Monthly Archives: January 2015

Day 5 from Praying with fire Opening Heaven’s Gates

In accessing the treasures stored for us in Heaven, tefillah is the key. Even though the treasures are there, and they are being held in store for each of us, they do not automatically flow into our lives. They remain locked in Heaven until we pray. 
   A person lives in unbearable poverty his entire life. He never has enough food. He can’t pay his bills. He cannot help others in need. Everyone tells him that there is a treasure buried under the floorboards of his house, but he doesn’t believe it. He gives the floor a half-hearted kick every so often, thinking maybe he’ll hear the jingle of coins, but he only hears the thunk of his heel against the wood. Then, on the last day of this man’s life, someone walks in, lifts up a plank and reveals an iron chest filled with gems and gold. All the wealth the dying man could ever have needed is in that chest. His whole lifetime of miserable struggle plays out before his dimming eyes; the stab of what could have been is the last sensation he ever feels.
   That piercing remorse is the lot of one who does not believe in and utilize the power of prayer. The Nefesh HaChaim expounds this through the verse: He recounts to a person what were his deeds. This, he explains, refers to the revelation people will experience in the World to Come regarding the gifts that would have been theirs had they only believed in the power of prayer and used it.
  Rav Pam explains: “These people will be shown how their prayers could have made a difference had they been said with heartfelt concentration. The sick person could have been healed; the childless couple could have been answered, the person looking for a spouse could have found one. ” 
   This principle is dramatically illustrated by the Jewish nation’s redemption from Egypt, as we are told:  Hashem heard their moaning, and Hashem remembered His covenant with Avraham, with Yitzchak, and with Yaakov. Hashem saw the Children of Israel and Hashem knew.
   The Ramban asks why the Torah mentions the numerous factors that caused Hashem to redeem the Jewish nation; after all, their exile was predestined to end after 430 years, as the Torah states:  It was at the end of four hundred and thirty years, and it was on this very day that all the legions of Hashem left the land of Egypt.
Rashi cites a Mechilta that explains the phrase, it was at the end of four hundred and thirty years. It tells us that once the preordained end of the exile arrived, Hashem did not delay the Jews from leaving for even the “blink of an eye.” But the arrival of the preordained time was not enough by itself to set the redemption in motion, the Ramban explains. It was when “Hashem heard their moaning” that He remembered His covenant. “They were not … redeemed, except for the fact that their prayers were accepted with pity and mercy.”
   Tefillah, along with repentance, will be the catalyst that sets in motion the Final Redemption as well. The She’arimB’Tefillah notes that even if everything is prepared and ready for the Redemption, if the Gates of Tefillah are not opened, nothing will be accomplished. This is the meaning of the verse, With weeping will they come, and with supplications will I lead them. As the Darchai Noam comments, “One must be very careful with his tefillos, certainly in the time when the arrival of Mashiach is at hand … for it is on them — those very tefillos — that the coming of Mashiach depends.” Rav Yaakov Emden writes that if the Jewish people would pray even one tefillah properly in all aspects, they would be instantly redeemed.
   Prayer is the natural cause of every effect in this world; just as rain causes flowers to grow, so does prayer cause Hashem to grant us His blessings. It is the key to all worldly good fortune. Incredibly, Hashem has entrusted us with the key to His storehouse; He waits only for us to use it.

When uncertain do we take the bait or exercise emunah – converting the Amalek within

Rabbi Mordechai Kraft  on Prophecy and Amalek

audio resumes after minute 8.30 :

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Rabbi Moshe Wolfson in his shiur Song of Life said that the original nachash suggested to Chava that Hashem had a reason that was NOT good for Chava in telling them to not eat from the tree of life, and that reason was that Hashem didn’t want man to be a creator like Hashem.  His basic emotional argument was Hashem says this but it isnt true, I say this and I will show you, try it.  That imagination which created a real sounding alternative is with us today in full force yet we are empowered to eliminate the confusion it presents and in declaring Hashem echad create positive influence through which Hashem’s light can be seen in this world:

Here is a chart to help us see where we can choose to eliminate the influence of Amalek in our lives and instead sing shira to Hashem, knowing that Hashem is with us at all times and that although we have real lives we don’t have autonomous independent existence and that our choices are to build an eternal identity based on using free will to reflect Hashem into the world.


uncertainty to shira

Chapters 31, 32 and 33 from Tanya that explain and support all of the above:

tanya 31 32 33 tanya 31 32 33_Page_1 tanya 31 32 33_Page_2 tanya 31 32 33_Page_3 tanya 31 32 33_Page_4 tanya 31 32 33_Page_5 tanya 31 32 33_Page_6 tanya 31 32 33_Page_7 tanya 31 32 33_Page_8



