What’s the ‘correct’ spiritual response to everything that’s going on, right now?
Let me spoil the suspense by telling you up front that I don’t have a pat, neat answer to that question. But what I do want to share here is some general guidelines, for how each of us can start to figure out what God really wants from us, and what message we are meant to be getting here, on the individual level.
Let’s start with an (anonymised…) email exchange I had a few days ago, around the subject of what happened in Meron:
What’s your take on the following videoclip:
How would you explain it in the light of your perception of what transpired?
Thank you in advance!
It’s a clip of one of the Meron survivors who lost a child saying that he refuses to discuss the idea that there was anything nefarious going on that evening.
Here’s what I wrote back to my correspondent:
If you’re asking how do I understand his viewpoint, that God did it and we shouldn’t question ‘why’ God did it – that’s his derech, and kol ha kavod to him.My derech (tries to….) follow the 3 rules of emuna set out by Rav Arush, based on Jewish traditions that pre-date Breslov, but are part of the Breslov path of my rabbi:1) God is doing everything.2) Everything God does is for the good (even though sometimes it’s v painful)3) Everything that happens contains a message, about what we need to work on, fix, rectify, improve.I’m looking at #3 with all this stuff.There’s a message here – many millions of messages here – and each person needs to identify their own message, and run with it, to figure out what God really wants from THEM.
Here’s what my correspondent sent back:
Thank you very much for your prompt and detailed response! I appreciate your analysis and lessons learned.
What my friend, who forwarded this videoclip to me, saw in it – is the refutation of “the conspiratorial insights” as per testimony of this person. It impressed him immensely and he demanded that I should be “moideh al hoemes”.
I was wondering if his reply was attributable to his “aberration state” of consciousness following such profound personal tragedy.
Also, I was thinking that perhaps, people in Israel are locked in the deep state of denial vis-a-vis the scale and pervasiveness of wickedness emanating from the Erev Rav in power that their Orwellian mode of thinking prevents them even under normal circumstances from facing the reality. And ultimately, simple concern and vigilance of possible outcome: who knows who else was there in the shiva room then, who was taping the scene and where could the recording eventually land?
Yet, with all that in mind, the resolve to deny any shred of a foul play does beg a question.
Perhaps, you might have additional clarifications.
I can’t really answer the question, as to why he believes what he believes, or is saying what he’s saying.I don’t know why.It certainly strikes me as very strange, and there could be any number of explanations as to what is really going on.
I think the thing to focus on is our role, our response to all this.It could well be that Hashem doesn’t expect the people who lost loved ones to stand up and fight this battle for the truth – they’ve been through enough.But you and me – we don’t have that excuse.And I feel in my soul, that IF there was foul play here – and the more I look into it, the more it seems that this is the case – then I owe it to myself, as a frum Jew, and to the victims, and to the greater Am, and ultimately also Hashem, to stand up for the truth.Or at least, to try to, given that I’m also very limited, and I’m also groping in the dark here, a lot of the time.
The point is this: spiritual responses are not ‘one size fits all’.
Each person in the world is on their own path, with their own mission, their own job to do, their own stuff to fix.
So where one person may get the message to just ‘see the good’ in something like Meron, and another person might get the message that they need to strengthen their Torah learning, or where bullet-proof tights – those messages are all individual to them.
The message I got – very strongly and repeatedly in my hitbodedut about what went down into Meron – was to research it as fast and as thoroughly as I could, because something very bad happened here, and we can’t just sit back and watch it all get covered up.
Which brings me to the next point.
Very well known individuals came out to say that we cannot know the reasons why Meron happened, and that there are no prophets in our generation that can tell us.
Again, I respectfully disagree with this approach.
EVERYTHING contains a message from God about what we may need to work on, fix rectify and change, absolutely everything – and especially soul-shaking events like the mass murder of 45 people in Meron on L’ag B’omer.
And I also disagree that there are ‘no prophets in our generation’.
A full three weeks before the atrocity in Meron, Rav Berland gave over THIS shiur, and that same day, he also sent two busloads of his talmidim up to Meron to go and pray on a Thursday night, dafka between 12am – 7am, to avert a ‘terrible decree’ he foresaw on the horizon.
Here’s some of what he said on April 11th, 2021, almost three weeks before L’ag B’omer:
[O]n that day, they decided to slaughter all the Jews. 100,000 Jews in five minutes.
How long does it take to kill 100,000 Jews?….
All the police will go on the microphone at 6 in the morning… And they will make an announcement to wipe out all the Jews, all the Jewish nation….
The goyim are waiting all year to start chopping… To decapitate, to [separate] the Jews from their heads. Only [waiting] for permission from the king.
They are just waiting for the announcement, the megaphone, and then within 10 seconds there will not remain any Jews in all of ‘Istanbul’…And so at 6 in the morning, no memory [of the Jews] will remain.
Judenrein, Judenrein, Judenrein.
Everything will all be cleansed of Jews. And Jews will not live in ‘Istanbul’, until the end of their lifetimes.
So then, the gezeira will occur, and then Jews will no longer live in ‘Istanbul’ forever. It will be Judenrein… And so, we will have a city cleansed of Jews, and then we’ll have fun.
And what a good life we will have!
This is what [the goyim] thought in their hearts – and it’s forbidden to reveal it.
Whoever reveals it, oy va voy. The electric chair in the city square. They would always say that there was one like this who used to tell things to the Jews, always!
And the Jews would then nullify the gezeira within five minutes. They would bring a few coins, they would collect at the wall (Kotel) a few agarot (pennies) and sweeten it all. What’s the problem? A Jew knows how to sweeten everything.
