Monday, September 07, 2009

Honk for Joy

I love my Lubavitcher friends. I truly do. I live in their neighborhood and Daven at their Shul every single day. They are some of the finest and most dedicated people I know. I can say this without any hesitation.

In fact there are several I know whose Midos I would match up against anyone. They are people of very high moral character - Baalei Chesed without peer - many of whom will give you the shirt off their back. Truly role models of Mentchlichkeit and Jewish behavior. Which makes what I am about to say so very difficult.

I was forwarded a website that is quite offensive to me. Despite my desire to keep quite and let sleeping dogs lie I cannot in good conscience ignore it.

Moshichism has quited down lately. I haven’t seen too much touting of the Lubavitcher Rebbe as Moshiach in quite some time. Although I still see more than a few cars with Moshiach flags attached passing through the streets of Chicago. It has quieted down - but it has not gone away. Quite the contrary as this website shows.

If one carefully examines it they will see that this proclamation is not only to Jews - it is to the world!

Here is an excerpt:

In light of these statements, and in light of the Rebbe's encouragement of the proclamation "Long live our Master, our Teacher and Rebbe King Moshiach for ever & ever!", we are obliged to heed the Rebbe's words and believe that he is indeed King Moshiach, who will be revealed immediately. Long live our Master, our Teacher & Rebbe King Moshiach for ever & ever!

This is not the first time I’ve seen this kind of thing on the Internet. Most of those websites are pretty old- dating back to shortly after the Rebbe’s death when there was a fever pitch about it. But this one is copyrighted 2008 – 2009. And the attitudes are no less diluted. They truly believe that the Rebbe is Moshiach. The message on this website is shocking - as are the two videos there.

Who are these people? Are they the few “Meshugoyim’ – ‘crazies’ of Tzefas?

This is what many ‘anti MeshichistLubavitchers would say. They claim that a there are a few 100 or so that stem from there and they are indeed very loud. But - they say - they are insignificant in number. And that at any rate they have been effectively ostracized from the movement.

Well unless Tzefas is in Australia, I don’t think so. According to website this group apparently operates out of Melbourne.

Not that we don’t have such a group here in Chicago. They have a Shul called ‘Beis Moshiach’. They have had it for some time now and are not going away. There is also a Meshichist girls high school. They are pretty successful, if I understand correctly.

So all this recent quiet by Lubavitch - is a false quiet. The problem is still there. In spades. And it is spreading around the globe.

When one watches the second video on this website one cannot help but conclude that the Rebbe himself is responsible for this phenomenon. He encouraged his Chasidim to sing the famous Meshichist line: ‘Long live our master our teacher and our Rebbe - the King Moshaich for ever and ever’.

Huge crowds of his Chasidim sang this in front of him while he was alive - as he looked on with obvious approval. Is it any wonder that they believed it then? And is it any less of a wonder that so many still do?

Yes – there are Lubavitchers that reject it entirely but they are rare. As I have said in the past - there is a level of belief by the vast majority of Lubavitch about the now deceased Rebbe that he is in some way shape or form the Messiah - whether alive now and laying in wait; or dead to be resurrected and to fulfill the rest of his mission and then be proclaimed Moshaich.

Some believe it will happen soon. Some believe it will happen later. Some believe it might happen. And some believe it is at least possible to happen though perhaps not likely.

Some proclaim it from the ‘mountain tops’ and some say it only in their heart of hearts. But at some level it is there in almost all Lubavitchers. The strident ones are there to remind us of this lest we forget. And for that we owe them a huge thank you.