Kislev 9 is both the birthday and day of passing of Rabbi DovBer of Lubavitch, son of and successor to the founder of Chabad Chassidism, Rabbi Schneur
Zalman·of Liadi. Rabbi DovBer was known for his unique style of "broadening rivers" -- his teachings were the intellectual rivers to his father's wellspring, lending breadth and depth to the principles set down by Rabbi Schneur Zalman.
Born in Li'ozna, White Russia in 1773, Rabbi DovBer was named after Rabbi Schneur Zalman's mentor and teacher, Rabbi DovBer of Mezeritch,
who had passed away on Kislev 19 of the previous year. Rabbi DovBer assumed the leadership of
Chabad upon his father's passing in 1812. In 1813 he settled in the town of
Lubavitch, which was to serve as
the movement's headquarters for the next 102 years. In 1826, he was arrested on charges that his teachings threatened the imperial authority of the Czar, but was subsequently exonerated.
Rabbi DovBer passed away on his 54th birthday in 1827, a
day before the first anniversary of his liberation (see calendar entries for
tomorrow, Kislev 10).
There was darkness and there was light. And He chose light.
He didn’t have to choose light. He could have chosen an eternal wrestling match of light and dark. What greater pleasure can there be than the aroma of darkness struck down and transformed to a throne for light?
Nevertheless, he chose light. He chose to set a time for the obliteration of darkness, a time of pure and perfect light. And what does He have from that?
He needs nothing from that. That is the plan He so desired.