Friday, January 14, 2011

Pasha Beshalach, HaMann, Shabbos Shira and Torah galore

Devorah Yached bas Chaya has taken ill please pray.

The shooting of a Congressman or Congresswoman is bad enough and even if it were for best ideological reasons but the man who shot the blue dog Democrat did so because she was Jewish and he was a Neo-Nazi member of the Renaissance Party. Giffords was born in Tucson, Arizona, to Gloria Kay (née Fraser) and Spencer J. Giffords. Her father is the first cousin of director Bruce Paltrow, whose daughter is actress Gwyneth Paltrow. Giffords was raised in a mixed religious environment by her Jewish father and Christian Science-practicing mother. She has identified herself solely with Judaism since 2001, belonging to Congregation Chaverim, a Reform synagogue, in Tucson. She is Arizona's first Jewish Congresswoman. She married U.S. Navy Captain and astronaut Mark E. Kelly on November 10, 2007. He was the space shuttle's pilot on STS-108 and STS-121, and commander of STS-124 and future flight STS-134 (scheduled for April 2011), the penultimate flight of the space shuttle program before its planned end in 2011. From the writing in the Wikipedia, I tend to believe that she is not Jewish at all but rather a Gentile with a Jewish father just like Monika Lewinsky.

The same goes for her cousin: G. Paltow was born in Los Angeles, California, the daughter of Blythe Danner, an actress, and Bruce Paltrow, a film and television director and producer. Paltrow's father was of Ashkenazi Russian Jewish descent and her mother is a Quaker of Pennsylvania Dutch ancestry Paltrow's paternal great-grandfather, whose surname was "Paltrowicz", was a rabbi in Nowogród, Poland. Paltrow was raised in Santa Monica, where she attended Crossroads School, before moving and enrolling in The Spence School, a private girls' school in New York City.


We have been contacted by a number of consumers noticing the presence of "shrimp" in sardines. This is actually krill, a small shrimp-like crustacean, which is a common source of feed for sardines. Krill is normally digested prior to processing and should not be found in canned sardines, even sardines which contain the stomach. This year, many factors (e.g., size of fish, warmer water temperatures, methods of fishing, etc.) combined to create a very unusual fishing year and an increase in sardines containing undigested krill in their stomachs.

This issue is not one of quality, species substitution or adulteration of any sort: rather an unexpected and previously unforeseen occurrence, which now requires our attention.

While the presence of undigested krill is a rare occurrence, and fluctuates seasonally, all sardines should be inspected prior to consumption or remove the stomach to eliminate any concern. Skinless and boneless sardines are not affected, as their stomachs have been removed.

Parsha Beshalach (also known as Parsha Shira because of the song by the sea and also Parsha HaMann (Manna))

The non-Jewish Priest who codified the Bible Chapters sometimes on purpose made Chapters in strange places and sometimes on a botch up.

13:17 And it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God led them not by the way of the land of the Philistines,

The way of the land in Hebrew Derek Eretz this means a path or even manners and etiquette. There was nothing like it before or after with a cloud that straightened out mountains and led the way during the day or a pillar of fire by night. All the time messages of tradition and the beginnings of Torah were being discussed. Everything was a new idea or concept. Shabbos was set aside as a holy day but not on the level it was set aside in the desert. There were new rules to follow and one could no longer be married to his aunt or a sister of a living divorced woman and many people were to cry in the wilderness because of this.

Our Pasha now brings us back to reality. Freed slaves with the mentality of a beat down Ben Yisrael cannot make good soldiers as they are not fighters but humble slaves in their own mind.

although that was near; for God said: 'Lest peradventure the people repent when they see war, and they return to Egypt.' 18 But God led the people about, by the way of the wilderness by the Red Sea; and the children of Israel went up armed out of the land of Egypt.

Here the Pasuk contradicts in some way what I just wrote. The people had some arms or weapons but at this stage it was a defense against perhaps a city or tribe attacking them and not the major power in the world – Egypt.

19 And Moses took the bones of Joseph with him; for he had straightly sworn the children of Israel, saying: 'God will surely remember you; and ye shall carry up my bones away hence with you.'

Rabbi Yehonasan Gefen writes:The Torah tells us that when the Jewish people were preparing to leave Egypt, Moses was involved with in the mitzvah of taking the remains of Joseph to be buried in Israel. The Talmud in Sotah quotes a verse from the book of Joshua which seems to contradict the Torah’s account here; the verse there states that the Jewish people, not Moses, brought the bones of Joseph to Israel. The Talmud answers with a principle that if a person begins a mitzvah and but another person completes it, then the Torah credits the one who completes it as having fulfilled the mitzvah. Since Moses only began the mitzvah of burying Joseph but did not complete it, it is not credited to him, but rather to the Jewish people, who completed it. Check out the Aish HaTorah website for the full Drasha.

20 And they took their journey from Succoth, and encamped in Etham, in the edge of the wilderness. 21 And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; that they might go by day and by night: 22 the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night, departed not from before the people.

14:1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 2 'Speak unto the children of Israel, that they turn back and encamp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, before Baal-zephon, over against it shall ye encamp by the sea. 3 And Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel: They are entangled in the land, the wilderness hath shut them in. 4 And I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and he shall follow after them; and I will get Me honor upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; and the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD.' And they did so. 5 And it was told the king of Egypt that the people were fled; and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned towards the people, and they said: 'What is this we have done, that we have let Israel go from serving us? 6 And he made ready his chariots, and took his people with him. 7 And he took six hundred chosen chariots, and all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over all of them. 8 And the LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and he pursued after the children of Israel; for the children of Israel went out with a high hand. 9 And the Egyptians pursued after them, all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, and his horsemen, and his army, and overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon. 10 And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and, behold, the Egyptians were marching after them; and they were sore afraid; and the children of Israel cried out unto the LORD. 11 And they said unto Moses: 'Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness? wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to bring us forth out of Egypt? 12 Is not this the word that we spoke unto thee in Egypt, saying: Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.' 13 And Moses said unto the people: 'Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will work for you to-day; for whereas ye have seen the Egyptians to-day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. 14 The LORD will fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.'

15 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'Wherefore criest thou unto Me? speak unto the children of Israel, that they go forward. 16 And lift thou up thy rod, and stretch out thy hand over the sea, and divide it; and the children of Israel shall go into the midst of the sea on dry ground. 17 And I, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall go in after them; and I will get Me honour upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host, upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen. 18 And the Egyptians shall know that I am the LORD, when I have gotten Me honour upon Pharaoh, upon his chariots, and upon his horsemen.' 19 And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud removed from before them, and stood behind them; 20 and it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud and the darkness here, yet gave it light by night there; and the one came not near the other all the night. 21 And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all the night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. 22 And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground; and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left. 23 And the Egyptians pursued, and went in after them into the midst of the sea, all Pharaoh's horses, his chariots, and his horsemen. 24 And it came to pass in the morning watch, that the LORD looked forth upon the host of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and of cloud, and discomfited the host of the Egyptians. 25 And He took off their chariot wheels, and made them to drive heavily; so that the Egyptians said: 'Let us flee from the face of Israel; for the LORD fights for them against the Egyptians.'

26 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'Stretch out thy hand over the sea, that the waters may come back upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots, and upon their horsemen.' 27 And Moses stretched forth his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its strength when the morning appeared; and the Egyptians fled against it; and the LORD overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea. 28 And the waters returned, and covered the chariots, and the horsemen, even all the host of Pharaoh that went in after them into the sea; there remained not so much as one of them. 29 But the children of Israel walked upon dry land in the midst of the sea; and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left. 30 Thus the LORD saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the sea-shore. 31 And Israel saw the great work which the LORD did upon the Egyptians, and the people feared the LORD; and they believed in the LORD, and in His servant Moses.

Rabbi Michael Shtiglitz Shliata: Parshat Beshalach and the parshiyot hashavua which come before and after it revolve around the first Geulah (Redemption). This Geulah serves as a model for every future Geulah – including the one whose beginning stages we are now privileged to experience.

