Opening the Gates
Mazal tov, Holy Chosson. Mazal tov, Holy Kallah. I bless you to open gates for all of Israel.
Right now you are mamash standing by the gates. And the Ribbono Shel Olam is opening the gates for both of you. The beginning of the chuppah is that the Chosson covers the face of the bride. How many people do you want to push through when you walk in through the gate? Don’t count, just close your eyes….
The Alter of Nevordoch said, “Imagine if Yom Kippur would be once in seventy years. How much would we pray that Gd should grant us life, that we should have at least one Yom Kippur in our life!”
We have the privilege that it comes every year. But I want you to know, Chosson and Kallah, the Yom Kippur you have is once in a lifetime.
At the end of Yom Kippur is Neila, the last prayer. Why is the last prayer called Neila? It should be called an opening; why Neila, ‘closing?’ The heilege Rebbe, Reb Hershel of Riminov, says that all Yom Kippur long Gd is talking, so to speak, to all the Yidden [Jews] together. Gd talks to all the Jews. But by Neila, the last moment, the Ribbono Shel Olam [Master of the world] says to each and every Yiddele, “Let’s lock the doors, I just want to be alone with you.”
When children are born, their eyes are closed. Because on the day when a child is born, it’s their Yom Kippur. One second before they’re born it’s their T’fillas Neila, so they close their eyes.
Thanking Gd for Your Soulmate
When somebody does you a favor, you say thank you. How often can you say thank you? You’re even ashamed to say thank you one more time. So the Chosson is covering the face of the bride and he says to her, “You know something? I’m already ashamed to tell Gd how much I thank Him for you. So I delegate you to close your eyes and thank the Ribbono Shel Olam one more time.”
Holding on to Gd
“Vayifga baMakom.” Mamash, Yaakov touched Gd. Mamash. Reb Leibele Eiger says when you ask somebody for a favor, if it’s not an emergency, you just talk to them. If it’s mamash pikuach nefesh [a matter of life and death], you’re mamash holding on to them; “Please, you have to listen to me.” So Yaakov Avinu, mamash, was so desperate… Vayifga baMakom, mamash holding on to Gd. So mamash I want you during this moment of the bedecken to hold on like Yaakov Avinu.
“Yaakov tiken tefilas arvis” [Jacob established the evening prayer]. Yaakov Avinu was mesaken [established] the prayer which the Kallah prays when the Chosson covers her face… it’s dark (like during the evening prayer). He established that this prayer should be accepted in Heaven. I bless you, mamash, your prayers should be so deep.
At that moment when the Chosson covers your face, your children are coming from Heaven. Your grandchildren. Your great grandchildren. And everybody knows children don’t go alone, they’re coming with Gd’s holy baby sitters, with our Holy Mothers, with Sara, Rivka, Rochel, and Leah. And I’m sure they’re bringing all your grandmothers and the Chosson’s grandmothers.
Spread your Wings over Me
When Ruth came to Boaz, she said, “peros kanfecha al amatecha” [spread your wings over me]. You know what she was telling him? Do me a favor, do my bedecken. Can you imagine what kind of a night that was? Mamash. The Medrash says it was so holy, it was the night when Malchus Bais Dovid [the kingdom of King David] began. Dovid Malka Mashicha.
Boaz was the neshama [soul] of Yehuda, and Ruth was the neshama of Tamar. When Yehuda went to Tamar the first time, he gave her his tallis.
The Greatest Fixing
Chosson and Kallah, I want you to know, in the most unbelievable way, I opened a sefer [holy book] today and I found something I didn’t know before. And I’d like to give it over to you. I don’t know the name of the Rebbe, but this is what he says: Whenever people get married, whenever husband and wife are together with great holiness, at that moment the holy Temple is rebuilt. At that moment, Heaven and earth are complete and rejoicing. At that moment, we are not in exile. At that moment, it is after the Mashiach has arrived.
Lifting your Bride to the Highest Place
Ok Chosson, this is your great moment. You know, Chosson, people who we push down, people who we step on, don’t want to remember us. You know who loves us the most? People who we lift up to the highest place. You know what kind of person loves us? People to whom we give back their pride, their holiness, their beauty. And you know what Gd, in His infinite mercy, lets you do to your holy bride? According to our Tzadikim, the bride is so high, that she is absolutely not in touch with this world. Higher than Heaven and earth. And you have the privilege of covering her face to let her know, “Kallah, I’m lifting you up to the highest place in the world.”
