The GuardUrEyes Chizuk List
(Started on Sept.5 2007, 22
Every time you say "no" to your
obsessions, it is priceless. It's another step up, and no step goes
to waste. Remember this parable: Even if someone is heading out to
the other side of town and on the way he slips on the ice, all he
needs to do it just get up and continue. But slipping never takes a
person all the way back home. Even if you slip, you are still
where you were when you fell. You just need to stand yourself up
and continue on from where you left off... JUST DON'T STAY ON THE
Ask yourself: "Who is my G-d?
The master of the universe, or flesh, blood, veins and bones?”
The Holy Sefer, Noam Elimelech
from Rav Elimelech of Lizensk writes that Yaakov Avinu's attribute
was that of Tiferes, meaning "Awesome Beauty". This implies that
Yaakov Avinu had the ability to be awestruck by G-dly beauty in all
he saw. For example, the Noam Elimelech continues, "When a person
eats a tasty food, he should say to himself, "if this food is so
good in taste, is it not obvious that all the good and pleasantness
is to be found in the Creator--may his name be blessed--without any
limit or boundary!"..."and this is the secret of the Pasuk "and
Yaakov kissed Rachel".
How uplifting and beautiful it is to try to apply this midah of
Yaakov Avinu to ourselves. Whenever we see something that turns our
hearts to sexual desire, we need to tell ourselves, "If this woman
is so beautiful and I desire her so much, how much more beautiful it
must be to connect with G-d, who is the infinite source of all
beauty, pleasantness and pleasure!”
The Zohar, Shemot 3b
, states: We have learned that the Holy One Blessed Be He has no
zealousness, except for His zealousness over the holy Brit, for this
Brit is the secret of the Sacred Name and the secret of faith. As is
written, 'And the people began to commit harlotry with the daughters
of Moav' (Bamidbar, 25:1), then, immediately afterward, 'And the
anger of the L-rd was kindled against Israel.'" Sexual immorality
brings about a kindling of the anger of G-d.
Zohar emphasizes that it was through the Brit with Avraham Avinu
that Israel made its initial attachment to with the Holy One Blessed
Be He, through the act of circumcision and the Covenant to safeguard
our lives in sexual purity. Judaism is founded upon this Covenant.
This is our connection to the Shechinah. Thus, Rabbi Shimon
explains, a Jew who is false to this Brit is false to our Covenant
Some people claim, "Hey, that's how G-d made me, so it's his
business". If that's the case though, what are we here for in this
world? Can we also say that murderers, pedophiles and rapists are
that way by nature too and so it's G-d's problem?
We are here in this world to play a game called "LIFE". And the
way we get points and proceed to the next level is by fighting the
inherent bad inside us. The Pasuk says "Ki Yetzer Lev Ha'adam Ra
Mi'ne'urav" (the inclinations of man are bad from his youth).
So others will say that only evil which hurts others needs to be
worked on. But think about it, what really is the difference? If we
believe that G-d wrote the Torah, and we believe in our sages words,
then we also believe that every time we gaze at things we shouldn't
and spill our seed etc, we are destroying G-d's world! So then, this
too is destructive and we must work on it, even if it is against our
nature. G-d created us, so he understands out nature. But he gave us
guidelines to curb our natural destructive tendencies, and when we
follow these guidelines we are building the world. And when we
don't, we are destroying the world.
Always remember to stay happy! The Yetzer Hara's biggest tool is
depression and sadness. Working on one's self is not a "sad" and
"confining" thing, but rather it should bring us tremendous joy
that we have the merit to sacrifice our desires for the
creator of the entire universe. If we take the time to think about
G-d's greatness for just a few minutes each day, then, like a candle
before a torch, we will feel a total bitul (self-annulment)
and a true joy in being able to give G-d pleasure, by doing his
Someone who merits to give up his desires to G-d, experiences a
great joy of freedom, like Chaza"l say " Ain Ben choirin ela mi
she'osek batorah" (there is no free man like he who deals in the
Torah). The Torah's way brings true freedom to a person. All the
people of the world are bound like slaves to their desires. The
tzadikim are the freest people on earth.
(Maimonides, Mishnah Torah, "Laws of Repentance", 10,3) writes:
"What is the proper love that we must have for G-d? It is to love
G-d with an exceedingly great and intensely powerful love until the
individual is constantly enraptured by it; he must be stricken like
a lovesick person, whose mind is at no time free from his passion
for a particular woman, with the thought of her filling his heart at
all times, whether he be sitting down or rising up, whether he be
eating or drinking. Even more intense should the love of G-d
be in the hearts of those who love Him, and this love should
constantly absorb him, as we
are commanded to love the Lord "with all your heart and with all
your soul." Solomon expressed this allegorically in the verse, "for
I am sick with love." (Song of Songs, 2:5) Indeed, the entire Song
of Songs is an allegorical description of this love".
Chaza"l say, "Who is strong? He who subdues his evil inclination". A
wise man once said. "Someone who serves G-d only with his heart
needs to wage great battles to subdue his evil inclinations, but one
who serves G-d also with his mind can subdue his inclinations
without even a battle".
writes "everyone knows that a woman is a barrel of excrement and
that her mouth (allegorically) is full of blood, and yet they all
run after her". Indeed, R' Nachman of Breslov once said that there
is no greater foolishness than sexual desire, and that anyone with
wisdom can overcome it.
