Last week I decided to go visit the CERN in Geneva, Switzerland to see for myself what the rumors about the organization are all about. Like many enthusiastic young students being shown around by various tour guides, I entered the Globe, which has a wonderful exhibit explaining in great detail, in various languages and with elaborate models, how the whole thing works, and how scientists are attempting to penetrate the secrets of the Universe. So far, so good: nothing wrong with scientific inquiry: on the contrary, getting to understand God's creation is a wonderful thing that can only increase our awe of Hashem, when we can marvel at the precision, perfection and unity of the universe. I would say, morally neutral at this point. The many students visiting the Globe standing over the LHC, the Large Hadron Collider, were obviously impressed, and frankly clear presentations by young, knowledgeable, dynamic scientists were very interesting.
Here is a well put together video that shares with you some of what I saw in Geneva -cool!
But that is only the face of CERN for public consumption. There is also the DARK SIDE: I told a female Cerberus type in charge of professional visits: "I would like to go see the Shiva statue. Where is it?" She froze, frowned, and replied: " Oh no, you cannot go there." I persisted: " But where is it"? She pointed to the buildings in the background and explained: "All the way deep in the compound of the CERN". The CERN is a huge enterprise that employs 12,000 people and is comprised of a large area with many buildings; and the Shiva statue is hidden on those grounds, concealed from the public eye. You know what happened there, don't you? If not, search the internet for details, I will spare you ( I'll give you a hint: do a search on "CERN video", and "human sacrifice, Shiva statue, CERN" ; then enjoy the videos}.
Soon after I had asked her that question, a male goon in uniform appeared and hung around in my close vicinity while I was asking more questions. Not too friendly for sure. And at the interface with the section of CERN closed to the public, where I was standing, I saw one senior man come out and he wasn't too pleasant looking either.
My visit was an eye-opener; what I observed is this:
Just like the Vatican, the CERN has two faces: there is the brilliant, enthusiastic, friendly, innocent face for public consumption, and then there is the dark side hidden from public awareness. Birds of a feather flock together! To stress this point I want to remind you of two recent posts I wrote, one about the CERN, the other about the Vatican:
This pattern can also be seen in this week's Parsha, Parshat Balak, in the person of the magician Bilaam. Rav Ofer Erez, whose Shiur I am posting here for you Hebrew listeners, discusses this in detail: he shows how there is the prophet Bilaam for public consumption, and then there is the thoroughly evil magician underneath it all. Both the Vatican and CERN like to play magician too: that thread goes back all the way in history to the times of evil magicians of old: don't forget that Bilaam was one of the advisors of Pharaoh, as well as one of his magicians. Ancient Egypt, Rome, CERN, the thread goes back all the way to the times of the Torah and continues to this day.
In light of this the video above makes sense: it IS possible that CERN is behind all the horrendous changes occurring on this planet lately. But of course the Hand of Hashem guides everything including that, let's not forget.
Last but not least, you can see a post I wrote about this parsha five years ago; I would say it is still quite relevant:
See also here , Part II: