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The headquarters of Chabad Lubavitch in Brooklyn, New York

Chabad ( Hebrew : חב״ד) or Lubavitch ( Yiddish : ליובאוויטש, Lyubawitsch) is a Hasidic group or dynasty within Orthodox Judaism , which was founded by Rabbi Schneur Salman von Ljadi (1745-1812) in the late 18th century. Followers of the movement are known as Lubavitch or Chabad Hasidim .

The dynasty is named after the place Lyubawitschi ( Russian Любавичи ), a village near Smolensk in the far west of Russia, historically located in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania , which was located there from 1813, when the second Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty Dov Ber , until the evacuation in 1915 formed the center of the movement during the turmoil of World War I. Its current center is in the residential neighborhood of Crown Heights in Brooklyn , New York.

“Chabad”, an acronym from the Hebrew Hochma (חכמה, “wisdom”), Bina (בינה, “knowledge, understanding”) and Daat (דעת, “knowledge”) are Hasidic groups for which these three terms ( Sephiroth ) from the Kabbalah are of central importance.

Chabad Lubavitch is represented with its institutions and emissaries (Schluchim) in around 70 countries. The number of followers is around 17,000 families, although several thousand non-religious Jews occasionally take part in Chabad activities.


The individual groups of Hasidism traditionally differ in the emphasis on different areas in the service of God. Chabad particularly emphasizes contemplative prayer and the intensive, systematic study of Hasidic teaching. Since Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson , significant efforts have also been made to bring the Torah teaching closer to non-observant Jews.

Together with other Hasidic groups, the Chabad philosophy emphasizes the service of God with joy (Hebrew Simcha ) and the task of human beings to liberate the divine sparks (Hebrew Nitzotzot ) through the use of material goods (this process is called Tiqqun in Hebrew Olam ).

The head office of Chabad was under Schneur Salman in Ljady , under his son and successor R. Dowber the seat was moved to Lubavitch. After the evacuation of Lubavitch during the First World War , the Chabad Rebbes lived in Rostov-on-Don , Riga and Warsaw until Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn fled to the United States in 1940. He settled in the New York borough of Crown Heights ( Brooklyn ), where his successor Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson lived until his death.

The central Chabad Synagogue , which is also located in Crown Heights, is also called 770 after its address "770 Eastern Parkway" .

Reliable information on the number of members of the Chabad movement is not available.

The book Tanja

The book Tanja by Schneur Salman is the central work of Chabad-Hasidism. It first appeared in Slavita in 1797. The name "Tanja" goes back to the Talmudic passage quoted at the beginning of the book , which begins with the word Tanja ("we have learned"). The book Tanja in today's print editions comprises five separate parts:

  1. Likkutej Amarim, also known as Tanja or Sefer Schel Bejnonim ("The Book of Average People ").
  2. Schaar HaJichud WeHaEmuna ("Gate of Unity and Faith")
  3. Iggeret HaTeschuva ("Letter about the return")
  4. Iggeret HaKodesch ("Holy Letter")
  5. Kuntres Acharon ("Last Treatise")

The entire book, and not just Part I, is now referred to as Tanja .

  • In Part I (53 chapters), as indicated in the subtitle “The Book of the Average Man ”, the main topic is the average person (Hebrew Bejnoni ) and his or her spiritual potential. According to R. Schneor Salman, the Bejnoni succeeds in sinning neither in thought, word nor deed. In spite of the external control over these areas, however, the potential for evil remains in the Bejnoni to its full extent and requires constant vigilance and combat. According to R. Schneor Salman, the personality of the Bejnoni is not a mere ideal but can be practically reached by everyone.
  • Basis for part II Schaar HaJichud WeHaEmuna (12 chapters) is one of the main theses of R. Schneor Salman: That belief and knowledge are necessary supplements in order to be able to serve God correctly. Man has to struggle to understand divinity to the limits of his own intellectual abilities and only apply faith beyond this limit. Part II covers u. A. the topics "creation out of nothing", divine essence and emanation, and Tzimtzum (Hebrew "reduction", "condensation").
  • Part III, Iggeret HaTeschuva (12 chapters), deals with the subject of the Teschuva (Hebrew "conversion", "return"). With R. Schneor Salman, the term Teschuva has a multifaceted meaning : from the turning away from evidently evil to the spiritual advancement of what is good.
  • Part IV, Iggeret HaKodesch , was added posthumously by the author's sons and contains 32 letters with no context in terms of content. Some of the letters refer to topics in Part I of Tanja . The commandment of charity (Hebrew Zedaka ) is a dominant theme. In addition, the need to study the mystical dimension of the Torah and a detailed justification of the Hasidic teaching are addressed.
  • Part V, Kuntres Acharon (9 treatises), was also edited posthumously by the author's sons. The treatises in this part are not related to each other and deal with complex theories of Kabbalah for the most part . The last two treatises (nos. 8 and 9), however, contain practical instructions for daily prayer, the instruction to learn the Halachot ( Hebrew "laws") of the Sabbath every Shabbat and at the same time not only observe the Sabbath according to the law but also to guard in its inner dimension.

The study of Hasidism in general and the “Book of Tanya” in particular is an important part of the study for Chabad Hasidim. A German translation of all five parts of "Book Tanja" was published in 2000 in Vienna.

