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July 29, 2016 / 23 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘solution’

It’s Halloween, Let’s All Idol-Worship Tonight!

Wednesday, October 31st, 2012

Tonight, Jewish youth all over the world – except in Israel– will celebrate the pagan holiday of Halloween.

Halloween is also called All Hallows’ Eve, because, for the gentiles, it is a hallowed evening, the eve of All Saints’ Day, a day which honors all Christian saints.

The Encyclopedia Britannica explains that in ancient Britain and Ireland, the Festival of Halloween was also celebration of the end of the fertile period of the Celtic goddess, Eiseria. It is said that when Eiseria reaches the end of her fertile cycle, the worlds of the dead and the living intertwine. This supposedly happens on October 31. Masks are worn to show respect for the Goddess Eiseria, who, like most Celtic gods, does not wish to be seen by human eyes. This is one of the reason behind Halloween costumes and for the holiday’s omens, spirits, demons, and witches.

This date was also New Year’s Eve in both Celtic and Anglo-Saxon times, and was the occasion for one of the ancient fire festivals when huge bonfires were set on hilltops to frighten away evil spirits. The souls of the dead were supposed to revisit their homes on this day, and the festival acquired sinister significance, with ghosts, witches, hobgoblins, black cats, fairies, and demons said to be roaming about.

It was the time to placate the supernatural powers controlling the processes of nature. In addition, Halloween was thought to be the most favorable time for divination concerning marriage, luck, health, and death. It was the only day on which the help of the devil was invoked for such purposes. These pagan observances also influenced the Christian festival of All Hallows’ Eve, celebrated on the same date.

Jewish Law states:

A Jew should not follow the customs of the gentiles, nor imitate them in dress, or in their way of trimming their hair, as it says, ‘You shall not walk in the customs of the nation which I cast out before you’ (Lev. 20:23), and ‘Neither shall you walk in their statutes’ (Lev. 18:3). These verses all refer to one and the same matter of not imitating them. A Jew, on the contrary, should be distinguished from them and recognizable by the way he dresses, and in his other activities, just as he is distinguished from them in his knowledge and his beliefs, as it is said, ‘I have set you apart from the peoples’ (Lev. 20:26). (See, Rambam, Laws Regarding Idol Worship and the Ordinances of the Gentiles, 11:1).

When it comes to the question whether Jews can take part in gentile holidays, the halachic discussion differs between clearly religious holidays like Xmas, which are forbidden, and purely secular holidays like Labor Day, which are permissible. Halloween’s religious origins and pagan history place it in the category of gentile holidays that are forbidden to celebrate.

Though Halloween in America has been secularized and commercialized to the point where it is now a frivolous time of costumes, candy, and pranks, it is still celebrated in places like Scotland and Ireland as a Celtic festival of the spirits, and in other places as a holiday honoring the Christian saints. Therefore, there is good reason for telling the kids that “Trick or Treating” is a no-no for Jewish children.

The law prohibiting our participation in gentile holidays and customs comes to protect our special Jewish holiness and cultural distinction. If you allow your kids to participate in the pagan rites of a gentile culture, they are likely to grow up with pumpkin heads instead of Jewish heads.

On the other hand, if you try to safeguard our distinction as Jews and not let your children go “Trick or Treating” with all the other kids in the neighborhood, there’s a good chance that they will grow up hating both you and Judaism for turning them into freaks in the eyes of their friends. Either way, as a Jewish parent, you lose.

What’s the solution? Move to Israel. The only place you will see a pumpkin here is in the supermarket (a small yellow one that looks more like a squash). If you truly love your children and don’t want them growing up with pumpkin heads, then the only solution is to bring them to Israel where they will grow up with Jewish holidays like we’re supposed to.

Tzvi Fishman

Likud-Beiteinu Worrying Left

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

The merger of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s Likud party and the Yisrael Beiteinu party of Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman on Thursday has left-wing parties scrambling for a solution to the sudden show of solidarity on the part of the pro-nationalist camp.

In an article by Israel HaYom, an anonymous Kadima MK said unity on the left is a big item of discussion now, with emphasis on securing a great leader who will draw votes.

According to the MK, Kadima chairman Shaul Mofaz, Yesh Atid chairman Yair Lapid, and Labor chairwoman Shelly Yachimovich are being called on to unify under the leadership of either former Foreign Minister and failed almost-Prime Minister and Kadima chairwoman Tzipi Livni, or the recently acquitted former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Both are expected to announce whether they will re-enter politics early next week.

