When Rivka Goldstein discovered she was to become a mother for the first time at age 40, she began writing vigorously a letter to her unborn child: “I wanted to leave my son a Life Manual – a kind of reference book to guide him from the beginning of his life till the end and everything in between from dating, marriage, parenting, and even, G-d forbid, tragedy,” says Mrs. Goldstein. It wasn’t long before her intended letter turned into a manuscript for a book.
A graduate of Harvard, Rivka Goldstein turned to the venerated Rabbi Manis Friedman to complete her manuscript. “I wanted to incorporate age-old Torah wisdom that’s true and time-tested in modern vernacular and that’s where Rabbi Friedman’s brilliance lies. There’s no need to reinvent the wheels.“
A native of Singapore, Rivka Goldstein was born into a Buddhist family that practiced Taoism and ancestral worship while attending Christian schools among Muslims, Hindus and Euroasians in a multi-cultural and religious state. “My own lifelong search for meaning and purpose brought me to Harvard but it was not until Judaism that I found my true home. Today, I live a proud, happy and fulfilling Orthodox Jewish (Asian) life! Hahaha! Boruch Hashem!” she said.
Mrs. Goldstein is a Life and Relationship Coach, “I often remind my clients and myself that if we, the women of this generation, have been endowed with the honor and the responsibility of leading an entire nation out of golus it must mean then that we are capable! Hashem does not give us a task without the tools! And so when we’re challenged, we can be sure that we can and we will triumph! And where are we most challenged? Where it hurts the most – in our marriage and children. This is where the dark side tries the hardest to get us. This is where our salvation lies. So we must never give up. Not now when we are so close to our redemption. Both personal and collective.”
A good tool, she said, is to fake it till you make it – we don’t become happy when things are good. Things become good when we are happy. “Being happy or light is hard for me. I am by nature a little heavy and down probably due to a tumultuous and difficult upbringing that was very confusing. So I have to make a daily effort to pick myself up and to be joyful. My secret is Chassidus.” she confessed.
Mrs. Goldstein also teaches at the Chaya Aydel Seminary in Florida where she lives. “I used to tell Hashem that He made a mistake by giving me one child when I have the capacity for 20. Today, I say todah Hashem for these precious girls I call my students. And they come in a pack of 20 every year!” They all address her as “Doda Rivka” or aunt Rivka. “That’s my alter-ego,” she laughs. “It’s a constant reminder that my purpose and mission in life is not about me, but what G-d needs from me,” she says.
Rivka Goldstein told us finding Judaism late in life has its pros and cons. “I used to wish that I’d been born frum or at the very least received a frum education from birth. It would have saved me lots of unnecessary bumps in life. Maybe that’s why I cannot get enough Torah; I listen and learn around the clock, especially those from Rabbi Manis Friedman. The result of which is this anthropology you are holding in your hands.”
“We are very excited to offer this new book,” said Rabbi Zalman Friedman, director of Its Good to Know publishing. “When we realized that this book has become not just a guide for Mrs. Goldstein’s son but a generation of seekers looking for real answers to life, we’re empowered to take this next step to bring Chassidus to more hearts and minds.”
With over 156,000 YouTube subscribers as of this article and millions of viewers from across the globe seeking Rabbi Friedman’s wisdom, there’s no better time for this anthology of his teachings. “We recently received a bulk order from a woman celebrating her 40th birthday as a give away and we thought what a special and meaningful gift this book makes for all occasions from bar/bas mitzvah to anniversaries and any holidays like Chanukah. It is an easy read as it is written in a conversational tone with contents relevant to all people and ages, regardless of gender, persuasion or religious background.”
Creating a Life that Matters is now available in hard and soft cover at your local Judaica store.
Bulk orders may be made here: https://itsgoodtoknow.
The book is available on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/