Given: July 25, 2022
Introduction: The Three Weeks
We happen to be in the “three weeks.” Last Sunday was shiva-asar b’Tamuz—17th of Tamuz which began the period of the three weeks which is the lead-up to Tisha b’Av—9th of Av. For three weeks you have to observe many behavioral rules which indicate mourning. You cannot listen to music or travel for pleasure and so on. I think it appropriate to speak about some of the very important ideas in hashkafa—Jewish philosophical world-view regarding this period.
The ideas I want to share are termed “congruent” with the ideas I’ve been sharing about the Satan, how he survives, the impact his mission has on the Redemption; I’ve dealt extensively with this. I want to revisit some of these ideas and lend even greater clarity to them, particularly as to their meaning in the context of the three weeks.
Review: The Nature of the Role of the Satan
Last week, I gave a lecture called “The Great Re-set, Part 2” and a portion of that was devoted to understanding the nature of the Satan. To restate it briefly, we know the Satan is an angel appointed by G-D to oversee “din”—justice. As such, he as three jobs: He tempts a person to sin in his capacity as the yetzer ha’ra—evil inclination. He prosecutes a person in the heavenly court. As “Satan,” also known as the malach ha’maves—Angel of Death, he carries out the judgement. In the last capacity he is the executioner of the judgment, according to the law, whether the punishment is, literally, death or some other consequence.
The Satan is the only malach—angel that can “grow” or can be diminished. Others are “stable” in that they will always be exactly as created, no more or less. They’re static. They cannot increase the capacity of their “being” in any way. The Satan can, which is unique. I went into this last week. What’s critical to understand is that the only other beings that can grow or diminish are the Jews depending on whether or not they do the will of G-D.
Also important, as I mentioned last week, is the very unusual relationship the Jews have with the Satan. In order for him to grow, he must have a certain kedusha—holiness in his possession. The holiness comes from G-D, called the “netzusei kedusha”--sparks of holiness. If he’s denied that, he ceases to exist—which is interesting. So, the Satan, clearly, can be annihilated. Though the source of these holy sparks is G-D, the recipient is either the Jews when they do G-D’s Will, or the Satan when they don’t. When a Jew does a mitzvah, he brings down those sparks, that energy which is the “Light” of the ten “sefiros”—Divine energy. If the Jew sins, then the Satan can take from that energy and he grows, is empowered, and can be yonek—nourished from it. This mechanism is his motive to do his job. It’s not only because it's his assignment to uphold justice, to ensure justice is done; he gets something out of it. He’s self-interested. If he can get a Jew to sin and the heavenly court finds him guilty, the Satan can take from the kedusha that would have gone to the Jew. The Satan can feed and grow.
This fundamental relationship that we have with evil—contributing to it, “feeding” it, or annihilating it—has contributed to and affected all of history. There are three historical events that emerge as a consequence of our relationship with the Satan, which I’ve mentioned, and which define what these three weeks are about.
The Destruction of the Holy Temples and the Inception of Religions
When the first Beis Ha’MIkdash—Holy Temple was destroyed about 2,400 years ago—the date according to the Gregorian calendar is approximated to be 586 BCE but it’s probably more recent than that, probably 450 BCE—the major idea is that it could only have happened because, as our sages tell us, we sinned, transgressed the three aveiros for which one is obligated to give his life rather than transgress: sexual promiscuity (such as incest), murder, and idolatry. Apparently, that generation was guilty of these sins and, therefore, G-D decided to remove, destroy, the first Beis Ha’Mikdash.
G-D had the Babylonians do it; they couldn’t have done it on their own. They can only do it if there’d been the g’zera—decree in heaven that allowed them to be the agent of G-D. Unfortunately, this is what G-D did. What’s important to remember is the role of the Satan. He prosecutes so, obviously, that’s what he did and, because he prosecutes, he can nourish from those sparks of holiness when the Jews were found guilty. He was able to nourish from the Divine energy of G-D—not that he can force G-D to give it to him. Justice demands it as compensation for what the Jews did or failed to do.
What the Satan could have said was: Look! They’re worshipping idols. They’re committing those three sins! Why should your Divine Presence stay among them? G-D, obviously, found merit to this argument and so the Satan won in the heavenly court which allowed King Nebuchadnezar to destroy the Temple.
