Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Breslov Kollel would like to announce that with G-d's help, we are embarking on two new programs.
Firstly, we are offering Chavrusaos, study-partners, in the works of Rebbe Nachman and his disciples. This program will be similiar to the classic "Partners-in-Torah" program.
For those who live within vicinity of Lakewood, NJ, there will be an option to learn with one of our Kollel members one on one. Otherwise, we are offering to study over the telephone.
For more information, please E-Mail us at breslovchavrusa@gmail.com.
In addition, we can assist in establishing study-groups and shiurim in the Rebbe's teachings, to be led by members of our Kollel. The E-Mail for this project is breslovshiurim@gmail.com.
You can also call us a 732-425-0224
We look forward to hearing from you. With your help we can continue to spread the light of Breslov to more and more people.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Meshivas Nefesh 2

If someone would ask me, what would be the greatest way to glorify Hashem’s Name, what would I answer?
Maybe my giving tremendous amounts of charity would venerate Him in the eyes of the world? Perhaps to dedicate my life solely to the service of Him would? Could be to die for His name?
Reb Nachman provides us with an interesting answer. “The exaltation of Hashem is that even those who are very, very far from Him also draw near to His service. Through this His name is honored and elevated above and below.”
This is the greatest honor I can bestow upon my creator. When I, however far I think I am, get closer to Him too. Especially if I think that I’m very far. Much more so if I think that I fall into the category of very, very far.
Sometimes, I might despair of ever properly serving Hashem. I feel that I’ve gotten into such bad habits and routines, that I just can’t get out. I might even fell that I’m always unsuccessful at whatever I try, maybe as a retribution for all of my sins.
But I can never give up hope. On the contrary, the elevation and praise of Hashem will come chiefly from someone like me, who’s so far right now.

Based on Meshivas Nefesh 2

Letters from R' Noson

To my friend, Reb Shimshon,

… To respond to you with words of truth as you wish, many pages would not suffice. I would have to copy for you all of the Rebbe’s works. In them is already explained whatever is needed for every individual according to his level, wherever his place, at every time. There is what’s needed when he’s sitting at home and when travelling on the road. There is nothing which may be hidden from you which you won’t find in his holy and awesome books, if you will study them sincerely.
Be strong, my brother and friend, and remember your Creator at all times, even when engaged in business, and of course in your spare time. For G-d’s sake, grab an hour a day to converse with Him, as the Rebbe commanded us to countless times.
Encourage yourself with new strength every day, and don’t let anything in the world upset you. Whatever happens to you, whether in material matters or in spiritual matters or financial, however it may be, don’t give up!
There are always sincere words which you can find to say to G-d every day, whatever is going on in your life, whether in good times or bad times. There are no excuses, because “Hashem’s Truth is forever.” That means that His Truth is always there, and nothing that happens to a person, no matter what, can ever conceal that Truth. For Truth is the light of Hashem Himself, and these words of Truth can shine in every type of darkness in the world, and with it you can always find passageways through which to leave the darkness, as is explained in Likutei Moharan 9 and 112.
Accustom yourself to carry out this lesson always, to always pursue only the truth, and always look for the truth, the genuine truth. See to speak before G-d with a sincerity and truth. Then Hashem will shine to you His light in any place that you might be, at any time, and you’ll see the way out of your darkness to a great light.
You will be able to always remember G-d, for He is always found, in every place, and by every person, whatever level he’s on…

