web analytics
November 23, 2014 / 1 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Deaf And Dumb


Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

I’ve often written and said that we are living in remarkable but dangerous times in which we can hear (provided we know how to listen) the footsteps of the Messiah. Ours, however, is a generation that has difficulty hearing.

We are saturated with constant noise, not only from rapidly developing world events but also from our own tumultuous, seductive lifestyles – lifestyles that are conducive to self-absorption and deafness.

You might, of course, wonder at the appropriateness of the word “deafness.” Isn’t that a bit extreme? Actually, if there were a stronger expression, I would resort to that. Yes, our generation has become deaf – no matter how thunderous the call of Hashem.

But still you might ask, Is our generation really so much different from those that preceded us? To be sure, in every generation we’ve had problems hearing that “still small voice” that comes in many shapes and forms. But in our generation that blockage has become even more acute. There are so many sounds that divert us from hearing.

Nowadays, it is rare to see anyone take even a moment to think. There was a time when people took walks for contemplation or secluded themselves to review their lives. Today, this hardly (if ever) occurs. Today, when you see people walking in the street they are almost always involved in some activity, be it talking on their cell phones, text messaging, scrolling through e-mail on their Blackberry, or listening to their iPod. And should they steal some moments to seclude themselves, there are other diversions vying for their attention – the Internet, TV, video games, etc.

In the interim, time relentlessly passes – and with every moment events unfold that we neither hear nor see. Not only have we lost our ability to hear, we have lost our ability to talk, to hold a conversation. People communicate through e-mail, texting or Twitter. This has become so prevalent that children no longer speak with parents, couples no longer speak with each other. They find it much easier to text or resort to other technological means of communication, because by doing so they don’t have to hear a response, another voice that might question or negate their message. Nor are they obliged to hear expressions of love that might make them feel guilty or indebted.

Regardless of our reaction (or non-reaction), the messages continue and the sounds become louder, demanding a response. But how can we respond if we no longer know how to hear? Deaf, dumb, and blind, we continue to march on to the sound of our own music and congratulate ourselves on our open-mindedness and ready acceptance of all lifestyles.

So it is that we never learn. Even the most world-shaking events go unheeded. Neither the Holocaust nor the rebirth of Israel after two thousand years of exile has made us stop and rethink our lives.

I could go through a number of other examples, but I’ll skip to 9/11 – a tragedy that spoke thunderously to everyone in our country. Remarkably, even then we continued to remain deaf, and chose to view its message through a politically correct lens.

We have become so inured that we see nothing unusual in the constant escalation of natural disasters – tsunamis, floods, tornados, earthquakes, nuclear spills, etc. Nor do we see anything remarkable about dead birds falling from the skies or dead fish washing ashore in uncountable numbers. Nor did we wake up when financial disaster overtook us. Overnight, we witnessed the collapse of giant corporations and industries, the meltdown of Wall Street and the devaluation of the dollar, which we once believed to be invincible.

Our inability to hear rendered us deaf and blind to the messages behind the toppling of powerful governments that for years were controlled by dictators who ruled with iron fists. We delude ourselves into believing that what we are witnessing is the dawn of freedom, peace and democracy in the dark world of the Middle East. We refuse to consider that the mobs are the precursors of even more tyrannical dictatorships.

Look at Egypt. In our blindness and deafness we refused to pay heed to the heinous shouts of “Jew! Jew” as CBS correspondent Lara Logan was barbarously attacked by the mob in the streets (though Logan is in fact not a Jew).

Nor has the world paid heed to the destruction of churches and the killing of Christians. Yes, all this is unfolding in the “new”Egypt, as the world responds with a deafening silence. Why? We dismiss that question as well. We have our own problems. We can’t really get involved in world events. It won’t help anyway, so the call continues to be sounded and we continue to remain blind, dumb and deaf.

(To Be Continued)

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Deaf And Dumb”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
France Jew in a French synagogue talks about rising anti-Semitism.
Israel to Ease Absorption, Employment for Immigrants from France
Latest Judaism Stories
Rabbi Avi Weiss

Yitzchak thought the Jewish people needed dual leadership: Eisav the physical; Yaakov the spiritual

Weiss-112114-Sufganiot

According to the Sefer Yetzirah, the nature of the month of Kislev is sleep.

Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

Though braggarts come across as conceited, their boasting often reflects a low sense of self-regard

Nimchinsky-112114-Learning

Not every child can live up to our hopes or expectations, but every child is loved by Hashem.

Leaders must always pay attention to the importance of timing.

While our leaders have been shepherds, the vast majority of the Children of Israel were farmers.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

If a man dies childless, the Torah commands the deceased’s brother to marry his brother’s widow in a ceremony known as yibum, or to perform a special form of divorce ceremony with her known as chalitzah.

Dovid turned to the other people sitting at his table. “I’m revoking my hefker of the Chumash,” he announced. “I want to keep it.”

Ever Vigilant
‘When Unworthy, One’s Number Of Years Is Reduced’
(Yevamos 50a)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Ramban interprets Korban as self-sacrifice, each Jew should attempt to recreate Akeidas Yitzchak.

Dr. Schwartz had no other alternatives up his sleeve. He suggested my mother go home and think about what she wanted to do.

Why does Lavan’s speaking before his father show that he was wicked? Disrespectful, yes. Rude, certainly. But a rasha?

We find that in certain circumstances before the Torah was actually given, people were permitted to make calculations as to what would better serve Hashem, even if it were against a mitzvah or aveirah.

More Articles from Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

When art and evil are intermingled, evil is elevated and made acceptable.

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

In BB, he said “You, my children are the angels of Shabbos and the licht are your beautiful eyes.”

Why does Hebrew refer to mothers-in-law as “sunshine” when society often calls them the opposite?

Boundaries must be set in every home. Parents and children are not pals. They are not equals.

The call of the shofar is eternal. It is not musical. Its magnetic allurement cannot be explained.

We recently marked the thirteenth anniversary of 9/11 – that terrible day when the symbols of man’s power and achievement crumbled before our eyes and disappeared in fire and smoke. For a very brief moment we lost our smugness. Our confidence was shaken. Many of us actually searched our ways. Some of us even learned […]

One of the cornerstones of our Jewish life is chesed, kindness. Chesed can only be taught by example

“There is nothing new under the sun” is as valid today as it was yesterday.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/rebbetzins-viewpointrebbetzin-jungreis/deaf-and-dumb-2/2011/05/18/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: