From the book Noam Siach, Part I,  excerpts from lessons given by Rabbi Levi Yitzchak Bender, zt"l. 

          If We Would Only Join Together in Unity

          It is impossible even to imagine how much Rebbe Nachman could reveal to us and influence us if only all the Breslov Chassidim would be united as one. A man on his own, even if he is completely righteous, does not merit a complete revelation from the Tzaddik according to his needs and his abilities. After all, Rabbeinu is a wondrous light, a light of truth, but he cannot reveal this light to us—he can’t give to us—so long as we are not united as one.
         In the same way that we have to study each negative commandment in the Torah and investigate our behavior to see if we have transgressed some part of the commandment in any way, so too are we obligated to study the greatness of the Tzaddikim. Even if we can’t reach such a level of holiness, still we have to believe that we can achieve, in some way, a part of his level.
         Rabbeinu said, “The world will wonder at the love between my Chassidim.”  What did he mean by love?  The light of Rabbeinu is so great, so holy, such a truth, that we must each work very hard on ourselves to always see the good in our friend. As Rabbeinu said (Likutei Moharan I:34), every single person has a holy spark inside of him, and there resides the holy love. This much pride we can allow ourselves: that there is inside me a holy spark, a holy spark of love, so that even if, G-d forbid, a person should come to do a sin, [he can rectify it through teshuva, repentance]. 
         As Rabbeinu says there, “The breaking was only of the vessels, but the light itself remains in the heavens in the Yesod of Atzilus, and there, there was no breaking.” And why? “Because if the light itself had also been broken there would have been no possibility of ever doing teshuva.” When one does a sin, he is completely broken, but if his holy spark were also broken, from where would he be able to find the strength to do teshuva? Surely his whole vessel is broken. There is nothing left from which he can return. Regarding this, Rabbeinu said, “Know, you are not completely broken. Even though the vessel itself is shattered, the holy spark of love still remains.”  The holy point of love is still complete inside me, and through it, I can do teshuva. I still have the ability to repent.
         Even as we see the words of Rabbi Nachman coming true—[as he said,] “I will separate you into many different groups”—still, we have to be very careful not to lose or even lessen the love between all the Breslov Chassidim. We should be like Abaye and Rava who argued about everything under the sun, yet this never affected the love between them. Their arguments were only ever regarding what is the true will of Hashem.
         Rabbi Nachman had Chassidim by him on the very highest levels of spirituality—people who could literally see into the future. And still he said (Likutei Moharan II:5), “Every person has to investigate himself where he is holding regarding his faith in Hashem.” In other words, regarding belief in Hashem, whatever level one is on, he should constantly pray to Hashem to help him to reach higher levels, that is, that his faith in Hashem should fill him ever more deeply.
        Rabbi Nachman said, “I judge everyone to the side of mercy, apart from an argumentative person.” We see in the Torah that Aharon HaKohen and Miriam the prophetess spoke disparagingly about Moshe Rabbeinu (BaMidbar 12:1). Hashem punished them both with leprosy. Aharon was cured straight away because he was a Kohen, but Miriam had to spend seven days outside of the camp as a leper. They spoke lashon hara, they argued against Moshe Rabbeinu, and Hashem immediately punished them. That Miriam, a prophetess, should have to spend seven days outside of the camp as a leper, is a tremendous punishment. And Moshe Rabbeinu himself wasn’t so bothered by their speaking against him. As the Torah says there, “And the man Moshe was very humble.” And Rashi explains that he didn’t get angry at the disgrace. But Hashem was much stricter regarding the honor of Moshe Rabbeinu, through whom was given the Torah, and who led Israel out of Egypt and across the Reed Sea and the Sinai desert to Israel. Even though they were both Tzaddikim and their intentions were for the best, they still spoke against the Tzaddik and were therefore punished. 
