Lydia Bat Malka
1) Rocket falls on empty school - was supposed to be a makeshift synagogue with 50 worshipers for Shabbat but they ran out of money for two weeks and instead was empty
2) Rocket falls between two buildings - missing by 5 meters a tank of gas that would have caused unimaginable destruction!
וְאֵת הַכֶּבֶשׂ הַשֵּׁנִי, תַּעֲשֶׂה בֵּין הָעַרְבָּיִם: כְּמִנְחַת הַבֹּקֶר וּכְנִסְכּוֹ תַּעֲשֶׂה, אִשֵּׁה רֵיחַ נִיחֹחַ לַיהוָה. And the other lamb shalt thou present at dusk; as the meal-offering of the morning, and as the drink-offering thereof, thou shalt present it, an offering made by fire, of a sweet savor unto the LORD. The underlined Hebrew Letters when the order is rearranged constitute 5772.
18:1 And the LORD appeared unto him by the terebinths of Mamre, as he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;
The Medrash says that it was no ordinary heat spell and in modern history with thermometers it is not uncommon to have 46-47C (117-119 F) which I recorded once in Modiin for a few hours and in the 1950’s the Rabbis let people dip into the swimming pool at the religious Kibbutzim on Shabbos when the temperatures in the Jordan River Valley hit 53 or 54C for a few days as back then there was no air conditioning.
Rabbi Salid Shlita wrote: The beginning of Parshas Vayeira is famous for the mitzvah of visiting the sick. Chazal say that Hashem came to visit Avraham after his bris and that we should emulate His ways and visit the sick as well. The only problem is that the Gemara that records this incident makes no mention of "bikur cholim." Rather, Hashem came to show respect for Avraham by making a personal appearance. But it seems that the point of the visit was not the conventional mitzvah of visiting the sick. Equally interesting is the fact that the Gemara that discusses the laws of bikkur cholim does not at all bring down the story of Avraham. Again, it seems that Hashem's agenda was not "bikur cholim." The explanation may be as follows: the word "bikur" does not mean "visit." It means "investigate." The whole purpose of the mitzvah is to see what the sick person needs in terms of food, drink, medical attention, and housekeeping. It is not just to sit there and keep him company. On the other hand, Hashem already knows what one needs. His purpose was to pay his respects to Avraham after the performance of a great mitzvah. In loose terminology we can call it "bikur cholim," but it wasn't the Halachic "bikur" that we must perform. FROM THIS WE LEARN that when we do a mitzvah we have to fulfill it in its proper way as dictated by Chazal. We must daven for the ill, see to their needs, and improve their condition. May Hashem grant that there won't be any sick among us to visit, but if it should befalls us, let us learn the halachos properly, so that we might be able to complete the mitzvah.
2 and he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, lo, three men stood over against him; and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed down to the earth, 3 and said: 'My lord, if now I have found favor in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant. 4 Let now a little water be fetched, and wash your feet, and recline yourselves under the tree.
Idolaters used to worship dust aka mother earth so that is why Avraham asked them to wash their feet.
5 And I will fetch a morsel of bread, and stay ye your heart; after that ye shall pass on; forasmuch as ye are come to your servant.' And they said: 'So do, as thou hast said.'
Avraham was used to giving food to travels that would embarrass even the meals that Melech Shlomo aka King Solomon gave in his court. After which Avraham would give them a choice to bless G-D who provided him with food or pay for the food.
So we see from here, from Hevel’s offering and from Noach’s Korbanos that Goyim do bless HASHEM. So I asked a question regarding a potential convert that I am working with. Many of our prayers start off “Blessed … WHO has sanctified us in HIS Commandments and commanded us to …” Or on Chanucha “WHO has done Miracles for our forefathers in this season at this time.” Now unless the potential convert has some Jewish Blood from a father or grandfather or a suspected Jewish name that was converted in Inquisition the Bracha would be a false one.
So Rabbi Mimran and I figured out ways of saying Berachos that would be acceptable for a non-Jew to say. But perhaps it was like a Bar Mitzvah practice, so I turned to some Gerim with the question how their teachers and Rabbis did with them during the conversion process - Rabbis here consider it a "learning" situation , like for a Bas Mitzva. Shabbat should be kept except for one thing, as you know, because of the "sign" (oat he le'olam). Same thing goes for other Berachos/ Tefillos etc. The one thing I declined to do before Giyur was saying "shel lo asani goy". From where did I learn to go according to the story of others? The answer comes from Talmud Shabbos. Hillel and Shammai had forgotten the Torah Ruling on how people bring the slaughter knife to the Temple when Pessach starts Motzei Shabbos and the Korban has to be slaughtered on Shabbos. They did not remember. They decided to watch what the common people did. They saw that the people placed the knives in the hair of the sheep to be slaughtered. Then two ordinary weavers came to them and stated that they had heard the Halacha stated by Avtalayon and Shemaya.
6 And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said: 'Make ready quickly three measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes.'
From here we learn that Avraham was Politically Incorrect. Politicians promise for the voters heaven, earth, the ocean and all that is within the ocean. Avraham asked them to stop by and enjoy of morsel of bread and here he is asking Sarah to prepare cakes from the finest semolina.
