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Warriors Talk About "Surrender"

GYE Corp. Thursday, 09 February 2012

"Chizkiyahu" writes:

For a while, I thought that the battle was simply yetzer tov vs. yetzer hara. I thought that if I simply strengthened my yetzer tov by learning more Torah, doing more mitzvos, etc. that the yetzer hara would simply fall away on its own. Instead, the yetzer hara just got stronger. I couldn't understand how I was making all of these teary resolutions to STOP - ONCE AND FOR ALL! and yet the yetzer hara wouldn't listen!

Then I learned to surrender. By that, I mean acknowledging that I have an addiction and I am powerless to fight it on my own.

Now, when I feel myself starting to slip I say, "Hashem, I am powerless to fight this addiction on my own. I have tried and failed. I give up. Please, Hashem, fight this battle for me." And Baruch Hashem, it seems to be working.

I do this in tandem with:
1. Trying to read up on the nature of this addiction every day.
2. Only using internet at work.
3. Mikvah every day, if possible.
4. Praying to Hashem for help every day.

I don't know if I will ever be "cured", but I will never despair of trying to enlist Hashem to help me.


"Levite" replies:

Hi, keep up the good work! We shall never surrender! LOL. I've been thinking about the idea of surrender in Chazal. It says that Dovid Hamelech asked G-d to test him, but when he was tested - he fell through. Regarding the Yetzer Hara Chazal say, "If Hashem would not help him, he could not overcome him". When we want to fight the Yetzer Hara what we are actually doing is telling G-d, "please let me fight this out by myself" - as Bar Kochva said (he asked G-d not to come with him into war), and the inevitable outcome is failure. Why? Because after all, the Yetzer Hara is a G-dly angel of fire, and we are mere flesh and blood. How can we win him? But when we surrender ourselves by saying; "I give myself over to you, G-d" (or something similar), we are asking the Almighty to help us - and He does!

One more thing that I thought of... The Ohr Hachayim says regarding chava and the snake that the reason why she fell was because she allowed the snake to engage her in conversation. Once she got into the conversation, she started entertaining the idea of saying "yes" even though she had originally entered the conversation with the intent of saying "no". She said no, he said "yes", she said "no", he said "why not?"... So she started explaing why not, but by the time the conversation had finished she had fallen through.

Reb Nachman of Breslov brings this idea as well and says: don't challenge your Yetzer Hara or your bad thoughts. Just leave them - and think or do something else.