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Lighten Up!

by Yehudis Golshevsky

Hold On! Lighten Up!
Meshivat Nefesh #30
Joy is the source of spiritual strength, so keeping myself in spiritual health means knowing how to stay in a positive state of mind with a happy disposition.

Rebbe Nachman taught that we need to have “a variety of joy-making tools at our disposal”—and that’s an art all by itself.

Does music put me in a good state of mind? Do I make sure to dance every day (this was always the practice in Breslov)? Am I comfortable being a little ridiculous sometimes? As long as I don’t violate Rebbe Nachman’s three golden rules of humor (no profanity, no ego-tripping, no insulting other people), I should do as he said and, “Go ahead and joke around!”

Spiritual strivers run the risk of taking themselves too seriously and depleting their energy with self-criticism. Rebbe Nachman wisely advises…“Lighten Up!”

God of Joy,
Please fill me with a spirit
of genuine Jewish joy.
Uplift my heart and energize me
and help me to make happiness a priority in my life.
Please keep heaviness and melancholy far from me
because I need all of the vitality I can get to serve You!
(Based on Likutey Moharan I:261)

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