Monday, February 20, 2017

A Solution for Jew Hatred

                                                                                 בס"ד
This essay was sent to me by one of our dear readers, Rabbi Yosef Stern. Although the term anti-Semitism is used throughout the essay, I like to point out that the compound word antisemite was popularized in Germany in 1879 as a scientific-sounding term for Judenhass "Jew-hatred," and that has been its common use since then. It is ironic that we play into the hands of the worst Jew-haters by toning down this horror with a more acceptable term anti-Semite. After all we wouldn’t want to offend those who hate us the most.

The essay:

Bila’am prophesized that, “We are a nation that dwells alone and among the nations, we will not be recognized.”[1] [2]

How right he was! What do I mean? Look at the United Nations. They have condemned us[3] more times than any other country![4] When will we experience this the most? In the period leading up to Moshiach.[5] For we see that the UN are ganging up against us. In the words of Dovid HaMelech, “All the nations surround me… they encircle me…”[6] As the Novi tells us, “I will gather the nations to Yerushalayim for war…”[7] However, this is materializing in our times! Only liberals, leftists or irreligious Jews - who have no Torah in their life[8] - can’t see that it’s the ‘hand’ of G-d running the show and not their own efforts.

Rashi[9] says, “It is a law that Eisav[10] hates Yaakov.[11] Some of our brethren just don’t seem to understand that when our Creator makes a law, we can’t fight it, only obey it. For He told us, “Amongst the nations you will not be tranquil…[12] Yet, there are people within our nation who ‘think’ they can eliminate anti-Semitism altogether. Someone once commented on a website with a solution regarding anti-Semitism:

“If we teach our children to respect non-Jews, then Hashem, will, in turn, instill into them to have mercy on us and there will be no more assaults or stabbings etc. ever again.”

The reason we must respect non-Jews and teach our children to do the same has nothing to do with acting civilized. It’s for a higher cause: to sanctify our Creator’s Name. As the Novi informs us, “You are My servant, Yisrael, through whom I am glorified!”[13] This means we have an awesome responsibility on our shoulders!

Yet, for him to say that Hashem will, in turn, instill into them to have mercy on us and there will be no more assaults or stabbings etc. ever again, is complete and utter nonsense! It’s like Theodore Herzl, who claimed that the establishment of a “Jewish” state would cure anti-Semitism.[14] When Dovid HaMelech said, “Do not rely on nobles or on a human being, for he holds no salvation,”[15] he was referring to people like “Theodore Herzl”.

Does the Torah contain a SOLUTION for anti-Semitism? In Parshas Kedoshim, Hashem warns us, “Do not follow the traditions of the nations that I expel from before you, for they did all of these [abominations] and I was disgusted with them… I am Hashem, your G-d, Who has separated you from the peoples.”[16]

Where else do, we find similar words “do not follow the customs of the nations”? In Achrei Mos the verse[17] says, “… do not perform the practices of the land of Canaan to which I bring you and do not follow their customs.”

On the words, “do not follow their customs,” Rashi[18] says, “… Matters that are etched for them in their ways as if they were laws, such as theaters and stadiums i.e., (days set aside for) attendance at theaters or stadiums…”

The Gemara[19] says, “Whenever it is stated in the Torah ‘do not,’ it is nothing other than a negative commandment.” Rashi is telling us, “Do not go to a Movie Theater[20] or a Sport Stadium.”[21] [22]

Our Creator signs off, “You shall be holy for Me,[23] for I Hashem am holy and I have separated you from among the peoples to be Mine.”[24]

What does this verse sound like? Marriage! Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan zt”l[25] says, “The groom gives his bride a circular ring, which has no beginning and no end. This parallels Hashem giving Klal Yisrael the Torah, which is endless.[26] [27] The words the groom says, ‘…הרי את מקודשת לי,’ begin with the letter hei, which has the numerical value of five, alluding to the five books of the Torah – the wedding ring of the marriage between Hashem and Klal Yisrael.’”[28] [29]

The Even Ezra[30] says, “I took you out of Egypt only to be your G-d; if you will not be holy I will not be your G-d. If you wish that I be your G-d, be holy.”

