from the book Israel Saba, pg. 284
(Rabbi Israel speaks to someone on the topic of educating children and family matters.)
We need to make strong hats for children so that they will not fall off, attractive and strong, yes.
We need to educate children from infancy. Children are still not immersed so much in desires, they are open to receiving. A child has a mind, and he is not given attention. We need to supervise and to guard. Children – one needs to speak to them when they are old enough to speak, and to instill in our children the ways of repentance, of modesty. When a child begins to speak, we need to speak with him, to help him understand that this world is only for the sake of the World to Come, to learn Torah and to fulfill the Torah and Mitzvot.
We need to pay attention to the education of our boys and girls from the earliest age, according to their minds, according to their capacity, and to learn with them the ways of keeping the Torah, the ways of modesty. Children like these need to be taught, so that they will understand. To teach the small child to be habituated to wash himself and ritually wash his hands, and the more he grows and matures, he will be able to understand more how to learn, how to live, yes.
When a child grows, his mind and all his human powers develop; he grows from month to month, from year to year, and becomes older and older. When he reaches some intelligence, some wisdom, one can learn with him. A child of seven or eight years, ten years, one can speak to him; one needs to speak to him and help him understand that the main point if life is the Torah, and the most important thing is to repent and fulfill the Torah and Mitzvot.
We need to accustom the children to say Tehillim (psalms) and Likutei Tefillot, and to understand and know what is a Jew. They should learn and know the Torah and the Tanach, and fulfill the Torah and believe in the Torah. We, the people of Israel, are a holy people, and we need to teach our children the ways of the Truth, the ways of modesty, the ways of holiness, and they should know the Torah, the Tanach and the Gemarrah and the Midrash.
To train the children to sleep on time, to wake up on time, to go to synagogue to hear, even at the age where he still does not understand; to hear the prayer of Jews praying to God.
We need to teach them, then they will be children of value and such great descendants will come from them…holy generations of Torah and faith. They should learn and know and become accustomed to learning and understanding, it will be an established thing. We need to have self-sacrifice, to use only God-fearing educators for our children, to see and hear good from them.
We are Jews, we and the Torah are one. We need to instill the Torah in ourselves and in our children, every anecdote and every story of the Torah is all our vitality. Without the vitality and the truth and faith and knowledge, we are nothing, God forbid.
Our speech…words of Torah and learning, that is all our life. We are human beings, the holy People of Israel, we can guide our children in the ways of the Torah and of modesty, that they will have strength to learn Torah and fulfill it.
Oy vey, our children learn with children who don’t know a thing about the Torah, about faith, they don’t know anything. They do not have the manners of the Torah and faith and truth, so they are nothing, the children are nothing. Also if, God forbid, we go in the ways of non-Jewish education, then we become like animals, like birds, like chickens, we have nothing, it kills us – the faith and the light. Without faith, without Torah, there is no vitality, nothing. It is because of this that we were cast away and distanced from the truth and from faith. The education of those Jews is like that of the non-Jews; because of this we are suffering…
Our children should know that we are a unique nation in the world, that we believe in the Torah and the Mitzvot. We and our descendants need to be educated in the way of the Torah, with holiness and fear of Heaven, not just in a common way. This is all our vitality, our life, our heart, yes. Oy…
We are the people of the covenant, the children of Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov, from whom we inherited the way of truth and the Torah and the Mitzvot. We are a unique nation in the world, the Holy People and the holy Land of Israel. We can receive holiness from every word of the Holy Torah. We are the people of the Torah, we have such a Torah, such awesome things that God does with us in every generation, and chose us from all the peoples and gave us the Torah, “Blessed are You, Lord, who gives the Torah!”
We need to guard the ways of the Torah and faith, then we will receive great vitality from the Torah, from every story of the Torah. Every word of the holy Torah is all our vitality, without it we have nothing, we have no wisdom and no faith and no strength, nothing. We need to give ourselves over to instilling the great light of faith in our hearts, of the holy Torah, the Tanach and the Talmud, all the books of the true tzadikkim, our holy forefathers. We have Torah, we have righteous and holy Rabbis, they already interpreted all the Torah for us. In their strength we can draw close to God. The wisdom of the Torah is only in order to fulfill and to understand the Torah, to fulfill the Torah!