Is the Satan really interested in the destruction of the Temple? What he really wanted was to be able to take from the Divine Presence itself—and he did. As a result, he was greatly empowered and wanted to increase the likelihood that Jews will sin even more. He took the sparks from the Divine Presence, took it away from the Jews by destroying the Beis Ha’Mikdash and gave those sparks to the goyim—non-Jews and it’s justified though dinim—judgments in the heavenly court. The concept of a “Divine Presence” now was in the hands of the non-Jews. Where do we see this historically?
Within a 100-year period after the First Temple’s destruction, most of the world’s religions were founded—Buddism, for example. There are hundreds of millions of Buddhists. Lao Tzu lived at that time along with Confucius (approximately 1st century-5th century BCE). Not only was an understanding of the Divine Presence given to the non-Jews which prompted the founding of these religions, chochma—wisdom, Divine Wisdom was too. As described, “Torah is your wisdom and your discernment” was also in the hands of the goyim. They got both. Where do we see that?
The Advance of Religions and “Beauty” and “Might,”
Modern civilization is founded upon the Greek approach to logic, science, philosophy, and the various disciplines that came into being around that time. Their practitioners were Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Parmenides, Pythagoras. a generation of philosophers and scientists who expanded on the chochma, on the intelligence, the brilliance, available to mankind. This too was given to the goyim.
That’s the Satan taking from what we could have had, giving it to the goyim and hoping that, in their hands, it would attract Jews to sin.
There’s a third element that the Satan was able to secure. The Jewish people are unique, among other things, in two particular attributes: tiferes—beauty, which is “wisdom,” and oz—might. The concept of “might” means “hatzlacha”—success. The Satan was able, in taking sparks of holy energy from the Divine Presence, to appropriate the tiferes and oz, the beauty that became the wisdom of successive theologies and intellectual achievement and the success of those theologies and intellectual developments to spread and popularize themselves. These went, for example, to the Greeks, Etruscans, and the Romans whose chochma became, eventually, Christianity. Right around the time Rome destroyed the Temple, it became a republic. That’s an example of the oz—might.
Incredible things began happening. Theology, metaphysics, was being developed and propagated, along with philosophy, science, architecture, literature, and the might of Rome. Was all this an accident?—no.
In Yirmiyahu’s (Jeremiah’s) lamentation, “Eicha,” it says, referring to the Jews, that “her princes and her kings are captured by the Gentiles.” It goes on to say, “And her prophets have no prophetic visions.” This refers to exactly what I’m saying. Not only was the Temple destroyed; the implications should be noted as to the Satan’s ability to feed and nourish off that energy from G-D Who allows the Satan to do that because justice demanded that the Jews lose. The Satan gave it to the Gentiles in the Far East and Europe who utilized it to create theologies and other disciplines attractive to Jews. It could become an attractive distraction creating alternative kinds of erudition and intellectual enlightenment to replace Torah thereby enticing Jews to sin.
There you are! This is the “reciprocal relationship” the Jews have with the Satan. We see how this relationship manifested in history and accounts for the major events replete with examples of our loss and their gain. That’s the deal the Satan has, that he can grow when the Jews sin.
The second tekufa--cycle is the destruction of the second Temple, about 70 CE. It was destroyed, as the chazal tell us, due to sinas chinam—baseless hatred. Incidentally, the Chofetz Chaim and the Marhasha tell us that the bottom-line cause was not sinas chinam but the loshon ha’ra that causes such hatred. This second destruction was a major event in Jewish history and the beginning of the galus—exile. That’s the inception of the diaspora. Who stands to benefit from it? I don’t want to get into what its loss meant to the Jews but we know the benefit goes to the Satan. He is able to be yonek again. The sparks went to him and, again, we lost the Divine Presence, and the Satan is able to take from that and present it to the goyim—as what? It’s the same as the first time, a major religion as an understanding of the presence of G-D, the nature of G-D—Christianity. It appeared and evolved.
Christianity’s inception coincided with the loss of the Second Temple. What’s interesting is that Yeshu died in the year 33 CE—a young guy—convicted for treason, somebody trying to overthrow the Roman government. Right around the time the Second Temple was destroyed, the major works of Christianity were written. Most of Paul’s letters, composed at approximately 60 CE, coincide with the destruction. The gospels of Matthew, Luke, and John were written between 70 CE and 100.
