Kuntres 28 Sivan: I Will Show You Wonders Behind the Miracles

A Chassidic discourse on the verse “As in the days when you came out from Mitzrayim, I will show you wonders” was edited and distributed by the Rebbe on 28 Sivan, 5751 (50th anniversary of the Rebbe’s arrival to America together with the Rebbetzin).  The subject is the nature and varying levels of miracles and wonders in general, and particularly as they will be in the Messianic age.  This not only shares an obvious connection with the miraculous escape of the Rebbe and Rebbetzin from Europe to America 50 years earlier, but also with the year 5751 תנש”א, which the Rebbe repeatedly referred to as the year of “I will show you wonders” (the letters of the Jewish year — Nun-Alef — standing for the  Hebrew words in our verse “I will show you wonders.”)

First, we need to understand the varying levels of miracles: miracles above nature (transforming water into blood, splitting the sea), and miracles enclothed in nature.  Miracles enclothed in nature themselves divide into 3 types: where the miracle is recognizable (Purim, Chanukah); where nature conceals the miracle but there is still a recognition that something out of the ordinary occurred and one is obligated to thank Hashem (an ill person who is healed, a prisoner who is freed, etc); and the lowest level, where nature so completely obscures the miracle to the point that one doesn’t even recognize that a miracle occurred (אין בעל הנס מכיר בניסו).

The Rebbe proceeds to explain that the last type of miracle, unrecognizable from the ordinary process of nature, is actually the highest in it’s source, from the verse עושה נפלאות גדולות לבדו, the great wonders that Hashem does “alone”, no one knows about them.  It is from this level that the great wonders of the Messianic age will come, which will be wonders even compared to the wonders of Mitzrayim.  This can explain why the about the Messianic wonders it says “I will show you wonders” — because they will come from the high level which today are unrecognizable — Hashem will have to “show” us that they are wonders.

But, the Rebbe explains, this verse of “showing wonders” doesn’t only apply to miracles enclothed in nature, but also miracles above nature.  Those miracles will be wonders even in comparison to the wonders that were seen in coming out of Mitzrayim.  But we are left with a question: what need is there to “show” the wonder of a miracle so above nature that it is already a wonder?  The answer the Rebbe gives is amazing.  But to reach that answer, we have to first understand the following:

First, the difference between these miracles is the degree to which they are grasped by human intellect.  A wonder like the splitting of the sea is so beyond human comprehension that we cannot grasp it at all, we can only gaze at it speechlessly.  The more the miracle is enclothed in nature, the more we can grasp it intellectually; to understand not only what happened, but how it happened.  The Rebbe gives examples: we don’t understand how a dead person is brought back to life, we only know that before he was dead and now he is alive.  But looking at the miracle of Purim, for example, we can see exactly how the decree was abolished, or when a sick person is healed we can grasp how it was brought about through certain drugs.  From this out comes out that being enclothed in nature is really what reveals the miracle, making it accessable to the human intellect.  The ultimate form are the miracles that we don’t even recognize — they are so fully grasped by our intellect that there is no sense of wonder that would cause us to notice something unusual has happened, which would cause us to give thanks to Hashem.

Mitteler Rebbe asks a question on the miracles that are unrecognizable: since they derive from the lofty level of “Him alone” (לבדו), then how is or possible for anything to conceal them?  His answer is that, in fact, nothing can conceal them.  They are so fully and seamlessly revealed by nature that we can’t even recognize that something out of the ordinary has occurred!

But really, all miracles come from the Ohr Ein Sof; the difference of whether that are enclothed in nature or not depends on whether they are from the aspect of concealment within the Ohr Ein Sof (למעלה מעלה עד אין קץ), it the aspect of revelation (למטה מטה עד אין תכתית).  And all the wonders of the Messianic era will revealed, including those that derive from the aspect of concealment.

So, the wonders of the Messianic era will come from the highest levels, and will also be revealed even into the human intellect.  But more than that, the Rebbe explains that even the miracles of the Messianic era that will not be enclothed in nature (like the splitting of the sea and the river) will be in the following manner: not only the splitting of the sea will be seen openly, but the revelation [of Elokus] that brings about the splitting of the sea will be seen openly! (As by the splitting of the sea upon coming out of Mitzrayim, when everyone pointed with a finger and said “this is my G-d” (זה א-לי ואנוהו). While by Yetzias Mitzrayim this was a one-time event, in the Messianic era it will be the ongoing reality!)

