Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Yud Shevat with the (possibly) greatest living Rabbi on the planet

So I go to the Minnesota farbrengen for literally five minutes, and who's there but Webby from Crownheights.info with his camera taking pictures, making it look like I was there the whole time. Well, I wasn't. I would have liked to be, but I was by the (practically empty) ohel tonight (said the whole maaneh lashon! First time ever! Woohoo!), and when I got home I had to eat something before I fell completely off the face of the earth. Then I walk to this farbie, and leave five minutes later for another. Crazy. Oh yeah, here's a nice little picture he snapped of yours truly:

That would be me in the green sweater, TC, and Shlomo Goldin. Here's some pictures of us from a couple of months ago. For all those who think my green sweater is cute, does it become less cute if I wear it nearly every day? Just wondering. The two guys in the foreground are Baruch Dorfman and Rabbi Mottel Friedman, of Nshei Chabad fame. Moments after the snapping of this picture Mr. Webby snapped one of me sticking my tongue out at him. He said, "You'll regret that!", to which I said, "Are you kidding me? I'd love that posted online!" He smiled as if he'd fulfill my wish, but then someone told him who I was and about my deep-seated need for as much publicity as possible, and I guess he reconsidered, which kind of stinks, because it was a cute picture, green sweater and long pick tongue and all.
Anyway, from there I made my way to the LA Farbrengen being held in the Beis Levi Yitzchak Shul with Rabbi Mendy Schapiro, who happens to be possibly the most sincerely religious person I have ever met. As in, he really cares. Sure, other people care, but he does something about it.
Due to the limitations of the medium (iPod Touch 2nd Gen) and the many people talking in the room I wasn't able to hear everything he said, so the following may be a little choppy, and perhaps even a bit jagged, which would conform to some people's opinion of me in real life. e, when will you get a blog I can link to? Anyway, here it is. Remember, all the mistakes are no doubt mine, all the genius is doubtlessly the rabbi's. Enjoy.

Moshiach is not going to come through those chassidim who saw the Rebbe and loved him. The chassidim who work hard, those who didn't see the rebbe, they're the ones who are going to bring moshiach.
The Rebbe didn't want bochurim who thought bad about themselves. He wanted bochurim who thought they could change the world.
Nowadays bochurim are depressed. Not depressed, but walking about in a daze.
When I was a bochur I had a real bochur issue. I thought I was a lost case. I wrote to the Rebbe in adar '52.
A chossid is not affected by the world around him. Because the world is bluff.
When you're alone in your bedroom, and you open an igros. I know people who watch movies. They do it because they're not happy with themselves. The Rebbe speaks the word of Hashem. If you learn sichos, translating each and every word, and make a decision to not be a woman, not be a wimp. Grab your etzem. You won't feel atzmus, you'll feel strong. We live in a wacky generation. The Rebbe told us that moshiach is coming. Who's going to bring him? Not the big chassidim who love. It's going to be the chassdim who work.
A bochur messed up in shidduchim, the Rebbe told him to learn chassidus.
The Rebbe is moshiach, but before we say that we say adoneinu, moreinu, and rabbeinu. We have to accept the Rebbe before we can have moshiach.
The chassidim who saw the Rebbe, they don't have it hard. Unless you're a chitzon, what's so difficult?
The kavanah is, there's no default. When will chassidus be real? When you make decisions and act according to chassidus. Not through giluim will you bring moshiach. Through hard work. Who is going to bring moshiach? The bochurim who struggled.
I speak to bochurim who are engaged. They tell me, without the rebbe's horaos, you're a lost case. Forget about Torah, how do you deal with anger?
Before the Rebbe, no one spoke about tafkid hador. There's going to be opposition. How do you deal with opposition? Not through love only. You have to fight it.
B'gashmius, it's amazing. Kids, jobs, life. Mofsim. Tomorrow there'll be bochurim who will have mofsim themselves. They're going to make a decision to become a better person.
Bottom line is, if you go to the Rebbe tomorrow, and you made hachanos, are you going to drop those hachanos when you're done? That's not what the Rebbe wants. The Rebbe wants you to continue on.
--------
There's a story that doesn't work so much-Lazer, you're a shtickel baal seichel. There's a story from the Rebbe-acharon shel pesach 17 the Rebbe brought the story. It's an unpopular story. It might not work. If you're a pnini it'll work. The Rebbe told about Shmuel Munkes. He was a smart guy with a sense of humor. He was looking for the Alter Rebbe in Liozna at the middle of the night. He said that the Rebbe must be up in the middle of the night. He looked around the town, every house was dark except for the Rebbe's house.
The Rebbe learned Torah all night. The Rebbe didn't sleep.
Shmuel Munkes said, I want to sleep in your house. The Alter Rebbe said, you couldn't find anywhere else to sleep? Shmuel Munkes said, this is also a Jewish home! The Rebbe said, I'll call my goy to throw you out. Shmuel said, my goy is bigger than your goy! Fine, the Rebbe let him stay.

