When Rabbi Shimon Cured the Millionaire



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    הצלה 1290

    When Rabbi Shimon Cured the Millionaire

    Every Lag B’Omer, a massive bonfire is lit by the kever of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. Each year, the great zechus of being the one to light the fire is sold for a lot of money. One year, a famous millionaire wanted the zechus of lighting the grand bonfire. He wanted it so much that he paid a massive amount of money for it—ten thousand “Zehuvim”! • By Baila Brikman, Beis Moshiach Magazine • Full Story

    By Baila Brikman, Beis Moshiach

    Every Lag B’Omer, a massive bonfire is lit by the kever of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai. Each year, the great zechus of being the one to light the fire is sold for a lot of money. 

    One year, a famous millionaire wanted the zechus of lighting the grand bonfire. He wanted it so much that he paid a massive amount of money for it—ten thousand “Zehuvim”!

    On Lag B’Omer night, he took the flaming torch in his hand and stretched out his arm to light the bonfire. The first twigs began to crackle and sizzle, and then the entire bonfire burst into flames! It lit up the night so brightly that it felt like it was the middle of the day.

    Sparks flew into the air and smoke drifted high above the bonfire. All at once, everyone began to dance. They sang and clapped their hands, twirling around the bonfire faster and faster. 

    The millionaire found himself among the dancers, but they were going too fast for him. He tried to dance along, but there were so many people on the rooftop of the kever! He just kept getting pushed around. He was shoved this way and that way, until he felt himself falling…

    And falling…

    And falling…

    Kerplunk!

    With a sickening crash, he fell all the way down from the roof and onto the hard stone floor of the area below. His legs were bent in a strange way, and he felt very dizzy. 

    “Somebody help me,” he moaned. “I can’t move my legs!”

    His weak cries were no match for the loud singing on the rooftop. No one was able to hear him. He tried screaming for help as loud as he could, but it was no use. He just lay on the ground, his legs broken and his spirit crushed. 

    He had just been on top of the world, lighting the grand bonfire to celebrate Rabbi Shimon, and now he was all alone. He lay on the ground in terrible pain, calling out for help and hoping that someone would hear him. 

    Suddenly, someone walked by and heard him. “Reb Yid, what happened to you?” he asked, rushing over to help.

    The millionaire looked up. “Baruch Hashem, you found me!” he cried. “Please call a doctor. I fell from the roof and I’m in so much pain.”

    The man carried him inside a nearby room and went to call a doctor. The only problem was that in those days, there were no doctors in Meron! He was left with no choice. He climbed onto a horse and wagon and started to travel to a nearby village. 

    The trip to the village took many hours. When he finally arrived, he found a doctor who agreed to come to Meron and help the poor millionaire who had fallen off the roof. They started the long trip back to Meron, and when they finally came, it was very late at night.

    The man led the doctor to the room. “Here, doctor. You’ll find him right on this—hey! The bed is empty! Where could he have gone!?”

    The doctor looked at him suspiciously. “Is this some sort of joke?” he said. “You made me travel all the way to Meron to help a person who doesn’t exist? How could he have left this room if his legs were broken?”

    “I—I’m just as confused as you are, honored doctor,” the man said in total shock. “Please, give me a few moments. I will go look for him.”

    “I’ll come with you,” the doctor said gruffly. “I don’t want you to pull any more tricks on me!”

    The two men climbed onto the roof where everyone was still dancing and began to search through the crowd. “I see him!” the man cried, tugging at the doctor’s sleeve. “Over there, dancing even faster than everyone else!”

    “I don’t understand it,” the doctor muttered. “Go and get him. How is he dancing like that if he fell from the roof and broke his legs?”

    The man pushed through the crowd and brought the millionaire over to the doctor. Smiling from ear to ear, he began to tell them his story:

    “I was laying on the floor in so much pain,” he said. “My legs were all twisted and I wasn’t able to move. But then, the heilige tzaddik Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai appeared to me! He told me: ‘Because you lit the bonfire, all of the simcha and celebrations for my Yom Hilula are in your zechus! Therefore, I must make you happy and heal you.’

    “He then placed his holy hands on my broken legs, and I was totally cured!” the millionaire said happily. “I jumped to my feet and ran to join the crowd, dancing as hard as I could to bring honor to Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai!”

    The man and the doctor stared at the millionaire, their mouths hanging wide open in shock. The millionaire smiled. “Now do you understand the greatness of this holy tzaddik?” he asked. “Let’s go dance!” 

    With that, he pulled the two into the circle, dancing and twirling with them around the bonfire. They sang and danced with all their might, celebrating the miracle that they witnessed and the power of Lag B’Omer.

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