This book has been twenty years in the making. It began with a discussion one summer in the country with Rabbi Berel Bell, who encouraged me to make tapes of my classes at Machon Chana and turn them into a tape series on basic concepts in chassidic philosophy. It continued with Rabbi Yonah Avtzon, the director of Sichos In English, who believed in the project and not only polished and packaged the tapes for the general public, but was the driving force behind turning the eight-part series on “The Rebbe-Chassid Relationship” into this book. The process of transforming the rough transcripts of the tapes into a professionally written book was painstakingly accomplished by editor and former Machon Chana student, Mrs. Rochel Chana Riven, who kept the transcripts on her computer for several years until she felt adequately prepared to undertake the project.

I speak for all of us when I say that one thing above all motivated each one of us, and that is our love for and devotion to the Lubavitcher Rebbe. It is our relationship with him — each one in his or her own unique way — that inspires us to share what we know and what we hold dear about the Rebbe and the Rebbe-chassid relationship.

I would like to thank the following people for their significant contributions to this effort.

To the editor, Mrs. Rochel Chana Riven, for dedicating her prodigious time, effort, and G‑d-given talent to help make this book a reality. Her ability to articulate deep ideas clearly and smoothly, yet retain the essence of the author’s vision, is truly an art.

To Rabbi Yonah Avtzon, the director and backbone of Sichos In English, who tirelessly supervised every detail of this project and hundreds like it in his thirty years at the helm of this organization.

To Yosef Yitzchok Turner, whose artistry, meticulousness and care in producing the pleasing layout for this book have added much to its readability.

To Rabbi Berel Bell, a Rabbinic judge of the Beis Din of Montreal, who directed me to Sichos In English and gave me the confidence to undertake this project.

To Rabbi Aharon Leib Raskin for his diligence in providing sources and valuable advice about the text.

To Mrs. Tzivia Yaffee, who transcribed the tape series on which this project is based with great devotion.

To Avrohom Weg, for his beautiful work designing the cover of the book.