The news of the killings in a Temple in Jerusalem shook the Jewish world to the core. Our experience with being victims of hate crimes is sadly nothing new. The depths to which those who hate us are willing to descend seem bottomless. The hatred of the Jews seems to be without logic, basis, or limits. There are other peoples who are hated, but it seems none as virulently as the Jews.
I have experience with violent, senseless death in an up close and very personal way. However, there is nothing in my experiences that have prepared me, or anyone else I know for an attack on rabbis and others who were praying in a sacred place. There is no way in the realm of normalcy such a horrific event can make sense.
As Jews, upon learning of a death, we respond ( or should): Baruch Dayan Emet– Blessed is the True Judge. There are times I have been able to say those words with full understanding and acceptance of their significance and there are other times, such as this, the words seem to ring hollow in the depths of my soul.
When facing such a challenge of faith, we are not made to withhold our questions of the Almighty. He created us with free will and the ability to think and reason. Such questions are not a crisis of faith. They are an expression of our deep and abiding faith in our Creator. Did we not have a connection with Him, we wouldn’t bother to question. It really wouldn’t matter as we would assume these killings were yet another inexplicable, albeit random and purposeless, tragedy in a world lost in the cosmic sea. Thank G-d that is not how it is.
Yes, I have screamed out in pain, “Why?” echoed through the silence of my house, tears flowed and are still pouring down my cheeks, yet I know the my Creator is the True Judge and whatever He does or allows is right and for the good.
I was speaking with an old friend this morning, with whom I haven’t spoken in years. Our call did more for me than I can say. As old friends do, we shared secrets of the past and concluded together that what we have experienced in our lives made us who we are today. We’re pretty good people. I am sure she’ll agree. Our call was a reminder to me of the work of the True Judge and how that which seemed so devastating somehow turned out for the good.
Life is not always easy. Sometimes it is pretty darn hard. In my questions of my Creator there is also an anger towards those that would kill me or any of our people given the opportunity. I think they should be dealt with measure-for-measure and I do not apologize for feeling that way. I am not passive when it comes to the existence of our people. Perhaps I am a Jew of a different hue but I have no problem taking some psycho who wants to hurt my people to the proverbial woodshed and let him know what it feels like to be bullied. I suppose that says more about me than it does our enemies. I am not really sure at this point that I care what it says about whom. It is where I am today.
On the other hand, you know the two natures, the ongoing battle within, my heart, though full of pain, accepts in faith all that has come to pass. It maybe a long time before the tears and anger subside yet the overwhelming cry of my heart remains: Baruch Dayan Emet——– Blessed is the True Judge.
As has always been the case, may we as individuals and a collective people be blessed with the courage to live on even when things happen beyond our comprehension. May we remain strong and undefeated, though hurting. And may me be blessed with the ability to say from the heart: Baruch Dayan Emet—–