In a letter that Rabbi Yehudah Lev Ashlag wrote to his brother Shmuel, he describes the purpose for which the soul leaves the spiritual realms and descends into this difficult physical world. Surprisingly, he describes the benefit the soul attains through its association with the physical.
This does seem surprising, as in general, the physical gets a bad press: it is the origin of the world to receive for oneself alone in this world, and is often seen as gross, compared to the ethereal nature of the spiritual worlds.
But Rabbi Ashlag points out that it is precisely through the association of the soul with the physical that the soul acquires not only knowledge of God but also feeling. Feelings are only possible through the physical body and it is through our feelings, both positive and negative that we may actually experience the light of God . Such experience is called “attaining the Names of God”.
Podcast dedicated to David and Linor on the occasion of their marriage