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Introduction to the Book of Zohar. Items 39-44

We continue studying “The Introduction to the Book of Zohar.” In this Introduction the Baal HaSulam tells us about the development of the human soul – from a small Reshimo, which awakens in man, up to the moment when he enters the spiritual world. First, in the form of a spiritual embryo, then as a child, and later on – as an adult, man becomes similar to the Creator and enters the sensation of eternity, infinity, and perfection. He rises above life and death, feels life as an endless process. Therefore, he naturally perceives his state in this world quite differently.

Each of us aspires to achieve such a state because the people who feel good do not come to Kabbalah. All of us need something, but mostly we are restless because of the tormenting question about the point of our life. The point of life can be attained as a result of the revelation of the Upper World, the Creator, the entire universe in which we exist (it is called the Creator on the highest level with regard to us). The remaining lower levels are called the worlds.

Kabbalah explains how man can go through all these intermediate states and rise from the level of this world to the Upper World, and then reach the highest level of merging with the Creator. Since it reveals the most important concerns in our life, man’s purpose, what he is going to achieve from his efforts in this world, this wisdom is vitally important for man. Because Kabbalah not only theoretically explains the existing reality, but also ushers the person into the Upper World, it is also important for the entire humankind.

We are just beginning to understand it and hope that others will soon realize it too, thanks to our efforts. The only means for entering the Upper World is the spiritual light that corrects us. We should expose ourselves to this light, so that it will pull us out of this reality into the sensation of the Upper World. Only during the studies can we tune ourselves up to this Supreme force (the so-called Ohr Makif – the Surrounding light). Being surrounded by the Upper Light is the most favorable state. We just need to prepare ourselves, be more sensitive to it, and wish to be influenced, corrected by this light.

The influence of the light depends on our desire, which can be increased at the expense of desires of other people. The way we receive desires for something in this world, from our environment, the virtual group, all of us should tune each other to the reception of the Upper Light and to spiritual ascent. When this becomes the most important thing in our life, when we need the influence of the Upper Light more than anything else, it will reveal itself to us and elevate us to the next level.

Therefore, during our studies we should imagine huge virtual groups with hundreds of people who gather and listen to us in Russian, Hebrew, and English all over the world. We should get to know each other well and encourage it in every way possible. We need to create a common webpage, post our photographs, and share our impressions. You should join this virtual group so that our spiritual aspirations will merge. Then the light of correction will shine upon all of us and elevate us to the Creator.

As a teacher and a guide, I only direct you to the Creator. Do not lock yourselves to me. Your opinions, desires, requests, and demands should be directed to the Creator alone. Even the questions you ask me on the forum, in your letters and in phone conversations should first be turned to Him. You may receive the answer and find the necessary solution within yourself. This will be the Creator’s reply to you.

After such attempts, when nothing is clear to you and it makes you suffer, you may turn to me. However, even in this case you may not receive my answer, because the answer to such questions should come from Above. As a teacher, I will not answer them.

Our advancement is directly connected with the higher spiritual level. We should try to demand the Ohr Makif from it , address all our questions to it and only from it receive the answers. The group, the teacher, and the books are only the means that help us to advance. This is the attitude we should adopt. Do not replace the Creator with Rav or the group, because they are only auxiliary instruments on our path to Him.

Now we will find out how to advance towards the Creator. The Baal HaSulam says:

39. We have shown that the Creator’s purpose is to bestow upon His creatures, so that they may know His genuineness and greatness, and receive all the delight and goodness He had prepared for them. We do not yet understand His purpose, but it will gradually transpire. It is most clear to the Kabbalists, on whose behalf the Baal HaSulam speaks. They attain the purpose, the meaning, and the final result of the entire creation.

After that, we (i.e., the Kabbalists) clearly find that this purpose does not apply to the still and the large planets such as the Earth, the Moon, or the Sun, however luminous they may be.

The Creator’s intentions refer neither to the vegetative nor to the animate level of nature (although they live some form of a biological life), for they lack the sensation of others(they cannot even develop it on their own level, let alone on the higher one).

They lack the sensation of others, of jealousy, envy, and real pleasures, even of the animate kind. Animals do not feel pleasure. All they do is dictated by their inner instincts. Since they are unable to absorb the desires of others, they naturally cannot enjoy the pleasures of others either. An animal may be either hungry or not, but it cannot get hungry by simply looking at another hungry animal.

