Avodah Mailing List

Volume 02 : Number 101

Wednesday, December 30 1998

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 19:54:46 -0600 (CST)
From: "Shoshanah M. & Yosef G. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: Jewish Observer, etc.

On Wed, 30 Dec 1998, Gershon Dubin wrote:

> 	What you might have heard was a request not to play the song
> "Mashiach"  which I also do not like to hear played at simchas, not
> because the word or concept of Mashiach is ch"v unacceptable, but
> because I am not inclined to rock music in any language. 

Let's not forget "Yidden!" (should be known as "Shkotzim!"). 


Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer
Cong. Bais Tefila, 3555 W. Peterson Ave., Chicago, IL, 60659
ygb@aishdas.org, http://www.aishdas.org/baistefila

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 20:03:34 -0600 (CST)
From: "Shoshanah M. & Yosef G. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Why Other Chassidim Do Not Engage in Kiruv

Speaking - as RYZ did - about the Erev Rav, I believe the reason most
Chassidim do not do Kiruv is because they hold most Jews are Erev Rav
(other than their sects and related ones), so it is a questionable effort
at best. The Divrei Chaim (Hasmotos l'Vayakhel) writes:

"...Hashem commanded not to connect to the Erev Rav in any way, and
[only] thus will they be worthy to build a Mishkon, for Jews themeselves
are holy, but the Erev Rav, however all good deeds they do are only for
their own advantage, as is apparent,as the Rabbanim, Chassidim and Ba'alei
Battim in our generation are mostly from the Erev Rav, and flock to bear
authority over the community, and all of their deeds are only for
themselves to garner honor and money. Therefore, only interact with those
who serve [Hashem] in truth and devote themselves to Hashem without any
benefit to themselves. 


Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer
Cong. Bais Tefila, 3555 W. Peterson Ave., Chicago, IL, 60659
ygb@aishdas.org, http://www.aishdas.org/baistefila

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 20:11:30 -0500
From: Harry Maryles <C-Maryles@neiu.edu>
Non Moshiach Lubavitch Issues

Dovid Eliezrie wrote:
> I find strange the definition of Klal Yisroel, which seems to me to some
> writers on this list "the Litrvasher Yeshiva world". Which is as insular, if
> not more so than Lubavitch. We at least interact on a regular basis with
> many other Yidden frum and not frum- something the Yeshiva world does little
> of.  
Unfortunately, my experience has been otherwise.  Lubavitch goes to 
great lengths as I previously indicated, to interact with the non frum. 
The reason, I presume, is twofold: One, to work their massive Kiruv 
effort, and, Two, to reach sources of funding partly through the very 
Kiruv work they do, that the rest of the frum world can only jealously 
dream about.  But when it comes to interacting with frum Jews who are 
not Lubavitch, it is only in the most minimal of ways.  I happen to live 
in the heart of the Lubavitch community here in Chicago and rarely see 
Lubavitchers at non Lubavitch functions.  Interacting with other frum 
Jews means more than just having casual contact.    Instead of 
participating with others, the Lubavitchers in the Shul I daven at on 
Friday night go to great lengths to separate themselves from the rest of 
the community by having their own minyan in another part of the Shul, 
apart from the rest of the members of the Shul.  This is the main 
Lubavitcher Shul in the city, mind you. There are many examples of this 
type of behavior.  I can go to a banquet of a community organization and 
see representatives of many of  various stripes, right to left, here in 
Chicago but rarely see a Lubavitcher. They have their own schools; the 
kids never mingle outside their own Lubavitch community. The Main Bais 
Yaakov school is directly across the street from the Lubavitch girls 
high school, yet the two groups of girls never see each other socially.

>True we pursued, without embarassment, a different agenda then other
> segments of the Torah World since we dropped out Agudah around 70 years ago.
> However they are no more the Klal as I am just the Klal.

Nobody is saying Agudah equals the definition of Klal Israel, least of 
all me.  But, when it comes to the frum community, compared to 
Lubavitch, Agudah seems like the most inclusive organization on earth!

>  We have a valid shittah in Torah. If someone walks into my Chabad House (in
> California) and learns how to put on Tefilin I have no reason not to teach
> my Minhag. 

