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6.01 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 38

The most important is the labor, meaning to crave to labor in His work, for the ordinary work does not count at all, only the bits that are more than usual, which is called “labor.” It is like a person who must eat a pound of bread to be full. All his eating does not merit the title, “a satisfying meal,” but only the last bit from the pound. That bit, for all its smallness, is what defines the meal as satisfying.

Similarly, out of every service, the Creator draws out only the bits beyond the ordinary, and they will be the letters and the Kelim [vessels] in which to receive the light of His face.

6.02 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 57

Everything, small or great, is obtained only by the power of prayer. All the labor and work to which we are obliged are only to discover our lack of strength and our lowliness—that we are unfit for anything by our own strength—for then we can pour out a wholehearted prayer before Him.

We could argue about this, “So I can decide that I am unfit for anything, and why all the labor and exertion?” However, there is a natural law that there is none so wise as the experienced, and before one tries to actually do all he can do, he is utterly incapable of arriving at true lowliness, to the real extent, as said above.

This is why we must toil in Kedusha [holiness] and purity, as it is written, “Whatever you find that your hand can do by your strength, that do,” and understand this for it is true and deep.

I revealed this truth to you only so you would not weaken or give up on mercy. Although you do not see anything, for even when the measure of labor is complete, it is the time of prayer, but until then, believe in our sages: “I did not labor and found, do not believe.”

When the measure is full, your prayer will be complete and the Creator will grant generously, as our sages instructed us, “I labored and found, believe,” for one is unfit for a prayer prior to this, and the Creator hears a prayer.

6.03 Baal HaSulam,

“Introduction to The Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 97

Our sages warned us in many places concerning the necessary condition in the practice of Torah, that it will be specifically Lishma, in a way that through it, one will be awarded life, for it is a Torah of life and this is why it was given to us, as it is written, “Therefore, choose life.”

Hence, during the practice of Torah, every person must labor in it, and set his mind and heart to find “the light of the King’s face” in it, meaning attainment of open Providence, called “light of the face.” Any person is capable of it, as it is written, “those who seek Me shall find Me,” and as it is written, “I labored and did not find, do not believe.”

Thus, one needs nothing in this matter except the labor alone. It is written, “Anyone who practices Torah Lishma, his Torah becomes for him a potion of life” (Taanit 7a). It means that one should only set one’s mind and heart to attain life, which is the meaning of Lishma.

6.04 Baal HaSulam,

“Introduction to The Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 18

The Creator, Who created it and gave the evil inclination its strength, evidently knew to create the remedy and the spice liable to wear off the power of the evil inclination and eradicate it altogether. And if one practices Torah and fails to remove the evil inclination from himself, it is either that he has been negligent in giving the necessary labor and exertion in the practice of Torah, as it is written, “I did not labor and found, do not believe,” or perhaps he did put in the necessary amount of labor, but has been negligent in the quality.

This means that while practicing Torah, they did not set their minds and hearts to draw the light in the Torah, which brings faith to one’s heart. Rather, they have been absent-minded about the principal requirement demanded of the Torah, namely the light that yields faith. And although they initially aimed for it, their minds went astray during the study.

6.05 Baal HaSulam,

Shamati, Article No. 20, “Lishma [for Her sake]”

If one considers what one receives for his work under the sun, he will find that it is not so difficult to submit himself to the Creator, for two reasons:

  1. One must strain oneself in this world in any case, whether one wants to or not.
  2. During the work, too, if one works Lishma, he receives pleasure from the work itself.

It is as the Sayer from Dubna said about the verse, “You did not call Me, Jacob, for you labored about Me, Israel.” It means that he who works for the Creator has no labor. On the contrary, one has pleasure and elation.

But he who does not work for the Creator, but for other goals, cannot complain to the Creator that He is not giving him vitality in the work, since he is working for another goal. One can complain only to the one for whom he works, to give vitality and pleasure during his work. It is said about him: “They who make them shall be like them, every one who trusts them.”

Do not be surprised that when one assumes the burden of the kingdom of heaven, when he wants to work in order to bestow upon the Creator, he still feels no vitality at all, and that this vitality would compel one to assume the burden of the kingdom of heaven. Rather, one should accept it coercively, against his better judgment. That is, the body does not agree to this enslavement, why the Creator does not shower him with vitality and pleasure.

