(photo credit: Courtesy)
Chabad hopes to bring the world one step closer to the age of the messiah by encouraging the entire Jewish people to rest this Shabbat. "By uniting the Jewish people, and hence the world, we hope to bring Moshiach," said Aaron Hurwitz, a Jerusalem-based Chabad rabbi who is helping organize the fifth annual One Shabbat, One World project.
According Jewish sources, Hurwitz said, if the Jewish people rests for two Shabbatot, Moshiach will come.
Chabad organizes the One Shabbat, One World project to coincide with the weekly portion that recounts the first Shabbat kept by the Jews after the Exodus from Egypt.
This year, the international endeavor also coincides with Tu Bishvat. The Torah (Deuteronomy 20:19) likens man to "a tree of the field," Hurwitz said. "Just as a tree grows and produces more and more fruit, so too should a man strive constantly to grow spiritually and do more and more good deeds."
On its oneshabbat.com Web site, Chabad says worldwide events like One Shabbat, One World "were foretold by our prophets and sages. They are part of the tumultuous and historic developments that precede the Messianic era. It is up to us to do what we can to hasten the process by increasing in goodness and kindness, and by adding more light."