Each and every person has a war between the instinctive body, which like any animal, as we speak now, there are literally billions, trillions, and much much more of little or larger life-forms, that their entire purpose is to “feel no pain and to feel only pleasure” which includes their survival.
We also have unique, Beyond animals – though some animals also feel limited compassion, a compassionate side, a Divine side, a side which is ready to even give our lives for another.
We activate this side by engaging in the triple loves: the love of Torah, the love of God, and the love of our fellow Jew.
These three loves, which effectively boils down to being a compassionate person, which comes from sensitivity / feeling another, and therefore being sensitive to their Joys and their suffering, is really all a single entity.
Why would God take, literally a soul, which is part of Himself! – imagine this infinite light and put it into an animal, which is attracted – because the instincts that we have, whether they are sexual, whether they are for food, certainly the horrific instincts for power – all of these only come from the body, and its selfish and negative desires – For the soul to be in the body, is like taking a king and making him dig excrement for decades – but all of this is worth it, because when the soul can bring light to the body, and through the body to the world, the reward is infinite.
By furthermore pursuing instinctual pleasures, and ignoring the one mechanism of bringing the soul to life, and light to the world, namely the study of Torah and the performance of God’s Commandments, the mitzvahs; we we ignore the potential for infinite Joy, and fall into that which is often self and other destructive.
This is why our sages say, we only sin when we are being foolish, for it is easy for one to understandp, that if the light of God has come into a body for a period of time, we should abandon all foolish Pursuits and pursue only the purpose of this existence.
Furthermore, the fact that God who is the essence of compassion, would take a soul and subjugate it to such horrific circumstances, proves how eternal, glorious, and blissful the reward, for every bit of Torah study and performance of Mitzvos!
As God is the essence of compassion and kindness, there is obviously no easier mechanism than this.
Only in the pit… in the bowels of creation, namely, of the darkness and the foolishness of modern, or all historical cultures, can we achieve the infinite growth.
And by understanding now, how light, bright, and infinitely valuable Torah and Mitzvos are, we can, as the great teaching of the Baal Shem Tov and the Alter Rebbe, a fundamental pathway – Do So With Immense Joy.