May 20, 2024
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A Dream Becomes a Mission

Talia Rapps, LMSW, of Cedarhurst, is on a mission to change the world. The founder and president of The Spiritual Escape (TSE) aims to celebrate diversity, unity and love, as a kiddush Hashem.

The idea of how to crystalize her concept of gathering the Jewish people came to the health care professional in a dream in November 2019. Her two grandfathers of blessed memory, Rabbi Eliyahu Fishman, an Auschwitz survivor who shared time in New Jersey and Israel, and Eliyahu Chai Magzimoff, who lived in Jerusalem, both spoke of her need to gather the Jewish women for Mashiach. They cautioned that people would be wearing masks. With prophetic insight, they told her to unmask the truth. Before the coronavirus pandemic, women in the dream were taking off their face masks.

In response, before the chaos in the world in March 2020, The Total Revolution Conference initiated by Rapps in December 2019 “with an emergent sense of urgency,” she says, “was soon rebranded as TSE for a much-needed spiritual bombshell,” expanded to welcome “all of humanity created in God’s image.”

An event planned for March 22, 2020 was canceled, “when the world went upside down,” and as in the dream, people started wearing masks.

Giving the example of an explosion of butterflies, she prayed on Purim in March 2019: “Hashem, if you want me to do this, to gather the Jewish people, then fill the skies with butterflies.” Rapps sees butterflies as a symbol of faith and hope. They are a personal sign she has with God. That evening she looked out at the New York sky and saw no butterflies.

In November 2019, Rapps received a call from her friend in Israel. “Tal, I thought of you. I just looked out and saw a butterfly.” That was when Rapps brought up the unanswered prayer she said nine months earlier for Hashem to fill the skies with butterflies. With that, her friend responded astonishingly, “Tal, on Purim 2019, the skies throughout Israel were filled with butterflies.” One item, found on the internet titled “Billions of butterflies visit Israel on their way to Cyprus,” confirms the story.

Based on such signs, Rapps, who says she never thought to look at other skies, believes that “the message came from Hashem. Hashem is with me. He believes in what I’m doing, and you should, too.”

At TSE’s inception, Rapps began to question working daily, dressed in a hazmat suit. The vivacious wife and mother of three explained that too often she found herself in a room at the nursing home and rehab center where patients, not allowed visitors, were saying goodbyes to their family members. After the deaths of multiple elderly patients, she thought, “The only way to escape the darkness is with light.”

Rapps, well-known in health care, left her position in November 2020 because she needed to give herself hope by devoting her energies to TSE. In the last seven of her 15 years in the health field, she was director of patient care at a nursing home and rehabilitation center. Much of her staff was out due to COVID, which caused her job duties to morph into working at admissions, marketing and patient care. “When this is over, as a spiritual escape, I’m going to throw the biggest party of the century for health care workers,” she decided. With the help of corporate sponsors, she raised $30,000 in three weeks. On July 8, 2021 in Southampton, she threw the party she planned to celebrate the female health care workers of New York and Long Island.

In 2020 during the pandemic, many synagogues and churches shut. Rapps saw a need to create a new spirituality. In came TSE to offer education, lectures and celebration. Rapps envisions it as trying to create “a moving movement” she relates to the movement of the Mishkan.

In her spare time, Rapps runs a commissioned business at a health care recruitment firm. She started the business as a sideline. Rapps feels her gift is recruitment, where she finds amazing people and brings them together using her gift to serve.

Rapps, a self-described entrepreneur, said that the TSE team of 30 members (and growing) came to the organization through word of mouth. She gives each member on her volunteer team a unique role, with a title to match.

The long-range goals Rapps speaks of in her role as president of TSE involve continuing with tours to change the world by aggressively bringing unity and love. With a deep relationship with God and a deep appreciation for people, Rapps sees herself turning darkness into light. She says she “plans to change the world and will not stop until this whole planet is vibrating love and light.”

The entire TSE team aspires to create an environment celebrating people of diversity rather than making everyone the same. Rapps is planning to bring as many people as she can to the cause. The event spaces are selected when people reach out requesting TSE-run events in their area.

With plans to go global, the TSE team has three upcoming events scheduled in Miami, Los Angeles and Tel Aviv. “Gorgeous, beautiful people with a beautiful soul bring beautiful vibes wherever they go,” Rapps said.

The advertised TSE Miami Weekend Getaway, November 19-20, promoted as “a weekend of connection and inspiration,” is set to be a dynamic event. Rapps sees it as “a chance to network, connect and elevate,” adding, “When you are around top people you grow by osmosis.” There is an on-site kosher caterer, and the event planners were offered an unbeatable discount with five-star accommodations.

TSE events are open to anybody to break bread and have a good time. For more information, to join her growing team, or to contribute to TSE, call Rapps at 516-330-5153. Use Zelle to make donations. Visit #thespiritualescape on Instagram.

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