Hi R' Locks,
I hope you are well. Just a quick question:
I understood by reading your books and articles and also by watching your videos that you took on the Hasidic costume, why? Why not stay simply Ashkenazi?
You talk a lot about Chabad, why are you not more into Chabad/Lubavitch? Is it because a majority of them say that the Rebbe is Mashiah?
Regarding dress, it is best to fit into the community where you daven (pray). Here, in Jerusalem my custom of dress fits in with both the daily Ashkenazi and Chassidic dress.
As for Chabad, the Rebbe said, "To please me, you do not have to dress like I do. You have to use your energy as I use mine." I never took on the customs of Chabad, but I have always tried to follow the good advice of the Rebbe.
The unique teaching of the Rebbe is having his Chassidim to not only love their fellow Jews, but to do something about that love. He taught them to follow up on that love by bringing Jews to do mitzvahs. This gives the Jews they find a unique spiritual opportunity, and it gives the Chabadniks a great boost in the eyes of Hashem.
Since you mention this sensitive subject, know that the Rebbe screamed on a number of occasions that his Chassidim should not call him the Moshiach (Messiah). He said, "You will ruin it for me." Once, he even told the speaker at a dedication to tell the huge group of his Chassidim that he was not the Moshiach.
This issue has caused great distress for Chabad. Most people assume that all of Chabad follows the ones who scream "yechi" and wave flags, but really the vast majority of Chabad, especially the ones in the field reaching out to Jews are following what the Rebbe said.
As to which path you should follow; one of the greatest Chassidim of the Rebbe, the holy Reb Mendel Futterfas was asked which path (religious community) was best to follow. He answered; "The one that gives you the most joy."