Friday, March 2, 2012

Perashat Zakhor

Tomorrow, the Shabbat that precedes Purim, is called shabbat Zakhor (remember). Two Torah scrolls are taken out, one for the regular Parasha and one for a special Maftir from Debarim 25: 'Remember what Amaleq did to you when you were leaving Egypt... he attacked all those defenseless...and did would not fear God".

This text describes our obligation to never forget what Amaleq did to us during our departure from Egypt. Amaleq attacked the Jews without a reason or a motive.

Amaleq and his ideological descendants, which are called "Zekher Amaleq" can be identified by the following key factors:

1. Amaleq's hatred toward the Jews is not motivated by greed, territorial claims or revenge. It is pure disinterested hatred. The excuses will always change. Greed, territorial claims, revenge, are often used as the cynical justifications, to disguise Amaleq's true's intention, which is to destroy the Jewish people.

2. Amaleq will attack defenseless Jews, civilians, women and children.

3. Amaleq is driven by a blind irrational subhuman hatred. He will even preach martyrdom, as a means to destroy the Jews.  Because Amaleq's hatred for the Jews will even supersede the love for his own people. 

4. Amaleq might hate other people temporarily, but his relentless obsession is against the Jews.

5. It is not possible to negotiate with Amaleq. Amaleq will not be satisfied if we surrender or even if we change our religion. Amaleq just wants us to disappear.

6. Amaleq, unfortunately, won't go away.

It is very difficult for non-Jews--and for many Jews not familiar with Jewish history--to understand, admit and acknowledge the true nature of Amaleq's intention. Because Amaleq's behavior is beyond rationality, so intelligent but naive people will always think: something must be motivating them? And they will blame it on the Jews...

The Torah urges us not to forget --also in the sense of forgiving-- Amaleq because our survival depends on keeping alert. If we forget the 'nature' of Amaleq's war against us, we put ourselves at the risk of extinction.

Our Chakhamim prescribed the public reading of the Mitzva of remembering Amaleq once every year, on the Shabbat which precedes Purim, when Haman, a faithfull descendant of Amaleq sought the destruction of Israel.

This Parasha, Zakhor, has the special status of being the only Biblical text which reading is a direct Torah commandment. Women are also obligated to attend Synagogue and listen to Parashat Zakhor.

Candle Lighting in NYC: 5:30 PM
Shabbat Ends in NYC at: 6:39 PM

Shabbat Shalom!!!

CLICK here to WATCH: THE BEST EXPLANATION OF THE CONFLICT OF THE MIDDLE EAST (it has to do with Amaleq's behavior...)