Thanking Hashem When Things Look Bad #1082:
Rav Moshe Sternbuch Speaks on The Russian Invasion
The Russian Superpower – It Means Something
When you see the nations of the world scuffling with each other, you should yearn for the coming of Mashiach.
He references an unbroken tradition from the Vilna Gaon, as quoted many times by Rav Moshe Sternbuch:
The Russian nation will be a superpower. They will become so powerful, the other nations will have the greatest fear of the Russians.
And the end of World War II.
(The behavior of the Russian soldiers was UGLY. Barbaric. And people across Europe were terrified of them...including the very Jews the Russian soldiers liberated.)
How is now different?
To understand these ideas, let's first take a deeper look into why davka Russia stands as the great symbol of the imminent arrival of the Geula.
The Great Russian Bear
Interestingly, even the non-Jews sense this aspect of Russia because they dubbed Russia with the moniker "the great Russian bear."
The original nation under the klippah/sar/Heavenly representative of Dubiel was Paras—Persia.
Persia existed as the initial earthly manifestation of Dubiel.
(Over the centuries, Russia and Persia have overlapped and even influenced each other culturally. This explains why, for example, a lot of Russian architecture reminds many of Arabian style. The root of that style is actually Persian, not Arabian.)
Rabbi Travis goes on to explain:
When the klippah of Dubiel is at its peak, the Russians will have the ability to attack other nations and to be victorious.
The Vilna Gaon reveals that when the Russian nation enters Crimea—which at the time of the Vilna Gaon was Constantinople—this is a sign the Russian nation has reached their peak.
The klippah of Dubiel has strengthened them to the maximum level and the time will have come to rid the world of this klippah of tumah.
In the words of the Vilna Gaon, this occurrence is "the bells of Mashiach."
It is a harbinger that the Geula is ready to come.
Rather, Russia's increasing fearful strength portends (in Rabbi Travis's words) to the "pre-bells of Mashiach."
But another tradition about the second stage of Mashiach stems from the Vilna Gaon:
When Russian forces enter the gates of Istanbul or Turkey, we should put on our Shabbos clothes. It's a sign that Mashiach's arrival is imminent.
We should strengthen ourselves to hasten his arrival.
This is similar to Rabbi Zecharia Wallerstein's parable of a dying fish which, in an effort to return to its life-giving watery habitat, thrashes around more than it ever did or ever needed to do its entire life.
Davka in the last dying moments, power often peaks.
Dubiel is about to die, so its earthly counterpart is thrashing around.
This means we now need to prepare ourselves for the approaching bell-ringing of Mashiach.
Notice Rabbi Travis quotes the Vilna Gaon as urging us to hasten the arrival.
Sure, we can wait around for the inevitable to take place.
But why not hasten things if we can?
Ring Those Bells, Yidden!
(All these Guela events are spiritual physics.)
We need to participate.
The Gemara Sanhedrin 97a states that "motza'ei Shemittah, Ben David will come."
So all the puzzle pieces are in place...except one.
Says Rav Moshe Sternbuch:
The last piece is us.
What can we correct and rectify?
What can we change?
What can we do right now to make Mashiach come?
Rabbi Travis emphasizes:
All this noise about Russia is meant to wake us up.
These are wake-up signs...the "bells" are coming.
The last piece is in our hands. We have to change ourselves.
This is so important.
Every media outlet focuses on the "noise" with no clue about the real purpose of the noise as a wake-up call.
Even much of frum media has taken a bizarre anti-Russia pro-Ukraine stance without acknowledging much about what Hashem really means by doing all that.
(Based on everything I've ever read from Torah sources, Hashem is probably not pleased by the copious articles from frummies praising the Ukrainians while trashing the Russians. Neither is He pleased by a Russia-sympathetic stance. That's simply NOT the point AT ALL.)
In the name of Rav Sternbuch, Rabbi Travis says:
The most difficult, challenging, struggling machlokes—if you have—end it today.
And it could be, says Rav Moshe Sternbuch, that that's the final piece for the Geula to come.
And that will bring the Geula.
And says Rav Moshe Sternbuch, "When the Geula comes, it will be called in your name."
And not just my name.
Room exists on the "Geula plaque" for EVERYONE'S name.
Also YOUR NAME.
(Geula plaque: "Your name here!")
Pick Your Bell & Just Ring It! At Least, Give It a Start...
(Although if you fortunately lack face-to-face machloket, you might want to check out your behavior in comment sections and social media because those venues cultivate a culture of machloket, making it seem normal...or even fun & admirable.)
Someone might hate you because, for example, they are Erev Rav and you are not.
Or because of their own ugly flaws, which they project on to you.
Machloket is NOT when THEY are slandering you, verbally abusing you, and otherwise hurting you...while you cower in a corner, bawling your head off & hating being alive.
Or whatever your specific situation is.
Each person needs to figure out for themselves what they need to fix.
It doesn't HAVE to be machloket.
It can be something else entirely.
And yes, you can start very small.
Here's Rabbi Travis again:
...and the time to rid the world of this tumah [Dubiel]—as the Vilna Gaon said—that these are the bells of Mashiach.
The bells of Mashiach are perhaps getting ready to ring.
But we need someone to ring the bells. We need someone to ring the bells.
That person is you.