Friday, July 28, 2006

Abda-llah's Havdala

The Muslims (at least the Arab Muslims) have a political and social culture that is deeply religious, which is the way we used to be and the way that we'll be again. When the Arabs get rowdy and pissed off about our returning to our Holy Land, we should take it as a serious sign that we're doing something right because they foresee the re-establishment of the Jewish sovereign state, which would undermine claims to Islam's universality and utter dominance. Through all their bluffs of military strength this is one thing that they demonstrate honestly through their hostility. To the degree of their fear of the implications of Israel we should be that much happier and willing. It's strange, but they are serving as a reminder for us in a way. Hehe, if we get confused about what we have to do we should take a look at what the Arab Muslims are saying Israel is and take a cue from them. R' Chaim of Volozhin said, "If a Jew doesn't say Kiddush, the non-Jew will say Havdalah for him*." In Arabic, the word "junud" means soldiers and "Yahud" means Jews. I once heard an Hamas song where the singer rhymed those two words. The song was expressively negative but the jist of the lines was, "My son, Qassam, have no mercy on all of the Jews. They are all soldiers." He's right, but not the kind of soldiers he says we are, the soldiers that we say we are, soldiers of Torah. We should put our lives in the hands of Hashem, not of some bloody murderer terrorist. Let's make some Kiddush and avoid that type of Havdalah; Abda-llah's Havdalah.

May the anthems of our enemies be like sweet words to our ears.

*"Kiddush" literally means "sanctification," i.e., separating the holy from the mundane. "Havdalah" literally means "separation" and it's a blessing that Jews say right after Shabbat ends to separate the holy day from the mundane. R' Chaim was using the words metaphorically; if a Jew doesn't sanctify his/her life, he will be shown just how different he is. I also read it, if a Jew doesn't take on a life of holiness, the Gentiles will take it upon themselves to take on that life of holiness in our stead. The two ways it can be read can come together, because once they believe they have replaced us, they will try to remove us.

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