Hebraic Studies - Ushpizin a pagan invasion!

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The Pagan Invasion

With Rabbi Reuven Ben-Avraham


On this site I will mostly use a version of the Torah/Tanakh based on the “Jewish Publication Society” (JPS).

I am sad to say that I am disenchanted with parts of Judaism, as parts of the faith of my people of Israel has sadly gone astray. The truth is that so much of Judaism has turned the wrong corner and is slowly going back to the days of the prophet Yirmyahu - Jeremiah. On what basis do I say this? The fact is Judaism in general has been invaded by rabbis in the past with a new ideology, and more recently the erroneous “Chabad-Lubavitch” and Kabbalistic Movements filled with teachings from the occult, and they have been bringing their pagan ideology into our pure faith. The Lubavitchers have even changed our Siddur, with prayers, some of which are frankly blasphemous, such as praying to the dead and even inviting them to sit and dine with us during the Feast of Sukkot. However this is a completely pagan custom which is known as, “Ushpizin”.

Ushpizin was established by the Kabbalists in the 16th century, based on the earlier Zohar, and in their formula on the first night before the service and meal in the Sukkah we are told to say, “I invite to my meal the exalted (dead) guests, Avraham - Abraham, Yitzchak - Isaac, Ja’akov - Jacob, Yosef - Joseph, Moshe - Moses, Acharon - Aaron, and Dovid - David. May it please you, Avraham, my exalted guest, that all the other exalted guests dwell with me and with you

The Lubavitcher movement has grown worldwide, and somehow they have taken over countless Orthodox Synagogues including in the city I live. The Chabad website states – “Discover the vast empire of Chabad-Lubavitch”.

Encyclopaedia Judaica describe Ushpizin as follows:

Ushpizin (“guest”). According to kabbalistic tradition the mystical seven “guests”, Avraham, Yitzchak, Ja’akov, Yosef, Moshe, Acharon and Dovid, who visit the Sukkah during the seven days of Sukkot (cf. Zohar, 5:103b).

The Sukkah can be built in various ways, but the roof must always have palm or green covering

Note the plate designs on the canvas wall, these will be explained below

According to the Zohar, Yosef comes after Moshe and Acharon, but in most Ashkenazi Mahzorim (festival prayer books) and Shabbat and daily Prayer books the order is chronological. The spiritual guest of each day is invited before the meal and the text of this invitation commences with; “Enter, exalted holy guests...” is found in several Ashkenazi and Sephardi Prayer books. The custom was adopted by the Chasidim and their many pamphlets entitled “Seder-Ushpiz”, including liturgy based upon the practices of certain tzaddikim (e.g., the rabbis of Belz, Zanz, etc.), began to be published in the 19th century. There is also a custom of Ushpizin that originated from a Phoenician custom, for they believed it was possible to consult with the dead by a magical inscription on a plate. Thus it has become a custom for some groups of Jews to place a plate on the walls of their Sukkah as an invitation to their seven guests, in other words for the “holy dead” to come to sit with them at their Sukkah meal. Whilst others will decorate their Sukkah wall with a special panel (see image below) which bears an inscription of the names of the seven guests. Moroccan Jews have a special compilation of prayers in honour of the Ushpizin, called Hamad Elohim”, from which special sections are recited each day of the festival.

Here we see one of the many Ushpizin panels now available with the names

of the Fathers of Israel to be invited to dine with them for the Sukkot meal

The following was culled from two Jewish websites:

Many Judaic ceremonial traditions originated in medieval times through the teachings of rabbis who were steeped in the mystical “Kabbalah.” The origin of one such ceremony; “Ushpizin” (or “Guests”), can be found in the following verse;

“When a person is seated in his Succah, Abraham and six distinguished visitors partake of his company”. The Zohar, Emor 103b.

A mystical recitation based on Zohar, Emor 103b-104a, is then repeated each night of Succot to invite seven Biblical guests (Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Aaron, Joseph, and King David) into the Succah.

Consulting the dead:

The following, rather confusing item was written by a Rabbi Michael Ezra Ozair of KabbalaCoach.com. At first he clearly agrees with my belief that “The Torah clearly forbids consulting the dead,” however, he then continues to speak as if the dead are able to communicate with the living. And if that is not very confusing, what is? He wrote the following;

The Torah clearly forbids consulting the dead. This, in my understanding is because not all souls want to be contacted (excuse me REALLY???). Another reason is because you never know what kind of soul you are actually summoning in and finally, just because a soul has made a transition to the other side does not make it more enlightened. So the Torah, in its wisdom asks of us not to consult the dead for our own good. However, the Jewish tradition is full of accounts when contact between the living and the deceased are made … Many of the Chassidic masters would have ongoing conversations with their teachers AFTER they had already passed away including the late Lubavitcher Rebbe (Schneerson) when visiting his father in law’s grave.” Rabbi Michael Ezra Ozair.

