To the Shluchim The Eve of the 8th of Tishrei, 5752

1. Shabbos Shuvah has past and there are only several moments left until Yom Kippur, the most unique day of the year. As we heard from the Previous Rebbe, each and every Jew has already received a kesivah vachasimah tovah on the first day of Rosh HaShanah. And this positive judgment has been enhanced and has continued to grow in the subsequent days, the second day of Rosh HaShanah, and the Fast of Gedaliah,1 “a day of will.” These three establish a chazakah, a sequence of three associated with permanence and strength.

This positive influence was initiated by the sequence of three days which culminated in Rosh HaShanah: the preceding Shabbos, a Shabbos associated with Selichos; Sunday, a day of oneness;2 and Rosh HaShanah itself.

We can be assured that G‑d has accepted our prayers. Indeed, as stated in the Tur, the nature of the Jewish people is that even on the day preceding Rosh HaShanah, they wear festive garments and eat a festive meal, confident that they will prevail in judgment.

And this positive influence is further enhanced by Shabbos Shuvah which is connected with the service of Shuvah Yisrael, that as the Maggid explains, a Jew’s teshuvah should bring him to the awareness that Havayah, the transcendent dimension of G‑dliness is Elokecha, “your strength and your vitality.”

And this is drawn down throughout the year at large, making it an entire year when Havayah becomes manifest as Elokecha. And this relationship is reflected in the totality of one’s experience, one’s thoughts, speech, and deeds, expressing itself even in the material dimensions of one’s life.

The Haftorah from the previous Shabbos continues, “And [the recitations of] our lips will compensate for [the offering of] bulls.” This will lead to the offering of bulls in the Beis HaMikdash, “the Sanctuary of the L‑rd established by Your hands.” And those offerings will be complemented and brought to perfection by the service of the Jews, “[the recitations of] our lips.”

And thus together with the service of the Levites and the Priests this service will bring about a threefold bond which draws down a dimension of permanence and eternality to the world. This in turn will be enhanced by every Jew’s fulfillment of his individual mission in the world, transforming this world into a dwelling for G‑d. In particular, this will be brought about by those Jews who are referred to by others as Shluchim. For as mentioned on other occasions, when the number ten, representative of an individual’s ten spiritual powers, is added to the numerical equivalent of the word Shliach (שליח), the sum equals the numerical equivalent of Mashiach (משיח). And Mashiach will come in the immediate future and lead us to our Holy Land with great joy.

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FOOTNOTES:

1. The root of the name Gedaliah is the word gadol, meaning “great,” i.e., the day contributes a dimension of greatness. Furthermore, Gedaliah was “of the seed of the House of David,” thus introducing a connection to David who is described as malkah meshicha, “the anointed king.”

2. In the narrative of Creation, instead of stating “the first day,” the Torah states “one day.” Our Sages interpret this to mean “a day when G‑d was one with His world.”

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After the Minchah Service Tzom Gedaliah, 5752

1. As mentioned on many previous occasions, a fast day is “a day of will.” The intent of this statement is not merely that through the fast, G‑d’s will is aroused, but rather that the fast day itself is a day desired by G‑d.

There is a particular connection between this concept and today’s fast, the Fast of Gedaliah. The Fast of Gedaliah, like the fasts of the Tenth of Teves, the Seventeenth of Tammuz, and the Ninth of Av, commemorates a tragic event in the epoch of the destruction of the First Beis HaMikdash by the Babylonians. Nevertheless, unlike the other fast days which are referred to by the dates which commemorate national catastrophes, the name, Fast of Gedaliah, is associated with the name of a person of positive import, Gedaliah.

To explain: After the destruction of the Beis HaMikdash, Nebuchadneztar appointed Gedaliah as the governor of Judah. Gedaliah descended from the House of David and was accepted by the remaining prophets and Sages. As such, his rule reflected the possibility for a continuation — albeit with restrictions — of the kingdom of Judah. After his murder, this possibility was nullified and the destruction of the land and the exile of the people became complete.

To commemorate this tragedy, a public fast was instituted. Nevertheless, as explained above, the name of this fast, the Fast of Gedaliah, is positive, indicating a direct connection to the concept of a fast day being a day of will.

The positive nature of the Fast of Gedaliah is reflected in that, according to many opinions, the fast is not held on the day on which Gedaliah was murdered. I.e., Gedaliah was murdered on Rosh HaShanah. The fast, however, is not held on that day, for Rosh HaShanah is “sanctified unto our L‑rd,” above all material concerns, and definitely above events associated with tragedy and destruction. On the contrary, it should be a day when one “eats succulent foods and drinks sweet beverages.”

When a fast is scheduled to be held on Shabbos, it is postponed until the following day. Furthermore, on Sunday, when the fast is held, there are certain leniencies. This emphasizes the positive nature of the fast. Similarly, at the very outset, the Fast of Gedaliah was “postponed,” i.e., it was not ordained to be observed on the day the tragedy occurred. Therefore, its status is more lenient than that of other fasts.

Even according to the opinions which maintain that the murder of Gedaliah took place on the third of Tishrei and thus the fast is not postponed, the Fast of Gedaliah possesses a dimension of leniency over other fasts.

To explain: The Anshei Maamad, the men who acted as the representatives of the Israelites for the sacrifices offered in the Beis HaMikdash, would fast throughout the week. They would not, however, begin their fast on Sunday, “so that they would not emerge from rest and pleasure to work and fasting and die.” Although the fast was required by the nature of their service, since the transition from the rest and pleasure of the Shabbos to a fast could have undesirable results, the Torah did not obligate them to fast.

