The fundamental aspect of the Rebbe Maharash’s service is expressed in his adage Lechat’chilah aribber, “Right from the outset, you should climb over.” This is the message that should permeate our conduct throughout the entire day, beginning with our service of Torah and mitzvos, which is the essence of our being for “I was only created to serve my Creator,” and extending into every aspect of our conduct. All our efforts must be characterized by the approach of Lechat’chilah aribber.
Each person has the potential to carry out such service, and is aided in these efforts by G‑d Himself. G‑d’s help does not detract from the virtue of a person carrying out the service on his own initiative. Although G‑d offers assistance in every aspect of our service, it is man who carries the responsibility for this service from its beginning until its end.
The approach of Lechat’chilah aribber is particularly relevant this year, a year in which “I will show you wonders” and in particular, in the present days when since the 27th of Nissan, we have experienced two sets of three day periods of holiness and happiness.
This will be enhanced by the Jews uniting together in the service of “Love your neighbor as yourself.” This unity will amplify our achievements in the three services of Torah, prayer, and deeds of kindness. Similarly, it will prepare us for the ultimate of unity, the ingathering of the Jewish people in the Era of Redemption. Then it will be revealed how “My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations.” This refers to the Third Beis HaMikdash, “the Sanctuary of G‑d established by Your hands.”
This will be brought about by the completion of our service. If anywhere there is a good deed, a good thought, or a good word that has to be completed, it will be completed and — in the spirit of the seven “perfect”2 weeks of the Counting of the Omer — completed in a perfect manner.
Indeed, this perfection will be revealed before the completion of the Counting of the Omer as reflected in the prayer recited after counting each night, “May the Merciful One return to us the service of the Beis HaMikdash speedily….” The intent is that the redemption should come directly after our reciting this prayer.
This will be enhanced by the firm resolutions made by the Jewish people. Their strength and their firmness will be revealed, not only by their continuity over an extended period, but in a manner of Lechat’chilah aribber, i.e., at the very outset, their strength will be seen.3 Furthermore, that strength will be reflected even in the mundane dimensions of our conduct.
To focus on the Rebbe Maharash’s statement at greater length: The Rebbe would say, “Generally, people say, ‘If you can’t crawl under, try to climb over,’ and I say, Lechat’chilah aribber, ‘Right from the outset, you should climb over.’ ” On the surface, it was unnecessary for the Rebbe to mention what others think. By doing so, however, he emphasizes that a Jew is aware of the approach which is generally accepted. Nevertheless, as a Jew, he has a potential to reveal a new approach, Lechat’chilah aribber, and have that approach permeate even the most mundane aspects of our existence.
May this enable us to merit the redemption immediately. In the prayer recited after Counting the Omer, we state how this counting corrects our souls (on all the three levels of nefesh, ruach, and neshamah). Similarly, it spreads “correction” in the world at large, elevating every dimension of existence.
In this manner, the world at large and the Jewish people become ready to receive the revelations that will accompany the future redemption. This is enhanced by the influence of the last months: Adar, a month associated with health and strength and Nissan, a month of miracles of a truly wondrous nature. Similarly, this is amplified by the influence of the present month, Iyar, whose name (אייר) serves as an acronym for the names Avraham, Yitzchak, Yaakov, and Rachel who represent the four “legs” of the Heavenly Chariot.
(Here we see a unique connection to Jewish women. For although the fourth leg of the Chariot is also associated with King David, the connection to David is merely an allusion, while the connection to Rachel is explicit. Rachel is representative of the righteous women in whose merit came the redemption, and in whose merit will come the ultimate redemption.)
The above will also be enhanced by the Torah portion which is associated with the present days, Parshas Tazria. This Torah portion which begins, “When a woman conceives and gives birth,” refers to the Jewish people who — in their relationship with G‑d — are described as a woman. They will soon give birth, a metaphor for the coming redemption.
The Talmud also associates the above with Jewish children whom it describes with the verse “Do not touch My anointed (Mishichoi).” This points to a connection between Jewish children and Mashiach.
May we merit the coming of Mashiach when all Jews will be like children studying Torah and G‑d will be our teacher, revealing the “new [dimension of the] Torah which will emerge from Me.”
This will be enhanced by the distribution of money to be given to tzedakah4 which will bring near the redemption. Then we will merit the ultimate ingathering of the exiles when G‑d will lead each person by the hand, bringing us back toEretz Yisrael, to Jerusalem, and to the Beis HaMikdash, “the Sanctuary of G‑d established by Your hands.”
As explained on several occasions, what occurs to one particular generation effects the totality of the history of our nation. It affects the previous generations, because this is their continuity, and it affects the coming generations because it sets the tone for their service.
Based on the concept that a father transfers the essence of his being to his children, we can assume that it is not merely the superficial aspects, but rather the essence of each generation which is conveyed.
This concept also relates to the teaching of the Baal Shem Tov that G‑d cherishes every Jew like an only child born to a father in his old age.