Across Israel, Meir Panim responds to the growing needs of the country’s 1.75 million impoverished residents through various food and social service programs.
They walked up a tree-lined path through stony hills to a square, white building — men in black hats, beards and frock coats; in T-shirts and jeans; in sweaters, slacks and velvet kippas.
They came by the hundreds — 19-year-olds looking for a match, 40-year-olds losing hope that they would ever find one, boys of 15 praying for the unmarried.
They had come for a special ceremony: They would blow 1,000 shofars, encircle the building seven times and recite penitential prayers led by a master of Jewish mysticism. They would scream and they would sing.
They had come to harness the power of a dead rabbi, Yonatan ben Uziel, a man they believed would intercede on their behalf in heaven, granting any Jew a match within the year — as long as they prayed at his tomb or paid a fee.
“This is the bringing-together of all the strengths in the world,” said Meir Levy, a 40-year-old bachelor who had come to join the prayer service on Jan. 27. “This is a very holy place.”
A man in a light blue robe, red velvet hat and paisley sash approached the building’s courtyard. Volunteers distributed standard-issue shofars to anyone who thought he could blow. The cardboard boxes full of rams’ horns emptied as the men stood at the ready, waiting for the robed man — the kabbalah master Rabbi Yechiel Abuhatzeira — to begin the prayers.
“The Abuhatzeira family is a family with many miracles,” said Eliyahu Hazan, 32, as he waited for the rabbi. “Their reputation speaks for itself. Everyone who goes to them gets results.”
Cryptic ceremonies like these are especially appropriate at the graves of rabbis because the souls of the rabbis help transmit the worshipers’ requests to God,” explained Andre Levy, an anthropologist at Ben-Gurion University.
“In Judaism and Islam, there’s no mediator between you and God. You are totally exposed to God, which is a difficult thought, and you need a go-between. People find solutions in the character of a righteous person.”
About the Author:
If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.
Comments are closed.
According to the Ministry of the Interior, at the time the ballot closed, in the Beit Shemesh elections, 76% of eligible voters voted, compared to 69.32% in 2013. While in the redo election in Nazareth, 83.6% of eligible voters voted, compared to 70.27% in 2013. There is no update yet as to who won.
Retired Supreme Court Edmund Levy, who headed a three-man committee that debunked allegations that Israel is an “occupier,” died Tuesday night at the age of 72. He served on the Supreme Court from 2000 to 2011, capping a legal career that began with studies at Tel Aviv University several years after his family immigrated to […]
Nadia Haroun, the deputy head of Egypt’s Jewish community was buried on Thursday.
The youth wing of Sweden’s Liberal party organized a “love bombing” Monday night and pasted heart-shaped papers on the same school that was attacked by neo-Nazi vandals the night before. Stockholm’s “Vasa Real” school was sprayed with swastikas and slogans, such as “disgusting Jews” and the number 1488 that is a symbol for white power […]
Norwegian Cruise Lines dropped Tunisia from its itineraries after the country refused to allow Israeli citizens to disembark in the Port of Tunis. About 20 Israelis were quietly told before disembarking from the Norwegian Jade over the weekend that they were not welcome per the Tunisian government. The cruise line’s decision to drop Tunisia was […]
“More than the Jews have kept the Shabbos (Sabbath), the Shabbos has kept the Jews.”
A lot more guns than usual were visible in Beit Shemesh.
Bye-bye to the right-wing extremists, left-wing extremists, weirdoes and maybe Tzipi Livni.
Three Hamas terrorists were killed on Tuesday in an explosion that was “all part of a day’s work” of preparing rockets and bombs for attacks on Israel. The Hamas website reported that the “work accident” killed three members of the “military branch” of Hamas in Beit Hanoun, located in northern Gaza. Earlier on Tuesday, the […]
The Priceline online ticketing and reservation company has bought Israeli-based start-up Qlika for around $3 million, according to the VentureBeat website. Qlika, based in the metropolitan Tel Aviv city of Ramat Gan, focuses on “micro-location” ad campaigns and has only six employees, all of whom have masters’ degrees in physics and mathematics and who have […]
An airline owned by the United Arab Emirates said it “emphatically refutes” claims that it excludes Israel from its official travel-route map and refuses to transport Israelis. In a statement, Etihad Airways wrote that it carried more than 1,000 passengers traveling with Israeli passports last year, refuting assertions made in the New York Post newspaper. […]
Either the IDF has privately admitted it goofed or Netanyahu is scared of Jordan when he needs him most.
Ruderman Foundation announces $250K prize for programs to ensure inclusion into the Jewish community to those with disabilities.
It is up to Defense Minister Ya’alon to decide if a court ruling in favor of Hebron Jews has any meaning at all.
A Jewish scribe has restored an 18th century copy of the Book of Esther that was donated to Catholic Nuns.
One of the passengers aboard the Malaysian Airlines plane that vanished is a Jewish Russian national, Nikolai Brodskii, 43, of the Siberian city of Irkutsk, whose name appears on the missing plane’s passenger manifest. He is a husband and father of sons aged 17 and 11. The flight, with 239 passengers on board, disappeared Saturday […]
JERUSALEM – To be married in Israel, immigrants must prove their Jewish ancestry to the country’s Chief Rabbinate.
TEL AVIV – The disclosure last week that American intelligence spied on former Israeli prime ministers has given new momentum to the effort to secure a pardon for convicted spy Jonathan Pollard.
BEIT SHEMESH – It was only when her sons came at her with knives that she realized keeping quiet was not going to work.
TEL AVIV – Following reports of what was almost certainly a chemical weapons attack in Syria, the White House has made moves indicating it may be inching closer to military intervention in the civil war there.
TEL AVIV – When Magda Haroun was out on the streets during the unrest now rocking Egypt’s capital, she saw someone standing over the body of a dead soldier.
“Not even a Jew would do this,” she heard him say.
JERUSALEM – The large white poster is topped by a screaming headline written in large black letters: “Hell.” Posted on a wall in Jerusalem’s haredi Meah Shearim neighborhood, the sign describes a development that threatens the community with “extinction” and “makes all living hearts tremble.”
The contest for Chief Rabbi gets uglier. Rabbi Metzger is suspected of bribery. No charges have been filed, but candidate Rabbi Stav said there is no room for “corrupt politicians” in the rabbinate.
Adding Turkey to the list of volatile states would mean even more uncertainty for Israel.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/blowing-1000-shofars-in-hopes-of-finding-a-mate/2013/02/10/
Scan this QR code to visit this page online:
No related posts.