This sounds exaggerated, but I think it actually may be spot on. I’ll explain.
Kabbalistically, when G-d created the spiritual framework of the world, the ‘vessels’ which He originally created couldn’t take the intensity of the Divine light which shone into them. So they shattered, scattering Divine sparks throughout the world.
For the last 5,777 years or so we have been gathering in each and every one of those billions of Divine sparks, and raising them up back to G-d. This occurs, mostly, when we learn Torah, do Mitzvahs and pray to G-d. For example, that apple you’re about to eat contains a good number of Divine sparks. When you make a bracha (blessing) over it before you eat it, you raise the sparks in it back up to Hashem.
If a person is switched on, spiritually, he can feel the presence of those Divine sparks, or at least his Neshamah can feel them. This is the spiritual uplift or ‘high’ we get after doing a Mitzvah.
Now, in the early years, there were literally billions of these sparks all over the place just clambering to get back to their source (Hashem). So, whenever a person acted with G-dly intent to do a holy act, these sparks would rush to ‘get liberated’, and that person would feel an immediate boost of holiness and closeness to G-d.
But, now, as we enter the so called ‘end of days’ when there is not so many of these Divine sparks remaining, it’s becoming harder and harder for us feel any spiritual kick or connection to G-d from performing Mitzvahs. It wasn’t so long ago that your average holy Jewish housewife could open a book of Tehillim and have tears streaming down her face within 5 minutes. And, now? Well, even the holiest days of the year seemed to have lost their meaning, connection and vitality.
But, that’s a good thing! It means we’re getting close, very close… (b’ezrat Hashem).
So, when you get up tomorrow morning and wash your hands, if you find enough spiritual strength to eke any Divine sparks out of your bracha, you may just be on the level of the Ba’al Shem Tov.