The Voice of the Bride
And our holy Rabbis tell us that the Chosson says a few words under the chuppah: “Be holy unto me.” And why doesn’t the bride say anything? The bride doesn’t open her mouth, because, if she would open her mouth, she would reveal the deepest secrets of the world. And the world isn’t ready.
And you know, Kallah, when Mashiach is coming, the bride will also say a few words under the chuppah, because Yishayahu says: “Od yishama be’arrei yehuda… kol Chosson vekol kallah” [It will be heard in the cities of Yehuda… the voice of the groom and the voice of the bride]. And all our holy Rabbis are asking, “The voice of the bride, the voice of the groom? But the bride doesn’t say anything.” So it’s unbelievable, when Mashiach is coming, the bride will also say something under the chuppah.
Hearing your Soulmate
I want to bless you, Chosson. You know what it means to love somebody? To love somebody means even if they don’t say anything, you can hear it too. I want to bless you that, whatever your Kallah wants to tell you, you should be privileged to hear it, and let it sink deep, deep into your heart. And Kallah, I don’t have to tell you, whatever your Chosson wants to tell you is only one billionth of what he really wants to tell you….
The Silent Yell
I just want to bless you with all the blessings of Reb Nachman. It’s unbelievable. Reb Nachman lived 200 years ago, and he is still around. So someone asked Reb Nachman, “How loud do you have to yell when you pray?” So he said, “You have to yell so loud, that no one can hear you.” So I want to bless you that you should hear each other yell so loud, that only you can hear each other. And I want to bless you that you should always hear your children when they yell so loud that nobody can hear them except their parents. And you should be the ones to hear them. And isn’t Gd yelling so loud all the time? You know why we say Shuva Yisroel [Return Israel]? You know what a Jew is? Someone who can hear Gd yelling so loud that nobody can hear it.
Right now, we need two holy people to stand up behind the Chosson, with two candles, and walk the Chosson to the holy bride, and cover her holy face, and lift her up to the highest place in Heaven. MAZAL TOV, MAZAL TOV!
The Power of Privacy
Chosson, I want you to know something. A lot of people told me that after they had the privilege, with their bare hands, to lift up the soul of their Kallah to high Heavens, their hands became so holy that they could not imagine doing anything but the holiest, sweetest things in the world. I want to bless you that your hands should always taste this moment, for ever and ever.
And Kallah, I want to bless you that right now your Chosson gives you the deepest da’as [knowing], the deepest, deepest holiest tikun [fixing]. You know a woman has the power of privacy. A man alone can lock the door, but he is not private. The door is locked: there is nothing in it. A woman gives the privacy to the house. I want to bless you, that you should have the deepest, deepest, most holiest, most glorious, untouched-by-the-world holiness and privacy.
Chosson, we have a very special gift from your holy bride. One of the deepest teachings we were learning about a thousand times is that there are two kinds of garments. There is a garment that has to do with measure, like a shirt or a coat. And then, there is a tallis. It’s not measured: it’s a garment, but it’s infinite. You know what your bride does for you? She makes you infinite.
So, fine, you have beautiful garments, and I don’t only mean physical garments. I mean even spiritual garments. But a person alone is always limited. However, the moment you find your soulmate, something happens to you. Suddenly, you are infinite, you have the power to do the most unbelievable things in the world. So I bless you, you should give each other privacy, give each other infiniteness.
Praying has to be Infinite
And do you know, Chosson, why we pray under the tallis? Because the praying has to be infinite. You know, Gd forbid, Gd forbid somebody is sick, and I say to Gd, maybe according to the finiteness of the world this person is sick. Gd, can you make a miracle? A miracle is infinite. So the tallis connects you to all the miracles in the world which Gd did, and which Gd wants you to do.
And I want to bless you, Chosson and Kallah, you should always be a married couple, and whoever sees you just walking in the street should say, “Oy! Ribbono Shel Olam, you are performing miracles every second.” Gevalt! Can you imagine Avraham and Sara just walking in the street? What would people think? They would say, “Ribbono Shel Olam, it’s true, there is one Gd, there is Someone who can do everything in the world.
At a wedding ceremony, we use a little bit of wine. Unless you are drunk about something, you won’t do it. The bride and groom need to be drunk about being married.