Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Refining One's Middos

Once, during a farbrengen, the Razah said that the only way to correct one's middos is to use one's mind - just as one can safely walk across a narrow beam lying in a pool of mud, by using one's head to keep balance.

The Rebbe Rashab commented, "Why does controlling one's middoswith the mind resemble walking across a narrow beam? Because safety is only insured when the head is keeping balance, preventing themiddos from making one fall.

"This approach requires constant watchfulness of the mind so that themiddos that have not yet been corrected will not return to their natural, wild ways. True correction of middos requires transforming the middosthemselves, by using the mind together with avoda of the heart."
The Frierdiker Rebbe noted: The chassidim of earlier times were more devoted, and they corrected their middos on an entirely different level, both in quality and quantity. In those days they were able walk with slippers and white socks and their socks would remain clean, for they knew how to sidestep the mud. Nowadays, we go across with boots and even our clothes get dirty.
(סה"ש ת"ש ע' 39)

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