This concept implies that appreciating Shabbos pleasure in the proper manner has an effect on the day that follows. Simply put, the pleasure from the Shabbos foods carries over until the following day. Therefore, the fact that the Anshei Maamad did not fast on Sunday can also be attributed to the continuing influence of Shabbos. The fast of the Anshei Maamad had to be severe in nature. Because the influence of Shabbos continues to prevail on Sunday, a severe fast was impossible. Therefore, they did not fast at all.1

Similarly, in regard to Rosh HaShanah: Since the day is characterized by “eating succulent foods and drinking sweet beverages,” the Fast of Gedaliah which follows2 is still affected by this influence and therefore, is not as severe as the other fast days. On the contrary, the conception of it as a “day of will” is stronger.

The positive import of the name, the Fast of Gedaliah, is also implied by the first word of the name, Tzom, “fast.” As reflected in the additions to the Machzor in the prayer Unasonah Tokef, tzom is associated with teshuvah. The name of this prayer is also significant, meaning literally,3 “And You shall endow with strength.” I.e., G‑d endows every Jew with a quality of strength.

In this context, we can understand the placement of this prayer next to the kedushah beginning “A crown is given to You… by Your people Israel” which reflects how every Jew has the potential to crown G‑d as King, as it were.

Because of these positive qualities, certain undesirable factors are mentioned in the prayer Unasonah Tokef. Generally, on Rosh HaShanah (and even on Yom Kippur), we are careful not to mention undesirable factors. Because of the positive qualities mentioned above, however, we can rest assured that all the undesirable qualities will be transformed4 into good and the judgment of all the Jews will be only for good from the beginning of the year onward.

Thus we can be assured that the true positive nature of the Fast of Gedaliah will soon be revealed. And with the coming of the Redemption, it will be transformed into a day of celebration and rejoicing.

This is particularly true due to the influence of the previous year, the year (תנש”א). This relates to the phrase, תנשא מלכותך, “Your Kingdom will be uplifted.” And this will be enhanced by the influence of the present year, a year when “miracles will be understood.” I.e., the previous year, the year of “I will show you wonders,” related to the power of Chochmah, for the power of sight shares a connection to Chochmah and the present year relates to the power of Binah, “understanding.” That power possesses certain advantages over Chochmah as explained in Chassidic texts.5

The advantages of the present year can be understood in a simple sense, the letters (תשנ_), 575_ stand for the Hebrew words meaning “This will be a year of wonders,” and 2 (5752, the present year) is twice 1 (5751, the previous year). I.e., the wonders of the present year will be twice those of the previous year.

Also, this will be a year of niflaos bakol, “wonders in all things.” Similarly, bakol relates to the threefold expression of good granted to the Patriarchs, bakol mikol kol. The latter expression is numerically equivalent to the word kabetz (קבץ) meaning “ingathering,” an allusion to the ingathering of the exiles which will occur when G‑d “sounds the great shofar for our freedom.”

In this context, we can understand the prayer, L’Shanah haboah b’Yerushalayim, “Next year in Jerusalem” recited on Yom Kippur and on Pesach. As the Previous Rebbe explained, the intent is not that the Redemption will be postponed until next year, but that the Redemption will come immediately and thus Pesach and Yom Kippur will be celebrated in Jerusalem.

For we will be granted a good and sweet year in all things. And this good will continue and increase until we merit the Redemption and after that, the Resurrection. Then Gedaliah6 — for he was of the House of David — will be among the leaders of the people. And we will proceed following him with great joy to our Holy Land. This joy will surpass the rejoicing of Simchas Beis HaShoeivah and the rejoicing of Simchas Torah, for the joy of the Redemption will be unbounded. May this take place in the immediate future.
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Footnotes:
1. Thus the fasts of the Anshei Maamad, unlike our fasts, were not associated with the idea of “a day of will.” Similarly, we find fasts that are undertaken for penance to be associated primarily with negative influences. Therefore, when a particular Chassid wanted to fast for this purpose, the Rebbe Rashab paid personal attention to him to see that the fast did not have an overly negative effect.
2. In certain years, Shabbos follows directly after Rosh HaShanah and thus the Fast of Gedaliah is postponed another day. In this instance, the influence of the Shabbos prevails on the Fast of Gedaliah causing it to be governed by more lenient rules.
3. Trans. Note: With the context of this hymn, the words have a slightly different meaning. See the Machzor published by Kehot.
4. In regard to the transformation of undesirable qualities into good, there is a well-known story of the Mitteler Rebbe who explained in regard to the curses found in the Torah, “when my father reads them, they are different in nature.” Similarly, when our Father reads any of the undesirable factors mentioned in Unasonah Tokef, we can rest assured that the intent is positive.
5. The dimension of understanding associated with the present year will also be reflected in our understanding the teachings of Pnimiyus HaTorah to be revealed by Mashiach.
6. Gedaliah’s importance is also reflected in that he is at times referred to as Gedalyahu (גדלי-הו), i.e., the letters yud, hay, and vav, the first letters of the name Havayah, are added to his name.

Blessings after Receiving the Pan Klali Erev Rosh HaShanah, 5752(1991)

1. The Holy One, blessed be He, has delivered a decision — particularly relevant in these days of judgment — that it is necessary that “the ruling body shall save;” i.e., in every judgment, saving is of paramount importance. This is particularly true in regard to our present status in exile, there is a necessity for saving and delivering our people, bringing the True and Complete Redemption.

At present, even those who are blessed with both material and spiritual prosperity, and even those who live in Eretz Yisrael, and more particularly, even those who live near the site of the Beis HaMikdash, must realize that, since the “Sanctuary of the L‑rd established by Your hands” has not been built, they are still in exile.

This state will continue until the entire Jewish people return to Eretz Yisrael. Then the Yovel will be reinstituted and thus, “each man will return to his family inheritance,” even those who declare “I love my master” and therefore are not freed by the Sabbatical year.

We must be ready to accept the coming of the True and Complete Redemption immediately. David, the anointed king, and the Previous Rebbe will be our leaders. The sooner we complete all the matters dependent on us, the sooner the Redemption will come.

