Mission Possible (and Mandatory)
Kabbalists explain that the only role of the Jewish people is to reveal to humanity how it can achieve the highest possible level of existence, and that the Jewish people have no choice in the matter.
A report on global anti-Semitism was released January 5, 2005 by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor in the United States Department of State. It stated that “Anti-Semitism in Europe increased significantly in recent years. …The disturbing rise of anti-Semitic intimidation and incidents is widespread throughout Europe.” Concerning North America, the report stated that “in addition to manifestations of anti-Semitism in the United States, Canada experienced a significant increase in attacks against Jews and Jewish property.”
In most other nations, such as the Swiss or Australians, people go about their business without the constant threat of verbal or even physical abuse. Why can't we be like that? Are we different from other nations? And why does it seem like the eyes of the whole world are fixed on that miniscule group known as “the people of Israel”? Is there a reason for the pressure, the wars, and the attention the world is giving us?
The Role of Israel
Kabbalists write that the Israeli nation has a unique role in the global scheme. Their books explain that this people has no right to exist unless it carries out its role as a chosen people. Moreover, this is the only reason for which the nation of Israel was created.
If we examine its evolution, we will see that the Israeli nation unfolded quite differently from the way other nations did. Each nation has its own genetic root, but the uniqueness of the Israeli nation is in its spiritual root. Jews are meant to promote all of humanity to the highest degree that humans can reach, and they are also meant to be the first to reach that spiritual level.
Let's briefly review the Jewish history. Abraham, the father of the nation, was the first Jew. He was born as a Babylonian somewhere between the Euphrates and the Tigris rivers. While trying to “decode” the secret of human existence, Abraham succeeded in “crossing” the barrier separating our world from the spiritual world. He united these two worlds, and this unity is the root of the word Yehudi (Jewish): In Hebrew, Yehudi comes from the word Yechudi, which means “one,” “united,” or “unique.”
Following the revelation of the spiritual world, Abraham wrote the first Kabbalah book, Sefer Yetzira (Book of Creation). Subsequently, he began to share his teachings with local residents interested in learning about this newly discovered higher reality. In time, his initial group of students grew and became a nation. Later on, this people received the name “the people of Israel.”
Until the ruin of the Second Temple, the people of Israel simultaneously sensed both the spiritual world and the corporeal world. The only reason why this spiritual nation had to stay tightly connected to the material world, instead of retiring to the perfect and eternal life of the spiritual world, was its mission: it was to transfer the method of spiritual evolution it had discovered to every other nation. After all, this was the original reason for which Israel had been created.
Knowing the Role and Following it
The whole of humanity is actually a single entity, and within it, each nation has its role. The Jews' special role is to implement the correction method and pass it on to all the other nations. This is what is meant by “being a light of the nations.”
Obviously, to make the rest of humanity want to reach the height of spirituality, the people of Israel must get there first. This is the task for which we have been chosen, but the longer we wait, the more we, and all other nations, suffer.
However, to carry out this mission, we must first realize what detaches us from spirituality. Kabbalists, those who have attained the comprehensive reality, tell us that the root of human corruption lies in the inherent quality of egoism that controls every one of us.
Egoism has evolved naturally, from its first (tiny) degree at the beginning of humankind’s existence to its present degree. It is like a sharp knife that separates people from each other. Today, connections among people are deteriorating even at the family level—the most basic level of association.
Kabbalists explain that this separation among souls is the root of all that is wrong and evil in the world. The method to correct it is explained in the authentic books of Kabbalah, which is a method to correct egoism. By applying its teachings on ourselves and subsequently sharing it with the rest of the world, we will restore the glory of the nation of Israel, and bring all of humanity to the state of “one man, one heart,” following the principle, “Love thy friend as thyself.”
That same ego, which has grown to monstrous dimensions, is the very reason people lost their spiritual perception after the ruin of the Second Temple. This is the same unfounded hatred that caused the spiritual ruin of the Jewish people.
The blows we are suffering today are intended to awaken us to our role. Only when we pull ourselves together as individuals and as a nation, and understand the essence of our existence and our role on Earth, can we rekindle our lost connection with the spiritual world. Only then will we earn secure, prosperous, independent, and complete lives here in this world.