In a thousandth of a second, he can sweeten all of the gezeirot in the world – so [the Turks decided] don’t reveal it, and that’s it!…
It’s already 1 in the morning, and [the minister who loves the Jews] can’t fall asleep. He cries out, hatzilu! Save us! Save us! Save us! Save us!
They are going to destroy all of the Jews, and they don’t know anything about it!
So he ran to the head of the community, at 1 o’clock in the morning, already everyone is asleep…
[S]uddenly, BOOM! CRASH! What incredible banging on the door! CRASH! BOOM! They are breaking down the door.
And the head of the community, he doesn’t understand what’s going on. The FBI has arrived, the KGB have arrived – only the KGB would make such banging.
He ran in a panic to open the door… He sees the most important minister, the most important minister.
He says to him, Listen, in another five minutes no memory will remain from all of Am Yisrael. Run quickly to the King! I’m fleeing from here. Oy va voy, maybe they will come after me! Today everything is recorded!
If they record me, I’m finished! I’m lost! The electric chair! He called out to the minister, where are you running to?
The minister with kol od nafsho bo (all the soul that was left in him) jumped all the stairs in one jump.
The head of the community, did not know what to do. He did not know where to run. Where can we go? In another five minutes, אhere will be no trace left of all the Jews.
Six in the morning, 9.30 – there won’t remain the trace of even a single Jew.
Run quickly! Run quickly, and save all the Jews! Just run, they need to run!
How the head of the community ran!
Wow! Not even the best athlete couldn’t catch up with him. He woke up all the heads of the community. It’s already 3 in the morning. Everyone is running.
They don’t know their right from their left, north or south, east or west. They don’t know where to run to, in which direction, where to run, where to flee to, where to go…
The heads of the community, let’s say Shuvu Banim, began to sing one passuk (verse) for three hours, ‘Who performs wonders alone, because His kindnesses are forever’.
[On April 11th, the same day this shiur was given over by the Rav, two coachloads of Shuvu Banim went to Meron, on the instructions of a ‘hidden Tzaddik’, to try to sweeten a very harsh decree that this ‘hidden Tzaddik’ could see on the horizon.]
Everybody sing! [Rabbi] Shimon is singing with us! [the Rav is singing with them] ‘Who performs wonders alone, because his kindnesses are forever’. There are still another 20 minutes before 7am, ‘to perform wonders alone, because His kindnesses are forever.’..
….Come, let’s run to Balfour!
Maybe there, Bibi will sweeten something…Everyone, yallah, run, run!
How they ran! Wow!
I remember it, they ran, they stampeded over 10 cats and 5 dogs.
There are indictments, to crush a cat is worse than murdering a human being, today.
B’kitzur, they bang for the gatekeeper, four in the morning. By six – they say there will already be no trace remaining of the Jews.
They didn’t tell about the decree, because we can’t make the announcement five minutes before. They didn’t make the announcement – because people would cancel it. Only at that moment. And then, they would all come, and gomarnu. He / it will decapitate 10 people, and slaughter, and within five seconds there will not remain one Jew in ‘Istanbul’…
The guard wakes up.
What’s going on here?! Why are you breaking down the gate?! I’m going to bring the police on everyone!! They said, no, no! There is a terrible decree here! Some decree on the Jews! We are the messengers of the Jews! There is a decree to wipe out all of us!
Yes, I heard it. I heard something about this. They said it’s forbidden to reveal it….
….He jumped 10 stairs in one jump.
Banged on the door. [The mother of the sultan] came out in her pyjamas, wearing her night robe. What’s going on? Guests? I heard that the head of the community arrived.
Don’t ask! They are going to kill all the Jews!
What?! Bring them into the lobby. I’m coming down.
She slid down all of the 10 steps. She jumped it in one jump. What’s going on?! They said there’s a decree!! They are killing the Jews! They said it’s forbidden for us to reveal it. If we reveal it, they will hang us all in the city square…
They crushed 20 cats. 100 dogs, on the way.
She has 100 indictments until today.
To run over dogs is worse than killing a human today.
Who can read this, and honestly not see – with hindsight – exactly what Rav Berland was describing?
On the same day that he sent his students up to Meron, to go and pray to avert a terrible decree?
And now, you tell me: can we really say ‘there are no prophets amongst us’?
Why are all these terrible things happening right now?
There are many reasons, and each of us has to do our own cheshbon hanefesh, talk to God, and figure out what the specific message is for us, that we need to work on figure out.
But there are certainly clues that the ongoing awful treatment of Rav Berland – and how the frum world has turned its back on him, leaving him to be tortured in prison by the same reshaim who killed 45 holy Jews in Meron – has at least something to do with all this.
Remember THIS, from three days ago?
A terrifying message from the elder Kabbalist, the Tzaddik Rabbi Amos Gweta shlit”a of Netanya.
“For a long time the Jewish people are silent, great rabbis are silent, the entire world is silent — about the disgracing of a great Tzaddik, the Tzaddik of the generation, who is Rabbi Eliezer Berland shlit”a, who they are disgracing from the morning to the evening.
Rabbi Berland shlit”a, they’re torturing him for a year and a half in prison — he still hasn’t been tried, and everyone is afraid to protest….
“If [people] don’t protest the [insult] to the honor of Rabbi Eliezer Berland, there will be a tragedy a 1000 times greater.”
There are many, many spiritual messages coming down right now.
Each person needs to do their own cheshbon hanefesh, to see what they themselves are being required to recognise, rectify and fix.
But at least for some people in the frum world, re-examining their attitudes towards Rav Berland – and towards the lying, corrupt, murderous, anti-Torah ‘State of Israel’ who has been persecuting him groundlessly for the last decade – may need to loom large in that process.
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