בס׳ד

"Where does it say that you have a contract with G-d to have an easy life?"

the Lubavitcher Rebbe



"Failure is not the enemy of success; it is its prerequisite."

Rabbi Nosson Scherman



22 Oct 2019

Rejoice

One of the outstanding themes of the High Holiday/Sukkot season is the concept of unity. During the Aseret Yimei Teshuva, penitential days, we beseech God to make us into Agudah Achat, a single united group. Similarly, the Midrash notes the unity among the different types of Jews represented by each of the four species carried throughout the Sukkot holiday.
Continue reading: http://www.adathisraelshul.org/e-torah/parsha/85-succos/496-shmini-atzeret-and-yizkor

Having just celebrated Sukkot and Shemini Atzeret, where Hashem declared "Kasheh Alai Preidatchem," - your departure is difficult for Me - I marvel at the Jewish nation displaying the same feelings to G-d.
 Last night, the High Holidays, Sukkot and Simchat Torah came to a culmination in Israel. Instead of people running to watch the latest movie or to drink at a pub, thousands demonstrated  that it was difficult to get back to the mundane and wanted to experience the closeness of Hashem and His Torah for another day. Many thronged to Tel Aviv to celebrate hakafot sheniyot with Chief Rabbi Lau, others congregated at the Ra'anana square, at Modzhitz in Bnei Brak, at Kfar Chabad, and on and on. They wanted another chance to feel the closeness of Hashem and to experience the joy of what only the Torah can offer. Mi KeAmcha Yisrael.

Ilhan Omar - Daily Mail

AFTER SYNAGOGUE ATTACK, GERMAN LAWMAKERS UNDER FIRE FOR MEETING IRANIAN HOLOCAUST DENIER

POLICE: SWASTIKA FOUND IN PALM SPRINGS BEING INVESTIGATED AS HATE CRIME

‘DON’T TAKE JEWS, CHRISTIANS’ AS ALLIES, TURKISH AD WARNS

רבבות צפויים להגיע למסע הלווייה של הגר"נ קרליץ זצ"ל

A Yizkor Message

21 Oct 2019

On the Table

Synagogue massacre led to string of attack plots, Jewish group says

Warren: ‘Everything is on the Table’ If Israel Moves in ‘Opposite Direction’ on Two-State Solution

Hoshana Rabbah: Preparation for Simchat Torah - Rabbi Yitzchak Breitowitz

18 Oct 2019

Insta-fame

Arutz Sheva op-ed attacked by Holocaust Denier David Irving

Globetrotting ‘Millennial Rabbi’ uses Insta-fame to click with younger Jews

KOL YISRAEL AREIVIM: Lakewood Residents Open Chessed Chat For Those Who Need Help Rebuilding Sukkahs

An AP Factcheck looks into the claim that "Rep. Ilhan Omar protested outside President Donald Trump’s Oct. 10 campaign rally in Minneapolis."

It concludes that Omar was on a 5 day Moroccan trade trip from October 6-11, so she wasn't in Minnesota at the time of the rally.
http://www.startribune.com/ap-factcheck-u-s-rep-ilhan-omar-did-not-protest-outside-trump-s-minneapolis-rally/563103062/

Another AP article describes Ilhan Omar signing a divorce petition in Burkina Faso on August 4th. Does that mean  Representative Omar traveled back to the U.S. on August 4th or 5th and embarked on a trip to Morocco the following day?

29 Sep 2019

5 Sep 2019

Bearing Grudges

Why Every Child Needs to Hear Stories about the Holocaust

U’vahem Nehgeh: Chazarah Chaburah

"Al Pi Shinayim Aydim Oh Shlosha Aydim Yumas HaMais"; "According to the testimony of 2 or 3 witnesses shall the person be killed" Why does the pasuk say "Shnayim Aydim" as opposed to the more common "Shnay Aydim" like the pasuk says further (19:15)? The Netziv answers that there is a difference between the word "Shnayim" and "Shnay". "Shnay" - refers to 2 things that are identical as opposed to "Shnayim" - which refers to 2 things that are a bit different. For example, the pasuk says by the Keruvim - "Shnayim Keruvim" - since one had the face of a girl and one a boy, they were not identical; therefore the pasuk uses the terminology "Shnayim".

By witnesses, the Halacha states, if the witnesses testimonies are too identical, we must be concerned that maybe they are lying, and additional Chakiros (questioning) must be done. That is why the pasuk says, "Al Pi Shinayim Aydim" - because their testimony can't be identical. Since the Din of Chakiras HaAydim (questioning the witnesses) is derived from a case where the death penalty is being administered - "ViDarashta ViChakarta" - Parshas Re'eh - 13:15 - by the Parsha of Ir Hanidachas - the Torah writes "Shnayim" here, where we are dealing with the death penalty also (Avodah Zara), as opposed to the pasuk further (19:15) where the topic is Dinay Mamonis (Monetary Laws) - the Torah writes "Shnay".
http://www.thejewisheye.com/rev_pshoftim.html

2 Sep 2019

The Vital Question

A friend posted on Facebook this morning, "The difference between try and triumph is a little umph."

