‘RAV SHARABI SENT PEOPLE TO RAV BERLAND FOR BLESSINGS’ – MORE STORIES FROM RAV AVRAHAM HAJBEY
Following on from the last inspiring words from Rav Avraham Hajbey, shlita, one of Rav Berland’s oldest, but less well-known students, we’re pleased to share Rav Hajbey’s latest words of chizzuk (strengthening) and encouragement.
Rav Hajbey begins: “This story dates from my first years at the Shuvu Banim yeshiv. At that time, we were having a problem, whatever it was, with the Ministry for Religious Affairs. We’d appealed to them, to try to sort it out, and the clerk there who was dealing with our issue told us the following story, while he was enthusiastically helping us to sort things out for the yeshiva.”
The clerk told Rav Hajbey: “It was already a few years after we’d been married, and we still didn’t have any children. So, I went to see the kabbalist Rav [Mordechai] Sharabi, zt’l, who was very famous at that time for his blessings, and for the spiritual tikkunim (rectifications) he used to perform.
“Rav Sharabi told me that he couldn’t help me, as my tikkun was particularly difficult, and added that no-one in the world could really help me, either. Then he told me: ‘I’ve got just one piece of advice for you. Go to the Lederman Beit Knesset (synagogue) in Bnai Brak, where you’ll see a young avreich (Torah student) there who prays very loudly, and makes strange movements with all of his body – if you are fortunate enough to get a bracha out of him that you should have children, then you will be saved.”
Rav Hajbey continues: “We’re talking about a period of time when Rav Berland, shlita, used to go onto the roof of the Ponevezh yeshiva in Bnai Brak and pray out loud from 5am in the morning. The Rav’s actions were bothering some of the other students, so they went to the Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Kahaneman, zt’l, and told him what was happening.
“Rav Kahaneman went to check out what Rav Berland, shlita, was doing, and after he saw the Rav’s dvekut (attachment to Hashem), he said that it was impossible to say anything bad about a person like this.
“There were a bunch of other very big Tzaddikim in that generation, like the Baba Sali, etc, but Rav Sharabi, zt’l, still sent this guy to Moranu (our teacher) Rav Berland, shlita, to get a bracha,” Rav Hajbey continues. “And just like the kabbalist Rav Sharabi said, Rav Berland gave him the run-around, and tried to get away from him. But as we know, when the guy insisted on getting a bracha, and wouldn’t budge, finally the Rav blessed him, and he went on to have children.”
CLICK THE VIDEO TO WATCH RAV AVRAHAM HAJBEY TELL HIS AMAZING STORIES ABOUT THE RAV: (Hebrew)
THE CLINICAL DEATH OF RAV MOSHE LEVI
Next, Rav Hajbey recounted a now-famous story of a clinical death that he heard 15 years ago, but which was subsequently widely publicized in the Hebrew speaking world as the video called ‘HaSof’ (‘The End’). We should mention here that Rav Hajbey has never even heard of that film, and that all of his recollections of what happened are first-hand, heard straight from the horse’s mouth when the person it happened to came to the Shuvu Banim yeshiva to tell over what he’d experienced.
CLICK THE VIDEO TO WATCH RAV MOSHE LEVI’S TELL THE STORY OF HIS CLINICAL DEATH: (Hebrew)
The person who experienced the clinical death, Rav Moshe Levi, told Rav Hajbee himself that after all the suffering he was going through Upstairs, in the Heavenly court, Rav Berland, shlita, suddenly appeared and stopped all the awful demonic forces that were approaching [Rav Moshe], in order to tear him to pieces. [Rav Berland] mollified R’ Moshe’s dead grandfather (who R’ Moshe explains in the video was extremely angry about his grandson’s lack of mitzvah observance), and told him that he would take care of his grandson.
R Moshe Levi told Rav Hajbey: “After that, Rav Berland gave his name, and told [my grandfather] that Hashem Yitborach had appointed him to rectify all these sort of souls, and that he would help me.
“From that time Rav Moshe Levi, who in the meantime had made teshuva, had no idea who had rescued him. One day, after R Levi had already made aliya to Israel from his home in Paris, and was learning in a yeshiva for baalei teshuva (religious returnees), he came to visit the Kotel. He got to the Kotel Plaza, and he saw a group of people there who included someone who he recognized as being the same Rav, shlita, that he’d seen in shemayim (heaven).
“Rav Moshe Levi told us that immediately when he saw Rav Berland, shlita, he turned on his heel and ran away, even though his friends tried to stop him. ‘I told them that I wasn’t prepared for meeting a Tzaddik like this,’ said R Moshe.
THE SPECIAL OPS UNIT OF THE IDF
Rav Hajbey heard the third story directly from his brother, who also heard it first-hand from the person involved. Rav Hajbey continues:
“We’re taking about a man who belonged to a special ops unit [of the IDF], who was involved in a number of top-secret missions. He didn’t give any names, and he wouldn’t reveal any details [of the missions], but he did say that the special ops he was involved in were top, top secret.
“At the same time that one of these top-secret missions was happening, Moranu Rav Berland, shlita, was staying in Tiberius. This special ops unit was passing through the city, and after hearing how holy he was, they decided to try to come and visit him.
“As soon as they entered the Rav’s room, he welcomed them very enthusiastically. [The soldier who was recounting the story said:] ‘My buddies picked me to speak on behalf of the group, because I was the only one who had any sort of connection to Yiddishkeit, out of the whole group of 12 special ops guys.
“They asked the Rav to give them some words of chizzuk (strengthening), and the Rav started telling them enthusiastically: ‘Don’t be scared! You should know that Hashem Yitborach is with you, and is travelling with you!’ Then, Moranu Rav Berland, shlita, went through all the secret missions they’d been involved in.
“They were shocked [that the Rav knew all this stuff], and the unit’s spokesman became very curious to know how the Rav could know things that even the people closest to them knew nothing about. [He told me brother]:
‘I asked Rav Berland how he know all those things. The Rav opened up a gemara, and told me: ‘A person who learn the gemara in holiness, they know everything, because everything is written there.’
“This soldier told my brother that such a holy awe fell on this platoon or army tough guys. They felt like they’d really experienced some sort of hitgalut elokut (Divine revelation),” concludes Rav Hajbey.