Sichos In English   Holidays   Shabbat   Chabad-houses   Chassidism   Subscribe   Calendar   Links B"H

     Sichos In English -> Books -> Sichos -> Sichos In English
Volumes:
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17
18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32
33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51
  

Rosh Hashanah, 5747

Tzom Gedaliah, 5747

6th Day Of Tishrei, 5747

Shabbos Parshas Ha'azinu, Shabbos Shuvah

Blessings -- 5747

13th Day Of Tishrei, 5747

1st Night Of Sukkos, 5747

2nd Night Of Sukkos, 5747

3rd Night Of Sukkos, 5747

4th Night Of Sukkos, 5747

Tzivos Hashem

5th Night Of Sukkos, 5747

6th Night Of Sukkos, 5747

Hosha'ana Rabbah, 5747

Night Of Simchas Torah, 5747

Chabad Houses -- Everywhere

Yechidus

Shabbos Parshas Bereishis

Shabbos Parshas Noach

Chabad Houses -- Ii - Jewish Unity

Shabbos Parshas Vayeira

Shabbos Parshas Chaye Sarah

Reach Out And Teach Every Jew

Conquer The World With Torah

Shabbos Parshas Vayeitze

Shabbos Parshas Vayishlach

Are You A Shaliach?

Sichos In English
Volume 33

6th Night Of Sukkos, 5747

Published and copyright © by Sichos In English
(718) 778-5436     info@SichosInEnglish.org     FAX (718) 735-4139


Add to Shopping Cart   |   Buy this now
  5th Night Of Sukkos, 5747Hosha'ana Rabbah, 5747  

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

1

Simchas Bais Hashoevah is associated with water as Yeshayahu 12:3 states: "You shall draw water with happiness." Generally, happiness is associated with wine as our Sages stated: "there is no rejoicing except with wine." Similarly, Shoftim 9:3 describes wine as "gladdening men and G-d." However, throughout the year, when wine was poured on the altar, there was no special celebrations.

In contrast, water has no natural connection to happiness. Nevertheless, on Sukkos, the drawing of the water to be poured on the altar was accompanied by a great celebration to the extent that "anyone who did not witness Simchas Bais Hashoevah never witnessed [true] happiness in his life."

Thus, even though there was no external cause for happiness, happiness was expressed in an unbounded manner. For this reason, the commemoration of Simchas Bais Hashoevah centers only on the aspect of happiness and does not include any allusion to water as mentioned on the previous nights. This emphasizes that the entire concept revolves around celebration without an external cause and was not instituted because of the water, for water is not a cause for celebration.

The above is also related to the connection between Ruach HaKodesh, the spirit of prophecy, and Simchas Bais Hashoevah as our Sages stated: "Yonah, the prophet entered Simchas Bais Hashoevah and Ruach HaKodesh rested upon him." Their intent was not that the celebration was held because one derived Ruach HaKodesh, but rather, the intense celebration of Simchas Bais Hashoevah made a person a proper vessel for Ruach HaKodesh.

Thus, the celebration of Simchas Bais Hashoevah transcends all celebrations that could be motivated by external factors (e.g., wine or Ruach HaKodesh). It is a reflection of essential happiness, with the highest of sources.

Also, it must be emphasized that the Maggid explained that Ruach HaKodesh is easier to attain at present than in the time of the Temple, explaining the concept with a parable of a king and a peasant. While the king is in his palace, it is impossible for the peasant to gain an audience with him. However, when he is in an inn on a journey, there is the potential for even a simple peasant to speak with him.

2

The above is a general concept relevant to every night of Simchas Bais Hashoevah. However, it is also necessary to derive a particular lesson specifically relevant to the present night. That lesson can be understood within the context of the following concept.

The holiday of Sukkos is associated with the clouds of glory which accompanied the Jewish people on their journey through the desert. Thus, in his Shulchan Aruch, at the beginning of the laws of Sukkos, the Altar Rebbe quotes the verse: "You shall dwell in sukkos for seven days... so your [future] generations will know that I caused the children of Israel to dwell in sukkos when I took them out of the land of Egypt." He continues, explaining that those "sukkos" refer to the clouds of glory. (In particular, there were seven clouds of glory which correspond to the seven attributes of Za'er Anpin. These are reflected in the seven days of Sukkos, each day revealing a different quality.)

Furthermore, as explained on the previous nights, Sukkos reveals those qualities which were hidden on Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur. The schach of the sukkah is connected with both these holidays. The numerical equivalent of the Hebrew word schach is 100, reminiscent of the 100 shofar blasts of Rosh HaShanah. Similarly, the clouds of glory associated with the schach are reminiscent of the incense cloud which was the essence of the Yom Kippur service.

Based on the principle that one must always increase in regard to holy matters, the joy which accompanies Simchas Bais Hashoevah must be increased each night. There is also a unique quality associated with each night of Sukkos that is expressed by the Ushpizin connected with that night; in regard to the present night, Yosef, and the Chassidic Ushpiza, the Rebbe Maharash.

[It must be emphasized that the concept of Chassidic Ushpizin is relevant to each and every Jew. All of the concepts explained in Chassidus are not limited to a select few, but rather, are intended for the entire Jewish people. This is particularly true since the concept was revealed, published, and publicized by the Previous Rebbe, and was publicized to even more people in each subsequent year. Surely, the efforts to spread Chassidus will continue, with joy and good feeling, until the light of Chassidus reaches others who have not tasted it as of yet.]

The connection of the Rebbe Maharash to the present day is further emphasized by the fact that today, the twentieth of Tishrei, falls on the same day of the week as -- and in the week immediately following -- the Rebbe Maharash's Yartzeit, the thirteenth of Tishrei.

The common aspect that connects both Ushpizan is the service of Lechatchilah Ariber. Thus, we see that Yosef went out from prison to become ruler of Egypt, second to the king in a manner in which only the king had authority over him. Though previously, he was in a very low position, a slave and a prisoner, from these depths, he was able to ascend to the highest peaks. This is surely an approach of Lechatchilah Ariber. Similarly, the Rebbe Maharash himself acted in a manner of Lechatchilah Ariber and advised others to follow a similar approach.

Furthermore, the quality of Lechatchilah Ariber expressed by the Rebbe Maharash surpassed that expressed by Yosef. Yosef lived before the giving of the Torah, when there was a Divine decree separating the spiritual realms from our material world. Therefore, his approach of Lechatchilah Ariber cannot resemble that of the generations which followed. In contrast, the Rebbe Maharash displayed the quality of Lechatchilah Ariber after the giving of the Torah; i.e., even after a connection had been established between the spiritual realms and our world, he rose above the level of the world in a manner of Lechatchilah Ariber.

The approach of Lechatchilah Ariber is also related to the celebrations of Simchas Bais Hashoevah. As explained above, the celebrations of Simchas Bais Hashoevah are not connected with any external cause for happiness. The ability to reach the heights of joy without any external cause is an expression of the quality of Lechatchilah Ariber. Thus, if, in general, this quality is associated with Simchas Bais Hashoevah, it should surely characterize the celebrations of the present evening. To express this concept in simple terms, this means that one should celebrate Simchas Bais Hashoevah tonight with more strength and intensity than on the previous nights.

When a Jew is asked to celebrate and dance during Simchas Bais Hashoevah and conduct those celebrations in public, to the extent that they have an effect on the gentiles as well, his Yetzer Horah can come to him with a question: "How can you celebrate in this manner during exile?" "You, yourself," the Yetzer Horah continues, "heard the Previous Rebbe explain that we did not leave our land voluntarily, rather, it was G-d who sent us into exile. If so, why make such a fuss about dancing in public, that the street and the exile should dance?"