As mentioned in the previous address, there are three unique factors this year. Since it is already Erev Rosh HaShanah, we can be sure that everything is prepared, for, as the Tur writes, it is the character of this nation that even before G‑d’s decision has been rendered, they know the nature of the decision. And therefore, they wear festive garments and “eat sumptuous foods and drink sweet beverages.” And the preparations for this is undertaken on ErevRosh HaShanah. Afterwards, our activity on Rosh HaShanah affects the entire year to come as the head controls and directs the functioning of the entire body.

And we can be assured that this will be “a year of wonders in all things.” The Hebrew “in all things” bakol reflects the three expressions of blessing found in relation to the Patriarchs: In regard to Avraham, it is written, “And G‑d blessed Avraham with everything (בכל).” In regard to Yitzchak, it is it is written, “I have eaten of all (מכל).” And in regard to Yaakov, it is written, “I have everything (כל).” Since these are the Patriarchs of the Jewish people, it is understood that these qualities are communicated to each of their descendants, men, women, and children. Every Jew will possess this threefold quality of blessing in the fullest possible manner in these last days of exile.

And this will lead to the entry into Eretz Yisrael and taking possession of the land in a full and complete manner in the immediate future so that “each man will be under his vine and each man under his fig tree.” And this will be influenced by the month of Elul, a month characterized by the verse, “I am my Beloved’s and my Beloved is mine.” Since “my Beloved is mine,” even in the closing moments of Elul, G‑d will grant every individual Jew abundant blessings in both a spiritual and material sense.

This is influenced by the Torah reading of the previous Shabboswhich begins “You are all standing before G‑d, your L‑rd.” It proceeds to mention ten1 different categories of Jews, but emphasizes how they are all united “before G‑d, your L‑rd.” And this grants the potential, as we read in next week’s Torah reading, for every Jew to proceed, Vayeilech. And indeed, to proceed from exile to the Redemption, to Eretz Yisrael. And each Jew will merit, as reflected in Rashi’s commentary, “a fullness of days and years,” for his days and years will be full with the Torah and its mitzvos.Although Rashi’s statements are made in regard to Moshe, since every Jew possesses a spark of Moshe in his soul as explained in Tanya, this perfection can be reflected within him as well.

Today is the birthday of the Tzemach Tzedek, the day when the spiritual source of his soul shines powerfully. Surely, he is doing all that is dependent on him for his name, the name of Mashiach2 to be revealed.

And we will merit the revelation of all types of Divine light and influence, on both the spiritual and material planes in the immediate future. And this will be revealed on Erev Rosh HaShanah and will be reflected in the conduct of the Jews who “clothe themselves in white and robe themselves in white” even before Rosh HaShanah itself.

This is particularly true in the present year when Erev Rosh HaShanah is preceded by Shabbos. Shabbos represents a state of holiness that is not dependent on human activity.3 This quality is drawn down to every Jew. And from Shabbos, we proceed to Sunday, a day described as “one day,” i.e., “a day when G‑d was one with His world.” And thus we proceed to Rosh HaShanah on the second day of the week, a day associated with a difference of opinion for the sake of heaven, like the difference of opinion of Hillel and Shammai.4

And this will lead to the redemption immediately. Miyad (מיד), the Hebrew for “Immediately,” is an acronym for the three names Moshe (the mem), Yisrael (the Baal Shem Tov, the yud5 ), and David (the daled) and it fuses their influences together. And this will lead to the Redemption, when “And with our youth and with our elders… with our sons and with our daughters,” we will proceed to Eretz Yisrael, to Jerusalem, to the Beis HaMikdash, and to the Holy of Holies which contained the Even HaShtiah, the stone which served as the foundation for the entire world.

(The Even HaShtiah is associated with the Jews’ demand that the Redemption come immediately. For they maintain that they have completed the service of revealing how the entire world is based on the foundation of the Even HaShtiah as it exists without change in the Holy of Holies.)

And this will be in a manner of Atem Nitzavim, “you are standing,” which Chassidus associates with the firm and powerful stance of a king. I.e., every Jew will rule over his entire environment, and indeed, over the entire realm of existence. He will possess everything that he requires without the need for effort, for a king is not required to work. And he will accept the Kingship of the King of kings. The acceptance of G‑d as King is amplified because many people are gathered here and “The glory of the King is [revealed] in the multitude of people.”

And then, we will proceed together with the entire Jewish people, “on the clouds of the heavens,” to Eretz Yisrael, to Jerusalem, and to the Beis HaMikdash in the True and Complete Redemption, each Jew receiving a kesivah vachasimah tovah in both a material and a spiritual sense, a healthy body and a healthy soul. May this take place in the immediate future.
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FOOTNOTES
1.

Similarly, in a personal sense, these ten categories reflect how all of the ten Sefiros shine in a revealed manner within every Jew’s soul.
2.

I.e., both the names Tzemach and Tzedek are associated with Mashiach.

This relates to the statement in Kabbalah that there are five names for the soul, the highest of these being the name yechidah, for Mashiach is identified with this potential. And thus the essence of Mashiach is one with G‑d’s essence.

3.

Shabbos also represents a microcosm of “the era which is all Shabbos and rest for eternity.”
4.

The name Moshe (van) can be interpreted as an acronym for the names Moshe, Hillel, and Shammai. Hillel and Shammai represent the two side vectors and Moshe the middle vector which connects them.
5.

The yud can be written as a single point. This relates to the essential Jewish point within every Jew’s soul, the pintele yid.

Translation by Sichos In English

After the Annulment of Vows, 5752(1991)

1. Yasher koach. May you receive a kesivah vachasimah tovah for a good and sweet year together with the entire Jewish people. And may we merit a matter of fundamental importance, the coming of the True and Complete Redemption in the immediate future.

Signs of the Redemption have already become manifest. Indeed, many years ago, our Sages stated, “All the appointed times [for Mashiach’s coming] have passed and the matter depends on teshuvah alone.” And as the Previous Rebbe explained, we have already turned to G‑d in teshuvah. All that is necessary is to “stand together prepared [to greet Mashiach].”