Food for thought 

I started reading Cyril Harris's "For Heaven's Sake" and was struck by a passage in the foreword of the book.

"There is an old Rabbinic teaching, a beautiful one, that just before a person dies, an angel comes to him from heaven and asks the vital question: 'Tell me, is the world a better place because of your life which is about to end? Is the world a better place because of the efforts you exerted? Is the world a better place because you were around?'"

It's something to think about as we enter Chodesh Elul, a time for reflection and introspection, with thoughts of teshuva occupying our minds with the days leading to Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur.


1 Sep 2019

Honest Judges

We read Parshas Shoftim in the beginning of Elul because the first step to Tshuva is to put guards at our hotspots. "Shoftim V'Shotrim Tetein Lecha B'Chol She'arecha"; place judges and policemen at all your gates. These gates allude to the gates of your body; your eyes, ears, mouth, etc., says the Bnei Yisaschar. The gemara says the eyes see and the heart desires. This is the mechanics of Aveira. We need to watch both what goes into our mouth and what comes out of it. Once we have honest judges guarding these flashpoints from evil we are on the road to tshuvah.

If we do stumble we must have a mechanism for punishing ourselves whether it is in the form of promising to give money to tzedoka or withholding something that we enjoy for every time we slip. This effective idea was popular among the Talmidim of Rav Moshe Kordevero says the Bnei Yisaschar.
http://www.revach.net/moadim/elultishrei/ElulParshas-Shoftim-Bnei-Yisaschar-Shoftim-And-Personal-Bodyguards/822

Belgian ban on kosher slaughter goes into effect

29 Aug 2019

The Choice

Netanyahu: “On Shabbos, Avner and I learn Parsha, Haftorah, Pirkei Avos, Sara is Mafrish Challah”

Rochester Park Attack Victim Recounts Brutal Assault

"Re'eh Anochi Nosein Lifneichem HaYom Bracha UKlala; Look, I place before you today, a blessing and a curse." (Re'eh 11:26). Hashem gives us the choice to choose good or evil and tells us that we will be paid back in kind. Rav Aharon Kotler asks, "Why is the word Re'eh singular, while the word lifneichem is plural?"

He answers that this teaches us that Hashem gave the Torah to all of Klal Yisrael, even if the masses reject Torah and mitzvos, it is still incumbent on every single individual to make the right choice. It is not acceptable to follow the majority if they go down the wrong path. Re'eh mean to look with your own eyes and see for yourself the right path to follow.

In the Navi Yeshaya it says, "Habitu El Avrohom Avichem... Ki Echad Karasiv; Your forefather Avrohom HaIvri was the man from the other side. He followed the righteous path even though he stood alone against a cold and cruel world."
http://revach.net/parshas-hashavua/life-lessons/Parshas-Reeh-Rav-Aharon-Kotler-Even-If-You-Stand-Alone/3992

27 Aug 2019

Giving

Message in the Western Wall: A True Story

Giving or Taking

An award winning British composer, his BBC proms star wife and their baby have been killed in a plane crash in the Swiss Alps.

Jonathan and Hannah Goldstein, avid aviators from London, were flying with their child from Switzerland to Italy on Sunday when their plane crashed in the Simplon Pass.
Read more: https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7398841/British-composer-BBC-proms-star-wife-baby-killed-Swiss-Alps-plane-crash.html

How Should We Deal With Anti-Semitism

25 Aug 2019

Re'eh

American Jewry Imploding

"Re'eh Ani Nosain Lifnaychem Hayom Beracha Uklala" "See, I present before you today a blessing and a curse" The Meforshim ask, why does the pasuk start off in the singular (Re'eh) and then change to the plural (Lifnaychem)?

The Gemorah in Kiddushin says, on should always view himself as one who has 50% Mitzvos and 50% Avayros. He also should view the whole world as having 50% Mitzvos and 50% Avayros. This way, when he does 1 Mitzvah, he will tilt his scale to the side of merit and also tilt the scale of the whole world to merit. This is what the pasuk is teaching us. "Re'eh " - singular, you the individual have the power to have an effect on the whole world ("Lifnaychem" - plural) whether it will be "Beracha Uklala" - a blessing or a curse. Don't think this is just 1 single Mitzvah that you are being MeKayem.... It might change the whole world!
http://www.thejewisheye.com/rev_preeh.html


24 Aug 2019

The 17-year-old soldier

The DailyWire reports, "Last week, Israeli teenager Rina Shnerb celebrated her 17th birthday."