The Midrash offers an interesting description of Kri’at Yam Suf (the Splitting of the Sea):

“‘Hashem is known for the judgment which He performed…’ (Tehillim 9:17) ‘God is known in Yehudah…’ (Tehillim 76:2)

“R’ Yehudah said in the name of R’ Ila’i: When Yisrael stood next to the sea, the tribes competed with each other. This one said, ‘I will go down first.’ And this one said, ‘I will go down first.’ Nachshon jumped into the sea’s waves and went down. And of him, David said: ‘Save me, O God; for the waters have reached until the soul.’ (Tehillim 69:2)

HaKadosh Baruch Hu said to Moshe, ‘My beloved is drowning in the sea, and you are praying. “Speak to the children of Israel and let them travel.”’ (Shmot 14:15) Thus, ‘God is known in Yehudah.’ (Tehillim 76:2) And hence, HaKadosh Baruch Hu made Nachshon’s name great in Yisrael, for he merited bringing the first offering, as it says, ‘The one who brought his offering on the first day was Nachshon the son of Aminadav of the tribe of Yehudah.’ (Bamidbar 7:12) Thus, his name was great in Yisrael.” (Bamidbar Rabah – Naso 13:4)

Am Yisrael are in trouble. The impassable Yam Suf lies before them, and the Egyptian Empire’s massive army is behind them. In their hearts, which are still bound with the chains of slavery, they wonder if perhaps they are doomed to return to Egypt. And so, they begin to ask themselves what should be done. The Yerushalmi (Taanit 2:5) teaches that Bnei Yisrael were divided into four groups. Each one had its own opinion as to the best solution.

And here is where Nachshon ben Aminadav’s greatness is revealed. He does not speak; he does not lecture; he does not sin with “the sin which we sinned before You with our mouth’s speech.” (See Rav Soloveitchik’s incredible insight in “Yemei Zikaron” – pp. 131-133.) Instead, Nachshon takes action. He jumps into the sea, and in the final moments before drowning, he cries out to Hashem, “Save me, O God; for the waters have reached until the soul.” (Tehillim 69:2)

Tachlis” (or “tachlit” in normative Hebrew) is a popular expression which means “the ultimate objective”. I heard in the name of Rav Yisrael Meir Lau shlit”a that the English equivalent of tachlis is “talk less.” A person is not judged by his speaking abilities but rather by his actions.

I can talk about Shabbat’s importance and sanctity. But if I spend the entire holy day waiting for it to end in order that I may return to my business and hobbies, something is missing. I can talk about Eretz Yisrael’s importance and centrality both to Am Yisrael as a whole and to the life of each individual Jew. But if I take no steps towards moving there, I have missed the point. I can talk about Geulah and fervently recite, “may our eyes behold Your return to Tzion with mercy,” three times a day. However, if when He returns and waits for me to share in the process, I sit with my hands folded and do nothing to expedite the process, the essential point is missing.

In “Eim HaBanim Smaichah,” Rav Yissachar Shlomo Teichtel writes:

“And do not be quick to decide and rule that we must not do anything about matters of the Geulah and that instead we should ‘sit and not act’ and wait for Mashiach to come and carry us on the wings of eagles to our Land and our inheritance. And many of our fellow Jews and even rabbis and Torah giants think and assume thusly about the Geulah.

“And when one great Rav preached in public that one should do nothing at all about this – not even building and settling the Land - and instead one should wait for Mashiach’s arrival, which will blossom for us in a cloud, and he will carry us in clouds to Eretz Yisrael. And he came to this conclusion, because he did not delve into the depths of this halachah, which is one of the most profound halachot… And one who did not delve into it cannot grasp it.

“And I will cite the words of the Tana who supports me. Behold, he is the aforementioned righteous, Kabbalistic, and wise Sephardi (R’ Yehudah Alkalai), and these are his words:

“‘Do not think that the Keitz (literally, the “end”) and the Geulah… and the arrival of our Mashiach are one and that they will all come simultaneously and on the same day. For in truth, they are two separate things, and each one has a season and a boundary and a time for everything…

“‘And one who says that the Geulah will be initiated by Mashiach ben David, as the simple folk hope, is like one who says that the sun will rise before the morning light. These words are null and void, and the great evil which results from this harmful viewpoint is tangible, and experience will prove this to be true.

“‘And it is a mitzvah to tell this matter to the simple folks, and blessed is one who sanctifies His Name in public. And in my opinion, one who hides this matter secretly desecrates the Name of Heaven …’” (Eim HaBanim Smaichah 3:20)

If we learn how to strengthen ourselves and allow our actions to demonstrate our devotion to Hashem, the Redeemer of His Nation and His Inheritance, we will merit being among those who are privileged to have the Bat Kol echoing in their homes. Moreover, we will be rewarded for being the King’s faithful servants who worked together with Hashem and eagerly awaited His Torah and His Sovereignty.

May it occur speedily and in our days!

15:1 Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spoke, saying: I will sing unto the LORD, for He is highly exalted; the horse and his rider hath He thrown into the sea. 2 The LORD is my strength and song, and He is become my salvation; this is my God, and I will glorify Him; my father's God, and I will exalt Him. 3 The LORD is a man of war, The LORD is His name. 4 Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath He cast into the sea, and his chosen captains are sunk in the Red Sea. 5 The deeps cover them--they went down into the depths like a stone. 6 Thy right hand, O LORD, glorious in power, Thy right hand, O LORD, dasheth in pieces the enemy. 7 And in the greatness of Thine excellency Thou overthrow them that rise up against Thee; Thou sendest forth Thy wrath, it consumeth them as stubble. 8 And with the blast of Thy nostrils the waters were piled up--the floods stood upright as a heap; the deeps were congealed in the heart of the sea. 9 The enemy said: 'I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide the spoil; my lust shall be satisfied upon them; I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them.' 10 Thou didst blow with Thy wind, the sea covered them; they sank as lead in the mighty waters. 11 Who is like unto Thee, O LORD, among the mighty? who is like unto Thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders? 12 Thou stretchedst out Thy right hand--the earth swallowed them. 13 Thou in Thy love hast led the people that Thou hast redeemed; Thou hast guided them in Thy strength to Thy holy habitation. 14 The peoples have heard, they tremble; pangs have taken hold on the inhabitants of Philistia. 15 Then were the chiefs of Edom affrighted; the mighty men of Moab, trembling taketh hold upon them; all the inhabitants of Canaan are melted away. 16 Terror and dread falleth upon them; by the greatness of Thine arm they are as still as a stone; till Thy people pass over, O LORD, till the people pass over that Thou hast gotten. 17 Thou bringest them in, and plantest them in the mountain of Thine inheritance, the place, O LORD, which Thou hast made for Thee to dwell in, the sanctuary, O Lord, which Thy hands have established. 18 The LORD shall reign for ever and ever. 19 For the horses of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and the LORD brought back the waters of the sea upon them; but the children of Israel walked on dry land in the midst of the sea. 20 And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. 21 And Miriam sang unto them: Sing ye to the LORD, for He is highly exalted: the horse and his rider hath He thrown into the sea. {S} 22 And Moses led Israel onward from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water. 23 And when they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah, for they were bitter. Therefore the name of it was called Marah. 24 And the people murmured against Moses, saying: 'What shall we drink?' 25 And he cried unto the LORD; and the LORD showed him a tree, and he cast it into the waters, and the waters were made sweet. There He made for them a statute and an ordinance, and there He proved them; 26 and He said: 'If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in His eyes, and wilt give ear to His commandments, and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases upon thee, which I have put upon the Egyptians; for I am the LORD that healeth thee.' {S} 27 And they came to Elim, where were twelve springs of water, and three score and ten palm-trees; and they encamped there by the waters.

16:1 And they took their journey from Elim, and all the congregation of the children of Israel came unto the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after their departing out of the land of Egypt.

This is a desert that is south and drier than the Negev but it has a spring flowing through it and is located starting at the modern Kibbutz Sde Boker and the Sinai Desert but I do not know the land that well to tell you where it begins and ends nor can I classify if the modern El Arish is the northern border of the Sinai Desert or part of it.