Customs of Chabad

Chabad has group-specific Minhagim (Hebrew "customs") in some areas . a. in the books Sefer Ha-Minhagim Chabad and the multi-volume Share Halacha u-Minhag are presented and justified. Chabad has its own prayer rite (Hebrew Nussach ), which follows the rite of Rabbi Isaak Luria and was first published in 1803 by the Chabad founder Rabbi Schneor Salman von Ljadi. Unlike the prayer books based on the Lurian rite that had been printed up until then, the edition edited by R. Schneor Salman was not intended as a presentation of mystical Kawanot (intentions), but as a prayer book for practice and could be used without any prior knowledge of the Kabbalah . For this reason, R. Schneor Salman only printed the actual text of the prayers, without Kawanot . However, the liturgy follows the Lurian Kabbalah in every detail. R. Schneor Salman is said to have critically reviewed sixty different versions of the liturgy to determine the correct version of the liturgical text that conforms to both Halacha and Kabbalah. Originally published under the title Siddur Tora Or , the prayer book was later published in an expanded version under the title Siddur Tehillat Hashem .

Chabad and the Land of Israel

In 1823 followers of Rabbi Dowber, the second Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty, founded a Hasidic community in Hebron on his advice . The founding members included the Kuli and Menucha Rachel Slonim family, who was a daughter of Rabbi Dowber. In the course of the Hebron massacre of 1929 , the Chabad Hasidim who lived in the city fled with the other Jewish residents.

Rabbi Shalom Dowber and Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak von Lubavitch were opposed to the predominantly secular political Zionism of modern times; however, since the establishment of the state of Israel , the Chabad movement has been actively involved in the establishment of the state. In 1948 followers of R. Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn founded the village of Kfar Chabad near Tel Aviv on his advice . Originally, the local residents worked on their own farms. Today the village has around 2000 inhabitants. There is also the Yeshiva Tomche Tmimim with around 250 students, a Bet Sefer Le-Melacha for skilled trades with around 100 students and the Bet Rivka vocational school (for women) with around 1,000 students.

Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson rejected any territorial renunciation of parts of the biblical land of Israel, which in his opinion is reserved for the Jewish people. He saw in territorial compromises but also a life-threatening danger ( halachic technical term Pikuach Nefesch ) for the Jewish population and justified his rejection.

At the Israeli elections in 1996, when the Oslo Agreement and with it the possibility of territorial concessions were up for discussion, the Australian millionaire and Chabad supporter Yosef Gutnick initiated a private campaign to support Benjamin Netanyahu and contributed to Netanyahu's election success.

Chabad houses


Under the leadership of R. Menachem M. Schneerson from 1951, the Chabad movement sent married couples as so-called Schluchim (Hebrew "ambassadors", Sgl. Schliach ) to Jewish communities in order to support them.

The offices of around 3,000 envoys around the world are often called the Chabad House . Your activity differs depending on the location. Many ambassadors work as rabbis or teachers in school or adult education.

The structure of the Chabad houses is highly decentralized, the respective branches are largely run independently and do not receive any financial support from the Chabad management in New York. The Shluchim Office , based in New York, supports members with practical knowledge ( know-how ).

In order to get the highest possible public attention for their projects, Chabad branches often make use of radio and TV broadcasts, poster advertising, public Hanukkah ignition and websites.

Chabad in German-speaking countries today

Public Hanukkah chandelier lighting on the Karlsruhe market square 2016

Rabbi Jacob Biderman opened the first Chabad house in the German-speaking area in Vienna in 1980. In Switzerland, Rabbi Mendel Rosenfeld opened the first Chabad house in Zurich in 1982. In 1989, the first Chabad house in Germany followed in Munich under Rabbi Israel Diskin. In German-speaking countries, Chabad partly maintains its own synagogues , but all facilities work under the umbrella of the local Jewish community. Sometimes the Schluchim also work as community rabbis. In Germany there are Chabad branches in 14 cities, the largest center is in Berlin , others in Dresden, Düsseldorf , Frankfurt am Main, Giessen, Hamburg, Hanover, Karlsruhe, Cologne, Munich, Nuremberg, Offenbach am Main, Potsdam and Ulm . In Switzerland, in addition to Zurich, there are also branches in Basel, Lucerne and Geneva. Chabad sees itself in Germany, Austria and Switzerland as part of the unified church .

Chabad rabbis maintain their own rabbinical conference in Germany, the German Rabbinical Council , and thus do not belong to the Orthodox Rabbinical Conference Germany (ORD) - an organ of the Central Council of Jews in Germany - but can attend their conferences as guests. The permanent Chabad Beth Din (“House of Justice”, Hebrew: Court of Justice) Machsikei Hadat in Berlin has existed since 2011 .

Important facilities

Frankfurt am Main
  • Education and Family Center Rohr Chabad Berlin , with the following service:
  • Center for Jewish Tourists and Israelis at Alexanderplatz ( Chabad Israeli Center )
    • regular kiddush celebrations and Shabbat meals
  • Chabad Student Center ( Chabad On Campus Berlin ) for Jewish students, including American Jews studying abroad in Europe
  • New Jewish education center (“Bildungscampus Berlin 2013”, planned) with synagogue, yeshiva, day care center, elementary school, grammar school and teacher training in Berlin Wilmersdorf

Book publisher

Kehot Publication Society , based in New York, is the official publisher of the Chabad movement. The publishing house was founded in 1942 by Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn, the sixth Lubavitcher Rebbe. The name Kehot is an acrostic of Karnej Hod Tora (Hebrew "rays of the glory of the Torah"). The three Hebrew letters result in the year תק״ה (5505/1745), the year of birth of the movement founder Schneor Salman . Kehot currently publishes more than 600 Hebrew titles in the field of Hasidic philosophy. The publisher also publishes in English, Spanish, French and Russian. With the exception of children's books, Kehot only publishes books related to Chabad Hasidism.

