Sunday, April 29, 2018

Rebuilding the Temple -

Do you cry out only because you are told to do so? / The Rogatchover Gaon writes that according to Jewish law the Temples’s destruction is an ongoing event. It’s not that the Temple was destroyed 2,000 years ago—and we are mourning the events of the three weeks, and Tisha B’av, and praying every day for the Redemption, for HaShem to reverse an event that occurred over 1,900 years ago. 

No! The destruction of the Temple takes place every single day! - - so one can understand how much one should cry out for the exile to end, every single day. The Rogatchover proves this from a passage in the Jerusalem Talmud. “If the Temple was not rebuilt in your lifetime, it’s as if it were destroyed in your lifetime. Over 1,900 years have passed…But if today, Thursday, has passed, and the Evening Prayers are also over, yet the temple is still not rebuilt, a Jew should know that he’s expected to cry out for redemption as if he experienced the Temple’s destruction this very day

As to the fact that we’re gathered here to celebrate a joyous occasion…Jews are always expected to live with contradictions. HaShem forced your soul to descend into your body, as the Mishna states: “You were born against your will.” At the same time, a Jew is expected to joyously fulfill the commandment to guard his physical welfare; to love HaShem so much that you fell forced to remain in this body, and a the same time, to joyfully cling to physical life in the body, not allowing your soul to expire in Divine ecstasy… So too, if Jews cried out yesterday for the exile to end and they cried out the day before yesterday - - and all the days before that - -and nevertheless, the Temple is again being destroyed today it is obvious what kind of outcry is in order now for the exile to end! This isn’t some kind of sermonIt’s an explicit ruling in Torah that if one does not merit for the Temple to be rebuilt in his lifetime, then it’s as if he caused the exact opposite…. Imagine a Jew watching the Temple go down in flames at this very moment - - even a Jew with the hardest heart of stone, if he sees the Temple being destroyed before his very eyes, he’d turn the world over. Says the Torah of Truth and the Torah of Life, HaShem’s instruction for life, Turn the world over - - today. At the same time, joyously celebrate 12-13 Tammuz, draw happiness and joy to last you the entire year in order to “serve HaShem with joy and a glad heart,” and celebrate more intensely with each passing year… But there’s no contradiction - - the more a Jew increases in the joy of Torah and the joy of mitzvos, the more that joy will burn up the last vestiges of exile, and reveal Godliness within the exile itself. 

When you reveal the “Alef,” HaShem’s Unity, within the exile itself, then “golah - - exile” itself transforms into “geulah - - redemption.” That itself brings the redemption, completely and tangibly, through our righteous Moshiach, may it be speedily in our days. And this obligation is upon HaShem - - every single day anew. Aside from His 1,900-year-long obligation to rebuild the Temple since its destruction, HaShem also has the obligation each and every day anew, to hear our prayers “Rebuild Your House as it was! And more so greater than it was HaShem will build it with His very own hands, making it an eternal home. May it be speedily and immediately, and with joy and gladness. L'Chaim!

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