Divrei Tzaddikim: Vayeishev: Courage
The 20th of Kislev is the Yahrtzeit of Rabbi Dov Berish of Byala, author of Divrei Tzaddikim. He died on December 18, 1837 “For I will follow my son in mourning to the grave.” The Mishna teaches that, “the brazen faced person goes to Gehinnom, but the shamefaced goes to the Garden in Eden.” (Avot 5:24) We can better understand this idea based on the Zohar that teaches that one who is willing to “act brazenly” and stand up to the wicked and rebuke them and bring them back to God, will, upon his death, be led to Gehinnom to collect all the souls he touched and raise them up to Paradise. Just as he empowered people while living on this world, he will empower souls in the coming world.
This is why “the brazan faced goes to Gehinnom,” to collect and raise souls. The shamefaced person cannot raise the souls in Gehinnom and goes straight to the Garden.
When Jacob realized that his son, Joseph, would go out and teach the world, he withdrew into his shell of holiness. He no longer needed to go out and rebuke others, as his son did it.
“The House of Jacob is a flame, and the House of Joseph, a spark,” for Joseph used Jacob’s flame to inspire others.
When Jacob thought that Joseph died, he realized that he would have to go out again and inspire people, which meant that his soul’s journey would begin in Gehinnom where it would gather and raise the souls of others. “Now I will follow my son and have to journey through Gehinnom on my way to the Garden.