Posts Tagged ‘Spiritual Growth’


Shavuot: Awe vs. Love of God: Part Six

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays

Transcribed by Daniel Goldman from a shiur delivered on 18 May 1999: There’s more.  This is such a subtle point, and it’s so important.  For Orthodox Jews, it is so basic.  This is where the Kotsker Rebbe went insane.  The Kotsker said, “Oy, I work so hard…what, you’re working so hard?  Then you’re not working!  Because you’re taking the credit for yourself!  You’re in the way of yourself!  What happens eventually if you live like that?  You go mad!  Or, “Ah…that’s a great davening!  That’s a great davening?  It was self-serving!  Aha!  You see?  You’re a fake, you’re a phony!  You’re a nothing!”  What happens?  You go insane!

Frum people…I shouldn’t say frum people…it’s everybody.  But if you’re steeped in Torah, then you’re driven to it more.  There’s this sense that you just can’t get there.  Why do we create these superheroes like Rav Moshe Feinstein and Reb Yaakov (Kaminetsky)?  They were human beings.  Because if we turn them into superheroes, we can say, “Oh, so I’m not Reb Moshe!  No problem.”  “Am I in Awe of God?  Yes! God is magnificent.  God is stupendous!”  That’s not Awe, because there is joy in feeling Awe.  Awe doesn’t mean that I will never do a sin because I’m terrified of being zapped.  Awe means that no matter what I’m striving for I just can’t do it.  That is the basic struggle that goes back to Creation.

Question: Is it trying to do better, but just always failing?

RSW: You fail because you’re a human being.  It is to taste that exquisite moment of “I can’t do it” because I am a human being.  When you say, “I need you,” is the transition from Awe to Love.

Question: But what about the Kotsker? What’s the difference?

RSW:  The Kotsker looked for it inside of himself.  He was saying, “I need to do this.”   That wasn’t the right step.  The correct step is, “I can’t do it – you have do it for me.”  We experience this every year in the Ne’ilah service on Yom Kippur.  “Here I am,” you say, “my whole life is on the line.  I am having a little trouble believing that this a real Teshuva.  God, you have to help me out.  The gates of repentance are closing.  I’m desperate.  I’m desperate!”

Question: But you can’t hold on to it!

RSW: It doesn’t matter.  That moment is the seed of something so real and so powerful.  It will help you grow and it will guide you in the right direction.

But there’s a danger.  If you say, “I failed.  I’m a human being.  What do you expect?” – that’s surrender.  There are two people who really struggled with this  There’s a famous book written about them…

“And God the Lord said, it is not good for man to be alone.  I will make him a helpmate against him.” (Genesis 2:18)  Isn’t that what we’re speaking about?  The helpmate is coming against our limitations.  Experiencing that barrier is what will help me go forward.

“So God formed from the earth all the beasts from the field all the birds from the heavens.  And He brought them to the man to see what man would call them.” Did God bring the animals to Man to name them?  Or, to see what man would name them?  Strange thing isn’t it?  We don’t have time to talk about it now.  It is a whole class in itself.  Probably a series.

“And then whatever man called it was its name.” The Midrash says, even God.  God said, “What do you call me?”  Adam replied, “Oh, I’ll call you God.”  “I like that name!”  This is also a series of lectures.

Why wasn’t it good for man to be alone?  Rashi answers with the Midrash Rabbah: So that they should not say that there are two powers.  The Holy One Blessed be He is unique in the upper worlds and has no partner.  And this man is unique in the lower worlds and also has no partner.  God is in the Heavens and man is the master of the earth.

Question: Who’s they?

RSW: Ah! Great question! Who’s they?

Question: The animals?

RSW: They weren’t there yet.  God created the animals so that man wouldn’t be alone.  It’s not good for man to be alone. I will make a helpmate against him.  There are actually two stages.  (“First, I will make him to be not alone; I will create the animals.  Then, I will create the woman.”) The woman wasn’t created so that man wouldn’t be alone.  This is crucial!  She is a helpmate against him.  (Genesis is beyond anything you can imagine.  In fact, maybe we should do that next year.  Then you’ll kill me because we’ll spend the whole year on the first day!  You know what?  We’ll start backwards.  Actually Ramchal did that on his commentary on the Zohar.  The Torah, too.  But after a couple hundred pages on the last verse….)

