40 Years: An Introduction Pt. 2

It was only the immense leap of science and technology in our times that made possible that shrinking of the world and the spread of knowledge of the Jewish people and their G-d to every native tribe and every farflung island. Now, at last, they know of Israel and the G-d of Israel. And they reject them both. "Why do the nations rage and the people mutter in vain? The kings of the earth stand up and the rulers take counsel together against the L-rd and His appointed." (Psalms 2)

opportunity for the nations to learn of the L-rd and His people has brought about the beginning of the redemption, the beginning of "its time." The universal assault on Israel, the actual rejection of the nations of the entire world, of the people of Israel, and hence of the G-d of Israel, will bring the final redemption, the final realization of "its time." Our modern era has brought the nations to a point where an entire world can defy and desecrate the L-rd, G-d of Israel. That is the ultimate Hillul Hashem, that is the apex of Hillul Hashem. In the absence of the Jew deserving his redemption, a redemption that would have thus come gloriously and immediately, there must be a universal world-wide Hillul Hashem to bring "its time" into effect.

Then the Almighty will rise up and, through His people Israel, will give them victory and manifest His omnipotence and Sanctify His Name to an entire world that knew Him not, a world that will see and tremble and cry out: "The L-rd is G-d!", "He that sitteth in Heaven shall laugh; the L-rd shall have them in derision... Be wise now, therefore, kings; be admonished, you judges of the earth; serve the L-rd in fear and rejoice in trembling." (Psalms, ibid.) That is the beginning of what we see today. The beginning of the redemption, the beginning of "its time."

And there is yet another aspect to this. The very explosion of science and technology that shrinks the earth and makes it one in its Hillul Hashem, creates, without reference to Israel, an arrogance of pride and sense of godhood and divinity of Man. His ability to reach the stars and create stupefying progress instills within him the rejection of G-d and the coronation of Man as Master of his own fate and that of the world. There is no greater Hillul Hashem than that. Again, the apex of Hillul Hashem.

For the first time in the history of Man, he finds himself living in an age of disbelief. It is a situation unparalleled in the annals of humanity. Ever since man, as we know him, appeared in earth,
he believed. The concept of a Higher Being, of a Divinity, of a power greater than he, was firmly embedded in his consciousness. Atheism, the absence of G-d, was simply unthinkable and whether the belief in a greater power was monotheistic or polytheistic; whether it was the most primitive and cruel and ludicrous or the most sophisticated; whether in consisted of worshipping fire or entrails or an invisible Being - Man believed.

Today, however, as part of an evolving process that began just a little more than a century-and-a-half ago, we find, for the first time in history, whole societies and many, many millions of people who do not believe in a higher force, or who pay lip service to it but when pressed for an honest answer reply with one that is barren of any real Divinity.
Ours is the first Age of Disbelief and is the product of an explosion of Rationalism and Science that has ostensibly made man the master of his fate.

The revolutionary explosion of science and technological progress which brought with it a wealth of goods, materials and pleasures; which so man able to isolate and control and predict natural phenomenon, gave him a new sense of power and belief that in his intellectual and mental ability lay the key to unlimited progress and his own fate. Man's genius began to flower and the awe and fear that had originally given birth to a belief in a Higher Power began to withdraw, retreat and disappear. Man's mind had given birth to a belief in himself and in his intrinsic ability to achieve that which he desired.

And in the wake of the tremendous scientific and technological progress, rose philosophies and ideas that articulated this new thinking. Liberals of the nineteenth century extolled man as the repository of reason. In his mind was to be found all the wisdom to enable him to climb the highest mountain, reach the furthest star, create the most abundant of wealth, become the true Creator. It was no true, Man told himself, that Heaven had created him. It was rather man who concieved of a Divinity and that was an error that was being percieved only now. The theory of natural evolution made man a product free of a Higher Creator; the political liberalism of the new era freed him yet further from his ties to Heaven and old concepts, and Marxism - which explained religion in ter ms of economic determinism and class struggle - made it clear that the concept of a Divinity was but a tool of the ruling class to confuse and seduce the laborers and peasants.

And so, old values came crushing down and the Higher Power that once ruled the minds and hearts of men was replaced, increasingly, by the worship of Man. And when this worship became one that replaced restraint, discipline and guilt with a license to pursue pleasure, gratification and the "good life" without guilt or fear of punishment, the break with the past became a flight.

Hillul Hashem in all its rebellion. The world comes full circle. As an Adam who defiled his Creator and threw off the yoke of Heaven by eating from the Tree of Knowledge - good andevil, and whose heart yearned for the Tree of Life in ambition to become eternal, Divine - so too does his son, Man, today.

