We begin to search our minds for the words that fit what we are experiencing.
We build a case. We try and convict whomever we perceive as being the generator of our reaction.
What we have just done is find our conditioning. We feel that we are right and the next step is that we plan to take an action to remedy the matter, an action in time and space, to “correct” the situation and restore an environment in which we would not receive again that painful perception. Although our ability to be effective is not totally in our hands, we somehow feel that we have properly exercised our personal power.
We have NOT, however, found our real self. Nor have we utilized our personal power in the manner that we are designed to – to manage our inner world and build an identity for all eternity based on how we manage the gift of life given to us.
The saying about money is you can’t take it with you. The same is true about the powerful actions we take in time and space….have we first created our eternal identity whereby we give Hashem nachas and whereby we will be able to experience the pleasure in the next world for remembering to do Hashem’s Will – that we love Hashem every moment and seek only to unify His Name (return our will to His) while we are alive?
May we all see the futility in the use of power for actions that do not first consider our inner world and our personal identity for all eternity, for we live temporarily in this world and eternally in another dimension.
And may our rising to affecting our inner world make it possible for Hashem to be revealed in this world too.
Ironically, I was writing the below blog post when the time came to learn the above shiur. The subject matter matches so I am posting both here…the more places we hear the same ideas, the more likely we are to grasp the concepts. Here are two more shiurim from Rabbi Doniel Katz downloaded from Torahanytime on why bad things happen. He brings out these same ideas. He is a very good teacher.
And here is my blog post
Life! Temporary. Uncertain. Unique.
The experience of being alive is given to us. The existence we experience is a creation that hides the real existence, Hashem’s love and mercy.
The understanding we might have of a Being that is all loving and merciful comes with awe when we measure ourselves to that standard. In some ways, it feels to us like our natural tendencies are towards the exact opposite of loving and merciful. This is the design that Hashem has crafted in order that we can comprehend what complete love and mercy can be. How could we ever have a measure of understanding infinite love and mercy if we did not first experience the depths of our own anger when our will is opposed? Surely in that instant moment, the last emotion that we experience is love and mercy. And yet, instead of getting lost in the dark believing that all there is in the world is what we experience through our perceptions and thinking, we can have faith and belief in Hashem that He has, in fact, given us real free will to choose prayerful beseeching that He release our life force from our natural negative reaction and instead re-unify our soul to the real existence and oneness of Hashem. This is a step that, without Torah, we would never come to on our own. And this understanding from Torah has no logic to it. It is an act of faith that stems from intellect and intellect that generates faith. Its root is not in the logical thought process but in an integrated understanding of the wisdom of Torah that fills us and reaches our very hearts, the seat of our emotions, so that making this choice becomes the object we desire over all other pleasures in life.
While alive, each of us is in constant contact with the compelling alternative to believing that Hashem is all love and mercy. Throwing our negativity back to Hashem is the task at hand. The more we can see the darkness, the more we can comprehend how much light is waiting to be revealed by our choice to prayerfully beseech Hashem to shine His Love through our challenges out of our complete faith and trust that He is One and our desire to cling to Him.
May the message of this role that mankind can play be the message that is heard as loudly as possible, making possible the release of man from what torments and saddens and hurts and ruins. May Hashem’s love and light shine through by virtue of our prayerful beseeching, and may we soon see a revealed world.
The playlist below has shiurim that develop an understanding of our existence from a frame of reference that is larger than our discovered frame of reference. The combined effect of listening to these in order to expand our frame of reference for every moment of life is hopefully simchas hachaim. By understanding the deep and important points of these shiurim, our approach to challenges and every moment of life becomes one of healing and revealing, in accordance with Hashem’s purpose and vision in creating the world.
Sharing my own experience, these shiurim helped me solidify the understanding of how the strong negative reactions related to ego represent the opportunity to produce the unification of Hashem’s Name, unity, peace and the revelation of Hashem’s compassion in the world.
May these shiurim provide insight and confidence in our avodas Hashem
As we enter the Shabbos before Chanukah, I am taking a personal moment to think about Ahavas chinam and where I stand in reaching such an inspired goal. In one of the translations from the derech of Rabbi Asher Freund, Rabbi Freund explains that we are to love each other in a way that is not dependent on any other variables. When I heard that language, I was so very grateful. Here is why.
I have been sharing how arousing love in our heart when we have a challenge is the heart language that helps to dissolve the components of the challenge. The Nefesh HaChaim and the Bilvavi explain that by breaking the challenge back into its elemental parts earth, wind, water, and fire, we are able to infuse into this world of time and space Hasheem’s love.
While it seems like a challenge in and of itself to arouse love for Hashem when we are feeling challenging emotions, the mitzvah of Ahavas chinam becomes something we are more inspired to reach for in the moment when we tie together the knowledge of Hashem from Torah. How can we understand this from our perspective?
Have you ever felt like a martyr, doing for everyone openly and willingly and then needing something and no one is available? I choose this example because I think it comes up for most people at some point or another and it I a great way to show us what is going on in our relationship between Hashem and us. If you think of a situation and remember what you felt, write it down. Now let’s see – is it wind/honor? Fire/anger/fear? Water/desire? Or Earth/sadness/laziness? Or a combination of all four elements? On a scale of 1 to 10 how charged is it?
That same charge represents the power we are being given to POSITIVELY affect the elements, albeit the circumstances are 100% not in our control.
What do we have to do to return the charge in teshuva to Hashem? Simply keep steady and remember that we are sincerely yearning to a value of giving love independently of any variables. We may have to breathe through that for many seconds. We may be exhausted But we can see the bigger picture. If we can hold our own lives steady out of love for Hashem and understand that this is our primary purpose, we contribute something to the revelation of Hashem’s love and light in this world. How? That is the amazing part. Hashem is the One Who is giving every single second everything in the world and we are the ones who take it for granted! We can appreciate His Love so much more when we realize that whatever we are feeling, Hashem could make the same claim yet doesn’t, billions of times more. The pleasure of going to this place of self-nullification and identification with Hashem’s love is the pleasure for which we are created and turns our will into love = which is Hashem’s will -itself.
Good erev Shabbos and may we soon see the revelation of Hashem’s love throughout the world.