1. The second day of Sukkos, which starts from tonight, is both a continuation of the first day (and therefore is called the “second” day), and a preparation to the third day. Simultaneously however, it contains elements of its own, independent of the preceding or following days, for “each day has its own service.”

Every element in a chain contains two aspects: 1) a theme common to all the other elements; 2) a concept peculiar to itself. Time, too, has two aspects: 1) time as a continuum, in which every moment is the same as another. 2) Every moment as a unique element, fixed by Torah — as, for example, the differences between weekday and Yomtov and Shabbos.

Because everything in the world begins in the Torah, the above distinction is also found in Torah. 1) the common theme in all the Torah’s matters, to the extent that all is encompassed in one point — in the letter “aleph” of the word “Anochi” of the Ten Commandments. 2) Afterwards, the concepts are differentiated into details. First of all, as they are included in the word “Anochi;” then, in more detail, in the first commandment of the Ten Commandments; then in all the Ten Commandments; in more detail, in all the Written Torah; and finally, differentiated in all its particulars in the Oral Torah, including the countless new concepts derived by students of all generations.

Not only does time in general contain the above two aspects, but every day also: 1) its place in the time continuum — as it is a continuation of the previous days and a preparation to the following days; 2) a concept peculiar to itself. In our case, the second day of Sukkos, there is a theme common to all the days of Sukkos, and there is also a concept special to today.

We shall concentrate on the special aspect of today, explaining its unique features together with its connection to today’s “guests” and today’s portion of Chumash.

Today’s “guest” is Yitzchok, and the Chassidic “guest” is the Mezritcher Maggid. And because the “guests” of a particular day share the same concept, there is a common theme between Yitzchok and the Maggid.

Although all the forefathers were the “chariot” of G‑d, Yitzchok was different because unlike Avraham and Ya’akov, he never left Eretz Yisroel: he was a “perfect olah (burnt sacrifice).”

So too with the Maggid (compared to the Baal Shem Tov): Whereas the Baal Shem Tov used to travel extensively, the Maggid, for the entire duration of his leadership, stayed in the one place. Thus both the Maggid and Yitzchok stayed in their places of residence and from there exerted their influence on the entire world.

What does this mean in man’s service to G‑d? In serving G‑d, a Jew sometimes must leave his place of residence, and at other times must stay firmly in his place. “Place” in spiritual terms refers to the special defined territory of a Jew — his quintessence, which comes from his soul, “part of G‑d Above.” Every Jew, notwithstanding their differences in terms of their revealed powers, possesses such a “place.” This includes the youngest infants, for at a boy’s circumcision, his soul enters his body (and even earlier, while still in the womb, “a lit candle is on his head” — referring to the soul’s light; but the soul has not yet entered within him — it is “On his head” — whereas when he is circumcised, it becomes enclothed in his body). The soul enters a Jewish girl even earlier, immediately at birth, and certainly when a name is given to her.

Moreover, the Maggid (today’s “guest”) explains that even before the world was created, even before Torah existed, Jews were engraved in G‑d’s thought, in His essence. This further adds explanation to the greatness (“place”) of a Jew, irregardless of his personal status in terms of revealed powers. And today’s “guests,” Yitzchok and the Maggid, teach that there are matters in which a Jew must stand resolutely in his “place.”

2. Yitzchok is also associated with Sukkos, the “Season of our Rejoicing.” “Yitzchok” means laughter and joy. Although in future tense, it also refers to laughter in the present and past, for the name was given to commemorate Avraham’s and Sarah’s laughter at the time of Yitzchok’s birth. Moreover, Sarah laughed even before Yitzchok’s birth, when the angels informed her and Avraham that they would have a son.

True, the apex of laughter and joy will be in the future, as stated: “than our mouth will be filled with laughter.” But this joy is not a new thing, but the completion of the laughter in the past and present — as stated, “then our mouths will be filled with laughter,” indicating that even now there is laughter, but not the full amount. Thus the joy of the second night of Sukkos is emphasized by its “guest,” Yitzchok, who also symbolizes joy and laughter.

