web analytics
November 24, 2014 / 2 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Lebanon: Crossing And Possessing


Lessons-logo

About 15 months after the Second Lebanon War, we were called up to reserve duty in the Gush Talmonim region, part of the Binyamin Regional Council. On the second Friday night, I enjoyed the privilege of leading the entire company in singing, “Shalom Aleichem.” Although there wasn’t even a minyan of shomrei Shabbat men, the soldiers pulled out their hats in honor of the song (a handful placed a hand on their heads), and all respectfully rose to their feet – including the Bedouin trackers.

After the meal one of the soldiers approached me, and in a rare moment of sentimentality (an unusual occurrence on the macho Israeli landscape), he told me that the Kiddush was very nice and that it reminded him of the Kiddush that I recited back in Lebanon.

That Shabbat Nachamu of 2006 in the village of Shamah is an experience that I’m not likely to forget.

On the previous Wednesday, we entered Israel’s northern neighbor’s territory. Our visit was extended and within 30 hours, we had used up all of our food and water. Early Friday morning, we arrived in Shamah – tired, hungry, and dazed. We scattered among the local houses, where our hosts did not exactly see to our comfort. In fact, they weren’t even home.

Some of the others fared better, but my platoon’s Lebanese “hosts” were either desperately poor or had managed to take all their food with them before escaping the Zionist enemy. I thus avoided the following dilemma faced by others: were they forbidden/permitted/required to eat the non-kosher food that they had found?

Fortunately vegetable gardens are hard to move, and we were able to help ourselves to some watermelons and tomatoes. I was even happier that HaKadosh Baruch Hu planted the brilliant idea in my head of picking grapes from a vine-covered pergola. The grapes were crushed (by hand) in a plastic bag, and the juice dripped straight out of a hole into an empty bottle.

In the pitch darkness, we sat on sofas in the living room singing “L’cha Dodi” with feeling. Every few seconds someone would destroy the mood with a long “shh,” which would bring us back down to earth and remind us that we were in enemy territory and should be conducting ourselves accordingly. But in our enthusiasm, the decibels would soon rise again – and the process would repeat itself.

After somehow managing to daven by heart, the fresh grape juice was poured into a glass from the kitchen, and then I made Kiddush for everyone. Someone shared the pistachios that he managed to “smuggle,” and so we even had Kiddush b’makom seudah. (Ideally, Kiddush should lead into a meal.)

The next morning, we discovered that the grape juice had begun to ferment. Meanwhile we had no food left, and our shrunken stomachs had to make do with “spiritual food.” One of the guys took out a small Chumash, and we spent the next three hours going over Parshat Va’etchanan, theparshat hashavua. Astonishingly, the parshah seemed to have been written just for us.

Moshe said, “Let me now cross over and see the good land this good mountain and the Lebanon And Hashem commanded me at that time to teach you statutes and ordinances so that you should do them in the land to whichyoucross there[Shamah] to possess And from there you will seek Hashem, your God, and you will find Him; if you search for Him with all your heart and with all your soul to drive out nations from before you; to bring you, to give you their land for an inheritance, as this very day” (Deut. 3:25-4:38).

We had just conquered Shamah – and there we were, sitting and seeking Hashem!

“Face to face, Hashem spoke with you at the mountain from amid the fire” (Deut. 5:4).

We certainly had seen plenty of fire and mountains, but what did Hashem say to us “face to face”?

The first three chapters of the parshah contain all sorts of relevant hints, but the next chapter, chapter 6, was even more eerily reminiscent of our current circumstances.

According to some opinions (Gittin 7b), the northern borders of Eretz Yisrael reach the location of the village of Kfar Ras El Baide – where we were to spend the next Shabbat (our second and final one). This is referred to today as Lebanon (in spite of the anarchy that prevails in its south). During biblical times, this area belonged to the tribe of Asher.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Lebanon: Crossing And Possessing”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Banner at Tehran military parade, Sept. 23, 2013. Although the English statement is relatively mild, in Persian and Arabic it says “Death to America.”
Iran Says Nuclear Deal ‘Impossible’ by Nov. 24 Deadline
Latest Judaism Stories
Rabbi Avi Weiss

Yitzchak thought the Jewish people needed dual leadership: Eisav the physical; Yaakov the spiritual

Weiss-112114-Sufganiot

According to the Sefer Yetzirah, the nature of the month of Kislev is sleep.

Teller-Rabbi-Hanoch-NEW

Though braggarts come across as conceited, their boasting often reflects a low sense of self-regard

Nimchinsky-112114-Learning

Not every child can live up to our hopes or expectations, but every child is loved by Hashem.

Leaders must always pay attention to the importance of timing.

While our leaders have been shepherds, the vast majority of the Children of Israel were farmers.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

If a man dies childless, the Torah commands the deceased’s brother to marry his brother’s widow in a ceremony known as yibum, or to perform a special form of divorce ceremony with her known as chalitzah.

Dovid turned to the other people sitting at his table. “I’m revoking my hefker of the Chumash,” he announced. “I want to keep it.”

Ever Vigilant
‘When Unworthy, One’s Number Of Years Is Reduced’
(Yevamos 50a)

Question: My young daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. She does not function well socially and is extremely introverted, but we have noticed that she reacts very well to small animals. We reported this to her therapist who suggested that we get a dog or cat as a pet. We know that most religious people frown upon having pets, but we hate to see our daughter suffer and want to do anything that would make her happy. Would it be okay to own a pet in the circumstances we described?

Her Loving Parents
(Via E-Mail)

Ramban interprets Korban as self-sacrifice, each Jew should attempt to recreate Akeidas Yitzchak.

Dr. Schwartz had no other alternatives up his sleeve. He suggested my mother go home and think about what she wanted to do.

Why does Lavan’s speaking before his father show that he was wicked? Disrespectful, yes. Rude, certainly. But a rasha?

We find that in certain circumstances before the Torah was actually given, people were permitted to make calculations as to what would better serve Hashem, even if it were against a mitzvah or aveirah.

More Articles from Eldad Zamir
Lessons-logo

About 15 months after the Second Lebanon War, we were called up to reserve duty in the Gush Talmonim region, part of the Binyamin Regional Council. On the second Friday night, I enjoyed the privilege of leading the entire company in singing, “Shalom Aleichem.” Although there wasn’t even a minyan of shomrei Shabbat men, the soldiers pulled out their hats in honor of the song (a handful placed a hand on their heads), and all respectfully rose to their feet – including the Bedouin trackers.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/jewish-columns/lessons-in-emunah/lebanon-crossing-and-possessing/2011/11/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: