Sunday, September 13, 2009

Newest Segulah for the Shidduch Crisis

I'm halfway through my weekly attempt to murder my driving instructor, when I ask to book a lesson on the eve of Rosh Hashana .(I decided the kitchen will survive without me for an hour, seeing what a lousy housewife I am anyway)

"So we're on for next Friday?"
"Oh, sorry. I'm going to Uman."
"You're going to Uman?!"

I'm sure he's kidding. He's not Breslov, not Chasidic, not even Chareidi. This is the perennial joker, who sarcasm I never get. On second thought, maybe he's serious. It makes sense. He needs to pray for survival. It's a miracle I haven't yet killed him and me both (several near misses with lampposts, buses and helpless puppies) and I've paid him ahead for the next batch of lessons, so he can't back out.

"I'm really going. Want me to Daven for you?"

He pulls out a list, hands me a pen. "Add your name"

I look at the list of names, written in traditional plonit-bat-almonit style. I carefully print out mine at the bottom. I hesitate, considering if I should add "LeZivug Hagun" next to it, in case he doesn't know what I'm in need of prayers for. Then I see the top of the list, someone has already written "LeZivug Hagun" there, in big bold letters. We're all in need of a marriage mate, it seems.

"One of my pupils started the list", he explains, a tad embarrassed.

And so, this New Year, my driving teacher will be praying at Rav Nachman's Kever for me to find my Besherte. Only in Israel.

Of course I'd already noticed this new fad in Shidduch-Crises-Segulas.
We've done the Kotel for 40 days, done Amuka (a zivug within a year, anyone?), done Kever Rochel on Erev Rosh Chodesh.

The latest heavenly solution first became apparent when I logged into Facebook.

"Off to Uman"
"Praying by Rav Nachman"
"Breslov here we come"

The young, hip, trendy, and sophisticated, the former classmates I'm not even so friendly with because they are "more modern" than me, were all off to Uman to daven for Hubbys.

A week later their profiles were displaying photos of Park Sophia and the various rabbis' graves.

Maybe this is the solution to my single status? I discreetly inquire about pre- Rosh Hashona flights for women. However it's not to be. Women aren't welcome. I can go, but I'll then need to hide out in a rented room. Not my idea of uplifting.

Oh well, I'll just have to rely on the driving teacher. Let's hope his prayers are answered.


  1. I thought it's an all-male event. What are girls doing there? It can't be to pray - it must be to search.

  2. Sigh...and my driving teaches was just some old lady who spoke on the phone the whole time. I never knew what I was missing out on.

  3. where have you been? it's like a month since your last post.

  4. Another thing people are doing nowadays is tweeting their prayers to the kotel. They send it to the kotel page, and then someone prints it and puts it in the wall.

    What I like to do is sit somewhere and pray for both others and myself, and hope it helps both of us

  5. Update: my friend got engaged this week, exactly a year after going to Uman.

    Who want's to join me on the next plane?

  6. Deborah Shaya:

    Your best solution, is to go to the Kotel, and pray to Hashem from there. Hashem's Presence is always there.

    Before you go to the Kotel, I would suggest that you do sincere Teshuvah as well - if you have been using mediation and intercession.

    Turn to Hashem - totally. And have Emunah. And patience. This is a great test of Emunah in Hashem - which I am sure you will pass!

    You should not be going to the Bet HaChaim, nor should you be asking anyone to go to the various kevarim on your behalf. Mediation and intercession are against the Torah. The tzaddik was wrong to encourage this.

  7. Deborah Shaya:

    There should be NO MEDIATOR between a person’s tefillot and Hashem.

    If a person chooses to use intercession instead of praying directly to Hashem, this is completely Assur.

    If the leaders of Lubavitch/Chabad encouraged people to use the “Igrot” /(“Igros”) - including Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, tz”l - they were wrong. Using the Igrot is using intercession. Similarly the practices of

    (1) "reading out the Igrot request to a PICTURE of Rabbi Schneersohn tz"l" is direct Avodah Zarah. We are only allowed to pray to Hashem.

    (2) sending faxes to the Bet HaChaim should be stopped immediately.

    (3) Praying directly to the Tzaddik at the Bet HaChaim is wrong. It causes tremendous tsaar to the Neshamah of the Tzaddik in Shamayim.

