When Balance Becomes Betrayal — Liberal Jewish “Universalism” Can Be Anti-Jewish


I’ll Tell You A “Secret”:
True Judaism Is Much More Than Being Liberal

Could It Be That We need To Read The Prophets A Little More?

No, David HaMelech Was No Liberal, But He Surely is Our National Hero

Could Someone Be A Traitor To His Own People And Not Know It?

By Daniel Gordis

Universalism, Cynthia Ozick once noted, has become the particularism of the Jews. Increasingly, our most fundamental belief about ourselves is that we dare not care about ourselves any more than we can about others. Noble Jews have moved beyond difference.

Innocent Israeli childrenAbove: Children in Israel

Beaasts of HamasAbove: Children in Gaza

One of the Fogel children murdered for being JewishAbove: The children in Israel the media and the world ignore
This innocent Fogel kid was stabbed to death with his entire family of five
by “Palestinian” civilians.  Who deserves to be killed?

This inability to distinguish ourselves from the mass of humanity, this inability to celebrate our own origins, our own People and our own homeland, I argue in my latest book, The Promise of Israel, is dysfunctional. Do we not care about our own children more than we care about other people’s children? And shouldn’t we? Are our own parents not our responsibility in a way that other people’s parents are not? The same is true of nations and ethnicities. The French care about the French more than they do about others. So do the Italians. So do the Spanish. It’s only this new, re-imagined Jew who is constantly seeking to transcend origins which actually make us who we are and enable us to leave our distinct fingerprints on the world.

That ­an utterly universalized Judaism is almost entirely divorced from the richness of Jewish heritage and the worldview of our classic texts is bad enough. But on weeks like this, with hundreds of thousands of Israelis sleeping in bomb shelters and many millions more unspeakably frightened, it’s become clear that this universalized Judaism has rendered not only platitudinous Jews, but something worse. It bequeaths us a new Jew utterly incapable of feeling loyalty. The need for balance is so pervasive that even an expression of gut-level love for Israelis more than for their enemies is impossible. Balance has now bequeathed betrayal.

For me, the most devastating representation of this ethical and emotional confusion this week came from the pen of someone for whom I have great admiration, respect and affection. Rabbi Sharon Brous [ Ya’akov’s note: so-called “rabbi” ] is, to my mind, one of the most intelligent and creative minds in the American Jewish community. A perpetual fixture among the Forward 50, she is almost universally recognized for her path-breaking vision of what a synagogue can be, and her combination of deep intelligence and authentic soulfulness have reached many Jews who would otherwise not be attached to the Jewish world.

Because I hold Rabbi Brous in such high esteem and consider her a friend, I was especially devastated to read her message to her community this week, which I quote in full:

“It has been a devastating couple of days in Israel and Gaza.

I believe that the Israeli people, who have for years endured a barrage of rocket attacks targeting innocents and designed to create terror, instability and havoc, have the right and the obligation to defend themselves. I also believe that the Palestinian people, both in Gaza and the West Bank, have suffered terribly and deserve to live full and dignified lives. And I happen to agree with the editors of the New York Times that the best way for Israel to diminish the potency of Hamas – which poses a genuine threat to Israel – is to engage earnestly and immediately in peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority.

But most critically at this hour, I believe that there is a real and profound need for all of us to witness with empathy and grace. Take a breath. We are deeply entrenched in our narratives of good and evil, victim and perpetrator – and we are scared. Over one million Israelis will sleep in bomb shelters tonight and rockets have nearly reached Tel Aviv. So it’s tempting to dig in our heels, to diminish the loss on the other side of the border, even to gloat. This is not the Jewish way. However you feel about the wisdom and timing of Israel’s response to the Hamas threat, the people of Israel need our strong support and solidarity. At the same time, supporting Israel’s right to protect and defend itself does not diminish the reality that the Palestinian people are also children of God, whose suffering is real and undeniable.

Let us pray that this conflict comes to an end quickly, and that we soon see a return to negotiations and a real, viable and sustainable peace.”

It is, on the surface, a lovely and innocuous message. But what’s deeply troubling about it is that every single expression of sympathy for Israelis immediately coupled to a similar sentiment about the Palestinians. Absolute balance, even on a week like this, has become the supreme commandment. “Thou shall love thy neighbor who attacks thee as yourself.”

What do we have? Israelis have a right and obligation to defend themselves, but in the very next sentence, Palestinians have a right to lives of dignity. Nothing wrong with that. Israelis are scared, but so are Palestinians, and it is not our place to gloat. Fair enough. And even more balance: “the people of Israel need our strong support and solidarity. At the same time, supporting Israel’s right to protect and defend itself does not diminish the reality that the Palestinian people are also children of God, whose suffering is real and undeniable.”

Unobjectionable, sort of.

For the clincher is this: “We are deeply entrenched in our narratives of good and evil, victim and perpetrator – and we are scared.” Yes, we are all deeply entrenched in our narratives of good and evil. But why does Rabbi Brous not feel that it’s her place as a rabbi to tell her community (I know that I sound like a dinosaur to her community in saying this) which side is good and which side is evil?

Of course Israel is far from perfect, and yes, much of life in Gaza is miserable. Yet why can we not actually say what we know to be true? Why cannot a leader of the American Jewish community say that the only reason that Israel and Hamas are at war is that Hamas wants to destroy Israel? Does anyone really imagine that even a return to the 1967 borders would mollify Hamas? How do I know that it would not? Because they say so. They say that they will never end the “armed resistance” until the “Zionist entity” is utterly eradicated. Why don’t we believe them? Why this paternalistic, virtually racist, “oh they couldn’t possible mean that – it must be a cultural difference in how we express ourselves”? XXX

The “we’re all entrenched in our narratives of good and evil” worldview leaves no space for calling evil what it is. Why can we not simply say that at this moment, Israel’s enemies are evil? That they’re wrong? Why cannot someone as insightful and soulful as Rabbi Brous just say, without obfuscation, that whatever fault one finds with Israel, it is the Jewish State that for seventy years has sued for peace and the Arabs/Palestinians who have always refused. Does anyone bother pointing out to her community that whatever you think of Israel’s presence on the West Bank (or Judea/Samaria), that when Israel left Gaza, the Palestinians elected Hamas, and that when Mubarak fell, the Egyptians elected the Muslim Brotherhood? Why are these obvious facts utterly unmentionable? Because hope must spring eternal?

