A veteran mechanech and noted relationships expert, Rabbi Ben Tzion Shafier served as a high school rebbe for 15 years before creating the Shmuz. TheShmuz.com, a popular website that dispenses weekly Torah inspiration to 10,000 people across the globe, reflects the down-to-earth, practical voice of Rabbi Shafier. Offering refreshing parashah thoughts, life-changing hashkafa workshops, and captivating marriage seminars (like “10 Really Dumb Mistakes that Very Smart Couples Make”), Rabbi Shafier is direct, daring, and downright funny, providing audiences with essential Torah principles packaged in an enticing, enjoyable way. A father of six and grandfather of four, Rabbi Shafier lives in Monsey, New York. He can be contacted through TheShmuz.com.
Imagine a five-year-old, walking with her mother into the hospital for her second chemotherapy treatment. The little girl knows what’s coming. She remembers the pain. She understands the nausea. She knows what it’s like to brush her hair and watch clumps come out. Yet, she holds her mother’s hand, and goes along, because “Mommy said
Eighty percent of our emunah problems and ninety percent of our questions on Hashem stem from one mistake—we play God. Playing God means I know exactly what I need. I need to marry that woman. I need that job. I need my child to get into that school. I’ve talked to Hashem about it. I’ve
The Chovos HaLevavos explains that in order to have bitachon, you must realize that Hashem cares about you in a very real way. You must appreciate that Hashem is deeply concerned for your good. And you must know that Hashem loves you. But Hashem doesn’t care about you as a mortal cares about you. Hashem
“The second question is,” I said, “what could you do to make Hashem angry? “Let’s say that you decided, ‘That’s it. I’m fed up with Hashem, and I’m going to do something to get Him angry.’ What could you do to make Hashem really mad? “The answer is nothing. Because, quite frankly, you’re not important
I was speaking in an out-of-town community on the topic of the four levels of emunah. I spent some time dwelling on the third level: that Hashem knows our thoughts. I explained the parable of the transparent man, and that Hashem peers into my essence and knows exactly what I’m thinking as I think it.
When I was in third grade, I had a teacher who taught us how to accept a compliment. “Don’t squirm,” she would say. “Look the person in the eye, and say thank-you.” While this was wise advice, I don’t recall any teacher telling us how to take an insult. The Chovos HaLevavos does (Sha’ar Bitachon
“Do not take revenge.” [Vayikra 19:18] One day, you ask to borrow my shovel. I refuse. The next day, I say to you, “May I borrow your hammer?” You respond, “Yesterday, when I asked you for a shovel, you wouldn’t help me. I’m going to pay you back in kind. Now that you need something,
A generation ago, bingo games were serious fundraisers for Torah institutions. Most Yeshivas ran them, and as the staff at the game could only be volunteers, many a yeshiva bachur found himself “volunteering” to work the game. Every game had its version of Sadie—an older woman in her housecoat, sitting at the end of the
Imagine you are walking down a dimly lit street. It’s the middle of February, late at night, and you’re in a part of town you don’t normally frequent. You look around—not a soul to be seen. “It’s mighty quiet,” you think to yourself. You tighten your coat and walk a bit quicker, listening to the
On Rosh Hashanah it is written, and on Yom Kippur it is sealed: how many will pass from the earth, and how many will be born. Who will live, and who will die. Who will die at his predestined time, and who before his time. Who by water, and who by fire… [Tefillas Rosh Hashanah]