Friday, October 3, 2014

3 Holocaust and 3 good Shabbos Stories Yom Kippur Parsha Zos HaBracha

This week is again a special edition which will include Yom Kippur, Sukkos, Zos HaBracha and Holocaust Stories in the little time that I have, I will try to cover with as much quality and quantity what I can to make it enjoyable for you. Prayers for a few weeks - Noam Shalom ben Inbar

Parsha Zos HaBracha

Last week’s Parsha ends where Moshe is commanded to go up Har Nebo and this is the blessing before he climbs the mountain to enter the next world.

33: 1 And this is the blessing wherewith Moses the man of God blessed the children of Israel before his death.

And this is the blessing… [just] before his death: Very close to the time of his death. — [see Sifrei 33: 1] “For, if not now, when?”

2 And he said: The LORD came from Sinai, and rose from Seir unto them; He shined forth from mount Paran, and He came from the myriads holy, at His right hand was a fiery law unto them.

He said: The Lord came from Sinai: Moses initiated his blessing by praising the Omnipresent, and then he addressed the needs of Israel. — [Sifrei 33:2] The praise with which Moses commenced, mentions the merit of Israel. All this was a way of conciliation, as if to say, “These people are worthy that a blessing should rest upon them.” Came from Sinai: He came out toward them when they came to stand at the foot of the mountain, as a bridegroom goes forth to greet his bride, as it is said, “[And Moses brought the people forth] toward God” (Exod. 19:17). We learn from this, that God came out toward them (Mechilta 19:17). And shone forth from Seir to them: [Why did He come from Seir?] Because God first offered the children of Esau [who dwelled in Seir] that they accept the Torah, but they did not want [to accept it]. He appeared: to them [Israel] From Mount Paran: [Why did God then come from Paran?] Because He went there and offered the children of Ishmael [who dwelled in Paran] to accept the Torah, but they [also] did not want [to accept it]. — [A.Z. 2b] And came: to Israel. With some holy myriads: With God were only some of the myriads of His holy angels, but not all of them, nor [even] most of them. This is unlike the manner of a mortal, who displays all the splendor of his riches and his glory on his wedding day. — [Sifrei 33:2] A fiery law for them: It was originally written before God in [letters of] black fire upon [a background of] white fire. — [Tanchuma Bereishith 1] He gave it to them on tablets, inscribed, [as it were,] by His right hand [thus it is said here, “from His right hand”]. Another explanation of אֵשׁ דָּת : As the Targum renders it, that He gave it to them from amidst the fire.

3 Yea, He loves the peoples, all His holy ones--they are in Thy hand; and they sit down at Thy feet, receiving of Thy words.

Indeed, You showed love for peoples: [God] also displayed great affection to the tribes, each one of whom were known as a people, for only Benjamin was destined to be born when the Holy One, blessed is He, said to Jacob, “A nation and a multitude of nations shall come into existence from you” (Genesis 35:11). [Thus we see that Benjamin alone was called “a nation.” “A multitude of nations” refers to Ephraim and Manasseh. See Rashi on Gen. 35:11, 48:4.]- [Gen. Rabbah 82:4] All his holy ones are in Your hand: [This refers to] the souls of the righteous, which are hidden away with God, as it is said, “But my lord’s soul shall be bound up in the bundle of life, with the Lord, your God” (I Sam. 25:29). - [Sifrei 33:3] For they […] be centered at Your feet: And Israel is indeed worthy of this [privilege to have their souls hidden away with God], because they placed themselves right in the middle (תּוֹךְ) of the bottom of the mountain at Your feet [figuratively speaking] at Sinai. The word תֻּכּוּ is in the passive conjugation, which has the meaning: הִתְוַכּוּ, “They [allowed themselves] to be placed right in the middle (תּוֹךְ)” [of the underside of the mountain], between Your feet. Bearing Your utterances: They bore upon themselves the yoke of Your Torah. — [Sifrei 33:3] Your Torah: Heb. מִדַּבְּרֹתֶיךָ‏. The mem in it [i.e., in this word] is somewhat of a root letter [rather than a prefix], as in “And he heard the voice speaking (מִדַּבֵּר) to him” (Num. 7:89); and “And I heard what was being spoken (מִדַּבֵּר) to me” (Ezek. 2:2). This form is similar to מִתְדַּבֵּר אֵלַי, [speaking to Himself for me to hear, see Rashi on Num. 7:89]. This too, namely, the word מִדַּבְּרֹתֶיךָ‏, means: “what You were speaking to let me know what to tell the children of Israel.” Tes porparledurs in Old French. Onkelos, however, renders [the phrase יִשָּׂא מִדַּבְּרֹתֶיךָ‏ as: “they traveled (יִשָּׂא like יִסַּע) according to Your commands (דַּבְּרֹתֶיךָ).” Thus, the mem is a servile prefix, with the meaning of מִן, from. [Thus, according to Onkelos, the word מִדַּבְּרֹתֶי‏ךָ literally means, from Your utterances.] Another explanation [of this verse is as follows]: Indeed, You showed love for peoples — even when You displayed Your affection towards the nations of the world, showing them a smiling [friendly] face, and You delivered Israel into their hands, All his holy ones are in Your hand: All Israel’s righteous and good people clung to You; they did not turn away from You, and You guarded them. — [B.B. 8a)]
For they let themselves be centered at your feet: And they placed themselves right in the middle of, and entered beneath Your [protective] shadow; Bearing your utterances: And they gladly accepted Your decrees and Your laws. — [see Tanchuma 5] And these were their words:

4 Moses commanded us a law, an inheritance of the congregation of Jacob.

Moshe appeared before the people this last time and this sentence is a reminder of his life’s work.

5 And there was a king in Jeshurun, when the heads of the people were gathered, all the tribes of Israel together.

The Bnei Yisrael accepted the Malchos of HASHEM together and became his subjects. Rashi comments that the sovereignty was always upon them. They were one heart and one people! Now Moshe blesses each tribe.
26 There is none like unto God, O Jeshurun, who rides upon the heaven as thy help, and in His Excellency on the skies.

The people who were at the crossing of the sea saw more than Yechezkel’s vision as the ones under 20 at the time were still alive 40 years later. The vision was still embedded in their souls.

27 The eternal God is a dwelling-place, and underneath are the everlasting arms; and He thrust out the enemy from before thee, and said: 'Destroy.'

Although we no longer observe like the generation that was originally redeemed we have seen miracles and HASHEM is fighting our battles.

28 And Israel dwells in safety, the fountain of Jacob alone, in a land of corn and wine; yea, his heavens drop down dew. 29 Happy art thou, O Israel, who is like unto thee? a people saved by the LORD, the shield of thy help, and that is the sword of thy excellency! And thine enemies shall dwindle away before thee; and thou shalt tread upon their high places.

Because of all the anti-Semitism and being exiled for our past and continuing sins we cannot view this to appreciate it.

34:1 And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto mount Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho. And the LORD showed him all the land, even Gilead as far as Dan; 2 and all Naphtali, and the land of Ephraim and Manasseh, and all the land of Judah as far as the hinder sea; 3 and the South, and the Plain, even the valley of Jericho the city of palm-trees, as far as Zoar. 4 And the LORD said unto him: 'This is the land which I swore unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying: I will give it unto thy seed; I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither.'

Moshe is given a full view perhaps even miraculously telescopic like the legends of the Baal Shem Tov and the Holy Ari tell us. Now his life was complete and he could go to his eternal rest with this beautiful memory.

5 So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD. 6 And he was buried in the valley in the land of Moab over against Beth-peor; and no man knows of his sepulchre unto this day.

I can only speculate that Moshe was commanded like Aaron to lie down in a cave, he received a “kiss” or view of HASHEM and his soul departed. At this point an earthquake buried the cave into the mountain rocks never to be disclosed until the resurrection of the dead.

7 And Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated.

From here and a Pasuk in regarding mankind in the days of Noach that the days will be 120 years we get the blessing - until 120 years.

8 And the children of Israel wept for Moses in the plains of Moab thirty days; so the days of weeping in the mourning for Moses were ended. 9 And Joshua the son of Nun was full of the spirit of wisdom; for Moses had laid his hands upon him; and the children of Israel hearkened unto him, and did as the LORD commanded Moses. 10 And there hath not arisen a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face; 11 in all the signs and the wonders, which the LORD sent him to do in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh, and to all his servants, and to all his land; 12 and in all the mighty hand, and in all the great terror, which Moses wrought in the sight of all Israel.

Chazak – Chazak v’ nit Chazak

Parsha Beresheis

This year I decided for a change to leave the first 4 days alone and the creation of man but to focus on a few points in the Parsha.

1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. 2 Now the earth was unformed and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God hovered over the face of the waters. 3 And God said: 'Let there be light.' And there was light. … We shall return with some of Beresheis on Parsha Noach a productive fast and a happy Sukkah Holiday.

A new holocaust story as told by Rabbi Barack Kokavi Shlita English by Rabbi Rachamim Pauli
No Berchas Cohanim for me!

At first Rav Barak Kokavi did not pay attention to the phenomena. A member of the congregation would pray with everybody else but when it came to Berchas Cohanim, he would leave before that. It happened a few times but the Rabbi thought to himself perhaps he has to go to a Kiddush elsewhere as these things happen. So he ignored it but when it happened week after week there was something to it. So the Rabbi invited the man to his house for a Shabbos meal.

Sure enough just before Berchas Cohanim he left but he waited outside for the Rav. So they were eating and talking about things here and there. Until Rav Kokavi decided that now was the time to ask. The man blushed he was hoping that it was not noticeable but told him this story:

I was in the Shoah. We slept about 800 men (Here it is unclear if that was the whole camp or one large building). Eight men to a row so one could not get up to the toilet or even roll over in the night for fear of pushing somebody out of bed. There was one man in the camp who was our help and listened to each and every trouble. One day the man said that Pessach is coming and I would like to bake Matzos for us. The Jewish Cook of the camp commander was afraid to take even the slightest amount of flour but managed to take enough to make two Matzos in total. The Matzos had to be split into 800 little bits.

The Seder began with what people remembered and some remembered the 4 questions and others remembered in Aram worked my father … slaves we were, etc. Until the camp commander walked in and asked “Who is responsible for all this? He took his pistol to the head of the first Jews and said who is responsible for this? He warned that they had 10 seconds to tell him before he started killing Jews. The man open his mouth and said, “I am!” He said to him now you shall die but then a wicked smile crossed his lips. He said that not now but tomorrow you shall die in front of the whole camp.

The next day at roll call the man was set before everybody on a platform. He said to the commander he as one last request to say a few sentences to his fellow Jews. The commander granted him this. He said that he was a Cohain and with that he raised his hands and blessed the people before him and said to the command go ahead.

The man telling the story then went on. After the war I had somehow survived but wanted nothing to do with Judaism. I went to a different city wanted to marry a non-Jewish woman and was engaged. Suddenly before the wedding each night I dreamt of the Berchas Cohanim I could not marry the Goya. I then cancelled the wedding and went to marry a Jewish Woman and we had children. But when it came the education of the children, I wanted to send them to a State School. Again the priestly blessing stood before me and I could not. Since then I cannot stay around to hear the priestly blessing in a Schul as it would be lowering the blessing that once was.

You kill my Jew I will kill two of yours as told to Rabbi Rachamim Pauli from Nachum Illan

A Nazi and a Jew learned together in the University before the war and were friends and intellectual companions. The Nazi would take the Jew on work details and sit down and have a beer with him and the Jew did not suffer like his brethren. One day a second Nazi with three prisoners on work detail came for a drink and sat down next to the first. The two got into a discussion and the Jew made the mistake of correcting the second Nazi on some issue whether it was a quote from Goethe or Schiller or something else. The second Nazi was not an intellectual like the first Nazi and whipped out his pistol and shot the Jew in the head. On the ground loading a truck or command car were two Jews and the first Jew enraged said ‘You shot my Jew now I will shoot two of yours!’ and with that two more Jews were dead. The third Jew in the truck packing the load witnesses it all and told the story after the war to Nachum.

The Astrologer in Germany as told to Rabbi Rachamim Pauli from Nachum Illan

This story is pre-holocaust: One thing the Fuerher like was Astrology and the Occult. A certain Jewish Astrologer wrote for a newspaper and make weekly predictions. He got wind from the Nazis of the fact that in a few weeks the Reichstag was going to burn down. He made is fatal mistake in predicting something happening to the building or a popular public place and the Nazis put two and two together and he was dead within a week.

Life not with standing by Chava Willig Levy

Invisible, inaudible, inanimate: my adventures in a wheelchair.
The following is excerpted from Chava Willig Levy's new memoir, A Life Not with Standing. Chronicling the adventures of an iron lung alumna, it shatters stereotypes about people with disabilities, enabling others to view disability with pride, not prejudice.
I was raised in a joy-filled home. One of its most joy-filled days was April 12, 1955, when Dr. Jonas Salk announced that his polio vaccine worked. Four months later, at the age of three, I contracted polio.
Years of hospitalizations and surgeries had me hungering for home. But with each hospital discharge, one destination had me chomping at the bit to fly the coop. My ninth birthday long behind me, I had yet to attend school. Except for my synagogue’s afternoon program, home and hospital instruction was all I knew. The only advantage to this lonely segregation was its tight quarters. They afforded me the chance to minimize wheelchair use; at home, for example, a few steps from bed to kitchen table, my ersatz school desk, were well within my ambulatory range.
Finally, one spring day, after years on the New York City Board of Education’s waiting list, I was admitted to a special education class. Finally, I exulted, a chance to go to school like everyone else, with everyone else.
I was wrong. Each weekday morning, my special ed classmates and I got off the segregated school bus, entered our segregated classroom and – except for occasional visits to the physical therapist’s office or the separate “handicapped” bathroom – stayed there until the segregated school bus brought us home. We never mingled with able-bodied kids, not in the classroom, not in the library, not in the cafeteria (even though it was just down the hall, we were never allowed to eat there – an insurance risk, we were told).
The only advantage to this obscene segregation was, once again, its tight quarters. They afforded me the chance to minimize wheelchair use, so much so that my wheelchair stayed at home. A few steps from my front door to the school bus, a few steps from the school bus to the health conservation classroom (equating disability with illness was axiomatic in the 1960s; 50 years later, it still is) and reversing the order when homeward bound – nothing to it.
But then an outing to the Bronx Zoo took place in June. Imma came along; my wheelchair didn’t. For the first 15 yards, I loped jauntily among my classmates, most of them in wheelchairs. Then, without my saying a word, without my even knowing that I needed it, Imma placed her right hand under my left elbow. Ten yards later, her support was insufficient. I began to lag behind, out of energy, out of breath. Five yards later, Imma guided her enervated daughter to a bench, where we remained until my classmates paraded back.
I’m not sure if I realized it before. I certainly realized it then: My wheelchair was my friend. It still is. To this day, the final stanza of Nurse Callahan’s ditty often comes to mind:
One finger, one thumb, one arm, one leg, one nod of the head, stand up, sit down
Keep moving.

