Thursday, January 31, 2013

Love of Gd


"One's love of Gd should be... like the love of a son for his father, which is a natural love; his nature compels him to love his father... The true test of one's love of Gd is during a time of strain and trouble."

(R' Moshe Chaim Luzzato, Path of the Just Chapter 19)

Have a great day,


  1. On Oct 15th 2002 I was laid off. 80% of the business unit was let go in rounds of layoffs, so I know it was not something I did in particular.

    On Oct 21st, my daughter plunked herself down on my bed. My toe was in pain a couple of hours later, so we hopped around the corner to the ER. After they taped my toe, I asked the doctor about my swollen gland on the side of my neck. She told me to see a doctor, it's not an ER thing. "See a doctor. Tomorrow." So I did, and from the doctor's office to the pathologist for a biopsy. And so, on Ocr 22nd, a week after being laid off (even around the same time of day), I was told i had lymphoma.

    Job hunting didn't fill the day. So I had plenty of time for shiurim, labeling books for the shul library, worry and pray.

    This time "bein hametzarim" (between the troubles) was perhaps the easiest time I ever had with qavanah. Shortly after I was declared in remission, my wife was told she's expecting, and I got a new job (my personal "yetzias Mitzrayim"), that connection was harder to find. (BH I've been in remission for 9 years, and Noa is now in 3rd grade.)

    So, I'm not sure I understand the Mesilas Yesharim. Yes there are troubles that so take up their time that finding free mental space for HQBH is difficult. It's hard to be a lamdan if one has to spend all day begging or farming a dust patch. But as a general statement about strain?

    One also says "There are no atheists in a foxhole" for a reason!

  2. Or IOW, one who cries out in his troubles "Keili Keili, lamah azavtani?" may on one level feel abandoned. But even in his abandonment, he feels close enough to G-d (on another level?) to cry out to Him about it!

  3. Hi R' Micha,

    I'm very glad to hear your troubles were eventually mitigated, even if that meant a challenge to your kavvanah.

    But is the foxhole experience "ahavah"? It seems to me that strain may increase one's awareness of his dependence on Gd, but I don't see that as love.