How Believing In Each Other Brings Unity…
GEULA GATHERING, TU BAV 5779
BY SHULI KLEINMAN
Based on teachings from Rabbi Asher Freund
Introduction - Simcha
Tonight we are gathered in prayer and song and dance for the geula. What I hope to share tonight is something to increase our simcha in singing and dancing from what may for some people be an untapped place in our hearts. We are taught that a heart brimming with genuine love for Hashem is simultaneously overflowing with sincere love for the fellow Jew who is a partner in the incessant struggle to discover the truth.
We came here to join together, in yearning for redemption. The unity of just coming together is one thing. What I hope to give you tonight is a gift that will continue to bring simcha and unity into our lives after tonite as well. How?
Most people walk around with something weighing on our hearts. We all know that Hashem is doing everything and loves us. Yet we have challenges.
What we may not know is the love Hashem invested in the soul of Adom is a love capable of absorbing concealed light from challenges.
And this is my gift to you tonight to provide a context for our lives whereby we are able to thank Hashem for our challenges by realizing we are totally enabled to be a channel across which He may draw from the darkness back to Him a light that we may then bring into the world as new through mitzvahs and chesed and prayer and Torah learning.
There is a way of digging into a place we may have not looked before to pursue relationship with Hashem with a passionate love that activates the soul He designs – the place we are empowered to find this concealed light to face and ask for Him to absorb back through our soul is our subconscious mind that operates naturally and often in a stormy way.
Would it bring us simcha if we could view our darker moments as opportunities to bring Infinite Light into the world by channeling it from a dark message to a mitzvah? This takes emunah. We are created with everything we need to form a love bond with Hashem as long as we are prepared to toil over it energetically and enthusiastically and make this love our highest priority. As we do it more and more and come to see that the darkness becomes light, emunah and bitachon grow, and simcha grows and Hashem rests on our hearts and comes into the world through our speech and deeds. Facing challenges brings optimism and empowerment!
The basis for tonight’s talk stems from the derech of emes that Rabbi Asher Freund emulated. Although not well known, Reb Asher was considered a second Baal shem tov. He was niftar in 2004. He taught about emunah and his chevra included the leaders of Slonim, Breslov and Lubavitch along with many others who were living for the sake of Hashem. His hisbodidus practices are embedded in Breslov, and this derech of emunah and emes are the outlines for comprehending the soul, the ego, and our unique mission individually as well as a nation.
Simcha in serving Hashem is proportionate to emunah and bitachon. With deep faith that Hashem is doing everything, we see how He has given us a subjective place from which we may actually find that objective truth and realize our place in serving Him.
Here we stand, awaiting Moshiach, Torah tells us that each one of us has a spark within us to emit to contribute to the redemption. As long as we have free will and the Beis hamikdosh is not here, it is up to us to continue Torah, avoda, chesed and mitzvahs, to build within us a beis hamikdosh for Hashem. Let us come tonight one step closer to those who joyously master the myriad mysteries and intricacies of our rich Torah legacy.
What if we were to find a gold mine of sparks to emit as light into the world? Would we want to emit them?
There is such a wellspring. It is in our subconscious, in our nature. It operates often without our permission.
Tonight, with simcha and emunah and trust in Hashem, we will find a way to draw those sparks back to Hashem and then sing and dance with confidence that we served Hashem, with increased simcha, that we understand how to be unified and one with Him and with each other, and that we will continue to do so with joy until the soul of Moshiach is revealed. And may we fulfill Isaiah 1:17 “learn to do good, seek justice, strengthen the victim, do justice for the orphan, take up the cause of the widow” and the mitzvahs of the Torah from a passionate love for Hashem above all else.
What we see in ourselves and others is that when we feel sad, we may quickly find ourselves feeling mad and stewing on survival ideas that seem smart but may bring in something damaging that is for ourselves or others, bad.
