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FEATURED ARTICLES
6
LOCAL BUT GLOBAL
26
MATZA FROM THE
REBBE
Shai Gefen
30
THE REBBE SENDS TWO
TORAHS ON YUD-ALEF
NISSAN
Shneur Zalman Berger
44
THE FATE OF SDEROT
IS THE FATE OF
TOULOUSE
6
30
44
CONTENTS
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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF:
M.M. Hendel
HEBREW EDITOR:
Rabbi S.Y. Chazan
editorH@beismoshiach.org
ENGLISH EDITOR:
Boruch Merkur
editor@beismoshiach.org
WEEKLY COLUMNS
4 D’var Malchus
16 Farbrengen
23 Parsha Thought
28 Thought
38 Moshiach & Geula
44 Crossroads
48 Viewpoint
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‘WHAT DOES PESACH
HAVE TO DO WITH ME?
I AM ALREADY FREE!’
It is possible that someone could argue: But
it’s good for me in exile! Thanks to G-d’s
kindness, I live in America, and I am able to
study Torah and do Mitzvos in peace. So why
should I scream and cry out – he argues – about
going out of exile?! * To our great dismay, it is
not merely hypothetical that someone could
maintain such a misguided line of reasoning…
Translated by Boruch Merkur
1. Now it is Pesach, “the time
of our emancipation,” when the
time of year itself proclaims that
there is a need for freedom. That
is, the true freedom of (Pesach,
whose perfection will be realized
with) the true and complete
redemption (a redemption
that will never be followed by
another exile). (The redemption
of Purim, on the other hand,
was an incomplete redemption.
Indeed, the Jewish people were
well aware of the deficiency,
recognizing that “we are still
subjects of Achashverosh.”)
During this time of year, a Jew
should, therefore, raise his
voice and cry out about the
intolerable length of the exile,
“Ad masai?! When will it end?!”
And he should ask and plead
that the redemption should come
immediately.
It is possible, however, that
one could argue: But it’s good
for me in exile! Thanks to G-d’s
kindness, I live in America,
the Kingdom of Kindness, and
I am able to study Torah and
fulfill Mitzvos in peace. So why
should I scream and cry out – he
reasons – about going out of
exile?!
That is, someone may claim
that he sees himself as a “ger,”
a “sojourner,” who had it good
in Mitzrayim, whose ancestors
were not subjugated in Egypt
of old. So how is he supposed
to relate to anything to do with
Pesach – he argues – anything
to do with the emancipation and
redemption from Egypt, when it
was actually good for him there!
He continues to assert that he
is an “ezrach ha’aretz,” a “native
resident,” in the literal sense –
an American citizen! And when
you tell him that when the time
comes to leave the exile behind,
to pack up his bags, etc., and to
prepare to go up and travel “with
the clouds of heaven,” flying to
Eretz Yisroel – when he hears
these tidings, a groan escapes
his lips. Why should he have to
move from his place of residence
(“moving is difficult for a man”
––see K’subos 28a)? He has
it good here as an American
citizen. They leave him alone to
live as a Jew. In fact, they even
help him!
2. To be more specific, his
concern is not that he is leaving
behind the “sir ha’basar – the
fleshpots” of Egypt, for certainly
he knows that spirituality is the
main thing. Rather, his concern
about picking up and moving is
with regard to spiritual matters.
At present he is engaged
in Torah study, including
disseminating the teachings
of the Torah to others, even
“spreading the wellsprings
outward.” He is even capable of
identifying – “he indicates with
his finger and says ‘this’” – how
this approach has a positive
impact on his Torah study,
what it does for his service of
G-d through prayer, and how
it affects his performance of
Mitzvos b’hiddur, with finesse, as
it ought to be, and so on.
He goes on to argue that in
terms of spirituality, there have
never been such good times
as at present in America, the
Kingdom of Kindness, where
there is no opposition to Jewish
interests. In fact, America assists
him in several respects – and
with a smile! Thus, he is truly
lacking nothing (not creature
comforts nor what is of primary
4 8£l5 HO5MlACM • 11 Nissan 5772
D’VAR MALCHUS
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importance, his spiritual
concerns). So why must he leave
exile?!
First off, leaving exile will
cause him to waste time. He will
have to pack his belongings up
in boxes and move, and later
unpack. True, the journey will
be upon “the clouds of heaven,”
but that too is a bother – to go
up to the clouds and to descend,
among other inconveniences…
And that being the case, why
should he move?
Moreover, and this is the
main thing, when Moshiach
Tzidkeinu comes, all the
Jewish people will come to “an
inhabited land [as opposed to a
wilderness].” (He doesn’t know
whether Moshiach will come as
“a pauper riding a donkey,” were
it to be the case that “they were
not [found to be] worthy,” or if
he will come “with the clouds of
heaven,” should they be found
to be “worthy.” Whatever the
case, certainly they will come to
“an inhabited land.”) And since
this is a certainty, he will have
to be involved with working the
land, further detracting from his
service of G-d!
True, it is said that then, a
Jew’s labor will be done by others
(Brachos 35b), but he will still
have to be bothered to go out
and find a Gentile to help him,
and from time to time oversee his
work to determine if the Gentile
is performing in accordance with
his expectations. Likewise, he
will have to check to see if there
is enough straw for the cattle,
etc.
But in the meanwhile, in
the time of exile, he has neither
fields nor cattle; his livelihood is
provided for him automatically.
He has masses of wealth, thank
G-d, which accrues interest – by
means of a heter iska, and the
like [establishing partnerships
in investments and thereby
avoiding the prohibition of
charging interest to a Jew]. He
is free of worry, because – in
addition to other means of
security – the government itself
backs the bank’s guarantee of
the availability of his funds; the
government is the guarantor!
With this peace of mind, he can
study Torah and fulfill Mitzvos
b’hiddur in tranquility.
Recent innovations further
contribute to his ability to serve
G-d in peace and tranquility.
For example, in former times
it was difficult to obtain t’fillin
mehudaros, t’fillin crafted in
accordance with the highest
possible standards, and it
was necessary to undergo
extensive inconveniences to
obtain livestock that have all the
hiddurim, using the skin of an
unborn calf [for example, to be
used for parchment]. But now,
even if the materials are not
available in his locality, there is
no problem. He has a telephone
and he can call intercontinentally
and enquire where he can
find a cow that bears the
necessary unborn calf, and if
it is still intact, for his desire is
to produce t’fillin in the most
enhanced way possible. (This is
especially relevant now, for on
Chol HaMoed Pesach we read in
the Torah the section that speaks
about t’fillin.)
The same applies to the
Mitzva of Tz’daka, giving
charity. Times are so good
that although he wants to give
tz’daka, there is simply no poor
person to be found!
(This can be classified as a
“plague that is not mentioned
in the Torah.” (If only more and
more “plagues” such as these
would befall us!) In fact, it says
explicitly in the Torah, “The
impoverished shall never cease
from the land.” (Our Sages have
taught that the contradictory
verse, “Indeed, there shall not
be a pauper among you,” only
applies to the Future Era of
Redemption.)
(To be sure, there is a
scenario discussed in Torah
about being free from poverty.
It appears in a law ruled in
Shulchan Aruch regarding the
Mitzva to give gifts to the poor
on Purim. If there should be a
neighborhood or city that has no
poor people, since one would,
therefore, not be able to give
money to a poor person on the
day of Purim itself, one must
give it to the administrator of a
charity, in accordance with all
the details of the law in Shulchan
Aruch.)
Although he cannot find a
poor person in his vicinity, he
still has the opportunity to speak
on the phone and to search


The only explanation for this unfortunate state
of affairs is that since it is the ultimate finale of
history, the denouement of exile, it is more relevant than
ever to scream “ad masai?!” more urgent than ever that
people should beg and plead for the redemption. It is for
this very reason, precisely because it is so incredibly vital
right now, that it is met with such determined resistance
from the forces of evil.
Continued on page 49
Issue 829 • 8£l5 HO5MlACM 5
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LOCAL
BUT GLOBAL
The following is a transcript of a farbrengen led by Rabbi Leibel Groner
on the 19th of Shvat 5772. The get-together was held with a group of
balabatim who came to visit 770 with Rabbi Nechemia Deitsch from Chabad
of Midtown Toronto and Rabbi Mendel Bernstein of Chabad Romano-Maple
Ontario. Replete with stories, lessons, and inspiration, Beis Moshiach brings
its readers this unique talk in honor of Yud-Alef Nissan.
6 8£l5 HO5MlACM • 11 Nissan 5772
FEATURE
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AN HOUR OF RELAXATION
The concern that the Rebbe
had for the Rebbetzin was
moving. When a Chassid reflects
on the life that the Rebbe and
Rebbetzin shared, he cannot help
but be overwhelmed with awe.
Here’s an example of the
great concern that the Rebbe and
the Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka
showed for one another:
They had an understanding
between them that during the
winter, the Rebbe would go
home at around four-thirty or
five o’clock in the afternoon, and
in the summertime, he would
come at seven o’clock. While the
Rebbe knew that he had to be
home by seven o’clock, if he got
tied up due to a certain pressing
matter in the office, and it would
take him another ten or fifteen
minutes before he would come
home, he would have one of the
secretaries call the Rebbetzin.
The secretary would tell her not
to worry about the delay because
the Rebbe is busy with something
in the office, and he’ll be home
as soon as he finishes. For her
part, the Rebbetzin would always
inform the Rebbe about what was
happening.
When the Rebbe held yechidus
(private audiences) at night for
families and other groups, he
would start at eight o’clock in the
evening, and on a normal night
he would continue accepting
people until three or four in the
morning. In some cases, it lasted
until nearly six in the morning.
The Rebbetzin would stay up all
night until the Rebbe came home.
She would always say, “If I won’t
be there, he won’t take a cup of
tea for himself.”
The Rebbetzin had a non-
Jewish cleaning woman who
worked for her for about ten
years, coming three times a
week to take care of the house.
A few days after the Rebbetzin
passed away, while I was sitting
in the Rebbe’s house during the
Shiva, this woman sat down in
the kitchen and started to cry. I
thought that it was quite natural
that after working for someone
for ten years, she would cry
because that person is no longer
around. But when she calmed
down, and before I had a chance
to ask her, she said, “Of course,
I’m crying about the Rebbetzin,
but I’m mainly crying for the
Rebbe.”
When I asked her why, she
proceeded to explain: “You saw
the Rebbe when he was always
under pressure, always working.
The only time that you could see
that the Rebbe was relaxed and
forgot about everything else was
when he sat together with the
Rebbetzin at the dinner table.
Why am I crying? Who is going
to give the Rebbe that hour of
relaxation?”
“I DON’T UNDERSTAND”
One day, I received a phone
call from the Rebbetzin. She
told me that she noticed that
the Rebbe was in terrible pain.
He tried to conceal it from her,
but she could tell that he was
suffering. She asked the Rebbe
to let a doctor come and examine
him to determine the cause of the
pain, but the Rebbe said that it
wasn’t necessary. The Rebbetzin
asked me if I would speak to
the Rebbe, and then perhaps he
would agree to let the doctor
come, which he did. The doctor
went in, and he told the Rebbe
what he thought the problem
was, and he wanted to give the
Rebbe some medication to relieve
the pain.
“I don’t understand you,
Doctor,” the Rebbe replied. “If
I have pain, this means that the
Alm-ghty feels that I need a
certain punishment. Who are you
to ‘interfere’ in the Alm-ghty’s
business?” As a result, he didn’t
want to take the medication.
When the doctor came out
and told me what had transpired,
I told him that it says at the
beginning of Parshas Mishpatim,
“V’Rapo YeRapeh” (and he shall
provide for his cure). Our Sages
say that we learn from this pasuk
how a doctor has permission
to heal a person. While it’s true
that if G-d is causing pain to
someone there are reasons for
this, nevertheless, the Torah says
that while G-d gives a certain
punishment, the doctor has
permission to provide relief for
that punishment. I asked the
doctor if he would tell the Rebbe
that according to the pasuk, he’s
allowed to accept the treatment.
Before I finished speaking,
the Rebbetzin came in. When
I told her what happened, she
said, “I don’t understand.” The
Rebbetzin went in to the Rebbe,
and brought the doctor back into
the Rebbe’s room. The doctor
wrote a prescription, and we


Mrs. Sharon took out a white handkerchief to dab
her eyes. “You know that Arik is not the type to
get frightened easily. He became very pale and started
to sweat. We looked at one another. How did the Rebbe
know that such a thing was happening?”
Issue 829 • 8£l5 HO5MlACM 7
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went to the drug store to get
the medication. The Rebbetzin
had been afraid that even after I
would speak to the Rebbe, he still
wouldn’t want to see the doctor
and follow his advice, so she
came to make sure that he would.
MUTUAL CONCERN
Their relationship of concern
for one another was unbelievable.
Each one always tried to make
certain that the other wouldn’t
think that something was wrong.
They made great efforts to help
one another, and they didn’t
want the other to worry or to
waste valuable time.
There was one occasion
when the Rebbetzin had to be in
Europe, and the Rebbe asked us
to find out what time her flight
was due to arrive, because he
wanted to go to the airport to
meet her. Half an hour before the
plane was scheduled to land, the
Rebbetzin called. “I’m already
at the airport,” she said, “and
I’m taking a taxi home because I
don’t want to trouble my husband
to come and pick me up. Please
just tell him that I’m on my way.”
I told the Rebbe, and he left the
office and went home.
It’s quite interesting how
people tend to think that since
the Rebbe is such a great tzaddik,
he forgets about everything else.
Not true. The Rebbe was very
concerned…
AN ANSWER FOR THE NESHAMA
The Rebbe Maharash was once asked by one of
his Chassidim: “How is it that several people can ask
the same question, yet each person gets a different
answer?” The Rebbe replied: “What kind of Rebbe
would I be if I only had one answer for every question?”
I have a handwritten note from the Rebbe, where
he writes that when he gives an answer to a certain
individual, it doesn’t necessarily mean that someone
else is meant to learn something from that answer.
Why? Because when someone asks a question, you
have to consider the type of person he is, where he
comes from, the nature of the question, and many
other circumstances. All this serves as the basis for the
specific answer.
But there’s an aspect to this that’s on an even
higher level. Here’s a story to illustrate this point:
There was a Gerer Chassid who, back in the
fifties, dressed in modern attire and was involved in
various business ventures. While he was a member of
the Gerer community, he still went around wearing a
white hat and a short jacket.
One day, he came to the apartment building at 346
New York Avenue, on the corner of President Street.
He entered the vestibule and waited for the elevator.
Suddenly, a young man with a black beard came in
and also stood waiting for the elevator. He said
“Shalom Aleichem” to the Gerer businessman, and
then asked who he was. When the man gave his name,
the young man asked him what he did for a living.
After explaining the nature of his business, the young
man asked if his business periodically required him to
travel to foreign countries to sell his merchandise.
The businessman said yes, and the young
man asked where he had been traveling recently.
“Nicaragua,” the Gerer Chassid replied.
“Is there a mikveh there?” the young gentleman
inquired, and the businessman said that there wasn’t.
“Perhaps the reason why you go there to visit is in
order to build a mikveh for women and for Jewish
tourists,” the young man said.
Many years passed, and while the businessman
continued his line of work, he eventually became
much closer to the Gerer chassidim, and he began
dressing in accordance with Gerer chassidic customs
– long jacket, shtraimel, peios, a beard, etc. Once
during a business trip to New York, he heard that
the Lubavitcher Rebbe gave out dollars on Sunday
afternoon, and he decided to go and ask for a blessing.
As he approached the Rebbe, the Rebbe asked
him, “Is there already a mikveh in Nicaragua?” At
first, the Gerer Chassid didn’t understand. “Don’t you
remember?” the Rebbe clarified. “A number of years
ago, we met at the elevator and I asked you about the
mikveh…”
When the Gerer Chassid returned to Eretz Yisroel,
he went in to speak with the previous Gerer Rebbe.
The Chassid asked: “How is it that although I look
different now than I did back then – wearing chassidic
garb now as opposed to the modern clothes I wore at
the time – yet when the Rebbe saw me, he immediately
knew who I was?”
“When a Rebbe looks at someone, he looks at his
neshama – not at his physical body,” the Gerer Rebbe
replied. “Your neshama is the same now as it was then.
Therefore, when you approached the Lubavitcher
Rebbe, he saw that this is the same person with whom
he spoke a number of years ago.”
In other words, when the Rebbe gives an answer,
he answers according to the neshama, not only
according to the physical body. Since every soul is
different, each one has different ways to receive G-d’s
blessings from Above.
AN ANSWER FOR THE NESHAMA
The Rebbe Maharash was once asked by one of
his Chassidim: “How is it that several people can ask
the same question, yet each person gets a different
answer?” The Rebbe replied: “What kind of Rebbe
would I be if I only had one answer for every question?”
I have a handwritten note from the Rebbe, where
he writes that when he gives an answer to a certain
individual, it doesn’t necessarily mean that someone
else is meant to learn something from that answer.
Why? Because when someone asks a question, you
have to consider the type of person he is, where he
comes from, the nature of the question, and many
other circumstances. All this serves as the basis for the
specific answer.
But there’s an aspect to this that’s on an even
higher level. Here’s a story to illustrate this point:
There was a Gerer Chassid who, back in the
fifties, dressed in modern attire and was involved in
various business ventures. While he was a member of
the Gerer community, he still went around wearing a
white hat and a short jacket.
One day, he came to the apartment building at 346
New York Avenue, on the corner of President Street.
He entered the vestibule and waited for the elevator.
Suddenly, a young man with a black beard came in
and also stood waiting for the elevator. He said
“Shalom Aleichem” to the Gerer businessman, and
then asked who he was. When the man gave his name,
the young man asked him what he did for a living.
After explaining the nature of his business, the young
man asked if his business periodically required him to
travel to foreign countries to sell his merchandise.
The businessman said yes, and the young
man asked where he had been traveling recently.
“Nicaragua,” the Gerer Chassid replied.
“Is there a mikveh there?” the young gentleman
inquired, and the businessman said that there wasn’t.
“Perhaps the reason why you go there to visit is in
order to build a mikveh for women and for Jewish
tourists,” the young man said.
Many years passed, and while the businessman
continued his line of work, he eventually became
much closer to the Gerer chassidim, and he began
dressing in accordance with Gerer chassidic customs
– long jacket, shtraimel, peios, a beard, etc. Once
during a business trip to New York, he heard that
the Lubavitcher Rebbe gave out dollars on Sunday
afternoon, and he decided to go and ask for a blessing.
As he approached the Rebbe, the Rebbe asked
him, “Is there already a mikveh in Nicaragua?” At
first, the Gerer Chassid didn’t understand. “Don’t you
remember?” the Rebbe clarified. “A number of years
ago, we met at the elevator and I asked you about the
mikveh…”
When the Gerer Chassid returned to Eretz Yisroel,
he went in to speak with the previous Gerer Rebbe.
