Wednesday, May 14, 2008

I love stories about Zusya - I'm still looking for a book about him. Right now i find stories, like tiny treasures that grow in my heart, from my teacher and from Buber . .

A man who lived in the same town as Rabbi Zusya saw that he was very poor. So each day he put twenty coins into the little bag in which Zusya kept his phylacteries, so that he and his family might buy the necessities of life. From that time on, the man grew richer and richer. The more he had, the more he gave Zusya, and the more he gave Zusya, the more he had.
But once he recalled that Zusya was the disciple of a great maggid, and it occurred to him that if what he gave the disciple was so lavishly rewarded, he might become even more prosperous if he made presents to the master himself so he traveled to Mezritch and induced Rabbi Baer to accept a substantial gift from him. From this time on, his means shrank until he had lost all the profits he had made during the more fortunate period. He took his trouble to Rabbi Zusya, told him the whole story, and asked him what his present predicament was due to. For had not the rabbi himself told him that his master was immeasurably greater than he?
Zusya replied: "Look! As long as you gave and did not bother to whom, whether to Zusya or another, God gave to you and did not bother to whom. But when you began to seek out especially noble and distinguished recipients, God did exactly the same."

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