73 posts categorized "Encouragement"

Keep on Dreaming, Keep on Trucking

When I was a little boy in inner-city Washington, DC, we lived in a small apartment on top of my father's grocery store on Independence Avenu SE, twelve blocks from the Capital. We had a really nice African-American mailman who used to deliver the mail to us every day. I don't remember his name, but he had a smile like Louie Armstrong. I loved to greet him and talk to him. He would pinch my then-chubby cheeks and say, "Child, I ain't gonna be totin' mail all my life. Someday, I'm gonna be rich. Maybe I'll buy the White House. Meantime, I keep on dreamin' and I keep on truckin'!"

I'll never forget those words of wisdom. You keep on dreaming and in the meanwhile, you keep on plugging away. Every major accomplishment began with taking the first step to fulfill a dream.

Dreams Come True


Kapparah!

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Life is never boring around here. Tonight, one of my younger boys got a hold of a hammer that some naive and irresponsible parent let him play with, and was running around with the hammer in his hand. As much as I would love to blame David, he was at work, so I'm still looking for another alibi. I am confident that I'll come up with something. 

The strange thing is that I heard a bang while I was in the kitchen and I saw him running like a crazy person with a hammer in his hand, yet it didn't register that the bang was actually the hammer hitting something. I have no idea why! And then, like hours later, I was talking with my father as I was sitting on the couch, and in mid-sentence, my eye caught the massive scars running through the windowpane. 

I happened to be on video chat with my dad, and all he could see was me suddenly looking off to the side, my eyes bugging out and my jaw suddenly hanging three inches open. He was like, "What? What?" I couldn't answer him. All I did was show him the evidence. He shook his head in belief.

Thank God a million times that there was only one piece of glass on the floor, and that was it! And double thank God that the glass didn't actually break into a million pieces in the house. Also, considering the enormous time lapse between the breaking of the glass and my realizing what happened, thank God no one stepped on any broken glass! Triple thank God that the glass didn't break the whole way through, because then there would be a huge hole in the window and freezing air would be coming in all night. And maybe a few chutzpah (nervy) cats. 

Instead of getting all freaked out about it, I realized that it happened for a reason, and that reason must definitely be to atone for hubby's sins. Because y'all out there know that I ain't got no sins. I have a talent for blaming everything I ever did wrong on my husband; even the things that I did before I met him. You know, because I was forced to spend much of my late teens and early '20's waiting for his sorry self to mature enough for me. Of course, the fact that no one got hurt made it much easier to accept this tribulation with love. I may be delusional, but I am not perfect. But maybe I am, if I'm delusional. I'm confusing myself. 

Just a question: if I identify as a perfect person, does that make me perfect? Like, if it works for people that want to identify themselves as the opposite gender and force people to recognize them as such, then why shouldn't it work for me? I've decided that I'm going to identify as a millionaire/perfect personality/gorgeous/dripping in diamonds and workout clothes/lady of leisure, and you're going to have to recognize me as such. And if you don't, I'm going to sue you in court for discrimination and not yielding reality to my warped fantasies. And I'm going to win. God bless America.

Back to the broken glass. You see, broken glass has the same gematria as kapparah, which means spiritual atonement. Like I said, it's much easier on the nerves and the stomach to recognize such unpleasant occurrences as a kapparah, and to be grateful that things weren't worse. Because what's the alternative? Torturing yourself? Wallowing in self-pity and wondering why this had to happen? Questioning if God loves you? Wondering if God even exists?

I tell you, emuna is the end-all and be-all of life. If we can train ourselves to believe that it's all good, especially when it looks all bad, this saves us tons of headache and heartache. Of course, in this case it doesn't save me the 1,000 shekel it's going to cost me to replace the window. Maybe Rav Arush can come up with a cure-all for that one, too.

Have an awesome day!

