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October 7, 2015 / 24 Tishri, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘menorah’

The Gold Menorah

Friday, March 13th, 2015

This gold Menorah, recreated by the Machon HaMikdash and ready for use in the Temple.

It is currently located on the stairs leading down to the Kotel form the Jewish Quarter in the Old City of Jerusalem, for all to see.

The menorah weighs one-half ton. It contains forty five kilograms of twenty four karat gold. Its estimated value is approximately three million dollars.

For more information on how this Menorah was made, go to The Temple Institute.

Fragment of 1,700-Year-Old Menorah-Adorned Bracelet Discovered on Hanukkah

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

The Israel Antiquities Authority has uncovered during Hanukkah a fragment of a 1,600-year-old glass bracelet, adorned with  motifs of the seven-branched menorah used in the Holy Temples.

The discovery at Mount Carmel National Park was made in an excavation prior to the construction of a water reservoir for the city of Yokniyam, east of Haifa.

An industrial region and refuse pits found during the excavation were part of a large settlement that existed in the Late Roman and Early Byzantine periods, end of the 4th century to the beginning of the 5th century.

Limor Talmi and Dan Kirzner, excavation directors on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, said,  “Last Thursday, at the end of the excavation, we began the initial processing of the finds.

“While examining the contents of one of the boxes which contained hundreds of glass fragments that had been discarded in the refuse pit, we found to our surprise a small fragment of a bracelet. Naturally it was extremely dirty, but still, you could see it was decorated.

“After cleaning, we were excited to discover that the bracelet, which is made of turquoise colored glass, is decorated with symbols of the seven-branched menorah – the same menorah which according to tradition was kept alight in the Temple for eight days by means of a single cruse of oil.”

The researchers said, “It seems that the bracelet was embossed with the decoration while the glass was still hot. Stamped impressions of two menorot survived on the small fragment that was found – one a plain seven-branched menorah, of which only the surface of the menorah is visible and the other one consisting of a seven-branched menorah with flames depicted above its branches.”

According to Yael Gorin-Rosen, head of the Ancient Glass Department of the Israel Antiquities Authority, “Bracelets and pendants made of glass that are decorated with symbols of a menorah or lion or different images of gods and animals, are known during these periods in Israel, Lebanon and Syria. So far, three fragments of bracelets with menorah decorations have been discovered in archaeological excavations in the country: in an excavation at Bab el-Hawa in the northern Golan Heights, at Banias, and another bracelet that was discovered years ago in the excavations at Shiqmona, Haifa.

The Shiqmona bracelet is also adorned with an image of a menorah that has flames above it.” Rosen-Gorin added, “Jewelry such as this was found in excavations, usually in the context of funerary offerings. It is unusual to find such objects in settlement strata, and even rarer to discover them in an ancient refuse pit.”

“The question now is – Is this definite proof that Jews lived in the ancient settlement?” according to the researchers.

But it is also possible that Samaritans resided there or a pagan or Christian population.

Another hypothesis suggests that the bracelet comes from a workshop operating in the area and was intended for other markets. This possibility is based on other glass debris that was exposed in the refuse pit, among them beads and bracelets. Glass jewelry was used extensively in the Late Roman period.

It  can reasonably be assumes that “those items that were specially decorated were more expensive than the plain unornamented ones,” the IAA experts added. “The refuse that was discovered in the pit included numerous glass vessels and fragments of glass window panes, as well as a selection of jewelry, indicating of a population that lived a life of comfort and affluence. Conceivably, the large industrial area that was located there supported the residents of the nearby settlement.”

Temple Institute Produces Pure Olive Oil for Temple Menorah [video]

Saturday, December 20th, 2014

The Temple Institute in Jerusalem produced, for the first time in 2000 years, the first flask of pure olive oil fit for use in the Temple’s Menorah.

150 kg of organic olives from the Golan Heights were used to make 4 1/2 liters of olive oil, which were produced under special conditions to maintain their ritual purity and then stored in clay flasks specially made for the oil.

The oil will be brought to the Temple Institute in Jerusalem’s Old City on Monday night, December 22, 2014, the 7th night of Chanukah.

