Shavuot: Shavuot and the Cultural War

The key question regarding the Holiday of Shavuot today is: Do we simply look at this holiday as the commemoration of an event that occurred 3,000 years ago, or is it perhaps something more?

On Passover, we say “that in each and every generation, one must see himself as if he left Egypt!” That is, though the original event itself took place thousands of years ago, every Jew is obligated to feel that he himself left Egypt. If such is the case regarding Passover, all the more so regarding the Torah itself, for which the sages say that “each and every day, it shall be in your eyes as something new”. The Torah is not some antiquated burden we must carry on our backs, adjusting it “somehow” to today’s reality. No. Torah was given today and for today. Yes, it was actually given today, for this very moment!

One who sincerely wishes to receive Torah today and in its entirety, will find himself in the midst of a brutal cultural war. For in this generation more than any other, Jews are trying to prevent us from receiving Torah! What do we mean?

Lost in the muddle of all the campaign hoopla was a very significant event that dwarfs all others in importance. We are speaking of the declaration by the head of the Supreme Court of jesters, Aharon Barak, that any party which calls for changing the existing gentile laws of the state to Jewish law, is liable to be disqualified from running in the elections for the Knesset. (This declaration was made during a court decision concerning “Israel’s Right” party following a proposal by an Arab that the party be banned.)

In other words, any party whose platform includes the changing of Israel from a state of Jews to a Jewish State by making the Jewish halacha the law of the land instead of the present mixed multitude of British, Turkish, French and Swedish laws – any such party is liable to find itself tabooed! And all this despite the fact that one attempts to make such changes by attaining a majority in the Knesset! Even this is forbidden. Why? Because Jewish law “contradicts the fundamental concepts of democracy and equality” since it discriminates between men and women, Jew and non-Jew, and is therefore “racist”.

There is nothing new under the sun. This process began in 1988 when Rabbi Kahane was banned, since his platform included “racist” and “anti-democratic” halachot from the Torah. In 1992, the list was banned again for presenting the Tanach as its platform. In the appeal to the Supreme Court, endless sources from the Talmud and from the rabbis were brought down. The court determined that the sources brought down only strengthen the reason for disqualification!

When this occurred, we declared that the Torah was banned, and this matter will not end here with Rabbi Kahane and his students. And it did not. In systematic fashion, the Supreme Court has succeeded in delegitimizing any motion that would aspire to change the direction of Israel to that of a Jewish state. Due to Aharon Barak’s revolutionary legislation, the Supreme Court today can even ban religious laws (as long as a kosher majority is attained). There is no doubt that a change in the “undemocratic” marital and divorce laws is only around the corner. Afterwards, the “discriminatory” Law of Return will come under fire.

The “Racist Bill” whose entire reason for being is to negate the Torah is an established fact, and it is what sent Rabbi Ido Elba to prison for two years for a halachic essay that he wrote. Rabbis sitting in jail is a fact we have already gotten used to – Rabbi Levinger and Rabbi Ginzberg are just two of the more prominent examples.

Who Is Guilty?

The Torah world which kept silent when Rabbi Kahane was banned is the guilty party. Guilty are those who were silent when Rabbi Elba was arrested, and are quiet today when one of the great men of self-sacrifice in this generation, Rabbi Levinger, sits in jail. Let there be no mistake: This is a war waged against the Torah world, and no one else will fight our battles. He who sits by quietly can not complain when his turn comes up. And it will come up.

Aharon Barak knows exactly what his goals are. The religious parties return some fire in the battle, but they have much more important things on their minds. They are preparing themselves for a return to their rightful places near the jackpot – awaiting the funds that will flow to them if they play their cards right. Only the Torah which they supposedly represent will remain discarded and nonfunctional. For day by day the Torah is being cut up. A halacha today, another tomorrow, until eventually they will officially stamp “censured” on the entire Torah!

Shavuot is the holiday that celebrates the giving of all of the Torah, without “forfeiting” on the halachot that sent Rabbi Elba to prison, or banned Rabbi Kahane and his students, or turned Jewish law in this country into something in dispute. Receiving Torah can sometimes be a struggle. “Right”, “left” and all the rest is not where the battle lies. Even if the Likud wins the elections, they have made it quite clear that what was, will continue to be. Thus, the conclusion is that the real war standing before us is not between “right” and “left”, but rather between the Hellenists and the Jews.

“CHOOSE LIFE”

Question: For quite a while you have been preaching that there is no significant difference between Labor and Likud, as proven by their past records while in power, as well as their campaign messages this time around. But what you fail to tell us is – who SHOULD one vote for?

Answer: Our major goal is to bring forth the genuine Jewish Truth, the Jewish Idea – to the people. Not just a portion of the message, and not just a “realistic” part of the message, so to speak. Nor do we just convey ideas that the people will always grasp immediately upon hearing them. We are not politicians who have to try to show a pretty face before the public. And so we repeat that the election for Prime Minister is a race between Siamese twins. It is crucial to us that the people understand the painful truth that the Jewish truth was banned from participating in these elections, deeming these elections obscene from the very start. And part of the painful truth is that those who engineered the banning of Rabbi Kahane was not the left, but rather that “great hope” – the Likud!

As requested by many, we will bring the words of Rabbi Kahane, (May God Avenge His Blood), exactly as he said them immediately after he was banned in 1988. The Rav said that he is not a “guru”, and he doesn’t give orders to “Chassidim” (followers) how to vote. In any case, he RECOMMENDED putting an empty white slip into the ballot box, and for those who want to vote for someone, he suggested: Anything but Likud!

And let us add something else for those who want to vote for the Knesset. There is a party, a bit obscure, called “Israel’s Right”, which is a religious party with some good Jews in it. The very fact that the “Meretz” party tried to ban it for being “racist” is reason enough to identify with it. Its chances for success are not what interests us.

In any case, we must not despair. The salvation will not sprout from the Knesset ANYWAY, and we must start internalizing this fact. The alternative will come from outside that den of clowns, and it will overwhelm it. The salvation will come from those who do not nonchalantly accept the fact that the truth was banned, and life just goes on.

There is an alternative. And it won’t come from the Knesset, or anywhere near it…

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