How does one stay holy? Rashi explains that the only way for us to be holy to Hashem is by separating ourselves from arayos.[31] What is arayos? Intimate relationships[32] which are forbidden by prohibitions in the Torah.

We need to ask ourselves, “Are we still wearing the wedding ring[33] that He gave us?[34] “Have we forsaken it,[35] in exchange, to develop a relationship[36] with the nations that surround us?”

G-d ‘knows’ very well if we are living by our ‘marriage contract’: “If you are separated from [the other peoples], see, then, you are Mine. But if not, see then, you belong to Nevuchadnetzer and his colleagues, i.e. your enemies [who exiled you from the Holy Land].”[37]

For instance, Rav Chaim Volozhin used to say, “If Jews make themselves holy, then – as this posuk[38]guarantees – G-d will separate us from the nations to be His. What will happen if we do not sanctify ourselves? Then the nations will separate us from their midst – for persecution and expulsion, G-d forbid!”[39] This explains the Sifsei Chachamim,[40] which states, “The only way it’s possible for us to achieve holiness, is by separating ourselves from the nations,[41] with our actions. For example: wearing tzitzis, donning tefillin and doing other positive mitzvos…”[42] [43] the Ba’al HaTurim[44] says, “There are seventy mitzvos in Parshas Kedoshim, reflecting the seventy nations from whom I have separated you.”

Here’s Albert Einstein’s theory of anti-Semitism:

Separation = Holiness[45] I Assimilation ≠ Holiness I No Separation = Assimilation I Assimilation = anti-Semitism I anti-Semitism = Annihilation of our nation - Hitler = the Holocaust.

G-d spread us across the globe[46] with one mission specifically: To be a light unto the nations[47] and not to learn from their ways.[48]

When one buys an electronic item, it will say “batteries not included.” However, when the Creator presented us with the Torah, “batteries” were included. Those “batteries” were the sword. As the Medrash[49]says, “A sword and the book came down from heaven bound together. He said to them: ‘If you observe what is written in this book, you will be spared from this sword; if you do not; you will be killed by this sword.’”

The more we stick to our way of life and not theirs, the more they will respect us and the fewer problems we will have with them. In the words of Rav Shamshon Raphael Hirsch: “If you are an authentic Jew, you will be respected because of this, not in spite of it.”

With Hashem’s help, by fulfilling and upholding His Torah, we should soon merit to SEE and witness the day when:

“I will bring you out from the nations and gather you out of the lands to which you were scattered, with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm and with out-poured wrath…”[50]
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[1] See Bamidbar 23:9. Roy Neuberger says, “Rabbi Yitzchak Hutner referred to the United Nations as the place where the seventy wolves were gathering to plan their strategy on how to eat up the Jewish People, G-d forbid” (http://bit.ly/1s0iQJX). As Dovid HaMelech said, “He turned their hearts to hate His nation, to plot against His servants” (Tehillim 105:25).

[2] See Why Us? Reflections on the Cause of Anti-Semitism by Rabbi Finkel, page 25, who explains this posuk.

[3] I.e. Israel.

[4] Israel is the target of at least 77 UN Resolutions and the Palestinians are the target of 1 (http://bit.ly/1Y9MqGK).

[5] See Ba’al HaTurim to Bamidbar 23:9 “לבדד” and “לבדד ישכן”.

[6] Tehillim 118:10-11.

[7] Zecharyah 14:2.

[8] As the Gemara says, “Those who are bereft of Torah knowledge become more foolish with age” (Shabbos 152a). Conversely, “Whoever engages in Torah study, the Torah makes him great and exalts him above all things” (Avos 6:1).

[9] Bereishis 33:4 “אמר רבי שמעון”. See also Sifrei, Beha’aloscha 69; Tanchuma, Parshas Shemos #27; Bereishis Rabbah 84:6; and Igros Moshe, Choshen Mishpat 2:77. For an actual example of this, see Shemos Rabbah 1:8.

[10] I.e. the progenitor of the Western Nations.

[11] I.e. the Children of Israel.

[12] Devarim 28:65. See also Artscroll Stone Edition Chumash, page 1083, note 66 and Rashi to Devarim 28:66 “חייך תלאים לך”.