We have been standing in such a state of preparation for an extended period and therefore, the True and Complete Redemption should come in the immediate future. And “with our youth and with our elders… with our sons and with our daughters,” we will proceed to Eretz Yisrael, to Jerusalem, to the Beis HaMikdash, and to the Holy of Holies which contained the Even HaShtiah, the stone which served as the foundation for the entire world.

And from the Holy of Holies, holiness will spread throughout the entire world. “And G‑d will be King over the entire earth”, “And G‑d will reign forever and ever.”

Again, may you receive a kesivah vachasimah tovah for a good and sweet year.

[After descending from his platform, the Rebbe Shlita said:] In the present year, three different matters which often come, each reflecting a state of completion, are combined. Frequently, these three matters are separate and in this year, they are combined.

a) On the verse, “And they shall be seven perfect weeks for you,” the Midrash relates that the weeks of the Counting of the Omer are “perfect” when, each week, the counting of the Omer begins on the first day of the calendar week and thus, the conclusion of each week of the Counting of the Omer is on Shabbos.

b) This is a leap year, when a thirteenth month is added.

c) Every year, there are two months — Cheshvan and Kislev — whose number of days varies. This year, both those months are complete, including thirty days.

This present year combines all these three states of perfection, being complete in regard to the months of the year (the addition of the thirteenth month), the days of the months (for the months of Cheshvan and Kislev are complete), and the weeks of the year (because of the weeks of the Counting of the Omer.) The latter factor is associated with the bringing of the two loaves of bread offered on the holiday of Shavuos, “the season of the giving of our Torah.” This, in turn, relates to “the new [dimensions of the] Torah which will emerge from Me.” May we merit the revelation of these new dimensions of Torah with the coming of the True and Complete Redemption in the immediate future.

May each and every individual receive a kesivah vachasimah tovah for a good and sweet year of open and revealed sweetness together with the entire Jewish people.

Shabbos Parshas Haazinu, 13th Day of Tishrei, 5752

1. This Shabbos is the thirteenth of Tishrei, the yahrzeit of the Rebbe Maharash. A yahrzeit is a day when “all the deeds, Torah, and service of a person are revealed,”1 and thus there is a connection with the well-known adage which characterized the service of the Rebbe MaharashLechat’chilah Aribber, “The world says, ‘If you can’t crawl under, try to climb over,’ and I say, ‘At the outset, one should climb over.’ ”

The influence of the Rebbe Maharash’s yahrzeit is enhanced by the fact that it falls on Shabbos. In general, Shabbos elevates all matters with which it is concerned to a higher level of holiness.2 In particular, there is a unique quality to the present Shabbos, for it is the first Shabbos of an individual nature in the new year. I.e., Shabbos Shuvah is the first Shabbos of the year, but Shabbos Shuvah is of a general nature, including within it all the Shabbasosof the year to come. The present Shabbos is thus the first Shabbos of the year which is comparable to all the other Shabbasos.

Thirteen, today’s date, is the numerical equivalent of the word echad (אחד). There is a thematic relationship between oneness and Shabbos,3 because Shabbos is a day of spirituality and holiness. This spirituality and holiness is not dependent on man’s service and is a reflection of the spiritual order established by G‑d.4Nevertheless, man can enhance the Shabbos-like nature of the day as reflected in the command laasos es haShabbos, literally “to make the Shabbos.”

What is the nature of man’s Shabbos activity? “And you shall call the Shabbos a delight,” to introduce the quality of pleasure into the Shabbos. This is the fundamental dimension of the Shabbos day and each Jew is obligated to bring this quality into the Shabbos through his prayers and through all his Shabbos activities.

Pleasure is the highest of our human potentials. It permeates through all our other powers and serves as the motivating force for all our behavior. Although the Shabbos is characterized by pleasure by nature, even without man’s activity, man has the potential — and the obligation — to enhance and add to the pleasure of the Shabbos day.

These efforts — introducing pleasure — reflect the totality of man’s service within the world. For although G‑d derives a dimension of pleasure from the world even without man’s efforts, man was created in order to bring about a higher degree of Divine pleasure. This relates to our Sages’ interpretation of the word laasos as “to correct” in the phrase, “all that G‑d created laasos.” I.e., G‑d created the world in a manner that it can be corrected and brought to a higher level by man’s activity. Although there is a certain dimension of completion invested in the world by nature, the Jews have the potential to add a higher degree of perfection, breaking through the natural constraints of existence.

This concept is reflected in our Sages’ statement that “the world was created in a full state,” but that Mashiach will bring the world to an even higher level of fulfillment as reflected in the verse, “These are the generations of Peretz.” The name Peretz, the progenitor of the Mashiach, means “break through.” This implies that the fulfillment invested in the world at the outset was limited in nature. In contrast, through man’s service, the world can be brought to a level of fulfillment which is unbounded in nature.

Similarly, the pleasure that a Jew infuses into the creation is infinite in nature. He does not carry out his service because he realizes that it will create pleasure for G‑d. Were that to be the case, the pleasure that man would generate would be limited by the extent of his conception. Rather, to borrow an expression from the Rambam,he is “obsessed by the love of G‑d” with no thought of self; this love relationship characterizes the totality of his existence and thus generates infinite pleasure for G‑d.

The Rambam associates such love with the service of Avraham, our Patriarch. This is significant for it implies that this love is part of the spiritual heritage which the Patriarchs impart to each one of their descendants. And thus, such love is within the potential of every Jew.

The ability to perform this service relates to the approach of Lechat’chilah Aribber mentioned above, for it involves going above the limits of our ordinary conduct, at the outset, a person sets as his goal to draw down the highest levels of pleasure into the creation.5

This approach of Lechat’chilah Aribber should be actualized by every Jew in his daily conduct, for the qualities of a Nasi are relevant to everyone of his followers.6 Furthermore, not only does the Nasi’s influence affect them in their personal lives, it affords them the opportunity to have an effect on the world at large.

