1. There Is None Else Besides Him
2. Shechina [Divinity] in Exile
3. The Matter of Spiritual Attainment
4. What Is the Reason for the Heaviness One Feels when Annulling before the Creator in the Work?
5. Lishma Is an Awakening from Above, and Why Do We Need an Awakening from Below?
6. What Is Support in the Torah, in the Work?
7. What Is, “A Habit Becomes a Second Nature,” in the Work?
8. What Is the Difference between a Shade of Kedusha and a Shade of Sitra Achra?
9. What Are Three Things that Broaden One’s Mind in the Work?
10. What Is “Hurry, My Beloved,” in the Work?
11. Joy with Trembling
12. The Essence of Man’s Work
13. A Pomegranate
14. What Is the Exaltedness of the Creator?
15. What Is Other Gods in the Work?
16. What Is the Day of the Lord and the Night of the Lord, in the Work?
17. What Does It Mean that the Sitra Achra Is Called “Malchut without a Crown”?
18. My Soul Shall Weep in Secret – 1
19. What Is “The Creator Hates the Bodies,” in the Work?
20. Lishma [for Her sake]
21. When One Feels Oneself in a State of Ascent
22. Torah Lishma
23. You Who Love the Lord, Hate Evil
24. He Will Save Them from the Hand of the Wicked
25. Things that Come from the Heart
26. One’s Future Depends and Is Tied to Gratitude for the Past
27. What Is “The Lord Is High and the Low Will See”? - 1
28. I Shall Not Die but Live
29. When Thoughts Come to a Person
30. The Most Important Is to Want Only to Bestow
31. Anyone Who Pleases the Spirit of the People
32. A Lot Is an Awakening from Above
33. The Lots on Yom Kippur and with Haman
34. The Advantage of a Land
35. Concerning the Vitality of Kedusha
36. What Are the Three Bodies in Man?
37. An Article for Purim
38. The Fear of God Is His Treasure
39. And They Sewed Fig Leaves
40. What Is the Measure of Faith in the Rav?
41. What Is Greatness and Smallness in Faith?
42. What Is the Acronym Elul in the Work?
43. Concerning Truth and Faith
44. Mind and Heart
45. Two Discernments in the Torah and in the Work
46. The Domination of Israel over the Klipot
47. In the Place Where You Find His Greatness
48. The Primary Basis
49. The Most Important Are the Mind and the Heart
50. Two States
51. If You Encounter This Villain
52. A Transgression Does Not Extinguish a Mitzva
53. The Matter of Limitation
54. The Purpose of the Work – 1
55. Haman from the Torah, from Where?
56. Torah Is Called Indication
57. Will Bring Him Closer to His Will
58. Joy Is a “Reflection” of Good Deeds
59. Concerning the Rod and the Serpent
60. A Mitzva that Comes through Transgression
61. Round About Him It Storms Mightily
62. Descends and Incites, Ascends and Complains
63. I Was Borrowed on, and I Repay
64. From Lo Lishma, We Come to Lishma
65. Concerning the Revealed and the Concealed
66. Concerning the Giving of the Torah – 1
67. Depart from Evil
68. Man's Connection to the Sefirot
69. First Will Be the Correction of the World
70. With a Mighty Hand and with Fury Poured Out
71. My Soul Shall Weep in Secret – 2
72. Confidence Is the Clothing for the Light
73. After the Tzimtzum
74. World, Year, Soul
75. There Is a Discernment of the Next World, and There Is a Discernment of This World
76. On All Your Offerings You Shall Offer Salt
77. One's Soul Shall Teach Him
78. The Torah, the Creator, and Israel Are One
79. Atzilut and BYA
80. Concerning Achor be Achor
81. Concerning Raising MAN
82. The Prayer that One Should Always Pray
83. Concerning the Right Vav and the Left Vav
84. What Is “He Drove the Man Out of the Garden of Eden so He Would Not Take from the Tree of Life”?
85. What Is the Fruit of a Citrus Tree, in the Work?
86. And They Built Arei Miskenot
87. Shabbat Shekalim
88. All the Work Is Only Where There Are Two Ways – 1
89. To Understand the Words of The Zohar
90. In The Zohar, Beresheet
91. Concerning the Replaceable
92. Explaining the Discernment of Luck
93. Concerning Fins and Scales
94. And You Shall Keep Your Souls
95. Concerning Removing the Foreskin
96. What Is Waste of Barn and Winery, in the Work?
97. Waste of Barn and Winery
98. Spirituality Is Called That Which Will Never Be Lost
99. He Did Not Say Wicked or Righteous
100. The Written Torah and the Oral Torah – 1
101. A Commentary on the Psalm, “For the Winner over Roses”
102. And You Shall Take You the Fruit of a Citrus Tree
103. Whose Heart Makes Him Willing
104. And the Saboteur Was Sitting
105. A Bastard Wise Disciple Precedes a Commoner High Priest
106. What the Twelve Challahs on Shabbat Imply
107. Concerning the Two Angels
108. If You Leave Me One Day, I Will Leave You Two
109. Two Kinds of Meat
110. A Field that the Lord Has Blessed
111. Breath, Sound, and Speech
112. The Three Angels
113. The Eighteen Prayer
114. Prayer
115. Still, Vegetative, Animate, and Speaking
116. He Who Said, “Mitzvot Do Not Require Intention”
117. You Labored and Did Not Find, Do Not Believe
118. To Understand the Matter of the Knees Which Have Bowed to Baal
119. That Disciple Who Learned in Secret
120. The Reason for Not Eating Nuts on Rosh Hashanah