2 And the whole congregation of the children of Israel murmured against Moses and against Aaron in the wilderness; 3 and the children of Israel said unto them: 'Would that we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the flesh-pots, when we did eat bread to the full; for ye have brought us forth into this wilderness, to kill this whole assembly with hunger.' 4 Then said the LORD unto Moses: 'Behold, I will cause to rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a day's portion every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in My law, or not. 5 And it shall come to pass on the sixth day that they shall prepare that which they bring in, and it shall be twice as much as they gather daily.'

ADDING SHABBOS TO THE EQUATION by Rabbi Zvi Belovski Shlita check out the Aish HaTorah website for the full Drasha.

If we look closely, we will see that this common factor is also apparent in Shabbos. Every yom tov has a name which clearly reflects its aim, content, or historical origin. Pesach means "passing over," for it is the time when God passed over the houses of klal Yisrael in Egypt. Rosh Hashanah is "the head of the year," and Sukkos is the time when we sit in Sukkos (booths). This pattern is broken only by Shabbos, whose name merely means "rest." This name does not attempt to convey anything about what one does on Shabbos or anything about its historical roots. All we are told is that Shabbos is a day on which one may not do Melacha (constructive labor). Note that this is a negative definition - Shabbos is a day on which one must not do something.

Once again, we see the unknowable aspect of our subject highlighted by its very name. Indeed, our Sages tell us that we cannot really understand the greatness or holiness of Shabbos, for it is beyond our limited comprehension:

The gift of its reward is not given to be revealed. (Beitzah 16a)

The innate connection between Mon, Yiddish for Manna or Mann Moshe, and Shabbos is now clear - each is unknowable in some very profound sense. The links are now complete: the Mon was given on Shabbos via Moshe (who is himself described as a Mon eater), for each is intrinsically connected to the other two. These three entities portray the unfathomable in the three primary domains - time, space, and the human soul: Shabbos in time, Mon in space, and Moshe in the human soul.


To finish, we will note a well-known Midrash:

Moshe saw that klal Yisrael had no rest in Egypt, so he went to Pharaoh and said, "If someone owns a slave but doesn't give him one day a week to rest, the slave will die. So, too, if you don't give your slaves one day a week to rest, they will die." Pharaoh agreed, and Moshe selected Shabbos as that rest day. (Based on Shemos Rabbah 1:28)

We may have assumed that Moshe chose Shabbos, as he knew that this was God's chosen rest day, and this would have been the action taken by any great Jewish leader. This is true, but it omits one factor: Moshe and Shabbos are intrinsically linked. Moshe Rabbaynu had to be the one who chose Shabbos as the day of rest for klal Yisrael, for he and it were forever linked. It was not by chance that he merited commencing the observance of Shabbos, as it was not by chance that he merited to bring the mon to klal Yisrael.

The falling of the Mann on weekdays and non-falling of the Mann on Shabbos was a DIVINE indication of the sanctity of the day. One of the signs between HIM and the Bnei Yisrael as a remembrance forever was the fact that the Mann fell only six days a week. But Am Yisrael being a thick necked or perhaps thick sculled people many didn’t get it. They were not seeing things to clear and it sort of went in one ear and out the other. Shabbos the dear beloved by G-D holy Shabbos and they just didn’t get it! Wake up it is Shabbos that is the source of all blessings and health.

6 And Moses and Aaron said unto all the children of Israel: 'At even, then ye shall know that the LORD hath brought you out from the land of Egypt; 7 and in the morning, then ye shall see the glory of the LORD; for that He hath heard your murmurings against the LORD; and what are we, that ye murmur against us?' 8 And Moses said: 'This shall be, when the LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the LORD hears your murmurings which ye murmur against Him; and what are we? Your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD.'

If I were talking to a single person I would want to verbally shake him up and give a backwards slap against both cheeks for the murmurings. BUT ARE WE NOT JUST AS BAD? When something goes against us do we not blame a flu or perhaps a bad heart but not look into our actions and see that our heavenly FATHER is trying to tell us something or put us through a test. These people were hungry psychologically for meat and needed the Slav Bird (translated as Quail) to come out of their ears after a month. It can be compared to the Swiss Chocolate Factory where the worker on the first day is given a chance to sample every type of chocolate until it comes out of his hears and then he can start working in production without being tempted to eat all the time.

9 And Moses said unto Aaron: 'Say unto all the congregation of the children of Israel: Come near before the LORD; for He hath heard your murmurings.' 10 And it came to pass, as Aaron spoke unto the whole congregation of the children of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and, behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud.

The Slav flew in so thick that it looked like a cloud. Imagine feeding approximately 2,000,000 people for a month meat from these relatively small birds what numbers there must have been! I assume that there were also enough left over to repopulate the world as the Slav can be seen in Israel until this day.

11 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying: 12 'I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel. Speak unto them, saying: At dusk ye shall eat flesh, and in the morning ye shall be filled with bread; and ye shall know that I am the LORD your God.' 13 And it came to pass at even, that the quails came up, and covered the camp; and in the morning there was a layer of dew round about the camp. 14 And when the layer of dew was gone up, behold upon the face of the wilderness a fine, scale-like thing, fine as the hoar-frost on the ground. 15 And when the children of Israel saw it, they said one to another: 'What is it?'--for they knew not what it was.

Mon Hu in Hebrew was the question. Supposedly near Mount Sinai until today the Bedouins gather Mann each morning and I saw this whitish sort of foggy material floating near the ground in a film of the area. I was only in Sharm El Sheik and never in the area near Sinai so that I cannot testify seeing that the sea breeze blew in each morning and the floating Mann could not have been stable to remain in the area.

And Moses said unto them: 'It is the bread which the LORD hath given you to eat. 16 This is the thing which the LORD hath commanded: Gather ye of it every man according to his eating; an omer a head, according to the number of your persons, shall ye take it, every man for them that are in his tent.' 17 And the children of Israel did so, and gathered some more, some less. 18 And when they did mete it with an omer, he that gathered much had nothing over, and he that gathered little had no lack; they gathered every man according to his eating. 19 And Moses said unto them: 'Let no man leave of it till the morning.' 20 Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto Moses; but some of them left of it until the morning, and it bred worms, and rotted; and Moses was wroth with them. 21 And they gathered it morning by morning, every man according to his eating; and as the sun waxed hot, it melted. 22 And it came to pass that on the sixth day they gathered twice as much bread, two omers for each one; and all the rulers of the congregation came and told Moses. 23 And he said unto them: 'This is that which the LORD hath spoken: To-morrow is a solemn rest, a holy sabbath unto the LORD. Bake that which ye will bake, and seethe that which ye will seethe; and all that remains over lay up for you to be kept until the morning.' 24 And they laid it up till the morning, as Moses bade; and it did not rot, neither was there any worm therein. 25 And Moses said: 'Eat that to-day; for to-day is a sabbath unto the LORD; to-day ye shall not find it in the field. 26 Six days ye shall gather it; but on the seventh day is the sabbath, in it there shall be none.' 27 And it came to pass on the seventh day, that there went out some of the people to gather, and they found none.

Here the people are seeing a miracle for what other thing in nature do we know of except the mythical Sambation River that rests on Shabbos. (Supposedly it is in the area of Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan and it churns 6 days a week and is calm on Shabbos and our Sages knew where it was but if it exists it is kept quiet by the Muslims living in that area now.)

28 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'How long refuse ye to keep My commandments and My laws? 29 See that the LORD hath given you the sabbath; therefore He gives you on the sixth day the bread of two days; abide ye every man in his place, let no man go out of his place on the seventh day.' 30 So the people rested on the seventh day.

This is now the foundation stone of Am Yisrael observing the Shabbos. For up until now we were like Goyim observing the Shabbos as Maaser Beresheis “For HE rested on the seventh day”. Now we were a nation who was observing the Shabbos because it was becoming our thing. Before this special act we really were not better off than the animals that graze on grass or hunt seven days a week. Before the observance of Shabbos as a national act we were no better than the kingdom of Nimrod or Egypt. Now we were special we had a sign that separated Kodesh le Chol. For now six days a week the Mann would fall and on the Holy Shabbos it would not. All the more so that on the sixth day a double portion was waiting for us.

31 And the house of Israel called the name thereof Manna; and it was like coriander seed, white; and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey. 32 And Moses said: 'This is the thing which the LORD hath commanded: Let an omerful of it be kept throughout your generations; that they may see the bread wherewith I fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you forth from the land of Egypt.' 33 And Moses said unto Aaron: 'Take a jar, and put an omerful of manna therein, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept throughout your generations.' 34 As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept. 35 And the children of Israel did eat the manna forty years, until they came to a land inhabited; they did eat the manna, until they came unto the borders of the land of Canaan. 36 Now an omer is the tenth part of an ephah.

17:1 And all the congregation of the children of Israel journeyed from the wilderness of Sin, by their stages, according to the commandment of the LORD, and encamped in Rephidim; and there was no water for the people to drink. 2 Wherefore the people strove with Moses, and said: 'Give us water that we may drink.' And Moses said unto them: 'Why strive ye with me? wherefore do ye try the LORD?'

Boy oh boy are they ungrateful. Instead of entreating and trusting in the L-RD they complain and murmur against Moshe. Does Moshe create water or food?

3 And the people thirsted there for water; and the people murmured against Moses, and said: 'Wherefore hast thou brought us up out of Egypt, to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?' 4 And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying: 'What shall I do unto this people? they are almost ready to stone me.' 5 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'Pass on before the people, and take with thee of the elders of Israel; and thy rod, wherewith thou smite the river, take in thy hand, and go. 6 Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink.' And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. 7 And the name of the place was called Massah, and Meribah, because of the striving of the children of Israel, and because they tried the LORD, saying: 'Is the LORD among us, or not?'

Wake up ye people – when will you realize that the L-RD is in your midst? Until when will the Jews complain today of our situation instead of us seeking HASHEM Yisborach Shemo.

8 Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim. 9 And Moses said unto Joshua: 'Choose us out men, and go out, fight with Amalek; tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand.' 10 So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek; and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11 And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed; and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12 But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13 And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.

Too many complaints brought on the scourge of Amalek.

14 And the LORD said unto Moses: 'Write this for a memorial in the book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven.' 15 And Moses built an altar, and called the name of it Adonai-nissi. 16 And he said: 'The hand upon the throne of the LORD: the LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.

We have a Mitzvah to kill Amalek unto today yet when the Iranian President came to the UN we could do little to follow this Mitzvah.

From a women’s standpoint on the Parsha with Miriam taking up the musical instruments:

"Parsha Beshalach" (Ex. 13:17-17:16)
"The Women's Song, their Strength" (Shabbos Shira)

One of the classical pieces of Jewish text is mentioned in this week's Parsha Beshalach, the 'Shira' (song) that the Jewish nation sang after the crossing of the Red Sea. Moses led the men in song, praising HASHEM for their victory over the Egyptian army. There is also another aspect of the joy that took place during this episode in our history. Rashi quotes the Midrash that the women, led by Moses' sister Miriam, also spontaneously broke out in song. However, there was a fundamental difference between the singing of the men and the singing of the women, musical instruments accompanied the women's singing.

Let us look deeper into the circumstances leading up to this particular incident. The Egyptians had just been hammered by the tenth and final plague, the killing of their firstborn. Finally, Pharaoh, realizing that his kingdom is about to collapse, orders the Jewish people to leave Egypt. The Jewish nation leaves in great haste, never to look back.

Amidst all this turmoil and uncertainty about the outcome of this departure, the women bring musical instruments with them!
Our Sages, tell us that the women did bring the instruments with them because they were more organized than the men or because their sixth sense told them to do so. Those women who came out of Egypt were certain that HASHEM would perform miracles for them and that there would be a need to sing songs of praise. Our Sages are teaching us a truly remarkable idea, that when we look at the role of Jewish women in our history, the reason Jewish women are treated so centrally is because of this attribute of unshakable trust and faith in HASHEM during most times of turmoil and incident.

If you will examine the text of the women's song, you will see that it focuses on one aspect of the miracles that occurred by the Red Sea. Whereas the men praised HASHEM for our deliverance from the Egyptians and for the destruction of the Egyptian army, the women's song only centers on the destruction of the Egyptian army. The Chasam Sofer points out that in order for HASHEM to punish our enemies, we must be very deserving of such personal protections. The women were heralds of faith during the Egyptian oppression. When Pharaoh ordered the midwives to kill the Jewish babies as they were born, the Jewish women ignored Pharaoh's directive even at the risk of their own lives. \

What inner strength gave these brave women the courage to disregard Pharaoh's decree? Our Sages tell us that their conviction of spirit was the backbone of the Jewish resistance 3300 years ago. The faith demonstrated by our women ancestors in Egypt made us invincible and guaranteed that we warranted Divine protection as we scurried across the Red Sea under a barrage of missiles from the enemy forces. This difference is, therefore, why the women's song focuses on the destruction of Pharaoh's army.

Ultimately, the Jewish nation does not win the battles because of superior armaments or strategic plans against the foes of the nation, but rather because of the women that consistently demonstrate their unwavering devotion and trust in HASHEM that He will perform miracles for His beloved people. Just as at the Red Sea it was the women who were certain beyond doubt that would redeem us, certain enough to bring musical instruments with them when they hurried to leave Egypt, so is the unshakable faith and trust of the women of our history in HASHEM for Him to watch over us and rescue us from the wolves of the world that constantly endeavor to slaughter us.

These women of Valor have always been the key players in our survival, in a quiet tone of humility, siting in the background of the history books supporting the war against the enemies of HASHEM. They have ingrained in the Jewish women for all time, the strength, hope, and endurance to overcome any obstacle that would keep us from our rightful place in the scheme of all things.

Sources: Rashi, Midrash, Midrash Beshalach, Chasam Sofer, Rabbi Nussbaum.

Halachos from Danny Shoemann

When seeing lightning one says the Bracha of "Baruch... Oseh Maaseh Beresheis" - "... Who makes the work of creation". בָּרוּךְ אַתָּה ה', א-לקינו מֶלֶךְ הָעוֹלָם

עוֹשֶׂה מַעֲשֶׂה בְּרֵאשִׁית

This Bracha must be said immediately after seeing the lightning. Immediately is defined as the time needed to say 3 short words.
If one hears the thunder after saying the above mentioned Bracha, then, on the thunder one says the Bracha of "Baruch... Shekecho Ugvurato Maalah Olam" - "...for His strength and His power fill the universe".
ברוך אתה ה' א-לקינו מלך העולם
שֶׁכּוֹחוֹ וּגְבוּרָתוֹ מָלֵא עוֹלָם
If the thunder boomed before one finishes saying the Bracha on the lightning, then it is included in the same Bracha, and one does not say a second Bracha on the thunder.
This Bracha must be said immediately after hearing the thunder. One can begin before the roll of the thunder ends. These Berachos can only be said once per storm. The storm ends when the sky clears of clouds. No Bracha is said on lightning that is caused by the heat and doesn't produce thunder (summer lightning).
Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 60:2, 3

You are not allowed to cause other people damage or even discomfort - even if you are in your own home and they are in the street or in their home. The exception being those things that "everybody does" and they are accepted as the norm in that area. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 184:5

A father must educate his children to do all Mitzvos (Torah and Rabbinical) that are appropriate to their age. One also needs to prevent a child from doing any sin which he is capable of relating to, starting with telling the truth, eating only Kosher and not carrying things on Shabbat (in areas where one may not carry, i.e. where there is no Eruv.)
A child who stole must return the theft if it exists. If it no longer exists then he needn't return its value even after he becomes an adult. However, in heaven he will be required to account for the theft, so it's recommended to make amends. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 165:1-6

A person who frightens another person - e.g. by yelling suddenly from behind them or by appearing suddenly in the dark - will be made to account for their action in heaven.
Therefore is recommended to ask them for forgiveness, while one is still alive. Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 184:6

