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Sixteenth Talk: Intent "For the Sake of the Creator"

We can consider the desire to receive as the desire to bestow. If I know that you will enjoy the fact that I take your gift I will certainly take it. A taker within myself turns into a giver by giving you the pleasure from receiving your gift. Hence I use my own desire to receive but in a different direction. This new use of my natural desire to receive is known as “correction”. I become free from my desire, as though I stand away from it, I'm not subject to it. I prefer not to take anything rather than being a slave to my desire.

When accepting your gift, I should show an immense joy, so that later I could bring this joy to you. This way, my desire itself doesn’t change; the change is only in its use.

Desires are always sorted into lighter and heavier, according to their use, according to the enjoyment revealed, and to the possibility of turning reception into giving. It is important to separate a desire from its clothes, to see it in its pure condition. It opens up a new possibility to use this desire from the lightest part to the heaviest. But as each part starts revealing itself we first must perform a restriction on it, saying: “Yes, this is the enjoyment, but I can stop using it and resist it”. That’s how I draw a parallel between the host, the pleasure and myself.

And then it’s just a matter of a game. A certain desire comes to me. After I refuse it completely, I receive as much as I can take for the sake of the host. That’s why our work is named “mating while striking" when we stop our enjoyment by the means of a screen, push it away, and then accept as much as we can in order to give to the Host. I have to correctly use all the means at hand. But first, at least for a minute, I have to dissociate myself from everything that comes to me.

Then, discussing the purpose of creation, connection with the Creator, I have to direct each of my actions toward the Creator. That’s how I have to treat all my desires. Then the enjoyment received from them will multiply. And it means that I increase my vessel of reception for pleasure. It’s only necessary to use desires correctly, meaning to constantly analyze what is occurring at every single moment. In this process, the articles and letters of Baal HaSulam and Rav Baruch Ashlag provide great assistance.

Advancement consists in understating of what happens. I am not a master of my desires and pleasures. Only permanent analysis of the events leads us to the correct use of all our desires. We have to direct our thought at why such a desire is given to us, for what, how we should react, and why it is worth doing? And in some sense, we have to look at it from the outside. Through these examples a man learns why the Creator does all this to him. Sometimes he is given such desires that he cannot resist, and sometimes such desires that are not possible to fulfill.

It is only necessary to keep everything under control and to constantly monitor. Often what is important when handling a certain event is not the man’s reaction by itself but the experience acquired during that event. But we cannot give a correct evaluation to what is happening. It does not matter if it looks like a sin or a transgression in our eyes. Indeed, such an action could be very useful and wanted for us. The Creator gives us all such sensations for acquiring certain experience and knowledge.

As a result, the man will understand that he nevertheless feels pleasure without any connection to the Creator. This realization will put him into a terrible condition of realization of evil from his own egoism and will be so strong that he will then desire to sacrifice his personal enjoyment once and forever, to renounce it.

But the Creator wants us to enjoy, this is expected as the Goal of Creation, and the enjoyment must be genuine – with the intent to give it to the Creator, and not on the animal, selfish level. The attitude towards the enjoyment will change fundamentally.

All creation represents the desire to receive. That is, the feminine basis versus the Creator who is the desire to give, the masculine basis. Creation, in its turn, is also subdivided into male and female parts. If creation becomes similar to the Light and reaches its form, then it is termed as a masculine part. And if it remains outside of the Light, receiving, as an animal, then it is termed as a feminine part. This is how desires are classified from the point of view of the correction of creation. But besides correction, there is also a natural subdivision, where the masculine part is the first nine Sefirot, and the feminine part is Malchut.

In our world, everything takes place as a result of the division of Adam’s soul into 600,000 souls in the spiritual. These parts are in various degrees of correction, and each time they have to perform either male or female functions, that is, sometimes they have to follow the right line (giving, male), and sometimes – the left line (receiving, female). All the Names in Torah are spiritual attainments in the ladder of ascent. But for attainment of every Name it is necessary to play intermittently both male and female parts, which symbolize right and left lines. For example, at the levels of Pharaoh, Moses, Israel, Nations of the World, there are male and female sides, but each Name is attained only once at a certain level.

A man and a woman together represent a Zivug between Zeir Anpin and Malchut of the world Atzilut, whose essence and degree of connection give a certain name to the higher level each time. Male and female states are constant states at all 125 spiritual degrees.

So, how should we behave: me who was born as a man, and my wife who was born as a woman? All of us should act according to the opportunities we receive at any given state.

Despite that all of us are egoists and see only self-profit in everything, first of all, we should thank the Creator for giving us the opportunity to see the truth about ourselves, even though it is not very pleasant.

For a woman, it is easier than for a man to find inner strength for handling events at home or at work with her mind rather than feelings, even though some things may affect her heart and trigger a wild response. We need to learn how to take it easy with everything, look at everything from the outside.

That is all our work: to be a host of every situation, to control one’s feelings. Of course, one may explode, but then one needs to analyze why it happened, and what needs to be done next. This way, step by step, we separate brain from heart, mind from feelings.

Introduction to the book of Zohar says: “And the worlds condescended to the reality of our corporeal world, the place where the desire to enjoy acquired the shape of a body. And what was fulfilling a body became a soul. And this was the time of damage and correction.”

“Body” means the desire to receive selfishly, for one’s own sake. It propagated from the root of the thought of creation through the whole system of impure worlds, becoming coarser and coarser, and it was under the influence thirteen years. This time is named “the time of damage”.

Then, by the means of commandments directed towards giving to the Creator, the body starts purifying itself from the initially embedded desire to receive selfishly, and then it gradually acquires the desire to bestow. This enables the body to receive the Creator’s light, the soul that descends from the root of the thought of creation. The soul also passes through the whole system of impure worlds and clothes into the body. This time is named “the time of correction”.

Then man faces a ladder of spiritual steps that, as per the thought of creation, descend from the world of Infinity. This ladder is used to help him ascend, to acquire the intent “for the sake of the Creator” until all his actions become completely altruistic (receiving only for the sake of giving to the Creator and nothing for man’s own sake). By doing this, man reaches a complete unity of his properties to those of the Creator, merging with Him, because receiving for the sake of giving is equivalent to pure giving. Hence, man is honored to receive all the huge and infinite enjoyment, which was meant for him by the Creator in the Thought of Creation.”

It is not possible to turn the desire to receive into the desire to give; the desire to receive is something that represents man’s “I” and stays with him. It is only necessary to attach the intent “for the sake of giving” to this desire, that is, to alter the direction of his further enjoyment. Then the man’s body (i.e., his desires) starts improving (e.g., for 10 grams), becomes purified and able to accept to be fulfilled with the Creator’s light, which, in turn, when descending down from above, diminishes itself down to 10 grams of the corrected body, to be able to enter it. The two systems of worlds – holy and impure – work simultaneously and help each other in correcting a human. Each spiritual step acquired by a man helps him to climb another one and finally reach the last step, acquiring eternity, perfection, and a fresh view of birth and death.

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