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AN ADVENTURE IN BERDICHEV

בס”ד

Winning with good thoughts

In the enchanting town of Berdichev lived an exceptionally wise man who always warned about the mischievous antics of the Wicked Thoughts. He told an exciting tale of two strong men, Arik and Boris, challenging each other in the grand, beautiful forest where the trees whispered with mystery, and the animals watched curiously.

Arik and Boris wrestled vigorously, and the branches on the ground cracked, the leaves on the trees trembled; the forest breathed along with their strength. Despite their efforts, they couldn’t seem to win against each other. One day, Arik devised a clever plan. Instead of hitting Boris hard, he wanted to confuse his thoughts. ‘If I tease him with mean words, I can weaken his inner strength,’ whispered Arik, and all the animals looked surprised. Mean words and teasing? That didn’t sound good.

Arik started with his wicked tricks, speaking words that hung in the air like dark clouds, and Boris became increasingly confused. He felt that the mean words were making his fight against Arik more challenging. But Boris, clever as he was, didn’t let himself be easily defeated. He remembered the wise man’s words and focused on positive thoughts, kind words, and beautiful things.

The battle between Arik and Boris intensified, and the forest echoed with the sounds of their struggle. Eventually, by holding onto his good thoughts, Boris defeated the Wicked Thoughts of Arik.

The wise man smiled when he saw Boris had won. He said, ‘See, in the face of wicked tricks, good thoughts always triumph!’ And so, Arik and Boris became legendary figures in Berdichev, where the power of positive thoughts and kind words always prevailed. And they lived happily ever after, vigilant against the tricks of the Wicked Thoughts.

What can we learn from the story:

1. Stay positive, even in challenging situations. As Boris learned, holding onto good thoughts can help you win.

2. Be alert to negative influences. Just like Boris was vigilant against the Wicked Thoughts, we must consciously choose kindness and positivity to lead a happier life.

By Angelique Sijbolts
Reading English by Kimberley

Inspired by a tale from Martin Buber’s book, “Chassidic Tales.”

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