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Rabbi Arthur Segal’s love of people, humanity, and Judaism has him sharing with others “The Wisdom of the Ages” that has been passed on to him. His writings for modern Jews offer Spiritual, Ethical, and eco-Judaic lessons in plain English and with relevance to contemporary lifestyles. He is the author of countless articles, editorials, letters, and blog posts, and he has recently published two books:

The Handbook to Jewish Spiritual Renewal: A Path of Transformation for the Modern Jew

and

A Spiritual and Ethical Compendium to the Torah and Talmud

You can learn more about these books at:

www.JewishSpiritualRenewal.org
ALL ENTRIES ARE (C) AND PUBLISHED BY RABBI ARTHUR SEGAL JEWISH SPIRITUAL RENEWAL, INC, AND NOT BY ANY INDIVIDUAL EMPLOYEE OF SAID CORPORATION. THIS APPLIES TO 3 OTHER BLOGS (CHUMASH, ECO, SPIRITUALITY) AND WEB SITES PUBLISHED BY SAID CORPORATION.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

RABBI ARTHUR SEGAL: BLUFFTON SUN 7/1/14 7/1/14: EGO VERSUS THE STILL SMALL VOICE

RABBI ARTHUR SEGAL: BLUFFTON SUN: EGO VERSUS THE STILL SMALL VOICE
 
 
 

Shalom and Peace:

We will continue to look in depth at some of the many verses held in common by Judaism and Christianity, and at the same time, understand their Jewish Rabbinical roots.

Mathew 6:13 reads: "Lead us not into temptation and deliver us from evil.''

Circa 500 years before Matthew the oral tradition of the Talmud teaches: '' Bring me not into temptation, and lead me away from iniquity ... and save me from the evil one (Berachot 80b).''

While Judaism and Hebraism do refer to Satan, Judaism is more concerned with the evil inclination (yetzer hara) that is in all of us, than outside sources of evil. "The strongest trick in the storehouse of the yetzer hara is to take what you know to be truth and make you come to have doubts about it. If you are not careful, this can cause you to come to sin even where you are spiritually strongest." (Rabbi Ibn Pakudah, 1050 C.E.). "The yetzer hara starts as thin as a spider web strand and if one does not conquer it, it grows thicker than a cart rope...The bigger that one spiritually is, the bigger his yetzer hara is." (Talmud Sukkah 52a).

Being happy comes from learning that God controls the universe and that we can go with the His flow.. We can accept both good and bad without changing our attitudes about life and God. The more we grow spiritually, the more our evil inclination wants us to fail, as our ego doesn't want to die.

Deuteronomy (21:10) reads, "…when you go out to war against your enemies."  The grammar shows Moses is using the singular 'you.' The commentaries explain that life's basic war is the individual's struggle against his main enemy, his yetzer hara within. This inclination leads us to do our own will with negative actions. This leads one away from God and one's fellows.

Our ego, our yetzer hara, is always trying to lead us astray. It speaks loudly. Our yetzer tov (good inclination) doesn't speak as loudly. It is called "a still small voice" (1 Kings 19: 12) inside of us, that we must purposely access via prayer and meditation, walking with God consciously throughout the day, and by daily spiritual growth.

When we keep our hearts connected to our minds, we stay Godly centered, and can best avoid temptation and bad behaviors.

 Rabbi Arthur Segal is an international lecturer, author, and teacher. Visit him at www.JewishSpiritualRenewal.org . Email at RabbiASegal@aol.com

 
RABBI DR ARTHUR SEGAL
REBBETZIN ELLEN SEGAL
www.JewishSpiritualRenewal.com/books www.FaceBook.com/Arthur.L.Segal www.FaceBook.com/RabbiArthurSegalJewishSpiritualRenewal www.RabbiArthurSegal.blogspot.com
Jewish Spiritual Renewal
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