The Rebbes of the Chabad Movement

List of Rebbes

  1. Schneor Salman von Liadi , 1745–1812
  2. Dowber von Lubawitsch , 1773–1827
  3. Menachem Mendel von Lubavitch , the "Zemach Zedek", 1789–1866
  4. Schmuel Schneerson von Lubawitsch , 1834–1882
  5. Shalom Dowber Schneerson von Lubawitsch , 1860–1920
  6. Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn , 1880–1950
  7. Menachem Mendel Schneerson , 1902-1994

1. Rebbe: Schneor Salman from Ljadi

See also: Schneur Salman von Ljadi

Schneor Salman from Ljadi

Live and act

The founder of the Chabad movement, Rabbi Schneur Salman, is also called "Baal HaTanja" after his work on the philosophy of religion, Tanja . In addition to Tanja , his shulchan Aruch HaRav - a multi-volume work of the Halacha - is of importance. Schneur Salman was born in 1745. The name Schneur means “two lights” in Hebrew. In retrospect, his name was related to his two main works - Shulchan Aruch HaRav in the field of Halacha, and The Book of Tanja in the field of Kabbalah . In 1764 he first traveled to study with Rabbi Dow Ber, the Maggid of Mesritsch, who in turn was a student of the founder of Hasidism , R. Israel Baal Shem Tov . In 1767 he took over the position of Maggid (preacher) in the Ljosna community ( Russian : Лёзна, Belarusian : Лиозно). In 1770 he began working on his halachic work Shulchan Aruch on the instructions of the Maggid von Mesritsch . To better distinguish the eponymous Schulchan Aruch from Rabbi Josef Karo , the work by Schneur Salman is called "Schulchan Aruch  HaRav ". In 1772 he began formulating the basic tenets of the Chabad philosophy; 1773–1778 he established a yeshiva for selected scholars in the city of Ljosna, where he lived and taught. In 1794 he published (anonymously for the time being) his first halachic work Hilchot Talmud Tora ("The Laws of Torah Study"), which was later printed as part of the Shulchan Aruch HaRav . In 1797 he published his main work on the philosophy of religion, the book Tanja . In 1803 he published a siddur (prayer book) following the rite of Isaac Luria . In 1812 he fled with his family and students from the approaching troops of Napoleon and died on 24 Tevet 5573 (December 27, 1812) in the village of Hadicz in the Poltova district, where his grave is also located.

Opposition to R. Schneor Salman and his philosophy

With the emergence of a counter-movement to Hasidism led by the Vilna Gaon , Schneur Salman attempted to meet the Gaon in person to discuss the allegations against Hasidism. For this purpose he even traveled to Vilna . However, Gaon, who viewed the Hasidic movement as a dangerous " sect ", refused to meet him. After Gaon's death in October 1797, his followers went so far as to slander R. Schneor Salman with the tsarist authorities. He was arrested in the autumn of 1798 on charges of high treason and interrogated for 53 days in St. Petersburg prison.

It is true that the serious allegations of the prosecution, which amounted to high treason and thus the death penalty, were the result of targeted slander on the part of opponents of the Hasidic movement. Schneur Salman himself was convinced, however, that the underlying reason for the imprisonment were the allegations brought before the Heavenly Court - against his attempt to make the depth of the Torah easier to understand and more accessible. His release from physical captivity, he later reiterated, was therefore a direct result of the invalidation of all spiritual allegations. What is more, this is a clear signal and a divine invitation to make Hasidic teaching accessible to the entire people. The release caused R. Schneor Salman to intensify his efforts to formulate and spread the Hasidic doctrine. The day of his release is celebrated annually on the 19th and 20th  Kislev . This day, known as “Hasidic Rosh Hashanah ”, is celebrated by Chabad followers with a common feast and the resolution to study the entire Talmud up to the following 19th Kislev (Chalukat Ha-Shass), divided into groups .

Schneor Salman was arrested a second time in the winter of 1800/01 after defamation by enemies of Hasidism; in this case, too, he was released after careful examination of the allegations.

2. Rebbe: Dowber from Lubavitch

Rabbi Dowber (1773-1827), son of Rabbi Schneor Salman, was the second Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty. Within the Chabad movement, he is known as the Middle Rebbe . In his numerous works he categorizes different forms and levels of meditation during prayer. His work Schaar HaJichud (Heb. "Gate of Unity") is an attempt to systematically explain the concept of God's unity with the spiritual and material universe and how man can include this topic in his meditation.

3. Rebbe: Menachem Mendel Schneersohn von Lubavitch, called Zemach Zedek

Menachem Mendel Schneersohn, the third Lubavitcher Rebbe

See also: Menachem Mendel Schneersohn

Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneersohn (1789–1866) was the third Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty. After his Responsen work he is also called Zemach Zedek (Hebrew "Scion of righteousness"). His first name Menachem (מנחם) corresponds to the numerical value of Zemach (צמח), his first name Mendel (מנדל) corresponds to the numerical value of Zedek (צדק).

Schneersohn founded the aid organization Chevras Techias HaMejsim to help Jewish children and young people in the imperial Russian army . These child soldiers were recruited for years of military service in the Russian Empire and were often encouraged to convert to Christianity .

He founded yeshivot in Dubrovno and Kalisk, where around 600 students studied together.

He collected important manuscripts from his grandfather, Schneor Salman von Ljadi, and published them under the names Likute Tora , Tora Or (both Hasidic commentaries on the weekly sections of the Torah ) and Siddur in the roof (commentary on Siddur ).

