The Chabad Weekly - Chabad of Beverly Hills
The Chabad Weekly
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Seuda Shlishit is sponsored
by the Horowitz family in
memory of Alice Horowitz’s
Yartzhiet: Ita Chein – Elul
17, Nissim Rochel - Elul 18,
Rivka Molayem – Elul 18, Alice
Horowitz - Elul 21.
Birthday to Raz
Godasi, Benyamin Molayem,
Joshua Bekhor, Ethel Perles,
Lida Davidpour, Ayala Sulami,
Dr. Daniel Ganjian, Amir
Cohen, Rivka Sulami, Gabriela
Beroukhim and Yisr oel
Happy Anniversary to Rabbi
and Mrs. Reuven Mintz, Rabbi
and Mrs. Yosi Mayberg.
Chabad of Beverly Hills
Parshas Ki Tavo
Friday, 17 Elul 5774 / September 12, 2014
as an Acquired State
By Tali Loewenthal
For most people, the vacation is well
and truly over. The relaxed atmosphere of the summer has been replaced by the challenge of a new
season, whether in academic study,
business, or simple daily life. At this
point people sometimes ask themselves: am I really happy? Wouldn't I
always prefer the carefree atmosphere of the vacation, traveling,
doing as I please, being free...?
Indeed there are many for whom the
summer months themselves were
tense and problematic, for whatever
reason. How do they look towards
the coming months of the autumn?
With joy or with foreboding?
At this point our Torah portion is
enlightening. It reveals that joy and
gloom are not, as we might suppose, a kind of thermometer of our
general situation in life: if everything
is alright, the person is happy; if not,
he feels miserable.
The Torah suggests that joyfulness
is a state of mind which we should
aspire to achieve in virtually every
situation, especially when things are
going well, but even if unfortunately
there are set-backs.
A long section of the Torah de-
This Shabbos there will
be a catered Kiddush in
honor of Chai Elul
Rabbi Tzvi Freeman
Author of “Bringing Heaven
Down to Earth”
Morris Rochel in memory
of his father’s yartzheit
By Dr. and Mrs. Yakov
Ganjian and Family
409 Foothill Rd.
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
scribes the terrible suffering
which will come to the JewRabbi Yosef Shusterman
ish people if, when they are
in the Land of Israel, they
do not properly serve G-d.
The Torah speaks of destruction, famine, war, illwards a balanced and joyful state
ness, exile. The sins which provoke
of mind, despite all. That joy, he
this terrible punishment seem to be
says, is the key to inner mastery. It
those of idolatry and general rebelenables the person to win as a
lion against G-d's law.
human being and as a Jew, despite
Yet then comes a surprising statethe pain. Paradoxically, a person
ment. Why have these terrible
can experience grief and at the
things happened? "Because you
same time feel a sense of joy.
did not serve G-d with joy and a
happy heart, when you had everything" (Deuteronomy 28:47).
This coming Shabbat is Chai Elul, the
Maimonides writes that this verse
shows that one must serve G-d
with joy. The same comment is
made by the great kabbalist Rabbi
Isaac Luria, and this is a central
theme of the Chassidic movement.
Our lives as Jews should be joyful;
keeping Commandments should be
joyful. Even when we have done
wrong, perhaps something seriously wrong, and we regret the
past and attempt to mend our ways
for the future -- we should at the
same time be joyful that G-d grants
us this possibility of change.1
The Chassidic masters ask us to
be joyful also when we have serious problems! Rabbi Schneur Zalman gives advice in his Tanya how
to achieve a state of joy even if, Gd forbid, a person has grave worries concerning health, children or
lack of livelihood; or if one has
distressing guilt feelings about the
past; or if one regards oneself as a
terrible person in the present. In
each case he presents a path to-
Shabbos Elul 18 ( Sept 13) is
the birthdays of the
Baal Shem Tov
founder of the Chassidic
movement and the
(Rabbi Shneur Zalman)
18th of Elul. Chai Elul was the date of
birth of two great luminaries - the Baal
Shem Tov, founder of general Chasidut
and Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi, founder of Chabad Chasidut.