Even on a primitive animate level, desires do not pass from one animal to another, even more the desire to attain a higher spiritual level, which is initially absent in us.

Suppose I have no idea what it means to be a scientist, a professor, or an actor. However, I look at them and see how they enjoy it, so I want to be like them. With the help of “Kinah, Ta’avah ve Kavod” (envy, craving for pleasures and the desire for honor and fame), I can acquire from others the tastes that are totally unknown to me.

This way, my Kli, my desire, can constantly grow, and I can infinitely develop it in our world by absorbing all the desires existing in the universe and even on the spiritual level. It resembles a hypothetical situation where, with the help of certain actions, a plant could turn into an animal, or an animal into man. However, only humans can rise to the Divine level. This is possible because the root of such a property is present in us – the sensation of another human being. This property is absent in the inanimate bodies, plants and animals.

We are born with only animal desires, purely animal instincts that existed in primitive people. These are our bodily desires for such natural pleasures as food, sex, home and family. Besides, as a result of envy man develops a desire to receive something that another person has, even if he does not really need it. Even if I have all that my heart desires, but there is someone who enjoys something else; then I want to receive that pleasure too.

Finally, the desires for power and honor bring me pleasure, because I feel people’s submission and respect. These are man’s ultimate aspirations in this world. It does not matter to me that I do not have it in my pocket; I enjoy people’s attitude toward me. This makes me bigger, more significant.

Envy, craving for pleasures, and the desire for fame and recognition develop man to such an extent that he can attach additional egoism from others to his own and begin to advance spiritually.

Man does not receive his desires only from the level of this world. He has a “point in his heart” – the egoistical spiritual desire. In Hebrew, it is called “Achoraim de Nefesh de Kedusha.” This is the egoistical desire of the upper level. I come to desire to control this Upper level, the Creator. I want Him to do what I wish. The attainment is not limited by the desires of this world; the process continues in the Upper Worlds. Always, my Upper level begins with my desire to enslave the Creator.

When I discover His properties and gradually reveal His perfection, it transforms me in such a way that I already wish him to enslave me, my egoism. I want Him to pass His properties to me, so that I may absorb them and become similar to Him.

However, everything begins with huge egoistical desires. Hence, it is said: “He, who is higher than another has greater egoistical desires.” One should not be afraid of that.

Therefore, a few months after the person begins to study Kabbalah, he suddenly notices that his egoism has grown. For example, he never dreamed about millions of dollars before, and all of a sudden, he realizes what the passion for money is. He never thought of honor and recognition, for why would he need that and from whom? From other two-legged creatures? Yet suddenly he begins to crave it; he wants people to pay attention to him. The person who was quite moderate in his animal instincts (food and sex) suddenly loses his mind. It becomes his inner obstacle, which gave him no trouble before.

Everything that happens to the person in the process of his spiritual growth is based on the development of egoism. It is said in the Babylonian Talmud that, since the destruction of the Temple (when we spiritually fell to the level of this world), the real taste for sex and the genuine egoistical desires (“sex” being the core of our animal pleasures) can only be enjoyed by those who aspire to the Upper World (“Ta’am Biah Nishar Rak le Ovdei HaShem”). We need to correct additional egoism for advancing spiritually.

Having realized that the Creator’s desire, the purpose of creation, is in bestowing pleasure upon created beings, we now clearly see that this purpose refers neither to the inanimate bodies nor to huge planets, since they have no sensation of others. Neither does it concern the plants and animals in our world, because they also lack such a sensation. How will they be able to feel the Creator’s goodness if they cannot even feel their own kind?

When we develop and reach the spiritual level called “man”, i.e., when our egoism is so developed that we want much more than others, we begin to envy them and desire whatever they have, although initially we never had such desires. We envy their pleasures, honor, fame, and wish to conquer the whole world. This is called the real man. He is still uncorrected, yet he is ready for it because he already has what to correct.

Man alone, after having been prepared with the sensation of others who are like him, after delving into Torah and the commandments, will turn his will to receive (egoistic, enormous desire acquired from outside) into the will to bestow, and come to equivalence of form with his Maker. Then he reaches the levels that had been prepared for him in the Upper Worlds. This is the way we ascend the Upper Worlds.

