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Michael Laitman, PhD

Chapter 2.11 – Linking the Worlds

Reality consists of a Creator, or the will to bestow and give pleasure, and a creature, or the will to receive pleasure. There is nothing else in our reality except these two components.

When the will to enjoy is corrected through a spiritual screen that acts against egoism, it is called a Partzuf, which is a spiritual object. When the Partzuf receives pleasure in order to please the Creator, performing Zivug de Hakaa, this act is called a Mitzva, and the Light that enters the Partzuf is called "Torah."

If a person can receive the Light of the Torah into one's corrected egoism while performing a physical Mitzva, then he physical world and the spiritual world are now combined within that person.

In order to do this, one must first learn what one wishes to attain from this act. Simply performing Mitzvot (plural for Mitzva) gives no spiritual attainment, but only places one in a degree of "spiritual still." Only one’s aim - its power and direction - can bring one into the spiritual world and determine the spiritual degree and extent of sensation of the Upper Light (attainment of the Creator) that will be achieved.

It is said that a "Mitzva without an aim is like a body without a soul." This means that a Mitzva without an aim is "dead" in the spiritual sense. It is in a degree called "still."

The purpose of Kabbalah is to teach us how to aim correctly. That is the reason that Kabbalah is called "the wisdom of the hidden." Only the individual can know what he or she aims for, and sometimes even that is unclear to the person involved.

Therefore, Kabbalah teaches us to examine our exact intentions so we will eventually begin to feel our egoism and our real essence - the desire to enjoy without any reservations or consideration of the needs of others.

In the beginning of our spiritual quest, we cannot quite understand why we become so engrossed in Kabbalah, and engages so heavily in the study. We do those things without any awareness of our motives. Only afterwards, when we discover the Creator, do we to see and feel how we've been led from Above, and then it all falls into place.

All the worlds have been prepared in advance within us. They do not exist without the perceiving person. One perceives only this or that section of the uniform and eternal Light that extends from the worlds. He refers to it as “our world” and gives these sections names. These names are spiritual discriminations that we make through which he begin to gradually attain the outside world, the world that is outside our own.

If we want to accelerate our progress, we must receive additional desire for spiritual elevation from one another, meaning we must cling to others' desires for spiritual elevation. However, we come in contact with many people who are not related to Kabbalah, and may thus pick up their thoughts and wishes. If we bring these external desires into the group, we will unconsciously "infect" our friends and obstruct their spiritual progress. That will turn against us in a form of weakness and lack of motivation for the study. Hence, all of us must be very hesitant in our choice of environment and restrain our connection with it.

Our mission is to clean ourselves entirely from external issues, whether good or bad according to our current opinion. We must live only our pure selves, through which we will be able to feel the Creator. We can advance using our own vessels (desires), or we can use vessels that come from a superior Partzuf, meaning the vessels of our teacher.

Rabash had many students who would get together once a week to stimulate feelings about the importance of their work. This would help create a collective vessel. Every Kabbalist since the time of Rabbi Shimon Bar-Yochay held weekly assemblies of friends for this purpose. The Ari and Rabbi Moshe Chaim Lutzato (Ramchal) wrote about such assemblies, as well as other Kabbalists in Russia, among which are some of the greatest teachers of the previous generations.

The influence of the outer society awakens our beastly desires, which become a serious obstacle for spiritual progress. We must avoid the company of people who try to influence us, either consciously or unconsciously. Even speaking to such a person can result in a loss of spiritual achievements that took months to attain.

I do not wish to encourage isolation from society, but a beginning student must be extra careful regarding the knowledge that he or she absorbs. After all, our only free choice consists of choosing the right environment, meaning the society that we join and whose influence we are subject to.

We are but egoistic points that should ripe to spiritual work. This "point in our heart" that opens and ripens is the root and the beginning of everything. All other activities are but consequences and results of that point. The only thing that was created is a will to receive pleasure, meaning a desire to enjoy for one’s own gratification at varying degrees of evolution.

The desire for self-indulgence is called a "shell”. It covers us until we develop enough to ask to be rid of it in order to reach the fruit itself, the corrected shell itself.

The corrected shell and the fruit are a desire to bestow, to give and receive pleasure, like the Creator. A shell is a spiritual concept; its spiritual body consists of (like the body of a pure Partzuf) a Rosh (head) and a Guf (body). The Rosh of the shell is called Daat (wisdom) and the Guf of the shell is called “reception”. The pure Rosh is called “faith above reason” and the Guf itself is called “bestowal”.

Only a group of friends united by their desire can bring others out of the situations they fall into, where they are unable to control and criticize themselves. If one meets with friends on a day-to-day basis, it helps purify one's thoughts and give a thrust forward in the right direction.

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