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The Lubavitcher Rebbe on enlightenment

       Rabbi Menachem-Mendl Schneerson, a recognized leader and teacher, known throughout the world as the Lubavitcher Rebbe, possessed profound both spiritual and secular knowledge. The strength of his teaching is that it is a development of the centuries-old tradition of the Torah - the same Torah whose steadfast truths have been the foundation of humanity since its inception. The rabbi's spiritual heritage reflects his unique personality, because it is an amazing combination of warmth and strength, simplicity of presentation and depth of thought. One of the most impressive features of the talent of the Lubavitcher Rebbe is the ability to reveal the hidden connection of phenomena, lift the veil over the mundane facts of life and grasp the divine integrity of the surrounding world.

Contribution of Rabbi Menachem-Mendel Schneerson to 

the development of Jewish education in the Diaspora countries was enormous. In just over four decades of his leadership, more than two thousand educational institutions were opened all over the world on the initiative and with the comprehensive support of the Lubavitcher Rebbe. In 1976, which he declared the "Year of Education", the Rebbe began a special educational project.

The result of its implementation that year was dozens of new Jewish schools and children's educational and recreational camps, educational programs. In 1978, Rabin's birthday was declared Education Day in the USA. Since then, this day is celebrated annually.


Give the youth education according to his level, then, even when he grows old, he will not turn away from it


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Why is enlightenment necessary?

If there is a factor that we can regulate and that can influence us as a people, it is education. Enlightenment is the foundation of civilization. In order to raise healthy and highly moral people who will lead ascetic lives full of meaning, we must raise our children. Enlightenment is learning not only the art of living, but also the understanding of life.

What is life? This is the recognition of G-d and the mission that He entrusted to us - self-improvement and exaltation of our world.

True enlightenment is something that penetrates the depths of a person. It is what gives a person the ability to apply the information received in order to become smarter, more fruitful in thoughts and actions. We teach children various sciences so that they can think logically and understand the physical properties of the world they live in; to exchange ideas, conduct and develop business. But none of the sciences foresees a mandatory influence on morality, which the child is guided by in everyday life. The transmission of information is only one and quite simple component of enlightenment. True, vital enlightenment consists in teaching children that they must bear responsibility before G-d for observing the moral and ethical standards of life. This will provide them with individual support and contribute to the creation of a better world for their children and future generations, so long before children go to school, they should be taught good manners, the ability to distinguish between good and evil. It is much more difficult to influence an already formed personality that has defined a system of values for itself, to influence its worldview.

Enlightenment is life itself, and it does not end as long as a person lives. Formal education can be obtained after finishing school, but education becomes more intensive as we gain life experience and a deeper awareness of our place in the world. No matter how old we are or how advanced we are in intellectual development, we must always ask ourselves: how do I understand the inner meaning of life, how happy am I? Many of us may be surprised to learn how incredibly young we are in our spirituality, how much we still have to learn about our soul and the development of our relationship with G-d.


How to educate?

The question "How to educate?" similar to the questions "How to communicate?", "How to earn money?", finally, "How to live?" The answer to these questions will always be the same: through love. Of course, education requires discipline, but even within the limits of this discipline, the student must feel the teacher's love. In the Talmud it is said: "Support with the right hand and punish with the left" (Talmud, Sota, 47a). The main force symbolized by the dominant right hand is always love.

Such education is characterized by strictness, requires intellectual and emotional stress. But when young people, who are familiar with G-d and inclined to the spiritual, begin to understand its essence, they adjust to a higher meaning of life. They become people connected to their parents with respect and love. People who do not claim someone else's property. People who extend a helping hand to others generously give them their time and their love.

A true educator is not one who simply reports facts, but one who teaches a child to think, to find answers to questions in accordance with the principles he was taught, and not to depend entirely on parents or teachers when solving problems that he has to face in life . If you always have someone else answer your questions, you may be able to avoid responsibility for the error. But if you learn to think for yourself, then you will get deep satisfaction, reporting to yourself that you are acting on your own initiative. This is consistent with God's reasons for creating the world. Let's remember that the world was not created so that puppets could act out a pre-prepared scenario, but so that every person has the right to his own opinion and the freedom to act honestly and effectively.

Learning requires modesty. In most cases, the teacher is not a source, but only a means of transmitting information coming from a wider repository. He should never feel proud of the fact that it fell to him to spread knowledge. However, the opportunity to involve children in knowledge allows him to feel happy. At the same time, it is necessary to remember the following. Words that come from the heart enter the heart. A teacher must think what to say and serve as a living example of what he teaches.

When working with any child, the teacher must accurately determine and develop his potential, without attributing to him the abilities that, in our opinion, he should possess. The task is to raise a person who can stand on his own feet, not on yours. We often think that a person will keep absolute, dogmatic values from childhood for the rest of his life. This is only half the battle. Yes, these values must be expressed, expressed in the child's language, so that they become part of him, merge together with his personality, penetrate into his spirit.



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