Thought and How It Affects All Our Surroundings

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Thoughts Matter (

The influence of thought on our surroundings is observed in many ways. This has been established to some limited degree with machines that measure brainwaves, recorded either directly or through the scalp.

According to Jewish Law, a person is not allowed to think holy thoughts of prayer of the Bible in an unclean place. A person’s thinking interacts with his outside surroundings; thus, it is disrespectful to the holy thoughts, which conflict with the uncleanliness of the place.

A person is not permitted to think badly of an otherwise honest person. The mere reservation of trustworthiness is considered wrong and harmful to that individual. Even worse, for both parties, is to have hate in your heart and to bear a grudge.

The Talmud tells us that when the Bible character, King Balak, brought sacrifices to curse the Jews, his bad intentions brought a harsh punishment years later. In contrast, his good deeds, his sacrifices to God generated the reward that King David and King Solomon were his progeny!

While on the subject of sacrifices…if a person brought a sacrifice, but in his mind, he was intentionally thinking a wrong thought to eat the sacrifice outside of the allotted time or place where the sacrifice must be eaten, this would invalidate the offering.

Maimonides says that a person should always see himself as half-meritorious and half-contemptible, and with even one THOUGHT, he can tip the world to the positive or the negative. A person’s thoughts can influence and tip the entire Universe for good.

The Talmud further says that a person in one moment can make an about-face from (the status of) where he is and regret his past misdeeds. He is no longer considered an evil person in that one moment, and he can become righteous! Mechanically saying he is sorry accomplishes nothing. Specifically, his thoughts of regret and his sincere resolution to change his actions from now on transform the person entirely.

One of my teachers, who was sent to hard labor for fifteen years, remembered how his spiritual teacher once said that all those in the Russian gulag for teaching Judaism should intensely connect in their thoughts, and he would reciprocate.

So, at the first possibility, he closed his eyes and envisioned himself in a private audience with the Rebbe (Rabbi M.M. Schneerson), giving him a letter regarding his situation. The Rebbe responded with a letter! When his wife received this letter, she first thought her husband had successfully escaped and that they would soon be reunited, only to discover that he was still in the brutal labor camps. It was only years later, seeing the date on the letter, that the whole story fell into place. Think positively, think faithfully, and transform your world. Transform the entire Universe.

Chapter 14

About the Author
Rabbi Shlomo Ezagui is an author and lecturer. "A Spiritual Soul Book" & "Maimonides Advice for the 21st Century" Rabbi Ezagui opened in 1987 the first Chabad Center in Palm Beach County, Florida, and the first Orthodox Synagogue on the Island of Palm Beach, Florida.
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