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Two Paths To Recovery

The Laws of the Goring Ox: How to Deal with Addiction

1 hr 17 min

Jüdischer Viehhändler. Signiert. Gouache. 1909

Class Summary:

This women's class was presented on Tuesday Parshas Mishpatim, 21 Shevat, 5778, February 6, 2018, at Ohr Chaim, Monsey, NY.

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  • Anonymous -5 years ago


    Dear Rabby YY

    I want to first thank you and bless you for all the amazing work you do to inspire yidden to reignite their passion in yoddishkite. 


    This class in particular was fascinating and inspiring at once! can You please share the מראה מקום to this הלכה taught in עבודת האדם. Is it a Mamer/Sicha?

    also, you mentioned a fascinating biology fact, that the brain creates physical imprints in the brain for either patterns you  develop. Can you refer me to a source for that too? I find that to be mind blowing!


    thanks again! 



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  • Anonymous -6 years ago

    I just heard your shiur from  parshas mishpatim," two paths to recovery", and I was so gratified to hear you connect the spiritual element of nefesh bahamis to the very physical part of our brain ,the brain stem attached to the spinal cord ,also known as the survival or instinct or reptilian or animal brain. 

    And you connect our nefesh elokis, with the part of our brain ,the neocortex that makes us human ,gives us a higher wisdom to decide ,calculate , figure out, learn ,discern etc....
    I love that you touch on the function of the amygdalla. 
    I have become an SRT .This is  Self Regulation Training. The premise is that there are people who find themselves ping ponging from the state of being shutdown and dissociated to being hyper vigilant angry, enraged , acting out , extremely reactive and  impulsive . Neuroscientists have found that the amygdalla of these people is always lit up. They see this on fMRIs. The amygdalla is the fire alarm of the brain / body warning us that there's a threat and we must flight ,fight  or freeze. Well if this alarm is broken it doesn't take much to get triggered and to run away ( shut down) or fight ( angry,enraged , shouting , acting out) or frozen. 
    In your speech ,you tried to inspire and motivate your listeners to understand their animal side and to tap in to their nefesh elokis. We believe that since so many people live in chronic stress  living on planet trauma, more people than ever have a dysregulated nervous system. And in SRT we teach clients to quiet down the amygdalla ,kind of put it on reset. Then they can live in the present moment ,not triggered by past incidents. They can slow down and underreact and become more self aware, of what's going on within themselves. This is a soft gentle modality ,based on Peter Levine's Somatic Experiencing. 
    If you want to know more , let me know.
    Thank you for all that you do for klal yisroel.

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    • D

      Debbie -2 years ago

      What about the brain of someone who has Tourette's Syndrome?

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  • R

    rachel -6 years ago

    Thank you so much for your most inspiring shiur; I really took home the idea of surrendering the Nefesh Habahamies to Hashem, even while it is still in process of being "trained"... I hope to integrate it "today"....
    I have a question though, say a person is transformed into a Shor Hamued thru trauma etc, can he be  held accountable? In therapy I'm often challenged to be angry with my parents, my reflective brain kicks in and sees their lack of bechira in all this; they did the best they could with the knowledge and tools they had, every person wants to be good, no? and if they're acting otherwise on a steady basis, isn't it bc they have no bechira in the matter? (don't think you can hold a child accountable for creating neuro patterns, and if they didn't try to change it as an adult, their neuro patterns didn't allow the awareness for it, right?)
    I'm told that we have to draw the line somewhere to forgive and understand people's evil behavior, if so where is the line?
    I'm also told that I'm holding on to this believe bc I do not want to see my parents as evil (inner child)....
    Any insight to this would be greatly appreciated!

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    • Anonymous -6 years ago

      Yes, it can be very confusing when the voice of our inner child and the voice of our mature self don’t see eye to eye and are pulling us in different directions.
      I’m not a therapist so I can’t comment on what you are being told in therapy that you are not allowing yourself to feel your anger towards your parents. However I will comment on your question about whether you parents can be held accountable.
      The truth is, in terms of the emotions inside of us it really makes no difference.
      When your inner child feels angry because of trauma or abuse that you experienced while your were growing up, whether or not your parents  can be held accountable is irrelevant to your inner child.
      Yes, as you’ve matured you are able to look back and realize that perhaps they had no bechira and were only doing their best. But first you have to fully own the feelings from your childhood and address the pain, anger, etc. of the inner child, (with lots of empathy and compassion). If those feelings are not fully experienced then often those unexpressed or suppressed emotions will start leaking everywhere. We get angry at ourselves, our spouses, G-d, or our children and we may not realize that the people we are angry at are not the true source of our anger and pain.
      Only after having found the right address, the true source for our inner child’s anger and painful emotions can we then move slowly forward to the mature adult (while lovingly holding the hand of the inner child) that can understand about Shor Hamued and begin to forgive.
      So yes, your parents may have had no choice whats so ever. But for the little child, it makes no difference.
      If I slam the door by mistake on your child's finger c"v, he will scream in pain, and he will feel that I did it and he might be very very very hurt by me. I can tell him that "I had no choice," but it makes no difference in terms of his child emotions.
      I hope it is clearer now.

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  • Anonymous -6 years ago

    mutually exclusive?

    this was an amazing shiur, thank you Rabbi Jacobson!

    I am left wondering though -if these 2 'methods' for healing are mutually exclusive? if one surrenders should one also simultaneously continue one's efforts in creating new neural pathways to 'tame the animal'? or does surrendering one's beast over to Hashem's domain entail totally letting go of employing any other efforts in the direction of healing? thank you

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  • AH

    Abigail Hirsch -6 years ago

    This was an amazing talk and I will send it on.

    Yesher koach.

    And thank you,



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Women's Mishpatim Class

Rabbi YY Jacobson

  • February 6, 2018
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  • 21 Sh'vat 5778
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In the loving memory of Avraham ben Yitzchak Shlomo, in honor of his yartzeit, 19 Shevat. Dedicated by his son Reb Yitzchak Shlomo

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