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3 Adar I 5763 - February 5, 2003 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly








Rav Yisroel Salanter's Teachings In Yerushalayim -- The Beis Hamussar and Yeshivas Or Chodosh, Founded By Talmidim Of The Alter Of Kelm

by B. Re'eim

120th Yahrtzeit of HaRav Yisroel Salanter: 25 Shvat

From Kelm To The Old City

In his introduction to HaRav Yisroel Salanter's Or Yisroel, HaRav Yitzchok Blazer zt'l writes that some of the greatest among his rebbe's talmidim, "followed his holy path and worked to spread his teachings and his goodly approach to mussar to benefit the public and to draw their souls closer to the study of the fear of Heaven and of mussar. A spark of this light also went to illuminate the east, the holy site, Tzion and Yerushalayim. There too, there was a remnant to whom Hashem called, disciples of his disciples, who dwell in the tent of Torah and engage in Torah debate. They instituted the holy path of the study of mussar and yir'oh among themselves and through them, light shone forth. May they succeed in swelling their ranks, through Torah and the pure fear of Heaven."

Yerushalayim over a hundred years ago was peopled predominantly by the members of the old yishuv. It was a town filled with Torah sages and righteous Jews, whose days and nights were devoted to Torah, prayer and serving Hashem. This article examines how the disciples of Kelm established their Beis Hamussar and the niche that it established and the manner in which the residents of the holy city received it.

The Founders

Two outstanding talmidim of the Alter of Kelm zt'l, HaRav Shmuel Hillel Sheinker zt'l, and HaRav Boruch Marcus zt'l (who later became rov of Haifa), arrived in Yerushalayim in 5652 (1892) (nine years after Rav Yisroel Salanter's petiroh)) settling in Chotzer Strauss in the Old City. This was a spacious yard surrounded by houses that was home to many outstanding Torah scholars and mussar luminaries.

The chotzer was built by the well-to-do and righteous Rav Shmuel Strauss zt'l. Among its residents were HaRav Blazer (Rav Itzele Peterburger) himself and HaRav Naftoli Amsterdam zt'l, both of whom were among Rav Yisroel Salanter's closest talmidim. The Or Torah journal, published by Yeshivas Or Chodosh in 5659 (1899) contains a dedication to, "the rov and man of means, the tzaddik, one of the individuals in whom Klal Yisroel can glory, Reb Shmuel Strauss, who purchased a large courtyard and settled young rabbonim in it, supporting them with his every means; he merited that the sound of Torah of gedolei Yisroel in his chotzer is never interrupted."

The newcomers opened a Beis Hamussar in the chotzer, which attracted the residents of Yerushalayim who thirsted for any and every extra drop of yiras Shomayim. Later, in 5657 (1897), Yeshivas Or Chodosh was opened. In time, "it became a kollel and was an important center for Torah and mussar, with the Torah journal Or Torah being published by HaRav Avrohom Aharon Sonnenfeld zt'l (a son of HaRav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfled zt'l).

Rav Sheinker was closely connected to the mussar movement. He was the son of the gaon and tzaddik HaRav Avrohom Tan'is Sheinker zt'l, one of Rav Yisroel's greatest talmidim. In 5642 (1882) as an eight- year-old, Rav Shmuel Sheinker had received a blessing from Rav Yisroel Salanter, in the last year of the latter's life. Rav Yisroel had rested his hands upon the child and blessed him.

Seventy years later in 5713 (1953), Rav Shmuel Hillel participated in a large gathering of scholars of Torah and mussar held in Yeshivas Meah Sheorim in Yerushalayim. HaRav Eliyohu Dessler zt'l opened his remarks by mentioning that he was speaking in the presence of Rav Shmuel, who had merited making Rav Yisroel's acquaintance and who, as a talmid of the Alter of Kelm, had followed his rebbe's instructions and opened the first Beis Hamussar in Yerushalayim which had been a training ground for the great personalities of Yerushalayim who developed within it.

Among those who used to frequent the Beis Hamussar were such luminaries as HaRav Tzvi Pesach Frank zt'l, HaRav Yonah Rom zt'l, HaRav Avrohom Chaim Cheshin zt'l, HaRav Yeshayah Cheshin zt'l, HaRav Mordechai Leib Rubin zt'l (av beis din in Yerushalayim), HaRav Leib Todros zt'l, HaRav Chaim Man zt'l, HaRav Yosef Shimshelevitz zt'l, and many others.