Nefesh HaChaim writes in Chapter One: "A man of Israel must
understand, know, and establish in his mind and heart that every
detail of his deeds, speech, and thoughts, at every second and time,
all rise up according to their root source to influence the most
exalted worlds. Therefore, when a man entertains an impure,
licentious thought in his heart, G-d forbid, he in effect brings a
prostitute into the most exalted, celestial Holy of Holies, giving
strength to the forces of impurity and evil in this transcendently
holy place, to a greater extent than the impurity caused by
Nebuchadnezzar and Titus when they brought a prostitute into the
Holy of Holies in the Temple sanctuary on earth."
Sex and love are
the deepest human emotions and fixing these emotions fixes a
person deeper than anything else. That's why in Kabbalah, the
Seffirah of "Yesod" refers to the Brit. "Yesod" means
"foundation". Guarding the Brit is the foundation of Judaism.
Let me elaborate on the deeper meaning of this. The positive
commandments of the Torah are like a building. The negative
commandments, which are what you don't do, what's
underground, what people don't see - that's the foundation of
the building. If the foundation is weak, then the whole building
is in danger of falling. No matter how much Torah and Mitzvos a
person has, if he is not careful in guarding the "Yesod", he can
lose it all in one moment. That's why often people addicted to
internet pornography feel so precarious with their Yiddishkeit,
they feel they are constantly walking on a tightrope above the
abyss. If the foundation of the building is strong though, then
the building will last, no matter what it looks like above
Pleasure that is tied with truth has a lasting effect and can help
make a Mitzvah
more whole, like when we enjoy the
But pleasure that is tied to falsehood, like spilling seed, doesn't
last. That's why when the pleasure is over there is no feeling of
fulfillment. And that's why one doesn't tell those who want the best
for him --those who love him-- about it, because he knows that it
was just there to damage him, unlike the pleasures connected with
truth which are there to make a
whole. And that's also why one who does these things, always wants
it again and again. Why? He just had it! If it was a truthful
pleasure, why isn't it there anymore? The reason is because it is
falsehood, and it leaves a feeling of void in its wake which causes
him to search again to fill the void with another false pleasure.
Nachman of Breslov writes "Because the organ of the Brit is
associated with the sefirah of Yesod, which is the foundation of all
of the sefirot (Divine illuminations), in atoning for sexual
transgressions a person rectifies his entire spiritual blueprint".
The Sfat Emet writes that "Just as there is one special day in the
year, Yom Kippur, to purify all of the days that have passed, so too
there is one sinew of the body, the sinew of the milah, whose
purification purifies all of the rest of the body."
For more on the
deep connection between Yom-Kippur and Tikkun Habrit, see
All Jews are mandated
to fight the particular Avodah Zorah manifested in each particular
era. Perhaps if this particular "sexual" addiction is reduced to the
generic "status" of Avodah Zorah it will be easier to face and
dismiss. The objective of "the other side" is to tempt, demoralize
and depress us after having robbed us of self-respect, and thereby
separate us from Torah and Hashem. This is true of all types of
addiction to activities prohibited by the Torah. Just as we marvel
today at generations past having been tempted by Avodah Zorahs for
which we presently have no affinity, so can we tackle the present
day Avodah Zorahs that afflict us, with the confidence that we too
will look back in relief, having overcome them and having no
remaining reside of affinity for them. Wishing everyone an easy fast
and great success in the New Year in all matters of gashmiut and
Taken from the "Talk-Back" comments at
Arutz Sheva. Wendy, Jerusalem (19/09/07)
Look what comes out of not guarding one's eyes! The Gemara (in Sotah
47a) writes that while traveling with Rabbi Yehoshua ben Prachia,
Jesus of Nazareth complained that the innkeeper's eyes weren't
pretty. Rabbi Yehoshua pushed him away with both hands for his
preoccupation with looking at women. Having been kicked out of the
group of Torah students, Jesus went on to rebel against the sages
and eventually established Christianity. So never say "So what!".
Here are some very important words of Chaza"l to remember: "There
is a small organ in a man. When it is well-fed, it is hungry. When
it is starved, it is satiated".
Rabbi Mordichai Lechovitcher,
one of the great Chassidic masters once said "How bitter is the
world when one lies inside it, and how good is the world when one is
on top of it".
A Jew who is bound to his desires and cannot break free, feels a
darkness in all he does. He can't appreciate the everyday beauty of
the world and the harmony in nature. He can't appreciate the beauty
of Yiddishkeit, or even of his own family. Everything he experiences
has a bitter taste. However, the minute that one is master over his
sexual desires, the world is suddenly so different. One can suddenly
appreciate the beauty of a Shabbos and bask in the joy of Yom-Tov.
One can finally look at his family and praise Hashem for having
given him such beautiful children. He can finally appreciate his
wife in the proper manner. He can suddenly see the kindness of
Hashem wherever he turns.
How fortunate is one who masters these temptations, not just in the
next world, but in this
Rav Yehudah Leib Ashlag, the
Ba'al Hasulam, once said "What's the difference between Gashmius
(physical pleasures) and Ruchnius (spiritual pleasures)? Gashmius
everyone wants, but once you have it, there is no feeling of
fulfillment. Ruchniyus on the other hand, nobody wants, but when you
have it, there is such a deep feeling of fulfillment!"
