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The symbols of this holiday are a masked ball, a frivolous atmosphere, cheerful parades, costumes, masks, and tasty gifts, but first it is necessary to reach this state.
The attributes of the Purim holiday are not accidental. When we study the Book of Esther, we see that it is far from simple. According to the explanation of the wisdom of Kabbalah, the Book of Esther and the Purim holiday sum up the entire process we must pass through during the thousands of years of our development on Earth.
The holy Ari writes to us that in the future all festivals will be cancelled except Purim, the Book of Esther. The reason for this is that there was never a greater miracle than this; this illumination exists only during Purim. In the future, you will truly have a carnival.
In fact, on Purim we receive everything, and what is found below the level of Purim is simply unimportant. This speaks about the completion of correction and the end of development through which humanity attains its summit. It is immeasurably high, beyond time, space, movement, and above this world and this life. We rise to a completely different dimension to an absolutely different spiritual reality.
It is impossible to describe existence within it using the words of this world because there is nothing like it here. This is an existence without deficiency and without birth and death that are integrated into our lives like a shadow of an impending end. Spiritual life is unending, filling the senses and the mind. It is attainment, understanding, providence, and a feeling that is developed and revealed to a greater and greater degree.
This is what Purim symbolizes and embodies for us.
From a radio program on 103FM, 1/3/15
A commemorative holiday is a special date in the spiritual work that has nothing to do with the other days of the year that correlate to the movements of the sun, the moon, and the earth.
When a person ascends to a level of a special holiday (Moadi), it affects his past, present, and future, and everything he has done throughout his life in a special way. What is more, it can raise him to a new level either temporarily or permanently.
These special holidays differ, but each time they have a qualitative effect on a person, and therefore they are noted in the Torah.
All that is said in the Torah says and that we should know is about the spiritual ladder on which we ascend by correcting ourselves as compared to the Creator. There is nothing but that.
Our lowly, worthless, empty life and every event that takes place in our life is added to this ladder since it is based on the correction of the desire. The desire is the only matter of creation that includes the levels of evolution of the still, vegetative, animate, and speaking nature.
The desire grows continuously, rises, and is corrected. This movement perceives and absorbs the matter of all the worlds and the force that controls this matter.
These special dates are special levels on which there are vertical and horizontal elevators as a result of previous accumulated merit. They suddenly erupt, connect and therefore provide the result.
The vertical elevator refers to descents and ascents, while a horizontal elevator refers to the connection of a great number of small souls, of fragments, that on the current level suddenly begin to merge. Even in our world, a commemorative date is a massive event.
Theses include the rise of individuals in their comprehension and creation also can be attributed to them, but only one that develops in our perception of something massive. Thus, these two phenomena are part of the commemorative dates.
Consequently, there are horizontal elevators for the masses and vertical elevators that connect the holidays, interestingly, complementing one another. On the one hand, a single figure has an impact on history, and on the other hand, the masses have an impact on history. History means advancement.
The question is whether one can be used instead of the other. Practical experience shows that a housewife cannot run the country, but will the masses be able to replace a special figure if they are connected?
This is possible when a perfect correction is attained. In this case, the masses become the most outstanding figure by perceiving and absorbing all the individual Kabbalists and becoming as one man in one heart like at the gathering at Mount Sinai.
Comment: But then Moses was the leader.
Answer: Moses is the collective figure of the nation that yearns for the Creator who can gather and assemble its highest points that are detached from whatever is below. The sum of these yearnings is called Moses.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 6/11/14
The Torah, “Leviticus,” 23:4 – 23:8: These are the Lord’s appointed [holy days], holy occasions, which you shall designate in their appointed time: In the first month, on the fourteenth of the month, in the afternoon, [you shall sacrifice] the Passover offering to the Lord. And on the fifteenth day of that month is the Festival of Unleavened Cakes to the Lord; you shall eat unleavened cakes for a seven day period. On the first day, there shall be a holy occasion for you; you shall not perform any work of labor. And you shall bring a fire offering to the Lord for a seven day period. On the seventh day, there shall be a holy occasion; you shall not perform any work of labor.
Question: Why is it forbidden to work on the first and last days of Passover?
Answer: It is because we distinguish between two states in the spiritual work: awakening from below and awakening from Above.
During the awakening from below we evoke the cooperation between the Light and the vessel by our yearning. The Light corrects the vessel and gives it the right intention. During the awakening from Above, this work is fulfilled from Above but only because we have created all the right conditions for it in advance.