The Chassid asked: “How is it that although I look
different now than I did back then – wearing chassidic
garb now as opposed to the modern clothes I wore at
the time – yet when the Rebbe saw me, he immediately
knew who I was?”
“When a Rebbe looks at someone, he looks at his
neshama – not at his physical body,” the Gerer Rebbe
replied. “Your neshama is the same now as it was then.
Therefore, when you approached the Lubavitcher
Rebbe, he saw that this is the same person with whom
he spoke a number of years ago.”
In other words, when the Rebbe gives an answer,
he answers according to the neshama, not only
according to the physical body. Since every soul is
different, each one has different ways to receive G-d’s
blessings from Above.
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FOR THE LOVE OF HIS
CHASSIDIM
Yet, the Rebbe’s concern was
not just about his own family.
My wife’s uncle – her mother’s
sister’s husband – was Rabbi
Yehuda Chitrik, who passed away
five years ago at the age of 106.
He learned in Lubavitch with the
Rebbe Rashab, and then came to
America to be together with the
Rebbe Rayatz, and then with our
Rebbe. About two months after
Gimmel Tammuz, he came to my
office. He sat down and began to
cry like a baby. He cried for five,
ten minutes, and I couldn’t stop
him. Finally, after about twenty
minutes, he managed to calm
down.
“Fetter (Uncle),” I asked him,
“what are you crying about?”
“Let me tell you something,”
he replied. “I was with the
Rebbe Rashab, I was with the
Rebbe Rayatz, and I was with
our Rebbe here. It’s difficult
to make a distinction between
them, but certain things were so
obvious that you could practically
touch them. The Rebbe Rashab
was more detached from his
Chassidim, farbrenging with
them only three times a year. He
would say a maamer every Friday
night … He would farbreng,
people used to say L’chaim, [but]
only three times a year. His son,
the Rayatz, the previous Rebbe,
would do it on Yom Tov and on
other occasions. However, our
Rebbe,” he said, “was not only
a Rebbe – he was our father.
He took a personal interest in
everything that took place in
everyone’s private home. He
wanted to know exactly what was
happening with every child, every
individual, what they are doing,
and how they are getting along.”
A woman once told me that


“I told you that the channel for your daughter’s
health is your mitzvah of t’fillin,” the Rebbe said.
“So why did you stop?”
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she had to go into the Rebbe to
speak about a certain matter. Just
as she was about to come out, the
Rebbe asked her, “How is your
foot?”
“What foot?” she asked.
The Rebbe replied, “Your
husband wrote to me three
months ago that you fractured
your right foot, so I wanted to
know how it is.” The woman
told the Rebbe that it healed after
three weeks and now everything
is all right. “Fine,” the Rebbe
said, “but no one informed me.”
“The Rebbe has nothing else
to think about for three months,”
the woman said. “He has the
whole world on his head, but all
he is worried about is whether
my foot has healed or not.”
This shows how the Rebbe was
concerned with the details of
each and every family.
AMBASSADORS
I can safely say that since
Moshe Rabbeinu, I don’t think
there has been another leader
who has reached out to all
Jews throughout the world like
the Rebbe did. In all previous
generations, there were certain
physical limitations, as the
systems of communication and
technology that we have today
and the concept of sending
people all over the world still
didn’t exist.
A few months ago, we
had the convention of our
shluchim, over 3,500 in number
attending, followed by a women’s
convention for the 3,500
shluchos. The Canadian foreign
minister recently came to Kfar
Chabad, and they wanted me to
be there as well. I told him that
I thought that Lubavitch was
the greatest government in the
world. When the minister asked
me to explain, I asked him, “Mr.
Foreign Minister, how many
ambassadors does your country
have throughout the world?”
He replied that there were a few
hundred.
“Do you know how many
ambassadors we have?” I asked
him. “We have about 3500
ambassadors all over the world.”
The minister was overwhelmed
to hear about the work of the
Rebbe’s shluchim.
A REAL REBBE
[One of the participants identified herself as a
relative of Rabbi Efraim Eliezer a”h Yolles, Av Beis
Din in Philadelphia, and she asked Rabbi Groner if
he could tell something about his relationship with the
Rebbe.]
I knew him very well and I was very close to him.
He was a Chassid of the Previous Rebbe, and he once
told me about how he became a Chassid. He used to
come to visit the Rebbe Rayatz, but he didn’t feel that
he was his Rebbe. Once when he was standing near
the Rebbe Rayatz, he felt something intensely spiritual.
He jumped up from his seat, put on his gartel, and
said, “Rebbe, I’m becoming your Chassid.” He asked
the Rebbe to give him a pencil and a piece of paper to
write his name and his mother’s name for the purpose
of receiving a bracha.
From that moment on, he became very close to the
Rebbe Rayatz. He used to call him ‘Der Heileger Rebbe’
(the holy Rebbe). After the Rebbe Rayatz’s histalkus,
he became a Chassid of our Rebbe. He would come
to almost every weekday farbrengen and sit very close
to the Rebbe’s place. In addition, he would also come
to the Rebbe twice a year – during Chol HaMoed
Sukkos and Chol HaMoed Pesach. Whenever he came,
he would have a private yechidus with the Rebbe. The
Rebbe would speak to him about himself in a way that
he did with no one else. On many occasions, Rabbi
Yolles would confidentially tell me certain amazing
things that the Rebbe told him about himself.
He also used to go and see the Satmar Rebbe, who
would always chide him regarding his constant travels
to Lubavitch. Rabbi Yolles used to tell him, “If you
want to see a real Rebbe, come to Lubavitch.”
Due to his very close relationship with the Rebbe
Rayatz and our Rebbe, there were many opportunities
to help other people through him. During the
Second World War, Rabbi Yolles a”h had very strong
connections with high-ranking officials in the War
Department in Washington. The Rebbe Rayatz and
the Rebbe utilized that connection to help Jewish
soldiers all over the world, for example, to make
sure that they would have matzos for Pesach. Rabbi
Yolles would speak with his contacts, give them a list
of locations where Jewish soldiers were serving, and
the department would provide for their religious
needs. He was also involved in helping to get Jews out
of Europe to save them from the Holocaust, and he
was quite happy to use these connections to help the
Rebbe Rayatz in this respect.
Rabbi Yolles would use the expression “Kodshei
Kodshim” (holy of holies) in reference to the Rebbe
Rayatz. He would write the standard title “K’vod
K’dushas Admur Shlita,” and then add the words
“Kodshei Kodshim.”
A REAL REBBE
[One of the participants identified herself as a
relative of Rabbi Efraim Eliezer a”h Yolles, Av Beis
Din in Philadelphia, and she asked Rabbi Groner if
he could tell something about his relationship with the
Rebbe.]
I knew him very well and I was very close to him.
He was a Chassid of the Previous Rebbe, and he once
told me about how he became a Chassid. He used to
come to visit the Rebbe Rayatz, but he didn’t feel that
he was his Rebbe. Once when he was standing near
the Rebbe Rayatz, he felt something intensely spiritual.
He jumped up from his seat, put on his gartel, and
said, “Rebbe, I’m becoming your Chassid.” He asked
the Rebbe to give him a pencil and a piece of paper to
write his name and his mother’s name for the purpose
of receiving a bracha.
From that moment on, he became very close to the
Rebbe Rayatz. He used to call him ‘Der Heileger Rebbe’
(the holy Rebbe). After the Rebbe Rayatz’s histalkus,
he became a Chassid of our Rebbe. He would come
to almost every weekday farbrengen and sit very close
to the Rebbe’s place. In addition, he would also come
to the Rebbe twice a year – during Chol HaMoed
Sukkos and Chol HaMoed Pesach. Whenever he came,
he would have a private yechidus with the Rebbe. The
Rebbe would speak to him about himself in a way that
he did with no one else. On many occasions, Rabbi
Yolles would confidentially tell me certain amazing
things that the Rebbe told him about himself.
He also used to go and see the Satmar Rebbe, who
would always chide him regarding his constant travels
to Lubavitch. Rabbi Yolles used to tell him, “If you
want to see a real Rebbe, come to Lubavitch.”
Due to his very close relationship with the Rebbe
Rayatz and our Rebbe, there were many opportunities
to help other people through him. During the
Second World War, Rabbi Yolles a”h had very strong
connections with high-ranking officials in the War
Department in Washington. The Rebbe Rayatz and
the Rebbe utilized that connection to help Jewish
soldiers all over the world, for example, to make
sure that they would have matzos for Pesach. Rabbi
Yolles would speak with his contacts, give them a list
of locations where Jewish soldiers were serving, and
the department would provide for their religious
needs. He was also involved in helping to get Jews out
of Europe to save them from the Holocaust, and he
was quite happy to use these connections to help the
Rebbe Rayatz in this respect.
Rabbi Yolles would use the expression “Kodshei
Kodshim” (holy of holies) in reference to the Rebbe
Rayatz. He would write the standard title “K’vod
K’dushas Admur Shlita,” and then add the words
“Kodshei Kodshim.”
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FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS –
NO QUESTIONS ASKED
With all that, the Rebbe
showed great interest in every
individual.
Chassidim like to tell miracle
stories from the Rebbe. The
reason for this is to demonstrate
that the world is on a much
higher level than we think. The
saying goes, “The closer you
look, the better you look.” This
is what happens when we hear
about something beyond nature
running the world. Working
in the Rebbe’s office, I had the
opportunity to witness many,
many different incidents where
we saw this type of miracle taking
place.
In the first year of the Rebbe’s
nesius (1951), a doctor came on
Motzaei Shabbos to the office,
crying bitterly. When I asked him
what the problem was, he replied
that his twelve-year old daughter
had suddenly become very sick.
“My fellow doctors examined
her,” he said, “and they told
me that she is in very critical
condition. I heard that Rabbi
Schneersohn gives blessings and
advice that help and I would
like to see the Rebbe and get a
bracha.”
When he came out of the
Rebbe’s office, I asked him what
had happened. He said that the
Rebbe asked him if he put on
t’fillin every day, and the doctor
replied that unfortunately he did
not. The Rebbe then told him
that if he would start putting on
t’fillin every day, that would be
the channel for his daughter’s
recovery. When he explained to
the Rebbe that he didn’t know
how to put on t’fillin, the Rebbe
said, “Come tomorrow morning
to the yeshiva building, and one
of the students will teach you how
to do it.” And so he did. He came
to the shul the following morning
to daven and they showed him
how to put on t’fillin.
After doing this for about
three or four weeks, I asked him
if there was anything that we
could tell the Rebbe about his
daughter’s condition. “Yes,” the
doctor replied. “Please tell the
Rebbe that she’s out of danger,
and we hope that over the course
of time, things will improve and
she’ll be able to come home.”
This is exactly what happened.
About a year and a half later,
the doctor came running into
770 and told me that he needs
another bracha from the Rebbe.
“What happened?” I asked.
“My daughter became sick
again,” the doctor said.
“Doctor, tell me the truth,” I
asked him. “Did you stop putting
on t’fillin?” He admitted to his
mistake.
“You know what,” I told him.
“We’ll write a note to the Rebbe,
and we’ll tell him what happened,
but I won’t mention that I spoke
to you about the t’fillin.”
The doctor brought in the
note, and the Rebbe immediately
asked him if he was still putting
on t’fillin. “I told you that the
channel for your daughter’s
health is your mitzvah of t’fillin,”
the Rebbe said. “So why did you


“When a Rebbe looks at someone, he looks at his
neshama – not at his physical body,” the Gerer
Rebbe replied. “Your neshama is the same now as it was
then. Therefore, when you approached the Lubavitcher
Rebbe, he saw that this is the same person with whom he
spoke a number of years ago.”
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stop?” The doctor promised that
from then on, he would keep
putting on t’fillin.
I met him about two years
later. He said that he puts on
t’fillin every day, and thank G-d
she’s growing up healthy and
everything’s fine. Of course, we
don’t understand the connection
between t’fillin and her health,
but the effects are clear as ever.
One day, the Rebbe came
into the office, and he heard
one of the secretaries speaking
to a woman, trying to explain
to her that she has to listen to
what the Rebbe says. While I was
standing in the office, the Rebbe
interrupted the secretary and
asked to know what was going
on. The secretary explained that
this woman had called a few
weeks earlier requesting a bracha.
Her husband had become ill and
the doctors were unable to help
him recover, and the Rebbe told
her that she has to start lighting
candles every Erev Shabbos.
However, the woman didn’t
see the connection between her
lighting Shabbos candles and her
husband getting well.
The Rebbe told the secretary:
“Ask this woman, ‘Why did you
come to me?’ She knows that
I’m not a doctor, and I assume
that she knows that I never
studied medicine. Nevertheless,
I think she came to me because
she believes that Hashem gave
me an ability to advise and to
bless. What difference does it
make whether she understands
the connection or not? I’m telling
her again, if she starts lighting
candles…”
She called me six weeks later
to tell me that, thank G-d, her
husband was back home already,
fully recovered, and she wanted
the Rebbe to know that she
will continue lighting Shabbos
candles.
We don’t understand the
connection, but the Rebbe sees
the connection.
WHICH EXPERT?
Let me tell you another story
about the Rebbe that I heard
from the Rebbetzin:
The Rebbe has some relatives
living in Borough Park by the
name of Rokeach. Whenever they
had a question for the Rebbe,
they would not send it through
the secretaries’ office. They
would call the Rebbetzin, and
she in turn would ask the Rebbe
and then give them the Rebbe’s
answer. Once, I jokingly told her
that we would have to put her on
the payroll for doing secretarial
work for her husband.
One day, she received a
phone call that the mother of
this family, whom I knew very
well, had suddenly become ill.
After a series of tests, the doctors
came to the conclusion that she
needed an operation. Naturally,
her family wouldn’t do anything
without the Rebbe’s approval.
So they asked the Rebbetzin
BEHIND THE SCENES
[Rabbi Groner was asked to recall incidents when
prominent political figures from the United States and
Israel would call 770 and ask to speak with the Rebbe.]
We would get calls on Sunday from Eretz Yisroel.
Once there was a case of a difficult problem in the
Israeli government regarding a certain project. The
question was: Who was supposed to provide the
financial and budgetary support for the project? The
Ministry of Housing said that this office was in charge,
while another ministry gave a different answer. After
a few weeks of discussion, no one could come to a
final decision, and the prime minister said that the
only one who could help was the Rebbe. Government
officials came to 770, presented us with the problem,
and asked for the Rebbe’s advice.
One of the officials came in to the Rebbe, told him
what the question was, and the first thing the Rebbe
did was to give him a big smile and say to him, “For
such a simple matter you had to come overseas?”
The man felt like an infant. The Rebbe analyzed the
whole situation and then said, “This part of the project
belongs to this office, and this part of the project
belongs to that office. What’s the big deal?” The
official was about to leave when the Rebbe asked him
to stay.
“There are two ministers in the Cabinet who
are having misunderstandings between them,” the
Rebbe said. “This can have negative effects upon the
decisions of the government.” The man looked at the
Rebbe, uncertain as to what the Rebbe meant. The
Rebbe then proceeded to give the names of these two
government ministers. The official said that he knows
who they are, but he had no idea that there was some
misunderstanding between them. The Rebbe asked
that when he returns to Eretz Yisroel, he should call
them, let them know about his meeting with the Rebbe,
and tell them that the Rebbe has some advice on how
to settle their problem amicably.
The official was absolutely amazed. He told me
that neither of these ministers had any connection
to the Rebbe, and he didn’t believe that anyone had
written to the Rebbe on the matter. “The Rebbe sits
here in Brooklyn,” he said, “yet he knows everything
happening to us behind the scenes.”
BEHIND THE SCENES
[Rabbi Groner was asked to recall incidents when
prominent political figures from the United States and
Israel would call 770 and ask to speak with the Rebbe.]
We would get calls on Sunday from Eretz Yisroel.
Once there was a case of a difficult problem in the
Israeli government regarding a certain project. The
question was: Who was supposed to provide the
financial and budgetary support for the project? The
Ministry of Housing said that this office was in charge,
while another ministry gave a different answer. After
a few weeks of discussion, no one could come to a
final decision, and the prime minister said that the
only one who could help was the Rebbe. Government
officials came to 770, presented us with the problem,
and asked for the Rebbe’s advice.
One of the officials came in to the Rebbe, told him
what the question was, and the first thing the Rebbe
did was to give him a big smile and say to him, “For
such a simple matter you had to come overseas?”
The man felt like an infant. The Rebbe analyzed the
whole situation and then said, “This part of the project
belongs to this office, and this part of the project
belongs to that office. What’s the big deal?” The
official was about to leave when the Rebbe asked him
to stay.
“There are two ministers in the Cabinet who
are having misunderstandings between them,” the
Rebbe said. “This can have negative effects upon the
decisions of the government.” The man looked at the
Rebbe, uncertain as to what the Rebbe meant. The
Rebbe then proceeded to give the names of these two
government ministers. The official said that he knows
who they are, but he had no idea that there was some
misunderstanding between them. The Rebbe asked
that when he returns to Eretz Yisroel, he should call
them, let them know about his meeting with the Rebbe,
and tell them that the Rebbe has some advice on how
to settle their problem amicably.
The official was absolutely amazed. He told me
that neither of these ministers had any connection
to the Rebbe, and he didn’t believe that anyone had
written to the Rebbe on the matter. “The Rebbe sits
here in Brooklyn,” he said, “yet he knows everything
happening to us behind the scenes.”
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to report to the Rebbe what the
doctors had said and ask what
they should do regarding the
operation. The Rebbetzin said
that when she told the Rebbe the
whole story, the Rebbe said that
under no circumstances should
she have an operation. The
family immediately contacted the
doctors and told them they would
not give their consent.
The doctors couldn’t believe
it. “What will you do now?” they
asked.
“We hope that things will
get better,” the family members
replied.
A week later, a family member
called the Rebbetzin and told her
that ever since they had refused
to do the operation, the mother’s
health had seriously deteriorated,
to the point that the doctors
said that she was in very critical
condition. As a result, the family
now felt that the operation was
absolutely necessary, and they
wanted the Rebbetzin to ask
the Rebbe again. The Rebbetzin
replied that while Chassidim
don’t ask the Rebbe twice, she
would mention it to the Rebbe.
When the Rebbe came home
for dinner, he inquired about
the situation with this woman’s
health. When the Rebbetzin told
the Rebbe about her condition,
the Rebbe responded to her in the
strongest and most serious tone
she had ever heard. The Rebbe
gave a bang on the table and said
very loudly, “I said once not to
operate, and I’m saying now
a second time not to operate!”
The Rebbe was most adamant in
his opposition to any surgery.
