Divrei Torah

The Divrei Torah in this section have been translated by Rav Reuven Ungar, Director of Alumni Affairs

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Da Ma LeHashiv - Atchalta DeGeula- Part II

By: Rav Aryeh Hendler
Sgan Rosh Yeshivat Sha'alvim

Summary of Part I: In light of the expulsion ("disengagement") from Gush Katif/North Shomron, can we continue to maintain that our era marks the atchalta degeula (beginning of the redemption)? Yes, the Jewish People exercise control over the Land of Israel; all Jews may return to The Land. Multitudes have done so. This fulfills a function of the ingathering of exiles- kibbutz galuyot.

Torah is being studied in The Land on a tremendous scale. Nowhere and at no time in the history of the exile has there been so much study of Torah. The Land of Israel produces fruits in plentitude. For these reasons we maintain that we are indeed experiencing the atchalta degeula.

This would have been the case even if the partition plan of 1947 (that allotted to the Jewish State far less then what we received) had been accepted! The mere fact that we have the option to return to The Land constitutes a dimension of redemption. The mere fact that the Jewish People awakened and desired to return to The Land constitutes a call (pekida) of the redemption. According to some of our sages, this awakening (that transpired over 100 years ago) indicates that the fear of the 3 oaths (hinted at in Shir HaShirim, discussed at the end of Masechet Ketubot)-that prevented our return in mass to The Land- has elapsed and that we are permitted to return to The Land. This concept was accepted by leading Torah Sages of various viewpoints; it is not limited to the Mizrachi movement.

A parable illustrates this point. An individual is born; he is alive, he breathes. This person experiences an ache in his leg. He has the audacity to complain to Hashem. How can this person complain to He whom has bequeathed him with life?! Similarly, Hashem has provided us with The Land of Israel; the Land of Life (Eretz HaChaim). Can we ignore and deny the gift that we have received? We must appreciate each and every holy morsel of earth that we have merited to receive.

At this stage we must internalize the thoughts of Rav Kook (based upon the words of Chazal at the end of Masechet Sotah and in additional sources) that the road to the future redemption will include difficult turns. It is not a simple journey; it is complex. As we have noticed recently, it is very complex!

One should analyze the recent events in the framework of faith (emunah). A spiritual process is transpiring. The redemption is not limited to the physical state of the Jewish People. It contains a spiritual component as well (that constitutes the essence of the redemption). The youth participated in-indeed led- the struggle for Gush Katif. They adhered to the directives of their teachers and rabbis. Jewish unity was palpable. We must not focus on those pictures that the press delights in conveying. The central message was one of emunah and Ahavat Yisrael (love of Jews). Masses concentrated in prayer. Masses accepted upon themselves the severity of the judgment without a word of apostasy. A tremendous segment of the community in The Land enlisted itself to the cause of our brethren from Gush Katif. The love for fellow Jews engaged our entire community. I believe that it affected the general population as well. Who knows- perhaps the people of Gush Katif were the pious who were the vehicles for this great awakening (megalgalin zechut al yedey zakai)...

We must not give up now. Precisely because we are near the finish line, we must adhere to the belief that The Holy One, Blessed Be He, who chooses His people, is redeeming them. This constitutes the demand of yearning and anticipating the salvation (tzipia leyeshua). Tzipia leyeshua entails the constant willingness to await the salvation and not to reject it if does not conform to our pre-conceived notions of how it should appear.

Chazal have taught us that if we merit it, the Mashiach will arrive with heavenly clouds. If not, he will arrive as indigent individual riding upon a donkey. Perhaps we did not merit the former scenario. Nevertheless, it constitutes redemption! Should the fact that we are not enamored of the donkey prevent us from accepting he who rides upon it?


Categorized under: 1: Machshava > General
Uploaded: 9/26/2005 7:28:25 AM