Friday, November 16, 2012

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Blessed Art Thou…

at the Western Wall with Reb Gutman Locks on Mystical Paths


      What is happening when we say these words? What do they mean? Religious Jews say these words at least one hundred times a day. All blessings that we say begin with, “Blessed Art Thou O’ Lo-rd our G-d…” and then continue with the words appropriate to that specific occasion, such as, before eating, doing certain mitzvahs, praying the standing prayers (amidah) three times a day….

     According to some, when we say these words we are actually giving G-d a blessing. After all, we are saying, “Blessed are You,” so aren’t we are giving G-d a blessing?

     Others say, to think that you are blessing G-d is complete foolishness (or worse). According to this second opinion, the words mean, “You, Hashem, are the source of all blessings... ‘Blessed art Thou’.”

     Which opinion is correct, or is this one of the many times when we say, “Even though the two opinions are saying seemingly opposite things, both are correct”?

     From time to time a Jew may ask another Jew for a blessing. It could be that the Jew who is being asked is in his or her first year of marriage, when Hashem is particularly kind to their wishes. It might be that someone sees a respected teacher, or someone who is doing very good things, and he asks that Jew for a blessing, believing that the merit of that Jew will assure Hashem’s answering his prayers. In some communities this happens quite often.

     There are some Jews, who, when asked for a blessing will say, “I bless you that such and such will happen….” When I hear someone say such a “blessing” I ask the Jew who said it, “Do you really have such great merit that you can give this blessing, and actually make it happen?”

     They may answer; the blessing of even the simplest Jew is a very valuable thing.

     And I say to them; that is true when the Jew says the blessings in a way that conforms with G-d’s ways. Next time someone asks you for a blessing try saying it this way, ‘May Hashem give you such and such…,’ and then Hashem will hear your prayer, and please G-d, He will grant you your good wishes for that person.

     G-d is the source of all blessings. When we say a blessing we are recognizing that He is this source, and that everything comes from Him. Recognizing His greatness elevates our consciousness. This is why we make blessings.

     May He, Who is the source of all blessings, be so very kind as to grant you who are reading these words your every request for good. (Say, “Amen”)

1 comment:

  1. My New Hashkafah of Shidduchim :-)

    My new hashkafah of shidduchim is thanking and praising HASHEM always :-)

    Even when my dating experiences are far from pleasant, I realize that HASHEM is guiding my life with His infinite wisdom and abundant love, and exact precision that only He is capable of :-)

    HASHEM always knows what is truly good for me, even when I do not :-)

    Often what I need most is atonement and humility, so G_d gives me those precious things through unpleasant dating experiences :-)

    I now realize that I must always thank HASHEM for ALL of my dating experiences, because even the worst dates are for my eternal benefit, because they provide me with precious atonement and humility :-)

    Tractate Avot teaches that the reward for a good deed is proportionate to its difficulty; by giving me difficult dating experiences, HASHEM is providing me with greater reward for Olam HaBa, in addition to precious atonement and humility :-)

    G_d loves me even more than I love myself, and He would never give me an unpleasant dating experience unless it was for my eternal benefit in both Olam HaZeh and Olam HaBa :-)


    Thank you for all my dating experiences, whether pleasant or unpleasant or mediocre :-)
    You are always guiding me with endless wisdom and love; You always help me and give me everything I need :-)

    I regret all the times I complained;
    instead of complaining, I should have been busy thanking You.


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