Stand up. Sit down. Either way, the point is to keep moving. For me, sitting down in a motorized wheelchair (I took the leap from manual to motorized wheelchair in 1980) offers a faster, more liberating, less exhausting way to keep moving. For so many others, the mere thought of it fills them with revulsion.
In the 1990s, when I lived on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, my chariot of choice was a three-wheeled motorized scooter. Zipping along West End Avenue, I’d often greet elderly people plodding painstakingly with walkers, their pallid faces exuding exhaustion.
“I wonder if you’d find it easier to get around in a scooter like mine.”
“Oh, no!” I’d hear, and sometimes, “I’d rather die!”
I’d wish them a good day and sprint ahead, reaching the corner in seconds, leaving them far behind.
After that exhausting Bronx Zoo school outing, I didn’t mind becoming a more frequent wheelchair user. What I did mind was becoming a wheelchair.
The year was 1962. Another school year, another school trip. I was sitting in a yellow “handicapped” school bus, the kind equipped with a hydraulic lift and absolutely no shock absorbers. My class was on its way to the Museum of Natural History. After battling traffic for over an hour, the bus driver pulled into the parking lot and drove toward the museum’s rear – and (surprise) only accessible – entrance. Before he had a chance to turn off the ignition, a museum guard rapped authoritatively on the bus’s windshield and pointed to a far-off sea of yellow, where school buses apparently were required to park. Full of self-importance, our driver lowered his window and bellowed in the most mellifluous Brooklynese, “I gotta pock heeya. I got wheelchairs!”
Now that was a difficult shock to absorb. I knew something was dreadfully wrong with being defined as an inanimate object. I wanted to call out, “You mean, ‘I got people in wheelchairs!’” But I was only ten years old. I didn’t know how to speak my mind.
I have many more tales out of school to tell, but I can’t resist telling a tale not of my own: a tale from the classic television series The Twilight Zone, entitled “Eye of the Beholder.” For twenty of the twenty-five minutes Rod Serling needed to weave his riveting story, the bandaged face of a hospital patient is the only one in view. When we meet her, she is about to endure the plastic surgeon’s ninth and final attempt to correct, or at least diminish, her severe disfigurement. As the last bandage is about to be removed, the camera swings around. The doctor exclaims, “No change. No change at all!” The camera cuts back to the patient. For the first time, we see her face. It is ravishingly beautiful. Instantly, the camera cuts to the doctors and nurses. For the first time, we see their faces. They are repugnant, pig-like.
For me, the most powerful moment in this drama occurs well before that climax. The doctor tells his patient, “There are many others who share your misfortune, people who look much as you do. Now, one of the alternatives, just in the event that this last treatment is not successful, is simply to allow you to move into a special area in which people of your kind have been congregated.”
And the patient, her face swathed in bandages, cries out, “People of my kind? Congregated? No, you mean segregated!”
“Eye of the Beholder” first aired in 1960. Perhaps the eight-year-old I was then would not have appreciated its profundity. Still, I wish I had seen Serling’s masterpiece before the shame and rage that segregation engendered had taken their toll.
Educational segregation not only made us invisible, it made us inaudible. Although we could attend our school’s talent shows, we were never allowed to participate in them. I knew I had a good voice. It hurt being barred from sharing it. And because I was a child, it hurt having no voice to demand a voice.
Not surprisingly, the adult I am today bristles when people assume I can’t speak for myself (a waiter, for example, might turn to my friend and ask, “What does she want to eat?”). Still, were it not so infuriating, inaudibility can occasionally be funny. Wishing to sing her praises, I once asked a physical therapist for her supervisor’s name. She was delighted to provide it: Amy.
“Good morning. Rehabilitation Services, Orthopedics Department.”
“Hello. May I speak to Amy?”
“Who are you calling for?”
“No, who are you calling for?”
“Um, Amy.”
“No, who are you calling for?”

By this time, the woman on the line was exasperated. So was I. “Wait a minute,” she snapped. Then she asked incredulously, “Are you the patient?” Only then did I realize that “Who are you calling for?” meant “On whose behalf are you calling?” The notion that “the patient” could be calling on her own behalf never dawned on her.
The invisibility, inaudibility and anonymity of my special education days may be long gone. But every now and then, I still get to be inanimate. Fifty years after my school bus driver hollered, “I gotta pock heeya. I got wheelchairs,” a friend and I attended a dazzling concert at Carnegie Hall. At its conclusion, we proceeded from the lobby to the sidewalk. A man several inches in front of us said to his companion, “Let the wheelchair pass.”
I smiled and said, “You mean, ‘Let the woman in the wheelchair pass.’”
The man retorted, “Well, you’re a part of it.”
“No,” I replied, “it’s a part of me.”
A Life Not with Standing is available as a print book and as an e-book. I had the pleasure of meeting Chava at her grandmother’s apartment in Yerushalayim after I was married. She was a very nice person. I don’t know if I had met her as a bachelor if I would have had the spiritual personality at 22 years of age to marry her especially when Baalei Teshuva were treated as 2nd or 3rd rate people and set up with all types of cripples or other defects.

Miracle that I missed out upon which was broadcast 40 years after the Yom Kippur War.

At the beginning of the war it was thought that there were still Jews held out on the Har Hermon defense fort. Golan attacked only to be ambushed by Syrian Commandos and without air support many died. A squadron of 5 had their half-track break down and they had wounded and waited for being killed or captured. Suddenly a thick fog rolled in providing them cover to flee to safety downhill towards the Banias and Kibbutz Dan.  

Yom Kippur

I decided to open this year with only a few words to get you to pray harder and where one can be liberal on the fast and where one is strict on saving a life under Halacha.

On Rosh Hashanah we are judged. The opening prayer was OK for me but not great. The morning prayer of the first day was not better but worse and Mussaf I knew which section was kingship, which section shofar and which section a day of memory or memorial. The afternoon prayer was not that great, the night worst and in the morning and Mussaf I think my brain was somewhere in a fog in the ocean between Honolulu and Japan. Finally I thought to myself in the last prayer of the Chag – Rachamim you are a dead man. I did at least part of the trick as my prayer improved. Sometimes we need shock treatment to wake ourselves out of our dream world.

Remember if you are ill and feel you cannot fast even if a fleet of doctors and rabbis say you may, you are in charge according to Jewish Law and may eat. IF A DOCTOR OR RABBI FORBID YOU TO FAST then not eating on Yom Kippur you are committing a great sin. Here are Halachic Examples the whole Halachos of Yom Kippur and Sukkos can be found in the site below on the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch Part 2. If not wearing shoes will cause you pain for a month then by all means do not torture yourself. However one must use their heads during the Chag and Rabbinical Ordinances are not the same as a Torah Prohibition. The rule for eating is as follows. Although I hold most of the year the stricter opinion upon myself for an olive size bulk being that of the standard olive in Eretz Yisrael, for Yom Kippur I take the ruling of the majority of Rabbis that 2/3rds of the size of a medium egg every 9 minutes is permitted to eat for those ill. For drinking it is less than a mouthful of water spit into a glass or about two shot glasses of water if you don’t have the measure. You might want to google it and perhaps find a more scientific explanation. My standard warning against fasting goes to diabetic, cancer patients, certain stages of diseases like Parkinson, those needing transplants, recovering from a stroke or full heart attack or anything that can endanger health. My wife has to take TZOM KAL pills before the fast. While I was in the process of writing this a person with a very low hemoglobin count wrote me if they should fast. If ones hemoglobin is below 12 there is something wrong but if below 10 that is starting to become dangerous and 8.1 is about transfusion level so at this stage below 10, I would not advise fasting. Here is what the Chief Rabbi of Israel says and the measurements are closer than what I wrote:

As for myself after my own heart incident this past summer even though I am feeling fine, I plan to drink less than the quality with my medication in the morning.  Of course I will not be taking certain medications that are not important but two pills I will be taking in the morning. Last year, I took about 4 less than a Shiur during the fast for my heart. We do not play games with our health. A number of years ago on Tisha B’Av I wore canvas sneakers instead of my New Balance Shoes and for a month I was limping in pain. THE TORAH IS MEANT TO LIVE BY IT. I do expect to completely fast minus the few sips which is considered fasting according to Halacha.

