Rosh HaShana night I had an amazing dream. . . .
I was swimming at the beach with my two little boys. I began to sense a very slight change in the water level. I sensed danger. I sensed a tsunami.
I looked at the horizon, and there was nothing. But I knew something was up. I looked around and saw all the other people playing at the beach, completely oblivious. I quickly gathered my boys together, hoping to get a “jump” on the crowd and get outta there before the mad rush that was sure to come when people realized what was going on.
We hurried to the parking lot. I opened the door to my car and it suddenly turned into a clear vinyl comforter cover – useless. There was no escape. No running away.
The scene changed and I was on a cliff overlooking the ocean. The cliff was a few hundred feet high, and jutted out into the sea, almost like a peninsula. I looked at the horizon.
Far in the distance, I could see a distortion in the ocean, moving slowly towards me. It was a tsunami, but still very far out. It seemed small but given the distance I knew it was terrifyingly massive, and it was coming our way. There was no way to avoid it.
I looked around. Everybody had gathered together to dig a large trench from the edge of the cliff inland. The hope was that this trench would dissipate some of the power of the coming tsunami, so that people on the penninsula would survive. Some people digging the trench were not happy about working with other people digging the trench, but they had no choice – it was a matter of life or death.
The feeling I had during all of this was hope, but not certainty. The trench would only work if the tsunami’s level was below the height of the cliff. There was no way of telling just how high the tsunami actually was. The trench digging was an act of matzil o she’aino matzil – done whether we’d be saved or not saved.
As I tried to understand the dream, I first thought it had to do with myself and the situation of the Jews in the US – which inspired this post. However, a few days later my son and I were talking in learning and he mentioned that he had just learned that “all prophesy is for the sake of the Land of Israel.” Now, I am no prophet, but dreams are 1/60th of prophecy.
Thus, the meaning of the dream is very, very clear. The tsunami is the invasion of the forces of Gog u’Magog. The peninsula is Eretz Yisrael. Digging the trench is tshuva. The tshuva is working together – not out of love, but out of dire necessity.
The purpose of this tshuva is to break hearts of stone that separate us – a return to the slave pits of Egypt which smeltered out the dross of internecine arrogance so that only a unified, humble element remained. In the dream people were, like Egypt, digging for their lives. Nobody is exempt.
As a result, perhaps, the Jews will then be ready to accept Moshiach. He cannot come to a nation with hearts unbroken and divided.