Asher Baruch ben Avraham does not need prayers for healing.
Arieh ben Asaya was in a terrible car accident please pray for him.
Arieh ben Asaya was in a terrible car accident please pray for him.
Quote of the week: Annie is a new Face Book friend who wrote in her blog a tract similar to what Mark Twain wrote about the biggest bunch of crooks but in more detail: “Congress is a cesspool of liars, thieves, inside traders, traitors, drunks, criminals, and other low level swine who, as individuals (not all, but many), will do anything to enhance their lives, fortunes and power, all at the expense of the People of the United States and its Constitution, in order to be continually reelected.”
Parshiyos Matos – Masei
Our Parsha deviates from the last Parsha as the narrative is suddenly broken off and it goes into vows and oaths. The Medrash on our Parsha starts out with Melech Yannai who owned 2000 cities and all were destroyed because of true vows. One would make a vow that he would eat in such and such a place or learn in such and such a Beis Medrash or something similar and actually perform the vow as he did it. Thus it was a true vow and not in vain. Yet the excess amount of vowing caused the destruction.
When I came to
Still people are prone to vows and oaths. There are vows on condition for extra help in danger. Yacov asked for help at Beth El., “IF YOU will give me clothing, food and shelter and return me safely here … THEN” It was sort of a pray-vow it was not a vow out of his power.
Lastly, I don’t know about other people but I am prone to be passionate about things both in Torah, Politics and my own home. I have to watch myself very carefully if my own temper flares up over something. I don’t want to cut off my nose to spite my face so I have to get my brain in gear faster than my temper warms up and believe me that is super hard to control ones own emotions and words.
Two years ago, I wrote on this subject: Our Sages were very much against vows. Most vows are not those that need to be stated in the court and are frivolous or emotionally. A woman has serious delivery or labor pains and makes a vow against any more children or marital relations, the husband can annul it.
30:2 And Moses spoke unto the heads of the tribes of the children of
For the sake of my many new readers I repeat what I wrote last year on the subject: Rashi: He honored the chieftains by teaching them first, and only later the rest of the Israelites. How do we know that he did so with other statements? For it says, “[Moses called to them] and Aaron and all the princes of the community returned to him, and Moses would speak to them. Afterwards, all the children of
This is how Moshe taught the Torah. First he taught Aaron, then Aaron’s sons, then Yehoshua, then the leaders of the tribes and then the people. Aaron then taught the Torah, his sons, then Yehoshua then the leaders of the tribes this way everybody heard the Torah at least four times if not more so that it would be engrained in them.
3 When a man vows a vow unto the LORD, or swears an oath to bind his soul with a bond, he shall not break his word; he shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth.
I just wish than 10% of the politicians would follow this rule, the world would be a much better place. No flip flopping here! You cannot be a candidate and go before AIPAC and say that
By saying, “It shall be prohibited just like a sacrifice, that I will not eat, or I will not do a certain thing.” One might think that even if he swears to eat carrion, I apply to him “according to whatever came out of his mouth, he shall do.” Scripture therefore states, “to prohibit”-to prohibit what is permitted, but not to permit what is prohibited. — [Sifrei Mattoth 7] he shall not violate his word.
4 Also when a woman vows a vow unto the LORD, and binds herself by a bond, being in her father's house, in her youth,
Under her father’s jurisdiction, even if she is not [actually] in his house. - [Sifrei Mattoth 12] in her youth. Neither a minor nor an adult [above the age of twelve and a half], since a minor’s vows are invalid, and an adult is not under her father’s jurisdiction to revoke her vows. What is considered a minor? Our Rabbis said: A girl of eleven years and a day-her vows are examined. If she knew in whose name she vowed, or in whose name she consecrated something, her vow stands. From the age of twelve years and one day, she does not need to be tested. — [Niddah 45b]
Even if you want to tell me that the young lady made a vow behind her father’s back, on the day that he hears it, he can annul it. Above I talked about my own passion and temper; women with their hormonal and emotional composition are even more prone to this. For example: “Strike me dead if Marilyn Monroe ever sets foot in my house again”.
5 and her father hears her vow, or her bond wherewith she hath bound her soul, and her father holds his peace at her, then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she hath bound her soul shall stand. 6 But if her father disallow her in the day that he hears, none of her vows, or of her bonds wherewith she hath bound her soul, shall stand; and the LORD will forgive her, because her father disallowed her.
The father is older and wiser and perhaps emotionally unattached to the daughter’s vow. He therefore like a Chacham or Beis Din can overturn the vow.
7 And if she be married to a husband, while her vows are upon her, or the clear utterance of her lips, wherewith she hath bound her soul; 8 and her husband hear it, whatsoever day it be that he hears it, and hold his peace at her; then her vows shall stand, and her bonds wherewith she hath bound her soul shall stand. 9 But if her husband disallow her in the day that he hears it, then he shall make void her vow which is upon her, and the clear utterance of her lips, wherewith she hath bound her soul; and the LORD will forgive her.
I know a number of times my mother became infuriated at my father’s mother, he never heard her vow but would not have let it stand against my grandmother. I loved them both and tried to tell my mother that she was going over-board at the moment. (After my father passed away, she would call up my grandmother to inquire about her daily as if my father of blessed memory was still alive.) This is just one example of vows that women can make. “If I ever set foot into that Walmart again…etc.”
10 But the vow of a widow, or of her that is divorced, even every thing wherewith she hath bound her soul, shall stand against her.
A widow is an independent entity not bound as a full partner to a husband and therefore responsible for her actions. DISCLAIMER: Just because the Torah holds a man automatically responsible for his own vows does not mean that he is completely free from blame on the subject or that he can upon certain but not all circumstances have the vow revoked buy a Chacham or Beis Din.
11 And if a woman vowed in her husband's house, or bound her soul by a bond with an oath, 12 and her husband heard it, and held his peace at her, and disallowed her not, then all her vows shall stand, and every bond wherewith she bound her soul shall stand.
A couple wants to get a divorce and the wife vows refusal of nuptial rights, the couple must get divorced!
13 But if her husband make them null and void in the day that he hears them, then whatsoever proceeded out of her lips, whether it were her vows, or the bond of her soul, shall not stand: her husband hath made them void; and the LORD will forgive her. 14 Every vow, and every binding oath to afflict the soul, her husband may let it stand, or her husband may make it void. 15 But if her husband altogether hold his peace at her from day to day, then he causes all her vows to stand, or all her bonds, which are upon her; he hath let them stand, because he held his peace at her in the day that he heard them. 16 But if he shall make them null and void after that he hath heard them, then he shall bear her iniquity. 17 These are the statutes, which the LORD commanded Moses, between a man and his wife, between a father and his daughter, being in her youth, in her father's house.