Mofaz has said he will relinquish leadership of Kadima if either party needs the position in order to run for prime minister.

The strong Sephardic party, Shas, has expressed its concern over the Likud-Beiteinu merger, saying it could mean the drafting of Hareidi Jews into the army.

Malkah Fleisher

Israeli Foreign Minister Replies to Condemnation of Jewish Growth

Sunday, October 21st, 2012

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman urged the European Union on Saturday to focus on its own problems and stay out of the local dispute between Arabs and Jews over the future of Judea, Samaria, and the rest of Israel.

Vice President of the EU’s European Commission Catherine Ashton said on Friday that she “deeply regrets” Israel’s plans to expand the Jerusalem neighborhood of Gilo.

“Settlements are illegal under international law and threaten to make a two-state solution impossible,” she said.

Lieberman replied on Saturday that her statements “attest to a fundamental lack of ability to understand regional reality” and “merely encourage the Palestinian side … to pursue anti-Israel activity in the international sphere”.

He suggested the EU “focus, for now, on the problems arising among the various peoples and national groups on Europe’s territory, and once there is a successful solution we would be happy to hear recommendations for solving the problems with the Palestinians”.

Malkah Fleisher

The Alternative

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

“We’ve been living under mortar fire for 18 years. We have to do something,” said the young woman from Sderot on Razi Barkai’s radio show.

“What do you want the leaders to do?” asked Barkai.

“I don’t know, but what they are doing now doesn’t help,” replied the Sderot resident.

“Sorry to say this to you, but they also don’t know what to do,” Barkai said. “[It’s] not because they are stupid, but because there is simply no solution.”

It has been about 18 years since the Oslo Accords were implemented. It is simple to understand that the continuous terror raining down on Israel’s cities is the result of those accords. Why then doesn’t Israel’s leadership annul them? Why doesn’t it restore full Israeli control over Gaza, Judea and Samaria? Isn’t it cheaper than digging Beersheba into the ground or covering Sderot with a layer of cement? Isn’t it safer than being the targets of a hail of missiles on civilian targets? What does “there is no solution” mean? After all, just as our very own current president, Shimon Peres, and his cohorts brought this problem upon us, we can free ourselves from the problem.

Why doesn’t that happen?

The answer to that question is two-dimensional. First, the technical dimension: It is impossible to free ourselves of Oslo because those who brought it upon us knew how to tie the fate of a broad spectrum of Israeli elites to the “peace process.” Too many politicians, businessmen, academicians, senior IDF officers, political pundits, journalists, writers and other opinion makers – yes, almost everybody who is anybody in our small land – are sustained in one way or another by Oslo. They are all sitting on the branch that, if we want to solve the problem, must be cut off.

So although we sent the IDF into Gaza in Operation Cast Lead, we stopped precisely at the point when Gaza would have surrendered, leaving us once again responsible over it. That would have cancelled Oslo. That is why I opposed Cast Lead at the time. I knew that the operation was destined for defeat from its very beginning – as later became crystal clear.

The second dimension is the deeper, spiritual reason. It is impossible to blame the Left for the desperate, dangerous and irresponsible Oslo experiment. Zionist normalcy had reached a dead end. Oslo was not anti-Zionist. Oslo was a final, desperate attempt to cling to Zionism, to cling to the return of the Jewish people to its land. (The Disengagement was something else, and the true leftists opposed it.) We returned to history, specifically in this land. If our neighbors cannot accept that – even after they have repeatedly been beaten by us – something is simply not working. “We must compromise,” the Left says. “If we don’t, we will have used the vehicles of secularism and Zionism to return to the exile state of non-normalcy from which we fled. The entire Zionist idea will be proven a failure.”

We cannot claim that the Left has failed because the Right, including the religious Right, never proposed an alternative. That is, until Manhigut Yehudit came along.

“What do you suggest?” Avraham Burg, Molad chairman and the former Knesset speaker, asked Hagai Segal on the Knesset channel. When the answer he got was basically, “We’ll wait and see,” Burg said, “Feiglin is the only person who challenges the political frameworks in Israel.”