         So what did Rabbeinu mean when he said that he couldn’t judge favorably an argumentative person? It was not that he would abandon him completely, G-d forbid, but rather that for the sin of speaking lashon hara there is always a punishment, whether it is immediate or delayed.  A person can be given time to repent, or he can repent immediately as did Aharon, who straight away asked for mercy. And even though Rabbeinu said that he could judge everyone to the side of mercy, this applies to everything except argument.
         Rabbeinu said (Likutei Moharan I:5), “If a person hears any kind of argument between Tzaddikim, he should know that it comes to reprove him also.” In other words, if he heard it then it applies to him also, and he should pay very careful attention to the message that is coming to him. There have been many arguments between Tzaddikim, but one doesn’t hear them speaking badly about one another. It is only each in his own particular way trying to come closer to Hashem. One must be careful not to justify one side more than the other, but rather, he should not to get involved in the argument. One must know that even to hear about the argument is a sign that he himself is damaged, for otherwise he wouldn’t have heard the argument at all. It could even be that a person could learn that very Torah, and not pay any attention to the matter, but if it does catch his attention, this is a sign to him that he also has to rectify himself.
         If a person learns a Torah speaking about faith in Hashem, surely it cannot be said that he doesn't believe in Hashem. Yet Rabbeinu explains that faith is dependent on praying every single word of all the prayers with full concentration. If I then apply this to myself, I see that in fact I really am very far away from true faith. If I learn such a Torah and pay attention to it, it really does apply to me. Reb Yisrael from Terovitza used to prostrate himself on the grave of Rabbeinu and cry out, “Help me! I am in such danger.” Can it be that such a holy and kosher Tzaddik could really have been in danger? But according to our understanding of faith as explained by Rabbeinu, we have to believe that we have to pray to Hashem at all times to help us to strengthen ourselves in our belief in Him. If I come to hear such a teaching, then it must apply also to me. 
         Rabbeinu mentioned many, many times how important it is to serve Hashem with complete simplicity and not only with deep learning and higher wisdoms.  This means doing the simple things properly, praying with concentration, and fulfilling the mitzvos with happiness. A man has to make hisbodedus and pray to Hashem, “Ribono Shel Olam, lead me to your truth!  I don’t know anything at all!” And he must remind himself always of the words of Rabbeinu, “Stick together! Each of you must be filled with love for the other and go in the way of truth.” 

         The Importance of Feeling Ashamed of Oneself in this World

         Rabbeinu said, “Everyone must search his ways, to see how closely he is attached to Hashem.  The main sign is the Tefillin, and Tefillin is the aspect of shame.” Can it be that the more one is ashamed, the greater is his attachment to Hashem?  For what must one be ashamed?  The answer is that he must feel shame that he is angering Hashem, that he isn’t performing His will. And by achieving this feeling of shame, this of itself increases his attachment to Hashem. A person who goes through life treating it as joke is demonstrating the opposite of this feeling of shame. One must at all times feel shame, but this has nothing to do with depression. Exactly the opposite, this shame is the root of life. This itself is life. The Torah says of Moshe Rabbeinu that his face was shining. And Rabbeinu explains (Likutei Morahan I:38) that this was his feeling of shame. The Rabbis teach that anyone who commits a sin and is embarrassed about it, all his sins are forgiven. Because he is embarrassed, he is forgiven. Similarly, all our hisbodedus must also have this aspect of embarrassment. “Ribono Shel Olam, how can it be that I could behave in such a way that would make you angry with me!” And the embarrassment that he feels is in itself his repentance.
         Hashem has tremendous mercy on us. Rabbeinu says (Likutei Moharan II:1) that this shows itself in the way Hashem gave us Rosh Hashanah on Rosh Chodesh. How could we come before Hashem and request forgiveness and say that we truly repent. The whole year I behaved improperly, and now suddenly am I going to repent?  However since, on Rosh Chodesh, Hashem himself regrets how he ordered the moon to make itself smaller, and He says, “Bring for Me an atonement.” This gives us also the chance to stand before Him and say, “We repent.” The Torah describes bringing a sacrifice to the Temple as “giving a satisfying aroma to Hashem.” Our embarrassment over our behavior is this satisfying aroma.