The latter concept is reflected in the Rebbe Maharash’s adage which begins “The world says…” On the surface: Of what concern is it to a Nasi what the world says? The intent, however, is that the approach of Lechat’chilah Aribber should permeate the world at large.

Although a Nasi, like a king, is above all matters of the world,7 his service elevates the world at large. In particular, this is evident on a Nasi’s yahrzeit which “brings about salvation in the depths of the world.” (In microcosm, this pattern is reflected in every Jew who is veritably “a part of G‑d,” and simultaneously, his service must be carried out within the limits of our material world.)

The above concepts relate to the present year, 5752, whose equivalent in Hebrew (הי’ תהא שנת נפלאות בכל) serves as an acronym for the Hebrew words meaning, “This will be a year of wonders in all things.” Wonders, like pleasure, reflect a transcendent level and these wonders will, in a manner of Lechat’chilah Aribber, be drawn down into the world at large.

The above is particularly relevant on the Rebbe Maharash’s yahrzeit, a day when — like a birthday — “the spiritual source of his soul shines powerfully.” Since his name is Shmuel, there is also a connection to Chanah, the mother of Shmuel, the Prophet. {Herein, there is a connection to the previous Shabbos, the yahrzeit of [the Rebbetzin] Chanah8 and to Rosh HaShanah, when the Haftorah relates the story of Chanah and her prayer that G‑d “raise up the standard of His anointed (Meshicho).”}

The mention of Shmuel the Prophet has a connection with the Era of the Redemption, for at that time, “I will pour out My spirit to all flesh and your sons and your daughters will prophesy,” i.e., everyone will attain the gift of prophecy. This reflects an approach of Lechat’chilah Aribber, for generally, prophecy requires several preparatory levels. In that Era, however, prophecy will be granted indiscriminately to all. This is reflected in the expression, “I will pour out,” i.e., not pour into a vessel, but to pour out in an abundant manner where the liquid gushes over the walls of the container.

There is a greater emphasis on the above today, the Rebbe Maharash’s yahrzeit, because of the connection to Shmuel the Prophet. Everyone recognized Shmuel as a prophet and indeed, referred to him as “the seer.”9

Since the Rebbe Maharash was a Nasi, all the qualities he possessed are relevant to everyone, and in particular to those who study his teachings. In this context, it is worthy to note the maamarHaTzur Tamim Paalo, 5627. The verse which serves as the title of this maamar refers to the perfection of G‑d’s judgment. Surely this will be reflected in a positive judgment for every Jew. For a Jew is by nature totally above connection to any undesirable entities. Therefore, the judgment will only be positive. And with overwhelming joy, we will proceed to the Future Redemption. May it take place in the immediate future.

2. In connection with the maamar of the Rebbe Maharash mentioned previously, surely, everyone will study it on the Rebbe Maharash’s yahrzeit itself or at least in the days which follow as an extension of the Rebbe Maharash’s yahrzeit.

Similarly, it is appropriate to mention the importance of using the remaining days until the holiday of Sukkos to provide the needy with what they are lacking to celebrate the holiday in an appropriate manner.

This is particularly relevant since Sukkos is celebrated on the fifteenth of the month, the night on which the moon shines fully. This represents a state of completion in the service of the entire month, a month which includes Yom Kippur, a day of “pardon, atonement, and forgiveness.” These concepts surely must be considered in a positive sense, for a Jew is above sin in a simple sense; “Your nation are all righteous.” Thus in this context, teshuvah must be considered as reflecting the Zohar’s statement that, in the Era of the Redemption, Mashiach will “cause the righteous to turn in teshuvah.” This is surely true in light of tribulations our generation has endured and particularly, after the extensive efforts that have been undertaken to spread Chassidusoutward.10

In this context, it is appropriate to mention the importance of the journeys undertaken on Sukkos to spread holiday joy to those Jews living in outlying areas. These visits are used to spread the wellsprings of Chassidus and to encourage Jews to observe the Torah and its mitzvos, explaining that one’s prosperity in material things depends on such observance.

Needless to say, at this time, emphasis should be placed on the mitzvah of lulav and esrog, granting people the opportunity to fulfill the mitzvah. Indeed, if a lulav and esrog is unavailable in these places, a set should be left behind so that the people living there will continue to be able to observe the mitzvah. (In this context, it should be noted that, in addition to the three hadassim, “myrtle branches,” which are required to be included in the lulav and esrog, three others should be included, for it is the Chabad custom to add extra hadassim.)

A person should take his wife and children with him on these trips and thus involve the entire family in spreading the wellsprings outward. And these journeys should spread holiday joy, the celebra­tions of Simchas Beis HaShoeivah. That joy should be enhanced by the knowledge that in the immediate future, Mashiachwill come. For the imminence of Mashiach’s coming is already an established fact and one’s exuberant celebrations should reflect one’s awareness of this.

One might ask: If Mashiach’s coming is imminent, why is it necessary to undertake these journeys? A resolution to this question can be derived from the conduct of the Previous Rebbe who declared LeAlter LeGeulah, “We will immediately proceed to the Redemption” and yet sent out emissaries to many places and established Yeshivos. For a Jew has the potential to fuse opposite qualities together. Thus although he is awaiting Mashiach’s coming on this very day, he can use the time before Mashiach comes to do whatever is necessary to spread Yiddishkeit within the context of the immediate circumstances, including detailed plans and journeys to distant places.11

Indeed, we see a parallel to this concept in the journeys of the Jewish people in the desert. Although they knew that they would break camp shortly so that they could proceed to Eretz Yisrael,each camp was established in a permanent manner. Similarly, at present, although we are preparing to journey to Eretz Yisrael in the Redemption at any time, we must use the time we are still in exile to spread Yiddishkeit and Chassidus.

May these activities enable us to proceed from the season of our rejoicing to many festive occasions for the Jewish people, weddings, circumcisions, the naming of girls,12 and the like. And from these celebrations, we will proceed to the ultimate expression of joy, when we will proceed to our Holy Land in the Future Redemption.

