A night in the day of Rav Berland

Teshuva is the main thing

A night in the day of the Rav

A few months’ ago, back in Tammuz 5778, one of the Rav’s students decided to keep a ‘daily diary’, where he listed how the Rav spent his time. You’ll recall that Rav Berland, shlita, is 80 years old, and has a number of serious health issues. Yet, most people half his age – or even a quarter of his age – would struggle to keep up with the Rav’s daily schedule, set out below.

As you read, bear in mind that the Rav doesn’t just do this one day a week, or one day a fortnight. He keeps this pace up from one Shabbat to another, frequently fitting in four, five or even six shiurim and visits a night, to different locations across Israel, driven by his desire to bring the nation of Israel back in teshuva.

Rav Berland’s schedule for ‘I Tammuz, 5778:

20:15     The Rav comes out to lead the mincha prayers at the Beit HaRav shul, under his                building on Ido HaNavi

20.33     The Rav sings songs and niggunim before the ma’ariv prayers. Afterwards, he                    washes his hands in order to participate in the ‘Sheva Brachot’ meal of the bride                and groom, R Netanel Ben Shlomo

21:19     The Rav bentches Birkat HaMazon, (the blessing after bread), and makes the                      seven blessings of the Sheva Brachot meal for the young couple.

21:23     The Rav concludes the Sheva Brachot meal, and begins praying ma’ariv.

21:41     The Rav begins his recitation of the Tikkun Haklali[1] prayers, together with the                  kehilla.

21:49     The Rav returns to his home for a few minutes.

21:59     The Rav comes out of his home, and goes out to a waiting car, which takes off                    down Highway 1.

22.15     The Rav recites Tefillat HaDerech, the traveller’s prayer, by the Shoresh                              interchange.

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22:35     The Rav gets to Holon, where he’s due to give a number of shiurim, as well as                    meeting members of the public.

22:39     The first event of the night begins in Holon, at 42, Rabin St, where the Rav                        meets many people who have come for advice, help and a blessing.

11:49     The Rav leaves the first venue, to make his way to the second address in Holon.

11:55     The Rav gets to his next fixture, at 8, Rav Avraham Kook St. Again, there is no                  shiur, the Rav just meets members of the public.

12:54     The Rav leaves the second address in Holon, gets back in the car, and starts the                journey back to Jerusalem.

01:25     The Rav returns to the holy city of Jerusalem.

01:37     The Rav gets to his next venue: a place in the Jerusalem suburb of Neve Yaakov,                on Victor Vilius Street – the home of Rabbi Rahamim Bracha, one of the                            editors of Shuvu Banim’s ‘Knishta Hadar’ newsletter. Again, the Rav doesn’t give                a shiur, he just meets members of the public, who are coming for advice and                      blessings.

01:58     The Rav leaves Neve Yaakov, and makes his way back towards Meah Shearim.

02:08     The Rav gets to the Zhvill Hall on Shmuel HaNavi Street, where he joins the                      celebration being held for his great-grandson’s engagement. The son of his grandson R Naftali Tzucker ben [Dayan] R Nachman Tzuker, who is marrying                  the daughter of R Shmuel Stern, the head of the Nachali Netzach institutions.

02:14     The Rav starts giving over an awesome shiur, at the Zhviller hall.

03:01     The Rav concludes his shiur, and starts to dance enthusiastically, to celebrate his                grandson’s engagement.

04:32     The Rav concludes his dancing [Ed: he danced for 1 ½ hours straight!] and                        recites kaddish.

04:36     The Rav leaves the Zhviller hall, to head out to another address in Jerusalem.

04:41     The Rav arrives at the home of the Wertheimer family in Geula, on Reishit                          Chachma Street, where the Rav greets more members of the public.

04:55     The Rav leaves Geula, to get to his next event.

04:56     The Rav arrives at 21 Moshe Hagiz Street in the Zichron Moshe neighborhood,                    the home of the Berkowitz family. Again, a crowd of people are waiting to greet                  the Rav, and to ask him for advice, chizzuk and a bracha.

05:28     The Rav leaves Zichron Moshe, to head back to his home on Ido HaNavi Street.

05:32     The Rav gets back to his building, and heads up to his apartment. [Ed: This is                    probably when the Rav grabbed his hour of sleep.]

06:22     The Rav comes downstairs, enters the Beit HaRav hall under his building, and                    begins the shacharit, or morning prayers, together with his community.

07:56     The Rav returns to his home after completing the prayer service and reciting                      another communal Tikkun HaKlali, ready for a whole day of learning Torah, and                  meeting more members of the public who will come and wait long hours outside                his building, for their chance to see the Tzaddik HaDor, and bask in his holiness.


Many thanks to the person who spent a night travelling around Israel with the Rav. If you’d like to donate something to him, he can be reached on: 058 320 9606.

[1] The Tikkun HaKlali is a set of 10 tehillim that was revealed by Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, which can rectify sins – and difficulties and problematic situations – at their spiritual root. The ten tehillim are: 16, 32, 41, 42, 59, 77, 90, 105,137, and 150.

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