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The Alshich


I want to bless you that whenever something good and holy happens to you, it should also happen to your soulmate.  Because the saddest thing in the world is: imagine if one of you reaches a very high level, and the other one doesn’t.  It’s so heartbreaking because you can be very lonely being high.


The Holy Ari z”l and the Bais Yosef lived in Tsfat and the Holy Alshich was the shames [beadle] of the synagogue.  No one really paid that much attention to him, but he was a gevalt.  He was married by his Bar Mitzva and then, when he was fourteen, nebuch, his wife left the world.


The Holy Alshich was accustomed to waking up every night at three o’clock to learn.  While he was married, his wife would also wake up every night and give him tea.  Then, nebuch, his wife left the world.  So his mother got up.  But his mother didn’t have koach [strength], so she went to the next door neighbor, who was a water carrier.  He had a daughter, and she said to her, “I’ll pay you; can you bring my son, at three o’clock in the morning, some tea?”


The next morning, the Holy Alshich went to his mother and he said,  “Who brought me tea last night?”  She answered, “Bracha Feigel, the water carrier’s daughter.”


So he marched down to Bracha Feigela and he said to her,  “Why did you give me two glasses of tea last night?”  She said, “Because I saw you were learning with somebody.”


He said, “Gevalt!  My wife gave me tea for one year and she didn’t see Eliyahu HaNavi [Elija the Prophet].  My mother gave me tea for half a year and she didn’t see Eliyahu HaNavi.  And you, on the first night, you see Eliyahu HaNavi!  You better marry me fast!”


You know how the Holy Alshich became revealed to the world?  On Lag B’Omer the Ari z”l would go up to Meiron and dance gevalt.  Most of the time the Ari z”l would just be there by himself.  Everybody would stand in a circle, and the heilege Ari z”l would dance in the middle all by himself.  Suddenly the heilege Alshich, the shames, got up and started dancing with the Ari z”l.  A chutzpah [audacity], the Ari z”l, the Holy of Holiest, is dancing in honor of Shimon Bar Yochai, and here the shames has the chutzpah to dance also!


Before the people had a chance to tear him away, suddenly, out of nowhere, another person came that they had never seen before and also danced.  So there were already three people dancing, and the Ari z”l didn’t say anything.  Mamash dancing a gevalt.  After the dancing, the Alshich was still there and the third person disappeared.  So they asked the Ari z”l, “Really, what a chutzpah, the shames….”


He said, “Let me tell you, do you know who the third person was?  The heilege Rebbe Shimon bar Yochai.  And if the Alshich was good enough to dance with Shimon bar Yochai, he’s good enough to dance with me.”  So, from that time on, suddenly people realized that maybe the Alshich is… maybe…. The Holy Alshich is mamash gevalt!



The Angel


And now, we are coming to a very important thing;  I bless you one other thing.  I want to tell you a gevalt story now.  Listen to this.  This is in honor of your parents wherever they are.


The story is…, You know I don’t want to say anything bad, but there were some Rabbis who were so much into learning, that they didn’t know how holy their own children were.  The son of the Mezeritch Maggid, the heileger Malach, was called the Angel because he was so holy.  When he married the daughter of Reb Shalom Shachna, his father-in-law was a Misnagid.  He was sweet, he was holy, but mamash he didn’t know his own daughter.  So he sent word to the Mezeritch Maggid that he thinks it’s a waste of time to come to the wedding, because he has to learn.  Now what can you do?  His wife came back from the wedding, and she says, “Do you know how holy the wedding was?  Do you know how special it was?  Do you know that Heaven and earth were dancing?  Why didn’t you come to the wedding?  And do you know whom your daughter married?  He is an angel of all Heaven.  The world calls him Malach.”  So, she says, “I will not speak to you unless you promise me right now that next Shabbos you will go to your daughter.”


Anyway, it took him four days to walk there.  That next Friday night, he’s spending with his daughter and his son-in-law.  And I don’t have to tell you, in Mezeritch, by the Holy Malach, the davening [praying] was a gevalt, right?  Anyway, after davening, he comes home with his son-in-law, and his holy son-in-law begins to sing “Shalom Aleichem,” greeting the angels.  At that moment the father-in-law fainted.  You see, when he sang “Shalom Aleichem,” nothing happened.  Yet when his holy son-in-law began singing “Shalom Aleichem,” the room was filled with angels.  And since it was his son-in-law, he also saw them, and so he just fainted away.


So after they revived him, his son-in-law, the Holy Angel, told him, “Father-in-law, you are lucky you only saw your own angels, so you could just bear it and you fainted.  If you would have seen your daughter’s angels, you would have died instantly.”


Chosson, I want to bless your parents, that one day they should see your Kallah’s angels, and your angels and your children’s angels.  “Uvnei Yerushalayim ir hakodesh.”  “Lemikdashech tuv ulikodesh kodshim” [To Your Holy Temple return, and to the Holy of Holies].



Daily Torah Quote

Joke of the day

A not–so–young man and woman were sitting on the porch of the hotel catching a little breeze. The woman turned to the man and said, “It’s really something – you look exactly like my third husband.”

The gentleman asked her, “How many times have you been married?”

She replied, “Only twice so far!”