In the old days, Tzfat was not a place that needed media coverage in order for the world to remember its existence. This hasn’t been the case lately. First with the War in the North which brought world media coverage. Then now we have some escaped convict, Benny”, living with us. Every street in Tzfat has policeman on it 24 hours a day right now. The new talk in Tzfat is, “where is this guy hiding.” Have I seen him? What will I do if I meet up with him? Is our city crying out for attention?
You know… some say that in order for Moshiach to come, Tzfat must once again flurish. The Zohar says that it is here that the Moshiach will be born and lead us to Jerusalem.
You know over the last 10 years, you can’t imagine how much material was lost due to lack of backups, corrupt files, faulty hard drives and sometimes the work just simply disappeared. The other day, I wrote a blog post and then when I returned home, it was gone. I am sure I had saved it but I realized by its disappearance that it wasn’t meant to be. Some thoughts are simply meant to be private and they have a time and place to be revealed. At the same time, some of my greatest works were lost and I had to immediately push myself to start them again from the beginning due to their importance. One video took me 45 minnutes to do and then I realized the battery died in the middle. In these cases, one needs to view their situation from outside themselves in order to know what to do. Everything does come from Hashem. Sometimes it means if we started again we would do better, while other times, we simply have to move on.
This past Shabbos I was reading some stories about Reb Shlomo. I am not what you would call a typical Shlomo fan. In fact, coming from a FFB background, I have always found the ways to be different. It wasn’t till I was a young man struggling in spirituality that I realized how great his story telling was. Even this though, is not what draws me to write about him today.Â
When I am driving around my car, walking the streets and I see people that could maybe use a little help and I pass them bye,Â the thought keeps coming into my head, “Shlomo would have done it”. It is like he is haunting me. You have to do better! You have to reach out more to everyone, no matter what. Stop drawing lines of who you should help and who you shouldn’t. Don’t you see how precious this little yiddalah is?
I’ll tell you, I find it very difficult to read stories about this man. I’ve read dozens of books, hundreds of pages of people who were known for their chesed, kindness but it appears that Reb Shlomo Carlebach took it a step further from them all. Once he gave a concert and right after the organizer gave him a check for $3,000. He replied, “Thank you my friend, you have no idea how much I need this right now, I am totally broke.” A moment later, I passionate man came running over to him, baring his financial troubles and how it was affecting his marriage. Reb Shlomo simply handed him over the envelope without a second thought.
My friends, maybe you and I would also give but we would first be thinking what we were doing. For Reb Shlomo,Â this wasn’t the case, he gave and gave again…
He flu, drove & walked thousands of miles in order to help another person out. Never did he make a line that someone wasn’t good enough to help. So my dear friends, I am troubled by this. I have so much work to do!
The baby still has scares and 3rd degree burn. His arm is very stiff since it has beenÂ bandaged up so long. He still has pain. While a lot is improving quickly, some areas are still not good. Please continue to have him in your teflilos, prayers. I also worry for our otherÂ children who have been somewhat tramatized by not having parents full time for the last couple of months. Please also think of them in your prayers. Â
I am working on a new design of torahvideo with animated charactors and all flash. Give me your creative ideas here on the blog and I will consider them for the new layout!
1. I am looking for volunteers with long termÂ EXPERIENCE in kiruv ready to mekariv 300-1000 people a month under my direction. You will need 1-2 hoursÂ a day. Please email me if interested. Must haveÂ ahavas Yisrael, love of another Jew and great sensitivity.
2. I need advertising agents with experience to work with benefits from commission of sales. You can do this as a volunteer or for pay.
3. Fundraisers with some payment arrangement
4. Flash designers, programmers, writers, editors
u name it… I need it & your reward from Hashem for helping is unimaginable.
I go to sleep tonight worried for my children. Yeah, they will be okay but they have quite a road in front of them. My oldest went to bed with fever and ear pain. My youngest is rapped in bandages seeking the rest of his healing. I am comforted by one thought this moment as I close my eyes. It is the true meaning of Shema Yisrael that we say each night before retiring. What are we doing? We are giving over our soul back to Hashem entrusting Him to return it in the morning, that we may live another day. So, my last thought is quite simular. I have cared for Hashem’s children as he in-trusted me to do for Him, therefore, He shall take care of mine.Â I return this trust with the famous words of our people… Shema Yisrael, Hashem Elokeinu, Hashem Echad…
p.s. One of my most difficult memories as a young man was watching my father loose a limb from 3rd degree skin wounds and I have now just livedÂ over 3rd degree skin problems with my son, B’H he is recovering nicely. This is one thing I can’t really express in words(sharing simular pain from my dad & now my son). It had brought back many memories I had previously wished to forget. I just want to protect my children from all mishaps but there really is only one way to do that, truth in Hashem.
In the old days, a Rebbe in cheder meant that a teacher of children understood that this was not a one year commitment to the child but rather, he would always be there for the child. A Rebbe meant more then just a one year, Hello, goodbye… I taught you… go find yourself a new teacher.