6. Rebbe: Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn von Lubavitch

See also: Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn

Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn was the sixth Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty. He is also known as Rebbe Rayatz (an acronym for Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak).

Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn was born in Lubavitch, Ukraine, as the only child of Rabbi Shalom Dowber Schneersohn (1860–1920), the fifth Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty. At the age of 15, he was made his father's private secretary. In 1897, at the age of 17, he married a distant cousin, Nechama Dina Schneersohn. In 1898 he became head of Jeschiwat Tomche Tmimim. With financial support from Jewish patrons, he founded weaving mills in Dubrowno and Mogiliev to create jobs for the Jewish population. During the Russo-Japanese War in 1904, he organized kosher food supplies for Jewish soldiers. Between 1902 and 1911 he was arrested four times by the Tsarist police for his activism, but released each time.

After the death of his father, Rabbi Shalom Dowber Schneersohn, in 1920, Yosef Yitzchak took over the leadership of the Chabad movement.

Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn was an open opponent of the communist regime and explicitly urged his followers to found religious schools and mikvaot (ritual immersion baths).

In 1927 he was arrested and held in Schpalerno prison in Leningrad. He was accused of counter-revolutionary activities and sentenced to death. A worldwide protest by Western governments and the International Red Cross forced the communist regime to convert the death penalty into a three-year banishment to Kostroma in the Urals. This judgment was also overturned, and in 1928 Schneersohn was allowed to leave for Latvia . From 1934 to 1939 he lived in Warsaw and Otwock in Poland.

After the German attack on Poland in 1939, Schneersohn managed to flee to the USA. There he settled in Crown Heights, New York, where he lived until his death in 1950.

In 1942 he founded the book publisher Kehot - s. above " Buchverlag ".

In 1948 Schneersohn founded the village of Kfar Chabad - s in the newly formed State of Israel . above " Chabad and the Land of Israel ".

7. Rebbe: Menachem Mendel Schneerson

Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the seventh Lubavitcher Rebbe (1987)

See also: Menachem Mendel Schneerson , Schneerson's Position in Holocaust Theology

Live and act

Menachem Mendel Schneerson (1902-1994) was the seventh - and for the time being last - Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty. Menachem Mendel Schneerson was the eldest son of the rabbi and Kabbalist Levi Jizchak . In 1923 he met his second cousin, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn , the sixth Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty, for the first time. In 1928 he married his daughter Chaya Moussia. In 1941 he fled to New York from the Nazi threat. In 1951, a year after his father-in-law's death, he formally took over the leadership of the Chabad movement.

Rabbi Schneerson received visitors several times a week during the night for private meetings ( Hebrew: Jechidut ). As the Chabad movement grew and the workload increased, Schneerson increasingly restricted these meetings. As of April 1986, they were completely abolished. Instead, Schneerson received thousands of people every Sunday, who individually received a US dollar bill from him, which was to be donated to charity (Hebrew Zedaka ). People often used this brief encounter to ask for advice or a blessing.

Thousands of young Chabad rabbis and their wives were trained under Schneerson and sent as Schluchim (Hebrew ambassadors) to all parts of the world to support Jewish communities.

Schneerson initiated a total of ten mitzvah campaigns with which Jews were to be encouraged to observe the religious commandments (Hebrew mitzvot ) more intensely . The laying of tefillin , the lighting of Shabbat candles by Jewish women and girls, the Torah study and kashrut were particularly emphasized .

In 1983, on the occasion of Schneerson's 80th birthday , the US Congress set his birthday as National Education Day (USA ) and awarded him the National Scroll of Honor .

In 1992, Schneerson suffered a stroke while praying at his father-in-law's grave. As a result, he remained paralyzed on the right side of his body and could no longer speak. In June 1994, Schneerson died in a New York hospital.

Posthumously, Schneerson was recognized for his life's work and for his "exceptional and sustained contributions to worldwide education, morality, and acts of kindness" with the highest civil honor of the US Congress, the Congressional Gold Medal .

The Messiah Controversy

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson took the position in his first published interpretation of the Torah (Maamar Bati Le-Gani, Jud Schwat 5710) that bringing about the arrival of the Messiah would be a task for his generation. The Messiah theme was central to his interpretations of the Torah for the next four decades. At Schneerson's insistence, other authors published about the arrival of the Messiah in the areas of Halacha , Hasidism and Kabbalah , in which the teachings of Rabbi Schneerson are partly taken up and discussed. In addition, work began on the anthology Jalkut Ge'ula u-Mashiach , which has so far collected in 26 volumes (as of December 2008) for each weekly section of the Torah all materials of the Oral Torah that have to do with the topic of Messiah and salvation.

At the beginning of the 1990s, the opinion spread among his followers that Rabbi Schneerson himself was that of Maimonides in Hilchot Melachim , chap. 11, described Messiah. Rabbi Schneerson, however, has apparently refused to discuss the question of the Messiah's identity and neither confirmed nor denied this view of his followers.

After Rabbi Schneerson's death in June 1994, no successor was appointed, among other things because Schneerson had no children and therefore a “natural” successor was missing; Subsequently, this unresolved succession and the disappointed Messiah belief after Rabbi Schneerson's death led to internal conflicts over the leadership of the movement. Even today, Schneerson's followers turn to questions such as marriage, worries about health, work and the like. with letters or a visit to his grave to their deceased rabbi as an intercessor in heaven.

In addition to Chabad, the Hasidic Breslow movement also did not appoint a successor after the death of its founder and spiritual leader Rabbi Nachman and still regards Rabbi Nachman, who died in 1810, as its leader.