~Racheli


Keep Moving Forward

Coconut rice & vegetables

Mmmm, mmmm! Doesn't that look just delicious? Here's another one of my friend Tena's healthy and delicious creations. It's coconut rice and mixed vegetables. I'm so frustrated that I can't eat it right now. Tena, will you please reconsider moving in with me? I'll even let you put my kids to bed and spend 1-on-5 quality time with them while I'm out enjoying my peace and quiet. At least think about it. 

If you want this recipe, email me at racheli@breslev.co.il and I'll send it to you!

What does this picture have to do with the title of this post? Well, nothing, really. I didn't want to put a picture of a guy on a moving walkway, and I'm hungry, so I thought I could at least enjoy looking at yummy food if I can't eat it right now. But now I realized that I actually made things worse for myself. Great, my stomach is grumbling.

So let's talk about this title. What does it mean to move forward in life? It means that you're evolving in your personality and abilities. For example: I was realizing lately that I have greatly improved my Zumba skills, to the point where I'm not tripping over myself and bumping into other people. Okay, so I'm not really bad at all, but I have seen a great improvement. My sister calls me the JLo of Beit Shemesh. I kinda like that! 

As it happens, I love to lift weights as well. I've gotten to be friendly with many of the women in the gym, but I've noticed over the past 8 months that many of them stay at the same level they were on when I joined. In 8 months, I've increased the amount of weights I'm lifting several times. It's very motivating to see myself getting stronger.

But I wonder why some of the others stay at the same level of weights. I actually told one woman that she could clearly lift heavier weights, but she refused to even try, saying it was too hard. 

Unfortunately, this is how many of us behave in life. Hashem is trying to push us to the next level, but how many times do we refuse to budge because we think it will be too hard? Fear of the unknown and fear of failure can be completely incapacitating, and can cause us to freeze in our forward progression in life.

That's why emuna is so key. When we learn to trust Hashem, to believe that we can handle the situations He's trying to put us in for our own personal growth, this is when we are able to move forward. 

What about when things aren't clear? When we're not sure if the direction we're being pushed in is actually what Hashem wants for us? The only way to know is to talk to Hashem about it. Tell Him you're confused and you need clarity, so you can make the right decision. 

We all have so much untapped potential hiding inside of us; things that we can do that we never imagined were possible. Do you not know what your hidden talents are? Do you want to develop the talents that you're already aware of? Then ask Hashem for help! 

I really believe that everyone has a certain gift that Hashem gave them. Whether it's art, music, helping others, cooking, being empathetic, etc., each one of you has a special and brilliant diamond inside that's just waiting to sparkle. Your potential is so much greater than what you're aware of. You just have to ask Hashem to help you reveal it.

Wishing you a wonderful and insightful Shabbat!

~Racheli


The Countdown Begins

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Yesh! That's Hebrew for "Yes!" Tomorrow, David will be home! I don't know why I'm so excited, because it just means more laundry, more mess, more cooking, more dishes, OMG I just realized I went through the same feelings last time he came back from his trip. Does that mean I have conflicting feelings about my husband? I'd better speak with Rebbetzin Channen, our Emuna Therapist, about this.

Today, he had 25 minutes to run into a store and buy a "few" things, since predictably he went over the weight limit. I told him not to order so much stuff, but he didn't listen! Okay, you know I'm being completely sarcastic, right? In my defense, it's hard to remember what I ordered, and to figure out if it's all gonna fit in one suitcase. Since he had another 50 pounds of space, he did a power shopping run at one of the discount stores, 'cause that's how we roll. 

I wanted a new pair of slippers, so he starts sending me pictures of slippers. Then, I started to wonder where I can make myself a T-shirt that says: "My husband traveled the world with Rav Arush and all I got were these lousy slippers." Wait. That wouldn't make sense. I can't talk about slippers on my T-shirt. Can I put a caption like that on my new slippers? You see what happens to my brain when it's overtired? It don't think straight.

Check this out:

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And this:

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That is so not cool. Why is he sending me pictures of these things? More importantly, why don't we have them in Israel? Isn't it so weird that there are more and better kosher options outside of Israel than in Israel? It's the Yetzer, man! The Yetzer, I tell you!

