Thursday, January 29, 2015

Parshas B'Shalach By Rabbi Eliezer Berland Shlit"a

Rabbi Eliezer BerlandRabbi Eliezer Berland

Tzama Nafshi in English  - Parshas Beshalach ה’’תשע
Transcribed and translated from previous recordings of
HaRav Eliezer Berland Shlit”a

“And Moshe took along with him the bones of Yosef.” (13:19)

Moshe Rabenu knew the secret that without Yosef Hatzadik there can be no Redemption. He knew that the essence of the Redemption would come about through Yosef, as it says, “And Moshe took along with him the bones of Yosef.” Yosef is the foundation! Yosef is called “Yosef the Tzaddik” for a reason! When Moshe went to redeem Am Yisrael from Mitzrayim, he took with him the bones of Yosef. Moshe knew that there could not be Redemption without Yosef! Even though he is now the Tzaddik of the generation and even though he was well aware of the fact that he would soon bring the Torah down [from Shamayim], he knew that he must first connect to the previous Tzaddik [of the generation]. Even though Moshe Rabbenu was the greatest Tzaddik of that generation and was kodesh kodashim (holiest of holies); he was the one who would bring down the Torah and deliver the ten makos (plagues), nevertheless, he knew that without Yosef there would be no Redemption. He knew that all of the miracles that were about to take place could only come about by means of the bones of Yosef. Moshe could not split apart the sea without the bones of Yosef! Even the greatest Tzaddik in the world, such as Moshe Rabbenu himself, must connect to the Tzaddik previous to him.
People think that they don’t need the tzaddik. Why do they need the Tzaadik? We have everything we need, Tahini salad, someBaba ghanoush’… what do we need the Tzaddik for? We have plenty of beetroot, plenty of potatoes, baruch Hashem, enough to last us our lifetime, till 120 years! Till Techiyas Hameisim (the Revival of the Deceased)! People simply do not realize that everything they have in this world is by merit of the Tzaddik. Everything happens by the influence of the Tzaddik! People think they get their abundance on their own. They have no idea that there is a Tzaddik making an impression on the world and that the Tzaddik is alive here with us, praying for us. They don’t realize that everything that happens in the world is by merit of the Tzaddik and his prayers. If the Tzaddik were not in the world, we would have nothing! There would not even be grass to eat! Moshe was the only one who knew that secret.
“And Moshe took along with him the bones of Yosef.” At the time that Am Yisrael was taking the loot [of the Egyptians], Moshe was seeking out the Tzaddik. He sought out the bones of Yosef because he knew that all of the wealth comes by merit of Yosef. He took with him the bones of Yosef in order to draw chessed - kindness down into the world. He knew that the world is satiated via Yosef, as he was the one who sustained the world at the time of the famine. If a person would have faith in the Tzaddik, he could attain all the wealth in the world, since all the salvations and all of the abundance, everything we eat and drink, etc., everything we have in the world is only by merit of the Tzaddikim.
What is the meaning of the verse, “From the end of the earth we heard songs, ‘The righteous shall be praised’”? What do those words mean? The Zohar Hakadosh says, in Parshas Vayelech (284 pg.2), “The whole world sings and praises the Tzaddik.” The world sings, literally! From every corner of the world there shall be singing! The whole world sings to the Tzaddik and praises him, “We heard songs; the righteous shall be praised.” The whole world sings about the Tzaddik who supports all of the worlds; the whole world sings to the Tzaddik who is on the level of Moshe Rabbenu. As Am Yisrael were entering Eretz Yisrael they heard singing from every corner of the world; from every corner, every side, every grain of sand, every stone, from the mountains and the hills they heard the singing, it came from all over the land. The entire land was singing, ‘the righteous shall be praised.’ “The praises of Moshe”, everyone was singing to the Tzaddik called, “Moshe”. Everyone is singing to the Tzaddikim that are the aspect of Moshe. No thought or idea can take control over such Tzaddikim. All of the worlds look forward to the revelation of these Tzaddikim; everyone is singing “praises of Moshe”. Everything is by merit of Moshe! Everything is by merit of the Tzaddik! The whole world sings and praises the Tzaddik, literally!
The first thing a Jew must know is in whose merit the world exists and in whose merit the world is sustained. The world exists by merit of the “Tzaddik Yesod Olam” (the Tzaddik who is the foundation of the world). People must seek out the true Tzaddikim in whose merit the world exists. One must search the world over to find out who is the real Tzaddik by whose merit the world is sustained. This is the first thing people must learn; it is the foundation for the observance of the whole Torah, because people usually say, “Well, there are many Tzaddikim, of course everyone are Tzaddikim!” However, there are Tzaddikim who are outstanding in their time, a one of a kind and they are the ones who have an influence on the water, the manna and the Clouds of Glory. They are the ones who protect Am Yisrael from all harm; they are protecting us, and no one else! This is the first foundation which is the foundation of all foundations. One must not have self pride and think that he does everything by himself; rather, he should know that there are Tzaddikim that are the causes of everything! The world exists because of them and by their merit the world is sustained, and this is the foundation and observance of the whole Torah.         Good Shobbas!

