Emuna Yomi Tweets
Based on the book The Garden of Emuna by Rabbi Shalom Arush, translated to English by Rabbi Lazer Brody.
started 2 Shvat 5777 (Jan. 29, 2017).
1: Emuna is the solution to all problems, grants happiness & inner peace, has power to help a person bloom into their very best.
2: All of life’s questions have one universal key: Emuna. Emuna is like the master key to life’s locked dilemmas.
3a: Emuna: Original biblical Hebrew term for a firm belief in a single, supreme, omniscient, benevolent, supernatural —
3b: — & all-powerful Creator of the universe, which we refer to as God.
4: God alone cares for each of us in a unique, tailor-made fashion according to our own individual needs.
5: Everything that happens to us in life is the product of God’s will & personal intervention in our lives — Divine Providence.
6: Divine Providence is designed to help us perform our task in life.
7: Divine Providence determines events on a global scale & the tiniest details in the universe, even the evening meal of a worm.
8: God decides when we succeed and when we fail, when times are easy and when times are hard.
9: Completing one’s soul correction (Tikkun) is the loftiest achievement a person can accomplish in this material world.
10: Often must suffer or have hardship to reach higher spiritual level or correction of the soul. Like athlete suffers training.
11: Once develop deep sense of Emuna, then the puzzle-pieces of life suddenly come together in a picture of striking clarity.
12: God has one simple request from each of us — that we get to know Him.
13: Daily events & experiences are personal messages from God, to stimulate our Emuna, encourage us to speak to Him.
14: The closer one gets to God, the better one gets to know Him.
15: Proximity to God & thereby getting to know Him are the ultimate soul correction, our individual goal & mission on earth.
16: God, in His limitless love for each of us, directs our lives in a manner that helps us successfully achieve soul correction.
17: Understand that all in our lives is for our own ultimate good. Allows to cope with situations without stress, worry, anxiety.
18: When we ignore God’s personal messages, He is compelled to send “louder” messages (situations of greater difficulty).
19: If fail to know God when all good, risk of getting trouble with no natural or logical solution. Then can only cry out to God.
20: The more we cooperate with God to achieve our ultimate soul correction, the easier our lives become.
21: Zohar: God wields rod, leads son on straight path. Mishle “God reproves those He loves & like a father, mollifies the child.”
22: If God reproves those He loves, then doesn’t reprove those He hates. A life without trials & tribulations isn’t a good sign.
23: Ignorance of fact that God loves us & is helping us reach our soul correction is root of suffering, worry & anxiety.
24: Those constantly seeking God don’t need the superfluous “wake-up calls” of extreme tribulations.
25: Those that think they alone control their fate are prime candidates for suffering and emotional ills.
26: God often gives us a “jolt” in the form of some difficulty or challenge that forces us to seek His help.
27: God closes those doors that aren’t beneficial for our souls, yet opens the doors that lead to what’s best for each of us.
28: Task is to develop our spiritual antennae & to discern, by correctly processing God’s messages to us, what He wants from us.
29: Athlete knows & trusts that coach wants to build him or her up into winner & champion. Need same knowledge of & trust in God.
30: With hindsight, we’d understand that God did something that seemed harsh at the time, for our ultimate good.
31: Emuna turns hindsight into the foresighted knowledge that God is leading each & everyone of us on the very best path.
32: Without Emuna, a person is doomed to a life of confusion, frustration & costly mistakes that could have been avoided.
33: A person that ignores God’s messages creates a lack of communication with God.
34: Stubborn people that lack Emuna force God to send them all types of obstacles to prevent them from wasting their lives.
35: Those who squander their days trying to satisfy physical appetites, while ignoring God’s commandments, can expect misery.
36: Strife among nations impossible in world of Emuna. Each nation would realize has its own task in the global scheme of things.
37: Just as a carpenter doesn’t compete with a butcher, the nations of the world would cooperate in peace, rather than fight.
38: R’ Nahman: As knowledge of God increases, there will be no more damage & cruelty. Mercy & compassion will spread.
39: Only the fear of getting caught & punished deters unbelieving person from theft, embezzlement, murder & adultery.
40: Where there’s no Emuna, there’s corruption and anarchy. Injustice becomes the norm and humans become heartless.
41: Emuna restrains & refines a person, by teaching them to be satisfied with their lot & not to covet what God gives neighbor.
42: Truth prevents conflict & mass destruction. Can obtain truth only via Emuna. Emuna needed for world’s continued existence.