The Torah now returns to our theme started in Parsha Balak and continued in Pinchas.
31:1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 2 'Avenge the children of
The Medrash praises Moshe on this. For Moshe could have taken his time for the next ten years and lived until 130 years knowing this. Instead, he was very zealous for the fulfillment of the Command and acted it out immediately. This is not what Yehoshua did in the Conquest of the Eretz Yisrael. The Medrash blames him on taking his time. Because of his dilly-dallying his life was shortened by 10 years and he passed away at 110.
3 And Moses spoke unto the people, saying: 'Arm ye men from among you for the war, that they may go against Midian, to execute the LORD'S vengeance on Midian. 4 Of every tribe a thousand, throughout all the tribes of Israel, shall ye send to the war.'
The whole army of 600,000 soldiers was not needed for this relatively small people. 12,000 Commandos were enough for the job. Another 12,000 would be for the supply lines and 12,000 to pray and learn Torah to protect the front line forces from harm.
5 So there were delivered, out of the thousands of
The battle at this time went according to the normal conventions of war in ancient time. Kill off all the men so no soldiers would be left and take the women and children captive for yourselves. However, the difference here is that they were brought in mass before Moshe and the whole of Am Yisrael.
9 And the children of
Two years ago, I wrote on this subject:
It is obvious that Posuk 9 was the standard convention of war in those days. This means fight a battle and if you win, the women and children and spoils are yours. We see this with Plutarch’s story of the Sabine women. Thus the men of Yisrael (12,000) most G-D fearing were the ones who went into battle, automatically spared the women and children. This would be our way of thinking too in modern terms with our standard conventions. However, Moshe was a
We on our low level of spirituality today do not understand the level and prophecy of Moshe Rabbaynu.
Last year I wrote about modern logic even though I know that because I did nothing, the boy in the story today is 30 and perhaps filled with enough propaganda and hatred to kill many Jews there was nothing more I could do. The logical and moral aspect of war was to take in battle women and children captive. However one must get a deeper understanding. A three year old Arab boy once threw a stone at our bus. I asked the driver to stop I took the surprised boy in prior to the intafada in front of his siblings. He found himself in a bus with soldiers I asked the driver to drive about
10 And all their cities in the places wherein they dwelt, and all their encampments, they burnt with fire. 11 And they took all the spoil, and all the prey, both of man and of beast. 12 And they brought the captives, and the prey, and the spoil, unto Moses, and unto Eleazar the priest, and unto the congregation of the children of
If one were to read of Roman conquest or that of the Greeks this was standard up until this point. But that is where the normal world ends and the spiritual world begins with the koshering of the pots, pans, etc.
13 And Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and all the princes of the congregation, went forth to meet them without the camp. 14 And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, the captains of thousands and the captains of hundreds, who came from the service of the war. 15 And Moses said unto them: 'Have ye saved all the women alive?
13. Moses, Eleazar the kohen… went out. because they saw the Israelite youths going out to grab the spoils. — [Sifrei Mattoth 42]
14. Moses became angry with the officers of the army. Those appointed over the army. [This comes] to teach you that when a generation is corrupt, the leaders are held responsible, for they have the power to protest. — [Sifrei Mattoth 43]
16. They were the same ones. This shows that they recognized them [saying,] "This is the one who led so-and-so astray. — [Sifrei Zuta, Yalkut Shimoni] on Balaam’s advice. He said to them, "Even if you assemble all the multitudes of the world, you will not be able to overcome them. Are you more numerous than the Egyptians, who had six hundred chosen chariots? Come, and I will advise you. Their God hates immorality [thus, entice them to sin with your women…] as appears in [the chapter of] Cheilek (Sanh. 186a and in the Sifrei (Mattoth 43).
It is normal for Am Yisrael to take captives women and children and that is what the officers did. Moshe was wroth because of the acts that females from three years old and up performed on the Tribe of Shimon in order to entice them even if a few individuals did not take place in these disgusting acts. All the males as in certain Arab villages today and the heart of
I want to skip ahead to reinforce what I said with Rashi: 17. Every woman who can lie intimately with a man. Capable of sexual intercourse, even though she may never have experienced it. They passed them all in front of the showplate, and the faces of those capable of intercourse turned green. — [Yev. 60b] you shall kill. Why is this repeated? In order to make a pause in the text; so says R. Ishmael. For when I read, “kill every male child, and every woman who can lie intimately with a man… And all the young girls…” I would not know whether to kill them [the women of the first verse] with the males, or allow them to live along with the young [girls]. That is why it says [at the end of the verse] “you shall kill.” - [Sifrei Mattoth 45]
Remember in the times of Tanach, marriages were contracted sometimes at the age of 9 or 10 between young boys and girls. Sanhedrin goes so far as to say that Bat Sheva and the previous generations married at the age of seven. What we consider pedophilia today was contracted in marriage then. Even Rivka was 3 years old according to Rashi or 14 years old according to Ibn Ezra. Whatever her age it was young but contracted marriage as a wife. There was nothing morally wrong in the eyes of Midian with a three year old working for a fertility cult and carrying out adult fertility work. I am far from a Chassid of Warren Jeffs the cultist Mormon and I don’t think a 50 year old should marry a 12 year old as per Shulchan Aruch Eben HaEzer Siman Aleph. It states that one should be marry a woman that is much younger than himself. The Torah would say to each his own as we find that David HaMelech near the age of 70 married 18 year old Avishag. I could not think of myself as marrying a beautiful Giyoret candidate in
16 Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to revolt so as to break faith with the LORD in the matter of Peor, and so the plague was among the congregation of the LORD. 17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. 18 But all the women children, that have not known man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.
The 24,000 dead were caused by the women of Midian so unlike Chaggit who became a wife of the Melech David, these women who caused members of our people to die were to be put to death. Chaggit and her daughter Tamar were converts and thus Amnon could fall in love with Tamar for her beauty for technically she was an adopted daughter and adopted sister and not a blood daughter or sister of Amnon. However, the impurities and tuma of Midian meant that these women who had known men had to be killed.
19 And encamp ye without the camp seven days; whosoever hath killed any person, and whosoever hath touched any slain, purify yourselves on the third day and on the seventh day, ye and your captives. 20 And as to every garment, and all that is made of skin, and all work of goats' hair, and all things made of wood, ye shall purify.'
Unlike soldiers of the nations of the world, soldiers of Yisrael were to purify themselves after the battle. I have a feeling that originally the Parah Aduma (Red Heifer) was used for anybody. Afterwards the nations of the world were not considered Kadosh like Yisrael and therefore the Tuma was not the same Tuma as lack of Kadosh. For this is the only place that I have seen 7 days of purification of soldiers in the Tanach.