[13] Yeshayahu 49:3. To understand this principle, see Yuma 86a. In addition, Rav Eliyahu Dessler says, “A person should first sanctify Hashem’s Name before other Jews by teaching them the proper way and from there he should proceed to the next level, to sanctify His Name before the nations” (See Michtav Me’Eliyahu volume 3, page 118). Each one of us is an ambassador onto our fellow Jew(s) and the world at large.

[14] See link - http://bit.ly/1rWnybH

[15] Tehillim 146:3. See also 118:5-7 and 8-9.

[16] Vayikra 20:23 and 24.

[17] Ibid. 18:3.

[18] Ibid. 18:3 “ובחקתיהם לא תלכו”.

[19] Sotah 5a.

[20] I.e. IMAX.

[21] I.e. Yankee Stadium; Ralph Wilson Stadium - i.e. football (http://bit.ly/21XpBbw); Brooklyn Nets - i.e. basketball; New York Rangers - I.e. hockey (http://bit.ly/27enxjs) and Red Bull Arena - I.e. soccer (http://bit.ly/1T8Zs9t).

[22] Why not? The Gemara (Sanhedrin 107a) says that a person should never put himself into a situation of nisayon, a test [with his yeitzer hara]. What test is there? Regarding the IMAX Theater, one has to walk through the mall. This means passing or entering certain stores that display things which are completely immodest for one to see, thereby transgressing, “… You shall guard yourself against any evil matter” [(Devarim 23:10) See Artscroll Avodah Zarah 20b, note 24]. The same Gemara applies to attending a sport stadium. Because one is subjecting himself to a place where there is a lack of modesty. Even if one buys box seats - so that there won’t be women sitting in front of him - the stadium screen shows advertisements that are completely immodest for one to see. Besides transgressing, “…You shall guard yourself against any evil matter,” he also transgresses, “Yisrael do not rejoice like the rejoicing of the nations” (Hoshea 9:1). See also B’Mechitzos Rabbeinu by Rabbi Reuven Amar, page 92 “קרקסאות בזמננו” and http://bit.ly/2cLYvkA

*It is also important to realize that when one has the opportunity to sin, but refrains from doing so because G-d forbade it, there is no mitzvah greater than that (Rashi, Kiddushin 39b) and he draws onto himself a light of holiness greater than anyone can imagine (Karyana D’Igarta volume 1, page 22. See also Artscroll Avodah Zarah 20b, note 35).

[23] Our Creator tells us, “You are a holy nation (Shemos 19:6) and ‘a holy people… that is treasured from all the peoples that are on the face of the earth.” (Devarim 7:6)

[24] Vayikra 20:26. See also Positive Vision by Rabbi Neuberger, page 33.

[25] Made in Heaven. See also Positive Vision by Rabbi Neuberger, page 27.

[26] Mataamim 135.

[27] See Avos 5:22.

[28] Tashbatz 466.

[29] As the Zohar says, “Hashem, the Torah and Yisrael, are one” [(Parshas Acharei Mos 73a). In addition, the Novi says, “I will set for you for a covenant to the people, for a light to the nations…” (Yeshayahu 42:6)

[30] Mikra’os Gedolos Vayikra 11:45 “וטעם כי אני ה'”.

[31] See Rashi to Vayikra 19:2 “קדשים תהיו” and Vayikra Rabbah 24:6.

[32] I.e. having a relationship with someone else other than one’s wife.

[33] As Mishlei (7:3) says, “Tie them [i.e. words of Torah] to your finger; write them on the slate of your heart.”

[34] I.e. which allows us to maintain a relationship with Him.

[35] I.e. the Torah (see Mishlei 4:2).

[36] To follow their customs, i.e. values and culture. The Novi tells us, “Do not learn from the ways of the nations.” (Yirmiyahu 10:2).

[37] Rashi to Vayikra 20:26 “ואבדל אתכם מן העמים להיות לי”.

[38] Which is, “and I have separated you from among the peoples to be Mine.”(Vayikra 20:26).

