Oy Vavoy, here we are in the year 5773 and the Holy Temple, the house of Hashem, has still not been built. Not only that, but Israel seems on a political path which will result in a virtual suicide of the Jewish state with leaders who seem to lack leadership qualities. How sad it is to watch our Holy Land being bargained and compromised in the name of a supposed peace which any sane person would realize is a sad fantasy.
The enemies of the Jewish people are poking their hateful heads out and openly expressing their antisemitic ideas as the Shoah fades into the memory hole. It is unreal to see some of the insane comments on YouTube on Shoah videos by neo-Nazis who claim that the whole thing was made up. Not only that but our other enemy embodied in Ishmael conspire on every border with a lust for Jewish blood. If not for their lust for their own blood maybe things would not be as ‘peaceful’ as they seem.
Sure we read about the number of missiles which have rained down on Jewish cities, the rushing into bomb shelters after hearing 15 second warning sirens. And we sigh a sigh of relief when we hear that nobody was injured or that the Iron Dome operated as designed. But this is not a way an upright Jew should have to live. Woe onto the Jewish people collectively for countenancing such cruelty.
So many of our troubles are caused by our own failings. I was raised with a firm belief that Jews posses a special quality which, if it is harnessed, will permit us to have unlimited power of vision and connection with the source of life. We all have this innate ability, as the Torah teaches, to operate above the level of nature.
But a reality check brings me back down to a sad realization that the world is far from the Torah goal, and we are spiraling further and further from the way. I have had a saying from before my Teshuva which basically said ‘Reality is when the brick hits your head’. You know that when a brick hits your head -THAT- is real, because you cannot ignore it and it hurts a heck of a lot.
We must not allow ourselves to be lured into a state of depression. As several of the Rabbis I have posted in the ‘Three Weeks’ thread have said it is pointless to be depressed. A state of mourning is not intended to bring about depression because depression results in inaction and sin. The Torah clearly states that Hashem wants us to serve his will with joy.
So I have been successful in experiencing a mournful joy and also a joyous mourning. It is this state which brings about the contemplation and the pain, and permits me to formulate a view of Jewish history. This state permits me to feel the pain of my fellow Jews, and to try to share what I feel and have learned.
The Jews must not lose hope because hopelessness precedes depression, and depression leads to inaction and sin, and we must not permit ourselves to be caught in that trap. It is my belief that through each of us learning what we can of the Torah, the Prophets, the Writings and what the sages of the Talmud wrote we can each find something which will bring blessing to the people of Israel. Through the simple trust and faith in the word of Hashem we bring blessing to the world.
As we cry we also must think about what it is we can do to better our situation. Hashem helps those who put in the effort to acheive. Miracles do happen, but they only happen when we do our part in the deal. Hashem made a covenant with our forefathers and that covenant is surely still in effect. There are many things a Jew is obligated to.
We have the commandments which we can observe, and we have communal responsibilities which include giving Tzedakah to Jewish causes. I am not ashamed that I give more to Jewish causes than to other causes. This is because we are such a small nation and every little bit helps to feed the poor, support the settlers in difficult situations in Judea and Samaria, support your local community through the shul.
As I count myself among the Kahanists I will also say that the loss of Rabbi Kahane is most certainly something to cry about. How sad I am that I never attended a talk of his because at the time I was far from my faith. I cry sometimes when I watch his videos and am in awe of his grasp of Torah his love for the Jewish people even if many of them did not accept his teaching. Like so many of the prophets of our Tanach, his words were rejected and so many years later we see he was absolutely right about just about everything.
So my activism is considered pro-Kahanist and I am certainly not shy about sharing it with my minyan and Rabbis. Maybe Hashem is making it easy for me and in some places I might not be so welcome for my Kahanist leanings, but over the years I believe I have inspired some of my community to share our views. My advice is that we must convey the message of Jewish strength and the time is quickly coming when I think our views will be more mainstream.
This is why I feel like Rabbi Akiva after the Temple was destroyed. Rabbi Akiva laughed when he saw a fox running out of where the Kadosh HaKadoshim (Holy of Holies) used to be. The other Rabbis he walked with were weeping bitter tears. They asked Rabbi Akiva why he was laughing, he asked them why they were crying. They said that they were weeping because the sight of a fox running around where only the High Priest was permitted made them realise that they were alone and the Temple era was over. Rabbi Akiva said he was laughing because now that the Temple was destroyed he knew that the prophets were correct and a Third Temple would some day be built.
So too we see the destruction which the Talmud and the prophets discuss in the age before Moshiach. We see all so clearly that the prophets knew because Hashem put the words in their mouths. We see that the nations are only acting like they are the friends of the Jews, but when push comes to shove we know that Israel would be sold down the drain, if the arabs request it. So too Rabbi Kahane foresaw that even in America there would be a rise in antisemitism when the economy went sour.
I know we, the Jewish people, have unlimited ability when we put our minds to something. We have collective power of bringing blessing to the world. We must harness this ability before the world runs off its rocker. Whether we ‘deserve’ it or not the redemption will come, but I do prefer the scenario where we deserve it.
May we all merit seeing the rebuilding of the Third Beit HaMikdash and the flourishing of Jerusalem, and the righteous redeemer speedily and in our days.