The Previous Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi
Yosef Yitzchak Schneerson, described
Chai Elul by saying that it introduces
chayot - life energy - into the service of
the month of Elul.
The service of Elul includes Torah study,
prayer and mitzvot (commandments) as
well as teshuva (repentance) and redemption. The Baal Shem Tov taught that
at each moment, creation is renewed.
When G-d created the world from total
nothingness, the first moment of existence that He created included within it
every moment that would follow.
Similarly, at every moment, as G-d totally
recreates the world anew, every moment
includes all previous and all subsequent
moments, just as the first moment of
creation included all time.
This concept helps us understand teshuva
- return and repentance. It is explained
that in one moment of true repentance a
person can compensate for inadequacies
in his behavior over many years.
Indeed, with one turn of sincere teshuva,
one can compensate for all the past
transgression, even those committed in
previous incarnations. How is that possible? Because each moment contains
within it the totality of time and can thus
alter the nature of the events that occurred previously.
This concept, although true at all times,
receives greater emphasis during the
month of Elul. And Chai Elul contributes
the dimension of chayot - life energy - to
all of this. On this basis, we can understand the uniqueness of Chai Elul. (Rabbi
Shmuel Butman)(From L’Chaim # 1188) - lchaimweekly.org
SCHEDULE OF CLASSES
Sunday 8:00 AM
Gemara – Tractate Sanhedrin
Monday 8:00 PM
Chumash (men and women)
Tuesday 8:00 PM
Tractate Kesuvos (men)
Wednesday 8:30 PM
Halacha and Tanya (women)
Thursday 10:00 AM
Chassidus 6:45 AM– 7:15 AM
6:00 AM & 7:30 AM
7:00 AM & 9:00 AM
Before the Baal Shem Tov, people thought of G‑d as the One
who directs all things from above
and beyond. The Baal Shem Tov
taught that the vital force of
each thing, the place from which
comes its personality, its sense of
pain and pleasure, its growth and
life—that itself is G‑d.
Not that this is all of G‑d. It is less
than a glimmer of G‑d. Because
G‑d is entirely beyond all such
But that life force is G‑d as He is
found within each creature He
Tanya, part 2, chapter 1.
From the wisdom of the Lubavitcher
Rebbe, of righteous memory;
words and condensation by Rabbi
Tzvi Freeman. - Chabad.org
Story of the Week:
TODAY VS. YESTERDAY
A young scholar came to Rabbi
Yisrael the Baal Shem Tov with a
question. He had discovered a contradiction in the teachings of the
sages, and wanted to hear how the
chasidic master would resolve it.
On the one hand, the Talmud
person's parnassa (income and livelihood) for the entire year is determined on Rosh Hashana. On the
other hand, it also declares that "a
person is judged each day" for his
livelihood. Was this not a contradiction?
The Baal Shem Tov led the young
Talmudist to the window, and
pointed to a water-carrier who was
passing by with a pole across his
back and a pail of water tied at
"Come, let's speak with him," he
"Feivel, how are you doing today,
my friend?" the Baal Shem Tov
"How is your health and how is
"Thank G d, I'm fine," replied the
water-carrier, but then sighed unhappily. He complained about how
difficult it was to carry such heavy
pails all day, and yet he barely
made enough money to survive.
Not only that, but the local children
teased him, and sometimes tipped
over his pails.
The Baal Shem Tov responded
with a few commiserating words
and a parting blessing. He and the
student then returned to the house.
"I don't understand," said the young
man, still perplexed. "How does
what he said answer my question?"
The Baal Shem Tov smiled. "Come
again tomorrow at this time and
The next day, they stood at the
Baal Shem Tov's window, waiting
for the water-carrier to pass by. As
soon as they spotted him, they
quickly went out to speak to him
"Nu, Feivel, how are things today?"
asked the Baal Shem Tov.
"Thank G d, I can't complain," answered the water-carrier cheerfully.
