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Publisher’s Foreword

The Letter Sent Out by the Rebbe Shlita for Yud-Alef Nissan

Motzoei Shabbos Parshas Tzav
Yud-Alef Nissan, 5739

Yud-Gimmel Nissan, 5739
Yahrzeit Of The Tzemach Tzedek

Acharon Shel Pesach 5739

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh Parshas Shemini
Shabbos Mevorchim Iyar 5739

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh Parshas Tazria-Metzora, 5739

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh Parshas Bamidbar
And Shabbos Mevorchim Hachodesh Sivan, 5739

Neshei Ubnos Chabad Convention
Rosh Chodesh Sivan, 5739

Eve Of The 3rd Of Sivan, 5739

Erev Shavuos, 5739

Second Day Of Shavuos, 5739

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh
Parshas Nasso, 5739

To The Graduating Class Of Beis Rivka
And To The Counselors Of Camp Emunah & Pardes Chana
26th Day Of Sivan, 5739

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh — Parshas Shelach
Shabbos Mevorchim Hachodesh Tammuz, 5739

Motzoei Shabbos Parshas Chukas – Balak
12th Day Of Tammuz, 5739

13th Day of Tammuz, 5739

15th Day of Tammuz, 5739

17th of Tammuz

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh Parshas Mattos & Mas’ai
Shabbos Mevorchim HaChodesh Menachem Av, 5739

Shabbos Kodesh Parshas Devorim
Shabbos Chazon

To The Children Of Day Camps

15th of Av

Chaf (20th) Av, 5739
Yahrzeit Of Rav Levi Yitzchok Schneerson
(The Rebbe’S Father)

Motzoei Shabbos Kodesh — Parshas Re'ey
Shabbos Mevorchim HaChodesh Elul, 5739

To The Children Of Camp Gan Israel

To The Girls Of Camp “Emunah”

The Letter sent out by the Rebbe Shlita for Chai Elul

Chai (18th) Elul
The Birthdays Of The Baal Shem Tov And The Alter Rebbe

Shabbos Parshas Nitzavim-Vayeilech 5739

Neshei Ubnos Chabad
27th Elul, 5739

Erev Rosh Hashanah
29th Elul, 5739

Sichos In English
Excerpts of Sichos delivered by The Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson
Vol. 3 — Nissan 5739-Tishrei 5740


Eve Of The 3rd Of Sivan, 5739

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  Neshei Ubnos Chabad Convention
Rosh Chodesh Sivan, 5739
Erev Shavuos, 5739  

Hundreds of hours of audio lectures, on 9 CD-ROMs!

1. In his Shulchan Aruch,[126] the Alter Rebbe writes that from Rosh Chodesh Sivan on, Moshe began to prepare the Jewish people to receive the Torah — (Similarly, from G-d’s standpoint – when he saw the perfect unity that the Jewish people achieved during their encampment by Mt. Sinai — He commented now is the time to give the Torah). The following day, Tuesday, G-d told the Jewish peopld! “You will be for me a Kingdom of priests.” On Wednesday, He ordered Moshe to transmit the command to set up boundaries to make sure no one would ascend Mt. Sinai. The next three days were spent in preparation for the giving of the Torah and on the third day, Shabbos, the Torah was given. Each of the six days made its own unique contribution and contained and maintained the contribution of the previous days.[127]

Tonight is the night[128] between the second and third of Sivan. It is therefore fitting to carry out the service appropriate to these days. (as will be explained in section 2).

At this time (from Rosh Chodesh-12, Sivan), it is necessary for all of us to increase our study of Torah and our 4ifts of Tzedaka. The effects of these activities are very powerful. Tzedaka has the potential to take the place of fasting as a vehicle for averting harsh decrees. In fact Tzedaka is more powerful than fasting. Fasting works through deprivation — through “reducing our blood and fat.” Tzedaka[129] on the other hand, makes a positive contribution — “Tov lashamayim” (good to heaven) “Tov labrios” (good to man). Also Tzedaka works to bring about the future redemption as the Talmud relates ‘Great is charity, in that it brings the redemption nearer.’[130]

The activities of learning more Torah and giving more Tzedaka are the proper preparation for the holiday of Shavuos. Through them we are able to fulfill the ‘Brochal given by the Previous Rebbe for Shavuos, that we receive the Torah with joy and inwardly.[131] When a person studies Torah in such a manner, a true union is established between the Jew and Torah. The relationship is no longer a joining of two separate entities — the Jew dedicating himself to Torah, instead he and Torah become one thing. This fusion is reflected by serving G-d even when there is no explicit command, through knowing G-d in all your ways” and directing “all your deeds for the sake of heaven.” How can we acheive this union? Through serving Hashem with joy, for “joy breaks down all barriers” — the barriers that separate our souls from our bodies, our innermost powers from our external ones.

