MOSHIACH: MADE IN AMERICA
July 11, 2018
Rabbi Gershon Avtzon in #1126, Ha’yom Yom & Moshiach

Dear Readers sh’yichyu,

In our previous article, we discussed the importance of identifying the special air, the air of Moshiach, that we need to access in order to elevate ourselves and our children. It is so important because, as it is stated in the HaYom Yom of 11 Teves: “A person’s life depends upon the air around him.”

This idea, that the air needs to be purified so that we can live in this special atmosphere, is very important to our holy Rebbeim. In addition to instructing us to do our part to purify the air through words of Torah and T’filla etc., our holy Rebbeim assisted us with reaching this goal: They repeated special Maamarim. This is explained in the HaYom Yom of 28 Tammuz:

“Each of the Rebbeim assigned certain maamarim for the specific purpose (of purifying the atmosphere), and these they would review publicly once every two or three years. One of the maamarim that the Alter Rebbe would deliver is the one beginning ‘Heichaltzu’ that appears in Likkutei Torah, without the emendations. One of the maamarim of the Mitteler Rebbe is ‘Yafeh Shaah Achas,’ which comprises the first ten chapters of the maamer entitled ‘Hinei Kol Echad V’Echad Omer Elokai Neshama’ that appears in Derech HaChayim. One of the maamarim of the Tzemach Tzedek is the one beginning ‘Mah Tovu’ that is to be found in Likkutei Torah. One of the maamarim that my revered grandfather, the Rebbe Maharash, would deliver is ‘Mi Kamocha BaEilim.’ And one of the maamarim of my revered father, the Rebbe Rashab, is ‘V’Yadata HaYom’ (Moscow, 5657/1897).”

The history of this letter (Igros of the Frierdike Rebbe, volume 6 page 267), is fascinating. It was written on Erev Pesach 5742 to Rabbi Moshe Leib Rudstein. Who was this special Chassid? He was born as Zushe Shifrin in Lithuania and studied at Yeshivas Tomchei T’mimim Lubavitch. During his escape from Russia he changed his name to Moshe Leib Rudstein and with that name remained until his death. (In his last years he sometimes signed the name Zushe Rudstein.) When he left Russia he moved to Warsaw.

He served as secretary of the Rebbe Rayatz from 1932 until 1941. On the 19th of Elul, 1940, together with Rabbi Shmuel Zalmanov and Rabbi Yitzchak Dov Ushapel of Riga, he fled to the city of Vladivostok in eastern Russia, and from there they continued to Japan. From Japan they continued to the United States, where they reached the city of S. Francisco. They traveled by train to New York, where they arrived in the month of Cheshvan 1941. When Rabbi Moshe Leib arrived in New York, he was given the opportunity to enter Yechidus with the Rebbe, who was very happy to receive him, and instructed him to go to Chicago to serve as the director of the Chassidei Chabad of Chicago and the director of Tomchei T’mimim Chicago, together with the Gaon Rabbi Meir Greenberg.

In 1946 he returned to New York to serve as the secretary of the Rebbe Rayatz, and accompanied him in all his travels. After the passing of the Frierdike Rebbe on 10 Shevat 5710, he was a member of the Lubavitch Committee who directed the activities for the coronation of the Rebbe. After the Rebbe accepted the Nesius on the 10th of Shevat 5711, he served as the Rebbe’s secretary and was responsible for typing letters in Lashon HaKodesh together with Rabbi Shalom Mendel Simpson. In this capacity he served until his demise. He died after an illness on the 9th of Cheshvan 5728, and was buried near the Ohel.

What was the letter about? As mentioned, at that time Rabbi Rudstein lived in Chicago. Living in Chicago at that time was the famous Chassid Rabbi Shalom Posner. Rabbi Shalom Posner, who learned in Tomchei T’mimim in Lubavitch, was later sent to Pittsburgh where he established the famous school and community that is growing and thriving until this very day. Rabbi Posner had arrived in America in 5690/1930 from Eretz Yisroel, and he had a few sons that were, for all practical purposes, American.

