global responsibility  

March 12, 2020, Maaleh Adumim, Israel

There is a lesson in everything. Some believe in a Divine power that guides the world, some do not, but there is no arguing that every challenge, every war, every epidemic, every world crises has deep lessons. It is also clear that we have a habit of refusing to learn anything. We live in the Me Generation. There is a car called...It is all about Miii, and that is the message. 

This is in complete contrast with traditional Jewish values. From the earliest age we are brought to the synagogue and warned...Never withdraw from the community. Al tifrosh min ha zibor, everything revolves around the community, not the individual. There are endless volunteer associations to take care of the elderly, the poor, the widow, the orphan, the young bride (Kimpatoren in Yiddish), the mourner and bereaved. 

There is an expression I grew up with, something along of the lines...what you are saying is as interesting to me as the price of tea in China. Well, guess what, what goes on in China has a direct or indirect effect on all of us. Yes, you all know what I am talking about.

One man smokes, now we know that second hand smoke kills. We politely ask him not to smoke here. We are "called out", I have my rights!

Yes, you have your rights, but we believe you also have your responsibility towards the community, the common good. The modern man says, let me do what I want, what business is it of yours?

So he can raise his child to be a monster, and that effects our society. He can cause pollution and that causes all of us to have breathing problems. A company can dump toxic waste and a swimmer or anyone, can get cancer. Yes, all your actions have an impact on all of us. 

But we forget. and now we are reminded. 

In part of Asia there are "Wet Markets" where exotic wild animals are taken from their natural habitat and brought to markets. There they will be kept in torture like conditions. Strange creatures, called humans, will come by and choose a live animal. That terrified animal will then be grabbed cruelly and taken out and slaughtered, fresh meat. And now we are all suffering. The laws of the Torah have been disobeyed. The laws of God and nature have been broken. And now we are suffering. 

Humans are now confined in "home cages", our wings are clipped, we cannot fly, we cannot conduct business as usual. I am told the air in certain parts of China is now easier to breath because toxic humans are now forced inside. How "ironic". 

The Torah warns us to give the animals a day of rest, same as humans. The Torah warns us not to use an animal in an unnatural way, not to plow with two animals who are different. We are now told that in Asia, at these so called wet markets, animals that were never intended to be together are now together, this causes strange viruses to spread. We have broken the law of nature. 

The Torah even warns that once every seven years the land must be given its rest. Again, science has proven that this is the correct way to respect and preserve the earth. Are we listening to all this?

And there is a Krav Maga application, of course. You don't want to learn Krav Maga, your body, your choice. Got it!

But now you become a victim, your helplessness invites attacks. Imagine if we were all Krav Maga black belts. Imagine someone attacking a woman in your community, or an elderly rabbi, and suddenly they find themselves smashed against the wall, would that send a message? 

Imagine a community known to be docile, untrained, passive, this invites gangs, crime and worse. Imagine a Krav Maga school on every corner, not just a coffee shop on every corner. Imagine the fear placed in the hearts of criminals knowing that every member of our community has passed their black belt test and is ready to test their skills on the next outsider foolish enough to challenge us. imagine. 

Now stop imaging, do it. Just do it. 

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