Wednesday, September 10, 2014

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Hear Your Disgrace and Smile

Some Torah from Rav Shalom Arush, shlita, is being made available to us to share.  We’ll be publishing, with some edits as appropriate for our audience.

on Mystical Paths, Torah by Rav Shalom Arush, shlita

We now find ourselves in the wondrous days of the month of Elul, the days in which we call to our Father in heaven more than the rest of the year. Like is hinted to in the word Elul the letters of which אלול are the first letters of the words in the verse Ani Ledodi VLedodi Li (I am to my beloved and my beloved is to me), which means that we are yearning to return in complete tshuvah to Hashem and Hashem is, as if to say, yearning to return to us, to bring us close to Him.

It’s well known the words of Rebbe Nachman of Breslev in Likeutei Mohoran Torah 6 “The main thing in repentance is for a person you hear his disgrace and be tranquil and silent.” Really it’s hard to understand why this is the main thing in repentance. Everyone knows that repentance means to do vidui (to say to Hashem in words what you did wrong), to regret ones bad deeds and stop doing them, and return to following the will of Hashem of learning Torah and doing mitzvot, and so forth. Even though there is a type of forgiveness of sins that comes about through receiving disgrace, still it’s not understood why this is the main part of repentance.

We need to know that with every defect a person causes or sin that he does, the main spiritual cause is arrogance that made its way inside him. Every feeling of “being something”, haughtiness, or brazenness distances a person from Hashem. Like is said “one whose eyes are raised up high and his heart is expansive, I cannot tolerate [אותו] him.” Don’t read it אותו [him], rather איתו [with him]. Hashem is, as if to say, with whoever is haughty: I and him can not dwell together. In other words, Hashem can’t stand a person who has arrogance. Therefore the main repentance is to escape from arrogance. All of the hardship and the disgrace that fall on a person is all for this purpose – to circumcise the “foreskin” of his heart. Once this happens, then he can really come close to Hashem out of love and all of the gates will be opened for him, the gates of learning Torah, prayer, emuna, and more.

In general we see that the whole world is built like this – to bring down a person’s arrogance. We can see with our own eyes how this world is arranged in perfect precision for this purpose. Everything is hard. One’s livelihood is hard, there are constant troubles, sometimes with health, other times with children etc., sometimes there are troubles coming from all sides at once… All of these things are part of a precision plan to bring a person down from his arrogance, so that he’ll understand that he is a non-entity and that his every moment depends on heavenly mercy. So he’ll understand that with every breath Hashem is doing miracles with him by sustaining his life.

…to be continued.


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