The main building of Chabad Lubawitch in Kfar Chabad, Israel

According to a 2007 publication in Kfar Chabad Magazine, Israel , a minority of Chabad supporters called "meschichists" or messianists continue to hold the view that the Rebbe is still alive. However, the official Chabad leadership condemns this belief.

Rabbi David Berger, however, contradicts the statement that the meschichist movement in Chabad Lubawitch is a minority. In his study The Rebbe, the Messiah and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference from 2008, Berger addresses this from a halachic point of view and also describes the process that ultimately led to the condemnation of this belief by the Orthodox American rabbinical association, the Rabbinical Council of America .

Rabbi Berger is an academic expert on Jewish considerations of Christianity, in particular on the Christian claim to the Messiahship and the divinity of Jesus of Nazareth. He criticizes the, in his view, identical to Christianity claims among Chabad Lubawitch rabbis since Schneeson's death in 1994. It was not until 2014 that Rabbi Tuvia Bolton, the dean of the Talmud Academy ( Jeshiva ) from Kfar Chabad ( Chabad town ) in Israel, made the following statements : "The Rebbe is the Messiah, will come back as the Messiah, he was always here as the Messiah" . Berger proves that Schneerson does not meet the requirements of a Maschiach (Messiah) according to the Jewish law ( Halacha ), like Jesus, too. He goes on to argue that the claim that a person can begin his messianic mission, die and come back after death to fulfill it has ultimately been rejected by Jewish sages and scholars for 2000 years. In Berger's view, the meschichist belief stands outside of Orthodox Judaism.

The theological approaches of the messianists caused discussion within Judaism: the Rabbinical Council of America published a statement in 1996 in which they condemned their meschichist beliefs. In response, a statement was published under the name of the well-known Rabbi Aharon Soloveitchik , according to which the belief that the Messiah could be someone who has already died is not outside the guidelines of Orthodox Judaism . However, Soloveitchik later relativized this statement by emphasizing that he had not commented on the content of the Messiah debate, but only wanted to express that the dispute over messianism in the Jewish community should not lead to mutual attacks in public.

Rabbi Elasar Menachem Schach , a Talmudic capacity, referred to the seventh Rebbe Menachem Mendel Schneerson as a " heretic ". Continuously, from 1970 to 1994, he called Schneerson's followers the successor of a false messiah and accused Schneerson of establishing a hidden (crypto) messianic cult around himself. When some of Schneerson's supporters began to proclaim him as the Messiah , Schach called for a complete boycott of Chabad Lubawitch, its institutions, projects, and its kosher certificates. As early as 1988, Schach Schneerson explicitly named a meshiach sheker (false messiah). Elasar M. Schach also compared Chabad and Schneerson with the followers and successors of the false messiah Shabbtai Zvi from the 17th century.

The Israeli army (IDF) prohibits the wearing of meschichistischen Yechi tipping . "Yechi Adoneinu Moreinu v'Rabbeinu Melech ha Moshiach l'olam vo'ed!" (יחי אדוננו מורנו ורבינו מלך המשיח לעולם ועד) is a phrase used by Messianic Chabad followers (meschichists) to express their belief that Menachem Mendel Schneerson is the Messiah.


Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneersohn ( Zemach Zedek )

  • Zemach Zedek - Responses and Commentaries on the Talmud , 6 vol.
  • Derech Mitzvotecha (“The Way of Your Commandments”) - Reasons for the Mitzvot (commandments of the Torah ) according to Hasidic philosophy
  • Ohr Ha-Torah - 42-volume work with commentaries on the Torah and the Jewish holidays
  • Biure Sohar - Explanations of the Kabbalistic Book of Zohar
  • Sefer Ha-Chakira - Derech Emunah ( "Book of Research - the path of faith") - a philosophical work, similar to the More Nevuchim of Maimonides
  • Sefer Ha-Likutim - a kind of Hasidic encyclopedia with alphabetical entries, compiled from his works

Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn

The Torah works by Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn, the sixth Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty, are combined in the Sefer Ha-Maamarim series . This also includes Sefer Ha-Maamarim Yiddish with Hasidic Torah commentaries from the years 1941–1945, which were not printed in Hebrew as usual , but in Yiddish . Parts of his correspondence were published under the title Igrot Kodesch (13 vol.). In his Sefer Ha-Sichot (6 vol.) And Likkute Dibburim (2 vol.) He published numerous traditions from the Hasidic movement, starting with Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tow up to Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak's own childhood. He had heard these traditions throughout his life from related members of the Schneersohn dynasty or older Hasidim. Many of the traditional Hasidic stories are provided with practical instructions for the service of God by Joseph Jizchak Schneersohn; Sometimes he also locates it in the context of the theoretical teaching of Hasidism. In his Sefer Ha-Sichronot ("Book of Memories", 2 vol.) He describes many of these stories in a detailed version without theoretical deductions. The anthology of Chabad stories Ozar Sipure Chabad (18 vol.) Makes extensive use of texts by Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak.

In the years 1941–1945 Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak published the magazine Ha-Kria we ha-Keduscha , which was supposed to make the Jewish communities in the USA aware of the precarious situation of the Jews under the Nazi rule in Europe.

Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson

Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, the seventh Rebbe of the Chabad dynasty, always gave his explanations of the Torah in the 770 Eastern Parkway synagogue . They were published under the following titles:

  • Maamarim Melukat (5 vol.)
  • Likkute Sichot (39 vol.) - Explanations on the weekly sections of the Torah
  • Sefer HaSichot (10 vol.) - Explanations on the weekly sections of the Torah
  • Biurim le-Pirusch Raschi al ha-Tora (5 vol.) - Explanations on Raschi's commentary on the Pentateuch
  • Haggadah Schel Pesach (2 vol.) - Explanations on the Haggadah and the Passover festival
  • Hadranim Al ha-Shass (2 vol.) - Explanations on the Talmud

These works were all edited by R. Menachem M. Schneerson. The much more extensive edition of his unedited Torah interpretations under the title Torat Menachem - Hitwaadujot is in progress. There are currently 36 volumes available (covering the years 1951–1963; as of December 2008) in a new edition, and 43 volumes (including the years 1982–1992) in an old edition.

His letters were published under the title Igrot Kodesch (28 vol.), Parts of his English-language correspondence under the title Letters from the Rebbe (4 vol.) And The Letter and the Spirit .

See also


Primary literature
  • Roman A. Foxbrunner: Habad. The Hasidism of R. Shneur Zalman of Lyady. New Jersey 1992, ISBN 0-87668-526-2 .
  • Naftali Loewenthal: Communicating the Infinite. The Emergence of the Habad School. The University of Chicago Press 1990, ISBN 0-226-49045-9 .
  • Karl Erich Grözinger: Jewish thinking. Part 2. Frankfurt 2005, pp. 887-897; ISBN 3-593-37513-3 .
Messiah Debate
  • Elliot R. Wolfson: Open Secret: Postmessianic Messianism and the Mystical Revision of Menahem Mendel Schneerson. 2009, ISBN 978-0-231-14630-2 (English).
  • David Berger: The Rebbe, the Messiah, and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference. 2001, ISBN 978-1-874774-88-4 (English).
  • Chaim Rapoport: The Messiah Problem. Berger, the Angel and the Scandal of Reckless Indiscrimination. Ilford 2002, no ISBN available (English, a critical examination of David Berger's book).
Other literature
  • Simon Jacobson: The wisdom of Rabbi Schneerson , in Dt. Translated by Wulfing von Rohr, 368 pages, Gütersloher Verlagshaus 2007, ISBN 3-579-06521-1
  • Tzvi Freeman: Bringing Heaven to Earth. The wisdom of Rabbi Schneerson from New York , in Dt. translated by Wulfing von Rohr, Bern 1996; ISBN 3-502-61031-2 . The book is out of print, but can be read in full here .
  • Ron Horwitz: Beads for free removal , in: Jüdisches Wochenblatt [Vienna], No. 71, December 15, 2006, pp. 1–5; Article about Rabbi Schneor Salman von Ljadi and his teaching can be found here
  • Yosef Y. Kaminetzky (Author), Yosef Cohen (Translator): Days in Chabad. Historic Events in the Dynasty of Chabad-Lubavitch , 283 pages, New York 2005 (2nd, revised version), ISBN 0-8266-0489-7
  • Zusche Wolf: The Rabbis of Chabad and German Judaism. Admure Chabad we-Jahadut Germania , 282 pages, Jerusalem 2007, no ISBN. Book is in Hebrew, only an 8-page introduction is translated into German
  • Sue Fishkoff: The Rebbe's Army - Insights into the Chabad Movement. Edition Books & Bagels, Zurich 2011, ISBN 978-3-9523002-9-9 , extracts can be found here .
  • Carolyn Drake: The new force from Brooklyn. The Lubavitch Jews proclaim their message of piety with missionary zeal , in: National Geographic Germany, April 2006, pp. 146–159
  • Stefan Toepfer: Ancient wisdom for your own life. Listening, asking, disputing: Two new Torah and Talmud schools for men and women , in: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, December 12, 2001 [No. 289], p. 57; Full-page report on the Chabad learning tradition and the movement in general.

Commentary volumes on the book Tanja

Hebrew and Yiddish
  • Josef Weinberg: Schiurim be-Sefer ha-Tanya , Yiddish, 3 vol., New York 1992, ISBN 0-8266-5526-2 .
  • Yekutiel Green: Maskil le-Eitan , 14 vol., Kfar Chabad, no ISBN.
  • Adin Even-Israel (Steinsaltz): Biur Tanya , 8 vol., Milta, Jerusalem 1997, no ISBN.
  • Levi Yitzchak Ginzburg: Pniney Tanya , 5 vol., Kfar Chabad 1994, no ISBN.
  • Avraham Schmuel Bukiet: Neser ha-Tanya , 2 vol., Kfar Chabad 2007, no ISBN.
  • Adin Steinsaltz: Opening the Tanya (Vol. 1), Learning from the Tanya (Vol. 2), Understanding the Tanya (Vol. 3)
Literature on Chabad customs
  • Sefer Minhagim Chabad
  • Schaare Halacha u-Minhag (5 vol.), Machon Hechal Menachem, Jerusalem 1993
  • Yehoshua Mondschein (Ed.): Ozar Minhage Chabad (2 vol.)
  • Elijahu Jochanan Gourary: Chikre Minhagim. Mekorot, Taamim we-Iyunim be-Minhage Chabad (2 vol.), Cholon 1999 and 2005, no ISBN.

