17 Nissan 5779 / Monday, April 22, 2019 | Torah Reading: Acharei Mot
 
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Holy Sounds    

Holy Sounds



The silent scream is one of the most amazing therapeutic techniques I’ve ever learned: it's an imaginary scream, but you hear it as loud as if you're yelling on a mountain top…

 



We get connected to the infinite potential of G-d inside of us when we speak to Him every day. Even when we can't speak to G-d openly, we can still scream silently for Him to come and help us. The silent scream is one of the most amazing therapeutic techniques that I’ve ever learned: it's an imaginary scream – “Please G-d, help me!” - but you hear it as loud as if you're saying it on a mountain top, and it has the same impact in your head and in the Heavens as a regular scream.

 

When we say the Hallel prayer, we ask G-d to please deliver us, and to make us successful, and to answer us when we cry out to Him. But we don't have to say these things only once a month, when we're inaugurating the New Moon; we can say them literally hundreds of times a day. Even if we aren't saying them, we can think them, when we're on the train going to a business meeting in town; or when we're walking to get a breath of fresh air or  give the dog some exercise; or when we're standing on the train coming home after a long day in the office; or when we're on the highway, stuck in traffic, trying to get to our next appointment.

 

Rabbi Arush teaches us that the best personal prayers happen when out in nature, or when we're at the gravesite of a holy person - but we don't always have those things available. Even when circumstances aren't “ideal” for us to talk to G-d, we can't let that put us off. This is where holy brazenness and boldness comes in. Even if people think I'm psychotic because I appear to be talking to myself on the sidewalk - so what! I'm going to have holy chutzpa, and I'm going to stand up for my values, and talk to G-d openly, the way Jews have always done, without worrying about what other people think of me. And today, we have a great solution to the “I look crazy talking to myself problem”: headphones. Today, there are millions of people talking - loudly! - To people who aren't really there. I can just blend in, and pretend it's my Boss or my Significant Other on the phone.

 

In Rabbi Arush's yeshiva in Jerusalem, you see guys pacing back and forth talking to G-d all the time. Often, they are repeating what they just learnt in their Talmud class, to try and “bake” their Torah learning into their brains. They repeat and repeat over and over again and when we talk to G-d, it doesn't have to be grammatically correct; it doesn't have to be poetry; it doesn't have to be new, or original, or different. It's enough just to spend a whole hour saying: “Oy Vey, help!!!”'

 

Our sighs are not only good for our bodies and our physical health; they are also great for our souls. Even if it's an incoherent sound, it's still working spiritual magic. Take a deep breath and just let it out. See how good it feels. Your sigh is holy! It's bringing good things into you.

 

Crying is another holy sound. If you're crying to G-d (which is not the same thing at all as complaining) and speaking to Him honestly about what you're doing that you're not happy about or proud of, whether it was 10 minutes ago or 10 years ago, if you're being really honest, you may actually start crying and sobbing.  You simply can't imagine the holiness those sounds are bringing to you, and to the whole world - and you're getting credit for it! So every time Jews are crying, speaking or sighing in holiness, every time they speak to an emuna coach or spiritual guide in an effort to improve and establish a relationship with G-d, they are racking up enormous spiritual merits for themselves.

 

The only way to actualize the potential of our soul is through holy sounds, like speaking in prayer and song. So go to a Torah lecture or show up for the prayer service in synagogue; listen to a holy person; put on a CD of your favorite holy melodies; sigh a lot, cry a bit, pop a few coins in your charity box and hear the holy “clink.” Even if you don’t understand Hebrew, listen to Rabbi Arush's holy voice and get an immediate spiritual boost, because even hearing his voice is a sound of holiness, and it's enough to get us closer to G-d.

 

We should all be blessed to find our own voices; to connect to G-d in our own, unique way, and to push past our problems (which really aren't problems at all, especially when we know G-d is giving them for our benefit); and to build the revelation of G-d in our own souls.

 

 

* * *

We invite you to visit Dr. Zev Ballen's popular daily web journal Spiritual Coaching.





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