I received an email from Chaim Michel (pen name, to protect his privacy for obvious reasons), calling my attention to his article, "What Husbands Need to Know" on Aish.com, where he attributes saving his virtually hopeless marriage to "The Garden of Peace" by our beloved rabbi and spiritual guide Rav Shalom Arush shlit"a. Chaim was quite upset that the Aish editors toned down his praise for Rav Arush and the book as well as removed some of his most important points, such as the necessity to guard one's eyes and maintain personal holiness to assure marital bliss. When he confronted them about it, they purportedly told him, "those parts are not for our readers." Hashem wrote Lo Taturu in His Torah, commanding us to guard our eyes. Hashem intended all of "our readers" to be aware of this commandment. Breslev Israel is therefore happy to present you with Chaim Michel's original uncut article entitled, My Personal Redemption, with the sections that the Aish editors completely removed highlighted.
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Imagine that you failed to pay income tax for the last twenty years, and you owe the IRS back taxes that total a million dollars! You go before the head of IRS who is fully capable of throwing the book at you if he so desires. Yet, he’s kind, attentive, and understanding about everything you have to say in defense of yourself. Yet, despite your excuses for not having paid income tax for the last two decades, you still owe the money and are legally liable to pay it in full, or else…
Got the picture? Now imagine that the head of IRS offers you a proposal” “OK,” he says, “I’m willing to wipe your slate clean of the $1,000,000 dollars in back debts. All you have to do is to begin paying your income tax on a monthly basis from this moment on. Do you agree?”
Your head is spinning. What?! Such compassion!? Of course you agree! You take out your pen and you sign the commitment right away. You’ve just saved a million dollars and time behind bars…
A fantasy? No way – that’s just how teshuva works. In fact, that’s low-level teshuva, the teshuva out of fear. The Gemara says that if a person makes teshuva out of love, his transgression becomes a merit. That means that instead of paying a million-dollar fine, you get a check for a million dollars.
The Evil Inclination and the heresy of modern society have been giving Hashem, Torah and mitzvas terrible publicity. Teshuva really is umpteen times better than winning the Irish Lottery.
Also featured this week:
Rabbi Shalom Arush: Stop Comparing
Rabbi Avraham HaCohen Kook: The Omer Controversy
Dr. Zev Ballen: Stop the Insanity!
Rivka Levy: Smart and Simple
Racheli Reckles: Little Grease-stained Shirts
Chaya Ovadia: If Money Grew on Trees
Dovber Halevi: The Set-up
Yael Karni: The Road to Redemption
Bracha Goetz: Writing Books for Children
Bright Beam Blessings for a wonderful week!