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As Divided for a Leap Year
Tanya for 9 Menachem Av
And now once more I put forth my hand a second time with an additional explanation and a twofold request, extended and proposed to all men of the chassidic brotherhood, those who are near and those who are far, to undertake the following: On all weekdays, businessmen - who do not have so much time - should not step down before the Ark [to lead the congregation in prayer]. Only those who have the time [should lead the prayers], such as teachers or those who are supported by their parents, who at the morning service are able to pray at length for at least about an hour and a half  on all week-days. 
One of them should step down before the Ark, chosen by lot or by consent of the majority [of the congregants]. He should gather around him all those who are supported by their parents, or teachers, who are able to pray at length like himself, [and will thus not be distracted by the haste of others. This arrangement is] not to be changed, I beg and beseech you!
On the Sabbaths and festivals, however, when all the businessmen, too, have the time and opportunity to pray at length, devoutly concentrating their heart and soul to G-d, - moreover, their duty to do so is much greater, as is stated in Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim,  and as is written in the Torah of Moses:  "Six days shall you work... and the seventh day is a Sabbath unto the L-rd your G-d," stating clearly that the Sabbath is to be devoted wholly unto G-d, -
[Unlike the festivals which are "partially unto G-d and partially unto you," the Sabbath ought to be wholly dedicated to spiritual matters. Since the reason for this is that it was preceded by six mundane days of labor, it follows that those who were engaged in this labor during the weekdays -businessmen and the like - should surely utilize the Sabbath "wholly unto G-d."] on Sabbaths and festivals, therefore, they too can step down before the Ark, according to lot or by assent of the majority, as I wrote last year.
Moreover, it should be made known that, G-d willing, it is my intention to send spies secretly to all congregations,  to find out and to notify about anyone who has the ability and the time to worship at length and to meditate while at prayer, but is slothful. He shall be punished by estrangement, being distanced by both hands when he comes here to hear chassidic teachings.  And from the negative you may infer the positive  - [that those who are more generous in the time they devote to their prayers will be assured of a warm welcome.] Pleasant be the lot of those who hearken; may the blessing of goodness light upon them, - and  - "there is no "good" but Torah...."
- (Back to text) Cf. Zohar I, 62b and its commentaries; the letter published in the anthology entitled Meah Shearim 2b, and the sources indicated in the footnote there. See also op. cit., 9b. (Note of the Rebbe Shlita.)
- (Back to text) The statement (Berachot 32b) that even the early chassidim [of Talmudic times] would devote one hour to the prayer itself, refers to the Amidah [alone]. (Note of the Rebbe Shlita.)
- (Back to text) Gloss to 290:2; see also Shulchan Aruch HaRav, Orach Chayim 290:5.
Note of the Rebbe Shlita: See also the maamar entitled Mi Yitencha, in Torah Or.
- (Back to text) Shmot 20:9.
- (Back to text) In the original, minyanim; a minyan is a group of at least ten men constituting a congregation, and, by extension, signifies a place of communal prayer.
- (Back to text) Lit., the words of the living G-d.
- (Back to text) A Talmudic term; cf. Nedarim 11a.
- (Back to text) Avot 6:3.
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