I'd better get some rest so I can be ready to tackle the  extra 100 pounds of dirty laundry I'm going to have to do this week.

Yipee. 

My thinking is cloudy, and I'm trying to figure out an emuna angle to all this. Yesh! Here it is. It's been a long almost-two weeks. Thank G-d things were normal with the kids. By normal, I mean the usual amount of screaming, fighting, crying, and refusing to brush teeth and get into and out of bed. But throughout the times when my husband travels, it's comforting to know that one day the trip will be over, and life will go back to its regular routine, G-d willing.

Many of us suffer through very long periods of extremely challenging and difficult times. These days, no one has it easy. But with emuna, we can help relieve a lot of the negative feelings we have about going through such trying experiences. One day, the tough times will pass, and Hashem will show us how much we have accomplished and how much we have grown and learned, especially from the challenges.

Let's make an effort to really internalize this message, because the alternative isn't that great, right? In life, we basically have two choices: to suffer by believing that everything is random and without a purpose, or to believe that everything is orchestrated by God for reasons we can't possibly understand. Isn't the second one so much better?

I'd love to hear your stories of how you have grown through difficult times and have seen in the end that what you went through was the best thing for you. You can write in a comment, or email me at racheli@breslev.co.il

Have a wonderful day!

~Racheli 

 


Trees and Tribulations

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Sigh. What a stunning picture. I wish I was there right now. By myself. On a cozy couch. Next to a fireplace. In my log cabin. Can't stop. Typing half sentences. Sorry.

Well, this Shabbat is Tu B'Shvat! It's the new year for the trees, and we celebrate it by eating lots of sugar  dried fruit and/or fresh fruit and nuts. Here is a great article explaining the deeper meaning of this holiday and how we celebrate it with the food. Because we all know that there ain't be no Jewish holiday without some good food. Mmm, mmm

I'd like to share with you a short but profound thought, which I'm ashamed to say occurred to me while I was in the bathroom. Don't you just hate when that happens? I find it so annoying! 

Life knocks us down with tribulations. Sometimes we're cut down so much, we don't think we have the strength to get up and keep going. But do you know what the trees teach us? That even when we're down, when we feel like we can't go on, when we don't show any outward signs of life, we can come back! We will continue to grow, and we'll grow stronger and better than we were before!  

Every gardener knows that in order for a tree to grow strong and healthy, it needs to be pruned. That's how we should look at our tough times in life. Hashem is pruning us; removing the unhealthy and dead parts of us, so we can grow to our maximum potential. Sure, it hurts. No one said it would be painless. 

On that note, I hope you all have a wonderful and peaceful Shabbat! Try not to eat too much sugary dried "fruit," okay? Promise?

Here's a pic of Rav Brody and David and half of Yosef Nechama, our General Director, as they landed in Houston on the Breslev Israel Rav Arush Honeymoon. Sorry guys, but I don't care how hard your day was. If you're not taking care of little kids all day, I don't want to hear it! Just kidding! Sort of. Okay, not really.  

~Racheli

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Cancer Cures: Part I

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That's a nice fruit plate, if I do say so myself. I try to make a variation like this for the kids every day. I don't always succeed, but I've found that making the pieces easy to grab makes them more likely to get eaten by boys on the run. Give it a try with your kids and let me know how it goes! 

It's terrifying to think about, but all of us knows at least several people that have been diagnosed with cancer, lo aleinu. What I find more terrifying is that so many people are still pursuing the western medical modality of chemo/radiation, without much thought as to natural cancer cures. These people need to understand two things: First, the approach of western medicine is to kill disease, not to build up the body's strength so it can use its innate healing abilities and cure itself. Second, it approaches disease in such a myopic, fragmented way. 

