We have all heard it since we are kids. The Rebbe is brought up, whether at school, at home, or at work, the idea, the effect, and overall subject of the Rebbe is constantly infusing the air.
There is no question that it is different now then it was back in the day, but even though it is so different, there is no question that the essence connection, the pure relationship between Yid and Rebbe, remains, but on an even greater level.
The major difference obviously lies in the fact that we cannot see and feel the energy of the Rebbe the same way we saw and felt the Rebbe before Gimmel Tammuz. And of course not to deflect the puncture and wound we did and continuously have to endure, in truth, as we know and are taught, our connection with our Rebbe, runs much deeper than a physical connection- and this is what we live with today, connecting on a more spiritual, yet greater level.
The connection that we have today is not simple. Because in our connection with the Rebbe today lies the core concealment, but, yet, uniqueness of our personal Exile.
Obviously, our connection entails realness and affection, but on the other side, we can feel at times a certain emptiness or lack of words when we try to describe our connection with the Rebbe, even within ourselves. We are aware; we have a Rebbe, but yet again, what does that really mean to us?
This difficulty is not one to shrug off because, as mentioned, within this struggle lies the uniqueness of our connection with our Rebbe today.
Starting from when we got the Torah, and even earlier, our connection with spirituality relied on the fact that we saw and felt our connection. Whether that is referring to G-d himself, the Angles, Moshe or the Prophets, the entire relationship was built off the expressions that the Jew was able to give and feel and based off those interactions and expressions the relationship was established.
In practical terms what this means, is that in order for the relationship to be ignited and even sustained there needed to be constant expression, constant affection being felt, and with that infusion the connection lied.
To cite an example; when 2 people meet and attempt to form a relationship, the 2 parties need to show and express certain words and expressions for the connection and relationship to be built and sustained. So too, with regard to our perspective of our relationship between us and G-d; in general terms our expectation it that through feeling our connection, and through expressing ourselves to G-d our relationship would be ignited and consistently sustained.
On even more practical terms this is how we feel in regard to our relationship to G-d and our Rebbe, that through expressing and feeling, we connect. Hence we had the Beis Hamikdosh. The constant conversation, the immediate feeling of being taken aback, and totally losing self-awareness. These were the infusions that created and sustained the Jews’ relationship with G-d.
We can now bring this down a few thousand years down-the-line, when Chabad and Chabad Chassidus was started. We were introduced to the ideas, that through actively contemplating, feeling, and knowing G-d our relationship would reach ultimate heights; that this was the way- the way of service and connection to G-d, to revolve around refining, purifying, and feeling.
This perspective fits in to, as mentioned before, the connection when based off expression and feeling. That our relationship with our G-d and our Rebbe, depended on our level in service. The questions that were always asked, how are we expressing? What are the intellectual and emotional faculties being put to play? Am I feeling fear or love? etc. This is what the relationship entailed and again, was the focus of the relationship.
Then came our Rebbe; our Rebbe taught, guided, and brought us up in every way possible, whether it was conversations, fabrengens, mamoroim, or the sichos, the Rebbe guided us.
Yet, all with a mode, with a general perspective; that our relationship with G-d is not based off any expression or feeling, any action or any interactions. Remaining necessary and required components, but they are not the essence of our connection. Our connection is based off the fact that we are a piece of G-d, literally. Hence the mivtzoim, the campaigns, and overall bringing Yidden closer. Because our Rebbe tells us that all Yidden are the same. Our connection is pure and straight, whether we have been davening and learning our entire life or we don’t even know we are Jewish; there is a straight connection a Jew has to G-d and that is the core of Judaism.
This is the idea we constantly are taught; that our lives don’t revolve around feelings of love and fear, or at all times actively yearning and crying for G-d, but, yet, our work, our identity as Jews is to unveil the connection, the Essence connection that is already there within ourselves and others, by practically doing what we have to do and making this world a place for G-d. This is our relationship.
And when looking back at the earlier Chabad generations they too focused on Essence, but there lies an intrinsic difference. The Chassidim had the comfort and the ability to tune-in, to feel, to get inspired, they had a Rebbe in front of their eyes!
In our Galus we don’t have the option to “tune-in”, to feel the love or fear, we don’t necessarily have the plug-in.
And our natural reaction can at times feel like we want nothing to do with it, whether based on our traumas, lack of feelings, anger, and our practical issues! We, at times are just not into it!
We react this way because we don’t see our plug-in! And with the perspective that feeling and tuning in is our entire relationship we don’t feel that we have one, being that we are in the deepest Galus of all we simply naturally feel cut off, because our expectation is to feel and to be fully aware and as mentioned, at times we just don’t click.
This is directly related to us right now. We can’t see him, we can’t just show up to a fabrengen, dollars, yechidus and tune-in like we used to. We had the comfort and ultimate security that we have our Rebbe. I don’t feel, I have problems, I’ll go to the Rebbe. The drawing and ripping away of this comfort and security was a gash to our essence in every way!
Yet, knowing our Rebbe, we know we are not alone, and that now our relationship entails something more real than feelings or expressions, that in truth this is no downfall, yet this creates the biggest opportunity.
With this, we can understand our deep bond with our Rebbe. It is not about our immediate feeling or outlook, we are unified with our leader in our fullest essence. And that relationship can’t be touched by Gimmel Tammuz in a negative way, rather Gimmel Tammuz opened the opportunity to now focus on the real relationship which is based solely on the fact that we are, in essence, unified forever with our leader, our Nosi, our Rebbe.
At the same time, as Gimmel Tammuz is coming up we cry and plead that Dem Rebben should be back with us right now! In a real way with Moshiach Tzidkeinu!