Rav Avigdor Miller on Moods
What do you say about a person who says that he gets “moody” sometimes? What’s the meaning of being “moody”?
Moody actually means yielding to the yetzer hara. A man must at all times be under control. He has to know he is an eved Hashem and he must be in control. Imagine a man sitting at the steering wheel of a car and he’s driving on the thruway, a big, busy road, and he decides to go into a mood.
Now, life is a highway. And the highway is more dangerous than any road that you’ll ever travel with a car. We cannot afford to yield to moods. At all times a person must know first and foremost that he is standing lifnei Hashem and he’s responsible for his behavior – and included in your behavior is your moods. You are responsible to Hashem. You cannot yield to atzvus, to sadness. No; sadness is a yetzer hara. You can’t yield to atzlus, to laziness; that’s also a yetzer hara.
A man should always be in a good mood. That’s also a form of bechira, of choosing the right path in life. You should always be in a cheerful mood. Be a samei’ach b’chelko – a man should be happy with Hashem at all times. אשרי העם שהשם אלקיו – that’s the greatest happiness, that Hashem is our G-d. We have many thoughts to think, and each one of them is a guided thought – it’s up to you to guide your thoughts. There’s no such thing as getting into moods. You’re sitting at a steering wheel and you have in front of you all kinds of dials: if you want to think about something, dial ahavas Hashem. Or dial samei’ach b’chelko. Then dial morah shamayim. There are all kinds of things, all kinds of thoughts you can dial up.
But never take your eyes off the road and the steering wheel. Becoming moody just means to yield to the yetzer hara. And moody people are the victims of every kind of temptation and sin. It’s only when people become sad and morose or dejected, that’s how they become customers for the yetzer hara.