Progressive Jewish Spirituality
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Titles #4 - The Four Infinite and Eternal Lights, The Image of God, The Jewish Family and Nation, The King Rides on a Chariot, The Baal Teshuva of the Rebbe
The Four infinite and eternal lights
"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. God you were here before the world was created; you are here after the world was created. Your name of four letters spell out, now, past and future. God is forever."
God wanted to reveal himself in this world his attribute of infinity and eternity. He created the world that when a man looks into the heavens he sees infinity. Therefore it say in Psalms 19: the heavens relates the honor of God. God is called our father in heaven. Blessed is God in his place. The heavens is one of his places where is revealed his attribute of infinite.
God wanted to reveal his attribute of eternal and infinite through the nation of Israel. He made the nation of Israel from the forefathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He blessed them that their seed should be like the stars of the heavens and the sand of the seashore to represent his attribute of infinity. He gave to the people of Israel the Torah that the nation of Israel should live forever. The Torah protects the Jewish people from assimilation. First God brought the Jewish people to the land of Israel to make them a nation which existed over 800 years. After the nation was established with its religious Torah tradition it survives until the end of time with or without the Moshiach. The Moshiach will come soon in our days.
Moses the prophet of truth gave to Israel the Torah the will and wisdom of God. In the Torah is revealed infinity. God's name of four letters is revealed in the Torah to represent past present and future. The Torah is filled with an infinite number of lights which are the interpretations of the words and passages of the Torah. Each letter and each word has infinite lights like sparks which go out of a hammer when it is slammed on a stone. The Torah is a revelation of the infinite and eternal. The end of the Torah is woven into the beginning. The last letter Lamed joins with the first letter Beit to make the heart. The Torah has in it the heart and intellect of God the eternal one whose wisdom is without end.
The fourth revelation of infinity in God's creation is in man himself. Although the life of man is finite Adam lived 930 years, Moses lived 120 years, and the soul of man is eternal. The soul of man is revealed like a candle through its reflection within, like it says, the candle of God is the soul of man. Within man is the secret of eternity like eternity is revealed through looking outward into the heavens.
In all these ways is revealed the infinite and eternal God. In these ways God reveals himself in his kingdom through the Torah, Israel, in nature, and through his righteous saints including the two Messiahs.
The image of God
The closest knowledge that man has about God is that man was created in the image of God. The Torah commands "You should know and take it upon your heart that The Lord (YHVH- Four letter name of God) is God (Elokim), in the heavens and the earth there is none else."
The two names of God which are YHVH and Elokim represent two aspects which are attributes in the knowledge of God. These two aspects or attributes represented by his names YHVH and Elokim are God in the formless and God as he is revealed through man who is created in the image of God. God is above each one of his names YHVH and Elokim but is closest to the combination of these two names. On Mount Sinai God revealed himself in the world for one instant. The rest of the revelation of God on earth comes through his prophets.
The complete revelation of God on earth is the work of 6000 years, as it says in six days God created the heavens and the earth and in the seventh day he rested. The six days of creation correspond to 6000 years of creation. The Sabbath, the seventh day is the day when all of the revelation of God has been completed. Rest - Now you not only believe in God you have divine supernal knowledge.
God was revealed on Mount Sinai in one instance an event which will never be repeated until the time of the resurrection of the dead. In this event God was revealed at once. The revelation of God in an instant was too much spiritual light for the people; they complained and built the Golden Calf. Moses broke the first tablets written with the hand of God when he saw that the people had built the Golden Calf which was a sign of their resistance and difficulty coping with this high level of revelation. He prayed to God for their forgiveness and God gave through Moses a second set of tablets which contained the religion of the Jewish people which is the Torah, the Oral Torah and the written Torah.
There was a new plan for God to reveal himself in the world; the revelation would come in steps. Of course God knew this before he created the world, because it says in the Torah that in six days God created the heavens and the earth and not in one day. However on the first day it says in the Torah, And the earth was empty and void, God said Let there be light and there was light; on the first day. The first day was similar to the day that the Jews stood on Mount Sinai and received the Torah in one instance.
Destruction of all idolatry was the first step in the complete revelation of God on earth. Moses and the Jewish people destroyed the idolatry in the wilderness and Joshua destroyed the idolatry in the land of Israel when he conquered the land and established the State of Israel according to the Law of Moses and God. King David completed the conquest of the land and his son Solomon built the holy temple in Jerusalem.
The Torah commanded not to make any graven images for worship. Man was created in the image of God and even to make an idol of Moses was prohibited. In the times of the temple according to the Torah law the image of God was revealed by the presence of the King of Israel. The Kingship began with Saul. David his son in law took from Saul the kingship and it was forever given to his offspring, to David and his children forever. King David was a holy person and gave honor to be the representative of the image of God on earth. A king carries with him a Torah as part of this revelation. The King of Israel has responsibility to be a holy man. There is no man that has no sin. Moses the holiest man who fasted forty day and forty nights was not without sin. The Kings after King David and King Solomon blemished the image of God through their sins. King Solomon was attacked for having many wives. A King was only allowed up to eighteen wives. There were righteous kings and evil kings in Jewish history.