What’s going on here?  Why isn’t it good for man to be alone?  The idea of man being a power is a concern.  The snake says to man (3:5), “The Lord knows that on the day you eat of this tree, your eyes will be opened and you will be just as an Elohim, aware of good and evil.” What’s the struggle here? God does not want man to be like Elohim, but the snake wants man to be like Elohim.

Then, after the sin (3:22), “Now man is like one of us who knows good and evil.  And now, lest he send forth his hand and eat from the Tree of Life, then he will eat and live forever!” What’s the issue?  He’s going to be just like God!  So the snake was telling the truth!  God did not want man to be God, to be a power!  So the snake said, “Aha! He doesn’t want you to be God, but I’m telling you how to do it!”  Then man eats from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, and God says, “O my Gosh!  This is going to ruin everything!  Forget it! Get out!  I’m never going to let you back!”

Question:  Why can’t man be a power?

RSW: You can’t because you’re a created being.  If  you don’t understand that you could never be like God, you can’t have a relationship.  Who’s the one who sins first?  The woman.  Why is the woman there?  So that Adam shouldn’t think he is a power, a master of the world.  So what does the snake say?  “Listen, you’re a threat to him.  Until you came…so what, there were animals…but he still doesn’t have a partner.  But now that he’s got a partner, he ain’t God.  Listen, you ruined the whole thing.”  That’s why it has to happen through the woman.  Why does the woman give him of the fruit to eat?  Because she reasons that now she is going to die.  But if she is going to die, she is aware of her limitations.  She reasons that he’ll marry someone else.  Can I ask a really stupid question? – Who?  All of a sudden she’s worried that he will marry someone else? The whole struggle is about who’s in charge.

By the way, the moment the woman was created there had to be a sin.  Because if I am the only one, I’m me.  But the minute there are two of us, then I am automatically limited because I am not you.  That is the first taste of death, limitation.  That is why if you eat of the tree, you die.  (Similarly by the moon.  If you want an identity, you have to make yourself smaller.)  Once the woman was there, it had to happen.  And that’s why the snake spoke to the woman.

Question: Did the snake really believe they would be God?

RSW: The snake’s right!  You think you have power?

Question: You think you have power!

RSW: You do!

Question: Not the power God does!

RSW: Let me tell you something.  I know not you.  But if a person believed he didn’t have any power, would he ever sin?  Sometimes you need to sin.  That’s why the first of the Ten Statements is “I am the Lord you God who took you out of Egypt…” You should know that there is a God.  The second statement is “You should not have any other power.”  Rambam says it means that you shouldn’t even think that there is any other power than God.  And if the thought occurs to you that there is another God, you cease to exist, because God is existence.

Question: What I hear God saying is a sort of infantile omnipotence.  “You can be God. There is a temptation to believe you’re everything.  There’s no boundaries to man.”

RSW: No…No!  Not at all!  God is saying, “I am serious.  I’m not one of those guys pictured in the storybooks.  I want you to have a real relationship with Me.  You can’t have a real relationship unless you know what it’s like.  That’s all I want.”  It’s not infantile.

And by the way, what is the Oral Law?  It is tremendous power.  Kabbalistically speaking, the Oral Law corresponds to which parts of our bodies? – Netzach and Hod, which are our two feet.  Where do we find feet in the Garden?  What did the snake lose?  His feet.  He has no more independence.  Before the sin, he drew his sustenance from God.  Now, after losing his feet, the snake must eat the dust of the earth.  The dust is our sins.  That’s why he hates us.  “The only way I can exist is to destroy you.  I was never interested in your well-being.”  That’s why the snake eats dust; He no longer lives off G-d.  He lives off of you.  (Not you, people who sin.)

Goodness, or Tov, only comes by acknowledging that you can’t be alone.  The Torah says, Lo Tov, “It is not good for man to be alone.” You must understand how limited you are.  That’s why the Gemara says, tov means woman, tov means death, tov means Yetzer Hara, the Evil Inclination.  Because  the minute the woman appeared, death came into the world, which is limitation.  The Evil Inclination fights against that limitation.  But that’s the only way a partner is going to get you where you need to go.  Only when you acknowledge what you can’t be, and have Awe, that you can begin the relationship properly.

Question: But don’t we begin our human relationships with Love?