MaanNews reports:



According to MaanNews, Rina was an 18-year-old soldier. Conscription begins at age 18. How is a teenager who celebrated her 17th birthday last week an Israeli soldier?

23 Aug 2019

In the footprints

If you rearrange the letters of Mashiach, you come out with yismach, “to be happy,” the necessary ingredient now needed to bring Mashiach.
Read more: Brian Galbut z"l and the footprints of the Messiah

Another FBI failure involving the Clintons surfaces

KikarHashabat reports that Rina Shnerb, the terror victim murdered as she was hiking with her brother and father, celebrated her 17th birthday last week. Israel does not draft soldiers at that age. Yet, when I hit the translate button of a Maan News Agency article, I got the following:

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Friday he would strengthen settlements in retaliation for the killing of an 18-year-old Israeli soldier near the West Bank city of Ramallah and wounding her father and brother.
There is also a picture of a female Israeli soldier accompanying the article.

NYT editor’s tweets mocking Jews, Indians amid newspaper's 'anti-racist' drive

22 Aug 2019

Yearning

The Sefer Chareidim says that one of the 17 parts of a mitzva that you must do in order to fulfill a mitzva completely is to yearn to do the mitzva even if you cannot do at this moment. For example we should long for the Bais HaMikdash in order to be able to bring korbanos. We should want to live in Eretz Yisroel to be Mikayem mitzvos that are only relevant when planting in Eretz Yisroel.

Rav Levi Yitzchok MiBerditchev in the Kedushas Levi says that is pshat in the pasuk (8:1) "Kol HaMitzva Asher Anochi Mitzavecha Hayom Tishmirun La'asos" all the mitzvos that I command, you should watch to fulfill. Sometimes the word "shamar"; watch, means wait in anticipation like when Yaakov "watched" to see what would happen with Yosef's dreams. Similarly here the pasuk says every mitzva that I command, you should yearn to keep even if you are in Chutz La'Aretz and cannot do it. Then in that merit, continues the pasuk, you will be zocheh to "V'yirashtem Es HA'Aretz"; Hashem will eventually bring you to Eretz Yisroel to realize your aspirations.
http://www.thejewisheye.com/rev_peikev.html

"הפוסק הבכיר על האסונות: "אין ספק שבשמיים מאותתים

17 Aug 2019

Mashiach - the Recap

Project Veritas has released hundreds of internal Google documents leaked by Vorhies. Among those documents is a file called “news black list site for google now.” The document, according to Vorhies, is a “black list,” which restricts certain websites from appearing on news feeds for an Android Google product. 
Read more: https://www.projectveritas.com/2019/08/14/google-machine-learning-fairness-whistleblower-goes-public-says-burden-lifted-off-of-my-soul/

If you click on the word "file" you are redirected to a list of hundreds of site urls. Among them are theyeshivaworld and israellycool.

The Man who Kept Shabbat in Siberia for 20 Years

5 Aug 2019

The Closing Message

Jonathan Pollard: 'My wife is seriously ill, asking for help'

Exclusive: Gaza ‘Victim’ Exposed With His AK-47

Sefer Devarim is Moshe's closing message to Bnei Yisroel where he gives the mussar for the aveiros they have done, reviews with them all the mitzvos, and warns them about the future. The Gemara says (Bava Basra 165a) that most people steal, a few enter illicit relationships and everybody speaks Avak Lashon Hara.

The Vilna Gaon finds a Remez to this gemara in the opening words of the parsha. "Eileh Hadevarim Asher Diber Moshe El Kol Yisroel". Eileh (Aleph, Lamed, Hey) is for Avak Lashon Hara. That is why it says El Kol Yisroel, because we are all oveir on this.
http://www.thejewisheye.com/rev_pdevarim.html

The Interview

Jewish Boys Attacked On Shabbos Afternoon

Rashida Tlaib’s Disturbing Interview

The young people of Bnei Yisroel who were about to go into Eretz Yisroel. Moshe Rabbeinu in his last address to them retold the story of their parents' mistakes in the Midbar. When retelling the Cheit of the Meraglim, Moshe says that they were punished and routed by the Emori in their effort to go to Eretz Yisroel without permission. After this defeat they came back to the Machaneh and began to cry. The pasuk says (1:45) "V'Lo Shama Hashem B'Kolchem", Hashem did not listen to them. The next pasuk says that they stayed in Kadeish many years. Rashi says that they stayed there for 19 years without wandering around.

