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The Lag B’Omer Tragedy

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by Rabbi Avraham Eldelstein

“The tragedy… happened on Lag B’Omer at the grave of Rebbe Shimon Bar Yochai. It is a tragic mystery made more so by the contradiction of what this time in that place means. We cannot fathom the reasons because such things come from the Hester Panim of Hakadosh Boruch Hu [concealed Divine Providence]… they are hidden. Perforce, they represent that part of our relationship with G-d where I realize that I cannot reduce G-d’s thoughts to the level of mine. And I am relieved that G-d is so much bigger, deeper, more profound… than that.

 

… the Ramchal states that at the end of time, G-d will need to speed up history … to make sure that everything is completed in time for Moshiach. History, said the Chofetz Chaim, will go faster and faster. In order to do this, G-d will activate a special hanhaga [leadership/Divine administration] through which He will run the world… Part of this is for G-d to use the suffering of Tzadikim to create the final Tikunim (lit. fixings) that we need in order to ensure the general Tikun – the Tikun Haklali – that is needed for Bias Ha’Mashiach [the Messianic era].

The event of Lag B’Omer – in its timing, in its place, in the way it unfolded, and the people to whom it happened – all have the signs of just such an event. We must feel the tragedy and our tears must flow. And, simultaneously, we must feel the unleashing of the powerful Kedusha [holiness] that the death of these Kedoshim [holy ones] – and the suffering of those injured – unleashed.”