Rabbi Yaakov Yosef of Polnoye, the "Toldot Yaakov Yosef" was one of the closest disciples of the Baal Shem Tov, and through his three works, Toldot Yaakov Yosef, Ben Porat Yosef and Ketonet Passim, became the chief source and wellspring for the teachings of the Baal Shem Tov.

...antagonists are...from husks which the tzadik…discards in a perpetual process of spiritual cleansing….

He writes in numerous places that he heard from his master that a tzadik must pray on behalf of his antagonists, those who disparage and ridicule him. They are, quotes Rabbi Yaakov Yosef, "The spirit [Ruach] of the tzadik."

These antagonists are actually created from husks which the tzadik peels off and discards in a perpetual process of spiritual cleansing and purification. Since Ruach [which also can mean "wind" in Hebrew] is associated with speech, these antagonists employ slander and deceit to implement their destructive designs against the tzadik.

The only way for a tzadik to counter his antagonists is to "fight fire with fire" (or rather "wind with wind"). Their weapon is the power of speech. Therefore the tzadik responds in kind by praying on their behalf. The tzadik's prayer sweetens and neutralizes the harshness of the antagonists claims. Whatever strength they might retain easily dissipates by itself.

It follows, that being an aspect of the tzadik himself, these antagonists, when they behold the tzadik, see in him only a reflection of who they really are themselves. Being that they are the husks of the tzadik's purification process, they have no connection to the healing and rectifications that the tzadik is generating.

[Moses'] only business was G‑d's business….

The Torah informs us that Moses was the most humble man to ever walk the face of the earth. This was a result of a constant struggle to refine his character. Moses is also called "a faithful servant". G‑d says, "Moses is a faithful [servant] in my house." (Num. 12:3) Moses was trusted not to get his hands into anything of the Master, into things that were none of his business. His only business was G‑d's business; he had no personal self-interests at stake. This is why, in spite of the fact that Moses was the leader of a powerful nation, spoke with G‑d face to face and was revered or at least feared by all the inhabitants of the world, he succeeded in remaining humble.

Korach, in his rebellion against the authority of Moses, claimed that Moses, in a display of excessive arrogance and nepotism, had appropriated the kingship for himself and the priesthood for his brother's family. In reality, Korach the antagonist, was able to see in Moses only his own reflection; that of a jealous and bitter would-be leader anxious to usurp power.

[Adapted from Ben Porat Yosef; first published in B'Ohel Hatzadikim, Korach 5759]