Oct 31, 2015

Volunteer or Patient

Someone in a shiur quoted a hospital volunteer as saying that in heaven it is decreed how much time we will spend in hospitals.  Either we can be in hospitals as a patient or as a visitor.

This is like what it says (Gemara Bava Basra 10):  Rabbi Yehudah b'Rabbi Shalom says, Hashem's judgment on Rosh Hashanah decides losses as well as gains.

The story is told of Raban Yochanan ben Zakai, who dreamt one Motza'ei Rosh Hashanah that his nephews would lose seven hundred Zuz during the coming year. Throughout the year, he persuaded them to keep giving tzedaka (so as to fulfill the dream in the finest possible way). When, on the following Erev Yom-Kipur, they were still seventeen Zuzim short - the king's tax men came and claimed from them seventeen Zuz.

When Raban Yochanan ben Zakai reassured them that they were not destined to lose any more, and told them about his dream, they asked him why he did not inform them about the dream earlier, in which case they would have given all the money of their own free will. He told them he wanted them to give the money purely for the sake of the Mitzvah, and not for the least ulterior motive.

So we see this idea that we have a destiny that will be fulfilled in some form or another and we have a choice of how it will be done.  See this post here for other examples.

Oct 30, 2015

Prioritize Preemptive Prayer

The other day I heard about a woman who tripped where construction was being done and sustained a fracture where her arm meets the shoulder.  Her life changed in an instant with doctors, surgery, pain, rehabilitation, incapacity, etc. Her story is not unique; it happens all the time.

It just made me think that just as we say yeshuas Hashem k'heref ayin, that the salvation of Hashem is like the blinking of an eye, i.e. it can happen so fast, so too with negative occurrences.  They too are from Hashem and can happen in the blinking of an eye. 

A negative thought? Sobering, yes.  We have to keep praying and preemptive prayer is best.

Oct 29, 2015

Indulging in Food

The owner of an upscale kosher supermarket in Brooklyn is quoted as explaining the explosion of kosher food as follows, "There are very few places we Yidden can indulge, and food is one of them."

He goes on to say, "Food is like music.  It builds memories.  Food can take us from where we are to where we want to be.  That's how powerful food is."

Now that latter thought is true and intriguing, but what does indulging have to do with it?

The dictionary says that to indulge is to yield to an inclination or desire.  Is that what Halacha and Sifrei Mussar tell us is allowed or something to eradicate?

Oct 28, 2015

A Tzadekes in Our Time

This article here was published in 2002 about Mrs. Henny Machlis a'h and this one here in 2009.  I read them back then, and was amazed.

To my dismay, I read of her tragic passing at the young age of 58 on October 16 - 3 Cheshvan, after a horrible illness here.

I'm seeing new articles about her, here and there.  They tell about her remarkable outlook on life, how she truly believed and did not merely say that Hashem is in charge, how she loved children so that nine out of her fourteen children were born via C-section, how she excelled bein adam la'Makom and bein adam la'chaveiro.  And she was born in Brooklyn, to kind parents to be sure, but it wasn't like she came from an exotic locale, born to a kabbalist, and raised in unusual circumstances.  That's what make her accomplishments that much more incredible as well as doable. 

Oct 27, 2015

Real Mesirus Nefesh

In case you've heard that we can learn mesirus nefesh from the Arabs, a speaker I heard today said, no!


Because mesirus nefesh is selfless, it transcends reason.  What Arab terrorists do is to gain Paradise.  This is what they are promised and this is what motivates them.

No comparison.

Oct 14, 2015

'We'll Treat Terrorists First if They're More Severely Wounded'

From Israel National News:
Magen David Adom (MDA) volunteers have been busy in recent days providing immediate treatment to the victims of Arab terror, but according to MDA general director Eli Bein, the organization may put the attackers before their victims.
Speaking to the haredi radio station Kol Barama, Bein answered a question that has been posed constantly on social media, asking whether MDA medics would first treat an Arab terrorist who is shot while conducting an attack before treating his or her Jewish victims.
"I don't have instruction like that about who to treat first, the moment you see a wounded person you treat them, we don't check who the victims are," said Bein.
"Unfortunately the terrorists are doing awful things to innocent people. At the same time, I don't have the privilege to come and sort out the wounded - the rule of Magen David Adom is to treat the most seriously wounded person who is in life threatening danger."
No comment necessary.
See here