Friday, August 25, 2006

Yetzer Hara Trick # 72

So at the beginning of shemonei esrei or bentching we go into it with a lot of kavanna - right ?

"Gosh at that pace - I'll never finish! I'll be here all year !"

So then you speed it up a little ....

"Wow, davening / bentching is just flying by ..... Wait! We're up to that part already ?!?!?!"

"If I slow down now I'll be such a hypocrite - slowing down just to show that I don't bentch / daven too fast ... I'll just finish up at this pace - but next time, next time - I'll really have kavanna !"

( go to top of post ....... )

'till next time,

R' Druyan

Friday, August 11, 2006

You Be Good Now, Ya' Hear ?!?!?

We say it in Shema every day. 'If you will surely listen and hearken to Hashem's Mitzvos .....'. We won't even touch the concept of reward and punishment. Yet. However, why must Hashem refer to listening to the mitzvos with a repetitive, doubled phrase ?

Because sometimes we hear but don't listen, or even worse - listen but don't hearken ( to hear and take as a call-to-action ).

In trying to sift through our daily lives and trying to hear the call to do Hashem's work - we should listen for it. And if we don't hear it - we should listen again.

Just like a servant will not just listen to his master when he is commanded to do something, he will also wait, listening for any new commands the master might have.

We should also be constantly 'listening' - waiting to discern more opportunities for serving Hashem.

Be'Hatzlacha !
R' Druyan

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Just a little bit of Yiraah

So Moshe tells us - "And now - what does Hashem your G-d ask of you ? Just that you should be in awe of Him ....." [Devarim 10:12]
The Talmud already asks [Brachos 33b, Megilla 25a] "Why 'Just' - is Yiraas Hashem such a small thing ?'
The answers range from yes to no to maybe ( See the Gemara / Ramban / Kli Yakar / Or HaChaim Hakadosh ad loc. ) but one approach which we can effectively use to keep our own spiritual 'charge' is put forth by the Or HaChaim Hakadosh.

You can have a 'little bit' of Yiraah.

There are some things that can't be done by halves. You can't be a little bit shomer shabbos ( I avoid 26 of the melachos ! ) and you can't be a little bit pregnant ( uhh - yeah ). You can, however, have a little bit of Yiraah. Not all-out fear and awe at Hashem's magnificence. Not an overpowering trembling because of His awesomeness. But a bit. Yes, we feel that Hashem is there and that is a reason for increased observance / seriousness / trepidation. Not a lot - but an actual perceptible 'little bit'. And that's good.

So, even if we see ourselves as never reaching the great levels of the Tzaddikim who would be overcome with Yiraas Hashem they would shake and tremble for hours, we can still achieve our own 'little bit'.

Hatzlacha !