The end of church service
When churches closed due to covid, I started reading the Torah from a to z, pretty soon i figured out what should have been obvious from the start, at least for someone that critically asks questions and does his or her own research, something i had not done as a JW following the program, first I started doubting Paul, and soon the complete NT was obviously not the word of Hashem, I had been deceived along with billions of people.
Taking it out on the world.
Within a year I formed a small group of people, and we believed to be able to decipher truth by searching the hebrew strongs on the Biblical words, creating a new religion based on our own perception while believing Hashem was guiding us, in fact we had no guidance whatsoever, we believed to be the ones that needed to fight the lies of all world religions, as we surfed the media like keyboard warriors, harsh judges, condemning others, with words of hatred we attacked thousands of people directly and billions were judged for their believes and we believed we did that all in the name of our creator.
Negativity ruled my world
My heart was heavy and full of anger, looking back on it, I was hurt deceived, by the church, by the system,and I had been taking that out on others. This lead to a point of emotional collapse, all the fighting and negativity, it was never natural, I needed to force myself into every single debate as I actually despise fights and arguments, growing up in worldwar 3 at home, as a child, alcohol and violence ruled our home, I believe that my parents whom I love were placed in my life, in order for me to get to this point, and I do not exclude the posibility that I need to be in their lives as my change can also help them to grow and hopefully find Hashem.
Suddenly my friend’s 12 year old son died without any known cause, the funeral triggered a weak spot, I remember saying to myself, what does it matter, my life is worthless, after all that people around me had gone through, because of me in the past, because of my doings, this innocent boy was now where I felt i deserved to be,
this is where the Yetser Hara came in and I followed, I completely went rock bottom, drinking and using drugs as much as I could within 5 days of no sleep or food, to destroy every grain of feeling or even existance for that matter. After years of sobriety and a succesfull fight against my addictions overcoming my feeling of comfort in times of affliction, i had turned away from criminality and became an experienced expert on treating adictions starting with my own, despite all this I had found myself back on the old track in a split second.
All was in need of a 180 degree change
After a great hangover and a solid introspection, I realised what I had done, I had fooled my beloved ones and myself, looking back on it I knew that the road to truth serving Hashem was a path of Joy and seeking the good in others, trying to be a model of light instead of a frustated source of anger, so i decided to give religions a chance and started to read the Quran, halfway it was pretty clear that this book had the same purpose as the NT, another book to control the massess, bringing the Jews and their “current Torah” in discredit.
Torah and Judaism remained
Overthinking why both religions were obviously attacking the Jews and the Torah, the only book that made sense to me and stood like a rock more than ever, I had to aknowledge that there was something special about the Jews and I needed to fully open up to see what it was, eversince my life is changing in all kinds of fantastic ways, selfimprovement to add to the greater cause becoming that person who I was as a child, full of Chessed, a giver that was once hurt, I now gained emunah and bitachon and the fear and hurt that gave me so much kelipah, layers that made it impossible to do what I was made for, all that was gone and I could now truly give and live for others,wanting nothing in return yet gaining all I need as Hashem takes care of his servants.
The Jews were exactly the opposite of what I was taught and I was guilty of carrying that message out, numerous times I prayed and stiil do, to ask forgiveness to Hashem, not only for the Jews but for all people who I judged, the judgement was actually on myself, makes me think of what .
The Baal Shem Tov said:
“Your fellow is your mirror. If your own face is clean, the image you perceive will also be flawless. But should you look upon your fellow man and see a blemish, it is your own imperfection that you are encountering—you are being shown what it is that you must correct within yourself.”
I Found a Home
With great joy I took all the calamities for granted embracing every test of difficulty, as I know now that all of it ads to the path of growth, and growth goes hand in hand with pain, the privilige of having found Judaism, like what had been a hidden jewel to me all those years now provides me ways and answers to all of my questions, Tanya and Kabbalah also adds so much to my capacity of helping and guiding fellow addicts who came to sobriety, teachings about the animal and divine soul, the sefirot all of it makes so much sense (besides what we cannot grasp ofcourse)
A Special task for the Jews
I do not experience the feeling of being a sidekick, the way I see it: Imagine you are aking or leader in times of chaos and rebellion, what do you do to create order and safety for the people?
- 1 You set up an army or authorised group of people, choosing wisely who is able to do that job, this where Abraham came in.
- 2 They need a specific set of rules, which are the 606 aditional laws/mitzvot.
- 3 They need uniforms or specific points of recognition, you can fill that in yourself.
It is a very important task that brings many restrictions along, a hard knock life 3500 years of being hated, attacked, killed, persecuted, falsely accused, these people deserve some extra feastdays if you ask me, and so they have. Nothing to be jealous of, only greatfullness for having them to guide us, still here as promised by Hashem, we need them to show the light to the nations, and they need us to start believing in the authority that Hashem has given them.
By Yoeri Schepens
Sources: Avot 2:4 By The Baal Shem Tov.
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