Spirituality Vs. Self-Absorption [#3182]

Question:

I have big spiritual aspirations, and they are endless. In the course of my life, I want to reach the highest spiritual level within my reach. I want to reach the highest possible level of closeness and intimacy with G-d. To fulfill my aspirations, I learn the sefarim of Kaballah: the sefarim of the Arizal and the Reshash. I try to have all the holy intentions, and I learn about them once every week or two weeks, because there is so much wisdom and true knowledge there about how to reach closeness with G-d.

I have several friends, though, who tell me that my aspirations do not come from a pure place, and that my aspirations are a result of being totally self-absorbed, and that it’s all about “me” wanting more and more levels for myself to reach, and that it has nothing to do with avodas Hashem. So I want to know if there is any indicator by which I can know if my endless aspirations are coming from a good, pure place, or if they are not, chas v’shalom.

Answer:

Assess yourself and see if you have any traces of pure “lishmah” (selfless motives) in how you act, and to what extent. Also assess yourself to see if you are willing to forego something for a friend, and how much you can do that lishmah. Another thing for you to assess is to become aware of how much you think about yourself, [versus] how much you think about Hashem, and how much you think about others.