Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Teachings, Sayings and Stories: 3rd of Adar

One snowy winter day, Rebbe Shmelke of Nikolsburg zt”l and his brother, Rebbe Pinchas of Frankfort zt”l went to see their Rebbe, the Maggid of Mezeritch zt”l, with a question:


They asked him how the Talmud (in Masechta Berachos) can command us to praise Hashem equally when bad things happen as to when good things happen.  In response to their question, the Maggid told his two students to go to the Beis Midrash, and see Rebbe Zusia of Anipoli zt”l.  He explained that Reb Zusia suffered from poverty and lots of trials and tribulations, and that he was more qualified to answer the question than he himself was. 


So Reb Shmelke and Reb Pinchas trudged through the snow to the Beis Midrash, to see Reb Zusia.  When they opened the door, they found the room freezing, and only one man sitting in it.  It was Reb Zusia, learning, with a burned-out candle by his side.  He looked up with his holy eyes, to see Reb Shmelke and Reb Pinchas. 


The two told him their question, and of what the Maggid had said, and Reb Zusia replied something like “How can Zusia answer that?  For, in his entire life, all Heaven has given him, has only been good.” (Quoted in Of Heaven and Earth: Stories of the Chassidic Masters)

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