How Rav Berland’s blessing brought Lidor back from the dead
“Come fast, Lidor is about to collapse!” Lidor’s friend recalled that these were the last words he said in the horrible moments before his friend succumbed, and experienced a clinical death.
“I ran over to him, and I saw that his eyes had almost completely rolled back into his head, and that something really not good was happening,” continues the friend. A little while later, Lidor’s condition seemed to be improving a little, but after a very short period of time it started to deteriorate again, until Lidor literally seemed to have died.”
Lidor’s friend continues:
“We saw him start having convulsions, and then all this froth started coming out of his mouth.”
The near-fatal overdose
Lidor Ganzeh is a 23 year old secular young man, who in the video below, describes what happened to him, after he experienced a clinical death as a result of overdosing on drugs. He claims that the drugs were put in the water he was drinking without his knowledge. Whatever actually happened, the outcome was as total disaster: his health was affected so badly, that’s it’s only thanks to an open miracle that Lidor is still alive.
Even then, this open miracle required a pidyon nefesh payment of 5,000 euros from his family, which was subsequently passed along to some of the needy families in the Shuvu Banim community. It also required a visit in person from Rav Eliezer Berland, shlita, who came to pray by Lidor’s bedside while he was still hospitalized in a critical condition, with his life hanging by a thread.
The story of how Lidor miraculously came back from the dead quickly spread throughout the Shuvu Banim community, and was then picked up by the ‘7 days’ division of the Yediot Aharonot media group in Israel, who interviewed Lidor and other members of his family and circle, including his mother, Marcelle.
Fighting for Lidor’s life
Marcelle described the terrible moments when she was given the news about her son’s worsening condition: “The head of the trauma unit came out to see us, and he told us that they were fighting for his life right now. His temperature was 42 degrees, and it had been that way for three hours, and they just couldn’t bring it down,” she says.
“The cardiac specialist also came out to see me, and told me that they were prepping him for open heart surgery, where they’d be opening up his chest, and applying electric shocks straight to his heart, in order to get it to start working again.
“I told the doctor to speak straight,” continues Marcelle. “’What are you really telling me?! That my son is dead?! Don’t try to hide this from me!’ I started screaming at them. They continued trying to resuscitate Lidor, but it didn’t work. So they kept him on the artificial respirator,” she told Yediot Aharonot.
“The situation is not good”
“A little later on, another doctor came to see me, and he told me: ‘You know his situation isn’t very good?’ I looked past him, frozen in place, and stopped listening to him. I refused to believe that my son wouldn’t be coming back with me.”
The family contacts Rav Berland
After a week of Lidor continuing to hang on in a critical condition, the family decided to turn to Rav Berland, because one of Lidor’s friends decided he had to try to do something. Shlomie Galem picks up the story:
“On the wednesday after Lidor had been taken to hospital, I got in touch with one of Rav Berland’s assistants, literally a very short time before he was meant to be flying out to Uman [for Rosh Hashana, 5779]. The assistant told the Rav: ‘A young man was with his friends at a party, and he took drugs, and now he’s in a coma.’ The Rav immediately told him:
‘He needs to give a pidyon of 5,000 euro, and then he’ll wake up on Shabbat.’
What’s with the 5,000 euros?!
“We said to ourselves, what’s with this 5,000 euro?! It’s really hard to put 21,000 shekels together, and for what?! Why do we have to do this?! But then, we spoke to a lot of our friends, and we did a fundraiser on the internet, and we managed to get all the money together.
“We agreed with the Rav that he would come to Lidor’s hospital room at 6am Friday morning. He got there, he went in, he read some Tehillim, and he did some sort of ceremony that I didn’t understand, and then he said that by tomorrow, Lidor would wake up.
“And then, quite simply, a nes, a miracle happened. After the Rav went to the hospital, Lidor opened his eyes.
“After Shabbat, the father of Lidor contacted us and he told us: ‘Lidor woke up!’ Everyone started jumping around like crazy people.”
Lidor’s story, in his own words
In the video (2 mins 20 seconds), you can see Lidor tell his story [in the original Hebrew] in his own words, including how he saw a bright light in Heaven, and how Rav Berland’s blessing – together with all the prayers of his family and friends – helped him return to the land of the living.
“I saw a movie of all my life,” explains Lidor, trying to describe what he was experiencing whilst he was clinically dead. “When I was two years’ old, I experienced an accident when a car ran into me, and I saw that. Afterwards, I saw my school, from Kita Alef to Kita Tet, and afterwards when I was in the army dormitories.
“After I’d gone through my whole life, then suddenly everything was covered by a red screen. I didn’t go towards it, and then suddenly there was a huge flash, a white screen appeared, and I went towards that, instead. Then suddenly, I woke up in the hospital.
“I tell people this, and they think I’m meshuggeh, crazy. But this is what happened. I had no idea that I was in a coma for a week. I was certain that I’d only be out for a couple of hours.”
Everything was failing
In the interview he gave to the Rav’s attendant, Natan Edri, Lidor gave more details about his miraculous return to life:
“As far as the doctors were concerned, I was admitted to hospital with 1% of my brain functioning. All my organs were failing, nothing was working, not my kidneys, not my liver, and not my heart. Every day that passed, something else was failing, or not responding.
“Then, they called the Rav [Rav Eliezer Berland, shlita] to come, and I don’t know exactly what happened then, because I was totally unconscious. But he did a pidyon nefesh for me, from the donations that people had given, and the day after that, my heart started beating by itself again.
“Rav Berland said that on Shabbat, I would wake up, and that’s what happened. On Shabbat, I saw a big light and I woke up. Exactly the way Rav Berland said, that’s what happened.”
To learn more about a pidyon nefesh, please click HERE.