I was reading a discussion between a Satmar Rabbi and a Chabad Rabbi; unfortunately, the "discussion" quickly degenrated into a dispute with accusations flying among the participants. (*exasperated sigh!)
In the conversation, there were references to Rebbe Menachem Mendel Shneerson (zt"l) and the concept that some hold that he is Moshiach and is in hiding until the time for his anointment arrives.
I find this concept to be a fallacy and more inline with islam than Judaism. It smacks of the 12th imam who went down the well and will return when the world is bathed in blood. I find the idea abhorrent and repugnant.
So, the question comes "Has the Rebbe's words been misunderstood and misinterpreted?"
To this question I answer "Yes! Without a doubt!"
What was the Rebbe trying to do or say? Was he trying to establish himself as Moshiach? Was he trying to set himself up as HaNasi or HaMelech?
No, I do not believe he was trying to do either. What he was trying to do was to bring the world to an understanding of Moshiach and how this can be brought about by mankind.
How so? you may be asking.
Well, the Baal Shem Tov (zt"l) told us, and this was confirmed by Rebbe Nachman of Breslov (zt"l), that there is a Moshiach in potential born to every generation. However, before a potential Moshiach can come to realization, the Jewish people must merit him.
How do the Jewish people come to merit Moshiach?
They come to this by "Being a kingdom of priests" (Shemot 19: 6); by being a "light unto the nations" (Yeshayahu 49: 6) and by returning to faith in HaShem rather than putting their faith in men as did Yosef when he was in the prison of the Chief of the Guard; for which, HaShem made him languish there for an additional two years. (B'reshit 41: 1).
Rebbe Menachem Mendel Shneerson may well have been the potential Moshiach of this generation; we will never know. But, we know, as a people, we did not yet merit Moshiach, so he passed to be replaced by another potential Moshach of the next generation.
This is what I believe Rebbe Shneerson was trying to teach. However, as happens so many times, people do not hear the message, only what they want to interpret.
May we merit Moshiach and turn the potential into reality! (Besiyata Dishmaya)
Caption "Oh, for crying out loud, not this again!"
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