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Sunday, September 27, 2015

Eiding the Geula

A horrific tragedy in Mina, Saudi Arabia:
On 24 September 2015, a stampede resulted in the deaths of at least 769 people and injuries to 934 others during the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca.
We are not joyous at the downfall of others - even our enemies.  However, we can be joyous at what this possibly represents - vengeance against the nations - as it says: יִשְׂמַח צַדִּיק, כִּי-חָזָה נָקָם [The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance].

Hat tip commenter Elliot on the Tomer Devorah blog, who started me off with this.  Subsequently, Devash posted her own thoughts on the subject.

We know from the Ramban in Ha'azinu that the Song of Ha'azinu contains within it the entire history of mankind from beginning to end.  It stands to reason, therefore, that we will find everything that occurred in history in the song if we know how and where to look.  Some things are more difficult to find than others, but this event - if I'm reading it correctly - seems abundantly clear.

The verse in חמישי of Ha'azinu (Devarim 32:35):
לִי נָקָם וְשִׁלֵּם, {ר} לְעֵת תָּמוּט רַגְלָם: {ס} כִּי קָרוֹב יוֹם אֵידָם, {ר} וְחָשׁ עֲתִדֹת לָמוֹ.
Vengeance is Mine, and recompense, against the time when their foot shall slip; for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that are to come upon them shall make haste.
The word "Eidam" has a double-meaning: 1) Their holiday - as it was "Eid al-Adha" or 2) Their calamity.

Ironic that their holiday became their calamity.

The verse refers to Hashem's vengeance when the time that their foot slip (תמוט רגלם).  When a stampede occurs, people slip in a way that they cannot stand straight and end up getting trampled upon.

And this occurred on Thursday, or יום חמישי, of Parshat Ha'azinu, corresponding exactly to the Aliyah in which the verse is written.

All this occurred with Yishmael, of whom the Ba'al Haturim says when Yishmael will fall at the End of Days, the children of Yitzhak (i.e. the Jewish people) will flourish.

And then, the leader of Esav, the Pope, stumbled as he was boarding a plane from New York to Philadelphia on Shabbat at around the time when many synagogues would be reading the words לעת תמוט רגלם.    And it seems like the verse is mainly speaking about Esav, as it says in Pirkei DeRibbi Eliezer:
מה עשה הב"ה יעקב אחז בעקבו של עשו להפילו שנ' ואחרי כן יצא אחיו וידו אוחזת בעקב עשו מכאן אתה למד שאין בני  עשו נופלים עד שיבא שריד מיעקב ויקצץ רגליו של בני עשו מהר שעיר שנ' כל קביל די חזית וכתוב אחר אומ' לי נקם ושלם [לעת תמוט רגלם]

In other words, Yaakov held onto the heal of Esav to symbolize that his downfall will occur when Yaakov will cut off the feat of Esav. We can possibly add that even the event in Mecca is a blow to Esav since Yishmael is included in Edom like Rav Saadia Gaon says on Daniel, and therefore, any punishment to Yishmael is like a punishment to Edom.

Getting back to our verse, we can add that the word לעת can refer to בעתה and the word וחש can refer to אחישנה - and in fact, both the Rashbam and Da'at Zekeinim refer to the verse בעתה אחישנה in their commentary on the word וחש.

Also, the Or Hahayim Hakadosh says that לעת תמוט רגלם refers to the period of Ikveta Dimshiha, and וחש עתידות למו tells us that when the vengeance is taken against evildoers, immediately thereafter, Hashem will fulfill the consolations and promises to the righteous.

We can therefore interpret the Pasuk to mean the following:

Hashem's vengeance will be paid at the time of בעתה - when the stampede will cause people's feet to slip - since the day of the holiday which caused their calamity has approached, and He will now speed up all future positive events for the Jewish people.

