The Wings of Morning -
A Torah Review
Yaacov Dovid Shulman
|WINGS OF MORNING
Volume VI, Issue 32
Emor, April 2002
Unless otherwise noted, translations and original material copyright © 2002 by Yaacov Dovid Shulman (firstname.lastname@example.org).
* AND I SAY
* EVERY MORNING
* GOD TAKES PRIDE
* THE CHILDREN OF THE "HOLY JEW" (conclusion)
* THE LOVE OF ISRAEL MUST BE NURTURED
* LOVE FOR OTHERS
* THE BAAL SHEM TOV AND THE OHR HACHAIM
* A PLEASANT COUNTENANCE
* A FULL HEART
by M. Lipson
R. Yitzchak Yaacov Reines, rabbi of Lied, used to say: "The Zionists say that a Jew who is not a Zionist isn't a Jew either. And I say that a Zionist who is not a Jew isn't a Zionist either."
by M. Lipson
Every morning, as soon as he got up, R. Zusha of Anipolia would say, "Good morning, all of Israel!"
by Rabbi Nachman of Breslov
God takes pride in every Jew, even in his every limb and movement.
by Avraham Stern
I answered, "I don't want the world-to-come as a gift. The world-to-come is worth something when you earn it yourself." So the "Holy Jew" blessed me with health and wealth. When I returned home, I immediately began to succeed. And I hope that by using my wealth correctly, I will be able to acquire the world-to-come.
Since I am busy the entire week with my business, I have to make up [my spiritual work] on the Sabbath. On Friday night after eating, I rest my head on my arms at the table and take a nap. Afterwards, I go through the weekly Torah reading and other things as well. Tonight, as usual, I fell asleep after the meal. But this time I dreamt that I saw the Holy Jew, whom I recognized clearly, and I heard him tell me, "You know that your entire wealth came to you because of my blessing. It is only right that you help my children, who are at this moment in the beis medrash without wine for kiddush and without a Sabbath meal."
So I know whose children you are, and I know that your holy father wants you to reveal yourselves. That is why I brought everything to the beis medrash: so that everyone will hear about this incident. God willing, tomorrow you will lead a tisch for the entire community. You will no longer be poor, and you will return to Rizhin well-off, both physically and spiritually.
–May their merit protect us and all Israel.
by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Kook
Love for the people of Israel must be nurtured. It is not like the natural love within every other nation, which a handful of its people possesses. The core of every other nation is merely a simple natural phenomenon: meeting a necessity for life and gathering together, engendering the fulfillment of natural desires that are satisfied when people who have strong connections to each other assemble.
This does not have to be animated by reasons that require learning and training.
But the connectedness of the Congregation of Israel is built principally upon shared spiritual desires. These in themselves very much spiritual effort and strength in the heart of each individual and, even more, in the life of the entire community. Orot
by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Kook
Love for others must be alive within our heart and soul: love for every individual and love of all the nations: the desire for their spiritual and physical elevation and improvement.
Hatred must be directed only at the evil and foulness in the world. We can by no means arrive at the uplifted spirit of "Give thanks to Hashem, call out in His name, make His deeds known amidst the nations" without an inner love from the depths of the heart and spirit [that desires] to help all the nations, to perfect their characteristics, to impart happiness to their lives.
This trait causes the spirit of the regal messiah to rest upon Israel.
Wherever we find allusions toward hatred, we must clearly know that the intent is solely towards evil, which so strongly binds together many nations. This, which is now the case, was even more true in earlier days, when the world's pollution was even filthier.
We must be aware that the central point of life, light and holiness is never disconnected from the divine image with which all humanity as a whole is graced, and with which every nation and people is graced, each in accordance with its nature. This seed of holiness will elevate everything. From the midst of this central point of life, we desire the world's complete elevation: the light of justice and rightness, which unites with glory and beauty, might and victory–and the perfection of all creation, beginning with humanity and all its attributes.
This [desire] is the innermost soul that exists within the depth of the consciousness of the Congregation of Israel. With the spirit of God upon us, we ever awaken [this desire so that it may exist within] both this-worldly and spiritual life.
by Chaim Eliyahu Sternberg
The Baal Shem Tov said that the soul of the Ohr Hachaim came from the ruach of David of Atzilut, and that every night he heard Torah from the mouth of the Holy One, blessed be He. He was one of those who "descend in the chariot" and who experience the manifestation of souls and levels of true divine inspiration.
As for the Baal Shem Tov, he was the nefesh of David of Atzilut.
He wanted these two–the nefesh and ruach–to connect. Then the neshamah and Chayah of Atzilut would be revealed, and the true redemption would arrive.
The Baal Shem Tov asked his brother-in-law, R. Gershon of Kitov, if it would be possible for him to travel to Jerusalem and meet the Ohr Hachaim face to face. His brother-in-law replied that he should write and tell him whether, when he looks carefully at the image of the Ohr Hachaim in the upper worlds, he sees all of the Ohr Hachaim's limbs and features. The Baal Shem Tov replied that he does not see the Ohr Hachaim's heels. The holy R. Gershon told the Baal Shem Tov not to trouble himself, for all his bother would come to nothing. However, the holy master, the Baal Shem Tov, did not receive this letter, and he set out with a great measure of self-sacrifice.
On the holiday of Passover he was in the city of Stambul, where he accomplished awesome and wondrous things. This brought him to the attention of the royal palace and as a result he had to flee by ship. He was told from heaven to go back, but he did not want to. And so the heavenly forces took away all of his spiritual levels, including his Torah and prayer, so that he could not even recognize the letters in the prayer book. Nevertheless, he said, "What of it? I will go as an ignoramus and a boor (heaven forbid) to the tzaddik, the Ohr Hachaim, in the Holy Land."
He accepted everything, until the ship foundered and his holy daughter, Adel, was drowning in the sea, and she cried out, "Compassionate father, you see my suffering. Where are you?"
In the midst of the Baal Shem Tov's great anguish and suffering, and also because all the levels of holiness had been taken from him, the Evil Spirit came to him and told him what he told him. When he saw his own suffering–a great suffering, because his soul had reached Sheol–he proclaimed, "Hear O Israel, Hashem our God, Hashem is One! " And he said, "Master of the universes, I am returning home." Immediately his principle teacher, Achiya Hashiloni the prophet, came to him, showed him where he was, and in a moment brought him back home.
Come and see the exalted level of our holy rabbi, the holy Ohr Hachaim.
by Rabbi Yechiel Moshe (av beis din of Kamaravke and Yadimave)
"Greet everyone with a pleasant countenance" (Avot).
I heard in the name of R. Yitzchak of Vorke, "Why is the phrase for pleasant countenance sever panim, which means ‘thinking'?" He explained, "As long as the other person is thinking that you have greeted him pleasantly, even if you actually dislike him, that too is good."
by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Kook
Love must be with a full heart for everyone.
Men's Learning Group: Hakhsharat Ha'avreikhim ("Spiritual Training"), step-by-step guidebook on how to develop an awareness of our souls and of God, by Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapiro (the Pieszesner Rebbe), Sunday night. For information, call (410) 358-8771.
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