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August 27, 2016 / 23 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Yom Kippur’

Making a Shofar

Thursday, August 20th, 2015

Rabbi Nissan of Efrat teaches how to make a shofar and blow it. In the current Hebrew month Elul, the month of Selichot (forgiveness), there is the Jewish custom of blowing the Shofar every morning.

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Orthodox Rabbis to Lobby near Rosh HaShanah against Deal with Iran

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

Rosh HaShanah marks the beginning of the “Ten Days of Repentance,” perfect timing for Orthodox rabbis to work on the conscience of Jewish Congressmen who have not joined the opposition to the nuclear agreement with Iran.

The Orthodox Union, better known as the OU for its symbol on foods it approves as kosher, sent out a letter to its affiliated rabbis and the Rabbinical Council of America that urged them to arrive in Washington on Sept. 9, less than a week before the Jewish New Year and Tens Days of Repentance leading to Yom Kippur begin.

The letter stated:

We are confident that hundreds of rabbis traveling to Washington on the eve of this vote and just days before Rosh Hashanah will have a highly visible and real impact upon this fateful vote in Congress.

We will only have this impact with your participation.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Fast of 17th of Tammuz Is on the 18th of Tammuz

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

In three weeks, the Fast of the 9th of Av will be on the 10th of Av.

Today’s fast day actually was supposed to take place on Saturday, which was the 17th day of the month of Tammuz, whose laws are reported here.

The Shabbat postpones the fast, leaving us with the seeming contradiction of marking the Fast of the 17th Day of Tammuz on the 18th day.

In three weeks, there will be a replay in three weeks, when the Fast of the Ninth Av will be noted on the 19th of Av for the same reason that one does not fast on Shabbat.

The exception to the rule is the fast of Yom Kippur, which takes precedence even if it falls on Shabbat.

Judaism is full of many apparent contradictions but which are logical after studying Jewish law

For example, it is forbidden to erect a tent, including umbrellas, on Shabbat. Jews also may not drive a car on Shabbat, unless it is a matter of life and death.

That is why you might see a Jew walking half a mile to synagogue in the winter in a wicked rainstorm and totally drenched when he arrives for prayers in which he asks God for rain.

Go figure.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Indyk ‘Atones’ on Yom Kippur by Dumping on Israel

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

Martin Indyk, former U.S. Ambassador to Israel and another ex-Middle East “Peace Process” huckster, spent part of the Yom Kippur Day of Atonement grumping over Israel’s not laying down as a doormat for the Obama administration.

His comments were reported by the Washington Free Beacon, which said it obtained an audio of Indyk’s remarks made at a conservative synagogue on the fast day.

Setting aside the fact the recording on Yom Kippur violates Jewish law, and not digging too deep into the sin of speaking evil of Israel, Indyk’s remarks say a lot about the pitiful intellectual level of American liberal Jews.

The Netanyahu government has total “disrespect” for the Obama administration, he said.

“The U.S.-Israel relationship is critical, is essential to Israel’s survival, and the relationship is in trouble, according Indyk, who once “joked” that he made aliyah to Washington to save Israel.

He also told fellow Jews that American support for Israel “is the bedrock that Israel has always relied on … and I worry that bedrock is crumbling.”

Israel right-wing leaders, he sermonized in his informal conversation, “manifests itself with right-wing politicians standing up excoriating our leaders, who are trying to do their best for Israel.”

Indyk, Kerry, the Clintons, Obama, Rice – the whole bunch of them – just don’t understand how Israel can be such an ingrate to the American government’s knowing what is best for Israel.

That attitude is encouraged by the liberal Jewish establishment that Indyk represents.

On Yom Kippur, Jews, for the asking, are forgiven for their sins against God, but the holiday does not atone Jews for sins committed against fellow Jews. Each one has to do the work himself.

It is a given that Indyk would not ask forgiveness from fellow Jews, the ones who do not consider that Israel’s raison d’etre is to allow American Jews not to feel uncomfortable about being Jewish by virtue of a strong Jewish state.

It is not a given that Indyk cannot even take one day of rest from the liberal Jewish theme that Israel was created to be the embodiment of the American melting pot, a country that can be called “Jewish” in name but which in practice should be ”Israeli,” wrapped up in the flag and felafel.

God, of course, is out of the question because the same liberals want church, the synagogue and mosques separate from the State of Israel.

They want Israel to be their key for social status among non-Jews who seek Israel being accepted by Arabs by their standards so they continue to feel comfortable that Israel is a charity case and so they can comfortably ignore growing anti-Semitism in the United States of America.

Indyk is the epitome of the liberal American Jew who sees his existence as a Jew dependent on Israel’s being a “yes man” for the American president, whether Republican or Democrat.