Below are the laws of koshering of utensils:
21 And Eleazar the priest said unto the men of war that went to the battle: 'This is the statute of the law which the LORD hath commanded Moses: 22 Howbeit the gold, and the silver, the brass, the iron, the tin, and the lead, 23 every thing that may abide the fire, ye shall make to go through the fire, and it shall be clean; nevertheless it shall be purified with the water of sprinkling; and all that abides not the fire ye shall make to go through the water. 24 And ye shall wash your clothes on the seventh day, and ye shall be clean, and afterward ye may come into the camp.'
We learn what can be koshered and that clay/china utensils cannot be koshered. At the time of the Mishnah there were people who had utensils and cutlery from fish bones. Metals were for wealthier people.
25 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 26 'Take the sum of the prey that was taken, both of man and of beast, thou, and Eleazar the priest, and the heads of the fathers' houses of the congregation; …. 53 For the men of war had taken booty, every man for himself.-- 54 And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the tent of meeting, for a memorial for the children of Israel before the LORD.
Let me set the record straight about what happened to the Midian children taken captive, they grew up and married within the tribes. In the end of the day the chance of any Jew having a Midian Gene inside of him is close to 100%.
32:1 Now the children of Reuben and the children of Gad had a very great multitude of cattle; and when they saw the land of Jazer, and the land of Gilead, that, behold, the place was a place for cattle, 2 the children of Gad and the children of Reuben came and spoke unto Moses, and to Eleazar the priest, and unto the princes of the congregation, saying: 3 'Ataroth, and Dibon, and Jazer, and Nimrah, I do not know if this is the area near the ‘fort of Nimrod’ on the way up to the Golan Heights from the Banias and Heshbon, and Elealeh, and Sebam, and Nebo, and Beon, 4 the land which the LORD smote before the congregation of Israel, is a land for cattle, and thy servants have cattle.' 5 And they said: 'If we have found favor in thy sight, let this land be given unto thy servants for a possession; bring us not over the
Our Sages of blessed memory tell us that by giving up on the land promised to Avraham, Yitzchak and Yacov; no matter how nice the Golan Heights are in water sources, grazing land and fertility for growing grapes, apples, cherries, and other fruits these tribes and half of the tribe of Menashe were to go into exile first because of this. Even this willingness to fight with their brethren were considered an affront to G-D. The
20 And Moses said unto them: 'If ye will do this thing: if ye will arm yourselves to go before the LORD to the war, 21 and every armed man of you will pass over the Jordan before the LORD, until He hath driven out His enemies from before Him, 22 and the land be subdued before the LORD, and ye return afterward; then ye shall be clear before the LORD, and before Israel, and this land shall be unto you for a possession before the LORD. 23 But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD; and know ye your sin which will find you.
Still the sin of not first going to war for the land and then requesting the Golan Heights etc. to live would haunt them in the future and when the evil came out of the North they were the first to get taken into captivity.
… 40 And Moses gave
Even though the
We now switch the theme from the inheritance and future conquest of Eretz Yisrael to remembering out travels in the Desert 40 years. Note 42 different places in 40 years. But upon analysis some of these places were in the first year and some in the last and most of the 40 years the tribes were more sedimentary than traveling.
33:1 These are the stages of the children of
This appears to be some journeying back and forth after fleeing
16 And they journeyed from the wilderness of Sinai, and pitched in Kibroth-hattaavah. 17 And they journeyed from Kibroth-hattaavah, and pitched in Hazeroth. 18 And they journeyed from Hazeroth, and pitched in Rithmah. 19 And they journeyed from Rithmah, and pitched in Rimmon-perez. 20 And they journeyed from Rimmon-perez, and pitched in Libnah. 21 And they journeyed from Libnah, and pitched in Rissah. 22 And they journeyed from Rissah, and pitched in Kehelah. 23 And they journeyed from Kehelah, and pitched in
One thing for certain is that these last 11 stops were made during the last year. So if I am correct 24 out of the 42 stops were made in the first and last year. Leaving us 18 major areas (because of grazing, I assume that the tribes did move around these areas but not much of a physical diversion far from them and their water source) in the course of 38 years.
50 And the LORD spoke unto Moses in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho, saying: 51 'Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them: When ye pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, 52 then ye shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before you, and destroy all their figured stones, and destroy all their molten images, and demolish all their high places. 53 And ye shall drive out the inhabitants of the land, and dwell therein; for unto you have I given the land to possess it. 54 And ye shall inherit the land by lot according to your families--to the more ye shall give the more inheritance, and to the fewer thou shalt give the less inheritance; wheresoever the lot falls to any man, that shall be his; according to the tribes of your fathers shall ye inherit. 55 But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then shall those that ye let remain of them be as thorns in your eyes, and as pricks in your sides, and they shall harass you in the land wherein ye dwell. 56 And it shall come to pass, that as I thought to do unto them, so will I do unto you.
All idols were to be destroyed. One of the greatest mistakes during the six day war was that of Defense Minister Moshe Dayan. The Arabs were fleeing from Yehuda and the Shomron. He forcibly made them return to be thorns in our sides and harassment unto this day all because he wanted cheap laborers for the Kibbutzim. He also gave the Arabs to the keys to the
Defining the original borders of the land of Yisrael:34:1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 2 'Command the children of Israel, and say unto them: When ye come into the land of Canaan, this shall be the land that shall fall unto you for an inheritance, even the land of Canaan according to the borders thereof. 3 Thus your south side shall be from the wilderness of Zin close by the side of Edom, and your south border shall begin at the end of the Salt Sea eastward; 4 and your border shall turn about southward of the ascent of Akrabbim, This is an area south of the Dead Sea and a very winding road. The name Akrabbim comes from the Hebrew for Scorpions as such areas are great breeding places for these creatures. Above the Syrian-African fault line lies the wilderness of Zin and pass along to Zin; and the goings out thereof shall be southward of Kadesh-Barnea; There is a Kibbutz by this name on the Egyptian Israeli border and it is in the approximate spot and it shall go forth to Hazar-addar, and pass along to Azmon; 5 and the border shall turn about from Azmon unto the Brook of Egypt, and the goings out thereof shall be at the Sea. 6 And for the western border, ye shall have the
We are now introduced to the next generation of leaders or the Bnei Yisrael. These are the new princes of the tribes that are going to conquer and divide the land.