Yes, Jewish hope must spring eternal. And in order for it to do so, in order for us to find the strength to continue, to send our children to war and to raise another generation in a place that will tragically not know peace in any of our lifetimes, we need to tell Jews what this is. This is a battle of good versus evil, the battle between those struggling to avoid civilian casualties and those who are intentionally trying to kill civilians, the battle between those who have time and again sought peace, and those who said “no” in Khartoum in 1967 and still say “no.”

As I read Rabbi Brous’s missive, I couldn’t stop thinking about my two sons, both in the army, each doing his share to save the Jewish state from this latest onslaught. What I wanted to hear was that Rabbi Brous cares about my boys (for whom she actually babysat when we were all much younger) more than she cares about the children of terrorists. Especially this week, I wanted her to tell her community to love my family and my neighbors more than they love the people who elected Hamas and who celebrate each time a suicide bomber kills Jews. Is that really too much to ask?

But my friend left me heartbroken. If people as wise and as deeply Jewishly knowledgeable as Rabbi Brous (whom I told that this response was forthcoming) cannot come out and say that at least at this moment, we care about Israel more than we care about its enemies because we care about the future of the Jews more than almost anything else in the world, then her Jewish world and mine simply no longer inhabit overlapping universes.

I knew, even before reading Rabbi Brous’s missive, that we Israelis are surrounded by enemies. When I finished reading her, though, I understood that matters are much worse than that. Yes, we’re surrounded, but increasingly, we are also truly alone, utterly abandoned by those who ought to be unabashedly at our side.

Source:  Times of Israel

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The New Torah Scroll At The Dimona Nuclear Reactor Protects Us From Iran


Because Far Better Than Any Atomic Bomb Is HaShem‘s Torah
And His Wonderful Promises Of Protection In It
That, And No Other, Is Our True Security
Kol HaKavod L’Haverim B’Dimona

The First Torah Scroll For The Dimona Nuclear Reactor
Is Being Dedicated Today Along With A New Synagogue.
The Synagogue Shall Be Replacing A Bomb Shelter

Dimona Plant

The first Torah scroll for the Dimona nuclear reactor is being dedicated today Tuesday 16 Tishrei 5773 (2 October 2012), along with a new synagogue, replacing an old room for worship — none other than a bomb shelter.  Synagogues in bomb shelters are common in Israel; mine is like that too.

Logically, a restricted number of guests were invited to the ceremony at the tightly guarded facility.

Daily prayers at the northern Negev nuclear reactor have been conducted for years in a bomb shelter and the initiative for the new synagogue was launched last year.

American billionaire and philanthropist Ira Rennert, who has provided funding for dozens of Torah scrolls and yeshivot throughout Israel, responded positively to an appeal from Rabbi David Abuhatzeira.

“The rabbi said that a synagogue in the nuclear reactor would be a tremendous combination of holiness with [non-spiritual] power,” according to a source closely involved with the fundraising effort. “The rabbi asked that we work a soon as possible to build the synagogue, which he described as being “splendid.” It seats approximately 300 people.

“The reactor operates 365 days a year, even during holidays, but until now, there has not been a proper synagogue,” the source said. “This was very important for the rabbi. There are thousands of workers at the reactor, and we were surprised to discover there was no synagogue for the hundreds of observant Jews working there.

He noted it is not coincidental that the synagogue is being dedicated at the same time a public debate is raging over the Iranian nuclear threat.

“I have no doubt that the building of a new synagogue and dedication of a new Torah scroll here will protect us against all eternal threats, including that from Iran,” he added.

The nuclear site, officially known as the Negev Nuclear Research Center, is located several miles east of Be’er Sheva and south of Arad.

It is closely defended through the use of a 24/7 unmanned aerial craft hovering over the facility and round-the-clock guards by the IDF in surrounding areas.

Rumors floated last January that the Israel Atomic Energy Commission was considering shutting down the reactor, at least temporarily, because of its possible vulnerability to an attack from Iran.

Source: Arutz7

What Is Hoshanah Rabbah? Does It Have A Connection With The War Of Gog uMagog?


On Rosh Hashanah our Judgement is Written in the Heavenly Book,
then on Yom Kippur that Highest Judicial Decision is Sealed,
and on Hoshanah Rabbah the Verdict is Implemented

Hoshanah Rabbah, the last day of the Sukkot Festival, is the day when the most prayers for Redemption are recited.

Chabad.org: These prayers for Redemption are referred to as Hoshanot because each stanza of the prayer is accompanied by the word Hoshanah — a combination form of the words hosha and nah (bring us salvation, please).

On the first six days of the Festival, the Bimah is circled once. On Hoshana Rabbah, the last day of the Festival, seven circles are made. This custom commemorates the service in the Bet ha-Mikdash during which the kohanim would circle the Altar once daily and seven times on Hoshana Rabbah.

Hoshana Rabbah is the last day on which we fulfill the Mitzvot of the Four Species and dwelling in the Sukkah …. The day is referred to as Hoshana Rabbah (literally, The Great Hoshanah) because more Hoshanah prayers are recited on this day than on the other days.