Of course you can teach him your minhag.  The problem is that there is 
no attempt to differentiate between your minhagim and the minhagim of 
other segments of Jews.    You teach your minhagim as though they are 
the essence of Judaism.  By the time they realize that putting on 
teffilin according to the Chabad minhag is only one of many differing 
minhagim amongst Klal Israel, they are well indoctrinated into Chabad.  
This leaves them no freedom of choice to explore other streams such as 
the Litvishe, Yeshiva,  or modern orthodox or even other Hasidic 
movements. Chabad Kiruv seems to imprint on the Baal Teshuva that Chabad 
is the only true way to be an Oved HaShem.  Compare that to the approach 
of NCSY.  "Graduates" of NCSY are found all over Judaism, from YU to 

It is as good as  the Minhag of Brisk or Aishenaz. The same goes
> for benthing licht for girls, nusach etc. etc. We are not a different world,
> just a different shittah. In fact in almost every Jewish community of size
> there are three competing voices in the frum world, The Livasher Yeshiva
> dereck, Lubavitch and YU. (there are smaller groups in certain communities
> of other yeshivas, and Chassidim). The variety of Mosdos Chinuch usually
> represents this variety of ideologies.

No one denies the legitimacy of Lubavitcher minhagim. Again, the Kiruv 
work in Lubavitch doesn't allow for exploring other legitimate 
approaches to Judaism.

> While some of you may feel the need to spend years in Kollel-something I can
> appreciate-you might also find value in those of us who made the choice of
> Shlichus of the Rebbe Z"YA to places none of you would live. There, we
> spread Yiddiskiet where there are no Yeshivas or Torah Volt of any kind, in
> some 2,500 locations worldwide. Anyone want to move to Shanghai, Lima, of
> just maybe my suburban oasis of Yorba Linda California. (just last week the
> head of a major Orthodox group told me he can not people for positions in
> many out of town places)

As I indicated in my original post, I was the biggest fan of Lubavitch. 
If they go to these far flung places with the intent of KIruv, then they 
are providing one of the biggest services to Judaism.  But, the kiruv is 
tainted because it paints only Chabad as Legitimate.   Can you show me 
any evidence where Chabad Kiruv work produced large numbers ( I know 
there are individual exceptions)  of frum jews who are not 
Lubvavitchers?  I doubt it.  Most of the time, a baal teshuva who became 
frum through Lubavitch and is not a Lubavitcher is extremely rare.

> The variety in Orthodoxy is the true pluralism in Judaism. For those of you
> on this list that respect the various shittahs there can be common ground.
> Those who have a disdain for Lubavitch no matter what we do about the
> Moshistim or what we don't do then there is little to talk about.

I applaud variety in Judaism.  I just dispise exclusivity, especially  
when it doesn't recognize the legitimacy of others.

> Again excuse me for harshness. I am trying to be bluntly honest.
> Dovid Eliezrie

I truely appreciate your bluntness and hope you take my response as a 
sincere effort to convince you of my deep concern about the ways of 
Lubavitch and my fervent desire to have Lubavitch integrate into the 
mainstream, if this Moshiach Mishigoss is eliminated.  It would be nice 
to have Lubavicher girls in the main Bais Yaakov.


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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 20:49:26 -0500
From: Harry Maryles <C-Maryles@neiu.edu>
Lubavitcher Correspondences

Thanks to Micha for the very enlightening corespondence which I believe 
at the very least highlights the animus between factions within Chabad 
about the unresolved standing of the moshiachists.  It seems to be a 
struggle for survival of the fittest. I happen to be very close with a 
Prominent Lubavitch family in Detroit and I believe they are the 
exception rather than the rule.  I am told that Detroit is very much in 
the anti Moshichist camp. And these Lubavitchers are extremely upset by 
what's  going on now in Lubavitch.  To paraphrase what they told me: 
These idiots (the moshichists) are destroying everything the Rebbe 
worked for.  Yet when I attended the wedding of their daughter late last 
summer.  I heard the father of the groom declare under the chupah to all 
who were there, words to the effect that, "May the Rebbe rise at techyas 
hamesim and lead us out of this bitter galus." Nobody protested and the 
wedding went on just fine without skipping a beat.This seemed to me to 
contradict the protestations that this family demonstrated when 
discussing the issue with me. 

Does mainstream Lubavitch believe that the Rebbe is Moshiach?  Is it 
just a debate as to whether to keep it in the closet or to publicize it 
to the max? Do Lubavitchers on this list "protest too much"?


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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 21:06:13 -0500
From: Harry Maryles <C-Maryles@neiu.edu>
Angry Response to the Berger Article

The following is a response printed in HaAretz, by a knowledgable 
Lubavitcher, to the Berger article in Haartez of early this year. How 
can anyone doubt that the problem is enormous and is far from being 


The Prophet of God

No one can 'evade the yoke of the belief in the Lubavitcher Rebbe's
Messiahship', writes Gedalyahu Axelrod
                                                By Gedalyahu Axelrod    

     I read the article by David Berger - "On false Messianism, idolatry 
and Lubavitch," Ha'aretz, Jan.11) in which I was attacked together with 
other rabbis of cities and heads of rabbinical courts in Israel and 
abroad, for signing a formal rabbinical ruling stating that the 
Lubavitcher Rebbe has the status of a prophet, and that he is the 
Messiah, and that every Jew must accept the sovereignty of his 
Messiahship, by dint of the Jewish law which obligates all Jews to obey 
a prophet. The writer of the article went so far as to proclaim that 
"this declaration alone is sufficient to exclude its promulgators from 
Orthodox Judaism." In his article, Berger makes an hysterical attack on 
the entire Lubavitch movement. First, I would like to make one thing 
absolutely clear to David Berger and to everyone else.  There is no 
halachic dispensation that will enable anyone to evade accepting the 
yoke of the belief in the Rebbe's Messiahship, because of Maimonides' 
ruling that obligates all Jews to do so. That may be the reason why he 
is so angry, because - as far as I can see - he has no inclination to do 
so, and he is using this furious outburst to try to escape his 
obligations. Maimonides, in his Hilchot Yesodei Hatorah
[Laws of the Foundations of the Torah], Chapter 10, determines the 
criteria for a great and wise prophet: that he "has broad knowledge," 
"is in full control of himself," "predicts the future," and most 
important, that he declares that the Lord sent him to be a prophet. The 
Lubavitcher Rebbe, in session with thousands of his followers, dropped a 
spiritual and historic bombshell by declaring himself the prophet of the 
generation. We Jews, throughout all generations, have been willing to 
enter blazing furnaces for our faith. We will remain strong in this 
mission as well. We will accept the prophet of God, the sovereignty of 
the Rebbe, Messiah the King, because
we are thus obliged by virtue of our Judaism. Rabbi Ahron Soloveichik, 
one of the greatest rabbis in the United States, published an open 
letter in the American press on June 24, 1996, in which he attacked 
those who persecute Chabad, such as the likes of Berger, and determined 
that belief in the Rebbe as King Messiah, even today after his passing 
from our vision, does not conflict with the views of Judaism. ( A gross 
distortion or R. Aaron's views.- HM)  As for the ability of the Rebbe to 
see into the future, let me mention just two prophecies. One was during 
 the Gulf War, when the Rebbe said that it would be unnecessary to wear 
gas masks because no chemical weapons would be used; and the second, 
when he told Benjamin Netanyahu, during Netanyahu's visit with him 
before his
election to the Knesset, that in the future he would have to contend 
with 119 people. The only confrontation of this type would be in 
elections for prime minister, when each member of Knesset pulls in a 
different direction.  I would like to address the claim of idolatry - 
Heaven forbid 
raised in the article. I can only marvel at the way people are willing 
to destroy a movement known all over the world for its staunch devotion 
to the observance of commandments and to bringing Jews closer to their 
Judaism. And those who are even more familiar with Lubavitch, know just 
how pure and sublime it is. True, there have been some anomalous 
comments which should not have been made, but these exceptions are being 
taken care of by Chabad
rabbis everywhere by means of education and guidance, so that those who 
made them do not deviate from the path of halacha. I believe that David 
Berger must beg the forgiveness of the tens of thousands of followers of 
Lubavitch who proudly carry high the torch of Judaism, and who are not 
deterred by those who would destroy it from the day of its foundation.