The reason is that this is a great correction. Were it not for this, if the will to receive had agreed to this work, one would never have been able to achieve Lishma. Rather, he would always work for his own benefit, to satisfy his own desires. It is as people say, that the thief himself yells, “Catch the thief!” and then you cannot tell which is the real thief in order to catch him and reclaim the theft from him.

But when the thief, meaning the will to receive, does not find the work of accepting the burden of the kingdom of heaven tasteful, since the body accustoms itself to work against its will, one has the means by which to come to work only in order to bring contentment to his Maker, since his sole intention should be only for the Creator, as it is written, “Then shall you delight yourself in the Lord.” Thus, when he served the Creator in the past, he did not sense any pleasure in the work. Rather his work was compulsory.

But now that he has accustomed himself to work in order to bestow, he is rewarded with delight- ing in the Creator, and the work itself renders him pleasure and vitality. This is considered that the pleasure, too, is specifically for the Creator.

6.06 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 56

The iniquity of the Amorite is the Klipa [shell/peel] that keeps and surrounds the fruit, called “awakening from above,” or “the land of Israel.” That Klipa will not move from its place even as a hairsbreadth before Israel complement entirely the necessary measure of awakening from below, called “merit,” meaning the labor and exertion beyond human capability.

Anything that one can do is merely called “work”; it is still not considered “labor.” When Israel reach that point, they complement their amount, and then it is called “The iniquity of the Amorite is full.” In other words, it is evident that the land of Israel and the glory of the Creator, being the Shechina [Divinity], do not belong to them.

Then they break that Klipa called “Amorite,” and raise the Shechina from the dust, and not a moment sooner, as in the verse. This is the meaning of the explicit number, four hundred years, which shows the great precision in that matter, that there are no concessions here at all. As our sages said, the matter of skipping over the end, which was mandatory and obligatory for Israel, that skipping caused all the exiles to this day.

6.07 Baal HaSulam,

Shamati, Article No. 187, “Choosing Labor”

The matter of the lower Hey in the Eynaim [eyes] means that there was a Masach [screen] and a cover over the eyes. The eyes mean Providence, when one sees hidden Providence.

A trial means that a person cannot decide either way, when one cannot determine the Creator’s will and the will of his teacher. Although one can work devotedly, he is unable to determine if this devoted work is appropriate or not, that this hard work would be against his teacher’s view, and the view of the Creator.

To determine, one chooses that which adds labor. This means that one should act according to one’s teacher. Only labor is for man to do, and nothing else. Hence, there is no place for doubt in one’s actions and thoughts and words. Instead, he should always increase labor.

 6.08 Baal HaSulam,

Shamati, Article No. 19, “What Is ‘The Creator Hates the Bodies,’ in the Work?”

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-be- tween 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.

6.09 Baal HaSulam,

Shamati, Article No. 5, “Lishma Is an Awakening from Above, and Why Do We Need an Awakening from Below?”

When one comes and says that he exerted extensively in observing Torah and Mitzvot, the Creator tells him, “You did not call Me, Jacob.” In other words, it is not My baggage that you took. Rather, this baggage belongs to someone else. Since you say that you had much effort in Torah and Mitzvot, you must have had a different landlord for whom you worked; so go to him to pay you.

This is the meaning of “for you labored about Me, Israel.” This means that he who works for the Creator has no labor, but on the contrary, pleasure and elation. But one who works for other goals cannot come to the Creator with complaints that the Creator does not give him vitality in the work, since he did not work for the Creator, for the Creator to pay for his work.

6.10 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 5

I rejoice in those revealed corruptions and the ones that are being revealed.

I do, however, regret and complain about the corruptions that have still not appeared, but which are destined to appear, for a hidden corruption is hopeless, and its surfacing is a great salvation from heaven. The rule is that one does not give what he does not have. Hence, if it has appeared now, there is no doubt that it was here to begin with but was hidden. This is why I am happy when they come out of their holes because when you cast your eye on them, they become a pile of bones. But I do not settle for it even for a moment, as I know that those who are with us are more numer- ous than those who are with them. But weakness stretches time, and those contemptible ants are hidden and their place is unknown. The sage says about this, “The fool folds his hands and eats his own flesh.” Moses let down his hands, but when Moses lifts his hands of faith, all that should appear promptly appears, and then Israel triumphs “in all the mighty hand, and in all the great terror.”

