Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Would the opposite happen?




A story from "הרב מבריסק " [The life and times of HaRav IZ Soloveitchik of Brisk] edited for brevity:

בערבו של חג שלחו להודיע למרן זצ"ל כי מונח עבורו אתרוג תחת ידיו של האדמו"ר הריי"צ שניאורסון מליובאוויטש, שהתגורר בקצה מרוחק של העיר, מרחק כמה שעות הליכה מאכסנייתו של מרן זצ"ל. הדרך הייתה בחזקת סכנה, כאשר כל העת חגים מפציצים כבדים בשמיה של וורשה ומטילים טונות של פצצות, שיצרו עם הגיעם אל הארץ עיי חרבות, וזרעו הרס רב. בחור בעל לב חם לתורה ומצוותיה, מחסידי גור, נדבה אותו רוחו והוא הציע חרף הסיכון הרב, שהוא ילך אל ביתו של האדמו"ר הריי"צ על מנת להביא את האתרוג. מרן זצ"ל הרהר קימעא, ולאחר שהפך בהצעה נטה להסכים לה, בהטעימו כי אם בעת צרה כזו ליעקב ישנו יהודי המוכן למסור את נפשו עבור קיום מצווה, אין הוא רשאי למנוע בעדו מלעשות כן. השעה הייתה תשע בערב, כאשר אותו בחור אכן יצא אל הרחוב המסוכן על מנת להביא את האתרוג. אולם, רק בסביבות השעה ארבע לפנות בוקר שב לאכסנייתו של מרן זצ"ל כשבחיקו טמון האתרוג היקר. הבחור סיפר כי האיזור בו התגורר אז הרבי הריי"צ ספג אותו לילה פצצות רבות, והרבי נאלץ לברוח ממקום למקום מאימת ההפגזות. כך יצא שרק בתום חיפושים מייגעים מהכא להתם ומהתם להכא, הצליח לפגוש באדמו"ר הריי"צ שנטל עמו את האתרוג היקר לכל מקום שאליו הגיע במנוסתו ממטוסי המלחמה. עם האוצר יקר-הערך שקיבל מידיו של הרבי, שב הבחור הנמרץ עם שחר לאכסנייתו של הרב מבריסק

"In short, they say, that a Gerrer Bochur ran around Warsaw on the night before Succos in October 1939 dodging German bombs looking for the Esrog that the Frierdige Rebbe N"E was guarding with his life for the Brisker Rov. The Rebbe had to run from place to place to avoid the bombardment. To highlight to the reader how rare an Esrog was that year, a line of thousands of people waited outside where the Rebbe stayed in order to fulfill the Mitzvah on the first day of Succos!

In actuality it was Rabbi Yosef Wineberg לאויוש"ט who was sent by the FR to deliver the Esrog to the BR.

Why the Rebbe chose to give this Esrog to the BR, although there were many, many other Rabbonim and Tzaddikim in Warsaw, many more friendly to Lubavitch than the BR, who would've gladly been the recipient of this prized esrog is not something I'll venture to answer. The Rebbe had his reasons, I'm sure.

My question is: Would the BR have risked his life and the life of a Talmid to do the same for the Rebbe?

30 comments:

avremel said...

Great post there, HT! I too read the book and was facinated by this tidbit. I had not read it in the annals of Chabad history, so maybe it was kept secret by the story's participants.

Maybe it was as an hakoras hatov to his father Reb Chaim for his devotion to the Rebbe's father the Rebbe Rashab?

vml said...

The hebrew version and yours contradict each other.According to the hebrew version a Gerer youth risked his life from the Brisker Rovs side.Where did you get the version of R'Weinberg having done it?

Hirshel Tzig said...

That's what I say in the post. Rabbi Wineberg in an interview said it was him. Maybe to the Briskers he looked like a Gerrer.

Hai Anav VTzaddik said...

sounds like another example of each side taking the credit for themselves. Personally, the Brisker version has more credibility because they are attributing it to a Gerrer (not their own kovod) while Lubavitch version is claiming the hero for themselves.