16 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 17 'These are the names of the men that shall take possession of the land for you: Eleazar the priest, and Joshua the son of Nun. 18 And ye shall take one prince of every tribe, to take possession of the land. 19 And these are the names of the men: of the tribe of Judah, Caleb the son of Jephunneh. The Kingship shall not come from his sons, but he is the leader of the conquest. 20 And of the tribe of the children of Simeon, Shmuel the son of Ammihud. 21 Of the tribe of Benjamin, Elidad the son of Chislon. 22 And of the tribe of the children of Dan a prince, Bukki the son of Jogli. 23 Of the children of Joseph: of the tribe of the children of Manasseh a prince, Hanniel the son of Ephod; 24 and of the tribe of the children of Ephraim a prince, Kemuel the son of Shiphtan. 25 And of the tribe of the children of Zebulun a prince, Eli-zaphan the son of Parnach. 26 And of the tribe of the children of Issachar a prince, Paltiel the son of Azzan. 27 And of the tribe of the children of Asher a prince, Ahihud the son of Shelomi. 28 And of the tribe of the children of Naphtali a prince, Pedahel the son of Ammihud. 29 These are they whom the LORD commanded to divide the inheritance unto the children of
35:1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses in the plains of Moab by the Jordan at Jericho, saying: 2 'Command the children of Israel, that they give unto the Levites of the inheritance of their possession cities to dwell in; and open land round about the cities shall ye give unto the Levites. 3 And the cities shall they have to dwell in; and their open land shall be for their cattle, and for their substance, and for all their beasts. 4 And the open land about the cities, which ye shall give unto the Levites, shall be from the wall of the city and outward a thousand cubits round about. 5 And ye shall measure without the city for the east side two thousand cubits, and for the south side two thousand cubits, and for the west side two thousand cubits, and for the north side two thousand cubits, the city being in the midst. This shall be to them the open land about the cities. 6 And the cities which ye shall give unto the Levites, they shall be the six cities of refuge, which ye shall give for the manslayer to flee thither; and beside them ye shall give forty and two cities. 7 All the cities which ye shall give to the Levites shall be forty and eight cities: them shall ye give with the open land about them. 8 And concerning the cities which ye shall give of the possession of the children of Israel, from the many ye shall take many, and from the few ye shall take few; each tribe according to its inheritance which it inherits shall give of its cities unto the Levites.' The Levites were to receive Maaser (Tithes) from the farmers. They too were to have some small fields for fruits and vegetables. Their main job was to serve the community as Torah Teachers, workers and guards in the Temple and to conduct the commerce centers of the cities with the associated trades inside – weavers, cloth salesmen, needle makers, black smiths, tailors, cobblers, tool makers, running the market, etc. This did not discount other people who were silver or gold smiths form coming to the cities to work and the cities were to be in each tribal area.
The Torah goes into the Mitzvah or establishing cities of refuge for a person who commits manslaughter. The manslaughterer was to flee to the city of refuge from the avenger of blood from the family. Although nowadays we do not have in our culture (not going into our Middle-Eastern neighbors) avengers of blood still this Mitzvah would apply. What is considered for this purpose manslaughter? For example a man going on a scaffold or ladder without a warning sign below or with his fellow worker below and not wearing a safety helmet. A tool or object slips out of his hand on the one below and kills the person; he would be considered a manslaugterer. If he was chopping with an axe and the handle flew off from hitting hard wood or the axe flew out of his hand and killed a person, he would have to flee for this.
However, if a man were to maintain his automobile on a regular maintenance program and driving at a safe speed came across an oil spill, sand spill, etc. that was unexpected come upon the road causing his car to skid resulting in a death or injury would not be considered something that an avenger of blood could act upon as the man could have done nothing more humanly possible to observe safety precautions and procedures. The same would be true for a person cutting his steak on an ocean liner when a tidal wave hits the ship and the man at the next table is thrown into the knife. The only thing is that perhaps in both cases the person should have prayed that no accident or mishap would occur through him as we do in the traveler’s prayers that we say.
9 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 10 'Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them: When ye pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, 11 then ye shall appoint you cities to be cities of refuge for you, that the manslayer that kills any person through error may flee thither. 12 And the cities shall be unto you for refuge from the avenger, that the manslayer die not, until he stand before the congregation for judgment. 13 And as to the cities which ye shall give, there shall be for you six cities of refuge. … 30 Whoso kills any person, the murderer shall be slain at the mouth of witnesses; but one witness shall not testify against any person that he die. See below about having two witnesses in the case of the mini-Madoff scammer praying on Chareidim and Dati-im. 31 Moreover ye shall take no ransom for the life of a murderer, that is guilty of death; but he shall surely be put to death. 32 And ye shall take no ransom for him that is fled to his city of refuge, that he should come again to dwell in the land, until the death of the priest. Our Sages say that one of the jobs of the High Priest on Yom Kippur was to pray for no accidents and manslaughter when he entered the Kadosh Kedoshim (Holy of Holies). The Talmud records that the mother of the Cohain Gadol used to go to the cities of refugee and feed the manslaughterers with cakes and other items so that they would not pray for the death of her son. (It is also that the wife or children did this too) 33 So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye are; for blood, it pollute the land; and no expiation can be made for the land for the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it. 34 And thou shalt not defile the land which ye inhabit, in the midst of which I dwell; for I the LORD dwell in the midst of the children of
36:1 And the heads of the fathers' houses of the family of the children of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, of the families of the sons of Joseph, came near, and spoke before Moses, and before the princes, the heads of the fathers' houses of the children of Israel; 2 and they said: 'The LORD commanded my lord to give the land for inheritance by lot to the children of Israel; and my lord was commanded by the LORD to give the inheritance of Zelophehad our brother unto his daughters. 3 And if they be married to any of the sons of the other tribes of the children of Israel, then will their inheritance be taken away from the inheritance of our fathers, and will be added to the inheritance of the tribe whereunto they shall belong; so will it be taken away from the lot of our inheritance. 4 And when the jubilee of the children of Israel shall be, then will their inheritance be added unto the inheritance of the tribe whereunto they shall belong; so will their inheritance be taken away from the inheritance of the tribe of our fathers.' 5 And Moses commanded the children of
The revolution of having women as land owners was so great that like the Shabbos the command had to be repeated over again to drill it into the Bnei Yisrael. Unto this day, women are treated as “Bone of my bones, flesh of my flesh” in Yisrael and not to be looked at as an object of whipping and beatings as done in both the middle and far eastern countries. Shlomo did not write about his ancestor Ruth “A woman of valor, who can find” for nothing. Are there women in
Chazak Chazak v’nit Chazak.