This is the meaning of “Whatever you find that your hand can do by your strength, do.” When the cup is full, the verse, “The wicked are overthrown,” comes true. And when the wicked are lost, light and gladness come to the world, and then they are gone.

 6.11 Baal HaSulam,

Shamati, Article No. 4, “What Is the Reason for the Heaviness One Feels when Annulling before the Creator in the Work?”

One’s work is only to come to feel the existence of the Creator, meaning to feel the existence of the Creator, that “the whole earth is full of His glory,” and this will be one’s entire work. That is, all the energy one puts into the work will be only to achieve this, and nothing else.

One should not be misled into having to acquire anything. Rather, there is only one thing a person needs: faith in the Creator. He should not think of anything, meaning that the only reward that he wants for his work should be to be rewarded with faith in the Creator.

6.12 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 16

I have already said in the name of the Baal Shem Tov that prior to making a Mitzva [command- ment], one must not consider private Providence at all. On the contrary, one should say, “If I am not for me, who is for me?” But after the fact, one must reconsider and believe that it was not by “My power and the might of my hand” that I did the Mitzva, but only by the power of the Creator, who contemplated so about me in advance, and so I had to do.

It is likewise in worldly matters because spirituality and corporeality are equal. Therefore, before one goes out to make one’s daily bread, he should remove his thoughts from private Providence and say, “If I am not for me, who is?” He should do all the tactics applied in corporeality to earn his living as do others.

But in the evening, when he returns home with his earnings, he must never think that he has earned this profit by his own innovations. Rather, even if he stayed all day in the basement of his home, he would still have earned his pay, for so the Creator contemplated for him in advance, and so it had to be.

Although the matters look the contrary on the surface, and are unreasonable, one must believe that so the Creator has determined for him in His law, from authors and from books.

6.13 Baal HaSulam,

Shamati, Article No. 35, “Concerning the Vitality of Kedusha”

If one extends some illumination and cannot sustain it permanently because his Kelim [vessels] are not yet clean to be fit for the light, meaning that he will receive it in vessels of bestowal like the light that comes from the Giver, the illumination must depart from him.

At that time, this illumination falls into the hands of the Sitra Achra. This continues several times, meaning that one extends, and then it departs from him.

Hence, the illuminations increase in the sea of the Sitra Achra until the cup is full. This means that after one reveals the full measure of the effort that one can reveal, the Sitra Achra gives him back everything she took into her own authority. This is the meaning of “He has swallowed down riches, and he shall vomit them up again.” It follows that all that the Sitra Achra received into her own authority was only as a deposit, meaning that as long as she has control over man, and the matter of the control that she has is so that one will be able to scrutinize one’s vessels of reception and admit them into Kedusha [holiness].

In other words, had she not controlled a person, he would settle for little. Then all of one’s ves- sels of reception would remain separated, and he would never be able to gather all the Kelim that belong to the root of his soul, admit them into Kedusha, and extend the light that belongs to him. Hence, it is a correction that each time one extends something and has a descent, he must start anew, meaning new scrutinies. And what one had from the past has fallen into the Sitra Achra, who holds it in her authority as a deposit. Afterward, one receives from her everything that she received from him the whole time.

6.14 Baal HaSulam,

“Introduction to The Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 133

Like a king who wished to select for himself the most loyal of his subjects in the country and bring them to work inside his palace. What did he do? He issued a decree that anyone who wished, young or old, would come to his palace to engage in the works inside his palace.

However, he appointed many of his servants to guard the palace gate and all the roads leading to it, and ordered them to cunningly deflect all those nearing his palace and divert them from the way that leads to the palace.

Naturally, all the people in the country began to run to the king’s palace. But the diligent guards cunningly rejected them. Many of them overpowered them and came near the palace gate, but the guards at the gate were the most diligent, and if someone approached the gate, they diverted him and turned him away with great craftiness until one despaired and returned as he had come. And so they came and went, and regained strength, and came and went again, and so on and so forth for several days and years until they grew weary of trying. Only the mighty ones among them, whose patience endured, defeated the guards and opened the gate. And they were instantly awarded seeing the king’s face, who appointed each of them in his right place.

Of course, from that moment on, they had no further dealings with those guards, who diverted and mislead them and made their lives bitter for several days and years, running back and forth around the gate. This is because they have been rewarded with working and serving before the glory of the king’s face inside his palace.

