Inspiration

The Secret to Love

The great Rabbi Akiva taught that the fundamental principle of the Torah is to ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The great sage Hillel went so far as to say that, “this is the entire Torah; all the rest is commentary.” Many ask if that is possible, when our default is selfishness and making sure first and foremost that we are taken care of. The Baal Shem Tov expounds on Rabbi Akiva’s lesson:though we are aware of our many faults, we still look out for and love ourselves, and we need to do the same for those around us despite their faults.  We need to uplift and elevate and that can only be done when leading with love of the “neighbor as yourself.” Ahava (ah-ha-va)/אהבה/love. In Hebrew, the root word for ‘love’ is ‘hav’ which means “to give”. Loving is synonymous with …

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Light of Infinite is a book series (coming soon), a podcast, and a weekly Dvar (digital + pamphlets distributed to shull’s in LA). Erez Safar acts as Your Spiritual DJ, curating insights into the weekly Torah portion and the infinite light of Kabbalah.

The Positivity Bias

“120 years ago to the day, a Jewish boy with a radically redemptive soul was born and dared to dream about a perfect world and devoted every fiber of his being ,  every waking moment of his life,  towards making that vision and that dream come true…,” this is how Mendel Kalmenson (who will be presenting at the Light of Infinite fest), spoke of The Rebbe to a packed crowd last night at Saban Theater in LA. It was a Farbrengen, celebrating 120th birthday of The Lubavitcher Rebbe! A few years ago Rabbi Eli Backman, the Chabad Emissary at the University of Maryland, gave me a copy of Kalmenson’s book the Positivity Bias and in it was a a letter from The Rebbe that changed my life when my mom passed away. This article in Chabad.org explains how.   —- click here to …

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Light of Infinite on Rabbi Peretz’s Podcast

I love writing, I love making music and I dig it when people dig into either, but speaking in public or doing interviews I generally shy away from, but when Rabbi Peretz asked me to be a guest on his Podcast before Rosh Hashana to talk about Don’t Block Your Blessings and the Light of Infinite.. I’m actually glad I agreed!✨ And only Rabbi Peretz could have gotten all these stories out of me;) Go listen to the reasons behind everything that I do. He’s such an epic and inspiring being so really it was fun to finally say yes to being a guest. His Don’t Block Your Blessings video (here) is still one of my favorites, full of so much truth and wisdom, I’ve rewatched it so many times! Anyway, go and listen to the Rabbi Peretz Podcast for …

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If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change

My mom was born in 47, and would have been 74 today. I miss her every second. She taught Talmud to women, made sculptures, painted, played accordion and became a partner/CPA at a firm in DC .. I mean, she was a badass Yemenite Jewess, and I see her in my kids and I’m thankful for that. I can’t not tear up just writing even this little bit about her.  I’m just trying to stay in the @dontblockyourblessings and @thelightofinfinite space as much as it’s possible, as it’s been helped heal my broken heart. I learned almost everything from my mom, by just seeing how she navigated and loved the journey of it all. We connected on so many things, but one of the most special was going to concerts together; two in particular stood out – one was Buena …

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That Yemenite Kid

My Great-grandfather (Saba Shelomo, pictured here with my mom and Savta) and my Grandfather (Saba Shalom pictured with his wife Yedida) passed away on the same day, and their אזכרה (Yahrtzeit) is tonight!  Their names & dates are Saba Shalom ben Shelomo Zipor z”l  25 Tammuz 5760 // Saba HaGadol Shelomo ben Salah Safar z”l, 25 Tammuz 5744. I have so many memories of Saba Shalom, but hearing from my uncle (סיימון אורגד ציפור) and sister about how he came to pass away on the same day as his father blew me away. My sister told me that he waited so that he wouldn’t be burdensome to anyone. He wanted his אזכרה (Yahrtzeit) to be the same as his father’s so that no one would have to go out of their way for him, which was his personality. My uncle explained …

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Mental Health & Radical Responsibility

This month is devoted to mental health and breaking the stigma of struggling with it. Now, more than ever, we need to show love and empathy to each other. The Tzemach Tzedek (1789–1866) taught us to think of ourselves as vessels for blessings. He would say in Yiddish, “Tracht gut, vet zein gut” which translates as “Think good, and it will be good.” Literally, the act of believing in a blessing is the vessel for receiving it. Getting your mind, body, and spirit into the mode of preparing for and accepting blessings, living with complete faith that they will come– that is how you receive blessings. The converse is also true, making it that much more important to focus on the good. Each of us has the power to uplift those around us. Rebbe Nachman of Breslov said, “With happiness, …

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MLK and paving the way

When Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. asked Rabbi Everett Gendler to help in Albany, GA., Gendler replied, “Even though my furniture had not yet arrived, I felt the need to respond to Rev. King’s prophetic appeal to conscience.” He walked hand in hand with MLK and the Torah in Selma joined by one of my favorite Theologian/Poet/Philosopher, Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel. When Heschel was asked upon his return from the 1965 Selma to Montgomery voting rights march with Dr. Martin Luther King, “Did you find time to pray?” he famously answered, “I prayed with my feet.” Some of Heschel’s most famous philosophical works charge human beings to sanctify time and space and to rediscover the power of wonder. Heschel’s famous expression “radical amazement” embodies his gift for highlighting spiritual curiosity and grandeur. His writings are filled with moments of transcendence. I …

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