Category: Bitachon

Trust in G-d, and in how He is running the universe.

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The Five Hardest Words

At Mussar Kallah V, R’ Ephraim Becker said something that really resonated with me. Of all the phrases in English that one could say — and mean what one says — which five words are hardest? R’ Becker offered the sentences: “I’m fine. How are you?” To say “I’m fine” and really mean it, one must have bitachon, belief that...

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The Kindness of Hashem

For many years — from before my bar mitzvah until my marriage — I had the honor to learn with Rabbi Matis Blum (who was a teen when we started) on Shabbos morning. Yesterday I had the heartwrenching experience of attending his wife’s funeral. Rebbetzen Etty Blum was 45 at the time, a mother of ten children. I just want...

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Vera’isa es Achorai

After the Golden Calf, Moshe asks Hashem if he could see His “Face”. Hashem then said, ‘I have a special place where you can stand on the rocky mountain. When My glory passes by, I will place you in a crevice in the mountain, protecting you with My power until I pass by. I will then remove My “Palms”, וְרָאִ֖יתָ...

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Lehman Brothers and Bitachon

During last night’s commute home, someone asked me how my preparations for Rosh haShanah were going. I had to admit, not well, as I had no thoughts as to which particular issues were calling for my attention this year, which were the battles to choose to fight. Thank G-d, this morning I saw the following by R’ Chaim Brown on...

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Emunah and Bitachon

There is a halakhah of semikhas ge’ulah letefillah, that one must finish the last berakhah after Shema, that about the redemption, immediately before the Shemoneh Esrei, with no interruptions. The Mishnah Berurah even advises that in Shacharis the chazan should whisper the end of the berakhah to himself, so that the congregation would not be obligated to interrupt between their...

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Bitachon: Trust that …?

There are three basic models of bitachon: 1- Bitachon is the belief that everything will turn out okay. This message is taught in an entire genre of stories which create the image that if you only are properly observant and had sufficient bitachon, the only airplane you would ever miss is one that ch”v is going to crash. This notion...

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Bitachon and Melukhah

Perhaps it is just that we have been exploring these two topics simultanously, but I think there is an interesting relationship between them. I wrote about bitachon that Bitachon is awareness that the A-lmighty is acting in a covenental partnership with you. It is from there that Rav Dessler’s formula for hishtadlus emerges, one partner only picks up what he...

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More on Finance and Bitachon

In an earlier post, I mentioned R’ Elchanan Wasserman’s essay on the Great Depression. ) Despite the past couple of days looking promising, it is still too early to rest comfortably. The markets are still volatile, meaning there is too much uncertainty. A 10% one day jump isn’t meaningful — people’s opinion of what the typical US company is worth...

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The True Hero of Chanukah

No, the title of this post doesn’t refer to HQBH, although clearly it could. (Or can it: Can we define “heroism” with respect to One for Whom there are no risks to take?) Nor Yehudah haMakabi, nor Matisyahu, nor Chana or any of her sons, nor Yehudis… The Beis Yoseif famously asks why we celebrate the first day of Chanukah....

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For the Good

אמר רבי אבהו כתיב (תהילים ד:ב) “בְּקָרְאִי עֲנֵנִי אֱ-לֹהֵי צִדְקִי, בַּצָּר הִרְחַבְתָּ לִּי[; חָנֵּנִי, וּשְׁמַע תְּפִלָּתִי].” אמר דוד לפני הקדוש ברוך הוא, “רבון העולמים! כל צרה שהייתי נכנס לה, אתה הייתה מרחיבה לי. נכנסתי לצרתה של בת שבע, ונתת לי את שלמה. נכנסתי לצרתן של ישראל ונתת לי את בית המקדש:” Rabbi Avohu said: It says, “When I called, You...

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Casting Lots

Regardless of what one believes about Creation and the origin of the species, we have evolution since then. In order to even entertain the possibility of evolution as the origin of the species, one would have to understand that “random mutation” is not random, but Divinely guided. So that in addition to the filtering effects of “survival of the fittest”...

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A Retrospective Implication of Bitachon

Saying that I have bitachon, trust that Hashem sets up the world I experience to maximize my opportunity for success, implies that I believe that all of my failures are due to my own decisions. So, if I am not succeeding, there are really only two possibilities. Either I am not carrying my own side of the partnership. In which...

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A Mishpat for the G-d of Yaaqov

תִּקְעוּ בַחֹדֶשׁ שׁוֹפָר, בַּכֵּסֶה לְיוֹם חַגֵּנוּ. כִּי חֹק לְיִשְׂרָאֵל הוּא, מִשְׁפָּט לֵאלֹקֵי יַעֲקֹב. Blow the shofar at the new moon, at the fullness for our holiday. For it is a choq [a trans-rational statute] for Yisrael, a mishpat [just law] of the G-d of Yaaqov. – Tehillim 81:4-5 The Malbim (ad loc) writes (tr. Rabbi Mordechai Torczyner): We do not...