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April 2, 2015 / 13 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘rabbis’

Jewish Home Unity Overcomes the ’Yesha Faction’

Sunday, December 21st, 2014

The “Tekuma” faction, headed by Housing Minister Uri Ariel, decided Saturday night to remain in the Jewish Home party and not join forces with Eli Yishai’s new party or run separately in a move that saves the right-wing from another weak if not useless party based on Judea and Samaria.

Ariel, whose integrity and intellectual honesty often place him in contradiction with the art of compromise in politics, has been upset with the Jewish Home party and its chairman Naftali Bennett because of the ostensibly democratic system of primaries, which is susceptible to wheeling and dealing even more  than a party’s central committee decision to decide who will be candidates.

Ariel last week met with Eli Yishai to discuss the chances of running on Yishai’s new party, following his leaving Shas.

Ariel left the decision up it his rabbinical advisers, who were split. The Tekuma Central Committee decided Saturday night to make the smartest decision and remain with the Jewish Home party.

A split would have been disastrous both for Tekuma and for the Jewish Home party.

The decision also leaves the “Yesha” rabbis and their followers weaker than ever, another blessing for a right-wing faction that has been hampered by decades with the mentality that a Jewish presence in the Judea and Samaria and that national religious yeshivas are the only issues that are important for Israel. They have tried to make Judea and Samaria the most important region in Israel and have tried to establish Beit El, dominated by prominent national religious rabbis, as the capital of Yesha.

The establishment of the Jewish Home party, which incorporated the Tekuma faction and the old-guard National Religious Party (“Mafdal”) was a political revolution because it finally made Yesha, the acronym, for what once was known as the Council of Jewish Communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, a part of the country and not apart from the country.

The Yesha platform of “Greater Israel” in practice was concerned only with Judea and Samaria and yeshivas and not with the rest of the country. It operated on the principle “if you are for Yesha, or you are against the country.”

Bennett, who is religious but lives in metropolitan Tel Aviv, changed that. He also brought in a secular MK, who, horror of horrors to some rabbis, was a woman. Her name is Ayelet Shaked, and her presence helped the party win 12 seats in the Knesset. All polls show the party will win at least 16 as of today.

If Tekuma had split, it would have taken seats away from the Jew Home but also might have made it itself extinct, wasting tens of thousands of votes.

Joining with Yishai’s party became problematic because his rabbinical adviser decided that a woman’s contribution to the country is cooking in the kitchen and not making trouble by being a Knesset Member.

That was a big problem for Ariel, whose Tekuma colleague MK Orit Struk was anxious to bolt the Jewish Home and follow Tekuma.

Ariel, too well-rooted in the kibbutz movement to ostracize women, would not have accepted keeping Struk out of the new party. If he had set up a new party, it is questionable if he and Struk could have garnered the minimum number of votes needed to enter the Knesset.

The inability of his rabbis to take a unified stand on the future of Tekuma shows indicates how much the “Yesha bloc” no longer is in charge.

Their correct rulings of Jewish law that Judea and Samaria are part of Israel, and that it is a mitzvah to live there, only enlarged the black image in the eyes of Israelis that all settlers are religious and robots to rabbis.

MK Yuli Edelstein Tells Chabad Rabbis Why He ‘Lost It’ Over Tefillin

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

Sometimes it takes an Israeli politician to tell a rabbi about how precious a pair of tefillin can be.

Thousands of Chassidic rabbis are still trickling out of the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn in the wake of the worldwide Chabad Lubavitch movement’s annual international convention for its emissaries.

At least 5,200 of the rabbis from more than 80 countries around the world gathered for the 31st annual International Conference of Shluchim which ran for five days. The closing banquet was held Sunday evening at the South Brooklyn Marine Terminal, with Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein featured as guest speaker.

A former Soviet refusenik, Edelstein was sentenced in 1984 to three years in a labor camp.

Edelstein told the those at the banquet that for him, the pivotal moment in his life came when a guard in a labor camp tried to break his tefillin boxes over his knee. That, he said, was when he “lost it” and fought back — earning himself 15 days in solitary confinement.

“You would do the same if something so dear to you was being taken away,” Edelstein explained. It is ironic, he added, that today when no one is taking away tefillin, many Jews no longer know what they are.