Dedicated in loving memory of the young tzaddekes, Feige Chana bas Daniella, (may her parents find peace after their grieving, amen.) 
To the refuah shleima of Shimon Machluf ben Miriam Varda, Daniella bas Zehava, Nachman ben Daniella, Miriam bas Daniella.
שיזכו לחיים טובים ארוכים ולשלום, אמן   

To dedicate an issue or to receive a blessing from the Rav please call:
(Israel) 052-718-6265
(US) 917-284-1118
(UK) 44-238-228-0223
or send email to

The court hearing has ended

The final verdict will be given in two weeks time and may be prosponed further.

The courts still can't figure out what the State of Israel wants from this Rabbi.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Live Broadcast of the Atzeres Tfilla by Kotel and Ma'aras Hamachpela (Prayer rally by Western Wall)

The live broadcast will begin around 7:30pm Israel time
If you don't see the video please refresh the page
After the Atzeres at the Kotel is over please wait about an hour for the broadcast to continue at Ma'aras Hamachpela

Huge atzeres tfilla (prayer rally) at kotel tomorrow will be broadcasted live here

Rabbi Berland
picture from previous atzeres

Wednesday January 28th a day before the court hearing of Rabbi Eliezer Berland in Holland there will be a mass atzeres at the Kotel Hama'aravi at 7:30pm. 

After which there will be free buses to Me'aras Ha'machpela and the Atzeres will continue there. To sign up dial 058-328-7777 ext 474 and you will be registered automatically. 

Bus transportation to the Kotel will be provided from throughout Israel for a subsidized price of 5 shekel. 
Here is a list of cities with the organizers phone number:
Eilat: 0528555943
Elad: 0527601376
Be'er Sheva 0548442801
Bnei Brak  0533147117
Beitar 0548497194
    or 0527144392
Cholon: 0508942299
Tiberias: 0547766123
Netivot: 0548491425 or 0548435596
Kiriat Sefer: 0527198173
Rosh Ha'ayin: 0527601376
Rishon L'Tzion: 0583263267 or 0522221313
Emanuel : 0548460925
Netanya: 0508341441
Bat Yam: 0583253877
Kiryat Gat: 0504162162
Haifa: ‏0548517868 
To arrange a bus in your area please call 054-718-6265
Updated information will be made available on this website or by calling the information hotline 058-328-7777 ext. 47

For those who cannot make it a live video broadcast will be provided here on this site. Please join us in your prayers.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Listen to Rabbi Berland's urgent message for all Jews! World Jewry is in imminent danger of a worldwide intifada!