Sad, mad, bad.
it happens in a moment. We see it easily in toddlers. A cry and a retaliatory hit, in about ten seconds time total. Sad, mad, bad.
A full and complete nefesh is in an immature brain that is operating according to nature alone. It is up to the parents to bring more wisdom to the toddler.
When we see this in young children and we truly understand this is how Hashem has designed us, then it is no shame that we continue, even as adults, to have that initial natural reaction.
As adults, it generally goes like this…
What does this mean for me,
Who is to blame?
that inner heartfelt distress.
Spiritually let me explain the dynamics. What I am about to share I learned from a shiur by Rabbi Nir Menussi on Anatomy of the Soul. Please follow me here.
In our highest soul, there is total awareness and pleasure with simple faith that Hashem is doing everything. There are no doubts.
The soul experiences a light and has faith and pleasure. As the soul descends into our body, like a cylinder, pleasure becomes hidden as the motivation of our will. We will what we believe is going to bring us pleasure. The problem is the etz hadaas has confused our will and by the time we think something through, what is pleasurable to us has been distorted into a drive or an instinct or a sense of self-consciousness rather than the pure state of devekus. This is what Hashem desires – to take a soul and give it free will. He gives us emunah and the power of speech to pray to Him.
Expanding our awareness of Hashem and His Love means that we ask Hashem that the light that falls into our natural pleasure seeking be once again pure faith that nurtures our awareness of Hashem and His Torah, and that our pursuit of pleasure be based on that truer path to simcha.
What happens when we pursue a happiness based on interpretations and the power of imagination based on will tangled by the etz hadaas?
Addictions, anger, fear, sadness and more. The seething. Why?
Naturally our thinking is battered between feeling the void or lack of something and the emptiness of having our self-interests met – these are our desires and our natural sense of self. If we believe that this is our true self, that this is who we are, our survival instincts and more are kept busy in this seething place. Do we realize that every moment of seething we are NOT keeping the commandment of loving your fellow Jew, do not hate in the heart, and give the benefit of the doubt? When we are hurt, and we feel wronged, we don’t really think about these mitzvahs much. Yet, not doing a positive commandment is something for which an olah offering would be brought as an atonement. It is, in fact, an aveira. And we may not even realize we are committing it.
Compassion on the Shechina in exile in these experiences immediately brings us out of the battering and into a mitzvah of loving Hashem. Why? Compassion is Hashem’s attribute and we are emulating Him. That simple move, to recognize that the force in our pain is Hashem concealed, Elokim, is the purpose Hashem has created us.
He surrounds us with love, and He fills us with life force. He orchestrates our circumstance. He places a nefesh elokis that He designs exactly into this moment, to make a choice regarding what we cling to – our subjective natural image or Hashem.
He desires that we choose to be a bridge for the sparks to flow back to Him and into the world through a body that we bring from being dominated by the subconscious nature to being dominated by Torah and love and awareness of Hashem. When we recognize Him in all of this, we are experiencing awe – that we have a consciousness that despite it all can move a body to do Torah learning, pray, an act of chesed or mitzvahs despite how we feel and with the force we are noticing.
Please look at this cup of water.
It looks like one thing. But it is not. It is a cup. And it is water. I can take the water and pour it into a mug.
That is what we are here to do. This is what we can redeem from the subconscious and put into Torah learning, mitzvahs, chesed and prayer with empowerment and simcha when we are aware and clear that He is doing everything and He creates our soul and places it in a body where He is concealed so that we may choose to do this and that He may rest on our hearts.
That is subconscious basics. Everything is a vessel that is filled with a force, a soul.
Hashem utters the vessel into the world through speech and sustains it and He fills the vessel with a soul that He designs and breathes into it.