6.15 Baal HaSulam,

“Introduction to The Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 101

As long as one is not rewarded with a guidance of revelation of the face, the abundance of Torah and Mitzvot he has performed make his concealment of the face much heavier. This is the meaning of “The Creator hides Himself in the Torah.”

Indeed, all that heaviness he feels through the Torah is but proclamations by which the Torah itself calls him, awakening him to hurry up and give the required measure of labor to promptly endow him with the revelation of the face, as God wills it.

6.16 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 34

We rush our pleas above, knock by knock, tirelessly, endlessly, and do not weaken at all when He does not answer us. We believe He hears our prayer but waits for a time when we have the Kelim [vessels] to receive the faithful bounty, and then we will receive a reply to each and every prayer at once, since “the hand of the Lord will not be short,” God forbid.

This is the meaning of the words, “Children in whom there was no blemish … and who have the strength to stand in the King’s palace.” It teaches you that even those who have been rewarded with pardon for iniquities—which became as merits, by which the matter appears after the fact, and in whom there is no blemish—still need more strength to stand in the King’s palace, meaning stand and pray, and wait tirelessly, knock by knock, until they elicit the complete desire from the Creator. This is why we should learn this trade before we enter the King’s palace, meaning muster power and might to stand as a pillar of iron until we elicit the desire from the Creator, as it is written, “Take no rest.” Although the Creator seems silent and unresponsive, let it not cross your minds to be silent, too, “Take no rest.” This is not what the Creator intended by His silence, but rather to give you power to stand afterward in the King’s palace when you have no blemish. This is why, “and give Him no rest.”

 6.17 Baal HaSulam,

Letter No. 2

Come and learn from the complete worker (complete even in awakening from above). Ask your elders and they will tell you that the Complete One is complete in everything and has complete knowledge in the “blessing in his future.” And yet, it does not weaken him at all because of it—from the labor in Torah and the searching.

On the contrary, none exert in the Torah and in searching as much as he. This is for a simple reason: His labor is not so much to bring the good future to himself. Rather, all his labor is about displaying love between him and his Maker. This is why the feelings of love grow and multiply each day until the love is completed in the form of “absolute love.” Afterward, it leads him to double his wholeness by way of awakening from below.

6.18 RABASH,

Article No. 488, “The Garments of the Soul”

It is known that nothing can be attained in spirituality except by clothing, which is like a Kli [vessel] that is suitable for revealing light. Hence, if a person exerts, the exertion makes the Kli for him, meaning the desire and the need for the filling of light, since nothing is given from above before there is a need for that illumination.

The labor that a person exerts causes him a need and a desire, meaning he becomes needy of the Creator’s help to emerge from the strait in which he finds himself during the labor. Were it not for the labor, he would have no need for His help. It follows that precisely the labor provides him with the clothing of the soul, so there will be revelation of Godliness.

6.19 RABASH,

Article No. 844, “Labor Is the Reward”

“According to the labor, so is the reward.” In other words, afterward, he sees that the labor he gave was his reward. To the extent of the labor, so is the reward, since the labor is the reward, and the Creator gave him the desire to labor.

6.20 RABASH,

Article No. 21 (1989), “What Is, ‘A Drunken Man Must Not Pray,’ in the Work?”

In order to have fuel to work in order to bestow and not receive any reward, but the work itself will be the reward, we must believe in Him, meaning believe in His greatness. We must make great efforts to obtain faith in the greatness of the Creator. Without faith in the greatness of the Creator, there is no power to work in order to bestow. That is, precisely when we feel the greatness of the Creator, a person is ready to work without any reward.

Instead, the work itself is the reward, since serving a great King is more valuable to him than any fortune in the world, compared to this service, that the Creator permits him to come in and serve Him. Hence, we must focus all our thoughts on how to come to feel the greatness of the Creator, and then everything follows that point.

6.21 RABASH,

Article No. 22 (1985), “The Whole of the Torah Is One Holy Name”

We must always consider the goal, which is to “do good to His creations.” If the evil inclination comes to a person and asks him all of Pharaoh’s questions, he should not reply with lame excuses, but say, “Now, with your questions, I can begin with the work of bestowal.”

This means that we should not say about the questions of the evil inclination that it came to us in order to lower us from our degree. On the contrary, now it is giving us a place to work, by which we will ascend on the degrees of wholeness. That is, any overcoming in the work is called “walking in the work of the Creator,” since each penny joins into a great amount.” That is, all the times we over- come accumulate to a certain measure required to become a Kli for the reception of the abundance.

