Monday, March 2, 2009

"the smell of gan eden" - a Berditchever story.

submitted velvel kutsy - amateur writer

Once upon a time, there were two chassidim travelling to see their Rebbe. The famous Rebbe, Rabbi Levi Yitzchok, lived in Berditchev. It was a cold winter night, and they were still several hours away, so when they came upon a little inn they decided to stay the night. However little did they know that the hostesses had intentions of their own.
Once they had been checked in and shown to their rooms..the enticing maids began to try and seduce the two chassidim. Perhaps to later demand payment, or perhaps just the thrill of the challenge. The two men were of course upright individuals on a holy journey to see their Rebbe, would not be swayed by the women's vain attempts. However the women insisted, and tried various tactics to make the pious men succumb to their temptations.
Men are only men, and soon they realized that this is going to be an uphill battle. Becoming aware that within minutes this could all end very tragically for their souls. How would they be able to face their Rebbe afterwards? They quickly ran out of the room,and decided that they needed to purify themselves in the mikvah as soon as possible. Mikvah? Where are they going to find a mikvah in the middle of the night in the middle of Russia? Quickly thinking, they ran to the bathroom, and without hesitation completely immersed themselves toilet's feces-filled trough.
As they came out of the bathroom...the women were so disgusted and outraged by the behavior of these two chassidim that they kicked them right out into the cold winter night. So having no other choice...they walked until morning and arrived at their Rebbe's shul just in time for shacharis.
When they entered the shul..they saw that the minyan was already assembled, and everybody was just waiting for the Rebbe to arrive. In the shul there was a fireplace, with a newly lit fire warming up the room. The two men went to warm themselves from their cold wet journey, and needless to say the congregants were not very happy. As the fire carried the smell all across the holy place of prayers, the rest of the chassidim started to become more and more upset. "According to Jewish law it is forbidden to pray with such a smell" they exclaimed to each other and were just about ready to kick the two men right back out.

All of a sudden Rabbi Levi Yitzchok, entered the shul..took a big sniff...smiled and said "Ah..that's the smell of Gan Eden"

1 comment:

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