Wednesday, February 25, 2009
What is unique about Chabad nigunim? What makes them so special?
The following is a beautiful letter of the Rebbe, written to a Chosson who asked if he could play Chabad nigunim at his wedding. Also attached is a first-time released photo of the Rebbe, with special thanks to Rebbe Archive.
By the Grace of G-d
Blessing and Greeting:
I am in receipt of your letter, and I hasten my reply as requested, and because time is of the essence in this case.
You write that you would like to use some of the published Nigunim of Chabad at your forthcoming marriage and ask my opinion about it.
My reply is as follows: There could be an advantage, or otherwise, in using these Nigunim depending on the circumstances (a) or (b).
If – as is expected of every Jewish girl and boy who are about to be married the marriage is entered into with a firm resolution to establish a truly Jewish home, on the foundation of the Torah and Mitzvoth, and likewise, or course, the preparations before the wedding are also as they should, with observance of the laws and regulations of Taharas Hamishpocho (which an observant rabbi has no doubt explained to you), and the Chuppah and Kiddushin is carried out by an Orthodox rabbi, etc. – then the use of the Lubavitcher Nigunim would not only be appropriate, but also desirable and auspicious. For a Nigun is closely linked with the soul of its author and those who have used it on sacred occasions (which is also the reason for the above-mentioned condition that everything connected with the wedding should be in according to the Torah, since the Torah was their whole life and ideal).
On the other hand, if, G-d forbid, there is a deficiency in the above conditions From the viewpoint of the Torah and Shulchan Aruch, the inference is obvious. However, I do not wish to dwell on this, since I feel certain that, judging by your letter, everything is in accordance with the Torah and Shulchan Aruch, and moreover, that there is a constant effort to advance in all matters of Torah and Mitzvoth, in accordance with the principle that all things of holiness should be on the ascendancy, as also indicated by the message of the Chanukah lights which are kindled in increasing number.
On the basis of this firm belief, I extend to you and your Chosson my prayerful wishes that the marriage take place in a happy and auspicious hour and that you should both build a Binyan adei ad.
With the blessing of Mazal Tov.
Posted by The Avner Institute / Menachem M Kirschenbaum at 9:40 PM