Each one of us has a playing field – our lives and circumstances – yet the mission is unified
I want to show the playing field – the unique places Hashem puts us. There is an 11 year old girl, Maayan, with a seizure disorder and Batten’s disease. She is blind, cannot walk or talk. She is on life support. Every moment for Maayan is about not choking on phlegm so that she can simply take a breath and stay alive and thereby be in this world and serve Hashem with love. She cannot do an aveira. She cannot do anything. Her entire challenge is to breathe. Just to take a breath. And it is often quite scary, with monitors going off, numbers dropping….real survival on a moment to moment basis. This is the playing field Hashem has placed Maayan, a precious emanation of Hashem, filled with and surrounded by His Light and Love. When Maayan in her challenge makes this effort to breathe because she loves Hashem and wishes to serve Him by being alive, Infinite Light comes into the world that fertilizes the spiritual atmosphere, creating positive influence. That is what each of us is here to do, from our playing fields and challenges.
We all are on a playing field. Each of us has a free will point, a place where we are struggling between feeling ourselves and clinging to Hashem with love and awe. In the pulls towards feeling ourselves, there can be many complicated layers.
Emunah, Hisbodidus, and Ratzo v’shov – the Derech Haemes
Every time we read the haftorah, we recite the blessings. The third blessing is “Have mercy on Zion, for it is the source of our life Bais Chayainu. In the one who is deeply humiliated bring salvation speedily,in our days. Blessed are You, Hashem, Who gladdens Zion through her children.” The footnote on have mercy on Zion is “this holiness of the temple on Mount Zion is the source of our spiritual life. Exiled and without it, we are humiliated. Without her children, Zion too is despondent.” We are instructed every time we read the Haftorah to have mercy on the holiness of the temple, the Spice of our life.
This is where we are told to toil, to have compassion on the holiness of the Source of our life, Hashem.
That is what we are instructed to do at the first sight of “sad.” This is important to guard our soul from the mad and bad that follow quickly and naturally in succession!
When we guard our soul, we run in hisbodidus to Hashem and tell Him exactly what our natural reactions are and that by ourself we would stray there but we do not want to. Out of love for Him and to guard our soul, we want to not naturally want...and describe completely and without shame the messages and inner false beliefs that we want to not want. In hisbodedus. And with a chabura for this type of vulnerable sharing. In this way, what is in the subconscious becomes more conscious and thereby within our ability to exercise free will regarding the force within the messages. (join whatsappgroup https://chat.whatsapp.com/BgDgxKCZi1xIppm0x4JqRE)
Knowing that He is the Source of Life, we are empowered to unify His Name by nullifying our subjectivity, the self-image. This process is called run and return, ratzo v’shov, or shifless and bitul. As the flow of mad and bad thoughts surface, lift them with faith, have compassion on the holiness of the Source of Life, Hashem. Through sorting out by recognizing Hashem is doing everything – meaning with truth in mind - the Infinite Light concealed in the vessel of our body is able to move from our subconscious into the world. We become independent of our nature when through our will, we pray and do mitzvahs out of a choice in what thoughts, speech and deeds that Infinite Light fills. We literally are able to serve Hashem uniquely. Recognizing that He, the Source of Life, is the Source for all of us and that each of us has the potential to become independent of our nature helps us love each other without it being based on anything else except sharing this mission of developing an identity independent of our nature providing a channel for Infinite Light to flow naturally through our choices into the world through Torah learning, chesed, prayer and mitzvahs.
It is our subconscious that stands between His activating the flow of Infinite Light into the natural world and the galus of Infinite Light trapped in our subjectivity. Yet, Hashem designs our subjectivity so that we truly find our way to Him. Our journey is beloved to Him. In the process of moving from self-conscious to consciousness of Hashem, our subconscious sad, mad, bad process becomes an amazing channel of awareness that connects with our heart and brings sincerity to our service. We literally polish the nerve center of our brain, that raw natural subconscious reactivity, into a channel that takes actions which reveal light.
