Rav Avigdor Miller on the Ushpizin

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Q: 
We have a tradition that Avraham Avinu will be coming as a guest to our sukkahs on the first night of Yom Tov. How is it possible for Avraham Avinu to be in thousands of sukkahs at one moment?


A:
Avraham Avinu is in Gan Eden. He’s not מלא כל הארץ כבודו. You have to understand that. So what does it mean that Avraham Avinu will be our guest? It means that the shem tov, the dugmah, the example and the influence of a man is just like the man himself. Avraham’s influence should come into our sukkah and be mashpi’ah upon us. Avraham was a big oived Hashem.  He was a tremendous ba’al chesed. Avraham was ready to sacrifice his son for Hashem. So what we want is that all the shleimus of Avraham Avinu should come into our sukkah and influence us. That’s more important than Avraham Avinu coming into our Sukkah. If he came and we didn’t think about anything, if we didn’t think about who Avraham Avinu was, it would be a waste of time – a waste of a visit. But when Avraham’s influence comes, that’s more important than Avraham himself. And that’s the ikar.

Now, when we say that Hakodosh Boruch Hu is in the sukkah, that’s a different story. Hakodosh Boruch Hu is in the sukkah and you have to know that. Vi’shuchanti bi’soch Bnei Yisroel. Asher ani sho’chein bi’sochum. “I dwell among you,” says Hashem. And it’s true. It’s true that wherever the Jews come together, Hashem is there too. And that is 100% true. But when we say Avraham is in our sukkah, it means that Avraham’s example and influence is in our Sukkah. When we invite Avraham into our sukkah we are being mispallel to Hashem that we should be zoicheh to impress upon our minds the influence and the ideals of this great man.
TAPE # E-202 (September 1999)