A conversation about G-d, mysteries of the universe and soul, Israel... and speculation about biblical prophecies and the end of days.

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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

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He Causes...


   by Reb Gutman Locks  

He Causes the Wind to Blow and the Rain to Fall

Thank G-d… Rain in Jerusalem


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Sunday, October 20, 2019

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Hoshana Rabbah


   by Reb Gutman Locks

This morning at the Kotel.

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Thursday, October 17, 2019

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A Healthy Approach to Life


 by Reb Gutman Locks  
     A.S. wrote:

Hi

For years I got involved in Kabbalah in some form.  I thought I was doing it safely.  Mostly hasidut. I am single now 44 years old.  What happened in last year is 2 psychiatric hospitalizations and a bipolar diagnosis.  I think I went into parades by doing mediating on Keter Shem Tov teaching specifically number 6.  I looked at all choices I made and wanted to make and determined if I was close to Hashem.  I thought in my mind I had great intuition.  What I had was energy that became emotional thinking and led me astray.  Your teachings the video on the power has you resonated with me.  Jewish energy healing though never was good at it probably did not help.

Recent years I also had cancer and major heart infection.  

For someone like me who is now on meds and no longer feels spiritual (maybe a good thing) and wants to keep Torah but needs a different approach...for someone who now believes he went to parades and became insane...someone who feels energy overtook his psyche...

What do you think is the way back or to forge a healthy approach to life?

Thank you 

A.S.

 

Gutman's answer:

Shalom A.S.

    Simply talk to G-d in your heart. As you go through your day instead of talking to yourself, talk to Hashem. Hashem is everywhere at all times including right in front of our lips. Speak sweetly, lovingly, being thankful for the opportunity called life.

     The goal is not energy, or power, or visions.... The goal is to reveal His Presence in this world. This is done by "directing your heart to Heaven."

     Hashem bless you with a quick and complete healing.

Be well,

Gutman

 

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Monday, October 14, 2019

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Chol HaMoed Trip to Kever Yosef this Wed

Looking for a unique and special Chol Hamoed activity?

Join a unique opportunity to visit Yosef Hatzadik (the biblical tribe founder Joseph son of Jacob) in Shechem (Nablus) – Israel.


The trip is closely coordinated with and supervised by the IDF – Israeli Defense Force and has a heavy IDF escort through the Arab city of Shechem to the holy site.

TRIP FROM:  Ramat Beit Shemesh, Israel  (info for other bus locations at the bottom)

WHEN:  Wed, Oct 16, 2019 - 10:00 PM

This trip will leave on October 16, 2019 from Ramat Beit Shemesh Alef, Israel at 10:00 PM from the mercaz (center) of RBS A, returning between 3:00 to 5:00 AM.

The cost is NIS 80 per seat. RESERVATION in advance is REQUIRED!

To RESERVE a seat please call, SMS or Whatsapp 054-9422171 – tour/transportation coordinated by Ms. Fayga Marks.

This trip is for men and women. The bus on this trip is not equipped for wheelchair access. Cane or walker is ok, but the holy site does have some stairs.

** FROM Jerusalem, contact (English or Hebrew) Yonah Rossmann 058-7832235
** FROM Other locations in Israel, contact Kever Yosef Administration (Hebrew Only) 02-9999700
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Sunday, October 13, 2019

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How to Wave the Luluv


   by Reb Gutman Locks  
    

How to Wave the Luluv

 

     If you haven't seen this video, you most likely have not been fulfilling the mitzvah of waving the Luluv and Esrog properly.