7 And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetched a calf tender and good, and gave it unto the servant; and he hastened to dress it.
He then slaughtered a whole young tender calf to prepare tongue for them. When the non-native people came out west and saw the Buffalo; they whole-sale slaughtered Buffalo just for the tongue but Avraham was known to invite others and the souls that he had made to eat other parts of the calf so that it was not wasted as the pale faces did to the Buffalo.
8 And he took curd, and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree, and they did eat.
This implies eating meat and milk but let us exam what Avraham really did. He prepared a feast and while the meat was cooking offered the guests bread and butter as many kosher milk and fish places do. Here it was before the giving of the Torah and it was milk and then meat.
9 And they said unto him: 'Where is Sarah thy wife?' And he said: 'Behold, in the tent.'
As the Angel Rafael is about to heal Avraham from the Bris and Sarah from being barren he and the others reveal whom they really are and their purpose.
10 And He said: 'I will certainly return unto thee when the season cometh round; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son.' And Sarah heard in the tent door, which was behind him.-- 11 Now Abraham and Sarah were old, and well stricken in age; it had ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women.-- 12 And Sarah laughed within herself, saying: 'After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?' 13 And the LORD said unto Abraham: 'Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying: Shall I of a surety bear a child, who am old? 14 Is anything too hard for the LORD. At the set time I will return unto thee, when the season cometh round, and Sarah shall have a son.' 15 Then Sarah denied, saying: 'I laughed not'; for she was afraid. And He said: 'Nay; but thou didst laugh.'
As I wrote before the truth can be distorted for Shalom Beis. Sarah stated that Avraham was old but here only her saying the words I am old is mentioned so that Avraham would not get angry at his wife. We also learn from this an important PRINCIPLE – HASHEM reads your thoughts as it is written in the Yom Kippur Prayers that HE checks all Kidneys and Hearts!
16 And the men rose up from thence, and looked out toward Sodom; and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.
It is a Mitzvah to see your guests off safely and for that reason if a man dies between two cities a young bullock is brought to have its neck broken (Egel Arufa).
17 And the LORD said: 'Shall I hide from Abraham that which I am doing; 18 seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? 19 For I have known him, to the end that he may command his children and his household after him, that they may keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice; to the end that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which He hath spoken of him.' 20 And the LORD said: 'Verily, the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and, verily, their sin is exceeding grievous. 21 I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto Me; and if not, I will know.' 22 And the men turned from thence, and went toward Sodom; but Abraham stood yet before the LORD. 23 And Abraham drew near, and said: 'Wilt Thou indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked?
We learn from this that one that is truly religious can question, argue with for mercy and try to change an decree from HASHEM. Moshe did this too at the incident with the golden calf.
… 19:1 And the two angels came to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom; and Lot saw them, and rose up to meet them; and he fell down on his face to the earth; 2 and he said: 'Behold now, my lords, turn aside, I pray you, into your servant's house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your way.' And they said: 'Nay; but we will abide in the broad place all night.'
Lot recognized that they were Angels as they had revealed themselves already to mankind (Avraham and Sarah).
3 And he urged them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.
This is a hint that Yitzchak was born on the night of the Seder Pessach as being hurried to serve them, Lot prepared Matzos. Of course in Shemos it is written 400 years on the self-same day indicating that Yitzchak would be born a year from that day on the night that would be Pessach.
4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both young and old, all the people from every quarter. 5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him: 'Where are the men that came in to thee this night? Bring them out unto us, that we may know them.'
Being Angels the men were of perfect form and beautiful or handsome. These creeps of the town wanted to abuse them. They only saw the physical form nothing spiritual as the men of Sodom had become more animalistic than the Donkey of Balaam or the dogs that did not bark when the Bnei Yisrael left Mitzrayim.
6 And Lot went out unto them to the door, and shut the door after him. 7 And he said: 'I pray you, my brethren, do not so wickedly. 8 Behold now, I have two daughters that have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes; only unto these men do nothing; forasmuch as they are come under the shadow of my roof.'
This is the custom that the Arabs have taken upon themselves to defend their guests. It happened that two men from Sheiken Street in Tel Aviv drove to an Arab Town to buy objects made out of clay for their restaurant and decided to have a meal there. While they were eating a few terrorists came in and wanted to kill them and the host threw the terrorist out of his restaurant. The Arabs are a patient people and the terrorists waited near the car of the two individuals who were stupidly there in the first place and even more stupid for the leaving the protection of the owner of the place. Since they did not have the power the Angels had, the terrorists gave them a welcoming ceremony for those who die on a Kiddush HASHEM.
9 And they said: 'Stand back.' And they said: 'This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs play the judge; now will we deal worse with thee, than with them.' And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and drew near to break the door. 10 But the men put forth their hand, and brought Lot into the house to them, and the door they shut. 11 And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great; so that they wearied themselves to find the door.
It was more than a high powered light it was like a laser beam to burn the retina of the eye.
