24 August 2014

Let's Be Honest and Straighforward

28 Menachem Av 5774

The truth only sounds harsh to ears that have been corrupted by the steady flow of this world's lies upon them. In this generation, it is very difficult to hear the truth and to recognize the truth when you hear it. 

Aliyah is a mitzvah. We don't change the truth of the Torah just because something is hard and a lot of people would like to be let off the hook for it.

Yes, it's a hard mitzvah and impossible for some people to perform, due to their own shortcomings and not due to any lack in Hashem or the Torah itself, G-d forbid!. But, that does not give us permission to trivialize it and excuse people from their responsibilities and obligations.

All of our prophets condemned the "smooth talkers" - those who worried more about placating feelings rather than faithfully representing the truth.

The Nazis cared nothing for the sensitive feelings of Jews and neither does ISIS. Telling you the truth may save your life, but nothing is to be gained by obfuscating it.

I say "feelings", but what we're really talking about is the fragile ego, which is really anything but fragile.

This generation is so full of ego, it can't accept rebuke on any level at all. It can't humbly acknowledge the truth has been spoken if it goes against the grain because that would bring shame upon the guilty and God knows (Oh yes, He certainly knows!) that this generation can not be allowed to feel shame of any kind. It would be detrimental to their 'fragile' ego and lower their sense of self-worth. 

Well, this is an idol of contemporary culture and if we don't smash it ourselves, Hashem will do it for us. Nothing so stands in the way of true teshuvah than the ego and an inflated sense of self-worth. We may parrot "ashamnu," but we don't really mean it. When we say "ayn od milevado" that means US, too. We are as nothing before Him!!

Now, a word to those who use their children for an excuse not to make aliyah. Ponder this...

"As for your infants, of whom you said that they will be as spoils, I will bring them [there], and they will come to know the Land which You despised." (Bamidbar 14:31)

When Hashem commands us to enter Eretz Yisrael, we are not allowed to make a cheshbon about whether it will be better for the children or not. Ours is but to obey and leave the cheshbon to Hashem whose children they are even more than yours.

Avraham Avinu was tested by his willingness to sacrifice his beloved son Yitzchak at the request of HKB"H. Because he succeeded in this trial, all of his progeny have the ablity to succeed at it as well.


As Jews, we are not allowed to put anything ahead of Hashem in our love or devotion - even our children and spouses. (That's why the halachah says that one may divorce a spouse if they will not accompany us to Eretz Yisrael.)

A Jewish couple is allowed to adopt a gentile baby and convert it and raise it as a Jew. Why? Because it is understood that this will benefit the child's neshamah. But, does that guarantee that the child will grow up to be a good and observant Jew? The parents made the best decision for the child and what he does with the future he's been handed is between that neshamah and its Creator. It's the same with children who have been brought on aliyah to Eretz Yisrael. It is understood that this is the best place for every Jewish neshamah, but does that guarantee that every Jewish neshamah will thrive here? The parents made the best decision, but it's up to that neshamah to cling to HKB"H and make a success of his life (in the way that the Torah defines success.)

For a child who "goes off the derech" in Eretz Yisrael, it must be understood that this is due to a flaw in their neshamah that was uncovered and exposed by the kedushah that resides here. The idea that this would not have happened in chu"l doesn't mean the flaw wasn't there, it just points up the fact that the tumah of chu"l would allow this flawed neshamah to live a whole lifetime of religious pretense.

As for salving the conscience of the yordim, again this is just ego. Why is it such a problem to admit that it was a personal failure and get up and try again. Instead, people want to make all kinds of justifications of why this was really a good decision. People make mistakes. No one who ever lived did not make a mistake - some bigger and some smaller, but mistakes need to be rectified, not excused. We need to learn from them and move on to the next level. 

I'm a nurse. If this makes you feel like the bandage has just been ripped off in one quick, fluid motion, so be it. This bandage is dirty and needs to be changed and the sore spot underneath needs fresh air to heal. Sometimes, things have to hurt before they can be made better.

