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November 29, 2015 / 17 Kislev, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘tzitzit’

Arrests on Temple Mount: Jewish Boy for Wearing Tzitzit, Jewish Man for Singing to Groom

Sunday, August 16th, 2015

It was a “two-fer” on the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem on Sunday.

Israel Police arrested a Jewish boy for wearing his tzitzit (tallit katan) as commanded in the Torah, and a Jewish man for singing into the ear of a Jewish groom ahead of his nuptials a few hours later.

No one arrested anyone for subsequenly attacking an Israeli police officer, who suffered an injured leg.

Members of the Islamic Waqf on the Temple Mount complained to the Israeli police about the Jewish boy who was walking on the Temple Mount wearing his Tzitzit, according to other Jewish visitors on the Jewish holy site.

The Muslim security officers complained that the boy’s Tzitzit were a “Jewish symbol” — in violation of the regulations that state one must not wear obvious religious symbols into the site — and the Islamic Waqf officer warned a “disruption” would ignite because of the boy’s Jewish garment.

Tzitzit are the four-cornered fringed garment that all Jewish men and boys are enjoined in the Torah to wear. The commandment is repeated in the third paragraph of the Shema prayer, the single most important prayer in Judaism save for the Kaddish, which is recited for the departed.

The police arrested the Jewish minor and took him to the police station.

But by the time they reached the entrance to the police station, the police apparently realized they had no cause to arrest the boy and he was unconditionally released.

The boy is a resident of Beit El.

A short time later, a 35-year-old Jewish man was arrested at the Temple Mount as well.

According to the police, the man was walking with a groom on the Temple Mount, while quietly singing to into his ear the popular Jewish wedding song, “Od Yishama” — a song which is often sung when accompanying a groom on his wedding day.

This man, celebrating the imminent nuptials of his friend, was also taken into custody. The Honenu civil rights NGO has issued a statement saying its legal counsel has gone to the police precinct in an attempt to secure his release in time for him to attend the wedding of his friend.

Following that incident an Israeli police officer was attacked by Arabs at the site. He was slightly injured when the Arabs hurled a wooden beam at him, hitting his leg.

There are no reports of anyone having been arrested, however, for attacking the Israeli police officer.

Seeing the IDF as Hand of G-d, Religiosity/Judaism Growing in Israel‏

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

Over the forty-four years since we’ve lived in Israel, I’ve noticed a definite increase in outward and accepted Jewish observance here. Being religious, in the American concept of MO Modern Orthodox, or even in the more religious Israeli “Chardal,” which is an even more observant life-style is no longer marginalized and hidden away.

The IDF, which in the early years of the State was extremely secular, today has a host of fully observant soldiers and officers even in or especially in the most elite, daring and dangerous units. Since the “first” Lebanese War, including those MIA missing in action, there’s a higher percentage disproportionate amount of religious, or from religious background, among the casualties.

A photographic tribute to the IDF and those who were killed during this recent, unfinished war, gives a pretty accurate impression of today’s Israeli army.

In the early days of the State of Israel, the Bnai Akiva look included a mustache, but their grandsons now frequently sport beards and payot, sometime just the payot which swing in syncopation with the tzitziyot coming out of their shirts. payot


I know that many people like to complain that Israel isn’t “religious enough,” but I have seen such positive changes in the forty plus years I am in Israel. It’s always easy to complain, but I really don’t see what there is to complain about.

IDF soldiers who are religiously observant have been promoted to important positions without being forced to give up religious life. Today there are many mechinot, religious preparatory yeshivot, academies, that provide IDF sanctioned guidance for the religious soldier, whether new conscript or high ranking officer.

That’s the big picture, thank G-d.

Ump Says Boy Can’t Play Ball With Tzitzit; Team Walks Off Field

Sunday, June 1st, 2014

For most nine-year-olds, a choice between playing Little League baseball and honoring a religious commandment would be an easy one to make: Mitzvot might be nice, and all, but when there’s a game on the line… well, you know. Not for Yossi, of Fountain Hills, Ariz. When an umpire told him he couldn’t take his turn at bat recently, he calmly tried to explain that the “illegal uniform” was a religious garment mandated by the Torah called tzitzit. The umpire, however, was unmoved, and ordered Yossi to remove the tzitzit for fear that “it could produce some type of interference or unfair advantage.” According to COL Live, Yossi –the only Jewish boy, not just on the team, but in the entire league– respectfully but assuredly walked off the field. In addition, Yossi’s team also volunteered to forfeit the game in solidarity with Yossi. Eventually, following a lengthy on-field meeting between the coaches and the umpire, Yossi was allowed to play, “double uniforms” and all. COL Live offered four lessons to be gleaned from Yossi:

  1. Tzitzit is a sign of Jewish pride.
  2. Religious tolerance means to refrain from discriminating against others who follow a different religious path.
  3. The freedom of individuals to believe in, practice, and promote their religion of choice without interference, harassment, or other repercussions shall always prevail.
  4. Ignorance and religious intolerance is still prevalent. The correct way to combat it is to wear “Jewish uniforms” – kippot, tzitzit – with pride.

The website also said that “self-assertion often demands a lot of humility. Doing something out of the ordinary requires putting our image on the line. It means that I care more about my truth than what other people think about me. This is self-esteem that is rooted in soul-consciousness.” It also cited a lesson from The Lubavitcher Rebbe about the relationship between the Torah and the value of humility.

“The Midrash tells us that God chose Mt. Sinai, and not a more impressive mountain, to teach us the value of humility. The question, of course, is this: If humility is paramount, why did G-d give us the Torah on a mountain at all? Why not a plain, or even a valley? The mere term “Mt. Sinai” is an oxymoron. It’s a mountain, towering and majestic. And it’s Sinai, meager compared to her sister mountains, humble. If humility is paramount, why did G-d give us the Torah on a mountain at all?

“When G-d gave us the Torah and inaugurated us into Jew-hood, He said, “You are going to need to be real strong to be a Jew.” Be a mountain. Have a backbone. Be a charismatic light unto the nations, and don’t give a hoot if people laugh at you. “But be a humble mountain. Humble in your recognition that your strength comes from G-d. Your life’s value is not about your image, it’s about your higher calling. Don’t measure yourself against the standards set by your neighbors; measure yourself against your soul’s potential,” said COL Live.

From Basketball Court to High-Performance Tzitzit

Monday, February 11th, 2013


Yishai is joined by Israeli basketball star Tamir Goodman. Goodman and Yishai talk about Goodman’s background and how he has managed to be both a professional athlete and an observant Jew without the need to compromise his values in order to be successful on the court. Goodman talks about the background behind his newest project, Sport Strings, which are a high-performance tzitzit made for athletes and being tested by the IDF.

Yishai Fleisher on Twitter: @YishaiFleisher
Yishai on Facebook

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/tv/radio/from-the-basketball-court-to-high-performance-tzitzit/2013/02/11/

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