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32 posts from November 2015

Ascent From the Depths

Escape From Darkness
A Jew must know one thing to survive - the deepest descent leads to the greatest ascent and the darkest darkness leads to the brightest light. This is the template of our entire Torah, especially this week's Torah portion "Vayeshev" and the Torah portions of the coming six Torah portions through the exodus from Egypt. This is also the template of current events as we see in my feature article Ascent From the Depths in this week's new issue of Breslev Israel web magazine.

Every time a person undergoes a test of faith, overcomes an obstacle in the performance of a mitzvah, or fights against temptation, he or she strengthens their soul. Read all about in Don't Live on Easy Street.

Also featured this week:

Rabbi Shalom Arush - The Doctor and the Angel

Dr. Zev Ballen - Tuning In

Racheli Reckles - Self-Empowerment Mentality

Howard Morton - Nuclear Shelter Time?

Yardena Slater - Out to Win

Editor's Choice - A New Breath of Air by Sunny Levi from Chicago, a must-read for any parent

Enjoy, and may Hashem bless you with a wonderful week and good tidings, amen!


A nation of miracles

Miracles "For the people of Israel, miracles are the way of nature, for the people of Israel are above nature." Rebbe Nachman of Breslev

Don't be upset with the nations of the world because they don't understand us; they're not capable of understanding us.

Many of our own brothers and sisters don't know what it means to be a Jew, so what can we possibly expect from our neighbors? One of life's biggest tragedies is when the King's own son and daughter don't know who their father is.

Our Father in Heaven can do whatever He wants, whenever He wants. Nature is nothing more than a tool in His hands. Whenever He so desires, He overrides nature. We call that miracles, but for Hashem, it's business as usual.

How can we invoke miracles?

My beloved teacher and spiritual guide Rabbi Shalom Arush says that if you haven't yet seen a miracle today, it's because you haven't said thank-you to Hashem today. So what are you waiting for?


Mi Adir, Shloimie Daskal

This post is in honor of Sara Techiya Litman, whose father and brother were killed in a terrorist attack last week, and her fiancé  Ariel Beigel, who are getting married tonight at Binyanei Hauma in Jerusalem. The Beams, Emuna Outreach and Breslev Israel wish them every blessing in the world!

With all the turmoil around us, let's not forget that there's much to rejoice in, such as our young people getting married. In Jewish tradition, as the bridegroom enters the wedding canopy or chuppa, we sing a moving melody entitled, Mi Adir, or "He who is mighty". Here is my special friend Shloimie Daskal singing Mi Adir with the inspiring "You Raise Me Up" melody by Josh Groban. Enjoy, and sing along. For your convenience, you'll find the lyrics in transliteration and translation below the vid:

Transliteration:

Mi adir al hakol,
mi baruch al hakol,
mi gadol al hakol,
mi dagul al hakol,
hu yivarech es hechasan
hu yivarech es hakallah
hu yivarech es hechasan v'es hakallah

Translation:

He who is mighty above all beings,
He who is blessed above all beings,
He who is great above all beings,
He who is distingui​shed above all beings,
May he bless the bridegroo​m
May he bless the bride
May he bless the bridegroo​m and the bride.


Danger: Desensitization

Desensitization
More Israelis have been killed in terrorist attacks during the last four weeks than in the last two Gaza wars combined. Barely a day goes by without tragedies, funerals and multiple terrorist attacks all over our beloved country, with Jerusalem and Gush Etzion being hit the worst. Yet, we're now faced with a new danger - it's a spiritual toxic call "desensitization", where people become desensitized by violence and killing. New widows, new orphans, weddings that turn into funerals and parents who lose children no longer bring tears to desensitized eyes. The hallmark of a Jew, as our sages tell us in the Mishna, is compassion, mercy and bashfulness. Desensitization kills all three of these beautiful traits. It is the evil inclination's covert plot to neutralize Jewish souls, not just bodies. We must fight against this danger with all our might.

How?

Pray for the injured. Visit the sick. Ask what you can do to help a family who suffered a tragedy. Help strengthen them. Don't be apathetic. Encourage the unfortunate and help spread emuna. Remember, our sages tell us that when tragedy strikes one of us, we should all take it to heart.


Independent, or Not?

Independent or Not
The industrial and technological revolution has given many people - even governments - the feeling that they are totally independent and self-reliant. Current affairs are Hashem's way of showing us just how much we still need Him...

Don't miss today's live broadcast and emuna shiur entitled "Independent, or Not?", which takes place this evening (Wednesday), G-d willing, at 7:00 PM local time at our Chut Shel Chessed Yeshiva, 13 Shmuel Hanavi Street, Jerusalem, in the main sanctuary. You can see today's lesson here - the broadcast, as well as our lessons posted from now on - are Mac and iPod compatible. If you tune in too early to the live broadcast link, you'll be sent to the main page of the Breslev Israel website, so try to tune in on time As always, the live shiur is open to the public - both men and women are welcome - so if you're anywhere near Jerusalem, come on by! If you are not able to view today's broadcast live, then G-d willing, you'll be able to see the video tape of it on this coming week on Lazer Beams.