As we receive additional portions of egoism (from the left line), we begin to correct it with the help of the Upper Light by raising a request (commandment) and receiving the Torah (the light of correction) from Above. The correction occurs with the help of the right line, the descending light. Thus, we create ourselves in the middle line. Our egoism of the left line becomes similar to the Creator’s properties of the right line.

We build ourselves between the two lines, while receiving the NaRaNHaY on all the 120 levels of our ascent to the world of Infinity. The NaRaNHaY in the world of Infinity is referred to as the light of the Torah; its parts on the preliminary stages between our level and the world of Infinity are called Nefesh, Ruach, Neshama, Haya, and Yechida. While ascending the five worlds we receive the light of Nefesh in the world of Assiya, the light of Ruach in the world of Yetzira, the light of Neshama in the world of Beria, the light of Haya in the world of Atzilut and the light of Yechida in the world of Adam Kadmon.

As we ascend from the world of AK to the world of Infinity, we simply are included into the common light already called, not the NaRaNHaY, but the Torah. There are no distinctions or subtle nuances in it, just the perfect light.

Thus, rising from our world to the world of Infinity, we pass through the following levels: first “secret”, then “allegory”, after that “hint” and finally “simplicity”. It is called PaRDeS – Pshat, Remez, Droosh, and Sod. The Pshat is the simplest light in the world of Infinity; the Droosh (the light in the worlds of AK and Atzilut) is below it; then the Remez is like a hint in the world of Beria and Yetzira and the Sod in the world of Assiya and in our world, the secret, concealed light, which we neither feel nor understand.

Therefore the attainment of the PaRDeS occurs in the reverse order (from down upwards). This is what the Gaon from Vilna says in his prayer book: “The PaRDeS constitutes four different levels of attainment: first the simple, then a little deeper, then deeper still and finally very profound knowledge”.

Thus, we ostensibly attain the PaRDeS, but in fact, we just mechanically study what is written in the book, staying within the bounds of a simple learning of the text on the level of our world. In reality, the attainment of the PaRDeS, i.e., of the Torah in the world of Infinity is simple, like the light that is shining there, because even the NaRaNHaY becomes one simple light on that level.

Here the Baal HaSulam says that the common people who study the Torah think that everything is studied on our level and that the knowledge of the laws of the universe requires no spiritual ascent. He calls such people “philosophers” or “ Baalei Batim” (house owners), or sometimes “false sages”.

40. I know that it is completely unaccepted in the eyes of some philosophers. They cannot agree that man, whom they think of as low and worthless, is the center of the magnificent creation.

In other words, man should not ascend and absorb the entire Creation. Everyone except for Kabbalists thinks this way. Kabbalists, however, are convinced that just with the help of his egoism, and not through its suppression, man should take in this whole world and become similar to the Creator in his attitude to the universe.

The Baal HaSulam says: I know that it is completely unaccepted in the eyes of some philosophers… He speaks about “the know-it-alls” among us, who are not willing to grasp the universe and rise above it. They are like the worm that is born inside a radish and thinks that the Creator’s world is as bitter and dark as the radish it was born in. However, as soon as the shell of the radish breaks and it peeps out, it wonders and says: "I thought the whole world was the size of my radish…" This is what we say to ourselves today. Each of us feels this way before crossing the Machsom. “I thought the whole world was the size of my radish, and now I see before me a grand, beautiful, and wondrous world!”

So too are those who are sunk in the shell of the will to receive; they were born with (that prevents them from feeling something beyond themselves) , and did not taste the new means, new sensations and the divine properties (that would enable them to transcend the bounds of their egoism and feel the world beyond themselves) that can break this hard shell and turn it into a will to bestow contentment upon the Maker (i.e., become equal to Him). It is certain that they must determine their worthlessness and emptiness, as that is what they really are like, and cannot comprehend that this magnificent reality had not been created but for them.