“This is a different world, a dangerous world,” the Knesset Speaker said. “Less dramatic than being in a prison corridor with five guards,” but the mission of Chabad Chassidim remains the same — teaching Jews to know what tefillin and Shabbat candles are for.

It was for this purpose a small group of Chassidim embraced the challenge of the Lubavitcher Rebbe about 70 years ago, to become agents of transformation.

Today, some 4500 couples are dedicated to continuing that mission in 87 countries. “The Rebbe was looking to make radical change,” said Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, chairman of the conference committee and a leader at Chabad-Lubavitch world headquarters. This year alone, 400 new emissaries took up their posts and 200 applicants are pending.

Rabbi Dovid Dubov, Chabad emissary to South London, serves the Jewish community of Wimbledon and delivered “love” as the banquet’s keynote address.

“In tennis, love equals zero. But at Chabad of Wimbledon we say that if you want to raise a racquet, serve with love,” he said with a smile.

Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, one of the Rebbe’s former aides and chairman of Chabad’s educational and social services division, noted the importance of the movement’s adherence to truth in Torah values, even above political correctness.

UPDATE: Hospital Will Not Release Yehuda Glick on Sunday

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Update: The doctors at Shaarei Tzezek will not be releasing Yehudah Glick on Sunday as previously planned. On Friday, the doctors decided to run some additional medical treatments on him.


Shaarei Tzedek Hospital officials said that Rabbi Yehuda Glick will be able to go home Sunday following his miraculous recovery from gunshot wounds at the hands of a Jerusalem Arab who tried to assassinate him last month.

The chief rabbis of Jerusalem and of Israel visited Glick this past week, challenging themselves in the art of diplomacy considering their interpretation of Jewish law that Jews are prohibited from visiting – let alone praying – on the Temple Mount.

Rabbi Glick is the leading activist to encourage Jews to listen to the rulings of a growing number of national religious rabbis who have stated there is no problem with visiting certain areas of the site that covers the ruins of the First and Second Temples.

All rabbis agree that it is forbidden to walk in certain area, such as where the Holy of Holies once stood and where only the High Priest was allowed to enter once a year, on Yom Kippur.

Jerusalem Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Aryeh Stern visited Glick in Thursday. Despite his opposition to Jews visiting the Temple Mount, he tactfully said, “It is with the help of God that He wants your words, and your intentions are in the name of God, and that is most important.”

Glick to told Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi David Lau earlier this week that the Jerusalem Arab who shot him first told him, “I am sorry. But you are an enemy of Al Aqsa” and then pumped four bullets into his chest, one of them puncturing a lung.

It is not surprising that Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef did not visit Glick. Rabbi Yosef last week was not satisfied with reiterating the Haredi stand that Jews aren’t allowed to visit the Temple Mount. He went to the extreme of disgracing himself by labeling rabbis who permit visits as “fourth-rate” rabbis.

Doctors at Shaarei Tzedek will hold a press conference on Sunday before Glick goes home to continue his recovery, which he will not consider complete until he returns to the Temple Mount. Of courses, no one will allow him to pray there because Muslims are afraid that God may hear his prayers,

The idiots don’t know that God also hears a silent prayer.

 

Har Nof Massacre: Four Murdered Rabbis are US and British Citizens

Tuesday, November 18th, 2014

The four Jews murdered in the Har Nof Massacre today held US and British citizenship, along with Israeli citizenship.

Rabbi Moshe Twersky (59): Israel-US national.

Rabbi Avraham Shmuel Goldberg (68): Israel-British national.

Rabbi Kalman Levine (55): Israel-US national.

Rabbi Aryeh Kopinsky (43): Israel-US national.

Eight more people were wounded in the attack, including 2 policemen.

Flemish Minister Calls for Ritual Slaughter Ban in Belgium

Monday, September 29th, 2014

The General Director of the European Jewish Association Rabbi Menachem Margolin has protested a proposal by a Flemish government minister to implement a total ban on the practice of Jewish ritual slaughter, insisting such a move “is against freedom of religion.”

Flemish Minister for Animal Welfare Ben Weyts said on Belgian television Sunday that he would actively pursue a total ban on the practice of animal slaughter without pre-stunning, beginning next year.

