The taste of Shabbat – Parshat Vayeshev 5777
Rav Mordechai Elon
During the Alter Rebbe of Chabad's imprisonment in Saint Petersburg, the chief investigator, an intelligent but cruel person, asked him : `When Adam hid in the garden of Eden after eating the fruit of the tree of knowing good and evil ,God asked him "where are you איכה?"`. `If so`, continued the investigator, `we can conclude that despite what you believe, that God is all-knowing , he isn`t, and he is not involved in what goes on in the world`.
The Rebbe understood where the question was leading to and answered `Every person has a time when God calls him", the Rebbe then said the investigator's full name , his age and other personal details , and asked `Where are you??`.
This conversation managed to touch the stone heart of the investigator, and after a short time, on the 19th of Kislev 5559 ( 27/11/1798), the Rebbe was freed. The call of "איכה – where are you?" is able to touch our hearts too.