By Felix Quigley
The reaction of a religious Jewish man in Israel after the recent mass murder of Jewish youth and students in a Jerusalem library over a month ago (known to Jewish people as the Mercaz Harav Yeshiva)
[Start quote here]
“Reb Simcha Bunim goes on to explain that, at times, we get so accustomed to the bitterness in our lives we assume that it is the normal state of being and cease to yearn for it to change. The bitterness of the maror is meant to remind us that there are greater things to yearn for than the bitterness that we become accustomed to. Only after such a realization can the herbs themselves be changed into a spice that will bring out the taste and yearning for complete redemption.
The people of Israel are undergoing the bitterness of hatred and oppression. They are experiencing it on the national level and, in some cases, on the personal level. It is that very bitterness that will strengthen the yearning for, and hasten the coming of, complete redemption in both the personal and national spheres.
The lessons learned from the senseless and brutal massacre are many and painful. The loss of such pure and obviously powerful souls is overwhelming for the families and devastating for the people of Israel. Yet, the courage, the faith and the vision of the bereaved families has moved the Jewish people one step closer to redemption. All the families have simply strengthened their faith, reinforced their resolve and moved closer to their Father in Heaven.
One mother was asked by a rather unscrupulous reporter about her son who was killed in the library of the Merkaz HaRav Yeshiva. The reporter asked the mother, “So where was G-d on that night?”
The mother seemed confused by the ignorant and insensitive question. “What do you mean?” she responded. “G-d was in the library as well.”
The spiritual depth of the answer was probably lost on the reporter, but in the Heavens there was probably great weeping.
May this Pesach be a time of healing for the pained and hope to the wandering. May it be the time of ultimate and complete redemption for Israel and the whole world.
[end quote here]
Published: 04/22/08, 12:06 AM
The Ongoing Exodus From Egypt
by Moshe Kempinski
Title of piece…We need to acknowledge that we are still enslaved
(On this site we are revolutionary socialists and speaking for myself alone I am a confirmed atheist. But Judaism and religion are at the centre of the whole Jewish experience and it is right that they are at the centre of the existence of Israel as well.
I support Kempinski above in everything he says. Israel must become a refuge where Jewish people are free to follow their religion and very ancient traditions in complete freedom.
That is exactly what we are fighting for, to have one small spot on earth where Jewish people can practice their religion in their own way, without being attacked.
So…More power to Kempinski!)