18 July 2019

Judging the Source

15 Tamuz 5779

One of the hallmarks of eastern spirituality is the enigmatic pronouncements of their 'tzadikim'.  Some people feel that their spiritual leaders are demonstrating their superiority by speaking in riddles.  In fact, I don't think it would be remiss to say that all false religions bear this hallmark and rely on it to keep their followers attached to them.

In Christianity, for example, when one asks the logical question, "How can God be One and 'three' at the same time?"  The answer provided out of 2000 years of 'scholarship':  "It's a mystery."  Many times throughout the gospel stories it is recounted how the people could not understand what Yeshu was getting at as he spoke to them in parables.  When his 'chasidim' asked why he didn't speak more plainly to the people, he answered by quoting Isaiah and saying this was in fulfillment of the prophecy:
And He said, "Go and say to this people, 'Indeed you hear, but you do not understand; indeed you see, but you do not know.' This people's heart is becoming fat, and his ears are becoming heavy, and his eyes are becoming sealed, lest he see with his eyes, and hear with his ears, and his heart understand, and he repent and be healed."
In other words, it was their low spiritual level which caused their lack of understanding. The problem lay within them and required repentance.

Curiously, false religions often claim that one may only approach God through a spiritually superior mediator, a 'tzadik', if you will.  Yeshu's followers believe this until this very day -"No one comes to the Father except through me."  They even claimed his lineage back to King David.  Though he hinted at it broadly, Yeshu never came right out and said he was mashiach, but they came to that conclusion anyway.  They expected him to ascend David's throne and rule over Israel in their lifetime which is why the Romans mockingly attached a sign at the top of his cross proclaiming him "King of the Jews."

The greatest leaders in Judaism were notable for their desire and ability to take the most esoteric topic and bring it down to the level where the common people could understand.  The Rambam (Mishneh Torah) and Ramchal (Derech Hashem) are particularly noted for trying to simplify learning in order to make it more accessible to more people.

This is the hallmark of Judaism and it is the hallmark of all Truth, that those with knowledge do not purposely obscure their words so as to produce more uncertainty, doubt and confusion in the world.  Just the opposite.  So, this is a good way to judge the source of a controversial teacher or leader.

True or false?


  1. Bs''d
    We are living in such crazy times, when the speech is filled with twists of NACHASH fully.
    Not many are found to speak PURE SPEECH of SIMPLE, FLAT , PLAIN TRUTH.
    When they do, the massa people living in lies find them ridiculous.
    Always good to turn to TORAH HA KDUSHA...PURE, STRAIGHT, HOLY.
    The blessing of a simple person is like the song of the morning bird.
    It fills the heart with JOY. May it bless us all to DO TSHUVA SHLEMA.

    1. For sure, all one really has to do is open the Torah and see how clearly everything is laid out.

  2. Yes! Amen! I think this is also one of the reasons they say "the simple who read Tehillim in the End of days" will see the Moshiach". Praise Hashem! In such a twisted world, we need blogs like this... we need to encourage each other that it is the world around us that is crazy. Torah is true! Thank you for this blog. Shabbat shalom! P.S. I'd be honored if you would add my blog to the list of blogs on this site. it is all praises of Hashem, Torah, and Israel: https://deborahbeth.blogspot.com/

  3. True. Unfortunately, even in Religious Zionist communities, this attitude toward rabbis also exists, almost as if to say, "Look. We have 'rebbes' too!"

    In some modern orthodox communities, it's worse. The rabbis pander to their communities for the same type of kavod, almost allowing their congregants to determine the halakha. This is exactly what the so-called Reconstructionists do, but are at least honest about it.