Tuesday, December 24, 2013

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Now What?

by Reb Gutman Locks @ Mystical Paths


      A total turnaround! Shmulie called me over to talk with this Irish UN Peace worker. Actually, he is retired from the UN now, and is staying on the West Bank, in an arab town, volunteering for a World Peace Organazation.

     Durng a long conversation he insisted that he had no religion, but was a “cultural x-ian” since he was born into a x-ian family. He had very strong feelings about how the arabs in Israel were not being treated fairly. He wanted everyone to treat each other with love.

     “You cannot love someone who is trying to kill you,” I said.

     He told me that every morning at 4:00 am he goes to “one of the checkpoints that make entry for the arabs into Israel so very difficult”. He said that they were harsh on the arabs.

     “Why do you think those checkpoints are there?” I asked. “If the arabs would stop trying to kill us we would not have to search them before letting them into our communities.”

     “I only want peace in the world,” he said.

     “One out of five people in the world are Muslim, yet four out of five wars in the world are Muslim. Talk to them if you want peace,” I said.

    “Let’s keep politics out of it,” he said,

    “Politics?! That’s not politics, that’s murder. Today in China there was a murderous muslim attack, and they are blaming Israel. You can only have peace if both sides are willing to live in peace.”

     He could not hear a word that I said. He pushed everything away that did not agree with the arab’s side.

     Then we talked about his family. He told me that some of his family ran from Hungry in 1941 to avoid the war. After much conversation, it turned out that his mother’s mother was Jewish, but he insisted that his mother was not Jewish, because she was a x-ian.

     I explained that might have been his mother’s religion, but it was not her people. And most likely she adopted that religion only to hide the fact that she was a Jew. “Since your mother’s mother was Jewish, so is your mother Jewish. And since your mother is Jewish, so are you Jewish. And now you can put on tefillin.”    

     He refused, insisting that he had no religion. I explained that tefillin are not about religion, “They are a spiritual exercise.” I convinced him to try and see. As you see he did, and now he has a real problem. First off, his face changed. He did not look like the same man who walked into Kotel area.

     But that’s not his biggest problem. His biggest problem is, now, when he goes with the arabs and x-ian “peace workers” to the checkpoints in the mornings, and hears them cursing the Jews, he will begin to wonder why he is being cursed by the very people he is trying to help.

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