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Tu B’Av 5772 Part Six

Transcribed by: Transcription for Everyone: So if the Jewish people are walking around saying, oy you know, we suffered so much, the Beis Ha’mikdash and the next Beis Ha’mikdash and Beitar and the Greeks and the Romans and the Byzantines and the Russians and the Poles and the English and the French and the German and the Ukrainians and Chelmenitsky and everything else that happened — one generation, we’re always suffering, the world hates us, it’ll never end and then the Nazis and then the Muslims and everything else and then all the Democrats and all the, everything — all the people who want the Jews — we walk around convinced that we’re destined to suffer, then we’re living in Tisha b’Av.  That means we haven’t woken up and accepted that the suffering is over.  And to accept this suffering is over is the only way that we’re going to deserve Mashiach.  It’s the only way we’re going to merit this sense of, you know what?  It’s over, it’s enough.  We can’t accept it.


The minute there were terrorist attacks after the ’67 War, you have famous rabbanim saying, you see, it wasn’t a miracle, we’re still suffering.  The suffering continues — not considering for a second that every time the suffering continues, it’s only because we believe that the suffering will continue.  We will carry around our negative experiences from our childhood, we carry around the negative self-perceptions we have, we carry around all the limitations we had as kids — we do not accept it and Tu b’Av, the Yom Kippur, is a day when we accept there’s so much good, there’s so many possibilities, there’s so much that is wonderful and exciting and dynamic and enriching and fabulous and lovely and beautiful and challenging. There’s so much that, you know what, the suffering is over, that’s the only way to prepare for a Rosh Hashana/Yom Kippur, it’s the only way to prepare to get out of the Tisha b’Av. 

It’s the only way.  And just think about the people who built the State of Israel after the Holocaust; Holocaust survivors going, draining swamps, Holocaust survivors going to this country surrounded by hundreds of millions of Arabs and fighting a war with a Davidka that could fire screws and nails, but no bullets and just make a scary noise?  So all these incredible things that were fought by people who said, you know what, the suffering is over. 

So, yeah, there may be religious issues with saying, never again, as if we are the ones in charge, but to say never again, the suffering is over, and now we’re going to live a life of possibility, that’s a huge madreiga, that’s a huge level, a very high level.  How often do our kids have a negative experience and then they work it out, but they’re still hesitant, they’re still nervous?  Isn’t it a tough adjustment to say, for them to accept the suffering is over?  That’s Tu b’Av, and that is as significant, if not more significant, than Yom Kippur, because Yom Kippur‘s in the Torah, this is something we did on our own. 

On our own we said we are so excited about accepting that the suffering is over, we are going to make a yom yov, a festival, as important as Yom Kippur. What a statement of the Jewish people that is — what a statement.  And so his approach is, you want to get out of exile, you want to get out of Tisha b’Av, you want to start preparing for Rosh Hashana/Yom Kippur?  The only way to do it is to say, okay, the bad is over.  And by the way, this appears numerous times in Halacha as well, that you have to accept that your suffering is over in order to prepare for the future.

Why do you read Parshas Bechukosai with the rebuke, the tochacha in Parshas Bechukosai two weeks before Shavuos?  Because Shavuos is like a Rosh Hashana.  So you want all the rebuke, all the curses, to end before the New Year, because you can’t have this experience of a New Year unless you say the bad stuff is over.  Why do you read Parshas Ki Savo with its curses and its rebuke two weeks before Rosh Hashana?  Keday she tichle ha’shana v’kol noseha. To say, you know what, the bad stuff is over, it’s the only way to prepare for a Rosh Hashana — with a sense all the bad stuff is over. 

Well, you know, the only reason there’s bad stuff is because we’re so bad and we’re so evil, we don’t do this well and this and I do so many aveiros — then that person doesn’t really believe the curses are over, but if I can accept the curses are over, then maybe I can accept that my negative or destructive behaviors, or limiting behaviors, are over as well.  That’s the only way to approach.  Well, I’m going to work on one thing — it means I’m carrying all the negative, but I’ll work on one thing.  But to say the bad stuff, it’s over, what an incredible approach — post churban. That’s so incredible.  If you think about in bentching, who composed the bracha of rachem na, have compassion on us, vna al tatzicheinu, please, G-d, don’t make us ever need to borrow money or to receive gifts, please G-d — who composed that blessing?  David and Shlomo at the peak of the malchus, of the royal reign.  And who composed the final bracha of bentching, hatov ve’hameitiv, who is good and makes things better?  The people who survived Beitar.  It’s incredible.  There’s a suffering, there’s hope, there’s a future

And the Chofetz Chaim explains that we’re so powerful that these people who were crushed, made a conscious decision not to focus on the negative, but to focus on the possibilities — that’s why you have all the harachamans after al yechasreinu, because you’re on such a high level of being able to see that it’s only good from now on, G-d says, you can ask Me for whatever you want.  It’s a ha’rachaman, harachaman hu yifarneseinu bechavod, give us parnassa.  That’s why you have all those prayers, because G-d says, I like you guys.  You’re able to say suffering’s over, I like you a lot.

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