[39] The Netziv says, “When a Jew claims to be “a Jew at heart” but is ashamed to practice Judaism, then the gentiles regard him with contempt and treat him like a useless vessel, to be discarded and thrown away” (see Why Us? Reflections on the Cause of Anti-Semitism by Rabbi Finkel, page 35). In the words of Rav Shamshon Raphael Hirsch zt”l, “If you are an authentic Jew, you will be respected because of this, not in spite of it.” [As for why the nations of the world hate us, see Artscroll Shabbos 89a, note 41]. Remember, “Who is like Your people Yisrael, one nation on earth” (Shmuel II 7:23).

[40] See Mikra’os Gedolos Vayikra 19:2 “דהא” and 20:26, Ohr HaChayim.

[41] See Michtav Me’Eliyahu Volume 1, Kuntres HaChesed, pages 35-38.

[42] See Rabbeinu B’Chayei Al HaTorah, Parshas Vayikra 20:26 “ואבדל אתכם מן העמים להיות לי”.

[43] Regarding the concept of a mitzvah, see Rav Schwab on Prayer, page 33 and Tefillin by Aryeh Kaplan, page 238.

[44] To Vayikra 20:24 “אשר הבדלתי אתכם”.

[45] See Positive Vision by Rabbi Neuberger, page 22.

[46] See Devarim 28:64 and Pesachim 118b.

[47] See Yeshayahu 42:6, 49:6 and 60:3.

[48] See Yirmiyahu 10:2.

[49] Devarim Rabbah 4:2.

[50] Yechezkeil 20:34.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Message from Rabbi Nir Ben-Artzi, Shlita, Parashat Yitro, 16 Shvat 5777 (5.2.17)

בס"ד
The Holy One, King of Kings, our Father in Heaven and on Earth, Father of mercy, feels compassion for all His creatures. The Holy One is with mercy and judgment.

When He created Adam the first man and gave him free will, Adam went the wrong way!

Since then, He is waiting for thousands of years for this moment of salvation and for the Messiah, to anoint publicly the Messiah King! The Creator will never retreat back.

The Holy One alerts and warns all states in the world, all countries, all Presidents and Heads of Governments: If you go against the Holy land, if you want to harm Israel and the Jews in Israel, or take parts of the land of Israel: the Creator, under oath, will hit them immediately, within a few days, with severe blows that did not exist until now from the time of Egypt to now, because free will in the world has been decreased and the Creator wants to install his reign on this earth. And when The Holy One wants to crown His reign, this world should be pure and holy, without any stain or spot not in the land of Israel nor in the Jews, and not in all humans on the world, and not in the animals, fishes and birds; all will repent. All will be clean, clear and pure, death for Jews will disappear and evil inclination will not exist in the world. It begins now with strength, and the whole world will feel it!

King David was a warrior and fought. Abraham was a warrior and fought. Jacob's sons were warriors and fought like soldiers of the IDF. Moses also fought with the Amalekites and the Egyptians. Even King Solomon fought for peace. The greats in Israel fought wars like the soldiers of the IDF!

France, the Holy One is giving it severe blows and will continue.

Europe is getting severe blows all over.

The Creator will never forgive Europe, He will hit them hard, because they interfere with the land of Israel and they need to expel the Jews from Europe to the land of Israel; they will be banished eventually.

Even the Jews will be banished soon from the United States.

Jews living outside the land of Israel they have no sanctity, no temple and no pure land; on the contrary their place is in the land of Israel! Anti-Semitism is increasing and growing in tremendous dimensions till "the big boom" to all Jews worldwide. Every Jew is smart and wise, understands and knows that his place is in the Holy Land, the land of Israel!

Turkey, ISIS is eating it, their economy is falling apart and they want the help of the State of Israel.

Iran lives in illusions; they think they can play with Trump.

Trump is smart, intelligent and witty. He doesn't give up to anyone, not even to Iran.

He knows exactly what he wants and will take care of everything twisted and distorted.

He will succeed in all his lawful efforts with truth and righteousness. Trump is a strong man and he will succeed, he has help from Heaven and he is working quietly.

The President of the US, Trump, is requesting from the Government of Israel to work quietly and without talking. When they talk it causes problems, interferences and things go wrong.

The State of Israel, the Holy land must develop and grow. In Israel there is everything, the best in medicine, economics, agriculture and science. The Jews in Israel are very merciful, unusual different from the people of all the nations. In Israel there are good winters, good rain, good fruits and vegetables, the most powerful army in the world and the Holy One is with us in the land of Israel!

