow, and that is how it is on every level.
In other words, we first make a restriction (Tzimtzum) on each level by closing our ego, and after that, we reach the stages of impregnation (Ibur), breastfeeding (Yenika) and a large state (Mochin).