121. She Is Like Merchant-Ships
122. Understanding What Is Written in Shulchan Aruch
123. His Divorce and His Hand Come as One
124. A Shabbat of Beresheet and of the Six Thousand Years
125. He Who Delights the Shabbat
126. A Sage Comes to Town
127. The Difference between Core, Self, and Added Abundance
128. Dew Drips from that Galgalta to Zeir Anpin
129. The Shechina in the Dust
130. Tiberias of Our Sages, Good Is Your Sight
131. Who Comes to Purify
132. In the Sweat of Your Face Shall You Eat Bread – 1
133. The Lights of Shabbat
134. Wine that Causes Drunkenness
135. Clean and Righteous Do Not Kill
136. The Difference between the First Letters and the Last Letters
137. Zelophehad Was Gathering Wood
138. Concerning Fear that Sometimes Comes Upon a Person
139. The Difference between the Six Workdays and Shabbat
140. How I Love Your Torah
141. The Holiday of Passover
142. The Essence of the War
143. Only Good to Israel
144. There Is a Certain People
145. What Is He Will Give Wisdom Specifically to the Wise
146. A Commentary on The Zohar
147. The Work of Reception and Bestowal
148. The Scrutiny of Bitter and Sweet, True and False
149. Why We Need to Extend Hochma
150. Sing unto the Lord, for He Has Done Pride
151. And Israel Saw the Egyptians
152. For Bribe Blinds the Eyes of the Wise
153. A Thought Is a Result of the Desire
154. There Cannot Be an Empty Space in the World
155. The Cleanness of the Body
156. Lest He Took from the Tree of Life
157. I Am Asleep but My Heart Is Awake
158. The Reason for Not Eating at Each Other's Home on Passover
159. And It Came to Pass in the Course of Those Many Days
160. The Reason for Concealing the Matzot
161. Concerning the Giving of the Torah – 2
162. Concerning the Hazak We Say After Completing the Series
163. What the Authors of The Zohar Said
164. There Is a Difference between Corporeality and Spirituality
165. An Explanation to Elisha's Request of Elijah
166. Two Discernments in Attainment
167. The Reason Why It Is Called Shabbat Teshuva
168. The Customs of Israel
169. Concerning a Complete Righteous
170. You Shall Not Have in Your Pocket a Big Stone
171. In The Zohar, Emor – 1
172. The Matter of Preventions and Delays
173. Why We Say LeChaim
174. Concealment
175. And If the Way Be Too Far for You
176. When Drinking Brandy after the Havdala
177. Atonements
178. Three Partners in Man
179. Three Lines
180. In The Zohar, Emor – 2
181. Honor
182. Moses and Solomon
183. The Discernment of Messiah
184. The Difference between Faith and Intellect
185. The Uneducated, the Fear of Shabbat Is on Him
186. Make Your Shabbat a Weekday, and Do Not Need People
187. Choosing Labor
188. All the Work Is Only Where There Are Two Ways – 2
189. The Action Affects the Thought
190. Every Act Leaves an Imprint
191. The Time of Descent
192. The Lots
193. One Wall Serves Both
194. The Complete Seven
195. Rewarded - I Will Hasten It
196. A Grip for the External Ones
197. Book, Author, Story
198. Freedom
199. To Every Man of Israel
200. The Hizdakchut of the Masach
201. Spirituality and Corporeality
202. In the Sweat of Your Face Shall You Eat Bread – 2
203. Man's Pride Shall Bring Him Low
204. The Purpose of the Work - 2
205. Wisdom Cries Out in the Streets
206. Faith and Pleasure
207. Receiving in order to Bestow
208. Labor
209. Three Conditions in Prayer
210. A Sightly Flaw in You
211. As Though Standing before a King
212. Embrace of the Right, Embrace of the Left
213. Acknowledging the Desire
214. Known in the Gates
215. Concerning Faith
216. Right and Left
217. If I Am Not for Me, Who Is for Me?
218. The Torah and the Creator Are One
219. Devotion
220. Suffering
221. Multiple Authorities
222. The Part Given to the Sitra Achra to Separate It from the Kedusha
223. Clothing, Sack, Lie, Almond
224. Yesod de Nukva and Yesod de Dechura
225. Raising Oneself
226. The Written Torah and the Oral Torah – 2
227. The Reward for a Mitzva–a Mitzva
228. Fish before Meat
229. Haman Pockets
230. The Lord Is High and the Low Will See - 2
231. The Purity of the Vessels of Reception
232. Completing the Labor
233. Pardon, Forgiveness, and Atonement
234. He Who Ceases Words of Torah and Engages in Conversation
235. Looking in the Book Again
236. My Adversaries Curse Me All the Day
237. For Man Shall Not See Me and Live
238. Happy Is the Man Who Does Not Forget You and the Son of Man Who Exerts in You
239. The Difference between Mochin of Shavuot and that of Shabbat at Minchah
240. Seek Your Seekers when They Seek Your Face
241. Call Upon Him When He Is Near
242. What Is the Matter of Delighting the Poor on a Good Day, in the Work?
243. Examining the Shade on the Night of Hosha’ana Rabbah
244. All the Worlds
245. Prior to the Creation of the Newborn
246. An Explanation about Luck
247. A Thought Is Regarded as Nourishment
248. Let His Friend Begin
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Baal HaSulam/Shamati
What Is “The Creator Hates the Bodies,” in the Work?

