Enlightenment OR Enlightenment? [#1452]

Question:

In my past, I have been involved in many different “spiritual paths” of goyim. From listening to the shiurim of the Rav, I have been zoche to disconnect myself from those paths. I remain, however, with two points that I am not clear about.

(1) According to our Sages, a goy has a “nefesh” (soul), whereas a Jew additionally has a “Ruach”, “Neshamah”, “Chayah” and “Yechidah”. How exactly can we see this being expressed? Even goyim can connect to the concept of oneness, through meditation and all kinds of other means. Goyim also are able to nullify the ego. There are also goyim who are able to teach people how to connect to the “endless love”, to a certain power of G-dliness, and through this, to positively influence the environment. How is any of this unique only to the Ruach, Neshamah, Chayah and Yechidah in the soul of a Jew, which isn’t found in the soul of a goy?

(2) Also, in my past, I read about a certain gentile teacher who guided his students on how to reveal “light”, which is forbidden according to halachah (for example, it entails eating certain foods which aren’t always kosher, or it entails a connection to immorality). As Jews, we aren’t able to prevent those who are stumbling in these forbidden areas until the coming of Mashiach. But it seems that there are spiritual advantages that a goy has over a Jew, with regards to revealing “G-dly light”. I will be happy if the Rav can enlighten me in this topic: how can it be that a gentile is able to break through to higher spiritual levels than a Jew, if it is the purpose of the Jewish people to elevate the creation to the Creator, being that Judaism is the most spiritual path?

Much thanks to all of the inspiration from the Rav pertaining to the inner, spiritual dimension, the soul, which has helped me immensely, in so many areas, where others weren’t able to.

Answer:


  1. In our own “nefesh” as well, there is a difference between the nefeshlower soul of a goy with the nefeshlower soul of a Jew. Refer to the beginning of sefer Tanya, where this topic is treated at length, and it is based on the words of the Arizal.


There exists [two categories of spiritual revelation]: spiritual light, and ‘partial’ spiritual light, which are called “sparks” of light. In a Jew, everything is in the category of [complete] spiritual light, which is unification and oneness. The Jew’s soul can bind and connect everything together, from the highest root, infinitely, all the way down to the lowest level. A goy is only able to have “sparks” of each spiritual level (because they are in the category of the “288 sparks” that fell from the “shattering of the vessels”, as is known). Whatever they can access, can only be a partial level of the light. It is disparate. Therefore, they cannot integrate everything together. Instead, each level remains disparate from the other. They can attain a minimal level of unification through the “sparks” which connect to each other, but the connection can never be complete. Only a Jew is called “one nation” [implying that only a Jew can attain total oneness].

  1. Any parts of good which have fallen into total evil – the “three impure husks” – are able to be rectified through a Jew, in several ways: (1)Through committing a sin unwillingly, which shows that there was a desire from Heaven that he should rectify this forbidden act. (2) Through a mixture, where the forbidden becomes nullified through the permissible. (3) Through mesirus nefesh (self-sacrifice), the evil parts become drawn to their root. (4) If one has fallen into evil through any forbidden means [he can rectify it] - through teshuvahrepentance. (5) Through returning those who have fallen, to teshuvah. (6) Through the mitzvah of accepting converts.

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