So we find that the miracles of the Messianic era will be wonders, from a higher level than even the wonders of Yetzias Mitzrayim, and at the same time they will be able to be grasped by human intellect.  (And they will be seen in a way where the Divine revelation itself will be perceived!)  But how will nature — which derives from the Divine name Elokim which conceals G-dliness that is above world — be able to accommodate such a degree of revelation?  The Rebbe explains that  through avoidas habirurim, refining the Divine sparks that fell in physicality, the Jewish people effect a refinement of nature.  Nature itself becomes elevated  (עלית הטבע), so that instead of obscuring the level of G-dliness that is above the world, it becomes a vessel for that G-dliness to be revealed!

It will be interesting to note (for those who have learned the Sicha explaining the “New Torah That Will Go Forth From Me”) that the Rebbe references chapter 16 in Shaar HoEmuna by the Mitteler Rebbe.  There, the Mitteler Rebbe explains this same subject of miracles, and also the difference between the aspect of concealment within the Ohr Ein Sof (למעלה מעלה עד אין קץ), and the aspect of revelation (למטה מטה עד אין תכתית).  He brings out that these two aspects correspond to Halacha (revelation to the lowest levels) and Kabbala (hidden secrets above revelation). Through this reference we can tie together everything in our maamor (which seems to be speaking only about miracles and wonders in physical objects) with the concepts discussed in the Sicha explaining the “New Torah That Will Go Forth From Me” — the ability of Moshiach to draw down the loftiest secrets of Torah to the point where they become Halacha! 

But what is the connection between the secrets of Kabbala, rulings in Halacha, and miracles in the physical world?  As explained by the Rebbe elsewhere, a Halacha ruling (psak din) has an affect on the world, and thus we can understand that when Moshiach draws down the secrets of Torah into Halacha (unifying the aspect of concealment with that of revelation) that this causes the same effect in the physical world, resulting in miracles and wonders which themselves unify the levels of concealment and revelation — above nature and within nature, as explained in this maamor of 28 Sivan 

28 Sivan, 5751: Where is the Beis Hamikdash Now?

The Rebbe spoke this sicha on the 50th anniversary of his arriving safely to the shores of America (together with the Rebbetzin) from war-torn Europe in 5701 (1941).  America is identified in Chassidus as a place where Matan Torah did not take place (in a revealed way), and is referred to as the “lower half of the world” (חצי כדור התחתון).  It is, in this regard, the lowliest place.  But specifically from the lowest place one can elevate everything (like a lever  positioned under a building, which can lift up the entire building).

Here, in the lower half of the world, the Previous Rebbe settled in 5700 (1940), joined by the Rebbe and the Rebbetzin a year later.  The (now-famous) 770 Eastern Parkway was acquired as the home, shul, and study-hall of the Previous Rebbe, and the Rebbe explains the significance of this number.  (This sicha is one of the talks that would be compiled into the unprecedented sicha of “Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel“.)

As is know, there are 7 sefiros, from Chesed to Malchus.  The state of perfection is represented by 10, so the ultimate perfection of 70 is 700, and of 7 is 70, both of which combine to make 770.  The completion of the task of refining the sefiros.  This is not just number-play, as the Rebbe goes on to explain:

And from this place the Geuloh begins, and the building of the Beis Hamikdosh, “the Sanctuary of G-d, which Your hands established” (מקדש אדנ”י כוננו ידיך)… Even though its place is in the Holy Land, in Yerushalayim, on the Holy Mountain, [but the work of achieving this] is done via our avoidah in the time of golus, so we have in this place, specifically in this place, the entire preparation for the “Sanctuary of G-d”…until in this place will be the revelation of “the Sanctuary of G-d”, in this place (770).

The Rebbe continues to say that this refers to the entire building (of the Beis Hamikdosh), including the roof, as the Midrash states “Melech Hamoshiach stands on the roof of the Beis Hamikdosh and announces to Yisroel: the time of your redemption has arrived”.

Immediately, all Jews will find themselves standing (איבערגעשטעלט) in our Holy Land together with the third Beis Hamikdosh WHICH WE HAVE HERE (וואס מ’האט דא)…

Those words have been translated in capital letters to draw attention to their significance.  In this and other sichos, one could arrive at the mistaken understanding that 770 is merely the “small sanctuary in the time of golus” where, “at some point in the future”, the 3rd Beis Hamikdosh will be revealed first (see Kuntres “Beis Rabbeinu sh’b’Bavel”).

