עלה זית בפיה
איסוף פסוקים ומאמרי חז”ל לצורך ציור בדבור, שהוא עצה נפלא לעזור לתקן מדות הנפש
שמואל יוסף אלבינגר
שמואל יוסף אלבינגר
Read the intro to the book Aley Zayis B’fihah for the basic idea behind this, and eitzahs to work with.
My translation: “Thank Hashem since it is good, (how do I know) since His chesed is eternal.” His chesed is forever, it may not be experienced that way now, but it is… We have the choice to see as much as we can now, and to look for his chesed everywhere.
I suggest repeating the pasuk at least ten times with intent and feeling, and any images etc… that you can associate it with. (See 1.)
Think of five things that you have to be thankful for, and a specific reason why, say Thank you Hashem for X because it (example: Thank you Hashem for my hands, because I can use them to type Torah on my keyboard)… thank You, thank You, thank You.) For each item. This can be included in the ten minutes.
The thank you items can be the biggest or the smallest.
The Maggid and Rabeinu B’chayey explain that having your machshovas in line with chessed, believing Hashem wants to give you chessed chinam even if you don’t deserve it… places your neshama’s root in line with the source of Chesed (wherever your thoughts are, that’s where you are), and automatically draws down good things in your life.
Again, repeat this pasuk at least ten times. You can even include this in the ten minutes… The more time the better but:
Twenty repetitions at four per minute is five minutes. Plus five minutes for the thank you’s. It can easily suffice. No excuses. If you have longer, more imaging etc… do it.
It is important to set a time to do this. Right before sleeping if you don’t crash, right when you wake up if you are a morning guy, right after davening with your talis on and a sefer in front of you… Better to have a set time! Missed your set time? Do it anytime! Only problem is you can’t do it in the bathroom.
When you are not doing anything else, when you are walking, or spacing out, or whatever, try to say one of these pasukim – even just the words with no kavannah. Maybe make a little tune. You can also choose a particular pasuk you want to work on. These pasukim are chosen because they will definitely help you in all other areas. This I can guarantee.
But, if you already want to work on your desire for Torah or Tefillah, pick a pasuk that works for you.
Every day has a middah, and associated energies it was created with, as per the Gemorah in Shabbos describing the middos of those born on different days. It is befitting to try and tap into that positive shefah, divine influx, on that day of the week.
Chessed. Loving kindness, expansiveness.
Knowing that a practice is not a practice, and is useless without real commitment, I ______________________________________, hereby take on for the next month, 30 days, beginning __________ continuing until __________ , a constant commitment to the following daily and weekly practices:
Ok, submitted for your critique, the beginning of what I originally called “The Book,” but what I am tentatively calling “Oh God, What’s the Point?” until I get a better title. It’s a general hashkafah book about the purpose of the world. When we understand basically what we’re doing here, it makes it easier for us to trust Hashem.
Like a great many, Hebrew words, the terms emunah and bitachon defy translation. Trying to fit these concepts into the tight bonds of the word faith is comparable to calling the Grand Canyon a “pretty ditch.”
In his book about emunah and bitachon Nachmanadies says that emunah is analogous to a tree, and bitachon is the fruit of that tree. You can have a tree that never produced fruit, but if you have fruit, there must have been a tree involved. Emunah, he says, is belief in God and his power to act, but bitachon is the trust that He will.
It can be said that emunah involves a clear recognition of all of the principles of the Jewish faith, and bitachon is not only the active behavior which reflects these truths, but trust in God. Bitachon is trust that God is not only interested in our behavior, but He loves us and has our highest good in mind. Trust is the basis for relationships with our fellow man, and a relationship with God is no different.
The work of building bitachon is a life time job. The Vilna Gaon says that bitachon is necessary for all positive character traits, and without bitachon a person’s Torah will not last. This trust is the basis for a healthy, loving relationship between us and God, as well as with ourselves. The Gaon adds that bitachon is also necessary for experiencing true love for one another. How can I be jealous of my friend when we both have the very best we can have for us?
The positive benefits of trusting God have been discussed by the Sages throughout the generations. A person is relieved of his daily worries.Bitachon even has the inherent ability to bring a person the object of his desires. Obviously emunah and bitachon deserve a work of their own, and many have been written. Discussing emunah and bitachon – their definition, benefits and practice – is not the point of this booklet.
Next excerpt: What is the Purpose of this Book?… Stay tuned! (Don’t worry, I’ll put it up tomorrow.)
Shmuel Yosef Elbinger here.
I’m finally doing it! I’m putting up a blog/website, just like the other millions of bloggers out there. I’m not really in a profound writing mood, because I’ve just been building this website, and making it look half decent.
I’ve already written a lot of the content for the books, so I’m going to up it all up on a schedule, so in case you sign up for the emails already somehow you won’t get it all right away….
Maybe I’ll tell a little of the story of what got me to writing later.