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RK Intro to Ma’amar HaDor – To see the true inner essence of historical processes

To see that which is developing, the goal of the process, is to see the “real” reality, unlike one who is “realistic” and judges by what is in front of his senses, seeing the world as static, thinking the momentary reality is all there is. For example, to judge a baby by its present situation who seems so tiny and worthless – at one point even looks similar to a tadpole – is to misjudge the true worth of his being. His parents are thrilled because they know this is only the beginning, a temporary phase of development towards that great human being, personality, he will grow to be. So too, the untrained person measures the sapling of a Cedar of Lebanon tree and judges its value based on its weight and height, facts and figures the senses perceive, and it seems so small and insignificant. The expert sees what grows out of this sapling – a giant cedar – and appreciates its greatness even in its first stages of development because he knows they are the first stages of a giant cedar. With a baby and cedar sapling this all seems quite obvious and simple. But in historical processes this requires a greater level of abstraction and training to see. Rav Kook teaches us to to develop this vision. His spiritual diagnosis of the current generations in Ma’amar HaDor is not based on external signs and measurements alone, but on an inner analysis of the energized souls, what is developing and will ultimately be revealed in the process of redemption, even though the first stages seem so remote from that goal. Our Rabbis taught that the “shell precedes the fruit” – if judge by momentary exterior will totally misjudge (and thus misguide) the national rebirth. Have to penetrate to see the inner goal that is there even though initial stages do not yet express it. So too, Rabbi Akiva laughed when saw destruction of Temple as others cried. He saw the destruction no less than they did. He was not a mystic, cut off from reality. Rather he saw MORE than they saw. He saw how this phase led to an even greater third and final Temple.


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