14 Tamuz 5779 / Wednesday, July 17, 2019 | Torah Reading: Pinchas
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The Eternal Promise    

The Eternal Promise

Personal prayer is for everyone, not just for those on lofty spiritual levels; that's why it's called "personal" prayer, for anyone can talk to Hashem in their own way...


A person made an appointment with me and asked for advice on how to be happy. I told him to do teshuva and to speak to Hashem in personal prayer for an hour every day. There are no tricks or quick remedies. Someone who never tasted the taste of personal prayer can't possibly know what teshuva is, and it's impossible to be happy without making teshuva.


Rebbe Nachman made amazing promises to those who would speak to Hashem on a daily basis. Here is his personal letter:


To you, my dear pupils and followers!


I call to you and ask of you stop for a few moments and listen to my words, for I'm speaking for your eternal benefit. Know that I worked hard to bring you close to me, for you surely can feel some of the miracles that were performed on your behalf. I urge you not to let anyone fool you and not to fool yourself. You have already heard, and you understand, that the way I help those close to me attain their soul correction is primarily by way of personal prayer, that they set aside a place for themselves where they can speak their heart out to Hashem, and ask for everything they need both in the spiritual and the material, and confess to Hashem everything they did wrong whether willfully or accidentally, whether coerced or voluntarily. Also, that they thank Hashem for all their amenities both in spiritual and in material. And this, I succeeded in arranging with Hashem: that if a person stands before Hashem for an hour a day in personal prayer, even if he has no spiritual arousal or can't say a word, only that he forces himself to yearn to speak to Hashem, he will merit everything good and there will be no stern judgments against him, for his soul will be corrected! Not only that, but all the heavenly realms that depend on him since the creation of Adam and until the coming of Moshiach will be rectified as well, for this is true and unshakable, and I guarantee it.


Signed, Rebbe Nachman of Breslev


Rebbe Nachman also promised that anyone who devotes an hour a day to personal prayer would live long enough to complete his soul correction. Therefore, if a person wants a guarantee of longevity, that he'll circumvent Purgatory and walk right into Gan Eden, and many other wonderful promises, he should devote an hour to personal prayer every single day with no compromises.


The most important component of personal prayer is setting aside an hour a day to speak to Hashem. The more one becomes accustomed to spending a daily hour with Hashem, the easier it is.


Personal prayer is for everyone, not just for those on lofty spiritual levels; that's why it's called "personal" prayer, since anyone - man, woman or child - can talk to Hashem in their own way.


Personal prayer should be in your own language, even in your own slang. Speak in the manner that you can best express yourself. Pour your heart out and share your innermost dreams and aspirations with Hashem. Don't try to be fancy, formal or impressive - speak naturally. Stick to your native tongue, whichever way you can best express yourself.


Simple speech flows the best, for Rebbe Nachman says that "It's a virtue that surpasses everything". Speak to Hashem simply from wherever you can, whether it's a room, a balcony or the back yard, on the beach or out in the field - wherever you feel comfortable and can be alone. Tell Hashem everything and ask Him to bring you close to Him, and you'll merit every blessing in the world.


No one - man, woman or child - should let a day go by without speaking to Hashem for an hour. Confess to Him, thank Him and take stock in yourself. Think about everything you did in the last 24 hours since your previous personal prayer session. This daily hour is a miniature Yom Kippur that atones for everything you've done the entire day. As such, a person who engages in personal prayer every day does teshuva every day and is constantly cleansed from sin. What could be better!?!

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