12 And the men said unto Lot: 'Hast thou here any besides? son-in-law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whomsoever thou hast in the city; bring them out of the place; 13 for we will destroy this place, because the cry of them is waxed great before the LORD; and the LORD hath sent us to destroy it.' 14 And Lot went out, and spoke unto his sons-in-law, who married his daughters, and said: 'Up, get you out of this place; for the LORD will destroy the city.' But he seemed unto his sons-in-law as one that jested.
Oh yeah tell me another story that we are going to the land of the Tooth Fairy, a bunny who brings colored eggs and Santa Claus.
15 And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying: 'Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters that are here; lest thou be swept away in the iniquity of the city.' 16 But he lingered; and the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters; the LORD being merciful unto him. And they brought him forth, and set him without the city. 17 And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he said: 'Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the Plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be swept away.' 18 And Lot said unto them: 'Oh, not so, my lord; 19 behold now, thy servant hath found grace in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercy, which thou hast shown unto me in saving my life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest the evil overtake me, and I die. 20 Behold now, this city is near to flee unto, and it is a little one; oh, let me escape thither--is it not a little one?--and my soul shall live.' 21 And he said unto him: 'See, I have accepted thee concerning this thing also, that I will not overthrow the city of which thou hast spoken. 22 Hasten thou, escape thither; for I cannot do anything till thou become thither.'--Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar.—
The Hebrew that Lot uses in his plea is NA where in Gematria is 51 and the world was in the 52nd year of the dispersion from Migdal Bavel. Avraham was 48 when the Tower was destroyed and the Nations dispersed. Zoar was built one year later and therefore spared as they did not have fulfilled years of sin.
23 The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot came unto Zoar. 24 Then the LORD caused to rain upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven; 25 and He overthrow those cities, and all the Plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. 26 But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. 27 And Abraham got up early in the morning to the place where he had stood before the LORD. 28 And he looked out toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the Plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the land went up as the smoke of a furnace. 29 And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the Plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when He overthrew the cities in which Lot dwelt. 30 And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar; and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. 31 And the first-born said unto the younger: 'Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth.
The girls did not use their heads and look for Uncle Avraham for their salvation in preserving the human race. Instead they narrowed down their sights on their father as the only man left.
32 Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.' 33 And they made their father drink wine that night. And the first-born went in, and lay with her father; and he knew not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
This is a reflection of the education and morals of the town of Sodom. Today we have the Kinsey Report on sex. What Doctor Alfred Kinsey did in his book, the Satan did not do for 57 Centuries. His report on sexual promiscuity combined with the advent of the birth control pill destroyed the moral fabric of western society. Not that promiscuity did not exist before hand but just made it more acceptable. The next thing one knew was like in Sodom the immorality flourished.
I spoke to a woman of around thirty this week about my generation even non-religious married and after marriage was the first time for full sex. Not so nowadays and there was not this binge drinking of females then as is today. We can all trace this back to the advent of the Kinsey Report and the advent of the pill.
34 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the first-born said unto the younger: 'Behold, I lay yesternight with my father. Let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.' 35 And they made their father drink wine that night also. And the younger arose, and lay with him; and he knew not when she lay down, nor when she arose. 36 Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father. 37 And the first-born bore a son, and called his name Moab--the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day. 38 And the younger, she also bore a son, and called his name Ben-ammi--the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day.
The older had become so immodest that she called the son “Moav or from my father” while the second one was not completely into brazenness and called him “Son of my Nation”. The fact that they were still virgins is a credit to Lot the fact that they were immoral is from Lot’s wife who liked the modern culture in Sodom. The actions of the girls came from their education outside of the home as we see Rivka in next week’s Parsha as being humble and modest so even if the family was good the school system and friends influence young children a lot.
… 21:1 And the LORD remembered Sarah as He had said, and the LORD did unto Sarah as He had spoken. 2 And Sarah conceived, and bore Abraham a son in his old age, at the set time of which God had spoken to him. 3 And Abraham called the name of his son that was born unto him, whom Sarah bore to him, Isaac.
Yitzchak from the laughter of Sarah at the talk of the Angels and the laughter of Avraham at the rejoicing over a son at long last from Sarah.
33 And Abraham planted a tamarisk-tree in Beer-Sheba, and called there on the name of the LORD, the Everlasting God. 34 And Abraham sojourned in the land of the Philistines many days.
Rabbi Yossi Jankovits Shlita wrote: It is written in Beresheis Verse 21:33 that Avrohom planted an EISHEL. The word eishel is the acronym for the Hebrew words achila (eating) shetiyah (drinking) and lina (overnight lodging). The Vilna Gaon says that Avrohom intended, through his chesed (charitable acts) to right the three original sins that caused the world damage: Adam eating the forbidden fruit, Noach drinking wine and the citizens of Sodom denying overnight lodging to guests. We see that when we do chesed to our fellow Jews, we also merit to right these wrongs..
… 22:20 And it came to pass after these things, that it was told Abraham, saying: 'Behold, Milcah, she also hath borne children unto thy brother Nahor: 21 Uz his first-born, and Buz his brother, and Kemuel the father of Aram; 22 and Chesed, and Hazo, and Pildash, and Jidlaph, and Bethuel.' 23 And Bethuel begot Rebekah; these eight did Milcah bear to Nahor, Abraham's brother. 24 And his concubine, whose name was Reumah, she also bore Tebah, and Gaham, and Tahash, and Maacah.
