In his Chasidic writings, the Alter Rebbe, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, teaches how those attempting to draw closer to Holiness by serving G‑d with mind and heart, and putting piety into practice-in our relation with our Creator through fulfillment of the mitzvot, as well as in our relationship with our fellows-can achieve this through logical comprehension of the Divine.

During one of the farbrengens [chasidic gatherings] of the early chasidim, marking the bar-mitzvah of Rabbi DovBer, the Alter Rebbe's son, the subject of discussion was the advent of Mashiach and the resurrection of the dead. One of the chasidim declared that the Alter Rebbe enlivens the dead. He explained that the dead are cold and insensitive; movement and feeling are indications of life. Is there anything as cold and unexcitable as the brain? he asked. When the cold brain comprehends and is moved by a G‑dly concept, isn't that a form of resurrection of the dead?

Chasidus illuminates and vivifies everything. It opens our eyes enabling us to perceive within every creature-inanimate, vegetative, animal, or human-the word of G‑d that gives it existence and life, as evidenced in a remark by the Alter Rebbe.

On the second evening of Succot, 5660 (1899), the fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Sholom DovBer, related, One hundred years have now passed since the conversation between the Alter Rebbe and his son Rabbi DovBer on the subject of prayer, as recounted by the Tzemach Tzedek, Rabbi Menachem Mendel, to his son Rabbi Shmuel, the third and fourth Rebbes. During the holiday repast on the second evening of Succot, 5560 (1799), the Alter Rebbe asked his son on what subject he had meditated during the prayers of the past Rosh Hashana. Rabbi DovBer replied, 'I prayed with meditation on, The lofty shall bow before You.1 He then proceeded to ask the Alter Rebbe: And you, with what meditation did you pray?'

The Alter Rebbe answered, 'I prayed with the stender-the wooden prayer book stand, while meditating on the fact that the existence of physical matter derives from His Essence.'

Prayer, then, is the medium for fusing intellectual concepts with the emotions of the heart, and translating both into the practical fulfillment of mitzvot and the perfection of finer moral qualities.