We make efforts, thus creating the right conditions for the first and last days of the holiday since the week of Passover has to be closed at its ends by states in which we don’t do anything since the upper Light does all the work. The first day of the holiday is the beginning of the exodus from Egypt. The last day is the end of the exodus that seals it.
It is important to say that the nations of the world have different calendars. The Christian calendar is based on the movement of the sun. The Muslim calendar is based on the movement of the moon. While the Jewish calendar takes the movement of the sun, the moon, and the earth into account since the earth is the central object between the sun and the moon.
On the one hand, we take the year into account, which means the revolution of the earth around the sun, and on the other hand, we take the month into account, the revolution of the moon around the earth, and compare the two. Thus the Jewish calendar doesn’t change and so, for example, we can calculate in advance which day of the week will be the first day of Passover in another 35 years.
What is more, based on the comparison between the movement of the sun, the earth, and the moon, we can say that Passover cannot be on certain days of the month. This means that everything is accurately related to the general astrological system.
Question: The Torah refers to holy assemblies several times. Why do we have to gather in Passover?
Answer: Holy assemblies during Passover are the most important thing for the Israeli nation since it is actually thanks to their desire to unite that they need to come out of Egypt.
A person’s union with a group of people, with the society, with the nation, or with the whole world is actually different levels of the exodus from Egypt (from the ego). When we attain the force of unity, a certain tension, this exodus, the detachment from the ego, takes place.
It is always among us, separating us and making us feel repulsed by one another. If we begin to compress and condense it, try to unite and connect to one another, then the exit from the ego begins the moment we first attain unity.
On the first day of Passover (the exodus from Egypt) we begin to tighten this connection. Then we work on it during the week and totally unite on the last day of the exodus from Egypt. From that moment on we are a united nation.
But in the meantime, people don’t understand what they should do, although there is a direction that spurs the desire to escape from the ego. But it is merely an animalistic instinct without the proper awareness. People will acquire the recognition when they gather at the foot of Mount Sinai.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 5/28/14
A child who is born in this world, for example, is the same child after a year only on a larger scale: in his mind, feelings, and his understanding—everything.
It is the same on the spiritual levels, on all 125 of them, since the lower level is connected to a higher level. A person always aspires to be on an higher level; this is what growing means.
The details on every level of a certain connection are the same, just like on the previous levels, but the connection becomes increasingly more altruistic. This is the only thing that changes. Therefore, our world is absolutely similar to the spiritual world, but their relationship is not similar, but inverse.
Our world is below the first level, like a cellar. Suppose that there is an elevator in a 125-story building that goes down to that floor below the first floor—which is the floor on which we live. However, the ascent from that floor is by a special key that is inserted into the elevator, and raises us.
In order to ascend from the very dark basement floor to the first floor, there is a need for an inversion because the elite live on the first floor and we aren’t allowed there. We must change completely in order to integrate in the new society. We need the most serious preparation in overcoming, correcting, and preparing ourselves.
All the next levels are merely in a relative ascent compared to each other, which means that the current level is a bit more qualitative than the previous one, and the next level is even more qualitative, and so on. We already know in which direction we must develop, performing increasingly more sophisticated actions with regard to others, by deeply understanding and cooperating with one another.
Question: Does this mean that we are working in the basement now and that our goal is to come out?
Answer: That’s right, and how can you guess what is happening above? There is thundering music there, a dance, and the souls are celebrating—the souls and not the bodies! Here, the bodies are busy with wars, conflicts, and mutual hatred.
We cannot even imagine that when the elevator raises us we will see a fantastic, whole, and eternal world that is in perfect harmony and total connection and continuous exciting motion that fills and reveals the unity of creation.
Question: How do we feel that if we are siting in the basement? After all, are you saying that you still can hear the laughter and the music that comes from the upper floor?
Answer: It is with the help of the group and the teacher who can guide us like a tour guide. If we listen to him and try to establish such relationships in the group, we suddenly will begin to discover this music in our attempts, the special filling in the new sense, and the exit from self, a certain elevation to new dimensions.
The teacher must hint at that, and we must try to do everything that he says, no matter what attempts we make, no matter if we are disappointed by the outcomes. We only must lower our heads when facing the waves that come along. They must pass above you, and you will still reach your goal.