Code of Jewish Law on people who are ill or pregnant on Yom Kippur: Note Siman 133:13 to 19 is embedded Hebrew and English if you cannot see it go to the blogspot.

A pregnant woman who smelt a particular food, and she wants it, and it's certain that if she is not given (some) from this (food) that she wants, she and the baby may be in danger. Therefore, if she says ''I must eat'' even though one has not seen a change in her face, or one sees that her face has changed even though she hasn't said anything, she is quietly told that today is Yom Kippur, because sometimes this will change her mind, but if her mind is not calmed, we feed her in the following way. First we give her a little by dippIng a finger in soup or similar and giving (this) in her mouth, because sometimes one drop (is enough) to change her mind. If not, then she is given less than the required quantity, and if she is still not calm, we give her as much as she needs. Similarly, any man who's face was changed by the smell of food, we consider him as in danger and we give him as described above. However, all the time that his face has not changed, we don't feed him, even if he says ''I need to eat''.
מעוברת שהריחה איזה מאכל ונתאוה לו וידוע שאם אין נותנין לה ממה שהיא מתאוה היא וולדה מסוכנים לכן אם אמרה צריכה אני לאכול אף על פי שאין פניה משתנים או שרואים שפניה משתנים אף על פי שאינה אומרת כלום לוחשין לה באזנה שהיום הוא יום הכפורים כי לפעמים מתיישבת דעתה בכך ואם לא נתיישבה דעתה מאכילין אותה בענין זה מתחלה נותנין לה דבר מועט שטובלין אצבע ברוטב וכדומה ונותנין לתוך פיה כי לפעמים בטפה אחת מתיישבת דעתה ואם לאו נותנין לה פחות מכשיעור ואם עדיין לא נתישבה נותנין לה די צרכה וכן כל אדם שהריח מאכל ונשתנה פניו מסוכן הוא ונוהגין בו כמו שכתבנו אבל כל זמן שלא נשתנה פניו אין מאכילין אותו אף על פי שאומר צריך אני
A pregnant woman and one who is dangerously ill, the laws of eating and drinking which are (normally) forbidden on Yom Kippur are the same as on Shabbat. Except, that regarding eating and drinking, even if several doctors say that he doesn't need to, and even if they say that eating or drinking would hurt him but the ill person says that he needs (to), and even if he says that he is not in danger yet, rather that if he does not eat he will become sicker and be in danger, we listen to him and feed him. This is because with regard to eating and drinking, he understands his own state better, and feels the extent of his (own) suffering.
יולדת וכן חולה שיש בו סכנה לענין אכילה ושתיה וחילול יום הכפורים דינם כמו בחילול שבת אלא דלענין אכילה ושתיה אפילו כמה רופאים אומרים שאינו צריך ואפילו אומרים שהאכילה או השתיה תזיק לו והחולה אומר שהוא צריך ואפילו הוא אומר שעדיין אינו מסוכן אלא שאם לא יאכל תכבד עליו החולי ויסתכן שומעין לו ומאכילין אותו כי לענין אכילה ושתיה הוא יותר מבין על עצמו ולב יודע מרת נפשו
When one feeds a pregnant woman or one who has given birth, or a sick person, one puts before them the food and says to them, ''If you know that you may be in danger if you don't eat as much as you need, eat as you normally do until you feel satisfied. However, if it is possible for you not to eat, at one time the (full) quantity, do as follows. Eat at one time a quantity of about two-thirds of an egg,1 (for the quantity of food that makes one liable to ''Keret''2 on Yom Kippur is like a large dried date which is a little less than an average egg without the shell), rest a little,and then eat again, so that the rest between eating, makes the time between the end of eating the first portion to the start of eating the second, at least the time it takes to eat a slice of bread3 You can eat (like this) even many times, except there should not be eating in this time , if this is possible and it is enough for him, (because eating twice during this time is counted together as one (quantity) of food) With drink one should drink a little less than a cheek-full4 and also drink a little then drink again, and waiting time should also be at least the time it takes to eat a slice of bread, or in any case the time to drink a revi'it5 One should measure out before Yom Kippur these times using a timer (such as a clock), in order to know the (measure of the) correct (time).
1) About 50 cc or 30 gm.
2) Punishment by heaven.
3) About 9 minutes.
4) About 80 cc.
5) About 2 minutes.
כשמאכילין את המעוברת או את היולדת או את החולה, מניחין לפניהם את המאכל ואומרים להם, אם יודע אתה שאפשר שתסתכן אם לא תאכל די מחסורך תאכל כסדר עד שתבין כי די לך אבל אם אפשר לך שלא תאכל בפעם אחת כשיעור עשה כך ויאכל בפעם אחת כשיעור שני שלישי ביצה כי שיעור אכילה להתחייב כרת ביום הכפורים היא ככותבת הגסה שהוא פחות מעט מכביצה בינונית בלא קליפתה ישהה קצת, ושוב יאכל כך וישהה בין אכילה לאכילהו עד שתהא מסוף אכילה הראשונה עד תחלת האכילה שניה לכל הפחות שיעור כדי אכילת פרס וכן יכול לאכול אפילו הרבה פעמים רק שלא יהיו בו אכילות בתוך שיעור אכילת פרס אם אפשר ודי לו כי שתי אכילות שהן בכדי אכילת פרס מצטרפות ונחשבות כאכילה אחת ובשתיה ישתה בפעם אחת קצת פחות ממלא לוגמיו וישהה גם כן קצת ויחזור וישתה ושהיות אלו יהיו גם כן לכל הפחות כדי אכילת פרס או על כל פנים לפחות כדי שתית רביעית ויש לשער קודם יום הכפורים שיעורים אלו על כלי שעות עם שעון כדי שידעו על נכון
One who is overcome by desire (for food) and becomes ill due to his hunger, the sign for this is that the eyes become dim and he cannot see, he is fed until his eyes become bright again.
מי שאחזו בולמוס והוא חולה מחמת רעבון וסימניו שעיניו כהות ואינו יכול לראות מאכילין אתו עד שיאירו עיניו
All those who are fed because they are in danger, if no kosher food is available they may be fed with non-kosher food. If he is fed non-kosher food then one should feed him less than an ''k'zayit''1 as long as this suffices him.
1) The amount of an olive, about 1 oz or 28 gm.
בכל אלו שמאכילין אותן משום סכנה אם אין שם מאכל היתר מאכילין אותן מאכל איסור ואם מאכילין אותו דבר איסור נראה דיש להאכילו פחות מכזית אם די לו בכך
If his mind is clear, he should bless before and after eating, but not make Kiddush. During Grace after Meals, he should say ''May our remembrance rise and come...'' and if it is Shabbat also ''Be pleased..'' If one forgot, there is no need to return, since there is no obligation on this day to eat bread.
אם דעתו מיושבת מברך לפניהם ולאחריהם אבל קידוש לא יעשה ובברכת המזון אומר יעלה ויבוא ואם חל בשבת אומר גם רצה ואם שכח אין צריך לחזור ולברך שאין חיוב היום לאכול פת
A boy or girl who are younger than 9 years, even if they want to fast a little, One does not allow them in case they would come, Heaven forbid, to danger. However, one who is at least 9 years old and is healthy, we train them to fast a little and not eat until after the hour they would normally have eaten. Concerning (not) wearing) shoes, washing and annointing, one should train them even before 9 years old.
קטן וקטנה פחותים מט' שנים אפילו אם רוצים להתענות קצת אין מניחין אותן שלא יבואו חס ושלום לידי סכנה אבל משיש להם ט' שנים שלמות והם בריאים מחנכין אותן שיתענו קצת ולא יאכלו עד לאחר איזה שעות ממה שהם רגילים לאכול ובנעילת הסנדל ורחיצה וסיכה יש לחנכם גם קודם ט' שנים

The main thing on Yom Kippur is not the fasting or the beating of the breast on each sin but to recount what you did, regret and resolve not to sin again which is true repentance.