In this campaign (Torah and Tzedaka), special attention should be paid to young children. They possess “a voice not tainted by sin’.’~and as the Medrash relates “our children are our guarantors” (that we will keep the Torah).

To repeat for the sake of emphasis: The purpose of this Farbrengen is to motivate an increase in the study of Torah and the giving of Tzedaka. Special stress should be placed on engaging everyone, especially children, to participate in this campaign. May the campaign be carried out with true joy[132] and continue through the 12th of Sivan[133] and through these efforts may we receive the Torah with joy and inwardly.

2. As mentioned above, directly after Rosh Chodesh Sivan, Moshe began to prepare the Jewish people for the giving of the Torah. Those events are of practical relevance for each Jew, for within all of our souls lies a spark from the soul of Moshe.[134] Therefore, the series of events that transpired then apply to us in relation to our preparation for receiving the Torah each year.

On the second of Sivan, G-d called the Jewish people a ‘Kingdom of Priests’ that term is very significant. The Talmud states “the King declares and uproots a mountain.” The term mountain alludes to the Yetzer Hora that appears as a mountain. A Jew can uproot his Yetzer Hora, using merely his power of speech.

(It is interesting to note that the Talmud uses the phrase “uproots a mountain” and not destroy a mountain. The aim of Torah is not to destroy the Yetzer Hora, but to transform it. To love G-d with both your hearts — both the Yetzer Hora and the Yetzer Tov.)

The term priest refers to someone who has no material concerns. In reference to the Levites, the Rambam writes “the phrase ‘G-d is their portion’ was not said to the tribe of Levites alone but to every man who sets himself apart to stand before G-d and serve Him. Behold he is sanctified holy of holies and G-d will be his portion forever.”

There are those who interpret the phrase “Kingdom of Priests” as a reference to the level a high priest. Each Jew is potentially a high priest. What does that mean on a practical level? The high priest was distinguished by the fact that he was prohibited by Torah law from leaving Jerusalem. Yerushalayim (Jerusalem) is a combination of two Hebrew words, ‘Yirah Sholaim’ — complete fear. A Jew who would come to Yerushalayim and see the service in the Bais Hamikdosh would be instilled with fear of G-d. This level of fear is attainable to every Jew. G-d’s statement, “You will be a Kingdom of Priests” is both a request and a promise. The very utterance of these words affects our behavior and shapes our actions.[135]

On the third day, G-d commanded Moshe to set up boundaries around Mt. Sinai. This event is also relevant to us on a personal level. We must realize that even after we have reached the level of “Kingdom of Priests,” we must know our limits — not to recklessly climb up the mountain. In Chassidic lore, stories are told explaining how it is necessary to know one’s limitations, not to reach for a level beyond our grasp.

In light of the above mentioned importance of children in the campaign to increase study of Torah and gifts to Tzedaka, it is appropriate that they all say L’chaim and join together in a happy nigun. This shall break down the last barriers of Golus and transform the darkness of Golus into light.

3. When at the previous Farbrengen, I launched a campaign for an increase in Torah study and gifts to Tzedaka. I expected that the campaign would be publicized in a manner that would reach out to every Jew. I thought that advertisements would be placed in newspapers and that all communication media would be used. (There’s nothing wrong with using the media to spread Torah. Older Chassidim used to say that “the coming of Moshiach would be written in the newspapers.”)

