We are made from the substance of the will to receive, like all of creation. But in contrast to all the rest, the human knows how to divide himself into two: into action and intention. It is possible to act like all of the still, vegetative, and animate nature, or like little children who play without any inner intention, taking what they want for themselves.
But when the child grows and takes the image of man in this world, it is no longer possible to know his intentions from his actions. It could be that the deed is a deed of bestowal, but as usual, the intention is for the sake of receiving. This means that our bestowal requires compensation in exchange and we are always acting for our own good.
From here it is clear that if we don’t change ourselves, then we act only for our own good. And because the ego grows all the time, then all of our activity is based upon the new ego and the intention becomes more and more egoistic. That is how we advance until the gap between our actions and intentions is made so great that we begin to pay attention to it.
When we see an old movie that was made fifty years ago, it seems really childish. Although they show strong and heroic people there, all of their speeches and their actions seem naïve like those of little children. This is because the ego was still small, not like in our time; their behaviors seem naïve and primitive to us. The action and the intention are very close to one another, the deed precisely matches the intention like with a small child. There are no devious political calculations behind all of it.
But in our times, the ego has developed so much that it brings us to despair because we see that every action in our world is only with an intention for oneself alone. We no longer believe in advertising, in nice promises, in words or actions, we no longer believe anyone, not politicians or simple people. We don’t even believe the members of the family, for we see how much each one is an egoist and is concerned only for himself, both children and the parents. So we are moving far away from each other. It is clear to all of us that all of our deeds are only for our own good without consideration of others at all.
Even if we are concerned about someone else, this is only because of feeling a connection with him, and as a result of that, his problem becomes our problem. So we think of him as we think about ourselves. But essentially this is only an egoistic calculation, for there is nothing else. That is how we reach recognition of the evil of our nature, understanding that everything is “for the sake of reception.”
The ego develops so much that it is not possible for us to connect to anyone. In the previous generations the ego was still not so developed and we would not use it in such a coarse form as today. But in our day nobody matters to us and nobody is ashamed of anything, rather he is even proud of his ego.
Politicians and businessmen no longer try to disguise their activities and appear to be nice. Each one acts according to his desire, fearing only punishment, and making a simple egoistic calculation.
And this is good because it is a sign that our generation has reached the recognition of the truth about itself. We have finally understood who we are and in what kind of a world we exist, and in what kind of connection we find between us. All connections have been made simple and clear, between nations, between people, in every city and family. As long as it is good for me with them, I will remain, and the moment that it is bad for me, I will leave everything.
There is no other calculation. Nobody speaks about patriotism, about self-sacrifice for the sake of the motherland or for the sake of someone else. A modern hero is famous for the number of people that he killed in a movie and not how many people he saved.
The question is can we continue to exist like this? If we continue to develop our egoistic nature, whose source is the desire to receive, then without shame we begin to use our ego instinctively like animals.
Animals act instinctively according to the inner program that is implanted in them, and humans can exist only if some kind of connection exists between them, like ants in an anthill. We are seven billion humans, each one must be aware of his place, his role, and his obligation. And that is how, through reciprocal work, we will build a secure life for ourselves.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 7/13/14, Shamati #60