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FOOTNOTES
1. Similarly, a yahrzeit represents an ascent for the soul and all its service.
2. There is an allusion to this in the verse which describes the advent of the first Shabbos, “And the heavens and the earth were completed.”
3. The Torah describes Sunday, the first day of creation as “one day,” and our Sages explain that it is a day when “the Holy One, blessed be He, was one with His world.” Nevertheless, in an open and revealed manner, this oneness is more evident on Shabbos.
4. This concept can be understood by contrasting the holiness of the Shabbos with that of the festivals. The holiness of the festivals is dependent on the holiness imparted to them by the Jewish people, while in contrast, Shabbos represents a spiritual level above the influence of man which is revealed by G‑d.
5. There is a parallel to this concept in regard to a Jew’s service at the beginning of the year. As the Tur writes, even on the eve of Rosh HaShanah, the Jews wear festive clothing and eat a festive meal, confident that they will prevail in judgment.
6. The Rebbe Maharash’s position as Nasi is significant for all of the sons of his father, the Tzemach Tzedek, were accomplished spiritual leaders. Indeed, the Previous Rebbe refers to them all with the title Admor. Nevertheless, it was the Maharash, the youngest son, who was chosen as Nasi.
7. The Tanach describes Shaul, the first king as “from the shoulders and up, above the people.” Chassidus explains that the king’s shoulders, the level which refer to the source for his emotions, are above the heads, the intellectual potential of the people at large. Surely, this applies to a king’s intellectual potentials.
8. Even though this is a personal matter, there is a connection to matters of general importance. For all women named Chanah share a connection to the first Chanah who was the one who prayed that the standard of the Mashiach be raised. This endows all connected with her with general significance.
9. Shmuel also said of himself, “I am the seer.” Anochi, “I am” in Hebrew, is also the first word of the Ten Commandments and, as explained in the works of Rav Saadia Gaon, contains within it the entire Torah. The word Roeh, “seer,” relates to the power of revelation. Thus Shmuel’s statement can figuratively be interpreted to mean that he, Shmuel, brought the entire Torah into revelation.
10. The merit for these activities is shared among those who actually performed the service of spreading Chassidus and those who support these activities. This applies if such an agreement is made before the tzedakah is given and before the activities are carried out.
11. In connection with the above, it is worthy to mention the printing of the Book of Shluchim which was completed at present. This printing was done in a luxurious manner with the intent of showing how the service of G‑d should be carried out in a beautiful manner, without lacking gold or silver.
12. In this context, it is worthy to mention the Chabad custom of naming girls at the earliest possible opportunity.

Shabbos Parshas Nitzavim 5751, Rosh HaShanah and Shabbos Parshas Vayeilech, 5752

1. The unique qualities of the present year are reflected in the signs mentioned by the Sages of our people in regard to the days on which Rosh HaShanah is celebrated. Among them:

a) פתבג המלך — This phrase quoted from Daniel 1:5 and meaning, “the king’s food” is interpreted as follows: When HaMelech (המלך), i.e., Rosh HaShanah,1 falls on either of ב or ג, the second or the third day of the week,2 then pas (פת) — the parshiyos, Nitzavim and Vayeilech are divided. Nitzavim is read on the Shabbos before Rosh HaShanah and Vayeilech, on the Shabbos afterwards.

b) בשז — This means that if Rosh HaShanah falls on the second day (c) as it does this year, then the year will be shleimah, “full,” (a), i.e., both the months of MarCheshvan and Kislev will have thirty days. Also, in such a year, Pesach falls on Shabbos, the seventh day of the week (z).

Thus the present year contains three different states of perfection:

a) In regard to the months of the year — This is a leap year, when a thirteenth month is added. Our Sages described a leap year as a perfect year, implying that the addition of the extra month contributes a dimension of perfection to the year as a whole.

b) In regard to weeks — On the verse, “And they shall be seven perfect weeks for you,” the Midrash relates that the weeks of the Counting of the Omer are “perfect” when, each week, the counting of the Omer begins on the first day of the calendar week and thus, the conclusion of each week of the Counting of the Omer is on Shabbos.

c) In regard to days — Every year, there are two months (MarCheshvan and Kislev) whose number of days varies. In certain years, they contain twenty-nine days, in others, thirty, and in others, one contains twenty-nine days and the other, thirty. This year, both those months are complete, each including thirty days. Thus, this year contains the maximum amount of days possible.

The above concepts and similarly, the allusions associated with the Hebrew letters equivalent to the year’s number, 5752, (תשנ”ב) are all significant and are worthy of elaboration.

פתבג המלך — There is a thematic connection between Rosh HaShanah and Sunday, the first day of the week, for both commemorate the creation of the world.3 This connection is reflected in that chapter 24 of Tehillim which is the Psalm of the day for Sunday, is recited as part of the evening service of Rosh HaShanah.4 Since Rosh HaShanah can never fall on Sunday, when it falls on a Monday as in the present year, there is a closer interrelation to this concept.

To elaborate on this connection: The Torah refers to the first day of creation, not as the first day, but as “one day,” a day in which “the Holy One, blessed be He, was one with His world.” Although all the different creations had already come into being, they were permeated with G‑d’s oneness and did not sense their individual identity.

The creation of man was intended to bring the world to a similar state of oneness. And indeed, this goal was realized by Adam, the first man, directly after his creation. For he called to all the other created beings, telling them “Come let us prostrate ourselves, bow, and bend the knee before G‑d, our Maker.”