How true this is with the pursuit of sexual pleasures. The whole
world is running after it, almost everything in the media revolves
around the "desire" for it. But you'll seldom, if ever, hear someone
talk about how good he feels after it's over. It's all "want, want
want" with no fulfillment. Spirituality on the other hand, no one
seems to want. But someone who has it, there's no need to ask him
how enlightened and uplifted his life feels!
Parshas Vayetzeh when
Yaakov Avinu came to the well and met the shepherds there, he asked
them "From where do you come?" and they replied "from
Charan". Explains the the
Holy Noam Elimelech that
Charan mean "wrath", and
that the Pasuk is alluding to our spiritual growth. When a person
wants to attain a higher level of spirituality he must always
remember "from where did he come?" from "wrath", from angering G-d.
This will bring him to a feeling of shame and humility which will
then allow him to truly achieve a higher spiritual level. And the
Noam Elimelech goes on to
explain how this is especially true in our state of great sins
today, where so many people stumble in the sexual transgression of
spilling seed. And he says that precisely
because we have fallen in
the past, this allows us to truly grow closer to G-d through our
humility and our great trembling, when we remember how many sins and
anger we once caused G-d. And this is the meaning as well, of the
words of our holy sages in Avos;
"Remember three things and you won't come to sin - from where did
you come? from a putrid drop"... Again, says the Noam Elimelech,
this is hinting to the same idea, that when a person remembers the
sins of the seed he spilled in the past, he will tremble before G-d
and no longer come to sin, and through his humility and shame he
will be able to ultimately reach the level where he is truly able to
feel the words; "...and where are you going to stand? before the
king of kings, the Almighty blessed be he"
In short, the
Noam Elimelech is telling
us how we need to recognize that our failures in the past are the
foundation of our future growth. The sins of our youth, and the
shame and humility that we feel before G-d as a result, will
ultimately allow us to grow much closer to G-d than we would have
been able to otherwise.
Here's something nice I found on a Jewish forum discussing the
plague of internet pornography. A Christian woman, Mrs. Robertson
from St. Pete, FL writes: "Christians the world over look to the
Jewish people to set a holy moral standard for all of us to follow.
Don't allow the evil of pornography to pollute your holy offspring.
Stamp the devil's agent out of the land. For all of us. May the
people of Israel be blessed!"
As Yeshayah Hanavi wrote: "I have set you to be a light unto the
nations". So let's leave all the filth out there to the nations of
the world. We Jews have a G-dly mission, and all of mankind look to
us for inspiration!
Taken from Tzvi Fishman's Blog
on Arutz Sheva, at
Sent on Hoshana Rabba.
Slaughter the Trojan
Everyone's final judgment
is hermetically sealed and handed over to the Heavenly Tribunal
on Hoshana Rabbah. Many Jews will stay up all night studying
Torah this evening in a last burst of t'shuva. My friends, we
have come down to the wire. Therefore in the name of our holy
Sages, if you have not yet installed an anti-pornography
filtering service on your computer, this is the time to do it.
Save yourselves and save your holy children!
The beginning of this week
marked the yahrtzeit of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov. Yesterday was
the yahrtzeit of the Gaon of Vilna. Today, the guest in our
Succah is Yosef. Rabbi Nachman taught that the greatest test in
life is to fight against the sexual temptation. As we have
explained elsewhere, one of the main weapons in the battle is
the lulav. The waving of the lulav and the succah itself are all
designed to purify us from our sexual mistakes and protect us
from the sexual sin. Rabbi Nachman explains that the awesome
destructive power of the nations comes from their saturation in
sexual impurity. They come against us with the power of evil.
Our real weapon against them is not tanks and bombers, but our
lulavs. The holiness of Israel is what overcomes our enemies,
not our physical prowess. When we purify our beings, re-embrace
the holy Brit and reattach ourselves to G-d, our enemies are
shattered before us. This is the secret of the haftorahs we read
on the first day of the Holiday and on Shabbat. It is not our
physical might that defeats the terrible enemies that strike
from the north, but our holy connection to G-d. The salvation is
Our Sages have long told us that sexual transgression causes a
terrible rift between the Jewish Nation and G-d, causing exile
and national destruction. Our enemies know this and therefore
muster all of their cunning, material resources, and technology
to bring us to sin. This has been the strategy from the time of
Amalek, Midian, Greece, throughout history down to the zillion
dollar industry of
Internet pornography today. Today, this terrible enemy has
not only invaded our territorial borders – rather, like the
Trojan Horse, it has been afforded in an honored place in our
homes. So if you want to join in the fight and help win the
battle, save yourselves and your children, and the entire Jewish
Nation – and expel this seductive, vile, and cruel and crafty
enemy from your homes.
The Gaon of Vilna
writes that the apocalyptic war of Gog and Magog that we
read about on Succot can be averted if we reassert of
allegiance to the Covenant of sexual purity through Tikun
HaBrit. This is the great example and teaching of Yosef who
is called Yosef the Tzaddik because he resisted the
temptations of Potifar's wife. It is Yosef, in his aspect of
sexual holiness, who leads the way to tomorrow's exalted
succah guest, King David, who represents the long-awaited
Redemption and re-establishment of the Kingdom of Israel.
Rabbi Nachman stresses that it is precisely through the
festival of Sukkot and the rectification of the Brit that
comes through it that we attain the great holiness that
leads us to victory over our enemies and to the renewal of
the fallen succah of David.
This week, we had
the honor of welcoming the esteemed Kabbalist, HaRav
Eliahu Leon Levi, in our succah. He explained that
because we are in the sixth millennium of Jewish
history, which parallels the sefirah of the Yesod, the
channel of sexual purity represented by Yosef, the
nations of the world are waging a fierce spiritual war
against us, precisely in this sphere, the very
foundation of our holiness and connection to G-d. This
is the underlying reason for all of the sexual
licentiousness today. It is the people who sanctify
their sexual lives, he said, who will find "a refuge in
Zion and Jerusalem" in the end of days, as our Prophets
Each of us can
play a part in this national sanctification by making
sure that the impurity of the nations of the world does
not seep into his or her home through the Trojan Horse
of the Internet. Download a filter today. In our home,
we have three for safe measure: Eye-Saver of Bezeq;
K9 Web Protection; and the new enhanced Israeli
If we all make this a
part of our t'shuva, we will give a big push to bring the
Redemption much closer. May it come soon. Amen.
Pgam Habris is a very
strong Klipah (impure husk). Rebbe Nachman writes that staying pure
from any sort of Pgam Habris, in action, thought or speech, is the
main test that a person is subjected to in his life. It is therefore
not surprising that many fall into these Klipas, each person
according to his personal downfalls.
though it is a constant battle to be Shomer Habris, a person must do
so for his whole life is dependent on it, both in this world and the
next. The punishment for any sort of Pgam Habris is extreme. In this
world, a person is brought through suffering after suffering for his
actions. In the next world, the person is demolished completely for
such sins. Any person in this world who is leading a happy life
although he is Pogem Habris, should know that every ounce of his
energy is coming straight from the Sitra Achra (the other side) and
in fact his punishment after death will be many times more then
those who have suffered in this world for their sins.
person who is Pogem Habris is cut off from all Holiness in this
world and the Next.
Western Society, the various sins of Pgam Habris are looked at as if
they are harmless. Even in the religious world, some of the sins,
such as spilling seed, are almost totally ignored. Since people do
not hear about the severity of these sins, they hardly stay away
from them. Even the people that were warned that it is a sin to
commit such actions look at them like an extremely minor
transgression with very little consequences. In Western Society it
is considered impossible to be Shomer Habris. There are even wicked
people who claim that it is unhealthy to be Shomer Habris.
all a lie. Pgam Habris is one of the worst sins that a person can
commit. A person is going to be punished for his actions even if he
passed his life pretending that he is ignorant and avoiding the
is absolutely no other option other then to be a mighty worrier and
battle these klipos constantly, through every up and down, until
they are destroyed completely.
more on this subject and for
briskodesh's tips on breaking free,
It is not
people who were raised in Western Society steeped in the Klipot,
believe that it is impossible to be Shomer Habris. This is not true.
There are thousands upon thousands of people in Eretz Yisroel and
throughout the world that are Shomer Habris, amongst them many that
are single and not married.
those that claim that if a person never fell into these Klipot it is
possible, but one who has unfortunately stumbled has no way of
picking himself up, this is also not true. There are many Balei
Teshuva, who in the first part of their life committed many severe
sins. Later they managed to rectify their life and become Shomer
first thing a person needs is the will to stop. It is going to be a
tough battle and a person must be truly committed to stop. A person
should recognize that although his animalistic soul is still very
attached to these Klipot, at times even controlling him. He himself
knows that it is a terrible sin and he is petrified of committing
it. He must have the will to want to be Shomer Habris. If he was
given an easy way to do it, he would go there immediately. Now that
there is no easy way to remain pure, he commits himself to fight
with all his power.
is only one way to reach this will, that is to read as much as he
can about the severity of these sins and the damage that it causes.
Even though this topic is ignored by Western Society, it does not
excuse one from researching this topic.
Although there is only a small amount of information on this web
site (www.briskodesh.org), one should begin with this. There is also a
list of Sefarim that deal with this topic. A person should try his
hardest to study as many of them as he can.
Click here to download a PDF file on the importance of
There are three different
mind-frames that one can use when he is faced with a strong
challenge in Shmiras Ha'ainayim
or Shmiras Ha'bris . Each
person can choose the one that works best for him. There also may be
times when one way will work better for you than the other ways, so
it is important to train your mind in all three frames of thinking.
Mind Frame 1. Tell yourself
there is nothing there! It is all air, a big bubble of the Yetzer
Hara! True, it looks so tempting, but as Chaza"l say, "a
woman is but a barrel of excrement, and her mouth (allegorically) is
filled with blood - and yet all run after her!". And know,
that even as a person sins, he is asking himself what he gains from
this, what is so amazing about this?!
Rash Lakish (who was once
the head of the robbers), writes in the
Gemara that the desire to
look at women is much more than the pleasure of the actual deed
itself!". The minute a person has had his few second pleasure, all
the fantasies and arousals vanish like smoke! The bubble pops in his
face! And how the Yetzer Hara
laughs at him, for he has given away his world to come for a big bag
of empty air! Remember, the only reason it seems so hard is because
G-d wants us to work on ourselves, therefore he gave us this
"imaginary" struggle. The minute one realizes that it's all a
"trick" of G-d to test our loyalty to him, he won't let his heart be
swayed any more by "hot air".
However powerful this frame of
mind may be though, not always is a person able to manage with this
mind-set. Sometimes, no matter how much he tells himself that it's
all hot air, his blood is still boiling... That's where
Frame 2 comes in...
Mind Frame 2. Learn how to
take the pain of saying "No" to yourself. Learn how to
enjoy the challenge! Tell
yourself, the pain I feel is GOOD for me, the pain I feel is HEALING
me, and it is fixing all that I have damaged in the past. Can you
imagine the pleasure we give G-d every time we see something that
pulls us to go astray, and instead of letting it get to us, we go
against everything in our nature and scream out to G-d from the
depths of our hearts and say "G-d!! Take this powerful desire of
mine on your heavenly alter as a sacrifice for your honor!".
Again, however, not always is a
person able to hold onto such a frame of mind. Sometimes a person
can't bear the pain and he doesn't feel up to making sacrifices to
G-d. Instead, what he sees can cause him to become depressed and end
up sinning, G-d forbid. That's where
Mind Frame 3 comes in...
Mind Frame 3. Instead of
letting yourself feel the
pain and having to sacrifice it to G-d, train yourself instead how
to uplift the beauty that you see to G-d. In other words, instead of
letting the beauty and desire get to you, immediately cry out to G-d
in you heart "Oh G-d, how beautiful
YOU must be, that you created such beauty in the world! For
you, Oh G-d, are the SOURCE of all beauty and pleasure that
exists!"..."I want you G-d,
as much as I want this! I want you G-d,
instead of this!" This frame
of mind is a beautiful method of uplifting your heart to G-d and not
letting the desire get to you. How holy a person can become, if he
trains his mind to think in this way! (For more on this method, see
number 3 at our
e-mail list page).
Hashem doesn't ask of us that
which we can't do. The Torah says "Ki karov elecha hadavar me'od",
which means "it is very close to you" (i.e that it is not
difficult). So why does it feel sometimes so hard? The answer is,
these profound words of the Torah are true only when one makes a
decision in his mind, once and for always, that this is truly
what he wants! In other words, it's not half as much a matter of
"will power" as it is simply deciding that this is what you want!
"Just once" is always too
much. A thousand times is never enough.
Sometimes you are feeling low, depressed and very vulnerable. In
such a state the Yetzer Hara tells you that there's no use trying to
fight. But realize one thing. The depression you feel will not go
away by giving in, it will only get worse. The more you give in, the
more you will need... But in such a state, it is sometimes hard to
fight all the way. Instead, distract yourself. Waste some time
reading a good book, take a jog or take your family to the park. If
you're tired, lay down and take a nap. But don't give in! Remember
this always - no matter what state you are in, giving in
will SOLVE NOTHING!
The middah of humility is
one of the most powerful tools in dealing with sexual desire and
obsession. When you are feeling weak, vulnerable and needy, and
everything inside you in craving to just give in, one of the best
ways to overcome the test is to just let go and say to yourself "
Who am I? What are my
desires against the desires of the creator of all the universe?!".
Even though every fiber of your being is pulling you in one
direction, you can annul yourself before G-d and give up your entire
being to him. There is no greater sacrifice than this. Happy is the
man who is zoche to be able
to do this. It is considered by Hashem as if he offered himself up
on the Mizbeach as a
Rav Nachman says, the name of
the Yetzer Hara in our generation is "Dimyon" - "imagination". This
is very deep. That's truly all the Yetzer Hara is, a big bubble of
"imaginary" pleasure that just pops in your face!
Think about it. Sexuality is really
97% desire and only 3% pleasure. Let's analyze it:
- First, you want it. Then you want it more. Then you start to give
in and need it more and more. Then you want it so much, you NEED it.
Then you must have it now!
Then you're about to get it! Then, it's finally coming, you want it,
want it, want it...
- But if you ever paid attention though,
as the pleasure actually comes - the arousals have already
left your head. There are no more lusts or fantasies, only the petty
pleasure. The bubble of desire is already gone, even as the pleasure
comes. The Yetzer Hara has done it's job
- 10 seconds later, it's
all over. Done. Nothing. Only emptiness and quilt are left to
So it's 97% desire and 3%
pleasure. So what is there to give in for? Don't give up everything
precious for this! Earn your eternal reward in the world to come by
just saying "No".
Use simple analysis to conquer
the Yetzer Hara! No need to be a mighty warrior in a major battle.
Sometimes, just using your "head" takes away the necessity for a
mighty battle in your "heart".
We discussed yesterday how the
Yetzer Hara is all air, and that by using your head, you can conquer
him without a major battle in your heart. However, this is only true
if you guard your eyes carefully. Once the eyes start to see, the
heart starts to lust, and the battle switches over from being in the
mind to being a much more difficult battle of the heart. Therefore,
a person must make boundaries for themselves! Accept upon yourself
to stop doing the things that cause the heart to become aroused.
Install a fool proof filter! Stop watching movies, they are full of
things that awaken the heart to lust - without you even wanting to
let it happen. Stop reading non-Jewish magazines and news-papers.
Learn to guard your eyes in the street. You MUST make boundaries if
you are to make any progress! Otherwise, no matter how "smart" you
are and no matter how much you are
convinced in your mind of the folly of these desires, the
heart will still wage a merciless battle. But if you guard the eyes,
then the battle can remain only in the realm of the mind, which is
much easier to win!