The reply comes from the Ushpiza of the present night, Yosef. When he was in exile in Egypt, he was the ruler of the entire country and controlled every aspect of the land. This serves as a lesson to all Jews in every generation. The entire Jewish people are referred to as Yosef (Psalm 80) because Yosef gave them sustenance -- of both a material and spiritual nature -- throughout the years of famine. This gave them the potential to maintain themselves throughout the exile and, ultimately, to emerge from Egypt.

Similarly, in the present exile of which our prophets declared, "As in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders," each Jew has the potential to establish his position in a manner resembling that of Yosef in Egypt, becoming the ruler of the land, the aspect of exile being expressed in that he is only "second to the king," and not the king himself.

[Who is the real king? Our Sages teach, "Who are our kings? Our Rabbis." Each person has to find himself a teacher and set him up as an absolute authority. This is what is meant by the expression, "Make a teacher for yourself." One should not find a teacher who will only say what is acceptable. Of what use is such a Rav? Rather, one should find a Rav who does not seek to find favor in his eyes or be lenient with him, a Rav whose very acceptance requires an approach of going against one's nature. This will make that appointing a proper vehicle to proceed to the acceptance of G-d's yoke, which, in turn, will lead to an abundance of spiritual benefits and ultimately, an abundance of material benefits.]

To return to the above concept: Even within the conditions of exile, one can reach a position where one can influence the gentiles in the manner described by the verses of Hallel which are recited throughout the holiday of Sukkos: "Praise the Lord, all you nations; extol Him, all you peoples."

Even within the exile, we can witness the fulfillment of the prophecy: "Kings will be your guardians and their queens, your nursemaids." Indeed, when the Talmud wishes to exemplify the fulfillment of this prophecy, it chooses a story which took place while the Jews were in exile. It relates that a sage stood before a king with his gartel dragging. The king descended from his throne and lifted it up, explaining: "You are 'a kingdom of priests and a holy people,' therefore, you should be dressed attractively as befits a priest."

Indeed, the fact we are in exile should increase the intensity of our demand that, in a manner of Lechatchilah Ariber, the exile cease. This is particularly true as we see the darkness of exile continues and we see, to quote the Psalm discussed yesterday, "those who shamed the footsteps of Moshiach." Such a situation warrants that the complete and ultimate redemption come immediately and, even before that time, the difficulties of exile be nullified.

[As mentioned, in His kindness, G-d allows us to undergo the same process of self-refinement for which the Jews in Egypt required back-breaking work "with mortar (chomer) and bricks (l'vainim)" by dedicating ourselves to Torah study including the process of Biblical exegis (Kal V'Chomer) and the clarification of Torah law (Livon Hilchasah).]

Thus, we shall finish the task of "polishing the buttons," and leave the exile together with the entire Jewish people. When the Jews will be redeemed from this present exile, no Jew will be left behind. Each and every Jew will leave the exile accompanied by the Divine Presence.

To proceed from the era of "those who shamed the footsteps of Moshiach" to the complete redemption requires an approach of Lechatchilah Ariber. This is emphasized by the conclusion of that Psalm, "Blessed be the Lord, forever, Amen and Amen."

Amen is equivalent to 91 which also equals the two names of G-d, Yud-Hay-Vav-Hay and Ado-nai. The fusion of these two names implies that the transcendent aspects of G-dliness implied by the name Yud-Hay-Vav-Hay become one with the name, Ado-nai, the lowest of G-d's names. Furthermore, the word Amen is repeated, implying a further state of elevation. This concludes the portion of Psalms associated with the previous day and serves as a preparation for the service of Lechatchilah Ariber in a higher manner on the present day.


3

The portion of Torah associated with the present day contains the blessings of the tribes who camped under the flag of Dan; Dan, Naftali, and Asher. It is thus connected to Yosef, the Ushpiza of the present night, for as the Bible relates he was friendly with "the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah," who were included in these tribes.

Yosef's relationship with these brothers also expresses the concept of Lechatchilah Ariber. Yosef was on a higher level than all his brothers. Indeed, his level was so high that Ya'akov felt it necessary to single him out by making him a coat of many colors. He knew that doing so might arouse jealousy among his brothers, for such feelings are natural. Nevertheless, because of Yosef's high level, he felt it was necessary to single him out in this fashion.

