Monday, March 11, 2019

There is Always Hope

There exists a solution to every problem and a way out of every darkness.

But, in order to find it, a person must be willing to open up his mind to a way of thinking which he has never thought before and to a way of understanding which he has never understood before.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Rav Yehuda Petaya and The Elderly Ba'al Teshuva

Story 1: Rav Yehuda Petaya and The Elderly Ba’al Teshuva

In the book "Minchat Yehuda" (number 86), we find the following account:
In the year 5683 (1923), I was approached by a certain older man who confessed to me that he had sinned with his daughter in law while she was married to his son. He told me that he wanted to make teshuva and atone for his sin. However, he did not possess the strength anymore to perform many fasts or to do other difficult sigufim (self-mortifications) for atonement.

I asked him if he would at very least be able to fast for one full day, similar to that of Yom Kippur? He said yes.

I told him to go and dip seven times in the mikva, and then to accept upon himself a 24 hour fast for the above mentioned sin.

I instructed him that on the day of the fast he was to come to me with a pidyon (redemption money) for the 325 fasts that were necessary to atone for the sin of being with a married woman, and that I would assist him with his tikkun, and so it was.

On the day of the fast he came to me and entered into my room. He took four steps barefoot (as a gesture of repentance) and stood in front of me and confessed his above mentioned sin. After his confession, he handed me the pidyon money and said, “Here is the pidyon money for the 325 fasts which I am required to do as atonement for my sin, please take it and distribute it as charity to whomever you wish.”

When I received the money from his hand, I said, “Behold, I am receiving this money from so and so who has given it as charity in order to redeem the remaining fasts which he is obligated to do as atonement for the sin which he sinned with his daughter in law, etc. For You hear the prayers of all mouths, blessed are You who hears prayers.

I then suspected that that this old man was very poor and actually borrowed this money from others, so I returned to him the whole amount as charity – keeping nothing but two small coins.
Two years later, this old man passed away, and I saw him in a dream standing before the Heavenly Court. He was received above as a Ba’al Teshuva, however, they found that he had only repented for the sin of being with a married woman, and was still lacking atonement for the sin of being with his daughter in law.

He was not spoken to, and he removed himself to a side room and lowered himself down to his knees. The Heavenly Court lifted their eyes upward, and three angels instantly descended from the heavens above and performed a surgery on his organ – removing from it the rust and blemish of the sin of being with his daughter in law. They then healed him completely and exited.

This is all what I saw in my dream. And from this account, one can see the great value and preciousness of teshuva, for it saved this old man of hundreds of years of kaf hakele, painful reincarnations and gehenom. Therefore our sages teach us, “Finer is one hour of repentance and good deeds in this world; then is the value of the entire World to Come.”

(Until here were the words of Rav Yehuda Petaya)

Monday, February 18, 2019

Deep Thoughts About the Purpose of Life

Words from, Rejoice O Youth! by Rav Avigdor Miller zt"l

(whoever reads these words very carefully and thinks about them, will find enough reason and encouragement to begin a whole new life dictated by total Truth and Virtue - blessings, Hazak We'ematz)

The truth is everywhere, but few men are able to see it. This world is a night of darkness; we see nothing, despite the brightness of the daylight. We move all about, all our lives, in a thick fog which conceals from our eyes all the great truths. Out of this heavy, impenetrable mist, murky phantoms loom up before us. Some terrify us, and some lure us on; but all are unreal fantasies fashioned by the fog swirls.

Sometimes the evil inclination conceals from men the fact of G-d's control over their affairs. This is the darkness which causes a man to seem to be a post, and a post to appear to be a man. Men fail to see the real perils, including the waste of their lives, which is a loss never to be regained; but they see only the imaginary forms of happiness, theories of error, and the threat to their economic security. Thus men are affrighted by the phantoms of poverty which the Evil Inclination conjures up and by this means enslaves them to the pursuit of security. For this, they forsake their sole purpose in life, which is the pursuit of Perfection; and they pursue the illusion of security. 

Sometimes, for a fleeting moment, the fog lifts, such as when men are about to leave the world, or in times of catastrophe or great excitement. For a brief interval the light appears; but again the mist closes in, and men continue their blind march in the dark.

