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We need Rav Kook today

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Rav Kook was an extremist… of sorts. But we so desperately need Rav Kook today. Why do I say that he was an extremist? Some of his positions were indeed extreme within the religious Zionist movement. I’ll share two examples. First, Rav Kook, a staunch religious Zionist, refused to join the Mizrachi party. He was ambivalent to the new Zionist movement because of his opposition to secular nationalism. Other religious Zionist Rabbinic leaders, like Mizrachi founder Rav Reines, worked hand in hand with secular Zionists towards the creation of a Jewish state beginning at the end of the 19th century. However, Rav Kook felt that there was a lack of religious fervor in the Mizrachi movement and its members willingly accepted a secondary status within the Zionist movement. He believed that integration into the secular Zionist enterprise would permanently deflect the spiritual revolution that both secular and religious Jewry needed at this time to usher in the messianic era. For these reasons, Rav Kook refused to join the Mizrachi party and he tried to start the movement called Degel Yerushalayim, a religious Zionist movement that would focus on the character of the state. However, his movement did not succeed.........

© The Times of Israel (Blogs)

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