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Bringing Moshiach Now!
by Rabbi Eli Teitelbaum
It takes great people to build but even one fool can destroy!
While the Lubavitcher Rebbe, z.z.vk.l. has worked a lifetime in trying to bring Moshiach closer through his unbelievable work of Harbotzas HaTorah and Mitzvos on a grand world-wide scale, it is sad and trgic that his work and lifetime goals are in danger of being shattered and destroyed in jusst a few years since his passing.
While the Rebbe constantly pleaded for greater Jewish unity by increasing our love toward our fellow Jews as being one of the prime ways in which to bring Moshiach closer, some of his "followers" have unfortunately created an atmosphere of hatred and hostility that threatens to push the coming of Moshiach back to the time of the Churban.
Their preposterous claim that the Rebbe has never really passed away and their self-proclaiming prophecy that he is still undoubtedly the Moshiach of our generation, has relegated them to the sidelines of Jewish belief. Even worse, the tactics they have been using to spread this gospel and to silence all internal opposition is appalling. The hatred they have generated and the division and broken hearts that they have caused among their own families is beyond description. To seriously contemplate that Moshiach can be brought closer by using the "Yodayim Yedei Esav" is totally against everything the Rebbe stood for. To intimidate and terrorize those who don't accept their outlandish philosophy and don't dance to their tune of "Yechi" is the very cause of our long and bitter golus and only adds to its darkness. To brainwash the minds of young children with ideologies that have caused them to rebel against their own parents and to turn their own Torah institutions into havens of hatred for those so-called "non-believers" is catastrophic.
Their underhanded tactics and divisiveness have brought untold damage to the Rebbe's great legacy as well as to the countless thousands of followers who continue to follow in his ways. They threaten to malign the very name of Lubavitch and turn it into a laughing stock and mockery of all the Rebbe stood for. To "Bring Moshiach Now" there must be true peace, love and harmony among all Jews and not just catchy slogans and empty misleading propaganda!
It's astonishing to see how sane, sensible people can fail to realize the great damage they are inflicting upon the very Rebbe they so highly regard and revere.
I have not come to debate their philosophies or enter into dialogue with them, since this is an exercise in futility - they are masters at misrepresenting and misinterpreting the Rebbe's true ideologies. I only come to plead and urge them to stop their dangerous ways before they become totally ostracized from Klal Yisroel.
And to those who have not yet fallen into their clutches, please "Hibodlu mitoch ho'edah hazos" - "Distance yourselves from this group" - for they do not represent the Rebbe's explicit teachings, recorded over the past fifty years which are based on "drochecho darchei noam v'chol nesivosecho shalom" - "Her ways are pleasant ways and all her paths are peace."
I had hoped that these fantasies and illusions would disappear with the passage of time, but I now realize that the situation is getting progressively worse. Therefore, I feel that the time has come for everyone to speak out against this outrageous Chilul Hashem, lest our silence be interpreted as acquiescence!
P.S. It should be made clear that this essay is not directed at the Rebbe's vast majority of tue followers who don't believe in all this nonsense but whose voices are being silenced by a vocal minority who use intimidation and terror tactics to achieve their aims. While I believe that their leaders certainly don't condone this type of behavior, it seems that they have lost control over their own clan.
P.P.S. Even though in all probability this protest will fall on deaf ears and only generate an avalanche of nonsensical replies and denials, it is still required by Halacha. (Also see Mesechtas Shabbos 55).
[A number of people complained to the publisher regarding Rabbi Teitelbaum's article, and in the following issue Rabbi Teitelbaum responded:]
Sorry Y.H., but my essay was not written to "vent my spleen," etc., nor out of "hatred" but rather out of love, respect and honor of the Rebbe and his thousands of true followers that clearly condemn this "Yechi" mania and continue in the ways of "derocheho darchei noam..." to spread Torah and mitzvos to the far corners of the world, but are being maligned and mocked because of a cult of meshichisten that refuse to accept the reality of the Rebbe's passing.
I was fully aware that I was stirring up a hornet's nest with my article on "Meshichism" but I must admit that despite a few threatening calls, most comments were very favorable and supportive. Many Crown Heights residents called to tell me of the intimidation they are sujected to, and of the hatred and split it has caused amongst them.
As to the references the Rebbe, z.z.vk.l. made about Moshiach, I have stated clearly that I will not enter into any debate with people that are masters of distortion and deception and can easily twist the Rebbe's words out of context. If you have any questions as to how to interpret the Rebbe's talks or how to understand the Rambam, then you ought to discuss it with the master himself - Rabbi Yoel Kahan who was the Rebbe's personal chozer for more than forty years. I'm sure there is no one more qualified to explain their meanings. Or has he, too, become an outcast because of his strong anti-meshichist stand?
Isn't it quite strangeand surprising that as long as the Rebbe was alive everyone agreed that the Rambam calls for a Moshiach that is amongst the living and not one that will arise from the dead, but now that it did not come to pass, the Rambam is instantly given a new twist. This is just one example of outright distortion! First they shoot the arrow and then they draw the target around it!
What the Christians have done to the Bivle, l'havdil, the meshichisten are doing to the Rebbe's Sichos and ideology. Sometimes the variations are very subtle and not apparent, but within time the differences become more discernible. Therefore it comes as no surprise when just recently in an article appearing in the "Bais Moshiach," a weekly meshichistic publication that appears in Eretz Yisroel, an additional word "boraynu" - "our creator" - was inserted into the "melech ha'moshiach" national anthem. This was outright kefira and brought on the instant fury and outrage of many Chabad rabbonim who tore it off the walls and banned the publication. This should light a red warning signal indicating in which direction they are heading!
Recently some excellent pamphlets have been published exposing some of the distortions made of the Rebbe's sichos. Those looking for the truth should check them out.
To those who called and denied the existence of terrorism and intimidation, I gladly supplied them with a list of people whose tires were slashed and whose bones were beaten for their outspokenness against "Meshichisism." In fact I even offered them a one thousand dollar reward if they could prove my facts wrong. So far there have been no claimants.
While most of those who are part of the "Yechi" cult are NOT terrorists (certainly not Rabbi Butman or Rabbi Marlow), the movement as a whole has been a fertile breeding ground for such people. By not stopping those amonst them who have used the "Yodayim yedei Esav" they must share in the guilt.
The biggest problem I'm up against is one of denial. After all, if someone denies that the Rebbe passed away, then he can just as well deny that the sun shines during the day. Anyone with open eyes is certainly aware of the terrible damage the "meshichisten" have inflicted to the name of Lubavitch and the Rebbe z.z.vk.l. Those who believe differently are simply living in a state of denial. Bringing proof would be useless.
Just this past Shabbos, ove4r one thousand of the Rebbe's emissaries from all over the world gathered in Crown Heights for a special shlichim convention. It was a great kiddush Shem Shomayim. When the photographer tried taking a picture of the gathering with the banner of "Yechi" in the background, they refused. Only about forty of them agreed to have a picture taken with the sign behind them. This is certainly a good indication of where the majority stands. Isn't it also very strange that most of those that were closest to the Rebbe, his own gabboyim, are against the meshichist cult?
I should add that during the evening a group of meshichisten tried to force their way into the convention hall in order to distribute their propaganda, but were stopped by the specially hired guards at the door. They tried to force their way into the hall by beating one of the guards but were quickly arrested by police. So much for their denials of terrorism and violence.
Anyone that listened to the Crown Heights Hot Line last week was appalled to hear how far these few meshichisten are removed from reality. The announcer, a fanatical meshichis, said that he has "some earth-shattering news which proves that techias hamaysim is imminent. Rabbi Berel Lipsker, a member of the Chevra Kaddisha as well as many others have noticed that deep holes have developed in the graves surrounding the Ohel. This is a sure sign of life and proves beyond doubt that moshiach is on his way."
When people start believing that holes caused by an invasion of rodents is a sign of techias hamaysim than it's time to call it quits! I still remeber all too well the horrid sight that met me at the levayah. A bunch of spaced-out zombies dancing to the tune of "yechi"! Is this what the Rebbe did when his father-in-law passed away? Did the Lubavitcher bais din condone such behavior? Certainly NOT!
Doesn't H. know that two out of three rabbonim on the bais din (Rabbi Osdoba and Rabbi Heller) are against the "Yechi" mania? Why is he trying to cover it up?
Sorry, but no amount of dancing in the street on Simchas Bais Hashoeva or Simchas Torah will undo the damage done to the Rebbe's great legacy. I'm not a politician nore running for election and therefore I can speak the truth without concern of whether I'm gaining respect or losing respect in your eyes. Even if the truth hurts I will continue to speak it. There's an old saying that "Evil flourishes when good people say nothing."
Yet despite all the damage they've done, I still believe, along with every Jew, that moshiach is on his way. I only plead with them to stop their foolish way so he shouldn't be delayed any longer.