    We pray only to Hashem – directly ourselves. NO mediator is permitted.

    These practices are abhorrent and against the Torah. They are assur and forbidden, and should all be stopped.

    If the tzaddik advised that people do this in his lifetime – he was wrong. And this must be corrected. Speedily.

    TESHUVAH to Hashem should be done speedily instead - by the whole of the Lubavitch organisation especially. The whole of the Lubavitch organisation is currently all refusing to do Teshuvah.

    Similarly in the case of Breslov, with those who go Uman to pray directly to the Tzaddik, at the kever of Rav Nachman tz”l – instead of directly to Hakadosh Baruch Hu. “Intercession” and “mediation” is against the Torah.

    The Torah cannot be mixed with Avodah Zarah. This is twisting the Torah, and the Torah must remain straight.

  8. Deborah Shaya:

    • There should be NO MEDIATOR between a person’s tefillot and Hashem.

    Hashem likes to hear the prayers, tefillot, from our OWN mouths. Even if all we know is how to recite the first 3 letters of the Aleph Bet: Aleph, Bet, Gimmel... Our very own tefillot TO HASHEM, are much more precious than anything else.

    By going to the Bet HaChaim (cemetery - incorrectly referred to as “the Ohel” by Lubavitch), and lighting a candle, praying, making a request, and then going home – such a person is “leaving it all to the tzaddik” who is not physically alive. You can’t leave it all “to him!”. This is completely Assur and forbidden.

    We too, can be tzaddikim – and be like the tzaddik. The tzaddik has already made all his tefillot to Hashem in his lifetime. And these are very precious to Hashem. The tzaddik has now passed on.

    Hashem is now waiting for US – to make our OWN tefillot to Him.

    We pray to Hashem – at all times. If a person is insisting on praying to one of the creations of Hashem, instead of directly to the King Himself, Hashem will say to us, “You are meant to pray to ME!”
    Remember that Hashem, our G-d, is a very "JEALOUS G-D" who demands "EXCLUSIVE WORSHIP." (2nd Commandment of the Asseret Hadibrot.)

    What is your logic in going there?

    The Ashkenazi tradition has encouraged people to do this, and it is very wrong. Teshuvah to Hashem must be done quickly.

  9. Deborah Shaya:

    The Jewish People is a “Holy People.” “Am Kadosh.”

    We are referred to as being Hashem’s special “Treasure.” We are a “Holy Nation,” and so holy, that we are to emulate the Cohanim, who are of a much higher stature than the rest of the Jewish People. One day, we will all be on the level of a “Kingdom of Priests.”

    Hashem has told us, “.…Ve’atem tiheyu li Mamlechet Kohanim ve’goi kadosh…” (Yitro, 19:5-6)

    “…And you shall be to Me, a KINGDOM OF PRIESTS, and a HOLY NATION….”

    The Benei Yisrael must follow the example of the true Cohanim. We should emulate the Cohanim in our daily lives. The Cohanim are not allowed to go into any cemetery (Jewish or not Jewish), as they cannot come into contact with ANY meitim whatsoever. We too, should emulate the Kohanim in our daily lives, and be pure like them.

    We too, should not be coming into contact with meitim where we can help it.

    Hashem has told us, “.…Ve’atem tiheyu li Mamlechet Kohanim ve’goi kadosh…” (Yitro, 19:5-6)

    “…And you shall be to Me, a KINGDOM OF PRIESTS, and a HOLY NATION….”

    A person’t tefillot, prayers, from the Kotel, or from his or her own house are truly delightful to Hashem. A person can also go to the Kotel to pray, and make the journey there, to pray to Hashem. Hashem’s Presence is always there.

    - Why was the place of Moshe Rabeinu, the very greatest of all the Prophets, kept hidden from us? Precisely so that Moshe would c”v never be worshipped. So that people would never pray to Moshe, c”v, instead of directly to Hashem, themselves. The Torah states very clearly:

    “…velo yada ish et kevurato ad hayom hazeh” (Vezot Haberacha 34:6) “…and no man knows the place that he was buried even to this day.”

    If people are praying to a tzaddik, who is finite – and of far lesser stature than Moshe Rabeinu – instead of to Hashem – who is Infinite – that is avodah zarah.

