Translated by Rabbi Lazer Brody
Our sages tell us that Moshiach will arrive on the back of a white donkey. His arrival doesn't have to be following or in the midst of global conflict. Despite what's happening in the world now, Moshiach can still arrive in a pleasant manner...
Rebbe Natan writes in a number of places in Likutei Halachot about the power of song and the lofty spiritual source from where it emanates. In the Laws of Marital Relations, law 4, he writes:
“The main point of clinging and closeness to G-d is with voices that are the aspect of the ten types of song. All the sounds in the world are included in these ten types of song. These sounds are the main channel through which Israel becomes closer to their Father in Heaven. All the prayers, songs, praises, supplications, requests, admissions of guilt and words of endearment and appeasement, and all the conversations that a person speaks between him and his Maker in personal prayer, etc., are all included in the ten types of song, which are the ten utterances with which the Book of Psalms was said. As our Sages say, ‘with a song of praise, triumph,’ etc.”
Rebbe Nachman explains (Likutei Moharan, I: 205) that the ten chapters of Psalms in the Tikkun Klali are a rectification for nocturnal emissions.
The Book of Psalms includes all the different types of prayers and supplication. Most of the Book of Psalms is compiled of intense entreaties to Hashem, begging Him to help and fulfill our requests, and to bring us out of the depths of our worldly lusts and frivolity.
The main way to achieve closeness with Hashem is through prayer, as Rebbe Nachman writes in Likutei Moharan (II: 84), "Know, that the main closeness and clinging of Israel to G-d is through prayer. We see, then, that the main closeness and clinging of Israel to G-d is through the holy voices of song, praise, prayers and supplications…melodies and music."
So, if you want to get close to Hashem, you must pray, sing, and be happy!
Sincere Torah study is also a very good way to attain happiness.
Rebbe Nachman writes (Likutei Moharan, II: 2) that the main pleasure of the World to Come is thanksgiving and studying Jewish law, for through them a person becomes closer to G-d. The study of Jewish law has two aspects: one is the study of the simple meaning of the laws so that a person knows what he should and should not be doing. Observing Hashem’s commandments and knowing how to fulfill them properly helps us know G-d more and more. For this reason, Rebbe Nachman said that a person is obligated to study Jewish law daily and that if a day goes by without the study of Jewish law, that day cannot be rectified. Elijah the Prophet promises that whoever studies Jewish law daily will merit the World to Come.
The second aspect of study of Jewish law is the study of the laws of emuna. Emuna enables us to traverse this world with inner peace and guides us on the path of returning to Hashem. We learn emuna from the true tzaddik, the righteous spiritual guide in each generation, who teaches us how to truly serve Hashem.
So with prayer, song, Torah and emuna, we're really starting to smile from deep down in the soul. This brings us to happiness and invokes a special type of abundance, as follows:
A number of our Sages wrote that they hope not to be alive in the days that herald the Moshiach, since it will be a period of evil decrees and troubles. Rebbe Elimelech of Liszansk commented, "I am surprised at our Sages. With their holy sense of foresight, they were able to see the troubles in the days of Moshiach – but they didn't see that the soul of Rebbe Elimelech of Liszansk would come down to the world!"
Now, we can express the same idea: Our Sages saw the troubles of the days of Moshiach – but they didn't see Rabbi Shalom Arush's CD Stop Crying! They didn't see The Garden of Gratitude! If they had seen them, they would have known that it is possible to bring Moshiach with smiles, thanksgiving, song and praise. They wouldn't have feared the days of Moshiach.
A life filled with Torah, song, prayer and gratitude will certainly bring salvation to the world and mitigate all harsh judgments. This must be the main focus of our service of G-d. We must uproot all complaining and ingratitude and work on expressing our thanks and praise to Hashem, thus hastening the complete redemption of our people. Redemption depends on smiles, joy in serving Hashem, and expressing our thanks. Life can be easy and pleasant – if we only learn to be happy and thank G-d.