Question: After the First and Second Temples were destroyed, did the Jewish people feel and remember their foundation established by Abraham? Did the people of Israel remember around what they were created and consolidated? Did this foundation live among them?
Answer: Yes and no.
After the destruction of the Second Temple, the people fell from seeing the inner picture of reality, the managing forces, everything that happens in the world, and again found themselves in mutual hatred, mutual rejection, and mutual distance from each other, with an indifference that characterizes us even today.
Exiled from the land of Israel, we passed through many lands and turned to the West, to Europe, to the East, to the Arab nations, and we began to sink into apathy. Since then, what has held us together is not the power of love, nor belonging to one idea, not mutuality, not connection, and not mutual help without any calculations, but only the desire to survive. We were stuck to each other like sheep flocking together and facing wolves, but we didn’t hold ourselves together.
Basically our situation has been like this throughout the entire exile until this very day, which is the entire two thousand years.
Question: What role did religion fulfill in this?
Answer: Religion helped people in this state of absolute detachment from spiritual sources, from understanding, from everything. It simply strengthened and supported them in this low and abject state so that people could be involved in carrying out some kind of worldly activities, also called Mitzvot, and thus would maintain themselves in this manner. Religion is what is left and what was given to the people after the destruction of the Temple, instead of the wisdom of Kabbalah.
The wisdom of Kabbalah opens the heavens, reveals the Creator, and reveals the power of unity to the people. Through realizing it between them, they discover the Creator, who is found among them, and who makes it possible for them to live within a sensation of a completely different reality.
And when all of this was lost, we acquired our present form. This pertains to everyone, except for a few Kabbalists in every generation who wrote books and developed this method, and who continue to work to attain the Creator and unity between us.
From KabTV’s “Babylon Yesterday and Today” 9/24/14, Part 7