Web links

Commons : Chabad  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files
Links to the Messiah controversy
  • Comprehensive material on the subject of Messiah on the official Chabad website (in English)
  • Moshiach Talk Critical discussion on "Can the Rebbe be Moshiach?" By Rabbi Gil Student (in English)
  • Moshiachfacts unofficial Chabad Messiah site

Individual evidence

  1. Marcin Wodziński, Historical Atlas of Hasidism , Princeton University Press , 2018. pp. 192–196.
  2. Dr. Naftali Loewenthal: Contemplative Prayer in 20th Century Chabad ( Memento of the original from October 11, 2006 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  3. See Michael Chanoch Golomb, Schaare Limud HeChassidut , New York 1998, ISBN 0-8266-5284-0
  4. See the treatise Lamplighters. The Philosophy of Lubavitch Activism in Jacob Immanuel Schochet, The Mystical Dimension, vol. III , New York 1995, ISBN 0-8266-0530-3 , pp. 183-214
  5. See Sue Fishkoff: The Rebbe's Army. Inside the World of Chabad-Lubavitch , New York 2003, ISBN 0-8052-4189-2 , p. 13: There's no membership roster, no official census. Many reporters use the figure of 2000,000 Lubavitchers worldwide, but that's little more than guesstime. ("There are no membership lists, no official census. Many reporters speak of around 200,000 Lubavitchers around the world, but that is little more than an approximate estimate.")
  6. Kizzurim We-Le-Haorot Sefer Ha-Tanya , New York 1989, p 113th
  7. ^ The book Tanja, translated into German by Levi Sternglanz under the direction of Rabbi Jacob I. Biderman, Kehot Publication Society, Vienna 2000, 486 pages, ISBN 0-8266-6124-6
  8. Rabbi Nissen Mangel in the introduction to his translation of the Siddur Tehillat Hashem , Annotated Edition, New York 2003, p. XV, ISBN 0-8266-0152-9
  9. Rabbi Nissen Mangel in the introduction to his translation of the Siddur Tehillat Hashem , Annotated Edition, New York 2003
  10. For a detailed discussion and sources on this point of view see Karati we-En One. Sichotav schel Admur mi-Lubavitch al Schlemut Ha-Aretz, Jerusalem 2002, 749 pages, no ISBN
  12. ^ "Anger and incomprehension" , Jüdische Allgemeine, March 7, 2013
  13. ^ Central Council of Jews in Germany: German Rabbinical Conference
  14. Bet Din Berlin . Bet Din "Machsikei Hadat" Berlin. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  15. Homepage Chabad Berlin . Chabad Lubavitch Berlin. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  16. ^ Jewish Education Center Rohr Chabad Center . Chabad-Lubavitch Media Center. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  17. ^ Yeshiva Gedola Berlin . Yeshiva Gedola Berlin. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  18. Bet Din "Machsikei Hadat" Berlin . Bet Din "Machsikei Hadat" Berlin. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  19. ^ Philipp Peyman Engel: Five minutes with Rabbi Pinchas Padwa about the Beit Din in Berlin and the Jewish infrastructure . In: Interview . Jüdische Allgemeine, Zentralrat der Juden in Deutschland Kdö.R .. Accessed September 10, 2013.
  20. ^ Chabad Berlin-Alexanderplatz . Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  21. Fabian Wolff: At home on Alex . In: Jüdische Allgemeine . Jüdische Allgemeine, Zentralrat der Juden in Deutschland Kdö.R .. Accessed September 10, 2013.
  22. ^ Chabad On Campus Berlin . Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  23. Four new student centers in Europe . tachles - Archived from the original on January 9, 2015. Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Retrieved September 10, 2013. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  24. Brigitte Schmiemann: Orthodox Jews are planning an educational campus in Berlin . In: Religion . Berliner Morgenpost 2013. Retrieved on September 10, 2013.
  25. Julia Haak: A campus for Orthodox Jews . 2013 Berliner Zeitung. Retrieved September 10, 2013.
  26. ^ Rabbi Schneor Salman von Ljadi, Schulchan Aruch, Revised Edition, 6 vol. + Mafteach Inyanim, New York 2006, ISBN 0-8266-5199-2 (set)
  27. Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn: Likkutej Dibburim , New York 1992, Vol 1, p 26th
  28. ^ Biographical data according to Das Buch Tanja (German translation), Vienna 2000, p. 460; ISBN 0-8266-6124-6 ; and according to HaYom Yom , Bilingual edition Hebrew-English, New York 1994, ISBN 0-8266-0670-9 , pp. A8-A9
  29. Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, Likkutej Sichot, New York 1992, vol. XXX, pp. 170ff.
  30. ^ Letter from Rabbi Schalom Dowber von Lubawitsch, printed in Schalom Dowber von Lubawitsch, Igrot Kodesch , vol. 1, p. 259; Kuntres u-Maayan , Introduction, p. 17; cited u. a. in Menachem M. Schneerson, On the Essence of Chassidus , New York 2003, p. 46, note 61
  31. ^ Nissan Mindel: Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi. A Biography , Brooklyn 2002, pp. 130-160; ISBN 0-8266-0416-1
  32. ^ Nissan Mindel: Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi. A Biography , Brooklyn 2002, pp. 173-179; ISBN 0-8266-0416-1
  33. ^ Nissan Mindel (Ed.): The Letter and the Spirit. Letters by the Lubavitcher Rebbe , New York 1998, pp. XIII-XV.
  34. Public Law 103-457
  35. ^ Rabbi Avrohom Yosef Heller, Kuntres Hilchot Moshiach, New York 1989; Rabbi Avrohom Gerlitzky, Yemot HaMoshiach BeHalacha , Moznaim Publishing Comp., 2005, 462 pages
  36. ^ Rabbi Nissan Dovid Dubov, To Live and Live Again. An Overview of Techiyas HaMeisim, based on the Classical Sources and on the Teachings of Chabad Chassidism, New York 1995, ISBN 1-881400-18-2