19. What Is “The Creator Hates the Bodies,” in the Work?

I heard in 1943, Jerusalem

The Zohar says that the Creator hates the bodies. He said that we should interpret it as referring to the will to receive, called Guf [body]. The Creator created His world for His glory, as it is written, “Every one who is called by My Name, for My glory, I have created him, formed him, and also I made him.”

Therefore, this contradicts the body’s argument that everything is for it, meaning only for its own benefit, while the Creator says the opposite, that everything should be for the sake of the Creator. This is why our sages said that the Creator said, “he and I cannot dwell in the same abode.”

It follows that the primary separator from being in Dvekut [adhesion] with the Creator is the will to receive. This is apparent when the evil comes, meaning the will to receive for oneself comes and asks, “Why do you want to work for the sake of the Creator?” We think that it speaks as people do, that it wants to understand with its intellect. Yet, this is not the truth, since it does not ask for whom one is working. This is certainly a rational argument, as this argument awakens in a reasonable person.

Instead, the argument of the wicked is a bodily question. That is, it asks, “What is this work?” In other words, What will you profit for the exertion you are making? It means that it asks, “If you are not working for your own benefit, what will the body, called ‘the will to receive for oneself,’ get out of it?”

Since this is a bodily argument, the only reply is a bodily reply, which is “He blunted its teeth, and had he not been there, he would not have been redeemed.” Why? Because the will to receive for oneself has no redemption even at the time of redemption, since redemption will be when all the profits enter the vessels of bestowal and not the vessels of reception.

The will to receive for oneself must always remain in deficit, since satisfying the will to receive is actual death. The reason is, as said above, that creation was primarily for His glory (and this is an answer to what is written, that His wish is to do good to His creations and not for Himself).

The interpretation will be that the essence of creation is to reveal to all that the purpose of creation is to do good to His creations. This is specifically when one says that he was born to honor the Creator. At that time, in these vessels, the purpose of creation appears, which is to do good to His creations.

For this reason, one must always examine oneself, the purpose of one’s work, meaning if the Creator receives contentment in every act that one performs, because he wants equivalence of form with the Creator. This is called “All your actions will be for the sake of the Creator,” meaning that one wants the Creator to enjoy everything he does, as it is written, “to bring contentment to his Maker.”

Also, one needs to conduct oneself with the will to receive and say to it, “I have already decided that I do not want to receive any pleasure because you want to enjoy, since with your desire I am forced to be separated from the Creator, for disparity of form causes separation and distance from the Creator.”

One’s hope should be that since he cannot break free from the power of the will to receive, he is therefore in perpetual ascents and descents. Hence, he awaits the Creator, to be rewarded with the Creator opening his eyes, and to have the strength to overcome and work only for the sake of the Creator. It is as it is written, “One have I asked of the Lord; her will I seek.” “Her” means the Shechina [Divinity]. And one asks “that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.”

The house of the Lord is the Shechina. And now we can understand what our sages said about the verse, “And you shall take for you on the first day,” the first to count the iniquities. We must understand why is there joy if there is room for a count of iniquities here. He said that we must know that there is a matter of importance in the labor when there is contact between the individual and the Creator.

It means that one feels that he needs the Creator since, in the state of labor, he sees that no one in the world can save him from the state he is in except for the Creator. Then he sees that “There is none else besides Him,” who can save him from the state he is in, and from which he cannot escape.

This is called having close contact with the Creator. If one knows how to appreciate that contact, meaning that one should believe that then he is adhered to the Creator, meaning that all his thought is of the Creator, meaning that He will help him, for otherwise he sees that he is lost.

Conversely, one who is rewarded with private Providence and sees that the Creator does everything, as it is written, “He alone does and will do all the deeds,” naturally has nothing to add, and in any case, he has no room for prayer for the Creator’s help, since he sees that even without his prayer the Creator still does everything.

Hence, at that time one has no place to be able to do good deeds since he sees that without him, too, everything is done by the Creator. Thus, one has no need for the Creator to help him do anything. In that state, he has no contact with the Creator, to need Him to the extent that he is lost if the Creator does not help him.

It follows that he does not have the contact that he had with the Creator during the labor. He said that it is like a person who is hanging between life and death, and asks of his friend to save him from death. How does he ask his friend? He certainly tries to ask his friend to have mercy on him and save him from death with every power at his disposal. He certainly never forgets to pray to his friend, since he sees that otherwise he will lose his life.

However, one who asks of his friend for luxuries, which are not so necessary, the pleading person is not so attached to his friend to give him what he asks for to the point that his mind will not be distracted from asking. You find that with things that are not related to life-saving, the pleading person is not so adhered to the giver.

Thus, when one feels that he should ask the Creator to save him from death, meaning from the state of “The wicked in their lives are called ‘dead,’” the contact between the person and the Creator is close contact. For this reason, for the righteous, a place of work is to need the Creator’s help. Otherwise, he is lost. This is what the righteous crave: a place to work so they will have close contact with the Creator.

It follows that if the Creator gives room for work, these righteous are very happy. This is why they said, “first to the count of iniquities.” For them it is joyous to now have a place to work, meaning that now they have become needy of the Creator and can now come into close contact with the Creator, since one can come to the King’s palace only for some purpose.

This is the meaning of the verse, “And you shall take for you.” It specifies “for you,” since everything is in the hands of heaven but the fear of heaven. In other words, the Creator can give abundance of light because He has it. But the darkness, the place of lack, this is not in His domain.

Since there is a rule that there is fear of heaven only from a place of lack, and a place of lack is called “the will to receive,” it means that only then is there a place for labor. In what? In that it resists.

The body comes and asks, “What is the work?” and one has nothing to answer to its question. Then one must assume the burden of the kingdom of heaven above reason as an ox to the burden and as a donkey to the load without any arguments. Rather, He said and His will was done. This is called “for you,” meaning this work belongs precisely to you, and not to Me, meaning the work that your will to receive requires.

However, if the Creator gives one some illumination from above, the will to receive surrenders and annuls like a candle before a torch. Then one has no labor anyhow, since he no longer needs to take upon himself the burden of the kingdom of heaven coercively as an ox to the burden and as a donkey to the load, as it is written, “You who love the Lord, hate evil.”

This means that the love of the Creator extends only from the place of evil. In other words, to the extent that one has hatred for evil, meaning that he sees how the will to receive obstructs him from achieving the completeness of the goal, to that extent he needs to be imparted the love of the Creator. If one does not feel that he has evil, he cannot be granted the love of the Creator since he has no need for it, as he already has satisfaction in the work.

As we have said, one must not be angry when he has work with the will to receive, that it obstructs him in the work. One would certainly be more satisfied if the will to receive were absent from the body, meaning that it would not bring its questions to a person, obstructing him in the work of observing Torah and Mitzvot [commandments].

However, one should believe that the obstructions of the will to receive in the work come to him from above. One is given the force to discover the will to receive from above because there is room for work precisely when the will to receive awakens.

Then one has close contact with the Creator to help him turn the will to receive to work in order to bestow. One must believe that from this extends contentment to the Creator, from his praying to Him to draw him near in the manner of Dvekut [adhesion], called “equivalence of form,” discerned as the annulment of the will to receive, so it is in order to bestow. The Creator says about this, “My sons defeated Me.” That is, I gave you the will to receive, and you ask Me to give you a desire to bestow instead.

Now we can interpret what is brought in the Gemara (Hulin p 7): “Rabbi Pinhas Ben Yair was going to redeem the captive. He came across the river Ginai (the name of the river was Ginai). He said to Ginai, ‘Split your water and I will pass through you.’ It told him: ‘You are going to do your Maker’s will, and I am going to do my Maker’s will. You perhaps do, perhaps not do, while I certainly do.’”

He said that the meaning is that he told the river, meaning the will to receive, to let him through it and reach the degree of doing the will of the Creator, meaning to do everything in order to bestow contentment upon his Maker. The river, the will to receive, replied that since the Creator created it with this nature of wanting to receive delight and pleasure, it therefore does not want to change the nature in which the Creator created it.

Rabbi Pinhas Ben Yair waged war against it, meaning he wanted to invert it to a desire to bestow. This is regarded as waging war against the creation that the Creator created in nature, called “the will to receive,” which the Creator created, which is the whole of creation, called “existence from absence.”

We must know that during the work, when the will to receive comes to a person with its arguments, no arguments or rationalizations help with it. Though one thinks that they are just arguments, it will not help one defeat his evil.

Instead, as it is written, “Blunt its teeth.” This means to advance only by actions, and not by arguments. This is considered that one must add powers coercively. This is the meaning of what our sages said, “He is coerced until he says ‘I want.’” In other words, through persistence, habit becomes a second nature.

One must especially try to have a strong desire to obtain the desire to bestow and overcome the will to receive. A strong desire means that a strong desire is measured by the increment of the in-between rests and the arrests, meaning the time gaps between each overcoming.

Sometimes one receives a cessation in the middle, meaning a descent. This descent can be a cessation of a minute, an hour, a day, or a month. Afterward, he resumes the work of overcoming the will to receive and the attempts to achieve the desire to bestow. A strong desire means that the cessation does not take him a long time and he is immediately reawakened to the work.

It is like a person who wants to break a big rock. He takes a big hammer and hammers many times all day long, but they are weak. In other words, he does not hammer the rock with one swing but brings down the big hammer slowly. Afterward, he complains that this work of breaking the rock is not for him, that it must take a very strong man to be able to break this big rock. He says that he was not born with such great powers to be able to break the rock.

However, one who lifts this big hammer and strikes the rock with a big swing, not slowly but with a great effort, the rock immediately surrenders to him and breaks. This is the meaning of “like a strong hammer that shatters the rock.”