The main thing on Sukkos after the Mitzvah of building a Sukkah with at least 3 walls that are steady in the wind and covering made out of things that grow from the ground like wood or reeds is to have joy. The Lulav of three species and the Esrog are part of the holiday and this week we do not wear Tephillin those outside of Israel who put them on for a short period on Chol HaMoed as their custom should not do so when visiting Eretz Yisrael on the 8 days of Sukkos. Again I invite you to go on-line and learn the various laws of Sukkos.

Ladies who go to the Synagogue only a few times a year even if you do not dress Halachically Modest all year long when you are going to a public place on Yom Kippur make sure that your sleeves are 3/4ths length that they cover the elbows and your neck area does not expose too much of your back or your front and sitting down your dress will cover your knees or you wear the modern Israeli Style of slacks under your dress if it is too short. (Ashkenazi Rabbis prefer my first suggestion and not the slacks) A Jewish woman who was married should have her hair covered so that no more than a fistful will be visible. (Many Chassidim and Sephardim do not allow any hair to be shown and the Talmud Tractate Yoma tells the story of one lady who had children that became Cohanim Gadolim as “the beams of my house never saw a strand of hair from my head”.)

From Mrs. O. Unit 504 which sometimes I was back-up rescue unit during my border patrol days Hebrew only intelligence gathering:

Israel does not have wedding bells but perhaps a shofar or two:

The last wounded man: A story of Gad Shoham who lost two friends and parts of two legs in the last hours of Protective Edge:,7340,L-4573154,00.html

From Esther C: When was it first possible that the fixed Jewish Calendar could be known to man? It only means that the ability to calculate the calendar existed about 1000 years previously but was always before that time by witnesses.

Terrorists murdered this man and cut the livelihood of the family:

Volkswagen reminds young movie goers not to text and drive:

This week the former mayor of Tel Aviv Shlomo Lahat passed away. I did not want to write a few negative comments about him as he is about to be judged before the heavenly court. However, the TV was heaping praise on him for opening up Tel Aviv to entertainment and business 24/7 and ignoring the laws of Shabbos. Where he is now is not going to be a pretty scene. For violating the Shabbos via a séance* with the late PM Rabin the people were told that he got Kaf Keller for 250 years and he was not an over-turner of Shabbos. I hate to think of what this one will get for his violations of Shabbos! *The person who performed the séance did not know that it was forbidden in the Torah and has since returned to Torah Judaism.

Inyanay Diyoma

Due to the longer period between printings I am only going to bring down here the most important news and Ed-Ops that should be still timely.

60,000 Kurds flee Syria from ISIS. Lebanon catches an almost intact Israeli Drone can examine camera, frequency of transmission, design, etc. The Belgian authorities have prevented several attacks by jihadist ISIS fighters returning home from Syria and by sympathizers with the Islamic State extremist group, a report said Saturday. Al Qaeda in Syria according to the USA is more dangerous than ISIS as it recruits more westerners. The State Budget is almost ready. Egypt kills Gazans trying to cross into Egypt. Egypt to get with Israeli approval Apache Helicopters to battle Islamist in Sinai. 176,000 babies were born in Israel this last year. Jordan is on the alert for ISIS and if they attack Jordan, Israel will probably bomb them.

From Gail Winston only in part: Islam is a religion of peace.” — U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, 9/13/14
“There is a place for violence in Islam. There is a place for jihad in Islam.” — U.K. Imam Anjem Choudary, CBN News, April 5, 2010.
Regrettably it is impossible to re-interpret the Qur’an in a “moderate” manner. The most famous modern interpretation by Sayyid Qutb (d. 1966), the Muslim Brotherhood ideologue, leads the reader again & again into political territory, where jihad is at the root of action.
If they deviated from the true faith — as we are seeing in the Islamic State today — “backsliders,” like pagans, were to be fought until they either accepted Islam or were killed.

In Gaza the regular population does not like Abbas but are afraid to speak against Hamas:,7340,L-4573441,00.html

Mike Harari the Mossad Agent behind the scenes passes away:,7340,L-4573644,00.html

Gail: New Air Warfare initiative was instituted this past war successfully.
UAV Hezballah’s new strategic weapon:,7340,L-4573625,00.html

When my son Asher was a small boy he almost ran into this street and my yelling stopped him. The most dangerous street in Israel.

On the 103rd day after the kidnapping of the 3 teens, the kidnappers were sent to their maker. I got this strange feeling that they will not be getting virgins in the next world.,7340,L-4574149,00.html

First day of 50 US airstrikes in Syria leaves ISIS members killed and wounded as Arab planes participate too.,7340,L-4574157,00.html

Patriot Missile downs Syrian Aircraft on the Golan:

Armed Arabs within Israel Proper in Yerushalayim:

The amount of rock throwing and Molotov cocktails in Yerushalayim has gone down since 300 arrests. Still there are riots all the time on the Temple Mount. Osama Bin Laden’s right hand man acquitted of terror due to lack of proof in Yarden. 

Ed-Op Judicial Activism back in mode:,7340,L-4574296,00.html

Via Gail Winston: Abbas has ended the peace process by Dan Margalit

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has done what he always does. As usual, upon arriving at a crucial junction, he hesitates for a moment before making the wrong turn. It takes time before we can get him back right where he started.
     Addressing the U.N. General Assembly over the weekend, Abbas was expected to take a semi-appeasing tone, a peacemaker's tone, & he was expected to address the U.N. in English. Instead, he acted as if he were attending an election rally in Ramallah, speaking in Arabic & taking an aggressive tone, as if he were representing Hamas.
     Abbas antagonized the entire Israeli political spectrum, except for Meretz Chairwoman Zehava Gal-On, who expressed her understanding of the circumstances that drove Abbas to use an unusually abrasive tone.
The Palestinians' verbal belligerence is especially discordant in a time when the majority of the world, including many Arab nations, is banding together to fight the Islamic State group.
     In his speech, Abbas has effectively debunked the U.S.-sponsored peace process. His speech was extreme enough to vex even Washington, & the entire diplomatic world had a front row seat to listen to the chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization's lies.
     Operation Protective Edge was an Israeli attempt at "genocide"? If anything, Abbas was almost as disappointed by the caution Israel exercised during the military campaign as Habayit Hayehudi Chairman Naftali Bennett. Abbas further complained about Israel's arrest of Hamas operatives in Judea & Samaria over the murder of three Israeli teens -- but everyone knows how relieved he actually was, as some of those operatives were part of a Hamas plot to stage a coup in the West Bank.
     The speech, of course, did not surprise anyone. Abbas traditionally plays the role of a wolf in sheep's clothing. In 2000, he incited Yasser Arafat to bolt from Camp David the moment then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak expressed willingness to discuss the future of Jerusalem; & years later he bolted back to Ramallah the moment former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert presented him with an appeasing peace proposal, the likes of which Israel had never devised before.
     There is no doubt that at this point, Abbas has abandoned the path of negotiations. He strives to impose some sort of solution on Israel, & he fails to understand that the tumultuous developments in the Arab world, including the conflict between Ramallah & the Gaza Strip, have plunged the Palestinian stock to a new low.
     Many in the world still subscribe to Abbas' criticism of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, especially when it comes to settlement construction during the peace talks, but the Palestinians' demands no longer seem as poignant given Abbas' refusal to hold earnest negotiations.
     The majority of Israelis who subscribe to the two-state solution would probably allege that Netanyahu's insistence to forge ahead with construction outside the main settlement blocs has made it difficult of the Palestinians. I would also hedge that Netanyahu is not keen to pursue the two-state solution, but that no longer matters, since Abbas has beat him to the punch by debunking it.
     Netanyahu is scheduled to address the U.N. General Assembly on Monday & respond to Abbas' speech. Netanyahu is likely to depict Abbas as a leader who has no interest in peace, but he would be wise to offer an alternative -- one that would single him out as a leader who seeks to revive the peace process, & would dispel concerns that Netanyahu would like to distance himself from the declared objective of a permanent agreement between Israel & the Palestinians
From Gail Winston a most read: Radical Islam, Israel and Agitprop by Guy Milliere

