Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Some Thoughts About Chanuka 5776 by RaP

Guest post by RaP
Meeting a few Jews today and talking about the current situation in Israel, America, terrorism, Jihadis, Donald Trump and reactions to him, a few things came to my mind that are worth sharing.
You know, I looked at the young men who were having the discussion that I was part of, I said the problem is the Jews, that Jews do not know how to be real Jews. We are very far away from knowing who we are and what we are supposed to be. They looked at me in surprise. So I continued.

Look at the Israelis, they are confused. Especially the secular Israelis, why are they so soft in confronting threats when their grandparents knew how to protect themselves? When the Arabs attacked Israel in 1947, the Jews fought back and won. When the Arabs blocked off the Suez Canal in 1956 the Israelis fought back and won. When the Arabs massed their armies to destroy Israel and the Jews in 1967, Israel won in six days! When the Arabs attacked in 1973 on Yom Kippur, the Israelis fought back and won. And many other examples like this. So why can't the Israelis win today?
And I said, because the previous generations, even if they were secular and not religious they knew about the Pogroms and the Holocaust. While today's generation is dreaming of "peace" and not just peace but they are dreaming of dancing with the Arabs not just that they are dreaming of going to have a good time in New York, Paris, and have a good time in the discothèques. They are not thinking of fighting and winning, they are thinking about how they can be with the world and dance at their parties.
I said, what if someone breaks into your house and starts stabbing everyone and you sit around and basically don't do much to protect yourself. Who is at fault? Of course it is you because you are expected to defend yourself and defeat the attacker otherwise you are a fool!

So my listeners said to me, what will the world say? There is nothing we can do!

I said really? And asked them, do you happen to know what holiday we are celebrating right now? And they looked at me, still not getting it. People think that Chanuka is about "lights" and "parties" and fun! I said that in the times of the ancient Greeks, they occupied Eretz Yisrael, and the Jews started to assimilate and join them, to become Misyavnim - Hellenists. And just like today it did not end with just copying the Greeks and wanting to be like them, but with that came intermarriage and Shmad, apostasy as Jews started to convert to the Avoda Zara of the Greeks, just like today secular Jews are assimilated, marrying Christian and Muslim gentiles and being lost to Yiddishkeit.
So what happened, at a certain point there was a man by the name of Matisyahu (no, not the singer I told them) but he was Matisyahu the Kohen Gadol, the High Priest, and one day he had enough and fought back. He picked up a sword and killed a Greek official and an apostate Jew who was going to serve an idol and guess what happened next? The Jews won, they defeated the Greeks, regained their own land and re-dedicated the Bais HaMikdash, and that is what Chanuka means, the "re-dedication" not just of the Bais HaMikdash but of the triumph of Torah over the secular world, of light over darkness, the few defeated the many and they survived.

That is the moral of Chanuka because after 2000 years of wandering around in the Golus and having to pay our dues we had to bow our heads, but now that so many Jews are back in Eretz Yisrael, they are back home and at home you have the responsibility to protect yourself or else you are a fool.
A day in the life of a Jew on Chanuka 5776.

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