26 Av 5781 / Wednesday, August 04, 2021 | Torah Reading: Re'eh
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The Tests of This Generation    

The Tests of This Generation

A person asks Rabbi Avigdor Miller osb"m how he can guard himself against the temptations of this generation, which are incessantly pulling a Jew away from his Judaism…


Editor's note: Rabbi Avigdor Miller of saintly and blessed memory was one of the great spiritual leaders of Torah Jewry in America during the previous generation. With a courageous commitment to truth, he feared no one but Hashem. As a young man, he left the comforts of America to learn in the Slavodka Yeshiva in Lithuania from 1932-1938. We are honored at Breslev Israel to feature his writings, which we have received from the Toras Avigdor organization in Brooklyn, New York.


How does one help himself pass the ordeals and tests of this generation?

This man wants to know how a person can arm himself against the temptations of this generation. And the number one advice and counsel I can give you is to cut loose from the media. Cut loose from the media!


First of all, you must not have a TV in your house. If you persist in watching TV, then it's like inviting disaster into your life. Your eyes are inviting into your head all the wickedness and the stupidity of the world. And listening to the radio as well. And so, it is like a man who is holding onto a thorn bush, while yelling out, "Oh, it hurts! It hurts! Bring me some medicine!" So we say, "Yes, we can help you. But first let go of the thorn bush."


You want to be a frum Jew? You want to pass the tests of this generation? So how can you continue bringing into your head all the patterns, all the models, all the wickedness from the outside world?! And the less contact you have with the gentile world and the wicked Jewish world, the better off you are.


That's number one! What's the use of bewailing the tests and trials of this world, if you're running after them? It says, "Run away from sin!" But most Orthodox Jews are running towards sin! How can you fight sin, when you are running towards it?!


And therefore, the number one eitza (advice) I can give you is to cut loose from the wicked world. Don't read their things. Don't do it. Just let go. Their newspapers are full of poison. The New York Times is a textbook of immorality - besides apikorsis (heresy). It's two wicked textbooks in one newspaper. And anybody who goes with the New York Times in his pocket, demonstrates that he doesn't belong to Hashem. His heart is in the camp of the enemy. It's like a Jew walking around with the Nazi symbol on his arm. If you walk with the apikorsis in your back pocket, it shows that you don't belong to Hashem. So number one is, cut loose.


Now, I know what I'm saying won't be obeyed, but I'm saying it anyway because that's the only remedy.


Now, it won't make you a big tzaddik. It won't make you perfect in all the values of Torah. There's still something to do after that. But you must cut loose from the gentile world.


And stop using gentile names. Not Marvin anymore. Marvin should die - and Moshe should be reborn. Forget about Stanley – and Shimon should come back to life.

You have to throw off all the attitudes of the outside world. And little by little, as your face changes from the face of a wicked shicker, a drunken bum - little by little, the wrinkles smooth out, the face softens and you start looking like a mentch after a while, like a Jew.


And then we can start the great job of teaching you the values of Torah. But while you're still holding on for dear life, with affection, to all the ways of the nations of the world, what can we do for you already? You don't really want to leave go of the gentile ways, so how can you pass the tests that you face?


Eating out is a gentile way. Traveling is a gentile way. Reading newspapers - reading anything but Torah books is the way of the gentiles. You have to keep far away from all the things that the gentiles do.


How do you spend your Sundays? How do you spend your evenings? It's all in imitation of the gentiles! Jews are supposed to have an entirely different lifestyle. And I'm not taking about Jews who are great in Torah. Even if you're a nobody. But at least you should have a Jewish lifestyle. Then you'll be ready to start the trek on that great path leading upwards to Hashem and perfection.


(Transcribed from TAPE # 430)

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  How true
Anonymous,5/10/2017 12:05:06 PM

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