Trip to Uman for Women with english speaking guide

Parshas Bo By HaRav Eliezer Berland Shlit”a

Tzama Nafshi in English  - Parshas Bo ה’’תשע
By HaRav Eliezer Berland, shlit”a
It says in the Parsha: “And you shall take a bundle of Ezov - Hyssop.” (12:22)
The Midrash Raba comments on this and says: “Specifically through the Ezov, which is the lowliest tree of all trees, he redeemed Israel (parsha 17).”
A person’s greatness derives from his humbleness and humility. Only one who lowers himself to dust will be revived in Techiyas Ha’meisim and will merit eternal life: “And He fulfills his faith to those who dwell in the earth”, “Awaken and rejoice, dust dwellers”, meaning, the lowlier one holds himself to be, the more he humbles himself before others and Hashem, the more likely he is to merit techiyas Ha’meisim, a life of all eternity. The more points we gain in our daily quest for humility the better are our chances to merit an eternal life; the pleasure of the Olam Haba. With every insult, the person attains greater humility. No matter how often a person is humiliated and disgraced, he should rejoice. If you are certain that someone in the street is going to insult you, you should run and immerse in the mikveh beforehand, because when a person is disgraced, he receives such a tremendous light. That’s why I reiterate that you should immerse yourself in the mikveh first, so that you will have the appropriate “tools” with which to receive that light. When a person is disgraced, a powerful light comes into the world, the likes of which cannot be received through any other mitzvah in the world. The Bizzayon- disgrace – turns the person into ‘non-existent’ and he merits such a Divine light, a wondrously bright light, an eternal light, a light which is brighter than the surrounding light of all of the worlds – it surrounds all of the worlds. The more points of humility we collect for ourselves the more we will merit the Divine light; the light of eternity.
David HaMelech said, “Purify me with Ezov and I will become pure, wash me and I will become whiter than snow.” – purify me with Ezov! I want to be Ezov, I want to be humiliated, I want everyone to step on me, laugh at me and humiliate me; that is the only way for one to do teshuva! I need to know that I am worse than everyone else, I sinned more than anyone else, I caused more trouble than anyone else, I am nothing more than, “Purify me and I will become pure, wash me and I will become whiter than snow.” I want to be Ezov like the Ezov that grows along the walls, the one everyone steps on, humiliate and disgrace; I want to be an Ezov my whole life!
There are two levels of teshuva. There is one level where the person is disgraced by another but remains silent, and this is called in the Torah, “they are insulted but do not insult back, they hear their disgrace but do not respond.” The person is humiliated but he remains silent, he does not retort or respond, as it says in the Torah, “And Aharon kept quiet.” There is a higher level, though, which is as it says, “They do it out of love and rejoice in their suffering.” This refers to a person who merits a higher spiritual level because even though people are humiliating and disgracing him, [not only does he remain silent,] he is happy. He sings and plays music and accepts all of the humiliation with joy, with love and with song. Every insult he receives is like an ointment for his wounds, it heals them. Every bizzayon is like purifying water, as it says, “And I shall cast upon you purified water, and you shall be purified.”
There is no limit to humility and humbleness. When someone gives a person a bizzayon, he has showered him with eternity, made him limitless, now he has no limits, he is nullified. He can sense the Divine light. About such a person people say, “This person is nothing, he is worthless, and he is a liar and a hypocrite!” The more they say about him the more nullified he becomes and then he is awarded all the success and abundance in the world. He gets one insult and suddenly merits a million successes. After being disgraced he will have endless success and abundance. He becomes the provider of the land, he receives endless abundance as it says, “And Yosef was the provider to all the people of the land.” Yosef became the provider of the land; he merited infinite abundance, because after he had been sold and humiliated he became nullified and then all of the abundance was transferred directle through him. We learn from this that the more a person is disgraced, the more abundance and success he will have.
