Last Sunday, July 17, I had a very interesting conversation with French Senator, Nathalie Goulet, of Normandy, about the Muslim immigration into Europe in general, and the security situation in France in particular. Mrs. Goulet has been involved in her country’s attempts to tackle the deteriorating security situation and radicalization of Islam in France for many years. However, during those years, not only have things not improved, the senator pointed out that now Christians are even converting to Islam by the thousands in order to join the ranks of ISIS and other radical Islamist groups. As one who headed an investigation committee on Jihadists, and partook in drafting the report on the November 13, 2015, terror attack in Paris, Mrs. Goulet concludes that “It’s a nightmare … we have to understand that you cannot prevent this kind of things.”
Indeed, when millions of immigrants inundate country after country with a foreign culture that shuns and scoffs at the local culture and faith, you are bound to have violent clashes. In such a state, the more vibrant and aggressive culture is the sure winner, and considering the current state of affairs in Europe, the winner will be Islam. Europeans are too tired and too meek to stand up to the young, vigorous Muslims swamping the “old continent.” They are taking Europe by storm and there is no one to stop them.
In response to Mrs. Goulet’s statement in one of her recent interviews on CNN that she was open to ideas about the security situation, I offered in our conversation an analysis from the perspective of the wisdom of Kabbalah.A Sign of Things to Come
My teacher, the RABASH, referred me several times to Kabbalistic writings that talk about the end of days. According to The Book of Zohar
), “The sons of Ishmael [Muslims] are destined to evoke great wars in the world. And the sons of Edom [Christians] will gather against them and will wage war on them.”
We may think that a war between Christians and Muslims has nothing to do with us, but as we all know, when there is trouble in the world, the Jews are held responsible. The Book of Zohar
describes this in no uncertain terms. In the portion, Vayera, The Zohar
writes, “The sons of Ishmael will awaken at that time along with all the peoples of the world … to come to Jerusalem for war, as it is written, ‘For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle.’” And in the portion, Shemot
, it adds, “All the nations and their kings will seek counsel together against them [Jews]. They will awaken several evil sentences, unite against them, and trouble after trouble will come, and the last makes the first forgotten.”
Considering that the last “trouble” we had was the Holocaust, what kind of trouble would it take to make it forgotten?
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What the Nations Want
The nations of the world feel that the Jews cause all their problems. They hate us and fear us because they sense that we possess some secret power or knowledge that gives us dominance over the world. If this assertion seems over-the-top, consider how many people believe that The Protocols of the Elders of Zion
speaks the absolute truth, or the declarations of politicians who claim that Israel created ISIS and stands behind terror attacks such as the one in Paris are accurate.
Accordingly, when large scale clashes between Christians and Muslims begin in Europe, and they will, the Jews will take the blame. And just as in Europe, so too will it happen in the US. However rooted and confident the American Jewish community feels at the moment, a turn for the worse is just around the corner. And as much as the state of Israel seems weak and vulnerable right now, it is still the safest place for any Jew, anywhere in the world.What Is Required of the Jews?
The era we are living in is unique. According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, our generation is the generation of the days of the Messiah
. But Kabbalah does not promise us an easy life at the beginning of this era. In his “Introduction to the Book of Zohar,” Rav Yehuda Ashlag, known as Baal Hasulam for his Sulam
[Ladder] commentary on The Book of Zohar
, writes, “In such a generation [as ours], all the destructors among the nations of the world raise their heads and wish primarily to destroy and to kill the sons of Israel, as it is written (Yevamot 63
), ‘No calamity comes to the world but for Israel,’ meaning that they [Jews] cause poverty, ruin, robbery, killing, and destruction in the whole world.”
We take pride in our contributions to science, culture, medicine, and economics. Statistically speaking, we should be proud. But Nobel prizes and other such tributes have never earned us any gratitude among the nations. If we want to win the nations’ favor and respect, we need to take a very different approach.The Need for Unity
The world we live in is a closed system, like an organism. And like an organism, it seeks to maintain balance and harmony. In biology, we call this homeostasis. In the human society, this balance depends on our unification, and acquiring it depends on the Jewish people. The mitigation of terrorism and violence throughout the world depends on our desire to unite and pass our unity on to the rest of the world, or as Baal Hasulam puts it in “The Arvut
” (Mutual Responsibility), “It is upon the Israeli nation to qualify itself and all the people of the world … to develop until they take upon themselves that sublime work of love of others. …The Israeli nation has been constructed as a sort of gateway by which sparks of purity [love of others] would shine upon the whole of the human race the world over.”
Since our globalized world is a single system, whatever we stream through its channels will radiate throughout the entire system. We, the “gateway,” must therefore “project” unity, which will then spread the world over. Unconsciously, people hate Jews because they cannot find balance and harmony until we stream union through the system. And as long as we are immersed in unfounded hatred among ourselves, the emotions we project are all negative. When that negativity finds its expression in the world, it manifests as violence, which finally turns against its root cause—the Jews.
Our deepest, most precious trait as Jews is the commandment to love our neighbor as ourselves. This, as Rabbi Akiva said, is the whole of the Torah. If we have none of that among us, then what do we have that makes us Jews?
The end of the “Introduction to the Book of Zohar” states that “When a person from Israel enhances and dignifies his internality—the Israel in him [love of others]—over the externality … he makes the sons of Israel soar upward … and the nations of the world … recognize and acknowledge the value of the sons of Israel.”
At a time when the words, “World War III,” are no longer the sole domain of Doomsayers, only spreading Israel’s (as yet) untapped power of connection can mitigate radicalism in general, and radical Islam in particular. This is what can save Europe, the US, and the Jews.
As I was speaking with Senator Goulet, I was delighted to see that, unlike past meetings with public figures, Mrs. Goulet seemed genuinely attentive and open-minded. In that spirit, I would like to conclude with the words of Baal Hasulam, “I am happy that I have been born in such a generation when it is permitted to disclose the wisdom of truth.”
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