A reader inquired where to start on his path of t’shuva. The legendary Kabbalist, Rabbi Yaacov Abuchatzera from Morocco, states that a person should first strive to cleanse himself from the stains of sexual transgression. In his commentary to the Torah portion, “Bechukotai,” he writes:
“A person who comes to serve G-d should first rectify any blemish to the Brit in the proper fashion, and afterward begin to serve G-d…. When the Brit is blemished and has not been rectified, everything is canceled and considered naught.”
Wake up, my friends. The clock is ticking. The Day of Judgment is just moments away.
We have explained on many occasions that sexual transgressions most damage the Brit, or Covenant, between G-d and the Jewish People. The Brit of sexual purity that was sealed in the flesh of our forefather Avraham is the foundation of the Jewish Nation. Living our lives in a holy fashion is what distinguishes us from the other nations of the world. Therefore, Rabbi Abuchatzera explains that G-d warns us in the most emphatic matter regarding the sufferings that will come upon us if we blemish this part of our lives:
“Even if you will do all of the mitzvot, I will consider that you have not done them. Even if you will observe My statutes with love, I proclaim that you have despised My statutes. And even if you will perform My judgments with great joy, I proclaim that you have abhorred them. All of this is because you violated My Brit and have not rectified it. For this reason, everything you do is considered canceled and as naught.... Therefore, whoever desires to do t’shuva, let him first rectify blemishes to the Brit, and after that, the things he does to please G-d will succeed.”
Readers who are interested in understanding this subject in more depth are encouraged to read the opening chapters of the book, “Secret of the Brit,” which can be found online at www.jewishsexuality.com. But even without learning the Kabbalistic secrets surrounding the Brit of sexual purity, this message comes across loud and clear in the Torah portion we read this past Shabbat:
“When you go out to encamp against your enemies, you should keep from every evil thing. If there be a man among you that is not pure by reason of impurity of a seminal emission that chances by night, he shall go abroad out of the camp…. For the L-rd your G-d walks in the midst of your camp to deliver you, and to give up your enemies before you; therefore your camp shall be holy, that He see no unclean thing in you and turn away from you (Devarim, 10-16).
All of our security and well being, both in a national, military sense, and in the camp of our homes, depends on our sexual purity. The Talmud explains that the meaning of “you shall keep from every evil thing” means that you should not gaze upon the beauty of a woman, because a man shouldn’t have sexual thoughts in the day and come to seminal impurity at night,” (Avodah Zara 20A).
Our camps are to be holy. Sexual transgressions cause the Shechnah, the Divine Presence, to flee. Without the protection that the Shechinah affords, our country and our homes are vulnerable to all sorts of misfortune, G-d forbid, whether it be enemy missiles, traffic deaths, or health, livelihood, and marital problems at home.
Of course, most people hear these verses during the Torah reading in shul and don’t think twice about them. “That was back then,” they think. Or “It’s something for the army to worry about.” They don’t realize the Torah is also speaking about our homes, warning us that our homes must be free of any unclean thing, and that includes such things as televisions, and computers that don’t have reliable filters on their Internet server to prevent pornography from entering the home. Without such a filter, a computer is an “unclean thing.” Say what you will say, the fact is that men are men, and boys will be boys, and only the most holy Tzaddik will not fall prey to the temptation of the Internet, with all of the seductions of Midian and Amalek just an easy click away. Without a reliable filter that blocks out erotic images and websites, your computer is an open, flowing sewer that brings pornography into the house, causing the Shechinah to flee.
Men will be men, and boys will be boys.
The Day of Judgment is only a short time away. Don’t let it come without having downloaded a filter onto your computer. Don’t fool yourselves, saying that you trust yourselves, or your husbands, or your children. Don’t let your camp be unholy. For the sake of your family, and for the well being of the Jewish People as a whole. “Remember what Amalek did to you (אשר קרך בדרך) causing you to have a seminal emission on the way” (See Rashi, Devarim, 25:17). Amalek isn’t just some enemy of the past. He is lurking in our computers, just waiting to pounce and draw us into his web. And we are to remember and guard against his evils every day, in every way that we can, including blotting Amalek out of our homes.
Take it from Rabbi Yaacov Abuchatzera. Take it from the Torah. Wake up, my friends. The clock is ticking. The Day of Judgment is just moments away.