"I have steady business-after all,
everyone needs water. I'm not rich,
but I get by. The pails are heavy,
but praise G d, I have a strong
"And what about the children who
bother you?" the Baal Shem Tov
"Children!" laughed the watercarrier. "G d bless them! Children
are supposed to be mischievous,
aren't they? Besides, I can always
buy them off with a bit of candy."
The water-carrier continued on his
way with a wave, and the Baal
Shem Tov turned to his visitor.
"Do you see? He did the same
thing yesterday and today and
made the same amount of money,
yet his feelings about it were completely different. It is true that a
person's income for the entire
year is fixed irrevocably on Rosh
Hashana. But how we receive our
daily allotment differs each day,
depending on the daily judgment.".
HaYom Yom Elul 18
Birth of the Baal Shem Tov in 5458
(1698). The day his holy teacher1 and
master appeared to him in 5484
(1724). The day the Baal Shem Tov
became revealed2 in 5494 (1734).
Birth of the Alter Rebbe 5505
Outline of the Baal Shem Tov's discourse on Shabbat Tavo, Chai (18th)
Elul 5652 (1892), after Kabalat Shabbat:
It will be when you come into the land
(eretz) that the Eternal your G-d
gives you for an inheritance, and you
will inherit it and dwell in it.
The Midrash notes that eretz is an
idiom of merutza (running) and of
ratzon (will, desire). When you attain
the level of ratzon, "desire," that is a
gift from Above and an inheritance
for every one of Israel, then your
avoda is "...you will dwell in it" - to
internalize all you have attained,
"bringing it down" in a settled manner.
"You shall take...and place it in a basket," - draw down the (spiritual)
lights into (appropriate) vessels.
"You shall go to the place the Eternal
your G-d will choose" - a Jew must
know that when he goes from one
place to another, he is not going on
his own, but is being directed from
Above. And the intention and purpose
in this is...
"...to cause His Name to dwell there"
- that is, to make G-d known in his
(that Jew's) locale.
After Maariv the Baal Shem Tov
repeated this discourse and added:
"It will be when you come..." For you
to attain the level of "desire"11 etc.
it is necessary that... "you shall go to
the place, etc... to cause His Name to
dwell there." You are to utterly dedicate yourself to making G-d known
there. How does one "make G-d
known"? With a b'racha and a verse
"Every mitzva that a Jew does
creates a defending angel, and
every sin creates a prosecuting
Rabbi Zusha of Anipoli used to
say: "I never saw a whole angel
created by the transgression of a
Jew. Every angel created by a sin
is missing a limb. Every Jew has
an innate belief and faith in G-d,
and even if he slips and commits
a sin, he immediately regrets his
action, sighs, and is sorry for
what he has done. These sighs
have the power to maim the
limbs of the resulting prosecuting angels." (Otzar HeChasidut)
(From L'Chaim #826)
And it shall come to pass, when
you come into the land which the L
-rd your G-d is giving you (Deut.
The Jews' entrance into the land of
Israel is symbolic of the soul's descent into the body and its being
forced to live in the physical world.
The Midrash teaches that the words
"and it shall come to pass" are always used to denote something of
great joy. Though the G-dly soul is
saddened when it temporarily
leaves its place under G-d's throne
to dwell in a Jewish body for a certain number of years, it is a joyous
occurrence, since the descent is to
elevate the corporeal world through
doing mitzvot (commandments).
(The Lubavitcher Rebbe)
Blessed shall you be in the city, and
blessed shall you be in the field
A city has certain advantages over
rural life, among them the pleasure
of others' company and the availability of places of Torah and learning. Rural life also has its advantages, such as a more relaxed life
style, fresher air, and warmer relationships between neighbors. G-d's
blessing is that we should be
equally blessed in both locales.
From: L’Chaim #1285
Prayer without direction of the heart
is like a body without a soul... Love
of G‑d and fear of G‑d are the two
wings by which a deed rises heavenward. (Alter Rebbe)