Friday, October 28, 2011

The Tzohar Of Rav Mordechai Eilon

"עת צרה  היא ליעקב וממנה יושע"
איכה באה הישוע מתוך הצרה? אותיות  צרה  הם גם אותיות  רצה ו צהר  הצדיק מתוך רצון טהור לעשות רצון השם יכול להפוך חשכת  צרה לאור הצהר
 נועם אלימלך
"It is a time of trouble for Ya'akov and from (within) it  he will be saved"
 How does salvation come from within the trouble? The letters of the word for trouble צרה are also the letters for the words for will-רצה and  tzohar (the light in Noah's ark)  צהר
From the pure will to do the will of Hashem  a righteous person can  transform the darkness of misfortune  to the light of the tzohar.
Rebbe Elimelech of Lizhansk-Noam Elimelech  

This Shabbat is parashat Noach which is the parasha in which the word "tzohar" appears. I am always on the lookout for a new interpretation of tzohar (I already know of at least ten). My daughter was at the sheva brachot  celebration of the marriage of the son of Rav Mordechai Eilon last year on shabbat parashat Noach. She brought home a pamphlet with the dvar torah that the Rav gave which included a new (for me) interpretation of tzohar based on the Noam Elimelech quoted above.

First a few words about R'Mordechai Eilon. I consider him to be one of my Rebbes, one of the three or four Rabbis who most influenced me spiritually. When I was learning in Yeshiva in Yerushalayim I would go every week to hear the shiur he gave in the Yeshurun synagogue.Hundreds would come to this shiur. People would be standing in the aisles and three deep in the back. I would go a half an hour early to get a seat in the front.When Rav Motti (as he liked to be called) came in and took his place at the lectern you could feel the electricity in the air. Then Rav Motti would begin speaking in his deep mellifluous baritone and continue for an hour and a half without notes. His shiurim were a tapestry of pshat plus insights from baalai mussar and chassidut.I have never in my life seen or heard anyone with anywhere near the charsma of Rav Mordechai Eilon. In the quote from Noam Elimelech Rav Motti asks how can one be saved in a time of trouble. He knows whereof he speaks. Several years ago he was accused of "inappropriate behavior" involving two of his students. A self appointed "forum" of rabbanim and other leading personalities of the National Religious sector led by R' Aharon Lichtenstein summoned him for a hearing. Although he denied the charges he agreed to go into "galut" to the settlement of Migdal near the Kinneret. He agreed to this  to protect his accusers  so their names would not be  made public. His talmidim refused to accept this gezeira and flocked to Migdal to hear their Rebbe's Torah. Last year the Forum made the case public and Rav Motti came back to giving shiurim in Jerusalem and elsewhere. His shiurim now lean more toward pnimiut haTorah with Kabbalistic overtones and references to the Chassidic masters formost the Tanya of  Admor  Schneur Zalman of Lyadi founder of the Chabad movement. In the meantime he has had a hearing by the public prosecutor who has decided there is no case for an indictment.

This background explains why R' Eilon brought the peirush of the Noam Elimelech. From within his own troubles he found the strength to focus his will on disseminating Torah and through the confluence of  his will with the will of Hashem he became the tzohar la teivah, to bring the inner light of the Torah to Am Yisrael

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