by Rebbitzen Rachel Wheeler @ Mystical Paths
Some reflections on the Yahzeit of the Rebbetzin Chaya MUSHKA, wife of the Lubavticher Rebbe and daughter of the 6th Rebbe of Lubavtich.
At an age when life takes place on Facebook, chat, smart phones and it seems it all reduced to a virtual world. When there is always constant hectic movement and change. In a time when everything (without any sorting between ikar to tafel, between internal to external, meaningful to nonsense) is reported non stop like one big reality TV show.
In a time like this reading about the Rebbetzin Chaya Mushka (AY”H) today (Kaf Beit Shvat is her yahrzeit) and to connect to her personality is like peeping into a different world. A journey in time to a world of emmes, messirut nefesh, modesty, and humbleness on a level that is inconceivable (“honour does not hold anything for me").
In order to write this article I reread stories about the Rebbetzin, stories that were told in awe by friends, acquaintances and visitors to her house who were hesitating to reveal her in knowing how modest the Rebbetzin was. She was hiding her greatness, her generosity her knowledge. It is very clear we have bits of knowledge about her greatness, we know a little about her being the right hand of her father The Rebbe Rayatz, and a tiny bit of the amazing stories of a noble Tzadeketh that she was.
I reread about the nightly meetings The Rebbe used to have with the Rebbetzin. Every night when he came home, she was waiting for him. Most of the time (very late) after finishing meeting with people. (Yechidus with the Rebbe sometime took place at 2 or 3 AM). And I was reading about the sanctified moments they shared with each other at their home.
This year I wanted to know how it was when she passed away 26 years ago (1988) (at that time I was still far from Tshuva), so I was reading almost everything that was published, I watched the video of the funeral, about the Shiva, about the mourning the sadness the shock that everybody was in. The cries of the Rebbe in the cemetery, the words of some Chassidim who said that they did not realize what a place the Rebbetzin took in the Rebbe’s life, and then I came across a picture of the Rebbe praying after the death of the Rebbetzin, ( a picture I had seen in the past) in his house on President Street and then it all started to look in my eyes in a different light.
Suddenly I felt that the picture was transforming into another dimension (like the dotted pictures that are transformed to a three dimensional vision) suddenly I sensed the Rebbetzin next to him, behind him, above him like a Ohr Makif (Surrounding light), with a lot of warmth and caring and love and support , like being one, suddenly the image of the Rebbe (that always was in my eyes so alone) now another dimension was added in my eyes. I saw the dimension in which he is whole with the Rebbetzin with him. (“Wow!!!, how come I didn't see it before? It was there but so concealed, who knows how many more dimensions of the Rebbe I still do not see?...) And then, this piece of testimonial about the “Yechiddus “The Rebbe had with the Rebbetzin every night , when they were sitting and talking (and probably consulting with each other) seemed so different, it did not seem anymore as a kind gesture of the Rebbe to his devoted wife who was at home when he was out there. Suddenly it became so clear to me this was his Yechiddus. She was for him as a powerful support after giving of himself to the rest of the world.
Suddenly the line “Eshes Chail the crown of her husband” got such a mystical powerful meaning.
And on the same subject from a different angle. I read a testimonial from a friend who came to visit the Rebbetzin on her birthday. The house was filled with flowers from all over the world, at the corner of the room there was a majestic bouquet, the visitor asked the Rebbetzin who had sent her the bouquet, and the Rebbetzin said with tears in her eyes and in a low voice “this is from my husband” (“mein mann” she used to call him) .
This small story is so intense. It’s like an essence of precious oil. So brief and so awesome. So much like the Rebbetzin. It tells so much about their relationship.
That we all will have the merit to have Simcha and be moved by the giving of our spouses (even after many years of marriage)
May the Rebbetzin will be a malitz yosher to all of us and her zchut will protect us to Geula soon.