The Rebbe explained this story. A bochur comes and says, I want to learn chassidus, to be a chassis. Do we welcome you with open arms? No! We investigate. Do you want to be cool and hip, or do you want to be battul? You have a goy? What does the goy want and do? Even after that, your goy is bigger than the Rebbe's goy. You sinned. You become a chassis easily? Not happening. Cry. Then you can become a chassis.

There are a lot of beautiful homes in the world. But you have to go to a light house. One that has the light of Torah.
You can't just say that you want it. Don't just think that by wanting it you can get it. You have to go to a light house. No ego. No self.
Don't think you can just write to the Rebbe and it'll all turn out fine. You can't just surrender. You have to cry out and say, my goy is bigger! Just because you want to be a chassid doesn't mean the Rebbe will accept you. There are no smooth roads. You have to cry. You have to beg to be accepted. You have to want it very hard.
Don't think you farbrenged, decided to be a chassid, and now the sky is going to open for you. You have to open your own heart. Bochurim think that they work hard, and now they should feel elokus. Well, it's not going to happen. It takes hard work. You have to live with chassidus. Until moshiach comes there is no red carpet. There is no free lunch, no free supper.
--------
When a bochur these days wants to be serious, not ad d'lo yadah, it's very easy to put the Rebbe out of the picture. There's a story with R. Yoel Kahn. There was a family who lived in a totally frie kibbutz. They were sick of living in Israel where the religious parties are taking over. So they moved to Tasmania. He was a professor in psychology. They moved so that no one should bother them. Tasmania is the achurayim. It's far away from far away. They moved away and had a good time. No one bugged them.
This is like bochurim who want no one to bother them.
The reform rabbi there left back to America, and they needed a new rabbi. The congregation needed a new rabbi, and they came to this professor and asked him to become their rabbi. He said he wasn't even reform, he doesn't believe in everything, but they said, you're Israeli, you can read Hebrew. He became the rabbi.
His Kids started to ask him regarding yiddishkeit. He had no answers. His wife started praying. A week later he met rabbi Gutnick walking down the street in Tasmania, and they became close, and eventually they came to the Gutnick's house in Melbourne, and asked, why did you come here? Gutnick said, we got a letter saying we should come to Tasmania. When was the letter? The day the woman prayed to Hashem, if you're there, please, show us a sign.
You might think she cried and the Rebbe answered. R' Yoel Kahn said, the Rebbe thought of them, and she cried.

57 comments:

Mottel said...

Not bad stuff . . .

The Real Shliach said...

But of course not! Would you expect less?

Crawling Axe said...

In a few words, V = IR.

I was going to write a story I heard here, but then decided to post it on my blog.

LE7 said...

A woman? Oh well.

The last story was written up all fancy in a recent copy of Celebration. (Yes I am plugging since I can).

The Real Shliach said...

What do you mean, "A women? Oh well."

Can we get a link?

LE7 said...

