DIVREI YOEL PARASHAS VAYEISHEV
1. The Satmar Rebbe, ZY"A, in Divrei Yoel (Parashas Vayeishev, pp. 235-236) discusses a puzzling mashal found in the Midrash. The Midrash teaches that there was once someone traveling along the road and he came across a pack of dogs. He was frightened, and in order to dispel his fear, he went and sat among them. The Midrash draws a comparison between this man and Yaakov Avinu. Yaakov was frightened by Eisav, who represented the Satan incarnate and his army, the army of the Samech Mem. and so he dwelled near Har Se'ir, Eisav's place of residence. The Divrei Yoel explains that Eisav was not physically in the land of Eretz Yisroel, since Har Se'ir is not in the Land, but the evil Canaanites were there, and they defiled the land from inside. They were the ones that Yaakov Avinu truly feared. He feared the difficulties that would possibly be created for his children entering Eretz Yisroel in the future -- difficulties generated by the satanic impurity of the Canaanim. The Rebbe implies that the power of the Samech Mem (Eisav) could control Eretz Yisroel since the Canaanim had already defiled the Land, and, as the Rebbe explains here, due to the impurity of the nations who resided in the Land, the Shechinah left. When this occurred, the Sitra Achara took control of Eretz Yisroel. Therefore, explains the Rebbe, Yaakov Avinu went to settle in Eretz Yisroel in order to establish kedushah in the Land, and pave the way for his descendants, who would inherit the land in the time of Yehoshua. The Divrei Yoel further explains that since Chazal teach that the Jewish People were redeemed from Mitzrayim in the zechus of Yosef Hatzaddik, and the main purpose of Yetzias Mitzrayim was to give Klal Yisroel the Torah and bring them to Eretz Yisroel, it emerges that it was in Yosef's zechus that the Jewish People entered the land. The Rebbe teaches further that it will be in the zechus of Yosef that we will be redeemed from our current galus.
This section of Divrei Yoel requires further analysis. The Rebbe begins here by teaching that the evil of the Canaanites gave power to Eisav and the forces of evil that he represents. Furthermore, from the loshon of the Midrash, it sees that Eisav was actually in Eretz Yisroel, but the truth is that he lived outside of Eretz Yisroel, in Se'ir. These two points can, perhaps, be explained as follows: It is known that the main tumah of Canaan is immorality while the main tumah of Eisav is bloodshed and trust in his own power and might (a form of idol worship). Combined, these two nations represent the three cardinal sins: idolatry, adultery, and murder. It is known that every nation has an angel in Heaven who advocates for it. When one country on earth is divided, the angel corresponding to that country splits into two, and when two nations merge, their angels likewise merge. This, then, can explain what happened here. When the angel of Eisav joined with the angel of Canaan, every tumah in the world came together, endangering the future of Eretz Yisroel.
This concept can be see clearly today. The nation of Yishmael, which, like the Canaanim, personifies immorality, was living in Eretz Yisroel before the Zionists came along. Originally, the Zionists worked from outside Eretz Yisroel to tear apart Klal Yisroel. This can be compared to Eisav, who was technically living outside Eretz Yisrel. Perhaps it was through the immorality of the nation of Yishmael that the Zionists (who represent Eisav) were able to gain a foothold over Eretz Yisroel. Threrefore, contrary to the claims of the Zionists that they are fighting the Arabs, it is highly probable that they gain their strength from the perverted immorality of the Arabs.
After receiving strength from the tumah of Yishmael, the Zionists internalized this immorality, completing the three-fold evil of the Zionist kingdom, which already had internalized the evil of idol worship and bloodshed. This led them to become the very root and source of every impurity in the world, as stated by the Rebbe in Vayoel Moshe.
