Lag BaOmer
  Breaking Free Chizuk: Lag BaOmer  
In Today's Issue
Torah: Ashreichem Yisroel!
Torah: Excerpts from the Holy Zohar
Announcements: New 12-step program launched internationally
Torah: The Final Moments of Rabbi Shimon's Life
Torah: Comes to be purified
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Ashreichem Yisroel!
By Avrom
By GYE Member

On Lag Baomer, we joyfully sing: "Omar R‘ Akiva, Ashreichem Yisrael! Ma hamikva metaher es hat’meim kach Hkb’h metaher es yisroel.“ Why was it necessary for R’ Akiva to tell us this?

The Lubavitcher Rebbe explains: As we know, there are no extra words in Mishnayos. Therefore, it may seem strange for R’ Akiva so specify: “Ma mikva metaher - es Hat’meyim.” Isn’t it obvious that a mikva is metaher tmeyim?? He should have said “Ma hamikva metaher – kach Hkb’h metaher..!?”

The gemara has a dispute: If someone becomes tomei by touching a sheretz or by seeing shichvas zera, he must go to the mikva – and when night falls, he’s tahor. If someone, however, touches a 'mess' (corpse), he must go through a seven-day procedure that includes getting sprinkled with the ashes of the Poroh Aduma, only then he regains his tahara.

Here comes the question: What if someone who touched a corpse during the 7 days of purity touches a sheretz or sees shichvas zerah? Do we say “let him take care of the small tumah and then you can proceed “ or do we say “You anyways are impure, so what difference does this small impurity make? Plus: The greater impurity will be removed thru the ashes of the porah adumah – so why make an effort for something that will vanish anyway?”

R’ Akiva viewed the first opinion as correct and sent us a message: Of course, a mikva makes a person tahor! However, “Ma hamikva metaher es hatmeyim” – just like a mikva is metaher the tmeyim (even though he is possessed by a much greater tuma, as above) - “Kach Hkb’h metaher es yisrael” - So too, we still may be deep in the mud, but even a small step towards Hashem is very valued by Him and will purify us. Often, it doesn’t seem to make sense to make a small change, feeling that it is so insignificant and that greater action is needed for any result. R’ Akiva teaches us that every small action is productive!

-Ashreichem Yisrael

Excerpts from the Holy Zohar

In honor of Lag Ba'Omer, we will bring some excerpts from the Holy Zohar of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. (Tanslations taken from

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New 12-step program launched internationally
The Final Moments of Rabbi Shimon's Life

On the day that Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai passed away, he revealed many great secrets of the Torah which had been hidden in his heart until this day. The secrets he revealed can be found in the "Idra Zuta" in Parshas Ha'azinu. The Idra Zuta discusses the parallels between the human body and the corresponding spiritual worlds. It starts out with the head and moves downwards, discussing the many different limbs of the body - and how they parallel the upper worlds.

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Comes to be purified
By Bardichev

In Honor of Lag Ba'Omer, I would like to bring a truly beautiful post from one of the "Bon-Fires" on our forum; "Barditchev"! He writes to a fellow member as follows:

When I was in my first 2 weeks, I monitored myself hourly. When I started the 3rd week, I started to keep track of greater intervals. To be perfectly honest, my goal was to come into Pesach without falling. 40 days was not even on my horizon at the time, I actually hand-drew a chart which only had "30" on it. I felt that if I were to make a goal that was too much, I would never keep it.

I am now passed 50 days B"H, and I would like to mention a few of the things which I can attribute my success so far to, Bli Ayin Horah:

A. I was able to break free.

That I attribute to all that I read and internalized here on the forum and on the website. I realized that I'm an addict, and I realized that I was in a self-destructive situation. I realized that other people who sound so normal and rational, had the same problem and are dealing with it successfully.

B. I was able to stay clean.

This part is the hardest part, because that is where all the work is. Staying clean is a struggle. But I feel that the part that makes it doable, is that we are able to post to one another in real time. (Plus, this forum replaced my addiction somewhat). Not that I have any confidence to say I trust myself, but I do feel that being constantly in touch with people who recognize my problems, can help me deal with them in a positive way.

C. Momentum

There is a real vibrancy on GYE, you can feel the excitement and energy. The Wall of Honor is a great motivator. The fact that you have to monitor yourself and you see the results up on the board, is terrific way to keep up the good work.

D. Communication

What I was suffering from as an addict, is that I thought I was the only lonely person on this planet who is struggling with shemiras einayim. The fact that I can communicate with other people who are open and honest and are dealing with the same issues, gives me the proper frame of mind to stay focused on that goal.

E. Love vs. Lust

What many of us have to deal with, is differentiating between love and lust. Lust is the wild spontaneous sensation of self gratification. Love is the opposite. On this site we are taught to control the addiction of lusting, remove its veneer, and search for what we are really are looking for, which is love: i.e. love of Hashem and love of our fellow man. And there's lots of it here!

F. Hope

On GYE, everyone is given a second chance. This site is the optimization of "HABAA LITAHER MISAYYIN OISO - He who comes to be purified, is helped".

Humble and happy


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Do you have a problem with obsessive and compulsive porn use? Have you seriously tried the tools on GYE and feel that you are not getting better? Maybe it’s time to consider joining a 12-Step program.

Porn Anonymous (PA)
If you’re compulsively acting-out with pornography and masturbation we suggest you explore joining Porn Anonymous (PA). If you need help deciding whether to join PA, call Michael at 347-699-2368, or email to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit (Hebrew: / Yiddish:

Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
If your compulsive acting-out has progressed beyond the screen (with other people, paid sexual services, etc.) we suggest you explore joining Sexaholics Anonymous (SA). To figure out if SA is for you, call Dov at 917-414-8205, or email Dov at to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit

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