You are a
mature adult who can make the right choices. Say no to the child
Chaza"l say that if a person is walking and he needs to say
Kriyas Shema, he should
"stand" and not continue walking when he says the first
pasuk. The Beis Ahron of
Karlin explains this to mean that one should stand firm like a beam
of iron, meaning that when one accepts upon himself the yoke of
heaven completely, he is able to stand up against any desire, even
the greatest among the great. And, he continues, this is the meaning
of true mesiras nefesh.
There is nothing as powerful as
prayer to help a person break free and overcome the greatest tests.
Make a note of pesukim in Tehilim that you feel relate
to your situation. Compile a list, print them out and save them in
your wallet to read over to Hashem, with a broken heart, when you
are feeling weak.
Click here for some example
pesukim that can help you pray to Hashem.
Never underestimate the value of each and every time you say no to
yourself. Sometimes a person is feeling weak and says to themselves,
"what's the difference if I look now at something that I know I
shouldn't - I'm anyway not feeling strong now". You must
believe in the significance of
saying no, every time,
no matter for how long and no matter for what desire, be it a big
sin or even a quick gaze at a woman. Tell yourself, "Now I will not
look, now I will turn away. Later I may look, later I may fall, but
just for NOW I will be strong". You must believe in the significance
and importance of every time on it's own.
This is a powerful and proven way of making significant progress in
the long term.
Know that there are two sides.
The side of good, and the side of evil (Sitra Achrah).
G-d created evil to provide man with free will.
The Sitra Achrah is like a shell (klipah) it has no energy
of its own.
All the klipas must receive their substance from the side of
In the days of idol worship (avodah zarah) people would
consciously channel energy to the forces of evil through
meditating and other practices.
Human fluids especially, provide substance to demonic
It is for this reason that many satanic rituals require
semen or blood.
All pain and suffering that exists in the world comes from
In this generation the klipas receive most of their
nourishment from people who are pogem their bris (desecrate
The most common of these transgressions is spilling seed
(motze zera lvtalah).
Unfortunately this sin is quite common today. If people
would realize its consequences many would stop.
Due to our low level and many sins, this topic is ignored
Just the opposite, shmiras habris is the most important
issue to deal with today.
Many people were pogem their bris since they were young and
no longer remember their state of mind before they started.
Most people nowadays are controlled by their subconscious.
Even conscious acts are strongly tainted by their
This enslaves a person, strongly limiting his abilities.
Again someone who has never been out of these klipos (impure
husks) can not associate with this. Through meditation one
can start to feel this.
Spilling seed makes this much worse. A person's emotions are
thrown totally out of balance.
People who are pogem their bris often have a hard time
controlling their temper, they are subject to bouts of
sadness and depression, and they lose their self confidence.
Wasting seed uses up a lot of of the bodies energy this has
many physical manifestations.
People who are pogem the bris are always tired and need more
There is spiritual energy all over the place.
A special part of the brain is designated to receive these
However the information entering from the five senses is so
strong that it blocks out the spirituality.
A person who studies torah keeps halacha and meditates can
feel spirituality very strongly.
Even a regular person can feel spirituality to some degree.
A person should be able to feel a difference on Shabbat.
Someone who is pogem habris loses almost all his ability to
One also loses his desire to study Torah and do mitzvos.
The Chassidim teach that
physical love is a branch of spiritual love. It is a materialistic
expression of what the soul truly years for. G-d gave us these
desires only to "learn" what the love of G-d should be like. As
David Hamelech said, "Tzama nafshi le'lokim... Kama lecha besari" -
"my sould thirst for you, my skin aches for you".
If someone has a very strong sub-conscience need for love, it means
he has a great soul because
he has the highest opportunity for
true love of G-d. But he is in this world to learn how to
focus it properly, to channel the love in the right place - to
the source of
all love, all beauty, all
desire, and all good.
This is an amazing tip that really works to get
you started, if you are determined to learn how to guard your eyes:
Commit (for a few weeks or
a period of time), to pinch yourself -- enough to make it hurt --
every time you gaze improperly at something that you know you
Taken from the forum at
"I made it thru the whole week. I have been following
the 12 Torah Steps for almost 2 months. I confessed to my Rabbi
and he has an encouraging word each morning after Sharcharis. I try
doing a mikvah a day, reciting Tikun Yeshuat Eliahu, learning Torah
with a hevruta in the evening, and I moved the computer into the
living room so I can't be alone with it. My Rabbi said that my
stopping on Shabbat was proof that I could overcome the urge on
weekdays too. He was right".
www.briskodesh.org on the seriousness of spilling seed,
according to Kabbala.
Just like a
person creates children through intercourse, so too, souls
are drawn down every time a person spills seed.
These souls are
immediately captured by the forces of evil who torture and
starve them, stealing all their energy for themselves.
brought down through a person's sins are also considered his
They are not to
happy about the position their father put them in.
After a person
dies these souls come to take revenge on their father,
causing him many problems (there are a number of halochos
during the funeral and shivah that help prevent this).
they also come after his physical children and try to harm
taken from this person, the forces of darkness give birth to
Lilim (sexual demons).
hang around a person, steal his energy, confuse him and
stick thoughts in his head.
If he tries to
meditate, he will see many thoughts streaming through his
mind are not his own.
include sexual thoughts and thoughts denying G-D.
At night, these
demons influence the persons dreams, and cause him to have
nocturnal emissions (mikreh lailah).
I can't believe I'm quoting
from an Islamic Forum. Nonetheless, I think these excerpt from a
forum discussion have some educational value for us. It makes us
feel all the more responsibility in these areas, for if even these
people, who are called "Am Hadomeh
Lachamor" are expected by their religion to stay clean from
masturbation, how much more so are we Jews, as G-d's holy nation,
required to guard ourselves!
THE RULING REGARDING MASTURBATION
Masturbation is Haraam (unlawful).
This is the ruling of the four Madhaahibs viz. Maliki, Shafée,
Hanafee and one riwaayah (narration) from Imaam Hanbalee. They have
drawn their conclusions from various proofs. I would recommend any
person who is involved in masturbation to keep roza (fasting)
because it controls ones sexual desires. If you think you cannot
fast, then you should do some exercise and no doubt exercise does
keeps ones sexual desires under control. Their are many bad side
effects of masturbation and there is a medical report which throws
light on the symptoms of masturbation. I hope my brothers will avoid
doing it. Believe me brothers i have seen some people who have
destroyed their future by getting involved in these kinds of bad
activities, it is just like drug addiction, If any person who thinks
that if he does masturbation once a week or month then it will not
harm him but this is not true because most of the people who do
excessive masturbation are those who use to do it once a month but
later they got into its habit and ruined their lives. I would
recommend those who want to get ride of masturbation, to do exercise
when ever you feel like masturbating, it surely does controls sexual
desires, and diverts your attention from masturbation as soon as
this evil strikes your mind.
Sometimes, when we find ourselves drawn time and
time again, to looking at things we know we shouldn't, we ask
ourselves "wouldn't it be great if I just couldn't see"? But then
you start to think about how wonderful it is to be able to see. You
begin to realize that without your eyes, you wouldn't be able to get
around, to support yourself and family, to enjoy food, to enjoy the
beauty in your wife and children and to enjoy the beautiful world.
So then you ask yourself, "So, which is better? To be blind and have
no test, or to enjoy the tremendous gift of sight and simply learn
to work on ourselves? We need to realize that our eyes truly don't
belong to us. They were given to us by G-d to be able to live a
fulfilling and meaningful life, and to experience his infinite
goodness. So how can we let ourselves use this precious gift to
rebel against him?
non-Jewish sex therapist in Maryland wrote on one of the forums of
Arutz Sheva (on the subject of porn addictions): "While many men
watch pornography to stimulate their sexual excitement with their
wives, the opposite is the case. The experience of our clinic and
studies have indicated that pornography deadens a husband's
attraction to his wife, leading him to find satisfaction outside of
the marital relationship or forcing him to rely on Viagra and the
If even non-Jews see the awful results of this
phenomena, how much more so should we - the holy people of Hashem -
remain strong, and stay far away from such evils!
We all know how the attraction to women makes no
logical sense. It is part of our animal nature, given to us by G-d
for the sole purpose of the perpetuation of mankind. As our sages
said, "everyone knows that a woman is a barrel of excrement and
that her mouth (allegorically) is full of blood, and yet all run
after her". Therefore, if one wants to save himself from the fires
of this desire, he needs to stay as far away as he can from that
which awakens his animal instincts. This is why guarding the eyes is
so important. For as long as one has not seen anything to awaken his
instincts, his logic can rule, and he can use his mind to overcome
the desire without waging a major battle. However, once he has let
himself see something that awakens his animal instincts, his mind is
no longer in control and there is nothing he can do to change his
instincts besides putting up a difficult fight. It is similar to
someone telling a child not to put his hand in fire and the child
says, "why not, it looks so nice" and sticks his hand in. Obviously,
he will give a cry and pull his hand out as fast as he can. There is
nothing the child can do to prevent the pain once he has touched the
fire, since a human being feels terrible pain from fire whether he
understands it or not. But there is one thing we all can do, and
that is - don't stick your hand in fire in the first place! It is
the same with guarding the eyes.
The man who sees a woman improperly
exposed and closes his eyes because at that time he can't go
anywhere else, merits to greet the Shechina, for he has drawn an
great light of holiness onto his soul. Even though he has no
conscious perception of it, he is really greeting Her at that very
moment, for this light stems from Her -
Taharat Hakodesh, p. 55
From the Medrash
Yalkut Shimoni, Vayechi
STORY HAPPENED TO RABBI MATYA BEN CHERESH WHO WOULD ALWAYS BE
SITTING IN THE BET HA MIDRASH ENGAGED IN TORAH STUDY AND THE
BRILLIANCE OF HIS FACE RESEMBLED THE SUN AND THE APPEARANCE OF HIS
FACE RESEMBLED THAT OF THE MINISTERING ANGELS, BECAUSE HE HAD NEVER
RAISED HIS EYES TO LOOK AT WOMEN
Once the Satan
fixed his sight on this Tzaddik and said to himself: "Is it possible
that this man does not sin? " Then the Satan went and asked G-d:
"How do you consider Rabbi Matya Ben Cheresh?" And G-d replied: "He
is a perfect Tzaddik" The Satan said to G-d: "Give me permission to
put him to the test". G-d told the Satan: "Go".
