Saturday, November 27, 2010

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Fighting the Other Side

A commentor wrote (edited for privacy and brevity)…

…I know that G-d's will for man is truly for his benefit. I am a firm believer that there are powers that exist in this world that thrive off of man’s iniquities. Most people live their lives in complete ignorance of the consequences that happen in other realms due to every positive and negative action that they do. The only books that I have found that even come close to explaining some of the true experiences that I have had are written about the sitra- achra and evil influence of the yetzer harah in Jewish mysticism.

(Being in a very negative place with much negative history) I firmly believe that these powers in my life were fully confident that they had won and I was not supposed to make it out of my negative circumstances because they had me firmly gripped. I feel now that they are not going to let their mistake go and that I am in grave danger. I wake instantly at nights sometimes with the physical feeling of energy running through my body and the feeling of dread. I can’t explain it but when this happens I…know that my life and soul are in danger and that the more I try to improve and change the stronger these forces will fight and that they have me.

I am doing my best to live the appropriate life through honest repentance, teshuva and tzedakah. I have completely changed my ways but I know that the more I fight the more traps are set and the other side is as real as your next door neighbor.

This may sound like a paranoid delusion but I can swear by the real occurrences that have happened in my life that it is very real. …I ask if you have any advice for me.

I replied as follows…

Yes, such things can be real...but they can also be mental health problems.  I’ve asked Reb Gutman Locks to reply with some positive spiritually strengthening steps to see if it is spiritual, and those will help repair the breech.

Reb Gutman Locks followed up…

You are one” lucky” fellow. We learn that wrestling with the evil inclination is just like wrestling with a human opponent, the more you fight, and the more it looks like you are going to win—the stronger the opponent fights back. This is why your experience is becoming so difficult. It is a sign that you are coming close to realizing your righteous dreams.

When man goes through life, if he sins, he digs a hole. Then he stands in that hole. If he sins again, and it is easier to sin the second time than the first, then, the hole becomes deeper. Obviously, it gets even easier to sin the second time, so he blows it again, and the hole he is standing in becomes even deeper. And guess where he is standing? Right in the middle of that  pit. Sometimes the hole gets so deep that the poor guy can’t even see daylight.

Then, by some miracle, some grace, instead of rolling around in the pit, the guy thinks to turn. He turns up and starts to climb out of the pit. Once he makes up his mind to turn, and he really works hard to do it---his life turns around, and so does the pit. His world turns up-side-down. The pit becomes a mountain. He is now standing on a tall mountain. Your pit was so low that now you are about to stand on a huge mountain peak. Whew!

After you catch your breath from enjoying the view, you are going to want to help others turn their pits into mountains. And this is why G-d let you go into that pit and this is why He is helping you to climb out.

I too am standing on a very high mountain that started out as a very low pit.

Be well.

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