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Purim In Lubavitch-770, 5706
Translated by Rabbi Shimon Neubort
The following is a farbrengen of the Rebbe Rayatz that took place on Purim, 5706 (1946), hanacha bilti muga.

1) When the Alter Rebbe first arrived in Vitebsk he was already considered a gaon (master of the Talmud). It is known that when he was 13 years old he was already a gaon, and when his father R’ Boruch came with him to arrange his match in Vitebsk, the gaonim of Vitebsk already knew of his genius. Until 17 years of age, however, the Alter Rebbe did not reveal himself, but when he was 18 he already had colleagues with whom he studied, and that is how his genius was discovered.

After his genius became known, his uncle, the Maharil, said to him, “You know how to learn, but you know nothing of Chassidus.” And then the Alter Rebbe traveled to Mezritch.

Upon returning from Mezritch, the Alter Rebbe said that in Mezritch he took on a new approach: We must know we are amei ha’aretz and an am ha’aretz is an elevated level. An am ha’aretz does everything with simplicity without reason or logic as to why he is doing anything. From this simplicity one achieves tmimus (complete sincerity).

He also took on the emphasis of song from Mezritch — that song has the power to remove a person from his present state and to bring him to where he ought to be.

2) When the Alter Rebbe returned from his first Purim in Mezritch, he was surrounded by young married men who were outstanding scholars. When they asked him what he had heard there, he said: The Rebbe explained to us what yada (knowing) means, and that one must attain “lo yada” (not knowing), which is actually the true yada [i.e., the ultimate knowledge of G-d, is the knowledge of how unknowable He really is].

We Chabad Chassidim are, boruch Hashem, in a good state, but a lot is still lacking. Early Chassidim learned less, understood less, and they were not expert in many maamerim. But with the maamer Chassidus that they learned, the Chassidus taught them. The Chassid and the Chassidus were one thing.

They traveled to the Rebbe [only] once a year, once in two years, once in three years. But when they heard something from the Rebbe, they lived with it. The Chassid and Chassidus were one thing, in the street, in the store, when he ate, he always lived with it.

But today a lot more is understand. Chassidus is learned, but the Chassidus does not teach its learner anything. The student and the Chassidus are two things.

And when one goes to daven, he doesn’t skimp on snapping his fingers, and he even bangs on the table, but it doesn’t affect him. You should know that this is antithetical to the point of it all.

3) When I was in yechidus in 5658 (1898), my father told me what he had heard from Grandfather, the Rebbe Maharash, in the name of the Tzemach Tzedek — that the Divine service of the Alter Rebbe was to reveal the Chabad (intellectual faculties) of the soul in everyone. When a Jew came to him for yechidus (a private audience) — a simple Jew — he would “squeeze” (that is how the Rebbe Maharash put it) the Chabad of the soul.

When the Alter Rebbe returned from Mezritch to Vitebsk and wanted to take (captivate) the young married scholars, he sang a niggun for them, and with this niggun that he sang for them, the young men achieved a dveikus and burned like a candle. Then the light of Torah illuminated in them and all their questions and difficulties were answered. But afterwards, when the Alter Rebbe said Torah, they fell asleep in the middle.

This is like the well known story of R’ Isaac of Homil with the Tzemach Tzedek, in connection with the maamer “The World Stands on Three Things,” which the Tzemach Tzedek said at the beginning of his nesius, the same maamer which he had heard from the Alter Rebbe when he was a boy. At that time, the Tzemach Tzedek went to visit R’ Isaac who was ill, extended his hand to him and healed him. Then R’ Isaac said that the Tzemach Tzedek had essential “lights” and developed “vessels,” whereas his own “lights” were given to him, but the “vessels” were not developed.       

4) We know that R’ Isaac was a tremendous genius, and his genius was famous not only in his surrounding area, but also in Minsk and Slutsk, and even in Vilna they repeated his teachings. When he returned from Liozna, they asked him what he heard there, and he said: I heard a little, but I saw a lot — I saw the light of Torah. They asked him: how is it possible to see the light of Torah? He answered: When the eyes are not blind, and when the ears are not deaf, it is possible to see and hear something like the light in the Beis HaMikdash.

In order to say such a thing, you have to be on the level of R’ Isaac. Today we can only wish for ourselves, if only we said sayings in the name of the older Chassidim with sincerity and penetrating understanding. In truth, we have nothing and we are nothing. We make do just like that pauper who rejoiced when the wealthy man greeted him...

There is an old saying about those who are not involved in avoda: Why do you denigrate the Torah? You have taken a pure Torah and put it in a disgusting vessel...

It has to be like Father said, “toporu da placha” (the hatchet to the wood; that is to say, action is the main thing.

5) When the Alter Rebbe was imprisoned in the fortress in Petersberg, the Baal Shem Tov and the Maggid came to visit him and encourage him. The Alter Rebbe said to them: I don’t need encouragement, for I accepted upon myself mesirus ha’guf (the sacrifice of the body), but with my mesirus nefesh (sacrifice of the soul) I want to ensure that those who go in this path will succeed, and their way should be successful.

And when the Alter Rebbe returned from Petersberg he said that he received guarantees about this matter, but he asked the Chassidim not to debate the Misnagdim at all, and that they should not pride themselves over them.

We too, must behave in this way. We do not have to debate with Misnagdim at all. We have to behave in such a way that they see the right way. If he agrees, we have to do a Jew a favor. But if he is a fool, it is not necessary. It is not pleasant to be with a fool, even in Gan Eden after 120 years.

When in distress, r’l, one screams Father! Grandfather! We must prepare to sing the Alter Rebbe’s niggun, and we must picture how those who are in the ohel in Haditch are banging on the door and saying, Rebbe!

6) All things — whether in Torah, in fear of Heaven, or guidance — have to be done b’pnimiyus (internally, sincerely), without fanfare. First one must work on oneself — to fix oneself, and as far as what you want to fix in a talmid, it must be done without fanfare. Even children who cannot eat at home [due to the fact that their parents are not observant], shouldn’t eat, but without showing chutzpa to their parents.

You talmidei ha’Tmimim have no idea what we hope to accomplish through you. You must do everything with pnimiyus, and Hashem will help you have success in your work.

Hashem will make the brokenhearted rejoice. May Hashem help that this should be the final Purim in Exile and that all Jews be in Eretz Yisroel, the way it is supposed to be, and that everything should be with chayus.



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