The Nation of Israel was conquered by its enemies, the two holy temples were destroyed. Christianity came into the world to bring a new religion with Jesus the new king, the image of God on earth. Christianity also allowed to build statues of Jesus in their religion. Before Jesus already the image of God had been lost in Judaism. There was no worthy king. The last of Kings was Agrippus who was no representative of the Image of God.
Christianity brought the image of God in the world in a new way. In Judaism the king was the representative of the image of God. The other attribute of God formless and unknowable which was part of the Torah was missing in Christianity and still a part of Judaism. The attribute of the revelation of God without form was mostly revealed in the holy temple and through the learning of the Torah and the observance of its commandments. The Jewish nation went into exile with the Torah without a King and without a temple. They built synagogues in place of the temple and prayer was instituted in place of the sacrifices. There was no king, they prayed three times a day for the King the Messiah to return the nation to the days of world. In exile, they had no king only the memory of King David, the servant of God the anointed one.
Judaism lives with memories of the past. However the past in examining Jewish history is polluted with corruption. However God commanded the Jewish people not to change the Torah and their religion. Through Judaism principally the Oral law the Jewish nation has survived until today. In Judaism remains the revelation of God as the Lord called ADNY in their prayers but the aspect of God which is the image of God YHVH revealed through the king of Israel could not be revealed until the coming of the Messiah.
Other religions in the world like Christianity and Hinduism emphasize the image of God in their religion and even build statues of their leaders who are their Godhead. They make a new statue to represent each Godhead. In some temples in India they include Jesus as one of these statues. The prophet of the Jewish people is forever Moses. Their King is forever David. The Torah prohibited making a statue of Moses even though he was in his time the representative of the image of God on earth. King David was great and courageous but he was not on the spiritual level of Moses. The Torah says, that there will not be in Israel another prophet like Moses.
The Zohar was discovered more than a thousand years after the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash. The Zohar is mostly devoted to restore the memory of Moses the prophet. Moses appears in the Zohar in the name of Raya Mehemna the faithful servant and learns with Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai the secrets of Torah. Elijah the prophet who never died and went up to heaven with his body on a cloud also appears in the Zohar to reveal the secrets of the Torah. In the Zohar there are two aspects of the image of God which are Elijah and Moses. In the Zohar Moses represents the image of God through resurrection. Elijah never dies and elevated into heaven with his body. There is also in the Zohar mentioned the image of God which is revealed through the Messiah the son of Joseph and the Messiah the son of David. The identity of the Messiah the son of David and the Messiah the son of Joseph is left hidden. In the interpretation of the Zohar by Rabbi Ashlag called Sulam, Rabbi Ashlag identifies the identity of the Messiah the son of Joseph as the Messiah of spiritual freedom called Yoval the 50th gate. The Messiah the son of David combines both the aspect of son which is spiritual freedom with servant. Moses connects the two Messiahs Joseph and David the upper and lower lights of spirituality.
Man was created in the image of God. The image of God is revealed by all the great righteous saints and prophets but principally by the two Messiah. The two Messiah complement each other. They combine the principal attributes of God of Justice and mercy. In this way they reveal God on earth but God still remains unknown that God is the combination of these attributes but not to be compared to or limited by these attributes. The Messiah is not God but a part of God, a part of the revelation of the image of God on earth. The image of God is a reflection of God but the essence of God is still unknown. God is truth; truth combines all the attributes of God principally the attribute of peace which unites all his attributes into one unity.
Building the image of God on earth began with the establishment of the Nation of Israel according to the Law of Moses, the Torah. Afterward, Christianity added to the image of God on earth, the Messiah of Mercy and Truth. Islam came to compliment the revelation of God through Christianity by establishing a Monotheistic religion like Judaism with a new law. Christianity did not make a new law but added the aspect of the image of God the Messiah the son of God his attribute of mercy. These were two new revelations of God to reveal the image of God on earth both form and formless. Christianity revealed the image of God in a way that all mankind could see the image of God with their own eyes. Islam reinforced the revelation of God revealed in Judaism formless and unknown, the opposite of Christianity. These two attributes of the revelation of God are called by Jerimiah the prophet, the seed of man with form spiritual pleasure and the seed of the animal without form and with sacrifice.
God is revealed in these two aspects of form and formless which are mercy and justice. The completion of the revelation of God on earth comes through the Messiah the son of David and through the resurrection of Moses. The Messiah the son of David reveals both attributes of God mercy and justice within the Torah given by Moses to Israel, the law and justice of God. The attribute of the Messiah the son of David is principally justice but includes in it mercy. The Messiah the son of Joseph revealed in Christianity is pure mercy. Islam is pure justice an eye for an eye. Moses resurrects at the end of time to unite pure mercy with pure justice the attributes of Christianity and Islamic faith. The Messiah the son of David elevates above everything also to include everything and to unite all God's attributes with God. The Messiah the son of David like Elijah and King David doesn't dies; they live forever.