When the Frierdike Rebbe opened the Yeshiva in 770 in the year 5700, the oldest son (the famous Shliach to Nashville Tennessee, Rav and author), Rabbi Zalman Posner, joined the Yeshiva. A year later, in 5701, the second son, Rabbi Leibel Posner, from the Ziknei HaChassidim of today, joined the Yeshiva. As it was Pesach time, the young boys were going home to spend Yom Tov with their parents.

In this letter, the Frierdike Rebbe is instructing Rabbi Rudstein to make sure that these young boys are repeating Maamarim of Chassidus in the Shuls in Chicago! From the letter is seems that the Frierdike Rebbe wanted to send a message to all Anash that “America iz nit Andersh – America is no different!” Many thought that in America it would be impossible to produce T’mimim with eidelkait and Chassidishkait like in the “old country.” By the Anash seeing these young American boys, with “their faces shining of Yiras Shamayim and acting with Middos Tovos,” and hearing them speak about the Tomchei T’mimim in America and give over Maamarim of Chassidus, it would make a major impression on all those who were listening. By repeating these Maamarim, even if they were not always understood by the ones who were hearing the Maamarim, they would bring refinement and purity to all those participating and to the atmosphere of the entire community. After conveying the importance of saying over the Maamarim of Chassidus, the Frierdike Rebbe writes, as mentioned above, that each Rebbe recited his own Maamer to purify the world.

 

Dear Chassidim!

There are many lessons that we can learn from the above-mentioned HaYom Yom and its history. We will focus on just a few:

1) While I do not know of any specific Maamer that our Rebbe would repeat from time to time to purify the air, there is no doubt that there are hundreds of times that the Rebbe speaks passionately about Moshiach and the pain of Galus etc. While on a basic level the Rebbe is trying to motivate us and get us to realize the seriousness of the current situation, it seems to me that the Rebbe is also “purifying the air” with these sichos and Maamarim. Each time the Rebbe speaks about Moshiach, he is bringing Geula into the world, thus making it easier for us to do our small part of making it happen b’poel mamash.

2) There is no age-appropriate level that one must reach in order to be the messenger to give over the message of our Rebbe about Moshiach. This whole letter is written to encourage young bachurim to go and teach Chassidus in shuls of Anash. On the contrary: As at that time, it is so important that people see the “post Gimmel Tamuz generation of Bachurim” excited and alive with the passion and mission of bringing Moshiach. This will inspire the older members of our generation to get involved in this essential and living shlichus as well. Everyone needs to get involved, as the Geula is for everyone.

America – post Gimmel Tammuz – is nisht andersh! We have a living Rebbe and a living Chassidus. This never ceased and the mission did not expire. This is so important for all to realize. We cannot let down our guard during these final moments before the Geula. In our hands, we have the ability to bring fulfillment to the entire purpose of the revelation of the Baal Shem Tov, and in truth the purpose of the creation of the world. We can’t fall prey to last-ditch attempts of the Yetzer Hara, who understands that he is in his final moments and breathing his last breaths, who wants to convince us that it is all over now and we should go back to the “good old days” before the Rebbe brought Moshiach to the forefront. There is no going back, only forward! We all need to get involved to make it happen.

In the words of our Rebbe (Chayei Sara 5752, Kinus HaShluchim): “From the international convention must come and be brought good resolutions such that every shliach must prepare himself and prepare all Jews in his place and city etc., to greet our righteous Moshiach. This should be done through his explanation of the concept of Moshiach, as explained in the Written Torah and the Oral Torah, in a way that it will be received by everyone according to his intellect and understanding. This includes in particular learning the subject of Moshiach and Redemption, and specifically in a manner of Wisdom, Understanding and Knowledge. And since this is the Divine service of the time, it’s understood this applies to every Jew without any exception whatsoever.”

 

Rabbi Avtzon is the Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Lubavitch Cincinnati and a well sought after speaker and lecturer. Recordings of his in-depth shiurim on Inyanei Geula u’Moshiach can be accessed at
http://www.ylcrecording.com

Article originally appeared on Beis Moshiach Magazine (http://beismoshiachmagazine.org/).
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