ב"ה
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Monday, November 14, 2022

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

The fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Sholom DovBer Schneersohn (known by the acronym "Rashab"), was born on the 20th of Cheshvan of the year 5621 from creation (1860).

After the passing of his father, Rabbi Shmuel of Lubavitch, in 1882, Rabbi Sholom DovBer assumed the leadership of the movement. Over the next 38 years, he wrote and delivered some 2,000 maamarim (discourses of Chassidic teaching) including the famed hemshechim (serialized discourses) which contain his profound analytical treatment of Chabad Chassidism. In 1897, he established the Tomchei Temimim yeshivah in Lubavitch, the first institution of Jewish learning to integrate the "body" (Talmudic and legal studies) and "soul" (philosophic and mystical) of Torah into a cohesive, living whole; it was this unique form of education and Torah study that produced the "Temimim" -- the army of learned, inspired and devoted torchbearers who, in the decades to come, would literally give their lives to keep Judaism alive under Soviet rule.

In 1915 Rabbi Sholom DovBer was forced to flee Lubavitch from the advancing WWI front and settled in Rostov-on-Don in southern Russia. In his final years, he began the heroic battle -- carried on under the leadership of his son and successor, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn -- against the new Communist regime's efforts to destroy the Jewish faith. Rabbi Sholom DovBer passed away in Rostov in 1920.

Links: Want it All; To Know G-d and On Ahavat Yisrael -- two maamarim by Rabbi Sholom DovBer.

An international religious leader, philosopher, and respected moral voice, he was the author of over 30 books, served as the Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth from 1991 to 2013 and took his seat in the House of Lords in October 2009.

Born in London in 1948, he was planning to become a layer until the Rebbe—Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory—directed him to the rabbinate. He was a towering figure, who counseled social and political leaders and others. His voluminous writings brought relevance and eloquence to thousands of Torah topics. Even after his retirement, he continued to write, teach, lead and inspire until his passing at the age of 72.

Daily Thought

“A home,” wrote Solomon the Wise, “is built with wisdom.”

And not with a hammer.

With a hammer, you can nail together disparate parts and force them to hold together. You can build a house, but not a home.

But wisdom is the glue of beauty. Wisdom, meaning the ability to step back and see all of the picture, the past and, most important, the future to which all this leads. To see the truth inside each person and each event in that person’s life.

And then to find the oneness of all those truths, so that they can all be in harmony with one another, to feel accepted and secure at home.

Without wisdom, there are only fragments. With wisdom, there is a whole. And there is peace between all the parts of that whole.

Sefer Hasichot 5704, page 100.