RSW: We live in a world in which Love comes first.  That means that we have to learn from our human relationships how to relate to God.  You have to see that person as they are and develop the relationship from there.  Suppose you take two people who are entirely different.  You would expect them to be antagonistic to each other, but they find a way to bridge the gap.  Shavuot is the time to experience this.  We spend an entire night learning.  Searching for something.  It’s not just sitting and learning in a class.  It’s a night of work.  Working to discover something.  At the moment you realize that you can’t, that’s when you daven in the morning and express your love for God.

You have the opportunity to search and to feel the frustration.  The most practical thing to do on Shavuot is to work.  It is not going to classes.  It’s taking a text and working at it.  Not just reading the Hebrew, but thinking about it, conceptualizing it, applying it, using it, sinking your fingers into it, and sweating over it.  Then, to have that feeling.  We all have that moment.  That feeling that no matter how much you learn and learn and learn, there are levels and levels that are beyond you.  At that moment, when you realize that you can’t do it that’s the moment you can turn to God and develop a relationship.

On Shavuot, it’s not a night just to be interested.  It’s a night to do battle.  The biggest battle is not to stay up all night.  Because if you really work, staying up is not the issue.  The biggest thing you will have to deal with is the Yetzer Hara, the Evil Inclination, because if you conquer that you will be getting it right where it hurts – Right between the legs.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


Lessons of the Succah or Why I’m Not A Tzaddik

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Spiritual Growth

I slept in the Succah with my grandfather zt”l and was determined to stay up and learn as long as he was awake. After all, how could I possibly become like him if I didn’t study as assiduously?

It actually wasn’t that difficult because I was reading a set of books about the Chofetz Chaim. I was enthralled and when I eventually fell asleep I dreamt of growing up to be the next Chofetz Chaim. I woke up determined to never again speak a word of Lishon Harah – destructive speech. I calmly reported my new mission in life to my father at the festival meal, and he was supportive of the general idea, although he suggested that perhaps I begin with smaller steps. “But then I won’t be the Chofetz Chaim. He started with giant steps!”

“First of all, I’m not sure that is true. Second of all, why do you want to be a Tzaddik like someone else? Be a Tzaddik as you.” OK, he was right, but still, I wanted to tackle the Lishon Harah issue. My sister carefully listened to the conversation and calmly predicted that my life as a Tzaddik would not last the day!

She did whatever she could to provoke me. I refused to respond. “Hey! Maybe this Tzaddik thing is not as hard as they say.” So, although she continues to deny her evil deeds more than forty years later, she kicked me. I cried. Our older sister, a true Tzaddeiket, came running asking, “What happened?” “She kicked me!”

There went my Tzaddik plans. “You spoke Lishon Harah!” she said as she calmly walked away. Not even a day, and there were holes in my armor.

Why am I not a Tzaddik? It’s my sister’s fault.

I believed as a child, as do many people, even adults, that a Tzaddik had to be perfect. But it’s not true. Simply look up at the roof of your Succah and you will see holes throughout the S’chach. The Succah is an imperfect structure and yet it is holy. Even holy people have gaps in their spiritual armor, and they are still holy.

So, why am I not a Tzaddik? Because I continue to struggle to accept the gaps in the S’chach and the giant holes in my armor. Hopefully, this year, the Succah will finally get its message through my head.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


A Bed of Doorknobs

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Reflections & Observations, Spiritual Growth

People we don’t really know offered their home on the ocean to Debbie and me for some quiet time. It’s beautiful, spacious, full of personality, and, wow! What a view! (there may be no angels in LA, but there sure are some wonderful people!)

I forgot about the traffic in this area, so was shocked when the GPS predicted that the hundred mile drive would take four hours. We were exhausted when we arrived, but, even so, hesitated before entering the beautiful home:

We passed the garbage bins on our way from the driveway to the front door. These people are so clean that even their garbage bins take showers! The bin stands underneath a shower, and even has bottles of shampoo and conditioner. “Debbie, I don’t want to stay in the home of people who are so clean that even their garbage bins shower! What if we drop a crumb!”

Debbie foolishly believes that they simply placed the large bin underneath the shower they use when they return from the beach. Come on! Does she really believe that people who bathe their garbage bins would even go to the beach and get sand on their feet?

I don’t argue with Debbie, at least not in public, so I sterilized my clothes and skin and entered the house. (I still think I was right about the shower; the home is spotless.)