This understanding of the Zionist's impurity can help us explain a seeming contradiction in the works of the Rebbe. The Rebbe would quote the Chesed L'Avraham, which teaches that when Moshiach arrives in Eretz Yisroel, he will find a mere 7,000 Yidden, every one a kadosh. The Rebbe explained that before Moshiach's arrivel, Eretz Yisroel will come under the control of the non-Jews, and anyone who came to Eretz Yisroel because of the Zionists will be forced to leave. Only the true tzaddikim who came to Eretz Yisroel simply to serve Hashem in a higher level, not because of the Zionists, will stay. (The Rebbe by R' Dovid Meisels, p. 514-515) However, this seems to be contradicted by a statement of the Rebbe in Al Hageulah V'al Hatemurah. There, the Rebbe teaches that in the time right before the arrival of Moshiach, during the War of Gog and Magog, the IDF will join with the non-Jews to fight against Moshiach and the Torah. If the only Jews left in Eretz Yisroel will be tzaddikim, how can it be that the filthy, heretical, Zionist army will still be there? Additionally, how could there still be a Zionist army if Eretz Yisroel is under the control of the non-Jews?
The answer to this contradiction could possibly be as follows: Chazal teach that since Moshe Rabbeinu requested of Hashem, "Erase me, please, from your book (but spare Bnei Yisroel)," his name is not mentioned at all in Parashas Tetzaveh as a small fulfillment of this tefillah. The seforim explain that on a deeper level, Moshe, due to his monumental mesiras nefesh for Klal Yisroel, especially in this case, became one with the Torah, and therefore, it was unnecessary for his name to be mentioned in this Torah portion. Kabbalah teaches that every concept in the realm of holiness has a corresponding concept in impurity. Therefore, it is logial to assume that when someone throws himself into a certain force of impurity and makes the attainment of this evil his life's goal, he becomes one with this impurity. This occurs on a very real level and it is apparent that this is what has occured today.
The government in Israel began as a truly Zionist government, bent on fighting and defeating the Arabs. Today, the Israeli government has drifted very far from the ideals and aspirations of the original Zionist founders. If the Zionist leaders could come back from the dead today and look at the Israeli government, they would, in all probability, decide to go back to the grave seeing constant Israeli concessions to the Palestinians, such as Land for Peace and monetary support for Palestinians.
This does not mean that the Israeli government is better today, or cannot be called Zionist. They are the new Zionists who, because of their connection to the Arabs on a spiritual level, have unwittingly thrown themselves into the klipah and tumah of Yishmael becoming one, in a sense, with the Arabs. Therefore, it makes sense to say that one day, Eretz Yisroel will come under the control of the non-Jews. Aditionally, it is possible that the Rebbe does not mean that Eretz Yisroel will be controlled by the Arabs. He may mean that Eretz Yisroel will come under the control of Eisav. When the Zionists have attached themselves to the tumah of Yishmael (which is also the tumah of Canaan) to such an extant that they become one with this klipah, this will give the forces of Eisav the power to control Eretz Yisroel, just as we find in Yaakov Avinu's time. At that time, it is possible that the IDF will leave the physical confines of Eretz Yisroel (like Eisav) and help the forces of the Sitra Achara from the outside, while the non-Jews (represented by Canaan) will fight inside the borders of the Land. There is, therefore, no contradiction between the two above-mentioned teachings of the Rebbe.
What does it mean to become one with a certain force -- either a force of holiness or, l'havdil, a force of depravity? The Rebbe discusses this in Divrei Yoel and explains that sometimes, when a person sins grievously, his neshama is exchanged for a soul from the demonic forces. This, explains the Rebbe, is why we say each morning the brachos of "Shelo asani goy" and "Shelo asani Aved." If we were not a goy yesterday, how can we wake up as one, that we must thank Hashem every morning? One also does not just wake up as a slave. The Rebbe explains that, sometimes, when soemone is sleeping, his neshama will be exchanged for the neshamah of a non-Jew, or the neshama of a slave (representing a spiritually low concept). We therefore thank Hashem for restoring to us our own souls. This is, perhaps an explanation for the concepts discussed above.
It is also true that when one throws himself completely into holiness, he may recive a new neshamah. Some tzaddikim will receive a new soul after accomplishing one set of goals, in order that they have greater power to accomplish another set of goals. The neshamah of a tzaddik can, in fact, be so holy and powerful that it will actually alter the tzaddik's physical apearance.