This is totally backwards. Think about it. If the body were strong and healthy, it would be able to fight off disease without letting it destroy us. So killing disease without strengthening the body is short-sighted. What's scary about the second approach is that by default, it separates the cause of the disease from the effects. Therefore, we are relieved of all responsibility of having contributed to the disease by our diets and lifestyles. This puts us in complete victim mode, and as a result, we let the doctor do as he wishes - which, many times, leads to other negative long-term consequences. 

Well, I don't know about you, but I am fed up with this approach. 

I'm fed up of hearing about parents burying their children. I'm fed up of hearing about young children burying their parents. I'm fed up of the ignorance and naivete that we still have regarding cancer and its causes. I'm fed up with people still holding on to the belief that it's a genetic disease, and there's nothing they could have done to prevent it. People! Genetics only accounts for 2-3% of cancer cases! Dr. Colin Campbell, author of The China Study, and many other doctors and research scientists already know and have proven that most cancers are caused by poor diet and lifestyle! 

Contrary to popular belief, cancer is not a death sentence, unless caught in the much later stages. And even then, there is hope that these cases can recover as well, as has been proven time and time again. As we all know, knowledge is power, and it's time to use that knowledge to promote a long, healthy life. 

If you are currently on a cancer therapy regimen, by no means can you stop without the approval of your doctor! The following suggestions can work in tangent with your treatment, and you must discuss them with your doctor before you begin them. Also, note that this list is short by design. There are so many wonderful sites out there, and our main objective is to provide you with the knowledge that chemo and radiation is not the only solution, nor is it always the best solution to cancer. 

Here are some of the top proven natural cancer cures in the world. Please share this info with others!

1) Proper diet - Eat mostly vegetables and fruits, and a modest amount of whole grains and complex carbs. Keep animal product consumption to below 5%, as per Dr. Campbell's recommendations. If you really want to be aggressive, stay away from animal products altogether. Animal protein has been correlated with a higher incidence of most cancers. Just the amount of antibiotics and hormones the animals get should be enough to deter us from eating them. Also, white flour and sugar and all processed foods should be COMPLETELY AVOIDED!

Our bodies make and destroy cancer cells all the time. But when the environment gets too unhealthy, this promotes disease, and there's no end to the madness that these diseases can make in our bodies. 

2) Gerson Therapy - This approach treats all kinds of diseases based on the understanding that our bodies get sick because of toxicity and nutritional deficiency. It works by feeding the body with massive amounts of cleansing fruit and vegetable juices, along with nutritional supplements, which give the body its strength to fight disease. It also uses coffee enemas to cleanse the liver from its toxic overload, so it can properly filter out all of the impurities from the blood and allow the immune system to work better. There is so much information on the link, and it's well worth your while to read it all.  

3) IV Vitamin C - Known as one of the most powerful destroyer of free radicals, vitamin C has long been known to be a cure for cancer and many other types of chronic diseases. It works by turning into hydrogen peroxide when coming into contact with iron and other heavy metals. The hydrogen peroxide kills the cancer cells by damaging their DNA and shutting down their energy supply. 

However, I recently found out to my great dismay that the FDA is doing everything they can to keep this therapy from being available to us. Shocker.

4) Hydrogen Peroxide - This powerful molecule stimulates natural killer cells, which attack cancer and other disease cells. T-cells release H2O2, which kills viruses, fungi, and bacteria. There's tons of info on H2O2 and cancer, so read up on it! 

5) The Cancer Tutor is an excellent website with tons and tons of info on natural treatments. They do a great job at explaining how cancer grows, and they show that there can be different approaches to different types of cancers. This is a lot of reading, but well worth it. 

6) Vitamin D and sunlight- Vitamin D is another extremely powerful cancer fighter. Many studies have been done with many types of cancer patients, even those with inflammatory breast cancer, which is the most aggressive form of breast cancer. Amazingly, these studies came up with the same general results: more vitamin D in the blood = higher likelihood of surviving cancer and less likelihood of remission, and higher chances of long-term survival. Less vitamin D in the blood = the exact opposite.