Time to expose a mini-Madoff who preys on the Charedi & Orthodox Community
For a number of years, I have heard about this man and his wife by one witness as con artist, cheat, thief, etc. However, I only had one witness come before me with this and only upon two witnesses to this effect can a thing be established in
The man is known and wanted by the
The man has at least an American and an Israeli Passport and may also be a holder of a European Passport to enable him to slip in and out of various countries undetected by the local authorities looking for him.
The man poses as an Insurance Agent, Investor, Member of the
Caution these people dress up as Tzaddikim, the man never has a spot on his ‘Kaputa” or Hat and the woman is dressed super modest. These are wolves in sheep’s clothing. Again, I have known their story for a number of years but only had one plaintiff come before me until last Friday.
IT’S NOT ME, IT’S THE JEWS by Barry Chamish
In the April ‘09 issue of Vanity Fair, I met a soul sister who tried to warn the Jews that Bernie Madoff was a fraud who would destroy their community;
Laura Goldman of Tel Aviv-based LSG Capital decided not to invest with Madoff. She even sent anti-Madoff articles to members of the
Country Club. “I was expecting a thank you, all I got back in return was a hostile response. Some of the Madoff investors said I was behaving unprofessionally and was bad-mouthing a competitor. Oh, they were nasty. Nasty! They said the publications were jealous of Bernie. They were being anti-Semitic. People called me an anti-Semite. I’m not only a Jew, I live in Palm Beach .” Israel
She found out, the way I did, that there is something psychologically diseased about the Jewish mind. You live in
And the hatred for the exposer doesn’t verge on psychotic, it is mass insanity. It’s just too easy to destroy the Jews. You murder a third of them and they learn nothing from their history except jingoes. NEVER AGAIN! Yeah, right.
Madoff stole $55b of his $65b right from the Jews, and that included many of the most established Jewish charities. And as $55b, half of
Artificial Sperm kosher to use for vitro-fertilization: http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1246443769068&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull
We learned that the destruction of the Bet Hamikdash (
During this period of mourning we do not get married. Getting engaged is permitted during the 3 weeks. Until Rosh Chodesh Av one may even celebrate with a festive meal, but without music. After Rosh Chodesh Av one may not have a festive meal, but one may serve refreshments. One may even get engaged on a fast day, but no food may be served. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 122:1
The period between the fast of 17 Tammuz and the fast of 9 B'Av 3 weeks later is known as Bein Hametzarim, or "The 3 Weeks". Since the destruction of the Bet Hamikdash (Temple) started on 17 Tammuz with the breaching of the walls, and ended 3 weeks later when it was set alight, this period of 3 weeks has been set aside as a time of mourning. If a Jew plays a musical instrument for a living, he may continue to do so for non-Jews until Rosh Chodesh Av. Some have the custom of refraining from meat and wine during the entire 3 weeks, except on Shabbat and Mitzva-meals (like at a Brit Mila). Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 122:1
The Kotel ("Wailing wall") is the western retaining wall of the
The Kotel "plaza" is outside the
On 9 B'Av almost everybody needs to fast. Pregnant and nursing mothers need to fast on 9 B'Av even if it causes them discomfort, unless it's dangerous to their health. When in doubt, consult your LOR (Local Orthodox Rabbi). During the first 7 days after childbirth, a mother is not allowed to fast. Anybody who isn't healthy should only fast for a few hours. This includes a mother between 7 and 30 days after childbirth unless she feels up to fasting. When in doubt, consult your LOR.
Children are not allowed to fast. (A girl of 11 plus and a boy of 12 plus are allowed to fast until the afternoon to prepare them for the year after when they are required to fast. – This is done for education only and if the child is hungry we tell them that it is OK to eat and drink.) Those who are not fasting should limit their food intake to the bare minimum; only bread and water if possible. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 124:6 The fact of the matter is we also have people who are not critically ill but can become endangered who do not fast on Tisha B’Av or Yom Kippur. An MD should be consulted. Sometimes the patient knows too. This week due a medication that I was taking, I had a lowered heart beat and very low blood pressure. I would not fast on Tisha B’Av if this were the case. I stopped the medication and B”H, things returned to normal. The doctors don’t know everything and the one who has the last word is the patient and that is the final Halacha. (Of course we expect that the patient is not looking for an excuse or heter not to fast but wants to fast on the mourning for Yerushalayim or to repent on Yom Kippur.)
This week we read the double Parsha of Matos-Masei Parshat מסעי begins by listing the 42 encampments the wandering Jews had during their 40 years in the desert. All 42 encampments should be read together during the same "Aliyah". Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 78:4 See http://halocho.blogspot.com/search/label/Shabbos for more Shabbat related Halachos. Shabbat Shalom, - Danny
This is an internet fwd from R’ A.L. obviously the source is not Jewish but it has a bit of Mussar to it.
Read This Slowly
Jack took a long look at his speedometer before slowing down:
A guy who happened to be a little eager to get home after a long day at the office. A guy he was about to play golf with tomorrow. Jumping out of the car,
he approached a man he saw every Sunday, a man he'd never seen in uniform.
Hi, Bob. Fancy meeting you like this.' 'Hello, Jack.' No smile. 'Guess you caught me red-handed in a rush to see my wife and kids.' 'Yeah, I guess.' Bob seemed uncertain. Good.
'I've seen some long days at the office lately I'm afraid I bent the rules a bit -just this once.' Jack toed at a pebble on the pavement. 'Diane said something about roast beef and potatoes tonight. Know what I mean?' 'I know what you mean. I also know that you have a reputation in our precinct .'
This was not going in the right direction. Time to change tactics. 'What'd you clock me at?' 'Seventy. Would you sit back in your car please?' 'Now wait a minute here, Bob. I checked as soon as I saw you. I was barely nudging 65.' The lie seemed to come easier with every ticket. 'Please, Jack, in the car' Flustered, Jack hunched himself through the still-open door. Slamming it shut, he stared at the dashboard He was in no rush to open the window. The minutes ticked by.
Bob scribbled away on the pad. Why hadn't he asked for a driver's license? Whatever the reason, it would be a month of Sundays before Jack ever sat near this cop again. A tap on the door jerked his head to the left. There was Bob, a folded paper in hand Jack rolled down the window a mere two inches, just enough room for Bob to pass him the slip.
Jack could not quite keep the sneer out of his voice. Bob returned to his police car without a word. Jack watched his retreat in the mirror. Jack unfolded the sheet of paper. How much was this one going to cost?
Wait a minute.
What was this? Some kind of joke? Certainly not a ticket. Jack began to read:
'Dear Jack, Once upon a time I had a daughter. She was six when killed by a car. You guessed it - a speeding driver. A fine and three months in jail, and the man was free. Free to hug his daughters, all three of them. I only had one, and I'm going to have to wait until Heaven before I can ever hug her again. A thousand times I've tried to forgive that man. A thousand times I thought I had. Maybe I did, but I need to do it again. Even now. Pray for me. And be careful, Jack, my son is all I have left.'
