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Baseless Hatred: Understanding the Great Tisha B'Av Crime
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In this course, Rabbi Fohrman explores the fascinating Talmudic allegorical narrative of Kamtza and Bar Kamtza, looking carefully at the connection between the different episodes of the story as a window into our own tendencies to anger and suggests how we should consciously work to truly eradicate baseless hatred from the world.
So, I confess, I have always had a real problem with [Inaudible 00:04]. I know that sounds terrible to say but here’s my issue, we all know the famous saying quoted from the [Inaudible 00:11] that temple was only destroyed because of the [Inaudible 00:14], baseless hatred. So if there is a spiritual remedy be undertaken on [Inaudible 00:19]. It is clearly debanished, baseless hatred from our hearts. We have to resolve never to feel baseless hatred. We pray and ask God’s assistance, we join facebook campaigns, we engage of acts of [Inaudible 00:33] baseless love to just love people for no reason rather than hate people for no reason but here’s the problem. Honestly, how often are you attempted to hate somebody baselessly? When is the last time, you are walking down the street, you saw somebody, ‘Oh, there’s Phil, I hate him’, just no reason, baseless. We don’t do that. I mean, are you like that? Is there anyone you know like that? Are we creating some kind of scarecrow with baseless hatred that just doesn’t exist and then, we congratulate ourselves that we don’t have this terrible sin. Wow! Great, you are not a psychopath. You should be proud of that, I mean what if every year we congratulate ourselves about how we have purged [Inaudible 01:13] from our heart, we no longer hate people baselessly. As if you did in the first place? [Inaudible 01:19], I mean those are very strong words.
In real life, you know, many of us are no strangers to hatred, to anger, sometimes even to rage but usually, when we get really mad at somebody, we get mad at them for a reason. Somebody bullies me and I hate them, is that baseless hatred? It’s not baseless hatred, there is a reason I hate him. Who feels baseless hatred? I think if we really want to experience [Inaudible 01:44] like adults, we sort of owe it to ourselves to try to come to grips with the question of, what baseless hatred means? What do we mean when we talk about [Inaudible 01:55]? Hatred for no reason because there is an insidious possibility that every year we congratulate ourselves for getting rid of [Inaudible 02:04] but we don’t even know what it is. And maybe, what it really is continues to lurk on our hearts, to poison our minds and our relationships. It turns out that there’s a fundamental piece of [Inaudible 02:16] that exemplifies the idea of [Inaudible 02:19]. Traditionally, we learn it on [Inaudible 02:22], deals with the famousapocryphal story of [Inaudible 02:27].
What I want to do with you in this video series is to analyze that story, to read it through with you and to try to figure out through looking at that story. What is [Inaudible 02:37] really is because the strange thing is as you read the story it doesn’t seem to be about baseless hatred at all. I think, if we read that story with clear eyes, we will arrive at a surprising understanding of the nature of [Inaudible 02:55], of baseless hatred. It is not something not that monstrous feel, that psychopath feel, hatred for no reason. Indeed the kind of baseless hatred that the Gomorrah talks about, it is uncomfortable close to home.
Let’s jump right in and take a look at [Inaudible 03:11] episode as recorded in the Gomorrah in [Inaudible 03:16].
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