Sometimes, when a person is disgraced, he thinks, “Ah! I am being disgraced because I am a Tzaddik! Because I am a servant of Hashem!” This is self pride. One should not come to self pride through his disgrace; he should think to himself, “I am being disgraced and humiliated because I deserve it, because I am neither Tzaddik nor Chassid; I don’t learn Torah properly, don’t guard my eyes, I really am a rasha (wicked person)!” People have to face the truth. If someone says to you, “You’re a rasha!”, your thoughts should be: “Baruch Hashem that he told me the truth.” A person must admit the truth. When someone comes along and reminds me just who I am, I should kiss that person; kiss his feet for telling me the truth. It says, “Hate the ones who love [you] and love the one who hates [you].” This means you should love your haters. The more people talk badly about a person and humiliate him the more beneficial. Those who love you mean nothing! You should hate those who adore you, they are just flattering you and confusing you, they give you the illusion that you are a Tzaddik, that everything you do is good. ‘Hate the ones who love you’, that’s what it says! Love the one who rebukes you, who disgraces you, that’s who you should love! He’s the one you should embrace. What’s the problem? Somebody comes along and tells you the truth about yourself - what do you get out of having your other friends who respect you and flatter you?
Rebbe Nachman says in Tora 260, that when one does a messirus nefesh, yichudim  (Divine unifications) are established. When tzaddikim themselves are not able to do those same yichudim, there is no one to rise at chatzos and weep [over Beis Hamikdash], no one else serving Hashem with a real messirus nefesh, than there is no choice but to make these yichudim via people who have been killed, i.e., via death. There is, however, one other way to make those yichudim and that is through the acceptance of bizzyonos with love. A person who accepts his bizzyonos with love saves the entire generation form death. Whenever a person accepts a bizzayon with love he should know that he has just saved a Jew from being killed. Moreover, the more important and famous the person is, if he accepts the insults he gets from others with love, the more he merits saving the generation from death. There are those who intentionally go out seeking abuse; they look for all sorts of ideas and plots to cause people to speak badly about them and insult them, as Rabbenu said, “he does this of his own accord and of his own free will.” By doing so, the person makes the loftiest, most elevated yichudim; it is considered as though he gave his life to sanctify Hashem. He sacrifices his reputation, his good name; for the name is the nefesh, and everyone says things about him that never really happened. Through this he saves Klal Yisrael from death, by the fact that his own ‘blood’ is being spilled moment by moment, and yet he accepts it all with joy and love. He saves Am Yisrael from all of the harsh decrees and troubles that were supposed to befall them, chas veshalom! Therefore, every person undergoing humiliation should simply accept it all with love because who knows how many decrees he is saving Am Yisrael from by his acceptance? Rabbenu said (Siach Sarfei Kodesh 2:65), “He who makes dispute – I cannot hate him” – I cannot hate any person who fights me, any person who hates me; how can anyone hate a disputer? They are doing me such a favor; I really am able to see the good they are bringing me, by arguing against me and speaking about me. Their dispute sheds upon me such a radiant light, all I want to do is kiss them and hug them.
When a person is disgraced, at that very moment he has been awarded a million dollars. There is a story about Reb Zusha and Reb Elimelech from Lidzensk who happened to come to a certain inn. Upon entering they saw that the men there, were drunk and had begun kicking each other. No sooner had they laid their eyes upon Reb Zusha, who was closer to them than his brother, than the drunks began kicking him. They kicked him so hard, they nearly broke his bones. Reb Elimelech saw this and said, “My brother, you are getting everything. You’re taking all the beatings and humiliation for yourself! I also want some! I also want an Olam Haba. What about me? What am I, Swiss cheese?! Don’t I deserve some too? I also want to merit, let me have some! What do you think? You get it all for yourself??? For a whole hour he tried convincing his brother to let him share in the merits of the disgrace until Reb Zusha was finally persuaded to “share”. The “Noam Elimelech” then switched places with Reb Zusha in order to ‘treat’ himself to some of the beatings. No sooner had they switched places, than the goyim suddenly decided that it was now the turn of “the guy in the back” and thus returned to beating Reb Zusha once more. Reb Zusha said to Reb Elimelech, “You see? I deserve all the beatings. “No person can touch what is destined for his friend.”
With just one insult, a person’s sins from thousands of reincarnations are atoned. All it takes is one insult to atone for an endless amount of sins. With even one insult the person can merit what he could not through thousands of good deeds. Every insult is equivalent to thousands upon thousands of fasts, thousands upon thousands of sigufim (self affliction of pain and suffering); it’s an alternative to being thrown into fire, into the ovens of fire. People don’t understand the greatness of such rectifications – “No eye has seen it, aside from You, Hashem.”                       Good Shobbas!

