Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Breaking Down Hiskashrus

(Picture courtesy of braingle.com)

Chabakuk Elisha commenting on Hiskashrus:

Hiskashrus, similar to other emotional bonds (love, for example) is something that is felt, and it is felt to varying degrees.

There are a number of ways to get there (and it's often a combination) such as:

1. Automatic: We'll call it "ruchni," or a "soul connection." This can apply to anyone from anywhere and under any circumstances. It just "is."

2. Inherited: One was raised with it. It's in their "mother's milk." Regardless of anything else in their background, they are raised in a way that developed and created a strong hiskashrus in their consciousness.

3. Created: This can happen a number of ways; I subdivide them into 2 groups:

a) Decision Based: One may find a derech or individual Tzaddik's message especially compelling, or their individual situation may be especially compatible with a specific derech or Tzaddik's message. Based on that, they create a bond or hiskashrus.

b) Based on Intangibles: One may feel a natural connection due to one's history, background, family or other mainly emotional circumstance.

I have heard people tell me many reasons for their development of hiskashrus to a certain derech or tzaddik. Sometimes they had a teacher that had a shaychis to a specific derech/tzaddik that they especially were especially fond of, and this was the most significant force in their ending up also a follower of that derech/tzaddik. Sometimes they grew up with a specific old sefer on their shelf belonging to a specific derech/tzaddik that caused them to end up connected with that derech/tzaddik. Sometimes they looked up to certain people that represented a specific tzaddik/ derech. The reasons are endless.

We know that ahava that is tluya bedavar doesn't endure when challenged, unlike like ahava that isn't dependant on any specific cause – which is far deeper and enduring. We also know that if one feels it in their bones from causes beyond themselves it will be far stronger, more powerful and palpable in one's life. And the more that one individual can connect emotionally (and intellectually) the stronger that the hiskashrus is likely to be.

So, if one shares more in common (meaning shared culture, shared experiences, shared background), it is more likely that the bond will be stronger – and if, let's say, someone comes from 12 generations of followers of a drech/tzaddik, and comes from the basic area of that tzaddik/derech's roots, it would seem obvious that they have more "resources" to draw upon – but, with all that said, quite often none of it is necessary, and an individual can have a far greater true hiskashrus even though they have none of those advantages.


At October 16, 2007 at 12:28:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It might sometimes be far less crystal clear... For instance, I actually daven, learn and follow Chabad's path, and my children go to a chabad school. Nonetheless, I always feel an emotionnal and intellectual hiskashrus with Rabbi Nahman and Likutey Moharan and Likutey Halakhot. Seems to me that Rabbi Nahman speaks to me, it's a very strong feeling. On the other way, while learning Tanya, I dont understand a word without translation and/or pirushim, and while learning a sicha from the Rabbi I'm intellectually happy, I dont feel such a love I feel with Braslav. Now, that being said, I think it's easier to grow children in the Chabad path than living the whole family to go to Uman on Rosh Hashana... So, bottom line, I think there is 2 kind of hishkasrus: the deeper one, from the heart and pnymius, and the external one, ie the way you look, the mynian you go, the sidur you're davening with... Any comments?

At October 17, 2007 at 3:10:00 AM EDT, Blogger Yehudi said...

This is deep stuff.. :)
I love the blog! I really enjoy reading through your posts...keep up the great work and I'll be back often to check out your latest!
L'Shalom, Yehudi

At October 17, 2007 at 4:33:00 AM EDT, Blogger Moshe David Tokayer said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At October 17, 2007 at 4:41:00 AM EDT, Blogger Moshe David Tokayer said...

Regardless of the reason a person feels a connection - just is, brought up that way, decided, etc. - the underlying principle is that there is a ruchniyesdiga need that the individual has that can only be satisfied by the connnection. In other words, the individual's tikun hanefesh is to an extent dependent on the hiskashrus regardless of what brought him to it.

It could be, for example, that a person is born into a certain chassidishe family because min hashamiyim it's determined that he needs a hiskashrus with that chassidus for his tikun. The same btw, applies to everything.

I've heard, for example, that adopted children may very well have a much stronger ruchniyidiga connection with their adopted parents than with their biological parents and for whatever reason, determined in shamayim they needed to be born to people other than the ones that actually raised them. This is certainly an encouraging attitude for adopted children.

My point is that whatever the apparent reason for the connection, it is always a "soul connection."

At October 17, 2007 at 6:23:00 AM EDT, Blogger A Simple Jew said...

Yehudi01: Thanks for the feedback!


Post a Comment

<< Home