Despite Yosef's high level, he associated with the sons of Bilhah and the sons of Zilpah, the lowest of the brothers. Furthermore, it appears that Yosef served these brothers, actions which caused his other brothers to look down upon him. Nevertheless, Yosef did not cease his behavior, continuing in a manner of Lechatchilah Ariber.

The concept of Lechatchilah Ariber is also relevant to the order in which the three tribes are mentioned in today's Torah portion. When the Torah describes the encampment of these tribes in the desert, it mentions Asher before Naftali. However, here Asher is mentioned last.

There is a unique aspect in the blessing of Asher which is not found in regard to the blessings of the other tribes. On the verse, "Iron and copper shall be your bars," Rashi comments: "Now, the Torah is speaking about Israel as a whole.... Alternatively,... [the verse refers to] the land of Asher which was the lock to Eretz Yisroel."

Thus, the first interpretation which is closer to the simple meaning of the verse emphasizes that the blessing of Asher possesses a dimension which is relevant to the Jewish people as a whole. This is an expression of the approach, Lechatchilah Ariber.

This approach can also be seen in other aspects of this Torah portion. For example, the opening verse describes Dan, the lowest of the tribes as "a lion cub," using the same metaphor that is employed for Yehudah, the most elevated tribe. Further, Dan is described as "leaping," i.e., jumping upward.

Similarly, the final verse of the portion describes how G-d, "rides through the heavens to your aid, through the skies in His grandeur." This is surely an aspect of Lechatchilah Ariber. In general, the blessings are connected to the earth and this verse deals with the heavens. Furthermore, it emphasizes how G-d is above the heavens and rides them in His pride.

The latter verse also shares a point of connection to the Rebbe Maharash, tonight's Ushpiza. Our Sages relate that in the Shechakim -- translated as skies -- are mills which "churn out manna for the righteous." The Rebbe Maharash taught that in our age, the livelihood of the Jewish people is granted in a manner that transcends natural law, "like manna from heaven." It is only that this process is clothed in a veil so that the natural order of the world will not be nullified.

[Furthermore, it is a thin "veil," for by watching and contemplating the matter, one can appreciate G-d's hand.]

Though our livelihood is granted as "manna from heaven," it is still necessary that we work to earn it. However, we must realize that this work is only a vessel to draw down G-d's blessings.

Even in regard to the collection of the manna, a certain degree of effort was necessary on man's part. Our Sages relate that for the righteous it descended "on their doorsteps" -- i.e., and not on their tables -- and for others, an even greater degree of effort was necessary.

(There is a story about the Baal Shem Tov which emphasizes the varying degrees of effort necessary to earn a livelihood: Once the Baal Shem Tov, approached a person's house, knocked on his window, and then continued on his way. The person ran after the Baal Shem Tov asked him what he needed and returned home to fulfill the Baal Shem Tov's desires.

The Baal Shem Tov's students asked: If he needed a favor from the person, why did he continue on his way after knocking on his window?

The Baal Shem Tov answered: Man's desires are fulfilled by G-d. However, G-d desires that man expend a certain degree of effort. In my case, the effort of knocking on the window was sufficient to create the vessel for G-d's blessing.)

We must appreciate these two concepts: On one hand, our livelihood is granted as "manna from heaven." On the other hand, a certain degree of effort is necessary on our part to make a vessel to contain the blessings G-d will give.


4

There is also a connection between the daily portion of Psalms and the Ushpizin associated with the present day. Indeed, since the portion of Psalms associated with the present day does not change from year to year, that connection is stronger.

In regard to the Rebbe Maharash, the connection is obvious. One of the verses in the Psalms (99:6) mentions the Rebbe Maharash's name, relating how G-d answered "Shmuel, among those who invoke His name."

The portion of Psalms also relates to the approach of Lechatchilah Ariber, revealing that quality in the first verse, "When the Lord will reveal His kingship, the earth will exult;" i.e., immediately upon the revelation of G-d's kingship, "the earth will exult."

In particular, the word tagel translated as "exult," implies an expression of happiness that is also associated with fear. See Psalms 2:11, "they shall rejoice in trembling." This implies that because of the aspect of worldliness -- "the earth will exult" -- the celebration must be carried out with slight trepidation, lest it bring about undesirable consequences.

(This is only a preliminary stage of service. As a person develops and becomes a "servant of G-d", he can and should proceed to open and revealed happiness as one of the later verses in today's portion of Psalms states: "Serve G-d with joy.")

The portion of Psalms continues: "A Psalm. Sing to the L-rd a new song." Rashi explains that this, as the "new song" mentioned in yesterday's portion of Psalms, is associated with the Messianic redemption which will not be followed by further subjugation.

Indeed, it can be explained that the "new song" of today's portion of Psalms surpasses the "new song" of yesterday's portion. We see that there are a number of levels within the concept of redemption. The verse, "as in the days of your exodus from Egypt, I will show you wonders," implies that the miracles of the Messianic age will be considered as "wonders" when compared to the exodus from Egypt. Similarly, within the Messianic age itself, there will be a number of stages, each one above the other as our Sages states:

The righteous have no rest, not in this world, nor in the world to come as it is stated: "and they shall proceed from strength to strength."

There are two interpretations of what is meant by "the world to come": a) Gan Eden, (the spiritual realm of the souls); b) the age of resurrection, which is the ultimate level of the Messianic age. Both interpretations are true. Thus, we see that even in the Messianic age, there will be a progression from one level to another. Accordingly, we can presume that the second "new song" mentioned in Psalms refers to a higher level than the first.

The preparation for these levels of service must be made at present, through our deeds and service during the time of exile. When in these last moments of exile, "there is light in the dwellings... of all the children of Israel," this prepares for the time when we will "sing a new song to the L-rd" in the Messianic redemption.

The final Psalm (103) of today's portion, "To Dovid, Let my soul bless the Lord," also expresses the concept of Lechatchilah Ariber. The very fact that "my soul," which has human limits (and indeed, the word nafshi, translated as "soul" refers to the lowest aspects of the soul), can "bless the L-rd" (particularly, according to the interpretation of bless as "draw down") is an expression of Lechatchilah Ariber.

This theme is surely emphasized by the final verse of the Psalm, "Bless the L-rd all His works throughout all the places of His dominion," i.e., G-dliness is drawn down into the entire world, making every place in the world, "a place of His dominion," and making every creation aware that he is one of "His works."

Furthermore, the name, "the L-rd," refers to the name Y-H-V-H, implying that it is this transcendent aspect of G-dliness which will be drawn down into the world. Before creation, the world was not able to accept the revelation of the name, Y-H-V-H. Therefore, the series of limitations and veils that stem from the name Elokim were necessary for the creation to be able to accept the revelation of the name, Y-H-V-H. However, in the Messianic age, the world will have been refined and elevated to the extent that it can receive that revelation directly without these limitations and veils. Furthermore, it will be revealed how "Y-H-V-H is Elokim."

The revelation that "Y-H-V-H is Elokim" shares a particular connection to the holiday of Sukkos for, as explained above, on this holiday, the spiritual influences associated with Yom Kippur are revealed. On Yom Kippur, at the conclusion of the Neilah service, we declare, "Y-H-V-H is Elokim," seven times. We conclude that service with the wish, "Next year in Yerushalayim," i.e., that the concept of "Y-H-V-H is Elokim" will be revealed in a physical city in this world, for it is in this physical world that the essential dwelling place for G-d will be revealed.

This is particularly true when we bring about a microcosm of that revelation through our service of going out to the public thoroughfare and speaking about the concept of "Y-H-V-H is Elokim" (celebrating and dancing) and proclaiming, "Next year in Yerushalayim." (The intent is not that we should have to wait until next year for the Messianic redemption. Rather, Moshiach should come immediately and, thus, as a natural consequence, next year, the celebration will be held in Yerushalayim.)

