18 Tishrei 5782 / Friday, September 24, 2021 | Torah Reading: Sukkot
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DG is doing time in a Texas prison for a violent crime. He found himself in a kill or be-killed situation, for it's not easy to be a Jewish boy in an environment like that…


My esteemed and beloved teacher Rabbi Shalom Arush always encourages me by saying that the evil inclination makes life tough for us because of the emuna we spread, particularly by way of Emuna Outreach. He says that we have no idea as to the souls we reach and the effect that the emuna books and CDs have on their lives. The following handwritten letter is living proof of what he says. It arrived several weeks ago at Breslev Israel's Jerusalem office – it's amazing…


To Rabbi Shalom Arush and Rabbi Lazer Brody,


I hope that this finds all of you in excellent health and great humor. I am writing in order to express my thanks and appreciation for the work that you and your yeshivas do. I pray that you and all your students experience only blessings from the One True G-d.


I am a Jewish man currently incarcerated in the Texas prison system for a violent crime. I am 39 years old and have been incarcerated since I was 20. My father is Israeli, and my brothers and I grew up in Tel Aviv and when I was 11, we moved to Texas.


Being Jewish in the Texas Prison system is a strange experience, but I am proud to say that I have maintained my identity, and grown in observance. However, spending so much time in a such a harsh environment can either break a man, or force him to become very hard. I had become hardened, and so very angry.


As the years have gone by, I became very angry with Hashem and increasingly depressed, to the point that my health and soul were affected.  However, about a year and a half ago, someone sent me the English edition of "The Universal Garden of Emuna". It came through the Aleph Institute from an organization named "Emuna Outreach". It was if the shades were thrown open in a dark room, and light was let into my soul.


This book changed my entire relationship with Hashem and I started to view my life, and life in general, in a completely different light. I quickly recommended this book to my entire family, and I requested your other publications. My mother sent me "In Forest Fields", "The Garden of Wisdom", and I am currently studying "The Garden of Gratitude."


A year ago, I began doing 30 minutes of Hitbodedut at night, once my cellmate had gone to sleep. The 30 minutes turned into an hour, and my entire life has changed. So much has changed. So much as has been revealed to me! So much of my anger has just disappeared! Once I began truly giving thanks to Hashem, HKB"H, as you suggest in "The Garden of Gratitude", the positive changes only increased. I was given a work detail, a month ago, in which I work in a secluded area by myself, from 9PM at night until 4AM in the morning. Now, I pray, study Torah, and practice hitbodedut for hours on end. I dance and sing, and laugh, because, why not? My life has so much joy and color now… All blessings to G-d.


My family has noticed the changes, and even more importantly, I have been able to share the truth with my mother and father. I cannot describe the calming effect your teachings have on my poor, long-suffering parents.


I am unsure of where my life path will lead. However, I am certain, and have no doubts as to Hashem, His love and plan for me. The worries and doubts and anger that I carried for most of my life are gone. I cannot explain to you the joy and love I feel, sitting in a Texas prison. Baruch Hashem, I feel so light…


I am writing since I believe in gratitude. Thank you for sharing the light of emuna and thank you for making it so accessible to everyone. May the One True G-d bless all of you and continue to grant you and your students the opportunities to help others. May all of you be blessed.


I wish all of you health, wealth and joy. May Moshiach arrive and may we all dance in Jerusalem. May I merit to meet all of you in person, soon. Again, thank you!


DHG, Texas State Prison (full name and address in the editorial bureau of Breslev Israel)


As you can see, Emuna Outreach literally saves lives. You can share in the magnificent mitzvah of spreading emuna around the world - Donate to Emuna Outreach

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