The Gift of Giving

Rebbe Nachman of Breslov taught…

When a person is completely true before G-d, in the sense that he serves G-d in the same exacting and careful way whether or not he is in the presence of others, his truthfulness draws the power of tzedakah to him.
(Likutey Moharan I:251)

 

What does this mean to me?
Rebbe Nachman explains in many of his lessons that giving charity is a powerful force not only for the receiver, and not merely for the giver, but for the entire world. In the lesson quoted here, we learn that the power of giving is diluted and diverted if it was motivated by ego. The remedy that Rebbe Nachman suggests is to remain focused on “echad”—that there is no other observer than G-d to my act of giving. The way that I demonstrate that this message has penetrated is if I also fulfill other commandments with the same attention to detail and devotion when no one else can see me. By working on this latter goal, it will become easier for me to give without ego-involvement, and then the giving can reach its highest potential.

 

A prayer:
 

My G-d, help me become a “giver.”
Help me give…and go on giving.
You’ve called on us
to be charitable;
show me how.
Show me how to give
with a pure heart,
with an open heart,
with a heart filled with joy.
Lead me to those
who are truly deserving,
for giving is so holy an act.
Help me find the truly needy,
and help them find me.

(Gentle Weapon*, p. 12)

We encourage hearing your feedback and may anonymously publish your remarks. Please send email to: yehudis.golshevsky@breslov.org

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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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