Friday, December 16, 2011

19 Kislev 5772 Yud Tes 12.15.2011

Fabrengen with R' Paltiel

And here are notes from Chunah:

Yud Tes Kislev (The Alter Rebbe’s First Redemption from Prison)Farbrengen with R. Abba Paltiel

Rabbi’s words:
We will sing pada v'shalom (a Chabad song based on psalm 55) with personal appreciation.

Chassidus did not start with the Alter Rebbe, it was revealed from the Baal Shem Tov.  Really pnimius haTorah (inner Torah) started with the Rashbi (R. Shimon bar Yochai), then through various forms over the years, and to the Ari, then the Baal Shem Tov.  It was learned discreetly throughout ages, as a very unique element of our people.  In the Zichronus (Freidiker Rebbe’s (?) writings), regarding Reb Baruch, the Alter Rebbe's father, it is shown how he found his way to pnimius haTorah.  How he was taught very cautiously until Reb Baruch showed he could take on this limud (type of learning).  It is a process of life that is unusual.  'Chassidus' was then revealed by the Besht. He revealed pnimius hatorah in a different way.  Pnimius hatorah is what is contained in a yidishe neshama (Jewish soul). So then the Besht said that what is contained in the nefesh of a simple Yid (Jew) is…, why a simple Yid?  What about a scholar?  Specifically a simple Jew because the wisdom of a scholar hides the real perception.  The light of neshama is concealed behind the scholarship.  Amazing, but true. We can really understand why.  The Besht said that a simple Yid, because his soul's in a greater state of revelation than the scholar, he reaches a higher level of neshama (soul), than a chocham (scholar).  At the same time, he (the Besht) encouraged learning.  But the scholar, to find ultimate truth, he has to speak to the simple Yid. This was the innovation of the Baal Shem and his succesor, the Maggid, continued.

Then the AR (Alter Rebbe) came, innovated and revealed a new element to this whole process:  that every Yid is capable of scholarship.  This was not agreed with early on. At first scholarship was only the property of the scholar.  The AR said, 'no’, ‘everyone can reach it’.  No one needs to ride on the coattails of another. Everyone can stand on their own. Finding it on their own is different, (they may need help to find it) but (once shown) they can understand what is being taught. This is the AR. 

The Alter Rebbe’s Method
The AR made it possible b/c the AR presented the deepest concepts of chassidus in a most-logical formal manner. One can begin from the lowest rung of the ladder and then advance step-by-step.  This is analogous to a piano.  A piano has individual keys with different sounds.   Anyone can make the sounds, which is amazing, (that anyone can make these sounds, these beautiful notes). Anyone can make the sounds, and when you repeat it over and over again, you become sensitive to it, and then eventually you become sensitive to the combination of sounds.  These are the words of the piano. Then chords, these are the sentences.   Little by little you can relate to whole songs.  So the AR broke down pnimius haTorah into little keys!  Learn the keys and see how they correlate to one another, and then climb up the ladder.  The piano will dance, the soul will dance !

The AR presented it to everyone.  (All the Rebbeim were instrumental in bringing it down.)  The Mittle Rebbe (the AR’s son) developed this to an unbelievable degree. Then came the Rebbe Rashab, the FR and our Rebbe.  Everyone has access and can teach it to everyone else.  Our Rebbe had a new commitment to our Jewish community. “Everyone is a teacher!” Says our Rebbe.  This is the real redemption of the Jewish soul, the life of our soul, the chayis hanefesh.  To fully relate to what Chassidus is about.  Not just to know, but to think that when you're learning chassidus, you're on a ladder. Something is holding you up.  Go from strength to strength and move up the ladder…even though you're in the middle of the air…but you want to climb.

The Rebbe Maharash was playing with other boys and the friends challenged each other. This one went half way, the next went a step beyond half way etc. but then (each one) gave up and came back down.  The R Maharash climbed, on his turn, all the way to top and then came down. His father, the Rebbe the Tzemach Tzedek was watching the whole thing. He asked the RM (Rebbe Maharash) when he came back inside “how were you able to climb the entire way, while the other boys weren’t able?” (The TZTZ (Tzemach Tzedek) asked, knowing the answer, for the purpose of the RM giving his response).  “Because I did not look back down.  All the other boys did and got scared etc.”  Why does it take a Rebbe to say this? (at least a Rebbe in the making.  He had a rebbeishe koach (Rebbe-like power)), but everybody knows this principle.  Every boy, before climbing, he resolves “I will not look back” but then, when climbing he can't help himself. One glance, and then he comes back down.  It takes a Rebbe to not look.  But why? 

Two types of support
The ladder's on the ground, something is holding it up (at the top), but it is supported by the ground.  ‘As I climb, I lose sense that I'm connected to ground’.  I have to reestablish the sense, look back and see that ‘yeah, the ground's still there'. (Time: 15:17) So the Rebbe doesn't have to look back to reestablish himself.  (Why?  Because)  ‘Wherever I am, I'm supported, I don't need the ground’. (note: This is a perception of a truth, not wishful thinking.  It was so palpable by the Rebbe Maharash that it was felt tangibly in his emotions. He felt secure even in mid-air, because the support came from G-d)  This is the ladder of tefila (prayer) that we discuss in chassidus.  Sometimes-Rabbi observes this- that we understand something presented to us in chassidus, but we understand it, and get scared...'let me reorient myself to the point of where I was before I got this...”  The AR said ‘don't be scared’.  The ladder is held up, and when you took the very first step, you knew (without telling yourself) that it was held up. Eventually the first step becomes a second step and then a third and then Pada V’shalom- the nefesh habahamis (animal soul) will become the supporter of the nefesh elokis (G-dly soul), rather than a challenger.

Nigun Pada V'shalom
Reference Time for the video : 22:30

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