Indeed, if they had delved into Kabbalah in order to bestow contentment to their Maker (if they had transformed their egoistic desires into bestowal upon the Creator). They would try to hatch from the shell they were born into and receive the will to bestow, their eyes would immediately open to see and attain all the pleasant and sweet, beyond words, degrees of wisdom, intelligence and clear mind, which have been prepared for them in the spiritual worlds. Then they themselves would say as our sages said: "What does a good guest say? Everything the host did, he did for me alone”. We should attain this level and see all that the Creator is doing for us. “All” implies the level of the world of Infinity.

We learn that the last level of man’s attainment is called the “Thought of creation”. The first, the second, the third, and then the fourth levels descend from there, from the four stages of the Straight light. The highest level consists of two parts. The lower part of this root level, Behina Shoresh, refers to us. The Upper Light descends from it and gives birth to Behina Aleph, the first stage of the Direct light, but this is the lower part of the root level. The upper part of the root level is the Creator’s Thought, where all that was created is inside Him, on His level. We should reach this level.

Although we are born on the lower part (zero stage), we have to achieve the Creator through our own effort.

Behina Shoresh consists of two parts. The first stage (the will to receive) is born from the lower part. Then the second stage (the will to bestow) emerges. Here the Creator’s action manifests with regard to us. His Thought is in the upper part (the zero stage).

We are born in the third stage, and then the fourth stage follows. Malchut transforms itself, performs Tzimtzum Aleph, acquires a screen,

and then ascends 125 levels through a long series of corrective actions. Although it was born because of the Creator’s action, by imitating His actions, it rises, achieves His Thought, and merges with Him, since “similarity” in the spiritual world implies likeness to the Creator’s actions – the desire to bestow. Our will to receive for the sake of bestowal is equivalent to the Creator’s bestowal.

It is said: “I will know You by Your actions”, (i.e., we reach the Creator’s level. “I will know You” means I will rise to the level of Your thoughts). This is what similarity gives us. Only after reaching the level of the Creator’s thoughts can we really say: Everything the host did, he did for me alone.

41. However, there still remains a need to clarify why man would need all those Upper Worlds the Creator built for him? For what use has he of them?

Bear in mind, that reality is generally divided into five worlds, which are Adam Kadmon, Atzilut, Beria, Yetzira, and Assiya. Indeed, in each of them there are an infinite number of details, which are the five Sefirot…

Each world consists of five parts, called Sefirot. I would call them five Partzufim: Galgalta, AB, SAG, MA, and BON, alternatively, Atik, AA, AVI, and ZON. It is not so important how we name them. The Baal HaSulam calls them Sefirot instead of Partzufim: Keter, Hochma, Bina, Tifferet, and Malchut. He does not wish to divide the worlds into Partzufim: five worlds with five Partzufim, five Sefirot in each Partzuf amounts to 125 levels. He wants to explain that:

Because the world of Adam Kadmon is Keter, and the world of Atzilut is Hochma, and Beria is Bina and Yetzira is Tifferet and the world Assiya is Malchut. And the lights that dress in those five worlds are called YHNRN, as the light of Yechida shines in Adam Kadmon (the most powerful common light of the Torah, which shines in the world of Infinity), the light of Haya shines in Atzilut, the light of Neshama shines in Beria, the light of Ruach shines in Yetzira, and the light of Nefesh shines in Assiya.

All these worlds and everything in them are included in the holy name Yud Hey Vav Hey, and the tip of the Yud. In the first world, Adam Kadmon, we have no perception. Therefore, the tip of the Yud of the name indicates it; we do not speak of it and always mention only the four worlds ABYA. The Yud is the world of Atzilut, the Hey is Beria, the Vav is Yetzira, and the bottom Hey is Assiya.

42. We have now explained the five worlds that include all the spiritual reality that extends from Infinity to this world. Indeed they are included one in the other and in each of the worlds there are the five worlds, the five Sefirot - Keter, Hochma, Bina, Tiferet, Malchut, where the five lights - NaRaNHaY are dressed, which correspond to the five worlds.

Besides the five Sefirot, in each world there are the four spiritual categories - Still, Vegetative, Animate, Speaking - where the soul of man is regarded as the Speaking in that world, and the Animate is regarded as the angels in that world. The Vegetative are called the clothes, and the Still are called the halls.