Via Gail Ret. Capt. Chuck Nash on ISIS will not be destroyed

5 STARS - English and Hebrew From Eliyokum: The falsehoods exposed: a full lecture 1 hr and 7 minutes in English Plus 17 more minutes in English:

Two countries with dangerous neighbors are friendly:,7340,L-4575718,00.html

The Iranians killed him and blamed Israel but he was a real hero who did not want to help Iran build atomic bombs. Spread this far and wide that the truth will be known.

Lovely religion of peace terrorists pelt preschool with rocks and fireworks in Yerushalayim children panic:,7340,L-4576489,00.html

Barry Shaw : US air strike kills civilians. No one cares. If you're an Israeli pilot or soldier, it's a war crime.

Netanyahu warns of a threshold nuclear Iran:

In the 50’s or 60’s if I said “you rock” it was good but here it is terror as two girls injured:,7340,L-4577288,00.html

Do not delude yourself this money will not rebuild Gaza but buy weapons:,7340,L-4577343,00.html

During Protective Edge, the Jerusalem City Council approved the final plans for the housing project announced two years ago in Yerushalayim. This project included construction for Arabs too. The left with the help of their J-Street mentors in the States to embarrass Netanyahu announced this in a press conference and the Main Stream Media like the NYT, NBC and others picked this up and the State Dept. reacted a few minutes after Netanyahu had a successful meeting with the president.

No boots, sneakers or sandals on the ground, the US is about to lose Iraq because the lack of 10,000 troops which the pentagon recommended left a vacuum.

Now for Matis Wolfberg’s Story “Wunder Kind” and “Merry New Year” and “Shoe-in”

Good Shabbos Everyone.  This Shabbos is the last Shabbos of the year as Rosh Hashana is next week.  The new year Rosh Hashana is a time of renewal, of new beginnings.  In preparation for Rosh Hashana, we will begin on Motzei Shabbos to say Slichos - prayers aimed at opening our hearts to teshuva - repentance.   The Sages tell us that one who repents has a fresh start on life.  The following amazing true story will inspire us to make the necessary changes in life to ensure that we will have a good sweet year, with Hashem's help.
Hellen and Paul Nach (not their real names) underwent the most challenging of life's circumstances. Yet, through it all, they searched for meaning and the Divine hand guiding their lives.  You see, Hellen and Paul were having trouble having a a baby.  They had been married for several years and they desperately wanted children. Yet, in spite of all their attempts, all of their most fervent prayers, they were unable to conceive. Ever since they married and moved to their cozy home in the suburbs, Paul dreamed of being father. As he made kiddush Friday nights, he envisioned a table crowded with noisy children who would sing songs, share words of Torah, and talk about their week. So, he wondered, why weren't they able to have their own child?
Perhaps Hashem wanted something else from them. But what? Weary of disappointment, they tried just about any treatment. The first treatment was unsuccessful. But the couple kept their faith, insisting that, "The next treatment one will be the one." Six months later, they tried another treatment. But that, too, did not work.
One night, as they prepared dinner together, Paul wondered aloud if they should pursue a different path. "Maybe Hashem doesn't want us to have children this way," he said gently, as his wife's eyes filled with tears. "Maybe we should adopt." Hellen was hesitant, she didn't want to give up hope. But she didn't want to let her husband down either. Maybe adopting was the answer, she agreed. She tried to warm up to the idea, and began researching the possibility.
One night, as Paul and Hellen were reading in the den, Hellen remarked that in China, thousands of baby girls are abandoned as couples attempt to have a boy. Paul's ears perked up. "That's terrible," he exclaimed. "More people ought to go to China and try to adopt them!"
Hellen agreed it would be a mitzvah to adopt one of the girls and have her converted to Judaism. The next day, they filed paperwork to begin adoption proceedings. But even as they sent in the papers to the adoption agency, a part of her couldn't give up on the idea of having her own child so she continued the  treatments.
After the third treatment, they received shocking news. They were expecting twins. Their joy knew no bounds, and soon most of their friends and family knew of the good tidings. Hellen skimmed baby magazines; Paul began researching Jewish baby names. Despite her happiness, some uncomfortable questions began gnawing at Hellen. She asked herself, could she handle newborn twins and an adopted baby at the same time? Although she was excited, she was also nervous about the birth of her twins. She wanted to be the best mother she could be. But she kept thinking about the girl in China who was surely waiting for loving parents to rescue her. She told Paul about her doubts, and he agreed that three kids at once would be too difficult. With a heavy heart, she called the agency to discontinue the adoption process. And so they put the idea of an adoption to rest.
For a few months, Hellen reveled in her pregnancy.  But then, four months into her pregnancy, tragedy struck. Hellen lost one of the babies. The couple was devastated. For Paul and Hellen, the celebration was marred by sadness.  But thankfully, that March, they had a healthy baby girl, whom they named Miriam. Dozens of well-wishers from the community descended on their home with gifts and good wishes. Miriam was an easy baby who Paul and Hellen instantly adored. Paul never wanted to put her down, although Hellen teased him that he was spoiling her. Everyone was happy for them. But for Paul and Hellen, the celebration was marred by sadness because of the baby they had lost.
After a few months, Paul began thinking again about adoption. He wondered about the baby girls in China waiting for families. Hellen, too, was already contemplating another baby, and like Paul, she couldn't stop thinking about the Chinese girls China in need of a family.
One morning, as Paul was leaving for work, she turned to him and said, "Maybe we lost the baby so that we know we should have two children, but one of them is a girl from China." Paul was stunned. What a coincidence, he told her. It was precisely what he had been thinking. They called back the adoption agency to commence the adoption process they had halted when they became pregnant. Most of the paperwork was already complete. They had spent many hours acquiring the necessary letters of recommendation, background checks and fingerprints.
According to the adoption agency, all they needed to do was visit a doctor to prove they were physically fit to be parents. Hellen's doctor appointment was routine. The doctor proclaimed her to be in excellent health and signed the papers, which were sent to the agency. Hellen breathed a sigh of relief.
Paul went for his physical a few days later. After some routine tests, the doctor signed off on the adoption papers and sent them in. "I noticed something on the x-raus that bothered me," he said.  But then the doctor requested a battery of additional tests. Although most doctors never bother with such detailed tests, he explained to Paul, he is old-fashioned and detail oriented, and always requires them. Paul sighed and tried not to get impatient. The papers had already been sent in. Why should he bother with more tests?
But after his chest x-ray, the doctor called him back to discuss the results. "I noticed something on the films that bothered me," he said. "It's probably a clogged artery. You should have it looked at." He sent Paul for a CAT scan. The results shook him to the core: He had a rare form of cancer. The tumor was just large enough to be visible but in an early-enough stage to cure, the doctor told him.
"It's a complete miracle that you came now," the doctor told Paul. "Had you visited any earlier we never would have detected it, and a few months from now, it would have been too large to do anything."
Paul's head spun when he realized what he was hearing. He was 38 years old and a first-time father. He was about to adopt a child. And now he had a tumor? But the fact that he had arrived at the doctor's office at that precise time made recovery possible. Could it be that their decision to adopt had saved his life? When Paul told Hellen, tears welled up in her eyes. Suddenly, everything was clear to her. "This is why we went through what we did," she said in a chocked voice. "It's because Hashem wanted you to see the doctor at the right time. Maybe that's why it took so long to get pregnant, why we lost a child, why we decided to adopt when we did – it was all to save your life."
Paul underwent chemotherapy and had the tumor removed. As he recovered, the adoption papers were processed. A photo arrived in the mail of a baby girl with giant chocolate brown eyes and black hair. Hellen and Boruch Hashem a cancer-free Paul stood in a nursery in a small city in China.  Paul stared at the photo and began pondering Hebrew names aloud. Hellen's heart thumped wildly as she peered at the baby's face. Somehow, even thousands of miles away, she felt connected to the child. She knew she was meant to be her mother.
And then, several weeks later, Hellen stood in a nursery in a small city in China and beamed as they cradled their new baby girl. They brought in the Jewish New Year with Chabad of Guangzhou. It was there that Paul and Hellen ushered in another beginning with their second child, whom they decided to name Anya, meaning "Hashem answered me." Paul and Hellen had saved Anya, giving her a second chance by taking her into their lives and raising her as a Jew. And she, in turn, saved her father's life and answered her parents' most fervent prayers. Good Shabbos Everyone.