We had a wonderful and relaxing evening and eventually went to sleep. I woke up in middle of the night and when I placed my hand on the bed frame to lift myself I felt a doorknob in my hand. Accustomed to my usual middle of the night disorientation, I assumed that I was opening a door in my dream, but I wasn’t dreaming. There was a doorknob on the bed. When I went upstairs I noticed doorknobs on the wall.

These are unusual people: they invite strangers to use their home. They placed a bottle of wine, corkscrew and two lovely wineglasses on the table for us. They bathe their garbage bins. They have doorknobs on beds and walls. What kind of people are they?

I’m sitting on the beach, listening to the waves, learning some Yom Kippur texts, and it all comes together: One of the major themes of Yom Kippur is our pleading with God to open “The Gates of Prayer,” “The Gates of Compassion,” “The Gates of Forgiveness,” and “The Gates of Purity,” culminating in our desperate Neilah prayers as the Gates are closing. The many mentions of gates got me thinking about, you guessed it; doorknobs!

Some of us approach Yom Kippur furiously attempting to take advantage of the open gates. Other people, such as our incredible hosts, approach Yom Kippur as “Gate Openers,” people who see every one of life’s opportunities as a gate to be opened. They walk around with door knobs, so to speak, determined to find a way to open every doorway to growth.

Some people have a home on the beach. our hosts have a home to share. Some people wait for God to open gates for them. Our hosts keep a steady supply of doorknobs handy, prepared to constantly find new opportunities for growth.

Even “Gate Openers,” come in different forms. Some are focused on the challenge of opening the gates. Others, are focused on what lies beyond the open door. They want to open the gates for what they will discover beyond. They don’t only maintain a steady supply of door knobs, they prepare themselves for the beyond, in a state of cleanliness and purity; even their garbage bins shower.

Yom Kippur is the culmination of an entire year for people who live as “Gate Openers” all year. Their Yom Kippur is a promise of a year filled with one gate of opportunity after another. Their Yom Kippur is their chance to spring ahead, unconcerned when others are worried about the gates closing. They can just grab a door knob off the bed or wall, (spotlessly clear doorknobs, of course,) and open those gates even as they officially close. No wonder all I could do in this home was learn, think and pray. There was a sense of endless possibilities.

So, my dear hosts, thanks for your hospitality, and even more so for the Yom Kippur lesson. I hope we left your home as clean as you left it for us.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


Comfortable Speaking With God: Na’aman IV

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Spiritual Growth

So Naaman brought to the king of Israel, the letter which said, ‘and now when this letter comes to you, behold I have sent my servant Naaman to you that you shall heal him from his tzoraas.’ Isn’t there something missing from that letter?

The prophet.

What happened to the prophet? But the king is obviously, intentionally, avoiding any mention of the prophet. This is between king and king. And what message is he sending to Yehoram, to the king of Israel, you are responsible. You handle it any way you want, but you are responsible. Now let’s figure it out over here. Why wouldn’t he mention the prophet?

Why wouldn’t he?

Well what does the king of Aram expect Yehoram to do?

To find the best solution.

Which would obviously be what?

The prophet.

The prophet. But remember someone had a question before about this idea of the prophet. What’s the only way they know about this prophet?

Through the girl.

So he is not going to write a letter to another king based on what a little girl said. So he is saying, you know what, if the king of Israel really has this prophet, I would imagine that the king of Israel is using this prophet. That logical isn’t it, if the king of Israel has someone with so much power, he has got to be crazy not to be using this person with power. So let him take care of it, and if this prophet really exists he’ll take care of it, and if he doesn’t exist I’ll have an excuse to smash him in battle. So the king reads the letter and when Yehoram, the king of Israel, read the letter what does he do? He doesn’t say oh no, call Elisha we have an emergency, where is the hotline to G-d. we need him. What does he do? He tears his clothes and he says am I G-d that I can go and give life, that this person sends to me to heal a man of his tzoraas. Go now and see he is seeking a pretext against me. He wants war.

So a little girl knows about the prophet and it doesn’t even occur to the king to think about the prophet. Woah. It doesn’t even occur to him, and he is so angry what does he do? He tears his clothes. Now you picture yourself, you are the chief of staff of the army of Aram, you come into the king of Israel, you hand him a letter, you know about the prophet, the king opens the letter, reads it and tears his clothes, he is freaking out. What do you think about this man? If he is so angry that he is tearing his clothes, what do you think about this man?

That he is not going to be a very good enemy, he’ll be too ??