Jack turned around in time to see Bob's car pull away and head down the road. Jack watched until it disappeared. A full 15 minutes later, he too, pulled away and drove slowly home, praying for forgiveness and hugging a surprised wife and kids when he arrived. Life is precious.
Handle with care. This is an important message; please pass it along to your friends.
Drive safely and carefully. Remember, cars are not the only things recalled by their maker. Funny how you can send a thousand jokes through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the sanctity of life, people think twice about sharing. Funny how when you go to forward this message, you will not send it to many on your address list because you're not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it to them.
Pass this on, you may save a life. Maybe not, but we'll never know if we don't try.
The life you save may be....Your own child or grandchild.
Mussar on: LIFE
Life isn’t about keeping score
It’s not about how many friends you have
Or how accepted you are
Not about if you have plans this weekend of if you’re alone
It isn’t about who you’re dating, who you used to date, or how many people you’ve dated
It isn’t about who your family is or how much money they have
Or what kind of car you drive
Or where you are sent to school
It’s not about how beautiful or ugly you are
Or what clothes you wear, what shoes you have on, or what kind of music you listen to
It’s not about if you hair is blonde, red, black or brown
Or if you skin is too light or too dark
Not about what grades you get, how smart you are, how smart everybody else thinks you are. Or how smart standardized tests say you are
It’s not about what clubs you’re in or how good you are at “your” sport
It’s not about representing your whole being on a piece of paper and seeing who will “accept the written you”.
LIFE JUST ISNT.
But life is about who you love and who you hurt
It’s about who you make happy or unhappy purposefully
It’s about keeping or betraying trust
It’s about friendship, used as a sanctity or a weapon
It’s about what you say and mean, maybe hurtful, maybe heartening
About starting rumors and contributing to petty gossip
It’s about what judgments you pass and why. And who you judgments are spread to.
It’s about who you’ve ignored with full control and intention
It’s about jealousy, fear, ignorance, and revenge
It’s about carrying inner hate and love, letting it grow, and spreading it
But most of all, it’s about using you life to touch or poison other people’s hearts in such a way that could have never occurred alone
Only you choose the way those hearts are affected, and those choices are what life’s all about.
This is Progressive Judaism which I escaped from 6 generations of non-sense despite the anti-baal Tshuvah snobs and others in the Orthodox community. http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=136859203624
If the above link does not work try this: http://www.ucalgary.ca/~elsegal/363_Transp/Orthodoxy/SRHirsch.html
Lori speaks out: http://www.aish.com/sp/lal/49590657.html
MSG to Europe 1000 accurate rockets with a range of
From Renaud: Wife of
Must Read and see the photos in the article. Monkeys dressed as Jews: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3745700,00.html
From the author: http://www.heshspeaksout.com/
From Jason – I loved this unfortunately it is terribly true: Logic 101
An interesting letter in the Australian Shooter Magazine this week, which I quote: "If you consider that there has been an average of 160,000 troops in the Iraq theater of operations during the past 22 months, and a total of 2112 deaths, that gives a firearm death rate
of 60 per 100,000 soldiers.
"The firearm death rate in
" Conclusion: The
Regarding Israeli Soldier Girls: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3744954,00.html
From Pamela over 37,000 infected in the
Instead of giving to Kollel Beit Shlomo and other kosher institutions Jews are aiding Saudi Terrorists in
Justice better late than never: http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1246443802968&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull
On June 30th Cynthia McKinney wanted to enter
http://news.aol.com/article/alleged-kkk-member-arrested-in-israel/570651 now he claims that he has a Jewish girl friend to avoid expedition http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3746686,00.html
Time to stop suicidal Jews from disarming
Legal issues about a missing birth certificate: http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=104009
Jackie Mason tells it like it is no punches pulled on this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jzMi2R05XQU
The Israeli Navy is getting ready: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3747430,00.html
Anti-missile defense for short range: http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1246443820017&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull
For long range: http://www.debka.com/headline.php?hid=6180
Fwd to me by many people this is condensed from Tsila: Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Israel's High Court Targets Widow and Orphans of Fallen IDF War Hero
IDF Major Roi Klein, killed in the Second Lebanon War. From Wikipedia:
Roi Klein (Hebrew: רועי קליין; July 10 1975–July 26 2006 was a Major in the Golani Brigade of the Israeli Defense Forces. Klein was killed in the
>Klein was born in
>In 2002, Klein received a Chief of Staff Citation for his conduct during an ambush near
>Roi Klein became a symbol for heroism in
At the request of "Peace Now's" never ending war on Jewish housing in Israel, Israel's Supreme Court announced that the home of the widow and orphans of Major Roi Klein is to be destroyed. The home, along with 11 others slated for destruction are built in "Givat HaYovel" neighborhood of the Eli community in the Shomron/West Bank. The Supreme Court ruled that these 11 homes were built illegally, on private land, and are to be destroyed.
>The Yovel neighborhood is built on a South East hilltop in Eli. According to Eli residents, the neighborhood appears on the official and approved building plan of the community. The first homes were built in 1998 during
>"We are not an outpost, we are a neighborhood of Eli," said Tamar Asraf, whose home is also scheduled for destruction. The homes are legal, built on State lands and not built on lands taken from private people. We have all the legal building permits and we pay taxes to
Israel's Supreme Court won't let Israel destroy the home of a terrorist, yet destroying the homes of widows and orphans of
THE SAGA OF BARACK OBAMA’S ORIGINS CONTINUES by Emanuel A. Winston,
The saga of Obama’s origins continues to grow as you will read in the following by Joseph Farah in WorldNetDaily.(1) As you will note, a certain group of Obama supporters/collaborators ginned up a challenge to John McCain during the last Presidential election as to whether McCain was a legitimate American citizen, born off-shore to American parents. Their contention was that he was NOT qualified to run for and to be President of the
As you will see in Farah’s analysis, Obama was ‘somehow’ spared rigorous vetting by judicial inquiry and still refuses to confirm his place of birth, in addition to proving up his parentage to prove that he is a legitimate American naturally born citizen - as is specified in the Constitution. While the search goes on and despite firewalls erected every inch of the way, it is those firewalls and who erected them that are of equal interest.
Barack Obama was a lowly, first term junior Senator from Illinois, not known for bringing important pieces of legislation to the floor of the Senate, with most of his voting record stating he voted: "Present" on most legislative votes. That means he didn’t vote Yes; he didn’t vote No; he merely voted that he was Present - with no opinion.