         This is the true purpose of making hisbodedus: that one should feel embarrassment before Hashem and that this shame should automatically lead one to repentance. And one who truly repents does not come to do those sins again.

         The Importance of Learning the Books of Rabbeinu

         Rabbeinu said  (Likutei Moharan I:7), “Through coming close to the Tzaddik and following his advice, the truth is engraved upon him.” This means that the essence of coming close to the Tzaddik is following his advice. Rabbeinu once said to his followers, “I have placed inside you a great deal of Truth.”  What is this truth that we have received from Rabbeinu?  It is when we learn his books and follow his advice. That is when the truth becomes engraved in us. But we have to learn his books! 
         Rav Nosson said, “Happy is the person who thinks always about the teachings of Rabbeinu.” Rav Nachman Tulchiner said one time, “Who will learn the book of Rabbeinu?  Behold!  No one in the world is learning it. Will we also not learn it?” Rabbeinu himself said, “Once the whole world starts to learn my book, it will be time to prepare for Moshiach.”

         The Importance of Learning from the Written Word and Not to Rely on Cassettes and the Like

         It says in the Torah, “Open our eyes to your Torah.” When my eyes see the written word [in Hebrew], this is what gives the kedusha, the holiness. Today, people learn Gemara from cassettes, but it doesn’t give any holiness. It actually prevents many people from opening the Gemara. What do I need it for? Why do I need the Shas? I’ve got the tapes! This is a terrible mistake. It prevents people from looking at words of Torah.
         When a person damages his eyes by looking at forbidden sights, the only way to repair them is by looking at words of Torah. When one damages his speech by speaking lashon hara, the only way to repair the damage is to speak words of Torah. 
         It is related regarding the Arizal, that in front of his desk, where he learned in the Beis Medrash, was written the word “Amen.” Any time he had the opportunity to answer amen to a blessing, he would read it from the written word and not answer it off by heart. The word “amen,” as is known, is the gematria of two names of Hashem. Therefore it is important to look at the letters, even of the word “amen.”
         Today a person sits down at the table, lights a cigarette, and learns Gemara from a tape. I am certain this is damaging the Torah, damaging the honor of the Torah. This does not come into the category of  “working hard to learn Torah.” Surely we bless on the Torah every morning, “who has chosen us from all the peoples and given us the Torah.” Am I really allowed to bless on something that someone else is learning for me? Hashem wants us to purify our eyes by looking at words of Torah, to purify our mouths by speaking words of Torah. 
         My eyes are already very weak [Rav Levi Yitzchak was almost blind at this time] and I need someone to learn with me. Even so, I repeat every word after him. The one and only way for a Jew to purify himself is by looking at the words of Torah, and by speaking words of Torah. 

         The Importance of Humility

         The Rabbis teach that the one character trait that Hashem cannot tolerate in a person is pride. When Rav Nosson first came to Rabbeinu, he was already on a very high level. It was nine years after his marriage to the daughter of Rav David Tzvi, one of the most famous Rabbis in the Ukraine. Still Rabbeinu said in describing him, “in his own eyes, he is nothing more than dust and earth. If a small child would send him to buy some candies, he would run to buy them.” As great as Rav Nosson already was in his Torah learning, the Rebbe, in describing him, only mentioned his complete humility, and it is because of this humility that he was able to receive so much from the Rebbe. 