This guy is nuts. He’s wacko. A little girl thinks about the prophet and the king doesn’t? woah man, what is going on. No wonder this guy is losing all his battles, he cant think straight. And why doesn’t the king think about it? Why would he hesitate to think about the Navi? Because what is the price of his calling Elisha on the hotline?

He had to listen to Elisha about everything.

You mean if Elisha comes through for him here then he is going to have to start listening to Elisha. Does he want to start listening to Elisha?


But of course none of us ever do that. Right? We never play this game with G-d. Do we?

No. never.

Ok. Good. So as long as we agree on that too then we are fine. But I suspect that some of us do. That when we need help from G-d and only G-d can come through for us or we are overwhelmed so we feel we need a super power, so, we call G-d. but sometimes we hesitate because we feel inadequate or sometimes we hesitate because we say, well, I’m not as good as I should be, I don’t daven as much as I should, I don’t learn as much as I should. I’m not as careful as I should be. And so there are times when we are hesitant in davening before G-d because we feel almost as if we are undeserving.

So here is king he is self-destruct. I mean he is ripping his clothes, what better indication of self destruct do you need that that? Because this is a king who has created a situation for himself, his only solution is the navi, everyone knows about the navi. And his only solution is the navi, but he has created a situation in which he is convinced that he can’t access the navi. And we believe this. So Rabbeinu Menachem Hameiri in his commentary to the gemarah says that one of the biggest issues we have in davening is that we feel inadequate. First of all I’m going to bother G-d about my needs and G-d has to take care of the world. He said the bigger issue of inadequacy is we’re embarrassed. How can I come to G-d now and ask G-d for help when I haven’t been doing everything the way I should be doing it. Or I haven’t been doing it as well as I should be doing it. The Meiri says that’s the biggest mistake a human being can make. G-d is G-d, there is no pestering, there is no issue that is too insignificant for G-d, G-d cares about everything and everyone. And there is no such thing as having reached the stage at which G-d says you have no right to daven. And somebody who reaches a stage, or they have created an environment around themselves in which they feel uncomfortable speaking to G-d because of the weakness in their relationship with Hashem is self-destructing in the same way that Yehoram was self-destructing when he was tearing his clothes. And the Navi knows this.

Author Info:
Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone™ is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


Pythagoras, Cholent, and Tznius (Modesty)

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Spiritual Growth

Pythagorus had a lot of influence for a man who probably never existed. The Pythagoreans invented their founder, including the manner of his death. Pyhthagoras had a strong revulsion to beans. He would definitely never have eaten Shabbat afternoon Cholent, and not because of its natural effects on the stomach, but because beans are not Tznius – not appropriate for a modest person: (Please do not read on if you are sensitive.) Bean may have been an Egyptian slang word for testicle. The Christian Bishop Hippolytus, in his Refutation of All Heresies (especially wrote that if beans are chewed and then left in the sun, they emit the smell of semen. Very not Tznius! There’s more! If one takes the bean in flower and buries it in the earth and, in a few days, digs it up: “It will have the appearance of something immodest.”

It seems that Pythagoras was very strict about Tznius: When running from the Syracusans during the war with Arigentum, he escaped because his followers formed a bridge over a fire with their bodies, only to be caught because he would not escape through a field of beans: not tznius! That’s commitment.

Even the great philosophers, if they truly existed, had their foibles.

Lately, I have been wondering if the manner in which we teach Tznius has become one of the foibles of certain religious communities.

I repeat: “The manner in which we teach the laws of Tznius.” I do not mean the laws of personal dignity.

If a teacher publicly humiliates a young girl for wearing a school uniform that is too tight; is she not stuck at Pythagoras’ field of beans? Is it Tznius – modesty to most – dignity to me – to humiliate someone? Did the “laws” of Tznius not just override the biblical commandments to love others, to rebuke in an effective manner, to not embarrass someone, to copy the ways of God in personal attributes, to avoid arrogance and numerous others? Is that public rebuke not a tergiversation (I wanted to use a word I learned today – not too modest, but hopefully dignified,) of all the lessons of Jewish law and thought?

I open this “blog” to you: How do you suggest we teach the concept of Tznius and its laws?

Please allow me one more reflection on this topic: I met a non-observant man this week who commented that he never understood the concept of Kedusha – Holiness – until he met a group of Satmar women. He used to laugh at their hats and dress. After one conversation he understood the concept of Holiness at least he sensed it. These were women who were untouchable simply by virtue of who they are as human beings. I can picture Reb Yoelish zt”l smiling with great pride.