     L'Shana Tova Everyone.  Rosh Hashanah begins this evening tonight at nightfall.  On Rosh Hashanah it is written and on Yom Kippur it is sealed.  Our judgment depends on our track record.  However, Hashem is very patient with us, even if we have not been the best Jews during the past year, we can "turn it all around" instantly by doing Teshuva - returning to Hashem.  Teshuva involves:  confessing our wrongdoings, feeling remorse, and promising not to do the same bad thing again. The Rambam tells us that a Jew who has sinned his whole life, yet he does Teshuva before he dies, none of his sins are mentioned at his judgment.  From here we see the power of Teshuva.  The following true story will inspire us to do Teshuva.
        The year was 1809. R' Yisroel Shklover and one hundred and fifty of his followers packed their belongings, bade their families and friends farewell. They traveled over hill and dale until they reached the seaport. There they boarded a frail-looking vessel for the final leg of their trip to Eretz Yisroel.
        After a month at sea, torrential rains started to fall. For hours the rain pounded the ship as gale-force winds rattled the vessel and its passengers to their very core. Wave after wave slammed against the ship's sides and spilled over onto the deck. Children huddled against parents who were themselves overcome with fear. The ship floundered helplessly, reeling from each blow of the storm.
        After two days of unremitting wind and rain it became obvious that the trip was in danger of ending right there on the high seas. People were ordered to lighten the ship's load and they began throwing their belongings overboard. Only a few, highly prized possessions could be kept, but most baggage had to be thrown in the water.
        The captain called for R' Yisroel. Bracing themselves against the wind, the two men huddled together. The captain said, "As the leader of your group, I feel that I must tell you that we are in very grave danger. I don't know how much you want to tell your people, but this is the worst weather I have encountered in thirty years at sea. I will do everything that I can to save the ship and its passengers, but I can tell you that I believe our end is near."
        The rav was pale with fear as he went back to talk to his people, many of whom were sick, exhausted by the rigors of the voyage, and afraid for their lives. R' Yisroel was filled with anguish at the realization that the voyage to which his followers had been looking forward for years, the dream that they had dared to dream, would soon come to a terrible end. Their aspirations, their years of spiritual preparation to live in the Holy Land would soon be dashed. What could he say? Could he hold out any hope — or just prepare them to meet their end?
        He gathered his people together and in earnest began, "I tremble as I say this, but the captain has informed me that we are in danger of sinking. He says that this is the worst weather he has ever encountered, and fears that at any moment the ship will split apart and we will all be lost."
        He could hardly bear to look at the shocked faces before him, but he continued, almost choking on his next words. Holding back his tears, he said, "Soon we will be in the Olam Haelyon (the World Above). It is the custom that before one dies, he recites viduy (confession). The Talmud (Sotah 7b) tells us that it is wrong for someone to reveal his sins in public, but that is true only when those hearing the sin will remain alive. However, since we will all be going together to the Olam HaElyon, if we openly confess our sins, the embarrassment we feel as a result of their being made public will in itself be an atonement for us. In its merit we will go directly to Can Eden (Paradise), and not to Gehinnom."
        The talmidim of the Gaon, many of them great Torah scholars themselves, agreed to R' Yisroel's suggestion. Despite their terror, they decided they would begin a public Viduy, one by one, starting with the youngest of them all.
        The one chosen to be first was a young man who had lived in Vilna. The winds roared and the rain battered the people as they battled to stand upright while trying to hear the young man speak. He was so overcome with emotion that he burst into tears. "For two years I violated the mitzvah of honoring my father and mother. I lied and deceived my mother day after day, and I am sorry that I did so, but I wish to explain the circumstances."
        "When I was thirteen years old my parents moved to Vilna. We were fortunate that our new home was right next door to that of the Vilna Gaon. When the Gaon learned, it was like music to our ears and his sweet voice enraptured us. One night my father who had come home from a hard day's work at his grocery store heard the Gaon repeat the Talmudic phrase, They leave the eternal life, and are involved with temporary life" (see Shabbos 10a), a number of times.
        The repetition and the intensity with which the Gaon repeated the phrase (which is a criticism of those who pursue the materialistic aspects of life at the expense of the spiritual aspects) over and over made such an indelible impression on my father that the very next morning he told my mother he felt that he had to leave his job and study Torah exclusively. He locked himself in a room and no one was allowed to disturb him.
        "My mother proudly took over the responsibility of caring and providing for her nine children. She couldn't take care of the store and so we had to sell it. The only way she could support the family was by selling some bread and cleaning people's houses. It was tough work, but she was proud that her husband showed such dedication to learning Torah.
        One day my mother gathered all of us around her and said, 'My dear children, I can no longer afford to feed you twice a day. We'll have to manage with just one main meal, mittag (the afternoon meal).' It was difficult but we were all proud of father who learned so diligently. The little that she brought home had to be divided ten ways. I realized that if I didn't take my portion there would be a little more to be divided among my brothers and sisters.
        And so I made up a story and told my mother that in my cheder (day school) mittag was now being given to all the boys in the school. "For two years I lied every time she asked me if I had gotten my meal and eaten that day. In reality all I ate were some of the scraps that the other boys had left over.
        I now beg Hashem for forgiveness for having lied to my mother all those times." The young man finished his story and the others stared in sympathetic silence.
        They hadn't known of this quiet talmid's travail, and were awed by his story. R' Yisroel was visibly touched by the tale, particularly because the young man had developed into a great talmid chacham, despite his hardships.
        The rav turned his face towards the crying heavens and with imploring, outstretched hands called out, "Hashem in Heaven In the first selichos (penitential prayers) before Rosh Hashanah, we say: Turn to our travails and not to our sins. We plead with You to see the travails that we have endured through the past year, so that they may atone for us, but not to see our sins. Now I plead with You, Hashem, 'Look at the sins'.' Look at what this young man calls his eternal sins. These are the 'sins' of Your children.  In his merit, have mercy on us."
        R' Yisroel had barely finished his plea when the rains stopped. Moments later there was a break in the thickly clouded sky, and between the clouds a shaft of sunlight shone through. The winds swept the clouds away and the group began to relax, the tension easing for the first time in days. R' Yisroel instructed them to recite together Tehilim (Psalms) Chapter 100  - A "Song of Thanks," for the great miracle which had occurred. 
        The captain and the sailors, none of whom were Jews, stood by respectfully as they marveled at the rav and his very special people. It was a kiddush Hashem (sanctification of Hashem's Name) in the truest sense. The rest of the trip was uneventful, and the entire group arrived safely at the shores of the Holy Land. 
        When the Satmar Rav, R' YoelTeitelbaum (1887-1979), heard this story, he remarked cryptically, "This is what Moshe Rabbeinu (Moses) did." The Yerushalmi (Shevuos 1:5) notes that when Hashem informed Moshe that confession on Yom Kippur would atone for the nation's sins, Moshe responded by reciting psalm 100 in gratitude that the confession would be accepted. (From The Maggid Speaks P. Krohn p.74)
        Let us all take advantage of the wonderful gift of Teshuvah, which can turn a bad report card into straight "A"s
Good Good Yom Tov Everyone.