         The Gemara relates that when Reb Zera came from Babylon to live in Israel, he fasted many fasts in order to forget all the Torah that he had learned in Babylon. And did it help? Surely he went straight away and learned in the yeshiva of Rav Yochanan! But what really happened is that when Reb Zera came to Israel, he realized that it was on a completely different level, that Israel was the aspect of serenity as opposed to Babylon, which was the aspect of argument. Rav Zera saw that he would be unable to receive from the Torah of Israel as long as he still had inside him the Torah of Babylon. The explanation isn’t that he abandoned everything that he had learned prior to his arrival in Israel, but rather that all his learning no longer had any importance for him.
         When Rav Nosson started to come close to Rabbeinu, he said about himself, “I completely abandoned all my knowledge.” Does he mean he was no longer a gadol in Torah? There is a very great secret involved here. A person can be filled with Torah, fear of heaven, righteousness, and holiness, and yet he can see that he is unable to receive anything from the Tzaddik. That is why he has to leave everything behind him. After all, he has come to the Tzaddik in order to receive from him, but what is he to receive, Tzidkus?  Behold, he is already a Tzaddik! Holiness? But he is already holy. So what is left to receive? If he comes to the Tzaddik and feels that he already has everything that he needs, then he won’t be able to receive from the Tzaddik. That’s why he has to leave behind all his knowledge. But where should he leave it? Where should he put it? Someone who worked so hard and struggled so many years until he has reached such a high level, how does he leave his Torah behind him? Furthermore, Rav Nosson was the son-in-law of the famous Rav David Tzvi. Does he also have to leave that behind him?
         The solution is as follows: regarding humility, it is not that a person has to go with his head bowed down. Quite the opposite, that’s not humility at all. Rabbeinu himself said (Likutei Moharan II:72), “To be humble, one needs a lot of intelligence.” A man decides to go with head bowed down, torn clothes...this is not humility—it is nothing at all. The main point of humility is to contemplate the greatness of Hashem. What am I next to such greatness, such an incredible greatness? How can I rebel against Him? This is already a different type of wisdom. This is a humility that increases as one feels more the greatness of Hashem, and this is how it is when one comes close to a Tzaddik. One comes close to the Tzaddik and starts to feel such a light. This in itself is enough to bring one to humility. Consequently, his Torah also will be a Torah of humility. He will be filled with a completely different Torah and a completely different tefilla.
         It is said in the name of Reb Pinchas of Koritz, “Before I came close to the Baal Shem Tov, my teeth used to fly out of my mouth when I prayed. But this wasn’t the truth. After I came close to the Baal Shem Tov, my teeth stopped flying out of mouth when I prayed, and this was the real truth.” When one sees and examines the light of the Tzaddik, of the Baal Shem Tov, and he receives from this light and leaves behind him everything that he had up until then, only then does the light of truth enter him.
         Rav Nosson came close to Rabbeinu and examined his light, his truth, and all that he had achieved up until then fell away from him. It had no importance in his eyes. He was no longer able to see himself with the same importance. This is what is called “leaving all your knowledge behind you.” It is not that he stopped being a great Torah scholar or a holy Tzaddik, but he saw such a great light, regarding which Rabbeinu said, “It is the nature of things that the small is canceled before the great.” If one can feel the light of the Tzaddik, it is impossible that he should continue to feel his own importance. Just the opposite, if one still feels that he has the slightest importance, this is a sign that he doesn’t yet feel the light of the Tzaddik. Next to a bright light, a lesser light simply cannot be seen at all. 
         In truth we have to beg from Hashem, “Ribono Shel Olam, surely we are known as Breslover Chassidim, and if we were to really feel the great light of Rabbeinu, we would have to be completely humble—to have such a great Rebbe, and not to feel him at all!”
         The Rebbe brings in Likutei Moharan I:17 that Ma’Aras HaMachpelah, which was owned by Ephron the Hittite, is the gateway to heaven. All the souls go up via this gate to heaven. Such an incredible light is there, but Ephron did not see the light at all. He was delighted to sell it to Avraham. Rabbeinu explains there that this is how it can be by the Tzaddik. One can be right next to him and not feel the slightest light.
         It is our task to apply this teaching to ourselves. Behold, there were such great Tzaddikim by Rabbeinu. They could open Likutei Moharan and feel such a great light, such an awakening! This was a sign of their humility. Tears, literally, used to fall from their eyes. So how come we do not feel this? How come we are unable to feel this great light! We have to beg very much from Hashem, “Reveal to us the light of your Torah!” I open the books but the letters do not shine for me. Why not? Surely it can not be the fault of the Torah. Surely the Torah is so holy that it should be able to shine for everybody. So it must be me that is at fault. Thus, one can start to cry out before Hashem, and slowly, surely, gradually over the years, Hashem will help him, and the Torah will start to shine to him.

          Prayer and Hisbodedus

         There is a letter from the Baal Shem Tov to the Toldos Yaakov Yosef which says, “I have heard that you are taking upon yourself all kinds of fasts and sufferings. This is not the true path. My advice is that you simply concentrate on the words of the Torah. They will shine to you such an incredible light.” In this generation, the only way to come close to Hashem is through a tremendous amount of prayer and hisbodedus and by turning our learning into prayers.
         Rabbeinu said, “Once, the way to come close to Hashem was through fasting and all kind of self-afflictions. People actually used to fast from Shabbos to Shabbos. Today, this path is not applicable. One should not fast at all, other than on the days specified in the Shulchan Aruch. Similarly, self-affliction is also forbidden.” Once people used to roll in the snow. Unbelievable!
        Rabbeinu said, “what people once used to achieve through fasting and suffering, is today, only achievable through prayer and hisbodedus.”
         Rabbeinu said in Chayei Moharan, “Before a new path opens up, it is possible to achieve without using that path. But once the new path has been opened, achievement is possible only by using that path.” Before Rabbeinu, there were a number of different ways of doing teshuva. Once he arrived, only the way that he specified was effective, which is through prayer and hisbodedus. Since then, the previous paths are now forbidden to us. 
         One must spend very much time doing hisbodedus. The best time is at midnight. One should wake up and pray to Hashem for all that he is lacking. It is especially good, with Hashem’s help, if one can come to weep during the hisbodedus. This is the path that Rabbeinu decreed for us. Through this path, one can become a kosher and holy Jew, a real Tzaddik, exactly as they used to become through fasts and sufferings. But now, since we have a Rebbe who has taught us the greatness of prayer and hisbodedus, it is no longer permitted to use the previous paths. Not only that, but the previous paths can now do more damage than they can fix. Especially for us, Breslover Chassidim, for surely the Rebbe is our Rebbe. We, more than anyone, must go on his path of prayer and hisbodedus and wake up at midnight, at a time of special favor. This is our path to repentance and to Hashem. 
         Rav Ozer, a student of Rav Nosson, regularly used to go out to the forests after Shabbos and return home in time for the next Shabbos. One time someone related to Rav Nosson that he had a friend who knew a thousand pages of Gemara by heart. Rav Nosson answered him, “My student Ozer can stand in the corner and cry ‘Ribono Shel Olam’ a thousand times.” Rav Ozer was a Gadol in Torah. By the time he came to Rabbeinu he already had many students of his own. But Rav Nosson’s praise of him was that he could cry “Ribono Shel Olam” a thousand times. One thousand pages of Gemara learnt by heart is a tremendous achievement, but someone who can cry out “Ribono Shel Olam” a thousand times, his Gemara learning is a different thing altogether.
             The Gemara explains that Hashem created the evil inclination and that He created the Torah as its “tavlin,” its spice. Why should the Torah be called a spice? Surely a spice is used for flavoring! The answer is that the evil inclination, with all its lusts and desires, is nothing more than a disgusting smell, and the Torah is the spice that sweetens it. Rabbeinu told us, “Make prayers out of my teachings.” The first Torah in Likutei Moharan starts, “Through the Torah, all the prayers are accepted.” Rabbeinu is speaking here about a tremendously high level of the Torah. In practical terms, Rabbeinu is saying that one should pray about what one learns, that he should pray that he will be able to fulfill it. 
