Tuesday, February 05, 2013

The Role of Every Jew

Wherever we turn we are apt to encounter moral filth. The world is drenched in lewdness, falsity, violence, corruption - all things impure.

A Jew might think God's plan actually requires this omnipresence of decadence, therefore he can hardly expect to change it; Better, he figures, he should minimize his contact with the outside presence and immerse himself entirely in prayer and study, living a religious hermit's life.

Says the Previous Rebbe, creation of the world began with an atmosphere of purity and sanctity. Decadence never was built in. Decadence resulted only as an addition, as a result of the sin involving the Tree of Knowledge. On the contrary, the very purpose of creation was so God's presence would ultimately yield maximum exposure in this human habitat. The Jew is expected to interact with the world and not withdraw therefrom, to elevate it to its ultimate purpose.

Well then, if the world began in pure form, and has as its goal a pure and even loftier purpose, we can conclude the current state of affairs, being transitory and temporary, bears no consequence on the world's ultimate state because the essence of the world - intrinsically - constitutes purity.

With this logic applied to the individual, we can turn the religious hermit's reasoning inside-out. Since the body, once a man passes away and his soul departs from it, undergoes rot and decomposition, then what good does it do, all during life, to try refine and sanctify himself, when no trace of it will remain after death?

The answer lies in the fact that God chose the Jewish people to provide for God an eternal "home" on earth. This act of "choosing", by itself, brands the target of choice with an attribute it never had before the choosing. Before the choosing, Jews and Gentiles had bodies and souls that were equivalent, on par with each other. But the moment the choosing was executed, the Jewish body gained sanctity and it also gained an extra soul that was implanted.

The purpose of creation is for God's Torah to be established on earth as the manual by which all Jews will ultimately serve God so that God can "dwell in their presence", so that God can "feel at home" among His people. It will be a time when we will have extra dimensions of perception to perceive a more revealing God Almighty. Righteous Gentiles who will participate in that world-to-come will also subserve this reality as they commit themselves to the 7 Noahide Laws that Torah dictates for them.

So the body of the Jew does NOT vanish. Those who passed away will again be reincarnated.

Well then, why bother doing the commandments, especially with eagerness and gusto, in this world if Jews receive eternal life? Says the Previous Rebbe, because every Jew plays a vital role in bringing this Era of Redemption to bear, and the sooner they accomplish them, the sooner that Era dawns.

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