Any person with some sort of brain will be laughing madly having read such a statement of total confusion, for this rabbi who supposed to be wise, is so confused and he obviously does not understand what G-d has taught us, which is so very clear!

What does the Torah say about consulting the dead?

 “And the soul that turneth unto the ghosts, and unto the familiar spirits, to go astray after them, I will even set My face against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people”. Vayikra - Leviticus 20:6.

“When thou art come into the land which HaSHEM thy G-d giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, one that useth divination, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or one that consulteth a ghost or a familiar spirit, or a necromancer. For whosoever doeth these things is an abomination unto HaSHEM; and because of these abominations HaSHEM thy G-d is driving them out from before thee. Thou shalt be whole-hearted with HaSHEM thy G-d”. Davarim - Deuteronomy 18:9-13.

Yeshayahu Clearly Told Us:

“And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their G-d? for the living to the dead? To the law and to the testimony, if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them”. Yeshayahu - Isaiah 8:19-20.

Deviant Jews – Praying to the Dead

With Rabbi Moshe Ben-Chaim of Mesora.org

The item below came from a ‘Question and Answer’ section of Mesora.org, and Rabbi Moshe Ben-Chaim responds to the last of a series of questions by a follower of the “Chabad-Lubavitch Movement”.

“There is no excuse for your blatant Torah violation, as you entice Jews to violate idolatry, the prohibition of ‘consulting the dead.’ It is essential that others condemn the views of such factions who freely malign G-d’s Torah and cause Jews to violate not merely small sins, but sins that G-d refers to as ‘abominations’.

Question by Ariel:

“By the grace of G-d. Shalom u’Brocha! Perhaps you have no obligation to believe the Lubavitcher Rebbe or the Besht were prophets, but those who witnessed their prophecies and miracles have such an obligation. Brocha ve’hatzlocha!” Ariel.

Rabbi Ben-Chaim replies:

First off, let me offer you a sampling of reality regarding the Rebbe: a close friend went to the Rebbe and asked him a question about the condition of her sick relative. The Rebbe told her that her relative would live, but she died. The Rebbe was wrong. All humans are bereft of absolute knowledge and of future events.

Furthermore, to suggest the Rebbe, or ‘the Besht’ or anyone is a prophet, never having produced the Torah’s required proofs of prophecy; you display a severe lack of adherence to the Torah, which destroys Torah. For you will most certainly follow your self-proclamation of their prophecy with the view that ‘all they said is Torah.’  Suggesting man is infallible and is always speaking ‘prophetic truths’ leads many astray. These men were never proven as prophets, so your claim exposes you as a very poor judge of Torah principles. Based on G-d’s words, we do not accept what an unproven prophet speaks, lest he mislead Jews from G-d. So until a man produces the phenomenon required by Torah to be a prophet, he is not considered one. You seem to be living in a fantasy world, simply to maintain your idols as leaders of ‘holy’ status. Be mindful: when Moses died, the Jews accepted his death. They did not say he was returning. So why do you place your Rebbe higher than Moses?

I visited your website ‘www.kingmessiah.com’ (no longer online) where under a picture of the most recent Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, you write, “The Lubavitcher Rebbe - King Messiah may he live for ever.” (see picture below). You feel the Rebbe is the Moshiach, but he never satisfied any requirements that he might be considered the messiah. Your credibility as a voice of Torah is thereby completely stripped from you. But the most disgusting element of your website is where you encourage others to violate a Torah prohibition of consulting the dead, where you write, “Write to the Rebbe and Behold Miracles.” You openly tell Jews they may consult the dead, and that they will receive miracles. You do not practice Judaism, but idolatry. We just celebrated our liberation from the idolatrous, Egyptian culture (Pesach), but you intend to return the Jews to the Egyptians’ primitivism.

Yet Lubavitchers still Claim:

The Lubavitcher Rebbe - King Messiah may he live for ever.”

As seen on ‘the website www.kingmessiah.com’

In contrast, to the errors of the Lubavitchers, what does G-d tell us?

“There shall not be found among you any one that … useth divination, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or one that consulteth a ghost or a familiar spirit, or a necromancer. For whosoever doeth these things is an abomination unto HaSHEM; and because of these abominations HaSHEM thy G-d is driving them out from before thee”. Davarim - Deuteronomy 18:10-12.

G-d also says, “do not lie” (Vayikra - Leviticus: 19:11) but if you violate this too, and lie by telling others they can talk to the dead. Not only can the dead not hear our words, they cannot do anything. They know nothing, as King Solomon said, “for the dead know nothing.” (Qoheleth - Ecclesiastes: 9:5) This is why G-d prohibited this action, for it is useless, false, and breeds hope in that which cannot be. These evil and false views of speaking and praying to the dead will cause many to become distressed.

