Reb Shlomo - Chanukah Digest
Reb Shlomo ztz"l taught us in the name of the Baal Shem Tov, that on Channukah even the lowest Jew can reach to places which are higher than the holy places which can be reached by holy people on the other holidays...
The light of Channukah will reach even the furthest Jew and b’ezrat Hashem we will all come home walking upright, healthy and joyous 'l'artzeinu hakedosha, b'karov mammash, together with Mashiach tzidkeinnu" Amen.
The following is a prayer in Reb Shlomo’s words:
“Master of the World, if it is my mistakes that have kept me in darkness let this Channukah light shine into all areas of my darkness let this Channukah Light keep me from ever hating people let this Channukah Light give me so much holiness that all the darkness of the world cannot take away the love for myself and for all the beautiful people”
Surely you know that
not every Jew is holy
but every Jew is
Holy of Holies
-Reb Shlomo Carlebach ztz"l
Sweetest Of The Sweet: Reb Shlomo's Torah Teachings
“Chanunkah, Chanukah a Yom Tov a Freilicher”
A Chanukah Letter from Reb Shlomo z"l
Moshav Meor Modiim, Kislev 5749
Reprinted from Cong. Kehilath Jacob News
Everybody knows that Chanukah is the culmination of the high holidays. We are accustomed to think that joy and bliss are the highest a human being can aspire to, but our holy rabbis teach us that light is even deeper. So after Simhas Torah, when we experience the greatest joy in the world, we come to Chanukah. Chanukah is the Festival of Light. Chanukah is when we initiate the Third Temple, which shall be rebuilt soon. It is the one week of Chanukah, when every Jewish home is a little bit of the Holy Temple, which gives us the strength to hold out until the Holy Temple will be here for always.
It is possible to know every word of the Torah, but if the inside light of the Torah is not shining into you out of every word, you are still an outsider.
Chanukah has two outstanding characteristics:
On every other holiday you don't need a house. On Chanukah you need a house to kindle light at the door. On Chanukah when I see someone else kindling, I also say a blessing. When do I know that I'm at home with the Torah? When do I know that the light of the Torah is really my own? If I blow my mind over everyone else's good deed and I can't control myself, I have to say a blessing over it.
It is possible to live in the same house as your wife and children and be strangers to one another. On Chanukah every person in the house is kindling light; every night the light is becoming stronger and deeper and more. Our age is the age of strangers. We're strangers in our own homes; we're strangers in our own land; we're strangers in our own religion.
Reb Shlomo Chanuka Blessings
People wonder sometimes how after two thousand years Yerushalayim is still
the center of our hearts and the Beis Hamikdash is still our address. The
answer is very simple: because on Chanuka, wherever we are it is
Yerushalayim; our house is the Holy Temple and every Jew is the High Priest.
Why don't we confess our mistakes on Chanuka? The answer is that on Yom
Kippur, only the High Priest walks into the Holy of the Holiest. On Chanuka
when we light the candles every Jew is the Holy of the Holiest. On Yom
Kippur only the High Priest walks into the Holy of the Holiest but when I
see what the Greeks do to my children, how they destroy the holiness of
their fires, how they defile the soul of their souls, then I have no other
way but to take my wife and my children into the Holy of Holiest.
And everybody knows that in the Holy of Holiest you don't talk about mistakes.
You don't say bad things - even about yourself. You don't even say bad
things about the world. You just want G-d's light to reach the four corners
of the world. So, our holy rabbis tell us that Chanuka is the light of the
Messiah; the deepest, deepest, most hidden light in the world... a light
that reaches the most hidden place in our hearts.
We kindle the lights by the door or window of the house because on Chanuka
all the doors and the windows of hearts are open to each other. G-d's
Oneness, the Oneness of all of Israel and the Oneness of all the world is revealed to us
in the most glorius way. While we look at the Chanuka candles, I bless us to be
together with all the people we love as the light of Chanuka is shining
into our eyes.
Love you and bless you,
TEACHING and GIVING OVER Torah 2
There is such a thing as teaching, and there is such a thing as giving over. Giving something over to someone is
much deeper than teaching. The Torah says Moses received the Torah on Mt. Sinai, and he came down, but it does not say he taught the Torah to Joshua. It says 'u'm'sora' , gave it over to Joshua. This is the deepest depths there is.
Sometimes one meet someone one can study with for ten years, they can teach you for ten years and they don't give anything over to you. Sometimes you meet someone, and maybe they don't teach you so much but they give something over to you.
Reb Mendele Vorker, the silent Rebbe, was a rebbe for 40
years, and in those 40 years he only spoke eight times. Even
those times, on a teaching level he didn't say anything. At
one time he was sitting with his Chassidim for fourteen hours
and at the end he said, haShem Echad". "G-d is One" and then
he said, "Happy is the one who knows that 'G-d is one' means
G-d is One". On a teaching level he didn't say anything, but
when he said "Hashem Echad". "G-d is One", he gave it over.
We need someone to give over Yiddishkeit to us. We need
someone to give over to us, not to teach us that there is one G-d.'
The Torah says 'Jacob, Yisroel, loved Yosef more than all
his children. Naturally today, on the low leveI we are, if a
father loves his son, he says to him, "Man" - Oh no, he would
never say man, that would be too far out. He says, "Son, I
want to do something special for you - buy you a trip to Bermuda!"
But what does it mean Jacob loved Yosef more? Listen
what Rashi says, All the things which Yaakov learned at the
Yeshiva of Shem and Aver he gave over to Yosef. You see, he
taught all his children the same information, but to Yosef he
gave it over. The Bais Yaakov says the most unbelievable
thing. Sometimes the holy prophets knew everything clearly,
and sometimes they knew everything, but it wasn't clear. The
Midrash says "Yaakov loved Yosef more than all his children"
and it also says God says to Israel "I love you". This is my
humble explanation. What did Yaakov give over to Yosef? He
gave over to him that he should know that God says I love you.
Knowing that God loves you is something you can not get via
teaching. It has to be given over to you. So the thing is
like this, Yaakov didn't have clear prophecy, because he was
not to know that Yosef was to be a slave. But Yaakov knew
that Yosef needed something special, because he was the first
Jew in exile.
Chanuka is the one holiday which has no tractates in the
Gemora. Every other holiday has a long tractate, even Purim,
which is a minor holiday. Chanuka has only about a page and
a half in the Gemara. Chanuka is a holiday of giving over. It says in
the Krias Shma that you should teach your children when you sit in
your house and when you go on your way. Teaching is 'at home'
and giving over is 'on your way' because there is no time for
teaching on the way, only time for giving over. Chanuka is
teaching and giving over become one, because on Chanuka
I have to put lights at the door of my house so that the light
the house (teaching) shines into the street (giving over).
When you teach someone you are not sure his light will
increase, but when you give over to someone you know his light
will grow. That is why each night of Chanuka we kindle one
more candle to shine into the world, until all the streets of
the world are full of light.
Hanukah 5752 Torah 3
Subject: Last day of Chanukah