Finds His Life’s Calling

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The Yahrzeit of Rabbi Yehudah Tzvi of Stretin (1780-1854) is commemorated on the 11th of Iyar. The following meise / hasidic tale appeared in Sefer HaHasidut, Meah Tzadikim, Raphael, Yitzchak, 1961, Tel Aviv. (Freely translated by Gabbai Seth Fishman.)

The Slaughterer of Animals and Meat Inspector

A Hasid from the city of Stretin happened to be traveling to the holy Rabbi of Lublin, (may his memory be a blessing for eternal life in the world to come) and so, the holy Rabbi Yehudah Tzvi asked him to take a Kvittel / petitionary note with a seal to give to him.

When the Hasid came to the holy Rabbi of Lublin and gave him the note with the seal of Rabbi Yehudah Tzvi, he opened it and said these words:

“He shines, he shines in all the worlds.

“Tell him, in my name, I order him to give up his job of slaughtering animals; he should no longer be a slaughterer or meat inspector from this day forward for, many myriads of souls of Jews in heaven are standing attentively and longing for his prayer. They know he could be raising them to higher regions, but they say that his prayers will never arrive in a particular, special palace in heaven while he still slaughters animals and inspects meat.

“Therefore, when you arrive back home, tell him, in my name, that I order him to no longer be a slaughterer and meat inspector.”

When the aforementioned Hasid arrived home and told the holy teacher Reb Yehudah Tzvi all the words of the Rabbi of Lublin, he felt compelled to check it out with his holy mentor and teacher, the Rabbi of Strelisk; he did not want to do anything without his knowledge. So he traveled to Strelisk to ask for advice whether to leave off his slaughtering.

The holy one of Strelisk told him that he did not agree with this and Reb Yehudah Tzvi returned home.

Nonetheless, he continued to think about it, could not stop, and he went a second time to Strelisk to ask him to agree with the recommendation but, he still didn’t agree.

However, when he traveled to see him the third time, (it was on Shabbos after the holiday of Shavuot, at the third meal), then the Rabbi of Strelisk called out to him and told him:

“I am also in agreement with the Rabbi of Lublin.”

And the Rabbi of Strelisk told the close-knit group gathered there:

“I hadn’t agreed with the Rabbi of Lublin until now, but, since souls from four corners of the world have testified that it would be a tikkun for them if he left off slaughtering, I felt compelled to change my mind.”

(Standard of the Tribe of Judah, Stories)


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