Support Of The Gedolei Yisroel

From the letters they wrote in support of the Beis Hamussar, it is clear that the gedolei Torah of Eretz Yisroel esteemed it very highly. Rav Blazer wrote that it was, "a firm bastion for Torah and yir'oh." HaRav Moshe Mordechai Epstein zt'l, rosh yeshivas Knesses Yisroel-Chevron wrote, "Much Torah-light has emanated from this fine institution, which was founded to further Torah and yir'oh in the holy city."

In 5685 (1925), HaRav Shimon Shkop zt'l wrote in a letter that he wished to settle in Eretz Yisroel and that he was looking for a means of disseminating Torah there. His friend HaRav Yehuda Leib Chasman zt'l mentioned Yeshivas Or Chodosh to him and asked Rav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld's opinion as to Reb Shimon's suitability for the institution. HaRav Chaim Ozer Grodzensky zt'l also lent the yeshiva his support, as did the Gerrer Rebbe the Imrei Emes zt'l, HaRav Yosef Tzvi Dushinsky zt'l and other gedolim.

In the winter of 5659 (1899), the scholars of the beis hamedrash asked HaRav Sonnenfeld to accept the position of rosh yeshiva, to which he agreed. He headed both the yeshiva and the kollel, delivering shiurim regularly for many years and guiding the students in every respect. Prior to every shiur, he would learn a chapter from Chovos Halevovos and on occasion, he would also convey guidance about how to learn. When HaRav Sonnenfeld grew older, the yeshiva was relocated to Botei Machseh in the Old City, close to his home. HaRav Sonnenfeld continued giving shiurim until his petiroh on the nineteenth of Adar 5692 (1932).

HaRav Chaim Soloveitchik zt'l of Brisk also penned several very enthusiastic letters about the Beis Hamussar. In 5669 (1909) he wrote that it was, "established according to the spirit and the approach of the teacher and luminary of Yisroel, our master Rav Yisroel of Salant zy'a, and is presided over by the great and well- known gaon HaRav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld and his son-in- law . . . HaRav Shmuel Hillel Sheinker. It is a great and mighty bastion of talmidei chachomim who are great in Torah and yir'oh and are adorned with all the traits that Chazal enumerated for Torah's acquisition. It is one of the most distinguished and important institutions, where there is a gathering of G-d-fearing sages among the finest in Yerushalayim."

In 5671 (1911) HaRav Shmuel Hillel travelled abroad on behalf of the yeshiva. He spent approximately a year in Brisk, where he stayed in Reb Chaim's home. Reb Chaim wrote to the leaders of the generation, asking them to assist Rav Shmuel Hillel.

Letters From Kelm

The Alter of Kelm, HaRav Simcha Zissel Ziv zt'l, who was the impetus for the founding of the Beis Hamussar, sent thirty-eight discourses to the scholars who gathered there. The group would meet together every Friday and one of them would read out the piece that had been received from HaRav Simcha Zissel. The Alter's son, HaRav Nochum Zev Ziv zt'l, wrote in a letter to HaRav Shmuel Hillel, "Know, my dear friend that you are holding onto great wealth and riches -- sufficient for several generations -- in the form of thirty-eight ma'amorim that are full of wisdom and mussar from the holy lips of our master, Father, z'l."

Some of the discourses that HaRav Simcha Zissel sent to Yerushalayim are printed in Chochmoh Umussar. In Volume I, ma'amar 36, HaRav Simcha Zissel writes to his son, "This ma'amar should be entitled, "Ashrei Odom Mefacheid Tomid" (Happy Is The Man Who Is Always Fearful). Write this at the top of the ma'amar and send it straight to Eretz Yisroel, to Yerushalayim . . . to . . . and his agreeable group, who are very precious to me, for they respect the honor of the holy city."

At the end of ma'amar 408, HaRav Simcha Zissel writes, "I have received a letter from Yerushalayim . . . [informing me] that they are taking guidance from one another and learning from one another. Happy is their lot. Copy out this ma'amar for them, so that they can see the great level of those who train themselves. I will write to them [telling them] that I was glad with what they wrote. Please don't forget that we discussed the occasional practical application of Chazal's statement, `Therefore the rulers say . . . ' (Bovo Basra 78). "

And at the end of ma'amar 160, he writes, "My friends, members of the chaburah in Yerushalayim . . . I want to inform you that this ma'amar is so precious to me, that I only give it to those who are prepared to pay money for it. For only then do I know that they truly cherish divrei Torah. I am sending it to you however, for free and I have written the explanation in your honor."