In the Gaza Strip, they continue to dig tunnels. There is no recession in the Gaza Strip, there's a new profession: one who digs illegal tunnels. All Gaza's economy lives on digging tunnels. There is no need for a certificate, no need for a degrees and education; everyone works from age three to 100 - everyone has a job - digger. May their swords pierce their hearts!

Hamas, Mahmoud Abbas, Isis and Jihad are all working together. The IDF should be alert in the north. Hezbollah is warming the northern area through Syria, so the place will flare up against Israel, G-d forbid.

Hezbollah and Nasrallah are swelling like a peacock. The Holy One will hit them hard.

The IDF is very alert and will not let the arms and ammunition reach Hezbollah and Nasrallah.

Egypt, May G-d help Sissi so that Egypt will not be destroyed in his hands. Sissi attacks and works to prevent a revolution. He gives gifts all the time gifts, so they will not disturb him.

Jordan, the refugees eat it. If a Palestinian State will be created, G-d forbid, it will be the worst of the worst.

Syria, they think and say there is calm - it is a lie. No peace and quiet; all is like usual. They are killing, murdering and destroying each other.

Iraq continues to deteriorate and be erased.

China and Japan want to be connected with the United States.

Russia wants to sell weapons and ammunition; it is its lucrative business. Putin loves the land of Israel; he will not bother or disturb it although he is selling weapons to the goyim!

All the left are doing a big mistake about the Palestinians and Hamas; it must be proven to them they are wrong! They don't know with whom they're dealing. They must not live in illusions that the Arabs want peace and love them; Arabs hate them too.

Assimilation is forbidden; it divides the Jewish people and angers very much the Holy One.

We Jews are the chosen people. The angels of Hashem.

All the thieves and crooks, those who live on the backs of others, the lecherous men and those who take bribery will be caught! Everyone should repent, if so, Heaven will have mercy on them.

Hard rains will fall on the world, floods, earthquakes, fire, natural disasters, accidents with trains and airplanes, cars, buses and ships.

Tall buildings will disappear from the face of the earth. They will be swallowed by the earth.

There are natural disasters and there are calamities that the Holy One is making to confuse people, and so they're feuding and fighting amongst themselves.

The holy land of Israel is protected and secure; nothing will happen; it's all good.

We need to open our eyes and be alert all the time and we must not say 'it won't happen to me.'

All the stories about stars that fall from the sky are just stories; Israel is protected and secured.

The Messiah, son of David, is working, acting and protecting the land of Israel.

Over sixty percent of all is known.

In Israel and in the entire world people are aware that there is salvation and the Messiah. In the Sea of Reeds they finally found parts of the chariots of Pharaoh, and it strengthens the people of Israel and the salvation.

The Messiah cares and protects all the people of Israel, doing wonders and miracles that the Holy One in Heaven transfers, through him, the Messiah, a man of Hashem.

The Mothers are waiting; the Messiah from above is connected to the Messiah from below. The Messiah came into awareness of the public and must be revealed in public step by step. Every day is another step, until he will be revealed in public at 100%.
It is not much longer, in a short time!
Courtesy of the site: "Tairneri"

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

How to Construct Your Roller Coaster

בס"ד
Yesterday we posted an excellent article that pointed out how the time, when we were in Egypt and the desert, had its ups and downs. We were on a roller coaster. As bad as it was, the roller coaster ride continued throughout Jewish history to this very day. The article ended with: “This world is like a roller coaster with ups and downs, and the wild ride will only end when Moshiach comes.”

You may notice in recent decades how the world’s roller coasters have increased in craziness. What used to be up and down is now with circles, spirals, much greater speeds, much more dangerous drops, etc. If you want an idea of what I am talking about, go to YouTube and put in: “the world's worst roller coasters.” I have noticed that as things change in the world, so do representative examples. The world’s roller coasters have become as crazy as the world is today. The world offers much more than ups and downs, it includes every dangerous move that the worst roller coasters can make.

So what does this parable have to do with each of us? It turns out that we each have a personal roller coaster in our lives. We each have our ups and downs and even our loops, spirals, changes in speed, etc (you get the idea).

