This letter was addressed to the Lubavitcher yeshivah students who had fled from Poland in WWII and had taken refuge in Shanghai.1

B”H, 27 Nissan, 5706

Greetings and blessings,

Your letters from 27 Adar II and 4 Nissan arrived (as did a package of books containing: the maamarim of 5657, Pokeach Ivrim, Likkutei Dibburim, HaYom Yom, and HaKeriah VehaKedushah). You are correct in saying that establishing a branch of Kehot in your community is the desire of my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe Shlita, as I wrote in my previous letter.

Your second letter contains a suggestion that a yeshivah student named Leibel Bloomberg should be involved in [this printing effort]. Since we do not know [about] his character, rely on your own understanding. One proviso, however, is necessary. As long as you are there, you should be involved with him. And afterwards, he should be under the supervision of Rav [Meir] Ashkenazi who is considered as the person responsible by my revered father-in-law, the Rebbe Shlita.

I am surprised by the fact that you did not answer our question: Which texts do you have at hand (from those listed in my first letter)? Please immediately begin printing — 300 from each title. Notify me and I will send the text for the title page.

In addition, I am sending to Rav [Ashkenazi] some of the texts that I possess which are at hand.2 The paper and the binding used should be of the highest quality. At present, it is impossible to send paper from here.

I printed a list of texts of Chassidus at the conclusion of the text Toras HaChassidus. I am now preparing a second printing. I would have like to include also the texts that you have published, but I do not have definitive knowledge of the names of all those texts.

Awaiting a reply from you, I conclude with the blessing, “Immediately to teshuvah; immediately to Redemption,”

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson
Executive Director

The letter contains a post-script to Rabbi Chaim Meir Bukiet, at that time one of the students in the yeshivah in Shanghai.

You were correct in stating that there is a distinction between [receiving property by] lot and [receiving it through] inheritance. It is explained in the maamar entitled Ashreinu (2 Nissan, 5700) that [the spiritual counterparts to] a portion, a lot, and an inheritance3 are the Divine service of the heart, [the Divine service of] the mind, and the sensation of G‑dliness in all matters. [The latter] is a matter that is transferred by inheritance. Alternatively, ([as explained in] the maamar entitled Ashreinu, 5696,) [the terms refer to] the Divine service of the nefesh, ruach, and the neshamah; that of the power of will, of pleasure, and that of the essential point of the Jewish soul, or the level of life-energy [as it is granted to each] particular [limb], the general life-force [of the body], and the essential life-force [which transcends the body]. [Or the terms can be understood as recalling] the particular Divine service of the G‑dly soul [in tandem with] the animal soul, an encompassing level of Divine service, and the Divine service of the G‑dly soul on its own (the maamar entitled BaChodesh HaShivii, 5663).

Nevertheless, your conclusion — that an inheritance resembles a lottery more than other means of acquisitions — does not, in my humble opinion, appear correct, neither according to the revealed teachings of Torah law (Nigleh), nor according to its hidden, mystic secrets (Nistar).

On the contrary, according to Nigleh, inheritance is greater than other means of acquisition, because it comes by force.4 In contrast, [acquisition through] a lottery is weaker than other means of acquisition to the extent that there are opinions that maintain that it is not an effective means of acquisition at all (see the commentaries to the Talmud, Bava Basra 106b, and to the Tur and the Shulchan Aruch, Choshen Mishpat 173).

Thisalso applies to the understanding in Nistar, because the sensation of G‑dliness that stems from the [essential] point of the soul exists in each and every person. Even at the time of sin, it is still faithful to Him (Tanya, ch. 24). Afterwards comes the particular Divine service of the Torah and its mitzvos in which everyone is obligated. And above that comes Divine service of an encompassing nature (or the increased attention and greater care [in the observance of a particular practice] which is one of the differences between a portion and a lot. See Tanya, Iggeres HaKodesh, Epistle 7).

(It appears that what led to your mistake is that in Nistar, [it is explained that] the revelation of the qualities that are transferred by inheritance comes through the preface of the Divine service of a portion and a lot. It is possible to explain that we see a parallel to this in the division of Eretz Yisrael — which came as an inheritance from their ancestors (Bava Basra 119b) — but which was revealed in actual fact only after [the land] was conquered, a war on an individual level, with “the king of Jericho, one....”5 And it was divided by lot. See Tosafos, s.v. vilo, Rosh HaShanah 13a; Talmud Yerushalmi, Challah 2:1; Parshas Derachim, Derush 9, et al. This is not the place for further discussion of the issue.)