If the recent Sukkot overdose of Shabbat, followed by two days of Yom Tov, and another Shabbat followed by two more days of Yom Tov, isn’t enough to get Diaspora Jews to move to Israel, with its force-feeding of gefilta fish day-after-day, until gefilta fish jelly drips out of people’s noses and horseradish pours out of their ears, I don’t know what it’s going to take until Diaspora Jews are fed up with practicing Judaism in a jar.
On Simchat Torah we celebrate having successfully read the entire Torah over the space of a year.
Despite Obama’s poor debate performance, Romney’s rising likability numbers and voters saying he would better handle the economy – and two more polls which give him a significant bump since the debate – there is reason to fear that voters will still not vote against the incumbent.
Questions abound as the IDF released scant information about the drone which entered Israeli airspace. News agencies add additional minor details but the large questions remain unanswered for the moment. China's Xinhua news service says the unidentified drone flew over settlements and military bases in southern Israel briefly before being brought down by IDF fire over an open unpopulated area. It was spotted entering Israel's airspace from the Mediterranean sea heading from the west to the east. But there is no word on where the UAV originated.
The outcome of the debate between Obama and Romney had less to do with any extraordinary qualities possessed by Mitt Romney than with the purely ordinary qualities of Barack Obama. No matter how much Team Obama tried to warn the media faithful against any enthusiasm, the expectations were high and remained high until the Chicago Messiah began to speak. And then there was nothing.
It seems that two very prominent rabbinic figures have come on board with Rabbi Slifkin’s views with respect to reconciling science and the Torah. According to a post on Hirhurim by Rabbi Gil Student, Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, the Chief Rabbi of England, and a man of great intellect who I respect and admire greatly is one of them. The other is Rabbi Yaakov Ariel - one of the chief Poskim of Religious Zionists in Israel. These two people are not just your average rabbis. They are both highly respected not only by me but by Jews all over the world.
Last week's U.S. presidential debate was a victory for Romney on all accounts, especially if one judges by the closing statements, where Obama couldn't muster any specific reason why voters should re-elect him aside from the fact that he was trying really hard as president. Looking at polls on how people view the candidates, I’m beginning to wonder why it is that Obama leads Romney in national polls and whether that is going start to change in a big way.
On Saturday, at noon, local Jews out on a walk at the Aner springs west of the village of Neria in Samaria were attacked by dozens of Arabs throwing rocks, Tazpit reported. The official reason for the Arabs to be in the area was the olive harvest. What can be more peaceful than the olive harvest? And yet, despite the peaceful properties assigned to the olive, despite all those olive branches everywhere – those Arab olive pickers put down the olives and picked up the rocks.
Why is there so much animosity between Charedi and Dati Leumi/Religious Zionist factions? I can't fully answer the question. But I do have some thoughts about it. I think it is because Israelis are far more idealistic about their religious values - especially those who make Aliyah.
This same Mr Erdogan, who reserves to himself the right to defend his citizens and his borders and warns malefactors that they should not even dream of testing his country's determination, has expressed himself quite differently when it was Israel that took defensive measures in the face of lethal terrorist behavior that goes on and on.
I found some essays penned by Diaspora Jews who succumbed to the Sin of the Spies in their negative reports of the Holy Land. Oy.
The satirical news website, The Onion, published a story on shocking poll results, showing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad - who is widely viewed with disdain in the U.S - to be more popular than President Barack Obama among rural whites in the U.S. The Iranian FARS News Agency was quick to republish the obviously fake story. When the agency realized its mistakes they claimed that "if a free opinion poll is conducted in the US, a majority of Americans would prefer anyone outside the US political system to President Barack Obama and American statesmen."
The enmity I have observed between groups here in the holy land has been a source of great disappointment to me. Not that I didn’t know it exists. But I have encountered numerous instances of it I and did not realize the extent of it.
Human Rights Watch released a report on Hamas abuses of Palestinian human rights in the criminal justice system, including arbitrary arrests, failure to inform relatives of the whereabouts of detainees, the arrest, abuse and torture of lawyers, using military courts to try civilians, and death sentences.
On Monday, electric car company Better Place announced that Shai Agassi, up to now the face and driving force behind Better Place, was stepping back from his CEO rôle and would continue on as a member of the board and major shareholder. Evan Thornley, Better Place’s CEO in Australia, is stepping up to the global rôle. The news seemed to come out of the blue.
During the reign of King Solomon, the Nation of Israel was at its prime. We lived in peace in our own homeland. A Jewish government ruled over the country from the majestic city of Jerusalem. All of the people gathered for the Festivals at the Temple three times a year. Jewish law went forth from the Sanhedrin. Prophets communicated the word of the Lord to the Nation and the world. A powerful Jewish army guarded the country’s borders. Torah was studied in great academies of learning. Hebrew was spoken on the street. The leaders of foreign nations flocked to Jerusalem to pay tribute to the Jews.
The main holiday events took place on the last day of Sukkot, Hoshana Raba. The Gaon would lead the people around the Temple Mount, and then the crowd made its way to the Mount of Olives. After they climbed the mountain, they circled it seven times. A monumental stone marked the spot where God looked over the Temple Mount. The Gaon would sit on this stone as he spoke to the assembled crowd.
I am a Zionist. That means that I support a Jewish state in its historical homeland. I oppose efforts to change it into another Arab state, or to kill and disperse its Jewish inhabitants. It does not mean that I think that Jews are superior to Arabs or anyone else.
Those of us familiar with the do's and don'ts of accepted practice in the mental health profession saw similar blaring warning lights in our minds, as should have occurred when the facts were made public regarding the accusations against Nehemia Weberman. This case may very well be our community’s most important abuse trial during our lifetimes. It is imperative that we have a huge turnout in support of the victim, a courageous young lady who, may she be gezunt andge’bentched, is determined to see this through to the end so others won't suffer like she did.
Pamela Geller's attempt to stop the New York City MTA from changing the rules in order to block her anti-Jihad subway ads.
There is a special mitzvah on Sukkot to be “ach samaoch.” Only joyous. It is a happiness not dependent on anything external, beyond definition and words. Just to be absolutely joyous in one’s love and worship of G-d. Rabbi Kook describes the sukkah as a whirlpool of joyous energy which is constantly changing each second, reaching ever-higher levels of joy and attachment to G-d.
To rectify the blemish caused by galut, the Diaspora Jew has to stop being in exile and join the ingathered. He has to actualize the words of his daily prayers, “And gather us together from the four corners of the earth” by getting on a plane.
The brilliant plan that Barack Hussein Obama and some of his more useless advisers cooked up for defeating Islamic terrorism was to isolate the "extreme" violent Islamists who want to kill people from the "moderate" political Islamists who are willing to take over entire countries in elections.
Unfortunately, ‘respectable’ voices in our society, even — especially — among Jews, are unable to understand what the deliberately outrageous, over-the-top Geller sees clearly.
For sure, there is no "direct connection" between the book, Torat HaMelech, and the youth who carried out the vicious attack on an Arab in Zion Square although since the trial hasn't begun, we really do not know much, neither I nor the Reform Rabbi. A Rabbi, by the way, would steer clear of such an accusation, especially during the Ten Days of Penitence. But "concentration camps"?