Friday, August 29, 2008

Mishmeret Chillul HaShem

I was on the bus yesterday, and I heard two people talking in English behind me, saying how they hate religious people -- although I think they meant charedis. They mentioned how they didn't like that people said that they were religious, but they're actions would show otherwise. One example one of the guys said was the mishmeret tzni'us. (the modesty watch) For those who don't know what this is, it's a group of chassidim who, as is in the name, "protect" the tzni'us level in their neighborhoods. Their definition of "protect" though, is not what we may think. Instead of asking and talking nicely to these people (mostly women), they beat them up. I read an article in Jpost this week how they actually followed one woman around for awhile, days or weeks, and then one day they attacked her in her apartment, and told her to leave the neighborhood, or else they would keep harrasing her. She eventually moved, and a few of the chassidim were caught and convicted.

The problem I think is that chassidim think we're in the time of the Beis HaMikdash, when the Torah was actually the rule, not some secular government (notice how they don't like advancment in a lot of things, like clothes). I don't even know if one is allowed to do this according to the Torah (if anyone finds anything, let me know and give me a source), go beat up those who aren't tzni'us. Even if it is allowed, it can't be done by some vigillante, it's by the beis din, the court. We don't have a beis din like that today unfortunately. Today we can't just go around beating up people who don't keep the Torah. It's a huge chillul HaShem (desecration of God's name). Back then, even if it was allowed, there was no problem of chillul HaShem -- it was a Torah society. But we're not there yet. We're not at that level yet -- too many people are not keeping the Torah (wether accidently or not) for this to work.

They just are too blind to see what effect they have on themselves -- and us. This gives Jews a bad name. More importantly gives God a bad name: "What kind of God would tell His people to do this?"

We have to create the Mishmeret chillul HaShem. This has to stop somehow.


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