(Rabbi Axelrod is the head of a rabbinical court in Haifa.)

copyright 1997 Ha'aretz. All Rights Reserved

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 22:54:45 EST
From: C1A1Brown@aol.com
neshama klalis - R' Tzaddok

>>>As to whether this applies to later generations - on which you and RCB say,
if I understand you correctly: No...Likkutei Ma'amarim p. 84 col. 1:..."...And
so too in every generation the soul of the parnes, the leader of the
generation, is a soul that encompasses (nefesh ha'kolleles) all the souls of
the generation, just as the king is the klal of the entire nation. And that is
why he can lead them all, for his wisdom encompasses all of their wisdom, and
so too his da'as and all his oul's kochos..."<<

You wrote originally that "Moshe was the "kelali" - - or yechida - for his
generation" and that is is this which was "ishpashet b'chol dor".  

R' Tzaddok writes:  T"T 159 - "Except for David and the Avos there was NO ONE
whose soul encompassed the entire world, as Moshe was 'kollel' only talmidei
chachamim, just that the dor hamidbas was the dor deah of all talmidei

Your conundrum is in explicating Tzidkas HaTzaddik in a way that meshes with
your citation from Likutei Ma'amarim -  not in any position of mine.  

My own attempted analysis (for what its worth based on very limited knowledge
- I'd like to hear other's ideas): I prefer to return to Tzidkas HaTzaddik
#172 - "There IS one soul which encompasses the entire dor, and all
generations, as is known.  In time there is one time which encompasses all
days, and it is Shabbos."  R' Tzaddok goes on to identify these all
encompasing souls with the souls of the melech (from whom stems the authority
of the parnes - "just as the king..." is very miduyak in the passage from
Likutei Ma'amarim you cite!) and the kohein gadol.  R' Tzaddok returns to the
same theme in #253 - the all encompassing sanctity of time in Shabbos, place
in the Mikdash, and all souls united and encompasssed in the melech and K"G. 

I believe the resolution to the apparent contradiction of these passages with
#159 (top of posting) lies in the conclusion to the passage - "There exists
these three kedushot in select souls, HIDDEN AND NOT REVEALED.  According to
the 'kishron' of the dor they are revealed...".  R' Tzaddok accepts the notion
of neshama klalis as a theoretical justifcation for the authority of the
leaders of each dor.  However, there is no consequence to having this endowed
neshama - it cannot elevate the world through its tshuvah (the context of T"T
#159) or serve any other practical end.  It is limited by the needs and
abilites of the dor it finds itself in.

To reiterate the point I made yesterday: in Tanya (ch 42, 44) we do find this
concept of hispashtus of Moshe's neshama to all doros which you referred to,
yet formulated in a substantively different way then presented by R' Tzaddok,
or R' Kook. Different 'tzaddikim' expressed the idea with differing nuances,
and I suspect a full appreciation of the issue can only be arrived at through
a careful and critical reading of all the sources.  (and unfortunately, I am
certainly not a bar hachi in the realm of chassidus).


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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:18:54 -0500
From: "Noah Witty" <nwitty@ix.netcom.com>

I have noticed that Rabbi Eliyahu Teitz's "signature" is always followed by
"Jewish Educational Center."

It suddenly occurred to me to ask the following:

Are Rabbi Teitz's opinions one and the same with those of J.E.C. and its
board members (if any) or is the board and Rabbi Teitz one and the same?

Should I conclude that all Jewish Elizabethans affiliated with J.E.C. (Hy-nu
hach?) agree with Rabbi Teitz's opinions or have authorized him to speak on
their behalf?

Same question applies to parents of students and to teachers at J.E.C.


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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:27:39 -0500
From: "Noah Witty" <nwitty@ix.netcom.com>
Imminent arrival of the mashiach

I accept Micah Berger's correction.  I suppose I should have said
"possibility of imminent arrival." Point remains the same, i.e. li-shuascha
kivinu kol hayom.


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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:35:09 -0500
From: "Noah Witty" <nwitty@ix.netcom.com>
Euphemisms (correct spelling?)

Someone posted the following sentence (the context is not important):

"This was a problem both when the Rebbe was alive and after Gimmel Tammuz."

If we are to reject the meshichistin, we must stop using circumlocutions
such as that quoted above for fear that someone may take umbrage.  Such
expressions merely feed into the possibility that the Rebbe is still alive
and breathing.  Is he? If not, why not say p'tira? If so,  . . . . .

The interesting mida kneged midah here is that the Lubavitcher Rebbe was
known for avoiding any negative or disparaging remarks, e.g. a hospital is a
bait refuah. So it's interesting that people are reluctant to use sad words
in describing his histalkus (that it certainly was).


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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:49:31 -0500
From: "Noah Witty" <nwitty@ix.netcom.com>
D. Glasner's Two Anecdotes

Unless adultery is still a crime in the District of Columbia, the President
can not be impeached for same.  In any event, he may be impeached for
committing the felony of perjury.

I do not understand why you asked about the embarassment of the bas yisrael
in having story #2 repeated and did not ask a similar question about the
very meticulous yeshiva bochur in story #1.  Furthermore, if he had such  a
"corrupt" character, maybe we might ask how he spent so much time in yeshiva
and became/remained "corrupt"? How did he sit before the eyes of so many
roshei yeshiva and they made no impact upon him? Are they blameless?

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 22:58:08 -0600 (CST)
From: mshulman@ix.netcom.com (Moshe Shulman)
Re: Avodah V2 #90

>On Mon, 28 Dec 1998, Moshe Shulman wrote:
>> I don't know who told you that, but it is an error. The reason has to do
>> with sufik brochos. (BTW I DO make a shehakol on potatoes.)
>What safek?

The sefer Hadras Kodesh (Nasoider Rov quoting the Chasam Sofer) brings that
the talmidim of Rabbenu Yonah held that oraz requires a mazonos as it is a
food that fills one up, and that this applies to all such foods. This is also
the opinion of the Rosh. A similar logic applies to potatoes, and even though
not all hold from this sevorah it is enough to bring a sufik of either mazonos
or adamah. Among the gadolim who likewise made a shehakol was the Imrei Eish
(a gadol from Hungary), The Ropshitzer Rov (the Rebbe of the Tzanzer Rov), The
Kamarna Rov (who argued that since potatoes do not need the ground to grow
they should have a shehakol like like komos and patrious.) The Yismach Moshe
(the anscestor of the Satmar Rov) likewise made a shahokol, but he based his
view on the sefer HaOruch who said that komos and patrious are called tartafel
which is kartofel (potatoes) in Yiddish. (All this from the sefer Otzar

Moshe Shulman mshulman@ix.netcom.com    718-436-7705
http://www.pobox.com/~chassidus         Chassidus Website

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 09:02:01 -0800
From: "Dovid Eliezrie" <tzedek@sprynet.com>

I will try to respond briefly to some of J. Bakers points.

Agudah is not monolithic. It is a coalition of a wide variety of people in
the Frum world. Some are Chassidim and some hostile to Chassidus.

My point about Agudah was that this article caused some internal debate. In
particular after our communications with Agudah. A few things happened. One
they began to understand what the true internal dynamics of the problem
where. Secondly I think (this is my assessment) they where impressed by what
we are doing and how pained the leadership is. Keller caused was one good
thing-some honest communication between Lubavitch and Aguda. This was
primarily by face to face communication and by phone. By the way there where
many in Agudah who were not so happy with the statements calling Rabbi Lamn
a sonie Yisroel, they just reserved the criticism to themselves, or
expressed it to friends quietly.

