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May 30, 2016 / 22 Iyar, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘menorah’

Rivlin’s Chanukah Message to Jews: Be Strong as a Rock against Terror [video]

Friday, December 4th, 2015

President Reuven Rivlin tells “my dear brothers and sisters in Israel, and around the world” to let the Light of Chanukah remind them ” f the bonds that we all share, and the important role we all have of being a light unto the nations.

He said:

At Chanukah we stand around the lights, watch as they glow, and sing together Maoz Tzur, a song that tells about the many challenges that have risen against the Jewish people in the past….

It is no coincidence that the symbol of the Government of Israel is the Menorah, the symbol of Jewish independence, which lights our path.

Today, hatred, incitement, and terrorism threaten the whole world. In the face of these threats we need to be firm and strong like a rock – like Maoz Tzur – in our beliefs in freedom, justice, in the values of our tradition and of democracy….

Our thoughts at this time are of course with those who will be celebrating with a heavy heart; the injured and the families who have lost loved ones in the wave of terror that has struck in Israel, and around the world. To them especially, and to all the Jewish people, I wish a very happy Chanukah. Shalom from Jerusalem.

Below is the full video message.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Off-Shore Menorah-Shaped Islands Plan Mixes Interfaith with Promise of Jobs and Housing

Wednesday, May 6th, 2015

The United Abrahamic Family (TUAFI), a largely anonymous company, made up of “peace-loving people who believe that conflicts between Christians, Muslims and Jews are not only destructive, but also personally painful to the mutual descendants of Abraham,” has launched its artificial Menorah Islands project, with a long-term strategy for “spreading its message of peace through economic cooperation and pursuit of shared interests.”

The concept envisions a group of nine artificial islands off the coast of Israel in the Mediterranean Sea.

“They (the islands) would serve as a forum for collaboration and dialogue between peoples of all Middle Eastern nations, a place to concentrate on growth that could occur when people of all backgrounds collaborate,” according to the Menorah Islands kickstarter-style website, themenorahislands.com.

A press release issued Tuesday says TUAFI’s major focus revolves around scientific and technological advancements that could benefit the entire globe, from medicine to earth sciences.

“Districts for learning and science… will be an idealized example of what the future on Planet Earth and beyond can look like,” according to TUAFI.

TUAFI also aims to create an area with enough jobs to help boost Israel’s overall economy, and, even more important: plentiful housing just outside Tel Aviv.

Their online fundraising campaign boasts 31,203 supporters, who have to date donated a combined $129,500. Not quite the amount required to raise nine, off-shore landfill islands. But most dreams start small (many end small, too).

The website is disturbingly anonymous, which, coupled with its strong, interfaith message, as well as passing references to Christian writings in its blog posts, suggests it is an evangelical venture—although it goes out of its way to avoid identifying itself as such.

Menora Island 2

Jewish Press News Briefs

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.

Photo of the Day

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.”

Jewish Press Staff

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

Jewish Press News Briefs

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.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

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.

JTA

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/steven-sotloffs-parents-to-light-public-menorah-in-his-memory/2014/12/15/

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