A question I received: In the last lesson on the article “The Revelation of Godliness (Matan Torah)” you explained that in reality the other religions do not contain the rule “love your neighbor.” You gave an example of wars that are fought over issues such as the right way to pray and the Caste system in Hinduism, and that these are all signs that religion do not follow the rule “love your neighbor.”
So how are we to understand the “wars against the seven nations” and the war with Amalek? I am trying to understand how these actions can be implemented while keeping the rule “love your neighbor.” I think that even if they are performed while keeping this rule, the future generations will make wrong conclusions about them and as a result, commit cruelty and destruction.
My Answer: Correction takes place precisely through wars and clashes between egoism and the Light. Take King David for example, whose Psalms are valued by the entire world because they are the highest manifestation of love to the Creator. He spent forty years fighting wars, and moreover, he was the aggressor. This is known as the “Conquest of David” (Kibush David), spanning from Egypt to Babylon, including Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and other territories that have Upper Spiritual roots (other territories don’t have such roots). Another example is Joshua, who conquered the Land of Israel and exiled seven nations from it. Moreover, it was the Creator’s prohibition to let them stay in that land. All of this is described in the Torah, and it happens in congruence with the correction of egoism and its replacement with “bestowal.”
In order to correctly picture the arrangement of people in our world, one must imagine the forces that govern them. If the actions happen according to the Creator’s directive, like the wars fought by Joshua and David in Biblical times, then it is equivalent to the correction of egoism (see Rashbi’s commentary on Beresheet). On the other hand, if the actions are based on man’s decision, then they are egoistic! Since those times, Israel has not fought any wars where it was the aggressor.
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