HaRav Simcha Zissel yearned to join the group in Yerushalayim. In ma'amar 216 he wrote, "Let me say [to you] in writing, residents of the holy city, who dwell at Heaven's gate, by the holy mountain -- happy are you that you have merited this. Would that I had a dove's wings to [fly and] dwell with you as part of your group. How can I express the enormity of Hashem's kindness to you, in enabling you to bring [your wishes] to fruition, to occupy yourselves with what is most precious to Him, in His holy place? If my health were good, I would travel to our holy Land and join your chaburah." (See the accompanying box for more of Rav Simcha Zissel's communications to Yerushalayim.)

In The Face of Opposition

As suggested at the beginning of the article, the Beis Hamussar was an innovation in Yerushalayim of a century ago and as such, it encountered some opposition and disapproval. One of the arguments advanced against it was that man's duty was to learn Torah with the aim of arriving at the practical halochoh, not to engage in the study of mussar.

Among the gedolim of Yerushalayim were those who were suspicious of ideas that had no direct tradition from previous generations. They looked askance on the Beis Hamussar and even advised their followers not to go there. One of the gedolim who did frequent the Beis Hamussar, HaRav Yonah Rom, once told HaRav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld that even among tzaddikim, a difference could be discerned between those who learned mussar and those who did not. Those who didn't learn mussar knew what was forbidden, while those who did, knew what should be done.

The gaon HaRav Yehoshua Leib Diskin zt'l was also approached by the maligners of the Beis Hamussar. His talmid, HaRav Sonnenfeld, came to R' Yehoshua Leib's home bearing a copy of the newspaper Hatzefirah containing a lengthy diatribe against the idea of mussar, which he wanted to show his rebbe. As soon as Rav Yehoshua Leib saw the paper -- which was known as a mouthpiece of the maskilim -- in his talmid's hands, he cried, "An impure paper is in my home!"

He instructed Reb Chaim to take it out and stand four amos away from the entrance and read it to him from there. Shortly thereafter, R' Yehoshua Leib published a letter warmly supporting the Beis Hamussar.

Following Rav Yehoshua Leib's petiroh (in Shevat 5658 [1898] ), the gedolim of Yerushalayim sent the following appraisal of the Beis Hamussar's influence to HaRav Salomon Breuer zt'l, the rov of Frankfurt-am- Main. "We have decided to present the truth," they wrote, "which we have witnessed ourselves. Recently, the light of mussar has also spread through our holy city. We see it as a new light [with potential] for strengthening Torah and religion. It is well known that the true gaon . . . the holy [Rav] Yisroel Salanter, sacrificed himself for the spread of the idea of mussar, to the point where it spread to virtually all the yeshivos in Russia. In our holy city too, many who study Torah assiduously have taken up mussar study and they notice an improvement in their learning."

The letter is signed by HaRav Tzvi Hirsch Michel Shapiro zt'l, HaRav Zerach Braverman zt'l, HaRav Shlomo Zalman Baharan zt'l, and is countersigned by HaRav Yosef Chaim Sonnenfeld and HaRav Naftoli Hertz Halevi zt'l of Yafo.

Defending The Honor Of A Gaon

In the course of the campaign against the Beis Hamussar, HaRav Shmuel Hillel Sheinker was defamed. His father-in-law HaRav Sonnenfeld published the following letter: " `Hashem will not agree to forgive him.' He deserves to be placed under a ban; apparently he nurses hatred. I have informed him in the past that this holy yeshiva was literally the glory of Yerushalayim . . . unequalled in the benefit that it gave. Jealousy and the evil eye gained the upper hand and led to discord. Nevertheless, it is still correct and a holy obligation to make as much effort as possible and may those who speak falsehood be shamed and disgraced forever. The rov and great luminary, storehouse of Torah and fear of Heaven, HaRav Shmuel Hillel Sheinker -- son of the well known tzaddik . . . Rav Avrohom Tanis of Kovno -- my son-in- law, who is as dear to me as a son, who treads in perfect faith; the zealots' hand has gained mastery over him, in our sins . . . "

