Kabbalah: Growing Our Spiritual Spark

Kabbalah explains that the whole of Creation, including us, constitutes a single desire – the will to enjoy. This desire was created by what the Kabbalists call “Light,” or “the Creator.” As the Light continued to influence the desire it created, the desire went through several stages of development, until it broke into tiny, particular desires called “souls.” And this is the origin of the people in this world – us. The particular desires or souls were clothed in physical bodies in this world, and this is how we now feel our existence.

But even while we exist in the body and identify ourselves with it, there remains a spiritual particle, a spark of Light, within each of us. This spark is an aspiration to return to our root, the Creator.

However, since we live in the physical bodies, we also feel other aspirations, desires for things that we know from the physical level of existence. Kabbalah divides these desires into bodily desires and human desires, where the bodily desires are desires for all the things that our body wants, such as food, shelter and sex. The human desires are the desires we have towards things we can acquire in society, like wealth, fame, power, honor and knowledge.

When we start paying more attention to our spiritual spark, the aspiration to the Creator, then we nourish that spark and enable it to grow. We thereby begin to identify ourselves with our spiritual existence, above the bounds of time and space, where we exist as souls.

This is exactly what Kabbalah helps us to do: nourish and increase our spiritual component, the spark of Light that connects us to our root. Through Kabbalah books we are able to gain contact with our spiritual existence, since the Kabbalists write to us from their own attainment of the spiritual existence. It is as if they are throwing us a rope, and all we have to do is catch it, that is, read their books properly.

The first step in learning how to read Kabbalah books properly is to realize that you’re reading about things that are happening on a higher, spiritual level. In other words, the text has nothing to do with this world or anything you already know. The fact is: There is no way for you to understand anything in the text and to grasp it intellectually, because you have no existing premises for this. The only thing you can do while reading is desire to understand, desire to develop the inner discernments that match the text in order to grasp it. And when you do this, what actually takes place is the creation of a fundamentally new, spiritual sensation within you.

Depending in how strongly one desires for this change to happen within him while reading a Kabbalah book, one grabs onto the rope that the Kabbalists are extending to him, and “pulls” himself up to the higher spiritual level that the text is describing. One exposes himself to that level’s influence and connects to it, thereby beginning to sense eternity and perfection, just like he did when he was first created by the Light.