If We Want To Leave Mitzrayim – We Must Have Faith

There are times when we feel low and other times when we know that the exit from the darkness is just around the corner. The truth is all of our feelings of lacking and despair, are just feelings – true Redemption is always within our reach!

Only when we have faith that the Creator is the ultimate reality and our one real reason for being sent down here is to have a personal relationship with the Almighty, then we will begin to feel ourselves leave the Mitzrayim we have been trapped in.

MIKETZ: SolarWinds, China, and Crossing The Rubicon

I want to start by repeating the opening paragraph of my post on IsraelUnwired from earlier today:

“From chaos to chaos, the US is experiencing perhaps the most trying moment in its history. All of the fears about the 2020 election have come to pass and now with the revelation that the SolarWinds platform has been hacked with an active infiltration for more than six months has essentially, all assumptions about security and the efficacy of the elections themselves should be thrown out.”

What is happening is something far deeper than a mere cyber attack on the US. The SolarWinds hack and the subsequent confusion over just how bad it still, especially when it comes to trusting the election results cannot be overstated.

With trust in the US government and its various institutions at an all time low and with factionalism and tribalism growing by the day, the US is on verge of a true systemic collapse.

The Chinese Communist Party, along with other state actors like Russia, North Korea, and their allies have been waiting for the final execution of their plan to take down the US. After all, communist leaders have always believed the US could be taken “without firing a shot.”

There are serious military leaders in the US, both retired and active urging President Trump to take action. Those retired leaders are openly asking him to “cross the Rubicon” the way Caesar did and “restore the Republic.”

This is not about the Rubicon. This is about an inflection point in world history; what we call a Ketz or end in Hebrew. An end is obviously not a final moment in time, but an end of one period and a beginning of another. A Ketz is the transitional moment when that happens.

That is what this Torah portion is about. Joseph spent two years in the dungeon in Egypt and in the beginning of this week’s Torah portion, the end of that period, the Ketz occured and he was taken out into the light.

Enemies of freedom surround us all. Chassidut teaches us that these physical enemies are just manifestations of the spiritual enemies we are fighting within. We are at a Ketz, much the same as Joseph and the Maccabees – both of who went from darkness to light.

Over the next few weeks and months our enemies will attempt to sow fear and division across the world. They will attempt to keep us in darkness and yet if we understand that the Rubicon people are urging President Trump to cross is not just his, but in truth it exists within each of us, then we have nothing to fear at all.

Most of humanity lives in a universe of distraction, which is the darkness we are fighting against. They want to forget about the pressures of the world and inject the noise and darkness further in. They want to remain in the “dungeon of Egypt.”

This is the Ketz we are in. The darkness may feel unnavigable, but at the end we will be lifted out into the light.

This Chanukah, It Is Time To Finally Break The Chains Of The CCP And Their Global Partners

The world around us is in chaos. Old norms are buried, new ideas abound, and the tools purported to help us discover new avenues of abundance are now at our fingertips.

But what happens if all of this fast paced, information saturated global culture, is just a weapon wielded by a godless enemy determined to build a world based on a society where only the collective matters – not the individual.

This is the war we are fighting now. The antagonist is the Chinese Communist Party – a godless machine whose goal is global control. They are aided and abetted by big tech, big pharma, Wall Street, legacy media, and many in academia. The war is about money and control and it appears to those who have not been swayed by their guile that the CCP and their friends are winning.

So how do we defeat an enemy who uses so many different weapons to fight us?

It starts by having pure and simple faith in G-D. However, simple faith is not enough to hold back their full power. We must learn to activate this faith as a real tool, because part of the enemy’s strategy is to force us into a corner by our own hands. Faith that remains latent, is faith which is equivalent to light without a vessel and that in a way gives the enemy “territory.”

Rebbe Nachman teaches that our faces can be likened to the Menorah, the seven branch candelabra in the Holy Temple. We too have seven places that have a potential to shine light and in the same vein they can show nothing but darkness – it all depends on what we take in and express.

