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The Dream

posted Jul 27, 2008, 9:47 AM by Yaakov .Yosef   [ updated Jul 27, 2008, 10:00 AM ]

Josef Weisman is an accomplished philosopher who has received the highest degrees from UCLA. As a younger man, he wasn't religious, but very spiritual. And, during his quest for spirituality, he spent many years in India learning with monks, gurus and even joining cult-like groups. Now, Josef is a teacher of history and theology at YULA. Last year, while the Rebbe was visiting the school, Josef was extremely interested in meeting with the Tzadik, righteous man, if for nothing more than the experience itself.

When he walked into the room to meet with the Rebbe, the first thing the Rebbe asked him was, “Where do your children go to school?”  Stunned, Josef went on to explain that currently his children go to public schools. But, for the last several months he had wanted to move his children into YULA. After all, he explained, there was a clear difference between the kinds of students in public schools and the students in Yeshiva, and the education at YULA was superb. However, his wife was vehemently opposed to the idea of her children attending a religious school. So, for months they argued about it.  “You have no choice,” responded the Rebbe, “Your children must receive a proper Jewish education. It's essential. Go home and tell your wife these exact words: G-d gave her very special children with very unique character traits and personal qualities. They are refined. They will continue to develop into unbelievable people as long as they receive a Jewish education. If they don't, they will lose all their talents and uniqueness. They will lose their future.”

Knowing what his wife's reaction would be, Josef went home nervous and unsure. But, the Rebbe told him to do something and who was he not to do it? After dinner, he sat his wife down and said everything that the Rebbe told him. She had only one word to say afterwards: fine.  Josef was shocked, absolutely shocked. So shocked that he blurted out, “What! For months you were against this idea and now you just say 'fine'?”


“Let me explain,” answered his wife.  “Last night I had a dream. There was a man in my dream with a long beard. He looked so holy. And, this man in my dream said the very same thing that you just did.”

A year later when the Rebbe returned to YULA, Josef was a different looking man: he had long peyos and a beautiful beard. His two children were both in YULA and were very distinguished in their personalities. Now, instead of history and theology, Josef teaches Tanach and the differences between the philosophy of mussar and chassidus.