Question: Jerusalem has always been considered the heart of Israel and the whole world in general. How did it happen that Jerusalem today became the center of hatred among the Israeli people? The most negative events flare up there: hatred between the religious and secular, hatred of religious movements among themselves. What is the reason?
Answer: Since the Jews are the group of people who left ancient Babylon with Abraham, who preferred spiritual development to material development, over hundreds of years they developed spiritually, achieved becoming one with the Creator, and were at the level of the Temple. This is when a person becomes one with the Creator in his heart and begins to feel as existing eternally.
Therefore, upon leaving Egypt (egoism), they realized the call “to become like one man with one heart,” that is, to unite with each other in such a way as to completely overcome all kinds of selfish differences and mutual repulsion.
And then they achieved not only mutual rapprochement, but also mutual love. Therefore, Rabbi Akiva, although he was not born a Jew, was the greatest sage at the time of the destruction of the Second Temple, and he urged: “Do not forget that love your neighbor as yourself is our most important commandment.”
Nevertheless, unfounded hatred broke out among his twenty-four thousand disciples. They fell from the spiritual level and ceased to feel their community. And the spiritual world, the Creator, is felt only in community, in a single integral desire. Therefore, after falling to an egotistical fragmented level, they lost the feeling of the Creator, the feeling of the upper world.
Since then, mutual hatred, mutual repulsion, among the Jews is much greater than among the rest of the nations of the world. However, from the outside, it is perceived as mutual assistance of Jews to each other, but only because there is a mutual hatred of all nations toward the Jews, which keeps them together.
Mutual aid between Jews is manifested when there is a common external trouble. But as soon as it disappears, then immediately there is mutual hatred and mutual rejection. This is what we see everywhere, and especially here in Israel.
This is not particularly felt abroad because there is nothing for the Jews to share; there is no state pie, there are no big points of contact with each other. Jews live among other nations, and therefore, everything is diluted. They need to feel that there is someone who can help them, sympathize, that he hopes for you and you count on him. It works there.
And in Israel where there is no such reason, a terrible, mutual hatred appears, especially in the religious part of it, so much that it leads to very unpleasant manifestations.
In this respect, a religious person today does not differ from a secular person because he does not pursue the goal of improving himself. A person is not brought up knowing that he has to love another individual, help him, take care of him, merge with others into one whole, and merge with the whole world.
Religion is not Kabbalah, not human correction. People built their usual life out of it. It teaches them the mechanical fulfillment of the commandments for which they will allegedly receive a reward in the next world. That is, it is addressed purely to human egoism.
Believers will continue to demonstrate themselves like everyone else, they just have it in a closed society, veiled. Therefore when suddenly something happens, special cases appear that cannot be hidden. In fact, absolutely the same vices exist there as in the non-religious part of society.
I hope that all this will lead us to remember our main commandment “love your neighbor as yourself,” that we should be a light for all the nations of the world.
We were favored by God to set an example in uniting with each other, like at Mount Sinai, and to attract the whole world to this. In this case, we will truly become the element in the world that we must be.
From KabTV’s “Close-Up. Return” 2/19/10