1. As mentioned on a number of occasions, before we part and each one returns to his place, we gather together an additional time (aside from the times we gather together for communal prayer) in order to stress the concepts of Ahavas Yisrael and Achdus Yisrael.

[To further emphasize the concept of oneness, rather than hold this gathering with a separation between men, women, and children, they are all assembled together in one room. Nevertheless, needless to say, they are not mixed together.]

This is particularly true when the gathering is being held in a holy place, a place where people study, pray, and resolve to give tzedakah (and actually give tzedakah from time to time). These are the three pillars on which the world stands.

The concept of oneness was also emphasized in regard to the preparations for the giving of the Torah. Though Moshe addressed the men and women in different ways, the content of what he said was one and he made both statements in response to one command given by G‑d. Thus, if in regard to the entire Torah, we are taught “the Torah is eternal,” surely that statement applies to the oneness associated with the preparations for the giving of the Torah. Hence, the stress on oneness must be considered an eternal lesson. This is further emphasized by the fact that G‑d gave “the one Torah” to “the one nation,” the Jewish people.

In addition, the manner in which G‑d gave the Torah revealed how G‑d is Simple Oneness. At times, G‑d reveals Himself to the creations in a manner which allows for particular existence as it is written, “How numerous are Your works, O G‑d.” G‑d has created an infinitely great number of creations and, similarly, a numerous amount of Jews whose mission is to reveal the infinite nature of this creation.

However, G‑d also reveals Himself to each and every Jew, to the totality of the Jewish people, and to the entire world as Simple Oneness. When He declared: “I am the L‑rd, Your G‑d...” the totality of existence perceived G‑d’s Simple Oneness. Furthermore, the Aleph of Anochi, the first word of the Ten Commandments contains within it the totality of the Torah. That letter is numerically equivalent to one and thus, reveals how the totality of all existence is permeated by oneness.

There is a parallel to the above in our service — from one should stem multiplicity: The command: “I am the L‑rd, Your G‑d...” should lead to the performance of many mitzvos and the study of much Torah. Similarly, each individual Jew is commanded to “be fruitful and multiply,” i.e. from one individual, there will be many. Indeed, over the course of the generations, from each individual, there can stem an endless number of offspring.

This emphasis on oneness should produce the following lesson: Each person must remember that there are many Jews whom he must try to reach and help, even if it is by merely telling them a good word. He must connect himself to them with a bond of true Ahavas Yisrael.

The above should arouse two seemingly contradictory realizations On one hand, each individual must know that he is not alone, that he is connected with each and every Jew, and the totality of the Jewish people, men, women, and children all over the entire world. We are “all of a kind and there is one Father for all of us,” our Father in heaven.

Simultaneously, this commitment of Ahavas Yisrael has to be broken up and made particular in a vast multitude of ways so that it will unite the entire Jewish people and bind them together without argument and strife — “as one man, with one heart.”

This oneness was the preparation and the condition which G‑d required (before creation) to give the Torah. Since the Torah needs people to learn it, G‑d created the entire world and the Jewish people with the intention that the Jews study Torah, fulfill mitzvos, and make every aspect of the world an aspect of Torah and mitzvos permeated with the Oneness of the One G‑d.

Thus, though G‑d has blessed each individual with his own family, he still must realize that beyond all the differences that exist within the Jewish people, we are one nation. A parallel can be taken from one’s own being: Each person has a heart and a brain, and more particularly, 248 limbs and 365 sinews. Nevertheless, he is one entity, one man. Indeed, when is he a complete man? — when he has all these 613 elements. Then, he is an Adam, that term being derived from the word, Adameh, “I will resemble,” interpreted by the Shaloh to refer to the verse, Adamah L’Elyon — “I will resemble the Most High.”

The above holds true throughout the entire year. However, it is particularly relevant at present, in “the Season of the Giving of our Torah,” when we read the Ten Commandments which begin with the word Anochi and emphasize the aspect of oneness as explained above.

[This is further reinforced by the teaching of the Previous Rebbe who explained that the Aleph reflects the bond between the Jewish people and G‑d: An Aleph is made up of a Yud above — representing G‑d; a Yud below, representing the Jewish people; an a Vav, a connecting bond, drawing the two Yuddim together until they become a single letter. (There is a further point in the division of an Aleph into two Yuddim and a Vav: the numerical equivalent of those numbers is 26, the numerical equivalent of the name Y-H-V-H.)]

Thus, the Ten Commandments are represented by a single letter and that letter itself emphasizes the qualities of oneness and unity. Therefore, following Shavuos, in the “days of compensation” for that holiday, when the impression of the holiday is still fresh, the recollection of that reading should generate great excitement and energy in regard to the oneness achieved through hearing the Ten Commandments with the intent of drawing down that oneness throughout the entire year.

[Parenthetically, it must be noted that the name, “days of compensation,” can also be rendered “days of completion” or “perfection.” G‑d gives us an entire week to perfect and complete the service connected with the holiday of Shavuos.]

In order to extend this oneness into the coming year, it is important to emphasize — before we take leave of each other — that our parting is only superficial. Essentially, Jews never separate from each other at all.

Within each and every Jew, there is “a veritable part of G‑d.” Thus, he is truly at one with G‑d. In this manner, genuine oneness is established among all Jews, wherever they are, whatever they are involved with. “Israel, Torah, and G‑d are all One.” When a Jew carries out his life in accordance with the guidelines of Torah this unity is revealed in every particular aspect of his daily life.

This also involves the areas of one’s life that are not explicitly associated with Torah. Even in these areas, G‑d commanded (and, thus, granted the potential and assured) that the Jews would be “a holy nation,” at all times, in all situations, and would do so with happiness.

Furthermore, even when for the sake of earning a livelihood or in order to spread the observance of the seven mitzvos granted to Noach’s descendants, one comes into contact with gentiles, this association will make them realize how the entire earth belongs to G‑d and that He chose Israel as His “treasured people.”

Thus, each Jew is a “treasure,” a precious and eternal treasure of G‑d’s. Therefore, G‑d gave His “hidden delight,” the Torah, to him. Furthermore, that giving is constantly renewed as emphasized in the blessings of the Torah which praise G‑d “who gives the Torah,” using the present tense. The Alter Rebbe explains that each and every day, the Torah is given anew. At present, in the days of compensation for Shavuos, we have the potential to strengthen our appreciation of this realization and, through meditation and activity that is spurred by it, hasten the coming of Mashiach and the ultimate and complete redemption.

2. There is a connection between this gathering — held in the synagogue in which we read a few days ago the Ten Commandments and intended to intensify our resolutions for greater Ahavas Yisrael, and Achdus Yisrael with this week’s Torah portion, Parshas Naso.

The simple meaning of Naso is to count, to take a census. Nevertheless, there are other ways to express that same concept. Thus, the use of the word Naso implies a relation to the concept of elevation. Each of those who are counted are elevated. Furthermore, the elevation effects not only the lower aspects of our nature, but also the heads. This census implies the granting of G‑dly potential to lift up our true “heads,” i.e. our G‑dly souls, to a higher level than before the census.

Thus, in this (or these) week(s) when we should, as the Alter Rebbe advises, “live with the portion of the week,” we should derive a lesson from the portion of Naso. Even though our souls have descended to this physical world, and furthermore, are living in exile and, in many instances, in the diaspora, nevertheless, a Jew must realize that even there he is part of G‑d’s “treasure.” Not only will his involvement with gentiles have no effect upon him, on the contrary, he will influence them to behave in a manner that befits G‑d’s creations. These activities will bring up “elevation,” lifting up the heads, as well as the other limbs of the body, of the Jewish people.

Every Jew has the potential, particularly in the time directly following the giving of the Torah, to elevate not only those aspects of his being associated with physical activities, but also, his “head,” the spiritual aspects of his being. This elevation must continue each day as our Sages taught: “Always advance higher in holy matters.”

This process of advance must also continue in the weekdays that follow the festivals and Shabbosim. Though, by nature, the weekdays lack the holiness of the days which preceded them, a Jew has the potential to advance further in his service despite this transition.

Since everyone surely fulfills the command: “Love your colleague as yourself,” each person will surely assist his colleagues in the service outlined above and help him carry it out fully in a joyous manner. Furthermore, when each person returns to his home and meets others who are not aware (or are not totally aware) of these concepts, if he speaks with words that come from the heart, he will surely be successful.

This is true because all the Jewish souls from all the upcoming generations were present at Mount Sinai. This enabled them to receive all the strength necessary to fulfill any mission which G‑d charged them and, to fulfill these missions with true happiness, including the happiness which results from children and grandchildren occupied in Torah and its mitzvos.

There is a further point in this regard: As explained above, one of the goals of this gathering is to emphasize how the separation that will follow is only superficial and, in truth, we are always at one with each and every Jew because we are always at one with G‑d.

Accordingly, when we ask for blessings from G‑d, we will surely receive them with joy and with “a shining countenance.” We should also act in a similar manner to our fellow Jew, showing him genuine Ahavas Yisrael and helping him in everything that he needs. Since everyone has surely made such a resolution, G‑d will assist him and grant him the possibility of carrying out this resolution amidst true joy.

To ensure that there will be true joy, without the influence of any disturbing factors, G‑d blesses each and every Jew with an abundance of health, children, and sustenance amidst true Nachas, Torah Nachas, Chassidic Nachas, as we, together with our children and grandchildren, prepare to greet Mashiach.

In order to hasten the coming of the redemption, it is customary to give each individual a dollar to be given {or exchanged, and another dollar given} to charity when he/she returns home, for tzedakah is equivalent to all the mitzvos and tzedakah brings near the redemption.

May all the above be brought to fruition, and may we see, as learned from Parshas Naso, a true state of elevation. May this then lead us to Aharon’s kindling of the lights, the subject of the coming Torah portion, Behaaloscha. As it was in the Sanctuary in the desert so may it be in the third Temple.

The Menorah where the lights were kindled was made of one piece of pure gold, without the addition of any other metals. Nevertheless, the Menorah divides into seven branches. Similarly, though the Jews are given different missions and qualities which can be divided into seven general categories, their essence is one.

Aharon would light the candles “until the flame would rise up on its own.” This is a lesson for all of us. The Season of the Giving of our Torah and Aharon, give each individual the power to have his candle — “the soul of man is the candle of G‑d” — give off light on its own, without the assistance of others.

This will illuminate the entire world and make the entire world a dwelling place for G‑d by spreading Judaism among the Jews and by spreading the seven mitzvos given to Noach’s descendants among the gentiles to the extent where the entire world will be permeated by Torah and, thus, become “a dwelling place for G‑d.”

This will be revealed in the Messianic redemption. May your journey and your fulfillment of the good resolutions you accepted — particularly, the resolutions regarding Ahavas Yisrael and Achdus Yisrael — hasten the coming of that redemption. Then, we will see how the Jews are “one nation in the land,” studying and bound to the one Torah, which was given by the one G‑d. May this be speedily, in our days.