In this week’s letter, the Rebbe points to a powerful lesson for each of us in our personal lives which we can learn – from the experience of the Jewish people as we transitioned from the depth of Egyptian slavery to the loftiest spiritual heights of Har Sinai in a relatively short time. This letter is from volume 5 of The Letter and The Spirit.
RABBI MENACHEM M. SCHNEERSON
Lubavitch, 770 Eastern Parkway
Brooklyn 13, N.Y.
6 Nissan, 5711
New York, N.Y.
With Pesach approaching, I want to send you herewith, and through you to the entire group, my best wishes for a kosher and happy Yom Tov and a brief message.
You have surely heard of the teaching of the Baal Shem Tov, oft repeated by my father-in-law of sainted memory that a Jew should find a lesson for better Divine service* in everything that he sees or hears. Certainly the festivals contain important lessons for us in our daily life, especially such festival as Pesach and to one such lesson I call your attention.
For a long time the children of Israel were enslaved in Egypt, in physical and intellectual bondage. The danger of complete assimilation was grave, as the Torah tells us. So low had they sunk that when Moses brought them the message of deliverance from Egyptian bondage, they did no listen to him “because of lack of spirit and hard labor.”
However, after their liberation from enslavement, they reached, in a comparatively very short time, the highest spiritual level which is humanly possible to attain, making them all – men, women and children, for Divine Revelation at Mount Sinai and worthy of the highest knowledge and inexhaustible source of wisdom and faith for all generations to come.
This shows that potentially every person has it in him to rise from the lowest depths to the loftiest spiritual heights in a comparatively short time, provided he has the sincere and wholehearted desire and will to do so. The children of Israel had such a desire and will for, as our Sages tell us, when they learned of the real purpose of their liberation – the receiving of the Torah at Mount Sinai – they experienced a burning desire to receive the Divine science and counted every day in eager anticipation of that event. (that is why we also count Sephirah). Moreover, were there is such a will, G-d provides the ability to achieve it through liberation from all handicaps which stand in the way, so that every Jew could fulfill his soul’s mission upon this earth, until G-d will send us our complete Redemption.
- “Divine service” is used here in a broader sense, as explained by Mimonides (Hilchot Da’ot, ch.3) on the verse: “Serve Him in all your ways.”