The Torah begins with the stories of
- Kayin and Hevel, a story of jealousy,
- 2.Noah, a story of a time when unbridled desires polluted the world to the extent that a flood was brought to “start over,” and
- 3.The Tower of Babel, a story of corrupted honor, where the generation desired to exert their own goodness aggrandizing themselves as the purpose of the world over Hashem’s Will regarding how mankind should relate to and serve Hashem, aggrandizing Hashem.
It is logical to deduce that within each of our inner worlds, we are facing the same struggles, in our own time and space, with our own physical existence. The Torah is there to help us find this through these stories.
Our spiritual pursuit is to harmonize our inner world so that our external speech and deeds can, indeed, reflect Hashem’s Mercy without our flawed impulses given to us intentionally by Hashem so that we have real free will.
We may not really be conscious of how an impulse of jealousy may be affecting us! Our logic may tell us a more socially acceptable explanation for our reasons to blame or shame.
Let’s zoom in on this for a moment because without self-understanding, how will we upgrade our lives from the vicissitudes of the forces of blame and shame?
What really happens when we feel that our interests were not properly considered, or that our generosity or kindness not properly acknowledged? Immediately upon feeling that lack, we have an awareness that someone outside of us is conducting themselves in a manner that is lacking to our liking and that they think it is OK to do that!! Here we are, seemingly the victim of someone’s insensitivity and what are we thinking deeply? She thinks it is Ok to do THAT? Maybe I SHOULD TOO! How would she like it if I…. Pause. Do you see how what we might call revenge, tit for tat or whatever you want to call it really comes from the jealous impulse of the lower soul that wants comfort and ease and to take “I also want to be able to think that is OK to be just a lower soul.” Do you see how it is jealousy?
What has happened to the higher part of our soul that wants to reflect Hashem into the world? It has been concealed and covered over by a choice we are subconsciously making, a choice that is connecting us not to Hashem through our neshama but to the angel Hashem creates that controls nature, the yetzer hara, the designer of everything counterfeit we invest in falsely believing it will bring us pleasure, comfort, respect, happiness, wealth, or whatever deceptions it logically whispers to us.
Hard to spot that one, isn’t it? All the logical arguments and societal norms would support the counterfeit goals not as counterfeit but possibly even, indeed, as basic human rights! After all, how many of us have given up on being spiritual, of identifying ourselves as souls who have come to reveal Hashem’s mercy into this world?
It is NOT to late. It is NOT to hard. It does take time though, a lifetime!
With self-understanding when we experience this inner dialogue, we merely tell Hashem about it and say “with my free will I do not wish to seek the goals of jealousy, desires, or craving for honor. I wish instead to use my free will to ask You Hashem to please, in this very part of me, to instead flow through me Your Mercy so that I may reveal that, shine that, even from this part of my makeup.”
That effort is ours to choose. Success is up to Hashem.
In order to make this effort though, we need self-understanding of our inner world. Self-understanding means that we are willing to understand we are created imperfect and the reason we are created imperfect -which is so that we can unify our soul and impact the world in the process, thereby earning the pleasure of being connected to Hashem as HIS servant while alive as well as after we no longer have material existence. The more of our lackings we bring to Hashem for improvement, the more of Hashem’s light we can bring through our lives into the world.
There is no amount of money that can bring the pleasure of inner peace, of menuchas HaNefesh, of bringing a light to fill what otherwise might cause us stress, anxiety, panic, rage, depression, or any of the negative reactions we have. Don’t we yearn for inner peace, for inner calm, for health?
Bringing our negative reactions in hisbodidus to Hashem, we can talk it out until we see the fingerprint of either jealousy, desire or craving for honor, and then see the force we are experiencing – rising upward in firey feelings, wind that we want to speak out in an unbounded way, water that we want to fill our desires in an unbounded way, or sadness, earthiness, that drags us down. We want to search out these impulses, not suppress or deny them. We are born with them because we are in bodies and we come into this world in a body to bring these impulses from these unrectified states of jealousy, desire and craving for honor to rectification, returning the koach to ITS Creator, unifying Hashem’s Name in the process and creating inner wholeness.
What absorbs and provides boundaries for all of our negativity is the process represented by Hashem’s Name, yud K vav K. His Name IS a process of faith, wisdom, creating imagery that then speaks with a more powerful truth than the false imagery to our impulses, our heart, the blood that flows through us.
Torah teaches us the process. Self-understanding can only be accomplished when we talk openly to Hashem Who is our Creator and Who already knows our shortcomings because HE CREATES them SO we can bring them to Him for healing. Never be afraid to confess our shortcomings and impulses to Hashem Who creates them! Find them, seek them out! Then pray!
As Rabbi Rietti says in his series on Hisbodidus – call 1 800 ALMIGHTY!!
What is in our way? What is holding us back from accepting what the Torah tells us about how Hashem creates us?
It is our free will. And we have free will.
How many of us really know what happiness is?
Rabbi Shalom Arush teaches us to start with thank you. Thank you for all the good and all the challenges. Thank you is the effort that brings emunah into the matter to rebalance it. It brings Hashem into the picture. When we have gratitude, it dispels darkness. Start with that. If you can see that as true, then that is the first step to realizing the truth of the Torah, the truth that we are spiritual beings in an entirely spiritual world that appears material.
May our efforts to start be enough to bring more and more light so that the truth that we and the entire world are one with Hashem Who is ONE.
As you may know, I help people transform their lives one healthy habit at a time. For a free EBook by Dr. Wayne Andersen, please click here