Nosson from Breslov

Based on Alim L’Terufah 17

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

משיבת נפש

...מי שרוצה לשוב לה' יתברך
Whoever wants to return to Hashem… return to Hashem… to do Teshuvah…?
Do I want to stop all the nonsense? Do I want to leave all my bad habits?
Do I want to start accomplishing, to start actually come close to Hashem?
What do I need to do?
...צריך להיות בקי בהלכה מאד
I need to be an expert, to be proficient. In what do I need to be proficient?
...שלא יפיל אותו ולא ירחק אותו
I must be an expert in the knowledge that I can never let anything throw me down. Nothing should be able to distance me from Hashem.
...שום דבר בעולם
I shouldn’t think that there can be something which I might allow to throw me down or distance me. I shouldn’t let anything in the world do that.
...בין בעילייה
Sometimes I find myself on a high. Things are going good. But being successful can also knock me down, and distance me. I have to be careful not to let my highs distance me.
...ובין בירידה
And even if I know how to be cautious during good times, I have to be especially careful when I’m on a low. I have to make sure not to allow my down days knock me down.
ובכל מה שיעבור עליו
No matter what I may ever encounter, I must never let anything weaken me.
יחזק את עצמו, שקורין דער האלטין זיך
I must always be strong. I must always hold on. I can never lose my resolve.
ויקיים "אם אסק שמים שם אתה, ואציעה שאול הנך" שגם בשאול תחתיות יכולין לקרב את עצמו להשי"ת כי גם שם הוא נמצא בבחי' ואציעה שאול הנך.
Hashem is everywhere. Hashem is even in the lowest places. Wherever I may have fallen, Hashem is also there. Therefore, I can always come close to Him, even here, even now. I don’t have to wait until I “get out”. I don’t have to brush myself off. I just have to turn to Him, with simplicity and with faith. All I have to know is, “You are here.”
And then I am close to him.
Even here.
כשרוצה אדם לילל בדרכי התשובה
When a person wants to go in the ways of Teshuvah and repentance… do I fit into that category?
צריך להיות בקי בהלכה, וצריד להיות לו שני בקיאיות, היינו בקי ברצוא בקי בשוב
I need to be an expert in running and returning. I need to know how to run, and I need to know how to come back.
שזהו בחינת עייל ונפיק
Running and returning are an aspect of entering and exiting. I need to know what to do when I’m “in” and when I’m “out”.
בחי' אם אסק שמים שם אתה ואציעה שאול הנך
When I’m flying high I’ve got to remember that Hashem is there too. When I’m low I have to know that He’s right here.
היינו, מי שרוצה לשוב להשי"ת צריך לחגור מתניו
If I want to return to Hashem, I need to accept upon myself, I need resolve …
שיתחזק את עצמו בדרכי ה'…
I need to be firm in my path…
Always. There’s no moment when I can let up.
בין בעלייה...
I shouldn’t think I can soften up when it’s going good.
בין בירידה. שהם בחי' אם אסק וכו' ואציעה וכו'
Even when I’m on a low, I can’t let up.
היינו בין שיזכה לאיזה עלייה, לאיזה מדרגה גדולה או קטנה...
No matter what I’ve already accomplished, whether I’ve achieved big things, or even just small things…
אעפ"כ, אל יעמוד שם, ולא יסתפק עצמו בזה...
I can’t stay where I am. I can’t be satisfied with what I have. I must realize that there’s still so much more that I can do, there are still so many heights which I can reach.
וצריך שיהי בקי בזה - מאד...
I have to be proficient in this, very proficient in this…
לידע ולהאמין שהוא צריך לילך יותר ויותר וכו' שזהו בחי' בקי ברצוא וכו'
It takes great skill to know this, to know and to believe that no matter what, I must keep on going, to keep on growing.
וכן להיפך, שאפילו אם יפול ח"ו למקום שיפול...
The opposite is also true. Even if I fall wherever I might fall to…
אפילו בשאול תחתיות ח"ו...
Even if I fall so low that it seems as if I’ve reached rock bottom, I’ve reached the worst. And of course if I realize that however low my fall may be, I’m still not the worse it can be…
גם שם אל יתיאש את עצמו...
Even there, I can’t give up.
I can’t say that there’s a limit to how long I can hold on for. I must resolve that I will never give up.
בשום אופן...
I can’t think that that’s only in a somewhat normal situation, but of course there are some circumstances which may warrant giving up. There is no such situation.
יהיה איך שיהיה...
No way can I ever give up, no matter what.
So if I’m not being successful, and I also can’t give up, what can I do?
רק יחפש ויבקש את השי"ת...
The only thing I can do is to search for Hashem…
ויחזק את עצמו בכל מקום שהוא...
…and to be strong and hold on. No matter where I am now, I can’t consider that over here I’m unable to hold on. No matter what situation I’m in, I can’t think that in this case it’s not possible to hold on…
ובכל מה שיוכל...
And I’ve got to be strong and hold on with whatever I can, grab onto anything, just don’t let go…
כי גם בשאול תחתיות נמצא השי"ת, וגם משם יכולין לדבק את עצמו אליו ית', וזה בחי' ואציעה שאול הנך, בחי' בקי בשוב.
Even in the worst possible places, Hashem is there, for He is everywhere. I can come close to Him, to attach myself to Him, dveykus, even at my lowest. There’s no such thing as saying that I can’t be close to Him the way I am now, that I just have to wait until I get a little better. It’s not true that I can’t have dveykus in the place I am now. I can be close to Him here and now.
כי אי אפשר לזכות לתשובה כי אם כשבקי שתי בקיאיות אלו.
It’s impossible to achieve Teshuvah without being an expert in all this. These concepts are the basic tools which I have to acquire in order to be successful in my Teshuvah.
ובאמת היא בקיאות גדול מאד...
I shouldn’t fool myself. These really are very difficult concepts to internalize. But I must still realize that my life is dependent on putting in the time and effort in learning them.
שיזכה לידע ולהאמין שצריכין ליגע עצמו ולטרוח בעבודת ה'…
I’ve got to internalize this. I must know and believe that I must put all my effort into my Avodas Hashem. I need to plug away in Avodas Hashem…
Always. That means never to think that I only have to put that extra exertion in when I think that the situation calls for it. No. Everything I do in Avodas Hashem must be with all my strength.
ולצפות בכל עת להגיע למדרגה גבוה יותר.
And at all times I’ve got to be eager and hoping to reach higher levels. To always have that feeling that I wish and hope to reach a higher level than I am on now.
ואעפ"כ אל יפול...
Here comes the hard part. Even though I’m always putting in all my effort, and I’m always trying and hoping to reach higher levels, but I still can never let anything get me down, even when I see that I’m trying so hard for so long…
משום דבר...
Never think that there might be something which warrants me to feel bad. No matter how many times I fail, no matter how long I’m hoping to change and it’s just not going…
ואפילו אם יהיה איך שיהיה, אעפ"כ אל יפול בדעתו כלל, ויקיים ואציעה שאול הנך...
No matter what, never to feel down, no matter what. No matter what reason I may come up with to feel bad, that’s not a reason.
Don’t even think that this situation is so bad that maybe I can feel bad just a little… no, I can’t feel bad at all!
וכשיש לו שתי בקיאיות אלו אזי הוא הולך בדרכי התשובה, ואז ימין ה' פשוטה לקבל תשובתו וזוכה לכבוד ה' ונעשה עי"ז אדם לשבת על הכסא. אשרי לו!
When I will be proficient in these skills, then I’ll be on the path of Teshuvah, and Hashem will lovingly accept my Teshuvah. This will bring true honor to Him. Ashreinu!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

מזל טוב

The Breslov Kollel wishes a hartzidigeh Mazal Tov to our member Ephraim Portnoy and his wife upon the birth of their baby boy!

May the Bris be בעתו ובזמנו and may they be zocheh to have much nachas from him and from all of their children
ולגדלו לתורה ולחופה ולמעשים טובים ללכת בדרך רבינו הק' ז"ל

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The Site is Back Up!

We're happy to announce that B'Ezras Hashem our website is back up.