web analytics
October 22, 2014 / 28 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities – 5/21/10

By:

Chronicles-logo

Dear Rachel,

That the world is a scary place is no chiddush, but that we must guard ourselves from our own, now that’s scary!

Let me explain: The other day, as I browsed a local store’s wide magazine display for a Good Housekeeping issue, I noticed out of the corner of my eye a figure hunched over in an unusual manner. Turning my head in that direction, I saw a young man about 17 or 18, in full chassidic garb, intensely absorbed in a “girlie” magazine. My irritation got the better of me.

“Aren’t you ashamed of yourself?” I blurted out. I admit I really let him have it. He jumped up and scurried away, but I wasn’t done with him. I followed him to the door and asked him which rebbe’s tish he was going to attend on Friday night.

Before anyone accuses me of being anti-chassidic, let me assure you that I have close family and many friends who are chassidish and have an overall reverence for chassidism. That’s what made me even angrier.

Rachel, the thing that set me off was the fact that there were all kinds of people in the store, Jews and non-Jews alike, and that this young man portraying himself as ultra-religious was creating a chilul-Hashem.

No, I don’t blame him for being curious – hormones, I am quite aware, make no distinction between secular, modern orthodox and chassidish. Male is male.

I do however blame him for dressing the part of the ultra-orthodox and pious individual. You want to look? Take off the long payos, the long jacket and the black hat that depicts you as a religious and G-d fearing person.

What bothers me is the hypocrisy and I can’t help but worry for my grandchildren who are quickly approaching shidduch age. How can anyone trust anyone these days? When a shidduch comes up, how are we to discern someone’s true colors?

What is our world coming to? I realize there is no pat answer but I needed to vent.

An Alarmed Bubby

Dear Alarmed,

There is indeed no pat answer. We do the best we can with the tools at our disposal: hishtadlus and sincere prayer to our Guardian that never sleeps – a far more effective strategy than excessive worry that doesn’t accomplish a thing.

It is for sure a daunting task to shield our innocent children from the “pollution” that invades our space. Our responsibility as parents is to smother our children with love and attention, give them the best chinuch at our disposal and to teach by example.

Is there then a guarantee that they will grow up to be moral, upstanding and learned individuals? There are no guarantees in life, but we will have infused in them a strong “immune system” that will, with Divine guidance, sustain them through any emotional and spiritual hurdles down the road.

There is a great story told about Reb Meir of Premishlan who, upon preparing for davening one Shavuos morning, suddenly discovered the meaning of some words he had heard as a child from Reb Mordechai of Kremnitz.

During a winter season, the two had traveled together down an icy sloping hill and a young Meir had been petrified that the wagon would turn over with them inside. When the child stood up ready to jump off, Reb Mordechai grabbed a hold of him and told him to sit back down.

The elder assured the younger that nothing would happen. Sure enough, nothing did and they made it safely down, coming to a straight path where there no longer seemed to be any reason to be afraid.

All at once the wagon overturned, tossing them into the snow. Reb Mordechai laughed and remarked to young Meir, “You see now!” But little Meir had no idea what Reb Mordechai meant to convey with his remark.

“Today before davening,” explained Reb Meir Premishlaner on that enlightening Shavuos day, “it suddenly dawned on me that Reb Mordechai wanted to teach me a way of serving Hashem. If a Jew is in constant fear of falling into the yetzer hara’s trap, Hashem will help him steer clear of it.

“On the other hand, the person who in his self-assurance has no fear of falling can suddenly find himself in a bad way.

“Now I finally understood what Reb Mordechai had meant by telling me to sit down when I was scared and by saying ‘you see now!’ when we fell into the snow – just when I was confident that the danger had passed and had felt no fear.”

Shavuos is a great time for a major spiritual overhaul for all of us. As we commemorate the time we stood at Har Sinai and accepted the Torah with a promise “to do and to heed,” we are given the opportunity to renew our sacred commitment to the One Above.

Torah study without yiras Shamayim (fear of Heaven) is essentially “doing” without “heeding.” It is only by instilling yiras Shamayim in our children that we stand the chance of reaping true yiddish nachas for all eternity.

Chag Sameach!

About the Author: We encourage women and men of all ages to send in their personal stories via email to rachel@jewishpress.com or by mail to Rachel/Chronicles, c/o The Jewish Press, 4915 16th Ave., Brooklyn, N.Y. 11204. If you wish to make a contribution and help agunot, your tax-deductible donation should be sent to The Jewish Press Foundation. Please make sure to specify that it is to help agunot, as the foundation supports many worthwhile causes.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Chronicles Of Crises In Our Communities – 5/21/10”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Newly elected Chief Rabbis of Jerusalem: Rav Shlomo Amar (L) and Rav Aryeh Stern (R).
2 New Chief Rabbis Elected for Jerusalem After 10-Yr Hiatus
Latest Sections Stories

Sadly, there are mothers who, due to severe depression are unable or unwilling to prepare nourishing food for their children.

Michal had never been away from home. And now, she was going so far away, for so long – an entire year!

Though if you do have a schach mat, you’ll realize that it cannot actually support the weight of the water.

Social disabilities occur at many levels, but experts identify three different areas of learning and behavior that are most common for children who struggle to create lasting social connections.

Sukkot is an eternal time of joy, and if we are worthy, of plenty.

Two of our brothers, Jonathan Pollard and Alan Gross, sit in the pit of captivity. We have a mandate to see that they are freed.

Chabad of South Broward has 15 Chabad Houses in ten cities.

Victor Center works in partnership with healthcare professionals, clergy, and the community to sponsor education programs and college campus out reach.

So just in case you’re stuck in the house this Chol HaMoed – because there’s a new baby or because someone has a cold – not because of anything worse, here are six ideas for family fun at home.

We are told that someone who says that God’s mercy extends to a bird’s nest should be silenced.

Our harps have 22 strings. This gives musicians a wide musical range and yet stays within Biblical parameters.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/chronicles-of-crises/chronicles-of-crises-in-our-communities-246/2010/05/17/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: