Chassidus Perspective

Destroying the Inner Amalek

Amalek represents an apathy and a complete disregard for spirituality that cannot be reasoned with. It can only be eradicated with an absolute bittul which goes beyond reason.

A Dedicated Place

Why must our spiritual tefilos be focused towards the location of the physical Beis Hamikdash?

Torah Ethics

One is supposed to integrate the wisdom of Torah into his own intellect. Yet, he strives to understand only because it is the will of Hashem that he should understand. 

Yes or No?

Rabbi Akiva teaches us that we responded to "no" at Har Sinai with a "yes". In order to fulfill the will of Hashem we must use all of creation, including even, the negative aspects of our lives.

Yud Shevat

The maamar of Bosi L'gani emphasizes that world was originally Hashem's garden, hence the importance of (re)making it a dwelling for Hashem. We were ultimately chosen to serve Hashem in a physical body using our maximum effort to spread G-dliness throughout the world.

Freedom or Wealth?

By taking the wealth out of Mitzrayim the Yidden achieved a transformation of physicality into holiness. Now too we must transform our environment which is the purpose of Golus and leads to the Final Geula.

What is Truth?

Matan Torah accomplished that the physical can be impacted spiritually, whereas Moshiach’s era will allow that change to manifest itself physically. Our galus now, in turn, is preparing us for the coming revelation.

Not Just Aware

Both he who possess proofs and he who lacks them are in fact equal in their disconnect from the actual matter. To be persuaded of something is to be detached from it, bereft of the straightforwardness of plainly seeing it.

The Feet’s Edge

Using oil on the foot signifies that proper bittul should be supplemented with what oil represents. When coupled with understanding and emotion, the ‘foot’ absorbs the ‘oil,’ and the kabalas ol is infused with excitement and delight.

The Life of the Inanimate

Kabalas ol isn’t about us and what we understand; it’s about focusing on Hashem and removing ourselves from the picture, yet we must first begin with serving Hashem on our own terms, and we can then progress to a level of true selflessness.

Not Confined to Rationalism

“If the Jews wish to kindle the menorah, to illuminate the world with their wisdom, we’ll allow it, even if we believe our intellectual tradition to be superior, but to do so with ‘pure’ oil?”

What's Special About 19?

Tanya remarkably succeeded in capturing the emuna in a “great G-d” and making it conveyable it to anyone in their current state through the means of a “small book.”

The Third Month

There’s a level where there appears to be unity, but in fact it’s the result of completely ignoring the other, which isn’t true achdus, and there’s a different plane on which another existence is somewhat acknowledged but isn’t taken seriously, which is also flawed oneness.

To Be Mundane

To see holiness only in the spiritual is to interact with Hashem in a limited, reduced fashion; the revelation of a far more powerful level of G-dliness enables us to connect with Hashem even in the mundane aspects of our lives.

Countering the Scoffers

When the identity of a Jewish child is at stake, when the ‘scoffers’ seek to sever his connection to Avraham, it is specifically Yitzchak, gevura, that which is concealed, that Hashem renders into Avraham, revelation.

A Time to Segregate

Even when we engage in everyday activities like eating or business, we must deem these the throwaway ‘gifts’ to our inner non-Jew, and give ‘everything we possess’ to ‘Yitzchak,’ our spiritual pursuits.

Just One Small Room

Mesiras nefesh isn’t measured by its scale but by its essential quality. To spend even a single minute on something for no purpose other than for Hashem is therefore reminiscent of the akeida.

A Whole Different Species

Hashem said “I will make you into a great nation,” because He introduced an entirely new creature, the Jewish nation, not merely advanced humans, but an entity of an utterly different kind.

Seeing Solutions

The Frierdiker Rebbe once said that when cleaning a precious object, one doesn’t exult in finding more dirt but in rendering it pristine.

Celebrating with the Jewish Torah

We aren’t rejoicing over the revealed parts of Torah, the things which we can comprehend, because that isn’t too different from competing fields of wisdom. We keep the Torah within its wrappings to signify that Torah as we know it is simply a vessel for the ‘aleph,’ and that is the source of our joy.