Jo Shmo said...

I agree with Duvi

Hirshel Tzig said...

Duvie, we're geting sidetracked here. The Brisker version is not more credible because they attribute it to an anonymous Bochur. Did they ask him וואס פאר א חסיד ביסטו? probably not. Also, you're technically calling RYW a liar.

RSD Raitchik aslo claims that the sons of the BR came to the FR for advise on where to flee. That too was left out of "הרב מבריסק". Does that now mean it didn't happen, because the Soloveitchiks choose to forget it?

AVREMEL said...

I think the Briskers put it in the book just to show how important the Griz was. Even the Lubavitcher Rebbe (!) knew the truth that the Brisker Rov was the most suitable candidate for the Esrog. They then begrudgingly give credit to an nameless, faceless, "Gerrer Chossid" for risking his life.

SHAMELESS, JUST SHAMELESS!

ce said...

Why look for conspiracies? People get stories wrong all the time - who cares if it was or wasn't a Gerer? Don't tell me that you've never heard of conflicting details in a story before.
I believe R' Weinberg because he was there, and would probably remember if it was him - whereas one who repeats a story that they were not involved in would not.
But the point is, would the BR have done so for the PR? I suspect that he would have.

LAJEW said...

Another post that is nisht gefoilgen, vozsha hakst du ah tshinik, and I was begining to like you. You know if you dont have a good post then tacharishun just remain silent

oich mir said...

Did RYW look perhaps like ah paylisher that he was & is??

vml said...

Generally Lubavitch versions of history are very suspect (see for example a well known 'Harry Potter' novel, which is treated by the Lubavitcher as 'authentic history', )Unfortunately, many other frum cirlcles also mix fact and fiction, (though they don't turn Harry Potter into Torah Misinai)
R'Weinberg may have looked like a gerer chosid, since I don't think that the modern Lubavitch style of dress (no peyos, short jacket)was the norm for Polish boys in the Lub yeshiva in Otwock.

vml said...

''AVREMEL said...
I think the Briskers put it in the book just to show how important the Griz was. Even the Lubavitcher Rebbe (!) knew the truth that the Brisker Rov was the most suitable candidate for the Esrog. They then begrudgingly give credit to an nameless, faceless, "Gerrer Chossid" for risking his life.

SHAMELESS, JUST SHAMELESS''
AVREMEL, you are a one of a kind.Brainwashed to such a degree that you don't realize how silly you come across. Let me explain why:You come up with a 'theory', you yourself admit that you only 'think so' you end with boldfaced letters of how 'shameless' this is, BUT you yourself are not even sure if your theory is correct, yet you scream.
Overdosed on the vodka spiked 'kool aid'?

Kurenitzer said...

Perhaps because they were both Lithuanians living in Warsaw. Also the comment about the chashivus of Reb Chaim to the Rashab makes lots of sense.
I guess given some comments attriuted to the GRIZ in Palestine he had litle love for Lubavitch.

Hirshel Tzig said...

A gut ovent tieyere leiner

VML says in short:

1) All Lubavitcher stories are suspect

2) Briskers are to be believed at all costs, even regarding their adversaries

3) anything anybody else believes that conflicts with him is "brainwash"

am I correct?

c said...

Please tell us the page the story is on for those who want to see it inside and in full, as well as mentioning the name of the mechaber of the sefer for those who are not familiar with it.

I think people should not jump to conclusions too hastily.Things are not always as they may seem initially (see what I recently posted in the comments on the Rav EE Dessler and Lubavitch thread for an illustration of this, when the reality was shown to be different than the initial report indicated).

Hirshel Tzig said...

C: fair enough, I deserve to be doubted, but hear me out.

The difference here is clear. The whole Hebrew part of the post is quoted from the book, whereas the REED post was just to bring out a point about REED's legacy, not so much the book.

c said...