Egypt mediated between Israel and the Islamist movement Hamas to secure a deal under which more than 1,000 Palestinian security prisoners were freed this week in exchange for kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. "All reports suggest that the Shalit deal will not be the only one
concluded between Arabs and Israel in the coming days," Al-Ahram said.
Now the Israelis vehemently deny that Ilan Grapel was a spy, but if you were Egyptian, what would you think? An Israeli paratrooper, wounded in the 2006 war against Hizbullah, he arrives in Egypt with an American passport and:
Al-Masry al-Youm reported that Grapel met with members of the Muslim Brotherhood and other radical elements.The report also claimed Grapel met with journalists and academics in cafes in Cairo, purchased an Egyptian flag, and demonstrated at Tahrir Square on the Friday following former President Hosni Mubarak's ouster.According to the report, Grapel also attempted to travel to eastern Libya, to areas controlled by rebel forces.'Mistake or strange behaviour'Al-Ahram weekly reported that during his stay in Egypt, Grapel visited synagogues, including the Jewish community building in Alexandria, where he identified himself as a news agency reporter or a European tourist. The paper further noted Grapel concealed his Israeli citizenship during his visit.
And it gets even more suspicious:
Why Cairo chose Grapel as its test case seems to be merely a matter of convenience. Yes, the Queens native served in the Israeli Defense Forces in the 2006 war, where he was injured fighting Hezbollah. Yet the fact that Grapel, a law student at Emory University in Atlanta, had taken a job in Cairo in May with St. Andrew s Refugee Services, a Christian organization that mostly provides legal aid for Sudanese refugees, is perhaps what first attracted the attention of Egyptian authorities. African refugees Christians and Muslims are a sensitive issue for the Egyptians, not least because their mistreatment in Egypt has caused many of them to flee to friendlier vistas across the border in Israel.
And the case for spying just gets worse:
Two years later, in 2008, Grapel took part in the Israel Project's media fellows program in Jerusalem on "educating top young leaders in how to educate the press on Israel and Iran." In a comment that appears on the Israel Project's web page about the program, Grapel said he had been impressed by an Israeli Foreign Ministry's official's briefing on
conveying Israel's positions to the Arab world. "It would be very rewarding for me if I were to be able to communicate as effectively (as the official) in such anti-Israel environments,"
A judiciary source in Egypt said the arrested man had been active in Cairo's Tahrir Square, the epicenter of the revolt against Hosni Mubarak, after the former president stepped down. A statement issued by Egypt's public prosecutor said the suspect, ordered held for 15 days, had been sent to Egypt to recruit agents "trying to gather information and data and to monitor the events of the January 25 revolution.
If I were the Egyptians, I'd lock up this foreign troublemaker for my country's security and clearly, Israel agreed. With Egypt as host of the Shalit negotiations, Israel cut a deal for him, even though, he was an American prisoner. Obviously, America used Israel's leverage with the Egyptians to free their prisoner, which working ever so slightly backwards, means they pressed Israel on all aspects of the Shalit deal.
But that was easy compared to the kind of leverage Iran held over the US. They held two out of three American "hikers" captured in Northern Iran after "accidentally" wandering into their country from Iraq's Kurdistan province, an American virtual den of spies and subterfuge against them. And whaddya know, one of the spies, "Joshua Fattal's Iraqi-born Jewish father, Jacob, had emigrated to Israel as a child and later came to the United States, where he married Fattal's mother, Laura. In an effort not to draw attention to their ties with Israel after Josh's arrest, the family decided that rather than having his father involved in public efforts for Josh's release, the task would go to Josh's brother, Alex, a doctoral student at Harvard University, and to Josh's mother, Laura, who was born in the United States. "Like that stopped Iran from knowing who he was!! And guess where the trio had been just before starting on their hike:
Just weeks before the three were taken captive, says Mr. Meckfessel, they were in Israel to visit another friend, US activist Tristan Anderson. Shortly after taking photos during a demonstration against the Israeli separation barrier, Mr. Anderson was shot with a teargas canister in the head by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and hospitalized in Israel for a year...A year ago, the four friends had set out from Syria, where they were volunteering to help Palestinian refugees, on a hiking trip to Kurdistan, in Northern Iraq, recounts Meckfessel.
Well, imagine that! A few weeks before being captured, the three were in Israel preparing what the Iranians would believe was a plausible alibi. The cover story was they preferred Palestinians over Jews. Don't kid yourselves: the Iranians knew Fattal's father was Israeli and that he had just been in Israel. They played dumb while they set the terms for the prisoners Hamas would get for Shalit, in return for they freeing Fattal and his buddy Shane Bauer. Of him:
Shane Bauer wrote for publications such as The Nation, Mother Jones, and the Christian Science Monitor. A photojournalist who has won multiple awards and had his work published internationally, he's documented everything from tenant conditions in San Francisco SROs to conflict-ridden regions in Africa and the Middle East. There will be a screening of a new video made about his work, as well as a film Bauer produced with David Martinez documenting a group of armed rebels in Darfur.