Rabbeinu Bahye makes this even more interesting.  First of all, he says that the word "לעת" of לעת תמוט רגלם is referring to the verse in Daniel כִּי-סְתֻמִים וַחֲתֻמִים הַדְּבָרִים, עַד-עֵת קֵץ [for the words are shut up and sealed till the time of the end].

Even more interesting, he then says that the word "למו" in this verse in Ha'azinu is a סימן ורמז לגאולה - a sign and a hint to Redemption.  The footnote in the classic Rabbeinu Bahye quotes R' Shimshon of Ostrepoli ZY"A as saying that למו is Rashei Teivot for לְמוֹעֵד מוֹעֲדִים וָחֵצִי - [for a time, times, and a half].  Perhaps, we can say the following: If a "time" is a 19-year cycle, then 3.5 x 19 years = 66.5 years.  If the starting point was 5 Iyar, 5708, then the עת קץ was last Heshvan (Heshvan of 5775).  However, we needed to reach a Yom Kippur to rid us of our sins before anything occurred, so things got delayed for 11 months.  The day after Yom Kippur, things started to occur - starting with the vengeance upon the nations, a prerequisite for Redemption.  Alternately, it needed to wait for Yom Kippur as Devash said - since it needs to be after כי ידין ה' עמו - the Judgement Day that is solely for the Jews is Yom Kippur.

Or, perhaps we can say more simply that Rabbeinu Bahye's hint of למו is its gematria, which is 76, and telling us that in 5776, things will start to occur.

Or, perhaps the hint and sign is in the gematria of למו times itself, as 76 squared equals 5776.

As I recently brought down from Rav Hayim Palachi:
And would it be so that the sparks of Redemption should start to sparkle from Motza'ei Yom Hakippurim.
May the Redemption continue to flourish toward its fulfillment, speedily in our days, Amen.

חג שמח


At Sun Sep 27, 04:58:00 AM 2015, Blogger Devash said...

Just beautiful, Yaak. Yasher koach! So glad you posted this. I'll link to you from my post on it. You say it so much better and with so many more details.

And talk about fast! Every single day since Yom Kippur. Starting tomorrow will it be every hour?!

Putin and Obama are meeting tomorrow and NASA is supposed to make some big announcement about Mars. Then Tuesday Obama is supposed to chair some big meeting against "extremism". Look out!

At Sun Sep 27, 05:29:00 AM 2015, Blogger Esser Agaroth said...

Wait a minute.

Just to be clear. We do not rejoice in the downfall of those Jews we have issues with.

However, goyshe enemies? Of course, we do!

This argument occurred between Mordechai and Haman:

תלמוד בבלי מסכת מגילה טז,א
אמר ליה סק ורכב אמר ליה לא יכילנא דכחישא חילאי מימי תעניתא גחין וסליק כי סליק בעט ביה אמר ליה לא כתיב לכו (משלי כד) בנפל אויבך אל תשמח אמר ליה הני מילי בישראל אבל בדידכו כתיב (דברים לג) ואתה על במותימו תדרוך

At Sun Sep 27, 08:15:00 AM 2015, Blogger yaak said...

Yes, Esser. However, the people who died were somewhere in between. They are not all necessarily vicious anti-Semites, but they are involved in a religion whose majority are. Therefore, I don't want to automatically call them "אויבך" even if the chances are there that they are. To cover my bases, it therefore - at the very least - falls under the category of vengeance against the nations.

At Sun Sep 27, 09:30:00 AM 2015, Blogger Esser Agaroth said...

At the very least, they are koferim. They are not B'nei No'ah. They all have the same status.

We judge peoples as a whole. They have the status as a people.

Innocent civilians is a Western concept.

Only those declaring that what their leaders are doing to Israel is wrong are patur.

At Sun Sep 27, 10:19:00 AM 2015, Blogger Moriah said...

