One of the most foundational discourses in Chabad Chassidus is the one presented by the Rebbe Rasham exactly 140 years ago — on Chanukah 5643, in December 1882. In this incredible maamar, the Rebbe Rashab explains, with great elaboration and many illustrations, the core idea of the Baal Shem Tov and the Alter Rebbe, that we are all part of loving infinite oneness, and how we can access and live with this consciousness every moment of our lives.
The Maamar begins with a fascinating question, why from all of the 620 Mitzvos of Torah, the only mitzvah which we are supposed to perform outdoors, in the public domain, is lighting the Chanukah Menorah? It is this question and explanation which has become one of the hallmarks of the Rebbe’s now-famous Chanukah campaign in the entire world.
This Maamar drives home the key point of all Chassidus, how a person can live in a Geulah-consciousness, in which you discover how despite any pain and turmoil in life, you can live in a space of infinite expansive freedom and love, in the ultimate reality of Achadus Hashem, of internal oneness and unity.
But does this make sense? This is the question of the Maamar. My individuality is real! My emotions are real! My fears seem real! How can we say in a real way that all of reality is the oneness of Hashem? Either Hashem’s oneness is not real (chalilah), or our own existence is not real? This is what this maamar comes to explain in a clear and vivid way.
Rabbi YY Jacobson continued teaching this maamar in simple, relevant English, in order to complete the maamar beizer Hashem before Chanukah.
To view source sheets: theyeshiva.net/jewish/8787/
Watch part two of the maamar: