AS: It’s been six years since Living Emunah was first published — and since then you’ve sold more than 200,000 copies in the series, in four languages. Amazing! Why do you think the Living Emunah books have been so spectacularly popular?
RDA: Emunah speaks to everyone and helps in all areas of life. When a person knows how much control Hashem really has, it allows him to deal with people in a more loving manner, knowing they are all Hashem’s messengers. When a person knows how much Hashem appreciates our sacrifices, he becomes more excited to make them. Knowing the full extent of Hashem’s hashgachah gives a person a sense of calm; he knows how much Hashem loves him and that He only want his benefit. People need emunah, and when they see its vast benefits, they want it as well.
AS: In your newest book, Living Emunah on the Parashah, you combine brief and beautiful insights on the parashah and find the treasures of emunah to be found within. Of course, you’ve got so many true-life stories to illustrate your points. And you cover the entire Chumash! What went into making such a monumental project?
RDA: It was similar to the effort put into the other books; it’s only that for this one the backdrop of the lesson was not any idea that just came to mind. It had to fit into a specific idea from the weekly parashah.
AS: What is the unbreakable connection between Chumash and emunah?
RDA: All of our emunah stems from our great ancestors, like the Avos and Moshe Rabbeinu. They taught us through their actions how Hashem expects us to respond to challenges. They taught us how to use prayer effectively and how to connect to Hashem.
AS: In these very challenging times, do you have some words of chizuk for our readers?
RDA: Hashem is calling for us to improve ourselves. We have already been humbled in so many ways. We must utilize these feelings toward spiritual growth. As well, the daily study of emunah for even just five minutes will help immensely and enable us to persevere through these difficult days.