Even if there occur to him lustful imaginations or other extraneous thoughts during Divine Service, in Torah or in devout prayer, he must not let his heart dwell on them but must immediately avert his mind from them. Nor should he be foolish by attempting to sublimate the middot of the extraneous thought, as is known. For such things were meant only for tzaddikim, in whom extraneous thoughts do not occur of their own making, but those of others. But as for him whose extraneous thought is his own, from the aspect of evil that is in the left part of his heart, how can he raise it up when he himself is bound below?

Nevertheless he must not be downcast at heart and feel dejected and despicable during Divine Service, which should be with great joy. On the contrary, he should draw fresh strength and intensify [his] effort with all his power to concentrate on the prayer with increased joy and gladness, in the realisation that the foreign thought that had invaded his heart comes from the kelipah in the left part, which, in the case of the benoni, wages war with the divine soul within him. For it is known that the way of combatants, as of wrestlers, is that when one is gaining the upper hand the other likewise strives to prevail with all the resources of his strength. Therefore, when the divine soul exerts itself and summons its strength for prayer, the kelipah also gathers strength at such time to confuse her and topple her by means of a foreign thought of its own.

This refutes the error commonly held by people, who mistakenly deduce from the occurrence of the foreign thought that this proves their prayer to be worthless, for if one prayed as is fitting and proper no foreign thoughts would have occurred to him. What they say would be true if there were only one single soul, the same that prays as well as thinks and fancies the foreign thoughts.

The real truth, however, is that there are two souls, waging war one against the other in the person's mind, each one wishing and desiring to rule over him and pervade his mind exclusively. Thus all thoughts of Torah and the fear of Heaven come from the divine soul, while all mundane matters come from the animal soul, except that the divine soul is clothed in it. This is like the example of a person praying with devotion, while facing him there stands a wicked heathen who chats and speaks to him in order to confuse him. Surely the thing to do in such a case would be not to answer him good or evil, but rather to pretend to be deaf without hearing, and to comply with the verse, "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him." Similarly, he must answer nothing, nor engage in any argument and counter-argument with the foreign thought, for he who wrestles with a filthy person is bound to become soiled himself. Rather should he adopt an attitude as if he neither knows nor hears the thoughts that have befallen him; he must remove them from his mind and strengthen still more the power of his concentration. However, if he finds it hard to dismiss them from his mind, because they distract his mind with great intensity, then he should humble his spirit before G‑d and supplicate Him in his thought to have compassion upon him in His abundant mercies, as a father who takes pity on his children who stem from his brain; so may the Lord have pity on his soul which is derived from Him Who is blessed, and deliver it from the "turbulent waters;" for His sake He will do it, for verily "His people is a part of the Lord."