Saturday, May 16, 2009
Has anyone ever told you, that you were to religious, closed-minded, and an extremist, or the worst of all a fanatic!
In the “modern” sophisticated world, if someone talks about G-d they are immediately labeled. It seems, that the more you believe in G-d, the more extreme you are perceived to be.
If you don’t dress like everyone else, that’s bearable, but if it is because of religious reasons, people stay away from you.
But who is really closed-minded? The real closed-minded and limited people, are the ones that can’t perceive anything beyond this physical world.
The values and ideals of society change with every generation. Each generation does not progress, just the opposite. If someone from just one or two generations ago would look at our generation, they would be shocked!
So on what basis are people making their value judgment of religious Jews? Their own value system, will not be the same in a few years.
Not long ago in the fifties, men wore hats and women wore long dresses. There was even a time,when women went to the beach wearing bathing suits,in which they were fully clothed from head to toe!
Yet society thinks it is more sophisticated now. It has the misconception,that if you are more advanced in knowledge or in science, then the more advanced you are as humans. This is not the case.
As a matter of fact, science didn’t discover anything new, it just realized at some point,that something could be used in society.
But G-d had created it since the beginning of the world. It was only “discovered”,after G-d decided that it should be discovered.
It is interesting, how strong society will express its views, yet will subtly change them in a few years. Its views are affected and manipulated: by the newspapers it reads, the TV it sees, and by what everyone else does.
Torah, on the other hand, defines man’s eternal essence. The soul of a person never changes. Torah values have never changed. In previous generations, the world actually followed many Torah ideals.
At that time, Torah values of having a family, etc., were seen as normal. Society has become extreme and narrow-minded, and not Torah.
No one ever called someone a fanatic, if he already had a million dollars, but still worked day and night to get two million.
If someone wanted to spend a year to see the world, he wasn’t seen as an extremist. If someone owns five homes, three cars etc., he is looked up to, and respected.
Yet if someone wants to grow in their Judaism, and become closer to G-d, and do more than the minimum: Pray two hours instead of one, learn Torah three hours instead of two, give ten thousand dollars to charity instead of one; he is called a fanatic!
Just the opposite is true. In the next world, one is not judged by how much they have, but by how much one doesn’t have. What one doesn’t have, is the amount one gave to Charity. Even in this world, one is going to be happier.
Someone who knows, that his essence as a human being is his soul, also knows, that Torah explains how to feed that essence.
How many times do Rabbis have someone come to them and say, “Rabbi, I have a million dollar house, a hundred thousand dollars in the bank, and I’m not happy.”
Torah Jews, instead of being old-fashioned or fanatic, are actually on the cutting edge of society. They are infinitely farther ahead of the world.
This is especially true of the Rebbe. He was always far ahead of anyone else, which made some think, that he also was an extremist.
The first one to do something new, seems different from everyone else, until they eventually catch up, and it then becomes the norm.
Avraham went against the whole world, and even his father. Jews were always different, because they held a higher standard than the world around them.
The Rebbe saw so far into the future, that some were hesitant to follow his lead. When he told us that Moshiach is here, some of us instead of jumping for joy, became embarrassed.
Even the world knows, that we are called “The light unto the nations.” We have the light, to lead the world in the path that is best for everyone. Every person is here for a reason, and the Torah tells all people, how to achieve what is best for them.
The world is fanatical, closed-mined, extremist, and lost. We, through Torah, Chassidus and Rebbe’s guidance, have all the answers. The world is still looking for the right path.
Everyone realizes, that something is missing. They keep changing presidents, and values, trying to get it right. Yet we know exactly, what has to be done.
Of course initially, there may be hesitation on the world’s part, to totally accept everything we say. That just means, that we have to explain it better.
We know as a fact, that eventually the world will not only accept Torah values and Moshiach, but will also be the main force in bringing Jews back to Torah, realizing, that this is what is best for them and the world.
May we all become fanatics!