|Art Baruch Nachshon|
by Rabbi David Hanania Pinto
In this week's parashah Vayeitzei we find a hint and wonderful inspiration about answering Amen after a blessing:
The influential Rabbi Eliyahu Roth once told his audience:
It is important to know that answering Amen properly has a positive effect on us both physically and spiritually, and it prevents sickness from visiting our homes. Each person must contemplate, what is more important to him; is it to go visit doctors, or to answer Amen loudly, which is a wonderful segulah to be saved from all these and bring salvation and success in all matters.
It is written in the sefer “Meorot Hadaf Hayomi” [Bechorot 43a] in the name of Rabbi Yitzchak Zilberstein:
As we know, one hundred blessings were instituted in order to save people from the curses that are written in the parashah of Reproof. If so, we can conclude that a reason for answering 90 times Amen each day is in order to be saved from the 90 bodily blemishes that disqualify a Kohen, as listed by the Rambam [Hilchot Biyat Mikdash 8:1]. Indeed, proof supporting this is found by the fact that the word “המום – blemish” has the same numerical value as אמן – Amen!
Causing Abundance to Shower from Heaven
Rabbanit Meislish, shetichye, who inspires large audiences about this important matter, relates:
My father, the Admor of Bobov, ztk”l, who lived in New York, used to celebrate Purim also on the fifteenth of Adar, in order to rejoice with the Jews living in Eretz Yisrael.
One year, amidst the celebration, my father was offered “brandy” and he recited the blessing “Shehakol nihiye bidvaro.” Afterward he began to recite the blessing “Borei nefashot,” while the Mashgiach of the yeshiva stood by his side. The Mashgiach was married for eight years but was still childless, and he sensed that this was an opportune time of grace. He therefore answered Amen with great concentration after the blessing of “Borei nefashot,” contemplating the meaning of the words “Borei nefashot.” This was his heart’s desire, to merit nefashot – souls.
At the same time, one of the gabaim was also present who had only one son and he wished to have more children but had not met with success. He turned to my father and said: “I too yearn to have a child.” My father closed his eyes and replied: “Borei nefashot – creates souls” is in the plural form.” The Gabai and the Mashgiach shouted together: Amen! Exactly ten months passed since that day and the wife of the Mashgiach, after having been married for nine years, gave birth to a girl, whereas the wife of the Gabai gave birth to a boy. Twenty years later the two children got married and built a home together.
And for her it is not at all surprising. This is stated explicitly: “פתחו שערים ויבוא גוי צדיק שומר אמנים – Open the gates, so the righteous nation, keeper of the faith [lit. Amenim], may enter,” since the power of answering Amen opens the gates of Gan Eden and showers down upon us abundance from the Supreme Source. It is amazing how one small word “Amen” can bring about supernatural salvation.