This morning I had the pleasure to join in the Bar-Mitzvah of one of my cousins sons at the Kotel. Although I was looking forward to sharing in the simcha, I was also looking forward for some alone time talking to Hashem.
I am from Beit Shemesh, and have been living in this beautiful community since I first made Aliyah on the very first Nefesh B’Nefesh flight more than 11 years ago.
I really hate labels, I really, really do. We are all just Jews, the sons and daughters of Avraham and Sarah, but for the sake of perspective I will say that I am Charedi.
The pain in my city is genuine, and the hate is tangible and I and many others across the board are suffering from it.
What really breaks my heart is that I know in Shamayim the tears are flowing. Trying to imagine the discussions about Beit Shemesh in the Heavens is not hard to think of. We were given a nisayon (a test) and we are failing miserably.
In Shamayim they are not asking “Who did you vote for?”, but how are you responding to the current results, even if they will change?
In Shamayim they are not looking if you are celebrating a win? They are looking if you feel the pain from those who lost.
My friends, in Shamayim they are looking for one thing, they are looking for Achdut. Do we, as Chareidim give legitimacy to the pain and anguish that our Dati Leumi and non-religious brothers are going through? There is real evidence of fraud and a real feeling on the street that the elections was robbed from them. Can you feel their anguish? Does it bother you? It bothers me.
As I walked up to the ancient Kotel walls, knowing the the destruction we mourn over is because of sinat chinam, because of hate among our brothers, I did not know what I would say, could say, to Avinu B’Shamayim, our Father in Heaven.
I made an effort, I prayed asking Hashem, pleading with Hashem for an answer. What can be done? How can our city heal? How can we spread the achdut that is so central to our very existence? I asked Hashem that he should make those who are seeking to build bridges to succeed and to those who hate, to remove it from their hearts.
Hashem, please give us the answer! Please show us the way! How should we respond when we see one of our brothers in the street? How can we build bridges? How should we create peace?
I opened my eyes and looked at the holy Kotel wall and saw this image… the answer was right in front of me all along.