    If people wish to go to the Kivrei Tzaddikim to pray to Hashem from there, that is their choice. Far better, is to encourage people to go instead to the most holy place in the world – the Kotel. Hashem’s Presence is always there.

    The Kotel is where people should be going to pray to Hashem. Not the Bet HaChaim.

  10. Deborah Shaya:

    If people want to pray to anyone else, and make requests of any being other than Hakadosh Baruch Hu, they might as well join Christianity.

    When Moshe Rabeinu prayed, he prayed to Hashem. He did not pray to any Malachim or any celestial beings. These are all the creations of Hashem.

    We are not allowed to pray to the creations of Hashem.

    Similarly, with regard to the Selichot, and the Neilah prayer for Yom Kippur in the Ashkenazi tradition - they include direct Tefillot and requests to Malachim.

    The Malachim are the creations of Hashem.

    We are not allowed to pray to any Malachim.

    This is completely assur and causes very great damage and harm. I emphasise that this is something very grave which needs to be rectified as well - speedily.

    The Selichot and the Neilah Tefillah for Yom Kippur should be amended speedily to remove all prayers and requests to Malachim.

  11. Deborah Shaya:

    The false argument used by Lubavitch to permit intercession on a person’s behalf, is the act of Calev ben Yefuneh praying at the Cave of Machpelah in Chevron. He prayed for success in his mission of “spying out” the Land, Eretz Yisrael.

    No one can use this as a precedent for asking the Tzaddikim - and specifically, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneersohn tz"l - who are no longer alive physically on earth, to pray on a person’s behalf. This causes them tremendous suffering in Shamayim.
    This is twisting the Torah, and the Torah cannot ever be twisted.

    The reason Calev’s act cannot be used as a precedent, is that NO ONE, can be compared to the supreme Kedusha of the Avot, of Avraham, Yitzchak ve’Yaakov Avinu.

    We pray the Amidah 3 times a day, and we always recall the great merit of the Avot in the very first Beracha. What can be greater than that when we pray to Hashem?

    This does need to be corrected very quickly, to be in line with the Torah.

    - When people need help, why doesn’t Lubavitch teach people to look inside the Torah, which is Eternal and Infinite - instead of letters written to other people by Rabbi Schneersohn tz”l during his lifetime?

    Why doesn't Lubavitch choose the very greatest of all prophets, Moshe Rabbeinu?

  12. Deborah Shaya:

    Moshe Rabeinu is the greatest of all prophets, and no other prophet was equal to him.

    “Zichru Torat Moshe Avdi” we are told in Malachi (3:22)

    There simply is no comparison between Moshe Rabbeinu and Rabbi Schneersohn tz”l, although Rabbi Schneersohn tz”l was a Tzaddik and a very righteous and good man.

    Moshe Rabbeinu was the greatest of all prophets, and we do not even pray in the name of Moshe. Neither do we pray in the name of David Hamelech, whose descendent is the Mashiach.

    However, in the very first Beracha of the Amidah, the silent prayer to Hashem containing our requests, we recall the merit of the Avot: “…..Elokei Avraham, Elokei Yitzhak Velokei Yaakov….” “….The G-d of Avraham, the G-d of Yitzhak and the G-d of Yaakov…”
    The beracha is concluded with “Magen Avraham”.

    In summary:
    (1) We pray to Hashem – at all times.

    (2) There should be NO mediator between Hashem and a person’s tefillot – otherwise this is Assur.

    Therefore the practice of using the “Igrot” /(“Igros”) for "requests" and "guidance" should be stopped. Similarly the practices of sending faxes to the Bet HaChaim, and praying to the tzaddik at the Bet HaChaim instead of directly to Hashem ourselves - should be stopped immediately. They are abhorrent and against the Torah.

    The reason for this is that these practices use intercession. And the use of a “mediator” or someone to “intercede on a person’s behalf” to Hashem, is assur.
    Teshuvah to Hashem must be done - very speedily.

  13. Deborah Shaya:

    Going back to my first comment: I would suggest that you go to the Kotel, and pray to Hashem from there. Hashem's Presence is always there.

    Before you go to the Kotel, I would suggest that you do sincere Teshuvah as well - if you have been using mediation and intercession.