My point about him as a critic is simple. There is a time when a friend
comes to you and says "listen you need to correct this or that". You know
that there motivation is noble and they are truly concerned with your
welfare. There are other people who you know don't like you and seek ways to
attack you. I have Misnagdisher friends who care about Lubavitch and have
strong criticism. I know we disagree in Shitah about many things but we have
a common respect. So when a person who has never said a good word about us,
who has only expressed disdain and hatred comes and writes an article with
lies-that he was told where not true prior to publication-I have little
respect for such an attack. I doubt that it is motivated by the Yeitzer Tov.
As for the Moezes-and I cannot speak for them-I doubt if they where aware
about what we are doing, as they know now, prior to publication it would not
have been printed. By the way he is not a member of the Moezes.

Finally we see are ourselves as a crucial part of the Frum world. Just as
some of the Litvahsher Yeshiva crowd may not agree with us on some issues we
maintain the right to differ with them.  As for apoligists I am not one. As
for the Shitah of the Rebbe, Chassidus etc. I have nothing to aplogize for
only in what to have pride.

Dovid Eliezrie

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 22:59:33 -0600 (CST)
From: mshulman@ix.netcom.com (Moshe Shulman)
Re: Lubavitch

>A few years back Rabbi Kagan, the senior Lubavitch shaliach in Detroit,
>wrote a letter (which I think appeared on SCJ) basically stating that the
>main problem is with making the Rebbe being revealed as Moshiach the main
>focus of yiddishkeit -- to the exclusion of all else).  This was a problem
>both when the Rebbe was alive and after Gimmel Tammuz.  There are lots of
>other facets which can serve to differentiate Lubavitch from other derechs
>in a far more normative way than the notion of the Rebbe being Moshiach.
>I think Rabbi Manis Friedman has also made a similar point.
>I do think (and this might be controversial) but part of what gave impetus
>to the more vocal meshichisten were people who called themselves Torah Jews
>who publically questioned the stressing of the imminence of redemption --
>well before the Rebbe-Moshiach stuff started -- hence public criticism probably
> makes things worse.  When I was last at 770, more people weren't singing
>and dancing yechi or saying yechi three times after davenning as were.

I think the following is interesting and relates to this issue:
The Rov of Zavenchuk related that one time he was serving Rebbe Yakov
Shimon the son of Rebbe Pinchas of Koretz. At that time the Holy
Rebbe of Apt came for a visit and stayed with Rebbe Yakov Shimon.
They were sitting together and discussing when the Rebbe of Apt
asked, 'Dear friend of HaShem and our friend, HaRav Yakov Shimon, why
is it that the previous generations had so many Tzaddikim in each of
the generations. But now HaShem has held this great good back from us
so that there are only two or three 'twigs.' Rebbe Yakov Shimon
didn't answer him.

The Rebbe of Apt repeated the question two or three times, but Rebbe
Yakov Shimon remained silent. Then the Apter Rov said, 'If the
honored Rabbi will not answer then I will explain.' It says (Yeshaya
3.1), 'The lord HaShem will remove from Yehudah and Yerushalayim
support of men [Heb. mishan] and support of women' The word 'mishan'
has ten words of similar meaning according to the Hebrew language. He
then continued, 'The verse says (2.11) 'HaShem alone will be exalted
on that day.'

It was worthy that the generation of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai should
have been redeemed through Rebbe Shimon, whose merit was great. All
the Jewish people relied on him [to do this] and because of that the
redemption did not come in his time. Likewise it was worthy that the
redemption should come through Arizal. And the generation relied on
him and they said [of him] 'He will redeem us' [Heb. Hu Yigalanu]
Therefore the redemption was not in his time. Also the Baal Shem Tov
was worthy that the redemption should be brought about through him.
And all the Jewish people relied on him for this. Therefore the
redemption did not come in his time. Likewise in every generation
there are unique people whose souls are very lofty, and because the
Jewish people look to them and say, 'This one will redeem us' [Heb.
zeh yigaleinu] therefore the redemption does not come through their

Therefore before Moshiach will come 'HaShem will remove from Yehuda
and Yerushalayim support of men and support of women.' This means
those lofty souls, [who the Jewish people have relied upon to redeem
them,] and the Jewish people will only have HaShem to rely upon.
Then, the redemption will come.

