Beit Midrash

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קטגוריה משנית
To dedicate this lesson
Recipient: The Council of Petach Tikva. In this time-period, there was great tension between the "old guard" of Petach Tikva and younger, more liberal elements. Rav Kook was the head of a panel of seven who made extensive rules (released three weeks earlier) for the leadership of the moshava especially in preparation for voting. Rav Kook was also given authority to resolve by himself certain questions that would arise.

Body: My beloved, respected brothers, I have a holy obligation to add words to what we discussed yesterday, when you honored me with your visit to my house. First, I make a short prayer to the Master of Peace that He will enable my words, which emanate from a deep place in my soul, to arrive safely in your pure hearts, so that they will promote a foundation of peace in our dear moshava, your and our Petach Tikva, may it develop well.

I am protesting quietly the letter that I received today, due to the honor of its signees. I am depending on the delicateness of your elevated spirits, that like me, you realize the responsibility is too great this time to find the exactly correct degree [to which to aim the urgency of these words].

Therefore, I must respond without being asked to do so, in the manner of one with a dependable love, who strongly desires you to have peace and good fortune. I am requesting that you try now to compromise, in pursuit of peace, on the degree of the amount of taxes being demanded based on the court ruling, based on my decision. Find, with the wisdom of your hearts and the rectitude of your spirits, how to proceed in a well-balanced manner. Use the power of legislation to ensure discipline regarding the payment of taxes for the coming days in a prudent manner, as is fit for an organized and fresh moshava, which shall be successful with divine assistance. On the other hand, erase the excesses in regard to the matter of the recent elections. Do not allow the victory of one party to be too impactful, for blessing always comes along with balance.

I also want to speak clearly about all matters upon which there may be disagreement. Regarding the voting process, a committee should be chosen by the two parties, and those chosen should choose a neutral party that they both agree to.

If my eye condition did not make it difficult for me to write, I would write at length pleasantries, as befits such respected people as you, that are appropriate under the circumstances you are in. In any case, I hope that you will come out [of this period] with honor and grandeur, adorned by the glow of peace and the crown of bravery that befits one who demonstrates self-control, which is the most beloved glory of the valorous.

Now I must end my letter, doing so with every feeling of blessing and reliable love, as we look for national salvation and the raising of the stature of Israel and the spreading out of a booth of peace on Hashem’s nation and land. I have in mind to bless every individual who helps the foundation of peace in the moshava with a good year, adorned with everything good, with an abundance of long, productive life and peace.

I do not need to explain to honest people like you that all means that the council develops to alleviate the difficulty of making municipal payments, if they do so, will be done without discrimination between one party and the other. Also, they should not look for stringencies in the process of setting up voting groups and becoming a committee member. These are all things that I will strongly trust the council to do itself with the most complete attribute of honesty.

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