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Have a good month - with your thoughts, words, and actions

Translation by Yehoshua Siskin

A new month begins today -- the month of Tammuz. I recently heard a wonderful thought on daily renewal from the writings of the holy Baal Shem Tov, founder of the Chasidic movement:

When a person awakens from sleep, he must pay attention to three things: his first thought, his first words, and his first action. We express ourselves, after all, in our thoughts, words, and actions. We need to be strict and precise in ensuring that the start of the day is positive.

If the first thought of the day is, "Oof, the alarm clock is ringing," it will influence the thoughts of that day. In the realm of speech, "A person should be careful to sanctify his first words of the day," the Baal Shem Tov wrote, in order that his words will continue in the same holy direction the remainder of the day. Perhaps, therefore, in the prayer book, the first sentence that we say when rising is: "I offer thanks to you, living and eternal King, for you have mercifully returned my soul within me; Your faithfulness is great." Thus, the words that open the day are always about gratitude and faith. And regarding action, it is imperative to pay attention to the first thing we do every morning, the activity with which we open the day.

Good thoughts, good words, good actions. Have a good month.



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