The OpIsrael hacking campaign has a history of choosing their dates on auspicious days in the Jewish calendar. So when April 7th was selected this time, we were more than happy to oblige with an explanation.
As discussed before in The Mystical Meanings of the Anonymous Hacking Attacks, there are two approaches to anonymity. On the one hand, there are those mitzvah-doers or tzadikim (righteous people) who do their holy acts anonymously. No one knows their secret identity save for perhaps a select few. Then there are the nefarious evil-doers, who use the cover of anonymity to further their hate-mongering pursuits (God forbid).
But as we discussed there, these two extremes reflect two extremes, two split personalities, behind this one hacker group known as “Anonymous.” Campaigns such as OpIsrael only serve to distance the idealist, well-intentioned hackers who seek to utilize their tech skills to affect positive change, from those others seething with hatred.
While I didn’t see specific countries mentioned a year ago, the guess was that Iran was associated with that campaign (because of the connection between the concept of anonymity and the story of Purim). Now according to reports, this has been corroborated, further strengthening the sentiments expressed there. But the question still remains for us now: How does this relate to April 7th?
Given the above there are a couple things we would expect to find if April 7th is indeed related to our topic. One is that there should be some positive spin on curing split personality disorder. Since this is the biggest issue that Anonymous (and all hackers) face today – to belong to the extreme good instead of the extreme evil — then any discussion that doesn’t take this into account would be missing the point.
The second thought is that the date of April 7th, 7th of Nissan, is a week before Passover. So we would also expect to find some relationship to this, as well.
Since the start of Nissan we read a portion called the Nasi (lit. “prince”), commemorating the gifts that each tribe brought on consecutive days to commemorate the Mishkan (Tabernacle). While we begin to recite the Nasi on Rosh Chodesh Nissan by reading the gifts brought by Nachshon ben Aminadav, the nasi (prince) of the tribe of Judah, on the 7th of Nissan we read about the gifts brought by Elishama ben Amihud of the tribe of Ephraim.
For this discussion to be meaningful then, we would expect the personality of Ephraim to relate to Anonymous’ split personality disorder issue, and the upcoming holiday of Passover. Keeping in mind that Passover is a holiday centered on gathering together and educating all the “sons” of the Jewish people.
For the first, we didn’t need to look far. In “Curing Dissociative or Split Personality Disorder,” Rabbi Ginsburgh explains that a split personality occurs from two opposite impulses. First Ephraim worshiped idols, but then he did complete teshuvah (repentance) to the opposite extreme. As the articles goes on to explain, we can all learn an impressive lesson from Ephraim’s ability to redirect his behavior in a positive way: A person who fluctuates between two impulses, or who is confounded by his two personalities, also has the ability to make the bold decision to “have nothing more to do with idols.”
So our first call to the idealist and good-natured hackers out there is to form a group focused on positive change instead of the opposite.
Absent from the Seder
The relationship of Ephraim to Passover actually comes from the second part in this same series called, “Mother Rachel Cries for Her Children.” There Ephraim is compared to the person who at first is “absent” – the most distanced from the fold of the Jewish people – yet by the end finds his way back. This of course relates to the famous “fifth son” coined by the Lubavitcher Rebbe, who is not even present at the seder. Indeed, even though he is “absent”, our hope is that he too will return.
About the Author: Yonatan Gordon has spent most of his past 13 professional years in the world of Jewish publishing. He was the Marketing Manager at Kehot Publication Society (publishing arm of Chabad) for the better part of six years. He is founder of the website Community of Readers.
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