After Rav Sonnenfeld's petiroh (in 5692), the students of Yeshivas Or Chodosh issued a letter in which they wrote, "a group . . . has arisen that has brazenly dared to disgrace our master the holy gaon. With evil designs, [it] has spread slander and is attempting to undermine our yeshiva's existence, using devious means, draping themselves in scholar's garb in an attempt to bedeck evil and injustice in the coat of fairness . . . Let this serve as an open protest, a strict warning and a valiant call to all those who fear Hashem's word. Let all who fear for their souls take care not to be burned by the coals of this tzaddik, Hashem's holy one. May those who speak falsehood be disgraced forever . . . signed by the gabboim and directors of the yeshiva."

There was an additional factor in the opposition to the Beis Hamussar. Although Yerushalayim then was a place which flourished spiritually and was adorned by the presence of many great geonim, its material living conditions were very sparse. There was fear that the idea was to open a new institution and use it as a means of profiteering. The first quarrels began after Rav Simcha Zissel's petiroh (on the eighth of Av 5658 [1898]).

The Alter's brother, HaRav Avrohom Yosef Broide zt'l, wrote in a letter, "Rather than this yeshiva's standing out among all of Yerushalayim's yeshivos, as it did when it was running properly while my teacher and rebbe, my brother [i.e. the Alter] was alive, who was respected by all the city's leaders and residents, now the opposite is the case. Would that it be like all the other yeshivos, each of which sits quietly in its place and occupies itself with Torah. I am really upset about this, for throughout the world, virtually nothing like this exists -- a well- established institution solely for baalei mussar. Nor is there another unique figure like Reb Shmuel Strauss [who owned the Chotzer] anywhere in the world, one of the great supporters of the generation, who consented back then to my brother's proposal and agreed to him, to allow gedolei Torah who occupy themselves with Torah and the study of mussar, to dwell in his wonderful house."

In Later Years

Despite all the opposition, the yeshiva continued. A calendar issued by the yeshiva in 5716 (1956--the last year of HaRav Shmuel Sheinker's life), contains a copy of an article that appeared in a Yerushalmi newspaper on the sixth of Nisan 5632 following Rav Sonnenfeld's petiroh, which called to the public, "See what toil the tzaddik . . . Rav Sonnenfeld . . . invested in establishing the holy yeshiva Or Chodosh. A heavenly voice therefore issues from Har Tzion declaring, `Arouse yourselves and make a point of making a memorial for the soul of the gaon and tzaddik of the generation . . . supporting the wonderful yeshiva Or Chodosh with all your strength and power." The message is accompanied by Rav Sonnenfeld's blessing to supporters of the yeshiva.

Also appearing is another article from Kol Yisroel, from Av 5698 (1938), announcing that HaRav Shmuel Hillel's son, HaRav Yehoshua Leib Sheinker, had travelled to America to benefit the yeshiva. The yeshiva's directorate extended their blessings to him. The signatories are, Rav Shmuel Aharon Izakov zt'l, Rav Hillel Cohen zt'l, Rav Ezra Barzel zt'l, Rav Elyokim Getzel Cohen zt'l, Rav Chaim Aharon Turczin zt'l, Rav Mordechai Appel zt'l, and Rav Tzvi Kopshitz (Rav Shmuel Hillel's son-in- law).

Rav Shmuel Hillel Sheinker maintained his relationship with Kelm throughout his life. He corresponded with HaRav Reuven Dov Dessler zt'l inquiring about what was happening in the Kelm Talmud Torah. In one of his letters (dated 5688 [1928]), Rav Shmuel Hillel wrote, "That tzaddik [the Alter] fulfilled Chazal's statement, `You are in Netzivin but your net is spread [as far away as] in Yerushalayim' (Pesochim 3). Our master . . . devoted the remnant of his strength, with his life's blood, to the sowing of the light of mussar in Yerushalayim."

And in 5707 (1947) he wrote to his grandson, who had left Yeshivas Chevron and moved to Yeshivas Pardes Channah, "He had calmed his spirit because he knew that [among] the maggidei shiur there were the gaon HaRav Zevulun Graz zt'l who was one of the finest products of the mussar yeshivos and a son of HaRav Nesanel Yosef Graz zt'l, who had been a talmid of Klal Yisroel's holy gaon, prince of Torah and mussar . . . HaRav Simchah Zissel zy'a of Kelm, who had learned in Kelm in 5650 . . . "

(The writer would like to thank HaRav Yehuda Sheinker for his great help in the preparation of this article.)

There is No Doubt That This Place is Particularly Suited to Mussar Study . . .

Some of the ma'amorim that Rav Simchah Zissel sent to the Beis Hamussar in Yerushalayim express the great esteem in which he held the place. Here are some more quotes from those ma'amorim, taken from Chochmoh Umussar vol. I

"Some time ago, I sent two wonderful letters regarding a matter which arose spontaneously concerning the Beis Hamussar in Yerushalayim . . . the gateway to heaven; to thank Hashem and to be involved in that which is important in His eyes. This matter is so important [especially] at the gateway to heaven, the place from which the world was founded. It centers upon the posuk that we always say, `Train the youth according to his way; even when he is old, he will not veer from it' (Mishlei 22:6), meaning that a person should be used to educating and training himself. Then, even in his old age he will be used to this art of educating himself according to his path and he will [continually] ascend higher and higher.

"This is not the case with someone who is not used to training himself; he doesn't know how to educate himself. This is the virtue of mussar -- to become used to education. This study is especially precious in Yerushalayim . . . where the Keruvim were, and there is no doubt that this place is particularly suited to mussar study. Heaven has left them room in which to build, in this area."

" `And he bought the portion of the field', (Bereishis 33:19). Rabbi Avrohom Ibn Ezra writes: `The posuk mentions this in order to tell us the great virtue of Eretz Yisroel. If someone has a portion there, it is as though he has a portion in Olom Habo.' In this vein I say to you, my beloved ones, happy are you to have merited building a home for wisdom in Eretz Yisroel, particularly in Yerushalayim . . . a house that cultivates fear of Heaven, which is `His treasure' which Hakodosh Boruch Hu loves especially in His treasure house. The shape of this house is one's main portion in the Land. Hashem will certainly assist you, in this world and the next, to succeed. The main thing is to try and learn mussar, with comprehension and understanding, to study mussar carefully."

"Yesterday I received a letter from Yerushalayim . . . I want to tell you that this fine Beis Hamussar that you opened is growing stronger. Happy are you, who dwell in the holy city. Happy are you, in giving pleasure to our Father in heaven, in trying in the holy city to do what He has asked of us, as the posuk says, `What is Hashem . . . asking of you, but to fear Him?' (Devorim 10:12)"

Mussar -- The Only Path That Has Maintained Its Integrity

HaRav Yisroel Salanter's hundred and twentieth yahrtzeit is a fitting occasion for reminding ourselves of the obligation to learn mussar. We present some of HaRav Shach's remarks on the subject, as quoted in Machsheves Mussar:

A set time has been fixed for learning mussar, during which one has a definite obligation -- there is no greater obligation -- to learn mussar.

It is said that once after having heard Rav Yisroel Salanter zt'l speak about the need to learn mussar, someone asked him what he should learn in the only half hour a day that he had available for learning: Chayei Odom or mussar? Rav Yisroel replied that he should learn mussar, for then he would see that he had more than half an hour a day for learning.

One has to learn mussar; it doesn't matter from which sefer. We have nothing to be ashamed of in [any of] them. The main thing is to reflect on them, in order to assimilate their outlook and way of viewing things, rather than looking at men of the world whose outlook is corrupt; everything is filled with dirt. The only place one can find a little cleanliness is with bnei Torah" (pg. 419).


It is impossible to achieve anything without fear of Heaven. If one comes across someone who doesn't contemplate yiras Shomayim, even if he is great in Torah, if his yiras Shomayim is not as it should be, one can imagine the very worst about him . . . It doesn't absolve one from learning mussar, because mussar leads to a more personal arousal towards good traits (pg. 174).