I know a bit about how journalism is used as a cover in espionage. At the Bakaa recruitment center in 1979, I became close with fellow recruit Michael Oren, today's Israeli ambassador to Washington. After our duties ended we met. I told him, basically about eating sand for my duty, and he told me about being recruited by the Mossad and given press credentials from the Kansas City Star to travel from Iran to Syria spying for the state. As noted in the csmonitor:
These hikers remind me somewhat with Daniel Pearl (widely reported and known dual Israeli-Am erican citizenship) - who doesn't believe Pearl was debriefed by Mossad and or CIA once he was done 'reporting ' on sensitive Pakistani nuclear issues? How could Mossad/CIA NOT debrief assets near the heart of the Pakistani nuclear program or on the border of known Israeli Special Forces activity in Iran? It would be negligent. Israel is running special forces and spies in precisely this area.
I can imagine that Israel's denials of Fattal and Grapel being their spies are sincere. BUT I can accept that Egypt and Iran didn't buy it and forced inconceivable concessions in the Shalit deal, with the US and Germany on their side. And I'll wager that is exactly what happened. Barry Chamish
From terrifying cherubim with fiery swords, to angels in the form of simple wayfarers sent to visit the sick or deliver good tidings—like those we read about in this week's Torah portion—the Torah is full of examples of G‑d sending angels on all sorts of tasks.
The story is told of a student of Rabbi Israel Baal Shem Tov who, after much preparation, felt himself deserving of a vision of the prophet-turned-angel, Elijah. His master instructed him to journey to a certain town and asks to be hosted at the home of a specific family. "Make sure to bring food," the Baal Shem Tov added. The student eagerly packed a wagonful of food and set off. Upon arriving, he was directed to an old, dilapidated house, home of a poor widow with many young children.
The student spent Shabbat with them, and was only too happy to share his mountains of food. But Elijah never showed up.
The Baal Shem Tov instructed the dejected student to try again the next week. As he approached the door, he heard a child's plaintive voice, "But what will we eat on Shabbat?" A reassuring voice replied, "Don't worry. Just like Elijah came last week, he will come this week again!"
You and I can be angels as well. All we need to do is act the part.
Yehuda Shurpin, from Chabad Magazine
Exercise and Your Mental Health; An Overview By Dr. Michael Bunzel & Alan Freishtat http://www.ou.org/shabbat_shalom/article/exercise_and_your_mental_health_an_overview/
The evidence that using exercise regimens is effective in treating negative emotional and mental states is building. In the last ten years, several review articles have summarized the research in the field, stating a positive correlation between increasing levels of aerobic exercise and the extent to which symptoms of anxiety, depression, and even the most serious psychiatric conditions can be improved by intensive physical activity.
In my own practice as a psychiatrist in Bnei Brak and Jerusalem, I have begun implementing this new understanding, prescribing intensive physical activity in addition to psychopharmacological intervention even at the earliest visits at the onset of symptoms. It might seem counter-intuitive to encourage people to exercise whose symptoms might include feelings of sluggishness and fatigue in depressive states, for example, or panic symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness, and numbness. However, the reality is that often we see that the severity and duration of patients' conditions can be diminished when prescribed vigorous exercise, especially when it is accompanied by competent practitioners.
While the field is still young and requires further research to prove these facts unequivocally, many of these findings are starting to be buttressed by more and more trials and analyses in research studies that demonstrate this positive "dose-effect" correlation. That is, the more intensive and prolonged exercise in which a patient can invest, the more positive effect that s/he will see. Because of this, I also encourage my patients that engaging in more intensive exercise will enable them to discontinue their psychiatric medications sooner.
To this effect, I am happy to team up with competent exercise professionals who are eager to work with those suffering from varied psychological maladies. Alan Freishtat and his team at "Lose It!" in Jerusalem combine psychological counseling, Behavioral Therapy and Exercise coaching along with basic Nutritional Counseling to achieve quicker results in alleviating negative psychological states. I have had personal experience with them that has yielded positive outcomes.
Dr. Michael E. Bunzel M.D. Child, Adolescent and Adult Psychiatry Head Psychiatrist, Mayenei Hayeshua Hospital, Bnei Brak
It is commonly known that exercise is considered very good medicine for many physiological problems such as the prevention of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity and countless other physical problems. More and more, exercise is being recommended by doctors and other health providers across the board in place of or and in conjunction with medication for high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes and even gastrointestinal issues. But one area that has not received much publicity is the increased use of exercise to help those with common mental illnesses. Mental health disorders affect about 20% of the population in the United States today. Mental disorders are the leading cause of disability (lost years of productive life) in North America and Europe. By 2020, major depressive illness will be the leading cause of disability in the world for women and children. But the good news is that treatments for serious mental illnesses today are highly effective; between 70 and 90% of individuals have significant reduction of symptoms and improved quality of life with a combination of pharmacological and psychosocial treatments and supports, of exercise can be a significant component. Some of these disorders are short-term problems while others are classified as severe mental illness. In any case, exercise is being used more and more as a first-line treatment for many forms of mental illness.