This universal darkness and error is essential to the World-Plan, and it has been so arranged by the Creator: 'You make darkness, and it becomes night' (Psalms 104:20); 'This refers to this world, which is like the night' (Bava Metzia 83 b). In this blackness, men are led into two errors (Mesillas Yesharim): 1) They fail to see the truth and 2) they believe the imaginary phantoms to be real. Thus, the nations have adored men who were worthless; and they vilified some men of great virtue.

youth: "But why should the Creator permit this force to exist?"

sage: "Because it is of the greatest benefit to mankind."

youth: "The greatest enemy, which distorts all the truths of life, is the greatest benefit?"

sage: "Yes. The purpose of life is to practice Free-Will. G-d does not wish to force men into righteousness, for then the entire plan would be frustrated. But if men were not blinded by the Evil Inclination, they could not avoid seeing the truths. They would recognize G-d from the overwhelming and incontrovertible demonstration of plan-and purpose everywhere in the world,they would recognize Man's role as the sole recipient of G-d's unbounded kindliness, they would understand the end-purpose of the Afterlife, and they would see the true function of life as the pursuit of virtue and Perfection. G-d said: 'No man shall see Me and live' (Shemot 33:20); for such clarity of perception would hamper the Free-Will, without which life would be useless. 'You impose darkness and it is night' (Psalms 104:20). This world has been made dark by G-d, for if men could see the whole Truth, they could no longer act except in accordance with it. Virtue would be as natural as the instinct of self-preservation. It would not be the result of men's Free-Will. The concealing of all these truths creates the ordeal of Free-Will."

Men are so blind that they do not see their own faults, for even the lowest criminals regard themselves as good men. The greatest are sometimes deceived by this darkness. The wise and noble brothers of Joseph considered him a wicked man who deserved to be destroyed, despite the fact that they had seventeen years to observe his behavior. Even our father Issac was unable to discern the wickedness of Esau, who had lived in his house for over sixty years; and he wished to confer the blessings upon him.

Even the physical world is totally concealed from our eyes. By day we see an empty sky; and we forget that huge worlds hover overhead in space. Even at night we are deceived; for unless we look through the giant telescopes, we cannot visualize the vast numbers of the celestial bodies. Without the aid of the microscope, our eyes do not see the teeming millions of bacteria swarming upon our bodies, upon our clothing, and in the air we breathe... Even we, today, are completely unaware of numerous physical phenomena, before our eyes, which will be revealed in later generations. If such ignorance is possible in material things, then how great is the ignorance of men in the non-physical truths!

Rabbotai, we want the whole world to come and pray with us for one day; for on that one day, there will be peace in the entire world! Reb Shlomo Carlebach zt"l

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Benefits to Living in Israel

All the blessings of the Land will open up for you when you come here. 

Making Aliya is a leap of faith. It has to come from you, when you decide and truly believe that Hashem desires closeness with you. 

The best feeling for a parent is to know that their children are home and safe.

Israel is the Holy Land and Jerusalem is the Kings Royal City. We are His children and He wants us all to come back home. 

Leave the dark and scary streets of the 70 nations and come back to our happy and loving home.

"The air of Eretz Yisrael makes one wise"
(Bava Batra 158b)

"It is preferable to dwell in the deserts of Eretz Yisrael than the palaces of Chutz LaAretz"
(Bereshit Rabba 39:8)

"Fortunate is he who merits in his lifetime to fix his residence in Eretz HaKodesh"
(Zohar HaKadosh III 72b)

"And remove from your heart this false belief that a man has more blessings outside the land"
(Alshich HaKadosh, Ki Tavo 28:6)

"Living in Eretz Yisrael is the equivalent of all the Mitzvot in the Torah"
(Sifrei, Parashat Re'e, Tosefta Avoda Zara 5)

"There is no happiness, but only when Yisrael is settled in the Holy Land"
(Zohar HaKadosh, Bamidbar 118a)

"He who lives in Eretz Yisrael should be perpetually happy with this Mitzvah, and all the suffering he experiences should be insignificant to him in light of his love for this Mitzvah"
(Pele Yoetz, Eretz)

"Anyone who dwells in Eretz Yisrael, the very Land attones for him"
(Sifrei, Haazinu)

"Only in Eretz Yisrael can happiness be complete; and it is also possible to sanctify oneself with great kedusha, something that is impossible in foreign lands"
(Rabbi Elimelech MiLizensk)

"Eretz Yisrael lacks nothing"
(Brachot 36)

If you'd like to find out more about making the move and buying a property in Israel, contact my good friend Aaron Morgan:

Morgan Mortgage
Habasor 10/2, Beit Shemesh, 99632, Israel
Tel: 02-992-4137
Cel: 0525-688-940
USA Tel:        1-914-339-0583
Canada  Tel:  1-647-558-4952
Israel Fax: 153-2-992-4137 (Fax must be sent from Israel)
US Fax: 1-208-247-4561

Please visit our website at:

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Chodesh Adar Tov

No better time than the month of Adar to remind ourselves of the importance of being thankful to Hashem for all of His blessings.
Here is an older recording of Rav Dovid Breezel teaching us how to do it.

We hope to be zoche to come up with a new recording of the Rav soon...