All the world is a very narrow bridge, and the most important thing is not to fear at all. —Rebbe Nachman of Breslov
Do you have a common fear that’s not quite at the level of a phobia such as a fear of the IRS or other officials, a fear of dentists, a fear of what people think about you?
Do you have an existential fear, such as a fear that your life has no purpose, a fear of loneliness, or a fear of death?
Rebbe Nachman teaches us how to
Pollyanna. Naive. Just plain dumb. Whatever you call them, happy people bug me.
Don’t they know that the world is a terrible place?
Don’t they know that they are in for a big let-down. If not now, soon enough?
Are they really that naive? Do they really have faith in the ultimate goodness of life?
As for what you wrote (Rebbe Nachman of Breslov’s advice )to “force” yourself to be happy, to act silly, to lift your spirits, I’m sorry but happiness is not in our control. If we’re sad we can’t be expected to fake it. That’s disrespectful of our real feelings. I bet God doesn’t expect us to fake it.
Let’s face it: Only stupid people are happy.
Rebbe Nachman tells us that when we are happy and we are able to control our thoughts and therefore achieve a calm, centered mind, we are able to think about the important things in life, especially life’s ultimate purpose.
He explains that joy gives us real freedom and that a joyous mind is essential to being a truly free person, one who is not in exile.
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Intense prayer can help a person to find their marriage partner.
—Rebbe Nachman of Breslov
Are we allowed to think of our own joy during these difficult times?
We’re all connected—when one of us is uplifted so are our sisters and brothers. When our personal darkness is reflected in the world’s turmoil, it’s vital to keep on praying, doing mitzvos, and seeking light.
Maintaining the hope and belief that spiritual joy will prevail in trying times is an important part of the Jewish spiritual path.
One of the most joyful mitzvos that is central to many aspects of living a Jewish life, is marriage. Building a warm Jewish home and family, one in which happiness shines, is something most of us naturally gravitate to.