The woman’s condition
became even more serious and
the family didn’t know what to
do. A few days later, when the
Rebbe asked again about the
situation, he said, “Why don’t
they try to cure her through
medication?” Seeing a possible
sign of light at the end of the
tunnel, the family went to
speak to the doctors. Ridiculing
the Rebbe’s lack of medical
knowledge, the doctors rejected
this suggestion, convinced that
surgery was the only option.
The family went around to
the other departments in the
hospital until they found a doctor
who was prepared to listen. “I
think I know what the Rebbe
means,” this doctor said. “I
have my ‘passport’ – my white
apron – which allows me to go
into any room, even though the
person requiring treatment is not
my patient. When no one else
is in the room, I will inject her
with this medication to which I
assume the Rebbe is referring.”
And so he did.
Two days later, the family met
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with this doctor and he asked for
a medical update. They said that
the doctors couldn’t explain it,
but the woman’s condition had
stabilized. “If that’s the case,”
the doctor said, “I’ll give her
another dose.” He gave her two
or three more injections of this
medication, and after two weeks,
the doctors said that she was out
of danger. Finally, after about
a month had passed, she had
completely recovered and was
sent home from the hospital.
Naturally, the family called
the Rebbetzin to ask her to give
the Rebbe the good news. The
Rebbetzin then told me what the
Rebbe had said:
“Now I can tell you what
happened,” the Rebbe told the
Rebbetzin. “When they asked me
the first time about the operation,
I saw that if, G-d forbid, they
“HOW DID THE REBBE KNOW?”
Arik Sharon came to the Rebbe on numerous
occasions. When his wife Lily was alive, he always came
with her. Once he called me and said that he wanted to
see the Rebbe about a personal non-government related
matter, and since his elderly mother (she was about
eighty-five years old at the time) was accompanying
him, he wanted to know if she could come as well. “Of
course,” I said.
“What time should I come?” he asked.
“Try to be here at midnight,” I replied. The reason
for this was that I wanted the people who needed far
less time to get in for yechidus first. Mr. Sharon could
then sit with the Rebbe for an hour or two, because any
other people who came afterwards would have to wait.
He came at around eleven-thirty, a quarter to
twelve, and we sat and chatted until around twelve
o’clock. His mother went in with him and spent about
ten minutes with the Rebbe. Before she went in, she
asked her son, “Arik, tell me how long you expect to be
with the Rebbe?”
Sharon replied: “Maybe fifteen or twenty minutes.
That’s all I need.”
The mother came out, and Sharon and his wife
remained with the Rebbe. Half an hour passes, an hour,
an hour and a half. Finally, he came out. “Arik,” his
mother said, “you call that twenty minutes?”
“Don’t blame me,” he said. “It was the Rebbe.”
Lily Sharon then called me over and said that she
had to speak with me. “You know that we are not
chassidic people,” she said. “However, we have heard
many times how Chassidim say that the Rebbe has
ruach ha’kodesh – he sees and knows what’s happening
anywhere in the world.
“I must tell you what happened tonight. We came
regarding a personal problem with one of our children.
Thank G-d, the Rebbe gave us some very good advice.
That took about fifteen or twenty minutes. We were
about to leave when the Rebbe asked us to stay. ‘I want
to speak to you about something,’ the Rebbe said. ‘I
know that you’re having a misunderstanding with one
of your colleagues in the Cabinet, and I would like to
help you.’”
Mrs. Sharon took out a white handkerchief to dab
her eyes. “You know that Arik is not the type to get
frightened easily. He became very pale and started to
sweat. We looked at one another. How did the Rebbe
know that such a thing was happening? No one wrote
to the Rebbe about this – not me, not Arik, not anyone
in the government. ‘Are you ready to listen?’ the Rebbe
asked. Sharon said ‘yes.’
“‘First, I’ll tell you what the problem is,’ the Rebbe
began. For fifteen minutes, the Rebbe laid out the
nature of the dispute. ‘Is this correct?’ the Rebbe
asked. ‘Yes,’ Sharon replied. ‘Now, I’m ready to give
you advice,’ the Rebbe continued. This took up another
half an hour.
“How did the Rebbe know?” Lily Sharon asked.
“Now we can believe what Chassidim say about the
Rebbe having ruach ha’kodesh.”
A year later, Sharon was invited to speak in Kfar
Chabad. One of the Chassidim said to him, “Arik,
please tell the crowd about the ruach ha’kodesh
you experienced from the Rebbe.” Sharon didn’t
understand. “What ruach ha’kodesh? I never saw
ruach ha’kodesh from the Rebbe.”
“You know what?” the Chassid said. “Call up your
wife Lily. Don’t tell her that I said anything. Just say
that people are asking you to talk about the Rebbe’s
ruach ha’kodesh.”
While at this large gathering, he went out and
picked up the phone to speak to his wife. “Arik,” she
said, “don’t you remember?” and he suddenly recalled
this particular incident in 770. He went back out and
told the whole crowd what the Rebbe had told him,
including how without anyone writing to the Rebbe
about the problem, the Rebbe knew what it was and
even provided the answer.
Regarding other political candidates, I remember
when Averell Harriman [then Governor of New York,
1955-58] came to the Rebbe when he was running for
president [in 1956]. Robert Kennedy came to get a
blessing for his brother, John F. Kennedy. I made the
appointment.
“HOW DID THE REBBE KNOW?”
Arik Sharon came to the Rebbe on numerous
occasions. When his wife Lily was alive, he always came
with her. Once he called me and said that he wanted to
see the Rebbe about a personal non-government related
matter, and since his elderly mother (she was about
eighty-five years old at the time) was accompanying
him, he wanted to know if she could come as well. “Of
course,” I said.
“What time should I come?” he asked.
“Try to be here at midnight,” I replied. The reason
for this was that I wanted the people who needed far
less time to get in for yechidus first. Mr. Sharon could
then sit with the Rebbe for an hour or two, because any
other people who came afterwards would have to wait.
He came at around eleven-thirty, a quarter to
twelve, and we sat and chatted until around twelve
o’clock. His mother went in with him and spent about
ten minutes with the Rebbe. Before she went in, she
asked her son, “Arik, tell me how long you expect to be
with the Rebbe?”
Sharon replied: “Maybe fifteen or twenty minutes.
That’s all I need.”
The mother came out, and Sharon and his wife
remained with the Rebbe. Half an hour passes, an hour,
an hour and a half. Finally, he came out. “Arik,” his
mother said, “you call that twenty minutes?”
“Don’t blame me,” he said. “It was the Rebbe.”
Lily Sharon then called me over and said that she
had to speak with me. “You know that we are not
chassidic people,” she said. “However, we have heard
many times how Chassidim say that the Rebbe has
ruach ha’kodesh – he sees and knows what’s happening
anywhere in the world.
“I must tell you what happened tonight. We came
regarding a personal problem with one of our children.
Thank G-d, the Rebbe gave us some very good advice.
That took about fifteen or twenty minutes. We were
about to leave when the Rebbe asked us to stay. ‘I want
to speak to you about something,’ the Rebbe said. ‘I
know that you’re having a misunderstanding with one
of your colleagues in the Cabinet, and I would like to
help you.’”
Mrs. Sharon took out a white handkerchief to dab
her eyes. “You know that Arik is not the type to get
frightened easily. He became very pale and started to
sweat. We looked at one another. How did the Rebbe
know that such a thing was happening? No one wrote
to the Rebbe about this – not me, not Arik, not anyone
in the government. ‘Are you ready to listen?’ the Rebbe
asked. Sharon said ‘yes.’
“‘First, I’ll tell you what the problem is,’ the Rebbe
began. For fifteen minutes, the Rebbe laid out the
nature of the dispute. ‘Is this correct?’ the Rebbe
asked. ‘Yes,’ Sharon replied. ‘Now, I’m ready to give
you advice,’ the Rebbe continued. This took up another
half an hour.
“How did the Rebbe know?” Lily Sharon asked.
“Now we can believe what Chassidim say about the
Rebbe having ruach ha’kodesh.”
A year later, Sharon was invited to speak in Kfar
Chabad. One of the Chassidim said to him, “Arik,
please tell the crowd about the ruach ha’kodesh
you experienced from the Rebbe.” Sharon didn’t
understand. “What ruach ha’kodesh? I never saw
ruach ha’kodesh from the Rebbe.”
“You know what?” the Chassid said. “Call up your
wife Lily. Don’t tell her that I said anything. Just say
that people are asking you to talk about the Rebbe’s
ruach ha’kodesh.”
While at this large gathering, he went out and
picked up the phone to speak to his wife. “Arik,” she
said, “don’t you remember?” and he suddenly recalled
this particular incident in 770. He went back out and
told the whole crowd what the Rebbe had told him,
including how without anyone writing to the Rebbe
about the problem, the Rebbe knew what it was and
even provided the answer.
Regarding other political candidates, I remember
when Averell Harriman [then Governor of New York,
1955-58] came to the Rebbe when he was running for
president [in 1956]. Robert Kennedy came to get a
blessing for his brother, John F. Kennedy. I made the
appointment.
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would do the surgery, the
woman would not get out of the
operating room alive. This is
the reason I was so adamantly
opposed to it. When they asked
me a second time, I saw the
same thing. This shows that you
can have experts in a certain
field saying one thing, while
others contradict them and say
something else entirely. To whom
are you supposed to listen?”
A SHLIACH OR NOT?
One year, just a few days
before Pesach, I called a shliach
somewhere in Europe with
a message from the Rebbe,
instructing him to visit a certain
city and give assistance to a
Jewish resident there. The Rebbe
did not specify who this Jew
was or what type of help he was
supposed to provide.
“R’ Leibel,” the shliach said.
“It’s two or three days before
Pesach. I’m expecting four
hundred people for the Seder.
How can I drop everything and
travel four hours to this city and
four hours back?”
“Listen,” I told him, “are you
a shliach of the Rebbe or not?
The Rebbe knows that it’s right
before Pesach. Drop everything
and go immediately to that city.
Don’t waste any time.”
The shliach called me after
Pesach: “Let me tell you what
happened. I came to that city, but
there were only Gentiles there.
There wasn’t a single Jew – no
shul, no nothing. I went around
asking the local residents if there
were any Jews in the city. No one
knew of any Jews living there. I
went to the city hall and asked
to check the lists of people who
live in the city, but there were
no records of any Jews in town.
I thought that maybe I had made
a mistake (there were no cell
phones in those days), and so
I prepared to head back home
and I would call you to say what
happened.
“Before leaving the city, I
stopped at a gas station. The
attendant came out and asked
me, ‘What’s a Jew with a beard
doing in a city where there are
no Jewish people? What are you
doing here?’
“‘Are you sure that there’s
not even one Jew in this town?’
I asked the man. The attendant
thought for a moment and then
said, ‘Now that you mention it,
there’s a butcher shop about half
an hour away from here, and I’m
almost sure that the owner of that
butcher shop is a Jew.’ He gave
me the directions, and I arrived
there at around a quarter to six in
the evening.
“I opened the door of the
butcher shop, and when the
owner saw me, he fell down
on the floor and fainted. I got
scared. What had I done to him?
I picked him up, revived him,
brought him to a chair, and gave
him a cup of cold water. When I
asked him what had caused such
a strong reaction, he told me the
following:
“‘My wife, my two children,
and I are the only Jewish people
in this city. The local priest
comes from time to time and tries
to convince us to convert to their
religion. “Why does your family
have to be alone,” he says. I
always told him that Jews allowed
themselves to be sacrificed, burnt
in auto de fés…’”
The shliach said that he told
this young man, “Since Pesach is
in another two or three days, I’m
inviting you, your wife, and your
two children to spend the holiday
with us.” The man happily
agreed.
Two years later, this shliach
called me again. “I have to tell
you what happened afterwards.
While they were staying with
us, we asked them to stay a
little while longer. We explained
to them what it means to be a
Jew and taught them about the
mitzvos they have to observe.
Their stay lasted for about six
weeks.
“Last week, I was visiting
Yerushalayim and I went to
daven at the Western Wall.
Suddenly, I felt someone tapping
my shoulder. I turned around
and saw a bearded young man
standing with his children. They
looked like fine chassidic Jews
from top to bottom – yarmulke,
peios, tzitzis…
“’Do you recognize me?’ he
said. When I said no, he replied,
‘Look into my eyes.’ I took a
closer look at him. ‘You’re the
butcher from that town!’ I cried.
‘What happened? What are you
doing here?’
“’When we returned home
after spending those six weeks
in your home,’ he replied, ‘my
wife told me, “Listen, if we’re
Jewish and we have to live where
other Jews are, then what are we
doing here? We have to close the
shop, pack our things, and make
aliya to go live in Eretz Yisroel.”
That’s exactly what we did. Since
arriving here, we have become
closer and closer to our Judaism
and you can see for yourself how
we’ve progressed…’”
You can see from this how
the Rebbe’s foresight led to this
family becoming observant for
generations to come. The Rebbe
is sitting in Brooklyn, and he sees
a family in need somewhere else
in the world. Therefore, to save
them from, G-d forbid, doing
something disastrous, the Rebbe
immediately makes certain that
someone who can help them goes
out there and takes care of the
matter.
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WHAT YUD-ALEF
NISSAN MEANS
TO A CHASSID
By Rabbi Akiva Wagner
The following story was
shared with me by Rabbi Dovid
Sholom Pape:
Three meshulachim were
headed to Atlanta for “business.”
The three were of Sephardic
lineage, but had received their
education in Litvishe Yeshivos,
thus resulting in their belonging
to the new breed of Litvishe
Sephardim.
En route they experienced a
mishap (a tire went flat), which
caused them to lose a lot of
time. They soon realized that
they would no longer be able to
make it to Atlanta in time for the
upcoming Shabbos. They were
forced, instead, to spend Shabbos
in Charlotte, North Carolina.
There they were put up in the
home of Rabbi Binyomin Weiss,
one of the local Lubavitcher
shluchim.
They spent considerable
time over Shabbos in earnest
conversation with their host,
during which they displayed both
respect for and inquisitiveness
about Lubavitch. In the course
of their discussion, one of the
three meshulachim shared the
following experience with Rabbi
Weiss:
“For years, there was one
thing that disturbed me greatly
about Lubavitcher Chassidim,
and this was the fact that they
daven late. This went against
everything I’d been taught and
everything that I understood. It
seemed to me a flippant disregard
of Halacha, and in my mind I
could not conceive of any way to
defend it.
“Once, I spent a Shabbos in
Toronto. In shul, sitting at the
table with me was a Lubavitcher
bachur. When the minyan began,
he opened his siddur, but then,
as if reconsidering, he closed the
siddur, and resumed learning. I
was deeply offended. You want
to learn before davening, after
davening, fine, but how can you
just ignore the minyan?! I didn’t
say anything, but the entire
davening my eyes, as if on their
own accord, kept returning to
the bachur (who continued his
learning unconcerned), and I was
figuratively gnashing my teeth.
“Finally, when davening was
over, I could contain myself no
longer, and I challenged the
bachur about his conduct. He
listened to me, and then said:
‘If you are really interested in
an answer, then you can sit
down with me, and I’ll explain
it to you.’ I agreed, and we
sat together, while the bachur
brought me various sources,
both from chassidus and from
Halacha, explaining the meaning
of davening, and the importance
of preparing for it. I was duly
impressed and had to concede
to him that he had sufficiently
validated his behavior.
“Some time later, I had the
opportunity to spend Shabbos
in Queens, and I was hosted
by – none other than – another
Lubavitcher. At 12:30 in the
morning, my host turned to me
and asked if I would like to go to
the Ohel. I said ‘why not,’ so he
took me to the Ohel, and I went
inside.
“While I was inside, it
occurred to me that I really owed
the Rebbe a plea for forgiveness.
After all, I had spent years
entertaining negative thoughts
about Chabad and after the
matter had been explained to
me, I realized that they had been
unfounded. I didn’t waste any
time, and immediately asked the
Rebbe mechila.
“What can I tell you,” the
meshulach concluded to Rabbi
Weiss, “as soon as I asked
for the Rebbe’s forgiveness,
I immediately felt all the
resentment and the animosity
leave me completely. And not
just towards Lubavitchers, but
towards every single Jew. I felt
myself cleansed of every bit of
negativity, and was consumed,
instead, by an overpowering love
for every single Jew. I was like a
new person, and have remained
that way ever since!”
NESHAMA SIGNALS
If we try to analyze the story
(at least with the very limited
vision of our daas tachton), it
seems to make perfect sense!
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After all, we all inherently love all
other Jews; it is a natural result
of the fact that “Kulan Masimos
Ve’Av Echad Le’kulanu” – that
we are all essentially part of one
single indivisible entity. The fact
that that love does not regularly
make itself felt is a result of the
excessive filth and residue that
has become attached to the
neshama, thereby concealing it
and covering its signals. [This
is like the “GPS signal lost”
message you get as you drive
through the Holland tunnel,
because of the impenetrable
barriers between it and its
source/satellite, or your cell
phone suddenly not functioning
as you wander into some remote
location.]
The surest way to ensure clear
signals is to remove any obstacles
that separate the neshama from
its source. Thus, when the
Jew in the story reinforced his
connection with his ultimate
source – with the Eibeshter – by
removing the barrier between
his neshama and the Neshama
Klalis of the Nasi HaDor, it
was only natural that he was
suddenly in sync with the signals
of his neshama, which naturally
translated into a strong feeling of
love towards every single Jew!
WHY LIVE TO
AVOID DEATH?
Let us try to develop this
further (in the context of the
maamer “BeYom Ashtei Asar”):
You sometimes hear the
question: “Why is it necessary
for me to be a Lubavitcher, to
have to deal with all of these
inconveniences of Chalav
Yisroel, Lubavitcher sh’chita etc.
Why do I have to limit my Pesach
to chicken and potatoes (and
lots of schmaltz), when there
are all kinds of delicacies, coke,
ketchup, cakes, marshmallow,
chocolate covered matzos etc.,
that are all certified strictly
kosher for Passover by perfectly
reliable hashgachos? What
would be wrong if I would be a
Modern Orthodox Jew? They’re
religious after all, and everything
they practice is sanctioned by
their Rabbis (based on Shulchan
Aruch), and it doesn’t need to
interfere with their living a good
life. Why is it necessary for me to
follow the most oppressive and
restrictive form of Yiddishkait?”
It’s a legitimate question.
But let’s try to take it back a
bit. Why must one be Orthodox
altogether? You can, undeniably,
live an even more exciting life if
you permit yourself even those
indulgences that are unavailable
even to a Modern Orthodox.
Why restrict yourself at all?
You may say: “Well, if I do
anything wrong, then I’ll get
punished. I’ll get burned in the
fiery flames of purgatory. I can’t
do anything that’s not allowed.”
Sorry, but that’s not a good
answer. We don’t do Torah and
mitzvos to avoid future pain
and suffering. That would not
be a true form of Yiddishkait at
all, merely self-centeredness and
self-serving.
[In the words of the maamer:
There are two (types of) slaves,
i.e., two people who serve
Hashem and follow all of Torah
and mitzvos. Both are Orthodox,
perhaps even ultra-Orthodox,
they do everything that they’re
supposed to, and abstain from
doing anything wrong. Yet,
when it comes to categorizing
them, they are treated as polar
Painting: Zalman Kleinman
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opposites. One is put with the
dogs (because he has more in
common – Judaism-wise – with
the dogs than with anyone else),
and the other is bunched together
with the important ministers and
senators.
The difference between
them is not (necessarily) in
their performance, but in what
drives them. While the former is
merely trying to avoid any pain,
the latter developed a feeling and
appreciation for what he’s doing.
That alone leads to the incredible
contrast between them in their
categorization; steps taken
merely to avoid suffering do not
constitute authentic Yiddishkait].
WHY GO THROUGH LIFE
ON A DETOUR?
You say: “If I listen to the
Torah I’ll get rewarded, I’ll get
Gan Eden, Olam HaBa, a juicy
piece of Leviasan.” But that’s not
any better, any closer to genuine
Yiddishkait, than the previous
reasoning.
The reason is because
although by not serving Hashem
ch”v I may have a more exciting
life, earn more money and enjoy
more pleasures, those pleasures
take me out of Hashem’s
graces. And I prefer to have an
open p’nimius’dike relationship
with the Eibeshter, rather than
receiving pleasures that are
sustained by an incidental spark
of G-dliness.
We do mitzvos and refrain
from doing the opposite because
Hashem’s good graces are more
precious and important to us
than any worldly!
Well, the next step is natural
and obvious. If I’m not trying
to stay out of the frying pan by
fulfilling my duties, but rather
to develop a deep genuine
connection with Hashem through
being in tune and in sync with
His “P’nimius HaRatzon” and
“Chefetz HaAmiti,” then my
question is not whether or not
I’m fulfilling my obligations
by living a modern Orthodox
lifestyle (and whether or not it’s
enough to keep me away from
Gehinom), but, rather, whether
or not this is “P’nimius Retzono
VeCheftzo HaAmiti.” And for that
I will be looking for the greatest
hiddurim, the most extreme way
of being a practicing Jew.
For that, I need to live as a
Lubavitcher Chassid.
LIFE ON THE HIGH ROAD
Now, let’s take that a step
further: “Do I have to learn
three Prakim of Rambam a day,
or can I learn one (or Seifer
HaMitzvos)? Why should I
torment myself to learn three
prakim if the Rebbe himself gave
the option of doing one perek?”
Wait! The issue is not how to
be yoitzeh Rambam. What are
you being yoitzeh?! The issue
is how to carry out our desire
to follow “P’nimius Retzono
VeCheftzo HaAmiti.” What is
P’nimius Retzono? What does
the Rebbe really want from you?
What does he prefer from you?
For most of us, the answer is
very clearly three Prakim. End of
discussion!
Or, “Why do I need to
be fanatical about Geula and
Moshiach? I know the Rebbe
spoke about it and everything,
but there are many chassidishe
Yidden who are mainly into other
things. I’ll be happy to be like
them. Who says that I have to be
the leader?”
Wait! The issue is not how to
fulfill your duties or how to earn
the label of “Chassidishe Yid.”
The issue is how to carry out
our desire to follow “P’nimius
Retzono VeCheftzo HaAmiti.”
What is P’nimius Retzono? What
does the Rebbe really want
from you? What does he prefer
from you? If you know that what
he wants from you is to be crazy
about Moshiach, then there is
nothing else that matters.
Or, “Why do I need to torture
myself and go on shlichus,
never knowing where my next
paycheck will come from, or
how I’m going to make ends
meet. Of course I recognize that
shlichus is the ideal. But there
are many good Lubavitchers who
are fulfilling their obligations
(and accomplishing so much
for Yiddishkait while raising
exemplary chassidishe families)
without having made this
supreme sacrifice (and didn’t the
Alter Rebbe himself say to the
Berditchever that one can’t be
present at all the fairs…?). Why
isn’t it good enough for me to be
like them?”
But think again. As a Jew,
your interests are not material
comforts, neither luxuries,
necessities, nor security. Your
only aim and goal is to be
committed wholeheartedly to
“P’nimius Retzono VeCheftzo
HaAmiti.” And if you happen to
be lucky enough and fortunate
enough to know clearly what that
is, then that outweighs any and
all other considerations.
So you respond: “That’s all
very nice and good in theory,
but the fact of the matter is that
I don’t feel that way. I am very
concerned about my comforts
and my fun and my indulgences.
All of these explanations just
don’t change the way I feel and
what I want. And, even if I’m
ready to forego my own pleasures
in the interest of being the best
Chassid that I could be, I have
someone else to worry about
now as well. I need to support
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my family, and how can I try to
be Chassidish at their expense?
You tell me that that is what my
neshama inherently aspires for,
because it’s a part of Hashem;
then why don’t I feel it? Why do I
struggle so much with all of these
decisions?”
Well, this would seem like
a good time to return to the
lesson from the original story
that introduced our discussion:
Your neshama naturally and
instinctively wants to do the right
thing, and that takes precedence
over any other competing
desires. If, perchance, we’re
not noticing those signals, well,
that just means that there’s
some obstruction, some barrier
separating us from our source.
The key, therefore, is not to
seek profound arguments and
explanations that will convince
us of the righteousness of our
path, but instead to focus on
removing the foreign matter that
doesn’t belong, so that we can be
tuned in to the message that our
neshama has been giving us all
along.
CLEARING THE STATIC
On Yud-Alef Nissan, a day
when surely the theme is “Anoh
Nasiv Malka” we need to beg
the Rebbe for forgiveness, to
correct those practices (whether
in machshava, dibbur or maaseh)
that formed the barrier in the first
place, so that the signals that lead
us to arrive at that conclusion
should be loud and clear.
It is not for naught that the
HaYom Yom of Yud-Alef Nissan
is about making a cheshbon
ha’nefesh, about rectifying those
areas in our life that need to be
rectified. For in order to feel and
to identify with what Yud-Alef
Nissan is all about, “Ich vill mer
nit az dich alein” – all we need
to do is to ensure that our own
reception is static-free.
Undoubtedly, “Anoh Nasiv
Malka” is a lofty concept and a
lofty level. But we don’t need to
create it, but merely to uncover it.
Each of us has to be “Misboded
U’Maaleh Zichronosav.” Then we
can be assured of being purged
of the barriers and interferences,
and get our sights focused back
onto the one and only true and
ultimate goal, “Lifnei Hashem
Yishpoch Sicho!” So that we
can stop – I can stop – getting
distracted by the glitz and glitter
around us and conclude once
again: “Anoh Nasiv Malka!”
* * *
THE GOAL IS CLEAR
– OR IS IT?
Reb Hillel Paritcher was one
of the renowned Chassidim of the
Mitteler Rebbe and the Tzemach
Tzedek (having not actually met
the Alter Rebbe, despite his best
efforts). The Tzemach Tzedek
once said that he has two and a
half Chassidim, with Reb Hillel
being counted as a half because
he is a half Rebbe. The following
is a story about R’ Hillel:
Once, in the middle of the
week, Reb Hillel was suddenly
overcome with a yearning to
visit the Rebbe in Lubavitch
for Shabbos. Now, the trip


The issue is not how to fulfill your duties or how
to earn the label of “Chassidishe Yid.” The issue
is how to carry out our desire to follow “P’nimius Retzono
VeCheftzo HaAmiti.” What does the Rebbe really want
from you? If you know that what he wants from you is to
be crazy about Moshiach, then there is nothing else that
matters.
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from Paritch to Lubavitch was
a considerably long one, and
all of the wagon drivers that he
approached to transport him
there declined, on the grounds
that he had decided too late in
the week for this to be a viable
option.
One of the wagon drivers in
town was a devoted disciple of
Reb Hillel, and was prepared to
do anything for the sake of Reb
Hillel, his Rebbe. Thus, when
Reb Hillel approached him,
he calculated the viability and
decided that, if he exerted himself
and broke all speed limits, and
they were accompanied by the
great merit of the tzaddik Reb
Hillel, then he was prepared
to make the attempt with the
hope of arriving in Lubavitch in
time for Shabbos. However, in
order for there to be even the
smallest chance of success, it
would be crucial – in addition
to him driving at the greatest
speed ever attempted – that they
not encounter any additional
avoidable obstacles or delays.
Therefore, he stipulated with
Reb Hillel that he was prepared
to take him on condition that
the Rebbe (Reb Hillel) would
not get carried away and start
davening b’arichus en route.
This, he knew, was a very real
risk with Reb Hillel, and it would
completely prevent any possibility
of their reaching their destination
in a timely manner.
Reb Hillel agreed to the
condition, and the pair set out.
The driver urged his horses to
breakneck speeds, and it looked
as though, with Hashem’s help,
this amazing feat would be
realized.
But then disaster struck.
During a brief rest stop,
while the baal agala was giving
the horses a much needed (and
deserved) break and snack,
Reb Hillel got off and went
into a clearing in the woods to
daven. Sure enough, he became
completely immersed in his
davening, and lost track of
anything and everything going on
around him. While the baal agala
stood aside in consternation,
the possibilities of them arriving
at their destination in time
for Shabbos – or even getting
back home – dwindled and
disappeared entirely.
The wagon-driver was upset
about this for Reb Hillel’s sake
more than for his own. When
his Rebbe finally finished his
davening, the wagon driver
expressed his astonishment.
“Rebbe,” he exclaimed, “what
have you done? It was you
who was so eager to arrive in
Lubavitch for Shabbos. Now on
account of your davening there
is no longer a chance of our
achieving this!”
“Come now,” R’ Hillel
answered him, “I will answer you
with a story:
There was once a businessman
named Yankel who had
merchandise that he wanted to
sell. Since the biggest market
was in Leipzig, he loaded up a
wagon, and set out on the two-
day journey.
Shortly after he left town, he
met his friend Shmerel traveling
down the same road. “Yankel,”
Shmerel exclaimed, “where are
you headed?”
“I’m on the way to Leipzig to
sell my merchandise.”
“Why that’s wonderful,”
exclaimed Shmerel, “it’s just
what I’m looking for. You see,
I’m starting a business selling
that exact merchandise. I’ll give
you the same price you would get
for them in the market, and I’ll
relieve you of the whole load.”
“Do you think for a minute,”
asked Reb Hillel, “that Yankel
would say ‘I’m sorry I can’t sell
them to you because I’m on
the way to Leipzig?’ Of course
not! He is going to Leipzig
for a purpose, and if he could
achieve those results on the way,
why, surely he would grab the
opportunity with both hands!
“The same is true in my
case,” concluded Reb Hillel.
“I’m going to the Rebbe with a
purpose, that I should be able
to daven, so obviously if those
results are achieved on the way,
‘az es davent zich,’ I won’t throw
away this opportunity because
I had initially been heading to
Lubavitch!”
[According to one version,
I heard that the ending was
that they did indeed arrive in
Lubavitch in time for Shabbos].
WHAT DOES IT
MEAN TO “DAVEN”
Many mashpiim and
Chassidim discussed this story,
raising a simple question: Could
it be that a Chassid on the level
of Reb Hillel saw his travelling
to the Rebbe merely as a means
to an end, merely as an effort to
improve his davening (which,
while it is a spiritual benefit, is a
benefit nonetheless)? Didn’t he
see hiskashrus with the Rebbe
as an end in itself, not a way
of achieving either material or
spiritual advantages (as lofty as
they may be)?
Didn’t Reb Hillel ever learn
the maamer for Yud-Alef Nissan,
about “Anoh Nasiv Malka?”
How can it be that Reb Hillel
could exchange his trip to the
Rebbe for a geshmakeh davening,
as great and sublime as it may
have been?
Many answers and insights
have been suggested, and surely
many true ideas are derived from
the story. The following may be
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one of them: A chassidisher Yid
once addressed the question
saying: “It’s not that Reb
Hillel had a different outlook
on hiskashrus, a different
interpretation of travelling to the
Rebbe than us. Rather, davening
had a different meaning to him
than to us.”
When Reb Hillel spoke
about davening, he wasn’t
speaking about his own spiritual
achievement, about the beautiful
hergeshim that may have
accompanied his davening,
the inspiration that he reached
through it, or the lofty spiritual
heights to which it elevated him.
Reb Hillel was speaking about
the essence of davening (as it is
explained in chassidus), which is
a connection with the Eibeshter.
Indeed, a Chassid’s connection
to the Rebbe is not a means to an
end, even a spiritual one. Rather,
the Rebbe is the “Anochi Omeid
Beineichem L’Bein Elokeichem,”
the memutza – the intermediary –
that brings about the connection
between a Jew and the Alm-ghty.
We do not cling to the Rebbe to
get material benefits, nor even
to feel spiritually uplifted. Our
hiskashrus to the Rebbe is the
only way to be connected to
Elokus.
And this was what he had
achieved with his davening.
It wasn’t the spiritual benefit,
the elevation of his spirit or
awakening of his soul that he was
seeking. Rather, his message to
the simple baal agala was: “I’m
going to the Rebbe to be united
with G-dliness, because – as a
Chassid – I know that that is
the only way to be united with
G-dliness.
“It is therefore inconceivable
that I should tear myself away
from an experience of being
connected to the Eibeshter, of
davening when ‘es davent zich,’
in order to complete the trip that
I had begun to the Rebbe.”
EITHER WAY,
IT’S THE SAME THING
The above can, perhaps, also
illuminate another story, that
(according to what I’ve been
told) the Rebbe once related
during a farbrengen:
Reb Avrohom Pariz was a
prominent Chassid who had
learned in Lubavitch, and who
was known for his extreme
hiskashrus to the Frierdike Rebbe
and later to the Rebbe. The
very close relationship that Reb
Avrohom enjoyed with the Rebbe
began during the nesius of the
Frierdike Rebbe.
Once, after a Tishrei spent
in NY at the Frierdike Rebbe,
Reb Avrohom was preparing to
return home to Eretz Yisroel. As
was his custom, he also went to
take his leave from the Rebbe
(then known as “the Ramash”).
They said their goodbyes, and
Reb Avrohom concluded with his
heartfelt wish “Az mir zullen zich
zen noch amol mitten Rebben”
[we should again see the Rebbe].
“Reb Avrohom,” the Rebbe
said to him, “why don’t you say,
better, ‘mir zollen zich zen mit
Moshiach’n?’”
But Reb Avrohom discounted
the question, saying “Rebbe,
Moshiach, es iz di zelbe zach!”
The simple point of the story
is Reb Avrohom’s belief that the
Rebbe is Moshiach, there being,
therefore, no distinction between
them. But, in light of the above,
there is perhaps (also) a deeper


“Reb Avrohom,” the Rebbe said to him, “why
don’t you say, better, ‘mir zollen zich zen mit
Moshiach’n?’” But Reb Avrohom discounted the question,
saying “Rebbe, Moshiach, es iz di zelbe zach!”
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meaning in the story:
When a Chassid is davening
for Moshiach, he is not
anticipating the material benefits
that we will enjoy then – the
candy-canes that will grow on
our front lawn and the gelt
that will flow “ohn a shiur” –
nor even the spiritual benefits
that we will attain. Rather, the
yearning for Moshiach is for the
era of revelation of G-dliness in
the world, for the fulfillment of
“VeNigleh K’vod Hashem V’Ra’u
Kol Basar Yachdov Ki Pi Havaya
Dibber!”
Thus, the Frierdike Rebbe
related that the Mitteler Rebbe’s
Chassidim “hot nisht oisgefelt
Moshiach” (they weren’t lacking
the coming of Moshiach).
They had the Rebbe, they had
chassidus, and therefore they had
revelation of G-dliness, which is
what Moshiach is all about.
And this – the revelation of
G-dliness – is the essence of what
a Rebbe is all about as well. Thus,
as Reb Avrohom said, Moshiach,
Rebbe, it’s all the same; because
what difference does it make if
I’m yearning for the Rebbe or
yearning for Moshiach? Either
way, I’m yearning for Gilui
Elokus, for the ultimate goal of
“Dira lo Yisborach Ba’tachtonim”
to be realized.
BE A BETTER JEW
We are all eagerly awaiting,
anticipating, preparing and
readying ourselves for the
upcoming Yud-Alef Nissan, the
day when every single Chassid
takes the time to focus on
strengthening his hiskashrus to
the Rebbe. It is a time to consider
the essence of what a Rebbe
is. A Rebbe is the basis of our
connection with the Eibeshter,
the harbinger of the revelation of
G-dliness in our physical world.
Perhaps part of the way for
us to work on strengthening this
connection, on becoming worthy
vessels for this hiskashrus, is by,
simultaneously, enhancing our
connection with the Eibeshter, by
working on our davening, on our
learning, and on being good and
proper Jews.
[Once, the Rebbe told
a bachur that the way to be
mekushar is “by doing what
I do.” The bachur asked the
Rebbe, “What do you do?” The
Rebbe responded: “Ich ler’n un
ich daven” (I learn and daven)!]
Figure out how you can
improve somewhat on your
davening, to make it into more of
an experience of connection with
the Eibeshter. Calculate where
you can increase, in time or in
level, in a shiur in nigleh or in
chassidus. And figure out what
steps you can take to poshut be a
better Jew.
That is undoubtedly a step
in the right direction to being a
better Chassid and mekushar to
the Rebbe!
L’chaim! May we all take
advantage of this auspicious day
to remove the barriers between
our neshama and its source.
As R’ Mendel Futerfas used to
frequently say: “L’chaim, mir
zollen lernen un mir zollen
davenen un mir zollen dinin der
Eibeshter.” May we spend this
Yud-Alef Nissan with the Rebbe,
with Moshiach, with “V’Nigleh
K’vod Hashem,” and with the
hisgalus of Moshiach Tzidkeinu
Teikef U’miyad Mamash!!!
From a written farbrengen directed
towards Alumni of Yeshivas Lubavitch
Toronto
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THE LIBERATION
OF THOUGHT
By Rabbi Heschel Greenberg
MONEY TALKS
This week’s parsha begins
with G-d telling Moses to
command Aaron and his sons
concerning the manner in which
an olah, a “burnt offering,” was
to be offered in the Temple.
“Command Aaron and his sons,
saying, ‘This is the law of the
burnt offering. It is the burnt
offering that may burn on the
Altar all night until morning. The
Altar’s fire shall burn with it.’”
A question has been raised as
to why the Torah uses the more
imperative word “command”
instead of the more common
and more passive expression
of “speak” or “say.” Why did
Aaron have to be commanded?
Wasn’t G-d’s request of him to
do something enough for him to
have fulfilled G-d’s will? Indeed,
even a slight hint would have
sufficed for Aaron!
Rashi, noting this question,
provides three explanations:
“The expression tzav-
command always denotes
urging on for the present and
also for future generations.”