    Something that might be delaying you - could be something to do with avodah zarah - which you might not have been aware of.

    So the first thing to do, is to remove any kind of "connection" to the avodah zara, from your home and life.

    Once you have removed any kind of "tumah", there are specific mitzvot that you should do in connection with Teshuvah - before you go to the Kotel.

    I will list all this below, if I may. Most of the 1st part (Removal of Sources of Tumah) might not apply to you. But it may help someone else.

    The 2nd part (Teshuvah), I hope will be helpful. Unfortunately, many people have been misled by all that is around us - unknowingly. And they do not know how to correct their situation.

    With kind regards,


  14. Deborah Shaya:

    A Jewish Person (whether of Sephardi or Eastern European origin) is not allowed to go into ANY church. Every church, is quite simply, a place of idolatry. A church is a place of Avodah Zarah.

    If a person has gone into a church, he/she must do Teshuva to Hashem quickly.

    A person must similarly do Teshuva to Hashem if he/she has been inside any other place of idolatry e.g. a Buddist temple/Hindu temple/Sikh temple/Greek temple/buildings of any other kind of foreign worship. These are all places of Avodah Zarah.

    If any Jew is a “Freemason,” this too is based upon Avodah Zarah. He/she must stop going to such a place, and associating with “freemasons.”

    Hashem, our G-d, is a very “JEALOUS G-D” who demands “EXCLUSIVE WORSHIP.” (2ND Commandment of the Asseret Hadibrot.)

    Teshuvah is very great and regarded very highly in Shamayim.

    A person should seize the opportunity to do Teshuva to Hashem right now, while "the Gates of Teshuva are open".

    By doing a true and sincere Teshuva to Hashem, the brachot (blessings) from Hashem will come into a person's life, and obstacles will begin to shift.

  15. Deborah Shaya:

    REMOVAL OF SOURCES OF TUMAH, and AVODAH ZARAH (spiritual ‘uncleanliness’, which is extremely damaging) FROM YOUR HOME/LIFE:


    We are specifically commanded against idolatry, in the SECOND COMMANDMENT of the Asseret Hadibrot:

    ‘Do not have any other gods BEFORE ME.’

    ‘Lo yiheyeh lecha elohim acherim AL PANAI.’

    And: ‘Do not represent (such gods) by any CARVED STATUE OR PICTURE of anything in the heaven above, or the earth below, or in the water below the land.
    Do not bow down to (such gods) or worship them.
    I am G-d your Lord, A JEALOUS G-D, who demands EXCLUSIVE WORSHIP.
    Where My enemies are concerned, I keep in mind the sin of the fathers for (their) descendants, to the third and fourth (generation).
    But for those who love Me and keep My commandments, I show love for thousands (of generations.)’

    ‘Lo ta’aseh lecha PESEL, vechol temunah asher bashamayim, mima’al va’asher ba’aretz, mitachat va’asher ba’mayim, mitachat la’aretz.
    Lo tishtachaveh lahem, ve’lo ta’avdem, KI ANI HASHEM ELOKECHA, KEL KANAH, poked avon avot al banim, al shileshim, ve’al ribe’im, le’sonay.
    Ve’osseh chessed la’alafim, le’ohavai, u’leshomrei mitzvotai.’ (Parsha of Yitro, Chapter 20, verses 3-6)

    Hashem, our G-d, is a very “jealous G-d” who demands “exclusive worship.”

  16. Deborah Shaya:


    Do not go into any of the following, as they are all places of idolatry, and AVODAH ZARAH (literally ‘strange worship’). They deny the Sovereignty of Hashem, the One G-d, and Creator of the World.

    - Churches
    - Buddist temples
    - Hindu temples
    - Sikh temples
    - Greek temples
    - Temples/buildings of any other kind of foreign worship.
    - Freemasonry

    There is a lot of TUMAH in them (spiritual ‘uncleanliness’ which can affect a person has veshalom, physically and spiritually in different ways).
    Always walk to the opposite side of the road rather than walk directly past one of these buildings e.g. a church.

    If any Jew is a “Freemason,” this too is based upon Avodah Zarah. He/she must stop going to such a place, and associating with “freemasons.”


    These are graven images. They should IMMEDIATELY be removed from your home and discarded, no matter how much they might have cost, or the sentimental value attached to them. They are a strong source of Tumah.