"Hast thou eaten of the tree whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldst not eat?"

"Behold the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand and take of the Tree of Life and eat and live forever."
(Genesis 3)

Man comes full circle. The putting forth of the hand in an attempt to reach immortality, to be as G-d.
To be G-d! The essence of unbridled arrogant pride and ambition, the apex of Hillul Hashem. Yesterday, the first man; today, we, those of the final era.

Lasers, superconductors, transplants, near-human computer intelligence, artificial insemination and birth outside the womb, and above all, the discovery, tinkering with - and soon -
creation of genes. Life itself, creation, becomes the goal of the neo-Adam. And he moves closer and closer to attainment of the moment when he sees himself as becoming Creator, Omnipotent and sovereign of life itself. It is the apex of Hillul Hashem and, once again, the reason why this era - by its very nature - becomes the moment of "its time." The moment when Man begins to move toward Divinity is the moment when G-d rises to touch him and say, "You who come from the dust and who wishes to rule - go; Go and rule the dust."

And as an integral part of all this and so as to emphasize even more the reason for this era being the moment of "its time," is the fact that in the arrogant attack on G-d as Creator and King, it is the Jew who, sadly, leads all the rest. And the words of the Rabbis echo throughout the ages:
"This nation (the Jews) is likened to the dust and the stars: When they go down, they go down to the dust and when they rise, they rise to the stars." (Megila 16) And the reference is not only to Jewish destiny. It is true, too, for the very characteristics of the Jew. One who is capable of achieving the highest spiritual heights, of climbing the tallest elevation of the soul. And one who is also capable of leading all the rest in descent to the depths of anarchy and rebellion and decadence and the casting off of the yoke of Heaven. Intoxicated and seduced by his intelligence, it is exactly that which becomes for the Jew the source of an arrogance that leads him, the son of the people that gave the world the idea of One G-d, to reject withy contempt, the very existence of G-d. No one is as vociferous and as much a leader in the struggle to deny G-d and enthrone Man and his intellect on the thone of creation, as the Jew. And because of this, too, this must be the era of "its time." 

For the Exile was thrust upon the Jew by his G-d as a divine punishment, in the hope that this would bring him to penitence and repentance. But what happens when, despite the Exile or, worse, perversely
because of it, the Jew does not become more believing, but less so? Does not become less stubborn and arrogant, but more so? Does not become more willing to accept the yoke of Heaven, but eager to throw off all of it? In short, what happens when the Exile ceases to be a deterrent and becomes instead a laboratory for the Jew to build a new world of apostacy, of denial of G-d, of arrogant plans for a new world in which he will be the creator?

More. What happens when all this becomes natural to the Jew, a part of his intellect and emotions, and when because of his total secular and non-Jewish lifestyle, Judaism becomes a thing that he literally
cannot accept and believe in? In a word, what happens when the Jew, through a lifetime of un-Jewishness, reaches the point of literally losing the ability to choose between Torah truth and non-Torah falsehood, between good and evil, between life and death? What happens when the Jew actually faces the threat of losing that free will upon which human creation was postulated? How can such a Jewish people continue and how can the Almighty ultimately expect to punish Jews who have lost the ability to understand good and evil?

The answer is that the Almighty cannot allow such a thing, for it flies in the face of His reason for creating the world. If the Jew, through a totality of non-Jewishness, through a life of total rejection of Jewish concepts, sees un-Jewishness become an integral part and natural part of his thinking, his feeling, his very existence, he can never have the kind of Free Will that the Almighty contemplated as the basis fir reward and punishment, as the hope for a world in which the Jew would freely choose Torah; freely choose good; freely choose Life. And since the Jewish people moves more and more to a time when an overwhelming majority of its Jews will be such, we have again by the very nature of things, by the very nature of the Jew of this time.. another clear reason why this age must be the era of "its time."

And so, because I know that the difference between a final redemption that comes "hurriedly," because the Jew is deserving of it, and a redemption that comes "despite the sins of the Jew," and only because of the desire of G-d to put an end to the very apex of
Hillul Hashem - I hastened to write this little manuscript. For a redemption that comes only because of "its time," will be preceded by terrible - awesomely terrible - horrors for the Jew, of the kind that led both Ula and Raba to exclaim: "Let him (the Messiah) come and let me not see him." (Sanhedrin 98b)

May G-d grant us the wisdom to know what we must do and the courage to do it, despite the mockery, the hatred, the attacks of those who do not and who will not understand.

By Rabbi Meir Kahane
40 Years
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