The two Messiah which reveal the image of God on earth also reveal the aspect of God as infinite and eternal. The two Messiahs reveal the aspect of eternal life; which is a gift from God to all mankind that work to build the kingship of God on earth. The Jewish people also reveal the aspect of eternal and infinite through their religion which is the religion of the Torah. The nation of Israel has survived and continues to survive as long as it follows the teachings of the Torah. The Torah reveals the infinite wisdom of God given through the prophet Moses. All mankind has a part in the revelation of God through their true prophets and religions. They also have a share in the world to come.
The revelation of the image of God is also the revelation of the name of God which is Shalom or peace. In the east it is praised as Om tat sat. In the Torah it is called Emet and Shalom. Although the Jews have an obligation to reveal the eternal and infinite God as Jews; they are also part of the revelation of God and his name which is Shalom. This revelation is revealed through many prophets of truth. All the prophets have a place in the Torah and in the Garden of Eden together with Adam and Eve. There is one God; God is one. Only God is one and his name is called YHVH in the Torah. The one God YHVH is also called Elokim in the plural because his revelation combines many prophets of truth that were created in his image and are the descendants of Adam. God YHVH is Elokim.
The Jewish Family and Nation
Judaism emphasizes the family and the nation of Israel. Families try to marry off their children at a young age like it says " A child of 18 to the Chupah the bridal canopy." The years before marriage the children prepare for marriage through learning Torah. These years are very precious because after marriage there are many other family obligations which may limit the time for Torah learning. The children begin to build a family.
The single men and woman before marriage are encouraged not to have any interaction between opposite sexes. Modesty is very important for woman. The girls are encouraged to preserve their virginity as well as the men.
The Sanhedrin the Rabbincal Congress at the time of King David decreed that no man and woman should have relations out of marriage. Men and woman were forbidden to be alone together except for family members. All these decrees were against promiscuity and incest. Amongst the Ultra-Orthodox these laws are observed today in their communities. The Talmud tells stories of people who sacrificed their life rather than to transgress on these Rabbinical decrees. Judaism demands sacrifice for the sake of the family and for the sake of the nation.
In Judaism, the world is of secondary importance to Israel the Jewish nation. The welfare of a Jew comes before the welfare of a gentile like a person favors the members of his family over other people. The Jewish people are a family with a religion. Jews are descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob on their mother's side. A Jewish mother determines if her children are Jewish. If the father is Jewish and the mother is not Jewish, the children are not considered to be Jews and need to do conversion to become Jews according to the law. All mankind are the children of Adam and Eve which is also a family but the Jewish people are a special family within mankind. Jews are called the chosen people because God chose the Jewish people to give to them the Torah, the five books of Moses.
Through the Jewish religion especially laws pertaining to who is a Jew, the Jewish people have survived until today. Jewish law forbids intermarriage. Marriage and divorce must be done through Jewish law supervised by the rabbinical court. The Rabbinical Court determines if the people who want to marry are Jewish before they make the wedding ceremony. There are also some other restrictions involving divorced woman marrying Kohanim or priests and for sure each woman should have received a divorce according to Jewish law before remarrying. These laws protect the Jewish nation and through these laws the nation has survived until today.
Jewish education begins in the home. The parents begin to educate their children even from birth. At the age of five they send their children to Jewish day schools to get their Jewish education. Torah education involves knowing the laws and commandments of the Torah. At the Sabbath table the family are together; the father teaches the children about the weekly Torah portion. The holidays especially the holiday of Passover is devoted to education. At the Passover Table, the children are encouraged to ask questions including the Four Questions which are written in the Haggada which is read at the Passover ceremonial table.
At twelve years girls become considered as adults responsible for their behavior before God. Boys become adults at the age of 13 when they have a Bar Mitzvah which means they become a son of the Torah and its commandments. They are now responsible to God for their acts which may be sins or good deeds. They have been educated to choose the Torah way. Boys now wear each day Tefillin. Every adult is obligated in Sabbath observance and holiday observance. Torah education continues throughout the life of the Jew to know the law and keep its laws and commandments.
A father is responsible to teach his children a trade. They should all learn to swim. Successful parenthood means that their children continue their heritage and marry within their religion. Boys at eight days old are circumcised and the family makes a special meal of thanks to God for having a boy. At thirty days old there is a custom of redeeming the first born. The family gets together at these celebrations the grandfather, grandmother, father, mother and children with their cousins and other relatives and friends in the Jewish community. Very rarely do Jews have friends outside the Jewish community except through their work. Religious Jews usually keep close friendship with other religious Jews of their own religious group. All Jews are important; it is a mitzvah to love every Jew.
Through the ages there has been assimilation between Jews and the gentiles. There are always religious Jews that go away from their heritage for different reasons. A Jew that leaves his heritage has very little chance of Jewish survival in future generations. Those Jews today that are reformed, conservative, traditional or secular were several generations back from religious families. They are usually from parents that broke away from Judaism. Once a Jew leaves Judaism, he is on the way to assimilate with gentiles.
Jewish law which is derived from the Oral law given by Moses to the Jewish people on Mount Sinai protects the Jewish people from assimilation. Jews are forbidden to change the law. Although the love of your fellow Jew is sacred, nevertheless Jews that have assimilated or are assimilating can be excluded from the congregation to protect other Jews from assimilation. Jewish survival sometimes takes preference over Love of your Fellow Jew. It is encouraged to try to bring back Jews that have assimilated but at the same time there is a warning about becoming influenced by them especially children growing up when mixing with these assimilated families. These assimilated families may even be cousins but it may be better to avoid contact with them. In this way the Jewish people have survived today. Large blocks of Orthodox have multiplied and become fruitful within their religious groups which is forever the strength of the Jewish Religious Nation.
Orthodox Jews are encouraged by the Torah to have large families. Birth control is forbidden except when there is danger to the health of the mother or for other social reasons. The children grow older, bar mitzvah and wedding. They have children and their children have children. Through Jewish education the Jewish family and nation survives.
Fundamental in Judaism is Jewish survival in the diaspora. Jewish education continues throughout the Jewish life. Most important in Jewish education for family life is the study of Jewish law in its ancient text the Talmud and in its more modern versions called The Shulcan Aruch the Code of Jewish law.
In the last seven hundred years was introduced to the Jewish people the Zohar which began a spiritual revolution within Judaism. The Jewish nation had survived on the study of Jewish law without spirituality called the four Amot steps of Halacha. Within the Jewish nation began a Messianic movement based upon these teachings, which almost completely crippled the nation by the false Messiah Sabbatei Tzvi. Jews wanted spirituality which was very dangerous to the survival of the Jewish people. The nation had survived from avoiding spiritual issues and practicing Halacha with blind faith. Within the nation was discontent with Judaism where Jewish family life and Jewish survival was given more importance than the coming of the Messiah. Jews pray for the coming of the Messiah three times each day. However their prayers are for rebuilding the nation of Israel and the temple in Jerusalem; without any other spiritual goals like were in prophecies of Isaiah, that the whole world would be filled with the knowledge of God. The Zohar produced a conflict within the Jewish nation between Judaism with the goal of Jewish National Unity, family purity and the Messianic goals of World Unity and Peace. There was discontent with Judaism within the religious world.
The Arizal the kabbalist of Safed made several improvements to Judaism by giving deeper meanings to the performance of the commandments with the Kabballa. The Baal Shem Tov the founder of Chassidism initiated other changes to bring more joy into Judaism. Fundamentalists supporting Orthodox Judaism without making any changes continued to watch over the principle issues of Jewish survival in the diaspora through study of halacha alone.
There was already a conflict in Judaism between Jewish Nationalism and Messianic Judaism based on the prophecies of Isaiah and other prophets. The Rambam gives more emphasis on Jewish family and National Jewish interests. In Messianic Judaism is intermingled Christian values which have always been very dangerous to Jewish survival. The Messiah for Jewish National Unity still had not come and the people were becoming impatient. This uneasiness continued until the Holocaust. After the holocaust the secular Zionist movement which began in Europe won part of Israel in the war of independence of 1948. They established a secular state which would also protect Jewish lineage through appointing the Orthodox Rabbinate to officiate over marriage and divorce.
A secular Jewish State organized in this way allowed Jews to survive as secular Jews living in Israel for many generations. In the past these families would intermarry much faster when they became detached from their religious communities. The National Religious Jewish Zionists called the State of Israel the beginning of the redemption. The Ultra Orthodox who condemned making the state continue to oppose the State of Israel on the grounds that the Messiah has not yet come. Lubavitch Chassidim claim that the Rebbe is the Moshiach although he was not National Religious Zionist.
The Jewish Nation today is surviving from within through observance of the Torah and its laws, and from the outside through the establishment of the nation of Israel. Jewish survival today is considered of principal importance both by Jewish secularists and religious Jews. Judaism has still not accepted to join the rest of the world in its hope for World Unity and Peace like written in the prophets Isaiah, Jerimiah, Ezekiel, Zecharia etc. The religious still reject change and the secular do not want to become religious. This is the Jewish dilemma today.
The King The Rebbe Rides on a Chariot
After has been revealed in Am Yisrael the king the Moshiach the Rebbe, Judaism has adopted a new image also in the world and also in our four Amot of Halacha Jewish law.
The Messiah is not new to the world. Most of the world already have received the Messiah more than two thousand years ago. The Jewish people are the only people in the world that have not accepted him not as a Messiah and not as a prophet. Although Muslims pray in a different way than the Christians without any images, they do recognize Yehosaf, the Messiah the son of Joseph as a prophet and spokesman for truth. Mohammed adopted a religion which is more like Judaism although he rejected the Torah as the last final law of God. The Christians accepted the Old Testament and added to it a New Testament. Both the Christians and Muslims accept Moses as a prophet and the story of the Bible until the time of the destruction of the Beit HaMikdash. They accept the Torah but say that it has changed.
