In the footsteps of Yirmiyahu in preperation for the ninth of Av.
We started by Nachal Prat, a beautiful riverbed running through the Judean Desert. Here we spoke about the nearby village of Anata by ancient Anatot. We discussed the significance of Yirmiyahu being from Anatot and from beit eli. beit eli was destined to loose its position because of the way his sons acted and as a nation we lost the mishkan. Additionally, at that point the aron was taken because we attributed our potential victory to it and not to Hashem (more on this another day BS"D by Shiloh). We then learned together perek 13 of yirmiyahu where he is told to buy, wear, hide and then uncover a garment/belt. This symbolizes the close relationship that was meant to be between Am Yisrael and Hashem and how we were meant to be his pride and honor but have become useless in that respect, due to our actions and disobedience. This is likely talking about Nachal Prat, where we were, and not Nahar Prat in Iraq. We finished with a visit to Mt. Scopus where there are two lookouts, one towards the North and East and the other towards the South and West. Facing North-East we looked out over the judean desert and anata which near Nachal Pray that we just came from. Frim there you can see how Yirmiyahu and probably many others would come frequently to Jerusalem crossing the area right before us. The second viewpoint towards the South-West looks out over yerushalayim and in particular, in the not so far distance is har habayit. We learned together perek 7 of yirmiyahu the famous perek of heichal hashem heichal hashem. We cant think that the beit hamikdash itself will save us, we must mend our ways. This is the same failure of understanding as the times of shiloh with the aron! we can now understand why specifically Yirmiyahu from beit eli had to be sent. Who better can say- yes it can be destroyed- it has already happened by shiloh! Many still do this today when pushing to bring korbanot when the beit hamikdash wasnt destroyed because of a lack of korbanot! The root of the problem is still has yet to be fixed and that must be the focus. We ended with the classic story from the end of makot with Akiva nichamtanu when a group of Rabbis had been overlooking har habayit from 'Mt. Scopus'. They see a fox emerge from the area of the kodesh kodashim and rabbi akiva laughs when everyone else cries. Why? Becausy,e yes, there was a destruction, but that was to clear the way for us to return rebuild, and serve Hashem properly. - May we be zocheh to return b'ahava v'tahara to the service in the beit hamikdash quickly and in our days.