The Imagination

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of the Holy Beggars of the House of Love and Prayer

San Francisco, Iyar 5732

Transcribed by Steven Maimes
Reb Shlomo speaking

...The truth Is you cannot be a prophet without the utmost,
unbelievable, most infinite imagination. A person who has no
imagination can never be a prophet. You can be the holiest man in
the world, but if you don’t have any imagination - doesn’t work.
What is really a holy soul? Someone who has great imagination.
Take Reb Nachman - just to make up the story of the seven beggars
takes the holiest imagination in the world. Or the story of the
master of prayer. Way out imagination, right? What is the
difference, I’m not knocking it, between the great holy rabbis who
only knew gemora and those who were the great kabbalists?
Imagination. The more your imagination works, the closer you
feel to the secrets of the world. The real truth Is that to learn
gemora properly you also need imagination the most way out
imagination you can put in every word of the gemora. But this is
already if you are on the level, because then it becomes also a secret.
The holiness of the soul is really the holiness of imagination. What
is a person who Is really tied onto this world imagining? What is the
whole thing of believing in the Messiah or not believing in the
Messiah? It is a question of imagination, right? A person says,
listen, I see the world. People believe in money, people believe in
war. You will tell me that suddenly some day the Messiah is coming
and on a donkey! - he’ll blow a little trumpet, the whole world will
come running, and everybody will say, ich ves, “Shalom Alehem!”
It’s crazy! It’s a question of imagination. If you have good
imagination why not? That’s all there is to it. Why not?

...Why are we dreaming at night? Because at night the only thing
which we have is imagination. And the greatest vessel for dreams
is imagination. Reb Nachman says the most way out thing—the
strongest imagination that you need is to believe that G-d created
heaven and earth, and to believe that you really need imagination.
You look at the world and you see a solid world, you need the
strongest and holiness imagination that G-d created heaven and
earth. Reb Nachman says that all the holy tzaddikim, all the holy
people, they had this strong imagination. And if you have this
tremendous imagination not only can you receive dreams but you
can interpret dreams and even uplift someone else’s dreams.

by  Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach
Posted in: Personal Growth