Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Gluckel of Hameln: Waiting For Mashiach

Here is a noteworthy piece, from The Memoirs of Glueckel of Hameln. In this part, she relates how they reacted to news of Shabtai Tzvi.

One of the more interesting parts of the quote is what Glueckel relates about her father-in-law's reaction. She writes (see second picture):
"Many sold their houses and all their possessions, for any day they hoped to be redeemed. My good father-in-law left his home in Hameln, abandoned his house and lands and all his earthly furniture, and moved to Hildesheim. He sent on to us in Hamburg two enormous casks packed with linens and with peas, beans, dried meats, shredded prunes, and like stuff, any manner of food that would keep. For the old man expected to sail any moment from Hamburg to the Holy Land."
Because history tends to repeat itself, and because the people involved seldom read history, some modern day mystically oriented Jews are doing the same, following counsel to remove their money from bank accounts, stock up food for the impending war, move (to Israel), and so on. Glueckel's father-in-law's casks lay waiting for about three years, as he waited for the signal to depart, which never came. These modern day folks are convinced that moshiach will come by the end of this (Hebrew) year.

May moshiach come soon. But I don't put much stock in their predictors, and think it quite likely that this is just history repeating itself.

Glueckel of Hameln is a great book to own, in general.

But also because those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it.

1 comment:

yaak said...

This mystically-oriented Jew knows history too well to be fooled. A strict verification process will be a prerequisite for any potential candidate.

That said, packing your bags and moving to Israel even if Mashiah doesn't come so soon, cannot be looked on with disdain. Aderaba, it's a Mitzvah of the highest order.


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