In this vein, we can understand a certain aspect of how Yosef Hatzaddik's zechus will help us escape galus, as taught by the Rebbe here. Chazal teach that Eisav will fall only through the descendants of Yosef. This is especially true with regard to Amaleik. R' Elchonon Wasserman quotes from the Chafetz Chaim that the Zionists are the true Amaleik of our generation. The Rebbe quotes this and explains that the souls of the Zionist leaders have been exchanged for souls from the demonic forces, causing them to be counted from the seed of Amaleik and the Eirev Rav. In fact, explains the Rebbe, their very bodies have become the impure bodies of Amaleik.
Yosef Hatzaddik attained his great righteousness and power from his holiness. Since the Yidden in Mitzrayim followed in his ways, preserving their traditional clothing, names, and language, and guarding their chastity, they were able to "tap into" the zechus of Yosef Hatzaddik and therefore, they were redeemed. This concept can be explained as follows. The Gemara in Meseches Eiruvin teaches that R' Preida had a talmid who would not understand the lesson unless it was explained to him four hundred times. One day, R' Preida had a function that he had to attend, but on that day, this talmid still did not understand even after the regular four hundred times. R Preida therefore decided not to attend the function, and he stayed and taught the talmid again for another four hundred times. This great act of mesiras nefesh created a great stir in heaven and R Preida was given a choice as to his reward. He could either have an additional four hundred years of life, or he could receive guaranteed entry into Olam Haba for himself and his entire generation. He chose the latter, and was therefore granted both.
The meforshim ask on this story: why would it be that becauuse R Preida performed such a great mitzvah, his entire generation would merit Olam Haba? Isn't reward and punishment accorded based upon personal merit? They answer that the meaning of the Gemara is that anyone who followed in the ways of R' Preida would be taken along in the merit of this great tzaddik, and merit guarranteed entrance into Olam Haba. This concept applies itself in other contexts as well. When one attaches himself to a particular tzaddik, learning from him and emulating his ways, the merit of that tzaddik helps this person along. Possibly, this is what occurred with Bnei Yisroel in Mitzrayim. Since they followed in the ways of Yosef Hatzaddik, they became attached to him, and his merit helped them. This is also our task during this galus. We must attach ourselves to the ways of Yosef Hatzaddik, and in this merit we will be redeemed.
The necessity for this can be seen in the teaching of Chazal that the sixth millennium, which is the time in which we are currently living, is comparable to the sixth day of the week, Erev Shabbos. We must prepare now for the time of Moshiach, when there will be a "day that is entirely Shabbos." The sixth sefirah, which corresponds to the sixth day of the week, is the middah of Yesod, the middah of Yosef Hatzaddik.
In light of the above teaching, we can more clearly understand another teachng of Chazal. Our sages tell us that Moshiach will not come until all of the neshamos have been vacated from "guf." The meaning of this is that there is a heavenly world called "guf"; there, all of the neshamos awaiting their descent into this world in the form of a new-born child are stored. The more children that are conceived and born, the more neshamos are vacated from this heavenly realm, and hence, the closer Moshiach's coming is brought. This is not a contradiction to the above teaching that Moshiach will come in the merit of Yosef Hatzaddik. Perhaps the following explanation can be suggested. It is not automatic that the more neshamos brought down into this world, the closer Moshiach is. The neshamos must be brought down properly. Through implementation of the middah of Yesod in the process of bringing down these neshamos, we hasten Moshiach. Otherwise, we delay Moshiach through immorality, which, as explained by the Yismach Moshe and the Rebbe, is the main obstacle to the arrival of the final geulah.
It is also necessary to implement the concept of Yesod when raising these precious neshamos that have been entrusted to us. This is one of the main areas of Yiddishkeit that the apikorsim aim to destroy. The evil heretics have always tried to destroy this area of life, and today, this effort is manifested by the Zionist draft law, college, and deprication of Torah-true chinuch.
The above-mentioned concepts regarding the neshamah come to head in regard to our children. Inherently, every Yiddishe neshama is pure and holy. The goal of modern-day Amaleik -- the Zionists -- is however, to take that neshama and dirty it with as much filth as possible, until this neshama is exchanged for a neshama from the Sitra Achara. When children are given a proper Torah education, the holiness of their neshama is so powerful that it shines through to their faces. However, when children are raised to secular studies, television, and other such garbage, their faces do not have this holy appearance, and they loose the Tzelem Elokim, the image of Hashem that is upon the face of every frum Jew. Therefore, let us strengthen ourselves to follow in the ways of the true tzaddikim, and may we merit to great Moshiach speedily and in our days, Amein.