House pets or any other animals that depend on you for their food, must be fed on Shabbat before one starts eating. Animals that do not rely on humans for their food may not be fed on Shabbat, and one may not even throw them leftovers, with the exception of stray dogs. One may not feed pigeons as they are capable of fending for themselves.
The custom to put out grain for the birds on Shabbat Shira (this week) is incorrect since birds do not rely on humans for their food. (One may put out grain for them before Shabbat.) One may feed silkworms on Shabbat. Source Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 87:18 Shabbat Shalom - Danny

The Halacha of Lechem Mishneh (bread from two loaves) is a remembrance of the Mann in the desert. As we received a double portion on Friday and therefore on Friday night and Saturday morning we had the availability of two loaves. It is our custom to cover the loaves or even rolls from above and below during the Kiddush and the blessing. On Friday night after the blessing over washing of the hands (Blessed art thou O L-RD our G-D KING of the universe who has sanctified us and commanded us to wash our hands) we uncover the Challah Loaves and run the knife over the one we plan to cut and place the other loaf above it and recover. Raising the cutting board with the two Challos and cover we ask permission (B’reshus) and then make the blessing HaMotzei Lechem min HaAretz (Blessed art thou O L-RD our G-D who brings forth bread from the earth). The largest Challah is left for the morning and is placed on a whole roll or Challah and the knife is ran over this one for morning Kiddush. Since we have a third meal Seudas Shlishi we leave one roll or Challah for this meal (Even though it can be made over the 7 fruits and grains of Eretz Yisrael with a lesser blessing - see below). In the wilderness I would assume that the Seudas Shlishi turned into the Melaveh Malka or Motzei Shabbos meal on the rest of the Mann.

TU B’SHEVAT IS COMING: The 15th day of the Month of Shevat is the New Year for Trees or Jewish Arbor Day. Beis Shammai held that it was the first of Shevat from Oral Law but the School of Beis Hillel won out among the people as many events are on the 15th of the month Sukkos, Pessach, Shushan Purim and Tu B’Av. It is customary on this date to eat fruits of Eretz Yisrael – pomegranates, dates, figs, olives, grapes and the two grains of wheat and barley. Besides the possibility of eating grapes or raisons the Sephardim also drink red and white wine in their ceremony. Usually the Shehechiyanu Bracha is recited (who has preserved us and kept us alive until this season) and a new fruit should be present. In Eretz Yisrael candied Papaya, Esrog, dried apricots, prunes and other fruits are sold in the stores along with nuts and other fruits. It is of more merit if one takes a fresh fruit like an Persimmon, Quince, Kiwi, Esrog, Mango, Papaya, Star Fruit, Guava, Citrus Fruit like Kumquats, etc. Tu B’Shevat is a joyous occasion and no Tachanun is said in the morning.

* * *

Last week I wrote about Kidney Donations and transplants in a passing way from articles that I was reading on the airplane. One of the articles got on line and I want to share it. This is the site and the article appears below:

Meet the Kidney Matchmaker By Bayla Sheva Brenner

Ever since Chaya Lipschutz, creator of KidneyMitzvah, answered an ad to donate a kidney to a mother of two in New Jersey, she’s been busy linking those in need of kidneys with others willing to donate theirs—and aptly living up to her name, “Chaya,” Hebrew for “life-giver.”

Lipschutz, who hails from Brooklyn, began her mission by renting a booth at the 2005 Jewish Market Place Expo, held at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York, to promote kidney donation. She continued to spread the word about the pressing need for donors through postings on various Internet lists, speaking engagements and interviews on NPR, with the New York Daily News and the Jerusalem Post, and with other media outlets. From across the globe, donors and those needing kidneys started turning to Lipschutz for assistance. Her kidney matchmaking venture quickly took off.

One of Lipschutz’s first success stories involved her brother, Yosef, who in 2007, at the age of fifty, donated one of his kidneys to a grateful recipient. In 2009, with the aim of drawing wider interest, she launched Since the site’s inception, she has made eight kidney matches. According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, more than 86,000 people nationwide are waiting for a healthy kidney as of this writing. Last year, more than 4,600 lost their fight for life while waiting.

Finding the right match often requires more than a little determination. Rabbi Ephraim Simon, co-director of Friends of Lubavitch of Bergen County in Teaneck, New Jersey, a forty-one-year-old father of nine, responded to a mass e-mail from Lipschutz announcing the need for a kidney donor for a twelve-year-old girl. Soon after, she informed him that a donor had been found. “I felt like I didn’t act fast enough,” says Rabbi Simon. “I knew right then and there that if somebody else was in need, I was going to be the one to save his life.”

He insisted that Lipschutz continue to keep his name on file for others in need. Eventually, he donated his kidney to a Satmar Chassid, a father of ten from the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn.

“There is no greater feeling than knowing you brought life to another human being,” says Rabbi Simon. “It has truly been an amazing experience that ranks right up there with the birth of my children.”

“Almost every week, people are calling me, begging me to find a kidney donor,” says Lipschutz, “not only for themselves, but for family members, friends and others in their community. People on dialysis are suffering terribly.” Lipschutz doesn’t accept a penny for her work. “Just like my kidney donation was altruistic—so is my kidney matchmaking. My goal is to help save lives.”

Bayla Sheva Brenner is senior writer in the OU Communications and Marketing Department. To find out more about "Save a Life - Donate a Kidney", please visit:

The Article with questions for Lawyers by Dr. Zev Schostak is:

Condensed: Here is a good reason to make up with a lawyer prior to having any situation for a just in case scenario: Taking Charge of Our Healthcare
Our lives are too precious to allow just anyone to make life-and-death medical decisions on our behalf. With all that’s happening in healthcare today, we need to ask ourselves some hard questions: Who will advocate for us in hospitals? Who will fight for us should physicians attempt to stop life support against our wishes and Halachic sensitivities? Who will coordinate and monitor our medical care in hospitals? How do we take charge of our healthcare?

Kidney Donations by Dr. Edward Reichman:

The genesis of this essay began with an inquiry by the Jewish Action editors as to whether there is enough novel or substantive material about the halachic issues of living kidney donation to merit an article.

“It seems clear that kidney donation is permitted, though not obligatory. Is there anything else to discuss?” it was queried. While this assessment is technically absolutely correct, it is perhaps instructive to place this Halachic ruling in historical and Halachic context to gain an appreciation as to how we have come to take for granted the Halachic permissibility of surgically removing a vital organ from one human being and transplanting it into another.

The Talmud states that the kidneys give advice (Berachos 60a). While the exact meaning of this Talmudic pronouncement remains elusive, the anatomical and physiological functions of the kidney are well established in modern medicine. The treatment of kidney failure has evolved, with the first artificial kidney (dialysis) machine invented in the 1940s and the first kidney transplant occurring in 1950.

Poskim began discussions about living kidney transplants shortly thereafter. The major Halachic issue addressed was the nature of risk involved for the donor. While the verse in the Torah “Do not stand idly by as the blood of your brother is shed” obligates us to save the life of one in danger, how much risk can one assume in order to save another? In the case of kidney donation, there is both the immediate risk of the surgical procedure, as well as the long-term risk of living with only one remaining kidney.
The analyses of the Poskim revolved around risk assessment. In the very early days of kidney transplantation, a number of rabbinic authorities, including Rabbi Eliezer Waldenberg and Rabbi Yitzchak Weiss, forbade one to serve as a living kidney donor due to the intolerable level of risk involved for the donor. As with all medical Halachic matters, however, updating the information is essential. Living organ donation is now commonplace; the donor risk has been well studied and quantified, and the success rate has significantly improved and is well within the halachically accepted risk category. In fact, no Posek today forbids live kidney donation, and many, though stopping short of declaring it obligatory, encourage donation and consider it to be an extraordinary mitzvah.

Today, we rarely come across a Jewish periodical without an ad seeking a kidney donor, and there are organizations devoted to encouraging living kidney donation. (See sidebar on page 15.) The current Halachic state of kidney donation is most beautifully reflected in a Sefer aptly titled Klayot Yoatzot (The Kidneys Give Advice), which describes the following case: A man was told by his physician that he was in need of a kidney transplant. Upon returning home, one of his many sons was there to receive the news. The son immediately rushed to the hospital to begin the process of donor testing. Upon his return from the hospital, he was met by his brothers, all of whom likewise wished to be tested and all laid claim to the privilege of being their father’s kidney donor. How would they determine which son would serve as a donor for their father? They were unable to resolve the dispute and thus approached a prominent Posek. The entire sefer is an analysis of the Halachic issues relevant to the resolution of this question.