Author Info:

Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


This Week On The Foundation Stone

by admin in Music of Halacha, Prayer, Relationships, Spiritual Growth

This Week On The Foundation Stone:

Haftarah: Chukat – Balk: Variations on a Theme

Table Talk: Chukat

Parah Adumah – Links to Essays and Podcasts

Table Talk: Balak

The Torah Connection: Rabbi Yaakov Shlomo Weinberg

Life Lessons: The Heileger Chana Chaya: Chukat: Are You Missing The Miracles? and Do It Anyway

The Music of Halacha: Telling it Like It Is – An Introduction to the Laws of Rebuke

Bentzion of Medziboz’s Stories of the Baal Shem Tov: The Well of the Baal Shem Tov

Keter Shem Tov: Chapter 145

Forms of Prayer: Using the Siddur As A Workbook

Author Info:

Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


This Week on The Foundation Stone

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Music of Halacha, Spiritual Growth

We are happy to update the weekly essays on The Foundation Stone:

Life Lessons: Do Miracles Matter by the Heileger Chana Chaya: Healer, Life Coach, Story Teller and Teacher.

Haftarah: Beha’alotecha: Walkers

Table Talk: Beha’alotecha

The Music of Halacha: Shabbat 27: Speech

Haftarah: Shelach: A Partnership With God

Table Talk: Shelach

Author Info:

Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


Da’at Tevunot Class: Wednesday 8:30PM NY Time

by admin in Spiritual Growth

Call (218)486-1616 – Enter ID 375711


This Week on The Foundation Stone

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Music of Halacha, Spiritual Growth

We have posted the essays for this week:

Haftarah – Nasso: Identity

Table Talk – Nasso: Impressions

The Music of Halcha – Shabbat 26: Fire

The Voice of The Torah: Rabbi Chaim Goldberger

The Torah Connection: Rabbi Yaakov Shlomo Weinberg

Words Can Heal: Rabbi Irwin Katsof: Your Kids May Be Armed and Dangerous

Stories of the Baal Shem Tov: Bentzion of Medziboz: Nasso

Keter Shem Tov: Bentzion of Medziboz: Chapter 140

For Our Members in Israel we have posted:

Haftarah: Beha’alotecha: Walkers

They can also review the Haftarah for Shabbat Chanukah:

Table Talk: Beha’alotecha: The Challenge of Change & The Vocabulary of Evil

Author Info:

Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.


Adon Olam

by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Prayer, Spiritual Growth

Master of the Universe

The Midrash describes an interesting question and answer between a student and his rabbi on the topic of prayer: “Why are so many prayers unsuccessful?” asked the student. The rabbi answered; “Because people do not know to Whom they pray.”

It makes sense to say that we must know to Whom we pray in order for our prayer to succeed. Who is God? What is God? Isn’t God unknowable?

Adon Olam is a review of basic ideas about God, principles that are necessary to keep in mind when we pray.

Abraham was the first to describe God as Master of the Universe. He was the first to understand that God’s rule was not limited to the mysterious heavens, unreachable for those on earth. Abraham understood that when we acknowledge God we actually coronate Him as King of this world. We play a significant role in establishing God’s rule, here, on earth. It is those who develop a real relationship with God who bring His Presence to this world.

Abraham introduced the idea of a reciprocal relationship with the Creator. The phrase “Adon Olam” reminds us of Abraham’s accomplishment. It reminds us that we must pray as one half of a two-way relationship.

The Name of God, YHVH, represents; “He was, He is and He will be.” God is eternal, beyond time. God is Being. God is existence. We desire to attach to true existence and being. Our prayers are an expression of that desire.

This prayer states that we exist as expressions of God’s Will. That will is expressed in love as God provided all the needs of human beings before creating them. He cares for us. Our prayers are effective because of that love and care.

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God “desires” that we exist.

We should never hesitate to ask God to help. Simply asking acknowledges that He has the power to respond, and that He listens!

God provided all the needs of a human being before creating the primal human.

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Learn & discover the Divine prophecies with Rabbi Simcha Weinberg from the holy Torah, Jewish Law, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Jewish Prophecies. The Foundation Stone is the ultimate resource for Jews, Judaism, Jewish Education, Jewish Spirituality & the holy Torah.