The definition of mental health describes a state of emotional and psychological well-being in which an individual is able to use his or her cognitive and emotional capabilities, function in society, and meet the ordinary demands of everyday life. From the perspective of positive psychology or holism, mental health may include an individual's ability to enjoy life and to strike a balance between life activities and efforts to achieve a sound psychological state. Mental health is an expression of emotions, and signifies a successful adaptation to a range of demands.
This 4-part series will focus on Depression, Postpartum Depression, Anxiety, Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD/ADHD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Panic Disorder. At its conclusion, the reader will have a reasonable understanding of the above conditions, and the role that exercise plays in treatment.
For more information on programs and events, or content related to health, family, and community please visit: OU Community Services. Also see http://www.loseit.co.il/
I don't get the Debka weekly so I do not know all the details which minister http://www.debka.com/article/21439/
PRICE TAG ATTACKS & PEACE by Daniel Greenfield forwarded with comments by Gail Winston, Middle East Analyst & Commentator
Why is the Israeli government’s High Court of Justice (Supreme Court) serving a Leftist, Islamist agenda by chopping down Israeli citizens homes?
Does the Supreme Court have the right to declare that the land on which these homes stand belongs to the Palestinians? They have no proof of such ownership. When Jordan illegally occupied Judea and Samaria for 19 years, the King gave away pieces of land to whoever paid him. Now Jews have planted homes on the rocky, barren hilltops where no one ever lived. Most, if not all, of this land should be classified as "State Land" and therefore be Land of the Jewish State.
Why should Israel’s Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu tell the world via television: "Let’s fight for settlement blocs, not outposts." Jews live in isolated settlements, which are pejoratively called "outposts", most of which have been built with government help.
Bibi’s actions prove he will also abandon the "settlement blocs". On October 31st he ordered 3 homes demolished in Gush Etzion - a consensus "settlement bloc". Those 3 homes were built by their owners with their own hands and money in Bat Ayin Bet. One home was built by a newly married bride and groom who were about to enter their new home. The government has not pretended to compensate them. The Yassam destruction crews came in the middle of the night at 3 AM - no warning.
If we abandon the "isolated" which protectively surround the so-called "settlement blocs", Israel will no longer be a contiguous, sovereign State.
O, I forgot. The world (?) insists we create a contiguous 23rd Arab/Muslim state.
Dafka! (Means "just because")
Since when do we have to follow orders from the "world"?
The "world" will not protect Israel when she loses the strength of defensive land and is G-d forbid, no longer the strategic asset she is today.
Netanyahu has lost his political majority because heads of 6 party factions representing 64 Members of Knesset urged him NOT to destroy the homes of the Jews.
O, Israel will destroy Jewish homes but, has chickened out of defending against Iran’s Nuclear Bombs.
COMMENTS BY GAIL WINSTON
PRICE TAG ATTACKS &PEACE by Daniel Greenfield Price Tag Attacks and Peace Posted: 07 Nov 2011 08:59 PM PST
To the sort of people who think that a few teenagers living in a shack on a hilltop represent the greatest threat imaginable to the peace process and world peace-- the so-called "Price Tag" attacks in which local Jewish farmers strike back against Muslim attacks as a deterrent against further violence are an obsession.
Whether there are actually any "Price Tag" attacks and how many "Price Tag" attacks there are is open to question. Security agencies tasked with going after "right wing extremists" usually get their man and after a splashy announcement and prolonged detention have to let them go because their case doesn't actually exist. At that point it doesn't matter, the arrests have already been widely reported and the conclusions have all been drawn.
The investigation of a mosque burning incident has already resulted in arrests of people who couldn't have physically done it. But the arrests themselves are a form of "Price Tag" exacted by the authorities against community members to send a message. It's a particularly ironic form of message when the goal is to clamp down on those types of "eye for an eye" tactics.
States tend to command a monopoly on violence which is well and good, it's one of the things that states are for, and one of the few things that they do well, but that monopoly depends on the state exercising its proper function. The ugly truth is that the Israeli authorities have lost control of parts of the country, not just in places like Gaza and the West Bank which have been turned over to terrorist control, but in the Galilee and many Arab villages well within the '48 borders.
A sizable percentage of Israel's Muslim population lives in "No Go Zones", areas where Israeli police cannot operate and which they do not enter except on rare occasions. This isn't an entirely new development. Arab villages ran things their way, received state funding and avoided involving outsiders in their affairs. The village elders, some of whose families had backed the Israeli side in the war, took care of business and the authorities didn't ask too many questions.
The situation wasn't peaceful by any means, car thefts and copper thefts were and are common, and those cases tend not to be pursued. The owners are told by the police to accept the loss, collect the insurance and move on. Crime is widespread, income in those areas is mostly off the books and the construction is illegal and takes place on state lands.
Still the arrangement was mostly stable at least until the "wages of peace" kicked in and concessions to terrorists weakened the Israeli position. The old arrangements had been made based on a strong Israel that the village headmen could rely on for stability. The Oslo agreements showed that Israel was weak and unstable. As did the withdrawal from Lebanon, the evacuation of Gaza and every disastrous step along the way right down to the Gilad Shalit deal.