They are all dressed one into the other - the Speaking, which are the souls of people, are dressed in the five Sefirot: Keter, Hochma, Bina, Tifferet and Malchut - in that place. The Animate, which are the angels are dressed into the souls, the Vegetative - which are the clothes – dress into the angels and the Still - which are halls - encompasses them all.

The world of Assiya includes our world. The initial point of the Yud is in the world of AK and in the world of Infinity. That point is the beginning of the whole creation and the little tail beneath it points at what emerges and spreads from the point. This corresponds to Shoresh.

Why are these four letters used? This is because the point is a source of the light. If the source of the light moves to the right, it means the light of Hassadim. If it moves to the left, it is the lack of Hassadim. If this point goes down, it means the spreading of the light of Hochma, if it goes up – the light of Hochma disappears.

All kinds of combinations occur inside the construction of the Kli: Keter, Hochma, Bina, ZA, and Malchut. Each of these five desires has its own property and interrelates with the rest. In addition, we act with the screen and see how we can fill ourselves, so it turns out that there is never a “pure reception” or a “pure bestowal”.

“Pure receptions” and “pure bestowals” only exist in the world of AK. It is from there that the light spreads through the world of Infinity down to our world. The light, which descends from the world of Infinity to the world of AK splits, into Nefesh, Ruach, Neshama, Haya and Yechida, where they descend to us in their pure form.

The Galgalta is the light of Yechida, the AB is the light of Haya, and the SAG is the light of Neshama. When the two lights AB-SAG come to us, they correct and purify us with all their power.

They influence the Reshimo and the Reshimo (depending on its structure) chooses how much of the light of Hochma and Hassadim should affect it. Therefore, the Reshimo (its inner structure) determines to what kind of influence it will be exposed. Perhaps, the influence of the light on the Reshimo would be in the form of the letter “ Vav” – a little of the light of Hassadim and much of the light of Hochma, from up downwards. Alternatively, perhaps it is in the form of the letter “ Hey”, where in the “ Reish” (the massive spreading of Hassadim on the light of Hochma) there is a small “ Vav” inside. This letter consists of the two Partzufim, the inner and the outer, like a mother with a fetus (the tiny inner Partzuf) inside her womb. This characterizes Bina when it is the first (upper) “ Hey”. We will discuss the structure of the letters later on. They constitute the complete spreading of the light in all of its variations; hence, the name HaVaYaH implies the influence from Above.

The inanimate, vegetative, animate and human levels are divided into the Heichalot (the Baal HaSulam calls them halls, sometimes we call them houses), the Levushim (clothes), the Malachim (angels) and finally the souls (man).

As you may see, there is nothing regarding Keter because this is the Creator. If we begin to analyze how these spiritual levels are interrelated, we will discover that the soul is in the center, the angels dress on the soul, the Levushim dress on the angels and the halls dress on the Levushim. Inside the soul, a part descends from Keter. It consists of the ten Sefirot of the Straight light, the ten Sefirot of the “ Kav” (“line”).

Since the soul “dresses” on the Creator, it is in turn surrounded by the angels, the clothes, and the so-called halls. It is preferable to use the Hebrew names, because in Hebrew their structure and inscription include many different elements. These words are very meaningful and they include many levels of information.

Since the soul “dresses” on the Creator and the angels, the clothes and the halls dress on the soul, it becomes clear that the angels, the clothes and halls, i.e., the outer universe regarding the soul is only necessary for bonding this soul with the Creator, who is inside it.

Now we begin to deal with ourselves, and the Baal HaSulam speaks about our path from the lowest level. You will not find the things he so clearly and laconically explains in this Introduction anywhere else. He writes openly about the things that are normally ignored. How much of it can we grasp?

While reading these lines please let us think of each other, of how we can help each other by simply joining our desires. Let us assume there are 1000 men and women in the world, who simultaneously listen to me about the Creator’s revelation to man. Let us all together want it to happen to us. This is called the raising of prayer, of desire, that will be answered with the Surrounding light. It will, by all means, generate this action in us.

43. When man is born, he immediately receives a “holy soul”, Nefesh... Oh! If he only could have it… But he does not. So what do we actually have when we begin to aspire to the Creator? However, not an actual soul, but the posterior of it, meaning its last category, which is called a "point" because of it smallness. It is inserted in man's heart, in his will to receive, which is found primarily in man's heart.