In other words, when the term
“command” is used it suggests
immediacy. This is a command
that a) may not be delayed, and
b) should be imparted to future
generations as well.
If the Torah would have
used a less assertive expression
it could have been construed
that it was not quite so urgent
and its implementation might be
delayed.
Furthermore, though Aaron
did not have to be told in such
strong terms to fulfill this
obligation, his descendants might
have treated it less seriously.
By commanding Aaron, G-d
was thinking about the future
generations who might need
more prodding.
Rashi then provides a third
interpretation in the name of
Rabbi Shimon:
“Scripture needs especially
to urge a person to do a Mitzvah
when it involves a severe financial
loss” (literally: “A lacking wallet
or pouch.”) Commentators
explain that the regular offerings
in the Temple were very costly.
The prohibitive cost of these
offerings might have caused
Aaron and his sons to be lax in
bringing them. The Torah thus
employs the word “command”
to ensure that the integrity
of this offering would not be
compromised.
The simple understanding
of this concern is that,
subconsciously, even a person of
high spiritual stature who is not
interested in accumulating money
might, nevertheless, cut corners
in the execution of his duties in
order to save some money.
THE THREEFOLD POWER
OF THOUGHT
A question still remains. Why
does the Torah choose to impart
these lessons specifically in the
context of the olah-the burnt
offering? After all, there are many
other offerings and observances
that can be quite costly. The fact
that the Torah chose to make this
admonition with respect to the
burnt offering is instructive.
There is another deeper
explanation of the three reasons
as to why Aaron had to be
commanded that relates to the
spiritual nature of the burnt
offering.
A burnt offering, our Sages
tell us (Midrash Tanchuma), was
to atone for improper thoughts.
The reason improper
thoughts need atonement can be
understood on three levels:
First, the thought itself,
though appearing harmless, is
deleterious to the soul. Of the
three “garments” of our soul,
thought, speech and action,
thought is the closest to our soul.
And, in some respects,
improper thoughts can cause
more damage to the soul than
improper speech and/or action.
Second, an improper thought
may be a symptom of a diseased
soul that is in dire need of
refinement. And even if the
thought itself appears harmless, it
can be an indicator of a decadent
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inner personality. It may be a
telltale sign of some deep rooted
decay that must be cleansed and
perhaps uprooted before it can
spread and corrupt the person
entirely.
Third, a negative thought is
like a soul without a body. And
the nature of a soul is to find a
body within which it can express
itself. A writer has to express
his or her thoughts in writing.
An artist needs to draw, and an
inventor has to invent. Creative
people—people who are into
thinking—need to express
themselves. When a person
harbors positive thoughts he/she
seeks ways of expressing those
thoughts in positive speech and
action, giving the soul of their
thoughts a body. Conversely,
a negative thought seeks and
usually finds a way of expressing
itself in ways which lead to
negative speech and action.
We can now understand
the three approaches as to why
there was a need to command
Aaron concerning this offering
specifically.
PERISH THE THOUGHT
When a person harbors a
negative thought, he/she thinks
that they have all the time in the
world to deal with it. After all, the
thought will not harm anyone.
Why rush into bringing this
offering that deals specifically
with eradicating negative
thoughts?
The answer to this challenge
is that there is a need to rush
because the negative thought is
not innocuous. It’s “rubbing”
against the soul and causing
damage to it. And since the
damage can be severe, immediate
attention is needed and a sense
of urgency must therefore be
communicated to the people.
However, one could argue
that this is true for someone
whose soul is extremely sensitive
and pure. Like expensive silk, any
contact with something coarse
can damage the delicate nature of
the fabric. Not so, one will argue,
if one’s soul is far from such
holiness. A little scratch or dirt on
a crude animal skin will do it no
harm. Aaron was an example of
a silken soul. Perhaps he needed
to be exhorted about the offering
that removes the blemish caused
by an improper thought, but his
children wouldn’t necessarily
need it as urgently.
The answer to this challenge
is that, while it may be true that
the stain caused by the negative
thought is not as serious for
someone with a less radiant soul,
one must still feel the urgency
to remove that blemish. And
this urgency is for precisely the
reason they think they don’t need
to deal with it. The reason why
the thought is considered not to
be a major problem is because
their souls are unrefined. That is
why they harbor these negative
thoughts. Therefore, it is crucial
to remedy the situation by getting
to the root of the problem and
bringing refinement to one’s
soul. Without treatment of the
core problem, the person’s inner
decay can totally destroy them.
Less refined people are even in
greater need of atoning for their
thoughts. It is like the person
who develops external lesions
that can be a sign that there is a
malignancy beneath the surface.
While the lesion itself will not
harm them, the underlying cause
of it left untreated can.
And then there is a third
reason, Rabbi Shimon’s, as to
why urgent language must be
used to inspire conscientiousness
in dealing with negative thoughts.
Rabbi Shimon’s thesis
translated literally yields the
following:
“Scripture needs especially
to urge a person when there is
a lack of a kis (pouch or wallet,
implying financial loss).” This
has been understood, as noted
above, to refer to a person who
will have to incur great expense
to perform a Mitzvah and he
needs an extra boost not to
skimp or delay its performance.
A deeper explanation is that, as
mentioned above, a detached
thought is like a soul that seeks
a body, a receptacle, a pouch, a
way to express itself in a tangible
way.
Rabbi Shimon disabuses us
of the notion that we cannot be
affected by negative thoughts
because they are only thoughts,
and as long as our actions are
pure and holy we are safe. If
you don’t bring this offering
that changes the way you
think and which elevates your
thought process (the word for
burnt offering is olah which
means elevation), it will cause
your thoughts to materialize
in the world of action as well.
Thus, whenever there is a lack
of a body—when a bodiless
thought hovers in our mind—
we must bring this offering that
cleanses and refines our thought
processes.
THE SOUL OF TORAH
Rabbi Shimon, the author of
the classic Kabbala work called
the Zohar, epitomized the idea
of not neglecting our soul. True,
Judaism places the greatest
emphasis on action, but it does
so without neglecting to deal with
our inner thoughts and mindset.
Rabbi Shimon’s teaching
here—that has been applied
to negative thoughts—is also
operative with regard to positive
ones. We must not be content
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PARSHA THOUGHT
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with the body of Judaism; we
must infuse it also with soul, with
holy thoughts. And the means
to achieve this refinement of
our thoughts is through Rabbi
Shimon’s teachings of Kabbala,
especially as they have been
articulated and made accessible
to everyone through the teachings
of Chassidus, the soul of Torah.
EXILE = NEGATIVE
THOUGHTS
Exile conditions generate
negative and pessimistic
thoughts. We cannot allow such
thoughts to remain unchecked;
otherwise, they can harm us in
three ways:
First, an exile thought and
mindset causes damage to our
soul. Second, it is a sign that
our soul is ailing and needs
immediate attention. Third, it
leads to exile-tainted speech and
action as well.
Conversely, when we fill our
minds with positive and holy
thoughts, if we try to think in
spiritually sophisticated ways,
we cleanse our soul and, most
importantly, our soul then seeks
expression in the physical world
as well. The good thoughts
bring good results. Thinking in
a Moshiach and Redemption
oriented fashion is the instrument
that makes it a reality.
SHABBAT HAGADOL:
LIBERATING THOUGHT
BEFORE SPEECH AND
ACTION
The above analysis of the
power of thought can explain the
significance of Shabbos HaGadol
– the Great Shabbat – the
Shabbat that precedes Passover.
Many explanations have been
given for the designation of this
Shabbat as the Great Shabbat.
One way of explaining it is that
Passover is a Holiday of the
liberation of speech and action.
The Arizal states that the word
Pesach actually means “a mouth
that speaks.” On Passover we
experience the liberation of our
speech and we are physically
liberated from bondage as well.
That is the “body” of
Passover.
But before we acquire the
body of Passover—the physical
aspect of it—we preface it with
its soul. Shabbat HaGadol is the
soul of Redemption. It is the day
which introduces us to a mature
way of thinking (which is the
definition of the word gadol),
that takes us out of our immature
galus mentality. And this becomes
the catalyst to liberate our speech
and our actions with the ultimate
Redemption. May we celebrate
this Passover—the freedom of all
of our faculties—with Moshiach
in the Third Beis HaMikdash!


A negative thought is like a soul without a body.
And the nature of a soul is to find a body within
which it can express itself. A writer has to express his or
her thoughts in writing. An artist needs to draw, and an
inventor has to invent. Creative people need to express
themselves. When a person harbors positive thoughts he/
she seeks ways of expressing those thoughts in positive
speech and action, giving the soul of their thoughts a
body. Conversely, a negative thought seeks and usually
finds a way of expressing itself in ways which lead to
negative speech and action.
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MATZA FROM THE REBBE
This is a story about shmura matza that was
given out by Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Freiman,
which led to momentous changes in the lives of
a local family – a special story of matza, a dream,
an apartment and a baby.
By Shai Gefen
Much has been said about
the special, spiritual quality of
matza. The Rebbe often quotes
the Zohar which describes matza
as “food of faith” and “food of
healing.” This is why the Rebbe
asked that shmura matza be
distributed so that every Jew will
be able to eat at least a k’zayis on
Pesach night.
There are many special
stories that resulted from the
Rebbe’s Mivtza Matza, but the
following story, which took
place in Zichron Yaakov, home
of the shliach Rabbi Yosef
Yitzchok Freiman, is particularly
outstanding.
A BRIS AND A HISTORY
In Teves 5761/2001, Rabbi
Yossi Freiman was invited to
a bris mila, taking place in
the Yishuv Mevo Modiin. The
Ashuach family was celebrating
the bris of their newborn baby.
The Ashuachs were friends of the
Chabad house and had lived in
Zichron Yaakov until two years
prior to the story.
When Rabbi Freiman arrived
a bit late to the bris, he was
sure the bris had already taken
place and that he would find the
guests eating the seudas mitzva.
To his great surprise, he found
the crowd waiting expectantly.
The baby’s father, Menachem
Ashuach, a former Air Force
pilot, fell upon him with open
arms. “Aha, here you are. We
have been waiting for you. You
are honored to be the sandak for
our dear son.” Rabbi Freiman
hadn’t dreamed of receiving this
honor.
Rabbi Freiman soon learned
that the bris was the final event
in a series of miracles that led the
Ashuach family to become more
involved in Judaism and Chabad.
Rabbi Freiman explained how
this came to be:
The Ashuach family lived on
one of the northern kibbutzim
until they moved to Zichron
Yaakov. At a certain point, they
began taking tentative steps
in the direction of religious
observance. They were a very
intelligent family who became
more involved in Jewish life with
a great awareness of every step
they were taking. Leaving the
past was done slowly and with
great thought. The process took
a number of years until they were
finally fully committed to an
authentic Jewish lifestyle.
When they moved to Zichron
Yaakov, they began attending
the shiurim given at the Chabad
house. Both the husband and
wife were regular participants.
It was shortly before Pesach
5759/1999 and Rabbi Freiman
was busy with Mivtza Matza,
among the many other things
he had to do for Yom Tov. He
prepared dozens of packages of
shmura matza for friends and
mekuravim of the Chabad house.
One evening, he made the
rounds, distributing the shmura
matza. This was the first time
the Ashuach family had heard of
the idea of shmura matza. It was
then that they had just begun
taking their first steps towards
religious observance. Rabbi
Freiman gave them three matzos
along with an explanation about
the importance of eating shmura
matza in particular, which is
handmade and made l’sheim
mitzva. He reminded them to
sell their chametz, said a warm
goodbye, and went on his way.
The phone rang early the next
morning in the Freiman home. It
was an emotional Mrs. Ashuach
who asked, nay pleaded, for a
piece of shmura matza for every
member of her household.
“I could not understand
what had prompted this urgent
call,” recalls Rabbi Freiman. “I
asked her, ‘I was at your home
yesterday and you were satisfied
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with what I gave you. What
changed overnight, and why the
urgency?’
“The woman said, ‘The
Lubavitcher Rebbe appeared to
me in a dream last night and said
that Rabbi Freiman had come to
give us matzos not only because
he knew us, but because he is an
emissary of the Rebbe. Another
thing that happened in the dream
is that the Rebbe gave me a pen
and said: Today you will find the
apartment you want to buy in
Yerushalayim.’
“I understood the reference
to an apartment since I knew
that they had been looking for
a long time for an apartment in
Yerushalayim, but hadn’t found
anything suitable. At the Yud
Shvat farbrengen of that year at
the Chabad house, Mr. Ashuach
had written a letter to the Rebbe
asking for a bracha to find an
apartment in Yerushalayim. We
had put the note in a volume of
Igros Kodesh and had opened it
at random to a page with three
short letters about the special
quality of matza which is food
of faith. At the time, I couldn’t
explain what the Rebbe’s answer
had to do with her request.
“‘So that is why I immediately
called you to ask for matza for
everyone,’ she concluded.”
“FOR US YOU ARE THE
REBBE’S SHLIACH”
Rabbi Freiman continued:
“The woman was very
excited. I said I would be happy
to provide them with more
matza. I suggested she stop by
the Chabad house that evening.
She showed up that night and
was even more excited than she
was that morning, for her dream
had come true that very day!”
“‘This afternoon,’ said Mrs.
Ashuach, ‘a real estate agent
called my husband to suggest
an apartment in Yerushalayim.
After inquiring about the details
and the price, it sounded like this
was the apartment we had been
looking for all these months. My
husband called to discuss it and
I told him this is definitely our
apartment after the Rebbe said so
in my dream.’ The contract was
signed the very same day.
“They bought the apartment
in Nachalaot. The Rebbe’s
answer together with the dream
was a significant factor in the
family’s getting more involved in
Judaism and Chabad.
“On Erev Pesach 5760, I
heard a knock at the door. To
my surprise, it was the Ashuach
couple who said, ‘We came to get
shmura matza again this year.’
I couldn’t help but ask them,
‘Last year you lived in Zichron
Yaakov, but this year you live in
Yerushalayim! Is there no shmura
matza in Yerushalayim?!’
“They said, ‘The Rebbe told
us in the dream that you are his
shliach and so we came to get
matza from you. Although we
don’t live in Zichron Yaakov
anymore, to us you are still the
Rebbe’s shliach.’”
SURPRISE ENDING
At the end of Kislev 5761 the
Ashuachs called Rabbi Freiman
to tell him about the recent birth
of their son and the bris that was
to take place in a few days. The
boy was born nine months after
Pesach, when they had eaten the
shmura matza. At the seuda, the
father told his guests:
“For many years we wanted
more children. Before the Pesach
of last year we decided to get
shmura matza from you, because
we knew that in the merit of the
matza that the Rebbe’s shliach
gives, we would have a son.
Indeed, nine months passed
since that Pesach and now we are
celebrating the bris.”
Today, the Ashuachs consider
themselves a fervent Chassidic
family. They don’t make a move
without asking the Rebbe through
the Igros Kodesh and receiving
his bracha. “The miracles roll
about under the table,” they say.
From right to left: Deputy Mayor – Mr. Nissim Sharabi; the rav of the moshava – R’
Abramovsky; R’ Elimelech Shachar; R’ Y.Y. Freiman; R’ Uri Troyem, and R’ Menachem Ashuach
Issue 829 • 8£l5 HO5MlACM 27
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THE REBBE IS
WAITING FOR
US FOR TWENTY
YEARS!
Knowing that the Rebbe is with us and directing
world events towards the Geula, makes us long
to see him. This longing motivates us to action
to bring about the hisgalus!
By Rabbi Naftali Estulin, Shliach, Los Angeles
After I left Russia, I once
spoke with R’ Mendel Futerfas
and expressed my pain over not
having used my time in Russia
to learn more. R’ Mendel gazed
at me with his wise look and
declared: You are a liar!
Don’t you believe me?! I
asked in astonishment. R’ Mendel
responded sharply: If your lack
of learning really bothered you,
you wouldn’t be sitting now and
talking to me about it. You would
be sitting and learning!
I recall this story when we
start to talk about how painful it
is that so-and-so many years have
passed that we haven’t seen the
Rebbe. I spoke with a shliach this
week who expressed his anguish
over twenty years having passed
since 27 Adar I 5752 and we still
don’t have our Rebbe back. How
much more can we take?
I remembered R’ Mendel’s
razor sharp words and said to
him: Maybe instead of thinking
about ourselves, we should think
about the Rebbe. How much
more can the Rebbe take? Twenty
years have passed since he asked
that all aspects of shlichus be
permeated with Geula. How
come, in your Chabad house,
there isn’t even one shiur on
inyanei Moshiach and Geula?
It is twenty years now that the
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Rebbe is waiting for us, you and
me!
And instead of taking action,
we prefer rolling our eyes and
tsk-tsking about how pained we
are.
***
Twenty years have passed
since 27 Adar I 5752 and we
can look at this passage of years
in two, opposing ways. One way
is to think about ourselves and
focus on the negative. It is twenty
years that we don’t see the Rebbe,
don’t hear sichos and maamarim,
don’t receive dollars.
Another way is to think about
the Rebbe and focus on the
positive by looking at what is
happening in the world around
us and seeing the momentous
changes that the Rebbe is
bringing about in the world,
especially this past year. Day by
day, the Rebbe is transforming
the world into a better place and
advancing humanity to the era of
the Geula.
This way of thinking takes on
a whole different dimension when
you learn the Rebbe’s sichos of
5751-5752 and see the amazing
expressions he uses that illustrate
how he is running world events.
It might sound paradoxical,
but the person who believes that
the Rebbe is here with us is the
one who yearns for the Rebbe
more than anyone else, even
more than the Chassid who feels
that the Rebbe left us twenty
years ago.
As the Alter Rebbe describes
the tremendous closeness of the
Aseres Yemei T’shuva that “it is
like a son who is near his father
in his house but the father hides
from him so that the son will
focus on the love and reveal his
love in greater measure. When
the son recognizes that the
father is here and is hiding from
him, then surely his love will
grow in greater measure.”
It is when we know that the
Rebbe is really with us here in the
world and playing an active role
that we yearn for the full hisgalus!
Such yearning is healthy and
real and spurs a person on so that
he doesn’t long for the past but
takes action to hasten the future.
This is the touchstone for
genuine longing: when the
yearning leads to action in
accordance with the Rebbe’s
horaos, including and especially
inyanei Moshiach and Geula.
This yearning focuses on the
future as the Rebbe said a
number of times, that a Jew needs
to yearn for the future Geula. Or
like the special term used in the
sicha of 11 Adar 5752 that there
is “longing and yearning to reach
the month of Nissan already in
which they were redeemed and
in which they will be redeemed in
the future.”
The words “twenty years”
shouldn’t bring us down but
should wake us up!
Yechi Adoneinu Moreinu
V’Rabbeinu Melech HaMoshiach
L’olam Va’ed!