G-d Said, "Be Happy"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3R_b9-9vhDs&feature=plcp

 

 (link)

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Sukkoth

by Aharon Rubin at Mystical Paths

Rosh HaShonoh, Yom Kippur & Sukkoth

The shofar on Rosh HaShonoh is a window to G-d. We experience the essence of teshuvoh, a child in the mother’s womb. As breath is blown into the shofar, Divine Breath breathes new life into creation. That shofar sound, is the sound of new Life, of Divine Revelation.
On
Yom Kippur, we become G-d’s breath. We stand within the shofar, a place of complete renewal,  'before the Face of G-d’.51 Cleansing ourselves, we renew our covenantal bond and closeness.
The shofar sounds and Yom Kippur prayers are real spiritual edifices. As we enter the Sukkoh on Sukkoth, we are surrounded by those sounds. They are the s’chach and walls of the holy Succoh. (S’chach is gematria (100) the number of shofar sounds blown on Rosh HaShonoh.)52 
As you sit in the Sukkoh, see yourself surrounded by the shofar sounds, cascading all around, a kaleidoscope of beauty. Sit in this Garden of Eden, among souls embraced by G-d. Take a sefer, learn or pray. Speak into G-d's Ear. Walk with G-d in this Gan. Look beyond the s’chach. Look into the light of the Shechinoh.53

Sukkoth

The Four Species

G-d, Source of all Good, wished to do the Greatest Ultimate Good – to share of Himself.54 To do that, He hid His Light and created a being with freewill and the natural sensitivity, intelligence and wherewithall to find Him. This was the purpose of creation.
After humanity (and the rest of the world) fell, due to First Man’s sin, our forefathers, Avrohom, Yitschoq and Ya’aqov, were the first to seek, find and truly attach to G-d, the first to proclaim His Name to the world, the first that G-d could delight in and bestow His Presence upon. Thereupon G-d chose their descendants to bring His Presence into the world, His Name within the physical, to implement His Will, the sharing of His Light and Unity with Mankind.
On Rosh HaShonoh, we proclaim the Creator as King of the world and our personal King. Accepting His Torah, we show ourselves to be true descendants of Avrohom, Yitschoq and Ya’aqov. We sound the horn of redemption, ushering in the tiqun ho’olom – ‘correction of the world’, Divine Revelation to all. On Yom Kippur, we cleave to G-d, like a child to its mother, hugging, pleading, crying, the mother embracing the child close to her bosom. As we press ourselves to G-d, G-d wipes us clean, writing our names in His Heart, sealing us to Him, in everlasting life.
Now, on Sukkoth, G-d says, you have come so close to Me, stay with Me, sit with Me, be One with Me. Here is a taste of Olom HaBo, the hereafter [the mitsvoh of Sukkoh]. Here is a mitsvoh [the four species] that represents Myself and Name in this world.
My goal is the revelation of My Presence to the entire world –  ‘that all peoples of the Earth may know that G-d is the Prime Force, there is nothing else’ (Melochim II,8:60). This is the ultimate goodness. I guide everything towards the time when all nations will declare G-d as their King, that He rules over all and there is none like His people who accept His Providence in the intimate details of their life. And you, My children, are My main thought; the revelation of My Glory comes about through you.
Take the four species,55 the letters of My Name. The four are made of seven,56 My seven lights 57 hidden within My Name through which I renew and guide the world.58 Take them and be one with Me. Point them to the six directions around you, returning each time to your heart. The six directions are the six main ways I connect with the world and draw it closer to the Revelation of My Kindness and Glory – the seventh point. This is you, My children, catalyst for that revelation, always on My Heart. As you are one with Me, guiding the seven lights from the six directions to the seventh [My heart], so I do: drawing down Supernal Everlasting Love from the point transcending creation from which I constantly renew all creation, to the world through each of My six attributes,59 building the Holy Edifice speedily to be revealed, the revelation of My Kingdom on earth. 
(Excerpts from Eye to the Infinite

