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Why doesn't Chabad select a new Rebbe?

by Rabbi Naftali Silberberg

  

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The Rebbe accepted the leadership of Chabad (and world Jewry) in 1951 and became the seventh Chabad Rebbe.

In his very first Chassidic discourse, he set forth the goal of his "administration":

It says in Midrash Rabbah (on Shir Hashirim 5:1) that when the world was first created the Ikar Shechinah (essence of the divine presence) was down here on this world. However, because of seven sins (starting with the sin of the the Tree of Knowledge) the Shechinah ascended the seven heavens, only to be brought back down by seven righteous people. The seventh one, Moses, was the one who actually brought the Shechinah down to this world on Mt. Sinai, and eventually in to the Tabernacle.

The Rebbe continued: our generation is the seventh generation (starting from the first Chabad Rebbe) of the revelation of Chabad Chassidus. It is our generation who will, once again, bring the Shechinah down - in the Holy Temple with the ultimate Redemption.

This idea was repeated by the Rebbe many times throughout the years, by saying that, "this generation is the last generation of Exile and the first generation of Redemption."

Chassidim therefore believe that there is no need for a new Rebbe (and thus, a new generation). We must only hold on for a few more moments and we will be reunited with the Rebbe, with the coming of our righteous Messiah!


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COMMENTS

The Last Rebbe

Posted by: Isaacs on Jan 21, 2005

So Chabad Chasudus will become like Breslov Chasidus - a flock without a Rebbe, with a large body of Torah and legend from the Rebbe, but no single and universally accepted on-the-ground, in-the-flesh, definitive authoritative Rebbe.

What happens when Rabbi Freeman and Rabbi Ginzberg and Rabbi Cohen *disagree* over what the current Rebbe is saying: is there a way to have him declare his opinion on his words?

Editor's Comment

No one is satisfied with the current situation... But apparently this a difficult phase which we must handle on our own -- with the Rebbe's words to guide us -- until we very soon will be reunited.

why isn,t there a new rebbe

Posted by: Anonymous on Feb 06, 2005

would it not then make sense that there should not have been a leader following Moses?

Editor's Comment

Did Moses say that the end of days is near, and therefore the Jews would be reunited with him in the very near future?

 


Breslov

Posted by: Anonymous on Sep 18, 2005

I find that comment very disrespectful to the Breslovers. Really, if you're going to look at it like that, the Jewish people as a whole is a flock without a shepherd. Sure, each group in the flock has it's own little leader, but we're not all following one posek, right?

The shepherd's Moshiach, and though he may tarry, he will lead us into pastures we've only had the priviledge of glimpsing from afar. The boss sheep--rabbis-- are there to keep us in line and not stray too far from the herd, in order that we may not get lost before entering said pastures. If a boss sheep dies, if the sheep learned well enough from it, then they'll be able to pass the lessons of The Breslover Rebbe, The Lubavitcher Rebbe, OR MOSHE RABBENU HIMSELF down to subsequent generations.

pick a new rebbe

Posted by: Yisroel Moshe, Springfeild, Massachuttets on Mar 27, 2006

I think there are so many good rabbis around they should picka new rebbe.Even though there are no one left in the rebbes families there are some great rabbis that can become the new rebbe

New Rebbe?

Posted by: Michael Weinstock, Laguna Hills, CA on May 09, 2006

The Rebbe never specifically stated that there should be no one succeeding him in that position, is that right?

If that is correct, why NOT look at other potential candidates? I agree, there are many good leaders out there now--to hasten the coming of Moshiach! The Rebbe inspired so much good, on a worldly scale. Even though no one person can take another's place, another yet strong leader might bring redemption faster.

Just a thought.


in response to why doesn't chabad choose a new rebbe

Posted by: Leah on May 10, 2006

In response to Yisroel Moshe, Springfeild, Massachuttets on Mar 27, 2006 who wrote:

"I think there are so many good rabbis around they should picka new rebbe. Even though there are no one left in the rebbes families there are some great rabbis that can become the new rebbe"

I used to think the same thing before I became close to chabad and really began to appreciate the Rebbe. When you truly have hiskashrus to the Rebbe, there is no need for a new Rebbe. Not only no need, it just doesn't make sense. It doesn't fit into the picture. I just can't imagine it. I KNOW the Rebbe is still leading us-- because the bond between chossid & Rebbe is so strong, The Rebbe was so much more than just a great Rabbi. I can't even explain in words how great the Rebbe is. When you learn the Rebbe's teachings you know how much he is here and leading us.


RELATED CATEGORIES

Chassidism » Rebbe » "The Rebbe"

Chabad
Chabad, an acronym for Wisdom, Knowledge, and Understanding, is the name of a Chassidic Group founded in the 1770s. Two of the most fundamental teachings of Chabad are the intellectual pursuit of understanding the divine and the willingness to help every Jew who has a spiritual or material need.
Chassidim
(Pl.: Chassidim; Adj.: Chassidic) Following the teachings of Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov (1698-1760), the founder of "Chassidut." Chassidut emphasizes serving G-d with sincerity and joy, and the importance of connecting to a Rebbe (saintly mentor).
Chassidic
(Pl.: Chassidim; Adj.: Chassidic) A follower of the teachings of Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov (1698-1760), the founder of "Chassidut." Chassidut emphasizes serving G-d with sincerity and joy, and the importance of connecting to a Rebbe (saintly mentor).
Rebbe
A Chassidic master. A saintly person who inspires followers to increase their spiritual awareness.
Moses
[Hebrew pronunciation: Moshe] Greatest prophet to ever live. Led the Jews out of Egyptian bondage amidst awesome miracles; brought down the Tablets from Mount Sinai; and transmitted to us word-for-word the Torah he heard from G-d's mouth. Died in the year 1272 BCE.
Midrash
(Pl. Midrashim). Non-legal material of anecdotal or allegorical nature, designed either to clarify historical material, or to teach a moral point. The Midrashim were compiled by the sages who authored the Mishna and Talmud (200 BCE-500 CE).
Tabernacle
Mobile sanctuary which traveled with the Jews in the desert, containing the Ark with the Tablets, and the sacrificial altars. When the Jews entered Israel, it was erected in the city of Shiloh where it remained for more than 300 years. It was buried when the permanent Holy Temple was erected in Jerusalem.
Temple
1. Usually a reference to the Holy Temple which was/will be situated in Jerusalem. 1st Temple was built in 825 BCE and was destroyed in 423 BCE. The 2nd Temple was built in 350 BCE and was destroyed in 70 CE. The 3rd Temple will be built by the Messiah. 2. A synagogue.
Shechinah
Divine Presence.