What in the subconscious stands between His activating the flow of Infinite Light into the natural world we are praying for – Geula now – and the galus of Infinite Light trapped in our subjectivity? It is our defense mechanisms, our coping mechanisms, our intellectual bias towards feeling ourself interest, and our natural drives. This is the closed door that it is for us to open and find sparks, new light to return to Him. Our mind and heart can become the channel that withstands the natural pulls and instead brings in a light that reveals. . We choose this over every other priority, from love, no matter what.
Yet it is heads or tails – feeling ourselves or clinging in devekus to Him – ratzo vshav / run and return.
Meet our Akeidas Yitzchak.
Meet Mesiras Nefesh.
Meet Kiddush Hashem
at a core level,
a level in our heart
that circumcises our heart
in all three steps.
Again we are here tonight to pray, to sing and dance.
How would you like to sing and dance with a new light from something that right now is heavy within you, disguised by a false impression coming from the battering between lack and self-image?
Understand that with intention, we may bring the spark concealed and animating that battering from doing so into our prayers. Each one of us has the will and the soul designed by Hashem to want to make that choice. Naturally, we cannot do anything on our own. But with prayer, which is a natural means, we may tell Hashem that we want to not want how we naturally feel. He favors our yetzer tov in that moment making it possible, with that light from that very pain, for us to experience simcha when we express our faith in Him through song and dance, confident that Hashem does everything else. Emunah, recognition from love, confession, will, sincerity
Here is a share from a whatsapp group where we are sharing vulnerably with the goal of bringing to visibility expanded consciousness of Hashem and choosing it over self-consciousness, anxiety and pain
I was noticing yesterday - during a surge of fire/ moment of challenge - a general feeling of malaise. As I focused on that feeling in my body, it led me to a the familiar queasiness in my gut. An instinctive emotional response. It was interesting to be aware of this since I am generally not attuned to these nuances. With your help, Shuli, I was able to notice it objectively. With that consciousness, I was able to work with it B”H and was able to be cognizant that this feeling is actually an old pattern - going back who knows how long ? - and recognized it as my life force, the Shechina in exile /nefesh Elokis (using your steps described above of ratzo vshav) and returned back to give a bracha and to yishuv haDaas. In the moment I thought, “this is similar to a surge/contraction in labor. Here it is... I just have to ride the wave” (I’m a doula so I coach women through this) and coached myself through the queasiness till it subsided.
Instead of fighting it, it passes rather uneventfully BH- meaning like in the past, it had the potential to escalate into an emotional conflagration. Chas VShalom. The nefesh behamis was quieted - once identified as the game player.
Thank you to this group for opening up to this type of healing.
Ein Od Milvado Consciousness
Get comfortable, relax and open your hearts and minds.
We are going to get in touch with that Infinite light in our subconscious that perhaps we have never thought of redirecting into Torah, avoda, chesed and mitzvahs before.. Or never realized that we could…we are going to face our challenges by realizing we have the opportunity to recognize with love the Creator. Let us come closer to understanding more of the deeper gifts within the Torah regarding ein od milvado consciousness. It may look like it is going to feel like fiery coals, but with emunah and bitachon, we withstand bravely, knowing this is the power of illusion confusing our search for truth. We are aware of His love and that He is One and that Torah is true. Do not fear. Have awe. And then iy”H simcha and understanding of unity, as a place the Infinite Light into mitzvahs with confidence from emunah in the soul He designs.
Experience the lack/pain/fire (This is an encounter with Elokim. Hashem is doing everything. He only does good. I am receiving interpretations that belong to nature. My nefesh Elokis is pure and cannot be damaged. But that is not how it feels.)
Describe it Write down the message, hold it and then look at the force within it only. We will see that the presenting message is a false interpretation and is NOT the subconscious mechanism where the light is concealed.
Ratz / Run to H-Shem. Go to the place where we realize we are “nothing”, that Hashem is doing everything and we are mere emanations, helpless and without control, yet capable of serving Him to bring goodness into the world, independent of human nature.
Love Hashem. (Have compassion on the FORCE in the message.) Recognize we are having an encounter with Hashem and that He loves us and we return that love.