If you learn sichos, translating each and every word, and make a decision to not be a woman, not be a wimp. Grab your etzem.

It's not published online that I know of, but if your family receives Celebration...

The Real Shliach said...

Ahh yes, that's one of his favorite topics. One of his favorite lines? "Don't be a nekeivah! Grab your etzem!" Of course, he only says this after four lchaims.

I think we do. Or not. When am I by my family's mail?

LE7 said...

I don't know if out-of-towners continue to receive it...

The Real Shliach said...

I know at least one family in NY that definitely gets it.

LE7 said...

Yes, but that depends on what their mail status is in the computer. If it's Y, then they get mail, if it's O... not so sure.

LE7 said...

Also, I have been known to wear a skirt a week in a row... so uh, wash your sweater I guess.

The Real Shliach said...

I see.
When I first saw that comment I thought you were referring to the previous discussion on being a male etc, and I couldn't figure out what you were talking about. Hilarious.

Wash my sweater? I do that every six months!

sarabonne said...

can't you just get 5 sweater in the same color? Just sell one of your women...

The Real Shliach said...

You think of my women are worth that much?

Anonymous said...

what is with you and lipa? i think you have a crush on him.

The Real Shliach said...

Is there a problem with that?

Anonymous said...

yeah, if youre gonna have a crush on a celebrity at least have one on someone you can do something about!

The Real Shliach said...

What do you mean something I can do something about?

Anonymous said...

i mean, you have a crush on lipa, right? but what can u do about it? nothing. exactly. however if you have a crush on say-your next door female neighbor-in this case you can potentially do something about.

The Real Shliach said...

Whatever. I like Lipa. I think he's an incredible talent and is quite cute too boot. I do not have designs on him.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Real Shliach said...

Comments like that get deleted, not because of the content, but because of the language.

Anonymous said...

what language? anyway, i love your blog and read it daily!

sarabonne said...

one woman is worth 1/600th of a goat (did you learn fractions?)find out how many goats a sweater costs and do the math...lets see, perhaps you could get 2 sweaters for one goat that would be...1,500 women for 5 sweaters.
or maybe they could just knit you some...

The Real Shliach said...

Anon: I'm glad to hear that. Read that last comment and if you aren't too desensitized to gentility you should get what I mean.
Sara: so which of you people are knitting?

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

Last I heard a nice Jewish girl was worth three goats and cow. (A friends mother was once proposed to by an Arab in Israel) Or you could get one of your harem to knit one.

e said...

I read the title and the first paragraph and thought that you would declare some Minnesota rabbis as the greatest living rabbi. But it was just more of the same. Schapiro, Schapiro, Schapiro. wtf? This is getting a tad repetitive.

sarabonne said...

As far as I know, none of us knit. Maybe you should just stick to one sweater afterall...

LE7 said...

My knitting is rather shabby, but my mother crochets real nice and is always taking requests.

LE7 said...

AM I awesome or am I awesome??

http://chabadwi.org/media/pdf/234/vJen2343580.pdf

See page 7.

The Real Shliach said...

Modeh: That's what I was thinking.
e: This is a different Schapiro.
LE7: Can she make me something?

Crawling Axe said...

I heard last night a story about yet another Shapiro — from Florida.

Also, on that day, in the morning, I was talking to my rabbi on the phone and he told me how when Rabbi Mendy Shapiro and he were in yeshiva, the former would explain to the latter that we say that Hashem is good b/c He is the source of good, but we don’t say He is evil, chv"sh, because he is the source of evil, because evil is not an entity — it’s just concealment of good.

Anyway, point being — can’t escape from them. Live with it.

LE7 said...

If you ask really nicely and buy the yarn.

No comments on the fact I linked the story?

The Real Shliach said...

LE7: I'll see what I can do.
You did an incredible job there. No, really, you did.

e said...

LE7, I'm duly impressed. You are awesome and awesome. (Lest any of you think this contradicts the original assertion that le7 is EITHER awesome OR awesome, I'll have you know that(A*A)>(AvA).)