It is correct that 770 is that place where the 3rd Beis Hamikdosh will be revealed first.  But only the revelation to you and me is in the future; because the essential presence of the 3rd Beis Hamikdosh we have here מ’האט דא (present tense)!  This is a critical point to grasp, which enables many things to be understood.  For example: the Rebbe’s assertion (parshas Vayakhel) that the ingathering of the Exiles has begun.  This is something which comes about, as the Rebbe himself explains elsewhere, through the 3rd Beis Hamikdosh (and not merely the “small sanctuary in the time of golus”)!  We have it here!

The Rebbe continues and says that Eybershter agrees to the words and requests of Yidden, revealing His love for them down below in this low world, that everything in the world is working for Geuloh.  And further: the 28th of Sivan leads into the 29th, which is Erev Rosh Chodesh, when the moon is not visible.  This aspect of “your place will be empty” (יפקד מושבך) brings to “you are remembered” (see Kuntres Beis Iyar for more explanation), a term which also refers to the intimacy of husband and wife — the unification with the Eybershter, becoming “one reality”, “one flesh”.

Finally, the Rebbe makes a statement that, if understood, resolves all of the difficulties as to whether the Rebbe is really saying (here and elsewhere) that the Geuloh is here, which is contrary to what we see, or if we have to bring it.  The Rebbe states that:

The Eybershter “needs” (so to speak) the partnership of every Yid, specifically as soul in a body; and through our deeds and avoidah comes the Geuloh.  The Yid must come to agree that not only the time of your redemption has arrived, but more than that: the Geuloh b’pashtus is already here…Geuloh from the root that means revelation (through the avoidah of a Yid in Golus)…

Reading this closely, we note that the Rebbe is saying that what is needed in order to BRING the redemption (in the future, even if only the next moment) is that a Jew who is still in GOLUS (present tense, meaning that he has not yet experienced the Geuloh) nonetheless will AGREE and PROCLAIM that the Geuloh is ALREADY here “b’pashtus”!  To agree, and to go so far as to proclaim, that the Geuloh is already here while you yourself are still in golus — this what brings the Geuloh.

Furthermore, we can note the Rebbe’s exacting choice of words: “agree” (מסכים), which has a different meaning than “acknowledge” (מודה).  Agree means that the Yid, with his own level of understanding, comes to the same conclusion — agrees — with what the Rebbe is saying.  This is the “partnership” with the Eybershter the Rebbe is speaking about.  Because if we did not need to reach this through our own intellect and understanding, if it would be sufficient to simply to believe what the Rebbe is saying (that the Geuloh is already here b’pashtus), or to accept it unconditionally as a loyal Chosid, then the Rebbe would not have chosen the word “agree” (מסכים).  To reach the level of “agreement”, one has to learn and understand and on his level reach the same conclusion — much like a Rov who must rule according to his own understanding and not because he has unconditional acceptance of one who is greater than him.  (As the Gemara* tells about Rebbe Meir — that in his generation he was acknowledged as being uniquely great, but the sages did not rule the halacha according to his opinion because they could not understand the depth of his reasoning.).   We can readily grasp how the direct path to our “agreement” will be learning about the subject of Moshiach and Geuloh, especially in the Rebbe’s teachings. Only in this way can we do more than acknowledge the Rebbe’s words — we will be able to truly agree!

* Eruvin 13b:

גלוי וידוע לפני מי שאמר והיה העולם שאין בדורו כמותו. ומפני מה לא קבעו הלכה כמוהו? שלא יכלו חבריו לעמוד על סוף דעתו

28 Sivan 5751: Agree and Proclaim That the Geulah is Here

The 28th of Sivan marks the day in 1941 when the Rebbe (איש וביתו–together with the Rebbetzin, a”h), arrived to America after fleeing Europe. [video]

The year 5751 (1991) marked the yovel year (50th anniversary) and a special booklet was printed and distributed by the Rebbe in honor of the special day.  The Rebbe spoke a sicha preceeding the Maariv prayers, and following Maariv, when it was announced that there would be a break while they will go to bring the booklets, the Rebbe interrupted with a smile and said that instead of a “break” there will be a “continuation” and the Rebbe proceeded to continue speaking.

During the “continuation” of the sicha, the Rebbe said:

…in order for the Holy One, blessed be He, to bring about [the Geuloh] in a complete manner, He requires (so to speak) the participation of every single Jew, that via “our deeds and our effort” the Geuloh comes.  Thus, He must require, so to speak, that a Jew will agree, and more than that — that he will want and will proclaim that not only “the time has arrived for  your Redemption”, but rather that simply the Geuloh is already present….  This is brought about by a Jew in golus.