Responding to the latest attack on the ancient Jewish ritual, Rabbi Margolin emphasized that the Jewish practice of “Shechita” is “the most humane method of slaughter” because it ensures the welfare of the animal not only at the time of slaughter, but also concerns itself with “the conditions in which animals are raised before their slaughter.”

He added, “As well as being illogical and inconsistent from the perspective of animal rights, labelling kosher meat will give ammunition to anti-Semites to attack Jewish tradition.”

Mr. Weyts called for religious groups to adhere to current legislation which allows animal slaughter without pre-stunning to be carried out only in licensed abattoirs. Further legislation, he added, was on the agenda for 2015. His Belgian government counterpart, Wallon Minister Carlo Di Antonio, indicated it would “take the same shape as that suggested by” the Flemish Minister.

Gwyneth Paltrow ‘Quietly’ Converting to Judaism [video]

Saturday, September 6th, 2014

Recently divorced actress Gwyneth Paltrow is moving on from Kabbalah studies to converting to Judaism, The New York Post reported.

She has two children from her marriage with British singer Chris Martin, from whom she divorced this year, and she said she wants to bring them up as Jews.

Her late father was Jewish, but her mother is a Christian, which determines the religion of the child, according to Jewish law.

She has been dabbling in Kabbalah, a favorite pastime among Hollywood stars who like to find instant spirituality, but Paltrow has something special going for her.

She discovered several years ago that she comes from a long line of prominent rabbis, as described in the video below from NBC”s “Who Do You Think You Are” program.

She was so thrilled to discover her lineage that she told an interviewer in 2006, “I really am a Jewish princess!”

So if she really wants to be a Jewish American Princess, she has to convert. The question is whether she will go for instant Judaism and go through a Reform conversion or if the knowledge of her lineage will persuade her to enter the tribe according to the same rules that her great-grandfather followed.

So far, her approach reflects the typical surface understanding of Hollywood stars. She has been quoted as saying that being raised by a Jewish father and Christian mother “was such a nice way to grow up.”

Paltrow is big on cooking, and she calls herself “the original Jewish mother: because she likes cooking for others. “ I am the original Jewish mother,” she told You magazine.

Gwyneth, sorry to bring the news, but there is bit more to Judaism to feeling Jewish and being a good cook, or even a good actress, and it certainly means more than studying Kabbalah, which for you and Madonna is like someone studying to be a doctor starting with medical school before learning Biology 101.

Rabbis Equate BDS Movement with Biblical Theft, Murder

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

The Rabbinical Alliance of America – a major American mainstream rabbinic organization – has equated support for the BDS movement with being an accessory to Biblical theft and murder.

The organization urged fellow Jews to reject absolutely the ‘boycott, divestment and sanctions’ movement against Israel rather than risk transgressions of those and other Biblical prohibitions.

The 800-member organization warned in a statement issued at its recent rabbinic convocation there is a “rising tide of anti-Semitism worldwide and [the] anti-Jewish rhetoric associated with the BDS movement against the people and the State of Israel.”

In addition, the RAA said the goals of the BDS movement are so toxic they actually contravene Biblical standards for anyone who considers themselves ‘People of the Book,’ be they Jewish or not.

The movement “contravenes Biblical scripture and undermines the very foundations that assure a just and moral society for all people,” said the RAA.

“The Rabbinical Alliance views this movement as being malevolent in calling Israel an apartheid state as it utilizes inflammatory language to delegitimize the basic human rights of the Jewish people for self-determination and to live amongst its neighbors in security and safety.

“The Rabbinical Alliance calls upon members of the Jewish faith and all people of good will to reject the BDS movement in all of its variations as its goal is to harm the safety and security of the Jewish people in Israel, as well as impact its hard working Jewish citizens and Arab residents from earning their livelihood and being able to export their products to other regions of the globe.

“Any action in support of the … movement is tantamount to transgressing numerous Biblical prohibitions of theft, denial of gainful employment, the utilization of unjust weights and measurements and is considered to be a contributing factor to the very serious transgression of the shedding of blood (murder) of a fellow human being,” the rabbis wrote.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/rabbis-equate-bds-movement-with-biblical-theft-murder/2014/06/12/

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