Not only did Israel look like easy prey with no future, and the Arabs who had supported it looked like they had backed a loser and would be forced to pay the price for it by their cousins on the other side of the border, but the left's NGO's were busy mobilizing and radicalizing Israeli Arab. On top of that a lunatic plan had been laid out by to compensate for the abandonment of Gaza, Judea and Samaria by expanding settlement in the Negev. The reaction of Bedouins in the Negev to this plan was about what could be expected.
The people dealing with all this weren't living in residential towers in Tel Aviv, but in rural areas where Israeli law enforcement no longer operates in any meaningful way except when it comes to arresting Israelis. When law enforcement no longer does its job, then local residents begin doing theirs. The reason we have laws and police forces is so that it doesn't come down to that, but when the police enforce the law against only one side, then they are worse than useless.
When local residents are confronted with stone throwing, land seizures, vandalism, theft and assault that the authorities are no longer interested in dealing with, then it's inevitable that some will act to create their own law based on a balance of terror. There's nothing glorious about that, it's what happens when the law no longer works and no one has any confidence in its enforcement.
And that's only a thin slice of the larger problem. The Shalit case was a demonstration by Hamas that Israel can no longer control what goes on inside its own borders. But there are plenty of unheard signs within the forty-eight that the situation is deteriorating badly throughout Israel. The Muslim Brotherhood isn't just operating in Gaza and Palestinian Arab nationalism stretches well beyond Ramallah. The difference between most Israeli Arab MK's and Fatah and Hamas leaders is cosmetic.
The complex currency of transactions has Israeli security forces tearing down Jewish villages to meet demands by European and American diplomats, only for supposed price-tag attacks to retaliate against what European and Israeli leaders seem to care the most about, Muslim settlements. And if local Muslim tribal warfare gets passed off on occasion as price tag attacks, then so much the better as it will mean apologizes and funds from Israeli leaders.
Breathless reports on the latest thing those "crazy right-wingers who will tear the country apart"(TM) have done is a propellant for the inbred intelligentsia who are sure that the country went wrong around the time the religious began having too many kids, especially the ones from Yemen, but what they are ignoring is that Israel's surrender of moral and political authority has created a wild west that won't be put to bed with Haaretz editorials.
Jerusalem may have light rail and Tel Aviv may one day have one too, but the tensions in much of the country that never sees a minister unless he's flying overhead are about basic things like grazing space, water rights and not being murdered in your bed. And deeper inwards, Israeli cities are roiling with the same Muslim violence and native self-defense groups that are a familiar sign in London and Paris. The Israeli left and its punditocracy are still hoping to divert the country by raving on about settler price tag attacks, but is Jaffa a "settlement" now? Is Tel Aviv?
For the last two decades, Israeli authorities have abdicated control over much of the country, shown weakness in the face of terror and imported large amounts of migrant workers. All those things have a price and all the euphemisms about democracy won't change the equal and opposite reactions of teens trapped in lawless zones that their government created with its hybrid legal system and its deals with terrorists.
When the snotty university brats of the rich, whose fathers are members of the elite, come down to their towns and protest on behalf of the Muslims, and break the law and walk away, what are those teens supposed to think? That they live in a democracy with full protection for all, or that the law only rewards those with "protektsia" or those who are willing to make those with it pay a price for tampering with their rights?
The left created this nightmare by encouraging and rewarding Muslim violence. It can either reverse course and uphold the rule of law, or it can start rewarding Jewish violence, or it can go on rewarding Muslim violence, punishing Jewish violence, while preaching about the sanctity of democracy, justice and the law. And those teens will take out their spray cans and write what they think of a democracy in which the Supreme Court declares itself above the law, where the police enforce laws against only one side, and where every minister who pounds the table about justice fills his own pockets to the brim.
While Haaretz writes its editorials, they will write theirs, and while theirs won't be nearly as articulate, they will be harder to ignore.
FOR DANIEL GREENFIELD'S PHOTOS GO TO: http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/
Good Shabbos Everyone. One day, several years ago, Reb Mordechai Shain was passing the corner of Main and Maple streets in Monsey, New York, on a Friday afternoon when he spotted a family sitting on the front steps of the Yeshiva Spring Valley.
With their car parked nearby, heaped full of luggage, it was clear that they had nowhere to go. "Welcome to Monsey," he greeted them. "Can I help you in some way." Said Reb
"Yes, please." the man said gratefully. "We need a place to stay for Shabbos." "No problem at all," he reassured them. "My parents live right across the street. I'll make the arrangements and come right back."
In no time, the Parimen family was settled in the Shain home, where preparations for Shabbos were in full swing. It wasn't until later, when they were relaxed and sitting around after the Friday night meal, that Dr. Parimen had a chance to tell his story.
Mark Parimen had grown up in Minnesota, but a search for the truth and a study of history brought him to understand that the ultimate truth lay with Orthodox Jewry. Eventually, Mark became an Orthodox Jew. Mark's career path led him to the medical field and then to the army. It was there that he met his future wife, and together they deepened their religious commitment.
