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Sounds of Sinai

Sounds of Sinai

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It's been said that if you talk to G‑d, you're a religious person; if G‑d talks to you, you're crazy.

I guess that means I'm crazy. G‑d talks to me--not as frequently as He should, but fairly often.

I might be arguing with my wife--that same tired argument that we've had a hundred times already--when something inside me says, "Hey, just a minute. Maybe look at it her way, for a change?"

Who said that, me? I don't talk that way to myself!

Or I might be walking along a sunny street, thinking my usual thoughts--the balance in my bank account, or what to have for lunch--when I'm struck with a deep sadness, a sudden yearning for something higher, something more meaningful. Who said that, me? I don't say things like that--not since I was twenty years old, anyway.

Our Sages tell us that "every day a Heavenly voice issues forth from Mount Sinai" calling for a return to the truth of truths. Asked Chassidism's founder, Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov: What is the purpose of this voice, if no one hears it?

But we all hear it, answered the Baal Shem Tov. Every time that we are struck with an unexpected thought that pushes us in the right direction--unexpected because it is totally out of character for us, and a complete departure from our present frame of mind--that means that our inner ear has picked up an echo of the Divine voice calling from Mount Sinai.

Whether or not you make it a habit to talk to G‑d, you should listen to Him talk to you. It'll be the sanest moment of your day.

By Yanki Tauber; based on the teachings of the Rebbe.
Artwork by David Brook. David lives in Sydney, Australia, and has been selling his art since he was in high school. He is currently painting and doing web illustrations.
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Karen K. October 31, 2016

Awesome! I get it - I understand what you are saying. Love the way you opened up sharing your thoughts and experiences. Simple - straight forward and, yet, deeply profound and connected. Connection to is the best of all and everything! And - you are soooo correct in saying the connect is the sanest moment(s) in the day. :) Reply

cl neese lowell ma June 6, 2014

G-d speaks as He Wills...in His Ways Reply

Irene Glen Burnie, Md USA May 24, 2012

Sounds of Sinai One thing I have learned is that when G-d speaks to me about something, He confirms that it is He who speaks, and shows me in time why He said what He said to me. He is our Great Teacher. Reply

elle St Petersburg, FL December 9, 2010

prayer G-d is never the problem in "us hearing from G-d" rather it is us who are out of communion. G-d is ever-present and non-changing and no respecter of persons. If someone is not hearing from G-d, then they are probably rebellious and have turned away from the Father of Lights who is always teaching and magnifying Himself in us as we submit to a relationship with Him. The questions arise: "How bright is my light?" and "To what am I looking?" and "Am I teachable?" Reply

Blanca February 12, 2009

re: source Har Chorev is Har Sinai (for example, see Devarim 9:8) Reply

Anonymous Greenville, SC January 25, 2008

to Danya but for all Jews I don't know what the good rabbi's sources were, but in my experience, we can hear it. Whether it is emanating from Sinai or not, the Voice of G-d is clear and audible. In Kings 19, we get a report of what Eliyahu heard: "v'achar hara-ash eish, lo va-eish HaShem; v'achar ha-eish kol d'mamah dakah." (Sorry no Hebrew characters.)

And we know it is G-d and not some pretender because of the effect it has on us: it makes us well, calms us down when we are upset, teaches us to do mitzvot (it has actually guided me before to read Torah and keep kosher), guides us out of trouble and into what we should be doing....

If thinking of this as G-d is troubling to you, try thinking of it as intuition, or as your Jewish soul guiding the rest of your being into right action. Personally, I find the report about Eliyahu to be a very accurate description of what I hear. Reply

Danya Keesing Efrat, Israel January 24, 2008

source thank you for your article which i have found very inspiring. I have tried to search for the source of:every day a Heavenly voice issues forth from Mount Sinai, and i cannot find it. The closest i came to was pirkei avot 6:2, but that talks about Har Chorev and not Har Sinai. Can you please "reveal" your source?
Best regards, Reply

Inge Reisinger Offenbach/Main, Germany May 29, 2007

Sounds of your heart This is the essence of our life, but most of the people don't listen to their inner voice where G-d is waiting for you. I had to make the same experience and it was not easy for me and my kids and a lot of people said that I am crazy, but it opened the horizon immense. It brings out of you the best to make the word a littte be better for the future. Reply

Anonymous Indianapolis, IN May 29, 2007

Sounds of Sinai It's comforting to know that other people hear that "still,small voice" - the one that nags, cajoles, kibbitzes and wins every argument. After 50 years, I finally learned to listen - and have been happier for it! Reply

Eric Sander Kingston Hollywood, CA May 27, 2007

Remember Your past is the present in its calling and faith
it bonds with its tears, with hope, and with faith
you may turn from its message or turn from its way
but you cannot deny from where it is that you came

For our cultures not easy to live or to learn
it may take a whole lifetime to make its love turn
small men to giants and great men to saints
all from the Blessing and Gifts of G-d's Way

For it's more than religion, or tears, or sweet dance
or teachings, or candles, or traditions that pass
for we are all of these things tied together and whole
that commands and splits seas and frees human souls

So hold tight to your culture, plant its roots in your heart
tie its love to your soul, bond it's faith in the stars
for the strength of our being is Blessed Holy each day
So remember,
Do not forget from where it is that you came
Do not forget from where it is that you came
Do not forget from where it is that you came Reply

Anonymous Taylors, SC February 6, 2007

This is a great article and will be especially helpful to someone who might be doubting what he or she is hearing. It is true to my experience, though I have to add that we are not hearing an echo. No echo can change the trajectory of someone's life, even a divine echo.

G-d is intelligent, alive, and very much wants a dwelling place in our world, um, within US is how I understand what is being said. Reply

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