43: Emuna girds us with phenomenal inner strength & enables us to successfully weather life’s difficult tests & challenges.
44: Emotional breakdowns & despair all result from a lack of Emuna. Life is unbearable when one loses hope.
45: King Hezekia: Tradition from King David: Even if a sharp sword is at throat, don’t lose hope in Divine mercy. Berahot 10a.
46: Everyone has Emuna, but most people fail to “live” it. They don’t know how to apply the concept of Emuna to daily practice.
47: We tap our cogent resources of Emuna once we begin speaking with God and asking for all our needs.
48: Eumna isn’t activited in its entirety until a person begins a daily dialog with God, namely through prayer.
49: Doubts: that have power & privilege to speak to God in our own language & words, whenever we wish.
50: Doubts: that God listens to us, heeds our prayers & those of every creation; loves each of us & desires to help us.
51: Doubts: that God’s power & mercy are limitless & has abilities to help us in any situation, even when we don’t deserve it.
52: With true Emuna, any person, w/ simple personal prayer & dialog w/ God can transcend any natural limitation & work wonders.
53: Don’t ever forget that God listens to, sees, and personally provides for the lowest and simplest creatures in the universe.
54: Each prayer has its power, & each request requires a certain amount of prayer or spiritual power to bring it about.
55: The Zohar explains that entrance-level Emuna is the cognizance of a world to come, far beyond the limited material world.
56: If a human does things for a purpose only, then rest assured that God does nothing without a specific and very good purpose.
57: Every mineral, plant, animal, and human has an important task to perform in the overall scheme of creation.
58: God gave humans fabulous intellectual potential, physical capabilities & spiritual power for a definitive purpose.
59: We can surmise that there must be a continuation of spiritual life far beyond physical demise.
60: Our powers of cognizance are enhanced when we realize our lives began long before we’re born & continue long after we die.
61: The knowledge that God does everything for our eternal benefit should be engraved on our hearts and minds.
62: Mind-boggling set of Divine considerations influences a person’s life & longevity: deeds, former lives, public edicts & more.
63: Don’t be surprised if hear of young, upright people that die suddenly. They’ve completed their soul correction & mission.
64: Arizal: Encounter most resistance in area of our mission on earth. Evil inclination doesn’t want us to complete successfully.
65: The more we’re hampered by the Yetzer Hara, the evil inclination, the more we have to accomplish on earth.
66: Sometimes, soul makes brief visit to earth. Soul of R’ Yosef Karo returned as baby & died right after his circumcision.
67: Lack of even one small but critical detail makes God’s lovingkindness seem like cruelty. Entire picture seems flawed.
68: Emuna, our unshakable belief & trust in God, fills in the missing pieces that our limited vision sometimes creates.
69: God gave mankind, and the Jewish people in particular, clear instructions as to one’s purpose in life.
70: We have holy Torah & commandments, & righteous sages & spiritual leaders of every generation that lead us on path of truth.
71: Can’t achieve & internalize genuine Emuna w/o Torah. Humans, swayed by own interests & appetites will decide warped “truth”.
72: Life is a labyrinth of utter chaos in the absence of Torah, where confused people live lives of folly and fantasy.
73: Without Torah, the world is a heartless hothouse of strife, hatred, slander, theft, revenge, cruelty, adultery & injustice.
74: A life of Torah is like a smooth ride in a new car when the owner fulfills all the manufacturer’s instructions.
75: Torah: God’s manual for welfare of our body & spirit, shows us how to be happy, respect our fellow man & raise our children.
76: True Torah observers deal honestly, help others, rejoice when they’re happy; live worthy fulfilled lives, make world better.
77: Unfortunately, if a person learns Torah without striving for Emuna, then the power of Torah becomes lethal and damaging.
78: Instead of turning to God for all needs, they put their hopes in futile man, become easily worried, upset, quarrel w/ others.
79: Unbroken chain of righteous extends from Moses until today. They help us understand Torah, commandments, individual purpose.
80: Each of us must search for tzadik (righteous) of true spiritual stature to help find way to apply Torah to our daily lives.
81: 3 levels of Emuna: Basic, belief that all is from God; Intermediate, everything is for best; Upper, for specific purpose.
82: Everything that happens to us spiritually, materially, accidental, intended, no matter who or what the catalyst, is from God.
83: Rule of thumb to apply in daily life: anytime something happens that upsets us, we should let Emuna precede our intellect.
