Ostensibly, the death of the Queen of England should not make more waves than the death of any other elderly woman around the world; the Queen (practically) had no executive authority that influenced the life of Britain, and certainly not on our own lives.
At the same time, news releases all over the world deal with her death. Why?
The simple explanation is that the British royal house sparks the imagination. This is our opportunity to live in a magical world of kings and queens, princes and princesses; the scandals, the clothes, the ceremonies – have allowed Western culture to live in a type of “soap opera” for many years.
- But there is something deeper: in a postmodern, technical, cynical and cold world – the concept of “royalty” is missing for people. While democracy grants freedom to the individual, it partially sterilizes the concept of the “klal”, the whole.
The descriptions of God that will soon be said on Rosh Hashana are in terms of His kingdom.
- The concept of a “king” in the Bible is different from that of the monarchy formulated in world history, but the common denominator is that the monarchy gives a connection to the whole; and this is what humanity in the 21st century is missing. People are looking for the power of the whole; the desire to feel a connection to something big, historic and magnificent – and they imagine finding it in the legend of Buckingham palace.
The sorrow over the queen’s death should be in the right proportion: this is not the “end of an era” and not the end of Britain.
- It is sorrow for the death of an impressive woman who played an important (symbolic) role in history.
- The main spiritual meaning that can be derived from this is the recognition of the human need for connection to greatness and eternity; a need – which, despite attempts to extinguish it, wakes up anew each time. And it will continue to beat in our hearts; and will also appear in the future in a deeper, correct and greater way – in connection with the King of Kings.
Source: Rav Hagai Lundin – Arutz Sheva
Header: Nicholas Hilliard’s “Pelican Portrait” of Queen Elizabeth I, ca. 1575.