THE SATAN APPEARED
TO THE RABBI AS A BEAUTIFUL WOMAN AND HE PREFERRED BEING BLIND THAN
SINNING BEFORE HASHEM
The Satan appeared
to the Rabbi as a beautiful woman the like of which there had never
been in the world. When the Tzaddik saw he immediately turned his
face away from the woman. Then the woman quickly moved to the side
where Rabbi Matya had turned his face to, and he quickly again
turned his face away from that woman. Then the Tzaddik said: "I am
afraid that my Yetzer haRa will overpower me and will cause me to
sin" What did the Tzaddik do? He called a student that was there
with him and ordered him to bring him fire with nails. The student
brought him nails and the Tzaddik put them to his eyes and became
blind. When the Satan saw this he trembled and fell on his back.
HASHEM ORDERED THE
ANGEL RAPHAEL TO CURE THE TZADDIK
At that time The
Holy One Blessed be He called the angel Raphael for he is in charge
of healing and told him: "Go and heal Rabbi Matya Ben Cheresh" Then
Raphael came in front of the Rabbi and he asked: "Who are you" and
he replied: "I am Raphael the angel, I came for G-d sent me to cure
your eyes" and Rabbi Matya replied: "Leave me alone, what is already
done is what will be" Raphael returned before the Holy One Blessed
be He and said: "Master of the World, thus spoke Matya" G-d said to
him: "Go back to him and tell him that I will personally guarantee
that the Yetzer haRa will have no power over him". Immediately
Raphael went and cured Matya. From here Our Sages said: "All those
that are careful not to look at women, The Yetzer haRa has no power
The Yetzer Hara's
biggest tool in getting people to sin, is depression. One way to
always remain happy is to remember that everything we go through in
life - including all of the "unfulfilled" desires that we think we
need and all the suffering that we endure, it is all only for our
good. We are designed and programmed by God to attain lasting
pleasure. That's our function. God is not stingy. He wants us to
have the premium -- the greatest possible pleasure, just like most
parents want nothing less for their children. Anything less than the
very best would smack of imperfection, in contradiction to God's
perfect essence. We must believe that this is the best possible
world, since it is a reflection of God's perfection. "Since God
desired to bestow good, a partial good would not be sufficient. The
good that He bestows would have to be the ultimate good that His
handiwork could accept." (The Way of God, 1:2:1). Since God is
perfect and has no needs, He cannot take; He only gives. Creation is
not for His benefit. It is one continuous gift of pure altruism, an
act of complete giving without getting anything in return. "God's
purpose in creation was to bestow of His good to another." [Rabbi
Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, The Way of God, 1:2:1].
One way to
perfect this frame of mind of how G-d deals with us, is to look at
how we deal with our own kids. We all know that kids hate school and
would rather stay home. So why do we parents force them to go?
Obviously we want the best for them, but they are too young to
understand that we are leading them down a path of opportunity and
lifelong fulfillment for their own good. However, if the child would
truly trust that the parent wanted only the best for him, the child
would be able to keep a happy frame of mind while going to school.
He would be just as happy as an adult who was accepted to a big-name
university to study for a prestigious degree for the job of his
frame of mind requires a lot of faith, but if we work on it enough
we can be given the gift by God to start to truly feel it. And with
this frame of mind, a man can achieve the ultimate happiness and be
saved from sin. Every test we go through is another step towards
graduation in this incredible opportunity of a school called "Life".
Keep happy, you are in the best school possible and your teacher is
none-other than G-d himself!
Do not EVER let the Yetzer Hara make you sad
or dejected if you stumble. This sadness can be worse than the
sin itself. The Yetzer Hara is hoping to get you depressed and take
you away from Hashem and from yourself. We must always serve Hashem
be'simcha. This is one of the most fundamental teachings of
The Lechevitcher Rebbe (a student of R'Shlomo of
Karlin) once went as far as to say that even if a person just killed
someone and the knife is still dripping with blood, but he feels
can't stand up and pray Mincha (the afternoon service) with
all his strength and with all his heart, then he has not yet tasted
from the waters of Chassidus!
Sometimes when a person tries
to guard his eyes the evil inclination tells him "why are you not
letting yourself experience the beauty that G-d created in his
world? There is so much incredible beauty out there, why do you try
to ignore it?" One must realize though that "there is beauty and
there is beauty". Some of the beauty in this world was put here just
to test us, to trick us, and to turn us away from G-d. From this
type of beauty we need to keep far away. But sometimes to have the
strength to do this, we need to focus on the other beauty, the
beauty of G-d. We need to learn to see the beauty in G-d's
handiwork, and focus on that instead when we are being tested. For
example, each one of us ourselves is such a beautiful expression of
G-d's handiwork, the amazing perfection of how our body, mind and
soul all work together. Also, how much beauty there is in the world
around us! The beauty in our children, in our own wife, in the
sunset, and in the perfect collaboration in nature - all designed by
G-d to work in perfect sync and to be pleasing to man...
And if we indeed work on ourselves and focus on G-d's infinite
beauty instead, then truly there is nothing more beautiful in G-d's
eyes than this.
If you struggle a lot with
intense desire, it means you have a lot of emotional / spiritual
energy in you. It is the people like you that have the capacity for
the most intense spiritual connection with G-d. However, you need to
learn to channel this energy in the right way. Channel it into your
prayer, you will be amazed how uplifting it can become! Do mitzvot
with joy, learn Torah with passion! Most religious people today
serve G-d like an alarm clock, they turn on, they turn off. But they
remain dead inside, like a clock - an inanimate object. You were
given a gift by G-d. The struggles you experience are really just
the vibes of your soul, striving for true love of G-d. Your divine
service can be so much more than average... Breath your emotional
energy into your divine service - bring your heart to life!