When that publicity did not appear, I assumed that everyone was so busy occupying themselves with the increase they were making in their own service, that they had no time left to publicize the necessity for others to take similar steps.[136]

The purpose of this Farbrengen is to urge everyone to make a concentrated effort to publicize the campaign. Advertisements should be placed in the Yiddish papers, English papers, French papers, Spanish papers, Portuguese papers, (surely) Jewish papers, and even in the Russian papers. No attempt should be made to save money on either the size of the advertisement or it’s position in the paper.

Teachers and educators should pay special attention to involving their pupils in the campaign.[137] There is no need to mention the person who initiated the campaign. If anonymity will bring greater results, than that path should be taken. What is most important is that action be taken.

   

Notes:

  1. (Back to text) The fact that these laws are written in the Alter Rebbe’s Shulchan Aruch implies that they are practically relevant today. The Alter Rebbe only wrote laws that are practically applicable. Other codifiers, for example Maimonides wrote down all the laws even those concerning construction of the Temple.

  2. (Back to text) This concept of making a unique individual contribution and also maintaining that of the previous days is evident in Sefiras HaOmer. When counting each day, we recite “today is ... days to the Omer” (counting the number of days passed not just the specific day). All of the days of the Omer are connected in one continuous pattern of growth.

  3. (Back to text) Even though in the Temple no sacrifices were offered at night: (and in regards to the Temple — night is not a time of service). The reason for the creation of every Jew was “to serve the Creator.” That purpose must be fulfilled at night as well.

  4. (Back to text) The Talmud comments that Tzedaka is equal to the totality of all Mitzvos. When the Jerusalem Talmud uses the term “Mitzvah” it refers to Tzedaka. There is an intrinsic connection between the two. The entire concept of Torah and Mitzvah is Tzedaka. They are a gift from an infinite G-d to finite man. They serve as a bridge — a connection between man and G-d. For that reason G-d gave many Mitzvos, providing each Jew with at least one Mitzvah that he can relate to fully.

  5. (Back to text) Tzedaka has the power of redeeming and atoning for sins. As it says “Redeem your sins through Tzedaka.”

  6. (Back to text) The same concept is expressed through the name chosen for the sixth chapter of Pirkei Avos — “Kinyan Torah.” This chapter deals with the great qualities attainable through Torah study. It is read as a preparation for the holiday of Shavuos. The name Kinyan Torah means the acquisition of Torah, indicating the concept of taking Torah and making it yours.

  7. (Back to text) The Rambam explains in the laws of Matonos Llevyonim (the special charity given on Purim) how true joy is connected with giving Tzedaka.

  8. (Back to text) These days are still connected with the holiday of Shavuos. Therefore, no Tachnun is said until after the 12th of Sivan.

  9. (Back to text) The concept of the existence of a spark of Moshe Rabbeinu’s soul in the soul of every Jew is explained in the commentary on the following Talmudic explanation. The Torah states — All G-d asks from you is to fear Him: >From the expression “all G-d asks” the Talmud implies that the Torah considers fear an easily accessible service. Therefore, the Rabbi’s ask “Is fear a small thing?” They answer — “for Moshe fear is indeed a small thing.” Their answer itself raises a question: The Torah’s statement was addressed to the entire Jewish people — Why did the Sages answer regarding Moshe alone? However, since each Jew’s soul contains a spark of Moshe, it is possible for every Jew to emulate his service.

  10. (Back to text) The Rogatchover Gaon explained in Halachic terms how every statement of the (Written) Torah remains permanent. Similarly, in regards to the statement “You will be a Kingdom of Priests.”

  11. (Back to text) The Talmud explains that someone wh6 is occupied in fulfilling one Mitzva is free from the obligation to fulfill any others. However, his service is still considered incomplete, as the Zohar recalls the story of a Sage who met his sons returning from a wedding feast. He told them I can tell from the smell of your clothes that you have not recited ‘Krias Shema.’ They protested that they were occupied in a great Mitzvah, the rejoicing at a wedding. He explained that they were not obligated to have performed the Mitzvah but that a deficiency in their service to G-d was still noticeable.

  12. (Back to text) Since the main purpose of everyone who is connected with a school — even the janitor—is, not the income they receive, but the creation of an educational environment, they should all feel the responsibility to help in the campaign.


  Neshei Ubnos Chabad Convention
Rosh Chodesh Sivan, 5739
Erev Shavuos, 5739  
  
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