Translation by Sichos In English
It is Jewish custom to begin at the conclusion of the previous statement. Thus, in continuation with the above blessings, the Torah conveys G‑d’s words of assurance, “I will bless them.” The blessings that emanate from G‑d’s “full, open, holy, and ample hand,” are limitless in nature. They are not restricted by time or space, and will be drawn down immediately.
These blessings are associated with the conclusion of Psalm 90, the first of the 11 Psalms recited by Moshe our teacher. That Psalm concludes, “May the pleasantness of G‑d, our L‑rd, be upon us. Establish for us the work of our hands, establish the work of our hands.”1
All the qualities of Moshe are relevant to every Jew for every Jew possesses a spark of Moshe in his heart.2 Therefore, this Psalm, “a prayer of Moshe,” can bring him all possible blessings. This is particularly true after forty years have passed and we have been granted, “eyes to see, ears to hear, and a knowing heart.”
The repetition of the request, “Establish for us the work of our hands,” can refer to our activities during the week and to our activities on Shabbos3 which are different in nature and hence require a different request. The Shabbos can be considered as miraculous when compared to the days of the week. Thus we are requesting that G‑d also “establish for us” a miraculous framework of conduct.
G‑d will show the Jews open miracles. Although we have seen the beginning of this process, we can be assured that G‑d will amplify and intensify these wonders. Each Jew will see open miracles in his own personal life. This will begin by the conduct of every Jew being elevated to a miraculous plane, causing him to step beyond even the upraised level of conduct appropriate to 5750 (הי’ תהא שנת נסים) “a year of miracles,” and to behave in a manner appropriate to the message of the present year, “I will show you wonders.” This implies a twofold increase because wonders are higher than miracles, and also these wonders will be “shown,” openly revealed.
The word “establish” has a connection to the concept of a foundation and thus relates to the beginning of the Rambam’s classic text Mishneh Torah, “The foundation of all foundations and the pillar of all knowledge….”4 Through the study of the Rambam’s text we will bring close the Redemption,5 and we will leave the exile with happiness, health, and good spirits.
This will be enhanced and hurried by our efforts to make the world into a vessel for G‑dliness, carrying out this shlichus in every element of our existence in this lowly material world. This is reflected in the fact that shliach (שליח), plus ten (the ten powers of our soul), is numerically equivalent to Mashiach (משיח).
May speaking about these concepts lead to their being reflected in deed. May we openly see how “the Divine Presence will rest in the works of your hands”6and may the Divine Presence dwell among us in a permanent and fixed manner.
Since “He fulfills the desire of those who fear Him,” and “You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living being,” G‑d will surely fulfill the desire of every Jew. That desire is expressed at the conclusion of the Book of Psalms, “Let every being that has a soul praise G‑d.” Each Jew has a soul which is “a part of G‑d from above” and thus, wherever a Jew is, he can “praise G‑d.” This activity, especially when it comes on the initiative of the person himself (and not as “bread of shame”) will hasten Mashiach’s coming.
This is related to the tribe of Asher whose Nasi is associated with the present day. In regard to Asher, the Torah states, “He will grant the delicacies of the king.” Implied is also that, at present, in the conclusion of the exile, each Jew will be granted “the delicacies of the king.”7
This is connected with the fact that “All your sons are students of G‑d.” The Previous Rebbe (in the wedding maamarim) explains that this verse refers to every Jew. As the Baal Shem Tov explains, G‑d cherishes each Jew as parents cherish a child born to them in their old age.8 This should be reflected in an increase in Torah study (and in particularly, an increase in the study of Pnimiyus HaTorah) and indeed, a miraculous and wondrous increase as appropriate for a year when “I will show you wonders.”
The use of the phrase Arenu Niflaos (אראנו נפלאות) as an acronym for the year reflects the contributions of the Jewish people. The usual form of 5751 (הי’ תהא שנת נפלאות אראנו) places the nun before the alef, niflaos arenu, implying that first the wonders will take place, and then, they will be revealed. Through their service, the Jews cause that the nature of these wonders be revealed from the outset. These wonders will be shown to each individual in his personal life. G‑d will point with His finger, as it were, and show each individual the open and revealed miracles which are happening to him, and show him how G‑d cherishes him as parents cherish an only son born to them in their old age.
May speaking about these wonders lead to the immediate coming of the Redemption when “Your eyes will behold Your Master;” G‑d will reveal Himself to every Jew. Thus we will begin by “proceeding from strength to strength” now in the last days of exile. And immediately, we will merit to “appear before G‑d in Zion,” together with the entire Jewish people, “with our youth and with our elders… with our sons and with our daughters,” in Eretz Yisrael, and in “the Sanctuary of G‑d established by Your hands.”