Saturday, June 25, 2016

Sealed with Actual Tears


The United States Postal Service [USPS] in the late 80s - early 90s, confirmed that the Lubavitcher Rebbe received more pieces of mail each week than any other person in the entire country except for the President of the United States. What's amazing about this is that the US President has a whole team of people at the White House hired to open the mail being addressed to him, while the Rebbe personally opened 'each' letter addressed to him at 770.

Someone once suggested to the Rebbe that maybe he should at least use a machine to open these enormous piles of letters [arriving at 770 in huge mail bags each week from places all throughout the world], as the machine would speed up the process. The mail poured in each week from people of all walks of life, Jews, non-Jews, religious, non-religious, dignitaries, poor people, rich people, young people, old people, etc. Opening each letter by hand was very time consuming. And the Rebbe's schedule was much more busy than a normal person- the Rebbe barely slept, never took a vacation during his time as Rebbe, never left New York City during his time as Rebbe except on about two occasions to visit two different Lubavitch children's camps Upstate, and not one second was wasted.

And as the Lubavitch movement grew, so too did the mail grow.  [First it was confirmed by the USPS in the 70s that the Rebbe received more mail than anyone in New York State except that going to the State Capitol, but by the late 80s and early 90s Lubavitch was exponentially larger than it had been in the 70s.]. Yet when asked why not use a machine, the Rebbe replied that some of the letters were sealed with the actual tears of people writing to him, and he said that he could not open a letter sealed with tears by using a machine.

This was the exceptional sensitivity of the Rebbe to every person.

5 comments:

10rainbow said...

he reached out to non jews and the 7 laws like no one else ever had.
reading this made me want to cry. so much turmoil everywhere,
and no one around to lead. thanks for posting the article.

Devorah said...

Yes 10Rainbow, those were the days! Seems so far away now.... another world.

10rainbow said...

i dont know what to write devorah. it looks like evil is winning everywhere
and yet we know this is only temporary as HaShem is always in control.
this is one of the most difficult passages of time for people all over the world.
its a very thin line between hating the deeds of people, which is what we
are taught to do, and hating the people themselves. my orth. rabbis always taught
that its wrong to hate people as all humanity is made in G-d's image.
however, as R Meir's wife, advised him, we should only hate their deeds.

Anonymous said...

You know Devorah, the picture with this this wonderful Rabbi, carrying the letters from his followers/admirers/anyone... touched me deep within my soul.

Do not know how to put in words really. I have seen many pictures of his before, but this one touched me..

Wish i had met him..
10 rainbow, not to worry, there are still some people who care, but the special thing about this Rabbi was he included all peoples, Noahides and 'et al'

Devorah, thanks a bunch.

Have a good week ... and Hashem bless all.

joshwaxman said...

Is there any evidence that the USPS confirmed this, aside from the Facebook post asserting it.

Compare this, from 1996:
http://articles.latimes.com/1996-01-21/entertainment/ca-26913_1_fan-mail

"You do the best you can when you get 8,000 to 10,000 letters a week," says "Beverly Hills 90210's" Jason Priestley. "There aren't enough hours in the day."

If the Rebbe similarly received 8,000 letters a week, and spent just one minute opening each, that would be 5.55555556 days per week just opening mail. If he recieved 10,000 letters per week and spent one minute opening each, then that would be 6.94444444 days per week, but he couldn't because of the chillul Shabbos that would involve. Meanwhile, he had to eat, sleep, use the restroom, learn, meet with people, teach Torah...