In every generation, they gave their souls for the Torah and Mitzvot, for the keeping of the Shabbat, for all the Mitzvot; that is all our vitality, all of our life. We need to have mercy on ourselves, ourselves and on our descendants, we need to understand and to instill in our hearts the will to fulfill the ways ways of the Torah, to give our souls for this; also our children will know the ways of the Torah and faith and truth. Only we are a holy people! We are the people of God, people of the Torah. We need to accustom ourselves to learning Torah and fulfilling the Torah and the Mitzvot. (The Torah) guides us and concerning the mitzvoth od Tzitzit and Tefillin and Shabbat. We need such faith, such holiness, such a Torah… which is all our vitality and all our life! We need only to rejoice always in our holy Torah, and to learn Torah with self-sacrifice, and to inspire our wives and children and descendants only with holiness.
We need to learn, not to waste even one moment; to learn, only to learn all the time, and to train ourselves to know the Torah and faith and truth. Without this – there is no life, nothing. We would be like animals, like beasts. Oy vey, oy vey…
We need to train ourselves and our descendants in the ways of the Torah and faith and truth. Education – we need to educate our children in the ways of the Torah, that they will learn and know, then they will be rectified. Only we are the People of Israel, the People of the Torah. The Messiah will come and we will know what we are, who we are. Oy vey…
Our Torah gives us life and light and strength and faith and truth, and teaches us the ways of faith and the ways of God and Torah. Every word is all our vitality. There are such lights in the Torah that can fill us with the light of Torah and Judaism. It teaches us what to eat and how to eat and everything. In the Torah are mentioned unclean birds – but it is forbidden for us to eat them. Everything can be found in the Torah – the way of truth, how to do everything and how to live.
The main thing is to live with faith, with the Torah; we as well as our descendants, and our homes. Also for the woman, there is what to learn and how to live. The woman needs to learn and to know and to believe in God and in the Torah, without this – nothing. All our life depends on the woman! She needs to understand how to live with her husband and how to educate the children and how to mold them; he commanded that it should all be entirely holy. They should learn and know what we have, the holy Torah, faith and truth. Only we are the people of Israel, a unique people in the world, one people, a holy people. God gave us the Torah and the Mitzvot, and all the Torah is the main point of our lives. We need also the teachings and the language of Yiddish, to speak in Yiddish, yes. We need to sanctify our speech, everything we say should have holiness and the holiness of the Torah of the Torah and God and truth and faith. Also, when one speaks in a foreign tongue, it impurifies the man. It changes, impurifies the man. Our speech, God should have mercy, all that it causes. Oy vey, Master of the World…
The thinkers that left the ways of the Torah ruin our children. It creates generations of destructive thieves, it destroys the world, yes. The parents do not know, and we have not merited to educate our children in the ways of the Torah. The parents strayed, but the truth will be revealed and all will know that the main point of our life is faith and truth and the holy Torah, every word.
The time will come when there will be a new existence, not like it is now. The time will come when we will know the holiness of our life, the holiness of our Torah, it will be a redemption, the children will be good and holy. The time will come when everyone will know the Torah and believe in the Torah and keep the Torah. It will be a different world! Now the world is a ruin; there is no light, no truth. All the world is in darkness and not knowing anything. Oy vey, what there is in the world, oy vey…
I bless all the children that God should help them to be strengthened in fear of Heaven and Torah. God should help all of Israel, all who need. May God arouse mercy and have mercy on them and help them with all the salvations, quickly, and give us true knowledge, to know how to come close to God in truth. The main point is faith, to believe in God and the Torah and the Mitzvot. We are the people of God, the people of the Torah. We need to be strong in faith in God and in the Torah. To be strong, not to fall, God forbid. May God have mercy on us, end everyone should ask for mercy every day, that we should merit to guard the Torah and our children, and to learn and fulfill the Torah. That is the main point! To think about this, not to forget what we are saying. This is all our vitality, all our hearts, everything!