6.22 RABASH,

Article No. 6 (1991), “What Is, ‘The Herdsmen of Abram’s Cattle and the Herdsmen of Lot’s Cattle,’ in the Work?”

Since in every beginning a person must start over the acceptance of the kingdom of heaven, it is not enough that yesterday he had faith in the Creator. For this reason, every acceptance of the kingdom of heaven is considered a new discernment. That is, now he receives a part of the vacant space that was devoid of the kingdom of heaven, and admits that empty place and fills it with the kingdom of heaven. It follows that now he sorted out a new thing, which did not exist before he took that empty place and filled it with the kingdom of heaven. This is regarded as elevating a new spark into the Kedusha. Finally, from all the ascents, he always raises sparks from the vacant space into the Kedusha.

It follows that from each descent he arrives at a new beginning and raises new sparks. Hence, when a person sees that he has descents, he should be careful not to escape from the campaign, even though he sees that he is not progressing. Rather, he must try to start anew each time. That is, the fact that he begins to ascend does not mean that he returned to his previous degree. This would mean that he did nothing by his work, since he thinks that he is now ascending to his previous level. Rather, he must believe that this is a new discernment, that each time, he raises different sparks, until he raises the sparks that pertain to his essence.

6.23 RABASH,

Article No. 30 (1989), “What Is the Meaning of Lighting the Menorah in the Work?”

Only one who labors and works as much as he can, and goes through ups and downs, can say that he tastes the taste of darkness because he cannot overcome his will to receive for himself.

Thus, the descents that a person receives when he wants to walk on the path of truth are instru- ments for the sensation of the help he will receive. We must believe the words of our sages who said, “He who comes to purify is aided.” A person must not escape the campaign when he sees that he is not making progress. Sometimes he gets thoughts of the spies, who said that this work is not for us and requires special people who can walk on the path of overcoming.

All this comes to him because he understands that each time, he must see how he is making progress. However, it does not occur to him that he must advance in obtaining darkness, that this is the only Kli he needs to acquire. A Kli is a need for a filling. That is, if he has no filling for the lack, he feels that he is in the dark. For this reason, a person must not say that he is not advancing in the work.

Hence, he wants to escape the campaign, for it is not the truth, since he sees each time how far he is from obtaining the light, meaning for the Creator to give him the Kli called “desire to bestow.” He cannot obtain the desire to bestow by himself, and then he comes to feel that the world has grown dark on him. At that time, the light comes, meaning help from above, as it is written, “He who comes to purify is aided”.

 6.24 RABASH,

Article No. 572, “Two Labors”

The order of one’s work in Torah and Mitzvot [commandments] when he wants to work for the sake of the Creator is that one must fight and defeat the evil inclination.

That is, it is human nature to toil when there is self-benefit. But when he sees that no self-benefit will emerge from this work, he cannot work. Instead, he complains and asks, “What is this work for you?” meaning what will you gain from exerting?

When a person overcomes it and says that he wants to work against nature and bestow upon the Creator, the evil inclination comes with a different argument, asking the question of wicked Pharaoh, “Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice?” It is possible to work for the sake of others only where I know that the other receives the labor.

However, when he has two labors, 1) He must overcome and go against nature, and work not for his own benefit but for the benefit of others, for the sake of the Creator. 2) He must believe that the Creator receives his labor.

6.25 RABASH,

Article No. 837, “Ibur [Conception] – 2”

Ibur Aleph [first conception] is done by the upper one, like a person who receives an awakening from above. Ibur Bet [second conception] means that the lower one must work by himself by the power of the awakening he had received. In other words, he must add, through the awakening he had received from the upper one, and work by his labor. Otherwise, he loses everything and returns to being a black dot, meaning that his spirituality is regarded as darkness that does not shine.

6.26 RABASH,

Article No. 23 (1989), “What Is, ‘If He Swallows the Bitter Herb, He Will Not Come Out,’ in the Work?”

When one begins the work, he begins with faith, but the body resists this work, and then comes a state of labor, when he must overcome the body and seek all kinds of counsels, as our sages said, “In trickery shall you conduct war,” since the body does not want to relinquish self-benefit. To the extent that he exerts, to that extent he begins to feel that he is incapable of doing anything since in his view, he has done everything he could. After the labor, he comes to know that only the Creator can help, and it is out of his hands. Then comes the third state—a prayer—and then the prayer is from the bottom of the heart, since it is utterly clear to him that no one can help him but the Creator.

