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Where Therapy Meets Spirituality

What Is Hell? Feeling the Pain In Order to Let Go of a Past

2 hr 36 min

Class Summary:

This class, in Torah Or by the Alter Rebbe, Baal HaTanya, was presented in the winter of 5777 (Nov. 2016), in Ohr Chaim Shul, Monsey, NY.

Please leave your comment below!

  • S

    Shmuel -7 years ago

    Dear Rabbi Jacobson Shlito

    I am in the middle of listening to your shiur entitled “Where therapy meets Spirituality” Torah Or Vayehi Miketz (11/24/16)

    If I understood you correctly you said the following
    You bring down in the name of the Kotzker that at the time the faucet of real love was accessed by the Baal Shem Hakodoish and his talmidim, simultaneously it opened up the world of romance and love between the opposite sexes. Both are true love.
    The only problem was that it was love without any borders / limits. For example adultery / crushes etc.

    I have a major problem understanding this idea.

    In the attached piece I am sending you* I demonstrate that romantic love / falling in love is ALL about “Love of self” (Ahavas Utzmoi) and NOTHING WHATSOEVER about loving another person (Ahavas Hazulas) which is what true love is ALL about.

    I would be ever so grateful if you could clarify this issue for me.

    Looking very much forward to your response

    Kol Tuv

    Shmuel Lemon

    *“LOVE” IN CRISIS

    We all know the rate of divorce is on the rise. Many reasons have been suggested.

    I would like to put forward an idea that as yet, I have not seen being
    discussed in depth.

    People say "I LOVE YOU"

    What do they really mean?

    When two people meet and eventually find themselves emotionally bonded
    to each other, they then decide to get married.
    What has taken place?

    They have seen and experienced “in the other” certain characteristics
    and features that they identify with.
    They like and enjoy the way the other talks, behaves, looks, physical features, laughs, holds themselves etc….
    They feel that the other has connected to their dreams, values, goals, ideas etc…
    They value the other persons middos, yiras shomayim and character.
    This makes them feel “good” being in their company / attracted to them.

    They now feel emotionally connected and each one feels concerning the other “I love you”

    Now I have found my “bashert”.
    This is what is referred to as “falling in love”

    This really means, that since I feel that I am getting my needs and desires
    fulfilled, I therefore feel that I want to be connected to the other forever.

    People say that love is about giving: I love you therefore i want to give you.
    But “falling and being in love” is ALL about receiving, not at all about giving.

    Although I may feel that I now want to give to the other, this is
    conditional to my feeling of “being in love" (getting my needs met)

    Once I "fall out of love" (not getting my needs met) I will not want to give any more since I am not getting what I want (my needs met) in return.
    This is what is taking place in a person’s subconscious.

    This is an example of ‘giving with the sole intention of receiving in return:
    Thus it is not classified as "giving to the other" at all.

    The essence of “Giving” is unconditional, without expecting anything in return: otherwise I am not giving.

    This kind of “giving” is not even considered sheloi lishmo that leads to lishmo.

    Why? Because one does not make conditions with Hashem saying that I will only be involved in the mitzva of giving when I have a certain feeling!!!!

    In other words, the feeling of love that I experience is “love of self”

    Just like when I say I love a certain type of food etc…what I really mean is that I enjoy eating that food because it’s tasty. It’s all about loving what gives me pleasure.
    The same in our case: the object that I love happens to be a person rather than fish but there is absolutely no other difference whatsoever.

    It’s ok to love oneself (not at all wrong) because we all need to get our needs met; otherwise we will lack self-esteem and be emotionally unhealthy human beings.

    This is not at all classified as being selfish as long as one vital condition is fulfilled: that I am AWARE (recognise and admit to myself) that this feeling IS ALL ABOUT ME getting my needs / desires met and not about giving to the other what so ever.

    Why? Because only then will I be motivated to give to the other (which is the essence of “Love of Other”) as then I will realise that all I have done until now is classified as receiving. I have not yet begun to give!

    To give means to satisfy the other person’s needs unconditionally: without expecting anything in return
    Once I become aware that the other person is meeting my needs, I will automatically want to reciprocate.
    .
    Why? Either because that’s the way I show my appreciation for what I am receiving or because I will feel selfish for using the other person just for satisfying my own needs. I will feel that I am abusing my spouse.

    When does it go wrong?

    If I am under the illusion that “falling in love” is all about love of the other: Because then one becomes selfish and abusive.

    Why? Because I will be using "the other" solely for my own benefit.

    In reality what then happens, is that I am unconsciously getting my
    needs met under the guise of “loving the other” and I will never ever
    attempt to get involved in “loving the other” because I feel that I have already
    achieved it.!!!

    This will automatically happen if I remain unaware of what my natural
    feelings are all about.

    This is what is referred to as “self awareness”: being aware of the reality of what is happening in my internal world of feelings, that my initial feeling of “love of other” is really ALL ABOUT ME.

    I believe that until people are re -educated, the problems (sholom bayis / divorce) remain unsolvable.

    [email protected]

    Reply to this comment.Flag this comment.

    • RYJ

      Rabbi YY Jacobson -7 years ago

      What the kotzker Rebbe meant was indeed that very point! Chassidus opened up channels of real love; it was misused in romantic love, which is often selfish and hence lacks real respect and boundaries.

      Reply to this comment.Flag this comment.

      • SL

        Shmuel Lemon -7 years ago

        Thanks for your peshat in the Kotzkers words

        Reply to this comment.Flag this comment.