He is fraught over the end of the “peace process,” which made America’s liberal Jews so proud to be Jews when they pledge to buy Israeli bonds on Yom Kippur. Whether or not Indyk bought bonds, he has not forgiven for Israel for ruining the liberal American dream of expelling Jews from Judea and Samaria and half of Jerusalem.

Not surprisingly, a healthy number, if not a majority, of those Jews are Orthodox.

The liberal Jewish establishment does not forgive Israel for not letting a corrupt and racist avowedly anti-Semitic Palestinian Authority to take charge.

Indyk, according to the Free Beacon report, also criticized the Obama for “fueling perceptions that the United States is withdrawing from the region, a view that he said is the result of both the Bush administration’s intervention in Iraq and Obama’s withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan. “That perception is the reason for the Obama’s not having credibility in Ramallah and in Jerusalem.”

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Israelis Mark Yom Kippur with Prayers for Peace and Life

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

On the eve of Yom Kippur, Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu returned to Israel after speaking to the international community at the United Nations this past week. “I went out on a national mission on behalf of the citizens of Israel,” recounted Netanyahu. “I told our truth on the UN podium, at the White House and at other meetings that I held,” he said after landing at Ben Gurion Airport on Friday morning.

The prime minister also wished a “Gmar Hatima Tova to all the citizens of Israel,” the traditional blessing for the successful sealing in the Book of Life during the days leading up to Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people that entails praying and fasting.

During Netanayhu’s speech to the UN General Assembly, in which the prime minister recounted the dangers of militant Islam and a nuclear Iran, along with ISIS and Hamas caliphate ambitions, he also highlighted the 50 days of Gaza rocket fire on Israeli cities that ended just over six weeks ago.

“For 50 days this past summer, Hamas fired thousands of rockets at Israel, many of them supplied by Iran. As their families were being rocketed by Hamas, Israel’s citizen army – the brave soldiers of the IDF, our young boys and girls –upheld the highest moral values of any army in the world. Israel’s soldiers deserve not condemnation, but admiration,” said Netanyahu.

For Ilanit Swissa, a mother from Kibbutz Kfar Aza on the Gaza border, Yom Kippur is being marked by hopes for peace and quiet among residents of the secular kibbutz, which was under heavy Gaza rocket fire throughout the summer war. “We just hope that the calm will continue,” she told Tazpit News Agency. “That there will no longer be any threats to us in the coming year and that we will all be able to live on our border with Gaza in peace,” she said.

“We think of our reality today in a different way because of the recent war,” Yogev Trabelsy, father of three from Sderot told Tazpit. “The meaning of Yom Kippur takes on an added significance when we think of all the rockets that were fired and the people who were saved by miracles this summer.”

Anav Silverman, Tazpit News Agency

Yom Kippur Guide for the Perplexed, 2014‏

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

1. Yom Kippur commemorates God’s forgiveness for the sin of the Golden Calf and God’s covenant with the Jewish people.

2. Yom Kippur is a day of forgiveness only for sins committed against God. It is customary to dedicate the eve of Yom Kippur to apologies for sins committed against fellow human beings. However, an apology or compensation are not sufficient if they do not elicit an expressed forgiveness by the injured person. One is commanded to be community-sensitive and invite everyone, including transgressors, to participate in Yom Kippur services. Thus, Yom Kippur underlines unity, as synagogues become a platform for the righteous and the sinner.

3. Yom Kippur’s focus on seeking forgiveness highlights humility, fallibility, faith, soul-searching, compassion, thoughtfulness, being considerate, accepting responsibility and magnanimity. Speaking ill of other people (“evil tongue,” Le’shon Ha’Ra, in Hebrew) may not be forgiven.

4. Yom Kippur is a happy Jewish Holiday, replacing vindictiveness and rage with peace-of-mind and peaceful co-existence between God and human beings and, primarily, between human beings.

5. Yom Kippur is observed on the tenth day of the Jewish month of Tishrei, whose astrological sign is Libra (Libra). Libra symbolizes the key themes of Yom Kippur: scales, justice, balance, truth, symmetry, sensitivity and optimism. Libra is ruled by the planet Venus (Noga, נגה, in Hebrew), which reflects divine light and love of the other person. (Noga is the name of my oldest granddaughter). The numerical value of the Hebrew letters of נגה is 58 (נ-50, ג-3, ה-5), just like the numerical value of אזן, which is the Hebrew word for “ear,” as well as, the Hebrew root of “listening,” “balance” and “scale.”

6. Yom Kippur is observed on the tenth day of Tishrei – an Acadian word for forgiveness and Genesis. Ten has special significance in Judaism: God’s abbreviation is the tenth Hebrew letter (Yod – י); there are ten attributes of God – Divine perfection – which were highlighted during the Creation; the Ten Commandments; the Ten Plagues; there are ten reasons for blowing the Shofar; The Prayer of Veedooi – וידוי (confession/reaffirmation in Hebrew), is recited ten times during Yom Kippur one is commanded to extend a 10% gift to God (tithe); Ten Martyrs (Jewish leaders) were tortured/murdered by the Roman Empire; there were ten generations between Adam and Noah and between Noah and Abraham; a ten worshipper quorum (Minyan in Hebrew) is required for a collective Jewish prayer; etc.

