(By Yoel Friedman, London)
The reaction was spontaneous, a kind of which recent history gives little or no comparison.
I received the news in the form of a text message. ‘’Trump commuted Rubashkin’s sentence, which means he can be freed with immediate effect’’. I was seated at a family Simcha when the news came through, it hit the entire hall like a bombshell, everything ceased to exist, and everyone’s face showed an expression of disbelief alongside utter happiness and joy. From children to elderly, young and old, man and woman, everyone.
Within moments the videos began to stream in, wherever Jews live there was spontaneous dancing, celebration in the streets, music and joy, it was like a new Yom Tov has been granted to Klal Yisroel. People were literally dancing everywhere. From the Otisville Gas Station, to Monsey, Boro Park and mid-flight. Kfar Chabad to – least we forget – 770, the headquarters and the nerve-centre of Lubavitch. Klal Yisroel was dancing.
Celebrations were going on throughout the night, eventually joined by Reb Shulem Mordchei himself, who recited the blessing ‘Baruch Matir Asurim’ (Blessed is He who frees the bound), and joined in with the night-long celebrations.
What was the last time anything caused Jews dance in the streets with such energy and joy?
What was the last time a story of an individual Jew made us dance in the streets with such energy and joy?
I’ve asked around by the elderly amongst us and found no comparable.
What’s the Rubashkin secret that electrified the Jewish world to such extent?
Throughout the Rubashkin trail as well as throughout his 8 years in prison Reb Shulem Mordchei was, and still remains, a living example of Emunah Pshutah (blind, simple faith). The way he conducted himself throughout, the way he accepted anything that came his way, be it good, bad or worse than bad, was something exceptional and enormously outstanding.
Like a real Lubavitch Chasid he saw Hashem in every single step of the way, he believed firmly that he is controlled and overseen by Hashem in the best possible way.
He believed that everything that happens to him is a direct result of Hashem’s will and he was happy to abide by that. No questions asked.
He believed so strongly that everything is Hashem and only Hashem, to an extent, that he was expecting to be released every second, rega k’meimra…
He knew that apart from Hashem there is nothing and when Hashem decides it’s time to be released he will be released. And so it was.
The 27-year sentence meant absolutely nothing to him.
The countless letters he wrote from his cell in the past 8 years, put our levels of Emunah to shame. To be in the position that he was and live with such strong and simple Emunah is something beyond human understanding. These letters testify for themselves and demonstrate such high levels of Emunah.. It’s hard for us to comprehend it.
When the moment came, and it happened, a manifestation of Emunah and miracles exploded and flooded the entire Klal Yisroel with boundless power. We didn’t know ourselves what hit us. We all felt it but couldn’t put our finger on it. It was in our hearts and minds, something higher and more spiritual than plain material joy. It was the power of Emunah, the power of faith in Hashem that made a sudden and powerful appearance without any restrictions or limits.
Hence the unexplained and mysterious joy and Simcha that spread upon a nation like never before.
We all say it all the time, we all have faith, but he lived it. He lived and breathed Hashem. And with this level of faith open miracles come as no surprise.
One nation under One God
The ongoing rivalling and differences by Klal Yisroel are often unpleasant to watch and not something we strive for at all. Evil does its job and occasionally manages to infiltrate us with bad feelings on each other, or on other groups or sects of Jewish people.
When that moment of truth and hisgalus (revelation) occurred, it touched the heart of every single Jew. There was no difference between the Chasid and the Litvak, between Ashkenazi and Sephardi, etc. All boundaries fell. The walls went crumbling and a holy emotion of unity swamped us.
It was the pure revelation of faith in our one and only God, that brought along the ‘one nation’ feeling once again. Children of one father, believing in One Father dancing arm in arm, hand by hand.
Stories like those are to change us, bring up our levels of faith to new heights, reveal Hashem and every step of our lives and make the unity amongst stronger, nicer and more beautiful than ever before. Until we will merit to as Reb Shulem Mordechai said on his way out of prison, Alef Beis Gimmel, Emunah, Bitachon Geula, soon in our days.
(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)