Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Just for laughs and Alan Dershowitz on no laughing matter, civilian deaths

Build On your Spouse's Image 

If your spouse portrays a picture of him/herself more positively than you feel is accurate, accept it anyway!!!

Build upon it instead of  criticizing..  It is frequently a mistake to try to demolish this picture. By building upon it, you create a more positive future reality.

People tend to act in ways that are consistent with their view of themselves. For example, your spouse might say, "I consider myself to be very considerate." Let's say you disagree and feel that your spouse has a long way to go to fit this picture. You would like your spouse to be more considerate, wouldn't you? Therefore, it is best to express gratitude for the consideration already displayed. By doing so you have a better chance of having a more considerate spouse. If you argue, there is a good chance you will end up in a no-win quarrel. Even if your spouse ends up agreeing with you, it is not likely that your approach will improve their character.

Love Yehuda Lave


 When  Computer Experts  
Get  Bored...They Create

Stuff Like  This!!!
















Or this...  


 I wish I could do  that.......when I get bored, I just send these  to others so they can  enjoy.


Hamas' dead baby strategy works because the media facilitates it.
by Alan M. Dershowitz

Civilian Deaths in Gaza

Hamas' dead baby strategy works because the media facilitates it.

The media loves to count the dead bodies on each side of a conflict. It's much easier to count that to explain. Hamas knows this. That's why they employ what has come to be known as "the dead baby strategy".

Hamas' strategy since Israel left Gaza in 2005 has been exactly the same. The media response has been exactly the same. And Hamas will continue to employ a strategy that causes many Palestinian civilians to die as long as the media keeps up its thoughtless body count.

Here's the way it works: Hamas deliberately fires its rockets from densely populated civilian areas, using hospitals, disability centers, mosques and schools as launching sites. This puts Israel to the tragic choice of either allowing the rockets to endanger its civilians or to destroy the rocket launchers, thereby risking civilian casualties among Hamas' human shields. Often Israel chooses to forgo attacking military targets, so as not to put Palestinian civilians at risk. Sometimes it has no choice, because the rocket fire against its civilians is persistent. Palestinian civilians are killed despite Israel's best efforts precisely because Hamas wants civilians to be killed, especially if these civilians are children, women or the elderly. Hamas stands ready to parade these human shields in front of the media which is eager to show the dead and count the bodies.

Hamas could easily reduce the death and injury toll among its civilians by simply allowing them to go underground into tunnels and shelters which abound throughout Gaza. But Hamas has a deliberate policy of refusing to allow civilians to enter the tunnels or shelters. They reserve these places of refuge for their fighters and commanders, which explains why so few Hamas fighters have been killed. If Hamas were to reverse its policy and allow civilians into the shelters while requiring its fighters to stay above ground, the ratio of civilians to fighters killed would dramatically change. That is why in each of the wars between Hamas and Israel there have been more Palestinian than Israeli civilian deaths and injuries. It is part of Hamas' dead baby strategy and it works, because the media facilitates it.

The media also emphasizes the fact that thus far no Israelis have been killed by Hamas rocket fire. Indeed some media and international organizations seem implicitly to be condemning Israel for protecting the lives of its own citizens, by repeatedly pointing out there has been only one fatality, while Palestinian deaths have reached over 200. The reason there has been only one Israeli death so far is because Israel spends hundreds of millions of dollars trying to protect its civilians, while Hamas spends its resources deliberately exposing its civilians to the risks of Israeli counterattacks. Israel has built shelters all throughout the country and has spent a fortune on the Iron Dome system. The results have been impressive, though many Israelis suffer from trauma, shock and the inevitable long term consequences of being exposed to constant rocket fire.

How many times have you heard, seen or read the body counts: nearly 200 Palestinians dead, no Israelis dead. This is usually accompanied by an accusation that Israel is violating the international law requirement of "proportionality." This is a misuse of the term, which has a precise meaning in international law that reflects a broader morality. Under international law, a nation has the right to attack military targets. Period! It doesn't matter whether the rockets coming from these launchers have as yet succeeded in their task of killing civilians. There can be no doubt under international law that rocket launchers, and the fighters who employ them are legitimate military targets. Israel is therefore entitled to attack these targets, even if no Israeli civilians have been killed, so long as it can do so without causing disproportionate civilian casualties.

