Let My People Know

"A Tzadik has to bless and be grateful equally for all that is given"


There is a story about a conscientious rabbi who fell ill and was unable to perform his various duties properly. 

He consulted one of the famous Tzadikim and was told to hold a feast in which the main course should consist of cheese. 

The reason for this was that the rabbi had always had a distaste for cheese and had never eaten any, and, since according to Chasidic doctrine, eating is a process of raising food to holiness, cheese had remained neglected by the rabbi and demanded to be redeemed. 

Indeed, all the fussiness about food is a kind of defiance of God's abundant goodness, and a Tzadik has to bless and be grateful equally for all that is given. 

The task of transforming darkness into light and the bitter into sweet is a kind of self-sacrifice: 

The Tzadik does not have to do it.

He is actually out of it.

He himself doesn't suffer the darkness or the bitterness.

He does it for the sake of Heaven, to allow His Blessed Divinity to flow from above downward, to be clothed in those who live in the lower worlds.

–Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz
From The Long Shorter Way by Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz