Section: Hanhagos Category: Ma'aseh Rav
|Reb Chaim Volozhin and the Secret That Saved The Brisker Rav|
Today is the yahrzeit of Reb Chaim Volozhin, talmid of the Vilna Gaon and architect and father of the modern yeshiva. In Nefesh HaChaim he writes that when faced by danger if you concentrate on the pasuk "Ein Od Milvado"; "there is no other power other than Hashem", then all other forces will be nullified and the danger will disappear.
His descendant the Brisker Rav, in World War II when escaping from German occupied Poland towards Lithuania, made a harrowing three day journey towards the border. While many people on the same route were murdered by the Nazis ym"s his wagon travelled pretty much unharassed encountering many miracles along the way. When he was about to cross the border he was stopped by a soldier who started physically abusing him. After a few minutes another soldier mysteriously appeared and told him to leave the Brisker Rav alone.
The Brisker Rav later told a talmid that during the entire journey he strained himself to concentrate on "Ein Od Milvado". Once he approached the border he relaxed thinking that he was safe and at that point he was harassed by the soldier. Once he started concentrate again the mysterious soldier came to the Rav's aid.