Remember and learn from the past to NOW!

The written English translation of
Parshas TERUMAH/PURIM Shalosh Seudah Torah is ready!
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Haman Prepared His Own Demise 

Achashveirosh was in a quandary about how to judge Vashti for her refusal to listen to the king. He therefore called his seven advisors who were rabid Jew haters and always sought to point out the shortcomings of the Jewish people.
Opposing them were seven holy angels – with the same names as these ministers – that always sought to highlight the greatness of Hashem’s nation.
As these seven advisors stepped forth to present their opinion – which was laced with prosecutions of the Jewish people – their heavenly counterparts presented a masterful defense.

The last and smallest advisor of Achashveirosh – Haman – is referred to here as Memuchan, prepared. The angels countered his accusations with, “Have they prepared before you a table?” referring to the merit of the Shulchan (table in the Tabernacle) and the Lechem HaPanim (bread of countenance).
Against Haman, the merit of the Shulchan and Lechem HaPanim was raised. What is the connection between Haman and the Lechem HaPanim?

There is no service performed with the Shulchan itself. It merely serves as the place to hold the Lechem HaPanim until the Kohanim (priests) eat it. The entire ‘service’ of the Shulchan is that of ‘preparation’ for another mitzvah, i.e. the eating of the Lechem HaPanim.
Haman, the opposition of the Lechem HaPanim shared the characteristic of ‘preparation’ with the Shulchan. He was a man that prepared his own demise.

The advice he gave Achashveirosh – to kill Vashti – led to Esther becoming the queen. It was she who caused his downfall. Furthermore, he was hung on the pole that he himself had prepared for Mordechai.
Appropriately, he is referred to as ‘Memuchan-prepared’ precisely as he was engaged in preparing his own demise; as he was giving the advice to Achashveirosh to kill Vashti.

Source: Excerpted from written English translation of the Parshas Terumah Shalosh Seudas Torah 5772

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Author: Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

-We are in crises, and with every day the crises intensifies. There is a new Hitler on the world scene –  Ahmadinejad, who unabashedly proclaims his plan to annihilate Israel, and he is preparing to do so. Some say that he is a few months away, and some say it will be a year or so ….. and still others say that he already has it in his hands. He has the arsenal that, in minutes, can do to an entire nation that which the gas chambers did to six million

And what are we doing about it? “  Shockingly,  NOTHING! Our world is crumbling and we are going on with “business as usual”

            And should you be among those who take this threat to heart, you will quickly be assured that Ahmadinejad  is a madman… not to be taken seriously.

            Yes, I agree, he is a madman, and that is precisely why he should be taken seriously. We should be concerned. Madmen are mad enough to carry out their satanic plots.. Trust me– I know. I saw Hitler in action and I also saw a cruel, evil world willingly accept and participate in the barbaric extermination of our people.

            Prior to Hitler’s conflagration, Hashem sounded the alarm.  He sent us many wake-up calls, but we went back to sleep until the inferno consumed six million of our people. One would have imagined that we learned our lesson and would not allow this tragedy to be repeated.  Hashem’s wake up calls have once again been sounded, but once again we have turned a deaf ear and shut our eyes. since Hitler’s conflagration was so recent and not something that occurred centuries ago, we would surely not fall into that trap again, but incredibly, we see it unfolding before our very eyes, We never absorbed the lesson. Tragically, we keep repeating the same mistakes and obdurately remain deaf and blind.  Compulsively, we repeat the tragedies of the past. I have been speaking about this for many years, and there have been those who advise me to focus on “happier subjects” – subjects that are “entertaining”; subjects that are “light”. But I dare not remain silent, I dare not ignore the wake up calls and the catastrophe they portend, So my ensuing columns, which I ask all our readers to read with their hearts, will be devoted to this painful topic.  I will limit myself to the wake up calls that we have witnessed in the last couple of years. But the wake-up calls commenced many years ago.

            During the summer of 2002, a terrible tragedy occurred in a bungalow colony in New York’s Catskill Mountains, A mother had just bathed her infant and put her into her carriage for a nap. Suddenly, from out of nowhere,  a wild bear appeared, snatched the baby from her carriage, and made off with her.  The shocking story appeared in newspapers and the media, but somehow it   failed to make an impression, yet our Talmud clearly states that the generation that witnesses a wild beast snatching a baby from its cradle should sound the alarm with a shofar to awaken the people. But the shofar was not sounded and we were not awakened.

            During the last few years, the number of catastrophes has multiplied to such an extent, that we have all but become immune to them. Natural disasters like tsunamis, Hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes (even in New York City), global warming, dead birds falling from the skies by the hundreds of thousands, dead fish and sardines washing up on the shores by the hundreds  of thousands, wild animals….. lions, tigers, wolves, roaming the streets of Ohio, world economic crisis, devaluation of the dollar and the Euro, accompanied by crippling unemployment, high oil prices, hitherto unknown diseases, barbaric acts of terror,  nuclear spill in Japan and today’s nuclear threat from Iran that threatens the very survival of our civilization, have all come to be accepted as the norm. “It is what it is,” we tell ourselves with resignation, and we go on with our lives as usual.  But can all this be attributed to mere coincidence? Shouldn’t these afflictions give us pause? Shouldn’t we stop and take stock of our lives? But incredibly we remain blind deaf and dumb.

