Special Blessings from Special People


Dear Rabbi, I recently got a blessing from a Chassidic Rabbi. This blessing was quite astonishing (in a good way). What is the significance of a blessing from a Chassidic Rabbi?



  1. In our prayers we say God “does the will of those who are in awe of Him.” (Psalms 145:19) As our Sages teach: A tzaddik (righteous person) decrees, and God fulfils the decree. Also: “Anyone who has a sick person in his household should go to a chacham (a Torah scholar) to pray for him.”

    How are we to understand this phenomenon? Grand Rabbi Levi Yitzchak Horowitz (the “Bostoner Rebbe”) explained that a Chassidic Rabbi is in many respects like a plumber. God wants only to bestow goodness upon us, and all a person needs to do is to make himself into a “vessel” to receive the good. But our bad deeds “jam up” the pipes through which Divine goodness flows. A Chassidic Rabbi “unclogs” these pipes for the person.

    A righteous person has a power of prayer more than most of us. Torah scholars (Chassidic or not) who have virtually perfected their character are known to have such powers. In the previous generation, many tens of thousands flocked to Rabbi Yaakov Yisrael Kanievsky (known as “the Steipler”) for his blessing. Today countless people come from all over the globe to his son, Rav Chaim, for special blessings. And women would come to his righteous wife, before her passing a few years ago, for her blessings and words of comfort.

    It’s known that prior to their highly dangerous but successful air strike on the Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1980, the Israeli pilots appeared before the Steipler and asked for his blessing. He told them, “Go in peace and return in peace.” And, of course they did.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team