Zoom in on the force with concentration and compassion, looking at the force and not the message with the mind's eye. Face the challenge presenting from the subconscious (It is my will to go above natural will.)
Hear the pattern and thoughts. Describe each to Hashem with confession and teshuva as needed. What is in it? Feel it, describe it to Hashem, and tell Him we want to do mitzvahs with it instead of feeling the way we do..
Have compassion on the force trapped in each part of it. . By feeling and describing in hisbodidus in Hashem's presence, we purge the false message that we identify in it without actually thinking it. and the loving,concealed light is able to flow out of the vessel of the false message
Gather all the force and tell Hashem “I wish to return all this force to You, it fell and I want to invest it in Torah / Avoda / Chesed” A vessel without a life source dissolves
Ask for help The place where that false message occupied in our hearts is now emptied by Hashem and poised to receive back that same pure light redeemed for us to flow into a mitzvah. With love in our hearts, we move forward to do the mitzvah, confident in the soul Hashem designs to function
Make a bracha that the light should be a merit a healing, a refuah, a cancellation of gezeira, a satisfaction of din for the soul as it exists in ourselves, our families, klal yisrael and the world
Go do a mitzvah, read tehillim, learn Torah or a chesed
Trust that the force has been returned to its Source
Feel the inner shift, and Experience H-shem’s Light in the form of inner calm or more.
Receive insights that may now come to light.
Our thinking, when it bounces back and forth between darkness and emptiness, lack/loss and unfulfilled sense of value/ego/arrogance is literally inner chaos. We all know what our hearts feel like in these moments. Anxiety, fear, anger, shaking, crying, and more. We feel the chaos. Our intellect is very sensitive to our natural condition of feeling ourselves. What is the pattern that we are experiencing?
Just like when we drive, we know we will have to stop for red lights, go on green lights, stop at stop signs and more, the journey of life means that we will have challenges and experience patterns. Our intellect is born from our experiences in a natural world and those experiences are stored in our brain and our hearts. Remember that the thought or memory is the vessel and it is filled only by Elokim, Hashem’s compassion concealed. Facing our challenges means that we are seeking to absorb Infinite Light for mitzvahs and Torah, and that Hashem has designed our soul with the mission to do so even though for us it is a “black box.” Hashem will shift the light when we love Him, realize the place from which we are calling and our role, will it, and bring a mitzvah forward with intention to channel that light into the world. This is the overall plan Torah teaches us for handling our “red lights.” We are not the chaos or the natural painful messages…those are the red lights. We are our emunah and effort to re-channel the presenting Infinite Light concealed in the vessels of our red lights. We are a one body and soul combination…when we move away from feeling with self-interest and move towards realizing Hashem’s purpose in placing our soul in chaos, we have the emunah to serve as that channel and experience the unity within us and between us. Being “nothing” is better than something for this reason.
How do we sincerely move from subjectivity to the objective truth of Hashem’s love and His doing everything?
We love Him and we will to go above our natural will.
Please hear that the fundamental shift to adjust our experience of a challenge is
to love Hashem and will to go above our natural will (intentionally nullify our thinking and create an opening for something new to come in) realize we are put in chaos to pray and bring Infinite Light from the vessel of a thought or emotion and to do mitzvahs with intention of bringing that new light into the world
This is mesiras nefesh and is the quality imbued in each one of us standing here.
Look to your right and to your left. There stands a nefesh elokis designed by Hashem with the channel ready willing and able to draw the concealed light in our hearts into this world.
We will it and make room for it.
He does it.
Through our nefesh elokis, Infinite light in the darkness can come into this world as a new revealed light that changes this world, that repairs this world by revealing Hashem’s compassion.
Final review before we bring something new and full of potential to our prayers:
According to nature, we have a subjective experience and we have learned by experience that it is destructive or self-destructive, addictive, powerful, or blocking real simcha. We want to not want it. It feels cynical, or animalistic, and even if it temporarily gives us a moment of feeling happy with ourselves, we also know it is not simcha as Hashem desires for us to have simcha. The simcha He desires for us is the simcha of feeling one with His compassionate Presence, not separate. He wants us to be independent of nature so that we may perform His Will within nature.