Thus, a critical mass of impressions that are not from this world is accumulated inside us. Even if they are not very accurate but rather foggy and created as a result of internal emotional hints, a person begins to get closer and closer to the first floor since an illumination operates on him from there. He hears music and senses the scents.
The elevator rises slowly and although a person is still in the dark, he feels from a distance that there is something out there, and that something is revealing in an increasingly clearer form and soon will be revealed.
The gap, between what he feels in his assumptions and the place where he is, grows bigger and bigger. His feeling that he is in the dark increases, and he is not enthusiastic about getting closer to the spiritual floor, but rather, he sinks into a great depression. This is the problem! It isn’t a physical ascent, but an opposite ascent.
Therefore, the general connection among us in the group together with the teacher, with studying according to a strict schedule, raises people. It is only that! Neither the mind nor a special feeling will lead to anything, but only blind stubbornness to reach the goal. We must hold to this by our teeth and keep on doing whatever needs to be done. Therefore, it is accessible to everyone.
From KabTV’s “Secrets of the Eternal Book” 12/18/13
The Zohar, “The Night of the Bride,” Item 126: Then those who feared the Creator spoke with each other, and the Creator hearkened and heard, and a Book of Remembrance was recorded before Him for those who fear the Creator and honor His name. “They shall become chosen for Me on the day that I shall determine…” (Malachi, 3:16 – 3:17).
…The thing is that at the end of correction, when the great general Zivug of Atik manifests, great Light will be revealed in all the worlds, and in this Light everyone will return to the Creator in absolute love.
After all of the corrections, the great operation must occur that completes all the particular actions, both in quantity and in time, that connect everything into the general adhesion with the Creator.
Question: Who are those who “fear the Creator?”
Answer: Those who fear the Creator are the parts of the desire that pass through corrections. Every layer within the desire to receive, including the still, vegetative, animate, and speaking, works according to its laws and is found within a system of particular forces.
The level of the speaking must be aware of the higher power that manages and animates everything. A person’s work is to acquire a desire for whomever leads him, to become aware of the Master, meaning to ascertain whoever it is that is doing all of this and how he is doing it. As it is written, “…for they shall all know Me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them…” (Jeremiah 31:33).
It turns out that it is up to us to acquire such a great need for the Creator, His might, the desire to attain Him, to understand His actions in all of their depth and essence, and understand why and why He is doing this. To understand the Creator is possible only from the opposite state, “…as far as light excelleth darkness” (Ecclesiastes 2:13). Otherwise, we will have no feeling. The feeling is built from the resistance between two opposites.
So, the greater the darkness and the Light, the good and the evil, are in contrast to each other, our feeling is more intense. Besides the intense feeling, the intelligence develops that helps one to feel, understand, digest, and move closer to the good, or conversely, to move away from evil.
It is up to us to prepare an empty desire that corresponds in every way to the Light but in the opposite form, in other words, Malchut of Infinity is completely darkened in all of its intensity and all of its parts precisely match Malchut of Infinity that is filled with Light. However, it is clear that we are not ready to tolerate darkness like this, for we flee from even the smallest problems, as it is written, “…a thousand enter a room, and one comes out to teach” (VaYikra Rabba 2). After all, we don’t even tolerate the smallest darkness in our lives, and spiritual darkness is much more terrible than physical darkness; it is a terrible feeling.
So, we must receive support from the group and the importance of the goal that we receive by means of the Light, and then with their help, it could be that we are able to leap above the suffering, above the feeling of emptiness within our desire to receive, above the lack of expected fulfillment.
I must feel the empty Malchut of Infinity. This is called the “illumination of Malchut,” an especially difficult feeling that is worse than death. It is as if you find yourself on the threshold of a black, infinite, endless abyss, facing a thundering silence. This is a terrible feeling.
The creature is not prepared to tolerate even a drop of this feeling so that afterward, in contrast, he will discover the Light as good. This is not possible; so the great desire is divided into a multitude of desires for many generations in time and people in a plurality of states in each of them.
All of the particular corrections are gathered, and in the end they bring us to the completion of correction (Gmar Tikkun), to the day of the marriage, and in that marriage, all of us are “friends of the bride,” in other words, the desires of creation.
From the 3rd part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/23/14, The Zohar
Chapter 5: Pariahs
The Roots of Anti-Semitism
Throughout history, never has a nation been more persecuted than the Jews. Throughout history, never has a nation survived every single persecution and emerged stronger every time.