The procession will begin at 5:30 PM at Zion Gate and meet at the Golden Menorah on the Rabbi Yehuda HaLevi Stairs, opposite the site of the Holy Temple, at 6:00 PM.

At 6:30 PM In a joyous, song-filled procession, the pure olive oil will be deposited in the Temple Institute’s Holy Temple Visitors Center

The Diapora’s Dilemma in Sydney

Friday, December 19th, 2014

The cancellation of the tradition public lighting of the Chabad menorah in Sydney this week epitomizes the excruciating neurosis of Jews in the Diaspora, torn between living freely as Jews and having to co-exist with the somewhat tolerant if not ignorant ruling powers.

I do not pre-judge the cancellation of the public lighting on the public area very near the scene of this week’s siege of the Lindt’s Café, in which another Islamic loony held hostages for 16 hours before police stormed the store. Two of the hostages were killed.

It would be too easy and wrong to write smugly from Israel that the Jewish community caved into pressure to cancel the public lighting. It may even have been the Jewish leaders’ own initiative to do so “out of respect” to the families of the victims.

If the victims had been Jewish, God forbid, they might have made the same decision that is politically correct but fundamentally wrong. Beneath the surface lies the eternal contradiction of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.

The need to be socially and culturally acceptable among the non-Jewish hosts in a foreign country – foreign meaning outside the Jewish home of Israel – clashes with the individual need to live Judaism fully.

The non-Jews cannot be expected to understand Judaism’s inner meaning and spirituality, but it is a tragedy that Jews’ understanding is tainted by their living in the Diaspora.

Hanukkah is universally recognized by lighting the Menorah, the Dreidel, the sickening sufganiyot –those unhealthy fried donuts once filled with jelly and now stuffed with everything from peanut butter to bubble gum – and the Xmas-inspired gift-giving.

Of all of these symbols, the Menorah is the only one that touches on the real meaning of Hanukkah, two victory of truth over evil in the war against the Greek conquerors of Jerusalem and the Holy Temple and the miracle of pure olive oil that was found in the debris of the Temple and which burned for eight days even though it was thought to be enough to burn for only one day.

For the non-Jew, and unfortunately as well as for many Jews, lighting the menorah has about as much meaning as lighting a Xmas tree, which has nothing to do with the origins of the holiday.

Light is beautiful. It is uplifting. It is fun. Hanukkah is also known as the Festival of Lights.

The light of Hanukkah represents the belief in God, the belief in good over evil, and it symbolizes the victory of the Jews over those who want to destroy the light, such as the mad Muslim of Lindt’s.

The Xmas tree’s decorations are nice and pretty but have no meaning other than one’s individual thoughts of God, the beauty of light and nature, and the cost of electricity. They have nothing to do with the meaning of the holiday (AFAIK).

For the families of the siege of Lindt’s Café, the public lighting of the Menorah nearby the scene of the crime indeed would seem disrespectful because they do not understand nor cannot be expected to understand the deep meaning of Hanukkah.

For the Jew who understands the meaning behind the Menorah, lighting it in public would seem exactly the message needed to show that terror and murder cannot and must not conquer.

But Jews in the Diaspora must behave as they are expected to behave.

If God forbid the siege had taken place in downtown Jerusalem or Tel Aviv, I dare say that more Menorahs would be lit than ever before. The expression of the belief in God and not in the fear of terrorist and murders would be omnipresent in public.

Steven Sotloff’s Parents to Light Public Menorah in His Memory

Monday, December 15th, 2014

The parents of Steven Sotloff, the Jewish journalist who was beheaded by a member of ISIS, will light a public menorah in Miami in his memory.

Arthur and Shirley Sotloff will light the first candle of Hanukkah Tuesday night at the Chabad center in Miami.

“Steve was a proud Jew who always enjoyed the holidays,” his father, Arthur Sotloff, told Chabad.org. “It was one of his defining characteristics.”

“Chanukah is a time we commemorate the vanquishing of our enemies who tried to deprive us of our right to live with Torah,” Arthur Sotloff said. “The Maccabees fought for Judaism, and Steve fought for the values they endowed us with.”

The directors of the Chabad center in Miami, Rabbi Yossi and Nechama Harlig, got to know the Sotloffs during the Shiva period for their son. They decided Hanukkah would be the appropriate time to honor the slain journalist “who sought to bring a little more light and truth to the world,” according to Chabad.org

Sotloff, who grew up in Miami, was abducted on Aug. 4, 2013, after crossing the Syrian border from Turkey. On Sept. 2, ISIS released a nearly three-minute video online titled “A Second Message to America” showing the beheading of Sotloff.

Sotloff published articles from Syria, Egypt and Libya in various publications, including Time.com, the World Affairs Journal and Foreign Policy. He also freelanced for The Jerusalem Post and the Jerusalem Report magazine.

It was revealed after his death that Sotloff, 31, held Israeli citizenship. His connections to Israel and the Jewish community reportedly had been sanitized from the Internet and social media in order to keep the information from his radical Islamic captors.

Sotloff, a grandson of Holocaust survivors, made aliyah in 2005.

His parents have established The 2Lives Steven Joel Sotloff Memorial Foundation to provide scholarships for journalism students.

Joe Biden to Light ‘National Menorah’

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

Vice President Joe Biden will assist in the lighting this year of the Hanukkah menorah on the ellipse in front of the White House.

Biden’s participation on Dec. 16, the first night of the holiday, marks the 35th anniversary of the first lighting of the “National Menorah,” an event sponsored by American Friends of Lubavitch, the Washington office of the Chabad movement.

It has become a tradition for Cabinet-level officials to assist in the lighting.

Look How Social Abbas is on Social Media

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is about to make his tenth visit to Israel in order to “facilitate” the “peace process” and usher in the era of good will between the long-time not best of friends the Israelis and the Palestinian Arabs. Just take a gander at the photo below.  It is what is posted on the official Facebook page of Fatah, the self-described “Palestinian National Liberation Movement,” the party of Palestinian Arab leader Mahmoud Abbas.

A screenshot of the page was tweeted on Tuesday, Jan. 1, by Mark Regev, the spokesperson for the Israeli prime minister. Regev included the message, “this pic, glorifying terror, was posted by Pres Abbas’s Fatah on its FB page as #SecKerry arrives to promote peace.”

The Fatah Facebook cover photo. Does this look like Fatah is ready for peace?

The Fatah Facebook cover photo. Does this look like Fatah is ready for peace?

There is also a smaller inset picture on the Fatah Facebook page. This is a slightly updated version of the official Fatah logo. As pointed out by an observer who saw Regev’s tweet, the logo is perhaps even more alarming. It makes absolutely clear that Fatah has no interest in a negotiated “two state solution.” Neither two states, nor anything suggesting negotiations as a desired tactic, appears on the Fatah logo.

The official logo of the Fatah party

The official logo of the Fatah party

The Fatah logo has a picture of the Dome of the Rock shrine located on the Temple Mount, with a Palestinian flag waving. According to Palestinian Media Watch, the Dome represents both Islam and the Palestinian claim to all of Jerusalem. The logo also contains a map of Israel – all of Israel, Areas A, B and C, in chains. They want to liberate all of the land.  The number 49 at the top of the picture is for the 49th year of the revolution. The key, along the bottom of the picture, of course represents the claims made by Palestinian Arabs that they are still carrying the keys to the homes in Israel which were allegedly taken from them.  The gun image running along the entire right hand side of the logo suggests a peaceful path is not the one they choose.

The dove breaking free from chains represents the Palestinian Arab “political prisoners,” all of whom Fatah believes must be freed.


In striking contrast, the emblem of the state of Israel is a menorah, a seven-branched candelabrum, flanked by olive branches.  The menorah has been the symbol of the Jewish people for millennium.  It is intended to represent Israel as a light unto the nations. The olive branches symbolize peace. Beneath the pictures appears the word Israel in Hebrew letters.

The Likud party, the party of Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu – the party and the man are always described as “hawkish” – is simply a slightly italicized version of the word Likud in Hebrew. Likud means “consolidation” or “combination” in Hebrew.


Perhaps these images will be forwarded to Secretary Kerry and his boss, as well as all other American politicians and other leaders who believe now is the right time to browbeat Israel into making peace with Abbas and his Fatah party, whose symbols appear above.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/look-how-social-abbas-is-on-social-media/2014/01/02/

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