1. The intent of this gathering is to stress and emphasize that, although each one of you is returning to his particular place, there is no separation between us. On the contrary, even when each person is “under his vine and fig-tree,” we are still bound together for, “All Israel are friends.” Indeed, the entire Jewish people can be considered as a single entity with one body and, similarly, each Jew’s soul is “a part of G‑d from above.” Thus, after spending the days of Tishrei together, this gathering grants the potential to extend this oneness into each individual’s personal realm.

This oneness is a reflection of G‑d’s transcendental oneness, a oneness which is above all sense of division. Since each Jew is “a part of G‑d from above,” a oneness that is G‑dly in nature permeates through the being of every Jew. Thus, in our prayers, we refer to the Jews as “one nation in the earth.” This expression implies that even when a Jew is involved with earthly things, matters of this material world, he is connected with and draws down G‑d’s oneness.1

In truth, this oneness pervades all existence for “All the entities in the heavens and the earth... came into existence from the truth of His being.” Although the creation encompasses a diversity of beings, each one possesses an essential point, a connection to “the truth of His being,” which unites it with all others.

This represents the ultimate of unity. True unity is reflected, not when one stands on a level of oneness which leaves no room for division, but rather, when the oneness is expressed within the context of division, and thus entities which are by nature different unite together.2

A parallel concept applies in regard to relations between one Jew and another. Although each Jewish man, woman, and child is different in nature, it is possible to “Love your neighbor as yourself,” and reach true unity because all Jews share a fundamental G‑dly essence.3 This essential oneness is reflected on all particular levels.

Similarly, in regard to the Torah: Although each individual fulfills different mitzvos at different times and, similarly, studies different aspects of Torah, there is a fundamental aspect of oneness permeating all dimensions of Torah and mitzvos. The totality of Torah and mitzvos reflects how, G‑d “sanctified us with His commandments and commanded us.”

This essential oneness is more clearly expressed when guests from different places come to a single place. This shows how all Jews, regardless of where they come from, are part of a single, unified entity. In particular, this is expressed when the guests gather together in the place where the Previous Rebbe lived. The service of a Nasi or a king involves uniting the entire Jewish people.4

The oneness mentioned above is reflected in the name of the Previous Rebbe, Yosef Yitzchok. Yosef is associated with the service alluded to in Rachel’s prayer recited when naming him, “May G‑d add on to me another son.” Chassidic thought explains that Yosef generates the potential to reveal how those entities which are “another,” i.e., estranged and alienated from G‑dliness, are truly “sons,” for even these entities emanate from “the truth of His being.”

Furthermore, this service is carried out in a spirit of happiness which is identified with Yitzchok as Sarah declared, “Whoever hears will rejoice with me.” Our service of G‑d should be characterized by happiness. When we meet another Jew, we should utilize that opportunity to tell him things that will bring him true happiness.

The intent of this gathering is to emphasize that this oneness will continue as each of you return to your place. You will extend this oneness when you arrive home, revealing how every entity “came into existence from the truth of His being.”

The above concepts are reflected in the significance of the present times: We are in the days directly after Simchas Torah5 which expresses the unity of the Jewish people. This is reflected by the fact that the service of Simchas Torah involves, not the study of Torah, but rather dancing with the Torah as it is wrapped up in its mantle. In regard to Torah study, there are differences between Jews. However, in regard to celebration with the Torah, all Jews join in an bond.

Similarly, the present day, the third day of the week, reflects the concept of unity. The third day of the week is associated with the service of “good to the heavens” and “good to the creations.” This does not imply that part of the day should be devoted to the service of “good to the heavens,” and part to the service of “good to the creations.” Rather, it implies that each moment of the day should be suffused by both services as they are united in a single essential thrust. A Jew should put himself entirely into the service of “good to the heavens” and put himself entirely into the service of “good to the creations,” and fuse the two services together.

