I would like to share with you, my beautiful friends, a story of the holy Vorke, the Heilige Reb Yitzchok of Vorke. One of his Chassidim, Moshele, was so poor, utterly poor, that he borrowed two hundred rubles from Reb Yankele, who was not rich and not poor — in between. He never paid it back. One night the holy Vorke went to visit Moshele, and Reb Yankele decided, “This is my time to ask him for the money back, because in front of the Rebbe he cannot — the Rebbe will do something to make him pay it back.” He knocks on the door, and the Rebbe opens the door.
He says, “Hey, Reb Yankele, what brings you here so late at night?”
Yankele says, “Rebbe, I don’t want to put Moshele to shame, but I have no other way. He owes me two hundred rubles for so many years, and he never paid it back.”
The Vorke says to Moshele, “Moshele, it is just the three of us, so please don’t be ashamed. Whatever money you have in the house, please bring it and put it on the table.” And the holy Vorke said, “Oh, thank you so much. It is very, very beautiful.”
He began counting: one, two, three...forty-one, forty-two...fifty-two, fifty-three...fifty-five, fifty-six. And he kept on counting the same pennies: fifty-eight, fifty-nine, sixty.... He counted until he reached two million rubles. Then he took the fifty-six pennies, and he gave them to Yankele, and he says, “Here is your money.” It goes without saying, after a few weeks Yankele was a multi-millionaire.
You know, friends, on Purim, you know what I am doing? Whatever you did for me, I count it a million times when you are not looking.
You know, friends, when I love somebody very much, and I spend with them one moment? How often do I count that moment in my heart, in my soul, in my head? Millions of times.
You know, friends, each time I have the privilege of putting my children to sleep, is it one time? It is zillions of times. It is eternity times.
Each time I see my children bentch licht Friday night, was it one time? Eternity times.
Friends, I want you to know, each time I have the privilege of opening a Gemara, I look at these holy words. Did you learn this page one time? It is thousands of times, and you know, my beautiful friends, the Talmud always starts with page two. There is no page one. There is no one, a Jew never looks at a page one time; it is always more than one.
So I want you to know, my beautiful friends, on Yom Kippur I am standing before G-d, and G-d is counting exactly how many good deeds I did, and how many, G-d forbid, wrong things I did, and puts it on a scale, and then they decide. On Purim they can’t judge me. You know why? Because on Purim, every good deed I did, G-d counts millions of times when I am not looking, when I don’t know.
You know, friends, as long as G-d’s name is only when it is written clear, it is one time. For me, G-d’s name is a thousand times; everything is G-d.
— Excerpted from "Shlomo's Purim Teachings," given over at the University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, Sunday, 24 Shevat, 5746 / February 2, 1986, published in What Do We Know? The Carlebach Anthology, edited by Rabbi Joe Schonwald and Reuven Goldfarb (Jerusalem: Zimrani Press, 2017), pp. 359-60.