Good Yom Tov Everyone.  Yom Kippur is also referred to as Yom HaKipurim - the day of atonements. (see Vayikra 23:27) If we look closely at the expression "Yom HaKipurim " we see that it contains the word "Purim." Purim is one of the most joyous of Jewish holidays, celebrating our miraculous victory over the Persians. It is therefore possible to translate Yom HaKipurim as - a day that is like Purim. We usually think of Yom Kippur as a somber day. In what way then is Yom Kippur like Purim?
        Anyone who has ever been involved in a disagreement or an argument with a friend or family member, can attest to the uncomfortable feelings which follow. However, once the argument stops and the two forgive each other, then the love and happiness between the two people grows even stronger than it ever was before.
        The relationship between Hashem and the Jewish people is one of great love. As the Mishnah teaches us "Beloved are the people Yisroel, for they are described as children of the Omnipresent. As it is said "You are children to Hashem Your G-d."(Avos 3:18 citing Deuteronomy 14:1) The love that Hashem has for the Jewish people is expressed allegorically in the Song of Songs. As the verse tells us "Even great waters cannot extinguish the love [between Hashem and His People Yisroel]." (Shir Hashirim 8:7) Therefore, when a Jew ignores or violates the mitzvahs, Hashem, as it were, feels insulted. After a Jew does wrong, the feeling in Heaven is one of: "Is this the way loved ones treat each other?" 
        On Yom Kippur each and every Jew can fix his relationship with Hashem. After a Jew returns to Hashem, the hurt and the pain dissolves and the love returns stronger than ever before. That is why Yom Kippur is Yom HaKippurim - a day with the happiness of Purim. Because, as we mentioned, there is no happiness like the happiness of reuniting with our loved ones. (heard from Rav A.C.Feuer)
        To summarize so far: Hashem loves us very much. When we transgress the Torah, however, we upset our relationship with Hashem. When we do Teshuvah - return to G-d and apologize to Hashem and resolve to do better in the coming year, then we reunite with Hashem and the love between us is stronger than ever before. This week's Haftara speaks of teshvuah, as the verse states: "Shuva (Return) O Israel to Hashem, your G-d, for you have stumbled through your immorality." (Hoshea 14:2) This Haftorah is a call to return to Hashem as is hinted to in the word Teshuva, which, when broken down is Tashoov (return), Heh (to Hashem). Hashem is full of mercy. If He sees that a person is genuinely sorry about his actions, Hashem will wipe the slate clean.
        Besides the duty we have to repair our relationship with Hashem, we also have a duty to repair our relationships with others. If used wisely,Yom Kippur has a tremendous spiritual power to reconcile our relationships with Hashem. However, the Talmud tells us that Yom Kippur does not have the power to reconcile our relationships with others.(Yuma 85b) In orther words, if we wronged someone, we cannot rely on Yom Kippur to wipe the slate clean. Rather, we must search out that person and beg for their forgiveness.
        So, let us use these last hours before Yom Kippur to search out those we have wronged and repair our relationships with those individuals. Rabeinu Yonah of Gerona (1180-1263) was a famous Talmudic scholar who spent much of his life in self-examination and teshuva. A cousin of the eminent scholar Ramban, R' Yonah began to devote himself to writing and teaching about teshuva as the result of one of the worst tragedies in medieval Jewish life. In the city of Paris, the Catholic Church burned twenty-four wagon loads of the Talmud. At the time, the printing press had not yet been invented.
        Thus, the loss of so many hand written copies of the Talmud was a catastrophe. R' Yonah saw the mass burning of the Talmud as a Divine punishment for the very sharp philosophical opposition to Rambam for writing Moreh Nevuchim (The Guide to the Perplexed), an opposition in which R' Yonah had been a leader. R' Yonah regretted his criticism of Rambam(1135-1205).
        However, Rambam had long since passed away and was buried in Teveriah, in Northern Eretz Yisroel. Rabeinu Yonah therefore resolved to travel from Spain to Rambam's tomb in Teveriah to ask for his forgiveness.
        On his way to Eretz Yisroel, R' Yonah was detained by communities who begged him to stay and teach. In many instances, R' Yonah agreed to stay and teach in Jewish communities, where he often quoted the Rambam with great respect. Before he could resume his journey to Eretz Yisroel, R' Yonah died suddenly in Toledo, Spain in 1263. (Machzor Zichron Moshe - Artscroll , p.8-11) One of R' Yonah's legacies to the Jewish nation is his insightful work The Foundation of Repentance. Many pious people have the custom of reading and studying this uplifting work before Yom Kippur, in order to be inspired to return to Hashem. R' Yonah teaches us that teshuva has a tremendous power to give us a fresh start in life.
        No matter where our lives have taken us until today, we have teshuva as a means of starting over. As Rabeinu Yonah promises us in his Foundation of Repentance: "On that day, let him cast off all the misdeeds he has committed and consider himself as though he were newly born on that very day..."
        In conclusion, Yom Kippur is a day when Hashem waits for us to return to Him with open arms. In order to prepare for Yom Kippur, we must do Teshuva. Teshuva has the power to correct our relationships with Hashem. However, in order to fully repair our relationships with others, we must out those people whom we have wronged and beg forgiveness from them. If we have wronged others in financial dealings, we must repay them.
        If we put our hearts and minds into our Yom Kippur prayers then the coming year will be a happy year full of sweetness and spiritual light and growth. We conclude with excerpts from the special additions to Amidah which are said between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur: "Hashem, please inscribe us in the book of life, blessing, and peace, and good livelihood, good decrees, salvations and consolations; may we be remembered and inscribed before You -- we and Your entire people the Family of Yisroel for life and for peace." And let us say: Amen!  Good Yom Tov Everyone.
M. Wolfberg is sponsored by: L'illui Nishmas Aryeh Leib ben Avrohom and Malka bas Tzvi Refuah Shleima to Reb Mordechai Mendel ben Tziporah Yitta  Refuah Shleima to Leah bas Tziporah
A healthy and peaceful Shabbos rest and good sealing in the book of life and Chag Sukkos Samayach,
Rachamim Pauli