How much more can the Rebbe take? Twenty
years have passed since he asked that all aspects
of shlichus be permeated with Geula. How come, in your
Chabad house, there isn’t even one shiur on inyanei
Moshiach and Geula?
h j h t s u b h b u n u r b u u r c b u n k l v n a h j k g u k o u g s
CHI TAS
INYONEI GEULA
& MOSHIACH
RAMBAM
SHIURIM IN LIKUTEI
SICHOS KODESH
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LIVE SHIURIM 0NLINE
Anywhere, Anytime !
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THE REBBE SENDS
TWO TORAHS ON
YUD-ALEF NISSAN
On 11 Nissan, the Rebbe sent two Sifrei Torah
to a new neighborhood called Nachalat Har
Chabad, a neighborhood in Kiryat Malachi. On
Chol HaMoed Pesach there was a festive event
that was attended by Chassidim from all over the
country. * Why did this new neighborhood merit
such a special gift? Why two Sifrei Torah? * “If
He had given us the Torah … Dayeinu.”
By Shneur Zalman Berger
CHOL HAMOED
PESACH 5729/1969
The fledgling neighborhood,
Nachalat Har Chabad in Kiryat
Malachi, looked festive and
it wasn’t only because it was
Pesach. It was no ordinary day,
for on this day, two Sifrei Torah
that were sent by the Rebbe for
the new settlers would be brought
to the local Chabad shul.
Word got around about how
the Rebbe regarded these two
Sifrei Torah in a most unusual
fashion, the likes of which had
never been seen in Lubavitch. It
was said that the Rebbe gave his
sirtuk to Rabbi Chadakov so he
would wear it when he escorted
the Sifrei Torah to the airport.
This in itself was enough to show
how highly the Rebbe regarded
these Sifrei Torah.
In an atmosphere of great joy,
with Chassidic song and dance,
the new residents of Nachala
escorted the Sifrei Torah that the
Rebbe had sent on Erev Pesach to
the shul which, at the time, was
nothing but a shed. Residents of
Kiryat Malachi gathered in the
afternoon in the central plaza
of the town, opposite the local
municipality buildings. They
were joined by hundreds of
Lubavitcher Chassidim who came
from Kfar Chabad, Lud, and
Yerushalayim. Children of the
elementary schools in Lud and
Kfar Chabad led the way carrying
torches as they walked to the new
neighborhood. Chassidim danced
alongside Russian immigrants.
It was an extraordinary Pesach
indeed.
KIRYAT MALACHI
HACHNASAS SEIFER
TORAH ON PESACH
Very few places had the z’chus
of receiving Sifrei Torah from the
Rebbe. None of us knows why a
certain place had this privilege
over another. As such, the goal
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in this article is not to speculate
but to survey those places that
received Sifrei Torah from the
Rebbe.
***
The Nachalat Har Chabad
neighborhood was founded at the
Rebbe’s behest at the beginning
of Adar 5729/1969. The Rebbe
was involved in every step that
was taken, and he constantly
encouraged those involved in
the project. The Rebbe also sent
monetary aid to Nachala, but
without a doubt, the most special
gift was the two Sifrei Torah
that the Rebbe gave the new
neighborhood.
Preparations for the shipment
began with the selection of two
Sifrei Torah that were picked
from the many Sifrei Torah in the
Aron Kodesh in 770. They were
brought to the Rebbe’s room
and mantles were made for them
upon which was embroidered:
The Chabad shul in Nachalat
Har Chabad in Eretz Yisroel,
may it soon be rebuilt. Sent by:
K’vod K’dushas Admur shlita
(Lubavitch).
The two Sifrei Torah were
very different from each other.
One was small and it had a white
mantle sewn for it. The other
Torah was quite large and had a
black mantle made for it. When
the mantles were finished, the
Sifrei Torah were returned to the
Aron Kodesh.
Why were two Sifrei Torah
sent? This question was posed
by the Rebbe’s brother-in-law,
Rashag, during the Pesach meal
that took place at the Rebbe
Rayatz’s home. The Rebbe
explained very simply that the
Sifrei Torah were sent for Pesach,
when there is a need to take out
two Sifrei Torah.
The Rebbe instructed that
an entourage of ten Chassidim
escort the Sifrei Torah to
Kennedy airport, three of whom
were to be members of the Kollel
in Crown Heights. The Rebbe
said that Rabbi Zalman Shimon
Torah arrives in Yerushalayim.
Front row from right to left: R’ Zushe Partisan, R’ Yaakov Yehuda Majeski and R’ Avrohom Zaltzman
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Dworkin, the rav of Crown
Heights, should choose the three
men.
The transfer was set for
Yud-Alef Nissan, the Rebbe’s
birthday. On that day, the Rebbe
went to the Ohel. Before he left,
he went to the large zal of 770
together with Rabbi Binyomin
Gorodetzky and his secretaries,
Rabbi Chadakov, Rabbi Klein and
Rabbi Groner. The Rebbe went
over to the Aron Kodesh where
the gabbai of the beis midrash,
Rabbi Yochanan Gordon was
standing. The Rebbe gave him
$200 towards the purchase of the
Sifrei Torah that had been chosen
ahead of time.
The Rebbe smiled at Rabbi
Gordon and blessed him, “You
should live until Moshiach.”
One Torah was given by the
Rebbe to Rabbi Chadakov and
the other one was given to Rabbi
Gorodetzky. They brought them
up to the small shul on the first
floor of 770 (the small zal).
When they entered the shul,
the Sifrei Torah were given to
the Rebbe, who passed them to
Rabbi Chadakov who put them in
the Aron Kodesh.
Then the Rebbe went to the
Ohel. When he returned, he
davened Mincha. After Mincha,
the Sifrei Torah were removed
from the Aron Kodesh. With the
Rebbe wearing Shabbos clothing
and a gartel, he accompanied the
Sifrei Torah until Rabbi Klein’s
car. The elder Chassidim, Rabbi
Eliyahu Yochil Simpson, Rabbi
Shlomo Aharon Kazarnovsky,
and Rabbi Zalman Duchman
were already standing around
the car. Many Chassidim and
bachurim stood at a distance.
Rabbi Manny Wolf, a student
in 770 at the time who was
present and even photographed
the Rebbe, wrote in his diary
what happened next:
“Rabbi Klein opened the car
doors and put the Sifrei Torah
in the car. Rabbi Gorodetzky
was going to travel with the
scrolls to Eretz Yisroel and
Rabbi Chadakov was going to
accompany them to the airport
and then return. I saw the Rebbe
talking to Rabbi Chadakov
and giving him a key. It turned
out that the Rebbe told Rabbi
Chadakov to escort the Sifrei
Torah while wearing a sirtuk.
A letter from the Rebbe that was sent along
with the Sifrei Torah to Nachalat Har Chabad
The letter to Nachalat Har Chabad
in the Rebbe’s handwriting
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“As is known, Rabbi
Chadakov wore a suit during
the week, so the Rebbe told him
to go to his (the Rebbe’s) room
and take the Rebbe’s sirtuk! The
Rebbe gave him the key to his
room so that upon his return
from the airport, if the Rebbe was
not in his room, Rabbi Chadakov
could return the sirtuk.”
The entourage left for the
airport. The crowd escorted
the car until the corner. At the
airport, Rabbi Nosson Gurary
reviewed a maamer Chassidus.
At Ben Gurion airport in Lud,
a delegation of rabbanim and
distinguished people was waiting
to welcome Rabbi Gorodetzky
and the Sifrei Torah.
Anash from all over Eretz
Yisroel and the residents
of Nachalat Har Chabad in
particular were thrilled to hear
about the two Sifrei Torah that
the Rebbe had sent to them.
Along with the Sifrei Torah,
the Rebbe sent a special letter
in which he wrote that he did
not have to explain why he had
sent the Sifrei Torah but quoted
a letter from the Rebbe Rayatz
at length, from the time he had
sent Sifrei Torah to the founders
of Kfar Chabad. In that letter,
the Rebbe Rayatz wrote that
one needs to contemplate the
Divine Providence which brought
the settlers to the land that has
the eyes of G-d upon it, and
the Torah would be a sign and
reminder to arrange their lives
according to the Torah and to
raise their sons and daughters
in the way of the Torah without
compromising.
The Hachnasas Sifrei Torah
celebration took place on 19
Nissan, the fourth day of Chol
HaMoed and was attended by
local Lubavitchers as well as
The Rebbe accompanying the Torah that was sent to Kiryat Malachi.
(In picture on right): From right to left: R’ Simpson, R’ Kazarnovsky, the Rebbe and the Torah. Photograph by Manny Wolf
Sifrei Torah held by residents at the Hachnasas Sifrei Torah in Nachala
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Chassidim from all over the
country. The next day, an article
appeared in the Yediot Acharonot
about the event.
Some years later, a shul was
built for the Chabad Chassidim
and the members of the Georgian
k’hilla continued davening in
the old shul. The large Torah
remained in the old shul and the
small Torah was brought to the
new Chabad shul. Over time,
many problems arose with this
Torah. It was just a few years
ago that money was raised to
correct it. After much work, the
Torah was fixed and a crown
was purchased for it that is just
like the crown on the small Torah
in 770, which is known as “the
Rebbe’s Seifer Torah.”
The high point of the year is
on Simchas Torah when everyone
wants to dance a hakafa with it,
although some have to suffice
with a kiss of respect for the
Torah that was given as a gift
from the Rebbe.
KIRYAT GAT
TWO SIFREI TORAH FOR
ROMANIAN JEWS
The Mayor of Kiryat Gat,
Gideon Naor, who helped
found Yeshivas Tomchei
T’mimim in Kiryat Gat, was in
America during the summer of
5721/1961. He had a yechidus
with the Rebbe in which he asked
for help with the religious needs
Yediot Acharonot report on 20 Nissan 5729 The Rebbe’s Seifer Torah in the Aron Kodesh in Nachalat Har Chabad
CELEBRATION IN HONOR OF THE REBBE’S TORAH
The question has been raised: Does one celebrate a Hachnasas Seifer
Torah even for an old Torah that was already used and is now being
brought to a new shul?
This question was addressed by Rabbi Yosef Simcha Ginsberg in
Hiskashrus #504. Here is the quote regarding the Sifrei Torah that were
sent by the Rebbeim:
“Rabbi Yitzchok Yehuda Yaroslavsky, mara d’asra of Nachalat Har
Chabad, said that when a Torah from the Rebbe Rayatz arrived in Kfar
Chabad upon its founding in 5709, they held a Hachnasas Seifer Torah
even though it was an old Torah. So too, in 5729, with the founding of
the Nachalat Har Chabad neighborhood of Kiryat Malachi, when two
Sifrei Torah were sent by the Rebbe which were both old, all details of the
customs of a Hachnasas Seifer Torah were observed (except for keeping
pieces of the mantle as a segula).
“In 5729, it was with the knowledge and consent of the Rebbe [and they
probably emended the Sifrei Torah before they were sent]. Perhaps [Rabbi
Groner notes] this should be done only when Chassidim receive a Torah
from the Rebbe, at which time there is good reason to make hakafos and
an all out event, of course.”
CELEBRATION IN HONOR OF THE REBBE’S TORAH
The question has been raised: Does one celebrate a Hachnasas Seifer
Torah even for an old Torah that was already used and is now being
brought to a new shul?
This question was addressed by Rabbi Yosef Simcha Ginsberg in
Hiskashrus #504. Here is the quote regarding the Sifrei Torah that were
sent by the Rebbeim:
“Rabbi Yitzchok Yehuda Yaroslavsky, mara d’asra of Nachalat Har
Chabad, said that when a Torah from the Rebbe Rayatz arrived in Kfar
Chabad upon its founding in 5709, they held a Hachnasas Seifer Torah
even though it was an old Torah. So too, in 5729, with the founding of
the Nachalat Har Chabad neighborhood of Kiryat Malachi, when two
Sifrei Torah were sent by the Rebbe which were both old, all details of the
customs of a Hachnasas Seifer Torah were observed (except for keeping
pieces of the mantle as a segula).
“In 5729, it was with the knowledge and consent of the Rebbe [and they
probably emended the Sifrei Torah before they were sent]. Perhaps [Rabbi
Groner notes] this should be done only when Chassidim receive a Torah
from the Rebbe, at which time there is good reason to make hakafos and
an all out event, of course.”
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of his constituents.
Upon his return to Eretz
Yisroel, the Rebbe wrote to him
that right after their conversation,
he had begun making efforts on
behalf of the shuls of his town
and he had managed to obtain
two Sifrei Torah. There were
delays in the shipment of the
Torah scrolls, which is why the
Rebbe wrote him that despite his
alacrity, difficulties had arisen in
getting the Sifrei Torah to their
destination.
On 16 Adar I, the Rebbe
wrote him a letter that starts off
about an “Evening with Chabad”
in Kiryat Gat, at the end of which
he writes about the Sifrei Torah:
With sadness and great
dismay I understood from your
letter that as of now, the two
Sifrei Torah which were already
sent have still not reached you.
Perhaps they were delayed by
the [government] offices. In any
case, I immediately wrote to our
activists in Eretz Yisroel with
the request that they look into
the matter and hasten things as
much as possible. (Igros Kodesh
vol. 22, letter # 8388)
The Sifrei Torah eventually
arrived in Kiryat Gat. Thus, the
Rebbe helped the residents of the
small town, most of whom were
new immigrants from Romania
and Morocco.
MOSHAVIM
AND KIBBUTZIM
“CAN WE PUBLICIZE THAT
THE REBBE DONATED
FOUR SIFREI TORAH?”
In 5725/1965, Rabbi
Menachem HaKohen, rabbi of
the Labor Settlements made a
special visit to the Rebbe. Various
issues came up that he was
involved in. He raised the topic of
Sifrei Torah which were lacking
on the kibbutzim and moshavim
of Eretz Yisroel. Rabbi Cohen
later wrote what happened:
“There was a dearth of
Sifrei Torah on the moshavim
and kibbutzim, so I went to the
United States to gather Sifrei
Torah. The Rebbe received me
with unusual warmth and asked:
‘Reb Menachem, what brings you
here this time?’ I told the Rebbe
about the Sifrei Torah I was
trying to gather. The Rebbe rang
the bell and asked (probably of
Rabbi Chadakov) to send Yudel
in. Rabbi Krinsky came in and
the Rebbe said to him: ‘I would
like you to give Reb Menachem
four Sifrei Torah.’
“Within a short time, I was
given four Sifrei Torah, properly
Rabbi Yaakov Peles presenting the Rebbe with a key to
Kiryat Gat at a farbrengen
Right: Mayor of Kiryat Gat, Gideon Naor, giving a key to the
city to R’ Yaakov Peles for him to give to the Rebbe
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packed [for transport]. The
Rebbe said: ‘You can do as you
see fit with the Sifrei Torah,
giving them to a place that needs
them, as you like. However, I
have a request – since you told
me that a shul was opened in
Degania, I would be very pleased
if one Torah is given there.’
“Then I asked the Rebbe
whether it was all right to
publicize that he donated four
Sifrei Torah to us. The Rebbe
smiled and said: ‘That which
is forbidden to do in public is
forbidden in private. You can
publicize it as you see fit, but you
need to weigh it. True, on the
one hand, it can inspire others to
contribute. On the other hand, it
can prevent certain others from
doing so.’”
***
The Rebbe’s response was
prescient, for within a short time
a letter was sent by Yosef Dekel,
a public figure with close ties to
Chabad who complained about
the decision to give Sifrei Torah
to certain places. In a letter of 27
Nissan 5725, the Rebbe told him
it wasn’t he who decided which
places would receive the Sifrei
Torah:
Apparently you received
incorrect information, for
when I spoke with Rabbi
HaKohen regarding the Sifrei
Torah that were being sent to
Eretz Yisroel … I emphasized
explicitly that I do not want
to differentiate between one
moshav and another, and one
kfar and another. It should
just be a place where the Torah
will be used. I emphasized
explicitly that I would not give
it to a certain mosad or kfar so
that there would be no room to
find any prejudice in my words
which is the opposite of my
intention.
I asked that when they give
it to a certain place, it should
be emphasized that it wasn’t
I who sent it to that particular
place, for that is not my issue.
They could only say that the
Torah was sent from Lubavitch
headquarters here, but not that
it was decided ahead of time
to which location and mosad
it would be sent, since that
would automatically negate
other mosdos or locations …
Obviously, a Seifer Torah sent
from here, or any Seifer Torah
for that matter, should not be
utilized for such things. (Igros
Kodesh vol. 23, p. 377)
EIN CHAROD
– ICHUD
What did Rabbi Menachem
HaKohen do with the Sifrei
Torah that he was given? We do
not have a precise answer to that
question, but one of the s’farim
was sent to Kibbutz Ein Charod
– Ichud.
Some background: At
Kibbutz Ein Charod there was a
shul, but a bitter political debate
erupted which split the kibbutz
in two: Kibbutz Ein Charod-
Ichud and Kibbutz Ein Charod-
M’uchad. The shul building was
in “M’uchad” while a temporary
structure was built in “Ichud” for
a shul.
Some of the members of
“Ichud” wanted a permanent
structure for a shul, but this
engendered another acrimonious
argument that resulted in
reactions for and against each
side in the national newspapers.
The dedication of the shul finally
took place on 16 Teves 5729
at which time several Sifrei
Torah were brought to the shul,
including one from the Rebbe.
Two days after the celebration,
a report appeared in one of the
newspapers:
“The first Beit Knesset
(synagogue) in the Kibbutz
movement in the Jezreel Valley
was dedicated on Monday, in
Kibbutz Ein Charod-Ichud.
The Beit Knesset was founded
through the initiative of
members of the farmstead as
a gesture towards the parents
of those members who are still
particular about tradition and
the observance of mitzvos. The
driving force was the member
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of the farming commune, Ezriel
Doron... Four Torah scrolls
were placed inside the Aron
HaKodesh, two of which were
purchased by parents of members
and two that were received
from the Department for the
Provision of Religious Needs
of the Histadrut (national labor
union). Of those, one was a gift
of the Lubavitcher Rebbe from
the United States.”
Ezriel Doron a”h, who was
the spirit behind the founding
of the shul and who received
the great gift from the Rebbe,
maintained the shul over the next
many years and prepared the
boys of the kibbutz and the area
for their bar mitzva.
YERUSHALAYIM
THE TZEMACH TZEDEK
SHUL
We’ll close with the story of
the Torah that was sent to the
Tzemach Tzedek shul, an old
Chabad shul in the Old City of
Yerushalayim. After the Six-Day
War, Chabad Chassidim returned
to the shul; upon the Rebbe’s
instruction they began carrying
out Chabad activities. In order
to encourage them, the Rebbe
sent a Torah with Rabbi Yaakov
Yehuda Majeski, the Menahel
Ruchni of the Beis Rivka School
in Crown Heights. The Torah
arrived the day after Shushan
Purim 5729/1969.
