July 17, 2007

What Chassidus Am I?

Filed under: deep reflections — Reb Moshe @ 12:30 am

A lot of people have read through the lines to notice that I am not the typical breslover Chassid. That is probably more of a true observation should you compair me side by side to one of them. You have to understand that I am mostly self-taught in the ways of chassidus. I learned from sefarim rather then their teachers, chavrusas and friends, as most do.

If you put me in the same room with a typical breslover, I probably wouldn’t click to well either. But should you put me in the room with a famous breslover like Rabbi Noson Maimon or some of the old time students of Rabbi Aryeh Rosenfeld, who also did primarily outreach, you will see quite literally my simular outlook.

I also look at Chassidus in general not through the eyes of a breslover but rather Nikolsburg. Growing up around litvish yeshivos, I have both leanings and things I distance myself from but I certainly curb my Chassidus in a more balanced way from having this background.

I value those Rabbi’s like Aryeh Kaplan, Reb Shlomo Carlebach who considered themselves a student of Rebbe Nachman but also drew from other lights. They were also very famious teachers who were little Rebbe’s in their own way who only focused on the tachlis of outreach rather then to define themselves. Instead, the idea was to be what the people needed. If the roll to this particular person was to be their Rav, they filled this. Should the roll be needed to simply be their friend, they also filled this. If needed, they could even perform a tish and be the person’s Rebbe. This is more how I see myself. Not to mention, for them, politics in Judaism was a sin in and of itself.

If you view enough of the videos, I think you can see that I take on more of an old time Rebbe in my style. Back then, they didn’t have so many fancy Yeshivos and books, so much of the learning was taught while walking threw meddows and holy sites. Torah came forth based on the moment and feeling of the surroundings and speratic singing of nigunim always completed them or initiated. In a certain way, Torah from the Rebbe’s was more free and open. I’m beginning to think that as much as the videos have been appreciated, they will be more so in another decade when chassidus spreads more thorugh American soil. It is almost as if I am trying to teach chassidus to people who never met a Rebbe before and my style is a bit faren to them. This will change in a few years and I hope then that my Videos could be seen in yeshivos for educational purposes and be a guide book for many.

It also seems a bit strange to be teaching in this way in Israel since primarily the viewers are living in America. If I was located there, people could meet me and we could become more appart of each others lives. It would also be sooooooo much easier to fundraise and get support. I could even take on a small synagoge somewhere and with community backing, accomplish more since I could reach people directly throughout the USA. But then again, I don’t want to live in America. I would miss so many of the holy places and it is so empty there. I feel as if, somehow, I need to bring all the ilovetorah fans together and unify them online. Maybe this will be the future goal of ilovetorah. With that, I have an idea… but… how will I pull it off with 50 sheckles in my pocket for now?


  1. [quote] but… how will I pull it off with 50 sheckles in my pocket for now?

    With faith in HaShem. This is the tikkun He chose for you and you fulfill your obligation. And it shouldnt matter what kind of chassid you are or even if you are a chassid or not (personally I’m an RZ and not usually fond of today’s chassidus). That said I enjoy your videos/chassisic discourses and I think you should focus more on an Israeli audience and do outreach at home first since there are many wondering and sick souls that need rectification there. Plus, you would receive more funds there and could even perhaps team up with one of the better known Breslev counterparts.

    Comment by yossel — July 18, 2007 @ 12:46 am

  2. Shalom Reb Moshe,

    It would be great if you had a small Shul! If you do I’ll join. I want to thank you so much for all the time and hard work you put into to Kriv… its wonderful. You are a wonderful Rebbe you are really bring the Torah down to the yidden who don’t understand yet.

    -50NIS… How can I??? Let me know……..I’ll be in Israel in less than a week without too many NIS… so we will see.

    Comment by Binah — July 20, 2007 @ 12:08 pm

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