Baal HaSulam, “Matan Torah” (The Giving of the Torah), Item 16: For then, each member of the nation was asked if he agreed to that exalted work. And once each and every one in the nation agreed to it in heart and soul, and said “We will do and we will hear,” it then became possible to keep the whole of the Torah, and that which was previously impossible became possible.
To reach the state of receiving the Torah, first we need a heaviness of heart that is called the Egyptian Exile, darkness with heaviness of the heart, a reaction from the ego, the desire to receive. The more that it grows, the more terrible it is and kills the person. We must feel that the Creator is concealed and we have a great need to discover Him, meaning discovering the characteristic of bestowal.
Specifically the Creator is what is called the discovery of the characteristic of bestowal, and not some mystical power that serves us the way we imagine within our ego.
We decide that the desire to receive is darkness to us, and the desire to bestow is the Light. And it is impossible to receive the Torah, meaning the Light that corrects us and raises us above the desire to receive to the desire to bestow, except in a group that will be big enough in intensity, quantity, and quality.
In this group we must gather people who support each other and are ready to devote their lives for the benefit of the society. They are sure that the best thing is to be dependent upon the opinion of the society.
This doesn’t mean that a person throws himself egoistically into the hands of the society so that it will be concerned about him and he doesn’t need to think about anything. He also doesn’t do this absent-mindedly, throwing himself into a group and thinking that whatever will be will be. No, rather the concern in overcoming his ego, in understanding all of his power, emotion, and intellect, is that he nullifies himself towards the environment, rising above his emotion and intellect.
Being a very wise, sensitive, mature, and serious person, he nullifies all this and accepts the opinion of the society, which is the opposite of all of his knowledge. He sees that this completely refutes his healthy intelligence, his logic, his mental strength, and his vision of the world; he discards all of his data and nullifies himself toward the society.
Just imagine what kind of difficult work Rabbi Yosi ben Kisma did in nullifying himself before his students. Certainly he didn’t actively show this to them in order not to ruin them. But he himself accepted being in the small, wretched, beginners group that the Creator arranged for him, and made himself even less and lower than them.
In order to get energy for spiritual advancement, a person must nullify himself towards the group. This is done “above reason” and is extended into all areas of life, but this happens only after many very serious calculations.
From the 4th part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/26/14, Writings of Baal HaSulam