The 70 nations battle conflagration of Islam:

At Mon Sep 28, 04:54:00 PM 2015, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

You did not mention what they were specifically celebrating on that very day even though you did mention it in a previous post. They were celebrating Qorban Yishmael which corresponds with either the tenth of the 11th of Tishrei in two or three consecutive years, once every 33 years. (The only reason why their tenth day of their month corresponds with our 11th day is because, this 1 Tishrei began only about 2 hours after the molad before the moon could be seen on 2 Tishrei.) I am sure it was not an accident that they chose the tenth of their Arabic month to "compete" with Yom Kippur which according to some opinions was the date of Aqeidat Yitzchak. So as it turned out, in this "battle of the Qorbanot (Yitzchak or Yishmael)" after approx. 1350 years they finally lost. Baruch HaShem for that. The Test in the medrash of Him accepting their Qorban (Yishmael) but not ours (Yitzchak) seems to be over. That is momentous. The fact that this event took place Motzei Yom Kippur obviously points to a momentous year ahead. The fact that this Yom Kippur was a potential Kiddush HaYovel speaks volumes.

This will obvious lead into Bibi's speech at the UN on Thursday where he is likely to quote the pasuk from Yishayahu repeated often during Yom Kippur with a rousing niggun:

ז וַהֲבִיאוֹתִים אֶל-הַר קָדְשִׁי, וְשִׂמַּחְתִּים בְּבֵית תְּפִלָּתִי--עוֹלֹתֵיהֶם וְזִבְחֵיהֶם לְרָצוֹן, עַל-מִזְבְּחִי: כִּי בֵיתִי, בֵּית-תְּפִלָּה יִקָּרֵא לְכָל-הָעַמִּים. 7 Even them will I bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer; their burnt-offerings and their sacrifices shall be acceptable upon Mine altar; for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples.

Now that Qorban Yishmael has been "rejected" as it were, Bibi will have to appeal to the "universal right to pray" or at least be present on the Temple Mt. without being accosted by the Bnai Yishmael who until now have run the show up there. So watch him quote that pasuk. In short things seem to be progressing nicely. In this Yovel year, the 50th year since and including the Year of Ichud Yerushalayim 5727, all eyes turn to the "50th Gate", the Golden Gate from Har HaZeitim through the Qidron Valley right into the Ezrat HaNashim of the Temple Mt, right through their infantile cemetery meant to keep Mashiach from arriving there. And to think that Bibi is speaking at the UN GA "Jubilee" plenum. He seems to have no free will anymore to prop up his govt. with a phony Justice Min. and PA negotiator named Livni. He is being forced against his will into this confrontation in what is shaping up to be a fascinating 50th year at the 50th Gate to Yerushalayim.

At Mon Sep 28, 05:23:00 PM 2015, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

Of course in lashon HaQodesh the "Golden Gate" or the 50th gate is שער הרחמים. It is worth noting though that the "Golden" adjective in English usually means the 50th.

At Tue Sep 29, 02:27:00 AM 2015, Blogger Esser Agaroth said...


Yes, and maybe HaShem has just gotten fed up with the kefirah of that holiday, as part fo the reason behind the collapse and deaths.

I hope we see some more fed-up-ness with kefirah, including the kefriah of other religions and peoples.

It would be nice to see more Jews getting fed up with kefira, too!

At Tue Sep 29, 04:17:00 AM 2015, Blogger Cosmic X said...

It seemed to me from the video of the Pope stumbling that his frock tripped him up. It reminded me of what King Menashe said to Abaye:

אי הוית בההוא דרא, הוית נקיט בשיפולא גלימא דידך ורהיט להתם

At Tue Sep 29, 08:42:00 AM 2015, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What joy is there in Edom? The Saudis have nothing but Missouri

At Wed Sep 30, 02:08:00 AM 2015, Blogger yaak said...


Hashem judges everyone including non-Jews individually on Rosh Hashana כבני מרון - not a whole nation as a whole. I agree that they are not בני נח, but not everyone has the status of אויבך. Lema'aseh, anyways, we're not disagreeing.