        Learning without prayer is what is described as “His wisdom is greater than his deeds.” The slightest wind can uproot such learning completely, which is why Rabbeinu taught us the importance of prayer. Whatever you learn—be it a chapter of Shulchan Aruch or whatever—you must pray to Hashem that He should help you to carry it out. Rabbeinu says there that Hashem gets immense pleasure from this type of prayer. We have come close to Rabbeinu; therefore, it is incumbent upon us to understand the importance of prayer, especially since Rabbeinu instructed us to pray to Hashem about absolutely everything. And even though we already pray the Shmonei Esrei three times a day and even though we also have Tehillim, still we have to pray to Hashem about each and every detail of our lives. Any time we leave the house, for whatever purpose, we must pray to Hashem to help us succeed. The prayer is our connection to Hashem.
        Torah and Prayer are inseparable. Rabbeinu said that they light up one another. This is the path of Rabbeinu, to wake up at midnight, say Tikkun Chatzos, and then to immediately sit down and start learning.
         Rabbeinu said in Likutei Moharan I:65, “After hisbodedus, one must learn new ideas in the Torah. That way, a reflection of his hisbodedus enters into his learning.” Only through hisbodedus, followed immediately by learning, does an image of the hisbodedus stay with him. But one who does not follow his hisbodedus with learning, all his hisbodedus can fall away from him. At the time one is making hisbodedus, his head is filled with thoughts of serving Hashem. But what will remain for him after he finishes speaking? For this, Rabbeinu says, “the hisbodedus has to merge with the learning.” The two are inseparable. Either without the other is ineffective. One who finishes his hisbodedus and goes off to talk to his friend, loses everything. Learn anything, Likutei Moharan, a Mishna, a halacha in the Shulchan Aruch. The Torah learning alone does not impart strength, but the two together have a tremendous power.
        Rabbeinu asked, “Why do people argue against me? My whole essence is prayer. Regarding prayer, it is said that it stands as the foundation of the world, and yet, people treat it so lightly!” What did he mean, “my whole essence is prayer?” Surely all the world prays! All Jews pray to Hashem. Rather, the explanation of the word “prayer” is that one must ask Hashem for everything. That is the meaning of “My whole essence is prayer.”
         As Rabbeinu explains in Likutei Moharan I:10, “Prayer is called a “mountain,” a “field,” and a “house.” Avraham called his place of prayer a “mountain.” “The mountain of Moriah.”  Yitzchak called it a “field,” as it says, “and Yitzchak went out to speak in the field.” Yaakov called it a “house,” as it says, “the house of Hashem.” Rabbeinu explains there that Yaakov called prayer a “house.” Just as one can not live without a house, so, one can not live without prayer.
        What Rabbeinu meant when he said, “My whole essence is prayer,” is that when one leaves his house, he has to pray to Hashem to protect him and to bring him home safely and that his evil inclination should not be able to overcome him. Similarly, when one goes to sleep, he should pray to Hashem to protect him. This is already a different sleep altogether.
             Rabbeinu said in Likutei Moharan, I:35, “While sleeping, one needs a very powerful protection.” What should one do if he can not fall asleep? He should pray by making hisbodedus. That way he will fall asleep while speaking to Hashem. Even if he has said the final blessing before retiring, “Hamapil,” this is not similar to other blessings, where the blessing has to be followed immediately by the act. If one cannot fall asleep, he is permitted to talk to Hashem.
