In fact, Hashem WANTS us to examine events & elicit mussar from them.
So I found it telling that just as covid-19 wound down in Eretz Yisrael, the Meron tragedy occurred with 45 dead.
And then Hamas started going nuts with a barrage of rockets continuing even as I write this.
At the same time, Yishmaelite rioting & fiercer attacks spread throughout the country...with accompanying curfews (sort of like during covid-19).
And most recently, the bleacher disaster in Givat Zev.
On the most superficial level, I see Hashem as saying, "I don't need covid-19 to cause someone to die. I don't need covid-19 to cause physical suffering & emotional distress. I don't need covid-19 to force you to say in your homes. Everything comes from Me. Stop looking in all other directions but Mine."
Throughout the duration of covid-19, it frustrated me that so many doctors, media, and mainstream non-Gadol shul rabbis strove to enforce face-masks and social distancing.
Because the most basic germ theory taught in my non-prestigious American public elementary school stated that if there's an airway, there's a germ-way.
The common mask allows germs to come out via the upper gap around the nose and the side gaps.
Furthermore, the 2-meter/6-foot distancing never made sense to me because the germs coming out the gaps in the mask hung out in the air & moved around according to air currents. Seeing as you can cross 2 meters within a second, what is the point?
Here is some actual science about the issue:
- MIT Study Challenges Social Distancing Guidelines, 6-Foot Rule
- https://video-tov.ml/watch/cK-oAJDXYHg: Oxford Epidemiologists – No Evidence that Coronavirus Masks Make Any Difference
Yet you had so many intelligent, educated people getting zealous about "compliance" with these rules.
It sometimes reached a point where it seemed more like groveling than anything else ("See what good little boys & girls we are!").
Intelligent, educated people truly believed that if they got sick with covid-19, it was because someone did not wear a mask.
From a purely scientific angle, I still cannot understand why they held these views.
I especially do not understand why so many doctors & nurses (though certainly not all) promoted this view—especially since medical school teaches how germs behave and spread. Medical school teaches about sterility and how to achieve this.
Sadly, despite lacking the scientific basis to support these measures, people were treated badly about not wearing masks or social distancing.
And this irrational fear-based maltreatment occurred in the frum community too.
And now I feel like Hashem is saying,
"You focused on the wrong thing all that time. I gave you truly insightful rabbonim and others who told you about doing teshuvah and explained the spiritual significance of the covid-19 regulations and what you're meant to work on. Yet you insisted on getting all worked up about masks, social distancing, "proper" quarantines, and vaccinations. Well, here. Look at this! Here is more social distancing, "quarantines" (in bomb shelters & safe rooms) curfews, illness (via injuries), and death—but from totally different causes! Are you getting the message yet?"
Their Priorities are Not Our Priorities
Police (likely acting on orders from higher up) refused to respond to desperate calls for assistance to Jews under attack by their Yishmaelite neighbors in Lod.
Furthermore, police actively prevented trained assistance from entering the neighborhood under attack! (Somewhere, there's a video online of a group of post-army guys who showed up to help their fellows in Lod, but authorities blocked them from entering immediately.)
However, police did manage to arrest a Jew who shot a Yishmaelite as the Jew was attacked by a bloodthirsty mob:
Some of these self-defending Jews were released to house arrest:
Way to prioritize, guys!
So we in Eretz Yisrael have very good reason to suspect our police of wrongdoing! Certainly not all of them are bad, but we needn't give them the benefit of the doubt when it looks that they're behaving unethically. Things are different here.
(I'm planning a post explaining how the Israeli police is different than the American police. But the fact that the Israeli police force developed within a Middle Eastern country under the rule of Russian/Polish anti-Torah Commies should give you a vague idea of what might be wrong within the Israeli police force. Stay tuned...)
Based on reports, it certainly looks like the Israeli police & justice system have a problem with the shooting-in-self-defense-Jews NOT ending up like Yigal Yehoshua, who was attacked in his car by a bloodthirsty mob armed with bricks, rocks, and other hard objects.
Unarmed, Yigal Yehoshua was not able to defend himself against his savage attackers.
Yigal Yehoshua was a husband & father to 2 children. He worked as a good-hearted electrician in Lod, assisting both Arabs & Jews.
He died of his injuries on Shavuot.
Hashem yinkom damo.
Apparently, that's okay with the secular Israeli police & the predominantly anti-Torah justice system.
It's the Jews who manage to shoot back—not necessarily even killing their attackers—who need to be penalized.
So we see that:
- Being murdered in an absolutely terrifying manner is okay.
- Defending yourself is not.
(But I refuse to accept it. I follow the Torah value system, not the destructive anti-Torah value system.)
Comparison with the Anti-Jewish Laws of Nazi Germany
- Everything comes from Hashem.
- Having said that, we need to operate on both planes—meaning, we invest in practical hishtadlut without losing sight of the bigger picture.
Needless to say, I find that balancing act just as challenging as everyone else does.
So let's look at the Nazi era in Germany & Austria—as explained by big rabbonim like Rav Avigdor Miller.
By the time the Nazis came to power, German Jewry sunk to disturbing depths.
Intermarriage ran rampant.
Most Jews preferred to be German than Jewish, striving for German names, a German appearance, German music, a German mentality & value system, and marrying non-Jewish Germans.
In other words, most Jews in Germany strove to assimilate into German culture as fast and as thoroughly as they could.
(Some awe-inspiring exceptions remained. But the above was true for the majority of German Jews.)