At four in the afternoon, the
Torah left the Kosel accompanied
by a festive entourage, torches,
music and dancing. The
traditional hakafos took place at
the Tzemach Tzedek shul.
Rabbi Yaakov Yehuda Majeski with the Torah scroll, by the Tzemach Tzedek Shul
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WHO’S WHO IN THE
TIMES OF MOSHIACH
THE EMPEROR’S CLUB: MOSHIACH’S
VICE-PRESIDENT • PART II
By Rabbi Gershon Avtzon
Dear Reader sh’yichyeh:
THE SOURCE
The Talmud (Sanhedrin
98b) relates, “Rav Yehudah
said in Rav’s name: The Holy
One, blessed be He, will raise
up another Dovid for us, as it is
written, But they shall serve the
L-rd their G-d, and Dovid their
king, whom I will raise up unto
them: not ‘I raised up,’ but ‘I will
raise up’ is said. R. Papa said to
Abayei: But it is written, And
my servant Dovid shall be their
prince [nasi] forever – for
example, a Caesar (emperor)
and a half-Caesar (viceroy).”
DUAL ROLES
Why would Moshiach need a
viceroy?
The Rebbe (Likkutei Sichos
Vol. 35 Parshas VaYigash) gives
a fascinating explanation: When
the Gemara says that in the
times of Moshiach there will
be “a Caesar (emperor) and a
half-Caesar (viceroy),” it is not
referring to two separate people.
Instead, it is referring to two
distinct responsibilities of Melech
HaMoshiach.
Firstly, he is the king of Klal
Yisroel. The job description
of a king is (Rambam Hilchos
Melachim 4:10): “In all matters,
his deeds shall be for the sake of
Heaven. His purpose and intent
shall be to elevate the true faith
and fill the world with justice,
destroying the power of the
wicked and waging the wars of
God. For the entire purpose of
appointing a king is to execute
justice and wage wars, as Shmuel
I 8:20 states: ‘Our king shall
judge us, go out before us, and
wage our wars.’”
Moshiach is the ultimate
king. He is a person like the
Rambam describes (Ibid 11:4):
“If a king will arise from the
House of Dovid who diligently
contemplates the Torah and
observes its mitzvos as prescribed
by the Written Law and the Oral
Law as Dovid his ancestor did,
will compel all of Israel to walk
in (the way of the Torah), and
rectify the breaches in its
observance, and fight the wars
of God, we may, with assurance,
consider him Moshiach. If he
succeeds in the above, builds the
Temple in its place, and gathers
the dispersed of Israel, he is
definitely the Moshiach.”
Secondly, he will be
a teacher to all of Klal Yisroel.
It is as the Rambam describes
(Hilchos T’shuva 9:2): “In that
era, knowledge, wisdom, and
truth will become abundant.
Isaiah [11:9] states, ‘The earth
will be full of the knowledge of
G-d.’ Jeremiah [31:33] states:
‘One man will no longer teach his
brother or a man his colleague...
[for all will know Me].’ And
Ezekiel [36:26] states: ‘I will
take away the heart of stone from
your flesh and give you a heart of
flesh.’”
“[These changes will come
about] because the king who will
arise from Dovid’s descendants
will be a greater master of
knowledge than Shlomo and a
great prophet, close to the level of
Moses our teacher. Therefore, he
will teach the entire nation and
instruct them in the path of God.
“All the gentile nations will
come to hear him as [Isaiah
2:2] states: ‘And it shall come
to pass in the last days that the
mountain of God’s house shall
be established at the peak of the
mountains... [and all the nations
shall flow to it].’”
Moshiach’s main novelty
will be in his job as king. As
the Rambam writes at the end
of his magnum opus, the Yad
HaChazaka, during the era
of Moshiach “there will be
neither famine nor war, envy or
competition, for good will flow
in abundance and all the delights
will be freely available as dust.
The occupation of the entire
world will be solely to know God.
“Therefore, the Jews will be
great sages and know the hidden
matters, grasping the knowledge
of their Creator according to the
full extent of human potential,
as Isaiah 11:9 states: ‘The world
will be filled with the knowledge
of God as the waters cover the
ocean bed.’”
Regarding the first job he is
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MOSHIACH & GEULA
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called a king (Caesar). Regarding
his job as the teacher of Klal
Yisroel he is called a viceroy. The
reason is that one cannot add to
Torah; one can only reveal things
that were previously hidden.
WHY USE A NON-JEWISH
TITLE?
There is another obvious
question: Why are we calling
Melech HaMoshiach with the
title Caesar, who was a non-
Jewish emperor?
Tosafos (Avoda Zara 10b)
explains the source of the name
Caesar. It explains that the
emperor’s mother did not give
birth to him in a natural manner
but rather through a procedure
known today as a Caesarean.
What does this have to do
with Moshiach? We explained
earlier that the kingship of
Moshiach will be novel. It will
not follow the natural course
of the kings who preceded him.
Under his rule, the entire world –
including the non-Jews – will be
serving Hashem, hence the non-
Jewish title Caesar.
THE CONNECTION TO
PESACH AND YUD-ALEF
NISSAN
The following are some of my
own thoughts:
This theme is connected
to the holiday of Pesach. The
main protagonist in the story
of Pesach is Moshe Rabbeinu.
We find something fascinating
about Moshe: He did not get
a formal Jewish education!
He was raised – and probably
received his doctorate – in the
palace of Pharaoh! Is this your
stereotypical Jewish leader?
The same question can be
asked about the Rebbe Melech
HaMoshiach – whose 110th
birthday is this week on Yud-
Alef Nissan: How can we believe
that Melech HaMoshiach will
be someone who did not learn
formally in any Yeshiva, yet took
courses at the Sorbonne?
There are a few points that
must be explained:
1) There is a common
historical background that we
find concerning the first and final
redeemer. They both grew up at a
time when a madman (Pharaoh/
Hitler YM”SH) wanted to
destroy Klal Yisroel. There was
a spiritual war to destroy and
kill the redeemer of Klal Yisroel.
The best place to hide them was
in “the house of Pharaoh” i.e.
the Sorbonne University.
It is also written that “Just
as Moshe was brought up in the
house of Pharaoh among the
enemies of his people, so too
will Moshiach dwell in the city of
Rome, among the destroyers of
his land.” (Shmos Rabba, Chap.
1)
2) While Moshiach is both a
leader and a teacher – and the
Rebbe definitely has both those
qualities – his main novelty is
that he is a Caesar, one who
will cause world-perfection.
To elevate the world, it must
be elevated “from the bottom
up.” It needs to be elevated by
someone “of the world,” hence
the “degrees” that Moshe and the
Rebbe received.
Thus we see that the
Rebbe re-instituted the Seven
Noachide Laws campaign.
He often quotes the Rambam
(Hilchos Melachim 8:10): “By
the same regard, Moshe was
commanded by the Almighty
to compel all the inhabitants
of the world to accept the
commandments given to Noach’s
descendants.”
The Rebbe has given over
to us the obligation to bring
Moshiach. Let’s all do our part to
make it a reality now!
Rabbi Avtzon is the Rosh
Yeshiva of Yeshivas Lubavitch
Cincinnati and a well sought after
speaker and lecturer. Recordings
of his in-depth shiurim on
Inyanei Geula u’Moshiach can
be accessed at http://ylcrecording.
weebly.com/moshiach-what-we-
believe.html. Weekly shiurim on
Moshiach topics given by Rabbi
Avtzon can be viewed at chabad.
info.


We find something fascinating about Moshe:
He did not get a formal Jewish education! He
was raised – and probably received his doctorate – in
the palace of Pharaoh! Is this your stereotypical Jewish
leader?
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OF MATZA AND TRULY
BITTER HERBS
The following two periods in young Heishke’s
life – the purges of the 1930’s and the period
immediately after WWII – are testaments to
the indomitable Jewish spirit that managed
to survive the crushing under the Soviet boot
and the smokestacks of the Nazi crematoria. *
Dedicated to my grandfather, Rabbi Menachem
Mendel Dubrawski. * Part 1
By Rabbi Yehoshua Dubrawski a”h
CHANGING OF THE GUARD
The purges spearheaded by
the infamous Yezov (head of
the NKVD under Stalin) spread
through cities and towns at the
end of the 1930’s. Hundreds
of thousands of people were
taken from their homes at night,
arrested, exiled, tortured and
shot.
The bloodbath did not skip
over our town in the Ukraine.
Nearly all the houses in the town
had the same poor, pathetic look,
primitive and gray. However, on
one of the side streets there was
a matching pair of houses that
were different than all the other
houses in their fine construction
– the walls, the red bricks with
nice windows, surrounded by
budding trees.
These dwellings aroused
unpleasant feelings on the part
of passersby whose glances
pierced the houses with a glint of
anger in their eyes. Two senior
officials in the Soviet leadership
of the town were the proud
inhabitants, the head of the
town council (the “Gorsoviet”),
and the director of the regional
council (the “Rayispolkom”). I
remember their names – Haidak
and Shiroka. The Jews who
passed by these abodes glanced
sideways at them and silently
sent their wishes to those who
dwelt therein, hoping that those
knockers (Yid. pronounced with
a hard “k” – a derogatory term
for big shots such as government
appointed functionaries) would
meet an untimely death or would
sink ten feet into the ground.
Since the Red Terrors
operated late at night, one
morning people noticed that
the windows in the two houses
were dark and closed and the
doors were perpetually closed
with nobody entering or leaving.
It was as though Haidak and
Shiroka had disappeared into
the earth. Haidak’s wife could be
found in a tumbledown hut at the
edge of town. The Jews who had
previously wished them the worst
now looked with compassion at
her brats that suddenly seemed
like frightened mice. In short,
the two red-bricked houses were
cleaned and readied for two new
“knockers,” who were brought in
from the district capitol.
SPRING ARRIVED
AND THE RAV RETURNED
Along with the two former
rulers of the town, the casualties
of the purge included some
smaller fish. A few Jews
disappeared – R’ Zerach the
shochet who was old and limped;
Yaakov Lemel, the gabbai of the
former shul which the authorities
had closed years before; Chatzkel
the storekeeper and a few other
so-called counter-revolutionaries.
The unbelievable thing was that
the biggest anti-Soviet criminal
of them all, my grandfather R’
Mendel, the rav of the city, was
not arrested, although he always
kept a bag with his tallis and
t’fillin at the ready.
He took that bundle when
he finally fled in the middle of
the night. He went to a nearby
town and from there, went to his
house in Leningrad. The Jews of
our town felt bereft without the
rav, R’ Mendele. A few months
went by and the Red Terrors
did not even stick their noses
into his house. The miracle was
tremendous given the fact that
although the rabbinate and the
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propagation of Judaism were
underground, it was no secret to
the angels of death of the NKVD.
Nevertheless, they forgot about
him even though men such as
they did not forget things like
this.
After a few months of exile in
Leningrad, R’ Mendele returned.
His wife and children who had
barely managed to convince him
to leave town, were not pleased
by his return. Fear of arrest
still hovered in the air and was
reflected in many eyes. There
were many things pulling him
back but the main thing was the
fact that it would soon be Pesach
and matzos were needed for
several dozen Jewish families.
Without R’ Mendele, there would
be no matzos. He was the one
who, in recent years, arranged
the secret baking of matzos in his
home.
Upon his return, R’ Mendele
did not sleep in his house for
several weeks as per his family’s
request. But after that, he made
his habitual dismissive motion
with his hand (often accompanied
by the Yiddish expression “veis
ich vos!” (Yiddish equivalent of
“whatever”) and went back to
sleeping at home. And not for
naught, since during the evening
hours he accomplished many
things that needed to be done in
secret.
THE STAMMERING
MESSENGER
A few weeks before Pesach,
R’ Mendele’s loyal assistant
discreetly made his way to
his house. He was a person
who was always willing to go
A painting of a Chassid baking matzos by the artist, R’ Zalman Kleiman
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through fire and water in order
to carry out various missions
or simply to help the rav to the
best of his ability. His name was
Reuven Karasik. He was a short
man with a little beard who
stammered badly when he spoke
to the rav even though he had no
speech impediment. It was just
the tremendous awe he felt for
R’ Mendele that made the words
come out as they did.
R’ Mendele understood the
purpose of Reuven’s visit. He
wanted to know whether R’
Mendele would be baking matzos
for the Jews of the town, but he
did not have the courage to speak
to the rav clearly about something
as dangerous as baking matzos.
With a bashful smile he began to
speak:
“Ai, R’ Mendele, may Hashem
give you health and long life …
It is almost Erev Pesach. This
year, we are very worried, may
Hashem protect you … but R’
Nachum Kaplan and R’ Isser
Baroler asked me to ask the dear
rav, nu, whether we can hope,
nu, that there will be matzos ...”
R’ Isser and R’ Nachum were
two shomer-Shabbos Jews in
town who helped R’ Mendele
with all his secret activities
in spreading Torah and the
fulfillment of mitzvos. They had
sent Reuven to feel out the rabbi
as to whether he was willing to
make a small secret oven, since
Reuven was always R’ Mendele’s
right hand man in the matza
baking.
R’ Mendel listened to him
with a smile and did not respond.
He merely took his arm in his
own and accompanied him to the
bedroom.
THE SECRET IS REVEALED
Upon entering the bedroom,
Reuven saw that half the room
was hidden under a large white
tablecloth. R’ Mendele moved
the curtain and Reuven saw
something that caused his eyes
to pop. There was a large sack
of flour covered with tin, several
dozen new rolling-pins, new
molds, sharpened wheels to make
holes and even new wooden
rollers and one long baker’s
shovel, and another one … It was
an entire matza baking operation
that R’ Mendele had managed
to prepare on his own in the
evenings.
Reuven was so overcome that
he was temporarily speechless.
Upon recovering he exclaimed,
“Oy, Rebbi!” and he grasped
R’ Mendele’s hand and kissed
it. When he had calmed down
he mustered the courage to
complain, “But why? Why didn’t
the rav tell me? I so much want
to help! How did the rav do this
all by himself? Oy, oy!”
R’ Mendele patted his
shoulder and said, “Reuven,
I thought a great deal about
whether to include you in this
work that entails great danger
since I knew that you would not
refuse. Don’t worry R’ Reuven.
With Hashem’s help, there will be
a small matza bakery in my house
and you will be my partner in the
baking of the matzos.”
R’ Mendele’s wife and two
daughters prepared for the matza
baking with trembling hearts and
a flutter of joy – both emotions
glinted and danced in their eyes.
His wife did the kneading and the
daughters did the rolling together
with another few observant
women and men. R’ Mendele
lit the oven and together with
Reuven and Nachum organized
the entire operation.
BURNING THE MATZA
Up until that point, Reuven
had never worked so hard and
with such enthusiasm. Of course,
every knock at the door made
their hearts skip a beat, and R’
Mendele would run to the door
to see who was there and whether
it was possible to let him in. But
during the two days of the matza
operation it was, as Reuven put
it, “Halevai vaiter” (if only we
merit to continue).
At the end of the second day,
the few rollers and their helpers
parted with warm wishes and
smiling faces from R’ Mendele
and his family. R’ Mendele and
Reuven, bathed in sweat and
exultation, thanked Hashem
with tremendous satisfaction.
They did so verbally and even
more so, with depth of feeling
in their hearts. Afterward, for
many hours, they collected and
arranged all the Pesach baking
utensils – the molds, the rolling-
pins, the wooden rollers and the
other things and hid them under
a large tablecloth behind a curtain
in R’ Mendele’s bedroom.
Later that night, Reuven also
left, albeit against his will, after
R’ Mendele finally persuaded
him to leave and the rest of the
family collapsed into bed in sweet
slumber. But R’ Mendele was
still not ready to sleep. His heart
overflowed with thanks for the
way things had gone thus far and
with prayers for the future. He
was mainly satisfied that the two
days of the operation had gone
without a hitch or undo fear.
He took out a Likkutei Torah
and began learning a maamer
on the parsha. The words with
the special tune of the maamer
calmed him but he finally drifted
off to sleep. He awoke suddenly
to the sound of the banging of
the doorknob.
At first, he was frightened.
His heart sank as he thought how
this was “their” usual time. Oy,
he might have to take his tallis
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and t’fillin and run through the
yard and over the fence, but the
knocks at the courtyard door
assuaged his fear. In general,
people used the knob on the
outer door and only those who
were closer, more heimish, also
knocked on the courtyard door
as a precaution.
R’ Mendele assumed it must
be Reuven who had returned
because he had forgotten to say
or take something. He went to
the courtyard and approached
the door. It was a cloudy, dark
night and he could not make out
who the “guest” was as he peered
through a large crack in the door.
MYSTERY GUEST
For a moment, the knocking
ceased and R’ Mendele thought
of going back in, but then the
gentle knocks resumed. R’
Mendele decided he had to see
who it was. In a low voice he
called out, “Who is it?” He was
taken aback when he heard a
soft, feminine voice answering
him in Russian, “I ask you, my
friend Mendel Yevesyevitch, do
not be afraid and please open the
door. I must speak to you.”
R’ Mendel was even more
astonished. How did she know
his name? How did she know
that she had to knock on the
outer door? Who was she and
what did she want?
When he opened the door,
the woman came in quickly. The
yard was illuminated somewhat
by the kitchen window and R’
Mendele saw a young, unfamiliar
woman who was well-dressed.
She immediately said she hoped
she would be allowed to enter the
house.
As they walked in, R’ Mendele
felt he had to ask, “Please tell me,
who are you and how did you
know …”
The woman finished his
sentence, “My name and my
father’s name, right? That is
what you wanted to know? Nu,
you know that at times like these
it is not advisable to ask certain
questions and not everything can
be answered. You are a smart
man.”
She smiled and with a wink
she continued, “Excuse me, there
is one thing that you must know
now. I will tell you something
that will answer many questions.
My husband and I are the new
tenants in the ‘twin red houses,’
as you refer to them. So you
probably know my name and if
not, you will soon find out.”
A chill went through R’
Mendel’s entire body. This
was the wife of one of the new
“knockers,” aha!
She took note of his great
surprise and said soothingly,
“I ask of you, do not be afraid.
Consider me a friend of yours.
It is worthwhile that my husband
and I be considered your friends.
My husband is sitting in a car on
the corner and there is no need
to ask you to keep my visit an
absolute secret. It is better for all
of us.”
WHEN A JEW NEEDS TO
KNOW
“Yes, yes, but what is the
purpose of this friendly visit?”
asked R’ Mendele. The woman
smiled once again, “You are
right, my friend. The point is
that my mother lives with me,
the dearest mother in the world
– a ‘Yiddishe mama,’ (said in a
Volhynian-Yiddish accent).” R’
Mendel’s heart skipped a beat.
A Jewish woman with one of the
new chiefs of the city! But what
did she want of him?
“My husband also respects
and loves my mother dearly, but
she is a believer and she needs
three kilograms of matza for
Pesach. Who can help her if not
Rabbin Mendel? I will pay you
whatever you ask.”
R’ Mendele was so moved
that tears came to his eyes and
in a choked voice he spoke from
the depths of his heart, “Dear
daughter, dear Jewish daughter.
Of course I will give you the
matzos. And what are you saying
– will I take money from you?!
Tell your mother that it’s a gift
from me. If it is possible, we
would be happy to have your
mother for the two s’darim on
the first two nights.”
There were tears in the
woman’s eyes too and she said,
“I thank you from the bottom of
my heart for the invitation, but it
is a very delicate matter. We shall
see …”
Before she left she said in
her accented Yiddish, “You are
probably wondering how I knew
that I could get matza from you.
What a Jew needs to know, he
will manage to find out.”


R’ Mendele was so moved that tears came to
his eyes and in a choked voice he spoke from
the depths of his heart, “Dear daughter, dear Jewish
daughter. Of course I will give you the matzos. And what
are you saying – will I take money from you?! Tell your
mother that it’s a gift from me.”
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THE FATE OF
SDEROT
IS THE FATE OF
TOULOUSE
Just as it’s impossible
to separate the
Hezbollah threat in
the north from the
Hamas threat in the
south, there can be no
distinction between
the bullets that ended
the lives of Jewish
schoolchildren in
France and the missiles
fired on Beersheva
– with no proper
response forthcoming
in either case.
By Sholom Ber Crombie
Translated by Michoel Leib Dobry
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The fallout from Israeli
weakness in the recent round of
terrorist violence was not long in
coming. Last Monday, we saw the
terrible pictures from Toulouse,
France, where four Jews were
murdered in cold blood, al
Kiddush Hashem. Anyone who
tries to disassociate Israel’s
policy of surrender to Islamic
terror from the arrogance of anti-
Semitic terrorists throughout the
world has no conception of what
this conflict is all about. When
you see the reality for what it is,
you can’t help but connect the
two. When the government of
Israel demonstrates weakness,
the international community
interprets such passivity as a
green light for further acts of
murder and terrorism.
During the last period
of actual hostilities, the IDF
officially changed their tactics
from offensive to defensive. The
technological invention known
as “Iron Dome” has left the
Hamas terrorists comfortably in
their command centers, enabling
them to continue firing rockets
on Eretz Yisroel, virtually without
interruption. It almost seems
that as long as the “Iron Dome”
system intercepts and destroys
the missiles, it poses no problem
that the terrorists launch as many
missiles as they want. Israeli
policy has turned such an Islamic
threat into a great disadvantage
against its own people. They
fire their missiles relentlessly,
threatening the lives of millions
of Jews living in southern Eretz
Yisroel. Yet, instead of fighting
fire with fire, we merely send the
residents of the region to hide in
bomb shelters, while we settle for
the protection of an electronic
system that stops the missiles in
flight.
The recent barrage of
terrorist missiles sends a clear
message that they can fire
their rockets on Eretz Yisroel
without fear of reprisals. The
IDF no longer operates as the
strongest military force in the
world, capable of protecting the
Jewish People wherever they
are and instilling fear among
our enemies throughout the
globe. Instead, it is an army
that develops “Maginot Line”-
styled technological systems
to overcome rocket fire – after
failing to stop it through more
conventional methods during the
past decade. The atmosphere that
the IDF once created, arousing a
sense of security for every Jew in
the world, is slowly dissipating.
Security has been replaced by
vacillation and fear.
The direct connection
between global terrorism and
Israeli submissiveness is clear to
anyone with eyes in his head. Yet,
the Rebbe had already established
this connection many years ago,
explaining that capitulation to
terrorists endangers the lives of
millions of Jews throughout the
world, not just in the Holy Land.
He proved how yielding to Arab
terror is not just the problem of
the Jews living in Eretz Yisroel; it
has an effect upon the personal
security of Jews everywhere. This
is the picture that we see today.
There is a clear connection
between the murderous terrorist
shooting last week in France
and the message of instability
and lack of strength conveyed by
the Israeli government in recent
weeks. It leaves the impression
that Jews can be randomly
attacked, while we remain silently
restrained as if we’re nothing
more than cannon fodder.
REWRITING HISTORY
When Prime Minister
Netanyahu stood at the Knesset
rostrum two weeks ago to speak
about the security situation
in southern Eretz Yisroel,
he had difficulty hiding his
sense of embarrassment as
opposition legislators persistently
interrupted his prepared
statement. This time, however,
it wasn’t the nationalist Knesset
Members reminding Bibi of
his support for the Gush Katif
expulsion, rather it was the
Kadima Party MKs who were
attacking him.
For his part, the prime
minister has done everything
in recent years to revise history
and correct the error of his
support for the expulsion plan.
However, to his great regret,
there is a sizable collection in
the historical archives of Eretz
Yisroel revealing again and
again that he not only backed
the Gaza “disengagement,” he
even proudly declared during the
Likud referendum seven years
ago that he would support the
expulsion of Jews from Gush
Katif.
To this very day, no Israeli
prime minister or policymaker
has really been able to accept
the truth. Even the tremendous
victories over Arab armies
occurred despite the indifference
of Israeli leaders, not because
of their great ingenuity. So it
was during the Six-Day War
and the Yom Kippur War, when


The Rebbe already established this connection
many years ago, explaining that capitulation
to terrorists endangers the lives of millions of Jews
throughout the world, not just in the Holy Land.
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the political leadership in Eretz
Yisroel preferred to demean itself
in the face of the coming Arab
onslaught. We were miraculously
saved only in the merit of G-d’s
great kindnesses.
Israeli leaders have
continually failed to understand
that victory means that even
the opposing side realizes that
you have won. Their perception
of victory is merely defined by
what the media calls success.
Therefore, even after the Gush
Katif expulsion, no one was
compelled to pay the price, and
there are still those who try to
classify this horror story as a
success – as bizarre as it sounds.
As for those who promoted the
disengagement plan, as long as
the general public accepts the
falsehood that it was all done in
good faith, they will continue to
consider it a success, telling us
how essential the uprooting of
the Gush Katif settlements was
for our security.
A DISTORTED SENSE OF
REALITY
Recent Israeli prime ministers
have tried to make one outlandish
declaration after another, proving
that those entrusted with the
security of the Jewish homeland
don’t know how to read a map
of the Middle East. Yitzchak
Rabin declared that it was only
those “cowards of peace” from
the political right-wing who
claimed that if we leave Gaza,
the PLO will fire rockets from
there. He carried out the first
Oslo agreement, withdrew the
IDF from the Gaza Strip, and
for more than a decade since
then, rocket fire from Gaza has
been a standard ritual. Ariel
Sharon proclaimed that if the
Arabs fire just one missile from
Gush Katif, the IDF will retaliate
with uncompromising force. He
carried out the brutal expulsion
and disappeared from the scene
soon afterwards. He thereby left
us with the cities of southern
Eretz Yisroel under constant
bombardment, and without the
ability to restore security to its
residents. Ehud Olmert and his
successor, Binyamin Netanyahu,
supported the Gush Katif
expulsion, claiming that it will
improve the security situation.
Each one in turn stood helpless
against the growing missile
threat.
To Olmert’s credit, he at
least tried at the end of his
term to take wide-scale military
action to change the regional
balance of power and crush
the Hamas regime in Gaza.
Government protocols recently
made public show that it was
Olmert who wanted to continue
military activities and employ
the IDF’s full power against
the terrorist organizations.
However, Defense Minister
Ehud Barak forced him to pull
back and eventually put a halt to
the entire operation. It stands to
reason that if the IDF had been
allowed to conduct unrestrained
warfare in Operation Cast Lead,
thereby destroying the terrorist
infrastructure in Gaza, it would
have taken much longer before
we would have had to confront
another missile threat.
Yet, even Olmert’s far-
reaching ambitions were limited
to occupying the Gaza Strip for
a few weeks and then returning
the territory to Hamas. No Israeli
prime minister has yet to admit
that there is only one way to
stop the missile threat: the return
of the Israel Defense Forces to
Gaza and their complete control
over the region. Thus far, the
argument has been over whether
there is a chance to restore Gaza
to the control of the ‘Palestinian
Authority’ or whether we have to
accept the inevitability of Gaza
remaining in the hands of Hamas
– Iran’s proxy.
Time after time, we hear the
claim that missiles were fired on
southern cities even before the
Gush Katif expulsion. However,
people seem to forget that the
army had left Gaza long before
the expulsion. Ever since the Oslo
Accords, proposed by Rabin and
later implemented by Netanyahu,
there has been no IDF presence
in the Gaza Strip. After Gush
Katif, the security situation has
become progressively worse.
Today, about half the country is
within the range of Gaza rocket
fire. Yet, we must remember
that this deterioration started
when the army left Gaza, and
the terrorists subsequently began
their unimpeded missile attacks
on Israeli cities. While it was just
Sderot at the outset, the terrorists
now have sufficient freedom of
movement to put every city in
southern Eretz Yisroel on the
alert.
WHO WILL RESTORE THE
PUBLIC’S CONFIDENCE?
In preparation for a possible
attack against Iran, many people
are talking about the need to
stand firm on the home front and
for a greater sense of national
strength. Yet, it remains unclear
how Israeli leaders can demand
that the public stand firm when
they are unable to withstand
even the slightest international
pressure. A sizable majority
of the ministers serving in the
current government supported
the Gush Katif expulsion. The
prime minister and his defense
minister proudly speak of their
record of making numerous
disgraceful concessions to
terrorist organizations. They have
both proven in the past that they
don’t know how to stand firm
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against truly dangerous threats.
How can the defense minister
demand strength from the
citizens of Eretz Yisroel, when it
was he who invented the concept
of “restraint” in the face of rocket
fire, i.e., learning to accept a
good smack in the mouth from
the terrorist organizations and
then sit quietly? Can we actually
rely upon someone who as prime
minister achieved ‘victory’ in
Lebanon through retreat and
showed a weak sense of resolve
against the second intifada? How
can he possibly be the one to
lead the battle against the Iranian
threat and stand strong against
world pressure?
Such questions must also be
directed towards the conduct
of the prime minister. It isn’t
clear how Netanyahu expects to
alter the balance of terror in the
Middle East and adversely affect
Iran’s ability to create a nuclear
bomb when he continues to
agonize over whether to crush
the Hamas regime in Gaza and
destroy its weapons stockpiles
located just a few dozen miles
from Israeli cities.
OUR ANSWER: LIGHT,
MORE LIGHT
The horrific terrorist attack in
France must serve as a warning
signal for Israeli policymakers. If
the country’s defense specialists
are prepared to do the right
thing, even at the price of their
popularity, now is the time that
they must stand firm against
the terrorist organizations and
demonstrate that anyone who
harms the Jewish People will
endure a painful lesson that they
will not soon forget.
As long as the terrorist
organizations persist in their
arrogant behavior in Gaza,
their members will continue to
roam the world with great self-
assurance, endangering the lives
of millions of Jews worldwide.
This is exactly what the Rebbe
foresaw, and it is impossible to
disassociate one from the other.
Just as it’s impossible to separate
the Hezbollah threat in the north
from the Hamas threat in the
south, there can be no distinction
between the bullets that ended
the lives of Jewish schoolchildren
in France and the missiles fired
on Beersheva – with no proper
response forthcoming in either
case.
“The measure of good is
greater than the measure of
punishment.” Thus, if terrorism
makes no distinction between
Sderot and Toulouse, our
influence on the scene must also
be intercontinental. In contrast
to a position of surrender and
submission, we must publicize
the position of Torah, as brought
in Shulchan Aruch, Sec. 329,
stating the halachic obligation
to go out against terrorists with
weapons of war and strike them
down.
By the same token, we must
spread the encouraging message
of the Rebbe. He promised
that the time of Redemption
has arrived and all the events
occurring in the world today are
signs of the Redemption – from
the darkness at the end of the
exile to the great light of Geula.
We must bring the message
of redemption and hope that
Moshiach is on his way.
The Divine promise of Alm-
ghty G-d that Eretz Yisroel is the
safest place in the world, “a land
in which the eyes of Hashem,
your G-d, are upon it from the
beginning of the year until the
end of the year,” continues to
accompany the entire Jewish
People. As a result, we should all
merit to see great miracles in the
face of the present threats, which
will surely be eliminated very
soon. We have been entrusted
with a most important shlichus to
spread a message of light to repel
the darkness. We must let every
Jew know that these occurrences
are all part of the process of
Redemption, and all we have to
do is open our eyes and see them
in the light of Geula, until we
come to the imminent hisgalus of
Melech HaMoshiach, mamash,
now!
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EXODUS:
A FORMULA FOR
PERSONAL GROWTH
By Rabbi Yisroel Harpaz
The Festival of Liberation and
the Exodus from Egypt captures
the imagination like no other
historical event. It engrosses
millions of television viewers
around the world every year to
watch a corny, melodramatic
movie, compels academics to
dig eagerly in the dessert like
schoolchildren in a sandbox and
inspires countless depictions and
studies by filmmakers, artists and
academics.
Perhaps all the hype is because
Exodus is a not a commemoration
of a 3,000 year-old event. Even
events of this magnitude are
forgotten as their relevance
fade. Exodus is a mantra, a
mantra that is the cornerstone
of Judaism and marks the birth
of the Jewish nation… a mantra
of freedom. It is the mantra of
true liberation, a path towards
personal and collective freedom
that is as relevant today as it
was 3,000 years ago, as relevant
in North America as it was in
Mesopotamia.
Even in the Messianic era,
when the entire world will enter a
state of unprecedented peace and
freedom, when we will all be truly
liberated, Exodus will continue
to be the mantra that we live by,
the rallying cry that serves as the
catalyst for social change and
personal transformation.
What is Exodus, and where do
its power and lasting resonance
come from?
The Exodus is synonymous
with freedom. However, though
it is the source from which
freedom flows, the Exodus from
Egypt itself did not constitute
freedom in the truest sense.
Freedom, as defined by Kabbala
and Chassidus, is the ability
to achieve one’s true potential
by transcending one’s own
limitations and connecting to
something higher. The Exodus
from Egypt was a reality that was
imposed on the Israelites from
Above; they did nothing on their
own to achieve the liberation,
and so they were not able to
internalize it or be transformed
by it. They were only able to run
away from the negative powers
that enslaved them, but not run
toward true liberation because
the material reality in which they
were immersed and the spiritual
reality they were striving toward
remained divided by a vast
chasm.
That chasm between the
higher and lower realities was
only bridged when the Torah
was received at Mount Sinai
seven weeks later, when G-d
Himself initiated a new era in
which human beings, through
following His directives, could
transform the nature of things
and fuse the material with the
spiritual. The concept of purpose
came into being. Those who were
there at the time were conscious
of this fusion, and as a result
had an incredible awareness of
the Divine within them and all
around them – they experienced
something way beyond what their
limited perception of reality could
have achieved. They experienced
true liberation. However,
because it came from Above,
and the people were not ready
for it, the experience itself – the
complete unity and fusion of the
material and spiritual – didn’t
last. Nevertheless, the effects
of the Mount Sinai experience
reverberate to this day in our
ability to perform physical deeds
that are imbued with spirituality.
So even though liberation
itself was not experienced until
Mount Sinai (albeit temporarily),
the Exodus – the abandonment
of the negativity – is the starting
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across the globe until he finds a
poor person. And when he finds
someone, he can donate money
to him, authorizing the transfer
of funds by means of telephone,
etc., in a manner whereby the
money arrives instantaneously, or
at least in but a moment’s time.
And since this is so – he
continues to argue – since
the modern world so
accommodates Jewish life, why
are they screaming about the
redemption?!
You say that “all the
predicted dates [for the advent
of Moshiach] have passed.” If
that is in fact the case, there is no
opposition, but why the uproar?!
So many years have gone by,
and in the course of that period
he learned Torah and performed
Mitzvos, etc., so what is the
tumult all about?!
Naturally, there will come a
time when the Alm-ghty Himself
comes forth and forces him to
go out of exile, as it says, “And
you [the Jewish people] will be
gathered one by one.” At that
time, he too will certainly not
remain in exile; G-d Al-ghty will
take him by his hat or by the
corner of his garment and take
him out. There will then be no
alternative. But until that time,
why should he ask for it of his
own accord?! At least he should
not push the advent of Moshiach
forward, earlier than its destined
time!
3. To our great dismay, it
is not merely hypothetical that
someone could maintain such a
line of reasoning. If only it would
not have come to pass as it has!
In fact, it is truly ironic that,
especially in recent times, when
there are those who seek to
rouse others about the need to
scream “ad masai?! – how much
longer must we suffer in exile?!”
asking and pleading for the
redemption, it is specifically now
that the cynics come forward
and pour cold water over the
souls of others, souls that were
inspired to boldly proclaim that
people need to work at bringing
Moshiach Tzidkeinu as soon as
possible (the sooner, the better!).
As a result of this cynicism, many
people have been weakened (not
only in their outcry and pleading
“ad masai?!” but even in) their
resolve in the very faith in the
coming of Moshiach Tzidkeinu.
The only explanation for this
unfortunate state of affairs is
that since it is the ultimate finale
of history, the denouement of
exile, it is more relevant than ever
to scream “ad masai?!” more
urgent than ever that people
should beg and plead for the
redemption. It is for this very
reason, precisely because it is so
incredibly vital right now, that
it is met with such determined
resistance from the forces of evil.
As is known, not all times
are equal; every time period has
something particular about it that
is undesirable and which should
be identified as the main target in
the war waged against evil in that
period.
(From the address of 19 Nissan,
5748, bilti muga)
point for the journey.
This model serves as a lesson
for our own personal journeys:
When we want to embark on
personal growth, when we want
to enhance our awareness of
the spiritual within the material,
we first have to leave “Egypt,”
we have to turn away from
enslavement by abandoning
the limitations – be they bad
habits, false prejudices, social
conditioning or the like – that
hold us back from exploring life
with an open mind. And although
this itself does not constitute the
ultimate liberation – which only
comes later when one attains an
elevated awareness that all things,
both material and spiritual, are
truly one – like the Exodus, it is
the beginning.
That’s why we commemorate
the days of the Exodus from
Egypt – even though the Exodus
took place on one specific day:
Because the process of Exodus –
of getting beyond your own self
– is a constant striving.
And that’s why we will still
commemorate the Exodus in
the Messianic era: Because
without that memory and the
transformative quality that
constituted the journey out
of slavery, the liberation and
awareness we will experience
then would not be possible.
On a personal level, this
process speaks volumes about
the powerful role memory plays
in the journey of self-discovery:
By remembering where we
come from, and the trials and
tribulations we experienced,
we get to carry with us the
inspiration and transformative
quality of the journey even after
we reach the destination.
Reproduced with permission
from Exodus Magazine


Exodus is a mantra, a mantra that is the
cornerstone of Judaism and marks the birth of
the Jewish nation… a mantra of freedom.
Continued from page 5
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