The years of service went by, and finally, it was time for Mark's discharge from the army. One of his last duties was performing final medical examinations for soldiers who were also leaving the military. As Mark worked, he asked several Jewish soldiers if they could recommend a religious community where he could set up a medical practice.
One soldier suggested Spring Valley, New York. At that time, it was a fairly new community, but over 400 families had already moved there. "It has great potential," the soldier assured him. Dr. Parimen thought it sounded promising. "But I have no contacts in Spring Valley," he realized. "How can we get to know the community?"
"Just go to the corner of Maple and Main and park your car near the yeshiva," he was told. "In a place like Monsey— where everyone is so caring—someone will definitely come to help you out."
Dr. Parimen was a bit skeptical, but in the end that's what he did. "And that's what happened," Mark concluded, turning to the Shains with a smile. "We parked in the yeshivas parking lot, and sure enough, Reb Mordechai showed up to fulfill this mission!" (From Visions of Greatness).
Through experiencing the Shain family hospitality, the Parimen family came even closer to Yiddishkeit and was able to make new contacts and get settled in a Jewish community. From here we see the importance of the mitzvah of welcoming guests into our homes. In the case of the Shains and the Parimens, the mitzvah affected generations!
In our Torah portion this week Vayeira, we read about the greatness of the mitzvah of Hachnasas Orchim, welcoming guests into our homes. The Torah tells us that Avrohom Avinu "was sitting at the entrance of the tent in the heat of the day."(Bereishis 18:1)
Rashi explains that Avrohom was waiting to see if travelers would pass by, so that he could invite them into his home. When Avrohom saw that three men were approaching, Avrohom ran towards the men in order to offer them hospitality. When the guests arrived, Avrohom was in the middle of receiving the Shechina - the Divine Presence of Hashem. Hashem had come to visit Avrohom who was still recovering from his bris milah which had taken place three days earlier.
The Torah quotes Avrohom as saying "My L-rd, If I find favor in Your eyes, please pass not away from Your servant." (Bereishis 18:3) The Talmud explains this verse to mean that Avrohom Avinu asked the Divine Presence to wait for him, so that Avrohom could take care of the guests. Avrohom and Sorah then quickly prepared a large meal for the travelers. (Shabbos 127a and Shevuos 35b)
The fact that Avrohom put the needs of his guests over receiving the Divine Presence, shows the greatness of the mitzvah of Hachnasas Orchim.(ibid.) As the Sages tell us, "let your house be open wide" (Avos 1:5) Bartinurah explains that a Jew’s house should be like Avrohom Avinu’s home, which had entrances on all four sides in order to make it easy for guests to enter.
When members of the Chofetz Chayim household would see the Torah great preparing a bed for a guest, they would tell the sage not to bother and to let them attend to such menial preparations. The Chofetz Chayim responded: "When it comes to the mitzvah of putting on tefillin, would you also like to fulfill it for me to save me the bother?" (Love Your Neighbor p.69, Rav Z.Pliskin citing Amud HaChesed, p.12-13)
In order for us to be able to perform the mitzvah of welcoming guests properly, we will now briefly detail some basic guidelines of this most important mitzvah. A host should avoid keeping a guest hostage through excessive talking or by delaying the recitation of bircas hamazon. The host should also avoid pressuring the guest to eat too much whether directly or indirectly by serving him extra large portions. In fact, although a guest must generally do as the host tells him, a guest however need not listen to a host who insists that he eat more. (O.C.170:5, M.B.17 citing Bigdey Yesha)
Also, although it is perfectly natural and proper to engage the guest in conversation, the host should chose his questions wisely, avoiding personal questions which could embarrass the guest.
Just as the host has obligations to the guest, the guest also has obligations to the host. A guest should avoid being a burden on the host. The Talmud tells us that a guest should appreciate that his host has spent time, money, and effort on his behalf. (Ibid. Rav Pliskin citing, Brochos 58a) The guest should not ask the host questions about his business, especially on Shabbos. A guest should also do his best to avoid raising topics of discussion which may be inappropriate for younger ears. Finally, a guest should not make a nuisance of himself by staying too long or by coming too often.(Ibid. citing Pele Yoetz, Orchim)
The mitzvah of Hachnasas Orchim is so powerful that the tradition among Jews in France was to make their coffins from the wood of their dinner tables.(heard from Reb Binyomin Shulman) The table is the main location of entertaining guests and learning Torah. By using the wood of the table for the coffin, we show our belief that the only thing we take with us to the next world are the mitzvahs that we do in this world. A Jew therefore brings with him the mitzvahs of Torah learning and welcoming guests which he was able to do at his table.
By following the basic guidelines for welcoming guests which we detailed above and by learning from the examples of Avrohom Avinu and the Jews in our story above, we should have the merit to warmly welcome guests into our homes for many years to come. Good Shabbos Everyone.
M. Wolfberg is sponsored by: Refuah Shleima to Reb Mordechai Menachem Mendel ben Tziporah Yitta Refuah Shleima to Tsviah bas Bracha Leah
Wishing everybody a wonderful Shabbos and I will be taking a few vacation days here and there between now and Chanucha so some weeks will be double and then next one or two weeks may be without a Drasha. Be well to you all, Rachamim Pauli