Lesson No. 1: The Spiritual Ladder
The Spiritual Process That One Must Undergo
1. This wisdom is no more and no less than a sequence of roots, which hang down by way of cause and consequence, by fixed, determined rules, interweaving to a single, exalted goal described as “the revelation of His Godliness to His creatures in this world.”
Writings of Baal HaSulam, “The Essence of the Wisdom of Kabbalah”
2. The thought of creation is to delight His creatures and no pleasure is perceived by the creature while he must be separated from the Creator. Moreover, we learn that the Creator craves to dwell in the lower ones.
Zohar La’am – Two Points #121
3. It is written in The Book of Zohar, “There is no place vacant of Him.” The fact that we are unable to feel him is because we lack the vessels of sensation. Just like we know that the radio receives sounds that are present in the world, since the receiver does not make the sounds, but rather, the sounds are already present in the world, though before we had the receiver we were unable to feel (hear) the sounds even though they were already in the world. Similarly, we understand that “There is no place vacant of Him”; all we need is a receiver to feel it. The receiver is called adhesion and equivalence of form, which is “the will to bestow.” When we acquire this receiver we will immediately be able to feel that indeed “there is no place vacant of him” and that “the whole earth is filled with his glory.”
Writings of Rabash, “From Your Actions We Know You,” Vol. 3
4. It is said that there are 600,000 souls, and each soul divides into several sparks. We must understand how it is possible for the spiritual to divide, since initially, only one soul was created, the soul of Adam HaRishon.
In my opinion, there is indeed only one soul in the world. … The same soul exists in all the children of Israel, complete in each and every one, as in Adam HaRishon, since the spiritual is indivisible and cannot be cut. …
Yet, saying that there are 600,000 souls and sparks of souls appears as though it is divided by the force of the body of each person. In other words, first, the body divides and completely denies him of the radiance of the soul, and by the force of the Torah and the Mitzva, the body is cleansed, and to the extent of its cleansing, the common soul shines upon him.
For this reason, two discernments were made in the corporeal body: In the first discernment, one feels one’s soul as a unique organ, and does not understand that this is the whole of Israel. And this is truly a flaw; hence, it causes along with the above-mentioned.
In the second discernment, the true Light of the soul of Israel does not shine on him in all its illumination force, but only partially, by the measure he has purified himself by returning to the collective.
The sign for the body’s complete correction is when one feels that one’s soul exists in the whole of Israel, in each and every one of them, for which he does not feel himself as an individual, for one depends on the other. At that time, he is complete, flawless, and the soul truly shines on him in its fullest power, as it appeared in Adam HaRishon.
Writings of Baal HaSulam, “600,000 Souls”
5. “If you shall walk in my laws and keep my commandments to do them.” Here the Holy Zohar asks: “Since it already said walk and keep, why also ‘to do’ them.” And it answers: Whoever does the commandments of Torah and walk in His paths; it is as if he made Him above, and the Creator said: It is as if he made Me. And this is the meaning of “And you shall do them” – as if you ‘made’ Me.” And it is important to understand the meaning of ‘whoever walks in the ways of the Lord, he makes the Lord.’ How could such a thought even enter into one’s mind?
Behold, it is known that “the whole earth is filled with His glory.” […] However, the Creator concealed it to make it impossible to see, in order to allow for choice, and this makes room for faith—to believe that the Creator fills the whole world (universe) and surrounds the whole world. And only after one engages in Torah and Mitzvot and keeps the commandment of choice, then the Creator reveals Himself to him, and then one is able to see that the Creator rules the world.
It follows that, then one is able to “make” the King to rule over him, which means that he feels that the Creator is the one that rules over the whole world, and this means that one “makes” the Creator to be King over him. But as long as he does not attain this feeling, the Kingship of the Creator remains in concealment. And this is what we say: “On this day the Creator will be One and His Name One,” meaning that the glory of His Kingdom will be revealed upon us.
And this is the complete correction that we must reach in this world, and by this we draw all the goodness in the world, meaning that all the abundance from above is drawn from our engagement in Torah and Mitzvot, with the intention to draw His blessed Kingdom upon us.
The Writings of Rabash, Vol 2, Article 76
6. We have gathered here to establish a society for all who wish to follow the path and method of Baal HaSulam, the way by which to climb the degrees of man, and not remain as a beast, …
Each of us follows the spirit of bestowing upon the Creator. And to achieve bestowal upon the Creator, we must begin with bestowal upon man, which is called “love of others.”
And love of others can only be with revoking one’s self. Thus, on the one hand, each person should feel lowly, and on the other hand, be proud that the Creator has given us the chance to be in a society where each of us has but a single goal: for Divinity to be among us.
And although we have not yet achieved this goal, we have the desire to achieve it. And this, too, should be appreciated by us, for even though we are at the beginning of the way, we do hope to achieve the exalted goal.
The Writings of Rabash, “The Purpose of Society – 1”
7. It is hopeless to wait for a time when a solution is found for allowing one to begin the work of the Creator in Lishma. As in the past, so in the future—every servant of the Creator must begin the work in Lo Lishma, and from that achieve Lishma.
And the way to achieving this degree is not limited by time, but by its qualifiers, and by the measure of one’s control over one’s heart. Hence, many have fallen, and will fall, in the field of working Lo Lishma. […]Yet, their reward is nevertheless great, since one’s mind cannot appreciate the true merit and value of bringing contentment to one’s Maker. Even if one works not under this condition, since one is not worthy of another way, one still brings contentment to one’s Maker.
Writings of Baal HaSulam, “One Commandment”