Our faith is the light of G-D and it is this faith that requires vessels to contain it and shine it to others. This is why the CCP and their partners around the world work so hard to create so much information that our senses are overloaded. This is meant to first distract and then to overtake the seven openings in our face (two eyes, two ears, two nostrils, and one mouth), thus dimming our pure and simple faith – extinguishing the Menorah within

This assault on our senses has been going on for a long time. It has taken the form of entertainment – meant to destroy our moral fabric. We have grown in our disdain for tradition and yet cannot pinpoint the exact reason why. All the while, we fill the growing void caused by our lack of faith with cheap products made by CCP run China and pushed on us by global corporations in order to distract us while making them richer.

We are now at the crossroads. We can fall deeper into the darkness or turn around and jettison the “slave masters” from our midst. The Greeks were able to gain control of the minds and the will of most of the Jews in the Land of Israel until one family stood up and led an uprising. It is true, the war was about freeing the Jewish people in the Land of Israel from Greek control, but ultimately the Jewish people needed to overthrow the Greek control over their minds and hearts to truly be victorious.

The light of faith was represented by the rekindling of the Menorah by the Jewish people. The seven branched candelabra burned for a miraculous eight days. Today, we can overthrow our enemies and relight the Menorah, but we must choose to see the enemy for who he is and recognize how much he has penetrated deep within and by doing so nearly extinguishing our soul.

Like the Maccabees of old, each one of us can lead an uprising within and by doing so, defeat the army of darkness that appears to be so close to winning. There is still time and always plenty of faith no matter how dim the light appears.

AN END TO EXCESS: We Must Return To Ourselves

Coronavirus has come. It has swept across the globe in such stunning fashion that it has laid waste to not only lives and economies, but to our preconceived notions of who we are.

I grew up in the age of globalization. It was drilled into me from high school onward that we were heading towards a borderless world that was only an air flight away. Even with my turn towards traditional Judaism and my move to Israel, I still believed to this to a certain extent.

The problem with globalization is that it is based on an infinite amount of resources and cheap products that essentially just turn traditional cultures and communities into carbon copies of one another.

How was the world meant to be built? China. The authoritarian regime would help produce this new world of anonymity, phone addiction, and infinite consumer products. Of course all of us have played along nicely.

The coronavirus pandemic destroyed all of this. It has blown out the idea that one can build a perfect world on the fulfillment of desires by using cheap slave labor in a far away land. Rather than a perfect word, the pandemic has revealed just how bankrupt these notions have been all along.

We have been trying to fulfill our ambitions for products and money and by doing so we have destroyed forests, ruined top soil, and assigned whole populations to a life of factory and wage slavery.

None of this has been holy work – it has been about giving into our base desires.

So much of what we experience and grapple with can be traced back to that initial decision of Adam and Eve to taste from the forbidden fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. It was simply about fulfilling a want versus focusing on needs.

We are constantly tripping up over the same challenge and it is about time we have learned from our mistakes.

Rebbe Nachman teaches in the 24th lesson of Likutey Moharan that one who lives in excess eventually falls into depression. In a sense, what Rebbe Nachman is saying is that the more each of us lives a life oof excess, the more the collective world falls further away from what it is meant to be.

We are meant to be G-dly beings – to repair the broken world that exists around us and within us. We can do this. We can return to our authentic selves, but we first must exit the world of desires and excess.

The coronavirus has taught us that we can in fact live on so much less than we thought we could. Will we continue on this path or return to our lives of excess once the world opens back up?

The choice as always is before us.

Patience and Faith In A Time Of Trouble

We are all experiencing stress and while there is a part of us that just wants to ignore the events swirling around us, that is not the point. Each of us are on a mission. We were sent here to work out our challenges and issues and ultimately we must confront all of the pain and sorrow in our world, not by succumbing to it, but by accepting it and then transcending it. The current coronavirus pandemic is all about fear.


