The following is an excerpt from here:“Thanking G-d for the good in our lives is one of the best ways to start a session of Hisbodedus – the private prayer and meditation in one’s native tongue, that Rebbe Nachman advocated as the highest level of devotion. It is particularly important to set aside time for this practice during Elul. It can be a very rewarding experience to make a detailed list of all the things we have to be grateful for, from our health, strength, faculties, family, home, livelihood… to the mitzvos we have the privilege of performing every day…and the very fact that we are Jews, with a holy soul that will endure for ever. By focusing on the good and developing a positive outlook we put ourselves in a far stronger position to grapple with the evil within us. Hisbodedus is the time to take a calm, honest look at ourselves to see where we need to improve. Changing entrenched habits can be difficult. The first step is to ask G-d to help. The essence of hisbodedus is simplicity – to express ourselves to G-d in simple, straightforward language the way we would talk to an intimate friend.”

I had never heard the term “hisbodedus” before, though I have done this process of reflecting and repenting every year since I was about 10. Apparently it means “secluded meditation and prayer”, and was advocated for every person by the Rabbi Nachman of Breslov around this time of year.

What I am grateful for this year: Having a spouse who loves me and puts up with me. Having parents who love me unconditionally. Having wonderful friends who bring me joy and who I can turn to when things are difficult. My health. Having a job. Having a job that doesn’t make me crazy. Having a home to live in. Being able to own my own home. Having the ability to pay my bills, eat good foods that are good for me. Having a satisfying sex life. Having the ability to travel. Getting some recognition for my writing. Living in a state that grants me equal civil rights.

That’s a lot. I take it for granted a lot of days. I’d like to try not to do that as much in the coming year.


~ by realsupergirl on September 8, 2010.

One Response to “Hisbodedus”

  1. It may not help any, but you would be more familiar with the pronounciation “hitbodedut”.

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