            There is a story about a Hasidic rebbe who was walking with his disciples when he noticed a little boy behind a tree, crying bitterly.

           “Why are you crying?” he asked.

           “I’m hiding, and no one is looking for me.”

           The words of the child were like a sharp knife in the heart of the rebbe. “Woe is us,” he said to his students, G-d is waiting for us to find Him, but we have failed to search for Him. Woe is us!”

Maimonides taught that, when suffering is visited upon us, we are commanded to cry out and awaken our people with the sound of the shofar, Everyone must be alerted to examine his or her life, and commit to greater adherence to Torah and mitzvos. Maimonides warned that, if we regard the tragedies that befall us simply as “the way of the world” – “natural happenings.” we will be guilty ofachzarius – cruelty.

            At first glance, it is difficult to understand why Maimonides would choose the term “cruelty” to describe those who view trials and tribulations as “natural happenings.” Such people may be unthinking, apathetic, foolish, blind or obtuse, but why accuse them of cruelty.

            The answer is simple, If we regard our pain and suffering as “mere coincidence” we will feel no motivation to examine our lives, abandon our old ways and change. So yes, such an attitude is cruel, for it invites additional misfortune upon ourselves and others.

            It would be the height of cruelty to dismiss that which is occurring in the world today as mere happenstance. Great Torah luminaries of past generations such as the Chofetz Chaim and Rabbi Elchanan Wasserman, told us that we are entering the final stages of history – a period in time called “Ikvesa DiMeshicha – Footsteps of the Messiah”   Our Torah foretells four exiles through which our people would suffer: Egypt, Babylonia – Persian-Mede Empires, Greece and Rome  – (the exile in which we presently find ourselves, for it was the Romans who exiled us when they destroyed the Second Temple).

            In Pirkei d’Rabbi Eliezer, an early Midrshic work, it is written that, before the coming of Messiah, we will have to contend with a fifth source of tribulation that will come from Yishmael – the Arabs – who will inflict terrible suffering on the world and on our people. This teaching is reaffirmed by Rabbi Chaim Vital, the illustrious disciple of  the Arizal, who wrote that before the final curtain falls upon the stage of history, Yishmael will inflict torture upon our people in ways the world has never before seen. One need not have great powers of discernment to recognize the painful veracity of these predictions, Consider only the suicide bombers, the decapitations, the hijackings, the missiles, the rockets and the constant, senseless, brutal acts of terror.

            We are the generation that has been destined to witness the fulfillment of the prophecy given to Hagar the matriarch of the Arab-Moslem world (Genesis 16: 11-13). “Behold, you will conceive and give birth to a son, and you shall name him Ishmael…and he shall be a wild ass of a man; with his hand against everyone and everyone’s hand against him, and over all his brethren shall he dwell…..”

            The long arm of Ishmael’s terror shall has indeed reach every part of the world.

            There is yet another amazing prophecy in theYalkut Shimoni – a Medieval Midrashiv compilation that eerily foretells the events of today and should give us all pause. Rabbi Yitzchok said: :The year in which Melech HaMashiach will be revealed, all the nations of the world will be provoking each other, The King of Persia (Iran) will provoke the King of Arabia (Saudi Arabia) The King of Arabia will go to Edom (the leader of the Christian nations – the President of the United States) to take counsel and the King of Persia (Ahmadinejad) will threaten to destroy the entire world..

            “The nations of the world will be outraged and panic . They will fall on their faces and experiences pains like birth pangs…… Israel too., will be outraged and in a state of panic, ask, “Where do we go?”

          “But say unto them, ‘My children, do not fear, The time of your redemption has come….. And this last redemption shall be different from the first that was followed by further bondage and pain. After this last redemption , you will not experience any further  pain or subjugation” (Yalkut ShemoniIsaiah 59).

            The Klausenberger Rebbe, z”tl, referring to this teaching, said, “Remember these words. They are perhaps not understood now, but in time they will be, and will be a source of strength to our people.”

(To be continued)

Today, about 250,000 survivors are living in Israel, 30,000 of whom live in the area of Jaffa and South Tel Aviv. The Jaffa Institute distributes food packages to 120 Holocaust survivors on a bimonthly basis and 250 survivors during the Holiday times. During our Holocaust to Hope Campaign, our goal is to raise $5,600 in order to provide 10 packages per week for a total of eight weeks to the survivors that we serve.

The campaign began on Holocaust Remembrance Day, as the international community recalls the horrors and the bondage of the Holocaust, and it will come to a close eight weeks later on Passover, as the Jewish community celebrates its liberation from oppression-both biblical and modern day.

Join us in not only remembering the victims, but also in celebrating the strength and perseverance of a minority who we must continue to support both because of the tragedies of their past, and because of their struggles in the present.

Thank you for your support! Eli Goldsmith aka midnightrabbi <- click for more! 

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2 thoughts on “Remember and learn from the past to NOW!

  1. new classes coming with Rav Tauber and our new summer program http://soundcloud.com/yeshiva-tiferes-yonoson

  2. […]  Click here for more or read comments for update! Author: Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis […]

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