Jewish Virtual Library:  “In the period of the geonim, the celebration of Hoshanah Rabba acquired considerable solemnity and religious-mystic significance. In Jerusalem a large gathering took place on the Mount of Olives which was circled seven times; official announcements (such as fixing the coming year) were proclaimed; philanthropists and communities received blessings; and public excommunications were issued. The piyyut of Hoshana Rabba which opens with the words, “the Power of Thy Salvation cometh,” which deals with the splitting open of the Mount of Olives (Zechariah 14:4) and the resurrection of the dead, probably has its origin in this ceremony.”

Hoshanah Rabbah occurs on the 21st day of Tishrei and corresponds to the 21st of Nissan when Israel was saved and her enemies were vanquished at the splitting of the Reed Sea. Both dates are exactly six months apart.  The first Redemption took place on the 21st day of Nissan, and the last Redemption shall take place on the 21st day of Tisrei.  HaShem has a fine taste for mathematical parallelisms in history.

Will Hoshanah Rabbah 5773 be the day that Israel is saved and her enemies vanquished at the splitting of the Mount of Olives?  It could be; and if it is not this year, it shall be one another year soon.

Rav Fish (Sod Hachashmal) on Gog uMagog

…It is written (Zechariah 14:2) that during the Gog U’Magog war there will be an earthquake on Har Hazeitim (Mount of Olives) in Yerushalayim, and there shall be the victory upon Gog U’Magog. Based on what we explained, that this will be on Hoshana Rabba, we understand the “Sefer Chassidim” which says: “Rav Hai Gaon used to go to Yerushalayim from Bavel every year on Succot, and surrounded Har Hazeitim seven times every Hoshana Rabba. Many of the special Tefilot we recite on Hoshana Rabba are concerning the Geula, such as: .תִּתְּנֵנוּ לְשֵׁם וְלִתְהִלָּה וְכוּ’. קוֹל מְבַשֵּׂר מְבַשֵּׂר וְאוֹמֵר

The Arizal writes (Likutei Torah, Sh’mot) the words Gog U’Magog equal 70, compared to the seventy nations. Gog U’Magog shall control all of the 70 nations, and they will all gather against Yisrael. When Am Yisrael will be redeemed, it shall be “Hoshana Rabba” (A Great Salvation). The verse (Tehillim 27:5)  “He shall hide me in the Succah on the Bad Day” is the same letters as “Arava Day” (refers to Hoshana Rabba): “כִּי יִצְפְּנֵנִי בְּסֻכֹּה בְּיוֹם רָעָה”, אוֹתִיּוֹת יוֹם עֲרָבָה

And then, there is this: Signs Sha’at Ratzon: Time of Will Sukkot 5773

KEN, YEHI RATZON !!!

Source: PalmTreeOfDeborah

Yom Kippur, The Highest Holy Day In The Jewish Year


Sealed on Yom Kippur

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A fascinating overview of Yom Kippur, which explains
how to maximize the spiritual potential of the Day

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Questions and Anwers on Yom Kippur

By Rabbi Eliezer Melamed

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Settling the Land is the Way to Reveal G-d’s Kingdom

But there are also halakhic questions that need answers before the Fast

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Accepting God’s Kingdom through Settling the Land

At the beginning of the year, we should return and connect to the most important and primary foundations in our lives – and paramount to all is remembering who are we, what our life is all about, where we came from, where we are going, and the great mission that has been assigned to us. Therefore, first and foremost, we once again accept upon ourselves God’s kingdom.

Correspondingly, in last week’s column, we mentioned the outwardly discernible mitzvoth – for men, wearing ‘tzitziot’ (tassels) on the outside of one’s clothing, and a sizeable ‘kippa’; for women, modest clothing according to halakhah; and for all – responding ‘amen’ out loud, and respect for the ‘beit knesset’ (synagogue).

Some people resented my pointing out mitzvoth that not everyone from the National-Religious public always excels in. Nevertheless, it is precisely the mitzvoth which require strengthening that need to be mentioned.

On the other hand, it is important to add that in general, the mitzvah that best expresses the acceptance of God’s Kingdom in the eyes of the entire world is the mitzvah of ‘yishuv Ha’Aretz’ (settling the Land), which our Sages said is equal to all the other mitzvoth (Sifri, Parshat ‘Re’eh’). And especially today, when many countries in the world accuse us, claiming: ‘You are bandits! You conquered the Arab’s land’, and demand we retreat from the Inheritance of our forefathers, but nonetheless, we stand in opposition to all of them, continuing to settle the Land of Israel, as the Word of God in the Torah and the Prophets.

The Need to Fight for the Land – Revealing God’s Kingdom

In fact, it can and should be argued that, historically speaking, our Rights to the Land of Israel are Superior, because the Arabs themselves conquered the Land some two thousand years after us, turned it into wilderness, and never had an independent state here. In any event, the most basic reply is that of Rabbi Yitzchak, as brought down by Rashi in his first commentary on the Torah:

“The entire world belongs to God. He created it and He has distributed portions of it in accordance with His Plan. Just as He exercised His Authority in granting the Land of Canaan to the seven nations, He exercised that Authority in granting the Holy Land to us” as it is written: “God revealed to His people His glorious creation so that they could receive their rightful Inheritance from the nations of the earth” (Psalms 111:6).

It is similarly explained in the Midrash:

“God said to Israel: I could have created a new land for you, but in order to show you My Strength, I slay your enemies before you, and give you their Land, to fulfill what is written: “God revealed to His People His glorious Creation so that they could receive their rightful Inheritance from the nations of the earth” (Bamidbar Rabba 23:12).

For only in this way will the world be redeemed from all its physical and moral woes. Despite all human attempts to prevent wars and quarrels, hatred and competition, vices still prevail, and humanity fails to be saved from the iniquities of human nature. Only by clinging to the Will of God can the world elevate itself from its small-mindedness, and be redeemed from its misery.

