THE ONE THING OUR RABBI’S HAD IN COMMON!
|There is one thing that our holy Rabbi’s have always had in common. The willingness to do anything for Hashem Yisborach. Some of our holy masters mortified themselves through fasting, while others took axes breaking the ice in a pond and actually immersing. If they did this once in a while, maybe we could comprehend it, try it ourselves but friends these acts where done constantly. Others took it upon themselves to remain silent 40 days. There were even some who locked themselves up in a room for months. Its funny, we have all these story books which tell of the greatest devotions of these Rabbi’s. But let me ask you, do we really know. Can we even begin to comprehend the greatness, the self control these Tzaddikim had?
Some people think that holiness is a gift your born with. Let me tell you differently. These Tzaddkim earned every ounce of holiness they attained. The question is how did they attain self mastery and how can we do the same today ourselves.
If you want something, a really important thing, you are willing to do anything for it. The same has to be true of Torah. If you ask any scholar, they will tell you, you have to be willing to go through the wall so to speak. Mamish you do, you really have to. That is what these Tzaddikim where all about. They wanted to come close to Hashem and not only that, they knew how to make it happen.
Self control is everything. Do you think that when the Baal Shem Tov stood at the lake, he didn’t have a second thought telling him its to cold. But having self control, he did it anyway for Hashem. We have to do the same in our lives. Lets not back of and let our bodies do the driving. The’ll steer us off the road into a ditch. How will we get out, our Rebbe’s will have to pull us up? Let your neshama do the driving, it is experienced and it knows how to get to where we need to go. Where is that? Self mastery, doing the will of Hashem and fixing all our midos. That is what these Tzaddikim where all about, putting the neshama in the drivers seat following the Torah strait ahead.
Your Rebbe in Yeshiva can give you the Torah, yes, but only you can turn yourself into a Tzaddik. You have to ditch the way of the world, even the way unfortunately of many of your Jewish friends and you have to take the Torah. The Torah won’t come after you, nor will self mastery. If you want it, you have to take it, go after it. Making Torah first and foremost.
Don’t let your eyes control themselves, your ears, mouth nor even your nose. Take back control over yourself. Protect what you have. Don’t let your ears here that which is bad for it. You can’t let your eyes run freely either. Lets not have our pallets touch that which is wrong for them. Most of all, lets take back our minds.
We are told that mortification is not the way today. Those practices did help these Tzaddikim reach their levels. Our hands are full though. To stay away from an improper movie, to much T.V.(or any for that matter), literature which is not Torah, the Internet, a pool hall, sports games… I could go on, but I probably have already touched a nerve in you besides myself. I read somewhere, I am not sure where, that whatever in life always is hard for you to overcome, that is your true test in life. It is said that the generation of today can reach the level of Rabbi Akiva. You must believe in yourself, the Torah and take over your life. A person certainly cannot perfect themselves without being in control of there time. Look at the clock, live by it. Be above time. Be above your body and yourself giving to Hashem and others. Also know that when you say a bracha, it shakes heaven too. Do everything with love and all your heart. Reb Carlebach said that if you don’t do something with all your heart, your not really doing it. That is what made these Tzaddikim who they are, there devotions, the ice, fasting, it was done with all their hearts. To help a fellow Jew out, enjoying it and giving it your all that is true life. The harder the test, the more difficult the devotion, the greater the reward. Be strong:)