Astonishingly, pro-Hitler Jewish organizations existed, along with Jewish Nazi groups, and a pro-Hitler monthly magazine with a circulation of 6000:
Talk about self-destructive tendencies!
Anyway, when anti-Jewish regulations came out, like the obligation to wear a yellow star declaring "Jew," the prohibition against marrying a non-Jew, the prohibition against mixing with non-Jews in school & cultural events, and the institution of a Jewish name on every Jew I.D. card ("Sara" for females and "Yisrael" for males), the Divine message was pretty clear.
Rav Avigdor Miller details it all in his book Divine Madness, but others have also explained this.
Such laws obviously tell Jews to stop assimilating.
However, let's say the Jews of that time only focused on the discriminatory regulations themselves.
And indeed, some Jews did exactly this.
Let's say they decided: "I REFUSE to wear this yellow patch! I WILL keep my name as Rolf Singer and NOT Rolf YISRAEL Singer! And I WILL marry Gretta, my Aryan beloved!"
And also they decided to fight the Nazi regime...all so they could go back to frolicking with Gretta and listening to German carols on the radio and attending the Berlin opera.
Of course, there was nothing wrong with fighting the Nazis—on the contrary, fighting Nazis is a very good thing to do! Timcheh et zecher Amalek.
But to focus exclusively on that? That's barking up the wrong tree.
Fighting the Nazis while remaining ensconced within everything German wasn't ultimately going to help because Hashem set everything in motion for a reason.
Was there a whole big conspiracy going on?
Yes! We know now it was called the Final Solution.
Was the Reichstag fire a false flag event?
It certainly seems so.
Was 17-year-old Herschel Grynszpan's shooting of a low-level German diplomat (to avenge the deportation of his parents & sister along with thousands of fellow Jews, plus the theft of all their property & possessions) merely the spark exploited to set off the pre-planned annihilation of European Jewry?
And were there truly evil people involved, against whom Jews needed to protect themselves?
But to focus only on that?
No. That would not work. In fact, tragically, it didn't work for the vast majority of Europe's Jews.
We need to deal with events without getting caught up in the event itself.
To take a mashal from Chazal: We should not be like the dog who, when struck with a stick, bites the stick rather than looking to see who wields the stick & why.
Sticks don't move on their own.
Honest Perception of Events Helps Us Avoid being Cruel to Each Other
And if we need to improve our society, our government, our justice system, & our safety regulations, then we should!
That's part of our hishtadlut, that's part of caring about each other.
At the same time, we must examine the parallels.
Whether we have journalists, media, doctors, health officials, etc. enforcing regulations that made no sense and even contradicted each other at times OR we have government officials, justice officials, Hamas-launched missiles, and rioting savages tormenting us, we need to see how the results are so similar: isolation, death, injury/damaged health, fear, distress, disruption, and so on.
The messages seems to be the same regardless of the messengers.
I'm worried this post comes off as too harsh, but I mean for it to be caring.
The Rambam says in Ta'aniyot 1:3 in the Mishneh Torah:
Conversely, should the people fail to cry out [to God] and sound the trumpets, and instead say,
"What has happened to us is merely a natural phenomenon and this difficulty is merely a chance occurrence," this is a cruel conception of things, which causes them to remain attached to their wicked deeds.
Thus, this time of distress will lead to further distresses.
And for myself too. After all, I'm talking to myself just as much as to anyone else.
Yes, of course we can blame the factors. We should take note of the people & factors behind all the distressing events.
It's GOOD for us to see that the media & our leaders are unreliable. We need to stop trusting in the media, political leaders, and a corrupt justice system.
We need to stop trusting in "isms" except for Torah-true Judaism.
We need to look at what Tziyonut has caused when a Torah mitzvah was taken out of context & distorted into a nationalist political movement with no innate connection to Torah. The actual mitzvah is yishuv Eretz Yisrael (settling the Land, dwelling within the Land), along with the privilege of being able to carry out the mitzvot dependent on the Land.
And MOST IMPORTANTLY: the SPIRITUAL advantage of living in Eretz Yisrael, which is why Jews traditionally strove to live here, even under harsh circumstances!
The air itself makes one wiser. Today, most of the best yeshivot exist in Eretz Yisrael. And the very Land itself contains kedushah.
Some of the deepest aspects of Torah—such as Rebbe Shimon Bar Yochai's Torah, which later became the Zohar, and further along with the Arizal's teachings—were revealed by those living in Eretz Yisrael, all made possible by the spiritual aspects inherent within Eretz Yisrael.
Many people find they can pray & learn Torah better in Eretz Yisrael than anywhere else.
Living in Eretz Yisrael enables close proximity to the holiest places on earth, such as the Kotel and the tombs of our holy Patriarchs, Matriarchs, Prophets, and Sages.
Living in Eretz Yisrael is all about living a Torah life. That's it.
Furthermore, are we worshipping rabbis who aren't Gedolim & doctors (both of whom may be well-intended, but misguided nonetheless)? Are we worshipping military prowess and the Iron Dome?
Have we swallowed the idea of being like the nations and thinking that peaceful co-existence is possible without adherence to Torah?
Are we, with good intentions, nonetheless transgressing uncompromising Torah prohibitions like Lo techonem?
We're experiencing a lot of disappointments, betrayals, and manipulations.
And this should help us clarify the truth: Who are we? Who do we need to be? What & who should we reject? What's the truth here? What should we be doing instead?
By examining current events honestly & answering the questions these events bring to fore, we can put an end to our distress & merit Heavenly Compassion.
May Hashem please bring the Geula b'rachamim.