Therefore, everyone must be aware that we have returned to the Land of Israel as God commanded, to reveal goodness and truth to the world. And, lo and behold, after all attempts, it turns out that this is the most convincing reply for the majority of people in the world.

Expansion of the Settlements

Following my article two weeks ago, in which I wrote that our main challenge is to expand Jewish settlement extensively in Judea and Samaria, I received a response from my friend, Rabbi Ya’ir Hiller, expressing his concern about the insufficient rate of growth in the settlements.

Seeing as this is a timely encouragement for the Ten Days of Repentance as well, I present part of his letter: “…The practical objective is to do what you have done on Har Bracha: to build densely populated, high-story buildings, enabling many young couples who cannot find relief from the insane housing prices everywhere, to rent or purchase.

“In my opinion, you should join forces with other public representatives, directly contacting additional local councils, and convince them and their residents about the necessity of the issue for all of Am Yisrael, not to be satisfied building expensive villas for the wealthy alone, but allocate land in every community for cheaper construction, even if this brings to the gates of their communities young families and not affluent ones. This move will solidify the settlements, especially in the outlying areas, and also bring relief to the housing shortage in the greater Tel-Aviv region.”

Indeed, this entreaty is an appropriate one, and hence, I have decided to publish it here. Thank God, for a number of years, residents of Har Bracha have been inspiring other communities to build densely, or at the very least, to build more modestly then in the past. In recent months, some residents have even started a construction company for this purpose, and we hope to hear good news from them soon.

Fast of Yom Kippur

Making Marriages on Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) is an able day for prayers and thoughts about making a good match, for oneself, or for his children. On the face of it, a person might think: “Is it fitting on this holy and awesome Day to contemplate such seemingly low matters between husband and wife?” But this is what our Sages said in the Mishna:

Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said, There were no holidays for Israel as the fifteenth of Av and as Yom Kippur, for on them the daughters of Jerusalem go forth in borrowed white garments, so as not to embarrass whoever does not have… And the daughters of Jerusalem go forth and dance in the vineyard. And what would they say? “Young man, lift up your eyes and see, what you choose for yourself. Do not set your eyes on beauty, set your eyes on the family: ‘Grace is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman that fears the L-rd, she shall be praised’ (Prov. 31:30), and it says, ‘Give her the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates’ (Mishna Ta’anit 4:8).

This was the custom when the Temple was still standing and the ‘Shechinah’ (Divine Presence) rested on Israel and the High Priest entered the Holy of Holies on Yom Kippur; at that time, Israel could engage in matchmaking in holiness. But today when the Holy Temple is destroyed, we are required to significantly increase our prayers, and the ‘Shechinah’ is not revealed within us; consequently, we can not actually engage in matchmaking on Yom Kippur. Nevertheless, on this Holy Day, it is fitting to pray and contemplate on this important issue.

In particular, a person who has a lot of doubts regarding marriage, and is influenced by external considerations connected to his bad character traits which he has not yet properly corrected, can find the path to discover his match, owing to the holiness of the day.

Restoring ‘Shalom Bayit’

While Yom Kippur is effective in finding a match, it can also be helpful in restoring peace and love between married couples. For sometimes, as a result of failing to remember the Divine destiny of the marriage covenant, difficulties develop between husband and wife causing division. But by means of the Great Repentance of Yom Kippur, they can restore the love and joy between them.

As Rabbi Akiva said: “When husband and wife are worthy, the Shechinah abides with them; when they are not worthy fire consumes them” (Sotah 17a). Rashi explains that God placed His name between them – the Hebrew letter ‘yud’ in the word ‘ish’ (man), and ‘heh’ in the word ‘isha’ (woman) [and without God’s Name, the remaining letters ‘aleph’ and ‘shin’ spell the word ‘esh’, or fire].

Many people make the mistake, thinking that by connecting to learning Torah and performing mitzvoth, love between the couple will be impaired. The truth is the exact opposite – the more they are genuinely connected to religious matters, later on, they will be able to increase happiness and joy between them.

On Yom Kippur it is forbidden for a husband to touch his wife even with his finger (Shulchan Aruch, 615:1), yet, as a result of the holiness and meaningful repentance, they will be able to increasingly deepen their relationship.

Wearing Insoles on Yom Kippur

Q: As all are aware, it is forbidden to wear leather shoes or sandals on Yom Kippur. My question is, what is the halakhah for someone who needs to wear insoles in his shoes, and without them, his feet hurt him extremely, but the insoles are covered with leather?

A: Some halakhic authorities are lenient in this matter, permitting a person who suffers greatly without his insoles, which happen to be covered with leather, to place them in his cloth or rubber shoes, since they are not considered part of the shoe, and it is similar to a person standing on a cushion made out of leather, which is permitted (Rema, 614:2). Additionally, since he suffers greatly, he is in the same category as a person who has to walk in mud, who is permitted to wear shoes (Chelek Yaacov, Vol. 2: 83). One who desires may rely on this opinion.

When purchasing insoles, a person who wishes to ‘l’hader’ (enhance the mitzvah), should ask for insoles without leather, and thus be able to use them on Yom Kippur without concern.

Does a Migraine Sufferer Have to Fast?

Q: Is a person who has migraines, and has suffered several times from an onset of acute headaches as a result of fasting, obligated to fast on Yom Kippur and other fast days?

A: The general rule is that a sick person is exempt from the minor fasts, and even Tisha B’Av. Not only that – even one who as a result of the Fast is liable to become sick and fall ill, is exempt from fasting. Therefore, someone who suffers from migraines, even if at the beginning of the Fast he does not suffer, but knows that as a result of the fast a migraine headache is liable to be triggered, is exempt from the minor fasts and Tisha B’Av.

However, regarding the Fast of Yom Kippur, where even a person who is ill must also fast, one suffering from migraine headaches is obligated to Fast as well – even if it is a strong migraine, ‘kol v’chomer’ (all the more so) in a situation where he is not yet suffering, but rather, the Fast is likely to cause the onset of a migraine headache. And even eating a little at a time, less than a ‘shiur’ [one who eats on Yom Kippur the measurement of a large date is guilty] is forbidden for an ill person, since even eating a little on Yom Kippur is a Torah prohibition.

Additionally, it is worthy to note that in most cases, there are medications, in the form of a suppository or spray, which prevent the onset of migraines until after the Fast.

However, there are rare instances where migraines can cause a stroke, in which case there is a ‘chashash sakanat nefashot’ (a possible life-threatening situation), and in any event, such an ill person is exempt from fasting on Yom Kippur.  This is under three conditions:

  1. He has been diagnosed that fasting causes his migraines.
  2. The migraine appears after an aura (a perceptual disturbance experienced by some migraine sufferers before a migraine headache), and the aura lasts for over an hour.
  3. No medications (such as suppositories or sprays) can prevent the onset of the migraine. (This halakhah was written with the assistance of Dr. Rafi Kayam, and in accordance to the opinion of Dr. Rachel Herring, an expert in this field).

It should be added that, when it comes to the type of migraine where ‘sakanat nefashot’ is involved, seeing as the ill person does not need to eat a lot at one time in order to prevent the onset, he must eat a little at a time – less than a ‘shiur’ – for as long as he eats less than a ‘shiur’, he is not considered as having broken the Fast completely.

Using Deodorant

Q: Is it permissible to use deodorant on Yom Kippur to remove bad odor?

A: One of the five unique prohibitions on Yom Kippur is the prohibition of ‘sicha’ (anointing oneself with perfumes or lotions), which includes the prohibition of anointing even a tiny part of the body with oil or cream, and also the prohibition of using cosmetic products such as powders and oils to beautify one’s skin, or for a pleasant scent (Shulchan Aruch, 614:1).

Anointing in order to remove a bad odor is also prohibited, and in this manner, the prohibition of ‘sicha’ is different from the prohibition of ‘richitza’ (bathing), because regarding ‘richitza’, if one’s clear intention is to remove dirt – washing is permitted. Nevertheless, regarding ‘sicha’, since it is mainly intended for pleasure, even when one’s intention is to remove a bad odor, it is prohibited.

However, if after changing a baby’s diaper a bad smell remains on one’s hands, it is permitted to wash one’s hands with liquid soap, because liquid soap is not considered a cream or oil.

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Source: Arutz7

HaShem’s Sword of Vengeance and the Vengeance of the Covenant


What is Spiritually Behind the Current Ordeal of Israel

David and Goliath

It Is NOT The Physically Stronger Who Wins

Iran – To strike or not to strike?

  • According to the media, not only is it a race of time, but time is running out.
  • According to the media, Israel’s Prime Minister and Defense Minister are in the final stages of planning an attack on Iran.
  • According to the media, the President of the United States and his Cabinet are doing everything in their power to discourage, sabotage and leak out Israel’s plans.

Either way, don’t be upset. The media and the politicians on both sides of the ocean don’t decide.

Each passing day brings Iran closer to a nuclear warhead. Only the blind and the naive would think otherwise. Despite international sanctions, the Iranian centrifuges are working 24/7 purifying uranium and producing nuclear weapons-grade fuel.

Lately, one after the other, senior deceiving American government officials such as the evil US Secretary of State and the wicked US Secretary of Defense have visited Israel, each carrying the same message: “Don’t be naughty, you mischievous Israelis! You may certainly not carry out a preemptive strike against the Iranian nuclear reactors!”  To which our docile  leaders, tamed in American schools, answer with their well-known bravado, “We won’t leave our fate in the hands of others. We’ll do what we need to do when we need to do.”

We certainly agree with the above statement, but our references aren’t the same as theirs. We don’t leave our fate in the hand of “others” – in other words, other gods. We leave our fate in the Hand of HaShem.

With all the hype in the media, people are frantic. They hear Iran day and night. Syria too is up for grabs, and no one knows in whose hands hundreds of tons of chemical mass-destructive weapons will fall. Then there’s Hizballah, Iran’s armed-to-the-gills proxy right on our border too. Terror is on the rise in lawless Sinai. What will be?  Rabbi Shalom Arush,  was asked that question.

In front of recent events, especially the horror stories of breaches of holiness in the religious community, whic have taken a toll on his health Rav Shalom brushed aside the USA, Iran, and all of our other so-called friends and enemies with one backhand gesture. “They don’t decide our fate,” he said hoarsely.  He had tears in his eyes, his voice was quivering, and he was obviously trying to restrain himself from crying. Rav Shalom was seeing a very dark cloud on the spiritual horizon.

He then quoted the Torah:

Leviticus 26:25
And I will bring upon you the Sword that avenges the vengeance of Covenant.

Rav Shalom then became as fierce as a lion:

“When will people begin to realize that the entire purpose of Torah and mitzvoth is to bring a person to a state of holiness, so he or she can be a worthy vessel for the Divine Presence. But everyone must know: if they eat Kosher BaDatz, keep Shabbat with stringencies and have long beards – yet they think that their libido is a big mitzvah and their hearts are far from holiness – then they have done nothing! They’ve completely missed the point of Torah observance.”

Not only have they missed the point, but they aid and abet the enemy. How?

Rav Shalom quoted Torah and mentioned “the Sword that avenges the vengeance of Covenant“. HaShem incorporated a hard-fast law of cause-and-effect in the fiber of creation: if the Jewish people shall live their lives in holiness, they shall be encompassed within the glorious “clouds of Divine Presence;” they shall lack nothing and shall enjoy every single blessing in life, both material and spiritual. Not only that, Hashem Himself shall dwell in their midst, so no evil can befall them.