That is actually the reason why I am running for Likud leader: to give Israeli society a new direction, an alternative to Oslo. We really can’t nullify Oslo, not because of the technical reason but because, first and foremost, we have no new alternative.

The alternative is already here. When it is internalized, the people of Sderot will finally be able to leave their bomb shelters.

Moshe Feiglin

Abbas Blasts Israel as ‘Racist’ at UN Speech, Downplays Statehood Bid

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas blasted Israel in his U.N.address as seeking to end the two-state solution, but he tamped down any plans to seek statehood unilaterally.

Describing what he said were “racist” attacks by settlers on Palestinians in collusion with the Israeli government, Abbas told the General Assembly on Thursday that he has reached the conclusion “that the Israeli government rejects the two-state solution.”

He said, however, that Palestinians remain ready to negotiate a two-state solution.

“We do not seek to delegitimize an existing state, that is, Israel,” Abbas said.

Abbas suggested that his bid to seek Palestinian state recognition at last year’s General Assembly had scored a success with the full-fledged Palestinian representation to UNESCO, the science and culture affiliate of the United Nations.

This year, however, Abbas said that instead of seeking full Palestinian statehood recognition throughout the U.N. Security Council , he would seek the body’s affirmation of statehood as an outcome of negotiations and continue to seek the status of the Vatican – non-member state – at the General Assembly.

Abbas said at least three times that the Palestine Liberation Organization was the sole representative of the Palestinian people, an implied rebuke to Hamas, which still controls the Gaza Strip.

He affirmed Palestine as the historic homeland of three faiths — Judaism, Islam and Christianity — a nod to Jewish anger when he omitted Jewish claims to the land in his speech last year.

Abbas has suspended peace talks with Israel since October 2010, saying it must again freeze settlement expansion before he returns to the table, as Israel did for 10 months that year.

In his own speech following Abbas, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu chided the PA president for delivering a “libelous” speech and urged him to return to talks toward establishing a “demilitarized Palestinian state.”

JTA

One, Two, or Three States?

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

(((CLICK BELOW TO HEAR AUDIO)))

Alternative dialogist Baruch Widen joins Yishai. Together, they present audio clips recently broadcast on Al Jezeera that discuss how the two-state solution hasn’t worked and how Arab movements that span the political and social spectrum are looking for alternatives. Don’t miss this fascinating segment!

Yishai Fleisher on Twitter: @YishaiFleisher
Yishai on Facebook

Moshe Herman

The Ravages of Justice

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

Here are the refugees from Migron in their relocation camp, in Givat Hayekev.

They are cleaning up their new homes, also known as “caravillas” (combination caravan and villa.

A caravilla is composed of several prefabricated sections that are joined on a foundation. They vary in size from about 650 to 1,000 square feet.

The biggest of these enclaves was established in Nitzan, north of Ashkelon, with 250 caravillas, which has grown to more than 500.

Let’s face it, it’s a trailer park.

The work of Peace Now and a cabal of several other anti-Zionist Jewish organizations, funded mostly by foreign states, is done here.

On to the next salami slice.

Since I was 12, when the territories across the armistice line of 1949 were captured—in 1967—I have opposed the forced transfer of civilian populations. But when I was a kid, we all thought it was the Arabs were would be protecting.

Folks on the left were saying how they would throw themselves in front of the trucks that uprooted Palestinians from their homes.

Now it turns out we were wrong. Arabs don’t get transferred. Ever. The only civilians getting thrown on the trucks (or buses) are Jews.

And no one throws themselves in front of the trucks.

Because it’s done by decree of the Supreme Court, executed by a right-wing government.

Everyone cites the slogan from Deuteronomy, “Tzedek, tzedek tirdof” – Justice, justice shall you chase.

These days it’s “justice” that’s chasing us.

Fellow Jews, here’s a personal solution: when you daven shmoneh-esreh today, all three times, when you get to “birkat ha’minim” – the additional blessing added by the sages to curse out the enemies within – say it with a lot of kavanah. Say it like you mean it. Pound the shtender in front of you with rage when you say it. And if you happen to be the ba’al tfilah today – cry it out loud like a wounded man.

At least show that you’re angry, for Heaven’s sake.

(Yes, I wrote all the key words in Boro-Park style so the GSS won’t come after me… I’m just a coward sitting at his desk, but an angry coward.)

Yori Yanover

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/photos/the-ravages-of-justice/2012/09/05/

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