While the virus is actually happening, we must not succumb to the fear it is causing, but rather us this opportunity to isolate the tests involved with it and then understand why Hashem has sent such a virus now, when we are so close to meeting our universal goals.

Redemption Now: 70 Years is Up, A New Beginning is Upon Us

The number 70 is a key number in the Torah and the Tanach. It is spoken about in Daniel as well as Yirmiyahu (Jeremiah) in relation to a span of time concerning the first exile.

“For thus said the LORD: When Babylon’s seventy years are over, I will take note of you, and I will fulfill to you My promise of favor—to bring you back to this place.” Jeremiah 29-10

While it is clear that the 70 years of Babylonian exile ended with the return of the Jewish people to their ancestral homeland, it is not clear how this fits into our current Redemption.

In tractate Taanit 23a of the Babylonian Talmud, the famous Honi Hamaagal slept 70 years .

“Rabbi Yohanan said: “This righteous man [Honi] was troubled throughout the whole of his life concerning the meaning of the verse, ‘A Song of Ascents: When the Lord brought back those that returned to Zion, we were like dreamers’ (Psalms 126:1). [Honi asked] Is it possible for seventy years to be like a dream? How could anyone sleep for seventy years?”One day Honi was journeying on the road and he saw a man planting a carob tree. He asked, “How long does it take [for this tree] to bear fruit?” The man replied: “Seventy years.” Honi then further asked him: “Are you certain that you will live another seventy years?” The man replied: “I found [already grown] carob trees in the world; as my forefathers planted those for me so I too plant these for my children.”Honi sat down to have a meal and sleep overcame him. As he slept a rocky formation enclosed upon him which hid him from sight and he slept for seventy years. When he awoke he saw a man gathering the fruit of the carob tree and Honi asked him, “Are you the man who planted the tree?” The man replied: “I am his grand-son.” Thereupon Honi exclaimed: “It is clear that I have slept for seventy years.”

Based on the above the Talmud connects the 70 years of sleep or dreaming to the span of exile.

Yet, when is this 70 years where it will seem that we are in a dream? Honi’s story takes place after the return from Babylon, so it must be referring to a future time. According to deeper sources the 70 years will be at the End of Days, but how do we calculate this span of time?


One possibility is to take the date of the armistice agreement with Jordan, which most recognize as the concretization of the State of Israel. This date on the Hebrew calendar is the 4th of Nissan 5709.

70 years from that date would be 4th of of Nissan 5779. This is the very date that the first election in this now three election cycle occurred. It is essentially the last time anything about the State we have come to “depend on” went according to plan. From that date onward no new government has been formed. It is now very obvious that the 70 years between the armistice and the election in April (Nissan) of the past year marks the 70 years spoken about at the End of Time. It is this span of time that “will seem like a dream.”

Like all dreams, one must eventually wake up to the truth. Yet, like all dreams one never wakes up easily. This is the chaos we are in. It is chaos that will lead to new order as we wake up from the dream of the last 70 years.

Interestingly, the Prime Minister’s life has spanned this very time period and in many ways his triumph in politics and success at guiding Israel out of the darkness of its rebirth into a focal point once again of world history is coming to an end within the chaos that has ensued after the 70 year mark. It is neither tragic nor preventable as we have reached a point where the Creator is ready to push us however unwilling we are to the next stage of the Redemption.

When the Lord brought back those that returned to Zion, we were like dreamers’

We may not know what it is like to live outside of our dream. After all we have lived in a perpetual nightmare for nearly 2,000 years until the Armistice agreement of 1949 and then our nightmare became a dream. We have held onto this dream, not ready to waken and we may not be ready, but it appears the Creator has other plans.

This year has been chaotic and in many ways as the dream dissipates the chaos will grow. However, like all chaos this one too will lead to a new order. Only then will we be ready.


Crying for Freedom

Our souls yearn to be free, so much so that it is as if they are weeping for redemption. Dovid Mark continues his class on the Lost Princess by Rebbe Nachman.

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