You write: “Although it seems contradictory, the Light of life, the very source of our pleasure, can also bring death. The reason is that a pleasure that is ‘for me’ is felt only in part of the vessel, thus generating the opposite result – death. When the pleasure is ‘for the Creator,’ it is felt in the entire vessel.” My question is: how can a feeling that is felt only in part of the vessel bring death? Why can pleasure “for me” enter only a part of the vessel?..
Please tell me about material and spiritual desires. Does the environment determine all our desires? And what if there is no environment? Is it death?..
When I began studying only a year ago, I seemed to be very close to the spiritual. I could almost feel it. But now I have a question: where does my desire arise for something I can’t feel, know or see? Why do I want it? After all, everyone around me says it doesn’t exist…
Suppose a Kabbalist has completed his personal correction. He then continues to climb from one level to the next. But in order to rise spiritually he will probably need to fall. So what desires does such a Kabbalist go down to? What kinds of desires exist after the end of correction?..
I teach Kabbalah in a small group I organized by myself. My students, beginners in Kabbalah, asked me about the difference between physical and spiritual pleasures. Please help me formulate a clear answer, since I myself feel a bit confused...
I would very much like you to clarify the meaning of “Kabbalah circulation...”
I was surprised to read in the Haggada (tales for Passover night) that Pharaoh made Israel come nearer to the Creator. How is a negative force capable of working for the Creator and against itself?..
Baal HaSulam writes about a premature spiritual birth. How does this happen and can it be prevented?..
The books of Kabbalah maintain that the exit from Egypt was made prematurely, and that there are farfetched historical consequences to it. Did the premature liberation prevent a possibility to attain spiritual attributes in due time. If so, is it like a child who was supposed to be born, where preparations were made for labor, but then everything was ruined because the child was born prematurely and died at birth?..
Can you say that man is farthest from the Creator because his will to receive is greater than that of a stone, a tree, or a cat?..
Why do we get pleasure when reflecting upon past pains? In fact, they even seem to bring us more pleasure than the pleasures of the past, especially when shared with someone...
I feel that there are a great many pleasures and that people around me are having fun. Are these pleasures considered small or great, compared to the spiritual pleasures you speak of?..
If a person badly wants love from the Creator, is that an egoistic desire?..
You said on one occasion: “The spiritual ascent is a long and rough road. You need to be born anew at every single degree, until you resemble the Creator in your every trait.” As I understand it, to be born is to feel a new attribute of the Creator. If the soul feels a new attribute and situation, does the old one still count?..
Once I tried to picture a situation where I lost everything: my job, my home, my health, etc. but I took it as something good, as something necessary for progress and suddenly felt a great relief. Can such self-persuasion help, and should it be done consciously on a regular basis? Is it, from the perspective of the Kabbalah, the right thing to do? After all, the will to improve one’s health is an egoistic desire...
You write about the deletion of surplus desires, but on the other hand, you say that there are no surplus desires, that no desire should be eradicated, but that man’s egoistic nature should be mended to match that of the Creator (altruistic)...
I find it hard to see myself, after so many years, changing my corporeal nature to a spiritual one. How does it happen?..
It is very hard to apply the first restriction over all my desires, so I wanted to ask if it is possible to work with each desire separately, one by one, without restricting all of them at once?..
Is it risky to allow yourself to be moved by a film or a book that does not contain even a shred of spirituality, and use them for relaxation? And what about my less positive habits? How will I deal with those?..
What do I do with my jealousy, with my lust? Does the Kabbalah correct such attributes and the relationships between people?..
What do I do if my will to receive doesn’t let me do what I intend to do? Can you lie to it, or use some trick?..
How can you tell what causes each ascent, and does it have any meaning in the spiritual work?..
Can other people see that I’ve become more egoistic, even though the changes are within me?..
Everything that was in me before is now coming out in the open. Do others see this as well?..
When we begin to study Kabbalah and advance toward spirituality, we discover within us hidden egotistical traits that hadn’t been apparent before. Will those traits affect ours whole behavior, increasing our selfishness towards others? If that is true, how can groups of people that advance together exist? How can people maintain relationships if they become so “evil” during the study?..
I read in an article written by Rabbi Baruch Ashlag that the only way to escape situations of spiritual decline and unawareness is to examine the current situation while still in a state of ascent, and understand that nothing is lower or more distanced from the Creator than one’s existence as a beast. In this state, we lack the ability to evaluate our situation under the dictatorship of worldly desires. What does it mean to inquire, to purposely decline to a lower degree?..
When I face a certain situation, my self wants to react. If I think that my response is not real, can I change my response?..
You once wrote that man couldn’t assess his own mental state. You said that to diagnose it correctly, he should exit his current situation, change it and only then be able to see what kind of mood he was in. I think there are two problems here: The first is that in his new situation, he will have to go back to the past, meaning he cannot live in the present. The second is that if he cannot evaluate his situation, he is in fact captivated in that situation, a slave to his own state...
Sometimes it happens that a certain situation makes me so angry that for days I am infuriated. I try to analyze the situation, seemingly objectively, and understand that it is my primitive egoism speaking and not the inspiration for the truth, for spirituality. How can I learn to interpret those feelings? After all, in order for me to turn to the Creator and ask for His help in correction, I need to see that my egoism is completely at fault...
What do I do if my ego does not allow me to do things for the Creator? I terribly regret it, but there is nothing I can do about it. Does this mean that as far as internal work is concerned, all that remains for me to do is to watch it from the side?..
Through a continuous spiritual quest, I have comprised a new theory about Kabbalah. It is The Theory of Shapes. It has an immense spiritual impact; it is full of mystery and secrets and with it one can triumph over one’s egoism...
I have several questions: Is man neither rewarded nor punished for his actions in this world, since he has no free choice over his actions? Aren’t the Creator’s decisions and actions in the spiritual world influenced by man’s desires? Are our desires the only ones that influence our world? Are man’s desires his essence?..
Where and how is the freedom of choice expressed? During one’s life, when exactly does one choose, and what should one choose?..
What has the correction of the 613 desires to do with the unchanging laws of nature?..
What if a person is jealous of someone else because they are regarded as being at a higher spiritual level?..