 50 I.e. the Ohr Ein Sof – Light of the Infinite One; see p. 52, fn. 31, on 'face'. (Shofar is gematria '' - נשם לפני ד breath before G-d'.)
52 Ari HaQodosh, Sha'ar HaKavvonoth, Derush Sukkoth.
53 Based on teachings of the Ari HaQodosh and Alter Rebbe (R. Shneur Zalman of Liadi).
54 See R. M.C. Luzatto, Mesilath Yeshorim, Chapter 1. 
55 The four species we are commanded to take on Sukkoth (see Vayiqro 21 and next fn.).
56 Three haddassim [myrtle branches], two arovoth [willow branches], one lulov [palm branch] and one ethrog [citron fruit] (see Zohar III, 283b; R.C. Vital, Liqutei Torah, Emor).
57 These correspond to the seven Sefiroth, which are essentially five lights that find unity and purpose through Yesod and Malchuth. The five correspond to five times ohr [light] mentioned in Bereishith (1:2–5). See next fn.
58 The five ohr of Bereishith (1:2–5) is gematria the four types: לולב אתרוג הדס ערבה 
59 Love, Constraint, Harmony, Victory, Glory, Balance and Connection.
 
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Thursday, October 10, 2019

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We Need…


   by Reb Gutman Locks
     

We Need

 

     Hashem, may we please go up onto the Temple Mount where there is a lot more room. You have blessed us, multiplied us, and You are bringing us home now, so we really need more room, especially on the Holidays. Thank You.

 

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Tuesday, October 08, 2019

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Yom haKippurim


   by Reb Gutman Locks

 

Yom haKippurim

 

      The day of atonement. The day our judgement for the New Year will be sealed. We come before the Judge seeking forgiveness and a favorable decree. We stand before the King of Kings dressed in white as if we were angels, free from sin. How will our judgement turn out? What kind of year will we have? A momentous day of immense importance.

     Why then can we read "Yom haKippurim" as "The day that is like Purim"? Purim is the day of immense joy, the joy of having been saved from our enemies. What does the Day of Atonement have to do with Purim?

     There is a Baal Shem story that answers this question best. One Yom Kippur the Baal Shem was away from home spending the holiday in a small village. He saw that one of the simple, unlearned Jews kept smiling and even laughing out loud during the evening service. The Baal Shem held back and didn't say anything.  

     But then in the morning the same thing happened. The simple Jew kept smiling and laughing, mostly to himself, but still it was noticeable.

     Noon prayers went the same. Finally, the Baal Shem could not hold back any longer. At the closing prayers, the Baal Shem approached the simple Jew and said, "This is a very serious day today. Our judgements are being finalized today. We stand before the Judge and you are laughing the entire time. Don't you realize how serious a day this is? Why are you laughing like this?"

     The simple Jew looked at the Baal Shem totally surprised at his question.

     "Of course I am happy on this wonderful day. All of my sins are being forgiven. Thank G-d, the kindest Judge there could ever be is forgiving me today."

    The Baal Shem smiled and said, "You are right."

    Yes, this day is the most serious day of all. Yes, we are being judged, perhaps even for our very lives. But if we sincerely say that we are sorry for what we did wrong, and we honestly promise not to do those horrible things again, then all of our sins will be forgiven. What a wonderful day! It's like Purim

Turning to G-d

https://youtu.be/oEXJBKZX-68

(link)

 

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Sunday, October 06, 2019

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I Am Missing Something


   by Reb Gutman Locks  

 Lacking Direction

Hello,

     I am Jewish but my life took me down a different path. My family was raised by strict Jewish parents but since I was raised in USA, they didn't want to raise me as strict. I am a non-practicing Jew and I believe in God and I am married to a Christian and had a child. But ever since I started a new job in an area with a lot of Hassidic Jews, I feel like I am missing something in my life. I don't even know where to start. If I start to follow and study the Torah how would it effect my life. I love my wife and my son. How can I be Jewish without a Jewish family? I feel like I am writing all over the place, but I think you understand where I am coming from.

