Rav Eliyahu Dessler, Qunterus haChessed (ch. 9-12) – Relationship ep. 23
The Beyond Meaningful Relationships – Relationshipful Meaning series at the kloiz meets on Wednesday nights at 8pm EDT.
Wednesday night (September 7th, 2022) the Beyond Meaningful Relationship – Relationshipful Meaning chaburah continued our study of Rav Dessler’s Qunterus haChessed from Mikhtav meiEilyahu vol I.
In this chaburah we learned and discussed chapters 9 – 12. After discussing the etiology of the Will to Take, which is rooted in our physical selves and our desire to service and the Will to Give, which comes from our being in the Divine “Image”, Rav Eliyahu Dessler gives advice for how to develop a giving disposition.
In chapter 9, Rav Dessler explains the value of two tools: (1) Using the power of taking– fear of punishment or the desire not to see others’ suffering. Either motive may not be as pure as giving for its own sake, but both will habituate the right behaviors. (2) Using the power of mental imagery. Art utilizes imagery to help us grasp unfathomables like the emotions and others are going through in greater details. We can do the same in our minds. Which would deepen our gains from (1), using our self-interest as a motive to give. But by imagining giving with a full heart, we can practice the proper emotions so that they will be triggered when acting, even if initially acting for imperfect motives.
Chapter 10 continues the constructive advice by addressing how to cure the ambition to take. In short, if you realize that a desire for something is coming from the Will to Take, starve it. After all, “one who has a maneh (a coin worth 100 zuz) wants 200″. So, you would really be happier not trying to get that maneh!
Chapter 11 is about gratitude. Recieving with the Will to Give connects one to others.
Chapter 12 draws a picture of the perfected world. A world of giving and thankfulness. Both sides of the exchange acting from a Will to Give, a win-win that leads to partnerships. With this, Rav Dessler explains an aggadic story about Alexander the Great and the King of Qatzia.