A Moment with the Rebbe: In an intense yechidus, the Rebbe reminded a chosson what lay ahead for him and what he must do to make it work.
When one Lubavitcher chassan was overly engrossed in choosing an apartment and furniture, the Rebbe addressed him with this handwritten note:
“Your letter was shocking and painful, and it caused me anguish.
“With marriage, a new period in life begins. A period in which one utilizes everything that he has learned and absorbed until then. A period in which one ceases to be only a recipient of his environment and society, but begins to give back, to return a debt that he has to his parents, teachers and surroundings.
“With marriage, a person begins to prepare for the greatest responsibility: educating his children that Hashem will bless him with, whose entire responsibility is on him.
“This is in addition to the fact that one has taken responsibility of another person’s life, namely his wife.
“And despite all of the above, you have sunken into a deep slumber. You have put your conscience into a deep sleep, and together with it your spirituality and even your very personality. You are investing energy in finding a fancy apartment and furniture, as if this is the purpose of man, and how he differs from an animal. And in this way you will educate, Rachmana litzlan, your family?!”
(Kuntres Michtovim Uma’anos, Tammuz 5774)
Credit: The Weekly Farbrengen by Merkaz Anash
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Thank you for posting these letters. Just wanted to comment please. Someone just me this link wondering how the Rebbe could be so harsh and critical. I took one look at this letter and was sure that the critique likely originated from the perspective of the בחור הזעצער whichgot lost in the translation.
Please compare the original of what the Rebbe actually said to the translation. The nuances are powerful. The translation indeed comes across as critical and harsh, not something our generation wants to hear. And not the Rebbes approach.
Notice how in the original the Rebbe never wrote “and it caused ME anguish”. He wrote מבהיל וגם מכאיב ביותר ומצער .
Saying it caused ME anguish if hurtful abd judgmental. The Rebbe said your letter is shocking and hurtful and painful. Not to ME. It is. To YOU too. Now let’s work on this together.
The Rebbe never wrote YOU have fallen into a deep slumber. YOU have put YOUR conscience etc
Those are all judgmental.
The Hebrew nuance moves it away from אתה to a lighter רודף אחר קלה “one chases after….הרי זו תרדמה…. it IS a deep slumber.
NEVER is the Rebbe judging this person. The translation seems harsh. The Rebbes original is uplifting. One has a yetzer and struggles. It’s an issue, work on it.
There’s more in this letter and translation. But just one final one. The Rebbes original is 2 exclamation marks. There is no question and exclamation. Note the difference , this makes it questioning and judgmental. The Rebbe was merely emphasizing a point strongly