In honor of the Kinus Hashluchim, we present a special Edition to the weekly “Letter and the Spirit” publication. In this letter, the Rebbe explains the goal of “lich’she’yofutzu ma’a’yonosecho chutzo” in reaching not only the outside, far places, but also those Jews who are as yet “outside” and removed from Torah and mitzvos. The Rebbe also explains the unique power of chassidus to do this. The letter, written originally in English, is from THE LETTER AND THE SPIRIT – VOLUME 4, available in the Crown Hights judaica stores and on Amazon.
By the Grace of G-d
28th of Teveth, 5726
This is in reply to your letter, the delay being due to a backlog of correspondence.
You ask – what is the meaning of the Baal Shem Tov’s words aimosai kossi mar/when will the master come? and what is the interpretation of this in regard to Chabad Chasidus?
The meaning of the first part of the question is simply “When will the master (Moshiach) come?” In other words, “What could be done to speed up your coming?”
To this, Moshiach answered – and this is the answer to the second part of your question: “When your fountains will be spread forth abroad (literally, ‘outside’)/lich’she’yofutzoo ma’ayonossecho chootzo.
The meaning of those words is that Moshiach promised to come when the fountains of the Baal Shem Tov’s teachings, i.e. the life-giving teachings of Chasidus, will be spread far and wide among the Jewish people, even among those who are as yet “outside” and removed from Torah and mitzvos.
In other words, Chasidus is the way which has been revealed by the Baal Shem Tov not only to bring life and vitality into the observance of Yidishkeit among the observant, but it has the power also to bring back into the Jewish fold those who for various reasons have been brought up in total ignorance of the Torah and mitzvos.
Why is it that Chasidus has such power to inspire and infuse and illuminate a Jew’s heart and soul? This is connected with the very nature and teachings of Chasidus, which cannot here be discussed; we can only say, Go and study it for yourself. One quality may be mentioned here briefly: Chasidus, with its emphasis on love of G-d, love of the Torah and love of fellow-Jew, touches the innermost fibers of the Jewish soul, in which these qualities are already there from birth; hence it finds a ready response. In Chabad the teachings of Chasidus are expounded and explained systematically and deeply, in a way that appeals both to the heart and mind, bringing both into true harmony. Chabad therefore has a particular appeal also to the individual with a bent for deeper thinking. Nevertheless, the emphasis is always on the actual deed, the practice and fulfillment of the mitzvos, which is the first step on the journey into Chasidus, as into Yiddishkeit in general, since, as Chabad explains at length, the very act of a mitzvah unites the Jew with G-d and enables him, the Jew, to break though the barrier of his otherwise finite and limited mind (as every human brain has its natural limitations), opening up new horizons and insights, many of which have been revealed in Chasidus in general and in Chabad Chasidus in particular.