You (Ariel) suggest that a minority, which claims to have seen a miracle, may be believed, such as with regards to the Rebbe or the Besht. If so, may I believe anyone today who says he saw someone perform a miracle? Perhaps someone today, I will claim, outperformed the supposed miracles of the Besht and your Rebbe. According to your view, you must allow me to believe this new miracle worker has surpassed the Besht and your Rebbe. Let us say this new miracle worker, I claim, outperformed Moshe Rabbeinu. Again, you must defend your position that I must be right in following this new miracle worker. According to you, I must then be allowed to believe a Muslim, that Mohammed is a true prophet. You see, your opinion allows anyone to attain a status of a prophet. But this is not Judaism. You are following your devotion to the Besht and the Rebbe and fake stories, and not a devotion to truth and Torah. As a Rabbi once said, you are attached “man”, not G-d.

G-d created the event of Har Sinai, precisely in the eyes of ALL Jews, thus there was a ‘mass of witnesses’ be the singular proof of His will and selection of the Jews, and no others. But your opinion negates the need for this mass event of Sinai, as you suggest, one may believe miracles, even with few “witnesses”.

Conclusion by Rav Reuven Ben-Avraham:

In addition to the above, these Lubavitchers have also been physically handing out small yellow cards around the world, including Yisroel, and these Lubavitchers have placed on one side of this card an image of the late rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson and directly under his photograph is the following message regarding this dead man … “This is the God Mashiach”. This card is shown below, and considering that this Chabad-Lubavitcher movement have actually claimed him to be “God” and that with his image placed directly above that wicked claim, it is obvious that they are guilty of blasphemy, and we all know the punishment for that most evil of sins!

The Torah is very clear on this point:

“Thou shalt not make unto thee a graven image, nor any manner of likeness, of any thing that is in heaven above …” Shemot - Exodus 20:3. (JPS).

What is the Torah’s position? It is this, we must deny all stories of this rabbi’s miracles and follow what G-d intended through His miracles at Sinai: we are to follow only that which is “comprehensively proven in front of masses”. This is the story G-d wishes all mankind to follow, and to abandon all other impostors. Only such a phenomenon removes all possibility of fabrication and ignorance. And when fabrication and ignorance do not enter a story, the story must be true, as there is no other possibility that a large attended event, communicated throughout history, can be false. When all possibilities of falsehood have been removed the story must be true.

Regarding Sinai, all possibilities have been removed: fabrication is refuted, as masses cannot all share one common motive to lie. Ignorance is refuted, as the event was simple in nature: all know what fire is, and what mountains are. Thus, regarding Mount Sinai’s fiery revelation, there is no possibility that this event was false. It must have occurred. But regarding other stories of reported miracles, if there are no masses, we know that the story may have been fabricated. This applies to your stories of this so called “Rebbe” and “Besht” performing miracles. G-d does not demand that we accept any story some religious Jew reports, be he a rabbi or less for there were no large number of witnesses, only the odd devotee, and they would believe anything, as they saw this man as some sort of god!

There is no excuse for a rabbi’s blatant Torah violation, as they entice Jews to enter into idolatry, for as we have learned that there is a strict prohibition of “consulting the dead.” It is essential that others condemn the views of such factions who freely malign G-d’s Torah and cause Jews to violate not merely small sins, but sins that G-d refers to as “abominations”.

HaSHEM is clear about those that pray to the dead, or asks the dead for favours, etc, for tragically it has become a custom of many within Judaism, and as the Torah and other verses in the Tanakh clearly states; “Anyone who does these things is detestable to HaSHEM”.

I am well aware that this study was not an easy one to read, and for me it was a very tough one to write, but sadly it needed to be shared, for our beloved Synagogues are being invaded by rabbis from rather that erroneous “Chabad-Lubavitch Movement.”

Just for interest, one evening I attended a “Torah” study at one of their rabbi’s homes, and taught that was nothing but absolutely weird, and completely false. He came out with his belief that Jochebed was unable to place the reed basket with her beloved baby son in it in the Nile, for this rabbi believed that she had to wait for the “Pharaoh’s daughter to enter into the Nile, as she first had to purify the river with her body”. He claimed that she was a believer in the G-d of Israel. Thus these Lubavitchers are actually rewriting our beloved Torah, for it does not add up with what is written in Shemos does it? That kind of rubbish can be expected from these Lubavitchers who operate as “Chabad House”, etc. If you are at one of these Chabad run Shul’s, pray for their removal, or be wise and go to another Shul! For our beloved G-d demands that we live within His Torah, and we cannot do this if we are led by a rabbi who practices and teaches lies and necromancy.

Wishing you and your Mishpachah or Mesbucha (family) Shalom, may the Peace of the Almighty fill you, your family and your home!

Rabbi Reuven Ben-Avraham.

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