Vol 27.07 - Shabbat HaGadol Spanish French Audio Video
The reason that the remembrance of Shabbat HaGadol was established according to the day of the week
(on the Shabbat before Pesach and not on the tenth of Nisan)
1. There is a well-known question that is asked regarding Shabbat HaGadol ( which was established as a memorial of the miracle which occurred before going out of Mitzrayim – the tenth day of Nisan, which at that time occurred on Shabbat – and which is like its occurrence this year(5746)
The question is: Why did they establish the memorial (of that day) on a day of the week – Shabbat, and not of the day of the month (the tenth of Nisan), “just as they established all the other holidays etc.”
And on the contrary:
The miracle of Shabbat HaGadol is connected to the taking of the lamb for the Paschal sacrifice, which was a commandment from G-d that was expressly predicated on the day of the month. As the verse states: “On the tenth day of this month you shall take etc.” – So, certainly the establishment of that memorial of the miracle should have been connected with the day of the month – even more so than the establishment of the other holidays?
The Alter Rebbe in his Shulchan Aruch cites the answer (of the Magen Avrohom): “Because on the tenth of Nisan, Miriam passed away and they established that day as a fast day when it occurred on a weekday”
Yet, since all aspects of Torah are quintessentially precise, it is logical to say that since they established the memorial of the miracle on a day of the week (and diverged from “way that they established all the holidays.”) – is
(not only because of a side issue, but also)
because the miracle of that day has more ( in Pnimiyut) of a connection to the day of the week than to the day of the month.
This is comparable to the explanation of the concept that “When the Yom Tov of Rosh Hashanah falls out on Shabbat, the shofar is not blown in the Medina (the synagogues in the cities and towns) because of the decree of Rabba (Rosh HaShanah 29b). – that the inner reason that “we do not sound“ is
(not just because of the decree of Rabba which is a side issue, but rather),
because when the Yom Tov of Rosh Hashanah falls out on Shabbat, one essentially does not require (so much) the sounding of the Shofar.
2. The understanding of the connection of the miracle of Shabbat HaGadol to its establishment on the day of the week is dependent upon, as is understood, on the (inner) reason that “all the holidays” were specifically established on the day of the month.
The difference between the days of the week and the days of the month is:
For even though that on the seventh day "He rested and was refreshed (shavas vayenafash)", the rest was, itself, a part of Creation. As the sages state, that after the six days of Creation “the world lacked rest” and “when Shabbat came, rest came” (Ba Shabbat ba menucha). Thus the “rest” of Shabbat completed (the existence) of the world.
The aforementioned difference between the aspects of week and month are also connected with the difference between the properties of “week (shavua)” and month (Chodesh)”:
There are no changes in the light and the circuit of the Sun, for this is in accordance with the natural tendency (of Creation) which is in a manner of “they shall not rest (Lo Yishbosu”) – Constancy, without change.
The Moon, however, is renewed every month (and thus the etymology of “Chodesh (month)” is from the word “Chidush (renewal)”. This alludes to an addition and renewal in Creation, which, in general, is the aspect of miraculous control, above Nature.
And this is the explanation why “all the other holidays” are established according to the day of the month, because the aspect of holidays (mo’ed) and Yom Tov, is a special revelation from G-dliness, which is above (the) Nature (of the world). Therefore it is connected to the days of the month (from the word “Chidush (renewal)”.
3. Accordingly, we can also understand why the miracle of Shabbat HaGadol is specifically connected to the day of the week:
The topic of the miracle of Shabbat HaGadol is explained by the Alter Rebbe in his Shulchan Aruch: “When the Israelites set aside their paschal lamb on that Shabbat, the first-born of the Mitzrayim gathered near the Israelites and asked them why they were doing this. They replied: “This is a Pesach offering to G-d who will kill the firstborn Egyptians.” They (the firstborn) went to their fathers and to Pharaoh to request that they grant permission to send the Jewish people free – but they refused. The first-born then waged a war against them and many of them (the Egyptians) were killed. This is the meaning of the verse (Psalms 136:10): “Who struck Egypt through its first born”.
There seemingly does not appear in this (story), any aspect that is contrary with Nature. That the firstborn of Mitzrayim believed the statement from the Israelites that: “(G-d) will kill all the firstborn of Mitzrayim” was not surprising. They witnessed the (warning of the) fulfillment of the previous nine plagues.
On the contrary, it is surprising that Pharaoh did not listen to them, and this is only because: “G-d hardened the heart of Pharaoh.
Therefore, because (their fathers) “refused”, - that which: “The first-born then waged a war against them and many of them (the Egyptians) were killed” was a natural outcome. Since their lives were in danger, they waged war against the Egyptians etc.
But, also the Bnei Yisroel did not receive an (open) miracle - namely, the rescue and salvation from Galut. Even after the miracle of: “Who struck Egypt through its first born”, they were not able to leave Galut.
So, what did the miracle accomplish?
A;though it did not have the aspect of reversing nature, nature itself changed on its own. For, instead of the tendency (nature) of the Egyptians to oppose holiness, the first-born of Egypt
(which represents the (primary natural) force of the Egyptians)
naturally nullified Egypt, (as it states:) “Who struck Egypt through its first born”.
Therefore, this miracle is specifically connected with the day of the week. Because its aspect is
(not an addition and innovation in that which is higher than the world, but rather)
to change nature (within) itself.
And therefore this miracle is specifically connected with the day of the week.
4. Even though the miracle of Shabbat HaGadol did not involve any aspect of a reversal of nature – nevertheless, specifically, this miracle is called: “a great miracle” (because of which, this Shabbat is called Shabbat HaGadol (The great Shabbat”))
For a conspicuous manner of “Great” – the omnipotence (bli gvul) of G-d – specifically manifests itself when nature is affected from within itself. So much so that it remakes within the nature of the world,
(the way that nature conducts itself according to the boundaries of nature)
- that it should be recognizable that: "kil'olam chasdo" ("for His kindness is forever").
And like the saying of the Sages on the verse:”Gadol Havaye u'mehulal me'od b;ir Elokeinu ("Great is G-d and much praised in the city (Yerushalyim) of our G-d"): “When is G-d great? When He is in the city of our G-d”.
(The explanation of the verse is:)
Thus, “When is He great” – when is the Omnipotent (aspect of G-d) great – “When He is in the city of our G-d”. (Note: when G-d’s Omnipotence is enclothed within nature).
But miraculous conduct which reverses and nullifies nature does not portray (so much) the “greatness” (gadol) of G-d (“Havaye”). Rather, it is specifically when G-d (“Havaye”) is enclothed within “Elokeinu”, (the manifestation of G-dliness within nature) and remakes the conduct of nature itself – that His kindness is forever ( in the world - 'olam chasdo") is recognizable. In this the “greatness” and omnipotence of G-d is conspicuously portrayed.
And this is the innovation of “Shabbat HaGadol”.
A plain “miracle” is not an aspect of conspicuous “greatness.”. When does the “miracle” become “great”? – when: “Who struck Egypt through its first born” - remaking the conduct of nature itself (from within).
(m’Sichas Shabbat HaGadol 5743)
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