Aside from kidneys, other organs can also be donated from living donors, such as bone marrow, a lobe of the lung, and a lobe of the liver. From a halachic point of view, there are many questions related to living organ donation that require detailed analysis, including:
1. Is it permissible to receive compensation for kidney or bone marrow donation? If so, in what form, and how much?
2. Can one travel to other countries to receive organs when the circumstances surrounding the organ donor and harvest are somewhat dubious?
3. Can one harvest a kidney from a katan (minor) who is unable to consent to the procedure?
4. Can one demand the return of one’s kidney after the transplant has occurred?
5. Are bone marrow, liver or lung donations halachically comparable to kidney donation?
6. If one is found to be a bone marrow match to an anonymous recipient, is one halachically obligated to serve as a donor?
These questions and many others are addressed in Halachic literature.

As human kidney transplantation has evolved since its inception some sixty years ago, we have also witnessed advances in medicine and science that may soon render human organ transplantation obsolete. Both xenotransplantation (the transplantation of animal organs into humans) and stem cell research have made limited strides, in different ways, in addressing the need for organs. Neither requires the involvement of, and attendant risk to, a human donor. The chapter in the Jewish medical ethics textbook on living kidney donation may soon be excised and relocated to the volume on the history of Jewish medical ethics.

Living organ donation is a truly unparalleled act of Chessed. I am confident that such individuals who would consider donating their organs will, im yirtzeh Hashem, find other ways to channel their desire to help Klal Yisrael. But for now, as living kidney donation in the Jewish community is on the rise, if the kidneys’ advisory powers are transferred to the organ recipient, then we will doubtless continue to see an increase in extraordinary acts of true Chessed and Hatzalas Nefashos in the world.

Dr. Edward Reichman is an associate professor of emergency medicine and associate professor in the Division of Education and Bioethics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. He received his rabbinic ordination from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary and writes and lectures internationally in the field of Jewish medical ethics.

From Moshe Feiglin:

There I was, after a two and a half day whirlwind trip to the US, stuck in the window seat for my flight home. The two seats next to me were still empty. I hoped that a basketball player wouldn't sit down next to me and cut off all communication between me and the rest of the plane for the next ten hours.

G-d heard my silent prayer and a friendly American couple took their seats next to mine. In their seventies, dressed fashionably in leisure-wear, suntanned and thin. He, tall and strong looking, took the aisle seat, while she, petite, elegant and smiling - just what I had hoped for - took the seat next to me. She immediately and politely introduced herself and her husband.

"This is not our first trip to Israel," she said.

"Better late than never," I answered with appreciation for the solid couple who, in their senior years, had decided to connect to their Homeland through their feet.

"Are you from Israel?"

"Yes, thank G-d. And where are you from?"

"Illinois. Do you know where that is?"

"Of course! My wife's family came from Chicago. Perhaps you know them?"

"No, we don't know them."

"Are you Jewish?" the husband suddenly asked.

"You can't see that I'm Jewish?" I asked, surprised. I immediately understood that not only was the couple next to me not Jewish, but they had probably never met a Jew, which would explain the fact that the kippah on my head meant nothing to them.

They were Evangelists - "Lovers of Israel". A quick survey of the seats around me revealed that I had been seated in the middle of an entire group of Evangelists happily on their way to the "Holy Land."

I felt ridiculous. Here I was in the middle of a Christian congregation, looking for my wife's long-lost relatives.

"We love Jews," the husband interrupted my train of thought.
I was pleased to be the object of the man's love. If one must be stuck next to somebody for ten hours, it is best to be stuck next to someone who loves you, isn't it?

"We're also Jews!" he added and upon my look of amazement added, "sort of." I kept my thoughts on identity theft to myself. After all, I still had ten hours to sit next to them.

An interesting conversation developed between us. They did not know me, but I understood who I was dealing with and answered them in a sort of Bible-ese that fit their pre-conceptions of Jews.

"I thank God for seating us next to you," said the husband.
I nodded uncomfortably.

By the time the plane took off, I was fast asleep. Our conversation resumed close to landing.

"What do you think of this?" the wife asked as she pulled a brochure out of her purse and handed it to me.

I looked inside. "All that you have to do is to believe in Jesus and he will forgive all your sins," it said.

"I'm the conservative type," I answered with a smile. "I have done very well with the Old Testament for the past three thousand years, and I think I will renew my subscription for at least the next three thousand."

"O.K., the woman said, slightly embarrassed, understanding that I wasn't so naive, after all. Her smile disappeared and the pleasant atmosphere disappeared along with it.

Countless important Israeli NGOs and organizations fall into this Christian "love of Israel" trap and stretch out their hands for their generous contributions. Even if they will not admit it, the end always includes the little brochure - just like the brochure that my polite flight neighbor pulled out toward the end of our journey. There are no free lunches. The final result is the baptism of Jews.

In the past, when I discovered that the friendly non-Jew generously donating to Manhigut Yehudit was - despite his declarations - a devout Christian, I cut off all monetary relations with him.

The nationalist and religious organizations that receive Christian aid must understand that there is no such thing as a Christian who is not a missionary toward the entire world, just as there is no 'religious' Jew who is not a 'missionary' toward his Jewish brethren on some level.

Every truly religious Jew - even if he is not into Jewish outreach - is happy to hear of more and more of his Jewish brothers who have joined the ranks of the Observant, simply because the Torah includes every Jew. It is impossible to believe in the Torah and not to hope that every Jew will observe its commandments. The same is true of Christianity - just that it sees all of humanity as a target for its mission.

The Golden Rule does not make exceptions for important Jewish organizations: He who has the gold still makes the rules. When you accept a contribution from a Christian - as nice and sympathetic as he may be - you turn your organization into a channel for missionary influence.

Next week is Parsha Yisro and the ten commandments but since some public murders occurred this week, I thought that I would forward this first.

Murder is evil.

I won't presume that I have experienced the same devastating feelings as those with family members who were murdered yesterday in Arizona because each person experiences the murder of a loved one differently. My brother Noel was murdered by a man who couldn't face him but chose to wait for him to return home and then shot him in the back of his head with a sawed off shot gun. My older brother visits his burial site which is in the village where we grew up in England. That is the only way to pay a visit now because of someone's evil actions. In the Bible God commands us not to murder and yet it happens all too often. Because of our analytic ability we scrutinize the motives and events surrounding the murderer. I have expressed personal concern for young teenagers who have been sentenced to life for killing sexual abusers because I feel compassion for their circumstances that led up to their act. And I think we have to consider the special circumstances of young offenders.
For the young man who took the lives of innocents in Arizona I wonder what the story will be. Reports are portraying him as disturbed and perhaps an easy target for someone else to manipulate and convince to do such evil. We will have to wait and see who the person was who dropped him off at the scene with a gun at the parking lot of the grocery store. It sounds eerily like the scenario of the underwear pants bomber who was dropped off at the airport ticket desk by a man. Let's pray that all will be revealed.
Now we are left in a state of shock and disbelief. I think that we have to be careful not to be pushed into situations where we loose our civil liberties in the name of protecting vulnerable officials. America has a Constitution which is non-existent in the political framework of any other nation. The Second Amendment allows us to have firearms.
We have transcended the assault of 911 and we will heal in community once again and move forward. Let our motto be for a more peaceful and loving society. According to the law of attraction we operate on a vibrational frequency that can be changed through meditation. People who meditate regularly have a higher frequency and that frequency attracts love and peace. Fear is an emotion which can't exist at the same time where love is. Meditate daily and pray for those who are recovering and for the relatives of those whose lives were taken.