Heart means all our egoism. There is a point in the heart – the reverse side of the soul, its beginning, its root. It is a tiny part that is destined to become the soul and will have to go through inversion in order to become a true point of the soul.

We feel it as opposite to our egoism. Even if I wish for the spiritual, my desire is absolutely egoistic. My point is called “a point in the heart”, because it is in the midst of my egoistic desires. It is in the center of my heart. For example, after satisfying all my egoistic desires of this world, I now want to grab the spiritual delights (I can think of no better word).

Know this rule, for all that you will find in reality in general, you will also find in every world, even in the smallest particles of it.

The same laws that rule in the universe influence the very last, microscopic part of it. The Hebrew phrase “ Prat u Klal Shavim” (the common and the individual are equal) explains the idea. This is because there cannot be even a slightest detail that would not consist of five stages of the Straight light. All that is concentrated in these five stages only spreads through the worlds from our first state to the third. Actually, nothing else was created except for these stages of the Straight light. Every minute detail consists of them. Therefore, “ Prat u Klal Shavim” is the general law of the universe, even its smallest part.

The smallest soul and the sum of all the souls are equal. There is nothing in the spiritual that would be bigger or smaller than something else would. Moreover, if one is against all the rest of the 599 999 souls, this one is equal to all the others. This is a marvelous property of the spiritual world.

Just as there are five worlds in reality, which are the five Sefirot, Keter, Hochma, Bina, Tifferet and Malchut, so too are there five Sefirot, Keter, Hochma, Bina, Tifferet and Malchut in, each and every world, and there are five Sefirot in the smallest particle of that world.

Everything is divided into five parts.

We have stated that this world is divided into the still, vegetative, animate, and human levels. They correspond to the four Sefirot, Hochma, Bina, Tifferet, and Malchut; or rather in the reverse order, Malchut, Tifferet, Bina, and Hochma.

Indeed, even in the smallest particle of each species in the still, vegetative, animate, and human levels, there are four inner categories: still, vegetative, animate, and human. The same exists in a single species, i.e., in one person…, in all of us.

Now let us understand what man is. Why should we think about anything else? We are the most active part of the universe, that which is destined to bring everything to the Creator. If we (the soul) merge with the Creator, then the halls, the clothes, and the angels will merge with Him together with us (i.e., the entire universe ascends to the Creator’s level). This depends only on our desire and our work. Therefore, we study the level of “man” and the way he ascends to the Creator.

So even in one person, there are also four levels (still, vegetative, animate and human), which are the four parts of his will to receive.

In all, there are five kinds of desires. We call them Aviut zero, one, two, three and four. All of these egoistic levels of a desire, still, vegetative, animate and human, exist in our world and are characterized by the general notion of a man’s heart.

The still level is represented by the bodily desires for food, sex, family, and home. The vegetative level is the desire for riches. The animate level is the desire for honor and fame. The human level is the desire for knowledge. Above it, there is only the spiritual desire.

We can see the same inside us. Even on the level of the biological and physical-chemical structure of the body, there are various minerals, non-organic compounds (the still level). Then there are nails and hair (the vegetative level). The next to follow is our flesh (the animate level) and finally, our inner psychology (the human level). Yet all of theses parts are of the animate level. Above them is also the Divine nature that is called a point in heart. Man begins to study Kabbalah only because this point prevails in his heart. Instead of craving this world with its food, sex, family, its chasing after money, fame and even knowledge, man becomes interested in something bigger, even without knowing what it is. This point makes him restless.

44. Earlier than the “thirteen years of age” (a relative level in man’s development) there cannot be any detection of the point in his heart. However, after “thirteen years”, when he begins to delve into Kabbalah, even without any intention for the Creator’s sake, (i.e., without any love and fear, as there should be with someone who serves the king), even not For Her Name, the point in his heart begins to grow and reveal its action.

Man, who begins to feel an aspiration for the spiritual world is considered to have come of age. From then on, he willy-nilly begins to develop the point in his heart, because this desire prevails over the others. He tries all kinds of ways until he finds a group, a book, and a teacher. The point in the heart leads him to the place, to the source that can fill him. We believe it to happen by chance, but it is not so.