2. The Satmar Rebbe, ZY"A, in Divrei Yoel (Parashas Vayeishev, p. 311) explains that in Yosef's dreams, he saw himself as king of Mtzrayim, not, chas v'shalom, as the king of Klal Yisroel. To desire rulership at this time would have been a serious aveirah, as the time was not yet ripe for Klal Yisroel to have a king or independent rulership. For Yosef to have attempted to become king of Bnei Yisroel would have a violation of the three oaths, and a tzaddik such as Yosef would not even have entertained such a thought.
The Rebbe goes on to explain that we must not attempt to establish independent Jewish rulership before the coming of Moshiach. He quotes the Maharal who writes that this is a matter that is in the category of "Yeihareig v'al yaavor" -- one must be willing to be killed, Hashem yishmireinu, rather than violate these oaths. Today as well, we must not attempt to end the galus before the predetermined time by establishing a malchus. The Rebbe goes on to cite the Rambam, who teaches that we will know when the true Moshiach has arrived by the sign he will display. What is this sign? Moshiach will bring the entire Jewish Nation back to Hashem in teshuvah. If a supposed redeemer does not accomplish this, it is clear and apparent that he is not the true Moshiach. This is similar to what transpired during the galus Mitzrayim. Klal Yisroel was a huge and mighty nation, as the Torah attests. Surely, they could have risen up in rebellion against Paroh and left Mitzrayim. However this was never even a suggestion amongst Klal Yisroel. The leaders of the Jewish nation knew that they must wait patiently for Hashem's chosen one to reveal himself as the redeemer of Klal Yisroel. This true redeemer would make himself known through the designated signs known to Klal Yisroel as the signs of the true redeemer. Any other course of action would have been against Hashem and His holy Torah, and such thoughts of heresy were never entertained by Bnei Yisroel.
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The lesson we can derive for today's times is clear. We must never believe in a "redemption" or a "savior" before the true Moshiach. We will know when the true geulah arrives by the siman that Moshiach will show. He will turn the hearts of the children to their Father in Heaven. A world-wide movment of genuine teshuah will occur.
Many people mistakenly believe that the Zionist victories, especially the victories of the Six-Day War, caused many secular Jews to return to orthodoxy. This, as explained by the Rebbe in many places throughout Al Hageulah V'al Hatemurah and Divrei Yoel, is simply false. Genuine teshuvah cannot come about thorugh the forces of evil. The Zionists have blatantly and openly violated all of the oaths that we, as a nation, have sworn to Hashem Yisborach. Their government and army are the embodiments of satanical evil and heresy. No one can come closer to Hashem or His holy Torah through these heretics. Additionally, Chazal teach us that Hashem performs miracles only for complete Tzaddikim, and therefore, the entire basis of the Zionist argument that divine support has been shown for the heretical state is fictitious.
3. The Satmar Rebbe, ZY"A, (Kuntres Chidushei Torah Bereishis Parashas Vayeishev, p.207) discusses the famous Rashi which teaches that Yaakov arrived "complete is money, etc." meaning that Hashem replenished what he had given away to Eisav. The Rebbe explains that Yaakov gave Eisav all of the wealth that he acquired from Lavan. This money came from the wicked Lavan, it was not pure money, and therefore, when he was faced with the need to give some of his wealth to Eisav, he used this money. Yaakov Avinu did not want to benefit from any of the money that he had received from the evil Lavan. Hashem repaid Yaakov with pure money from which Yaakov could benefit.
The Rebbe continues by quoting the Gemara in Meseches Beitzah (16a), which teaches that all of a person's income for the year is determined on Rosh Hashanah, except for expenses for Shabbos and Yom Tov, as well as for chinuch. Regarding these expenditures, the more one spends, the more he is given. The Rebbe explains that a person's regular income may come through the agency of various people or institutions, not all of which may be one hundred percent pure. However, it is fine for a person to use this money for his everyday needs. In regard to money for Shabbos, Yom Tov, and chinuch, however, the money must come directly from Hashem. This money is pure and untainted.
