Human Responsibility | Part One
Human Responsibility | Part One, Paragraph 1-3.
As to our makeup, it’s characterized by the fact that we’re a mélange of two conflicting elements: a soul and a body. The body and all of its physicality hold sway from birth on until your mind — and hence, your soul — comes into its own. But the body only gives way to the soul when you grow in wisdom and learn how to keep your baser instincts in check. For at bottom, sin and rank physicality reflect a sort of murkiness as opposed to the clarity of spirituality, and that murkiness is the polar opposite of what those who want to draw close to G-d would crave.
The rub is that the soul has to experience that murkiness as long as it’s in the body and must suffer it until the soul overcomes it. Given that the body and soul are to reunite in the end, it behooves the soul to eventually undo the body’s murkiness so that the two could ascend together as they must. And so each one of us must engage in the struggle to have the soul hold sway over the body here, in life, so as to improve ourselves and achieve our true potential.