Tuesday, June 17, 2008

New Breslov English Shiurim Website

With thanks to Hashem Yisborach, The Breslov World Center is happy to annouce the launch of our digitally remastered Audio Library. When completed, the library will contain literally thousands of hours of shiurim in English. Today, the library already contains over 1000 shiurim! There will be regular additions to this library. Free downloads of the shiurim are available at the Breslov World Center website.

Uman Rosh HaShana 5769/2008

Rosh Hashona is not to far off; it starts this year (2008) on Tuesday night, September 29. For those interested in going to Uman for Rosh Hashona, the latest to leave from New York would be Saturday night. Many of us will be leaving earlier, on Tuesday or Wednesday. From Eretz Yisroel or Europe it's a lot easier and you can leave on Sunday. Reb Noson was adamant that one should be in Uman for Zechor Bris, the Erev Rosh Hashona Selichos. For those that have never been there you can read all about the reasons for going from the online version of Breslov Research Institute's book, Uman! Uman! Rosh Hashana - A guide to Rebbe Nachman's Rosh HaShanah in Uman. At the bottom you can find the name of travel agents around the world who can make all necessary arrangements (travel, lodging, Shul, food, etc.) for going to Uman. Many people booked flights much earlier than usual, perhaps due to the larger amounts of people going each year. The flights are filling up fast, and prices will probably go higher, so make arrangements early.

14 Sivan - 2 Great Links

A Simple Jew: Engraving Emunah

Segula from Reb Chaim of Volozhin

Today, 14 Sivan, is the yartzeit of Reb Chaim of Volozhin ZY"A, talmid muvhak of the Vilna Gaon ZY"A. Every day I try to learn a little from the seforim of the tzadikim whose yartzeit it is. This morning I was learning Reb Chaim's famous sefer Nefesh HaChaim and learnt this famous piece from him. It can be found in Shaar 3, Chapter 12.


Reb Chaim of Volozhin says it is an "Inyan Gadol V'Segula Niflah" to erase and cancel "harsh judgements" if one implants in his heart that Hashem is the True G-d andאֵין עוֹד מִלְּבַדּוֹ (Devarim 4:35) – there is no power except for Hashem. If one does this, Hashem may help him through "natural" means are supernatural means, as the Gemara (Taanis 25a) says that Rebbi Chanina ben Dosa wife didn't have oil to light the Shabbos candles, but had vinegar, which miraculously stayed lit, to which he said: "the One who tells the oil also told the vinegar to burn".


There is a well known story of the Brisker Rov, a descendant of Reb Chaim Volozhiner, who concentrated on the words "Ein Od Milvado" and was able to escape the Nazis y's in this manner. Only when he lost his concentration was he noticed by the Nazis. As soon as he regained his concentration, he turned "invisible" again.


I was actually thinking of this a few weeks ago in connection with the article I wrote on the Degel Machane Ephraim. There it is mentioned the concept of imagining that when serving Hashem, it should be as if there is no one else but you and Hashem. I understand this as being the same as what the Nefesh HaChaim is saying. Nobody else in the Degel can mean absolutely nothing else – no other person, power or anything else - only Hashem. Also mentioned was the concept of Hashem being "One", which is the letter "Aleph" and also stands for "Alufo Shel Olam". There is a fascinating connection here. The letter "Aleph" spelled out in Hebrew is אלף, which has a numerical value of 111. The first letters of א׳ֵין ע׳וֹד מִ׳לְּבַדּו also equal 111.


There is much more to write but time doesn't allow for it now. No sefer needs by recommendation, but I have gained much from the little that I have learnt in Nefesh HaChaim and Degel Machane Ephraim and would encourage everyone to learn these Seforim HaKedoshim.


May the merit of

Reb Chaim ben Reb Yitzchok

protect us and all of Klal Yisroel.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Baal Shem Tov Foundation

Shavuos is the yartzeit of the Baal Shem Tov. A lot of Torah, stories and more from the Baal Shem Tov, in English, are available at the Baal Shem Tov Foundation website, BaalShemTov.com.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Segulas for Good Children

This Tuesday is Yom Kippur Koton, Erev Rosh Chodesh Sivan. See here for information on the tefila brought in Sefer Shlah and other segulas for good children.