Saturday, September 19

Some Reflections on Rosh Hashana 2020

 The international community as we know has been hit severely by Covid-19. The Coronavirus pandemic originated in Wuhan, China and spread out of control to almost every country on earth. It is a pandemic that does not distinguish between races or religion and nobody is immune from COVID-!9 hence the three main precautions accepted internationally to prevent being infected. 

Coronavirus spreads like wildfire in crowds, especially in limited closed spaces. The three main precautions to prevent infections as we are all made to feel aware are:

  1. Wearing masks to cover the nose and mouth.

  2. Social distancing - 2 metres between people to the next.

  3. Personal hygiene.

Many people do not observe these simple precautions and until a vaccine against COVID-19 is available to the public, we have to adjust our lives within the framework of these precautions to avoid infection. 

Israel is now under its second lockdown for 3 weeks which may even be extended after the end of Sukkot (Tabernacles).

Now for the religious aspect, which is also part of the story. I am not a religiously observant person and have strong feelings as to whether God exists or not but if I would be religious, I would have very strong doubts as to God’s existence and questions to ask.

A religious person would accept that the Coronavirus was created and sent by God. If this is the case, maybe God does not want people to pray in their respective houses of worship. Prayer in houses of worship, whether the synagogue, church or mosque or whatever, maybe considered evil in the eyes of God. Perhaps God does not want to hear the prayers of believers in Him. He punishes them by infecting them with Covid-19 if they crowd into a House of Worship. Maybe God wants to curtail the overpopulation on the planet and that we are all equal in His eyes and face the same destiny irrespective of our faith or lack of it. Excuse my use of anthropomorphisms but there does not appear to be any other way of my humble attempt to explain this theory. 

Is it possible that God wishes to punish humans for their evil ways? The hypocrisy that seems to exist in all faiths may be a cue to His anger. 

The scientists are in a race to achieve the invention of a vaccine against the Coronavirus. Nobody can predict when this will be achieved.

Here in Israel, while we are under lockdown and the threat of the ultra-Orthodox communities to overcrowd the synagogues during the High Holydays thus endangering themselves as well as all Israel’s citizens. Is it possible that they are acting against the Will of the Almighty, who will infect them and others with a vengeance?


  1. Coronavirus: Israel marks Jewish New Year with the second lockdown

  2. Jews can’t gather as usual for Rosh Hashanah — and stay safe from COVID-19

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