Weekly Cycle

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Week 37 (Book 4): Years of Life and Length of Days

STORY OF CHANNAH: 9. The feet of His pious ones He will guard, And the wicked shall be cut off in darkness, For not by strength will man prevail.

PIRKEI AVOT ON THE GREATNESS OF TORAH: And it says (9:11): "With me, your days shall be increased, and years of life shall be added to you."    


TZADIKKIM: Rav Aharon of Karlin (the Beis Aharon, 17th of Sivan) and Rabbi Yissachar Dov of Radoshitz (the "Sabba Kadisha," 18th of Sivan)

Week 37 is the third week of Sivan. In the verse from the story of Channah, she sings of how Hashem guards His pious ones, and the wicked are cut off in darkness (ie. they die).

The quotation in Pirkei Avot regarding the greatness of the Torah for this week also speaks of life and death – the Torah increases one’s days and years of life. There is an apparent repetition of days and years, because a person may live many years but yet not have many quality to their days.

Chapter 6 of Ecclesiastes speaks of length of days as well as of the darkness even in the life of those that live for a long time:

3. Should a man beget one hundred [children] and live many years, and he will have much throughout the days of his years, but his soul will not be sated from all the good, neither did he have burial. I said that the stillborn is better than he.

4. For he comes in vanity and goes in darkness, and in darkness his name is covered.


12. For who knows what is good for man in his lifetime, the number of the days of his life of vanity, that he do them like a shadow, for who will tell man what will be after him under the sun?

This week includes the yahrzeits of Rav Aharon of Karlin (the “Beis Aharon,” 17th of Sivan) and Rabbi Yissachar Dov of Radoshitz (the "Sabba Kadisha," 18th of Sivan)

From Heichal HaNeginah:
Today, 17 Sivan, is the yahrzeit of Rebbe Aharon of Karlin, son of Rebbe Asher of Stolin and grandson of Rebbe Aharon HaGadol (the Great) of Karlin, who is also known as the Second Rebbe Aharon. When he was only 26 years old he was chosen as Karliner Rebbe. With prodigious scholarship in Torah, and unparalleled piety and humility, he led the Karlin Chassidim; he attracted tens of thousands of followers who eagerly thronged around him, seeking the blessings of a man who was said to be endowed with ruach hakodesh (the spirit of holiness). Some even claimed that he had the soul of King David.

The period of Rebbe Aharon's leadership included the dark days of the reign of Czar Nikolai I [see below], but Rebbe Aharon knew how to cheer up his Chassidim and help them to bear their heavy burdens. However, some powerful residents of Karlin objected to the extent to which song and dance permeated the Rebbe's "Court," and in 1864, the Rebbe himself was run out of town. He resettled in Stolin, and since then, this dynasty has been known as "Karlin-Stolin."

Rebbe Aharon the Second (so called to distinguish him from his grandfather, Rebbe Aharon the Great), was born, according to a family tradition, on Rosh Chodesh Sivan, 1802. Rebbe Aharon was the recognized leader of the Karliner Chassidim for nearly fifty years. A gifted organizer, Rebbe Aharon applied himself to strengthening the bonds between himself and his followers. To this end, he used to pay them frequ
ent visits in their towns and welcome them most warmly in his court in Karlin. He also had a striking natural simplicity and sense of humor, and regularly made jokes in the Russian vernacular even while teaching his Chassidim at his table. He mixed freely with people of all kinds, and his confident and imposing presence was admired even in non-Chassidic circles.
 From Ascent:
Rabbi Yissachar Dov [1765-18 Sivan 1843], the "Sabba Kadisha" (holy grandfather) of Radoshitz, was a disciple of the Seer of Lublin and of the Holy Yid of Peshischa. Famed as a miracle maker, he lived in poverty as a simple tutor.
Other yahrzeits this week include Rabbi Chaim of Volozhin (14th of Sivan) andRabbi Dovid Twersky (Second Rebbe of Skver. 19th of Sivan).

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