Friday, May 22, 2009

A'maize'ing

Once you get into the habit of relying on past thought, life gets a lot easier. Don't worry, I'm sure at some point I'll give y'all some original shtuff, but right now I'm too wiped for that sort of thing. Instead, here's a farbrengen with Rabbi Chayim Friedman, originally published on October 25, 2007, as Inspiring Thoughts (No, Really).

Tonight we had a Farbrengen with Rabbi Chayim Friedman. I didn't arrive on time, and I left early. What an idiot. Rabbi F. is an amazing Mashpia. Here's the little that I caught: What is society's main problem? So there's a famous story. First of all, while the following makes sense, please know that #1. I have the rights to any self-improvement engendered, and #2. Don't blame me when things go wrong. Now that we've dealt with the disclaimers, here comes, in relatively serious fashion, the story.

The Rebbe Maharash had a Chassid who came to Yechidus (Private meeting) once a year from Peterburg. Whenever he came he would wear a Chassidic coat, but the rest of the year he wore a fashionable suit. After several years the Chassid said to himself, "Who am I fooling? The Rebbe knows I dress like a modern guy the whole year, and I fake for one day, I might as well stop the bluff and show him the truth." So the Chassid comes in, and the Rebbe asks him where his long Chassidic coat is, and he says, "In the dry-cleaners." Just kidding, they didn't have dry-cleaning in the 19th century. The Chassid explains his wardrobe change. And the Rebbe says, "I had it all wrong. I thought that you were truthful the one day a year, in your long black Chassidic coat, in Lubavitch, and that the rest of the year you were faking it. But now I see that you think that the 'Peterburg you' is the real you, and the 'Lubavitch you' is the fake.

History does not record what happened in the next year's Yechidus.

Point is, we all have this problem on some level. The problem is that we see ourselves as faking. OK, so this isn't so bad. We do fake. The problem is that we mix up the real and the fake. People are too scared to realize that what they think they're faking is actually the real them. They don't believe that they have the capability to live up their (supposed) bluff. So what do they do? They give up hope. But, my dear friends, you got the power (cue the gospel choir). If you only believe in yourself, the real self, you can do it. Who are the people who succeed? Those you believe in themselves. All right, and some of them are crackpots. Don't blame me.

Obviously I'm talking to myself just as much, and even more, than I'm talking to you. Only thing is that I dislike using the word "I" too much. In fact, at all.

22 comments:

Altie said...

(first one to comment. cool.) This gave me a lot to think about. So I shall go think. Thanks for posting it.

The Real Shliach said...

(oh, first commenters are. very much so.)

My pleasure. Glad to have been of service.

Cheerio said...

making me think serious thoughts on a friday morning...

e said...

subscribing.

The Real Shliach said...

Cheerio: Is this a good thing?

e: You had better what to say the first time.

e said...

Right. But I said it already.

sarabonne said...

Can I hear an AMEN! (gospel choirs are fun...)

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

Next year he went to Ruzhin.

Sitting here in a T-shirt and jeans when I spent Monday-Wednesday in penguin levush, this gives me what to think about.

The Real Shliach said...

e: Indeed.

Sara: That's why I like Ohad.

Modeh: And what's the result?

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

I've decided the t shirt is the real me and the white-shirt me is a show.

The Real Shliach said...

Ahh. Now that I know that, what do I do?

Anonymous said...

where is the the real shliach - he left morristown!

The Real Shliach said...

Of course The Real Shliach left Morristown-he's only been there twice for shabbos the whole year!

Anonymous said...

But where was The REal Shliach since Wednesday!!!

The Real Shliach said...

Somewhere, over the rainbow, way up high, there's a TRS being himself, singing a lullaby...

Cheerio said...

a: you decide.
b: that song has been stuck in my head all day!

The Real Shliach said...

A. I think it is. I hope.

B. From moi?

Anonymous said...

This website needs to be shut down. All it does is encourage bittul torah. Obviously the real shliach is a fraud, fry Jew who is machtie b'rabim. Do the right thing, shut it down

Cheerio said...

nope. because i was listening to it at work yesterday. the fact that you quoted it is just one of those universe converging things that happens.

le7 said...

Shut down? CH"V.

sarabonne said...

It would only rise again, more powerful than ever before.

The Real Shliach said...

Anon: With ahavas yisroel like you've displayed with this comment, how could I not?

Cheerio: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baader-Meinhof_phenomenon

le7: agreed.

Sara: Or so one would hope.