However, even when he comes to know that the Creator can help him, and he understands that the real advice is only prayer, the body comes and makes him see that “You see how many prayers you have already prayed but you received no answer from above. Therefore, why bother praying that the Creator will help you? You see that you are not getting any help from above.” At that time, he cannot pray. Then we need to overcome once more through faith, and believe that the Creator does hear the prayer of every mouth, and it does not matter if the person is adept and has good qualities, or to the contrary. Rather, he must overcome and believe above reason, although his reason dictates that since he has prayed many times but still received no answer from above, how can he come and pray once more? This, too, requires overcoming, meaning to exert above reason and pray that the Creator will help him overcome his view and pray.

6.27 RABASH,

Letter No. 14

One is rewarded with everything only by overcoming, called “strength,” and each and every strength that a person elicits joins into a great amount. That is, even if a person overcomes once and gets an alien thought, and says, “But I already know from experience that soon I will not have this desire for the work, so what will I get now if I overcome it a little?”’ At that time, he must reply that many pennies join into a great amount, meaning to the general account, whether to the root of his soul or to the public.

 6.28 RABASH,

Article No. 1 (1986), “Moses Went”

One who has already begun the work, and is not saying that he will wait until the Creator gives him the desire to do the holy work and then he will begin to work. Rather, he does not want to wait because the craving to work and reach the truth pushes him forward though he does not see that he will have the ability to go forward alone, like Nahshon.

However, he sees that he cannot continue this work and is afraid that the burden of the kingdom of heaven, which he is now carrying, is beginning to fall off from him so he begins to call out for help, since he sees that each time, the burden he has taken on himself begins to fall. It is like a per- son carrying a sack on his back and sees that the sack is beginning to fall. We see that in corporeality, each one he asks for help helps him right away, and no one puts him off for later.

Similarly, in spirituality, one who begins to see that the burden and load are beginning to fall off from him, meaning the work he had previously assumed, to be “as an ox to the burden and as a donkey to the load,” and he sees that soon he will be in descent, so he cries out to the Creator and receives help. It is as our sages said, “He who comes to purify is aided,” as is written in The Zohar.

Conversely, Baal HaSulam said about one who waits for the Creator to help him first and then he will have the strength to work, that it is as it is written (Ecclesiastes, 11), “He who guards the wind will not sow and he who looks at the clouds…” meaning that he stands and waits for the Creator to send a spirit of repentance. This man will never reach the truth.

6.29 RABASH,

Article No. 19 (1985), “Come unto Pharaoh – 1”

To keep from losing what he is given, one must first make great efforts, for something that comes to a person through labor causes him to keep the thing and not lose it. But during the exertion, when a person sees that the work is still far from finished, he sometimes escapes the campaign and falls into despair. At that time he needs great strengthening, to believe that the Creator will help him, and the fact that help has not arrived is because he has not given the required quantity and quality of labor for preparing the deficiency in order to receive the filing, as it is said (“Introduction to the Study of the Ten Sefirot,” Item 18), “And if one practices Torah and fails to remove the evil inclina- tion from himself, it is either that he has been negligent in giving the necessary labor and exertion in the practice of Torah, as it is written, ‘I have not labored but found, do not believe,’ or perhaps one did put in the necessary amount of labor, but has been negligent in the quality.”

6.30 RABASH,

Article No. 30 (1988), “What to Look for in the Assembly of Friends”

A person should make an effort to obtain love of others. And this is called “labor,” since he must exert above reason. Reasonably thinking, “How is it possible to judge another person to the side of merit when his reason shows him his friend’s true face, that he hates him?” What can he tell the body about that? Why should he submit himself before his friend?

The answer is that he wishes to achieve Dvekut [adhesion] with the Creator, called “equivalence of form,” meaning not to think of his own benefit. Thus, why is subduing a difficult thing? The reason is that he must revoke his own worth, and the whole of the life that he wishes to live will be only with the consideration of his ability to work for others’ benefit, beginning with love of others, between man and man, through the love of the Creator.

Hence, here is a place where he can say that anything he does is without any self-interest, since by reason, the friends are the ones who should love him, but he overcomes his reason, goes above reason, and says, “It is not worth living for myself.”

6.31 RABASH,

Article No. 24 (1991), “What Does It Mean that One Should Bear a Son and a Daughter, in the Work?”

