Talleitim, snow-white prayer shawls, symbols of purity and innocence, soaked red in the blood of holy worshippers. Tefillin meant to bind heart and mind together as one with God, lie still, unmoving next to the still, unmoving bodies of those sacred souls who wore them.
The collective family of Israel sits shiva, mourning for our holy brothers. There is nothing to say. May the Omnipresent comfort all of us among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem. May God avenge the blood of His holy ones. Blessed is the True Judge.
It happened early Tuesday morning in a center of Jewish study and prayer in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Nof. Prayer and study, the best of what Judaism has to offer, the pure nucleus of Judaism, was desecrated by evil.
Two unnamable savages, wielding meat cleavers and a gun, brought their sick darkness into that holy place.
This is not Nazi Germany of 70 years ago. This is not a pogrom of 150 years ago. This is not the Inquisition of 600 years ago. This is not the Roman occupation of 2,000 years ago. This is not the Babylonian invasion of 2,500 years ago. And this is not Egyptian domination of 3,400 years ago. This, my dear brothers and sisters, is Israel today. Shachrit morning service in a synagogue in Israel today – it is unfathomable, it doesn’t make any sense!
Shachrit, a morning service, has turned into shiva, a mourning service.
What can we do?