That is the meaning of the verse, 'HaShem alone will be exalted in
that day.' ['That day' refers to the time when Moshiach will come.]
The Jewish people will have no one else to rely on except for HaShem
alone. Then the redemption will come. (This appears on page 114 of
the sefer Yalkut Ohev Yisroel which is a collection of teachings of
Rebbe Avraham Yehoshua Heschel of Apt.)

Moshe Shulman mshulman@ix.netcom.com    718-436-7705
http://www.pobox.com/~chassidus         Chassidus Website

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 22:58:25 -0600 (CST)
From: mshulman@ix.netcom.com (Moshe Shulman)
Re: "Forks"

>In light of our recent discussions of "old" vs. "new" Lubavitch and
>Chassidus in general, I take the liberty of posting to the group my essay
>on "old" Lubavitch vs. other Chassidus and both vs. Mussar and non-Mussar
>"Misnagdus." Please note that the essay is:
>1. Available in HTML at the aishdas/baistefila website.
>2. Has not been published, and probably never will, since for the various
>periodicals to which it was submitted it was deemed eiither too short, too
>long, or not "politically correct." Comments welcome!

I have a nubmer of comments about this. Should I send them private ot to this

Moshe Shulman mshulman@ix.netcom.com    718-436-7705
http://www.pobox.com/~chassidus         Chassidus Website

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:00:31 -0600 (CST)
From: mshulman@ix.netcom.com (Moshe Shulman)
Re: neshama klalis - Tanya, R' Tzaddok, etc.

>know only where it is in R' Tzadok - see Tzidkas HaTzaddik 159-160.  I must
>rationalist leanings).  Explicit Chabad references can be found in Tanya ch.
>42 and 44 (where the citation YGB refers to from Tikkunei Zohar is cited), as
>well as direct citation from the Besht - see the likut Besht al HaTorah end of
>P' Bechukosi.   It should be noted that in Tanya the concept is used to show
>how an element of the greatness of Moshe can be found in EVERY Jew, not just
>Tzaddikim.  Also see Maor V' Shemesh end P' Pekudei.  (2) Tzaddikim in other

In Tanya it says that his nashamah is from atzulus, which agrees with Lekutei
Torah at the end of Bereishis, and that is NOT yichida, which is a nashamah
klalious. The Maor v'Shamash is talking of another inyan (very similar to that
of Rebbe Tzaddok which you mention below as not being related to having a NK.)

Al kol panim, R' Tzaddok in the passage cited rejects both aspects above in
>his formulation by writing that the neshama klalis existed only for the Avos
>and Dovid - not even for Moshe who only embodied the neshamos of T"CH  (T"T
>159), and certainly not for singular tzaddikim in each generation.

Yashir Koach. I just mentioned this, but it is nice that a second person has
read the same source and agrees.

Moshe Shulman mshulman@ix.netcom.com    718-436-7705
http://www.pobox.com/~chassidus         Chassidus Website

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:00:45 -0600 (CST)
From: mshulman@ix.netcom.com (Moshe Shulman)
Re: Yechida/Neshama Kelalis

>Secondly, and this is also meant as a reply to my esteemed brother in law
>RCB, who seems to be on your side of this issue: Nope.
>R' Tzadok there, and in several other places, says that Moshe's neshomo
>was kollel that of the *entire* Dor HaMidbar - whom he classifies as
>talmidei chachomim, lock stock and barrel.

Well there he says, as was quoted before:
>Al kol panim, R' Tzaddok in the passage cited rejects both aspects above in
>his formulation by writing that the neshama klalis existed only for the Avos
>and Dovid - not even for Moshe who only embodied the neshamos of T"CH  (T"T
>159), and certainly not for singular tzaddikim in each generation.

I strongly suggest that you read it, and take off your Lubavitcher/Chabad
glasses when you do. :)

>You may find this more explicit in Kedushas Shabbos (Pri Tzaddik Bereishis
>p. 48).

This seems to agree with what you are saying, although there is a problem
since he seems to say that he is the shoresh of the gadolei hador. When I
looked up the sources it isn't so clear. (There is another printing of this
which mentions sources, and says this refers to what appears in shaar
hagilgulim 20, which doesn't seem to indicate as you are arguing.)