Similarly, in the holy work, which is to bring the vessels of reception into Kedusha [holiness], we have a strong hammer, meaning words of Torah that give us good counsels. However, if it is not consistent, but with long intermissions in between, one escapes the campaign and says that he was not made for this, but this work requires one who was born with special skills for it. Nevertheless, one should believe that anyone can achieve the goal, but he should try to always increase his efforts to overcome, and then one can break the rock in a short time.

We must also know that for the effort to make contact with the Creator, there is a very harsh condition here: The effort must be in the form of adornment. “Adornment” means something that is important to a person. One cannot work gladly if the labor is not of importance, meaning that one is happy that now he has contact with the Creator.

This matter is implied in the citron. It is written about the citron, “a fruit of the citrus tree,”1 that it should be clean above its nose. It is known that there are three discernments: A) adornment, B) scent, C) taste.

Taste means that the lights are poured from above downward, meaning below the Peh [mouth], where there are the palate and the taste. This means that the lights come in vessels of reception.

Scent means that the lights come from below upward. This means that the lights come in vessels of bestowal, in the form of receiving and not bestowing below the palate and the throat. This is discerned as “and he shall smell in the fear of the Lord,” said about the Messiah. It is known that scent is attributed to the nose.

Adornment is beauty, discerned as above one’s nose, meaning scentless. It means that there is neither taste nor smell there. Thus, what is there by which one can endure? There is only the adornment in it, and this is what sustains him.

We see about the citron that the adornment is in it precisely before it is suitable for eating. However, when it is suitable for eating, there is no adornment in it anymore.

This comes to tell us about the work of the first to count the iniquities. This means that precisely when one works in the form of “And you shall take for you,” meaning the work during the acceptance of the burden of the kingdom of heaven, when the body resists this work, then there is room for the joy of adornment.

This means that during this work the adornment is apparent. This means that if he has gladness from this work, it is because he considers this work as adornment, and not as disgrace.

In other words, sometimes one despises this work of assuming the burden of the kingdom of heaven, which is a time of a sensation of darkness, when one sees that no one can save him from the state he is in but the Creator. Then he takes upon himself the kingdom of heaven above reason, as an ox to the burden and as a donkey to the load.

One should be glad that now he has something to give to the Creator, and the Creator enjoys him having something to give to the Creator. But one does not always have the strength to say that this is beautiful work, called “adornment,” but he despises this work.

This is a harsh condition for one to be able to say that he chooses this work over the work of whiteness, meaning that he does not sense a taste of darkness during the work, but then one feels a taste in the work. It means that then he does not have to work with the will to receive to agree to take upon himself the kingdom of heaven above reason.

If he does overcome himself and can say that this work is pleasant to him that now he is observing the Mitzva [commandment] of faith above reason, and he accepts this work as beauty and adornment, this is called “A joy of Mitzva.”

This is the meaning of the prayer being more important than the response to the prayer, since in prayer one has a place for labor and he needs the Creator, meaning he awaits heaven’s mercy. At that time, one has a true contact with the Creator and he is in the King’s palace. However, when the prayer is answered, he has already departed the King’s palace since he has already taken what he had asked for and left.

Accordingly, we should understand the verse, “Your oils have a good fragrance; your name is as oil poured forth.” Oil is called “the upper light” when it flows. “Poured forth” means during the cessation of the abundance. At that time, the scent from the oil remains. (Scent means that a Reshimo [reminiscence] of what he had remains nonetheless. Adornment, however, is called so in a place where there is no grip at all, meaning that even the Reshimo does not shine.)

This is the meaning of Atik and AA. During the expansion, the abundance is called AA, which is Hochma [wisdom], meaning open Providence. Atik comes from the [Hebrew] word VaYe’atek [detachment], meaning the departure of the light. In other words, it does not shine, and this is called “concealment.”

This is the time of rejection to clothing, which is the time of the reception of the King’s crown, which is considered Malchut [kingdom] of lights, regarded as the kingdom of heaven.

It is written about it in The Zohar, “the Shechina [Divinity] said to Rabbi Shimon, ‘There is no place to hide from you’ (meaning there is no place where I can hide Myself from you).” This means that even in the greatest concealment in reality, he still takes upon himself the burden of the kingdom of heaven with great joy.