Thus our Sages explain that at this time, Adam crowned G‑d as King of the world.5 Similarly, each Rosh HaShanah, man must relive this initial experience and accept G‑d as King. In doing so, man — as did Adam — elevates the creation as a whole to a higher level.6

To explain: The Torah concludes the narrative of the creation with the phrase “everything which G‑d created laasos.” Our Sages explain that laasos should be interpreted to mean “to correct,” i.e., G‑d created the world in such a manner that man can — and indeed is expected to — enhance the creation through his service of Torah and mitzvos.7

At the beginning of creation, the world was brought into being in a complete and perfect state. This perfection, however, was within the limits of the natural order. Through the service of Torah and mitzvos, man has the potential of transforming the world into a dwelling for G‑d, a place where His essence is manifest. This reveals a level of perfection which transcends the natural order.

This concept is reflected in the Torah’s description of man’s creation: “And G‑d, the L‑rd, formed man [from] dust from the earth and He blew into his nostrils a living soul.” Man was formed from dust, for dust is the foundation of the entire creation, “everything comes from dust.” This grants him the potential to infuse the influence of the “living soul” into the entire creation, allowing the revelation of the G‑dly power which brings the world into being. Furthermore, as mentioned above, man can reveal a level of G‑dliness which transcends the natural order.8

When Rosh HaShanah falls on Monday and Tuesday, we see a unique progression. From Sunday, “a day of oneness,” we proceed to the two days of Rosh HaShanah which represent the state of completion which man can add to the natural order. Significantly, these days fall on Monday and Tuesday. Our Sages explain the significance of these days, noting that on Monday, division was created and on Tuesday, division was nullified and peace established.

Division is a result of the concealment of G‑dliness which characterizes our world. The first day represents G‑d’s conception of the world. In contrast, the second day reflects a transition to man’s perspective and from man’s perspective, the world is characterized by division. The third day represents the conclusion of the process, the revelation of how, even from man’s perspective, the division can be resolved and the environment can be characterized by peace.

This transition is accomplished through the service of man and his observance of the Torah as the Rambam writes, “The Torah was given only to establish peace within the world.” Through the Torah, the Jews reveal a third perspective which reconciles G‑d’s perspective of the world and that of man. For this reason, the Torah and the Jewish people are also connected to the concept of three. Thus our Sages relate in regard to the giving of the Torah, that G‑d “gave a threefold light to a threefold people in the third month.”

From a deeper perspective, it can be explained that although “division was created on the second day,” this refers to “a difference of opinion for the sake of heaven,” as the differences of opinion between Hillel and Shammai in which both opinions represent valid Torah approaches.

Hillel represents the approach of chessed, “kindness,” and Shammai, gevurah, “might” and accordingly, they render either lenient or stringent decisions. Ultimately, however, such a division can also be reconciled and peace established between the two perspectives. This concept of peace in Torah reflects a fusion of these two approaches, relating to the level of G‑dliness that transcends our human perspective.9

This is the lesson conveyed by the days on which Rosh HaShanah is celebrated this year, that after the oneness of Sunday, i.e., perfection according to the natural limits of the world, man will add to a deeper level of peace through his service. For the celebration of Rosh HaShanah on Monday and Tuesday shows how he can reconcile the division which he perceives within the world with G‑d’s oneness.

In this context, we can comprehend the relationship between בג המלך and the Parshiyos Nitzavim and Vayeilech. Nitzavim represents the essential stance of the Jewish people.10 This is amplified by Parshas Vayeilech which describes the level of perfection reached by Moshe on the day of his death. Every Jew shares a connection to this level, for each Jew possesses a spark of Moshe within him.

Vayeilech means “And he went,” referring to the progress reached by the Jews in their service in this world.11 When, as in the present year, the two Torah portions are divided,12 the distinction between the level of the Jews before their service in this world and the level reached after their service is accentuated.

The uniqueness of Shabbos Parshas Vayeilech is also emphasized by the fact that it is Shabbos Shuvah and it is the Shabbos in the week between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur. The AriZal explains that the seven days between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur are of a general nature, including within them all the days of the week for the past year and for the year to come. I.e., the Sunday of these seven days includes within it all the Sundays of both the previous and the coming year. On this day, one can elevate and bring to a level of perfection all the Sundays of the previous year and prepare for all the Sundays of the coming year.

Similarly, the present Shabbos includes within it all the Shabbasos of the year to come. The elevation of the Shabbasos relates to the very nature of Shabbos which elevates the service of the previous days, connecting all entities to their source.13

This also relates to the concept of teshuvah, for teshuvah involves the return of the soul to its source. (This does not refer to the expiration of the soul. Instead, the intent is that as the soul exists in this world, it should have the intensity of the connection to its source.)

The phrase פתבג המלך, “the king’s food,” also has the connotation that G‑d will provide every Jew with his material needs. And this will be done with generosity. Since each Jew is G‑d’s only son as it were, whatever is given to a Jew, even “a feast of Shlomo” is insufficient for him.14 Each Jew should be given all his needs and furthermore, endowed with wealth and prosperity.

The above concepts receive greater influence in the present year, 5752, תשנ”ב, a year which is described as Shnas niflaos bah, “a year which will contain wonders,” and these wonders will be bakol, “in all things,” i.e., every aspect of the year will be characterized by wonders. Furthermore, these wonders will be revealed in a manner of binah, “understanding.”

Wonders are associated with the coming of the Redemption as the verse states, “As in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders.” “I will show you” refers to the revelation of the positive nature of our service in bringing the world to a higher level of perfection.

Our Sages relate that “the world was created in a full state,” but that Mashiach will bring the world to an even higher level of fulfillment as reflected in the verse, “These are the generations of Peretz.” The name Peretz, the progenitor of the Mashiach, means “break through.” This implies that the fulfillment invested in the world at the outset was limited in nature. In contrast, through man’s service, the world can be brought to a level of fulfillment which is unbounded in nature.

