Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Friday: Partial solar eclipse, Erev Rosh Chodesh Tammuz

This Friday, Erev Rosh Chodesh Tammuz, will mark the third of a rare series of three eclipses within a month and a half of each other: a partial solar eclipse on June 1st (Yom Yerushalayim), a lunar eclipse on June 15th, and the upcoming partial solar eclipse on July 1st. Although I usually refrain from personal rants, I must say that I feel my blogging activity was affected by these celestial phenomena (all of which it goes without saying are completely in the hands of the Creator of the Universe, who can do what He wills at any point): From Lag Ba'Omer through June 10th I was completely without words; around June 15th, which was the week of Parshas Shlach, I felt inspired to blog about the birthpangs of Mashiach after a period of relative concealment, and now again I feel somewhat at a loss for words but nonetheless motivated to try and put the pieces together, taking a bird's eye view of this year.

Looking back a bit further, a major point this year was March 9th, which marked the beginning of the 9th wave on the Mayan Calendar, the last stretch before the expected Great Transformation of 2012. According to the Mayan calendar, the seventh wave, which brought about global consciousness, began in 1755 BCE, which marks the beginning of the spread of Jewish mysticism according to the Ba'al Shem Tov's prophecy. The eighth wave - galactic consciousness -  began on January 5 (17 Tevet), 1999 (around the time when the internet really took off), and the ninth - universal consciousness - began on March 9th of this year.

Two days after March 9th (3 Adar Bet), a tsunami hit Japan, ensuing a global nuclear crisis that is still unfolding to this day, which has delivered a major blow to man's aspirations for nuclear power worldwide (and to the Iranian nuclear program in particular). As if Japan wasn't enough, a week later, the US and NATO countries declared war on Libya.

According to astrologers, solar eclipses, which occur every six months, set the tone for the next half-year of personal and global phenomena. The last solar eclipse occurred on January 4th of this year. During that time, I blogged about the relevance of such an event for Israel and the Jewish people, and in particular about the potential for negative outcomes (G-d forbid). However, looking back, the message of January-June 2011 is that Israel's destiny is greater than we can imagine; Hashem is shaking the entire world up in preparation for our redemption. If the first half of 2011 brought us an international nuclear crisis and unprecedented political revolution across the entire Middle East, what lies ahead? These are the questions that are born during a moment when the sun, earth and moon are aligned, in an era which ancient cultures saw as the last chapter of history.

Finally, how fitting that Erev Rosh Chodesh Tammuz be the day on which the far oceans will witness a solar eclipse; on Gimmel Tammuz, our leader Joshua, the messenger who saw that the Land of Israel was very good, commanded the sun to halt in the sky and remain there until the Jewish people conquered all of their enemies, and were able to dwell in the Land. Of course Gimmel Tammuz is also the day when the Tzaddik of our generation, the Lubavitcher Rebbe, ascended to the upper worlds, leaving us with his legacy and teachings, more alive than ever.

The Rebbe taught that although Tammuz is a month which originally held days of mourning, it has the potential to be the month of redemption, which was revealed in a year as late in history as 1927, when the previous Lubavitcher Rebbe was freed from prison in Soviet Russia. Upon his release the Rebbe informed the generations to come:
It was not myself alone that the Holy One, blessed be He, redeemed on Yud-Beis Tammuz, but also all who love the Holy Torah and observe its commands, and so too all who bear the name ‘Jew’.
May the light of the moon shine like the light of the sun, and may the light of the sun shine seventyfold, and may all darkness be transformed into light.

A guten choidesh!

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