LE7 said...

Thank you thank you. I'd also like to note that on page 4 I typed those pesukim. Yes I did.

e said...

awesome, awesome, and awesome!!

Now for the logical justification of that assertion:
1. a*a premise
2. a 1, simp
3. (a*a)*a 1,2 conj

The Real Shliach said...

e: Glad to see you're putting that college education to good use.
LE7: Ditto.

LE7 said...

(That's impressive once you realize what sort of hieroglyphics I had to translate to do that...)

LE7 said...

Sadly enough e. I had to drop logic since I'm already taking Calculus...

e said...

The truth is it's not big a deal. Yeah, typing hebrew is a pain. So you peck at the keyboard for a few minutes, and you get it done. Big deal.

(Typing in Hebrew is not such a big deal) > ~[(a*a)*a]

LE7 said...

The typing wasn't such a big deal, but translating the hieroglyphics was...

e said...

In MY super-cool school, 2/3 of the logic class was taking calculus at the same time. What's the big deal?

And what kind of hieroglyphics can you put that into?

e said...

Oh. My bad. I misunderstood you. Let me rephrase that. What kind of hieroglyphs were you translating from?

LE7 said...

Well for one, I only needed logic for a humanities GER so I wasn't about to bust my posterior for that. I'd rather be able to focus more time and energy into Calculus and Chemistry and not waste so much brainpower on logic.

LE7 said...

Awful handwriting hieroglyphics. Truthfully it wasn't that bad... translating his English words/Yiddish spelling hieroglyphics are much more fun.

e said...

"bust my posterior" that's a nice one. But I doubt it would sound good in speech. I guess if I ever make a blog, I'll make sure to use it.

e said...

what's with the hieroglyphs?

LE7 said...

...and that is why I'm not taking speech. I would fail horribly.

I'm a secretary, that's what.

e said...

Follow your train of thought I do not.

Shimon Michal said...

Good post.
Here is my issue.
I feel that I can not be mikabel from a Rabbi who proclaims that the Rebbe is Moshiach, yes I feel that it is quite immature seeing as the guy is only repeating things he has learned from the Rebbe's teaching, nontheless I feel that everything he learns from the Rebbe is distorted with his "Rebbe-moshaich" goggles.

Whatever,

Crawling Axe said...

And what is distorted? What’s the nafka mina?

The Real Shliach said...

e and LE7: what can I add?
Shimon Michal: what's your issue exactly?

LE7 said...

Ex. Hieroglyph. Mind you, they're hand written/scratched.

פרינט פורים ברושור

I probably spelled brochure wrong but you get the point...

Shimon Michal said...

TRS:
My "issue", is that anyone who misunderstands the teachings of the Rebbe with regards to Moshiach (a topic the Rebbe spent a lot of time speaking about) probably misunderstands all his other teachings as well.

If what drives a person to be mekusher to the Rebbe is the fact that he is the "messiah", than there is a gaping hole in the root of his hiskashurs, which in turn could mean, that his interpretation of the Rebbe's other teachings is coming from a distorted perspective.

But that's just me.

The Real Shliach said...

I think I can confidently say that Rabbi Schapiro is not drawn to the Rebbe because he believes the Rebbe is Moshiach, but rather because "taamu u'ru ki tov Havaye".
Also, do you really believe that it's a misunderstanding of the Rebbe's teachings if you think the Rebbe is Moshiach?
Also, please, let's not make this a meshichist-anti debate, because those are sooo 1996.

Crawling Axe said...

Most people are not drawn to the Rebbe because they believe he is Mashiach. It’s vice versa. They believe he is Mashiach because they are drawn to him (emotionally) or because they consider that he is a potential Mashiach due to his unique situation.

In any event, you have to meet Rabbi Schapiro to recognize that the guy is brilliant and is not some persona-worshiping fanatic. Whatever he believes he has an intellectual reason for believing.