84: Anyone or anything that influences our lives, for better or for worse, is merely God’s messenger & an agent of Divine will.
85: God is on the scene, the cause behind all events, to create certain situations – personal messages for our ultimate benefit.
86: Law of spirituality: Any situation of tension, stress, or sorrow is none other than a test of faith. Need Emuna to overcome.
87: The intellect tries to grasp “rationale” straws that lead to sorrow, anger & frustration, which cause depression & despair.
88: R’ Nathan of Breslov explains that God designed the universe in such a way that prayer can effect a change in nature.
89: Complete Emuna enhances a person’s chances to be saved from any peril. A breach in Emuna is the gravest danger of all.
90: Before making a mistake, a person has free choice not to make a mistake. But after the fact, must believe that God willed it.
91: Our successes are a result of God’s intervention in our lives, & likewise our failures are the result of God’s intervention.
92: God knows what is best for us. We should accept our failures lovingly and with Emuna, just as we accept our successes.
93: If don’t accept setbacks lovingly, as arrogant as those who take pride in their successes. Attribute fate to themselves.
94: Failure is a true test of Emuna. Have to acknowledge that our mistakes, bad decisions or any other setbacks are God’s will.
95: “God is good to all, merciful.” Can’t say that believe in God while complaining about lot in life; contradiction in terms.
96: Intermediate-level Emuna is the belief that everything God does is for the very best, even though it may appear otherwise.
97: Mortals can’t see all variables God takes into account. Often, we see in retrospect how a bad situation turned out for best.
98: At other times, we never become privy to God’s considerations for putting us through a certain trying & rigorous situation.
99: Only God knows optimum tailored path that’s perfect for each of us. At times we see purpose of suffering, other times, don’t.
100: In midst of difficult tribulation, can’t SEE how predicament for our own good, but with Emuna can BELIEVE that for own good.
101: Our faith, our Emuna, gives us the strength to cope and to function at our best under any situation.
102: Intermediate-level Emuna not separate from basic-level Emuna. Stronger cognizance that EVERYTHING comes from God & for best.
103: Requirement: Shulchan Aruch (Code of Jewish Law) Orach Chaim 230:5: Each of us must believe that all God does is for best.
104: Belief that EVERYTHING is for the best doesn’t mean ALMOST everything. Can’t say “everything is for the best, except this.”
105: Understanding situation for the best isn’t Emuna that all is for the best. Spiritually, comprehension is lower than Emuna.
106: When brain no longer understands how God is doing everything for best, Emuna begins. Emuna kicks in when brain kicks out.
107: With Emuna we rejoice rather than succumb to despair/depression. When we’re happy, our brains operate much more efficiently.
108: R’ Natan: If would always believe in God & that all for best & give thanks & praise to Him for good & bad – get redemption.
109: Simple and pure Emuna neutralizes severe judgments, just like an alkaline neutralizes an acid.
110: Complete & simple Emuna of person that tries best to fulfill the Torah’s laws will lead to a life of gratifying sweetness.
111: God has no joy from the Torah and Mitzvot of a person with a sour attitude. They are incomplete without Emuna.
112: Observant person’s lack of Emuna shows their fulfillment of Mitzvot is mechanical. Proper intent connects person w/ Emuna.
113: Life’s difficulties are steppingstones; lead us to the destination God predetermined for the ultimate benefit of each of us.
114: Against our will & for no clear reason, we often face grueling physical, emotional, interpersonal & financial challenges.
115: Accept life’s trying times with Emuna. Such a positive outlook assures that the tough situation will soon reverse itself.
116: W/o Emuna, person is bitter, broken in spirit, disgruntled & virtually defeated. Bitterness & dark moods draw more troubles.
117: Emotional/spiritual burns lead to arguments, anger, worry, tension, stress, jealousy, sadness, revenge, despair, depression.
118: In actuality, choices begin with something very basic; namely, choosing whether we’ll be happy with our lot in life or not.
119: If fail to make initial choice of being happy w/ our lot, we can’t possibly weigh our options w/ clarity of thought & mind.
120: By being happy with whatever we’re doing right now and with our current circumstance, we repel depression and confusion.
121: When we desire a change in our life, yet can’t, it’s a sign that God wants us to continue in our current situation for now.
122: When can’t change situation, we should accept God’s will happily, & know that current situation is for our ultimate benefit.
123: We should express all our aspirations in prayer, & devote a special timeslot to telling God about our aspirations & desires.
