Answer: The Torah speaks only about person’s spiritual path, about his spiritual elevation. Bilam is a great negative force, the opposite side of Moses. In order to reach the degree called Moses, first we will have to be at the opposite degree called Bilam.
It is necessary for us, like Moses; one cannot exist without the other. Similarly, Pharaoh is the opposite side of the Creator, equal to him in strength, but negative, not positive.
Question: So did Rabbi Shimon, the author of The Book of Zohar, exist both physically as a historical figure, and as a spiritual degree, but Bilam and Moses were not historical characters?
Answer: All characters of the Torah existed physically, but each of them played his spiritual role. Therefore, each of them personified a quality opposite to the one opposite to him. For example, Bilam personified the quality opposite to Moses.
In principle, the spiritual root must always touch its earthy branch once, embodied in matter. However, Kabbalah deals exclusively with roots. What do we care about historical characters? We are interested in ascending the spiritual ladder and going through all the states called Bilam, Moses, and so on.
From the Kabbalah Lesson in Russian 1/14/18