Day 9 of the Omer

נוֹהֲגִים שֶׁאֵין מְבָרְכִים שֶׁהֶחֱיָנוּ בִּימֵי סְפִירַת הָעוֹמֶר.

It is our custom to refrain from reciting the blessing Shehecheyanu1 during the period of the Counting of the Omer.2

לֹא טוֹב האָבּעֶן מִיר אַלֶע. שָׂעִיר לַעֲזָאזֵל אִיז געֶוועֶן אַן עֲבוֹדָה אִין בֵּית הַמִּקְדָשׁ. ווִי בּאַלד אַ נִבְרָא אִיז דאָ לֹא טוֹב, דאַרְף מעֶן עֶס אַוועֶקשִׁיקעֶן אִין אֶרֶץ גְּזֵרָה.

Everyone has in them something not so good.3 Sending the goat to Azazel4 was one of the services in the Beis HaMikdash. Since something not good exists within a human being, it must be banished to5 “an uninhabited place.”6

Living as a Chassid

As a rule, Chassidus advocates transforming our undesirable qualities by refining them and redirecting them into the realm of holiness. For example, a person contending with physical desire can transmute it into a positive desire to cleave to G‑d. Nevertheless, certain aspects of our characters are irredeemably devoid of any positive expression. It is these that must simply be cast away. This is the reaction that the Alter Rebbe recommends in response to unsavory alien thoughts that threaten to confuse one’s concentration while praying.7