Sincerely 

J

 

Shalom J,

     Start to follow the Torah and mitzvot with sincere joy. Discover what it means to be a Jew. Then, when your wife and child see you becoming happier and more fulfilled, they will either say; "This is good. We want it, too." If so, then begin the process of orthodox conversion. As long as the conversion is for Hashem, and not just for you, it will be kosher.

     Or, when they see you beginning to fulfill the Torah and mitzvot they will say; "What is this weird stuff you are doing? We do not want it in our lives," then you will know that it is time to divorce your wife and look for a Jewish wife.

    Hashem bless you to do what is best for everyone.

    Let me know what happens.

    Have a wonderful New Year

Gutman

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Thursday, October 03, 2019

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Repentance


   by Reb Gutman Locks   
     Repentance

 

     One of the highlights in the Holiday prayer service comes when we loudly call out, "Repentance - Prayer - Charity."

     In the prayer book there is a word placed over each of these words that teaches us important lessons about these three.

     Above "Repentance" is "Fasting" - above "Prayer" is "Voice", and above "Charity" is "Money".

      The words inserted above them do not come simply to explain how to fulfill the words they are over. They also come to teach us that each of them is equally as important. This means that we are not to think if we repent, we do not  need to also pray and to give charity, or if we do any one of them that we do not need the other two. They are each equally as essential as the other two.

      How do we learn this? The sages in their wisdom placed these small words above them that not only describe how to do the mitzvahs they are over, but each of the words they placed there has the same numerical value; Fasting  צום= 136, Voice קול = 136, and Money ממון = 136.

     This shows us that Repentance, Prayer and Charity are each equal. We need all of them to succeed.

 

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Sunday, September 29, 2019

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5780


   by Reb Gutman Locks  

5780

This New Year

 

      It is a custom to eat various "symbolic" foods on Rosh Hashana as signs as if to encourage good things to come in the New Year. Often, the foods' names will be similar to the benefit we seek. So, for instance, carrots in Hebrew (gezer) sounds like the Hebrew word (g'zar) "decree". So, eating them on Rosh Hashanah expresses our desire that Hashem nullify any negative decrees against us.

      Here is a very modern one in English:

     Take a piece of celery, put a raisin on it, wrap it with a piece of lettuce, and eat it at the meal on the first night of Rosh Hashanah.

     It expresses the wish, "Let us have a raise in salary." (got it?)

     May Hashem bless each of us with a healthy, happy, helpful, and holy New Year; a year filled with the awareness of Hashem's Presence; a year of picking up those around us, and seeing Hashem pick us up even further because of our love for Him and His creation. May we perform all of His mitzvas with genuine joy.

    Have a good and sweet year. 

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The Sound of Shofar

by Aharon Rubin at Mystical Paths

The Sound of Shofar

 The sound of the shofar on Rosh HaShonoh is a window to G-d. The mitsvoh opens a place in the highest of the spiritual worlds. Hearing the shofar, the sound of crying, of teshuvoh, our consciousness enters G-d’s Presence. We experience the essence of teshuvoh, a child in the mother’s womb. 
As breath is blown into the shofar, Divine Breath breathes new life into creation. That breath, the shofar sound, is the sound of Life, of renewal, of Divine Revelation.


Simple Meditations:

Have in mind that you are doing what is written in the Torah, doing G-d's will, as He commanded.

The long note of the teqi'oh signifies the person before sin.
 The broken shevorim sound corresponds to the damage done through sin.
The crying teru'oh sound is the voice of your teshuvoh.
The last teqi'oh is your healed soul.

Close your eyes as you stand before G-d.
G-d sees everything with one glance.
Your innermost thoughts, your travails, your inner battles.
Those fought valiantly and those otherwise.
Your triumphs, aspirations.. everything ...

Standing before your Infinitely Loving Father, embrace Him, with mind, soul and heart.

Hear the shofar sound, the main mitsvoh of Rosh HaShonoh.
It is a window to Heaven, an opening to the world of revelation of G-d.
Through this mitsvoh you are one with G-d.
Allow yourself to become enveloped by the sound, to be transformed.