124: Once we spend an hour a day pouring out our hearts to God, we are able to spend the remainder of the day in happiness.
125: Talk to God daily, ask Him help to fulfill aspirations; try best at what doing; accept current situation happily & w/ love.
126: Lack of spiritual success, despite best efforts, atones for period in our lives when we put much less effort in serving God.
127: God delays granting spiritual success if we aren’t strong enough to receive the enhanced Divine light of the higher plateau.
128: God delays spiritual success until we can properly learn to nullify our egos, so that the success won’t lead to arrogance.
129: God often delays success to encourage us to make a 2nd, more concerted effort. Delayed spiritual success is a test of Emuna.
130: Accepting interim situation happily, prepares us as suitable spiritual vessels to receive Divine light of spiritual success.
131: R’ Recanati, 1300s, prayed all life to study Torah, was merchant until age 80, then in 2 yrs wrote 40 texts of Torah/Kabala.
132: To attain genuine Emuna: spend one hour a day of introspection, confessing our wrongdoings to God and assessing our Emuna.
133: We must evaluate ourselves and ask, “Am I putting my Emuna to practice in all phases of my daily routine?”
134: Understanding God’s messages, spiritually awakening & learning how to correct ourselves, are products of upper-level Emuna.
135: At mid-level Emuna should be accepting life’s challenges w/ happiness. Then ready to understand message in each challenge.
136: Devoid of a good hold on intermediate-level Emuna, one shouldn’t attempt to understand God’s messages.
137: Without believing that God does everything for the best, a person can’t possibly reach a truthful conclusion.
138: Truth comes from a free and clear mind, and that comes from the happiness in knowing that God does everything for the best.
139: We therefore need intermediate-level Emuna in order to avoid erroneous conclusions in discerning God’s messages.
140: R’ Nachman of Breslev: happiness & freedom from worry lead to liberty of the brain that facilitates true mental composure.
141: If don’t use events of our lives as opportunities for growth, & constant introspection, maintaining hold on Emuna is tricky.
142: Silver lining in cloud of tribulation is that stimulates us to seek God. Our purpose in life is to seek & get to know Him.
143: Upper level Emuna belief that God does everything for specific purpose & conveys messages to help us perform our task.
144: Moreover, upper-level Emuna teaches that God sends us incessant stimuli that call us to strengthen our connection with Him.
145: OBSERVATION: God exposes me to a certain event or experience in order to convey a message or teach me something.
146: INTERPRETATION: I should do my best to relate God’s message to something in my life that needs reinforcement or improvement.
147: IMPLEMENTATION: Need to correct bad habit, atone for sin, strengthen service of God, awaken from spiritual slumber, etc.
148: Must all make an ongoing effort to observe the Divine wisdom in everything, & to connect to the Divine wisdom in everything.
149: When we connect, the Divine wisdom of a particular creation/event illuminates our brains & souls, drawing us closer to God.
150: If neither observes nor connects self to Divine wisdom of a particular creation or event resembles Esau, scorned birthright.
151: Nachmanides: A person doesn’t earn a share in the Torah until he believes that every thing or event in life is a miracle.
152: One who believes that God torments His creations for nothing consequently has a warped notion of Emuna.
153: If think that tribulations are the result of fate, chance, or natural course, contrary to Emuna.
154: If believe in Divine Providence, must believe that any sorrow, trouble, difficulty, and deficiency in life comes from God.
155: Our blemished souls diminish ability to get God’s divine light & prevent us from reaching optimal place in world to come.
156: God sends us tribulations that can cleanse our souls. Life’s difficulties aren’t punishments, they’re soul corrections.
157: Belief that no tribulations without transgressions brings us happiness when seize opportunity as trigger for soul-searching.
158: By viewing our difficulties in life as growth opportunities; we attain true and complete Emuna.
159: A devout person does daily soul-searching & confesses own misdeeds to God. If don’t soul-search, think you’re your own boss.
160: Love and devotion motivates the most laudable servant. Fear of punishment motivates the less commendable servant.
161: Since the “boss” thinks he can do whatever he wants whenever he wants, he doesn’t feel there’s anybody around to punish him.
162: By lacking the fear of punishment, the boss doesn’t even reach the spiritual plateau of the least commendable servant.
163: W/ even minimal fear of punishment, we fear results of sin & therefore make a daily accounting, confess to God & ask pardon.
164: Entrance-level servant knows that he or she will be rewarded for good conduct and punished for laziness and negligence.
