Praying for Someone’s Punishment

My heart flip-flop pendulum swings between compassionate, unthinkable forgiveness to out-loud prayers for punishment.  Usually, usually, with one villain in my life, I bury the desire for punishment and ask Hashem for the best.  But the other day, in tears, I asked Hashem to punish the person in a very specific way.  Very specific.  I surprised myself by asking for it and how unabashedly, heartlessly, heartfully it came out.

Today, I got a phone call from a friend who had contacted a kabbalist about my situation.  I am trembling with what she said.  Processing.  I don’t put much stock in it.  I put a little stock in it.  Who is this kabbalist?  What is a kabbalist?  How can he know anything by just hearing my name and birthday and the names/birthdays of those involved?

My friend at the end of our call, after assuring me the kabbalist says I will bode well, added ominously, “I wasn’t going to tell you this…”

Uh oh.

“But he mentioned something else.”


“He’s not clear, because there are other people involved,” then she said the kabbalist predicted the specific punishment that I had prayed for, which by the way no one else on this earth knows I prayed for.  Not even my Mama.

And my stomach dropped. Nooo!

Flip the pancake back to compassion and forgiveness and hope for better things and a desire to believe evil doesn’t exist so thereby can’t be punished.  I don’t really want that person to suffer such a harsh punishment.  Or maybe I do.  Was it my prayer’s fault?  Will this even really happen or are we dealing with some spooky ethereal na-noo stuff that may or may not even exist?

I’m shaking.

My friend prayed for someone (a bad guy) to die and he died.  (I did not pray for death.)

Does Hashem listen to our curses?

I go into my head to escape and search, because that’s what I do.  I research kabbalah and think about the holiness of Hebrew letters and numbers and mysticism and mysteries.

I listen to a shiur about Miriam and Her Drum.  (The Redemption Community will be offering many shiurum in the near future, and this was the beautiful first!)

The speaker, a friend from a retreat, asked, “How could we possibly dance and sing with Miriam when all those Egyptians had just died in the Sea?”  We are compassionate people.  Hashem had to remind the Jews when we were fighting Amalek to NOT HAVE COMPASSION.

So what wins here?  Forgiveness or Punishment?  Only time will tell and I’m trembling either way.  One requires a height of transcendence that I question if I’ll ever reach.  The other.  The Punishment.  It rips my heart out.

We are emotional, emotionless, logical, illogical women.  We are pancakes.  We flip and flop until one side gets a little too burnt, so we flip to the other.

Hashem help me stay grounded whatever happens and trust You.

Addendum: My research has suggested that kabbalists who do this kind of predicting may not be kosher, probably aren’t kosher, and are along the lines of fortune tellers.  I didn’t ask for a prediction or know my friend was going to ask for one; so I don’t feel guilty, but won’t be asking or receiving more.