Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Rebbe says: "You need a rebbe"


This past Shabbos, amongst the half-a-dozen Chabad publications found in Shuls was this one - a relatively new project trying to teach Chabadniks some basic Yiddish, by translating the rebbe's Sichos in a (grade 3-4 level) user-friendly form. As someone who speaks, loves and reads Yiddish, I applaud them for this most belated undertaking - after decades of almost 'criminal' neglect for the language of the Chabad (and all other) rebbes.

But what amazed me was the front cover of this "Extended (I think they meant 'expanded") ג' תמוז Edition" where in large font we are told about "THE NEED FOR A REBBE".

Are the publishers hinting something here? Is there something happening in the Chabad world to seriously consider the possibility of appointing a new rebbe? Every single one of my Chabad friends dismisses such a possibility, but then most of them are not too high up in the organisation to really know about such matters. But if such a move is  completely out of the question, how does that jell with the rebbe's view that there is a need for a rebbe?

I know for a fact the your blog is very well read amongst Chabadniks in Sydney and Melbourne as well as overseas. So maybe one of them could advise us if my speculation has any merit.

And thank you AJN WATCH for a most interesting and relevant website (despite the fact that I may sometimes disagree with your viewpoint).


  1. Over to you my chassidic friends.

  2. martin weingarten - staten islandSunday, June 24, 2012 3:26:00 PM

    Seriously, I'd like to know, seeing that the rebbe emphasised the need and importance of Jews having a rebbe, I understand he said this upon the passing of his predecessor, why is there such an absolute silence on this topic amongst chassidim today?

    Surely amongst the thousands of rabbis and talmidei chachamim Chabad has worldwide they can find someone worthy of the becoming a leader who will guide them along the path set by the late rebbe.

    As they are now, indeed doing a good job mostly, they are a group 'shteebels" social welfare orgs, kindergartens and schools, restaurants etc, Wonderful. But a chasidus its definitely not.

  3. How can anyone take the rebbe's place!

  4. The answer is simple: he doesn't say we need a Rebbe who is alive. On the contrary, for 52 years he insisted that he was not the Rebbe, that his father-in-law was still the Rebbe and he was just a sort of secretary.

  5. The Rebbe ZYA referred to his father in law OBM as his rebbe, so that's no proof. On the other hand, he instructed his Chassidim to seek out rabbonim for themselves ("aseh lecha rav"), and that in his absence they should seek guidance from senior Chassidim and local rabbonim.

  6. This publication is for school kids. The majority of Chabadniks who have been through the yeshiva system speak and read yiddish

  7. First, thanks AJN Watch for your important communal service.

    On the topic of this article, see my article here. On the topic of Yiddish, see my article here.

  8. Nechemia, you write shtuyot. Verym very few students who studied in Chabad schools in melb and Sydney can speak, let alone read and write Yiddish.

    Only a few of the "Americans' who are on the 'frummer' end of the scale speak the language.

    It is a shame (and disgrace) that the young chassidim cannot understand and enjoy the words of the rebbe - as he spoke them

  9. Sad that the chassidim can no loner understand the rebbes sichos and need second hand translations


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