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A Dvar Torah for Devarim

Our Dvar Torah: Tisha B'Av and Hitbodedut

A D'var Torah for Devarim: Deuteronomy 1:1 - 3:22
By Rabbi Shlomo Nachman ben Ya'akov © July 15, 2021
What Happened on Tisha B'Av?
Hebrew Year *
Common Year
2448 (1312) Spies return from 40 days in Israel with evil reports of the Land of Israel. Jewish people cry in despair, give up hope of entering the Land of Israel.
3340 (421) Destruction of First Temple by the Babylonians, under Nebuchadnezar. About 100,000 Jews killed during invasion. Exile of remaining tribes in southern kingdom to Babylon and Persia.
3830 70 Destruction of Second Temple by Romans, under Titus. Over 2,500,000 Jews die as a result of war, famine and disease. Over 1,000,000 Jews exiled to all parts of the Roman Empire.
Over 100,000 Jews sold as slaves by Romans. Jews killed and tortured in gladiatorial
"games" and pagan celebrations.
3892 132 Bar Kochba revolt crushed. Betar destroyed - over 100,00 killed.
3893 133 Turnus Rufus ploughs site of Temple. Romans build pagan city of Aelia Capitolina on site of Jerusalem.
4855 1095 First Crusade declared by Pope Urban II. 10,000 Jews killed in first month of Crusade.
Crusades bring death and destruction to thousands of Jews, totally obliterate many communities in Rhineland and France.
5050 1290 Expulsion of Jews from England, accompanied by pogroms and confiscation of books and property.
5252 1492 Inquisition in Spain and Portugal culminates in the expulsion of the Jews from the Iberian Peninsula.
Families separated, many die by drowning, massive loss of property.
5674 1914 Britain and Russia declare war on Germany. First World War begins. First World War issues unresolved, ultimately causing Second World War and Holocaust.
75% of all Jews in war zones. Jews in armies of all sides - 120,000 Jewish casualties in armies.
Over 400 pogroms immediately following war in Hungary, Ukraine, Poland and Russia.
5702 1942 Deportations from Warsaw Ghetto to the Treblinka concentration camp begin.
5749 1989 Iraq walks out of talks with Kuwait.
5754 1994 The deadly bombing the building of the AMIA (the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, Argentina) which killed 86 people and wounded some 300 others.
5780 2020 The streets of tghe United States and other countries are aflame as Anarchists and Globalist seek to destroy Western decoracy.
The Chinese Covid Plague continues to decimate much of the world.

What Do We Do On Tisha B'Av and Does It Matter?

Rebbe Nachman of Breslov and Rabbi Natan teach us how to bring Mashiach ben David and the blessings of the Olam Haba or 'Messianic World to Come' and it is directly related to Tisha B'Av! On Tisha B'Av, our sages explain, we sit on the floor in mourning over the destruction of the Temples and the other tragedies that occurred on this date, but especially the loss of the Holy Temples. But, what are we really grieving? A couple of ancient buildings? No. We are grieving over our own failings and our continuing exile! Even those living in Israel today remain in the exile because they, like the rest of us, are still living under the thumb of the globalist secular powers. Israel today is not a Jewish Torah based country. Much of its population does not want Mashaich ben David nor the Redemption, nor do they even believe it will ever come! In violation of Torah, many current day Israelis, even some Knesset members, are not even Jewish!

Rebbe Nachman and Rabbi Natan teach that each of us must come to the point of believing that "I" destroyed the Beit HaMikdash, 'only me, and nobody else besides me'!

But how can this be? When we don’t guard our eyes from beholding evil, we re-destroy Jerusalem and cause a spirit of tumah or spiritual impurity to hover over the Holy City and Land. If we want to see the Redemption each Jew needs to come to this realization and to choose the Derech or Way of HaShem! But how? It can only be done by choosing the Derech or Way of HaShem! Each of us must choose.

When we choose to invest time in hitbodedut, in personal secluded prayer and repentance, spiritual realization or enlightement enters into the Jewish consciousness. As one nullifies ego-based materialism and the untruthful sense of separateness from HaShem and our fellow Jews one comes into greater and greater proximity with the Beloved. We call this expanded experiential consciousness Devekut. As the saying has it, united we stand but divided we fall. We are woefully divided today!

Through searching ones deeds, thoughts and desires and seeking rectification at a soul level through hitbodedut, personal secluded prayer, one gradually awakens to Reality. Such a blessed soul begins to perceive True and Unconditional Reality, the True Light. All others wander aimless in conditional sub-realities and darkness. Again, as is said, there are none so blind as those refuse to see!

It is only within the expanded and rectified state of consciousness that the reality of the oneness of the Jewish People and our shared task is perceived. Such a person realizes that WE are those same Jews, those same Israelites, who rebelled against Moshe and against HaShem and only WE can rectify our deeds. Through hitbodedut and devekut those who choose to see beyond the veil of materialism and assimilation come to realize that the destruction of the Temple falls on us collectively and individually! Why has the Third Temple not yet been built? This too falls on us! We have failed to properly bend the knee before our King and to absorb the Consciousness of Light that is our individual birthrights. Awaking to who WE are as a people and to what it is that G-d demands of each of us is the only way the Redemption is going to come!

But make no mistake, as described Sanhedrin Folio 97a and b, the Redemption is coming! One way or another. And, paraphrasing Mordecai to Esther, “Who knows if perhaps it is for this noble task of welcoming Mashiach ben Yosef and HaMashiach David and building the Third Beit HaMikdash that we have been born at this time and place! The Redemption IS coming, with or without our participation, because HaShem is not a man that He should lie, as Scripture states. What He has declared is going to come! The globalist War of Magog, the despot like unto Haman, Mashiach ben Yosef followed by Mashiach ben David is on our horizon. What we each do is our decision.

For important insights into Hitbodedut and how, through personal secluded prayer, we can merit Unconditional Reality with the Beloved we now turn to Likutey Moharan Book 1, lesson 52. Due to time constraints we can not read the entire lesson here, but will consider a few of its more salient points. I encourage you all to read this lesson in its entirty as you prepare for Tisha B'Av.

As usual I will be reading from Rabbi Israel Dov Odesser's translation, in the three volume set, available at Breslovbooks.com, begining in Volume one page 479.


The above table is borrowed from OHR.edu.

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