Christianity started as a Messianic Jewish movement. Later on they broke away completely from Judaism and made their own Bible with a new religion. Some say that in the beginning of the movement they didn't request Jewish people the children of the covenant to change their religious customs but when already when they were accepting non-Jews to join them they had to give them equal rights and make One religion which became Christianity. Judaism did not give equal rights for Jew and non-Jew. Judaism does not accept converts except under rigid controls. Non-jews are required to accept the Torah, the Oral law, and do circumcism which can be painful for adults. Non-jews have an obligation in seven commandments and Jews in 613 commandments. Conversion to Judaism is discouraged and the people that want to convert are questioned to know about their sincerity. The Talmud warns about accepting converts. It says that accepting converts brings into the people Leprosy meaning bad outside influences.
Christianity existed for several hundred years as a Jewish Messianic sect until it was accepted by the Roman authorities who made it a political religion. The Romans tried to convert the whole world to Christianity and make them part of their nation. Islam accepted the prophet Yehosaf but rejected the Christian religion which was accepted by the Romans. The Romans gave Yehosaf a new image the son of God, the trinity, the only way to heaven. They made statues of Yehosaf as part of their worship which was against the tradition of Moses from Sinai. They forced people to bow before these statues and forced conversions. Islam rejected the concept of the Messiah who is God and to pray to God using statues or images of the Messiah in worship. They also wanted to make an Islamic state and tried conquer the world to convert the whole world to Islam. There were two new religions in the world which clashed. Neither was successful to conquer the world; instead most of the world became divided between these two religions Islam and Christianity . Christianity was mostly successful amongst the Ashkenazi the children of Esau and Islam was most successful amongst the children of Ishmael. Judaism the religion of Moses the prophet was in the background under the pressures of these two new religious movements. Judaism was more like Islam and accepted Islam as a new faith which was not idolatry, although they disagreed with Mohammed and the Koran because in Judaism the Torah is the only law of God.
The concept of the Messiah in Judaism is that the Messiah will return the whole world back to one religion which is Judaism. In Judaism the center of the world is Jerusalem where is the holy temple. The Torah governs the world. All prayers are directed toward Jerusalem. The Moshiach is the King of Israel and the King of the whole world. This is the way it was when Joshua entered into the land of Israel and conquered the seven nations that lived in Israel. The goal was to establish the Kingship of Israel and build the holy temple. The nation of Israel would rule the whole world. Idealistically Judaism rejects all other religions and continues with the belief that they are the chosen people the only representatives of God in the world, the only way and the Torah is the only law. The Moshiach of the Rambam is the King of the whole world.
The Jewish Messiah was rejected by the world on two fronts Islam and Christianity. Mohammed changed the direction of prayer toward Mecca to be a symbol that Islam is a separate religion from Judaism. Christianity established their home in Rome. Both took parts of Jerusalem and built in Jerusalem in the place of the holy temple their own places of worship. Today even though Jerusalem is under the control of the Israel government, it is divided spiritually between these three religions. Moses is no longer considered to be the only prophet and the Torah in its old form is not accepted to be the only Word of God. There is the Koran and the New Testament.
The kingship of Israel was given to the tribe of Judah and to King David and his descendants forever. The Moshiach that the Jews are waiting for according to Rambam is a man from the lineage of King David who will conquer the world and establish the Kingship of Israel as it was in the days of old.
The Rambam learns in the Law of Kings the prerequisites of who will be Moshiach beginning with a king from the house of David learned in the Torah like his father according to the written and Oral Torah, he will bring the Jewish people back to their religion, fight the wars of Hashem. Afterwards he will rebuild the holy temple in its place, gather the people together that have been scattered throughout the world, and bring the whole world together to serve God according to the Jewish faith. In another place in the Law of Kings Rambam says, if this great man that has accomplished part of the work of Moshiach dies, he can no longer be considered the Moshiach. This contradicts Christianity which considers Yehosaf the Messiah of the world and the Lubavitcher Rebbe being the Messiah of the Jewish people. The Messiah of the Jewish people is also the King of the whole world Jerusalem the capital a living human being according to the Rambam. The Lubavitch Messianic movement claims that the Rebbe did not die even though everyone saw his burial on video and thousands of people participated in his burial. This claim is based upon the concept of the death of King David, where it says that he is considered to be still alive, as it is a custom for Jews to pronounce King David the King of Israel Lives forever. Also about our father Jacob death is not mentioned in the Torah only the place of his burial. The principle commentator on the Written Torah the five books writes about the end of Jacob's life that he didn't die. Also about the Rebbe the Chassidim claim eternal life and that he is the Moshiach. It contradicts Rambam but is supported by other sources including the Zohar.
The Zohar rejects the concept of Moshiach as a soldier who will fight the war of Hashem in the aspect of physical war which requires bloodshed. Instead the Zohar says that the fulfillment of all prophecy of Moshiach will come peacefully. It says that at this time it will not even be necessary to have walls around Jerusalem to protect it. The Zohar endorses two Messiahs, the Messiah the son of Joseph and the Messiah the son of David. Moses is the peacemaker between them. The Ultra Orthodox reject the State of Israel today as the Nation prophesized as the Israel of the Moshiach. They protest against the establishment of a nation which has an army like Israel Army today. They also reject the government as a democracy which was not the government at the time of the Kingship of Israel. The Lubavitcher Rebbe Melech HaMoshiach, the King the Messiah accepted the Israel army as a reality but rejected the concept of Israel as the State the beginning of the redemption. He was for protecting the State and the Jews living in it. Idealistically, he did not believe it was the State of the Moshiach but important for the survival of the Jewish people until the coming of Moshiach.
The ultra orthodox Chareidi groups did not accept the Lubavitcher Rebbe as the Moshiach based upon Rambam who said that if he dies, he is not the Moshiach and that he did not build the Beit HaMikdash. However, they are against the State of Israel and army service to protect the nation and its people which according to Rambam is part of the Torah, Not to stand and ignore the blood of your brother. By rejecting the Rebbe as Moshiach, they are in effect accepting that there will eventually be a war between Moshiach and the rest of the world. In one way they are being against violence and on the other hand endorsing violence through Moshiach to conquer the nations surrounding Israel and establishing the Kingship of Israel and the world. The Ultra Orthodox Beit Din object to making any changes in the Oral Law. The Lubavitcher Rebbe made several changes for his supporters the Chabad Chassidim and was attacked by Ultra Orthodox opponents on the basis that the Oral Law is sacred and can never be changed.
The Rebbe by accepting to be called the Moshiach changed the image of Moshiach from a living person to an eternal Tzaddik. The Rambam already said that our Moshiach is different from the Moshiach of Christianity who they say died and was resurrected. After our Moshiach dies, he is no longer Moshiach according to the Rambam. Christianity is idolatry according to the Rambam. The Rebbe Melech HaMoshiach was not afraid to disagree with the Rambam on the concept of Moshiach. Rambam admits that on the concept of the Moshiach there is no certainty. There is no question that making the Rebbe Moshiach after his body was buried give support to the Christian concept of the Messiah.
The Zohar makes acceptable the concept of two Messiahs that have died or live eternally. The Zohar teaches that the righteous are even more alive after their death then before. In the Zohar, King David is forever considered to be alive and the Moshiach. The Jewish concept is for the coming of Moshiach but it is not clear how he will come. It was prophesized by the Jewish prophets. If there are two Messiahs for sure first one Moshiach must come before can come the second. In Israel the Jewish nation there is only a place for one king. The second king must be the king of another Kingdom but Rambam says Israel is the only Kingdom of God and religion. According to Rambam, the other religions and the other Messiah will disappear or be rejected by the whole world, when the Jewish Messiah arrives. The Jewish Messiah will fight his enemies which reject the Law of the Torah, the Law of Moses and be victorious to wipe them off the face of the earth. The Messiah of the Rambam is a living person who is a soldier a militant. Peace comes after the battle for Zion and the Kingship.
The Rebbe endorsed the learning of Pnimiut Hatorah the inner teachings of the Torah which includes the Zohar. The Rebbe was knowledgeable in all the aspects of Torah the Oral law and the written law. Pnimiut HaTorah allows for two Moshiach two kings in the world. The two kings can be alive even if they have died or they have been buried. The Rebbe is the Moshiach of Pnimiut HaTorah even if the Oral Torah rejects the possibility of a man after his death to be the Moshiach for the King of Israel is a Man a mortal. The Sanhedrin rejected Yehosaf in the claim that he was the Messiah and sentenced him to death. Yehosaf was not the national Moshiach especially after his execution. The king of Israel has to be a man a mortal. It didn't help to kill him. Instead the Sanhedrin created a new religion Chritianity which oppressed the Jewish people for centuries by forcing them to bow before an idol of Yehosaf the dead Messiah.
The Romans and the Sanhedrin created unintentionally another religion Islam with another prophet Mohammed who objected to worship of a man and a statue. Islam followed the precepts of Monotheism according to the Torah, but rejected the Oral law. They opposed idolatry and converted the other part of the world to the Muslim faith. From the death of Yehosaf became two new religions in conflict. The Jewish people were in the middle following the religion of Moses. Both Yehosaf and Mohammed were called false prophets. Moses was considered by the Jews to be the only true prophet and the Torah the only true Torah.
The Lubavitcher Rebbe the seventh generation of Chabad Chassidism the leaders in the study of Chassidut the inner teachings of the Torah according to the Baal Shem Tov accepted to make the concept of Moshiach more spiritual which made Judaism more compatible with the rest of the world. He never denied that Judaism was applicable to every human being. He endorsed for the whole world to connect with Judaism through observance of the seven commandments of the children of Noah. He never openly accepted other prophets only Moses. However by accepting to be called the Moshiach and giving instruction to his students to continue his life through announcing Yechi (he lives) which means extending the life of Moshiach forever, he did give credit to Christianity whose Messiah died and resurrected and remains eternally the Messiah of the world.