At the levaya of HaRav Nochum Abba Grosbard zt'l in Shevat 5753, HaRav Shach said, "Rabbosai, rabbosai, mussar is the only thing. I am speaking in a holy place and I'm telling you that none of the different approaches -- and there have been many -- have merits with which to exist today. Mussar is the only thing that remains uncontaminated by other things. Mussar is unsullied and has nothing added, because there is only one unvarnished truth, namely, that man takes himself to account. Nowadays, everything has been forgotten -- though I speak, I don't know if I am being understood -- nonetheless, I am saying what I feel very strongly . . . the Mashgiach was one of the few who remained. Even in his day he was unique. Now that the Mashgiach has gone, we are just left with remnants; something though, was once there . . .


In a letter dated erev Shabbos kodesh Bereishis 5749, HaRav Shach writes, "I thus address you, for all of you were educated in yeshivos where there was a regular time each day for learning works of mussar. It's importance is summed up in the saying that just as it is impossible to see without eyes and to walk without feet, it is also impossible to live a Torah life without mussar study.

This was written and explained back then, to a wise and understanding generation, when there were not so many breaches in Klal Yisroel. To our dismay, [today] the breaches are more than the fences and the need for reinforcement is certainly all that much greater.

Each yeshiva must insist that the time for mussar study is honored. My uncle, our master HaRav I. Z. Meltzer zt'l discussed this at length, as did . . . HaRav Y. I. Sher zt'l and . . . HaRav Y. Sarna zt'l."

Over The Pillar Of Fire That Has Left Us -- Contemporary Reports From The Time Of HaRav Yisroel Salanter's Petiroh

Hamagid, 1st Adar 5643 (1883):

The Gaon Rav Yisroel Salanter Is No More

During the night of the twenty-fifth of Shevat the renowned gaon . . . passed away at the age of seventy-two in Koenigsburg. He was greatly honored in Koenigsburg, where he had been living for several months. All our brethren thronged there to accord him the final kindness. The great rov and sage Dr. Hildesheimer [Reb Ezriel zt'l] rushed from Berlin and eulogized him, calling for [general] mourning over the petiroh of such an exalted man."


The issue of 28th Adar contains a report from Paris:

"On yom shelishi of parshas Tetzaveh, the seventh of Adar Rishon, a gathering was held at minchah time, to eulogize and bemoan this great man whom Heaven took. His disciple, the gaon Rav Yehoshua Heschel Levine ascended the bimoh and delivered a bitter eulogy over the pillar of fire that has left us."


Der Israelit, 5643:

"We were informed by telegraph from Koenigsburg of the dreadful tidings of the loss of one of the most outstanding of the great [talmidei chachomim] in our times . . . Rav Yisroel Salanter . . . who was summoned upon high last night. All of Israel weeps over the great loss of this great man."


Chavatzeles, Adar 5643:

Evil tidings are heard from Koenigsburg about the petiroh there of the great gaon, the pious and humble one, the perfect tzaddik . . . Rav Yisroel Lipkin zt'l, who was commonly known as Rav Yisroel Salanter. . . . HaRav Ezriel Hildesheimer of Berlin also went to Koenigsburg to eulogize the late gaon. When news of the calamity arrived here [Yerushalayim], multitudes gathered in the beis hamedrash Menachem Tzion and . . . HaRav Shmuel Salant eulogized the departed gaon and all who were present wept copiously."


Hameilitz, 23rd Adar Rishon 5643:

"Thousands of eulogies have been held throughout the world and all of Beis Yisroel has wept that which Hashem has burned. In the Neviezer beis hamedrash in Kovno, the gaon . . . HaRav Yitzchok Blazer held a great hesped, attended by thousands of distinguished and honorable residents of Kovno, Slobodka, Alexot and elsewhere. HaRav Blazer delivered a bitter eulogy in a tearful voice. It lasted for approximately four hours and the entire huge assembly was in tears."


The Hebrew press devoted many articles to Rav Yisroel Salanter zt'l. The elitist press also carried the news and published articles of appreciation honoring him.

In Shaarei Tzion (Yerushalayim 5693 [1933]), we find the following testimony: "One day, I was in Rav Shmuel Salant's vosikin minyan in the Churvah of Rabbi Yehuda Hechosid and he suddenly heard about the petiroh of his friend and colleague Rav Yisroel. He was shocked. He wept bitterly and he arranged for weeping and eulogy in the beis hamedrash Menachem Tzion. He hurried up onto the bimoh while the members of the minyan were still there and he cried from his heart, `The light of Yisroel has been extinguished!' He fell into a swoon, in his great distress and was unable to say anything else . . . "


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