The wonders of the redemption — and those which will precede the Redemption — will be bakol, “in all things.” Bakol is one of the three expressions of blessing associated with the Patriarchs — bakol, mikol, kol, as we recite in the Grace After Meals (Siddur Tehillat HaShem, p. 93, see Bava Basra 16b-17a). In regard to Avraham it is written, “And G‑d blessed Avraham with everything” (בכל; Genesis 24:1). In regard to Yitzchak, it is written, “I have eaten of all” (מכל; Ibid., 27:33). And regarding Yaakov it is written, “I have everything” (כל; Ibid., 33:11). Since Avraham, Yitzchak, and Yaakov are the Patriarchs of the Jewish people, it is self-understood that the above blessings are transmitted in every generation to all of their descendants, men, women, and children.

And these wonders will be associated with binah, “understanding.” Indeed, there is an intrinsic connection between understanding and wonders. Niflaos (נפלאות) the Hebrew for wonders can be divided into נ פלאות which means “fifty wonders.” Fifty, in turn, relates to the fifty gates of wisdom that exist in the world.15

The expression bakol mikol kol (בכל מכל כל) is numerically equivalent to the word kabetz (קבץ), meaning “gather.” Thus it serves as a reference to the ingathering of the exiles which will take place during the Era of the Redemption. May G‑d soon “Sound the great shofar for our freedom and raise a banner to gather our dispersed.”

May the Redemption come immediately, indeed, may it be that it has already come. For the newspapers have already written about Mashiach’s coming16 — may they continue to write more and may these articles be in the past tense for Mashiach’s coming will already be a reality.
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Footnotes
1.HaMelech means “the king.” It is employed as a reference to Rosh HaShanah, for on that day, the Jews’ service centers on the acceptance of G‑d’s Kingship.
2.In particular, there is a closer connection to this phrase when Rosh HaShanah falls on Monday, for then the second day of Rosh HaShanah falls on Tuesday and thus the holiday is celebrated on both the days of c and d.
3.Thus in regard to Rosh HaShanah, we say in our prayers, “This is the day which is the beginning of Your work, a commemoration of the first day.”
4.Significantly, it is related that the service of the Rebbeim reached a peak during the recitation of this psalm. Accordingly, it is proper for the Chassidim to, to the extent of their capacities, attempt to mirror such service.
5.For this reason, the psalm of the day of Friday, the day on which man was created, begins “G‑d is King, He garbs Himself in grandeur.” This verse reflects an advantage over Adam’s statement, “Come let us bow….” Adam describes G‑d as “our Maker,” i.e., relating to the G‑dliness manifest within the natural order. In contrast, the verse, “G‑d is King” reflects a level of G‑dliness above nature.
6.For this reason, Rosh HaShanah which commemorates the creation of the world as a whole is celebrated on the anniversary of the creation of man.
7.In this vein, we can understand our Sages comment that the hay in the words yom hashishi, “the sixth day,” is a reference to the sixth of Sivan, the day on which the Torah was given. For it is through the giving of the Torah that the world can be brought to a state of completion.This connection is further emphasized by the inclusion of the description of the giving of the Torah in the verses of Shofros recited on Rosh HaShanah. This emphasizes that the purpose of creation is for the service of the Jewish people in Torah and mitzvos.
8.These two levels, the G‑dliness invested within the natural order and the G‑dliness which transcends the natural order, are alluded to in the two chapters of Pirkei Avos which are studied before Rosh HaShanah, the fifth and the sixth chapters.

The fifth chapter begins stating how the world was created with ten utterances, describing the natural order of the world as it was created by G‑d. In contrast, the sixth chapter begins: “The Sages taught in the language of the Mishnah…” emphasizing man’s potential to contribute to the world through Torah study. And thus, this chapter also mentions the potential to bring redemption to the world.

The redemption is also alluded to by the very combination of the two chapters, for five and six equal eleven. The world as it exists within its limits is structured in a set of ten. Eleven represents a level that transcends these limits. Thus the Torah mentions “an eleven day journey from Choreb.” From Choreb (identified with Mt. Sinai, the place where the Torah was given), one’s journey must reflect eleven, man’s ability to infuse an infinite quality into the world at large.
9.This level will be revealed in the Era of the Redemption when the halachah will follow both the School of Hillel and the School of Shammai, fusing the two opposites together in an approach characteristic of G‑d’s essence. (Although it is explained in many sources that in the Era of the Redemption, the halachah will follow the School of Shammai, that refers only to the first period of the Era of the Redemption. In the second period, both the School of Hillel’s and the School of Shammai’s opinions will be followed.)
10.The verse mentions ten categories among the Jewish people, implying that this essential stance is shared by every member of our people, regardless of his nature.
11.In contrast, Nitzavim, “You are standing,” refers to the level of the soul as it exists in the spiritual realms. There the soul “stands” in love and fear of G‑d. In contrast, in our material world the soul has the potential for Vayeilech, progress and growth.
12.This relates to the division created on the second day.
13.In Kabbalistic terminology, this refers to elevating the world from the level of speech to the level of thought.
14.This applies to every Jew, regardless of his level of service. For this is due to a Jew because of the essence of his being even before he begins his service. (This is accentuated in the present year when Parshas Nitzavim alone is associated with Rosh HaShanah. As mentioned above, Parshas Vayeilech refers to the advantages a Jew requires through his service, while Parshas Nitzavim refers to the qualities a Jew possesses in essence, even before his service.)
15.Herein, there is a connection to Parshas Vayeilech which describes Moshe’s death. For at the time of his death, Moshe attained the fiftieth of these gates of wisdom.
16.The Rebbeim emphasized that when Mashiach comes, his coming will be written about in the newspapers.

Translation by Sichos In English (sie.org)

Video Shiur: Nitzovim-RH-Vayelech 5752

 

Chabadinfo.com Exclusive: In the last Sicha the Rebbe said on Shabbos Parshas Nitzovim & Shabbos Parshas Vayelech (5751), the Rebbe explains how the world was created incomplete, and it is in our hands to do the final touch and bring it to redemption ● Now you too can understand the Rebbe’s words with ChabadInfo.com’s NEW Weekly Shiur of the “Dvar Malchus” Sicha in English, presented by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Lipskier, Mashpia of Mesivta of Melbourne, Australia ● Watch Video