7. The Hebrew word Kippur, כיפור (atonement/repentance), is a derivative of the Biblical word Kaporet כפורת,, the cover of the Holy Ark at the Sanctuary, and Kopher, כופר, the cover of Noah’s Ark and the Holy Altar at the Temple. Yom Kippur resembles a spiritual cover (dome), which separates between the holy and the mundane, between spiritualism and materialism. The Kippah, כיפה (skullcap, Yarmulka’), which covers one’s head during prayers, reflects a spiritual dome.

8. The Hebrew spelling of “fast” (צם/צום) – abstinence from food – reflects the substance of Yom Kippur. The Hebrew word for “fast” is the root of the Hebrew word for “reduction” and “shrinking” (צמצום) of one’s wrong-doing. It is also the root of the Hebrew words for “slave” (צמית) and “eternity” (צמיתות) – eternal enslavement to God, but not to human beings. “Fast” is also the root of עצמי (being oneself),עצום (awesome), עצמה (power),עצמאות (independence), which are gained through the process of fasting, soul-searching, spiritual-enhancement and faith in God.

9. A Memorial Candle, in remembrance of one’s parents, is lit during Yom Kippur. This reaffirms the “Honor Thy Father and Mother Commandment,” providing another opportunity to ask forgiveness of one’s parent(s), as well as, asking forgiveness on their behalf.

Yoram Ettinger

Yom Kippur Greeting #20

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

{Originally posted at author’s website www.createconnectprotect.com}

In Judaism, there is a traditional request for forgiveness prior to Yom Kippur. We want to go into our Day of Judgment with as clean a slate as possible. Those we have hurt are the only ones who can provide us with forgiveness for our sins against them and so we must ask them for that forgiveness.

Every year for the past 20 years, I’ve written an Annual Yom Kippur greeting. But my Yom Kippur greetings tend to go a little further than the typical request.

I hope you both enjoy the below and find it inspirational. I also know that many readers of this are not religious and/or not Jewish. Despite the initial content, I believe you will enjoy the write-up.

In Leviticus, the Torah states: “Whichever man there is of the house of Israel, who kills an ox, or lamb, or goat, in the camp, or who kills it out of the camp, and brings it not to the door of the Tent of Meeting, to offer an offering to the Lord before the tabernacle of the Lord; blood shall be joined to that man; he has shed blood; and that man shall be cut off from among his people;”

The punishment is extremely unusual. What does it mean to have the man joined to the blood of the animal? And why is he cut off from his people?

To begin to understand this, we must start with an understanding of blood itself. The Torah has a fascination with blood. One of the key references is Hashem’s command to the Jewish people to put blood on their doorposts in order to distinguish them from the Egyptians. The commanded blood set them apart from the Egyptians. But it also defined them as a group. Just as blood connects the cells in our bodies, blood connected their homes and families and made them cells in the body of the Jewish nation.

In other places, we see blood being described as the soul. Not the timeless soul, but the animating soul; the thing which gives our bodies physical life – and which can misdirect them. Many natural human acts are punished because the sinner’s blood was upon them – it controlled them when it should not have been allowed to. Grapes are described as having blood – they change the animation of a person and can thus undermine them.

Blood is animating. It gives us life. And with that life, it gives us something far more fundamental. It gives us potential.

In the verse above, we can see that the slaughtered animal can have its blood spent – or it can have itself dedicated in the Tabernacle. It can be poured onto the ground, or it can be used to help connect our world to the world of the timeless.

If you deny the animal the opportunity to serve this positive role, then your blood is tied to its blood. You are cut off from the people and you are denied your own opportunity to connect to the unchanging, the peaceful and the timeless.

You have wasted the animal’s potential and so yours is wasted as well.

This applies to animals, but it applies even more strongly to people. If a murdered person is found in the countryside, an elaborate ritual – representing the destruction of the Jewish people – is carried out. We place tremendous value on the preservation of potential. Failing to preserve potential can undermine our purpose as a nation.

What is potential? We can get an idea from the story of Genesis, G-d creates things and then deems them ‘good.’ It is an assessment of something new that has been created. But when Adam was created, he was deemed ‘not good.’ The bar for a flower or an animal is in the goodness of its form. But for mankind, the bar is higher. Goodness comes from our imitation of G-d; and this imitation starts with the act of creation itself. Adam, and in time, Eve were not creators. In order to be driven to create, they had to experience fear and loss and uncertainty. They had to know evil in order to know good.

Joseph Cox

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/holidays/yom-kippur-greeting-20/2014/10/02/

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