The above concepts are also reflected in the Torah reading of parshas Bereishis which relates the narrative of creation. The Torah describes the first day as yom echad, “one day.” Although it would have been more grammatically proper to use the expression, “the first day,” the Torah calls it one day to emphasize that it was a day of oneness. Although all the creations of the heavens and the earth had come into being, they were at one with G‑d.

On the second day, the potential for division was brought into being. The positive dimension of this division was, however, brought out by the third day which is characterized by the service of “good to the heavens” and “good to the creations,” showing how even within the context of division, oneness can be established.

This positive dimension continued to be expressed on the fourth day of creation when the luminaries were brought into being. Although there are two different luminaries, the sun and the moon, they share a single purpose and function,6 they give light to the world.

This oneness came to its culmination on Shabbos7 when G‑d “rested from all His work which He created to function.” Our Sages interpret the expression, “to function,” la’asos in Hebrew as implying, l’takain, “to correct.” This points to man’s potential to become a partner in creation by his service of revealing G‑d’s oneness in the world.

Similarly, this service of oneness is reflected in the final verse of the Torah portion, “And Noach found favor (chen) in the eyes of G‑d.”8 This reflects the oneness of Noach (and the potential for such oneness possessed by every Jew) with G‑d. Indeed, Noach’s very name reflects this favor for chen and Noach share the same letters. This leads to the beginning of the next portion, “These are the chronicles of Noach. Noach was...” The Zohar notes the repetition of the name Noach and explains that Noach refers to a state of rest. By repeating the name, the Torah alludes to “rest in the higher realms and rest in the lower realms.”9

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2. The verse, “And Noach found favor” is particularly relevant to the present year, תש"נ, year of miracles. The letter nun is associated with miracles. The name Noach begins with a curved nun (נ) and the word chen concludes with a long nun (ן). Similarly, this year’s name can be written תש"ן employing a long nun or תש"נ using a short nun.

The two forms of the letter nun refer to two types of nissim, miracles: a) Miracles which, although they are great and wondrous, are not openly revealed, as our Sages stated, “The person to whom the miracle occurs does not recognize the miracle.” b) Miracles which as the long nun projects beyond the line; project beyond the limits of this world and are revealed on the earthly plane.

The above influences will also be enhanced by the fact that this year, Rosh HaShanah was celebrated on the Shabbos. Shabbos reflects how the creation is brought to its ultimate state of fulfillment.

The above influences should be reflected in the work to spread the wellsprings of Chassidus outward. This implies that one becomes “a well of living waters,” bringing life to one’s entire community, causing all one’s activities to be permeated with the light of Chassidus. This will add life and vitality to all aspects of one’s service of Torah and mitzvos and even to one’s mundane activities.

Each person should be a living example of how a Jew should behave and, in particular, in regard to ahavas Yisrael, to show how all Jews are one single entity.

This is relevant to each and every man, woman, or child since the above behavior comes about through the study of Pnimiyus HaTorah and woman are also obligated to learn this subject matter. Similarly, children are educated in the spirit of its teachings. Thus, when a child wants a drink of water, he proclaims that “everything was created with His speech.”

Each person receives the potential for this service from the holidays whose celebration is relevant to every Jew. Thus, all the Jews, men, women, and children, come to hear the blowing of the shofar on Rosh HaShanah and shout out amen to the blessings. Similarly, on Simchas Torah, all Jews, even children, join in the joyous celebrations with the Torah. Afterwards, they all use the time to prepare themselves to return home and spread the teachings of Chassidus which they heard.

May you all accept good resolutions regarding the above, including the establishment of fixed times for Torah study and may we continue to maintain a connection. This is accomplished by remembering that we are all “a part of G‑d from above.”

May you all, “Make Eretz Yisrael here,” in your homes, i.e., transform your homes into a dwelling for G‑d. This also applies to children and can be accomplished by having a siddur, chumash, and tzedakah pushkah in their worlds. These efforts will hasten the ultimate redemption when the entire Jewish people will greet Mashiach. May it come immediately.

