This series, of which installments will be”H be posted twice weekly, is adapted from an English translation of Rav Itche Meir Morgenstern shlita’s sefer Yam HaChochmah. This foundational pamphlet, “Sod HaTaanug”, presents a deep perspective on our desire for pleasure and the intense battle with the yetzer hara our generation is fighting before the coming of Moshiach. We hope you enjoy these essays, and please remember to share with family and friends!

There is Always Hope!

At this point, you may be saying, “Nice. I’ve internalized that only connecting to the Creator is the true pleasure in life. The truth is that I have indeed felt this at some points in my life, and now I am begining to understand what this is. But I have one problem. That last thing you said – that doing aveiros prevents me from feeling this true pleasure that is being described – has shattered me. I feel like everything is over for me, like all is lost, and there is no longer any hope.”

Hashem knows you very well and He recognizes exactly what your situation is. He knows exactly about the struggles and challenges that we find ourselves in, and for this very reason, He has given us the ability to perform teshuvah – to return to Him. This is the way by which we can cleanse our souls, fix all that needs to be fixed, and become clean and pure again.

It is actually very simple and easy to do teshuvah. Simply tell the Creator, “I made a mistake, a big mistake. I went after the falsity of the body’s desires and lusts, and now I see that I gained nothing from the – experiencing only bitterness from these empty acts. I regret doing these sins, and I am returning to You now. I am accepting upon myself to act according to Your guidelines.”

In truth, the Creator was with you all along. The moment He hears these words coming from you, He will be fully compliant to take you back and He will erase your past, enabling you to start fresh on a whole new page, where you will be able to forge a true bond with Him, a bond filled with pleasure and joy.

The yetzer hora (evil inclination) lies to you all the time, telling you that Hashem doesn’t want you, that He’s angry at you because of what you’ve done and that He has no desire for you, making it seem as if you have no chance of being close with Him. What is the truth? But the truth us that He always loved you and still does. If we fall into a sin, chas v’shalom, He is simply waiting for us to come back to Him.

The moment that a Jew re-connects with Hashem and begins to take his first steps towards Hashem, Hashem will accept his teshuvah, and from that point onward the person will live a life of truth, a life of closeness with Him. But we need to believe in Hashem’s great compassion, exhibited in the fact that He has given us the power to do teshuvah and return to Him. When a Jew returns to Hashem and truly regrets his past, accepting upon himself to begin living a truthful life, Hashem erases all aveiros that the person did and He turns it all into something good for the person.

The Pleasure of Emunah In Hashem

When a person lives connected to Hashem, aside from the fulfillment and enjoyment he will get out of living a truthful life for his neshamah, he will also be filled with constant joy.

Everything that he will go through, and everything that he has already gone through, can now be seen with a new perspective: It is all for the best!

He can now be filled with a confidence and a deep sense of peace which stems from his knowledge that Hashem sustains everything in the universe, that He’s doing everything, and that nothing in Creation exists independent of Him.

Living in this way will enable you can be calm and happy, knowing that whatever happens to you is all from the Creator, and everything He does is good, and even when something appears to be bad, it’s only because we have limited vision and we can’t see how it’s all for the best. However, in the end, we will realize how it was all completely good.

To be continued…

Rav Itche Meir Morgenstern
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