Todays Mussar Quote 27th Av 5769

 

Today 27th Av, 5769 – Mussar Quote

Todays_Mussar_Quote

Consider that HaShem gave you a new day (and good cup of coffee to go with it!) – and REJOICE.

By Rabbi Zvi Miller.

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Daily eMussar

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Todays eMussar Lesson 27th Av 5769

 

Today 27th Av, 5769 – eMussar Lesson –
With the Help of HaShem

Todays eMussar Lesson

eMussar – The Wisdom of Personal Growth
A daily inspirational, concise idea, with a suggested action.

THE PARABLES OF THE BEN ISH CHAI

There was once two friends who had a running debate. Shimon professed that success was proportional to the effort. Meaning, the harder one works, the more he will accomplish. Whereas Reuven held that all success was dependent exclusively on the will of HaShem. No matter how hard one tries, nothing will succeed without the blessing of HaShem.

One day as the two friends were walking through the woods they came upon a tall apple tree. They noticed a luscious red apple that was glistening in the sun at the very top of the tree. Without a moments hesitation Shimon started to scramble up the tree. He climbed towards the top as fast as he could; pushing his way through tangled branches and thick leaves. Finally he reached the top and plucked the apple from the tree.

On his way down he yelled out to Reuven, who was sitting below, “This proves my conviction that success depends on effort. It was the energy that I expended that put the apple in my hand. If had remained still as you I would never have gotten such a prize!”

As he finished speaking he brought the apple close to his mouth to take a bite. Suddenly it slipped from his hand and fell right into Reuven’s lap. He took the apple in his hand, made a blessing, and ate it in great delight – savoring every bite.

We understand from this story that nothing can go against the will of HaShem. Hence, it is not our efforts that lead to our success, but rather the blessing of HaShem. Let us remember to trust HaShem with all of our hearts and then we will be blessed in this world, as well as, The World to Come.

TODAY: Say, “B’ezras Hashem (with G-d’s help) before everything you do.

By Rabbi Zvi Miller.

New Blog Post: A Mussar Time of Year

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Daily eMussar

Salant Foundation’s eMussar(sm) gives you a piece of practical wisdom and perspective for your daily life…in just 3 or 4 minutes a day!

These practical character enhancement and personal growth tools stay impact your mind and your character….and you’ll likely have a chance to try out these inspiring insights and lessons almost every day.

Just so you know, “mussar” is the traditional name for the teaching of character development and personal growth. And Salant Foundation’s eMussar delivers this perspective to you every day via e-mail.

It’s FREE…so why not sign up now, please send email to salant@netvision.net.il

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Daily PiCK ME UPs 27th Av 5769

 

Daily “PiCK-ME-UPs” – 27th Av, 5769

Daily PiCK-ME-UPs the book

   

Motivational Quote

To Move Upwards

When things are not going as we feel they should go, it could well be that it’s time for us to move upwards — to strive towards the next level of personal growth and achievement.

By: Rabbi Avraham Tzvi Schwartz of “Self-Growth.

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PiCK-ME-UPs:
Empower yourself, enjoy life!
Not just another book, but a series of lessons to change our lives, turning darkness to light, misery to joy, shame into dignity; giving us a sense of direction, that we may move through our days with enthusiasm and passion, turning each moment into a jewel, a treasure, and a source of great pleasure and enjoyment. Click here for more.

FREE INSPIRATIONAL POSTER – To download high resolution version, click here.

Please visit Rabbi Avraham Tzvi Schwartz’s blog at: Keep Smiling ~ Self-Wealth

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Lessons in Truth Day 83 Hastening the Redemption

 

Lessons in Truth – SEFER SHEM OLAM – 27th Av, 5769

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Lessons in Truth

24 Av, 5769 / August 14, 2009

Day 83 – Hastening the Redemption

SEFER SHEM OLAM — Chapter Twelve: Birthpangs of Mashiach (cont.)

We cannot know exactly when the Final Redemption will occur. The duration of the exile following the destruction of the First Beis HaMikdash was explicitly stated by the prophet, “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I shall remember you” (Yirmiyahu 29:10). Nevertheless, as recorded in the Talmud, many calculated the seventy years and erred. Even the righteous Daniel erred as to when the seventy years began. Certainly no one can know the end of the current exile, for its conclusion has been concealed from us. However, the sufferings of our time indicate that it is drawing to a close.

This is how it was in Egypt; the depth of suffering hastened the redemption. Our forefather Avraham had been told that his descendants would be strangers in a land not their own for four hundred years (Bereishis 15:13), but Hashem calculated the exile as beginning with the birth of Yitzchak. The depths of the Jews’ suffering awakened Divine mercy so that the redemption was hastened and their stay in Egypt (from the time Yaakov descended there with his family) lasted two hundred ten years. Included in those years was the period of Yosef’s rule over Egypt when the Jews enjoyed a peaceful existence.

Over the past eight hundred years, the Jewish people have suffered greatly. Surely this is cause for hope that the exile will not last much longer. It is quite possible that we have already entered the period of “the birth pangs of Mashiach.” In Egypt, even after the Jews were informed that the time of redemption had arrived, the situation got worse before it improved. This can explain the situation in which we find ourselves today.

      The Chofetz Chaim possessed not only perfect emunah (faith), but also a degree of Ruach HaKodesh (Divine Inspiration), as can be seen from the following episode, related by Rabbi Shimon Schwab z”l, who spent a memorable Shabbos in Radin in the company of the Chofetz Chaim in 1930:

An incident took place that Shabbos which gave me a glimpse into the measure of the man. Had I not witnessed it myself, I would not have believed it…

The Chofetz Chaim had eaten a frugal Shalosh Seudos… He said, “It’s time to bentch (recite Bircas HaMazon),” and he started to bentch, like a simple Jew, saying one word at a time… I did not see anything special in his manner. Suddenly, when he reached the phrase Have mercy… something seemed to happen to him. He cried out:for Your people Israel, oy, oy!, for Zion, resting place of Your Glory, oy, oy!” He continued in this manner until he reached the end of the fourth and final blessing and stopped (before the “Harachamons”). At this point he said, “I see what will be ten years from now. You don’t see, but I do. A great conflagration will burn!” In the middle of Bircas HaMazon, he suddenly had a vision of future events. “Twelve million is child’s play!”

I turned to the person next to me and asked him what the Chofetz Chaim meant with these comments. He replied, “He always talks about it. Twelve million is the sum total of those killed in the [First] World War.”

I never forgot this scene and for ten years I repeated it, and waited watchfully, fearfully, for its realization — until ten years later, in 1940, when it started to come true.

This was the Chofetz Chaim.

      On whom can we rely? [Only] on our Father in Heaven. This means that before Mashiach’s arrival, the Jewish people will find themselves in a position so precarious that everyone will come to the realization that only Hashem can rescue us from our plight (heard from Rabbi Moshe Wolfson).

      As the Jews headed toward the Sea of Reeds at the time of the Exodus, they found themselves trapped on all sides (see Shemos Ch. 14) and they cried out in prayer to Hashem. Rashi (citing Mechilta and Tanchuma) writes: “They adopted the craft of their forefathers,” meaning that they prayed the way Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov would pray — with a feeling and awareness that without Hashem’s intervention they were totally lost. This is what Hashem had been waiting for and He immediately commanded Moshe: “Speak to the Children of Israel and let them journey!” (ibid. v.15). It is this sort of recognition which the Jewish people will need to demonstrate as a prelude to the Final Redemption (based on the thoughts of Rabbi Yeruchom Levovitz).

A daily lesson from “Chofetz Chaim: Lessons in Truth,” a project of Mesorah Publications and the Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation.

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KESER SHEM TOV

 

KESER SHEM TOV

The Baal Shem Tov Times

Anthology of the Teachings of the Baal Shem Tov

Section 259

The Baal Shem Tov taught:

One should pray as if he were awakening the dawn, and not the dawn awakening him.

This means that one should toil diligently and gradually in the preliminary prayers until reaching Baruch Sheamar. This first section is parallel to the world of Assiyah, which is the lowest, the home of the kelipoth. Then, one should intensify one’s concentration from Baruch She’Amar until Yishtabach, and this section is parallel to the world of Yetzirah, in which the kelipos are few. Then, from Yishtabach until the Silent Shemoneh Esreh Prayer, one should concentrate yet further. Finally, in the Shemoneh Esreh, which represents a state of embrace and union, one should be completely detached from all physical sensation.1

If one follows this path, then one has first created mayin nukvin,2 and only afterwards are the mayin dikhrin aroused, which gives “birth” to a “male.”

However, if a person is aroused spontaneously his prayer might be rejected. The way to rectify when such spontaneous arousal comes over a person, is to arouse deep regret and fear, and to then pray from the depths of one’s heart.

