LESSON 1: THE ESSENCE OF ACHISHENA (HASTENING)
What is the Optimal Hastening Toward the Goal of Creation?
The Path of Torah and the Path of Suffering
What are the Conditions to Advance in Achishena (hastening) Versus Beito (in due time)
Actualizing Achishna in the Group
Time requires Advancement in Achishna for the General Correction of the World
1. There are two authorities here acting in the conduct of development: The one is the authority of Heaven, which is sure to turn anything harmful and evil to good and useful, but that will be in due time, in its own way, in a floundering manner and after a long time. And then there is the authority of the earth. And when the evolving object is a living being, it suffers horrendous torments while under the “press of development,” a press that carves its way ruthlessly.
The authority of the earth, however, is comprised of people who have taken the laws of development under their own government and can free themselves entirely from the chains of time, and who greatly accelerate time, the completion of the ripeness and correction of the object, which is the end of its development.
-Baal HaSulam, “Peace in the World”
2. There are two forces that contradict each other, an upper force and a lower force. The upper force is, as it is written, “Every one that is called by My Name, and whom I have created for My glory.” This means that the whole world was created only for the glory of the Creator. The lower force is the will to receive that argues that everything was created for it, both corporeal and spiritual things, all is for self-love.
The will to receive argues that it deserves this world and the next world. Of course, the Creator is the winner, but this is called the path of pain. It is called a long way. But there is a short way, called the path of Torah. It should be everyone’s intention—to shorten time.
This is called Achishena – I will hasten it. Otherwise it will be Beito – in its time, as our sages said, “rewarded—I will hasten it; not rewarded—in its time,” “that I place upon you a king such as Haman, and he will force you to reform.”
– Baal HaSulam. Shamati 50, “Two States”
3. The Creator Himself puts one’s hand on the good fate by giving him a life of pleasure and contentment within the corporeal life that is filled with torment and pain, and devoid of any content… And one’s choice refers only to the strengthening… to strengthen in the good way by all sorts of means and tactics. Also, one should do whatever his hand finds the strength to do until he completes the work of purification.
-Baal HaSulam, Introduction to Talmud Eser Sefirot, Item 4
4. One cannot raise oneself above one’s circle. Hence, one must suck from one’s environment. And one has no other counsel, except through much work and Torah. Therefore, if one chooses for oneself a good environment, one saves time and efforts, since one is drawn according to one’s environment.
-Baal HaSulam, Shamati 225: “Raising Oneself”
5. But the most important is the labor, meaning to crave how to labor in His work, since the ordinary work does not count at all, only the bits that are more than the ordinary, which is called “labor.”… Similarly, out of every service, the Creator draws out only the bits beyond the ordinary, and they will be the letters and the Kelim (vessels) in which to receive the light of His face.
-Baal HaSulam, “Letter No. 38″
6. By which substance can one be brought to acquire a new quality that he must bestow, and that reception for self is faulty? This is against nature!
Thus, there is but one counsel: Several individuals must come together with the desire to abandon self-love, but without the sufficient force and appreciation for bestowal[…] Now, if these individuals annul before one another, since each of them has at least potential love of the Creator, though they cannot actually keep it, then by each joining the society and annulling oneself before it, they become one body.
For example, if there are ten people in that body, it has ten times more power than a single person does. However, there is a condition: When they gather, each of them should think that he has now come for the purpose of annulling self-love. It means that he will not consider how to satisfy his will to receive now, but will think as much as possible only of the love of others. This is the only way to acquire the desire and the need to acquire a new quality, called “the will to bestow.” And from love of friends one can reach love of the Creator, meaning wanting to give contentment to the Creator.
-Rabash, The Writings of Rabash Vol 1, “Love of Friends”
7. It is impossible to keep the Torah and Mitzvot without the Arvut, namely, when everyone becomes responsible for his friend, since the essence of keeping the Torah is in Behinat Haratzon (the will) in unity. Hence all who desire to accept upon themselves the Torah and Mitzvot … must be included in the assembly of Israel as one big collective … and thus they are able to be included in the upper will, which is the purpose of Unity.
-Likutei Halachot, “Laws of Arvut”
8. One who desires to serve the Creator in Truth, must include himself with all creation and unite himself with all the souls, be incorporated in them and they in him. Meaning, that one should not have anything remaining in him except what is necessary for him to connect with the Shechinah. To reach this, we must come closer to each other and be connected with many people… since according to the number of people who serve the Creator, the more light of the Shechinah will be revealed to them. For this one must include himself with all people and all creation, and raise everything to its root, as if for the correction of the Shechinah.
-A Banner over the Camp of Ephraim, “Parashat BeShalach”