However, man should constantly check the source from which he receives. I advise all of you who are sitting before your monitors not to trust me, to check for yourselves where you are. Perhaps you may find a better company, a wiser teacher who will provide you with a more powerful influence and lead you to the Purpose of creation. This is our main task. The rest is a means for achieving the goal.

You should have no other image before your eyes except for the Creator. You should say to yourself, “Only in order to achieve Him, am I ready to listen to some wise man, read some books, be in some company of people, make a sacrifice, etc. The Creator should constantly be in front of me; He alone should determine what I do.

This is the correct development of the point in the heart. Even if my desire for the Creator is egoistic, I still aspire for Him and nothing else. By no means should I join someone in order to feel more secure and comfortable.

I once asked my Teacher: “How can I be sure that I am in the right place? I have only one life, so I wish to realize everything I need by myself”. His answer was very simple: “Keep looking. This is your free will”.

The freedom of will is in a constant search for the right group. Only after you have checked everything, may you begin to work on its improvement. You are obliged to do it because your future depends on your environment, on your books, and teachers. Do not take anything on trust. You should check everything because this is the only way you can grow. Unless you put your effort into the group, unless you try to make it stronger, you will not be able to grow.

The realization of my freedom of will consists in exerting influence on the teacher, the books, the group, and consequently the Surrounding light, so that it will develop me. If man relaxes and wants to get under the wing of some wise person, some Rabbi, he confines himself to the still level and stops growing. Try to avoid such aspirations, although our body desires them very much. We should force ourselves every second to shake them off and realize our free will. Thus, we will only shorten the period of our correction because all the levels are predetermined. We will not reach the next level until we have corrected this one.

Even if man begins to study Kabbalah without any intention for the Creator’s sake, the point in his heart begins to grow.

This is what we partially feel and hope that it will continue to develop. The actions performed by the beginning Kabbalist so far do not require the intentions. Man always acts with a certain intention – with the egoistic intention for his own sake. However, regarding the spiritual, these actions are considered to be without intention. We can influence something in the spiritual only in accordance with our altruistic intention. Therefore, at the beginning of our development, even an egoistic intention is good enough. It is important to have a huge desire to conquer the spiritual world and the Creator, even if it is egoistic.

In his book “Pri Hacham”, the Baal HaSulam says in one of his letters on page 70, “This should be similar to the sensation of a man overwhelmed by passion for his beloved. He can neither see nor hear anything; it fills his whole world, he … loses his mind”. In Hebrew, it is called “Meturaf” (crazy). There is no other pleasure that can fill his empty Kli.

This is exactly the state we have to achieve with regard to the Creator. Only He can fill my vessels. I do not want anything else. This is the final level of this world after which we pass on to the spiritual one.

Man purifies, corrects the still level of his egoistic desire …

That is what we do today. We do not know anything on this level. We cannot see the difference between the elements. They are still. As a result, we pass through all 613 parts of the point in heart. Actually it consists of 620 parts, but we agreed on 613 parts that exist in every spiritual organ, shell, Partzuf, both in the general structure of Adam and in each of its individual parts. It does not matter what we speak about, whether it be the five stages or the 10 Sefirot or the 613 parts. There can be neither more nor less than that.

To the extent that man aspires for the Creator, he purifies the still part of the desire to receive. He builds the 613 organs of the point in the heart, which is the still level of the pure soul. When all the 613 actions called the commandments are completed, he creates the 613 organs (the corrected parts) of the point in the heart, which is the still part of the holy soul.

Let us imagine our big egoistic heart with a tiny point consisting of 613 desires. I should develop each of them to the maximum and direct them to the Creator. I neither know nor understand any of these 613 desires in the heart. I do not feel the difference between them because these desires are of the still level. However, this is not important. Like a still body, I automatically aspire to the Creator with my might.

Two hundred forty-eight spiritual organs are built through the observance of the 248 actions of "do" (precepts that you have to perform in), and its 365 spiritual organs are built through the observing of the 365 precepts of "do not do", until it becomes a whole Partzuf of pure Nefesh.

What does it mean? I have the Partzuf that consists of two parts – 248 and 365, in all – 613.

Two hundred forty-eight actions out of 613 that I perform with my desires are those with whose help I can act. Basically, these are my actions in the group, with all the people, friends, and family – the desires in which I can express and realize myself.