The following is a way for getting yourself on your feet and the Moshiach but follow this idea for holiness forget about the right and the left of the politics:

The Torah expects us to be individuals as Adam was created alone. On the other hand we are part of a Klal (a general group). But we must be strong and of courage in our beliefs in the Torah and Mitzvos to be part of Klal Yisrael and Am Yisrael. While it was Shabbos in Israel he gave individuals a choice how to take their financial problems into their own hands and not wait for the Moshiach to hand them something on a silver plate. Enlighten, educate, empowerment and entrepreneurship by each of us will move something. Not only towards yourself but also for the coming of the Moshiach the clip is secular in nature but we can take it to a Kedushah level.

Debbie Lynn Friedman the singer passes away at the age of 57 or 58:

Women’s Mission to Israel:

Breaking Jewish News – IDF Conversions approved by very Orthodox Rabbis:,7340,L-4013580,00.html

Inyanay Diyoma

I do not trust Iran and neither does Debka:

Former President honors retiring Mossad Chief:

US defense cuts: F-35 production frozen due to cutbacks: Major budget cuts in Pentagon, estimated at $78 billion, won't affect delivery of 20 stealth jets to Israel from 2015 to 2017:,7340,L-4010268,00.html

There were no WMD’s in Iraq or were there???\

From Shona - Americans against hate we have to recognize who the enemy is:

Politically Correct suicide of a country:

Things heat up in Gaza:,7340,L-4010560,00.html

This supposedly was posted two days before the near successful assassination:

The gunman was part of a white supremacy group. The Republican Jewish Coalition condemns the shooting attack against Rep. Gabrielle Giffords that left six people dead and others, including the Congresswoman, seriously injured. RJC Executive Director Matthew Brooks said, “We are outraged at this violent act against innocent people and deeply saddened by the loss of life and the injuries sustained. Our thoughts and prayers are with Rep. Giffords, the others who were injured, and the families of those killed on Saturday."


Don’t expect better from a slut:

Friend then and a friend now:

Representative Giffords was on the Holocaust Memorial group and knew about blood libels now her shooting is turning into one as indicated from the following statement and Facebook has many kill Palin and die Palin links which are up:

The Intelligence War:,7340,L-4012656,00.html

Lebanon is in crises and most are powerless to help at this time:

We are usually called upon to help third world countries but look at this:

Maybe Israel can fight back in the propaganda war:

U.S. Contractor is involved in child homosexual sex trade for Muslim:

Muslim like to pogrom a Jew or Christian:,7340,L-4013048,00.html

Emmanuel Winston wrote a lot about Jonathan Pollard but the bottom line is:

Send A Message For Pollard

Note: Regular mail, phone calls and faxes are preferable to emails.

Contact Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Phone: 011-972-2-670-5555 Fax: From overseas: 011-972-2-566-4838 - From Israel: 02-566-4838

· Write: Office of the Prime Minister, 3 Kaplan St., Kiryat Ben-Gurion, P.O. Box 187, 91919 Jerusalem, Israel Email

Contact the U.S. President and Vice President

· Comments: (202) 456-1111 - Switchboard: (202) 456-1414 - Fax: (202) 456-2461

· Write: The White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20500

· Complete the Whitehouse Contact Form

TTY/TDD: Comments: (202) 456-6213 - Visitors Office: (202) 456-2121 Email U.S. President Barack Obama: Email U.S. Vice President Joe Biden:

Contact U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder

· Phone: (202) 353-1555

· Write: U.S. Attorney Eric H. Holder, U.S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20530-0001

· Email:

Israel's Moral High Ground by Yoram Ettinger, "Second Thought: US-Israel Initiative" Forwarded with commentary by Emanuel A. Winston, Mid East Analyst & Commentator

What it means to be a real Jew, committed to the Land, the people and the universal laws of Torah…This is Israel’s Moral High Ground.

Then there are the Un-Jews who cower as they’ve been trained by the Gentiles through the rise of their religiously-driven Genocide. The Gentiles (Christians and/or Muslims) behave like parasites. They always tend to confiscate, loot and feed off whatever the Jews build and create.

The Ishmaelites have never accomplished much except tribal war against everyone – especially those who refuse to accept their pagan desert moon god ‘Zin’ later called Allah by the man who declared he was Allah’s prophet, Mohammed. As Muslims fill up the cities of Europe, every day is one of ‘High Alert’, anticipating an attack by Terrorist Muslims aka “Jihadists”.

Slowly, Europe empties of its industrious, creative, entrepreneurial Jews who elevated whatever civilization in which they lived. Now Europe has Mosques and Muslim neighborhoods in which the Police fear to tread. But, the murderous radical Islamists demand to be fed, housed, clothed, cured – and obeyed!



Israel's Moral High Ground by Yoram Ettinger, "Second Thought: US-Israel Initiative"   Ynet, January 10, 2011,7340,L-4011234,00.html

Since Oslo, 1993, the case of the Jewish State has highlighted Israel's pursuit of peace and security, while downplaying the right/deed of the Jewish People to its historical homeland. A resounding rebuke of David Ben Gurion, the Laborite Founding Father of the Jewish State and its first Prime Minister, who stated: "He who abandons his past, forfeits his future" ("Notes on Zionism," pp. 1.5, 1947).

The claim of national sovereignty - and the level of steadfastness in faceof adversity - are derivatives of the attachment to the territorial-cradleof history and of national security requirements.

Nations which highlight their non-conditional attachment to their territorial cradle of history (irrespective of diplomatic, security and economic considerations) enhance steadfastness and gain strategic respect.

On the other hand, nations which consider their cradle of history a negotiable-real-estate may gain short-lived popularity, but undermine their attachment to the land, lose long-term strategic respect and erode their own posture of deterrence. A nation which negotiates away its cradle of history is giving away its future.

Prof. (emeritus) Menasheh Har-El, leading expert on the history and geography of the Land of Israel, a recipient of the "Israel Prize" and author of 13 books, documents national Jewish roots in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem as early as the 13th century BC: 2000 years before the appearance of Islam in the Arabian Peninsula, 3,200 years before Arabs from Egypt, Syria and Lebanon migrated to the Land of Israel and 3,350 years before the establishment of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

According to Professor Har-El's 55 years of research, the Jews were the first to coalesce the various regions of Canaan into a unified country. They settled in the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria rather than along the coastal plain, introducing agricultural innovations into barren, rugged mountains, developing irrigation systems, establishing stone and metal shops, ushering advance architecture and construction, building roads from the Mediterranean to Jerusalem, which became the crown jewel of the Jewish


On the other hand, Har-El notes, Jerusalem was severely neglected during the Islamic rule of the area, overshadowed by the town of Ramlah (half way between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem), which was the provincial Muslim capital. The Muslim attitude toward Jerusalem - the Capital of the Jewish People since 1,000BC - reflected the negligible priority accorded by Islam toward the Land of Israel, which was devastated by Muslim rule. In 1867, Mark Twain attested to the state of the area in Innocents Abroad: "...Of all the lands there are for dismal scenery, Palestine must be the prince...It is a hopeless, dreary, heart-broken land...Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes...Palestine is desolate and unlovely...."

The 1949-67 Jordanian occupation of East Jerusalem sustained the Muslim attitude toward Jerusalem. Jordan oppressed Jerusalem's Christian community, which was reduced from 25,000 in 1949 to 10,000 in 1967. The Hashemites coerced Jerusalem's church schools to teach the Quran and prevented Christian expansion. Jordan defiled and vandalized over 50 synagogues, using some as cowsheds, stables or public latrines. Over 75% of the tombstones at the holiest Jewish cemetery, on Mount of Olives, were ripped out and used for pavements and public urinals.

Jerusalem was never a capital of any Arab entity. It was not mentioned in the 1964 PLO's (founding) Covenant. However, Jerusalem is highlighted in each synagogue, each Jewish prayer and holiday and during every Jewish wedding and other Jewish rituals. Jerusalem is a pillar of Judaism, but it is no included among the five pillars of Islam. Jerusalem - and its synonym, Zion - are mentioned 821 times in the Bible ("Old Testament"), but not even once in the Quran. Muhammad never set foot in Jerusalem or in the Land of Israel. In contrast to Jews, Muslims pray toward Mecca and Medina and not toward Jerusalem, and there is no Muslim pilgrimage to Jerusalem, but to Mecca.