All the revelations associated with the Messianic redemption are dependent on our service at present in the time of exile. However, as explained by the Rebbe Maharash, tonight's Ushpiza, these revelations also exist at present. He explains that our study of Torah and performance of mitzvos is to increase the Divine light in Atzilus and in the Messianic age, these lights will be revealed in our world. However, even at present, we have a connection to this light. He explains this connection with a parable about a person who has a chest full of treasures, but the chest is locked. Similarly, the revelations brought about by our service exist at present and it is merely the revelation which is postponed until the Messianic age.

Furthermore, it must be emphasized that we also have the key to open the treasure chest and reveal those lights. Each Jew has the potential to bring about Moshiach's coming. The Talmud relates that Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi asked Moshiach when he was coming and he answered him, "Today," which is interpreted to refer to the verse, "Today, if you harken unto My voice." Similarly, the Tikkunei Zohar states that if one Tzaddik would turn to G-d in complete teshuvah Moshiach would come. Chassidus explains, based on the verse, "your nation are all righteous," that this does not refer to a Tzaddik as defined in Tanya, but rather, to every Jew, for, as the Rambam states, every Jew has the power, with one deed to tip the balance of the entire world and bring about redemption and salvation. Furthermore, this potential is even granted to children, for even though a child's thoughts are not given halachic significance, his deeds are.

"Deed is most essential." At present, this means the deeds connected with the dancing and celebration of Simchas Bais Hashoevah, increasing the rejoicing beyond that of the previous nights in a manner of Lechatchilah Ariber. This also implies involving others (even gentiles) in the celebration. Not only must they witness the rejoicing, but they must also take part in the celebrations and attain the unique level of joy appropriate for the present evening.

If a person questions: Is it proper for me to dance so much, particularly, after I have been dancing without end for the last five days? He should realize that the very fact that he has a question shows that he has not reached true happiness, and surely, has not reached a level of joy appropriate for Simchas Bais Hashoevah. Thus, the celebration on the present night will lead us to Hosha'ana Rabbah in its simple sense, i.e., it will not only refer to the following day of Sukkos, but also will be "a great salvation" (the literal meaning of the words) with the coming of Moshiach.

No further time should be spent on explanations. It is necessary to concentrate on the "mitzvah of the day," the dancing and celebration. May we proceed from these celebrations and the dancing in the street (to the point that the street also dances) in this neighborhood, and all the other places where Simchas Bais Hashoevah is being celebrated, to the time when we will hold Simchas Bais Hashoevah in the Messianic Temple.


  5th Night Of Sukkos, 5747Hosha'ana Rabbah, 5747  
  
Volumes:
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17
18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32
33 | 34 | 35 | 36 | 41 | 42 | 43 | 44 | 45 | 46 | 47 | 48 | 49 | 50 | 51
     Sichos In English -> Books -> Sichos -> Sichos In English

Current
  • Daily Lessons
  • Weekly Texts & Audio
  • Candle-Lighting times

    613 Commandments
  • 248 Positive
  • 365 Negative

    PDA
  • BlackBerry
  • iPhone / iPod Touch
  • Java Phones
  • Palm Pilot
  • Palm Pre
  • Pocket PC
  • P800/P900
  • Moshiach
  • Resurrection
  • For children - part 1
  • For children - part 2

    General
  • Jewish Women
  • Holiday guides
  • About Holidays
  • The Hebrew Alphabet
  • Hebrew/English Calendar
  • Glossary

    Books
  • by SIE
  • About
  • Chabad
  • The Baal Shem Tov
  • The Alter Rebbe
  • The Rebbe Maharash
  • The Previous Rebbe
  • The Rebbe
  • Mitzvah Campaign

    Children's Corner
  • Rabbi Riddle
  • Rebbetzin Riddle
  • Tzivos Hashem

  • © Copyright 1988-2009
    All Rights Reserved
    Sichos In English