Yechidus to Bar and Bas Mitzvah Youth

3. May G‑d bless you with all you need. This is particularly relevant on a Bar or Bas Mitzvah which like other birthdays represents a new beginning in all matters of Torah and mitzvos.

This will add to the reward which your parents will receive for educating you in this manner and bringing you up in a way in which your house will be “a sanctuary in microcosm,” a place where the Divine Presence dwells.

This will be enhanced by following the custom of increasing one’s donations to tzedakah on one’s Bar/Bas mitzvah.10 If someone has not given such a donation at that time, he should compensate by making a donation now and adding a further amount — at least eighteen cents.

Similarly, on the day of his Bar Mitzvah, a boy should at least read — and preferably study — the fourteenth chapter of Tehillim and on the day of her Bas Mitzvah, a girl should at least read — and preferably study — the thirteenth chapter of Tehillim. If that was not done on the day of the Bar or Bas Mitzvah, it should be done now. May you take on good resolutions in all aspects of Torah and mitzvos, including the resolve to help other Jews advance, proceeding from strength to strength.

May we hear good news from you in all matters always and may we all merit the coming of Mashiach.

Yechidus to Brides and Grooms

May G‑d bless you all and grant you the potential to complete the preparations for your wedding, allowing it to be carried out in a Torah manner and in a Chassidic manner. May it take place in a good and auspicious hour and lead to an everlasting structure, built on the foundation of Torah and mitzvos.

May your wedding lead to the fulfillment of the prophecy, “Soon there will be heard... in the cities of Judah and the outskirts of Jerusalem... the voice of a groom and the voice of a bride,” with the coming of the true and ultimate redemption.

In order to draw down these blessings, it is proper for a bride and groom — and also their parents, relatives, and close friends — to follow the custom of giving generously to tzedakah in connection with their wedding. These gifts to tzedakah increase the blessings which will be granted to the bride and groom individually and those which will be granted to the entire Jewish people.

A wedding is associated with the revelation of G‑d’s infinite power in this world. In a complete sense, this will come about only after the true and ultimate redemption. May your wedding, the tzedakah given in connection with it, and the celebration and happiness it brings, hasten the revelation of the ultimate celebration which will accompany the redemption. Then the “marriage” between G‑d and the Jewish people will be “consummated” as an eternal structure.

Yechidus for Yeshivah Students

May G‑d grant you all the blessings mentioned above. They are relevant to you for, as Yeshivah students, you include the entire Jewish people as implied by the verse, “All of your sons will be students of G‑d.”

May the above verse be realized and may we see the entire Jewish people increase their study of Torah. Each Jew has a particular portion of Torah uniquely relevant to him as obvious from the request, “Grant us our portion in Your Torah.”11 May this be realized in particular among Yeshivah students. May they have success in the study of Nigleh (the revealed teachings of Torah law) and success in the study of Pnimiyus HaTorah (Torah’s mystic dimensions). Furthermore, may the virtues of both studies be combined so that it is obvious that the student learning Torah law is a Chassid and it is obvious that Chassidus is being studied by a scholar in Torah law.

May we not be concerned with material affairs. In particular, this applies to Yeshivah students whose material needs are taken care of by others and “their Torah is their livelihood.”12 This dimension is further emphasized this year when Rosh HaShanah (the “head of the year”) was celebrated on Shabbos. Shabbos is particularly associated with Torah study as reflected in our Sages’ statement, “Everyone agrees that the Torah was given on Shabbos.” Similarly, Shemini Atzeres, the day on which we collect and internalize the potential for Torah study, also was celebrated on Shabbos.13

Through our study of Torah at present, we prepare the world for the time when, “a new Torah will emerge from Me,” with the coming of Mashiach.14 Just as G‑d, “looked into the Torah and created the world,” when we study Torah, we will influence the world and, ultimately, bring about a total renewal of the creation in the era of redemption.15