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Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Live Broadcast from Holland today Jan 14, 2015 at around 3:00pm EST

Parshas Va’eira By HaRav Eliezer Berland, shlit”a

Rabbi Eliezer Berland Tzama'a Nafshi Parshas Vaera

Parshas Va’eira

By HaRav Eliezer Berland, shlit”a

“And they did not listen to Moshe because of [their] shortness of breath and harsh labor.” (Shmos 6:9)

The whole world is mistaken; people think that in order to merit salvation and sweeten the judgment, they must fast and do strenuous labor…
When Moshe Rabenu came to Mitzrayim, he announced to the people, “My friends! Hashem has revealed Himself to me! There is soon going to be redemption. Be happy, rejoice, sing and play music, this is a time for dancing and singing, bring a band, bring some violins and start singing about the news of the upcoming redemption!” Yet, “And the people did not listen to Moshe because of shortness of breath and harsh labor.” Rabbenu says (Tora 86), “They had very little emunah (faith), in the aspect of ‘from shortness of breath’… Since the Jews were in the aspect of “from shortness of breath” and had very little emunah, they had to fast and work hard. Those that are in the aspect of “shortness of breath”, who lack the shleimus (completeness) of emunah have a tendency to take upon themselves sigufim (self affliction of suffering) and fasting. The Noam Elimelech said that this was the argument Moshe had with the tzadikim of that generation; Moshe said, ‘Stop with the fasting and sigufim, stop with all the arduous labor! Start rejoicing, play music, sing!” Indeed, since they were sent into slavery, Am Yisrael and the tzadikim did not remain silent for even one moment; they fasted, wept and sat upon the ground [in mourning]. Day by day, they watched how children were being thrown into the Nile, how babies were being slaughtered; the Egyptians used them to build their walls. Paroh bathed in the blood of the babies! Not one person remained silent; they fasted, mourned and wept in order to bring about the redemption. Moshe came and said to them, “Rabosay! This is not the way! This is a mistake! You want to fast? So fast! But that will not bring the redemption. You cannot bring about the redemption via sigufim and fasting. The redemption can only be brought through simcha! They replied, “What?! You are suggesting to us a different way of serving Hashem? You want to take away our fasting and sigufim after we have been doing this for years upon years?” They did not pay attention to Moshe ‘from a shortness of breath’ and ‘from their harsh labor’ –i.e. from despair and frustration. They were so involved in their harsh labor, they could not release their feelings of despair and gain emunah that there was hope and that they may be redeemed. Moshe declared, ‘it is time to start serving Hashem with simcha, from tremendous joy! Only simcha can surrender the klipa (outer spiritual peel of impurity and depression); only simcha can bring about the redemption.’ The  Noam Elimelech explains that the tzaddikim who take upon themselves fasting and harsh labor have a very high neshama, not just any simple neshama, but they don’t see what greater tzaddikim, the likes of Moshe Rabenu see; because the tzadik ha’emes (the True Tzaddik) easily nullifies judgment and harsh decrees. He doesn’t require any effort at all; no sigufim, no fasting, he nullifies the decrees with pure simcha, with music and song. The world is mistaken; people think that in order to merit salvation and to sweeten the harsh judgment they must work strenuously and fast, etc. As a matter of fact, the Baal Shem Tov already cancelled the whole matter of fasting and harsh labor and this is what Rabbenu is referring to when he says that “the world doesn’t believe that one can merit salvation and mitigate the harsh judgment purely through simcha”.
There are several levels of Tzelem Elokim (the Image of Hashem). There is the first level, where the person lives in the present and is happy with the present. He’s always happy. That is the first level of Tzelem Elokim. Then there is a higher level, where one must know Torah and mitzvos and laws. First the person must attain the first level – he must start understanding what is the present; start learning how to live in the now, how to rejoice now, how to be happy every minute and every second, to sense the present and only the present and not think about anything else beyond. He shouldn’t worry himself at all with the future. You are here, now, alive, breathing and well, so be happy! Don’t worry yourself about what was or what will be. That is the aspect of “Who is wealthy? He who is happy with his portion.” The person must be happy every moment and every second. No one is beating you; you have a nice cup of tea, what more do you need? What do you lack? You’re thirsty? Go drink! You’re hungry? Go make yourself a sandwich and you’ll feel better! Feel happy, rejoice! Don’t fret about what was in the past or what will be in the future; be as happy as you possibly can! That’s how you should see everything – with joy. When a person focuses on living the present, he is fulfilling, “Who is wealthy? He who is happy with his portion.” Through this simcha, man can achieve everything; every kind of salvation he needs. He can reach the highest levels in the world.  