The territorial cradle of history constitutes the foundation of national moral high-ground. As essential as is the topographic high-ground (e.g., the over-towering mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria) to national security, the moral high-ground is significantly more critical to national survival. The devotion to the Land of Israel in general - and Jerusalem in particular - has played a critical role in preserving the Jewish People!

Melanie Phillips Tells It Like It Is ........... superbly By Jonathan Hoffman

Forwarded [with commentary to follow tomorrow] by Emanuel A. Winston, Mid East Analyst & Commentator

See Melanie Phillips on Israeli TV being interviewed by Ya'acov Ahimeir on the following


Melanie Phillips Tells It Like It Is ........... superbly By Jonathan Hoffman January 9, 2011
Melanie Phillips was interviewed recently on Israeli TV. She talks about the 'pathology' of the discourse about Israel in the UK - meaning the imperviousness of much of the media and many of the opinion formers to facts and truth about Israel. And about the absence in the media of truth about the Middle East - which she blames partly on the government of Israel.
or on

Click on the small red icon of a video camera to the left of the photo of Melanie. The intro is in Ivrit, the interview in English. Highly recomemnded.

Now for M. Wolfberg’s Good Shabbos Story “Just do it”.

Good Shabbos Everyone. Every week Jews around the world celebrate the gift of Shabbos with uplifting prayer, sumptuous meals, song, inspiring words of Torah and rest. The more a Jew separates himself from weekday activities, weekday thought and weekday speech on Shabbos, the more he will feel the special happiness of the Holy Day.
One of the primary ways we differentiate Shabbos from the rest of the days of the week is by not going to our jobs on Shabbos. This idea is mentioned in this week's parsha, as Moshe Rabeinu tells the Bnai Yisroel regarding the manna (the food that fell from heaven) - "Six days shall you gather it, but the seventh day is a Shabbos..." (Shemos 16:26) Manna was the sustenance of the Jewish people in the wilderness. Thus, Manna symbolizes making a living; just as we call money "dough" or "bread" in the colloquial.
Moshe Rabeinu was instructing the people not to pursue their livelihoods on Shabbos. Thus, a Jew can relax on Shabbos and not worry about money he could be making. Because, Hashem provides a double portion of income during the week to cover Shabbos also. As the verse teaches us, "See, Hashem has given you the Shabbos, that is why He gives you on the sixth day a two-day portion of bread." (Shemos 16:29) The following true story illustrates two Jewish families' commitment to not working on Shabbos.
Over the years a Jew from Europe "Moshe" had labored as a carpenter, as a textile factory employee, and subsequently as an assembly line worker at the local bottling company. That is the way it was in New York City in the early 1900's in America, which was supposed to be the land of golden opportunity. Many Jews succumbed to their need for money and desecrated the sacred Shabbos by working on that holy day. But Moshe was included among those few whose unwavering faith could not be broken. He had arrived two years earlier with a commitment to never violate the Shabbos and he was determined to adhere to that hallowed pledge.
Though he could not read English well, his minimal comprehension of the language confirmed his worst fears. Their eviction would take effect the first of the month. Moshe immediately arranged a meeting with Mr. Wells, the landlord of his apartment building, and pleaded for a one-month extension.
Mr. Wells, a compassionate man nonetheless, would not bend. "I'm sorry, Goldman, but the bills got to be paid." After Moshe made a desperate plea, he and Mr. Wells negotiated a compromise, buying the Goldman family some additional time. They were allowed to remain in the building, although they would have to leave their apartment and move into the dark, damp cellar. Their new apartment was actually the building's coal room; thick black soot permeated the entire room and with it their meager belongings. Soot was everywhere, on everything, always.
One day, Mark Bookman, a local Jewish businessman and philanthropist, was driving through Moshe's neighborhood and glanced out of his car window to see an unusual sight — two black boys wearing yarmulkas. Impossible, he thought.
Mr. Bookman instructed his driver to pull over to the side of the road as he called aside the two "black" boys to inquire about their origin. Upon closer examination he discovered that they were two fair colored young Jewish boys who were covered in black soot. "What happened to you?" Mr. Bookman inquired.
The young boys described their heartbreaking living conditions, the grimy coal room, and their resulting bizarre appearance. "Would you boys be able to show me where you live?" Mr. Bookman requested. And before he could offer them a ride, the anxious boys eagerly scampered down the street.
The chauffeured car pulled up in front of the apartment building. Mr. Bookman got out of the car, followed the energetic boys down the staircase into the filthy cellar and waited patiently by the doorway to their "apartment." "Mommy, we have a guest," the boys shouted.
Overcome with compassion, Mr. Bookman removed his checkbook, put pen to paper and wrote out a check for $5,000, an enormous sum of money — sufficient income to support an entire family for more than a year. Mrs. Goldman, moved beyond words, silently accepted the much-needed funds as
Mr. Bookman excused himself and hastily departed. She could hardly believe her good fortune. Her exhausted husband would be thrilled with this incredible sequence of events. She had thought that the Hashem had answered her prayers.
Later that day, Moshe arrived home, crushed by the burden of another futile job interview. How much more could he take? He glanced at his wife and noticed that she seemed to be in an unusually joyful mood. He then stared down in amazement at the check that lay before him. "Where did this come from?" he asked incredulously. "Earlier this afternoon some goodhearted person unexpectedly walked in and presented us with it," she replied, sensing skepticism in her husband's tone of voice.
"Well, we can't accept it." Moshe quietly declared. "Why not? Mr. Bookman gave it wholeheartedly!" Ettel his wife pleaded, | the frustration mounting in her voice. "Ettel, I know who Mark Bookman is. The man is a mechallel Shabbos (Shabbos Desecrator) We have not sacrificed for the last two years to observe Shabbos only to be rescued financially by one who desecrates the Shabbos!"
Early the next morning Reb Moshe paid a visit to Bookman's sweater factory. After some informal introductions, Reb Moshe plainly announced that although he was extremely grateful, he could not accept the money.
Bookman sincerely wanted to help and couldn't figure out what was troubling Goldman. "It is not about pride. It is about the Shabbos. We refuse to take money from someone who doesn't close his factory on Shabbos. Really, Mr. Bookman, I'm sorry, but It is not up for negotiation." Moshe Goldman abruptly turned and walked out the door.
That night a subdued Mark Bookman entered his home. His wife immediately recognized that something serious was troubling her husband and tried to get him to talk about it, as she had never seen him so distraught. "I can't believe he turned it down," Mark declared as he proceeded to relay the entire episode to his wife. With tears brimming in his eyes, Mark remembered how much he and his wife had once treasured the Shabbos. Then, one week, when business was very slow and they were short on money and they left the store open "just this one time" on Shabbos. One thing led to another and eventually, they had lost all of their Judaism.
The next week, Mr. Bookman paid a visit to Moshe. "Come in, the door's open," called Moshe as he skimmed through the classified section in the rear of the coal room. Mark Bookman entered the room wearing a broad smile. "Hello, Reb Moshe. I just wanted to bring this by." Mark placed a check on the table and turned to walk away. "I thought I already told you that..."
"Last week," Mark interrupted, "when you returned the check, I thought deeply about what you had said and it stirred memories that had been trapped inside of me for the past ten years. You see, my wife and I were also once Shomer Shabbos. This past week, an hour before sunset, we entered the factory and proudly announced that the factory would be closed until Sunday morning. When I arrived home on Friday afternoon and watched my wife light the Shabbos candles for the first time in ten years, I felt as if I had returned home from a long, lonely journey. "Moshe, thank you for bringing me home!" (Touched by a Story, p. 101 R. Yechiel Spiro)
Let us be inspired by this story to take advantage of the holy Shabbos by resting on this wonderful day.
Good Shabbos Everyone.

M. Wolfberg’s stories are sponsored by: Refuah Shleima to Mordechai Menachem Mendel ben Tziporah Yitta Refuah Shleima to Tsviah bas Bracha Leah Refuah Shleimah to Chana Ashayra bas Dodi.

Have a wonderful Shabbos and pray hard for rain in Israel,

Rachamim Pauli