165: Entrance-level Emuna begins with the belief in reward and punishment: Whatever happens in life, good or bad, comes from God.
166: If person remains in spiritual slumber & acts like a boss & not a servant, life’s difficulties become even more unbearable.
167: If attribute life’s difficulties to anything or anyone other than own transgressions, light-years away from minimal Emuna.
168: If fail to account for actions, never repent, fall deeper into spiritual slumber and becomes far removed from God.
169: Sadness: 1st & most common cause of suffering. Nothing invokes severe judgments as complaints & dissatisfaction w/ life.
170: By taking their blessings for granted & focusing on their difficulties, sad people make their lives even more insufferable.
171: Express unhappiness, Heaven examines closely & always discovers that really deserve more troubles & triggers new troubles.
172: Disgruntlement w/ lot in life is main cause of own suffering; goes hand in hand w/ ungratefulness to God & lack of Emuna.
173: Prolonged anguish often result of sins against other. Caused pain to other, can’t clear own sins until forgiven by victim.
174: As long as one’s injustices against a fellow human go uncorrected, severe judgments linger.
175: Tribulations can also indicate that either doing actions forbidden by Torah, or not fulfilling Torah’s obligatory actions.
176: God often uses suffering to deflate inflated egos. Proverbs: “Pride precedes destruction & arrogance comes before failure.”
177: Arrogant can’t get close to God. “Arrogant & I can’t dwell in same world.” When God removes His presence, suffering sets in.
178: God judges measure for measure. Samson pursued desire of eyes, eyes taken out. Absalom haughty about hair, hung by hair.
179: Diphtheria, stomach disease then blocks throat, punishment for slander. Negative “gut” feeling lead to slander. Shabat 33a.
180: Brahot 5b: R’ Huna had issue w/ field tenant; 400 wine casks soured; repented & accepted decree; price of vinegar shot up.
181: Rashi: Josef suffered measure for measure: told father 3 negative tales about brothers, his suffering related to each tale.
182: Jacob was away from parents 22 years, caused them anguish. Josef missing, thought dead 22 years, caused Jacob great anguish.
183: Baal Shev Tov: Trouble with children=neshama=thoughts, wife=ruach=speech, money=nefesh=deeds. Hint what needs to correct.
184: Son disobedient, parent likely disobeys God. Insolent children from insolent parents. Children treat us as we treat parents.
185: Wife is mirror of husband. Sees through her his traits. Marital difficulties can indicate lack of faith, arrogant, or lewd.
186: Berahot 5a: God sends suffering to those he loves, for soul-correction. Doesn’t bother with those who are steeped in evil.
187: Tribulations of love are an additional type of suffering designed especially for the righteous and the pious.
188: When suffering, self-evaluate & repent. If didn’t do anything wrong, was lax in Torah study; not lax, tribulations of love.
189: Most people not evil or righteous. Have trouble, figure out what did wrong, confess to God, remorse, apologize, improve.
190: Nobody wants trouble, but if comes, good sign. Shows that God cares about us very much & calling us to get closer to Him.
191: “God, help me understand what I did wrong. Have mercy on me & explain my suffering. I want to get close to you. Help me.”
192: If don’t understand reason for troubles, must resort on Emuna & remember that God does everything for a purpose.
193: If after prayers trouble doesn’t go away & still don’t understand reason, believe that for best AND for a specific purpose.
194: Accept tribulations w/ love & a subjugated heart. Invokes Divine compassion. Often, as soon as reconcile, trouble vanishes.
195: Thinking not strong enough to handle trouble shows lack of belief in self. God doesn’t give us troubles we can’t withstand.
196: Desire to live in “peace” is request not to repent or correct soul. Can’t strengthen without being tested from time to time.
197: Only by trials & tribulations build Emuna, achieve tranquility of soul. Running from difficulties makes more unbearable.
198: God doesn’t give up. He knows what we need to correct; the soul-correction we need to do in this life or in reincarnation.
199: Sages warn that any difficulties in this life are preferable to an additional reincarnation.
200: Can’t sit on sidelines in this world; pick up ball of life’s challenges & run with it toward our goal. W/ Emuna, win game.
201: True gratification and success, both in material and in spiritual endeavors, come from Emuna.
202: If unwilling to invest effort in correcting soul life, will ultimately suffer a worse collection of trials & tribulations.
203: Whenever we strengthen ourselves in Emuna, prayer, and the fear of God, we make life so much easier.