  37. Micha Brumlik: Commentary on Chabad Movement: Preservers of the Jewish Heritage . In: The daily newspaper: taz . May 30, 2018, ISSN  0931-9085 ( [accessed May 30, 2018]).
  38. Kfar Chabad Magazine , No. 1221 of 7 Schwat 5767 - January 26, 2007, pp. 18–24, interview with Rabbi Yoel Kahn.
  39. ^ Rabbi David Berger: On the Spectrum of Messianic Belief in Contemporary Lubavitch Chassidism . Dei'ah Vedibur - Information & Insight - Mordecai Plaut, Yated Ne'eman, and other corporate entities and individuals .. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
  40. ^ Center for Torah Demographics: Identifying Chabad: what they teach and how they influence the Torah world. , Revised. Edition, Center for Torah Demographics, [Illinois?] 2007, ISBN 978-1-4116-4241-6 , pp. 8, 91-97, 112-113. Archived from the original on May 17, 2014 Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. . @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  41. ^ David Berger: The Rebbe, the Messiah, and the scandal of orthodox indifference , 1st pbk. ed .. edition, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, London 2008, ISBN 978-1-904113-75-1 .
  42. “the Rebbe is the mashiach, will come back as the mashiach, he always was here as the mashiach” (German: the Rebbe is the Messiah , will come back as the Messiah, he was always here as the Messiah ), Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Tuvia Bolton from Kfar Chabad , Israel, quoting from time stamp 42:63 and following. When The Lubavitcher Rebbe's Met With Israeli Politicians , Arutz Sheva. December 4, 2014. Accessed December 11, 2014. 
  43. Quotation from the time mark 21:40 and following. Messiah Hour (December 2nd, 2014) Is the Lubavitcher Rebbe the Messiah? (Part 2). . In: Messiah Hour , December 2, 2014. Retrieved December 11, 2014. 
  44. David Berger: The Rebbe, the Messiah and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference , Portland, 2nd ed. 2008, p. 69. The statement reads: In light of disturbing developments which have recently arisen in the Jewish community, the Rabbinical Council of America in convention assembled declares that there is not and never has been a place in Judaism for the belief that Mashiach ben David will begin his Messianic mission only to experience death, burial and resurrection before completing it.
  45. ^ General Journal , June 28, 1996, English section, p. B2; Printed in David Berger: The Rebbe, the Messiah and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference , Portland, 2nd ed. 2008, p. 70. The statement reads: Insofar as the belief held by many in Lubavitch, based in part on similar statements made by the Rebbe himself concerning his predecessor the Previous Rebbe - including prominent Rabbonim and Roshei Yeshiva, that the Rebbe can still be Moshiach, in light of the Gemara in Sanhedrin, the Zohar, Abarbanel, Kisvei HaArizal, Sdei Chemed and other sources, it cannot be dismissed as a belief that is outside the pale of Orthodoxy. Any […] attempt at utilizing a legitimate disagreement of interpretation concerning this matter […] can only contribute to the regrettable discord that already plagues the Jewish and, particulary, Torah community.
  46. ^ In A. Soloveitchik's second statement it says u. a .: I recently lent my name to a statement deploring attacks on the Lubavitch movement which has done so much for the Jewish people through the years. I regret that some may interpret my statement in a way that suggests that I was endorsing specific views or claims concerning Mashiach instead of regretting attacks against Orthodox Jews who might hold these views. I [...] continue to believe that Jewish unity and communal comity is poorly seved by our attacking each other in public. (Reprinted in David Berger: The Rebbe, the Messiah and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference , Portland, 2nd ed. 2008, p. 71).
  47. See Mechtavim v'Ma'amorim [Letters and Speeches of Rabbi Shach in Hebrew. Bnei Brak, Israel. 03-574-5006]: Volume 1, Letter 6 (page 15), Letter 8 (page 19). Volume 3, Statements on pages 100–101, Letter on page 102. Volume 4, letter 349 (page 69), letter 351 (page 71). Volume 5, letter 533 (page 137), letter 535 (page 139), speech 569 (page 173), statement 570 (page 174). See also here: Archive link ( Memento of the original from March 5, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF) @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  48. ^ Independent, The (London), Nov 10, 2001 by David Landau. [1]
  49. ^ Berel Wein: Faith and Fate: The Story of the Jewish People in the 20th Century. Shaar Press, Brooklyn 2001, ISBN 1-5781-9593-4 , p. 340.
  50. ^ Allan Nadler: A Historian's Polemic Against 'The Madness of False Messianism'. or Peter Schäfer, Mark R. Cohen: Toward the Millennium: Messianic Expectations from the Bible to Waco. 1998. p. 404, footnote 56. [2] . Michtavim U'maamarim [5: 569 (173)]. Jerusalem Post of January 31, 1993: Chess says Schneerson is a False Messiah.
  51. ^ Summer of the Messiah ( Jerusalem Report ) February 14, 2001.
  52. IDF Says 'No' to Meshichist 'Yechi' Yarmulkes . The Yeshiva World News - July 31, 2012. Retrieved December 16, 2014.
  53. ^ Zalman I. (Rabbi) Posner: The Splintering of Chabad , Jewish Action-The Magazine of the Orthodox Union. Edition, Orthodox Union, Fall 2002 (Retrieved December 16, 2014).
  54. ^ Rabbi Joseph Jizchak Schneersohn, Sefer ha-Maamarim Yiddish: 5701-5705 , New York 1986, 5th edition, ISBN 0-8266-5706-0