Christianity is a religion that has wiped out—we don’t begin to know—how many Jews? We may not know for sure how many, but we do know why. Christianity is the result of the loss of the second Beis Ha’Mikdash. Again, the Satan takes that holy energy of the presence of G-D and gives it to the Gentiles to benefit, ultimately, himself. The amount of agony, anguish, and pain that Christianity has caused the Jews is incalculable. We lost the Beis Ha’Mikdash and they gained a major religion.
What they gained was closer to the truth because Christianity—depending on which stage of its history one looks at—believes in monotheism, not polytheism. They say there’s one god even if they speak of three, a trinity. Without getting into that, Christianity is much closer to the truth because, at some level, it’s one god who they refer to as a “Father” even if they have a “son” and a “holy ghost” and whatever else. It’s one god, except he’s got “parts.” It’s closer to truth than polytheism. The Satan brought that religion to the goyim hoping to influence Jews, punish Jews, due to their infractions, violations. We lost a temple and they benefited by getting a religion that is closer to the emes—truth.
We’re talking about major historical events, not minor, local episodes. Christianity is one of the most successful religions the world has ever seen. There are two billion Christians—approximately one billion Roman Catholics and another billion who subscribe to other denominations. It’s been a successful religion and its success comes about because it’s the result of the transfer of our kedusha, of our holy energy, to the Satan. You see how this relationship with the Satan is pivotal in understanding world events.
The Creation Calendar
I’ll tell you of one more aspect which his fascinating. In order to understand it, you need to grasp, as I’ve mentioned before, the concept called the “Creation Calendar.” The Gemara says that the world will last for six thousand years because it was created in six days and “one year in Your eyes is a thousand years in ours.” Therefore, six days of Creation is equal to six thousand years. According to the Gregorian calendar, the duration of this existence ends in the year 2240.
Each millennium is represented by one day of the week. Five days have elapsed: Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Friday, the sixth day, corresponds to the Gregorian calendar year 1240 CE, 6 p.m. Thursday night. That is the beginning of the last day, Friday. It’s erev Shabbos so we can expect monumental events to happen, especially considering what we’ve come to expect from the relationship between the Jewish people and the Satan. What happened?
Thursday, 6 p.m. on the Creation Calendar, the Gregorian year 1240, the Hebrew year 5000, was a pivotal time in world history. The Zohar says something interesting, that the messianic Light begins to come down in that year, 1240, approximately. Why?—because erev Shabbos is when you begin to prepare for, to think about, Shabbos. That Light comes down in preparation for the messianic era. This phenomenon doesn’t occur because of the Jews; it’s the time-table of the world—6,000 years for the Jews to do the tikkun—rectification of the Creation.
What is “messianic Light”? In simple terms, it’s the ability to see the internal structure, the causative property, of chochma—wisdom. In terms of Judaism, it’s the understanding of the internality of the Torah. In terms of “causation,” it’s the realization of what a mitzvah is, what it does. A mitzvah is a “trigger,” a “switch” to such ohr—Light. There are 613 mitzvos because there are 613 triggers which cause the Light of the sefiros—holy energies (that create realities) to be released. There are 613 parts to the sefiros so, every time you perform a mitzvah, you release its corresponding energy. That’s the “messianic Light.” We will understand every single mitzvah, what it does and how it corresponds to, parallels, and interfaces with the ten forces of G-D in the study of Kabbalah. Kabbalah is the messianic Light. It reveals the inner workings within the mechanism of all reality that is rooted in the sefiros of G-D. That’s the study of Kabbalah.
That information began to influence the world in the year 5000/1240 which, on the Creation Calendar—also referred to as the “Creation Clock”—is the beginning of the sixth day, of erev Shabbos.
If that’s the case, then that chochma is not only true of Kabbalah, of the Jewish perspective. It’s also true of the study of the physical universe. The messianic Light is like a magnifying glass enabling a view of the “micro,” the ultimate causes and nature of reality. Just like the relationship between mitzvos and the sefiros, there’s a relationship between the sefiros and the laws of physics, chemistry, biology, the internal structure of the physical universe. Uncovering this is called “science.” The power of science is nothing more than the messianic Light coming down. It goes to the Jews in the form of Kabbalah and it goes to the Gentiles in the form of science. Both can be understood in terms of the uncovering of internal structure of either the physical universe or the spiritual universe and making it know-able. One looks at the spiritual universe; the other, at the physical universe.
