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Reality Check

Reality Check

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What happens if you just don’t care? What if, no matter how many chapters of Tanya you learn, you feel apathetic and lack the emotional connection to prayer? Or to personal self-improvement?

It’s as if the pipes between your mind and heart are clogged, numbing your feelings and leaving you feeling cold towards anything spiritual.

The Alter Rebbe proposes a radical solution—one that should be used sparingly and only when necessary. For it is a bitter pill to swallow.

The apathy is caused by the arrogance of the animal soul, and the only way to break through it is to humble it. Just as tinder and smaller branches will catch fire faster than a very thick log, the ego may need to be “splintered” in order to kindle a spiritual fire.

A reality check will do the job of thawing the ice.

It is humbling to consider that we humans are capable of lusting after things that are forbidden and contrary to G‑d’s will. It is humbling to consider past sins, even ones that we have repented for. It can even be humbling to recall the content of dreams that we have experienced.

This process of intentional humbling deflates the ego and disempowers it from blocking our spiritual endeavors. These thoughts actually bring us to a deeper level of repentance and returning to G‑d, and may even be the reason G‑d caused us to feel apathy in the first place. So that we can get to work lighting a richer spiritual fire.

Tanya Bit: Our feelings of apathy are G‑d’s way to invite us to do a deeper level of repentance.

(Inspired from Chapter 29 of Tanya)

Sara Blau is a teacher and extracurricular director at Beth Rivkah High School. She is a wife, mother, and author of several children“s books.
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Dina Leah Albuquerque January 1, 2018

Our Chabad rabbi mentioned that there is a new book that helps explain Tanya for us beginners. He couldn’t think of the name of the book. Does anyone know what book he is referring to & if so, how can I purchase it online as we don’t have any place in Albuquerque, NM USA
Thank you Reply

S Uk January 3, 2018
in response to Dina Leah:

Listening everyday to Rabbi Gordon (of blessed memory) daily study, is a great help.

Praying all your endeavours will be successful Reply

Chabad.org Staff January 7, 2018
in response to Dina Leah:

Possibly "Sparks of Tanya"? And yes, Rabbi Gordon's Tanya classes are phenomenal, chabad.org/rabbigordon Reply

Dina Leah Albuquerque January 7, 2018
in response to Chabad.org Staff:

Thank you Thank you. I noticed it’s on sale in two volumes by Kehot. I gave my husband the information. He prefers reading than watching videos. He has a high IQ and grasps concepts quickly. I appreciate the responses. Reply

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