At the outset of the shiur the Rav said that we shouldn’t be upset when tzaddikim are niftar from this world. But shouldn’t we be upset because we don’t have their guidance and also that we don’t have the protection they give us by just existing?
It’s a good question. Shouldn’t we have been upset when, let’s say, the Chofetz Chaim passed away? Shouldn’t we be upset that a great man passed away? That we’re missing his guidance, his wisdom?
But suppose the tzaddik would have said, “I’m resigning. I’m not going to give any more advice to anybody. I’m going into a hermitage.” Nobody would weep that much. We weep mostly because of commiseration; sympathy for the fact that a great man lost his life.
Of course, the truth is that when a tzaddik goes lost, it’s a loss for us. The mere fact that he lived was a benefit for us. Even if a tzaddik doesn’t speak a word, his presence on this earth is a benefit for us.
However, there’s a certain limit for our mourning. After that limit is passed we are consoled because we know the tzaddik is in Gan Eden. We cannot imagine the happiness of the reward in the afterlife. No matter what you’ll say, you’re going to understate it. It’s such an eternal ecstasy that the tzaddik is enjoying right now that it’s impossible to have sympathy for him now.
Now, let’s say, the Chofetz Chaim; I remember when he passed away. I was present at the hesped in Kovno. After all these years, am I going to weep that he passed away? He wouldn’t live forever. He’s in the next world. The only thing I can do is envy him. That’s all I can do; I’m jealous of him; of his happiness, of his success forever and ever.
And so, that’s how we should view all the things in this world – as Hashem views them. And everything in this world is nothing but a preparation for our great career in the World To Come.
TAPE # E-43