'He recommends good for us'
The Keepers of the Faith of the Holy Rebbe
Free trip to his holy grave on Har HaZeitim (Mount of Olives)
I’m actually not sure which rebbe’s grave this pilgrimage is supposed to be going to (there are a lot buried up there). It was back in Elul so I think it was supposed to part of your pre-Rosh Hashanah spiritual preparation. Kever-gadding always freaked me out a bit though. I know you are supposed to be using the spiritual energy of the place to encourage you, and to ask God to help you in the zchus of the tzaddik, but let’s face it - plenty of people are just praying to the tzaddik.
Also, it is so clearly a Catholic idea imported into Judaism. Catholics also are supposed to be asking saints to intercede on their behalf with God, rather than asking the saint themselves for the miracle or whatever. But the rest of us think that’s a pretty shaky distinction. It’s the sort of thing that Orthodox people talk about with scorn at the Shabbos table, but when it comes to our own shaky distinctions suddenly it’s all just that the critic doesn’t understand the theology well enough. Such hypocrisy.
Taken on Yehezkel, Elul 2013.