A Flawless Bride

Rebbe Nachman of Breslov taught…
If you want to study with constant diligence, be careful never to speak against a fellow Jew. Every Jew is a letter in the Torah. The Torah is a bride, and when the bride is beautiful, love is perfect. If one finds a defect in any Jew, it is equivalent to a blemish within the Torah. When the Torah—the bride—has a flaw, one’s love for her is diminished. Then it is difficult to devote oneself to it fully. But if the Torah is entirely flawless in your eyes, you will have a deep love for it, and this love will lead you to great diligence in your study.
(Rebbe Nachman’s Wisdom, #91)
What does this mean to me?
This sounds so wonderful; but how am I supposed to not see the defects in my fellow Jews? While my own defects can elude me, the defects of others rarely escape my attention. And even though I know through the teachings of chassidus that when I see the flaws of others they’re only the outward projections of my own defects, I still do see them. What am I to do, then?

Rebbe Nachman taught that when we look at our fellow Jews, we need to seek their good points with so much focus that the negative just falls away, _mevutal_—like an irrelevance that falls to the side. This is such a deep and never-ending form of inner work, and the place to begin—as always—is to pray for help in accomplishing it.

A prayer:
When I am confronted with baseness and evil,
let all the bad
fall away before me.
Let all the good and G-dliness
that lies hidden
within everyone I meet
shine forth
and emerge
as a grand reflection
of beauty and light.

(The Gentle Weapon, p. 84*)

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*“The Gentle Weapon: Prayers for Everyday and Not-So-Everyday Moments – Timeless Wisdom from the Teachings of the Hasidic Master, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov” by Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, Adapted by Moshe Mykoff & S.C. Mizrahi with the Breslov Research Institute, 1999. Permission granted by Jewish Lights Publishing, Woodstock, VT, www.jewishlights.com.

To view the past emails, click here.

NarrowBridge.Org sends out twice weekly inspirational emails. These emails include small doses of Rebbe Nachman’s wisdom, enabling us to get through the week in a more spiritual way. If you are not signed up and would like to receive these emails, click here.

Author: Yehudis Golshevsky

Yehudis in her own words: When I first began learning Rebbe Nachman’s teachings with my husband and other teachers, I felt as though I had come home to the personal and vital relationship with G-d that I’d always sought. Today, a large part of my inspiration comes from helping other Jewish women discover their own spiritual potential through the meaningful teachings of Breslov Chassidut. Yehudis Golshevsky has been teaching Torah classes to women and working in Torah publishing for nearly twenty years. She’s a graduate of Yavne Teacher’s Seminary in Cleveland and holds a degree in Judaic Studies from SUNY at Buffalo. Currently, Yehudis is a contributor to Breslov.org and “Pathways”, the Breslov Research Institute’s weekly publication. Since 2006, she’s been taking women’s groups to Uman and other sites in Ukraine for prayer and study. Yehudis lives with her family in Jerusalem.

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