Vitamin D is excellent for our overall well-being, and usually 15 minutes a day of direct sunlight exposure is sufficient. However, it would be a good idea to supplement with D3 drops. I've seen recommendations of dosages to be anywhere between 1,000 IU and 5,000 IU. If you are considering taking a dose that's on the higher part of this range, consult with your doctor first. Here's a secret about vitamin D: it's a fat-soluble vitamin, which means it needs to be taken with a fat in order for the body to absorb it properly. Taking drops by themselves won't do you much good.

7) Intermittent Fasting - This is another powerful way to rid the body not only of cancer, but of many chronic diseases, such as diabetes and obesity. You can check out my recommendation for curing diabetes using fasting in Bye Bye, Diabetes!   Here's a wonderful video explaining why fasting works as a cure for cancer. BTW, I do the intermittent fasting/slightly moderated keto diet every day, and I work out in the mornings, and I've never felt better in my life! I absolutely recommend this to everyone! The above link is also full of info, and well worth the read.

8) Here's another great and informative website of natural cancer treatments by Dr. Axe. 

9) Personal Prayer - It's amazing that, if you ask a cancer survivor to tell you what they think helped them survive their treatments and get their cancer into remission, many will say that prayer played a large part in their healing process. If you've read Rav Arush's books, you'll certainly find that as no surprise. But I have to remind us all (especially me,) that praying is not just asking Hashem to take away your suffering. That's a good start, as it shows you recognize that Hashem gave you that suffering in the first place. However, we need to internalize that the suffering was given to us for a reason, and the best way to do that is with personal prayer. I highly recommend that everyone read The Garden of Gratitude.

Whether it's cancer, another disease, or any other tribulation from the endless list, Rebbe Nachman explains that gratitude unlocks tremendous Heavenly mercy and invokes miraculous salvations!  It is our wish here at the Beams that all of our dear readers and everyone in the entire world enjoy long, full lives of blessing, success, joy, health, and an ever-growing connection with our Creator. 

Tomorrow, G-d willing, I'm going to elaborate on the real cause of cancer - and it ain't genetics! 

If you've had a positive experience using one of these treatments or something I haven't listed, please write in! We would all appreciate your input!

Today is a very auspicious day for increasing one's income, so check out the post below to find out just how to do that! 

~Racheli


MC "Hitbodedut" Hammer

PC and Truth
It's amazing that you can find spirituality in everything if you just take a good look. Speaking of good looks, over Shabbat, David and I were arguing over where our kids got their good looks from. Obviously, he points to himself, to which I respond: "Well, that's exactly why I'm asking the question." 

Shameful.

Great, I already forgot what I wanted to say. But you know what I didn't forget? I didn't forget that I ate too much cake on Shabbat. I look about four months pregnant right now, that's how bloated I am. All week long, I'm fine with eating healthy. I don't have any temptation to stuff my waist with processed junk and calories that are going to end up being like that annoying person that can't get the hint that you want him to go away and leave you alone, so he keeps talking and talking, totally oblivious to the fact that you've tuned him out and are trying to make it obvious, but not to the point of being rude, that you just want him to get the heck away from you. Maybe I should have written "her" instead of "him." What difference does it make these days, anyway? Gender titles have suddenly become passe and degrading.

My problem, like many others out there, is that my desire to eat the moist, chocolaty marble cake is aroused only when I see the cake. If I don't see it tempting me from its container on my counter top, then I don't desire to eat it. I just realized that maybe I should put the cake somewhere where I can't see it. But then, how will it get eaten? Do you see my dilemma?

Well, Rav Arush understands my suffering. He realizes that resisting the cake is almost The Toughest Challenge for me. As in every tough challenge, he explains that our attempts to resist our bodily urges are futile without asking Hashem to help us succeed. More specifically, Rav Arush is referring to bodily lust. Even though I'm not a man (but I could say I am if that's how I feel, because this world is so messed up,) I feel your pain, guys. I have found through personal experience that it is absolutely impossible for me to resist my sweet goodies if I don't ask Hashem to save me from my desires. 

