Transforming Darkness to Light http://ravkooktorah.org/BO_67.htm
The period of Ikveta deMashicha is a difficult time, and not all the Sages were eager to experience it. Rav Yosef, however, demonstrated great spiritual courage, saying, "Let the Messiah come; and may I merit to sit in the shadow of his donkey's dung" (Sanhedrin 98b). Once again, we find the metaphor of the donkey used in connection with the Messianic Era.
Rav Yosef was accustomed to looking at the inner essence of things. He recognized the tremendous inner holiness hidden in this problematic generation, as symbolized by the Messiah's donkey. Rav Yosef understood that the Messianic light will demonstrate how to utilize all forces, even the most coarse — "the donkey's dung" — for the sake of good. He knew that the darkness of national rebirth will lead to an even higher light of Torah and knowledge of God.
(Sapphire from the Land of Israel. Adapted from Igrot HaRe'iyah vol. II, p. 188, letter 555 (1913) ("Igeret Takanah"); Orot p. 85 (Orot HaTechiyah, sec. 45))
Activist emails sent to my list are L'Ilui Nishmat Yisrael ben David Aryeh ob"m (Izzy - Kaplan) and Howard Chaim Grief great activists and lovers of Eretz Yisroel, Am Yisroel and the Torah. Yehi Zichronum Baruch. May their memories serve as a blessing.
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