The reason is that he follows a line of a desire to bestow, and therefore gives what he has in his hand. If the Creator gives him more, he gives more. And if he has nothing to give, he stands and cries like a crane for the Creator to save him from the evil water. Hence, in this manner, too, he has contact with the Creator.

The reason that this discernment is called Atik, since Atik is the highest degree, is that the farther the thing is from clothing, the higher it is. One can feel in the most abstract thing, called “the absolute zero,” since there man’s hand does not reach.

This means that the will to receive can grip only in a place where there is some expansion of light. Before one purifies one’s Kelim [vessels] so as to not blemish the light, he is unable for the light to come to him in a form of expansion in the Kelim. Only when one marches on the path of bestowal, in a place where the will to receive is not present, whether in mind or in heart, there the light can come in utter completeness. Then the light comes to him in a sensation that he can feel the exaltedness of the upper light.

However, when one has not corrected the Kelim to work in order to bestow, when the light expands, it must be restricted and shine only according to the purity of the Kelim. Hence, at that time, the light appears to be in utter smallness. Therefore, when the light is abstracted from clothing in the Kelim, the light can shine in utter completeness and clarity without any restrictions for the sake of the lower one.

It follows that the importance of the work is precisely when one comes to a state of zero, when one sees that he annuls his whole existence and being, for then the will to receive has no power. Only then does one enter the Kedusha.

We must know that “God has made the one opposite the other.” It means that as much as there is disclosure in Kedusha, to that extent the Sitra Achra [other side] awakens. In other words, when one claims, “It is all mine,” meaning the entire body belongs to Kedusha, the Sitra Achra, too, argues against him that the whole body should serve the Sitra Achra.

Hence, one must know that when he sees that the body claims that it belongs to the Sitra Achra, and cries the famous questions of “Who” and “What” with all its might, it is a sign that one is walking on the path of truth, meaning that one’s sole intention is to bestow contentment upon one’s Maker. Thus, the primary work is precisely in this state.

One must know that it is a sign that this work hits the target. The sign is that he fights and sends his arrows to the head of the serpent, since it yells and argues the argument of “What” and “Who,” meaning “What is this work for you?” meaning what will you gain by working only for the Creator and not for yourselves? And the argument of “Who” means that this is Pharaoh’s complaint who said, “Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice?”

It seems as if the “Who” argument is a rational argument. Normally, when someone is told to go and work for someone, the person asks, “For whom?” Hence, when the body claims, “Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice,” it is a rational argument.

However, according to the rule that the intellect is not an object in itself, but is rather a mirror of what is found in the senses, it appears so in the mind. This is the meaning of “The sons of Dan: Hushim.” That is, the mind judges only according to what the senses let it scrutinize and devise some inventions and tactics to suit the demands of the senses.

In other words, what the senses demand, the mind tries to provide their wish. However, the mind itself has no need for itself, for any demand. Hence, if there is a demand for bestowal in the senses, the mind operates according to a line of bestowal, and the mind does not ask questions, since it is merely serving the senses.

The mind is like a person looking in the mirror to see if he is dirty. And all the places where the mirror shows that he is dirty, he goes and washes and cleans, since the mirror showed him that there are ugly things in his face that need to be cleaned.

However, the hardest thing of all is to know what is considered ugly. Is it the will to receive, meaning the body’s demand to do everything only for oneself, or is the desire to bestow the ugly thing, which the body cannot tolerate? The mind cannot scrutinize it, like the mirror, which cannot say what is ugly and what is beauty; rather, it all depends on the senses, and only the senses determine this.

Hence, when one accustoms oneself to work coercively, to work in bestowal, the mind, too, operates by lines of bestowal. At that time, it is impossible that the mind will pose the “Who” question, when the senses have already grown accustomed to work in bestowal.

In other words, the senses no longer ask the question, “What is this work?” since they are already working in order to bestow, and, naturally, the mind does not ask the “Who” question.

You find that the primary work is in “What is this work for you?” And what one hears, that the body does ask the “Who” question, it is because the body does not want to degrade itself so much. This is why it asks the “Who” question. It appears to be asking a rational question, but the truth is that, as we have said above, the primary work is in the “What.”

  1. In Hebrew, citrus is Hadar, from the word Hidur (adornment).