Just When You Thought It Couldn't Be Any Worse
I've been in a deep gloom for the last eight days.
First there was the Selfishness & Ingratitude Rally in Jerusalem. Then there was that appalling video. Then a shul that I was very involved in developing turned into a campaign center for Abutbul and for perpetuating the Persecution Libel. Then Rabbi Ari Enkin (author of the Daled Amos Shel Halachah series) was screamed at by the principal of a local charedi elementary school that he has to vote for Abutbul because Rav Steinman said so, and when Rabbi Enkin responded that he doesn't need to follow Rav Steinman, the principal screamed at him that he is an apikores and then, in full view of a crowd of horrified onlookers, slapped him across the face. And today there is a Selfishness & Ingratitude Rally in Manhattan, publicized with a logo displaying the Torah surrounded by barbed wire. I didn't think that I could get any more depressed about the state of Orthodox Judaism.
But I was wrong! I could get even more depressed!
Today, I was speaking with a Rosh Yeshivah who had been inclined to bring his yeshivah to the rally in Jerusalem, but then changed his mind. Still, he decided that his students could recite the Tehillim in the yeshivah. After all, what could be wrong with saying Tehillim? Ah, the beauty of hundreds of thousands of Jews simultaneously saying Tehillim!
Then he looked at which Tehillim were being recited at the rally.
And he was horrified.
As I am.
Here is the first of the Tehillim that was recited by hundreds of thousands of Orthodox Jews last Sunday in Jerusalem, and by tens of thousands of Orthodox Jews in Manhattan today, at rallies protesting the government of the State of Israel:
O God, heathens have entered Your domain, defiled Your Holy Temple, and turned Jerusalem into ruins. They have left Your servants’ corpses as food for the fowl of heaven, and the flesh of Your faithful for the wild beasts.Their blood was shed like water around Jerusalem, with none to bury them. We have become the butt of our neighbors, the scorn and derision of those around us. How long, O Lord, will You be angry forever, will Your indignation blaze like fire? Pour out Your fury on the nations that do not know You, upon the kingdoms that do not invoke Your name... (Psalms 79)
Shefoch chamoscha al hagoyim?! This is what Orthodox Jews are reciting against the Government of Israel?!
What has become of us?!
In order to conclude on a somewhat upbeat note, I will sign off with a video that shows the "terrible threat" which has made all these Jews pray that God pours out His fury on the Government of Israel. (As usual, if you are reading this via email subscription, you have to go to www.rationalistjudaism.com in order to see it.)
From the YouTube description: As Shabbat began last week, these soldiers had already set sail to stop Iran's weapons shipment from reaching Gaza terrorists. In the middle of the sea, they all sang "Shalom Aleichem" -- a Shabbat song meaning "peace be upon you." Days later, their successful mission brought peace upon the entire nation of Israel. They are our heroes.