The nissayon (test) of a Jew is to always remain happy. That is the biggest test because every single person must go through nissyonos, ups and downs, throughout his entire lifetime. The most important time to strengthen ourselves in simcha is when we have fallen. In the midst of the nissayon, he must strengthen himself in simcha and have faith that this, too, will pass. There is a remarkable story in “Kochvei Or” about a man who was digging in the ground when he suddenly discovered a diamond worth a million dollars. He thought it was just a piece of glass, at first, but when he showed it to another man, the latter confirmed that that it was most certainly a real diamond! “It’s worth a fortune,” he said, “but you won’t find anyone in this village, or even in this land that can afford to buy it.” So he decided to travel to London. He sold his house and everything he owned; his broken furniture and torn clothes, but the money he earned afforded him only the ride to the harbor. At the harbor he ran into the captain of a boat who inquired what he was his business there? The man pulled the diamond out of his pocket and showed it to the captain. “I have a precious diamond,” he replied. The captain’s eyes popped out greedily. “With such a diamond you may come aboard my ship. You don’t have to pay me for the ride now.” The captain set him up in a comfortable room and gave him three good meals a day. One day, the man was sitting at his table, eating his meal when he suddenly decided to examine his precious diamond. He took it out and looked it over with glee. Feeling very tired then, he placed the diamond on the table and soon fell fast asleep. Meanwhile, the waiter entered into his room to clean up after the meal. Without paying any attention to the contents on the table, the waiter picked up the cloth with all the leftovers and diamond inside and shook it out of the window, into the sea. When the man awoke, you can imagine his horrible shock when he saw that the diamond was missing. He nearly fainted, his heart almost stopped beating. He knew that if the captain were to discover what had happened he would surely throw him into the sea to join his long lost diamond. The man decided that he had no choice but to be strong and remain happy. Using supernatural powers, he put a smile on his face and forced himself to appear happy. A few minutes later the captain came by to visit. The Yid gave him such a warm smile and began to dance about the room, laughing and rejoicing. The captain had never seen him so happy. Truthfully, though, the Yid knew that this burst of joy would not last long; soon his heart would start beating furiously once more. When the captain saw what a happy man he was, he said to him, “Let’s make a deal, you and I. Everyone thinks I am a pirate. When I arrive in London, everyone will inquire from where I have received the merchandise aboard my ship. You are a merciful Jew, please have mercy on me. Let’s sign a deal and put this entire ship, including all of the gold and diamonds in your name. I trust you. You are a great merchant, you are very successful, and you’ve got that huge diamond…” The captain then signed everything over to the Yid. Then, as the boat approached the harbor, the captain suddenly got a stroke and died. Now, the entire ship, with all of its priceless merchandise belonged to the Jew.  
Rabbenu introduced the world to a completely new revelation: ‘You should know that there is no despair in the world at all.’ There is no such a thing as despair, even in the most difficult times, even with the greatest disasters. If the person would hold on to simcha for even five minutes, dance and sing, he would see how everything would turn around for the best. One must always come home with a smile on his face, always come home happy! At home, your family doesn’t need to know about your troubles and that you are going through hard times. If you can’t bring yourself to smiling and being happy, sit outside in the stairwell and practice forcefully smiling. Practice all sorts of gestures of happiness and when you’re ready, go inside with a happy face. If the person would remain strong and stay happy he could merit the most wondrous miracles in the world. The entire avodah (work) of a person is to remain happy, no matter what. He must constantly say, “Everything is for the best”. That is the main nissayon. If the person would say, “everything is for the best” about everything, he would find his way out of every type of suffering and difficulty in the world. He’ll see wonders and miracles. A person must be happy, sing and thank Hashem at all times, before the troubles befall him. Don’t wait around for the troubles to come and then have to work hard to get out of them. Then, when your troubles are over you’ll be forced to give thanks, sing and offer a korban Todah. We should just always be happy, always sing to Hashem and recognize the greatness of Hashem. “Every neshama shall praise Hashem”, with every breath we should praise Hashem. You’re breathing? Be happy! One must sing for every breath he breathes. Don’t wait around for the troubles to come. If you’ll be happy, sing to Hashem and thank Him constantly, the troubles won’t need to come at all.