The Netziv says that we see from here that even when Hashem does not listen to our tefilos and does not grant our request, the tefila still helps. While their tefilos did not repeal the gezeira of staying in the Midbar for 40 years, it helped that they settled in one place did not need to wander for 19 years. We can't always get what we want but we always get something!
http://www.revach.net/tefilah/tefila/Parshas-Devarim-Netziv-Even-An-Unanswered-Tefila-Helps/3949

30 Jul 2019

Shidduchim

Rabbi Moshe Taragin: Matos/Maasei - Understanding Jews Who Oppose the State of Israel

Blindsided: He’s Just Not Feeling It

The Commuted Sentence

Trump Commutes Sentence of Boaz Nahmani

Three Months After Shooting, Lori Kaye's Husband ‘Fighting to Prevent the Next Poway’

The pasuk (Bamidbar 33:17) lists as one of Bnei Yisroel’s travels, “VaYis’u MiKivros HaTaava, VaYachanu BaChatzeiros”. The Chasam Sofer says that we see a Remez from these words that if you overcome your indulgence, you become more Kadosh and closer to Hashem. "VaYis’u MiKivros HaTaava", translates to, “they traveled from burying their desires.” VaYachanu BaChatzeiros, they encamped in the “courtyard”. The courtyard, he says, refers to Olam HaZeh. Like it says in Pirkei Avos (4:21), “Hasken Atzmicha B’Prosdor KDei SheDikaneis L’Traklin.” Once we bury our desires we then enter the courtyard to perform Mitzvos and Ma’asim Tovim to prepare ourselves for our entrance to the palace, Olam Habah.
http://revach.net/parshas-hashavua/quick-vort/Parshas-Masei-Chasam-Sofer-Straight-From-the-Burial-To-The-Courtyard/2562

21 Jul 2019

The 17th of Tammuz

Fast of Tammuz - what is it about?

I was aware of the Save Eliana campaign last week in which people donated money to help a family obtain an expensive medication for their daughter, but, today I came across a video of the mother asking for help. After watching the video, I thanked G-d profusely for my children.

15 Jul 2019

My Compliments

Do It Now

Berton Braley
If with pleasure you are viewing any work a man is doing,
If you like him or you love him, tell him now;
Don’t withhold your approbation till the parson makes oration
And he lies with snowy lilies on his brow;
No matter how you shout it he won’t really care about it;
He won’t know how many teardrops you have shed;
If you think some praise is due him now’s the time to slip it to him,
For he cannot read his tombstone when he’s dead.
More than fame and more than money is the comment kind and sunny
And the hearty, warm approval of a friend.
For it gives to life a savor, and it makes you stronger, braver,
And it gives you heart and spirit to the end;
If he earns your praise—bestow it; if you like him let him know it;
Let the words of true encouragement be said;
Do not wait till life is over and he’s underneath the clover,
For he cannot read his tombstone when he’s dead.
https://www.theobjectivestandard.com/issues/2017-fall/seven-poems-on-living-large-and-loving-life/

Speedily in our days

The comment below was posted at the Yeshiva World under an article titled BORUCH DAYAN HA’EMMES: Body Of Rabbi Reuven Bauman Z”L Has Been Found By Misaskim Boat

Baruch Dayan HaEmes.
Mi Kiamcha Yisroel.
How proud I am to be part of such a special nation.
The time, resources and money that was put into this search.
The dedication of tens of volunteers, working and worrying round the clock for one of our Holy Brothers.
The Achdus of Klal Yisroel uniting in Tefillah for a closure to this heartrending tradgedy.
Rabbi Bauman was a true hero.
We know that the Gemara states that the Melamed Dardiky; teachers of children; sit under the Kisei HaKavod.
Rabbi Bauman was fortunate to be a Rebbi and to Heroically give up his life in an extreme act of kindness.
May the family and Klal Yisroel have a Nechama, and May we greet Moshiach speedily in our days.
https://www.theyeshivaworld.com/news/general/1757886/boruch-dayan-haemmes-body-of-rabbi-reuven-bauman-zl-has-been-found-by-misaskim-boat.html

BBC's Documentary on Labour's Anti-Semitism

14 Jul 2019

Assaulted

Monticello: Jewish Man Assaulted While Walking To Shul Friday Night

A number of years ago, a relative was walking on the streets of Antwerp on Shabbos and was accosted by an individual demanding money. He explained that he didn't have any because Jews don't carry money on the Sabbath. Thankfully, my relative wasn't assaulted, as in the case of the Monticello man, but, I wonder if  Rabbi Yair Hoffman is going to  write an article about whether it is permissible to carry money on Shabbos, to avert physical danger.

Can Ilhan Omar Overcome Her Prejudice?
h/t EOZ

Seven Poems on Living Large and Loving Life

The Duet

Omer Adam and Yaakov Shwekey sing a duet

Eighty Groups Protest California Professor’s Use of Official Department Facebook Page to Spread Anti-Israel Propaganda