Message on the occasion of the Tishri Holidays
We are living in times full of trials. In particular, we are seeing much suffering among those who are doing Teshuvah. They must, however, overcome these trials and shortcomings. But is difficult to avoid the Bitoul Torah (negligence in the study of Torah): when one must choose between going to the movies to see the latest film that everyone is talking about, staying at home and watching the "match of the year" on TV or simply going to a Torah course!
How difficult it is, in summer, to resist the temptation and look at what it is forbidden for us to look at.
How difficult it is for everyone to watch over their own mouths and not to speak evil about their neighbor.
Unfortunately, today, we even dare to criticize the Rabbanim or those who dedicate their lives to the Torah; they are the ones who hold the world together! May Hashem forgive those who don't hesitate to condemn the Bne Torah and the Rabbanim without even trying to understand them!
How many impure thoughts invade us year round! We must ask Hashem for forgiveness for the feelings we were unable to control. But we should take a particular care of our neighbor.
We know well that for the harm we caused to another person, Hashem will only forgive us if we first asked forgiveness to our victim.
The 26th of Ellul will be the Hillulla of the Tzadik, Rabbi Haim Pinto (z.l.), who left this world around 150 years ago (may his Virtue protect us!).
As for my part, I am preparing to join the thousands of people who will come from all over the world to pray at the tomb of the Tzadik.
It goes without saying that I will pray for all the Jews of the world and those in France in particular. I am aware of their pain and troubles I see in everyday life. G-d knows how much I care about them.
My heart bleeds every time a Jew comes to me and gives the details of his problems.
After years of work I came to the conclusion that the suffering of Klall Israel has several simple but unfortunate reasons, and it will continue (G-d forbid) unless every Jew decides to purify his heart and attach himself to the main values of Judaism:
1) Love of the Holy Land
Every Jew should set himself a goal of visiting Eretz Israel one day, without taking into account economic or political problems and never considering Eretz Israel as a simple tourist destination.
2) Education of the Children
Only a Jewish school is able to preserve our childrens' Jewishness.
Financial problems associated with tuition in Jewish schools should not be an obstacle, and besides, the community must invest more in Jewish schools and in education.
Those who send their children to non-Jewish schools should be aware of the risk their childrens' future and Judaism are being put under.
3) Kosher food
We should strictly observe the laws of Kashrut at home and outside. The consumption of non-kosher food poisons the brain and soul of the Jew and distances him from Judaism.
If we have doubts about Judaism, if we have trouble concentrating or have bad thoughts during prayer, it is probably because we either ate non-kosher food, spoke Lashon Hara, or judged our neighbor.
4) Family purity
This mitzvah is characterizes Klall Israel and distinguishes us from other nations. It is the symbol of Judaism for all generations. It is this mitzvah that guarantees peace in the home. The Torah tells us: "Your camp will be holy".
We should, therefore, watch over the sanctity, the Kedusha of the Jewish family: young girls and married women as well will wear clothes that preserve their modesty. It goes without saying that we must strictly adhere to the recommendations of our Teachers who forbid us to attend ceremonies where mixed dances are tolerated.
5) Study of the Torah
Rambam (Maimonides) pointed out that even the poorest Jew must study Torah, all the more reason for those who have enough to live on and are healthy!
6) Purity of the eyes
We should avoid gazing on things that do not belong to us. In fact, it is said: "The eye sees and the heart desires". Of course, the eye is made to see but it is still possible not to focus our look. We should especially be careful not to look at married woman because, whether we like it or not, man's soul is at risk of being invaded by bad thoughts.
As we know, our Sages warn us about the hazard of bad thoughts. Because of such thoughts, man puts himself willingly in dangerous situations. May Hashem grant us the best of what our hearts desire and may you all be inscribed for a year filled with life, health and prosperity. Amen
May Hashem grant recovery and health to all the Tzadikim of Klall Israel and to all the Talmide Hakhamim and women who are expecting a child.
As far as I am concerned, I would like to offer my apologies and ask for forgiveness "Mehila or Seliha" to anyone I might have offended, to anyone that I might not have blessed well enough or to those who waited too long before they got to see me or those to whom I might have been not able to speak to on the phone.
In return, I pray to Hashem that He be forgiving towards them as they were towards me. Amen.
At the start of this new year which, we hope, will be good for us, we must come even closer to Hashem and serve him with all of our strength, especially in the times of senseless political turmoil that we are witnessing. Let us hope that these times are an indication of our true deliverance.
With G-d's help, may we see many miracles that have their source in Hessed (forgiveness) and not Din (rigor).