This letter was sent to R. Shlomo Matusof, a member of the chassidic community who would ultimately assume a leadership role in the activities of Lubavitch in Morocco.

B”H, 25 Nissan, 5710

Greetings and blessings,

I received your letter from the 9th of Nissan.1 I did not answer until now because of the festival and because of the matters associated with it.

First of all, I am writing [to assure you] that there is no displeasure and unfavorable consideration2 [of you], Heaven forbid. [On the contrary,] a person is granted merit and responsibilities even when he is not present,3 as you write in your letter. This is particularly true since I do not know you personally. What I wrote to R. Benyamin Gorodetzky was written only as an expression of wonderment because I did not understand the matter.

Second of all, I never thought of asking you to abandon [thoughts of how to conduct] your [own future]. In general, neither compulsion nor force are at all [relevant here].4 [To explain] the matter: With regard to material concerns, our Sages say (Pesachim 54b; see [Tanya,] Iggeres HaKodesh, Epistle 22): “A person does not know through what he will gain his livelihood.” As a matter of course, it is understood that this [axiom] also applies to one’s spiritual sustenance, for one is dependent on the other. This applies particularly in this later era, when there is chaos and a disruption of priorities in one’s modes of conduct and in the task of refinement. (See the introduction to Kuntres U’Maayon, p. 22, regarding this.) All we can do is to try to understand the events that transpire regarding us, to learn from this what we must do at present and in both the immediate and distant future, and to pray that we are directed to the truth.

What happened concerning you this winter was told to me. You also added in your present letter that my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe, הכ"מ, wrote you to remain in Europe for the time being.... In Kislev, you asked [the Rebbe] again whether to travel to our Holy Land and you did not receive an answer, although [the Rebbe] received your letter. In the interim, you traveled to Marseilles and succeeded in spiritual matters in a manner that transcends nature. Undoubtedly, it will be possible to establish a fitting material setting there as well....

After all this, when I found out that you were absolutely certain that it was to your benefit to travel to our Holy Land, I expressed my wonderment at how you interpreted the events that happened to you.

Obviously, in every place, it is necessary to establish oneself in a manner that enables one to be healthy and strong and that there be appropriate circumstances that are conducive to one’s health. Nevertheless, I do not see how this matter has any bearing on the question of Marseilles or Israel. [Perhaps,] the opposite [of your supposition is true].

May it be G‑d’s will that you make a decision and establish your circumstances in the most appropriate manner both materially and spiritually. May you report good news concerning what transpires with your future and your efforts with others.

Wishing you all forms of everlasting good and, in particular, with regard to establishing yourself,

M. Schneerson