What can we do about it? It turns out that we have actually been given a system in life from Hashem, of course, to design our own roller coaster. I have been saying for the past five years that what happens in our lives has everything to do with the testing Hashem feels we need, measure for measure, to reach correction of our souls – our Tikun, the very purpose of our being on planet Earth. If we follow Hashem, the testing is much more tolerable, since we are getting the correction we need by living the instructions Hashem has given us. That is the voluntary correction, perfection that has been mentioned many times (from repentance, prayer, charity, Torah study, helping others, doing the commandments – I know, you have heard this list many, many times). Or we have the involuntary ways to get correction and perfection through sickness, accidents, hardship, financial difficulties, family problems, problems, problems and more problems.


The extent of how much we accomplish in life the easy way with Hashem or the hard way on our own determines our roller coaster. The ups and downs are completely by design and it is the design that Hashem has made possible for us. What type of roller coaster we have in life completely comes from how much we use Hashem’s merciful guidance or not.

A little design tip: ups are good; downs are not. A positive attitude with positive action makes for a very happy life. A negative attitude with no upward motion causes all the problems of life. Climbing is our goal.

You got the idea.  Now it is time to review the ride you have been living and/or redesign that you need to do to make life much more pleasurable.  By the way, the roller coaster design from Hashem, His recommended model, comes with a lifetime guarantee in writing.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

The Song of Life

בס"ד
Another excellent article in last week’s Torah Tidbits from the Orthodox Union. Enjoy:

by Rabbi Ephraim Sprecher, Dean of Students, Diaspora Yeshiva

Frank Sinatra had a hit song called, "That's Life - Riding High in April Shot Down in May." Was he singing about the Splitting of the Red Sea followed by the Amalek terror attack? After the Song of the Sea praising Hashem has been sung, the Jewish Nation is in a state of euphoria. Thus, the Jewish People are not prepared for the series of failures that we encounter in the second half of Parshat Beshalach.

"Moshe led Israel from the Sea of Reeds (improperly called the Red Sea) and they went out into the desert of Shur, and they went three days in the desert, and found no water. And they came to Mara and could not drink the water because it was bitter. And the people complained against Moshe, saying, what shall we drink?" (Shemot 15).

The Baal Shem Tov explains, because the people were bitter, therefore, the water tasted bitter.

Israel proclaims their demand for water and after the problem of the shortage of water is solved, they again begin to complain, this time for food. "The Children of Israel said to them 'Better that we have died by the Hand of Hashem in Egypt, when we sat by the flesh-pots and we ate bread to the full. Why have you brought us into this wilderness, to kill this assembly with hunger?" (Shemot 16).

The People of Israel are purified from the 49 levels of impurity, and of being Egypt's slaves. The Jewish Nation is born in, and then ejected from Egypt, through the Sea of Reeds, into the desert. Now, says the Maharal, Israel reacts just like any newborn whose needs hunger and thirst, must be met. Hashem fulfills the function of a parent, supplying the newborn with food and providing precise instructions regarding it. The Manna will be given every day, and they must not save any Manna for the next day. On Shabbat no Manna will be given and one must save some of the Manna from Friday for Shabbat.

Like any parent feeding his child, Hashem gives more than food. He also teaches the rules concerning how we must behave in this world. Hashem teaches His children the natural order of time. Each day is allotted its daily portion of Manna so that every day is different from the previous one. Thus, one must not save any Manna from one day to the next.

Therefore, the Torah states, "Six days you shall gather the Manna, but on held up his hand, that Israel prevailed, and when he let down his hand Amalek prevailed" (Shemot 17).”

To a certain extent, the war against Amalek is a mirror image of the war against Pharaoh. But, whereas the victory over Pharaoh is absolute, the victory over Amalek is not conclusive.

The story of the war against Amalek demonstrates life events as being cyclical. The war against Amalek shows how not every war against evil ends in total victory. How can evil terrorize defenseless Jews only days after the Song of the Sea, and continue to exist even after it appears to have been defeated.

This world is like a roller coaster with ups and downs, and the wild ride will only end when Moshiach comes.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Sea Breeze

בס"ד
Another excellent message from Harry Rothenberg: