Taking our life to the next level starts with consciousness. Everything starts with consciousness.
We know that this week there are 2 portions, Acherai Mot and Kedoshim. Having 2 portions gives us a 2nd level of unity, since we receive 2 portions of light. Another portion enters to reinforce a higher level of light. The light is always trying to give us as much as possible. We get the light of immortality and holiness this week.
In Acherai Mot – we know the light reveals secrets to us. We should learn a completely different lesson each year as we get deeper and to another level, we should be at another way of seeing the story. “after the death of Nadav and Avihu.” The idea is “after the death.” What does this mean? Its where we need to be, “after the level of death,” meaning removing the aspect of death from our life. Death cannot be part of our movie/life/relationships/friendships/business.
The 2 souls of Nadav and Avihu were equivalent to the entire souls of all the Israelites. Yitzhak Levi of Berdichev explains that they were drunk and they entered the holy of holies, and then they died. The kabbalists explain – how can such high souls make such a mistake? They felt a level of light they thought was the light of immortality, so they thought they needed to get drunk since it was Purim – huge amount of light revealed, light of Binah, they thought it had already come, the end of the correction. And they needed to reincarnate at higher levels, later on, as Pinchas and Elijah the prophet. Imagine how careless and low our consciousness was however many years ago – when we were there, a person that does a negative action, how much negativity can that person spread? How much light can be revealed? Not really that much. But when a righteous person does a positive action, there is so much light revealed in one action; the same idea applies when he falls. When a righteous person does a negative action, he creates so much negativity for himself and the rest of the world. Kabbalists that use tools of the Zohar, mikveh, etc, to protect us so that we don’t fall, because the consequences are so much higher. “The sons of Aaron died because they didn’t ask Moshe.” When a person takes drugs or alcohol, they get immediate gratifications, and immediately bring light of Binah to a vessel in Malchut and get burned. If a person wants to elevate to a level above where they are – Nadav and Avihu got closer, they burned, they couldn’t handle it, and they short circuited; they went to directly plug into the light. If they had at least asked Moshe, no matter the answer, they would have at least had protection. A person that wants to elevate to a level above his own narrow place, study by himself, and not with his teacher, through his teacher, not asking permission from his teacher, “he must die.” This is tough to say, but we know that death is not just physical death. To attain another spiritual level, I have to connect through my teacher. The idea is for us, even asking questions, while its not easy, it helps us to stop; whether or not it’s the answer we like to hear; some people don’t like to ask questions because they know they are not going to get the answer they want to hear, or they ask questions in a way that they think will give them the answer that they want. And that’s not really “plugging in” and awakening the light. Most of us need to learn to reconnect to our teacher. When I am by myself and not plugging into the pipes and channels, I am causing death = spiritual death. You won’t be able to elevate. In order to elevate my consciousness, I need to understand I cannot just elevate by myself; in our life today we are not at such a spiritual level that we can elevate and connect any other way.
There are spiritual actions that we do that we feel so much energy from them, and there are actions that we stop doing, because we don’t feel like we get energy from them anymore. Some people love the mikveh, others do not. Even in our personal life, not just spiritual tools, there are things we like and things we don’t like. The Zohar says, when you do things you don’t enjoy and get no pleasure, because we do the things we don’t feel like we get energy from them, we will then be able to receive cleansing and clarity from the things we do in which we feel connected. By stretching and doing things that are uncomfortable or we don’t’ feel we get energy from them, we create more of an opening for energy from things where do feel we get energy. For example, if I don’t feel connected with Shabbat or other tools, we create limitations in the things we like to do. I like morning connection but not the night connection. The things I stop doing because I don’t like them, block the light that can be revealed from the things we like to do. Whatever it is, do it for the sake of cleansing to reveal light in something we do like to do. When a person starts doing something and likes to only do one thing, those of us that are leaders and want to inspire others, need to give people one small action to do. When you do one thing good, you feel good, and then you will do the next action. Just by doing one small action, that will bring us to do another small action. Eventually the person will be connected to the light in a much greater way. When we find that I need to know how to be more humble, if you continue doing spiritual and positive action, as you get closer to the light, you see how low you are, and how humble you can become; then the light can dwell on you.
Rav Ashlag shared a lot about this week’s energy. Must of the wisdom of Kabbalah is based on this week – in fact the Zohar says this week includes all the energy of the torah that we need in our life.
This portion Acharei Mot – after death, whenever there is any negativity, a person is not happy and has low energy. But there is another secret – this portion of Kedoshim – being holy – comes to bring and to draw to our life, to add holiness; when we connect its only for the sake of drawing to our life more holiness. What does holiness mean? Kedusha – holiness, separation not from others but separating a holy energy – like a surrounding energy that is separated from everything else. Kedusha is separation from the desire to receive for the self alone – any time a person separates himself from the realm of the desire to receive for the self alone – the small picture, small thinking. Shabbat is holy because it is separated from the rest of the week. Sometimes we need to separate ourselves from our environment if it is not so holy, for the sake of bringing holiness. A person should separate himself from the craving of the physical world; that is how we can draw holiness, so that our thoughts can become holy. You need to take yourself out of the physical world – out of the attachments, need and craving for 1% needs, by doing that you draw holiness and you become holy. There are righteous people whose soul is so powerful, and for them it is easy to separate from the 1%, they don’t have as much attachment to the physical world. But most of us are good people, but we don’t have as much power to achieve those levels of light and holiness by ourselves, so we need help. Include yourself in a holy environment. A single candle can add himself to a group of candles, and add to the equation of making a lot of light. That way can be included in the holiness that can be revealed that I wouldn’t otherwise get if I am by myself. When the light wants to come to our life, Rabbi Shimon said, when the light sees that he wants to be revealed in this world and enter someone’s life, but sees the person is not so holy, but is an evil person – meaning a person always connected to his desire to receive and who is not yet a transformed person – when the light wants to come but sees how much that person is into himself – the light will never look at us as a negative person, but regards us in such a way that wants to trickle down in a lesser way. The light shrinks himself to enter your life. Only through mercy and forgiveness. How many of us that really want to share with someone, will jump immediately and judge the other person and tell them what we think and all the negative things that we think about that person, rather than deciding if there is a merciful way to connect and convey our message. Is there another way for me to deliver that message in a merciful way? By doing that we elevate ourselves to behave like the light.
From Tiferet Shlomo – he says when a person works on himself and really prepares himself, when he works on his desire to receive for the self alone, awakens himself to really do more spiritual work – for the sake of revealing what is really connected to us – we are drawing holiness. But what we want to really understand - when a person in this world does a small action of holiness – meaning we do a small separation in our own level – when we awaken in our life, in the lower world, a small action – if you do a small separation between us and the physical world, between us and the desire to receive for the self alone – we decide not to be angry in order to separate ourselves from that need to be angry for the sake of bringing holiness into the world – if you separate yourself and you become holy – “I will have to come and dwell on you, and give you so much more holiness.” Just a small separation from the desire to receive for the self alone from above there is so much flow of holiness – a cloud of light and protection comes to a person. You can’t connect to the world of solutions and answers if we keep doing little negative actions. No matter how disconnected we were, how negative we were or are, a person will separate himself a little bit, a little bit holy, not just because we want to be holy, but because that selfish action we are about to do will prevent us from drawing down so much holiness from that cloud. We can draw down so much holiness from small actions because we want more holiness in our lives.
Rav Ashlag shared with Rav Brandwein – letter 13 in Beloved of My Soul – Rav Brandwein shares with the Rav Berg about Kedoshim. He speaks of Matan Torah, the gift of the Torah – dealing with the creation itself. The entire creation has an intention, a meaning – the entire creation was for one purpose, for us to become holy and for us to know that there is a creator. What does this mean, for us? Our job is to publish and to spread, to advertise, to market the creator, because that’s what the creator wants, that we will spread his name. Why? Why does the creator need us to spread his name? If the light is so good and can help everything in our life, we want to share it with others. When you study Kabbalah and you realize how great it is and you get the depth of it and get really excited you just want to share it. First, realize that if I am bringing that holiness into my life, I can attract more people to feel that light, and then more people will be attracted and will want to know about it. This light is the cure for all chaos, and a cure for death. The more people realize this the better position we are all in. in The Gift of the Bible, Rav Ashlag says the creator came to the Israelites and told them, if you will hear what I am saying to you and you will keep what I am telling you, you will become holy and protected, you will separate yourself from all other nations, and you will be a kingdom of priests, and you will be a holy nation. Rav Ashlag says, similarly the creator didn’t tell them anything that they should do. If my friend comes to me and asks me to do a job for him, he needs to clarify what is the job, what I will get out of it. We need to understand that when the creator asks us to do a certain job and asks us to keep all the commandments and separate ourselves from the desire to receive for the self alone, you will be priests and holy. But if there is no explanation of the job why should we take it? The idea of becoming a priest – is only for the sake of sharing. Only a person without the desire to receive for the self alone and can love anyone whoever they are -the results would be becoming a holy nation, and draw down light from the cloud of light that surrounds us. When you separate yourself from the desire to receive for the self alone, with a consciousness of wanting to draw so much more holiness to my life, it’s enough to draw so much more holiness. To the degree that I become a priest, I become holy. It’s very hard to separate yourself from the desire to receive for the self alone when you are by yourself.