  17. Deborah Shaya:

    3. Tefillah/Prayer – in the synagogue, and at home.

    (a) There should be NO IMAGES whatsoever, inside any synagogue.

    There should be NO IMAGES of
    • ANY PERSON, or
    • ANY ANIMAL or
    inside any shul.

    Any images of a person, animal or object should be REMOVED immediately, and ENTIRELY out of the synagogue or shteibl. No matter how large or small they may be. This is against the Halachah.

    (b) When praying at home, a person should endeavour to pray in a room which does not contain any images or paintings of a person, animal or object.

  18. Deborah Shaya:


    These are a strong source of TUMAH, and bring in a lot of negativity into the home. These books and magazines negatively affect those who live in that home.

    Go through every book in your home very carefully, and check for the following. If it falls into one of these categories, or you have doubt about it – sort them out into a pile, and then DISPOSE of these books as soon as possible, and take them out of your home. Or at least take them out of your home and put them in a shed if you can.

    It is a very great MITZVAH to remove such sources of Tumah from your home. If some of these books were expensive – discard them anyway, and put aside how much they cost. They are a form of Avodah Zarah, and should be removed immediately.

    • Instead, place your EMUNAH (faith) in Hashem, that He will bless all your endeavours, and new, good things, will now be able to come into your life. You might start to feel better in yourself.

    The following are some examples:

    (a) ‘New Age’ books – (e.g. Indian authors, ‘Shambhala’ publications)

    (b) Philosophical books (e.g. by Indian writers such as Deepak Chopra etc)

    (c) Yoga/Tai Chi books (qi gong)/yoga magazines &leaflets; tai chi (qigong) magasines & leaflets – these physical exercises are based upon AVODAH ZARAH, and come from a SOURCE OF TUMAH. Practicing yoga or tai chi is therefore harmful to a Jewish person – spiritually, and therefore physically.

    Have Emunah in Hashem to find another alternative form of exercise.

    (d) Meditation books - by non-Jewish or unorthodox Jewish writers.

    Buddism abounds with “meditation.”

    Meditation is only for Prophets – it is not for the ordinary man or woman.

    (e) Books that appear ok – but contain many idolatrous images and drawings e.g. mathematical or philosophical books interspersed with pictures of dragons; snakes; mandalas; crosses; ‘third eyes’; hindu gods; hindu goddesses; buddas; tibetan gods; egyptian gods; greek gods; stone/gold idols etc etc – THESE SHOULD ALL BE REMOVED IMMEDIATELY FROM YOUR HOME.

  19. Deborah Shaya:

    5. (a) Written “Requests” of the Igrot/Igros (letters of advice written to other people by Rabbi M. Schneerson tz”l during his lifetime);

    (b) FAXES and LETTERS “SENT TO” Rabbi M. Schneersohn tz”l after he passed away in 1994 – at the Bet HaChaim (incorrectly referred to as the, “Ohel” by Lubavitch)

    (c) Any other written “communications with” tzaddikim at the Bet HaChaim (cemetery), who are not physically alive.

    These written requests should all be destroyed. However “nice” or “comforting” or “accurate” the “reply you received” was; or whatever “bracha you received;” or “whatever the date of the letter was;” – these writings should be destroyed. They are pure Avodah Zarah.

    There should be NO MEDIATOR between a person’s tefillot (prayers) and Hashem.
    If a person chooses to use intercession instead of praying directly to Hashem, this is completely Assur, and forbidden.

  20. Deborah Shaya:


    If you have taken holiday photographs of e.g. Buddist temples, whether on the outside or inside, these are a source of Tumah, and should be discarded. Similarly for buddist celebrations. These places of AVODAH ZARAH completely DENY THE SOVREIGNTY OF HASHEM, the One and Only G-d, and Creator of the World. They should not be in your home.

    The same applies to photographs of:
    - Churches
    - Hindu temples
    - Sikh temples
    - Greek temples
    - Temples/buildings of any other kind of foreign worship.

    Sort through your photographs, and discard those that relate to Avodah Zarah.

    However attached you may feel to these photographs, they should be discarded, as they completely deny the Sovereignty of Hashem.

    • Instead, place your EMUNAH (faith) in Hashem, that He will bless all your endeavours, and new, good things, will now be able to come into your life. You might start to feel better in yourself.

