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New Rules

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Rabbi Shmuel "Shmelke" Horowitz (1726-1778), known as "Rabbi Shmelke of Nicholsburg," was a very remarkable Chassidic Master. He claimed the biblical prophet Shmuel haNavi as his ancestor, and said that the prophet passed his soul on to him. He was not always a Chassid; in fact, he was originally among the early opponents of Chassidism, untill he met the famous Maggid of Mezritch. Later Rabbi Shmelke became the rabbi of Nicholsburg (Mikulov) in Moravia. He is the author of the Torah works Divre Shmuel, Imre Shmuel, and Shemen haTov.

When he was appointed as rabbi in Nicholsburg, the community leaders informed him that they had a special custom: every new rabbi was expected to add a new rule or custom to the chronicles of the community. Rabbi Shmelke smiled and said nothing. As time went by and the new rabbi still had not contributed anything to the rule-book, the officers of the community began to press him about this; but Rabbi Shmelke continued to procrastinate and make all sorts of excuses. Finally, his secretary took the initiative and placed the book in front of him, open on his desk, an inkwell and a pen neatly next to it.

Reb Shmelke sat down, picked up the pen, and wrote the Ten Commandments.

We know them, but they are always new for us.

Text and image by chassidic artist Shoshannah Brombacher. To view or purchase Ms. Brombacher's art, click here.
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Slenderman Behind you November 12, 2013

I don't like the story nobody noticed me behind them because they were so into the "READING" Reply

Reb Zisha Boston, MA May 9, 2013

Hafoch ba/Turn it over and over A quasi-Zen response to the challenge! One could almost hear Ben Zoma add to his Avot aphorisms, "Eizeh-hu me-chadesh/Who is an innovator? The one who sees with open consciousness."

Thank you for the story! Reply

Anonymous August 24, 2012

Thanks Thanks Reply

annie Lederfeind June 13, 2008

chassidic masters beautiful and inspiring as always! Reply

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