The main avodah is to not be sad for even one second, because there is no reason at all to be sad or depressed. We must believe that every person has the chance to have everything good, materialistically and spiritually, to succeed in every aspect of his life. We should be happy that Hashem did not make us goyim, that he made us Jews: Baruch Hashem I merited keeping Shabbos, I merited putting on Tefillin… Be happy that you merited praying; it’s as though you found a diamond worth millions! One must constantly draw upon himself simcha, endless simcha. If you don’t know what to be happy about then be happy that Hashem created us as G-dly creations; that is the greatest joy! “Yisrael shall be happy with He who made them, the children of Tzion shall rejoice in their King.” We should be happy with Hashem, that He created us; “We are His nation and the sheep of His flock.” Hashem created us for His honor: “Blessed is He, our G-d, Who created us for His honor, and separated us from the wrongdoers.” We should rejoice in the fact that Hashem created us for His honor; so that we should learn and daven, so that the whole world will see - all the nations will see that the greatest weapon of the Jewish people is Torah and Tefilla, since Hashem sees that we have true simcha. He sees that we are happy with Him and will therefore nullify all the decrees and all the troubles. So, what is left for you to do? Start rejoicing in Hashem, be happy with Hashem, only Hashem, with Him you can be happy! He is the Omnipotent, Hashem is for all eternity, He loves you, He created you, Hashem believes in you, Hashem believes in your teshuva. He will never ever leave you and He will give you everything you need.       