    7. Discard any other items related in any way to Avodah Zarah. No matter how small and insignificant, or however large e.g. bookmarks with pictures of churches; jewellery and accessories.


    1. Do not go into any places of idolatry.

    2. Discard and remove from your home all stone/wood sculptures e.g. sculptures of:
    (a) the human form (“nudes.”)
    (b) the human face
    (c ) statues – of the human form in particular.

    3. Books – discard and destroy all books relating to Avodah Zarah.

    4. Photographs – discard and destroy all photographs of Avodah Zarah.

    5. Discard any other items you have relating to Avodah Zarah e.g.jewellery.

  21. Deborah Shaya:

    HOW TO DO TESHUVAH FOR AVODAH ZARAH – once you have removed all sources of Tumah, and Avodah Zarah from your home/life.

    1. Say the KETORET twice a week at least (Tefillah, prayer).

    The Ketoret has great Kedushah, (holiness) and power to transform all negatives into positives. Say the full text of the Ketoret in the full “Sefarad” version.

    If you can say it every day, including Shabbat, this is even better. You can say it as many times as you like during the day.

    The Ketoret is said formally 3 times a day in total: twice in the Shacharit, and once during the Minchah prayer.

  22. Deborah Shaya:

    2. Decide on an amount to give to TZEDAKAH, (charity) in Israel, so that it ‘hurts you’ a little bit. Give to a proper registered charity, such as a hospital or emergency services.

    3. MEZUZOT – (Positive Mitzvah, commandment in the Shema – affirming that G-d is ONE, and warning against idolatry.)

    Check that:

    (a) You have properly affixed a mezuzah on EVERY DOORWAY which needs a mezuzah. This includes archways, patio doors, folding doors, side doors to garden, garden doors.

    (b) If any places in your home are lacking a mezuzah, purchase one as soon as possible from a qualilfied Sofer (Scribe), and put it up as soon as possible.

    (c) Check that ALL your mezuzot are kosher, as soon as you can. These should be given to a qualified Sofer (scribe) for checking.

    (d) Mezuzot should ideally be checked ONCE A YEAR.

  23. Deborah Shaya:

    4. Travel to the KOTEL in Israel. If you can travel with a group of people who are going for the purposes of Teshuvah, this is even better. The purpose will be to pray, (Tefila and Teshuva), and ask Hashem, Hakadosh Baruch Hu, for His forgiveness, for mechilah.

    If a group can be arranged, this will be a greater mitzvah for everyone who joins. If you can go individually to the Kotel, in the meantime, before the group travel, this is also very good.

    5. When you have done 1-3 and/or 4 above, (summarised below as well), you should obtain the special BERACHA, (bracha, blessing) of someone who is known to be a TRUE KOHEN/COHEN. This will bring Hashem’s brachot of the material and spiritual blessings directly into your life.


    1. Say the Ketoret – at least twice a week.
    Say the full text of the Ketoret in the full “Sefarad” version.

    2. Give Tzedakah to recognised charity in Israel

    3. Mezuzot - Have you affixed a mezuzah on every doorway?
    - Have you checked that all your mezuzot are kosher?

    4. Kotel in Israel – in a group (and individually, if possible)

    5. Bracha of a true Kohen/Cohen.

  24. Eliyahoo William Dwek:

    A word of advice regarding those who masquerade as a ‘dayan’ ‘rabbi’ or false ‘mekubal’ (‘kabbalist’):

    1. These men may knowingly and willingly, deliberately deceive a Jew or Jewess. e.g. in the area of shidduchim, or offering to perform a ‘pidyon nefesh’.

    This abhorrent and deceptive behaviour has caused tremendous harm to people who are innocent and trusting.

    2. Do not ever ‘kiss the hands’ of these men (which they might offer to you in public).

    3. And do not be duped into queuing and waiting, to see them for their ‘brachot’ (‘blessings’). They peddle ‘brachot’ purely for their own selfish gratification and ‘kavod’ (‘honour’).

    Their duplicitous behaviour is nothing short of deception and cunning. In short they are abhorant and causing so much harm to amm israel. They prey on the vulnerable, and those who are naïve, unsuspecting and trusting of these pedlars.