Question: At what stage of the work does a person attain freedom of will?
Answer: Only after he has acquired a soul, after spiritual revelation.
A spiritual Partzuf is divided into two halves: the upper half-Keter, Hochma, Bina, Chesed, Gevurah, and the upper part of Tifferet; and the lower half, the lower part of Tifferet, Netzach, Hod, Yesod, and Malchut; and between them, the third part of Tifferet.
The upper part is comprised of desires to bestow, and the lower part is made of desires to receive. What is the middle then, the third part of Tifferet? It is not related to reception or bestowal, and here is where the freedom to choose what will you do with it is.
But you, like Buridan’s donkey, can’t pick either direction, are torn apart, unable to make a choice, until we discover that herein lies an opportunity to unify these two halves: the upper and lower halves to work together in the third, middle line!
I unify these two forces, the force of bestowal and the force of reception, and they start governing me together. This is called “receiving in order to bestow,” when the two forces work in harmony with each other.
This is the essence of Kabbalah, and for this reason it is called “Kabbalah” (reception); after all, it teaches how to receive these two forces, bestowal and reception, in such a way that they complement each other. And thereby you build your independence, true freedom.
You are independent of the Creator and simultaneously like Him! You learn from His example while remaining totally independent. You don’t have any other model to follow because receiving these two forces is mandatory. But how to accept them and be like them, in that, you are totally free.
Here, in middle between these two forces, in the middle third of Tifferet, lies our soul that we are constructing ourselves. The freedom of choice begins with the revelation of the Creator. It is written: “The dead are free,” which means that when egoistic desire dies, the two forces, reception and bestowal, stand facing each other, and you are between them, and then you are free. After all, you can work with both these forces equally.
Even though it seems to you that you are standing between them not knowing where to move since on one side you have the desire to receive and on the other the desire to bestow, but when one destroys the other, only in this condition, are you in a neutral state and may act freely.
As for now, we are all under the authority of the only desire to receive, and we have no desire to bestow. Therefore, until we have acquired the will to bestow, we are as beasts controlled by nature; but once we have obtained it, we become free and solely in the desire to become similar to the Creator and construct a human (Adam), which means “similar” to Him.
From a lesson, 10/8/10, BaalHaSulam, “The Freedom”