Reading this closely, note that the Rebbe is saying that what is needed in order to BRING the redemption is that a Jew who is still in GOLUS (meaning that he has not experienced the Geuloh) nonetheless will AGREE and PROCLAIM that the Geuloh is ALREADY here “b’pashtus”!  To agree, and to go so far as to proclaim, that the Geuloh is already here while you yourself are still in golus — this what brings the Geuloh!

Sicha of 28 Sivan, 5751 (Rebbe’s Arrival in America in 1941)

1. It is customary to develop a connection between a positive event and the day on which that event transpired, revealing how the day itself is a “day of merit.1 This surely applies in regard to the present day, the 28th day of the third month. 28 is numerically equivalent to the word כח, meaning “strength.” Thus, it contributes a dimension of strength and permanence to the entire day.2

This in turn grants strength to every Jew to carry out his preparations for the ultimate redemption. In particular, this applies in our generation, after the charge of the Previous Rebbe for us to “Stand prepared together” for the coming of the ultimate Redemption.

This concept can be connected with Parshas Shelach, the Torah reading of the previous Shabbos, which relates how Moshe sent3 spies “to explore” Eretz Yisrael, and thus allow it to be conquered more easily.

The Hebrew for “to explore,” לתור, is also significant. The root of the word לתור is also connected to the word יתרון, “advantage,” as in the verse “The advantage of the land is in all things (בכל).” בכל refers to the attribute of Yesod which includes within it all the Sefiros above it. Through descending and enclothing itself in “the land,” which refers to the attribute of Malchus, an advantage is generated for the quality of Yesod.

Malchus brings into revelation all qualities. In an ultimate sense, the concept of revelation is associated with permanence, when one is above change. This quality will be realized in the Era of the Redemption which — unlike the redemptions which preceded it — will never be followed by an exile. And thus all the qualities will be revealed in this material world. (This concept is reflected in the similarity between the Hebrew words for redemption, גאולה and revelation, גילוי.)

Thus, the redemption will be complete. שלימה, the Hebrew for “complete,” also contains the letters of the name שלמה, “Shlomo.” King Shlomo is associated with peace as the verse declares, “Shlomo will be his name and I will grant [Israel] peace and tranquility in his days.”

Peace is also connected with the concept of redemption as explained by theMitteler Rebbe in connection with the verse “He redeemed my soul in peace for the many were with me.” The Alter Rebbe recited this verse before he was redeemed, and thus it shares a connection with his personal redemption onYud-Tes Kislev. Nevertheless, in an ultimate sense, the verse is associated with the future Redemption which will come about as a result of the spreading forth of the wellsprings of Chassidus outward that began with the Alter Rebbe’s redemption.

The concept of “the many were with me,” refers to the transformation of this world, which is characterized by multiplicity and division, until it becomes “with me,” i.e., united in the oneness of the Redemption, these manifold qualities become positive influences.

The redemption will become a present matter; i.e., it will come immediately, and become manifest in this very place, which has a threefold advantage of being a house of prayer, a house of study, and a house of good deeds. These three activities are associated with the month of Sivan which is characterized by three.4

Sivan is also the month of the giving of the Torah which includes “all the new concepts to be developed by an experienced Torah scholar.” In an expanded sense, this also refers to the new concept developed by a child in the present era when he expresses his hope that Mashiach will come. This will bring about a new expression of G‑dly influence, for G‑d, motivated by His great love for the Jews — a love that relates to children as reflected in the verse “Israel is a youth and I love him” — will bring about the Redemption in an unlimited manner in this world.

This present place is also a preparation for “the Sanctuary of the L‑rd established by Your hands.” Although the place for that Sanctuary will be inEretz Yisrael, and in Jerusalem, the preparation will be accomplished here, through “the spreading of the wellsprings of Chassidus outward.” May the “spreading,” the “wellsprings,” and “outward” be realized in a full and complete sense.

On the surface, the concept of a full and complete sense of “outward” is undesirable for this seems to indicate an existence apart from G‑d, as it were. The true sense of outward, however, is to reveal how there is nothing which is apart from G‑d, and He is manifest in the furthest removed reaches.5

This relates to the extension of the revelation of Chassidus to the “lower half of the world.” Although the Torah was not given in this portion of the world, it is from here that the spreading forth of Chassidus reached peaks never appreciated beforehand. Although this service was begun in “the upper half of the world,” in Lubavitch and in the other centers in which the Rebbeim lived, it was here, from this building, 770, that the spreading of Chassidus reached its most complete expression.