The Rebbe goes on to say as follows: "Baruch Hashem, in regard to our chinuch, it is not necessary for us to accept money from people who do not act properly and desire to change the method of chinuch that has been passed down to us by our forefathers. Unfortunately, thre are those who have chosen to take money from every sort of institution of heresy and conversion (away from Judaism), R"L. It is clearly seen that all of these institutions, once they accept money from the resha'im, follow in and work for the upkeep of the path of heresy, bringing upon themselves terrible curses, R"L, curses that are greater than those mentioned by the navi Yirmiyahu, who cursed the the people of Anasos that they should stumble even when they are trying to do tzedakah. The Zionist government desires, through their abundant support to institutions of chinuch, to eventually turn the Yiddishe children away from the path of the Torah. This is clear to anyone who has a brain inside his skull and eyes in his head, and there is no need at this point to elaborate further on these facts which are known to all. Therefore, how fortunate are we to be able to run a system of chinuch which is pure and holy, and that we trust in Hashem to provide for each and every one what he needs, in conformance with the fact that the more one gives, the more he is given. Through this we are able to raise upright and blessed generations to do the will of Hashem wholeheartedly without embarrassment. May Hashem rescue us from every trouble and pain and may we merit to greet Moshiach Tzidkeinu and Eliyahu Hanavi ,and may we merit to see all that is written regarding Eliyahu, Moshiach, and the seal of Hakadosh Baruch Hu. May we merit to see the salvation of all of Yisrael and the revelation of the glory of Shomayim upon us, b'meheira b'yameinu, Amein."
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An individual who had acquired significant assets through insurance was searching for a way to make amends for his wrong. He did not want to directly use the money he had acquired illegally, so he wrote a check for $10,000 dollars to the Satmar Rebbe's yeshivah. He came to the Rebbe's house and gave the check to the gabbai, who was completely unaware of the money's origin. After a number of weeks, the man realized that his check had not yet been deposited. He went back to the Rebbe's house and asked the gabbai if he had deliverd the check to the Rebbe. The gabbai assured the man that he had. The man then told the gabbai that the Rebbe had, evidently, not cashed the check. The gabbai told the man to have a seat, and he would ask the Rebbe about it. When queried, the Satmar Rebbe, ZY"A, replied, "The check is still lying in my draw. Tell the man he can have it back. I do not want such money." (The Rebbe by R' Dovid Meisels, p. 191)
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There can be no question that acceptance of money from the Zionist government can bring no good. The ends simply do not justify the means, no matter how noble these ends may be. Quite the contrary, when we are dealing with holy endeavors such as chinuch, we must stay even farther away from impure money, as explained by the Rebbe here. Contrary to widespread belief, Zionist "generosity" toward yeshivos has not been a favor for the Jewish People. Most, if not all, yeshivos that receive government funding have compromised Torah-true values, in an attempt to please the wicked and get more money. This is a terrible disgrace. How can anyone who calls himself a Jew sacrifice our precious children for a few more contaminated Zionist shekels?
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When Menachem Begin became prime minister of the Zionist State, he poured a great amount of money into almost every yeshiva in Eretz Yisroel. (The Rebbe by R' Dovid Meisels) The result of this was the destructive trend that has continued until today, whereby young people spend a year or two in Eretz Yisroel as part of their "education." This pitfall has spread even to many very religious communities. More often than not, these people come back praising the Zionists for their supposed "accomplishments," and with admiration, even if only slight, for the Zionist army. Most of these people are damaged for life, the fire of Torah having been cooled within them. A feeling of nationalistic pride is associated with visiting the Kosel, and many of these students are taught to look at Eretz Yisroel in a historical context, rather than as our precious Holy Land where, if not for the Zionist government and army, the Shechinah would rest even in galus. Through such fads, the hand of the Zionists is strengthened, and as explained by the Rebbe in Al Hageulah V'al Hatemurah (Siman 3, page 31), it is prohibited to strengthen the sinners. This is not even mentioning programs such "birthright tours," which are affiliated with Reform "Judaism." Such institutions are attempting to destroy Klal Yisroel and we must strengthen ourselves against them.