18 comments:

  1. But I thought R Mizrachi lives in the US? Did he or is he returning to E"Y?

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  2. Shalom, Devash. I have enjoyed coming to your blog, yet I am not able to right now, for a while. I believe that your permanent written words are actually getting ahead of your usually sound logic and assessment. Your words are judging and lacking in what Jews need at this time:understanding and encouragement. To judge one's fellow Jews as making excuses to justify themselves about not making aliyah is egotistical in it's wording,misinformed and lacking in the Torah view and authority to label all non-aliyah making Jews in the manner in which you attempt to.
    At this juncture I must let you know that as a fellow Jew, I do NOT look down on you. Rather, I must depart your blog as a result of both your heavy handed judgment as well as your emotional tantrum.
    In the future should you decide to return to your usual inspirational words,then I and others will return.
    Take care.

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  3. Rabbi Mizrachi is working on Kiruv and you probably not, that is difference.

    --Moshe

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  4. Anonymous - You'd have to ask him. You can message him on his facebook page.

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  5. Judging by the volatile reactions these posts get, including the one at Yeranen Yaakov (see the comments), it seems like aliyah is the tikun of the generation. Nothing else generates so much debate and antagonism.

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  6. "Yes, it's a hard mitzvah and impossible for some people to perform, due to their own shortcomings and not due to any lack in Hashem or the Torah itself, G-d forbid".

    There are tens of thousands of elderly holocaust survivors living in atrocious conditions throughout Eastern Europe, who are completely incapable of making aliya. Are they also included in your judgement or do they get a heter?

    I wrote a comment on your previous post, starting with "the constant bashing".
    One thing that I can tell you for sure is that no-one is going to make aliya on account of this bashing. If someone tried to make aliya and "failed" they should be praised. They are in a small minority and are already on a very high level. If they are in chul, they are probably experiencing a whole host of negative emotions such as hurt, disappointment, embarrassment, as well as having to deal with the practicalities of starting life over. These people need to be consoled and encouraged, not badgered and bashed.

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  7. And you have the truth? How did you acquire this exactly - by spending your days and nights watching youtube videos about the Illuminati?

    Aliyah is a mitzvah? Says who? I live in New York City and the gadolim here have not told me to make aliyah. Rabbi Soloveitchik didn't say it. Reb Moshe didn't say it. Reb Yaakov didn't say it, and so on.

    When I first went to Israel 25 years ago I met people who talk like you, with this aliyah fervor, inventing a new mitzvah It struck me as being avodah zara-like. I found it a big turn off to making aliyah. Torah can be observed anywhere. Does it need a place?

    Have you ever heard of the three oaths?

    This is a complicated subject. You want to make it simple and put demands on other people. Rashi defines the lav d'orita of lefnei ever as giving bad advice. Careful now.

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  8. Anonymous - How are E Europe holocaust survivors incapable of making aliyah? And what have they been doing for the last seventy years? If anything, it's easier for them than it is for young families. They have an independent source of income, such as it is, but they don't have to worry about getting a job or learning the language, unless they want to. In fact, their survivor's reparation allowance would probably go further in Israel. The ticket to Israel is free. There are organizations that will help them find a place to live near other survivors. It's not perfect, but it's certainly doable. Those remaining in the killing fields do so because they just don't want to leave whatever comfort zone they have constructed for themselves. They're not prepared to put themselves through such major changes at this stage of their lives. It's understandable, but it's not correct. I ask again, what did they do for the last seventy years?

    Estimates of living Holocaust Survivors

    Israel 360.000 -- 380.000
    FSU* 184.000 -- 220.000
    USA 140.000 -- 160.000
    W Europe 80.000 -- 100.000
    E Europe 50.000 -- 80.000
    Other 20.000 -- 20.000
    Total 834.000 -- 960.000

    Almost another million survivors have managed to find another place to live since the war. What makes those of E Europe any different? They are there by choice, just like you are where you are by choice. Everybody has a choice. No one is being held captive today except Jonathan Pollard!!

    Fyi, it's neither my job, nor my intent to convince anyone to make aliyah. I'm just stating the truth. People can take it or leave it, but nobody can ever say they didn't know.

    If you could really look at your complaint honestly, you would see that everything you have listed is egocentric.

    Btw, the idea that people should be "praised" for failure - it may be "normative", but it's not normal. Praised for trying - yes. Praised for not letting their failure stop them from trying again - yes. But only Western pc assimilationists would seriously suggest praising failure. If failure garners accolades, why bother trying to succeed?

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  9. Israel - I will state for the last time, that I am not trying to convince anyone to make aliyah. That is not my purpose in writing on the subject.