  • SL

    shmuel lemon -7 years ago

    Dear Rabbi Jacobson Shlito

    I am in the middle of listening to your shiur entitled “Where therapy meets Spirituality” Torah Or Vayehi Miketz (11/24/16)

    If I understood you correctly you said the following
    You bring down in the name of the Kotzker that at the time the faucet of real love was accessed by the Baal Shem Hakodoish and his talmidim, simultaneously it opened up the world of romance and love between the opposite sexes. Both are true love.
    The only problem was that it was love without any borders / limits. For example adultery / crushes etc.

    I have a major problem understanding this idea.

    In the attached piece I am sending you* I demonstrate that romantic love / falling in love is ALL about “Love of self” (Ahavas Utzmoi) and NOTHING WHATSOEVER about loving another person (Ahavas Hazulas) which is what true love is ALL about.

    I would be ever so grateful if you could clarify this issue for me.

    Looking very much forward to your response

    Kol Tuv

    Shmuel Lemon

    *“LOVE” IN CRISIS

    We all know the rate of divorce is on the rise. Many reasons have been suggested.

    I would like to put forward an idea that as yet, I have not seen being
    discussed in depth.

    People say "I LOVE YOU"

    What do they really mean?

    When two people meet and eventually find themselves emotionally bonded
    to each other, they then decide to get married.
    What has taken place?

    They have seen and experienced “in the other” certain characteristics
    and features that they identify with.
    They like and enjoy the way the other talks, behaves, looks, physical features, laughs, holds themselves etc….
    They feel that the other has connected to their dreams, values, goals, ideas etc…
    They value the other persons middos, yiras shomayim and character.
    This makes them feel “good” being in their company / attracted to them.

    They now feel emotionally connected and each one feels concerning the other “I love you”

    Now I have found my “bashert”.
    This is what is referred to as “falling in love”

    This really means, that since I feel that I am getting my needs and desires
    fulfilled, I therefore feel that I want to be connected to the other forever.

    People say that love is about giving: I love you therefore i want to give you.
    But “falling and being in love” is ALL about receiving, not at all about giving.

    Although I may feel that I now want to give to the other, this is
    conditional to my feeling of “being in love" (getting my needs met)

    Once I "fall out of love" (not getting my needs met) I will not want to give any more since I am not getting what I want (my needs met) in return.
    This is what is taking place in a person’s subconscious.

    This is an example of ‘giving with the sole intention of receiving in return:
    Thus it is not classified as "giving to the other" at all.

    The essence of “Giving” is unconditional, without expecting anything in return: otherwise I am not giving.

    This kind of “giving” is not even considered sheloi lishmo that leads to lishmo.

    Why? Because one does not make conditions with Hashem saying that I will only be involved in the mitzva of giving when I have a certain feeling!!!!

    In other words, the feeling of love that I experience is “love of self”

    Just like when I say I love a certain type of food etc…what I really mean is that I enjoy eating that food because it’s tasty. It’s all about loving what gives me pleasure.
    The same in our case: the object that I love happens to be a person rather than fish but there is absolutely no other difference whatsoever.

    It’s ok to love oneself (not at all wrong) because we all need to get our needs met; otherwise we will lack self-esteem and be emotionally unhealthy human beings.

    This is not at all classified as being selfish as long as one vital condition is fulfilled: that I am AWARE (recognise and admit to myself) that this feeling IS ALL ABOUT ME getting my needs / desires met and not about giving to the other what so ever.

    Why? Because only then will I be motivated to give to the other (which is the essence of “Love of Other”) as then I will realise that all I have done until now is classified as receiving. I have not yet begun to give!

    To give means to satisfy the other person’s needs unconditionally: without expecting anything in return
    Once I become aware that the other person is meeting my needs, I will automatically want to reciprocate.
    .
    Why? Either because that’s the way I show my appreciation for what I am receiving or because I will feel selfish for using the other person just for satisfying my own needs. I will feel that I am abusing my spouse.

    When does it go wrong?

    If I am under the illusion that “falling in love” is all about love of the other: Because then one becomes selfish and abusive.

    Why? Because I will be using "the other" solely for my own benefit.

    In reality what then happens, is that I am unconsciously getting my
    needs met under the guise of “loving the other” and I will never ever
    attempt to get involved in “loving the other” because I feel that I have already
    achieved it.!!!

    This will automatically happen if I remain unaware of what my natural
    feelings are all about.

    This is what is referred to as “self awareness”: being aware of the reality of what is happening in my internal world of feelings, that my initial feeling of “love of other” is really ALL ABOUT ME.

    I believe that until people are re -educated, the problems (sholom bayis / divorce) remain unsolvable.

    [email protected]

    Reply to this comment.Flag this comment.

Torah Or Vayehi Miketz #3

Rabbi YY Jacobson

  • November 29, 2016
  • |
  • 28 Cheshvan 5777
  • |
  • 1134 views

In commemoration of the 5th yahrzeit (23 Cheshvan) of Mrs. Sara MuschelSorah bas Yechiel Michel.

Sara was born in Veretsky, Czechoslovakia, and was deported to Auschwitz on the last day of Pesach, along with her parents. Her mother and father were murdered upon arrival in Auschwitz. Sara, age 17, survived and went on to build a beautiful legacy of children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. She was the great granddaughter of the Bais Yitzchok, the great Hungarian Posek.

Dedicated by Liz and Michael Muschel

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