So how did this relatively unknown in
Who, by name, were the people who not only selected Obama but also knew about his "blank background"? We already know about some of his close and unsavory friends, advisors and funders. Syrian-born Antoine (Tony) Rezko now sits in Federal Prison for all sorts of political bribery in
Was Barack Hussein Obama a "Mansourian" Candidate? A black radical convert to Islam, Dr. Kalid Abdullah Tariq al-Mansour, (aka Donald Warden) was reportedly a conduit for Saudi funds for Obama’s University education at Harvard and possibly some of his campaign monies which were bestowed upon Barack Obama (and other political figures yet to be identified). This speaks to a related story of how many hand-picked Muslims were to be funded so they could climb to high positions in the American political system.
The deeper and darker side of the Obama story is: Who were the unseen backers who wanted a man they could control or manipulate well beyond the constraints of the Constitution?
These questions grow exponentially and should be addressed seriously, to be answered - despite the possibility of Obama’s ejection from office as an imposter representing an agenda of those who may have conducted what history might label a "Presidential Coup d’etat".
Who were the specific Congressmen who knew or suspected Obama’s possible ineligibility?
Who in the Intelligence Community (the Clandestine Services) wanted a change in Government and colluded to shield Obama so they could have their obedient man in Government?
Who in the Judiciary worked so diligently to keep the investigation of Obama’s qualifications smothered with rulings that dismissed innumerable charges and suits to force disclosure of Obama’s legitimacy?
Who really checked the extraordinary amount of overseas funding, much of which was funded through Muslims in
How did ACORN, a well-known associate of Obama manage to get millions of American tax-payers’ dollars to work almost exclusively for Obama in getting out the vote for Obama? ACORN is now under investigation in most
What about the
However, Barack Hussein Obama could not on his own be the master-mind who constructed this virtual "coup d’etat" against the American Constitution should be investigated and, if found guilty of fraud, should be removed from office.
There must have been an assemblage of powerful figures who would have had to conspire to achieve the goals of virtually overthrowing the U.S. Government in what would seem to be a bloodless "coup d’etat".
One cannot help but notice the take over of banks, insurance companies, industries - especially the Big Three Auto giants - with controlling "Czars" who act on the orders of the Obama Regime.
We observe the willingness of the President to bond with or simply ignore some of the world’s most deadly terror-driven regimes and tyrants in the Islamic world. This again brings up the matter of Obama’s origins having been born a Muslim and later adopting Christian ‘persona’ which met the criteria of
Now there is the critical matter of one man literally owning or, at least, controlling the finances of the American nation. Obama borrows and prints trillions of dollars which puts the nation and her future into a position of being an unrecoverable debtor nation.
Some will note that this borrowed money seems to be scheduled to be dumped into the market at a time approximately 1 to 1½ years prior to the next Presidential election. It looks as if Obama and his clever gang of manipulators plan to take the money forcibly borrowed from the American tax-payers and then use it to stimulate the economy, by giving some back with the image of the unemployed breaking up streets and highways as well as other make-work projects so Obama can claim he has lessened unemployment which he created. Rahm Emanuel and Timothy Geithner could tell us a lot about the scheme under subpoena from the witness stand IF they were put in the dock.
A lot of money came in to make Obama President and his advisors virtually controllers of
I recall that Adolph Hitler also had his Czars or area leaders called "Gauleiters", although there were other titles. It not only divided responsibility but gave ultimate control to the High Command and, of course, Hitler himself. I am speaking generally of dictatorial methods and planning when a nation and her people become subservient to the "Dear Leader". This includes all Media who carry the information or dis-information to the people at large. When you see a leader on most TV News networks and his face is splashed so frequently on news magazines you can safely assume the publishers, editors, journalists and news anchors are "in the bag".
So, have Americans been had? That can only be determined by conscientious Judges on America’s Supreme Court.
To view this item online, visit http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?pageId=101162
BETWEEN THE LINES
Why Obama wants to hide birth certificate By Joseph Farah
Exclusive: Joseph Farah explains how words of Barack himself belie natural born citizenship
Posted: June 16, 2009 1:00 am Eastern
Since I began my quixotic campaign to uncover Barack Obama's birth certificate, many have asked me about the president's possible motives for hiding it with such tenacity and diligence.
I think there are many plausible motives:
* Perhaps something in that birth certificate, if it indeed exists, would contradict assertions Obama has made about his life's story. These might even involve his true parental heritage. Without a real birth certificate, no one really knows who his parents were. So it is ridiculous even to speculate about whether citizenship could be conferred upon him by his mother, when we don't know for sure who his mother is.
* Perhaps it reveals a foreign birth, as
"certification of live birth" we have seen posted on his website.
* Or perhaps it will show just what Obama has claimed all along – a birth in Hawaii to two officially non-citizen parents, for the purpose of establishing "natural born citizenship" under the Constitution.
What do I mean by that last possibility?
Well, as you know, in 2008, the Senate of the
Start your own eligibility billboard campaign in your neighborhood with WND's new yard signs, asking: "Where's the Birth Certificate?"
On April 10 of last year, two senators, both Democrats, Patrick Leahy of
It's interesting what Leahy had to say on the subject: "Because he was born to American citizens (emphasis added), there is no doubt in my mind that Senator McCain is a natural born citizen. I expect that this will be a unanimous resolution of the
And, indeed it was. It was also, interestingly, the only such hearing held by the Congress on the subject of "natural born citizenship" and its application to the 2008 presidential race. Why was that interesting? Because everyone involved in this process knew – or should have known – that the life story told by Barack Obama would raise far more doubts about his eligibility than McCain's.
Notice Leahy did not say one parent citizen would qualify a child for "natural born citizenship." He indicated it would take two to tango.
He did so again at a Judiciary Committee hearing April 3, when he asked then-Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, a former federal judge, if he had any doubts about McCain's eligibility to serve as president.
"My assumption and my understanding is that if you are born of American parents, you are naturally a natural-born American citizen," Chertoff responded – again underlining the fact that both parents would need to be citizens.
And what did Leahy say to that? "That is mine, too."
By the way, Obama voted for this resolution, so he obviously agrees with the definition of what constitutes a "natural born citizen" – the offspring of two
Now, I don't know who Barack Obama's parents are, because I have never seen his birth certificate. All I've seen is a facsimile of a "certification of live birth" on the Internet. That document, even if genuine, proves nothing about Obama's birth in
But I do know who Barack Obama claims his parents were. According to him, neither one of them was an American citizen able to confer natural born citizenship on a child. One, Barack Obama Sr., was a foreign national from Kenya, and the other, Stanley Ann Dunham, was too young to have qualified under the law for bestowing that privilege on her son, even if the father had been a citizen and even in the unlikely event Obama was actually born in Hawaii!
