Parsha Devarim, Shabbat Chazon — What is the vision for Israel and the world?

Jeffrey Levine
5 min readAug 4, 2022

The modern state of Israel is a continuation of the promise made in this week’s Torah reading.

“Behold, I have set the land before you; go in and possess the land which the Lord swore to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give to them and to their seed after them.”

ראה נתתי לפניכם את־הארץ באו ורשו את־הארץ אשר נשבע יהוה לאבתיכם לאברהם ליצחק וליעקב לתת להם ולזרעם אחריהם׃

Deuteronomy 1:8

So, after all these years, we do not have full possession of the Land. Yet, we have the State of Israel, which is incomplete in terms of a final redemption. We recognize in the prayer for the state — Reishit Tzemichat geulateinu — the sprouting of our redemption. The question is this — Can the state of Israel be viewed as a modern-day equivalent of the 2nd Beit Hamikdash by having created a break in the exile of 2,000 years?

Do we need a temple to carry out the vision? The deeper question to consider is what is this vision? Is this a particularism or a universal one? This is something we can meditate on Tisha B’Av.

The 2nd Temple was incomplete, but just like Israel today it has revived the Jewish spirit and led to a surge in spirituality and religious observation.

Theme Sourced from YU Torah To Go — Rabbi Dr. Richard Weiss

“This Shabbat is called Shabbat Chazon — Vision/ to see. We should ask — What will the vision of the rebuilding of the Temple be like? What kind of Israel would we like to see? What kind of world would we like to see?

On Tisha B’Av we don’t learn Torah, we don’t eat and we don’t drink. Not because we are sad. Reb Shlomo Carlebach explains that we don’t want to be part of a world that is like this. If the Torah that we are learning can cause people to insult and shame other people in the name of the Torah, If the Torah that we are learning can cause us to feel that we are better than other Jews- then this Torah is not for us. We don’t eat or drink because we don’t want to live in a world where one of the holiest places for the Jewish people has become a battleground between orthodox and reform Jews.

The Beit Hamikdash we are all waiting for is not only a beautiful structure that will be built for all the nations to come and pray together to Hashem, it will be a mindset, it will be truly understanding that the entire nation of Israel, with all its different parts, will be one body working together to make the world a better place.”

Sourced from https://torahmitzion.org/learn/shabbat-chazon-5776/

Following the trail of thoughts here, we can see that Vision as advocated by Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach is that role of Israel (aka Temple) is to work together to make the world a better place. Interesting with the battle for Climate Change and the UNSDGs there is an attempt to work together to make the world a better place. What is missing from these efforts is that without recognition of God (or higher power), we are doomed to fail by a lack of morals, ethics, and care. And all our efforts will be like the Tower of Babel– leading to destruction. Religion and Interfaith efforts have the ability to make a change for the better—United in our common challenges, desire for peace, and a fairer world.

I am actively involved in a number of initiatives, opportunities, and projects that incorporates these visions. One of these initiatives is the Shlomo Carlebach Heritage Centre which will be an interactive experience showcasing Reb Shlomo Carlebach Life story, impact, and message that is relevant today. that the Center will be integrated with the Agudat Meor Modiim tourism project on 17 dunams, which will include a 100-room guest center with a spa and restaurant and an artisan center for local and non-local artists to work and display their creations. It will be a magnet for inspiration, spiritual recharge, and retreats, and will be built as a model Eco-Building highlighting natural living and lifestyle.

And what is the Chazon? The Vision? By learning from Reb Shlomo’s life journey, we hope to portray a deeper connection to Israel, Judaism, God, Shabbat, ourselves, and others. From this base, this leads to a calling and action plan for a better world.

Interactive History of Reb Shlomo’s Life, Music, and Teachings

Redefining post-Holocaust Judaism, seeking joy and reconciliation, The House of Love of Prayer, the battle for Russian Jewry, reinventing music at weddings, Shabbat night, bringing the guitar into Hallel, and more.

Shoa — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c38_tqU8yXA&t=47s

House of Love and Prayer — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rucb1a1jJYU

Russian Jewry — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIWrdU3QSGo

Am Yisrael Chai

  • A strong Israel, a more universalistic appeal, the centrality of Jerusalem, and the holy soldiers. This program, which traces how the life story of Reb Shlomo Carlebach mirrored the Israeli and Jewish story post-Holocaust, is titled after his signature song, Am Yisrael Chai, which, like so many of his other songs, has become part of the culture of Israel and Jewish lifestyle.
  • The Centre will trace the different time phases of his life, highlighting the important messages of inspiration that are still relevant in today’s confusing world.
  • His message of universal Judaism, faith, Tikkun Olam, joyful song and prayer is so needed today.

https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=543857003986585&extid=NS-UNK-UNK-UNK-AN_GK0T-GK1C&ref=sharing

Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach: Israel is our land רבי שלמה קרליבך: ארץ ישראל היא הארץ שלנו

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmUcQkapiv8&feature=youtu.be

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcU6qAmAqpI

Centre for Body and Soul

It was Reb Shlomo’s dream to have a Centre of Health for the Body and Soul where people connect not only to their inner self but to others in love and harmony. Reb Shlomo always used to say — Give me Harmony — So, following on the theme of harmony — — We have harmony with Shabbat, ourselves, others, and nature — Environment, Meditation, Art, Music, and Natural Medicine.

The buildings themselves will showcase a number of different solutions and advanced building methods, using solar, smart grids, water and waste recycling.

We will encourage different programs and innovations on the Moshav’s agricultural land, as well as allow locals and schools to rent plots to grow and experiment.

-The center will offer retreats and programs covering :

Impact / Tikkun Olam

Environmental + Social — The building itself will be green-built and highlight sustainable living and agriculture. The Moshav has Agriculture land which will highlight and promote natural, sustainable living and agriculture.

Education

The key underlying message is one of education and inspiration. The project will be a catalyst for educating tomorrow’s leaders for a better vision of Judaism, Israel, and the world.

The focus will be on immersive experiences: Education, Inspiration, and Tourism.

I encourage you to click on the links for inspiration, insight, and chizuk (strengthening) our faith for a better world

--

--

Jeffrey Levine

Jeffrey Levine provides CFO, Director, ESG Advisory Services through www.persofi.com and is a promoter of ideas and trends where Innovation meets ESG