Sunday, September 6, 2009

In honor of Chai Elul a story about Rav Chaim of Czernowitz

Once Rav Chaim of Czernowitz author of the Be'er Mayim Chaim fell critically
ill. He was bed ridden with a high fever, literally at death's door. In his
delirious feverish state he had a dream like vision in which he saw the
founder of the Chassidic movement the Holy Rav Yisrael ben Eliezer the Ba'al
Shem Tov zy"a.

Rav Chaim began to cry and plead with the Ba'al Shem Tov to entreat Heaven
for mercy on his behalf . The Ba'al Shem Tov asked Rav Chaim what merits he
had, that could persuade the Ba'al Shem Tov to ask on his behalf? Rav Chaim
answered him:

"My rebbe and teacher the Zlotshuver Maggid's custom was every Shabbos to
speak about the holy Ba'al Shem Tov and relate a teaching he had heard from
his mentor, a story or parable during the mystical third Shabbos meal of
Shalosh Seudos. Once, due to his intense passionate cleaving to G-d in
dveykus and rapture, my rebbe forget to do this and they almost brought the
Mayim Achronim water for him to wash before the Bentshing - the grace after
the meal, when I reminded him."

"If so," said the Ba'al Shem Tov to Rav Chaim, "then you have a complete
recovery." And so it was.
(Ma'amar Mordechai of Slonim #3 p101)

Elul 18 is the birthday of Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov, the founder of

Kol Tuv,
R' Tal Moshe Zwecker
Director Machon Be'er Mayim Chaim
Phone: 972-2-992-1218 / Cell: 972-54-842-4725
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