        According to the way one falls asleep is the sleep itself. If one falls asleep while thinking about Hashem or while talking to Hashem, this is altogether a different sleep. Regarding this, Rabbeinu said (Likutei Moharan, I:54), “Sleep is the world to come…Immediately when a person wakes up, he should remember that there is another world.” If Hashem helps you and when you wake up your first thought is about the next world, this is already a different type of day altogether. The way one wakes up sets the tone for the day, and the way one goes to sleep sets the tone for the night. If you go to sleep speaking to Hashem, that sets the tone as to how you are going to wake up. 
        This is the aspect of, “My whole essence is prayer. And that is why people argue against me.”  Such a thing the evil inclination can not stand. If you only pray three times a day and maybe say a few Tehillim, this is not so bad. But to make a prayer out of your whole life, to pray as you go to sleep and as you wake up, this the evil inclination can not tolerate.
             Rabbeinu brings in Likutei Moharan, I:11, “Yochni and Mamre, (two Egyptian magicians) asked Moshe, ‘Are you bringing teven (straw) to Apharayim?’” He answered them, ‘People say, “to the place where they sell vegetables, bring vegetables to sell.”’”  Rabbeinu explains: “teven” is referring to “tevuna,” the understanding [of Torah]. They understood that Moshe wanted to introduce understanding of Torah to the Jewish people. Which is why they asked, “When Israel is not doing the will of Hashem, they are likened to ‘afar’ (dust). So how are you going to be able to bring them to such a high level, to the understanding of Torah?” He answered them, “People say…” i.e. that through speaking a Jew can reach all the places that he has to do teshuva
        During the time that the people of Israel were in Egypt, they behaved the same way as the Egyptians. As it is said, “These worship idols, and those worship idols.” And the two magicians understood that Moshe wanted to introduce Torah to the Jewish people, which is why they asked, “How is this possible? Can people on such a low level possibly have any understanding of Torah?” 
        The evil inclination devotes all his efforts into fooling a person. “Who are you, such a lowly and badly behaved creature! Do you really think that you can do teshuva? You want to become a man? Do you truly believe that this is something that you are capable of?”
         Moshe answered them, “People say…” that through speech, speaking one’s heart out to Hashem, everything is possible. And that is why it is written (Shemos, 4:19), “And Moshe was slow of speech.”  It is explained that his speech impediment only lasted during the time that he was in Egypt. Once he left Egypt he was cured, for behold, he gave over the whole Torah to Israel. For in Egypt, speech was in exile, but once they escaped, they achieved the level of, “People say…” that is, they were at last able to start speaking, which is the aspect of, “to the place where they sell vegetables, bring vegetables to sell.” “Vegetables” refers to repentance (Likutei Moharan I:11), for then, at last, the people can start to do teshuva.
         Speech has such a power that even a person who does not know for what he has to do teshuva (for continuous sinning brings forgetfulness) can be awakened. Through speaking to Hashem, all that was hidden from him becomes revealed. He begins to understand the things that he is doing which things are truly forbidden. Until now, he did not take his speech seriously; he spoke only about things that were inconsequential. “So what if I speak to Hashem, what benefit will it give me?” 
        Similarly is it concerning looking at forbidden sights. A person says to himself, “What damage is it going to cause me?” How can such a person ever do teshuva? Everything is permitted to him: to speak stupidity, to think stupid thoughts, to look. The Tzaddik says to him, “If you will only start speaking to Hashem, all will be revealed to you: everything for which you need to do teshuva and everything you did that was forbidden.”
         We had people by us who were so simple that they did not even know how to pray. But simply by speaking constantly to Hashem, they turned out to be very kosher Jews. There are Breslov Chassidim who used to say that just for this one piece of advice from Rabbeinu—hisbodedus—it is worth becoming a Breslover Chassid. To learn how to say to Hashem, “Master of the Universe, have mercy on me. I myself do not know what to do with myself.” Then Hashem will surely have mercy on you, and reveal to you a great light. 
