5747 - Yud-Tet Kislev                     Spanish French Audio  Video

Hebrew Text:

Page 146  


A portion of the Yud-Tes Kislev Sicha 5749
Concerning the carefulness in protecting a woman in labor (and also) in the hospital


1. There is a well known and ancient Jewish custom ("The customs of Jews are Torah!") to hang , in the home of a woman giving  birth,  notes (or amulets) with holy names and Torah passages "shir hamaalot" (psalms) etc  ( each according to their custom) as a Segulah to protect etc. the mother and baby, both for the actual birth to ensure that it is proper and easy  and also for the period following birth, (may they be) for many good days and years.

Additionally, it is an important aspect for the baby - to be surrounded by holy objects immediately when he is born, as it is known that the things that even a one day old child, sees and hears, have an effect even when he is older ( this has even been discovered in recent years in psychology) . Therefore, when one surrounds him/her with holy objects etc, this adds blessings and success that the baby should grow up to attain “Torah, Chuppah and Good Deeds “
Concerning this, one needs to note and point out something that requires correction, in the customs of late:
2.  In the previous generations, women would give birth in their homes ( with the aid of a “midwife”), Thus everyone was accustomed and particular at the time of birth (starting  with the preparations to giving birth) to keep this custom.
However, in our time, due to health concerns, women are giving birth specifically in hospitals, and therefore, are not mindful to be particular about this custom, until the mother and child return from the hospital to their home (which could be many days after birth)
This comes at a time when the custom is more significant when it is closer to the actual birth ( as is obvious), for then they are in the hospital.
Therefore, it is a Mitzvah, to awaken in every place that even when the mother and child are in the hospital, they should endeavor to hang in the birth room and in the nursery ( or on the crib etc) a "Shir haMaalot" etc, according to all the specific customs therein,  just as they do so in the home. And more so, when they are in the hospital, for then it is more significant, as discussed above.
And in each place – one should consult a Rabbi if one needs to place the note in a double wrapped container etc
3. Concerning permission from the hospital administrators - with little effort, they will certainly get permission without objection - and, on the contrary, they will be happy to oblige.
Also, according to medical science – the success of a medical procedure is connected ( in a large measure) to the psychological condition of the patient. Therefore they try to relieve worry and doubt etc in order to cause calmness and optimism as much as possible.
And certainly regarding birth, where the spiritual condition, is critical ( both to the mother and child) , it is imperative to remove fear etc  and to ensure complete  serenity.
Therefore when one explains to the doctor ,to the administrative staff etc, that the "Shir haMaalot" note etc . that hangs in the birth room , brings calmness and improves the spirit of the mother (For she truly believes in the Segulah of protection) -  there will certainly not be any opposition from them - and,  on the contrary, they will be happy to give permission to hang these notes, in order to fulfill the desires of the mother, that she be at ease and calm.
And not only that, but this also helps the physician:
A truly good doctor – is concerned for the condition of the patient. Therefore when there is a downturn, weakness etc in the condition, it affects the doctor’s spirit and causes him to lose calm etc. Therefore, it also befits the doctor that his patient should be in a complete calm state, for then he (the doctor) is also calmer and accordingly is better able to perform his procedures with more strength and effectiveness.
Thus, in our case, when one hangs "Shir haMaalot" note which brings calmness to the spirit of the mother, the doctor is also calmer(whether or not he is Jewish, whether or not he is religious etc.)  and therefore, his procedures are more successful.
4. To conclude practically:
It is proper and fitting to publicize everywhere where Jews live, the custom  to hang a "Shir hamaalot"  in the birthing room and nursery, and the protection and Segulah it has ( as above)
And to stress, that one should endeavor to keep this custom immediately when the mother enters the hospital, when she is preparing to give birth, and certainly at the time of delivery, and also after the birth.
This includes – endeavoring to get permission from the hospital administrators – with proper explanation ( as above) and with heartfelt words that will certainly produce results.
And one should add, that all this is applicable not just in a large city where there are a lot of Jews and accordingly there are a lot of Jewish expectant mothers, but even in a small town and in a hospital with just one Jewish expectant mother, even there it is necessary and possible to accomplish this ( specifically since most of the hospitals there are many Jewish expectant mothers)
5. And may it be G-d’s will that through increasing sons and daughters in the Jewish People – both in quantity and in quality, with total protection etc that we hasten the coming of Ben Dovid (Moshiach) as Chazal state:  that "Moshiach Ben David won't arrive until all the souls are depleted from the body (Yevamos  62b) , “The heavenly treasure house called Guf (body)” (where every unborn soul awaits its descent into a newborn body. The Gemara there teaches: "The son of David (i.e., Mashiach) will not come before Guf will have been emptied of all its souls.")

And as is hinted in this week’s Parsha, the birth of Peretz, which hints to “Paratzta” (breaking forth”) with an abundance of actual, sons and daughters and from whose progeny comes King Moshiach  (These are the generations of Peretz  ..And Jesse gave birth to David”, “The breaker has gone up before them”.
So should it be with us – that we should really soon go to greet our righteous Moshiach, with our young and (afterward) with our old etc., with our sons and daughters in a manner that “they recognized Him first”, “as with the wonders of leaving Egypt” (and to the contrary , even more so in a manner of “I will show you wonders ) with the future redemption speedily and in our days mamash!



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