The Maggid, too, is associated with Simchas Bais Hashoeva. Our Sages said: “Why is it called Simchas Bais Hashoeva (Celebration of the Water Drawing)? For from there Ruach Hakodesh (Divine Spirit) is drawn.” Because all Jews participated in the Simchas Bais Hashoeva, it follows that all of them drew ruach hakodesh from it. Although the different categories of Jews drew different levels of ruach hakodesh, all of them drew it in some measure. Even, children whose parents took them to the Simchas Bais Hashoeva, drew ruach hakodesh!

How is it possible that everyone did so? We find in other instances that spiritual manifestations occurred to people without their knowledge. Of Moshe Rabbeinu, for example, Torah tells us that “Moshe did not know that the skin of his face shone.” Yet, although Moshe did not know of it, it certainly had an effect on him, for we see that it had an effect on others, as stated, “Aharon and all the children of Israel saw Moshe, and behold, the skin of his face shone, and they feared to approach him.” Moshe’s shinning face induced awe and fear in the Jews, and therefore it certainly had an effect on Moshe himself — although he did not know his face was shinning. If such was the case with even Moshe Rabbeinu, then certainly other Jews may experience lofty spiritual effects — in our case, ruach hakodesh — without knowing it.

Today’s “guest,” the Maggid, teaches a new insight into this phenomenon. He taught: “Today, in the time of exile, it is easier to obtain ruach hakodesh than in the times of the Bais Hamikdosh. A parable to this is a king to whom, when he is in his palace, it is impossible to approach as closely as when he is on the way, for then anyone who wishes may approach him — even a villager who is not fit to come before the king in his palace; whereas on the way, in his inn, he may come before him and speak with him.”

If in the time of exile in general it is easier to approach the king, it is certainly true of Simchas Bais Hashoeva, when ruach hakodesh was drawn. In other words, although the king, in the time of exile, is in the inn, on Yomtov extra distinction applies, for then one need not even go to the king; the king is together with him.

This is especially so when on Yomtov itself Jews are gathered together, for “on every assembly of ten (Jews), the Divine Presence rests.” And even more so, when the gathering takes place in a synagogue and study hall, for the purpose of increasing in Torah and mitzvos — and particularly on Simchas Bais Hashoeva, when ruach hakodesh is emphasized.

3. There is also a lesson to be derived from the daily portion of Chumash — the sixth section of parshas V’Zos HaBerachah. It talks of Jews vis a vis other nations, including their influence on the world. It states (33:28): “Israel dwells in safety, alone, just like Ya’akov,” meaning Jews need not fear the nations at all — as it then continues to state: “You shall tread upon their high places,” indicating that not only need they not fear the nations, but the nations will serve as the means whereby Jew rise higher.

This is achieved by that stated earlier (33:27): “He shall drive the enemy before you and say ‘destroy,’“ and even more, “Your enemies shall come cringing to you.” This symbolizes two forms of relationships between Jews and the nations: First “He shall drive the enemy before you, and say ‘destroy” — the banishment of evil. This is done through speech alone, through threats (“say ‘destroy”), which will suffice to drive the enemy away (for Jews do not actually “destroy”). Then follows “Your enemies shall come cringing to you,” which is the transformation of the enemy into a friend and asset; war will be unnecessary. As Rashi notes, an example of this is “the Givonim, who said: ‘Your servants have come from a far-off land.’“ That is, when the Givonim heard of the Jewish victory at Yericho, they decided it is better to help the Jews rather than fight them. To this end, they even practiced deceit, pretending to be inhabitants of a far-off land.

Thus, today’s portion of Chumash teaches that Jews must influence non-Jews to become decent citizens, observant of the Seven Noachide Laws. That is, Jews do not wish to eliminate the nations (“destroy”), but to transform them with words (“say ‘destroy”).

This adds to the idea of Simchas Bais Hashoeva. We spoke on the first night of Sukkos, that the dancing of Simchas Bais Hashoeva should extended to the streets. Today’s portion of Chumash emphasizes this: it stresses the need to influence all the nations of the world, to the extent that “You shall tread upon their high places.”

In practical terms, we must, tonight, the second night of Sukkos, increase in the joy of Simchas Bais Hashoeva even more than on the first night.

May it be G‑d’s will that all that said above be carried out with great success — first and foremost, success in Simchas Bais Hashoeva, which should then be extended to the whole year.