By COLlive reporter
Radio personality and author Dennis Prager ponders the future of the international outreach network of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement in a new article titled “What Chabad needs to do now.”
“One successful movement in contemporary Jewish life is Chabad,” Prager writes in the Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, and points out that “Chabad is entering a new and challenging phase.”
The problem, he identifies, is that “There are simply not enough Jews in the world to keep opening Chabad Houses at the rate it has in the last 25 years.”
“This is a personal tragedy for the many young Chabad rabbis who ache to become shluchim,” he writes. “And it is a tragedy for the larger Jewish world because these Chabad Houses add Jewish vitality wherever they are present.”
Prager, a public lecturer who has spoken at Chabad events for decades, offers the following two suggestions:
1. Open more Chabad Houses at colleges.
“No place needs a Chabad House as much as the university,” he writes. “There is virtually nothing morally or spiritually elevating at these campuses. Chabad could provide both, if it chooses to. That means locating at colleges and being proactively pro-Israel, pro-religion, pro-objective morality, pro-God, pro-the Ten Commandments.”
2. Reach out to non Jews to spread ethical monotheism.
“Almost no one is bringing the authentic Jewish message to the world — that there is one G-d of all people and that this G-d’s primary demand is that human beings treat each other decently,” he writes.
Prager notes that Chabad does in fact believe in spreading what is known as the Seven Laws of Noah and he quotes an article from Chabad.org about “Universal Morality.”
“When the Lubavitcher Rebbe began speaking about publicizing [the Noahide Laws] as a preparation for a new era, he was reviving an almost lost tradition,” the article says.
It notes that “At Mount Sinai, G-d charged the Children of Israel to serve as His “Light unto the nations” by bringing all of humanity to a recognition of their Creator and adherence to His laws.”
Prager argues: “Doing that should be regarded as important as getting Jews to put on tefillin. In order to make a better world — to usher in the Messianic Age, if you will — we have to spread ethical monotheism; to bring the world to the God of the Ten Commandments.”
He concludes that “Because no other Jewish group will do it, it is up to Chabad to do so. And in order to achieve that mission, there will never be enough shluchim.”