So you may be wondering why I titled my post the way I did. If you're not wondering, there's something wrong with you. Back in the '90's, I was in high school, and MC Hammer was all the rage. All of us wore those Hammer pants that looked like something fell inside of them and created this massive hanging piece of fabric between the pant legs. It almost looked like a curtain. I bet those pants could actually have been used as a curtain or as a cape in desperate situations where one needed to shield himself from the sun or suddenly fly away like a witch into the night. 

Well, I distinctly remember one of Hammer's songs, which wasn't his most popular, but it was catchy enough for me to remember it 20+ years later. It's called, "We Got to Pray." The lyrics are so spiritual and profound, that I am totally convinced that Hammer was another hidden Breslever, just like Martin Luther King, as I discussed in last Monday's post. Hence, I've given him the name, MC "Hitbodedut" Hammer. Check it out!

We got to pray (pray), I said we pray (pray,) We got to pray just to make it today. 

Okay, so that's half the song right there, but it gets better:

I tried and tried and tried to make a way, but nothing happened 'til that day I prayed. 

We're sending this one out to the Lord, And we thank You and know we need to pray, Cause all the blessings that are good, they come from Above, And once again we want to say "THANK YOU" to the Lord with all our love.

I'm thinking about coming out with a book called "Hidden Breslevers Through the Ages." Seriously. 

With the anti-God Liberal movement in full swing in the U.S., many people might believe that political correctness is a fairly recent invention. Rav Lazer Brody shows us that actually, it's not. In fact, political correctness dates all the way to the times before the Holy Temples were destroyed. Saying something Politically Incorrect certainly doesn't make you a popular person, especially not in Israel, ironically enough. What's the consequence of ignoring actions that are being done which go directly against the Torah? Oooh, you don't want to know! But, really, you do! Read the article!

Just because I like to enjoy a good piece (or three) of cake, it doesn't mean that I'm not into being healthy. Au contraire, darlings! This week, I examine a type of scientific short-sightedness that I call Medical Myopia.  Instead of focusing on changing our eating habits, drug companies and even vitamin and supplement companies try to re-direct our focus to buying more magic pills or vitamins. But too much focusing on taking pills can make us feel like we don't need to change our lifestyles, if we're giving our bodies what they need through medicines, natural or otherwise. Not to mention that it makes such companies crazy rich. This cuckoo mindset is W-Wr-Wro-Wrong! I've got some shocking statistics in here for you, so definitely don't miss reading this one!

I've decided that Rebbetzin Yehudit Channen's life should be made into a movie. I've never met anyone who has had so much drama, and survived it all! You'll never believe the mess she found herself in this time, on her Walk on the Wild Side. OMG. 

Chana Sherman writes about the struggle of being Torah-observant in the corporate world in The CEO Wears a Sheitel. 

David Perlow is a former IDF soldier, so he knows lots about discipline, fighting, and lust. Oops, what I meant to say was that he makes a brilliant comparison in the way soldiers are forced to depend on their superiors to how we are forced to depend on Hashem, and shows us that we are all spiritual Soldiers of the Honor Guard. *This article is for men only, and by men, I mean those who were genetically born as a man and remain a man. Of course, I had to read the article so I can promote it, but for the duration of actually reading the article, I really believed that I was a man, so according to Liberals, that made me a legitimate man, even if it was only for three minutes. Now, does this make me a transgender? Is there a term for going from one gender back to another and then back again? What an avant garde idea!

Lori Steiner came up with a great invention called The Happiness Meter.  It keeps you from feeling so elated that you'll predictably crash afterward, and it also keeps you from falling into a depression. How does it work? Well, I didn't invent the thing! Read the article to find out.

Dr. Zev Ballen continues discussing the secrets and joys of Living the Simple Life.  With all of the material temptations we face every day, is there a spiritual reason and benefit to resisting them? And if so, how can we accomplish such a tremendous feat?

Wishing all of our awesome readers a wonderful week! 

-Racheli