There is a difference between the Messiah of Christianity and the Rebbe Melech HaMoshiach, the Messiah of the Jewish people. The Messiah of Christianity accepts all human beings with an equal status. The Rebbe is first the Messiah for Jews and then for the rest of the world. Just like God chose the Jewish people as his representatives to give the Torah on Mount Sinai, the Rebbe is the Jewish Messiah the king of the Jewish people forever, the children of Abraham, Issac and Jacob. Christianity makes no difference between Jew and Non-Jew but the Rebbe does make a difference. There is an argument in several places in Torah about if Jewish sinners are preferable to righteous non-Jews. The Zohar says that the righteous non-Jew comes before even a Jewish Kohen who is not religious. The Jews are still the chosen people and in a completely different category from Non-Jews. In Christianity lineage is not a factor in judging the world, every person is a child of Adam and Eve. Judaism makes a distinction and the Torah of God makes a distinction.
Now after the Rebbe has been proclaimed by his followers to be the Moshiach, there are now two Messiahs in the world both claiming to be the King. Moses is a prophet of the highest level of prophecy that it says in the Torah that there will never be a prophet in Israel like Moses. The Torah the five books of Moses is prophecy of the highest level. In the book of Genesis, there is a story about a conflict between Joseph and his brothers. In Genesis 44: Judah his brother who later becomes the father of King David and the future Messiah of the Jewish people comes to speak to Joseph who has become a Royal Minister in Egypt. They didn't recognize each other but each spoke firmly in each one's behalf. The brothers of Joseph tried to kill him out of jealousy and threw him into a pit. Miraculously his life was saved and he became a Royal Minister in Egypt next to the king. The Zohar says that both Judah and Joseph are kings. In the future Yosef becomes Yehosaf the Messiah of the world, and Judah becomes the Moshiach the Rebbe of Chabad. They are both eternal. Before the appointment of the Rebbe Melech HaMoshiach, Yehosaf was the only Messiah, worshipped like the One God. Now there are two Messiahs and One God. The Moshiach is not God but a part of God. There are two Messiahs and One God. Neither Messiah can claim to be the only one as is the Christian claim. The prophecy of Moses has been revealed. The two Messiahs have peace with God and there is no longer the idolatry of the Messiah as was before.
About this the wise men of Israel say, that in the end of time the pig will become Kosher. The pig has only one sign and to be Kosher is required two signs which is split hooves and to chew its own cud. Before there was only one Moshiach in the world. The Christians claimed him to be God the trinity. Today there are two Messiahs neither one can claim to be God. The Trinity is divided. There is God and two Messiah. The Rebbe is considered to have never died like Eliyahu the prophet. The Rebbe continues the Jewish heritage with the instruction to all mankind Bnei Noah to keep the seven commandments. The Rebbe makes a distinction between Good and Evil, reward and punishment. The Rebbe is the Messiah of justice. Yehosaf accepts all people as equal and loves all people equally. He forgives all people for their sins. He is the Moshiach of mercy in this world, the Moshiach of the world. The Rebbe, the judge stands in the next world in heaven to ask each human being, Did you treat the Jewish people with respect? Before they are allowed to enter the next world and receive the reward for their good deeds that have to stand in judgment before the Messiah the son of David . Yehosaf the Messiah the son of Joseph is the angel of mercy to defend every person when they go in front of the heavenly court and before the Rebbe Melech HaMoshiach before entering heaven or going to hell. There is justice and mercy, not justice without mercy and mercy without justice.
Just as the Christians envision their Messiah riding upon a chariot. Joseph who was the second to the king in Egypt rode on a chariot; today the Rebbe the King Messiah rides on a chariot in heaven. The revelation of the Messiah has been completed. All that is left to complete the revelation of God on earth is for all of mankind to receive the Messiahs of World Unity and Peace.
The Baal Teshuva of the Rebbe
The Rebbe Melech HaMoshiach emphasized in his talks the greatness of the Baal Teshuva called Penitent that even the great Tzaddikim Righteoeous Men cannot stand in their place. This seems somewhat difficult to understand how a person who had sinned his whole life could instantly become greater than a person who grew up in Torah and never sinned.
Many Baalei Teshuva entered the gates of 770 Eastern Parkway. The Rebbe greeted each one with a big welcome. He did not look at the Baalei Teshuva as inferior but admired these people coming from secular lives who wanted to become religious Jews. The Rebbe didn't only say the words about the greatness of the Baal Teshuva but he himself believed in these words with a full heart. In many other synagogues the Baal Teshuva is a second class citizen or just one of the crowd. Only in Lubavitch by the Rebbe was the Baal teshuva considered to be great.
We are not talking about Baalei Teshuva that had already began to learn Torah in the Yeshiva Hadara HaTorah or Morristown but the Baal Teshuva even before he entered into the Yeshiva the first time he walked into 770. As a person who grew up in a secular traditional Jewish home, I myself had the experience of entering into 770 before ever beginning to learn Torah in a Yeshiva. It took me many years to understand the meaning of "In the place of the Baal Teshuva even the great Tzaddikim cannot stand." If I would have understood the meaning of the Rebbe's words I would maybe have not begun to learn. Every Baal Teshuva needs to learn the meaning of the Rebbe's words.
