How to Get Rid of Personal Bacteria

Mr. Yehudah Leib Unger, an entrepreneur from Pittsburgh, PA, invested in a new patent to recycle cloth bags. The Rebbe taught him an important lesson about how to eliminate bacteria and germs.

Mr. Yehudah Leib Unger, a successful entrepreneur from Pittsburgh, PA, invested in a new patent to recycle old sackcloth bags. Since they had been used previously, and had contracted bacteria, the solution was to place them in a closed, heated place, thereby eliminating the germs.

Following a trip of Reb Eliyahu Simpson to Pittsburgh, where he met Mr. Unger, the Rebbe penned him a letter, 25 Iyar 5711, with an application in avodas Hashem from his patent.

“A parallel to your business exists in our lives,” the Rebbe wrote. “When the yetzer tov comes to a person at the age of thirteen, the person has already been ‘used’ by the yetzer hara, which had come to him thirteen years prior. Indeed, the yetzer hara asserts that it has an established claim (chazaka) over the person’s body and his thoughts, words, and deeds…

“The solution is to seclude oneself for a specific period of time from the external environment, closing oneself off in the ‘four amos’ of a shul, a yeshiva, or a house of study, and warming oneself there more than usual with the love of Hashem, the love of Torah, and the love of one’s fellow Yid.

“In this manner,” the Rebbe concluded, “one’s ‘sack’ becomes freed of the bacteria of the yetzer hara. Afterwards, what is placed inside will be healthy and useful.”

From The Weekly Farbrengen by Merkaz Anash

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