The problem is that the Jews are sinning and the result is that the Satan can take from this power of the messianic Light and give it to goyim as science. Why? He wants people to think that the world came into being on its own. If that’s the case, why observe mitzvos? The natural order is, on its own, automatic. The Satan uses science to promote godlessness, chas v’shalom—G-d-forbid. This perspective holds that everything can be explained by natural laws. That’s what the Satan gets out of it.
As a result, since 1240/5000, the Light went to both sides. Is this true historically?—yes.
For the Jews, the Zohar was “found,” publicized, beginning around 1290, by Moshe de León (Moshe ben Shem-Tov). The Zohar is the primary “textbook” of all Kabbalah.
What about science, the messianic Light for goyim? The “father” of the “scientific method,” Roger Bacon, lived in the year 1240, born in 1220. He got away from Aristotle and “armchair science,” the science of idealized theory without empirical application. Roger Bacon developed a methodology and promoted it. It was a departure from Aristotelian thought.
So, both Kabbalah and “modern” science started during the same century, that time around 1240/5000. The messianic Light was the engine for these leaps in knowledge of both the spiritual and physical worlds. The Satan got the energy and allotted it to both, but the science was of particular benefit to him because it convinces people to draw conclusions about the universe that discount or dismiss G-D.
The year 1740 equals twelve hours later on the Creation Clock. It’s the dawn of Friday morning, 6 a.m., 500 years later. In fact, it’s the last day. The Satan has been yonek on so much kedusha, giving it to the goyim, that we see its progressive results at this time. What was happening? Modern science had progressed and the work of Sir Isaac Newton really accelerated it. He was one of the greatest scientists who ever lived. Francis Bacon lived a little before that and he improved the scientific method immensely. He expanded on the ideas of “hypothesis” and “experimentation.”
By the time you get to 1840, you can see the truth of another statement from the Zohar which says that, in the 600th year in the life of Noach, the Flood happened, that the “waters of the upper regions poured out and the waters of the lower regions poured out also and flooded the earth.” That’s the mabul—Flood. According to the Zohar, this indicates that, in the 600th year—like that of the life of Noach—which is the 5th millennium, 5600 on the Hebrew calendar, the ohr rishon—first Light, the messianic Light, will begin to pour out with unbelievable force, clarity, discovery. Did it happen?—yes. The year 5600 is “ha’netz ha’chama”—sunrise of the last day, erev Shabbos. Dawn is 5500. Sunrise is 5600. That’s another pivotal idea in the Creation Calendar.
The period around 1840 is recognized as the beginning of the Industrial. That’s when science and technology really begins to grow, proliferate, advance, with Michael Faraday, James Clark Maxwell, and others. Science proliferates as never before. Developments in transportation, communication, agriculture, tremendously increased and spread. Everything was becoming mechanized. This is the Satan taking and nourishing off of our messianic Light which is coming down in incredible volume, as the Zohar says. It was either the Kotzker Maggid or the Khozinitzer Maggid who said about that Zohar that, if the Jews deserve it, there will be a tremendous amount of Divine Light, kabbalistic energy, that will infuse them with great chochma. If the Jews don’t deserve it, it will go to the goyim as science. Unfortunately, it went to the goyim, not to the Jews. That’s why science proliferated with such success. It continued to grow with Einstein, Planck, etc.
Most people don’t realize that science is nothing more than the messianic Light directed to the physical universe. Science does not grow if there is no Light coming down. Unfortunately, the Satan is using it in order to persuade Jews to sin. One of the greatest—I hate to call him this—atheists, as he wasn’t; he was a priest or minister, was Charles Darwin. He wrote “Origin of the Species” in—I think—1858, right around that time. It caused a major upheaval in faith in G-D. People could say: well, you don’t need G-D; you have evolution. That’s what’s responsible for the origin of life and species. That’s it! I always find it to be paradoxical that a Christian minister would be responsible for creating such a theory that ruined people’s belief in G-D. That’s what his theory of evolution did. It gave mankind an excuse not to believe in G-D because it gave them an alternative way to explain how life came about. It destroyed emuna—faith, even among goyim. This, too, happened right around 1840!
It's all about the Satan’s efforts to proliferate sin and nourish off it by giving it to the goyim. It manifests as scientific advancement.
