Reb Nachman of Bratslav was a leader for the Hasidim movement and had amazing impact on the history of the Hasidim as a teacher and intellectual leader, Impact that you see until today.
Nachman born in Ukraine and was the great grandson of the Baal Shem Tov, founder of the Chassidic movement. Nachman grew to be an outstanding tzaddik , Brought new spirit into the Hasidic movement by combining his deep Torah knowledge with in esoteric secrets of Judaism (the Kabbalah) .
Since Nachman was young and for the rest of his life he always attracted many chassidim who looked to him as their main source of spiritual guidance in their quest for God, as the Rebbe. His amazing influence continues until today. One of his main religious philosophies is the concept of hitdobrot which means to be and feel close to god and speak to him in normal conversation as he is your best friend.
People tell that when Nachman was young child he used to study a unique amount of Talmud and prayers. Some say that when Nachman was six years old he went out to pray at night at the grave of the Baal Shem Tov, his grandfather and immerse in the mikveh afterward. His all childhood and his life Nachman dedicated for spiritual life threw studying and being close to god, all his life Nachman continued to teach and attract new followers in the Hasidim movement threw his spiritual life and his great ability as a teacher and a leader.
In 1798 Raabi Nachman went to Israel, he was received there with big honor by the Hasidim movement in Israel, his influence brought about appeasement and harmony between all the different kinds of Hasidim.
Nachman moved to the town of Breslov where he met Nathan Sternhartz who became his foremost follower and scribe, recording all of Rebbe Nachman's formal lessons and conversations he and other disciples had with the Rebbe as well as transcribing the Rebbe's magnum opus, Likutey Moharan. After Rebbe Nachman's death, Reb Noson published all of Nachman's works and his own commentaries on them.
Most of Rebbe Nachman's Torah lessons and stories that were published mostly after his death by his disciple are studying until today.
In May 1810, a fire broke out in Bratslav, destroying Rebbe Nachman's home. A group of Jews living in Uman invited Nachman to live in their homes and provided housing for him as his health condition got deteriorated. Rebbe Nachman told his disciples, "This is a good place to be buried with a good people around." Rebbe Nachman died of tuberculosis at the age of 38 on the fourth day of Sukkot 1810, and was buried in Uman.
Before he dies Rebbe Nachman called two of his closest disciples to act as witnesses for an unprecedented vow "If someone comes to my grave, gives) a coin to charity, and says these ten Psalms (the Tikkun HaKlali), I will pull him out from the depths of Gehinnom ( hell)" It makes no difference what he did until that day, but from that day on, he must take upon himself not to return to his foolish ways".
Until today thousands of people go every year due this vow to Uman for Nachman grave and describe patiently the special and spiritual atmosphere there and the pure they feel after visiting Nachman's grave.
He placed great stress on living with faith, simplicity, and joy. He encouraged his followers to clap, sing and dance during or after their prayers, bringing them to a closer relationship with God, That’s why if you visit Israel today you can see many of Nachmans dancing and singing to god in the middle of the streets and many people join them for this act of joy no matter who there are and what they believe in.
Rebbe Nachman was a Kabbalist and a mystic of the highest order, and yet at the same time was artlessly practical and down to earth. He told tales of princes and princesses, beggars and kings, demons and saints and he taught of the need to live with faith, simplicity and honesty.