Monday, January 12, 2015

R' Chaim Knievsky "Go to Rav Berland, he's a holy man"

This morning a litvish man who Rav Berland invited to him walked into Reb Chaim Knievsky and asked if he should go. Reb Chaim answered "Go to him, he's a holy man". (heard from source)

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Torah lesson on Parshas Shemos by Rabbi Eliezer Berland Shlit"a

Parshas Shemos
By Rav Eliezer Berland Shlit”a

“And he led the sheep after the desert.” (Shmos 3:1)

There is a diamond and the diamond is inside of a box. There is a man who spends his entire day renovating the box, polishing it and caring for it. But what about the diamond itself? The main thing is the diamond! The main thing is the neshama!
The Torah says that Moshe Rabbenu used to herd his sheep after the desert. What does this mean, “after the desert?” What does it mean, “And he went after the dessert”? What, Moshe went to look for better grass for the sheep to graze? Rabbi Avraham, son of the Rambam says, “Moshe went in search for a desert beyond the desert.” He was not satisfied with just any desert; he was seeking a desert far from all other deserts, one that no one ever travels through, one that no foot ever treads upon. Only there could he come to his shleimus – completeness, to truly cling to Hashem, to know that “ein od milvado” – there is none other than Him, to know that he has no ties to this world – the Olam Hazeh – to anything materialistic. He wanted to come to self nullification before the Supreme.  
A person must strip himself from all gashmius – materialism, and know that there is no gashmius, there is no world – this world is a dream, it is no more than imagination. The Zohar Hakadosh (in Parshas Shlach) says that in the future, there will be nothing left of this world – nothing at all! Not one hair will remain! No houses, no assets, no troubles, nothing will remain of this world! As long as a person has even one memory left of this world, he cannot complete his tikkun (rectification), unless he is given troubles and sufferings to purify him from the lusts of this world, from the hallucinations of the Olam Hazeh, until he forgets it all, until he has not one memory left of this world (no connections or ties to this world). A person cannot enter the Olam Haba (World to Come) if he has anything left from his body and from this world in general. In the Olam Haba there are no houses, there is no food, nothing! Everything is going to be completely different. The body will turn into a neshama and nothing else will remain of this world.
A story was told about “Rabbi Shimshon of the forest”, a Breslover Chassid who served Hashem day and night with such passion and strength to the point that he suddenly fell and passed away. One night, he came to Reb Avraham Berenyu, a grandson of Rabbenu, in a dream and told him the story of his passing. “Reb Nosson came and took me to Rabenu Hakadosh. The Rebbe said to me, ‘who says you are a Breslover Chassid? You were in Uman, you went to my gravesite, you did a messirus nefesh, it’s all true! But to be a Breslover Chassid is not so simple, it doesn’t come so easily. I have a notepad here, let’s look into it and see.’ The Rebbe looked into his notepad and said, ‘it’s okay, you’re in my notepad, so you are a Breslover Chassid. But you still smell of the Olam Hazeh!’ So long as a person has something left from the Olam Hazeh, some point that binds him to this world, a smell of gashmius, of ta’avas for this world (lusts and desires), he cannot come to his place in Heaven. Two angels came along then and took me to the river “Dinor”, a river of fire and immersed me. What can I say? How can I describe the extent of the suffering and pain I experienced in that river? Unimaginable and unthinkable. There is no such pain in this world. However, the extent of the pleasure one feels after being cleansed in that river is also beyond description. After immersing in the river, Reb Nosson took me back to Rabbenu. The Rebbe replied, “You still have a smell of the Olam Hazeh. Go immerse once more! One must have no faith at all in the Olam Hazeh, no connection whatsoever to this world! Until the person rids himself from all the impurities and contaminations of this world, he cannot enter the Olam Haba. Reb Nosson took me to immerse once again in the river of fire. Upon returning to Rabbenu, he declared, “indeed, you are now purified.”
We all want a life of eternity. The body is just a box; the body is a box for the neshama. Why did Hashem create for us a body? This is only to prevent the neshama from going up (to Heaven) before its time. The neshama has no desire at all to be in this world, it always wants to return to Shamayim, to its source. It has no connection to this world at all. Again it is forced to eat, again it is forced to drink – it is fed up! The person must eat because if he doesn’t, his neshama will escape and return up above to its source. The neshama has no desire at all to be down here! 120 years is all too much, as far as the neshama is concerned. It can’t take anymore down here, it wants to leave. It will last until 120 years but only through eating. This is why we must look after the needs of our body. Yet the body is really just a box for the neshama. It’s like a diamond inside of a box and there is a person who spends his days looking after the box, fixing it up, caring for it, that’s all very nice, but what will be with the diamond?! The most important thing is the diamond! The main thing is the neshama! Fix up the diamond! Polish it! You are a G-dly creation! Why are you polishing up the box? Why? So that it will shine? You waste your life polishing it, in the end it won’t shine anymore because you’ll have polished it too much. Nothing will remain from the body – from the box. That box serves as a cover; it is the cover for the diamond!
You must seek out that diamond. Every person has two ways to go, as it says in the Torah, “See that I have given to you life and goodness, death and evil… and you shall choose life.” Does man really need to be told not to choose death?! Who chooses death?! Rather, this is to show us that here in this world, everything is confused, everything is topsy turvey. Death appears to be life. Materialism and lusts appear to a person to be a good life, where as life – prayer and the Torah Hakedosha appear to people as death! This is why the Torah warns us to beware: What you may think is life is actually death – beware! You could die! “And you shall choose life” – choose the Torah, kedusha and purity. Every person is fighting long and difficult battles. So many people have entered kedusha and avodas Hashem and many could not withstand the nissyonos (trials); they couldn’t hold on. As soon as the evil thoughts and desires enter the person’s mind, the person breaks and thinks, “Perhaps this way is not really for me?”
What, you have another way?! “And you shall choose life”, there is good and there is bad. There is no middle. There is no such thing as, “This is not right for me.” If you are not choosing life then you are choosing death! You might fall and leave the Torah way, see forbidden sights, etc. That is why you must choose life.

Truthfully, if a person wants to come close to Hashem, if he would just want this, nothing stands in the way of true desire. Nothing can stand in the way of a G-dly desire. Whatever the person desires, he will achieve, as Reb Nosson says in Likutei Halachos, “People who wanted to get rich traveled to diamond mines; they travel across distances, through jungles, facing Indians, across deserts… most of these people were killed along the way. They gave their lives to travel far in order to earn a kilo of gold or a kilo of diamonds. So a person won’t go through such a messirus nefesh for the sake of Hashem? For the sake of kedusha?’ We can learn a lesson from the Sitra Achra (the Evil Side). Look how hard people work for the Sitra Achra! University students sit day and night learning, barely sleeping for the sake of nonsense, for a temporary world. So we can’t sit and learn Torah for the sake of Hakadosh Baruch Hu? We can’t make an effort? 

Hachnasas Sefer Torah in the main Etz Chaim synagogue in Amsterdam

Rabbi Berland is currently being honored by the local Rabbi's with the writing of the final letters. And the hachnasas sefer torah is beginning.

Listen to the Rav speaking live from the event on the information line +972-58-328-7777 ext 11 After the event: Interview with the Gabai of the Etz Chaim synagogue "We are very happy that the Rabbi is here and that the chassidim learn by us" Listen to the full interview in Hebrew on the information line +972-58-328-7777 ext 41