From Yerushalayim With Love

Location: Israel

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

I Accept the Holocaust

I accept the Holocaust.
If required to, we can vindicate the ways of G-d to man.
The G-d Who talked to Moses, Who called to Jonah.

Moses was reluctant to approach Pharoah..
Jonah certainly went out of his way to avoid having to act as G-d's spokesman and confront the King of Nineveh.

Why does G-d need a human representative anyway?

A human has to choose to act to affect his environment, to influence his future, or there can be no free will.
Human behavior is the responsibility of humans; if G-d forced us to do anything, it would be a denial of our free will.
So some people are approached by G-d, Who encourages these chosen spokesmen to address leaders and sinners and to convince them to change their ways.

Now let's get back to the Holocaust. Imagine it's Germany in the 1930s. Let's say Frankfurt am Main. And you're Jewish.
Suddenly, you start hearing a voice telling you to go to Hitler and warn him to stop.
What would you do?
Let's assume you argue with the voice: "How will I even get in to see Hitler? You have to be pretty high-ranking to get near him. They wouldn't let a Jew near him. And even if I could talk to them, they wouldn't be impressed. Whatever I show them they'll say it's done with concealed loudspeakers and trick photography. Or drugs and hypnosis – Jewish trickery."
Or suppose you're too Teutonic to engage in petty disputes with voices to whom you have not formally been introduced: suppose you're a sane man. What would you do?
Maybe you'd take the train to Vienna to consult with Doctor Freud concerning these auditory delusions.
At any rate, it is clearly conceivable that a twentieth century Jonah might have tried to run away rather than attempt to arrange a face to face audience with Adolf Hitler.

The Holocaust, then, occurred because man has free will – even the freedom to attempt to ignore G-d.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Purim Jerusalem 5766

Pay attention

Gladness, joy and honour.

Pedestrians Crossing: Jerusalem, Purim 5766

Everyone's Irish on Purim. Jerusalem, 5766

Jerusalem, Purim 5766

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Jerusalem Purim 5766

In 1938, at a dinner party, the American ambassador in London, Joseph Kennedy, an appeaser through and through, predicted to Churchill that England would go under. It drew from Churchill an impromptu oration that included these words:
It will then be for you, for the Americans, to preserve and maintain the great heritage of the English-speaking peoples. It will be for you to think imperially, which means to think always of something higher and more vast than one's own national interests.*

To think always of something higher and more vast than one's own national interests... It does describe how to think imperially; but it also describes any well-thought out national policy.

A light unto the nations.

Who observes that light is produced with heat - the physicist? The cynic?

* Sorry, but I forgot the article I copied this from.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Tsefat - Breslov

In Tsefat, each chassid I talked to, or was addressed by was likeable or loveable.
I davened at the unstintingly adorned Breslov Shul.
( I didn't enjoy it.)
Too many of the hundreds of congregation members prayed with oppressive intensity.
A few hundred men vocally declaring their determination to sip or suck joy from life is bound to result in their pissing their joy on my shoes.

As I was driven along Gallilean roads I noted that the lush winter greenery sprinkled with bright wildflowers was reminiscent of the hilly English countryside in early summer. There were leafy and blossoming trees and the occasional cow browsing.
Perhaps that is why the British allowed such beautiful land to be allotted to the Jews: in seasons like this, the countryside seemed so familiar to Englishmen that it seemed commonplace, nothing special.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Tsefat - The Plan

In a few minutes I'm off to catch the bus for Tsefat.
I'll be there for a few days,until after Shabbat.