GOD IS TELLING US SOMETHING
Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak’s Pesher and Socio-Political Pantheism of Coronavirus
The conflicting and different reactions to Covid-19 pandemic, ranging from a willingness to cooperate with health authorities to a violent rejection of all decisions and measures suggested or taken by local and international authorities are but expressions of framing meanings of and finding answers to why Covid-19 broke out on a such global scale beyond biological boundaries. This is to show why epidemics such as Covid-19 deserve to be investigated within their broader cultural, political, scientific, and geographic contexts. Religion or the religious rationale once again has made itself a site of interest in the public space; both as one of the many competing explanatory frameworks and as a scapegoat for contributing to the breakdown of the social order and for promoting unscientific, irrational and superstitious understandings and interpretations of Covid-19. As a matter of fact, certain religious communities across all the Abrahamic religions do present theological and eschatological interpretations of the pandemic. As we shall see, Messianic Jewish groups actually present a hermeneutical framework that consists of a theological-eschatological framework of the Covid-19 pandemic and a socio-political pantheism plan of action the aim of which is to maintain the believer immune to the attacks of secularism and its ills. On the latter point, I find Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak’s explanatory framework of the Covid-19 pandemic very informative as both to how the religious rationale is still at work in post-secular societies, and why Jewish ultra-orthodoxy’s theological-eschatological explanation and social pantheist response are worth investigating. In this article, Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak’s “perception, interpretation and response” to the Covid-19 pandemic and its global impact on both the biological and the social aspects shall be the primary subject of our analysis.