Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Signs that the Redemption is near?

It’s the end of the month again. That means it’s time to take another look at Redemption.

For years, the American magazine, Sports Illustrated, has run a weekly mini-report entitled, “Signs of the Apocalypse” (or something like that). It contains a one-or-two sentence announcement that features some weekly occurrence in the Sports world. Typically, it focuses on someone doing something really stupid. It highlights how incredibly awful highly-paid sports figures can be. Such behaviour by those we honour, the piece suggests, is surely a sign that our world must soon end.

Mostly, these incidents entertain.

That magazine comes from America. We live in Israel, which follows a different religious and spiritual orientation. So if someone in America thinks about Christian-inspired world Destruction, perhaps we can think about something different--a Jewish-inspired New-world Redemption.

Consider now some recent examples from the news that, in some way—humorous and not so humorous—suggest that the world might be preparing for something New. If you don’t see how these headlines might pre-sage a Jewish Redemption, that’s okay. That just means that your ‘Redemption training’ isn’t up-to-date.

For November 2013:

- Initial Obamacare enrollment estimates fall far short of targets (Chicago Tribune)

-FDA: Cigarette of future could be non-addictive (Boston Globe)

-Russian oligarch Sergei Polonsky: 'Everyone in Russia has gone mad' (The Guardian)

-The 100 top things you honestly don't need to do before you die (The Guardian)
-My 53-year-old mother has had a baby, and it's changed me (The Guardian)
-Entrepreneurs find success in Detroit (NBC news)
-Will I live longer if I eat more nuts? (The Guardian)
-More Americans say Obama can't manage government (Chicago tribune)
-Could a procedure alter hunger and cure obesity? Maybe, study says (Los Angeles Times)

November was a good month for Redemption seekers. For example, any news that we might have better health in our future is always uplifting—and November brought us some very good news indeed about our future health: in the future, cigarette smoking may no longer be an addiction. Perhaps, researchers suggested this month, the addictive element of smoking could be removed. That could save thousands of lives.
That’s a change for the better we all need.
Cigarettes weren’t the only potential ‘change’ we read about in November. Food, too, could give us a New—and better--Future: eating nuts could make you live longer.
Wait: did that headline say nuts could make you live longer—or, living longer makes you nuts?
Well, if nuts won’t help you, maybe a ‘procedure’ could—perhaps science could alter hunger and obesity, one headline suggested, through the means of a simple ‘procedure.’
It all sounds like something New--news for a New Future. Could our Redemption come on the heels of nuts and cuts?
Another possible sign that something New was in the air was a headline from Russia. We all know Russians are different. We also know that Russians don’t know they’re different. So, do we now see a hint of something New when we see a Russian declare that Russians are mad?
Certainly, that’s progress. But is it Redemption?
We believe that when Redemption comes, our ideas about life, birth and death could change. How we give meaning to our lives will change in ways we cannot now imagine. We may, for example, decide to rush to Detroit, Michigan.
Yes: we might decide to become entrepeneurs in Detroit—something that, these days, is an oxymoron. Most startling of all, when Redemption comes we may actually see entrepeneurs becoming successful in Detroit.
If it happens in Detroit, you’ll know Redemption is really here.
But during Redemption, success in Detroit won’t be the only startling thing to see. In Redemption, our ideas of birth and motherhood could get turned on its head.
A 53-year old woman could have a baby. That would change people’s lives, wouldn’t it?
According to at least one November headline, it already has changed lives.
Finally, we learned in November that, when you look for Redemption in the news, you may discover that Redemption means we re-think how we live. No longer do we talk about the top 100 things you must do before you die; that’s passé. Why rush around chasing things to do?
When it’s Redemption-time, what you’re going to be interested in is, what are the top 100 things you don’t want to do. You’ll be interested in that because now, with Redemption so close, you don’t want to waste time with frivolous pursuits.
Luckily for you, England’s The Guardian had just the news item for you: the top 100 things not to do before you die.
Makes you wonder if the editors at The Guardian have the right idea—but the wrong focus. They should be talking about the top 100 things to do before your New Life begins.

Look around. Our future beckons. The world reveals hints. It is up to us to understand what we see.

Naturally, it’s possible that all these headlines are meaningless. These news stories may have nothing to do with the Jewish Redemption. Perhaps they simply prove that nothing changes—except our perception of Redemption.

But then we see an odd headline about problems with initial enrollments into the new US health care system called, Obamacare. Judging from early November news reports, if you weren’t an Obamacare fan in September—before enrollment began—you may have actually begun to think that perhaps Obamacare would fail before it even got started. If that had happened, how many of you would have said that miracles had begun?

Then there’s this shocking thought: if most Americans now believe that US President Obama doesn’t know how to run the government, well, wouldn't that be proof that Change is in the air?

It could be a sign, all these Washington troubles. It could mean we now stand on the threshold of a wondrous time when you didn’t have to be nuts to eat nuts—or live a long life.  

All of this sounds silly, of course. But even so, the question still stands: has November brought us the beginning of something New?

You tell me.



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