The apparent indestructibility of the Jews raised many questions, albeit more among non-Jews than among Jews, as the Jews were too preoccupied with survival. Renowned German writer, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, expressed his bewilderment over the Jews’ tenacity in his book, Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre [Wilhelm Meister’s Apprenticeship]: “Every Jew, no matter how insignificant, is engaged in some decisive and immediate pursuit of a goal… It is the most perpetual people on earth.”[i]
Similar to Goethe, Cambridge professor, T.R. Glover, underlines the conundrum of Jewish existence in The Ancient World: “No ancient people have had a stranger history than the Jews. …The history of no ancient people should be so valuable, if we could only recover it and understand it. …Stranger still, the ancient religion of the Jews survives when all the religions of every ancient race of the pre-Christian world have disappeared … The great matter is not ‘What happened?’ but ‘Why did it happen?’ Why does Judaism live?”[ii]
Likewise, Ernest van den Haag, professor of Jurisprudence and Public Policy at Fordham University, wrote, “In a world where Jews are only a tiny percentage of the population, what is the secret of the disproportionate importance the Jews have had in the history of Western culture?”[iii]
The French mathematician, physicist, inventor, and philosopher, Blaise Pascal, was fascinated with the Jewish people’s antiquity. In his book, Pensees, he wrote, “This people are not eminent solely by their antiquity, but are also singular by their duration, which has always continued from their origin till now. For, whereas the nations of Greece and of Italy, of Lacedaemon, of Athens and of Rome, and others who came long after, have long since perished, these ever remain, and in spite of the endeavors of many powerful kings who have a hundred times tried to destroy them, …they have nevertheless been preserved.”[iv]
Indeed, as countless renowned individuals throughout the ages have noted, the Jews cannot be annihilated. The Jews have a mission to fulfill, and until they do, Nature, God, the Creator, Yahweh, or however you may choose to call Him, will not let it happen. And yet, as long as Jews continue to avoid assuming their intended task, they certainly can, have been, and will be tortured and slaughtered almost to extinction. To unearth the roots of the Jewish Via Dolorosa through history, we need to journey back in time to the onset of Creation.
In Chapter 2 we noted that the Creator has but one desire—to do good to His creations, namely us humans. But because we currently have no perception of Him, we cannot receive from Him.
When we want to give a present to a friend, we approach that friend and give it. There must be contact between the giver and the receiver. Just so, for Him to give to us, the Creator and Creation must connect. And upon connection, as we quoted Baal HaSulam, “One feels the wonderful benefit contained in the Thought of Creation, which is to delight His creatures with His full, good, and generous hand. Because of the abundance of benefit that one attains, wondrous love appears between a person and the Creator, incessantly pouring upon one by the very routes and channels through which natural love appears. However, all this comes to a person from the moment one attains and onwards.”[v]
This, we said in Chapter 2, arouses the need for “equivalence of form,” that is, to be like the Creator, having a nature of giving. Regrettably, the vast majority of us have no desire for it; we vehemently resent giving unless we have some underlying profit, an ulterior motive to do so. RASHI, the great commentator on the Bible, wrote that the verse, “The inclination of a man’s heart is evil from his youth” (Genesis 8:21), means that “As soon as one is shaken out of his mother’s womb, He [the Creator] plants in him the evil inclination,” which, as said in Chapter 3, is egotism, the desire to receive for ourselves.
Therefore, considering that the Creator is benevolent and that we are the opposite, the clash between man and God seems inevitable. How can we ever attain Him if He has made us inherently opposite from Him? The remedy to egotism lies in what we described earlier as “the point in the heart.” That thirst to understand what life is about, and what makes the world go around (and it is not money), is the yearning that enabled Adam, Abraham and his progeny, Moses, and the entire nation that arose out of the pariahs from Babylon, to develop a correction method that turns the evil inclination into goodness.
[i] Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre (Berlin (Germany), Johann Friedrich Unger, 1795-1796), 359.
[ii] Glover, The Ancient World, 184-191.
[iii] Ernest van den Haag, The Jewish Mystique (US, Stein & Day, 1977), 13.
[iv] Blaise Pascal, Pensees, trans. W.F. Trotter, Introduction by T.S. Eliot (Benediction Books, 2011), 205.
[v] Ashlag, Talmud Eser Sefirot (The Study of the Ten Sefirot), Part 1, “Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sephirot,” 31.