But, if on the other hand, Heaven forbid, the Jewish people forsake the Path of Holiness, succumbing to temptations of the mind and body, they shall suffer the consequences of the breach in Brit, the Holy Covenant. Any breach in Covenant produces a negative spiritual force known as “Vengeance of Covenant”.  The Vengeance of Covenant is the Force that creates a Sword of Vengeance, the same way that nuclear fuel is the power source of an atomic weapon.  Are you beginning to understand?

The spiritual roots of the Iranian nuclear weapons, the “Sword of Vengeance” that threatens us today, are all the breaches of holiness within the Torah-observant community. Maybe you think that’s not fair. “What about the seculars?” you want to ask.

Hashem expects much more from the observant community than He does from the seculars, who grew up in utter ignorance of Torah and mitzvoth.

People are afraid to be called names. One “average” religious man says, “If I go around closing my eyes, people will think I’m insane.”

Rav Shalom answers, “If you open your eyes, especially to unfiltered web and to Facebook, you will be insane.”

A so-called “Orthodox” woman says (wearing her long Euro-Kastem $1,600 wig and her long but quite-tight satin dress that accents every curve), “Do you expect me to dress like a yachna (Yiddish for ‘old hag’)? I wouldn’t be caught dead like that!”

Hey lady, if you continue dressing the way you do, you are creating the Sword which will “catch you dead.”

So maybe you’re asking, “What can I do if the whole world is off its rocker and I guard my eyes?” Or, “What can I do if all the women are ‘in style’ and I dress like ‘Little House on the Prairie’?” Rav Shalom that you’re doing a lot – you just might save the Jewish people.

When the Jews arrived at the Red Sea, with the Egyptian Army in hot pursuit from behind and the sea in front, there was an argument in the Heavenly Court if the Jews were worthy of being saved or not. One man’s dedication – Nachshon ben Aminadav who jumped into the water – tipped the scales in the Jews’ favor and the sea split. This is what Rebbe Nachman of Breslev calls azut d’kedusha, or “boldness for holiness.”

Rav Shalom says that azut d’kedusha is the only weapon which can defeat the sword of our enemies, conventional or otherwise.

So it’s not our enemies or our allies that determine our fate; they don’t decide. Our determination in strengthening personal holiness – guarding eyes for men and modesty for women – is the force that will determine which way the chips fall. There’s little time left, so let’s get to work. Personal holiness is our undisputable and irrefutable deed to the entire holy Land of Israel. The wicked Bilaam knew that Israel was invincible as long as it preserved its holiness. That’s why he tempted our people with the daughters of Midian; 24,000 Jews who dropped their guard died in the aftermath. Let’s not let that or anything like it happen ever again.

With our strengthened personal holiness, let Tehran worry; here we will sleep like babies, for The Guardian of Israel shall never slumber. G-d bless always.

In Jerusalem It Is Proclaimed That Israel’s Next Leader Is Moshiach!


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The Process of Redemption Is In Full Swing

And There is a Wind of Anticipation of Moshiach

An Excitement is felt by the Jews of Israel

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Jewish Temple
The Future Temple of HaShem in Jerusalem

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The Current Situation Of Israel
Requires Moshiach Soon

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Lifnei ha’kol, Shannah Tovah v’Chag Sameach l’kulam!
Translation:  Before everthing, Happy New (Jewish) Year and Joyful Festivities to all!

It is Erev Rosh Hashanah and the Jewish year 5773 (2012 to 2013) is just about to begin in a few hours, and that brings to mind that we are in the midst of a Shmitah (Sabbatical Week of Years) while portentous Events and Moments appear to now be upon us.

The Islam-bent American White House is quickly disengaging itself from the Netanyahu government as the 44th President of the United States tries to recoup momentum to keep the seat of the Oval Office.  At the same time, Obama’s top military official, Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on August 30, after visiting with Netanyahu, stated; “I don’t want to be complicit if they (Israel) choose to do it” – meaning attacking Iran.  With the deciding vote in November for who will be the 45th President may virtually hang on the swing vote of the Jewish American voters, the die is being cast for both America and Israel.  As DebkaFiles wrote:

“President Barack Obama’s refusal Tuesday Sept. 11 to see Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu because “the president’s schedule will not permit that,” left Jerusalem thunderstruck – and Washington too.  At one stroke, round after round of delicate negotiations on Iran between the White House, Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, the US National Security Council, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta collapsed.  They had aimed at an agreement on a starting point for the meeting that had been fixed between the two leaders for Sept. 28 in New York to bridge their differences over an attack on Iran’s nuclear program.”

As the diplomatic discussions continued to unfold for the last possible meeting between Netanyahu and Obama was slated for September 28, on Tishri 14 after Iran President Ahmadinejad is scheduled to speak at the United Nations on the Yom Kippur, the Great Day of Judgment, the stage is being set for the G-d of Israel to step into the world diplomatic ring and begin the final acts of judgment upon Planet Earth.  Then the clincher was revealed by DebkaFiles:

“Although the Israeli presidency is a largely titular function, Peres has elected himself senior spokesman for the opponents of an Israeli military operation against Iran.  While their advisers sought to establish agreed lines between them ahead of Netanyahu’s meeting with Obama, debkafile reports that the confrontation between the two Israeli politicians ended inconclusively, because Peres kept on demanding that the prime minister bend to the will of the White House.”

The Vatican’s P2 Masonic Lodge representative to the State of Israel sitting as the President of Israel has now joined the diplomatic discussion table, giving the final vote of the Vatican to the discussions on whether to strike Iran or not.  Then Barry Chamish jumped into the fray in April, 2012, with this article titled; “Out of Israel, the next Exodus”, we read these words:

“Not two months ago, the head of military intelligence for the IDF, Aviv Kochavi felt he had to tell the public a painful truth.  Israel’s enemies, presumably not Egypt or Jordan, had 200,000 missiles aimed at everywhere in the country. In the next war, unlike the disastrous war of ’06 which saw literally, the entire north driven south by the missiles, this time there would be nowhere to run.

[ Obviously, faithless Chamish forgets that HaShem IS the best Refuge there is.  Actually, for Israel, He is the only proven Defense and worthy Hope; not even the IDF is to be trusted completely for our defense. ]

So scared is this settler-less staff, that less than a month before they let Hamas rain over 300 rockets in 4 days from Rishon Letzion east to Be’er Sheva. The army, overwhelmed with fear that any retaliation might spark a full scale war it would lose, sat on its hands comatose.

There is a threat that Israel has let its enemies know that, so far, has kept the next war in check. In Lebanon, Syria, Gaza and Iran, they have decided not to order the missile war ignited because Israel has threatened a kamikaze nuclear ending. Any rational person knows that Damascus cannot be destroyed by an Israeli nuke. It would be the same as nuking yourself.

Located just 10 miles from the Golan Heights, if you destroy Damascus, no matter which way the wind may be blowing, the Golan and the upper Galilee would be irradiated within minutes. The same goes for Sidon, Tyre, and Gaza.  If you start the next war, we will lose, but you’re going down with us.  We will nuke you to oblivion, so don’t do anything stupid.”

So, Israel is at one of those critical existential moments.  The choice is to go alone — even if still doing it in the company of other countries, which means to be without the protecting Hand of the G-d of Israel — or to “call upon the Name of Hashem” as the Lord of the Legions, the invincible Leader of Forces of Heaven.  The terrible part is that many Israelis and Jews in Galut do not really trust Him when He says, “Call upon Me and I will answer.”

This is the scenario we currently have — at least the one we can see.

Enters Moshiach.

The Initial Shofar Is Being Blown

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In a series of newspapers, advertisements and billboards, the “Soon Coming of Moshiach” is being announced all over the Land of Israel. This event alone is palpable, not whether it will happen now, but that the Jewish soul is being awakened by the Almighty One of Israel and the Israeli people are responding to the facts that the Days of the Messiah (Mashiach) have now arrived.

The following half-page advertisement appeared in the Jerusalem Post on Sunday and Monday, 9, 10 September, 2012.

The Messiah is Here Ad

In the webpage of the group that put the advertisement it tells it in an expanded way:

The Next Leader of Israel is Moshiach!

The world will soon go through catastrophic disasters. Only Moshiach will save Israel in the coming up Gog and Magog war!  The group says that Moshiach is in Israel, in Tel Aviv.

The current government in Israel is the last government! The Next leader of Israel is: the Moshiach! Only Moshiach will save Israel in the coming up Gog and Magog war!

The world will soon go through catastrophic disasters, which have never seen before: severe earthquakes and mega tsunamis. Towns and Cities in Europe and U.S.A will sink under the ocean water! The world’s financial and economic system will fail and collapse; G-d will smash the silver and gold idols!

G-d will smash the idols of silver and gold

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Watch the video below.

  • Israel will go through a severe earthquake and fatal missiles attacks, including chemical, biological and atomic weapons after which; no building will remain intact!  Those who will remain after Gog and Magog events will live in tents!  Just as was in the First Redemption, those who left Egypt with Moses lived in tents in the Sinai desert.  Those who chose to stick as slaves to their houses and properties in Egypt were exterminated.  Vanished!
  • Anti-Semitism will increase all around the world and will develop into serious violence, worse than the horrible events which the Jewish communities have suffered from, before and during World War Two!!

Jews who will choose to remain in the Diaspora, worshiping the modern Golden Calf will be lost!  Just like the eighty percent of the Jews in Egypt who preferred to stick to their properties there, and remain slaves to Pharaoh.  Those eighty percent lost their lives!  The Israeli people will pay severely, on any Israeli government waiver of Homeland Property, handed to the enemy!

The Israeli people will pay severely even for the act of talking about handing over Israeli territories to the enemy, or declaring about “two states for two peoples”!

The Land of Israel was given to Abraham by G-d as an Eternal Gift: only to the people of Israel!

Orthodox Jewish Patriots of Israel

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Anyone who dares to trade with the Holy Land of Israel will not exist in the near Redemption!

Nowadays, disasters and diseases are increased also among the religious communities, including the Orthodox Haredim!  They do not ask for Moshiach as the Leader by advertising and loudly shouting to G-d asking for Moshiach!  They stand aside while blasphemy is occurring when the Israeli government continues to hand over Israeli Holy Territories to the enemy.

What should everyone do in order to survive in Gog and Magog War?

What should you do in order to see the holy 3rd Temple descending from Heaven to its location in Jerusalem?

What should you do in order to survive and watch the astonishing event of the resurrection!?

What should you do in order to live eternal life in the redemption era when all nations will speak the Hebrew language, and when the people of Israel will be the light for all the nations of the world!

You should cry out loudly every day to God (in Hebrew) asking for Moshiach:

! ה’ מלך העולם

!! אנא שלח:משיח בן דוד מיד

“Adonai Melech Haolam!
Ana shlach Moshiach Ben David miyad!!”

L-ord, King of the World!
Please, send us Moshiach Ben David immediately!

Better use the Shofar in between the shouting.

Here are examples of shouting in Hebrew:

Resources in the Bible, the Gmara, Rambam (Maimonides) etc/ for the command to shout loudly to G-d in cases of troubles:

In Hebrew – “What to do in order to be saved

Jerusalem Ad Messiah is Here

  • You should advertise Moshiach in the media: newspapers, internet, radio, billboards, flags, TV, as well as with shirts with Moshiach title, signposts, Moshiach advertisement on the car and in front of the house, on the doors etc.

Follow G-d’s Commandments according to Moses as revealed in the Bible.  Participate in the struggle for the possession of Israel’s whole Homeland Property!

