Inspired by Reb Kalonymos Kalman's ideal of a group of people coming together with the common goal of enhancing their service of God, increasing their sensitivity to all things spiritual, strengthening their love of acheinu kol beis Yisrael, and unlocking the enormous potential that we all have to cleave to the Almighty.

Interaction and discussion of practical ideas and concepts toward this end, culled from any Torah true source is welcome and appreciated.

Observations and personal experiences are also welcome; the point is to grow!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Tapping Into The Rich Emotional Reservoirs We All Have

In the previous post, Reb Ally writes about the inherent emotional capacity in everyone, and how it is only a matter of accessing those emotional wellsprings.

So how do we do it?

One exercise is to affect a certain emotional outpouring, even if it is not true or sincere; the display of emotion is a trigger that releases a larger authentic expression. For example, on Yom Kippur, we are encouraged during Ne'ila (the last part of the Yom Kippur service; we are taught that the gates of Heaven are beginning to swing shut, from the Hebrew word to close or lock) to bring ourselves to tears, by any means necessary- whether or not they are a true expression of feelings.

While tears are by nature a powerful spiritual tool - one that can be implemented despite the lack of any true feelings, and have such an effect to the degree that it can reverse even the most awesome of decrees - part of the idea behind our "forcing" ourselves to cry is the arousal that it will ultimately inspire.

More often than not, once we are crying about one thing - regardless of the source of "inspiration" - it is very easy for that episode of tears to increase and intensify to include other reasons (better reasons) to cry. M'toch sheLo Lishma, bah Lishma, as it were. That "insincere" flow of tears will inspire real tears to flow, and once we have achieved that outpouring of the soul - those tears can shatter the Heavens and break through the barriers. It is one reason why the Kav HaYashar repeatedly stresses the importance of prayer with tears; the tears wrap up even the most pathetic prayer and escorts it past the guards of the Heavenly gates directly to the Throne of Glory...

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