What’s happening today is beyond belief. As we get closer, we’ve passed another pivotal time period which is Friday, 12:00 noon. We’re just past 12:45 p.m. That’s chatzos. The Light is coming down, the energy of that Divine Light, that messianic Light—also called the “ohr ha’ganuz”—concealed Light—in tremendous amount but it’s not going to the Jews because we’re very much into the galus so science is growing in leaps and bounds. You go into an electronic store, come back a year later, and all the products have changed, advanced. The world has never seen such progress. Entire industries rise and fall in one year. The hatzlacha—success of scientists to understand physical reality is amazing. The difference between someone who lived around 1840 versus 2012—you can’t recognize it as the same society.
I once read this a long time ago, maybe twenty-five years ago, that the sum total of human knowledge doubles every five years—doubles! That’s how much information is coming out. Every day, 7,500 journal articles are published. What unbelievable proliferation of human knowledge!
Even if many Jewish seforim—books, publications, are being written, you can’t compare the advancement of Judaism to the advancements of science. This is the result of the relationship between the Satan and the Jewish people. Many might think that this is the normal advancement of mankind, but it’s not. It takes a Divine force to move the world forward. What has moved it, basically, especially the last thousand years, is the messianic Light which is an understanding of the internal structure of Creation.
Redirection of the Messianic Light
We have to hope that the messianic Light will be directed at the Jewish people enabling them to grow in a way that is beyond our comprehension. Imagine the messianic Light yielding its power to the Jewish world rather than to the goyim? Can you imagine what it will yield when it’s attached to the Torah? Can you imagine the amount of knowledge of the spiritual universes, kabbalah, wisdom—yes, we will be privy to that in the messianic era.
I once quoted from the “Midrash Rabah” at the end of “Koheles,” which says that the amount of Torah of Moshe Rabbeinu, which is everything we have—Bavli, Yerushalmi, Shulchan Aruch, everything—is nothing, is luft—air, is insubstantial, compared to the amount of knowledge we will have during the messianic era until the End of Time, until 6000/2240. How much time do we have left, it being 2022? We have 218 years to go. We can recognize the parallel; if this is what the secular world knows with such great advancement, we can begin to imagine what the advancement will be for the Jewish world. The knowledge of kabbalah will parallel that which has been advancing in the secular world as science. We don’t know how it will happen, but we can judge based on the secular world’s advancement and the fact that the knowledge we’ll have during messianic era will pale compared to that of the Future World.
I’ll end with a brief story that illustrates this. The great Arizal, Ari Ashkenazi, was once learning with a student and he put his head down and it looked as though he’d fallen asleep. The student didn’t know what to do; you don’t wake up the Ari. He begins to hear the Ari mumbling to himself. The student assumed he was simply mumbling in his sleep. He didn’t want to awaken him but he wanted to hear what the Ari was saying because the mumblings of the Ari are greater than the discourses of the sages.
So, the student placed his head down near the Ari’s mouth to listen and, possibly, apprehend what he was saying, even in his sleep. Suddenly, the Ari woke up. The talmid—student must have come too close. The talmid was very nervous, and the Ari noticed that and reassured him. The student got a little more courage; you were asleep and were mumbling. What was that all about?
The Ari’s account to his student went something like this:
“I wasn’t asleep. I thought of a Divine Name—'kavanah’—and my consciousness ascended to Olam Yetzira” which is the spiritual world right above us. I was not sleeping. In that world reside many of the angels. One of them came to me and asked me what I would like to do in that world.
“There are many lectures, shiurim, going on, the angel told me. Whose lecture would you like to attend? the angel asked. I inquired as to who was lecturing. Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai is giving a lecture, the angel informed me. I asked what he was lecturing about.
“Parashas ‘Balak,’ the angel said. I chose that and he transported my consciousness to that lecture.”
The Arizal was sitting and listening to a lecture in heaven! His mumbling was the content of Rav Shimon bar Yochai’s lecture, what he was saying. The student got very excited, wanting to know what the Torah of that world sounds like. Obviously, it cannot be the same. When he asked the Ari about this, the Ari told him: “If I had eighty years to write down what I heard in the few minutes I was there, I could not complete it.” That’s how much knowledge there was.
The Ari’s experience exemplifies how much information is concealed, how much lies within the concealed Light, the messianic Light—and this doesn’t even include the Torah of the Future World! If you wrote down all the commentaries ever written on parashas “Balak,” it might come to—perhaps one thousand pages? Two thousand pages? So, imagine how much information the Ari was referring to! It would take eighty years? By the way, this story was brought down in the “Shivchei Ari” by Rav Chaim Vital.