Okay HT. Nevertheless, I might want to check it out inside. Aysios machkimays. So efsher you can give the page number.

If the BR would have done it - you have to think Litvish to try to answer that. :) We have to determine if doing such a thing would be a chiyuv, reshus/lifnim mishuras hadin, or maybe even ossur. Is it so poshut that it's mutar or a chiyuv to do such a thing in such a situation for someone else ? There a few things that have to be considered, lichayre, limoshol. 1) Pikuach nefesh. Ay shlucheim mitzvoh einon nizokin ? Heicha dishchach hezeika shaani. 2) Did it have the status of a shaas hashmad then? Remember that that was just the beginning of the war, before the concentration camps. ? 3) Is there a difference between doing a mitzvoh for oneself in such a situation and doing it for someone else ? 4) Can one endanger someone else (e.g. by sending a bochur to do it)? Let the talmidei chachomim say their deios on this sheila and give their reasoning. Once the sheila is paskened, maybe we could better speculate. But we still may not understand exactly the thinking of an odom godol - lev chachomim ein cheiker. Mayim amukim eitza bileiv ish.

Hirshel Tzig said...

to address your request for a page number:

Page 400-401 in Cheylek alef

btw, the way they address the FR is worse than what they give for stam Balei Batim, it's disgusting. At first it's האדמו"ר הריי"צ שניאורסון מליובאוויטש a Pareve loshon with Admor being only "a Rebbe". Then they write הריי"צ and nothing more! Of course the Griz gets מרן זצ"ל every time. Of course they should write it such by him, Lubavitch would be no different, but they basically put him the same as HaRav Hertzog, who gets הרב while all others get רבי , very nice of them.

Read it yourself.

Hirshel Tzig said...

C

דו פארשטייסט מיר ניט, איך מיין צו פרעגן צי דער רב וואלט עס געטאן פאר'ן רבי'ן אזוי ווי די רבי האט עס געטאן פאר אים, לאו דוקא בשעת הסכנה. טאמער ער וואלט געהאט נאר איין איבריגע אתרוג וואלט ער אים אוועקגעגעבן פאר'ן רבי'ן? איך בין שטארק מסופק

פארגעס פון די פשט'לעך, אף א מצוה מוז מען האבען מסירוץ נפש

vml said...

Tzig:You are correct that I view all Lubavitcher stories as partisan and suspect.As someone who enjoys history, REAL truthful history, I cannot abide by the Lubavitch fantasy world(I can't blame them when a Harry Potter style book is fed to them as 'history' with mothers milk)
You are incorrect when you claim that I believe the Brisker version, I thought I mentioned that other frummer also have a penchant of mixing fact and fiction.I don't know anything about the book you quote,I have no idea if it's reliable.You don't even bother to furnish a 'source' for your version.'R'Weinberg told a story' What's YOUR SOURCE?

The whole thing is pretty infantile:You want people to comment on whether the Brisker Rov would have done the 'same' WHEN WE DON'T EVEN KNOW THE FACTS (besides for none of the posters having ever had any personal experience or relationship with the B.ROV)

c said...

HT - By the way - I just wanted to comment by the post where you asked for things people want you to post about, but I don't see it - es iz neelom gevoren - so I will leave the comment here.

A while ago you wrote "The Tzig met his counterpart last night. It was very informative. More to come soon, iy"h." Will you be writing about that ?

Hirshel Tzig said...

C

I removed that post, it was no longer necessary, or so I thought.

I'll write iy"h tomorrow about our meeting, bli neder. I didn't think anybody was interested.

VML

You haven't read HaRav MeBrisk? I don't believe it!

The source is RYW, he told the story to a writer.

I think it's a fair question to ask

and please stopwith the Harry Potter references, I don't know what you're talking about and it sounds juvenille.

Hirshel Tzig said...

C

check the Dessler post, I added a long piece about Lubavitch in Ponovezh, Lithuania. Also there's much in the BM magazine about Chassidus in Lita, eye-opening stuff.

vml said...