Indeed, the number 7706 is numerically equivalent to the word (ו)פרצת, “and you shall spread forth.” From this limited space, Chassidus will spread forth in an unlimited manner, reflecting the prophecy “And Jerusalem will exist without confines.”7

The Previous Rebbe caused that the first revelation of “the Sanctuary of the L‑rd established by Your hands,” will be here in 770, the place where he spent the last ten years of his life. This revelation will encompass the entire building from its lowest levels until its roof on which Mashiach will stand and announce, “Humble ones, the time for your redemption has come.”

And from this state, we will proceed, together with the entire Jewish people8, taken by “the clouds of the heavens,” to Eretz Yisrael, and to the Beis HaMikdash. May this be in the immediate future mamash.9 This will be hastened by our gifts to tzedakah, and for that purpose, money will be distributed at the conclusion of this gathering. May this “bring near the redemption,” and may it be in the immediate future.

2. As mentioned previously, today is the 28th, the כח of the month of Sivan. This date leads to the 29th of Sivan which is the day proceeding Rosh Chodesh. This shares a connection to the Jewish people for “the Jews resemble the moon and establish their calendar according to the moon.”

Rosh Chodesh involves a concealment of the moon. This, however, leads to a union between the sun and the moon, a union which is representative of the union between G‑d and the Jewish people. There is no separation in this unity; on the contrary, it is a complete bond, “they shall be as one flesh.”

This union also produces offspring and “the essential offspring of the righteous are their good deeds.” This adds perfection to the good deeds performed by each and every member of the Jewish people and reveals how the Jews become G‑d’s partner in the work of creation. As it were, G‑d cannot achieve this by Himself, and He needs the help of the Jews. And the Jews’ consent to accept this partnership causes Him to announce, “The time for your redemption has come.”

As mentioned, the Hebrew for “redemption,” גאולה, resembles the Hebrew for “revelation,” גילוי. Through the transformation of exile (גולה) into redemption (גאולה), the Alef, G‑d (Alufo shel olam), “the L‑rd of the world,” is revealed.

This will also be accompanied by a revelation of Pnimiyus HaTorah (Torah’s mystic dimension) as implied by the verse “He will kiss me with the kisses of His mouth.” All the revelations of Pnimiyus HaTorah we have been granted are merely a foretaste of the revelations of the Era of the Redemption.

Pnimiyus HaTorah is connected with the hidden dimensions of the Torah which are related to the hidden dimensions of G‑d and the hidden dimensions of the Jewish people. Then will be revealed the yechidah, the essence of the Jewish soul, the dimension of Mashiach possessed by every Jew. This is enhanced by the gathering together of many Jews in a house of good deeds, a house of prayer, and a house of study. And from this house will begin the revelation of G‑d’s dwelling in the lower worlds and we will proceed to greet Mashiach and receive “the new [dimension of the] Torah which will emerge from Me.”

FOOTNOTES

  1. Even if the positive event occurred at the end of the day, the entire day is considered as a “day of merit.”
  2. This dimension is further emphasized by the fact that the 28th day of the month follows the 27th day. 27 is 3 cubed and thus is associated with achazakah in regard to the concept ofchazakah.
  3. Our Sages explain that G‑d did not give Moshe a direct command to send the spies. Rather, He left the matter up to Moshe’s choice. The term our Sages use to convey this concept l’daatechoh(לדעתך), is also significant. This reflects a connection to the attribute of Daas(דעת), knowledge, which was personified by Moshe.
  4. Note the commentary of Rav Nissim Gaon who explains the connection of the third month with the giving of the Torah, a threefold light, to the Jews, a threefold people. (The name Nissim Gaon is significant.Nissim, Hebrew for “miracles,” indicates a connection to open miracles. Gaon (גאון) is numerically equivalent to 60 and thus indicates a connection to the sixty tractates of the Mishnah.
  5. This relates to the concept of the advantage possessed by miracles that are manifest within nature in which the natural order becomes a medium for the revelation of the highest levels of G‑dliness.
  6. 770 is also significant because seven is an important number. 770 reflects one hundred and ten (i.e., both one hundred and ten reflecting levels of completion) times seven.
  7. This lack of limitation will not be constrained by the fact that “I will be a wall of fire around her,” i.e., there will be physical limits to the city.
  8. The Jews will also bring “their gold and silver with them,” i.e., the redemption will also encompass their material property. (Gold and silver are also metaphorical terms for the attributes of love and fear.)
  9. Mamash means “in a manifest manner in this material world.”

Translation: Sichos In English