The piece of Torah that will give us the faith and trust that something new and simchadik and emesdik can come into our hearts is - Believe that everyone in the room is built with a design to do this, even if we don’t understand. Believing in Hashem and in His design of our soul IS the piece of Torah that helps us love each other based on that reason alone and without any other condition. This is unity.
Trust that we have challenges because Infinite Light is simply more than our intellect can hold.
We need emunah – more and more emunah.
With faith, and love for Hashem, tell Hashem it is your will to re-garment the force in a challenge so that Infinite Light may come into the world. We are all united in being able to choose this. We are given free will. Love each other even if a different choice is made. We are one because of this construct and have confidence in each other because He is the designer of all of us. We are truly brothers and sisters. Have faith in Hashem and the soul of the Jewish People that He designs .
“With all our hearts Hashem , we will to go above our will and we pray that the forces within our nature come into this world as the soul of our davening because we want You Hashem in our hearts, revealed in this world. “
Torah teaches us that Hashem has created the solution to our struggles within the love with which He fills the nefesh elokis, a healing love that HE activates when we submit our will and our interest in feeling ourselves.
We realize that He is doing everything and that He has placed us in these narrow straits for one purpose – so that we have compassion upon Him, so that we love Him, we pray to Him, and sincerely yearn to channel all the force within into a mitzvah, learning Torah , praying, or doing a chesed.
That is the natural means by which Infinite light comes into the world – from our raw unrefined first reactions to submission to humility and then to do a mitzvah or chesed.
That woman next to you? She has a soul that can be that channel. Each one, a unique emanation with unique gifts and talents from Hashem. Each one built with the design to draw Infinite Light from the darkness of imagination driven by natural pleasures into this world through having this expanded awareness of Hashem’s Torah and love. Each one of us is on a repair mission that He does when we sincerely will it. This is what unifies us, regardless of whether we ever heard it before, whether we do it, whether we fail when we try, whether we have never tried.
This is where we are all one exactly, and loving each other means we have faith in Hashem and in the soul He designs and puts in each of us
The force that blocks us from this awareness is infinite light in our subconscious waiting to come into the world through the natural means of our prayer, Torah learning, chesed and mitzvahs..we re-garment the blocking force into His will and voila He is here in our hearts and in nature and the world
We hold the mesiras nefesh card!
Using it means we have faith in Hashem and His Soul He creates, the one soul.
That is unity.
He is doing everything else but this. And here we stand.
Again - What does it mean for us to gather together in prayer and song and dance for geula? It means that we are each ready to take a hidden spark from a place of darkness and intentionally give it a new message as a prayer.
And what Torah may we bring to mind to help us daven for redemption? We are empowered with love and awe of Hashem and speech and free will to run and return sparks to Him, helping the Infinite Light flow into the world beyond our bodies and circumstances.
Let’s try. Find a force inside that is garmented in a challenge and ask, what is the message hiding that force? Stare in your mind’s eye only at the force and discard the message and when we pray, tell Hashem that this force we are putting into our tefillos so that it comes into the world as light, not animating that message we discard. We may have to do hisbodidus over a period of time before we sincerely submit the vessel of the message. That is normal. It takes time to see what is the vessel and what is the concealed light so that the light may be intentionally willed into a mitzvah. Hashem does the rest. But struggle we must, mesiras nefesh, showing love for Hashem.
Now daven, and trust that the force – Infinite Light from our subconscious - is re-invested and has, indeed, come into the world. That is emunah.
Hashem designs our nefesh elokis to do that, to draw out that infinite light and give it into the mitzvah or prayer we perform.
Let’s daven to Hashem. And may the sparks we emit tip the scales for a new light to be revealed.