Chassidut teaches that there are two levels of Teshuva the lower and the higher level. In terms of
In the lower repentance is regret over sins which the person has committed in his life, in the year before Yom Kippur, or each day before saying Shma before sleeping. There is no person that has not sinned. This level of repentance is applicable to every Jew and is repeated each day, each week on Erev Shabbat the afternoon before the Shabbat, and each day. We say in our prayers three times a day "forgive us our father, because we have sinned, forgive us our king" Blessed is Hashem that is graceful with abundant forgiveness." About the lower repentance was not the main issue in the eyes of the Rebbe. The Rebbe was looking first at the Upper repentance and also at the importance of the lower repentance.
To acquire the level of the upper repentance is more difficult and even impossible for many Jews. Where as the lower repentance comes through Torah study, the upper repentance comes to a Jew as a gift from HaShem from God. Jews growing up in a religious home starting out their lives learning in Torah Day schools become educated in the lower repentance through learning the difference between good and bad, permitted and prohibited. At five years we begin to learn Chumash. Then we start Mishna and Gemora. Lubavitcher Chassidim give a picture of all the aspects of Teshuva to their children at a young age through the learning of Chassidut. Most of the knowledge is learned through the Rebbe's talks and through teachers of Torah in the academy. Throughout your whole life you acquire knowledge from seforim Torah books. Through your own efforts and God given intellectual abilities you can even become a Talmud Chochom Torah Scholar. Not everyone has the capabilities intellectually to reach higher levels of learning but everyone has the mitzvah of Talmud Torah the learning of Torah. The same thing in life not everyone becomes a millionaire but everyone has the mitzvah of giving charity.
The Baal Teshuva of the Rebbe comes from a different background than Jews growing up religious. There are many difficulties for a Jew growing up in a secular background to change his life and become religious. Conventional Judaism allows Jews to separate themselves and their children from people in the secular world. Jews are judged by the way they dress and are often not accepted in congregations for these reasons. The chief Rabbi of Israel recently revealed that his father who was chief Rabbi never brought him to the homes of their relatives that were secular. Once when he became chief Rabbi a person came to his door to bring him flowers. He was a close relative. The chief Rabbi didn't recognize him as if he was a distant relative. In this way his father maintained in his family a high level of Torah scholarship to enable his children to become Talmidei Chochomim Torah Scholars.
The Rebbe was different than other scholars. He saw things in a different way. The Rebbe considers both levels of Teshuva as important. To the Rebbe scholarship was not the only part of Jewish life. There is a reason why a person from a secular life comes to 770 Eastern Parkway. The Rebbe looked at the reason for him coming to greet him. A lady a Baalet Teshuva told me that before she came to Lubavitch he received a message from HaShem which guided her and encouraged her to learn in Lubavitch. She actually had before coming to Lubavitch a direct connection with the Almighty. Hashem revealed himself to her like he revealed himself to Avraham Aveinu and said Lech Lecha, Go out of your father's home to the land of Israel. Baalei Teshuva very often have this spiritual experience which people growing up in religious homes never have in their lives. Baalei Teshuva have the direct connection with Hashem even before they begin to learn Hashem's Torah. The Rebbe when he looked at the Baal Teshuva he also saw HaShem or an angel of HaShem escorting the Baal Teshuva into 770. The Baal Teshuva came to the Rebbe with the power of the higher repentance even before he began the lower repentance through learning the Torah.
In all the Mitzvos are hinted secrets of the Torah like Teffillin, Shabbat, etc. In the mitzvah of tzitzis, wearing the fringes which are placed on a four corner garment is revealed the secret of Teshuva. The Tallis, similar to an Arab robe has in it two parts which are the garment itself which covers over the body of the Jew and the fringes which are placed on its four corners. The garment transcends the Jew from the outside and fringes stick out from all four sides which are looked at, like it says, " to see them and to remember all the mitzvos." The small Tallis is different because it is worn inside the other clothing. The Baal Teshuva comes to 770 or has been sent by Hashem to 770 symbolically wearing and enthralled in a Tallis without its fringes. He is connected to Hashem already and is wearing a Tallis without Tzitzis fringes which represent the mitzvot. He is already on the way to Teshuva. The Tallis is the upper repentance and the fringes are the other levels of repentance. The Rebbe sees this person as a special person with the potential to actually reach the complete level of Teshuva the upper and the lower level of Teshuva through learning Torah in Yeshiva. The Baal Teshuva has been given the gift of knowing Hashem even before knowing the Torah of HaShem. Therefore when the Baal Teshuva will begin to learn Torah his place is even higher than the Tzaddik the righteous saint who has never sinned but has never had the moment of prophecy like the Baal Teshuva when Hashem came to him in a dream or otherwise to tell him Lech Lecha.
Moshe Rabbeinu in Bemidbar 11 wished that all Jews would reach the level of prophecy. Every Jew should have a direct connection with HaShem. The Rebbe the Moshe Rabbeinu of our generation also wanted us all to become prophets like him and the Baal Teshuva already were the beginning of the fulfillment of his wish.
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