So, if we are to take Obama at his word, he is not a natural born citizen and not eligible to serve as president.
If he is to be judged by the same standard as his opponent in the race, there is no way he qualifies. That's what Leahy said. That's what Chertoff said. That's what the law says.
A logical question naturally follows: Why didn't the Congress of the
I'm still trying to figure that one out. Maybe the answer is this simple: Because there's no way Obama would have qualified.
Another logical question follows: Why is this man still serving in the White House and turning the country upside down when he is not even constitutionally eligible?
That's the heart and soul of the campaign I've been running.
By the way, further establishing that it was impossible for Obama to have been a "natural born citizen" are some astonishing words found on his own campaign website. They indicate that Obama was "at birth" a citizen of
So, again, I ask: Why doesn't Obama want to reveal his real birth certificate? Because he wants this discussion of eligibility to go away – once and for all. It is a vulnerability he cannot explain away. So he would rather not discuss it at all.
But let me remind you all, in case you hadn't considered this: Obama plans to run for re-election in 2012. And that's why we can never, ever let this matter rest.
Now for our Good Shabbos Story from M. Wolfberg entitled: Soul Train
Good Shabbos Everyone. In the second part of this week's double portion Matos-Masei, the Torah details the journeys of the Bnai Yisroel (Children of Yisroel) as they traveled through the desert. Why is it so important for the Torah to describe in such great detail the wanderings of the Jewish people? The commentary Maor Eynayim explains that there is a reason for every place that we must go in life. Namely, we must go to that certain place to elevate the sparks of holiness, which lay there, waiting to be elevated. We elevate the sparks of holiness in that place, by serving Hashem in that place. This is especially true in places with little Jewish presence. The following inspiring true story illustrates one Jew's journeys in this world. We now read the following amazing true story, told in the first person by Schneur Zalman Stern.
"In October of 1971 I came to
But my cameras were my freedom and my sole means of support. Determined to keep my options open, I said, "I will go to Yeshiva full-time, but I still want to support myself by photography."
The following week, I arranged to meet a wedding photographer in Far Rockaway,
"Sir, could you tell me how to get to
"Take the AA to
I sighed. It was 2:45 a.m. "There's a shortcut, if you're interested," he said. He sketched a map on a scrap of paper. "Go out those doors, take a right, and at the corner of the building, you'll see a fence with a hole. Climb through it and follow the tracks. "At the end of this field, you'll see an old, swinging bridge hanging across the tracks. Cross it. On the other side there's a staircase going into an alley. Make a right into the alley and follow it for 5 or 6 blocks. On your right, there'll be an elevated platform for the IRT."
"By the way, where I am?" I asked. "
I headed out of the station. A mangled chain-link fence connected the station to a bridge abutment. I crawled through the hole in the fence and saw the path leading to a field littered with rotting garbage, rusty car fenders and other refuse. Pressing on, I came to the swinging bridge, and walked gingerly to its center. I surveyed the panorama: bombed-out tenement houses, garbage heaps, graffiti. I crossed the bridge, went down the staircase and -- just as the man described -- stepped into a dark alley.
"Empty your pockets!" A voice growled from the darkness. A black man, aged 24 or so, walked up to me and pressed a .38 revolver into my chest. Click. He cocked the gun's hammer. "Empty your pockets before I kill you," he barked.
I pondered the double meaning of his words and concluded that I was probably about to meet my Maker.
"Before I empty my pockets," I said, looking straight into his fierce eyes, "there is something you must know: G-d gave everyone seven basic commandments and one of them is 'Thou shall not steal.' Now that you know this, if you steal from me, you will lose your portion in the World to Come."
After a moment of silence, he frothed, "I hate Jews!" Just then, another man emerged from the shadows carrying a large club. "Yo man, what's taking so long?" the club man asked the gunman.
"This Jew is giving me jive," the gunman responded. "Shoot him," he retorted. "Let me explain," I said, and I again went through the scenario of the Seven Commandments. I told him that if he stole from me he would forfeit Eternal Life.
The club man said angrily, "Is your G-d white? I don't like no white G-d." "My G-d is invisible," I answered, "Yet, He is the Creator of all colors." They seemed placated by my words, so I continued. "You know, if you don't steal from me, G-d will owe you. When the time comes, He's going to pay you." Silence. Then, the club man said to the gunman, "He is a jiving Jew! I'm going to empty his pockets." "Put your hands up Jew boy," the club man said.
His hand searched my pocket. His fingers became tangled in my tzitzis, (ritual fringes) and he couldn't reach the money in my pocket. He pulled his hand out, but the tzitzis held fast. He suddenly became terrified. Frantically, he untangled the strings from his fingers and jumped behind the gunman. "This Jew's got pocket guards," he said.
Both men examined my tzitzis. They argued vehemently about whether my tzitzis were strings or elastic bands, then growled, "What are those things?" "You see these knots?" I said, showing them the knots made from the strings. "There are five knots. Coming out of these knots are eights strings. Five plus eight is thirteen. The strings are called 'tzitzis' in Hebrew. The numerical value of the letters of the word 'tzitzis' add up to 600. Six hundred plus 5 knots, plus 8 strings, is 613, which is the number of commandments G-d gave to the Jewish people. These tzitzis always remind us of G-d and His commandments." There was silence followed by a long "Naah, you puttin' us on."
"I'm telling you the truth," I answered. "I want to see your G-d. Where can I see your G-d?" I answered, "G-d fills the world, transcends the world, and is continuously creating the world anew. In fact, He is creating this whole scene right now. G-d is also creating you, but because you have chosen to do evil, you are nothing more than a stick in G-d's hands." The guy with the club walked away, disappearing into the shadows.
The other guy approached me. "Where are you headed?" he asked. "I'm trying to get to the number 2 train," I said. "Man, you gonna die six times before you reach the number 2. But don't worry. I'm going to protect you."
Taking the gun in his left hand, he draped his right arm over my shoulder and escorted me to the platform. The next day I told Rabbi Jacobson what happened. With very little coaxing, Rabbi Jacobson convinced me to fork over my cameras, and supported me while I studied in yeshiva for the next four years." Good Shabbos Everyone.
Mr. Wolfberg’s stories are sponsored by: Refuah Shleima to Mordechai Menachem Mendel ben Tziporah Yitta
In memory of Shosha Malka bas R' Avrohom 21 Cheshvan Refuah Shleimah to Chana Ashayra bas Dodi
Be well and have a great Shabbos,