Any Jew who will not immediately return to Israel will not survive in the war of Redemption because G-d will soon repay the Gentiles for their bad deeds toward the Jews all along the history.  Any Jew who will stay abroad will not be protected!  He will be lost together with the Gentiles around him!

Take care of your wives as queens!  Take care of homeless animals!

To sum it up:  The Moshiach will soon be revealed in any case — with or without “your help”!  Following the dramatic events that will soon occur in the world, there will not be even one person who will not shout for G-d’s Help!   Why shout to G-d in hospitals, or after an earthquake, or after missiles attacks, when already it’s too late?!  Why not to spend money for advertising Moshiach, rather than spending money on mourning advertising?

Moshiach does not need you.  You are the one who needs Moshiach and G-d’s Help — most of all in the Gog and Magog period — in the great and horrifying Judgment Day of G-d which is ahead!

Advertising Moshiach in the radio

Advertising Moshiach on busses

Internet advertisment

Click to Open Advertising on Buses and Billboards in Israel

Shannah Tovah v’Chag Sameach!

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Source: V871

A Rosh HaShanah Message In Honey For A Fallen Jew


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No Matter What Our Situation Might Be
With HaShem There Is Hope And Recovery

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By Rabbi Aaron Moss

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Honey is a miraculous substance. It can do the impossible.  Just try this experiment with your family at the Rosh Hashana table:

  1. Dunk a slice of apple into a bowl of honey.
  2. Lift the apple out of the honey.
  3. Hold the apple over the bowl and allow a shaft of honey to drip back down into the bowl.
  4. While it is oozing downwards, quickly lift the apple until the shaft breaks.
  5. Watch carefully. The honey on the apple starts to fall a little, and then climbs back upwards towards the apple, defying the laws of gravity.
  6. Say “Wow!”

The upward climbing honey gives us a moving message for the new year. Even if you have fallen, you can always climb back up. Even if you have become disconnected, you can reconnect. You may have become estranged from your people and from your G-d. You may have lost your way in life and fallen to a very low place. But you can always pick yourself back up. No force in the world can stop a Jew coming home.

The honey may fall downwards, but at a certain point it turns around. In fact, it is the falling down that causes the bouncing up. The further you have strayed from Judaism and HaShem the more rebound energy you have built up for your return.

A Jewish soul wants to be Jewish. Materialistic distractions can only hold us back for so long. Our inner pull towards G-d is stronger than the pull of gravity towards the earth.  Honey always bounces back. So can we.

And since we are taking about honey and apples, let us continue at it for a moment with:

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The Healing Powers of Apples and Honey

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It is customary to eat an apple dipped in honey on the night of Rosh Hashanah and ask G-d to grant us a good sweet year. Ideally, the apple should be red and white, as an allusion to the verse,

Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 1:18
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be white as snow.

Apples help cleanse and purify the blood, are beneficial in the treatment of diabetes, respiratory tract infections, skin problems, the liver and the kidneys. They strengthen the body, are soothing to the nervous system, help prevent hardening of the arteries and are recommended for disorders of the kidneys and digestive system. There is a great deal of truth in the saying “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”.

According to Kabbalah, the apple is an allusion to the mystical level of the Holy Apple Field. Also, when you cut an apple in half horizontally you will see ten little holes and a five pointed star. Ten is the numerical value of the Hebrew letter “yud”, and five is the numerical value of the Hebrew letter “hey”. The stalk of the apple represents the “vav” – together these letters spell out G-d’s Name.

The Zohar tells us that the apple has healing qualities: just as the apple heals all, so the Holy One, blessed be He, heals all. Just as the apple has various colours (white, red, green), so the Holy One, blessed be He, has various supernal colours (white, red, green – corresponding to the attributes of chesed (loving kindness), gevurah (might) and tiferet (beauty). The symbol of the green apple reveals some of the hidden meaning behind this teaching of the Zohar. Tiferet, the kabbalistic attribute of harmony and beauty, is associated with green, the colour of healing.

The Ben Ish Chai writes that the apple tree is the only fruit tree that has its spiritual source in the attribute of tiferet. This is yet another indication of the special connection of the apple with healing.

Honey was called “one sixtieth of manna” by the Sages because it shares many of the curative qualities of the manna from Heaven.

Nowadays the term honey means bee’s honey, but the famous Biblical verse “A land flowing with milk and honey” refers to date honey. Dates are one of the seven species characteristic of the Land of Israel. Honey is fuel for such organs as the heart, brain and liver. Predigested in the bee’s crop it is readily absorbed into the bloodstream where it stimulates circulation and raises the red blood count. It is invaluable for those with heart conditions or weak hearts. Honey strengthens, invigorates and refreshes.

It is helpful in the treatment of stomach ulcers, and is a useful sweetening agent for diabetics since it helps reduce sugar levels while it boosts vitality and physical stamina. Because of its positive effects on the blood count, honey is highly recommended for sufferers of anaemia.

Honey is unique because of where it comes from. It is the only food taken from a non-kosher animal that we are permitted to eat. Furthermore the bee is an insect that stings and causes pain and bodily damage. Yet at the same time it is able to produce a sweet food that can add a delicious flavor to other things.

This is specifically why we use honey – because it represents the power of Rosh Hashanah. When we begin a fresh new year, the past is not always so sweet. Not everything in the last year might have been completely “Kosher”. Sometimes we may have stung and hurt those close to us. But on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur we can turn it all around. We can learn from last year’s experiences and make the future more positive and filled with blessing. Like the bee, we can produce sweet honey.

When we eat the honey on Rosh Hashanah we are making a statement: We are not perfect, but with a little effort we can achieve sweetness. G-d accepts our commitment, and blesses us all with a happy, healthy, prosperous and sweet new year.

Shabbat Shalom, v’Shanah Tovah l’kulam!

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Source: ShiratDevorah