>As to whether this applies to later generations - on which you and RCB
>say, if I understand you correctly: No...

>Likkutei Ma'amarim p. 84 col. 1:
>"...And so too in every generation the soul of the parnes, the leader of
>the generation, is a soul that encompasses (nefesh ha'kolleles) all the
>souls of the generation, just as the king is the klal of the entire
>nation. And that is why he can lead them all, for his wisdom encompasses
>all of their wisdom, and so too his da'as and all his oul's kochos..."
>I suspect that there are many other places in which R' Tzadok makes the
>same point.

He seems to be arguing such a point. However let us assume that R. Tzadok and
Chabad argue that way (contrary to the Ari.) So?  I still fail to see the
point. R. Tzadok is NOT considered as an 'authority' in any Chasidic group in
the world today. In fact the only person I know to have learned his seforim
was a Lubavitcher. If you know of Chasidic history in Poland, you have chosen
an obscure branch and claimed that this is an example of what Chassidus in
general believes. 

Moshe Shulman mshulman@ix.netcom.com    718-436-7705
http://www.pobox.com/~chassidus         Chassidus Website

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Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 23:01:47 -0600 (CST)
From: mshulman@ix.netcom.com (Moshe Shulman)
Re: [none]

Dovid, I do not doubt what you are stating here. HOWEVER,. I need to make some
comments because what people see and what HAS been done, is what brings people
to make the comments they do.

>As for the Moshiach issue. Some of you (in particular Rabbi Teitz) have
>discounted the efforts of the leadership of the Lubavitch in public
>condemnation of them. In particular he claimed that the statements were not
>clear and the Moshistim gained strength from them. First there was not one

I don't know if they gained 'strength' but I had originally thought it was a
good statement, UNTIL it was pointed out to me by some meshichistan that it
didn't really contradict them. It clearly DIDN'T say that anyone who believed
in a Moshaich who rises from the dead, belongs to another religion and not
Judaism (which is the view of ALL the Rabbi and Rebbes I have heard stating a
view privately.) We, in fact, see that the indefensable is being defended.
This is what gives Rabbi Teitz the opening to say what he does. Look at R.
Schochet's answer to Rabbi Keller. THAT is the problem. They just don't get
it. Maybe YOU don't get it either? In any case, as I have said before, there
is NO ONE outside of Lubavitch who can do anything to change the situation

>What I can tell you. Is that the Moshistim have lost considerable steam and
>support. I'm not saying that there is not a vocal core. But they are losing

Again I do not deny what you have said here, however: 1. I was recently in CH.
(I went to be menachem Ovel YY Kazen's family.) CH looks like the same mental
institute it has looked like for a number of years. 2. Buttman still has his
shows going on.

>Mosdos have gone through the painful decision to fire teachers who continue
>to advocate their theology in the classroom. This has happened in
>Pittsburgh, Morristown and other locations.They have been sytemaclity
>excluded from many positions.

I am aware of the Morristown situation, but not of anything in the local area.
(BTW I saw a sign that the ex of Morristown has opened a yeshiva.)

>As for Berger and Keller. Berger thinks he is going to save us from
>ourselves. I have spoken to him on a few occasions. Whatever his intentions,
>he is having little impact in Lubavitch. What is having an effect is the

Agreed. Let me ask you, is there anyone outside of Lubavitch whose views would
make a difference? Any Rebbe or Rov?

>He has a long history of intense hostility to Lubavitch. Today it is
>Moshiach, yesterday it was Menorahs, and almost everything else. He has for
>years, long before Moshiach was an issue, been the only Rosh Yeshiva in
>Chicago to refuse to participate in Kinusie Torah and other events we have
>in Chicago. He was informed prior to publication that his accusations

Do you go to his? My understanding of lubavitch is that they have NEVER in the
past taken part in anything not under Lubavitch.

>I find strange the definition of Klal Yisroel, which seems to me to some
>writers on this list "the Litrvasher Yeshiva world". Which is as insular, if

Isn't this a bit hypocritical? 

Moshe Shulman mshulman@ix.netcom.com    718-436-7705
http://www.pobox.com/~chassidus         Chassidus Website

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