When a father picked a teacher for his son, the child stayed with that teacher until the Rebbe had taught everything he knew in Judaism. He didn’t find him a new teacher until the Rebbe literally was milked for everything he had. Students always learned more from the angle of memorizing the materialÂ then a quick overview of chapters.
The Rebbes didn’t give up on children but taught them at their level of grasp. He was able to teach many students simultaneously even though their levels were different. He was a melamid, teacher because he was truly gifted and loved it.
The most important thing in the world for children are their first teachers in grade school.Â This teacher must believe in them wholeheartedly and make them feel special. He must show them love of commandments, not a pressure of keeping them. I ask of Hashem that all of us should be worthy of such a teacher for ourselves, our children and all of Israel. Amen
People are always giving others advice and mussar, thoughts on their character traits, during the wrong time. When a person is up, that is when you should encourage them in matters of personality gains and encouragement in life. If someone is down, what they need to know is that you are there for them and respect them. Gently you may also be able to throw in thoughts of encouragement and faith. Then when they are up again, they will heed further advice which would enable them not to fall again.
When a person sees that they have slowed down on an important mitzvah or Jewish act, they have to immediately take it back before it becomes too hard too. One of the most difficult tests is rekindling a light that went out long ago. When a candle first goes out, if you light it right away, it will light quickly. Even quicker then when you first lit it originally. This is not the case though after the wick has gone out for a long time. It is simply more difficult to rekindle. The same is true for us Jews. We jump on something when it is new too us but then we just watch the candle go out, thinking… we will rekindle it in a few months or years. Then we find that it is simple too difficult to go back to the beginning again.
My friends, if you have latched onto anything good and holy. Don’t let it go!
Tears and repentance are important but only after we wipe away those tears are we able to begin again. If a person acts on something purely from emotion… like the wet wick that is hard to light… It might be more difficultÂ to get the fire going properly but if you light the wick when it is dry, based on fear of Hashem and happiness, it will light right away again. So at first, you might need to cry but then after, brush those tears away and do the right thing because it is right, not based on your fluctuating emotions. As the Rabbi’s have told us, you must serve Hashem with both love and fear. Fear alone isn’t enough nor love alone.
This month even with the accedent of my son, we have hit record highs of kiruv. I am very close to the goal of mekariving 1,000 people this month. In fact, that is how many people a day visit ilovetorah.
What does it mean to mekariv someone? What is kiruv? You know, everyone thinks that others should be like them. They should think like them, act like them and do what they do. This is the mistaken idea of what kiruv is. It is not making someone religious persay but rather helping someone to relate to their Hashem given Jewish soul. To open it and fill it with the light it needs. Obviously, this means to take on a path towards following more of the Torah but each individual soul needs to be cherrished and respected. If you fill it with too much light, you shatter it. Too little light, it doesn’t shine. Rather, it has to be just right. Which means that you must allow the person themselves to find the light they need. You just have to shine it their way like the rays of the sun. To warm them and then in their natural tendency, they will seek to bathe in the light of Torah. After-all, the Jewish soul thirsts for Torah no matter how much materialism and immorality clings to it. It must and always needs Torah to servive. Chazal teach us that, “Torah is light”.
(With your donation, we can make this 2,000 mekariv, 2,000 visitors a day)
The baby is doing better but its a long road for us to recover from 3rd degree burns. Our other children have been devoid of parents for weeks. I call to my friends out there if you know any girl with experience who could be a mothers helper. If there is someone in seminary interested, maybe we could ask for a two week leave so you would be able to assist us.
I Love Torah now has a new design. We are still fixing the bugs on the video and finishing some links and effects. What do you think?
My wife and I are overwhelmed. So much is going on at once. We want to take care of our sick child but then the other children are neglected. The baby won’t sleep cause he is inchy and in pain. My second child has a fever. Then also my site is neglected and I am in the middle of mekariving thousands. Even if I had the time to pay my bills, I don’t have the money too. Things in the house need fixing but we are not here to do them. We are not returning again till Thursday after midnight. I have a laptop but no internet connection where I am staying in Bnei Brak.Â
All over Israel Jews are protesting the up and coming Gay Marches. It took me more then 30minutes to backtrack the roadblocks in one area and I had to spin the car around when I saw kids opening someones car trunk and jumping on the cars. I think this is a lack of Rabbinical and schools teaching the children the importance of protesting with good midos. In fact, no CHILD should be protesting at all or EVER involved in a political statement. It only causes the children harm and parents, rabbi’s and schools should speak more against the involvement of children. At the same time, a rightful protest is certainly needed and I hope there is a well organized one. We must stop such a march on holy soil where such a thing to take place is prohibited. There is still no greater protest then to pray to Hashem on this!
Years ago I was by the Shabbos protestÂ on Shmuel Hanavi street. After being there for 2minutes, IÂ walked away almost in tears. This is not how we show the light of Hashem and draw peopleÂ back to religion. Uy, Uy… I cried. It is not the way!Â