At Wed Sep 30, 02:15:00 AM 2015, Blogger yaak said...


I missed it on purpose. The post was long enough as it is, but believe me - there is much I could have added.

For example, I researched what this "stoning the devil" ceremony is about:

Wikipedia explains:

The ritual re-enacts Abraham (Ibrāhīm)'s pilgrimage to Mecca as explained by the Muslim historian al-Azraqi:

"When he [Abraham] left Mina and was brought down to (the defile called) al-Aqaba, the Devil appeared to him at Stone-Heap of the Defile. Gabriel (Jibrayil) said to him: "Pelt him!" so Abraham threw seven stones at him so that he disappeared from him. Then he appeared to him at the Middle Stone-Heap. Gabriel said to him: "Pelt him!" so he pelted him with seven stones so that he disappeared from him. Then he appeared to him at the Little Stone-Heap. Gabriel said to him: "Pelt him!" so he pelted him with seven stones like the little stones for throwing with a sling. So the Devil withdrew from him."[5]
All three jamarāt represent the devil: the first and largest represents his temptation of Abraham against sacrificing Ishmael (Ismāʿīl); the second represents the temptation of Abraham's wife Hagar (Hājar) to induce her to stop him; the third represents his temptation of Ishmael to avoid being sacrificed. He was rebuked each time, and the throwing of the stones symbolizes those rebukes.

So apparently they agree with the Midrashim that the Satan was trying to prevent the Akeida, but true to form, the Arabs' version of conflict resolution is to throw stones! You can't make this stuff up!

At Wed Sep 30, 02:16:00 AM 2015, Blogger yaak said...

Cosmic, I like your idea.

At Wed Sep 30, 03:20:00 PM 2015, Blogger yaak said...

When we read on the 3rd day of Hoshanot:

טובך מיחלים למו תחישנו

I'm wondering if this is based on the same verse in Ha'azinu. Again, it uses the word למו (gematria 76). Interesting that Russia started its bombing campaign today.

At Wed Sep 30, 04:04:00 PM 2015, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

Something to think deeply about:

It seems that a Hurricane that is about to hit on Hoshana Rabbah, some say around the vicinity of New York City, is named after the last undisputed King of Yehudah (Yehoiachin) who was most assuredly the ancestor of Mashiach ben David.....If this is true, this is truly awesome. Hurricane Yoaquin? I doubt it is named after Joaquin Andujar, the One Tough Dominican pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals who starred in the 1982 World Series. It seems to be named after King Yehoiachin, the last undisputed King of Yehudah who sat on the Throne of Yehudah and who was/is most assuredly the ancestor of Mashiach. He was let out of prison by Babylonian King Evil Merodach, 37 years after being exiled to Bavel. At that time he had 7 sons. His first born Shealtiel became the ancestor of the Exilarchs in Galut. His third son, Pedaiah fathered Zerubavel, who made Aliyah with the 42,000 to rebuild Yerushalayim and the 2nd Temple. Of those two, Shealtiel or Zeruvbavel, there is a dispute over who is the ancestor of Mashiach, but with Yehoiachin, there is no dispute.

The last few verses of Sefer Melachim make that obvious. Cursed by Yirmiyahu to remain childless and to have no children who rule on the Throne of Yehudah in his lifetime, Yehoiachin is let out of prison 37 years after being exiled and summarily gives birth to 7 boys, any one of whom can be the ancestor of Mashiach ben David.

At Wed Sep 30, 05:29:00 PM 2015, Blogger yaak said...

See Sanhedrin 37b-38a about King Yehoyachin.

He was exiled in the year 3327. That means that that was 2448+ years ago. Perhaps, that's the idea behind the verse כימי צאתך מארץ מצרים אראנו נפלאות. What's the idea with "כימי"? Couldn't it just say כצאתך מארץ מצרים אראנו נפלאות? Perhaps, it's telling us the days from Creation to the Exodus are the days from Galut Yehoyachin until Mashiah.


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