Tuesday, July 1, 2014

"Please, Leave Me Be" -- Murder in Israel - One Rabbi's response...



Yesterday after the murder of the 3 boys in Isreal were confirmed, my thought process went as follows.

1) I can't imagine the horror these boys went through.

2) I can't imagine the horror the parents and families are going through.

3) Then I asked myself what happened to the tens of thousand of teffilos that were said for these children? (Please don't criticize this. You thought this as well. I am just admitting it).

4) Then I thought about the Rabbinic mention of how we need to do Teshuva (repent) for our sins.

5) Then I thought about the conversation that will ensue about the specific sins that may have caused this tragedy (I'm sure homosexuality and gay marriage will surface at some point).



The following message addresses all these points. Not by addressing the questions but by admitting that there are no answers.

What is written belowbrings to us some honesty and bravery from a Rabbi from Passaic, NJ about the murder of the 3 boys in Israel.

A long but worthy read.

"Please, Leave Me Be" -- By Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman


If you are seeking from me words of comfort and consolation you will not find them.

If you are reading this in order for you gain some sort of insightful understanding of the tragic events then I advise you to stop reading.

This missive will not be one of comfort and consolation.

If you are looking at me as the rabbi who undoubtedly has the proper response and is able to theologically articulate and make sense out of the tragedy, then you will be utterly disappointed.

I have no words of comfort.

I offer no consolation.

I have no insight and no comprehension.

I am numbed and I am left wondering and wandering in my grief and my loneliness.

I cannot see the ‘good’ in this and I cannot comprehend the ways of the creator and certainly not of some of His creations.

I cannot and hope to never be able to understand how a human being can murder three innocent human beings with the justification that they are following the word of their (imaginary) ‘god’?

I cannot fathom the level of cruelty and savagery a person must lower themselves to in order to murder a child in cold-blood.

However, alas, it has occurred.

I am angry and I am confused.

I am pained and I am mourning.

I feel lost and alone and abandoned.

The only passuk which comes to my mind is the one said by Iyov (Job) so many years ago:

“If I have sinned, what have I done to You (why does it bother You so much)?

You (Hashem) who have created me, why do you make me the target of your wrath?”

(Iyov 7:20)

I am sorry to disappoint those of you who were searching for answers and consolation in the words of the rabbi; however, I too am human and my heart aches just as yours.

Today I have no answers.

Today I have no comfort.

Today I have no comprehension or insight.

Today I just have tears;

Tears for Naftali, for Gilad and for Eyal

However, most of all I cry for their parents who as they attempt to sleep tonight, they now know that their lives will never be the same.

The laughter of their sons will never return.

All of us will thankfully eventually return back to our normal, mundane lives.

However, for the three parents of the boys they have reached a period of no return.

You may see them next month or next year; you may see them in fifty years; the pain will always be there; the emptiness will never be filled.

Please do not turn to me for answers today.

Please let me be as is; please don’t ask me any questions.

The only questions I feel I can relate to today are the ones asked many years ago by Dovid himself:

“How long, O Lord will You forget me forever?

How long will You hide Your face from me?

How long will I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart by day?

How long will my enemy have the upper hand over me?”

(Tehillim 13:2, 3)

When the answers to these questions become known there will be no more questions which need answering.

May that day arrive soon."

3 comments:

  1. "I cannot and hope to never be able to understand how a human being can murder three innocent human beings with the justification that they are following the word of their (imaginary) ‘god’?" This concept isn't foreign to Jews. We have a commandment to destroy Amalek, regardless of age or relative innocence. This has long been a major struggle for me to understand.

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    1. In modern times, we are NOT supposed to be searching for Amalekian tribesmen to murder with machetes! As a mitzvah in contemporary times, it is a commandment to slay the proverbial Amalek inside all of us: Just as Amalek came right after G-d split the sea, coolly indifferent to the miracles the world saw, we should work on getting rid of the cynic inside of all of us that passive-aggressively dumps water on the passion we feel when we serve G-d.

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  2. Your article is beautiful. It's true: not everything makes sense. Rabbi Levi Yitzchak M'Berditchev, an awesome Rebbe from the 18th century or so, said, "If I were G-d I would have created the world without pain or suffering." He doesn't even pretend to understand why tragedies happen. He said he would rather they don't happen at all. No, it doesn't make sense, and it's imperative that we complain and tell G-d about the pain and suffering we have to endure.
    Moshiach Now.

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