Based on Likutey Moharan I, Lesson 4:8–9
“There were some impure people who were [therefore] unable to make the Pesach sacrifice on that day. They approached Moshe and Aharon that same day. They said to [Moshe], ‘We are impure. Why should be worse than the other Jews and not be allowed to bring an offering to God?’
Moshe said to them, ‘Wait and I will hear what God has to command concerning you’” (Numbers 9:6–8). Rashi on verse 7 cites the Midrash (Sifri 9:22): Moshe spoke like a student certain that he would hear teaching directly from his teacher. Fortunate is one born from a woman, who is guaranteed to speak to the Shekhinah whenever he desires!
Rebbe Nachman teaches that there are three aspects of being close to a tzaddik, i.e., to having a rebbe-talmid (master-disciple/teacher-student) relationship with him. Seeing the tzaddik gives one more strength to overcome his desire for nonsense and to overcome his moping and sluggishness. The Rebbe compares this to a young child who drops his silliness and perks up when he sees his mother. When one sees his root, everything else can be dispensed with.
Giving charity, offering assistance, to the tzaddik humbles and enriches. One realizes that his gifts, as much as he uses them, are still gifts never fully his. Even more, he realizes that he has not used his gifts as fully as the tzaddik. One is then inspired to use his potential more fully to enrich not only himself, but others.
Furthermore, one’s new found humility helps him be more circumspect in his choice of words.
Finally, speaking to the tzaddik, telling him all that bothers you—your failures and frustrations in life, and in particular of your Jewishness unfulfilled, “Why should I be less than all the other Jews?!”—is the deepest part of that relationship. Everything else is preparation, clearing the way for this. Having removed the obstacles via the first two aspects, pouring yourself out to the tzaddik and entrusting your soul’s deepest concerns to him allows the tzaddik to give you what you seek: the guidance you need now to continue on the true road to your destiny.
Fortunate are we that we can forge a relationship with such a tzaddik, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov.
© Copyright 2010 Breslov Research Institute