The Parallel and the Loss
We can draw a parallel between the world of science which has progressed in quantum leaps—you could say—and the knowledge that will come to the Jewish world when the time arrives. The knowledge to the goyim grew, not arithmetically and not geometrically, but exponentially, in the past century. Imagine how much we’re missing! Imagine how much there is and how much the world will see—not just the Jews—as it is written, “and the world will be filled with the knowledge of G-D as the waters—the oceans, right?—cover the seabed.” That’s the analog?—yes. Three quarters of the planet is covered with water to a depth of—what?—seven or eight miles? Imagine how much water that is and how much knowledge it implies! We have no idea how much information that is nor how it’s possible to absorb that amount of information in the amount of time that the mashiach will be around.
Therefore, we see that the major events of the world are, basically, the expression of the relationship between the Satan and the Jewish people. I’ve brought out just a couple of them but the truth is that all history is predicated on that relationship.
One of the things we grieve for is the destruction of the Temple which was wrought by the sins of the Jews and their relationship with the Satan; it’s what we’ve lost and why. Not only have we lost the Beis Ha’Mikdash, but what the goyim have gained due to our loss is the Satan’s ability to distract us, destroy us.
There are many other important examples but, Christianity is one of those. The RaMBaM says that Christianity has been one of the major vehicles for spreading Judaism world-wide, albeit in a distorted form. Paganism doesn’t believe in a messiah or a redemption. They believe that death is the end. Christianity denied the tenets of polytheism. Theirs was a useful service that Christianity provided and that G-D used once the Satan took the kedusha to the goyim.
We now understand that we lost more than the Temple. We lost the Divine Presence while the goyim gained the wherewithal to destroy us, hamper us, make it impossible for us to observe Judaism. This will, of course, end when the exile ends which, hopefully, is right around the corner.
Q & A
Participant: I have a couple of questions. You said that, when the mashiach does come, we start to get this knowledge from the messianic Light. Does it come in levels or does everyone receive the same amount?
R’Kessin: During the messianic era—it seems to be clear—everyone will be privy to the same information. I don’t see a difference. Important to keep in mind is that, in the messianic era, you experience the information that you receive. Together with the information is a gilui—revelation that you actually experience. That aspect will probably be an unequal one. There will be an awesome amount—no question about that—but, probably, the amount of avodah—service you did, the amount of worship you did toward G-D, will make your experience differ from that of others. The information itself would seem to be alike for all.
Participant: So now, with science, technology has taken big steps forward in the science realm. Isn’t that one way the Satan traps us, as Jews—of course, I mean everyone—but Jews especially?
R’Kessin: Yes, the Satan gains the ability to convince us to drop G-D, drop the mitzvos, drop Judaism, and believe in Darwin, in science, believe that everything is “natural” so you don’t need religion. That’s what he wants. He’s not interested in giving the world technology, science, per se. He wants to use it to convince you of the alternative to the reality you believe in and, hopefully, sin. It’s like a knife; in the hands of a killer, it will kill. In the hands of a surgeon, it will cure. The knife itself can be used for either.
I find it interesting that, even though there’s such a proliferation of science-related knowledge, the truth is that you read the science and realize that all this couldn’t have just come about by chance; it’s impossible. On the contrary, and like it says, “How great is your handiwork and how deep is the understanding of what G-D has done.” If science were learned in the correct way, in the context of G-D’s “handiwork,” a person would realize that all of this can only exist because of a Creator.
Just take a look at the human body, at insects, the millions of different species of insects, how each species survives and has its unique ability to survive. How do they get this? There are books written on this. It’s all planned and purposefully designed. This can’t just come about through chance. If you studied science in the right way, you would become a greater believer. Even science can be a path toward belief and faith in G-D.
Participant: So, let’s say we continue, as Jews, to live on the path of ending the handing over of the sparks of holiness to the Satan. At that time, in what way will we be able to experience the messianic Light so that, for him, the Satan, it’s over and he doesn’t get it anymore? With so many Jews “gone,” how will be able to reclaim the power of those sparks?
