Always Seeking Approval
The only thing worse than Mahmoud Abbas’s lie that “all of Israel is Palestine” is Benjamin Netanyahu’s lie that “some of Palestine is Israel.”
We can’t control the thoughts of our enemies, but we certainly can and must control our own. The parts of Eretz Yisrael miraculously liberated in the Six-Day War belong to the Jewish people according to Jewish law.
The fact that Israel’s leaders seek American approval before annexing the heartland of Biblical Israel is regrettable. Can you imagine Moshe Rabbenu seeking President Trump’s approval before instructing the Jews to fulfill Hashem’s commandment to smear blood on the lintels of Jewish homes?
If you need to unwind after a long day of homeschooling and tension, I would suggest joining me for “Storytime” – 20 minutes every evening geared to children and parents of all ages. Stories range from Ashkenazic to Sefardic to Chassidishe.
I started this program several weeks ago mainly for my talmidim and their families, but the response has been so positive that I’d like to share it with all of you. No sponsorships, no access codes. Just 20 minutes of daily relaxation (and perhaps some inspiration) every day, Sunday through Thursday, at 7:30 p.m.
The Free Conference Call number is 725-735-9571.
Rabbi Avrohom Hoffman, rebbe
Yeshiva Rabbi S. R. Hirsch
New York, NY
Messages From Hashem
I read with interest the letter to the editor suggesting that the virus and quarantine might be a message for us to be more guarded with dressing b’tzniut. Here are some other possible messages:
According to recent reports, as a result of the lockdowns, the air is clearer and mountain ranges not visible for decades due to air pollution are suddenly visible. But it shouldn’t have to take a plague and lockdowns for us to undo the damage we have inflicted upon the earth.
We were charged with keeping and guarding the earth. “V’ha’aretz natan livnei adam – The earth was given to man.” Is this how we treat a gift from Hashem?
Another point: Weddings have recently been scaled down to immediate family. Before this pandemic, though, smany families were going into debt in an effort to put on the “perfect” wedding, and many kallot and even chattanim were more focused on the wedding plans than the actual marriage.
The wedding is one day or evening; marriage is supposed to last a lifetime.
I’ve been saddened to hear of girls and boys not wishing to consider marriage until after this plague is over (may it be soon) because they don’t wish to be “cheated” of the wedding of their dreams. Perhaps it would be wise to help children and teens understand the value of marriage and building a home together, and not dream only of their wedding day and all its expensive trimmings.
We don’t know why Hakadosh Baruch Hu is allowing this plague to wreak such havoc, but we can observe and take direction from the changes it’s causing – and grow accordingly.
Instead of Kaddish
As hard as it is for those of us who have to adjust to not davening in shul, it is even harder for those who cannot say Kaddish for a loved one.
Their pain is indescribable. Saying Kaddish is a sacred obligation. There is no way we can repay our parents for what they’ve done for us once they’re gone. Until now, we’ve at least been able to elevate their souls by saying Kaddish. Sadly, for most chiyuvim, that privilege has been taken away.
The Gemara (Sotah 49a) says the world’s continued existence is assured only by the kedushah in U’va L’tzion and the communal response of Y’hei Shmei Rabbah recited after the study of aggadata.
Unfortunately, in today’s world, mourners can no longer say Kaddish, but they can say the kedushah of U’va L’tzion and, in so doing, still be the direct cause of the world’s ongoing existence!
“U’va l’tzion go’el…” May a redeemer soon come to Tziyon so that no one will ever need to say Mourners Kaddish again.
It’s China’s Fault
When Republican senators like Tom Cotton (R-AR) mentioned that the Wuhan coronavirus could have escaped from a Chinese lab, he was crucified. Well, it looks like he might have been right, as reports are trickling in that this was a lab experiment gone awry.
Liberals have an appalling conception that everyone is just as dumb or dumber than they are – so they think the American voter will blame Trump for a virus that came from a Chinese lab and spread as China’s leaders sat on their hands for nearly a week when presented with evidence that a pandemic was afoot and ordered its scientists to destroy samples of the virus.
They persecuted doctors who tried to raise the red flag and prevented hospitals from reporting new cases. But somehow it’s all Trump’s fault.
No, it’s not. It’s China’s fault. And everyone knows it but Democrats and their drooling vegetable brigade in the media.
Brian J. Goldenfeld
Oak Park, CA