This is meaning of the verse, “One who finds a woman”[the mayin nukvin] – first – “has found good,” and then, “will obtain favor from G-d.”3
Toldoth Akharei 6, tazriyah 1

1Orach Chaim #98
2Toldos tazriyah 1
3Proverbs 18:22

Translation and commentary by Rabbi Yehoshua Starrett.

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Loving Kindness Day 143 Eternal Wages

 

Loving Kindness – SEFER AHAVAS CHESED – 27th Av, 5769

Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation

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Loving Kindness

24 Av, 5769 / August 14, 2009

Day 143 – Eternal Wages

SEFER AHAVAS CHESED — Part III Chapter II

      The wages one earns by helping a guest are inestimable, as is illustrated in an episode from the Book of Judges. During the time in history that is recorded there, the Jews were in the process of conquering the Canaanite cities in the land of Israel. A group of Jewish spies waited outside one such city until a Canaanite man emerged from the gate. They asked the man for directions: How could they enter the city, and where could they hide? They promised that neither he nor his family would be harmed when the Jews came to conquer. The man saw their vulnerability in their current situation, and gave them the information they needed. He and his family were protected in the bloody conquest that ensued, and the man then went on to found a city, which he named Luz.

      Luz is a city synonymous with the concept of eternity. The Angel of Death had no dominion there; people who reached an age at which they were satiated with life on earth had to leave the city limits to embark on their journey to the Next World. Earthly conquerors had no power in Luz either — neither Sennacherib nor Nebuchadnezzer were able to destroy the city. The Chofetz Chaim points to this story as the Torah’s illustration of the everlasting rewards that can result from just one instance of helping a traveler in need. There are many ways of providing this help — directions, shelter, food, use of a cell phone, assistance with a flat tire or a dead battery — and all have the potential to bring immeasurable reward, for they remove the traveler from his vulnerable position and prevent any harm that might have come to him.

      The Chofetz Chaim introduces another concept in the realm of receiving guests — including a guest room in the construction of one’s house. The person who includes in his blueprint for construction a place for the car, a place for the toys, a place for the computer and so forth may well have the resources to include a place for guests as well. Such a room, which offers guests an added degree of comfort and privacy, can become the wellspring of great blessing for the entire household. One should remember to preserve this blessing by sending the guest off in the right way — well prepared and safely escorted. As the story of Jonathan and David (see Day 132) illustrated, the entire mitzvah can be turned toward tragedy by failing to provide food for the road.

      In one final instruction on hachnasas orchim, the Chofetz Chaim reiterates that this mitzvah is a communal responsibility. Any upstanding Jewish community should be sure that it has an organized method of taking care of guests who enter its precincts. There should be an official group of designated people whose task is hachnasas orchim. “Those that strengthen themselves in this mitzvah,” says the Chofetz Chaim, “how happy is their lot.”

Step by Step

If my synagogue or community does not have an official hospitality committee, I will try to initiate the organization of one.

Taken from “Chofetz Chaim: Loving Kindness – Daily Lessons in the Power of Giving,” a project of Mesorah Publications and the Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation

To subscribe or unsubscribe: e-mail them at kindness@chofetzchaimusa.org with subject subscribe or unsubscribe.

To order tapes, books, learning programs and their free catalog call them at 866-593-8399.

Please treat printed version with the respect due Torah materials.

ABOUT THE CHOFETZ CHAIM HERITAGE FOUNDATION

Since 1989, the Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation has successfully launched innovative methods of promoting the Torah’s wisdom on human relations and personal development. The foundation utilizes a vast array of effective communication tools including books, tapes, video seminars, telephone classes and a newsletter, designed to heighten one’s awareness of such essential values as judging others favorably, speaking with restraint and integrity, and acting with sensitivity and respect. The Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation’s programs reassert the Torah’s timeless recipe for building a world of compassion and harmony. The following opportunities for learning and personal growth are available through their offices.

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Daily Wisdom Portion of Kabbalah 27th Av 5769

 

Daily Wisdom Portion of Kabbalah – 27th Av, 5769

The Wisdom of Kabbalah

Quotes of prominent Kabbalists

I love G-d

“I am filled with love for G-d. I know that what I ask, what I love, is not called by any name. How can there be a name to what is more than everything, more than the best, more than the essence, more than being?! And I love, and I say, ‘I love G-d.’”

The Rav Kook, Orot Kodesh – Sacred Lights

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