R’Kessin: You have to remember one thing: the Satan will be annihilated. That’s the critical idea. If he’s not annihilated, you’re right; we couldn’t gain the sparks. He “dies” means he, literally, dies or becomes a good angel—whatever that means. The whole concept of “evil” is annihilated. It’s over! There’s no such thing as “evil” anymore, no distractions, no myths, no false arguments, just like there’s no more death or disease or sickness. It’s like what the chazal--sages say—and it’s a beautiful way of saying it about the Future World as well as about the messianic era—that “yom she’kulo tov”—on that day, it will all be good. You’ll never have a mishap, never have a problem; it’s all phenomenal. This can only take place if there’s no Satan. He’s gone, eradicated; it’s over with and it’s all good.
Participant: Last week, I got cut off from asking my questions, was unable to ask them so I’ll add a couple of them now. Speaking last week about how the Satan has three strategies to survive because he’s dying and he’s on his “last leg” of being allied with Edom and Ishmael—right?—that’s on a grander scale, on the world stage. Does the Satan do that, personally, to us? Does he use those same strategies?
R'Kessin: I’m not sure what you mean by “using these strategies on us.”
Participant: I mean, does he use the strategies on us, like the “great bluff” which he uses first and then he tries to start a war and then, once he’s starting to die off, he starts to ally with other nations. Does the Satan try to do that within us in order to get our own, personal, holy sparks?
R’Kessin: Actually, yes, he does. If you remember the second strategy in which he gets dissidents to go into the nations to convince them not to make war, that corresponds to the second strategy which is the Eirev Rav. The Satan sends them, “his guys,” that want to dismiss Torah, dismiss the central idea to all Judaism, to get rid of that. He uses the Eirev Rav. Who are they? In America, it’s the Reform and Conservative and Reconstructionist movements that have destroyed Judaism. In Israel, it’s the secular Zionists who want to replace Judaism with a “distinct Israeli culture.” They say, that’s all we need. They want Israel to be like every other nation. This is why, when you go to some Israeli institution, it’s always trying to imitate those in New York. The Satan’s ally is the Eirev Rav. He uses an ally to get the Jews to sin to get his sparks. Without that, he’s bankrupt.
With Ishmael, the Satan is able to take from their energy which they get directly from G-D due to what Avraham Avinu said. It’s similar but not exactly the same.
Participant: How long can that relationship with Ishmael last? Does it have a time limit?
R’Kessin: Obama is still active and that explains why Ishmael is still active. It’s amazing that the Satan got around the fact that a president can only serve two terms. He got Biden in. It’s hard to know, but I believe it will end, that Trump will be back in 2024 and bust up the whole party. I sure hope he goes after all these guys that tried to destroy him, as they’re doing (even) now. That’s when it will end. Then, Edom, which Trump is as the tov she’b’Esav—good part of Esav, will begin the real process of helping the Jews finish the tikkun. What have we got, two-and-a-half years to go?
Participant: So, the mashiach can’t really come during that time? Does the world-stage have to be in that…
R’Kessin: I don’t refer to the mashiach “coming.” I refer to the “beginning of the messianic era” when, suddenly, things turn upward. The critical thing is to get rid of evil and to give hatzlacha--success to goodness. The problem is that the good is not successful or is only minimally successful. Evil, in the End, dominates completely. Evil people, evil institutions, dominate. In the turn-around, evil fails. It doesn’t work. Evil fails and good becomes successful. That’s what we’re looking for. When does evil stop being successful and when do the forces of good achieve ascendancy and become successful?
That’s the beginning of the messianic era. That’s when you know mashiach has just come out of his prison; that’s the “pekida.” He’s got a way to go before he actually becomes what he really is so I don’t look at it in terms of when the mashiach appears in his full-blown “regalia”. I look for the time that evil stops being successful and good begins to emerge victorious; that’s the key. When that happens, the transformation is irrevocable and unstoppable.
This development itself will take time, but what we want is to see an end to the hatzlacha—success of evil.
Participant: In the time-frame of the two-and-a-half years that we still have left of Biden’s term, the “pekida” could happen and the mashiach could start growing on his own? What we see on the world stage won’t (indicate) that for some time once we see evil dissipating and good winning. What we’re waiting for is the pekida to happen?
R’Kessin: When he can break out of his prison, when he’s free, the Mashiach ben Yosef has to enter the stage called “rehabilitation.” He’s suffered enough and he has to stop suffering and enter the phase of rehabilitation. That’s how he comes to be himself. We’re waiting for his emergence and rehabilitation.