Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Free at Last!

In the Hagadah, we read: "Had the Blessed One not taken our fathers from Egypt (at that very moment), then we, our children, and our children's children would still be enslaved to Pharaoh in Egypt."
One might ask: If Hashem had not taken us out of Egypt then we would still probably become free at some later date?
To this, one may answer yes, we might have become physically free at some later date, but our minds and personalities would have remained 'enslaved' forever, becoming totally Egyptian. Hashem 'pulled us' from Egypt at the last possible moment when most Jews were only one step away from adopting the Egyptian way of life, unable to become the Jewish nation.I
In fact, only one fifth of  of the Jewish people were saved. Four fifths died in the maka of darkness, having fallen so low that they didn't believe in the redemption or didn't even want to be redeemed.
So too do our brains get conditioned into patterns of apathy, sadness, lonliness and feeling distant from Hashem. Why? because most often our thoughts go where they're most familiar then they get hard-wired into those destructive emotions. 
Can you become conditioned to feel loved by Hashem all of the time and to be happy all of the time? Most people believe they can't so their brains don't go for better thoughts and feelings because they don't reward themselves enough.
In physical conditioning when a person works his muscles beyond what is comfortable for them, he becomes stronger and what was previously difficult for him becomes easy. It's the same with spiritual conditioning. You've got to work on yourself when you don't want to, when you feel one-step away from giving up. But if you do, that's precisely when you'll get the biggest spiritual rewards. The same nervous system that conditioned the person to feel like a  slave can condition him to feel truly free!
With blessings,
Dr. Zev Ballen