The Continuing Adventures of Desire - Official Kabbalah Publication of the Bnei Baruch Kabbalah Education & Research Institute
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The Continuing Adventures of Desire

and how Desire became little Desiree

When we left off in the last issue, our friend Desire had discovered that it was made of a desire to receive pleasure, and that the Creator was a desire to give pleasure. Desire had also discovered that to be like the Creator, it had to receive not because this was what it wanted, but because receiving pleased the Creator. This turned Desire from a receiver to a giver, just like the Creator, because it received in order to give, and not for its own pleasure.

One day, Desire met a Kabbalist, who explained that the desire to receive within us is called “a feminine desire,” and the desire to give within us is called “a masculine desire.” Desire listened carefully to the Kabbalist, and then said: “Since I’m a desire to receive, I must be a girl. In that case, from now on my name will not be Desire, but Desiree.”

But that’s not the end of our story, far from it. You see, something very special happened when Desiree gave pleasure to the Creator by receiving from Him. When she received this pleasure, she realized what it was like to do what the Creator does—to give. In other words, Desiree learned what it felt like to be The Creator.

Now this may seem like the perfect situation: Desiree knew what she was like—a receiver—and now she learned what the Creator was like—a giver. But there is a fly in the ointment here: before all this receiving in order to give to the Creator stuff took place, Desiree had no idea what her own nature was. Everything was kind of on automatic pilot—she just received.

But now, things were very different. Now that Desiree experienced two different desires, she could compare them. In other words, before she discovered the Creator, Desiree felt only herself. But now she felt herself as well as the Creator. It was as if she had two kinds of desire within her: her original pleasure from receiving, and the pleasure from being like the Creator.

Her own nature—receiving because it felt good—was totally opposite from the Creator’s nature of bestowal. And this oppositeness made her feel just awful. Why? Because she wanted to be like the Creator, and now she realized that she was the exact opposite of Him.

Kabbalists call what Desiree felt “The bread of shame,” which is essentially the sensation of being totally opposite from the Creator.

When Desiree felt that bread of shame, she said to herself: “How in the world can I work this out? I know what I am like, and I know what He is like. I want to be like Him, and not like me, but not only did I love the pleasure I received from Him, I loved doing what He does—giving—even more. What a pleasure that was, being like the Creator! But now I want to be like the Creator just so I can feel good. Oh boy, what a mess!!!”

Indeed, this is quite a pickle that Desiree finds herself in. Now she not only wants pleasure from receiving, as before, but she wants pleasure from giving, too! You see, when Desiree gave back to the Creator, she had discovered that giving pleasure is millions of times more fun than just receiving it.

But by enjoying the giving, Desiree realized she was actually still receiving. Giving, she found out, meant thinking of His pleasure, not her own. So Desiree sets her sights on accomplishing one goal: to be able to receive in order to bestow for the right reason—because that is what the Giver wants her to do, without any thought of Her own pleasure.

Once again, Desiree begins to contemplate: “Now let’s see, I want to give, but I want it because it feels so good be like the Creator does. Heyyyy, what if I had no idea that I would get pleasure from bestowing? What if I had no idea that the Creator is the giver, or even that He exists? EUREKA!!! What I need is a total mind-melt, erase the awareness and sensation of the Creator from my mind. Then, if I choose to give, simply because giving is a good thing to do, and not because I knew it would be pleasurable, well that would be true, honest giving.

Yes folks, Desiree had another Eureka moment. And the first thing Desiree did, was to stop receiving altogether, because when receiving pleasure, she knew, she wouldn’t be aware that there was a giver.

Of course, she did remember that the Creator exists, but she didn’t feel His existence at the moment. “Now,” she said to herself, “If I receive, it’ll be only because I think giving is the right thing to do, and not because I think I’ll get some pleasure out of it.”

“Very well,” thought Desiree, “except, if I can’t feel Him, how will I receive from Him, or give to Him?”

To be continued…