Compiled and edited by Ziv Ritchie
Who is Moshiach? What will Moshiach do? How will he get us out of exile? How will he get us out of slavery? He will reach the utmost level of not being a slave to people, of not listening to anybody, not even to your own self, not to one’s stupid self. He will be mamash a servant of G-d completely. He will have the holy chutzpah to get the whole world out of exile. Why don’t we have the chutzpah to get people out of exile, to get the world out of exile? Sadly enough, we are not on the level, we don’t have the holy arrogance, we really don’t. We listen to ten thousand people. Maybe we listen to ourselves at the wrong moment. We do everything wrong.
The real humble people
Reb Nachman says that the people who have this holy arrogance are the most humble people in the world, the real truly humble people. Their arrogance is not because of “I am,” it is because “this is right,” – and this gives them strength. If I am doing something because I think it is right, or because you think it is right, then I am not humble anymore. When I wear a yarmulke, is it becauseI want to, because I believe in yarmulkes? It is because G-d wants me to wear a yarmulke! I am a Jew. I want the world to know I am a Jew.
I am not drawing my strength from my stupidity nor my genius. It has nothing to do with me. It is just that I know a Jew has to wear a yarmulke, and I am a grandchild of Abraham. This is holy arrogance, to do it just because the thing has to be done.
For instance, I walk on the street and I see someone beating up someone. I walk up, and I knock him off. I am doing it because that is the right thing to do, not because of “I.” It has nothing to do with me. The holy arrogant people have no “I,” they really have no “I.” The non-holy arrogant people also have chutzpah, but it is with such a big “I” that it is so disgusting, it smells so bad that nobody can have anything to do with them.
It’s written clearly in the Torah
Reb Nachman says that the real tzadik is someone who says a teaching, and later, when you look in the Torah, you see that every word he said was mamash written openly in the Torah. The question is, why didn’t we see it before? Now that the tzadik said it, we notice that it was written clearly in the Torah all along.
So Reb Nachman says, this is mamash a pasuk [verse] from the Torah, “You are leading the Jewish people with Your holy chutzpah back to the holy place.” The way King James translates it is “with your strength.” Reb Nachman says, it means, “with G-d giving us His holy chutzpah,” which is much deeper.
How will we get back to the Holy Temple? How will we do teshuva? What will Moshiach do to us? He will give us back this holy chutzpah.
A person without holy chutzpah cannot live
Now Rebbe Nachman says something very, very strong. Why is it considered like murder to put someone to shame? He says it is because when you put someone to shame you are killing his holy chutzpah. And a person without holy chutzpah cannot live. You are tearing out his heart. He might still be breathing, but the moment you cut off someone’s wings, you put someone to shame, you take away this holy chutzpah from the person, and you mamash kill him.
Be completely plugged in
Reb Nachman says, all Yiddishkeit, all service of G-d, depends on how much holy chutzpah you have within you. He says you must have holy chutzpah against your physical desires, against your spiritual desires, and you must have holy chutzpah even against the holiest dreams you have, and just do exactly what you know G-d wants you to do. You must be completely plugged in.
Reb Nachman asks, what is it to talk to a good friend? It is to take the little friend and instill into him the chutzpah, to give him strength to know exactly what is the right thing to do.
What is evil in the world? Imagine a person wants to learn, a person wants to do something holy. Evil doesn’t say that it’s bad. You know how the devil, so to speak, gets to you? The devil puts on himself the face of a friend, and he talks to you, and he tries to take away your holy chutzpah. Evil comes and says, “Listen to me. I’ve known you so long, I know you very well. You be holy? You be a good Jew? You be learned? Whom are you fooling? You won’t be able to do it. I know you.” Evil tells you, “Listen, you have to be realistic, and you have to know the world. And this, and that. Be sensible, see a psychiatrist...” and he gives himself the mask of your greatest friend. So Reb Nachman says, beware of devils who look like friends.
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Excerpt from “Rebbe Nachman Says”, The Teachings of Rabbi Nachman of Breslev as Taught by Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach z”tl
Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach’s books are available online at the Breslev Israel store.