Introduction: Creating Messianic Reality
Our generation is almost unanimously considered the generation of the redemption. The tumultuous events of the recent past are largely recognized as the footsteps of the Mashiach, heralding that the true and complete redemption is literally at our doorstep.
The nation of Israel and the entire world has weathered many storms since the prophetic declaration of the Rebbe Rayatz of Lubavitch at the end of the Holocaust, “Immediate return to God will bring immediate redemption, ” and since the prescient began to identify the radical developments experienced by the Jewish people in the last decades as the redemptive process (on one level or another).
Everyone would like to hasten the arrival of the Mashiach. Clearly, world events, and particularly those events connected with the Jewish people, are extraordinary and signal that he is near. But some questions remain:
What exactly is the coming redemption?
How can we act to hasten it?
What is the direct influence of the coming redemption on our daily lives?
More than anyone else in our generation, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, foresaw and sought the redemption. He understood the depth of the events and processes taking place in the world, and acted more than anyone else to further the redemption of Israel. More than anyone else, the Rebbe expressed the urgency of the redemption and the impossibility of remaining even one more moment in exile. The Rebbe declared time and again that the redemption is “already here,” and that “Mashiach is coming.” Yet, together with all the Rebbe’s actions and with all his confidence that the redemption is here and the Mashiach will be revealed at any moment, he insisted that the mission of actually bringing the Mashiach falls squarely on the shoulders of the general public. In his famous discourse of the 28th of Nissan, 5751 the Rebbe said, “I have done all that I can…From now on (all of you should) do everything that you can to bring the Mashiach immediately and without delay.”
The Rebbe reiterated many times that the easiest, fastest and most direct way to bring the Mashiach is to study about the redemption and the Mashiach. Kabbalah and Chassidut emphasize the unconditional effect that Torah study of any issue has on its manifestation in reality. In addition to this absolute value, Torah study on the redemption and the Mashiach in particular clearly and effectively fosters progress toward creating Messianic reality on five levels:
1. Faith in Mashiach
2. Desire for Mashiach
3. Identification of the ways to bring Mashiach
4. “Living with Mashiach”
5. The Torah of Mashiach
In the following posts, we will explore each of these levels in greater depth.