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7 posts from March 2010

To Live or not to Live: with Mom-in-Law...

Dear Rabbi Lazer,

I need your urgent advice. I'm engaged, and my wedding date is in 6 weeks (Lag B’Omer). My fiancé, a fresh honors graduate from med school, had been accepted for internship in a reputable Colorado hospital, and promised me (before our engagement) that right after the wedding, we'd be moving out West. Now, he's been accepted to intern in a very prestigious hospital in his home town of NYC, which I utterly can't stand. To make matters worse, he wants to save money by us living with his parents, since they have a tremendous house, and all their other kids have moved out already. I feel like I'm getting a raw deal, my stomach summersaults with nerves, and I'm having second doubts about the marriage, with a guilty conscience to boot. Rabbi Lazer, am I being selfish? My fiancé promised me that we'd be living in Denver; NYC is bad enough, but am I expected to live with his parents? I feel like a lamb being set up for slaughter, and I don't like it. As a rabbi, would you allow me to break off the engagement? Please answer me as fast as possible. Thank you so much. Betsy from Pennsylvania 

Read my answer to Betsy in Living with Mom-in-Law in this week's issue of Breslev Israel web magazine.

Rav Shalom Arush presents us with two wonderful articles this week: The Poor Man's Prayer and Moment of Trial, which is the final part of his wonderful series on Family Purity.

If you feel like you're the only one that's talking to Hashem, Rivka Levy tells you that You're Not Alone.

Four Shadows is Part 9 of Rabbi Erez Moshe Doron's gripping Warriors of Transcendence.

I'll bet they never taught you about Aristotle's Confession in your ancient history class...

The Melitzer Rebbetzen suggests that we try looking at life through The Rosy Glasses.

Tal Rotem gives practical guidelines to Shmirat Eynayim (Guarding our Eyes) in You can Too, My Brother.

Bracha Goetz is Getting Rid of Chometz, like the rest of us.

Breslev Kids can read the final Part 5 of The Grouchy Grizzly.

This week's Torah portion is Vayikra.

Great News: Guess which new book went to print today...


Aliya: Learning from History

Beloved brothers and sisters, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef has been imploring people to make aliya (literally, "ascending"; means coming home to Israel to live) for the last several years. Rabbi Amnon Yitzchak doesn't stop talking about the urgency with which World Jewry should head home to the Land of Israel. Rabbi Shalom Arush stresses the need for aliya in almost every one of his recent lessons. What's going on? I prefer to talk about aliya from a positive standpoint - strengthening our homeland and strengthening ourselves in emuna. Glenn Beck makes a pretty good case for aliya, but from a different angle; it's worthwhile hearing what he has to say:

Thanks for the Flat Tire...

Chani from Jerusalem writes:

Dear Rabbi Brody,

Last week I had an interesting experience.  I was on the way home from work and got a flat tire. I am not proud of how it happened because I let my impatience get the better of me and I tried to pass a bus instead of waiting my turn. I hit a sewer hole and it popped my tire. I was on the main road by the Kotel and I was able to drive the car up onto the walkway so I wouldn’t block the cars on the road. It’s a very busy road and dozens of cars were passing by but no one stopped to ask if I needed help. It is not a place where many people walk so I felt helpless. My husband was working and my son was nowhere nearby. The towing company connected to our insurance said they could come to fix it but it would cost 150 NIS which I couldn’t and wouldn’t pay. I decided to follow your advice, Rabbi Brody. You taught that whenever something goes wrong, we should thank HaShem for the tribulation. This wasn’t a major life crisis, but it was definitely an annoying inconvenience which I didn’t want. I was tired after work and still had to go grocery shopping. So I got back into the car and thanked HaShem for giving me the flat tire and said a few other things that needed saying. I had no sooner finished, when my son called me. As I was speaking to him, I turned around and saw two young men walking my way. When they got closer, I asked if they could help me and they didn’t think twice. They were able to quickly change the tire but the spare was also flat! They flagged down every passing car to find someone with a generator to pump some air into the tire. After many cars passed by, a van full of Arabs stopped and were able to fill the tire with air. I would never have been able to do that on my own.

This is the how things worked out:

1. Once I thanked HaShem for the problem, it was solved quickly and easily. What could have taken several hours of aggravation took about 15 minutes with calmness.

2. The two boys who stopped to help me were not from Jerusalem were unfamiliar with the area and were quite far from where they needed to go. I offered to drive them to their destination, which just happened to be in the same direction I was traveling. I asked them to write down their names and addresses so I could send them something as a ‘thank you’. I plan to go to the Chut Shel Chesed Yeshiva bookstore tomorrow, G-d willing, and buy the Garden of Emuna to send to each of them.

3. The car has been giving us problems for a few months already and we keep discussing whether or not to keep it.  A car is a big expense and the money could be better spent elsewhere. I feel like maybe HaShem is trying to give me a big hint.

4. The ‘thanks’ was sincere. Who knows when this weak tire could have blown? Better on a busy street by the Kotel than a busy highway going 90 km/h….

Thank you to you as well, Rabbi Brody, for all your spiritual guidance.

Respectfully, Chani from Jerusalem 

A Safe Landing

Dear Rabbi Brody,

About a week and a half ago, I was so depressed that I thought I couldn't stand another day on this earth. In one day, my boyfriend broke up with me and I received notice that I was about to lose my job at the end of the month. On the way home, my car broke down and I had to have it towed. I was feeling like a reincarnation of Job, and didn't know where to turn to.

I got home and started surfing aimlessly on the computer. I was toying with the idea of suicide, and I did a Google search looking for some miracle drug that would enable me to leave the garbage of this world behind with no pain. Maybe the word "miracle" did it, but I was sent to your phenomenal website, Lazer Beams. Just that day, you posted one of your short movie clips entitled Prayer of Thanks. You should know, Rabbi Brody - this clip saved my life. I cried like a baby for an hour, and then thought what an ingrate I am, because I've been ignoring the zillion other blessings that G-d has given me. You helped me land safely - on the side of life.

At any rate, during the last week, I've seen replays of a dozen or so of your weekly lecture video replays and have been devouring everything on Lazer Beams. You are incredible - I have never anyone that presented the notion of faith in such a gratifying way.

After having seen Thank You, Hashem today, I had to write a public thank-you to Hashem: Today I am writing in a public forum to thank Hashem for the gift of Rabbis... Rabbis who deliver very important messages ... Rabbis who are true heros in the battlefields of Life where the real enemy lives within ourselves... Rabbis who save lives.

Thank you for being there for people like me, Rabbi Brody. With indescribable gratitude, Sherryl from the USA