Monday, February 20, 2006

Chof Beis Shvat: Our Transparent Rebbetzin

Today is the Rebbetzin's Yartzeit.

I couldn't help but feel lost and frustrated at the farbrengen last night.

A teacher is leading the farbrengen, but she doesn't know any more about the Rebbetzin than we do. She can only talk about what we don't know, and when we do have a small insight, we explode it. We want so badly to have something to hold onto, something to take and channel into our daily lives.

So we all sit and ponder and imagine and grapple with the lack of information.

Much emphasis is put on the fact that the Rebbetzin led a very private life, and here we sit dissecting her life and searching for clues into her essence.

Something feels backwards.

I know much about what the Rebbetzin gave the world, but little about her life.

But, alas, that is the message.

What is a holy person?

Transcendent. Transparent.

Holiness is subtle, sensitive - yet it's power is unfathomable. It's strength is overpowering and succinct, but it draws nothing to itself.

In general, the Rebbetzin's image floats in and out of my mind. But when I approach lght and dark, when I have to grapple with holiness, her message is clear.

I don't need to know about the Rebbetzin's essence, the details of her life. When everything is quiet, the Rebbetzin's energy hits like a brick.

Strength is where strength seems to not exist. True existence is that which makes us look upwards. We can't fit the truth of realities into our palms.

I feel weak and teary-eyed trying to really capture the Rebbetzin's message and extend it into my life.

But I'm still going to try.


Anonymous said...

Your personality (as well as some of your looks) resemble a lot to the Rebbetzins, she would have loved you and you strong personality if she had meet you.


Ben Shalom

ליפא שנילצער said...

to see pics of the yorhziet in queens check this

wandering said...

beautiful post.
the whole beauty of the rebbetzin is her enigmatic personality. beacause she was so humble and discreet, we try to emulate her. But we don't know how to emulate her because she was so humble and discreet. sort of a catch 22 situation...

Anonymous said...

A catch 22 for a person who past away on the 22nd (of Shvat)....

la said...

I think we're wasting our time and completely missing the point when we spend 22 shevat trying to get to know the Rebbitzen better, picking around for new pieces of information etc. While it's always fascinating to learn new things about a person we know so little about, it's even more fascinating to analyze and focus on just that - the fact that the wife of the most public individual was so private. The fact that she emulated the concept of kol kevudah in such a profound and real way is the most meaningful message of all.

Anonymous said...

I think HaSHeM's best work is private, makes the public possible.