Ravit visited the Western Wall this past winter. She had mixed feelings. Her original plan for visiting the wall was to be a tourist visiting a tourist site. She just happened to be in the area and decided, ‘why not?’ She thought she would go to the wall and perhaps even pray but she didn’t really know how to do that. True, the idea that there was a creator was always in her heart, but that idea was forgotten and pushed away into a corner there. Nonetheless she decided to visit the Western wall for a few minutes.
“I believe the hand of G-d led me there, I have no other explanation,” Ravit tells us with great emotion. “But what happened to me at the wall was unbelievable, literally personal divine providence which affected me in an extraordinary way. I still tremble when I think about it.”
“I suddenly discovered new things”
Ravit tells her story: “As soon as I got to the wall I approached the stones and was trying to figure out what I should do. Should I pray, or perhaps say some Psalms or write a note and tuck it between the stones? I felt so distanced that I immediately regretted coming. In the end I found myself sitting down and observing the other women who came to pray, mumbling words to themselves or doing these strange unfamiliar motions with their hands. I felt totally removed from all that.”
“But between all the women, there was a woman wearing a kerchief on her head that other women would approach and would speak to. I’m curious by nature and I wanted to know what these women were discussing with her but I was embarrassed to ask. At one point I heard her mention ‘family purity’. It sounded interesting, I actually heard of it once but I didn’t know any details so I decided to go ask her about it. She said her name was Yaffa and that she works with the ‘Mitchabrot’ division of Hidaboot. (Mitchabrot means connected to G-d and with one another.) She asked me if I was married and I felt how this question pushed all my buttons.”
Why was that?
It was a very difficult time for me. I had a boyfriend for 4 years already were we had a relationship but there were many ups and downs. I really wanted him to propose to me already but that didn’t happen and it made me mad and put a lot of pressure on me. The question coming from this woman was at such poor timing as far as I was concerned but still, I took a deep breath and told the woman I wasn’t yet married but I hope that will change soon. She told me that family purity is only for married women and told me a bit about it.
In her short conversation with me she shed light on many things I didn’t understand beforehand. As a secular woman from a family that kept no traditions, I knew that anything related to family purity was a collection of antiquated customs from days of yore that had no relevance in our time. But when she spoke she shed a whole new light on the topic I was unaware of. She succeeded in explaining to me a few things about the great holiness of family purity and the great importance it has, not just in terms of Halacha, but also in terms of the deep and intimate relationship that a couple form with each other. It brought home a few things that made me shudder. I thought about my relationship with my boyfriend and how much the Jewish and pure aspect was lacking in our relationship.”
In the end she gave me a booklet with reading material and I found myself reading this booklet in the Western Wall Plaza with wonderment! It went right into my heart and in an outburst of emotion I approached the wall again and I found myself promising the creator that G-d willing, after I get married I will keep family purity properly.”
“When I left the Western Wall, still in the plaza area my phone started ringing, it was my boyfriend. He told me he’s in the Jerusalem area and that we should meet. We met a half an hour later and it was for something very important; he proposed!
“After 4 years of waiting and amazing tension, it happened! I feel that G-d, plain and simple, heard my prayers. I have no other explanation for this. We agreed that I will keep my promise to G-d and keep this mitzvah to the best of our ability, for after what I was through I’m not able to give up on it!”
The Mitchabrot Department is available for consulting and direction in this life changing mitzvah. In Israel call 02-630-1516 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org