However, there are actions in which I cannot realize myself. I have no idea how to work with them correctly. These are not simply desires to kill or to steal. These are all of my desires that I cannot connect with the spiritual in any way.

This is a natural process. We should not think: “Now I want something, so how am I to deal with this desire, satisfy it or refrain from it?” When I aspire to the Creator on the level of my point in the heart, I still do not have the inner definitions and cannot make this inner analysis. It is not necessary at this point. Consequently, my level is defined as still. I have not yet received the light from Above that breaks my point into 613 tiny squares where I know what properties each of them represents and that they are connected with the Creator. I cannot do that yet. However, when I do it… “my level of Nefesh rises and dresses Malchut in the spiritual world of Assiya”.

Below the level of the spiritual worlds, inside my heart (the heart is all our desires, but you should on no account imagine the biological heart) the Partzuf emerged (my aspiration to the Creator as something distinct from the aspirations of this world). If I aspire to the Creator, I rise to the level of Malchut of the world of Assiya on the first still level.

All the worlds form a descending line (“Kav”).“Kav” is the line of the light descending from the world of Infinity down to this world. When my Partzuf is complete, it rises and “dresses” from Above onto the Malchut of the world of Assiya, on the light that is there.

In other words, my soul “dressed” on this line with the angels, the clothes, and the halls enveloping my soul. They are added because these are my auxiliary desires that I have realized in order to ascend to this particular level.

All the spiritual parts of the still, vegetative and animate levels in the world that correspond to the Sefira of Malchut of Assiya serve and aid the soul of man who has risen there. To the extent that Nefesh (the soul, the very first level) uses them, they become spiritual nourishment to it…

All of these halls, clothes, and angels are our desires, except for the aspiration to the Creator. These are the desires of our world that strengthen my aspiration to the Creator. Even the hindrances in the form of a bad boss or problems with the children, everything that surrounds me in this world, are all the positive and negative influences that aspire together with me and “dress” on my soul, on the Malchut of the world of Assiya.

This means that, if I carry out a spiritual action and there are people who help me to do that, then as I ascend to a certain spiritual level, all those who helped me, “dress” on me with their inner parts and receive the light. This reception is still unconscious because they have not yet prepared their inner spiritual Kli. However, they do take part in the process. This is what makes the connection between all the people in the world so important. Through mutual aid, communication, and trade, our world has now become a small village. The world, as it exists with regard to the ascending man, rises together with him and enters the clothes of the Malchut of the world of Assiya and then even higher.

To the extent that Nefesh uses them (the auxiliary desires: the halls, the clothes and the angels) they give it strength to grow and multiply until it can extend the light of the Sefira of Malchut of Assiya in all the desired perfection to shine in man's body. That complete light aids man to add toil in Kabbalah and receive the remaining higher levels.

Just as immediately at the birth of man's body, a point of the light of Nefesh is born and dressed in him, so it is here, when his Partzuf of “pure Nefesh” is born. A point from one level higher is born with it, meaning the last degree of the light of Ruach of Assiya, and fills the inner part of the Partzuf Nefesh.

As soon as we ascend to that world, instead of it, what remains? The next part forms the so-called “naked” Partzuf – the next point in the heart. It has changed and has now divided into its own 613 parts. This second point in the heart is not of Aviut Shoresh (0). In order to ascend and dress on Malchut, it has to have Aviut Aleph (1). This happens because, as the Partzufim emerge, one is always born inside another and after completing its own development, pulls the next one after it similar to the forming of a garland.

Therefore, as soon as the Partzuf, Nefesh, completes its ascent and dresses on the Malchut of the world of Assiya, that very instant the point of the following Partzuf emerges and begins to push this whole process forward. Like cars of a train move one behind another, the point of the next Partzuf will push them up to the level of Infinity. This is an ascending movement, because man should reach the world of Infinity while living in this world – in his body, with his heart and with the point in it.

Here I would like to end this lesson and remind you again that we should unite. It will save much time and effort in our advancement. None of us will be able to gain individually what we can gain collectively. The growth of our group by just 10% shortens our path by many months. As we grow sufficiently and the members of the group learn to understand one another, even very different people will have much to discuss. We will know how to advance together to the Creator.

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