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Dinner for New Month of Tishrei, September 1996

The universe is made up of two components: the Creator and his desire to give pleasure and the creation and its desire to receive it. The desire to receive pleasure when corrected by an anti-selfishness screen is termed "Partzuf", a spiritual element. When the Partzuf allows the light of the Creator to enter and dedicates it to the Creator it realises the "Zivug de Aka'a." This action is termed "commandement". This light in the Partzuf is called "Torah". Whenever man performs a physical commandement with spiritual intention he receives the light of Torah. His selfishness is corrected and two worlds are united.

While observing the commandements in this world, man still needs to define what he wants to obtain. Mechanical observance does not lead to spiritual progression it only places man on a "spiritually inanimate" level. Only intention can help man enter the spiritual world. It also defines his spiritual level and the degree of perception of the spiritual light, the Creator. "A commandement without intention is like a "spiritless body" meaning that it is performed on the "spiritually inanimate" level.

The teaching of the proper intention is the purpose and task of Kabbalah. Kabbalah represents the hidden part of the Torah and is based in its preliminary teachings on the study of man and on how to define one's true intentions. Finally man becomes aware of his selfishness and true nature which foster his desire to receive pleasure without considering other people's opinions, thoughts and desires.

When embarking on his spiritual journey, man does not know why he gets up early in the morning, studies and attends lectures. All this is takes place unconsciously. Only once the Creator has revealed Himself to him does man understand he was guided to act in such a way and everything becomes clear. The worlds cannot exist without man who perceives them. Only when man perceives one of the fragments of the infinite and smooth light does he call "his world" the fragment perceived. Conversely all the degrees of the world are latent in man. These degrees of spiritual knowledge correspond to the progressive acquisition of knowledge located beyond the limits of our world.

Man is a selfish point in creation and he must ripen spiritually to progress. Only this maturation - that is to say the opening of the point in the heart - matches the initial incentive, all other actions stem from it.

We are only animated by the desire to feel pleasure at all stages of our development. This desire is termed "Klipa" (shell, husk) because this force protects man as long as he has not reached the level where he wishes to remove the skin to enjoy the fruit.The fruit is the mended Klipa, the desire to bestow without return, to please, just like the Creator. The Klipa is a spiritual force. The Klipa's spiritual body is composed of a head and a body. The head of the kilpa is termed "knowledge" and the body "desire to receive". The "head" of a spiritually pure body is called "faith above reason" and the "body" is named " the action of bestowing without return". Only assiduous study can lift man above undesired states in which he helplessly wallows. Daily study purifiies our thoughts and sets us moving in the right direction.

Question: Whydo we say "Le'Chaim" - to life - when we drink ?

Wine symbolises the light of Hochma, the light of life. In order to stress that we receive the light of life with the help of a screen we say "Le'Chaim". That way the received light shines upon us in the name of life. It is not incorrectly received via desires which are not repared-mended. If this were the case, the light would disappear and bring "spiritual death".

Question: Arethere wrong or useless questions?

No, because if there is a question this means that a desire needs to be satisfied hence the question has the right to be asked. As for the answer it is a little bit more complex. It is sometimes not possible to provide an answer due to the fact that the feelings of the questioner differ from those of the answer provider. One must find an answer to his own questions.

If man has spiritual worries this means that there are personal ties between him and the Creator. Even if they are not clearly felt these ties exist. Only man can find his own answers even if he does not understand what is going on. The spiritual world is nothing but the desire to receive and the screen (Masach) which opposes it. Decision making in the Kli (vessel) begins either with a desire (the selfish Kli) or the Masach (a spiritual Kli bestowing without return) or their merging (spiritual Kli receiving).

Man must strive to accept everything that happens to him as all events are a means to progress spiritually. There is no one recipe for any particular case and man must find out what he can or cannot do as well as apply the methods exposed by our masters. When man realises that after having tried everything he cannot escape the small universe of his selfishness, he calls God and cries out for help. Selfishness feels that it is the beginning of the end. Only in this dead end situation can the Creator help man because man is now ready to accept His help.

We will all reach the state of "Gmar Tikkun", the final correction. Whatever happens we will all reach our root in the "Ein Sof" (infinite world). Everything is geared towards the final correction, the end of selfish desires.The notion of "infinite world" in everyday life radically differs from its true meaning in Kabbalah.

The study of true sources can speed up our progression towards the spiritual and allow us to live the spiritual in this life. This way is called the way of the Torah. Progression can also occur through suffering, following the reincarnation of the soul but in any case the result is the same. The way of the Torah does not mean reducing suffering or avoiding it. This is not the driving force of the one who follows the way of the Torah.

Man transforms suffering induced by worldly selfish desires into suffering corresponding to a lack of spiritual and thus shortens the time left to reach his goal.

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