On January 16, 1962, a woman wrote to the Rebbe. She had been raised in a "non-believing," non-observant home. Now she had attended two lectures on Torah-true Judaism, which touched her deeply and presented her with a dilemma. "In what should I believe," she asked the Rebbe, "in the path along which I have been raised and educated over many years, or in that which I heard from a stranger in the course of two evenings?" What follows is a freely-translated excerpt of the Rebbe's reply, dated Shevat 16, 5722 (January 21, 1962).1

... Certainly you have heard of the expression "return to roots." I'm sure that you are also aware that an education does not work in a vacuum, since in each and every individual there are things that are rooted in the soul prior to the onset of the education process—things that stem from the innermost heart of the soul. Furthermore, no education or conditioning can change these things, only suppress them for a longer or shorter period of time. This has been repeatedly demonstrated in the field of education, as well as in medical science, biology and other fields.

This is the reason why we often see that a single lecture or a short discussion—an "education" of an extremely brief duration—might effect a most basic change in a person. All this person needed was a catalyst that would effect the removal of whatever has been covering up that which already exists in the inner reaches of his soul.

The above is the answer to your question, "What should I believe?" The very fact that you were so deeply impressed by what you heard in the course of two evenings attests to the truth of what our sages have told us thousands of years ago: "All Jews are believers, the children of believers"2; it is only that their faith might, at times, be obscured by a layer of foreign elements. Fortunate is one in whom this layer has been removed early in life, who recognizes the truth and returns to his roots.

My hope is that these lines, though few in quantity considering the import of the subject, will suffice to shed light on the matter. It will be my pleasure to receive good news from you regarding all of the above.