Baal HaSulam, “Introduction to The Book of Zohar,” Item 69: When one increases one’s toil in the internality of the Torah and its secrets, to that extent, one makes the virtue of the internality of the world—which are Israel—soar high above the externality of the world, which are the nations of the World.
So everything depends on preferring internality to externality. These two parts are essential in the Torah, in our actions, in our intention, in our desire, in everything. We should always distinguish between what is more internal and what is more external and prefer one to the other.
Thus a person focuses himself on the right goal and advances. In fact there is nothing else we should do but to prefer internality to externality all the time, to clarify what is internality and what is externality, and to prefer one to the other.
A person is like a dipole, or like the needle of a compass. I prefer that the needle would constantly point at spirituality as a result of placing it on top of corporeality. Whatever is closer to bestowal, to the internality of the group, to the internality of the world, to concentrating my efforts, should always be above anything corporeal. This clarification is actually the only thing I am required to do at any given moment, and nothing but that.
Question: How is the thought of creation integrated in this division into internality and externality?
Answer: How could the thought of creation be fulfilled if we didn’t have the freewill to prefer internality to externality? This is how we fulfill it.
The thought of creation is to do good to His created beings, to bring man to the Creator’s level so that he will be independent and will also resemble the Creator. This is already two opposites: How can you be independent and at the same time resemble the Creator? This is a paradox. So we always work in faith above reason, in bestowal above receiving.
The externality is close to my ego, it is my life; I want that my self-love, my desire to receive, will always be full and that it will feel good. I want to feel good and comfortable in it, that everything would be nice and peaceful. The internality is bestowal: It’s worrying about others, adhesion to the society and the teacher, and through them, adhesion to the Creator.
If I don’t prefer one to the other, how will I choose? How can I form myself? This is all my work. Without this I will not be able to form myself in any way.
When a person wants to acquire a form, he summons the Light that Reforms and it does the work. But without a person’s yearning there is no independence and there is no attainment of the Creator since there is no vessel, there is no desire.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/3/14, Writings of Baal HaSulam