When a person prevails and asks for help from the Creator, after he has decided that he has a harm- doer in his heart, called “will to receive,” and that he cannot emerge from it, meaning after going through several ascents and descents, he finally sees that he has remained bare and destitute. At that time, his prayer is from the bottom of the heart. That is, he sees that if the Creator does not help him, he cannot overcome it.

Although one can say that he believes above reason that only the Creator helps him, within reason, he does not feel this, since he knows that he himself made the efforts and the labor to obtain something in spirituality. But when one sees that after all the exertions, he cannot emerge from the governance of the will to receive for himself, then he sees within reason that only the Creator can help him.

6.32 RABASH,

Article No. 16 (1984), “Concerning Bestowal”

It is said about that (Kidushin, 30), “Man’s inclination overcomes him each day and seeks to kill him, as it is said, ‘The wicked watches the righteous, and seeks to slay him.’ And if the Creator did not help him, he would not overcome it, as it is said, ‘The Lord will not leave him in his hand.’”

This means that first, one must see if he has the strength to come to be able to act with the aim to bestow contentment upon the Creator. Then, when he has already come to realize that he cannot achieve it by himself, that person focuses his Torah and Mitzvot on a single point, which is that “the light in it reforms him,” that this will be the only reward that he wants from the Torah and Mitzvot. In other words, the reward for his labor will be for the Creator to give him this strength called “the power of bestowal.”

 6.33 RABASH,

Article No. 16 (1984), “Concerning Bestowal”

The only reward we need is the Kli, which is called “the power of bestowal.” Thus, all we need are Kelim [plural of Kli], and not lights, and this is why the reward is primarily the power of bestowal. However, to obtain that Kli, called “the desire to bestow,” we need a desire, meaning to feel that we need this Kli. This is why we must first engage in Torah and Mitzvot in Lo Lishma, and this is our labor—to see that everything we do is for self-benefit, without any intention to bestow.

And then we see that we need the power of bestowal, and we want a reward for our work—that the Creator will give us this reward—the desire to bestow.

6.34 RABASH,

Article No. 37 (1985), “Who Testifies to a Person?”

What can one do if, after all the efforts he has made, he still does not feel the lack of not being able to bestow as pain and suffering? The solution is to ask the Creator to give him the Kli called, “A lack from not feeling,” and that he is unconscious, without any pain from being unable to bestow.

 6.35 RABASH,

Article No. 587, “The Upper One Scrutinizes for the Purpose of the Lower One”

The lower one is powerless to begin the work, but only in the form of Lo Lishma [not for Her sake], called “will to receive,” for only the Lo Lishma gives the first moving force of the lower one, for when a person does not find sufficient flavor in corporeal pleasures, he begins to search for spiritual pleasures. It follows that the root of the work of the lower one is the will to receive, and the prayer, called MAN, rises up, and then the upper one corrects this MAN and places on it the power of the Masach, which is a desire to delay the abundance before the lower one knows about himself that his aim is to bestow. That is, the upper one bestows upon the lower one good taste and pleasure in the desire to bestow, by which the lower one feels His exaltedness. At that time, he begins to understand that it is worthwhile to annul before Him and cancel his existence before Him. Then, he feels that all that there is in reality is only because such is His will, that the Creator wants the lower one to exist, but for himself, he wants to annul his existence. It follows that then, all the vitality he feels is regarded as Lishma and not for himself.

When he feels this, it is considered that he already has the correction of the MAN, and then he is also fit to receive the MAD, as well, for there is no contradiction between them anymore, since the lower one, too, wants the benefit of the upper one and not his own benefit.

It is considered that when the upper one gives the lower one Mochin, he also gives him the cloth- ing of the Mochin, meaning that he gives the lower one the abundance, as well as the power of the Masach, which is the desire to bestow. This is the meaning of “from Lo Lishma, we come to Lishma.”

 6.36 RABASH,

Article No. 721, “The Segula of Torah and Mitzvot”

There is a Segula [power/cure] in Torah and Mitzvot [commandments] that if he learns with this intention, although his heart disagrees with it, and all that he does with this intention is against his will and heart, yet through compulsory work, he is rewarded with inverting his desire from self-love to love of others.

We should understand what is written, that it is harder to attain the concept of bestowal upon others as this is against nature. Nevertheless, through the power of Torah and Mitzvot in order to bestow, we can be rewarded with inverting our nature into aiming to bestow.

There is a question: When one is immersed in the nature of self-love, how can he engage in Torah and Mitzvot in order to bestow, since he has no desire or ability whatsoever to do anything unless it is for his own sake? Thus, how can one be educated into engaging in Torah and Mitzvot in order to bestow? We should say that although man’s nature is only self-love, and that which is against it is hard for him to do, to the point that all his organs go against him, but there is the matter of coercion, meaning that when he engages in Torah and Mitzvot, he learns against his will, meaning that he wants it to be only for the sake of the Creator, and then he learns and thinks only about things that speak of the matter of bestowal.

And although the body disagrees, through the labor in which he exerts himself, forcing his body to work with this intention, although his heart’s desire disagrees with this intention, the light in it reforms him.

6.37 RABASH,

Article No. 295, “Anyone Who Sanctifies the Seventh – 1”

When one comes to a degree where he wants to bestow upon the Creator, meaning give content- ment to his Maker, he begins to contemplate what the Creator needs so he can give it to Him, since all his concerns are to please the Creator. At that time, he realizes that the only reason He created the world was to receive pleasures from Him, and that more than this, the Creator does not need. Hence, he follows the Creator’s will and receives the pleasures.

At that time, there is no issue of bread of shame because he is not receiving the pleasures because he wants to enjoy, but because he wants to bestow upon the Creator, for when one achieves the degree of wanting only to bestow upon the Creator, the Tzimtzum is lifted from him and he sees the world as full of His glory.

Then he sees that all this was revealed to him so he would enjoy it. Hence, once he has obtained the degree of bestowal, meaning obtained the degree where all he wants is only to bestow content- ment upon the Creator, he fills himself with all the pleasures that his eyes see, as in the explanation, “The whole earth is full of His glory.”

It follows that all that one needs to obtain that he can define as a reward after he has toiled several years is only one thing: the desire to bestow, meaning the degree of wanting to serve the rav not in order to receive reward.

All the labor where one needs to exert himself in Torah and Mitzvot [commandments] is only to obtain this. This is called “fear of heaven,” as it is written, “What does the Lord your God ask of you? Only to fear Me.”

6.38 RABASH,

Article No. 24 (1986), “The Difference between Charity and Gift”

In the work of the Creator, in the beginning of his work he had energy and confidence, and great importance for Torah and prayer because at that time he had grace of holiness, and felt that the work of the Creator is important. However, this was still not considered a “deficiency” that the Creator will satisfy, a deficiency is called Dvekut [adhesion] with the Creator, since the lack and pain of not having Dvekut with the Creator was still not felt in him as he has not exerted for it because he has just begun the work.

But after a long period of time of making efforts and not achieving satisfaction of his deficiency, torments and pain begin to form in him because he has made efforts but sees no progress in his work. At that time the thoughts begin to come one-by-one. Sometimes it is with sparks of despair, and sometimes he grows stronger, but then he sees once more that he has fallen from his state, and so on repeatedly. Finally, a real deficiency forms in him, which he has obtained through exertion in ascents and descents. These ascents and descents leave him with pain each time at not having been granted Dvekut with the Creator. Finally, when the cup of labor has been filled sufficiently, it is called a Kli. Then the filling of it comes from the Creator, since now he has a real Kli.

It follows that his seeing that now—after several years of work—he has retreated, this happens deliberately so he will ache at not having Dvekut with the Creator. It turns out that each time he must see that he is approaching the making of the Kli, called “real deficiency.” That is, his gauge of Katnut [infancy/smallness] and Gadlut [adulthood/greatness] of the deficiency is to the extent of the suffering he feels at not having the filling, which is called here “Dvekut with the Creator,” where all he wants is only to bring contentment to the Creator.

6.39 Rabbi Nachman of Breslov,

Likutey Moharan, Last Edition, Mark 48

The work of the Creator requires great persistence, whatever happens to him. Remember this well for you will need it very much as you begin the work of the Creator. It requires great tenacity, and to be strong and brave, to brace oneself and stand still, even if you are dropped down every time. You must not allow yourself to fall off altogether, for it is necessary to experience all those falls, descents, and confusions prior to entering the gates of Kedusha [holiness], and the true righteous, too, have gone through all of it. Know, that man must cross and very, very narrow bridge, and the rule and the most important thing is not to be afraid at all.

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