אין יאר תרפ”ט (1929) האט דער פריערדיקער ליובאוויטשער רבי זצ”ל, ר’ יוסף יצחק שניאורסאהן, באזוכט ארץ ישראל, און ביי זיין אנקומען אין ירושלים האט ער אפגעשטאט א באזוך ביי הרב קוק זצ”ל. די באגעגעניש צווישען זיי איז געווען זייער א פריינטליכע און הארציקע. זיי האבען געשמועסט געמיטליך, ביז דער “נאמן בית” פון הרב קוק, ר’ אברהם צ’צ’יק ז”ל, האט געבראכט כיבוד צום טיש - “מזונות” און פירות, צווישען זיי אויך באנאנעס. און דא איז אויסגעבראכען א הלכה’דיגע “מחלוקת” צווישען די צוויי גדולים, וואס פאר א ברכה מאכט מען אויף באנאנעס - “העץ” אדער “האדמה”. א לענגערע צייט האבען זיי זיך מפלפל געווען און געבראכט פארשידענע ראיות אהער און אהין, ביז דער ליובאוויטשער רבי האט איינגעשטימט מיט דער מיינונג פון הרב קוק, אז מען דארף מאכען “האדמה”. און כדי צו איבערצייגען, אז זיין איינשטימיקייט איז אן אויפריכטיגע, איז הגם ער האט שוין פריער טועם געווען פירות “העץ”, האט ער גענומען א שטיקעל באנאנע און געמאכט בקול די ברכה “בורא פרי האדמה”.

דורך דער צייט וואס דער ליובאוויטשער רבי זצ”ל האט פארבראכט אין ירושלים, האט ער נאך אייניקע מאל זיך באגעגנט מיט הרב קוק, און פארשטענדליך, אז אויך הרב קוק האט באזוכט דעם ליובאוויטשער רבי אין זיין אכסניא, און זיי האבען פארשטארקט און באפעסטיגט זייער פריינטשאפט.

this is off topic, but I'm curious to know if it's true, feel free to mek ess ois if u want

Hirshel Tzig said...

The visits or the pilpul about bananas?

The Rebbe did visit him and did get a return visit. The kanoyim were incredulous.

avremel said...

There's a story that R' Menachem Porush tells that goes as follows: After the creation of the State of Israel he was to travel to the US. Before he left he was called to the home of the BR who sent him on a mission to the FR. Zalman Rubashov aka Shazar was then I believe the education minister. The ministry wanted to abolish all Yiddish-speaking Chadorim, or something to that effect. The BR asked RMP to go to the FR and ask him to use his influence with ZS to allow Yiddish-speaking Chadorim to continue unhindered. When he came to the Rebbe he said he has a Shlichus of the BR. The FR asked him incredulously: Di Brisker Rov hut eich geshikt tsu MIR? After cinfirming the shlichus the Rebbe said he'll do what he can. V'kach Hava.

What that has to do with the Esrog story, I don't know, but it's nice.

VML said...

The pilpul with the banans I meant.

Hirshel Tzig said...

Is that too dificult to imagine?

Oh, I get it, you don't believe the Rebbe could be Mifalpel with RK? A Chossid ken nit lernen, eh?

avremel said...

They say that the three Brisker Rabbonim L'Bais Soloveitchik had three different approaches to Chassidim and Chassidus:

I may be confusing the three, but the vort iz an emesser

1) The Bais HaLevi liked Chassidus but not Chassidim

2) Reb Chaim liked Chassidim but not Toras HaChassidus

3) The Brisker Rov Reb Velevel liked neither Chassidus nor Chasidim.

This may be part of the answer. If you don't like someone and you don't like what he's "pushing", namely Chassidus, then you don't save Esrogim for him.

Ay, why the Rebbe showed such Ahavas Yisroel? a shvacher kashe....

Chabad Historian said...

And i'd add that "The Rov" liked both Chassidim and Chassidus...