If there is a G-d, then how could He let this happen?
I don’t know.
If there is a G-d, then how could He let the Holocaust happen?
I don’t know.
That answer is immensely unsatisfying for the human brain. Immensely… And it takes every ounce of faith, and being, and belief, and understanding, and learning, and knowledge to be okay with “I don’t know.”
There are things I know, there are things I see, and there are things I don’t, and I have to have faith that they are happening for a reason. And maybe I will learn those reasons and maybe I won’t. Maybe I will see them, and experience them, and understand them here later on down the line, or in the World To Come, and maybe I won’t.
But how I respond, how I react, and how steadfast and strong I am in my faith, and my acts of kindness, in my studying and learning and growing are the only things I have control over.
And so, this has to be our struggle… and this is our daily struggle… To attach ourselves to our G-dly souls and elevate our Animal/Natural souls. These are the very lessons in Tanya, which actually gives practical ways to do this.And this is a lesson in many philosophies and religions. And I would say to all of us, to support each other in whatever it is that we believe. And to realize that if those beliefs move us to positivity, and kindness, and good deeds, and doing the right thing, then they are good beliefs, and positive beliefs.
My friend and teacher and Rabbi, Avi Rabin says in his Tanya class: “If you are not actively moving to light, then you are actively moving towards darkness.”
So even in these times of darkness and uncertainty, we must move towards the light.
The time for judgment and all that stuff, which is never, is certainly not now. We need to come together, we need to support… and wherever you’re going to find it, is where you are going to find it. Obviously for me, and this blog, I find it in Judaism. And I encourage others to look at these teachings. The lessons I have learned are powerful, proactive, and quite remarkable and have been around for thousands and thousands of years. I mean, we are in 5780!!!
We will get through this and things will get better, and so we must let the lessons we learn carry us through and never be forgotten. Breathe in the uncertainty and doubt and deal with it, learn from it.
As my other friend and Rabbi Shlomo Seidenfeld says: “Every person has two lives, the second one begins when we realize we have one.”Life is so uncertain and tenuous. Cling to what you know. In the next few days, weeks, months and years we will see the best of humanity and the worst of humanity. Do not judge it, but mark it, speak out to support the good and against the bad. We have the power of our voice, our vote and our wallet. Support those who do right, and fight those who do bad. And hate the sin, not the sinner.
I want to leave you with this… It comes from Rabbi Aron Moss in Australia, and is one of the best things you will read… ever…
Question of the Week:
This coronavirus thing has really thrown me. I feel like I’ve lost all sense of certainty. No one knows what will happen next. How do we stay sane when we don’t know what’s lurking around the corner?
It is not that we have lost our sense of certainty. We have lost our illusion of certainty. We never had it to begin with. This could be majorly unsettling, or amazingly liberating.
This tiny virus of 125 nanometres* has sent the entire world into chaos. All of our plans are up in the air, markets are going crazy, entire countries shutting down, and we have no clue what the future holds.
But that is always the case. We never know what the future holds. We only think we do, and keep getting surprised when things don’t pan out the way we expected. Now the mask is off. We have to admit our vulnerability.
What will happen next? We don’t know. Our experts don’t know. Our leaders don’t know. Only G-d knows. And that is the point. Only G-d knows.
Close your eyes and feel the uncertainty, make peace with it, let yourself be taken by it. Embrace your cluelessness. Because in all the confusion there is one thing you know for sure. You are in G-d’s hands.
Keep calm. Panic and fear are also contagious. Take every precaution as advised by health authorities. Wash your hands well. And every time you do, remember whose hands you are in.