Thursday, October 14, 2010

Don't be bitter

While we were bentching the month of Cheshvan, some days ago on Shabbos Beraishis, I remembered reviewing a farbrengen in which the Rebbe said something along the lines of: Chas V'Shalom that you should say that Mar Cheshvan is called that because 'Mar' means 'bitter', and there are no Yom Tovim. 'Mar' means ______.
I couldn't remember the rest, or where I had seen it.
The Chabad House in my town has a very small Chassidic library, and there were only two volumes of Hisvaadius on the shelf. To my luck, in a farbrengen in the year 1988, I found something similar to what I had remembered.
A small part of the sicha was discussing how 'Mar' means 'a drop', and that this is a time for drops of rain, bgashmius and bruchnius. The Rebbe quoted a posuk from Yeshaya (Isaiah 40:15) that reads: "The goyim are [like nothing] like a drop in the bucket", and in Hebrew: Hen goyim k'mar m'dli.
However, I looked up the posuk, and Rashi brings two reasons why "Kmar M'dli" means a drop from the bucket, and why it actually means the last drop of the bucket. Either because the last drop is bitter, because it physically has all the gross stuff at the bottom of the bucket, or as an expression, like one would say: the bitter end.
Which means that the only reason "mar" means "tipah", or "a drop" is because of its main translation of "bitter".
So I'm still on the lookout to see if the Rebbe brought a different type of pirush somewhere else, or if this is what I remembered, after all.
Regardless of what I find, this month should have nothing bitter in it, and only dripping with sweetness!