As you listen, think of G-d and thank Him.
With tears and longing, silent prayer and a beseeching heart, crown Him as King of the world.
Ask Him to reveal His Oneness, His Onliness, His relationship with the world and His People.
G-d stands from His Throne of Strict Judgment and ascends His Throne of Loving Mercy.
He stretches out His Hands to us, joins in our pain, joy and prayers, and pleads for His Children.

Excerpts from Eye to the Infinite 

 
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Thursday, September 26, 2019

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All


   by Reb Gutman Locks
       All

 

     A rabbi friend just stopped me on the street and asked, "How do you put together all the different forces of creation, the angels, spiritual powers, all the different things that there are."

     I answered, "The underlying principal is, 'Something from nothing.' Hashem created, and creates right now everything from nothing. It is ongoing. What we see or recognize will depend on the perspective, or level we are addressing.

     So, now I am looking at you. This is the physical reality I see; a man. But if I focus on that same physical you with a great microscope, I would see molecules or atoms depending on the level of creation I was looking at and not a man. All these levels exist at the same time and place, and I become aware of each of them by addressing that unique level or perspective.

     But, as always, at all times and places, the overall reality will always be, 'Something from Nothing,' with Hashem always being the all, (and beyond the all, too)."

     It is almost Rosh Hashanah. We are about to go before the Righteous Judge Who knows everything we did, to be judged for the new year. We call Him "our Father, our King." When we are coming before Hashem as the Judge, we try to straighten our behavior, resolve to improve our future deeds. When we come before our Father, we express our great love and appreciation of Him. When we come before the King, we are in complete awe of Him.

     May we all be written and sealed in the book of life.

     Have a good and sweet year. 

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Tuesday, September 24, 2019

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Neutral Meditation?


   by Reb Gutman Locks 

 

Hi R Gutman,

    Is it possible to concentrate on one's breath as a form of neutral meditation?

    Is it possible to do a "full body scan" meditation in order to get to sleep?

    Is it possible to perform mindfulness in times where I might get angry, sad or obsessive just not to mess up?

Thank you

~David

 

Shalom David,

    Watching your breath can be used as a meditation technique, however do not just watch your breath as the Eastern religions do. Instead, watch your breath and then also every few breaths remind yourself of the line in the Torah that Hashem breathed the breath of life into Adam. Just as did Hashem breath the breath of life into Adam then, so does He breathe the breath of life into us now.

     Thinking of your body to help fall asleep is alright. Watching your late afternoon, evening diet will probably help more.

     It is very good to watch what you are doing, what you are saying, angering people, and such. "Mindfulness" is a term from Eastern religions so do what you want to do, i.e. be careful, watch what you are doing, but do not do it as a meditation technique called mindfulness.

     The best "meditation" technique is to "direct your heart to Heaven" and the best way to do this is to softly, sweetly, lovingly, speak to Hashem as you go through your day.

Be well,

A Good Shabbos, and a wonderful New Year

Gutman

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Sunday, September 22, 2019

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Drive on Shabbos?


   by Reb Gutman Locks   

 

Lan Asks;

     I have a bit of a problem. To get to the nearest shul for Shabbat, I have to walk 2 miles to get to a public bus stop, ride 6 miles, then walk another mile. Do I break Shabbat to observe it, or just stay home?

    Might be a good video topic.

 

Shalom Lan;

     We don't break Shabbos to observe it. If we can't get to shul we daven alone.    

     Many years ago, the "Conservative" movement saw that their congregations were so spread out that they could not come to pray on Shabbos, so they passed a rule that you could drive on Shabbos if you were coming come to pray. Soon, they saw that those who drove to go pray on Shabbos, also, on the way home, stopped off to buy bagels for Shabbos lunch.

     Probably the best choice is to move closer to the minyan, or even better, start a minyan in your neighborhood.

     Let me know what happens.

Be well

Gutman

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