The Paper Chicken
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From the Chassidic Masters
Once, on the evening beforeYom Kippur, one of the chassidim of Rabbi Elimelech of Lizensk asked his Rebbe to allow him to see how he, Rabbi Elimelech, observes the custom of kaparot. “How I do kaparot?” repeated Rabbi Elimelech. “How do youdo kaparot?” “I am an ordinary Jew — I do what everyone else does. I hold the rooster in one hand, the prayer bookRead More
An Etrog from the Garden of Eden
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By Nissan Mindel
It was the first day of Sukkot, and all the congregants in the shul(synagogue) of Rabbi Elimelech of Lizensk were in a festive mood. One could feel the “Yom-Tov” spirit in the atmosphere. As Rabbi Elimelech stood at the lectern and began reciting Hallel, all eyes turned upon him. There was something unusual in his manner this Sukkot. Why did he stop so suddenly inRead More
Your Fellow’s Place
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Ethics 2:4
By Yanki Tauber
“Do not judge your fellow,” the great sage Hillel is quoted in the 2nd chapter of Ethics of the Fathers, “until you have reached his place.” One thought that comes to mind when contemplating this statement is that a person can never truly be in his fellow’s place. If that be the case, then what Hillel is really saying is, “don’t judge your fellow,Read More
A Bundle of Greens
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By Yerachmiel Tilles
Reb Eliezer Lippa was a simple but devout Jew who lived in the town of Taranow in Galicia. He was not well versed in Torah and didn’t know the meaning of most of his daily prayers, but he always prayed with the minyan(prayer quorum) and he was scrupulous to say all the proper responses to the prayer leader. He never conversed about worldly mattersRead More
A Rich Man’s Hospitality
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As told by Yanki Tauber
For many years the two saintly brothers, RabbiElimelech of Lizensk and Rabbi Zusha of Anipoli, wandered the back roads of Galicia. Disguised as simple beggars, they journeyed from town to town and from village to village, refining their souls with the travails of exile and inspiring their brethren with words of wisdom and encouragement. Late one evening, the brothers arrived in the townRead More
Telling the Truth
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The visitor from Hungary stopped a passerby on a street in the town of Lisensk with the query: “Can you please direct me to the home of the great Rabbi Elimelech?” The man raised his eyeslids in astonishment: “You mean to tell me that you journeyed all the way from Hungary to see this ‘Rebbe of Lisensk’?! Have the exaggerations and embellishments about this man traveled thatRead More
The Joy of a Mitzvah
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By Yossy Gordon
The two brothers, the famed Rabbi Elimelech of Lizensk and Rabbi Zushe of Anipoli, often wandered about together posing as simple beggars. They would mingle with the masses; listening, teaching, speaking, helping and guiding whomever and whenever they could. Once while traveling with a group of vagabonds, members of the group were accused of being thieves, resulting in the entire bunch being thrown into jail.Read More