Matis the Mischichist
A leaked track dumped from Matisyahu’s debut, Shake Off The Dust, reveals a cry of yechi adoneinu moreinu v’rabbeinu melech hamoshiach l’olam vo’ed: “Long live our master, teacher and rebbe, King Messiah, forever and ever.”
Will it hurt the new “face” of Judaism? Steven I. Weiss investigates:
Music industry observers I’ve contacted have thus far tended to think that Matisyahu’s being a messianist would not affect his status in the broader music world.
Rolling Stone’s Evan Serpick said in a phone interview that “I don’t think there’s any impact of that…he’s very open on his records and his shows” about promoting the idea of messiah generally. But what about the difference between supporting a messianic idea generally, and the specific notion of supporting the idea that a rabbi who died 11 years ago is still alive and will reveal himself as the messiah? “It doesn’t seem a very far stretch” to the average listener from Lubavitch generally, and “I think in most people’s minds, that doesn’t seem much more of a fringe…I don’t think most people are gonna get into the intricacies.”
It just goes to show he has more in common with Rastafarians than you might think. “Jah no dead, Jah no dead!” The late Emperor Haile Selassie is the Rastafarians’ moshiach, and only the Ethiopians (who lived through his corrupt regime) give ’em gruff for it. So too, Menachmen Mendel Schneerson may be Matisyahu’s Jah Rastafari. Watch as am yisrael turns Ethiopian, with Steven I. at the head of the line.
Frankly, anyone who believes the rebbe is moshiach deserves to be given gruff. That’s why I legitimate Ethiopians giving Rastafarians hell.
Steven I. responds, via IM, “Schneerson never persecuted anybody.” Tell that to the Ethiopians. Man, they just suffer one false messiah after another…