           This is exactly what the son of the King says in the story of “The Seven Beggars.” “Is it fitting for me that I should behave in such a way?” All this comes simply from speaking to Hashem, which is why the evil inclination puts so much effort into preventing a person from speaking to Hashem. He tells you, “Do not speak to Hashem. Whatever you do, do not speak to Hashem. Who do you think you are?” And the Tzaddik tells you absolutely the opposite, “Speak to Hashem. Constantly speak to Him. Only through this will you do teshuva. Only through this will you become a kosher Jew.” Breslover Chassidim will be judged regarding this in Heaven: Why did you not follow the advice of your Rabbi? Why did you not pour out your heart before Hashem? Granted you did not know this was forbidden, granted you did not know that was forbidden, but if you had only followed the advice of your Rabbi, all would have been revealed to you.
            And if you do not have what to say, do like Rav Ozer: stand facing the wall and say a thousand times, “Ribono Shel Olam” (“Master of the Universe”) over and over again. Say it for an hour. “Have mercy on me. Save me. Put words into my mouth that I should be able to speak to you.” Just speak even if you have nothing to say. Through this alone, Hashem will surely save you. Be stubborn, and do not get discouraged.  Speak, even if you can not think of what to say. When Hashem sees that you are trying, even if you are not succeeding, He will help you. He Himself will put the words into your mouth to petition Him. He Himself will reveal to you a new light, and show you all the places that you need to do teshuva.
            Simply to stand before Hashem and say, “Is it fitting that I should behave before you in such a way?” This alone will bring him to the level of  “teven,” a deeper understanding of the Torah, and through this he can become a kosher Jew. One must be tremendously stubborn, but only in prayer.
           Rabbeinu said in Likutei Moharan, I:48 that one must be very stubborn in serving Hashem. Rav Avraham ben Rav Nachman explained this as referring to prayer, for in nothing else is it permitted to be stubborn, only in prayer. Because sometimes a prayer is immediately accepted, and sometimes one is told to wait. This is not because the prayer has not been accepted, but rather because the person is not ready to be given what he prayed for. He has to improve himself, to raise himself up through continued prayer and longing to serve Hashem properly, until he is capable of receiving that which he is praying for.
            Rabbeinu once said to someone, “Do you really want to want?” Desire is a powerful thing. Even when you are not given what you ask for, still, you must continue to want, continue to pray. There is an example given in the Gemara (Yoma 38): One who wants to buy persimmon [which has a fragrant smell] is told to wait. One who wants to buy kerosene [which has a foul smell] is served immediately. A person succeeds in getting up at midnight every night, making hisbodedus and praying constantly to Hashem, yet he sees no progress, no improvement. The truth is that he is without question progressing, he is certainly improving, but the evil inclination has the power to hide this from a person. Even after years of working on himself, he still seems to have got nowhere. However, this is just a test. The evil inclination is trying to prevent him from carrying out the advice of the Tzaddik. One has to be tremendously stubborn and not allow himself to be prevented from continuing to cry out endlessly to Hashem. One must never cease from following the advice of Rabbeinu and not be put off by his apparent lack of success and improvement. Rather, he must say to Hashem, “Master of the Universe, do with me as You will. Nothing is going to stop me from crying out to You!”  Do not stop praying because you do not get what you want. If you stop praying, this just shows that you did not want it enough.
             When a person has an awakening to do teshuva, he straight away wants to start praying with concentration, to put meaning into every word. Rabbeinu says, “This I am not yet ready to give you. Perhaps tomorrow you will abandon me. Continue doing the best that you can until I see that you are really serious, really determined, and then I will give it to you.” Were a person to search for a hidden treasure, and not find it, would he simply give up searching? One must search for Hashem constantly. This is the only proof of sufficient desire. One should not press Him that He should give him immediately, but rather be prepared to wait for Him to give when He sees that you are ready.
            Hisbodedus is our only weapon. Through persistently begging Hashem to help us we can achieve every level and truly become a kosher Jew. But to do this, we have to pray, and pray, and never stop praying.

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