Rabbi Moshe Wolfson – Parshas Beshalach A Song of Life – Emunah and Bitachon

The Song of a Lifetime

A person’s lifespan can be compared to a song. While he is living, it is hard to see the harmony between one day and the next, the synchronization of aggravations, successes, business life, home life, recreational life, social life and inner life; childhood, youth, middle-age and twilight. Yet, each aspect serves as an instrument composing its own sound to contribute to the chorus; each stage is another chapter in the symphony.
Some songs are short with a quick tempo, others are long and gentle. Some songs take sharp twists and turns, others plod evenly along. Sometimes there is a terrible off note; the conductor of the song of life makes a dreadful mistake. If he is wise, he will correct this off-note by changing course and embarking upon a new direction, giving the song a whole new dimension and meaning.
There is another part of the symphony, terribly off-putting, but crucial to the success of the song as a whole: quiet empty stretches. There is no music. There seems to be no meaning in life. Everything is blah, pointless, senseless. Sometimes there is a terrible shatter of cymbals, or a merciless banging of the beats. Why is Hashem destroying the music?
My child, the music is not being destroyed. To the contrary, it is being enhanced. The spaces give pause and dimension; the clashes give drama, the beats movement. It’s ALL part of the song of life.

the essential rebuke on the Day of Judgment will be for a lack of emuna and this will cause insufferable embarrassment - Love, Soul, Joy

"I Am Hashem"

By: Rabbi Shalom Arush

“I Am Hashem”

When a soul completes its 120 years on the physical earth and leaves the body, Hashem reveals Himself to the soul. At this awesome moment, Hashem says, “I am Hashem”.  What is Hashem telling the soul?

“Know that everything that has happened to you in your life is all because ‘I am Hashem’.  All of the hardships that you went through and anything that didn’t work out for you are all because ‘I am Hashem’.”

Still, what does it mean that all of this was because “I am Hashem”?  It means that everything that happened was only for your own good – whether Hashem was helping you or not helping you – and you ignored all of this.  Then the soul/person will understand everything.  He’ll understand that he lived a lie and was mistaken his whole life and “woe to such embarrassment”.

We see that the essential rebuke on the Day of Judgment will be for a lack of emuna and this will cause insufferable embarrassment.  The rest of the mistakes a person made in his life were all the result of not living the fact of Hashem’s existence: he didn’t know that everything is Hashem.  He didn’t see Hashem in his. As a result, he is where he is with whatever sins he sinned.  Only then, will a person grasp how he lived a lie his whole life – one big mistake from beginning to end, because he didn’t live the fact of “I am Hashem”.

Our sages note that, Yosef’s could stand in his rebuke when he revealed himself to them: “His brothers were not able to answer him because they were panic-stricken before him”.  How much more so when the Holy One, Blessed be He, comes to rebuke each person according to his deserve as it is written: ‘I will rebuke you and arrange before your eyes’.”

Don’t wait for Judgment Day. From this moment on, whatever  you go through in life, remember “I am Hashem” — everything is from Hashem.  When dealing with any of life’s difficulties, there are only two options: the first option is to remember that it’s all “I am Hashem”. The second option is to be totally fooled by all of the confusion of this world, attributing power to nature, diseases, bacteria, viruses, and so forth; or to think that the problem was caused by evil eye, witchcraft or some imaginary attack; or to blame and get angry at a friend, boss, or spouse; or to blame oneself and to fall into depression.  These are the illusions that hold a person back from coming close to Hashem or utilizing life’s challenges for repenting.  The moment a person recognizes  “I am Hashem!”, he’s already ascended beyond the illusions and confusions of the material world. Then the picture becomes clearer and he begins to understand.

We understand from this the need for a daily cheshbon hanefeshself-evaluation and judging oneself in light of everything that happened during the day.  Ask yourself, “Did I see Hashem in everything that transpired?”, “Did I say thank You for everything”, “Did I try to understand what Hashem was teaching me through each event and experience?”  By doing this, a person won’t be embarrassed on the Day of Judgment, because he will already know that in this world everything is only “I am Hashem” and he already asked forgiveness in this world for anything that he did wrong, trying to fix what needed fixing.

Emunais not just knowing that everything is “I am Hashem”, but also knowing that everything is for good.  Genuine emuna says that everything Hashem does is for the good and there is no bad in the world at all.  Therefore, the first thing with every situation is to know that it’s from Hashem and that it’s for the good and say thank You for it all.  Only then can a person try and understand the good in the situation and what Hashem wants to teach him. Just remember three words and you’ll always succeed: “I am Hashem.”