If we begin to explain to a little three or four-year-old child our adult problems, obviously according to his mental, psychological, and spiritual development, he will be incapable of understanding them. He is not interested in them and they are not included in his definitions at all.
This is how we read books written by Kabbalists; we must try to realize that we do not understand what they say at all.
Let’s say we read the article “Concerning Love of Friends,” but we do not know what friends are or what love is. “Friends” in spirituality are parts of my soul; however, I do not feel them in this way. I immediately confuse the word “friends” with usual friendship in this world: with acquaintances, someone it is nice to spend an evening with or travel with, or with childhood friends.
However, here it has a completely different meaning. I want to reveal my soul, the eternal part of reality, but so far I only have a temporary, illusory existence in our imaginary world that really does not exist. Therefore, I must understand that the books speak of my eternal soul, which appears to me in the form of some special people I was brought together with by an upper governance, by the broken network of connections between us.
It is necessary to form a representation of such a system within ourselves, albeit still imaginary, but as close to the spiritual one as possible. Apart from this, we need to accurately define who is “a person” in general and “friends” in particular, and what is “love of friends”? Friends are not those with whom it is nice to hang out with, have a drink, a meal, or to dance or study with.
Friends are a special spiritual connection, which is not for the purpose of bringing pleasure to each other. Pleasure can only be the means. But in fact, the love of friends is when everyone acts instead of the other. This is one of the difficulties of studying Kabbalah.
The second difficulty is that we perceive the Torah as a story about our world: as if there is time, movement, and space, which do not exist in the spiritual world. Therefore, this “story” that we hear from the Torah does not exist as well! There is neither Egypt nor the Egyptian exile.
I should not imagine this has ever happened in our world. The Torah describes not historical events, but the sequence of preparatory states that Kabbalists went through in order to achieve the true and the only existing perception of reality.
So, I too should constantly imagine myself not studying history that occurred in the ancient times with a group of people fleeing from one place to another. It is not about this, but about a person’s sensory impressions, finding oneself in a state that he defines as spiritual exile, exile from the spiritual world. Then it is possible to imagine what the spiritual redemption and development is. It is only about what is happening within a person.
Every day I want to separate myself more and more from the stories, from history and geography, and explain them to myself at the inner, sensory level: mine or someone else’s who wants to develop spiritually. All this applies only to the period of a person’s spiritual development. Therefore, “love of friends” and, in general, the entire Torah should be considered only in the internal form, in relation to our development.
From the 1st Part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 3/6/18, Lesson on the Topic: “Preparation for the Pesach”
The Correct Attitude Toward Sacred Books
Secrets Of The Sacred Books
TES: A Kabbalist’s Personal Diary