    I'd just encourage people to be honest for a change. Stop pretending...

    1) That there is no Torah mitzvah for a Jew to live in the Land of Israel or,

    2) That a Jew is perfectly justified and even to be praised for choosing to reject G-d's gift of Eretz Israel.

    Your true colors are on display for all to see, Israel. You are looking for any way out. After what you have written here, there is no way you can go on pretending to yourself or to others - that you yearn to make aliyah and live in our precious Holy Land, if only you could see your way clear of the obstacles to it.

    You have shown by your statements that you despise this land and see no value in it. According to our holy prophet, people like you will get your wish. You won't have to come to a land that you detest, but you will also not be allowed to remain behind in the impure foreign land of our oppressors. You figure out what he meant by that.

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  10. Found this among the youtube videos on the Illuminati today. Thought they might be of interest to somebody...

    The Duty of Aliyah to Eretz Israel

    Rav Zev Leff, Shlita, On Making Aliyah

    Mitzvah of living in Eretz Yisrael

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  11. Life is short - too short really. It may indeed be easier in some ways for healthy, elderly people than for young couples,singles etc to make aliyah. But if hordes of Jews of all ages suddenly arrived in Israel over a short space of time, there is no surety that they will all have their various physical and medical needs met, acquire suitable accommodation, etc. There are also people who are mentally ill, with alzheimers, special needs, terminal and chronic diseases and so on to consider. Plus, most would have to adapt to a new language, culture and climate. The Jewish nation was miniscule (well not that big), compared to today, when these laws were first given. Today, it appears to me, that the Israel of today could not adequately take on myriads of Jews, of various ilks, in one go! If a moshiach era with accompanying holy spirituality/miracles does arise then it 'will' no doubt be possible, and will of itself facilitate this mass exodus and homecoming. Meanwhile, we cannot pre-empt these miracles, we just have to wait and see...

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  12. Boy oh boy, did I open up a can of worms!

    I'm sorry I mentioned the whole thing.

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  13. Devash

    Thank you for reply. I was just innocently wondering whether R Mizrachi had decided to make aliya, that was the purpose of my question so Moshe, relax, no need for your smart reply, you have no idea abt what my life is or why I am interested in R Mizrahi. but thanks for the reminder, now I remember why I feel a more productive member of klal Yisrael when I take break from blogs.

    Maybe if we could stop judging each other for 5 minutes we wouldnt be having these problems.

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  14. Anonymous wrote: "Today, it appears to me, that the Israel of today could not adequately take on myriads of Jews, of various ilks, in one go! If a moshiach era with accompanying holy spirituality/miracles does arise then it 'will' no doubt be possible,...."

    So...what, Anonymous? Did Hashem take a vacation? He's not in evidence until Days of Mashiach? Everything that's been happening in EY is all by chance? No Divine Guiding Hand holding off Arab armies and Scud missiles and protecting people where the Iron Dome doesn't reach? The economy growing by leaps and bounds even while BDS is, too? Maybe Hashem is just waiting for us to give Him a reason to come out of hiding before he brings on the big stuff. Maybe He wishes we'd give Him a real challenge by all of us coming home at once. Like I said already - lack of faith and bitachon.

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  15. Yaak - Apparently HKB"H wanted the conversation or it wouldn't be happening. Should we also leave our hard questions til 'final status' when by some miracle, hearts and minds are all aligned with the truth? Or would that be called relying on a miracle?

    We plant our seeds. Whether they take root or not is in Hashem's hands alone. I'm comfortable with that.

    I mean when a popular blogger can sully the work and the memory of a tzadik like Rav Moshe Maimon by 'confirming'that he did not hold yishuv Ha'aretz to be a mitzvah... Well, someone had to make a start toward rectifying that and the honor was all yours. :-)

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  16. Anonymous from 10:18 am - If you don't have access to facebook, I'll try to get an answer back from him for you. I wasn't blowing you off. Just didn't want to get in the middle. But, then, I thought, maybe you don't use facebook. Let me know.

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  17. Devash,

    I wasnt upset with you. I was seriously thanking you for your reply, which was more than adequate and appropriate. Its true i dont have facebook. I thought you might readilly have an answer to my question, and wasnt expecting you to go out of your way to get an answer for me.

    Most of my recent reply was not directed towards you or critical in any way of your handling my post.

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