You have the ability to fill each page with beautiful stories of spiritual growth and kind deeds. Past pages are already written, but you can revise their significance by learning from your mistakes. In a panoramic view of your life, those mistakes become stepping stones for growth.
Future pages are not yet ready to be written. Only the present pages are before you. You have the opportunity to be the author of a masterpiece which describes the life of a great person: you.
Love Yehuda Lave
The four rules for a Happy Marriage and a Happy Life direct from Rabbi Zelig Pliskin and Rabbi Yehuda Lave
1) Be Joyful. The Torah commands of to be joyful. Laughter is contangious and so is depression. Choose to be around happy people by being one yourself.
2) Don't cause pain to to your partner, give pleasure because that is what a partner is for. Would you chose to order a dinner you don't like. Chose to give pleasure not nagging, and harrasement. Each kind word lifts the soul
3) When differences arise work it out that it is good for both. I won't do this or that, leaves little room for compromise. I often say the most important thing I learned from Rabbi Pliskin was that if you take anyting to an extreme it is no longer true. If the other person is messy, you can get used to it, if you can't walk into the room becasue there is no space becasue of the clutter and mess, no one has to live like that. These principals are true when you don't go to an extreme
4) If something is really bad--Change it!! Living with pain doesn't work in the long run.
Love Yehuda Lave
Tomorrow is 13 Adar the fast of Esther
On Adar 13, during the biblical story of Purim, the 10 sons of Haman were hanged (Esther 9:7). This would find eerie parallel over 2,000 years later when 10 top Nazi officials were hanged at the Nuremberg Trials. Incredibly, the Hebrew year of the hangings at Nuremberg, 5707, is encoded in the Book of Esther: In the listing of Haman's 10 sons, three Hebrew letters -- taf, shin and zayin, representing the year 5707 -- are written unusually small. (This anomaly appears in every authentic Megillah scroll, written that way for over 2,000 years.) Incredibly, when Nazi officer Julius Streicher ascended the gallows to be hanged at Nuremberg, he shouted, "Purimfest 1946."
Adar 13 is also the yahrtzeit of Rabbi Moshe Feinstein (1895-1986), the great leader of 20th century American Jewry. He was born on Adar 7, like the Great Moshe Rabbinu for whom he was named (who also died on Adar 7 his birth day) Born in Russia, Rabbi Feinstein escaped the Stalinist regime in 1937 and settled in New York. He became recognized as the leading rabbinic figure of his generation, issuing thousands of responsa on all matters of Jewish law (published in a collection called Igros Moshe, The Letters of Moshe). Rabbi Feinstein was known for his genius command of talmudic literature, which enabled him to delve into topics of modern medicine, economics and ethics, thus demonstrating the power of Torah to integrate with the modern world. Rabbi Feinstein was revered for his great humility and concern for every human being. He was buried in Jerusalem, where 200,000 people attended his funeral on Purim day
"You shall love your God" means that you should make the Divine Name beloved (Yoma 86a).
Rabbi Shimon ben Shatach once bought a donkey and found a gem in the carrying case which came with it. The rabbis congratulated him on the windfall with which he had been blessed. "No," said Rabbi Shimon, "I bought a donkey, but I didn't buy a diamond." He proceeded to return the diamond to the donkey's owner, an Arab, who remarked, "Blessed be the God of Shimon ben Shatach."
A non-Jew once approached Rabbi Safra and offered him a sum of money to purchase an item. Since Rabbi Safra was in the midst of prayer at the time, he could not respond to the man, who interpreted the silence as a rejection of his offer and therefore told him that he would increase the price. When Rabbi Safra again did not respond, the man continued to raise his offer. When Rabbi Safra finished, he explained that he had been unable to interrupt his prayer, but had heard the initial amount offered and had silently consented to it in his heart. Therefore, the man could have the item for that first price. Here too, the astounded customer praised the God of Israel.
We have so many opportunities to demonstrate the beauty of the Torah's ethics. We accomplish three mitzvos by doing so: (1) practicing honesty, (2) kiddush Hashem (sanctifying the Divine Name), and (3) making the Divine Name beloved, according to the above Talmudic interpretation of the Scripture.
Today I shall ... ... try to act in a manner that will make the Divine Name beloved and respected.
The Opening of the Academy Awards: 1954 Oscars
Hosts Donald O'Connor and Fredric March open the 26th Academy Awards in 1954, with an introduction by Academy President Charles Brackett. Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Wilding present Oscars® to Walt Disney for Documentary (Short Subject) for "The Alaskan Eskimo" and Documentary (Feature Film) for "The Living Desert." Jack Webb presents the Oscar® for Sound Recording to the Columbia Studio Sound Department (John P. Livadary, Sound Director) for "From Here to Eternity." Also, watch for a young Betty White singing for Oldsmobile.
How to Manage Jewish Guilt? The myth goes that Jews are more guilt-driven than any other people on the planet. By Tzvi Freeman
From the mouths of babes and sucklings You established strength (Psalms 8:3).
The Talmud tells us that when Haman threatened to annihilate the Jews, Mordechai gathered the children and led them in prayer to God. Why children? Because they are likely to be more sincere, and their prayers more genuine.
A Chassidic master said that one of the things we should learn from an infant is that it cries for whatever it wants. When an infant wants something, it wants it with all its being, and nothing else either interests it or distracts it from the object of its desire. The baby will cry relentlessly until it gets what it wants.
We pray for the redemption of Israel. We tell ourselves that we really want the Exile to end. We ask for redemption no less than three times a day in our prayers. But just one question: If we really wanted it as much as we say we do, why do we not cry for it?
An infant does not play intellectual games. It does not rationalize. It does not debate why it is preferable to get its way or not get it. The item of its desire may be only a brightly colored ball or a wooden block, but at that moment, it is as important to the infant as life itself, and it makes its desire well known to all with ears to hear.
Parents respond to the infant's cry because, in their intense love for the child, they do not wish to deprive it of something it wants so desperately.
God loves us more than a parent loves a child. If we would cry for our redemption, we would certainly get it.
Today I shall ... ... try to understand how being in Exile prevents me from attaining maximum intimacy with God, to the point where I will cry to Him for redemption.