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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Tale of the Prayer Master (Intro)

1. A tale. Once there was a Prayer Master who was always involved only with prayers and songs and praises to Hashem Yitbarakh [the Blessed Creator]. And he dwelled outside of settled areas. And his schedule was: He would regularly go in to the settled areas. And he would enter in [to conversation] with some person. Typically he would converse with lowly people, such as poor people and so forth. And he would begin to talk with the people, [heart] to heart, regarding the purpose of the whole world. That in truth there is no purpose at all in the world, aside from serving God all the days of one’s life. And one should spend the years only with prayer to Hashem Yitbarakh, and with songs and praises to Hashem Yitbarakh etc. And he would speak very much with the people such words of awakening, until his words would enter in to someone’s heart. Until the person would be willing to join him. And as soon as the person agreed with him, he would immediately take him and bring him to his place, which he had outside the settled areas.

2. Because this Prayer Master had chosen himself a place outside the settled areas. And there was a river and trees, and fruits were also there. And they would eat from the fruits. And regarding clothes he was not stringent at all. And so was the schedule of the Prayer Master always. That he would go all around in the settled areas. And he would always speak with people that they should serve God in his manner, that they should only perform devotions to Hashem Yitbarakh; they should only be involved with prayers etc., and whoever listened to him, he would take him, and he would bring him to his place outside the settled areas, as mentioned. And there they would be involved only with prayers and songs and praises to Hashem Yitbarakh, and confessions and fasts and mortifications and repentance and the like, and the Master of Prater would give them his compendiums (i.e. books) that he had of prayers and songs and praises and confessions. And they would be involved with them constantly. Until he would find among his people that he brought there, such ones as were also able to bring people to Hashem Yitbarakh. He would sometimes give permission to one of his people, that he should also go in to the settled areas and should awaken people to the Almighty, that they should only perform devotions to Hashem Yitbarakh.

3. And the Prayer Master was always involved in this matter, and would each time attract his people, and would take them out from the settled areas, as mentioned. Until an impression was made in the world, and the thing began to be known. For suddenly people would escape from the country, and their whereabouts were unknown. Someone would lose a son, etc., and where they were was unknown, until it became known -- [that it is] because the Prayer Master would go and talk people into devotion to Hashem Yitbarakh. But it was impossible to recognize him and sieze him, because the Prayer Master would conduct himself with much wisdom, and would change himself with each person in a different way. With one person he would make himself appear as poor person, and with another, as a trader, etc. Also when he would come to talk to people, when he would see that he could not accomplish with him his intention, he would confuse him with much talk, until they did not understand at all his good intention, and as if it was not at all his intention, i.e. to draw them to Hashem Yitbarakh. Even though in truth his whole main intention in talking to people was only this, to draw them to Hashem Yitbarakh, for his whole intention was only this. Only when he understood that he could not influence him, he would turn him and bend him and deceive him, until he could not at all understand his good intention. And the Prayer Master would be involved in this thing until an impression and fame was made in the world, and they wanted to sieze him, but they could not, as mentioned...

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