This rule was not addressed to an enemy that deliberately uses human shields to protect its military targets and combatants against legitimate attacks. Proportionality is not judged by the number of civilians actually killed by Hamas rockets, but rather by the risks posed to Israelis. These risks have been diminished, but not eliminated by the Iron Dome system. They have also been considerably diminished by Israel's counterattacks on the missile launchers and those who employ them. Without these counterattacks, it is highly likely that more Hamas missiles would have made it through the Iron Dome system which has been approximately 85% effective. Israel has every right under the rules of proportionality to attack these military targets, so long as they take reasonable efforts to reduce civilian casualties. They have done so by leafleting, by calling, and by other methods of warning civilians to leave target areas. Hamas leaders, on the other hand, have urged, and sometimes compelled, their civilians to remain in harm's way as human shields.

The media, by emphasizing the comparative body counts without providing the reasons for the disparity, play into the hands of Hamas, and encourage that terrorist organization, to continue to pursue its dead baby strategy. So the next time those in the media promote a body count without explanation, they should point a finger at themselves for contributing to this deadly count.

This article originally appeared in the Jerusalem Post.

Author Biography:

Alan M. Dershowitz is the Felix Frankfurter professor of law at Harvard Law School, served as an attorney in several high-profile court cases, and is a sought-after commentator on the Arab–Israeli conflict. He is the author of some 25 books, including The Case for Israel.



Monday, July 21, 2014

Painted house in Bavaria (this is where my Ma was born) and I love you more than you love me

Admit The Truth

When you speak to others, admit the truth when they are right.

People often deny the truth because they are afraid that others will look down at them if they admit making a mistake. But in fact, most people will respect you

Love Yehuda Lave

Murals in Bavaria.

These are quite spectacular. This is the area where my mother was born. See slide show attached.

I Love You More Than You Love Me
By Yanki Tauber

It's that time of year when we're reminded of our marriage. The prophets point out that G‑d wed us at Sinai, admonish us for our betrayals, and promise that there are good times yet ahead.

You can usually tell when two people are in love, but the best way to recognize a married couple is by their arguments. These are arguments that you won't see anywhere else, for the simple reason that they don't make any sense anywhere but within the context of marriage.

We find one such argument in this week's Torah reading. (Actually, the argument takes two different forms, explained in different ways by our sages; but underneath, I believe, it's the same argument.)

The disagreement concerns G‑d's instructions to Moses to wage war on the Midianites. "Avenge the vengeance of the children of Israel upon the Midianites," G‑d says to the Jewish leader. But when Moses conveys these instructions to the people, he tells them that they're going to war "to take G‑d's vengeance on Midian." Who is the offended party, G‑d or Israel?

The Midrash Tanchuma explains: the Midianites caused the people of Israel to sin and worship the idol Pe'or, causing G‑d to punish His people with a plague. So G‑d tells Israel: "It is you who have an account to settle with them, for they caused Me to harm you." To which Moses responds: "Master of the Universe! If we had been uncircumcised, or idol-worshippers, or had denied the commandments, the Midianites would not have hated us. They persecute us only on account of the Torah and the precepts which You have given us. Consequently the vengeance is Yours . . ."

Rashi has a different take on the contradiction, and this theme is taken up by the chassidic masters: G‑d sees the war on Midian as avenging Israel, for G‑d's foremost concern is for His people; the people of Israel see the war as avenging G‑d, for they are concerned only with the honor of G‑d.

Typical marital argument logic. Husband: "How could you do that to me? When you act that way, it makes me angry at you, and then I hurt you. I'll never forgive you for for making me hurt the woman I love!" Wife: "If you wouldn't have married me, we wouldn't be so special to each other, and it wouldn't hurt you so much when I act that way. So it's all your fault."

Or the flip side of that argument, equally (il)logical: "I love you more than you love me!" "No! I love you more than you love me!"

We've been arguing that way for more than 3,300 years now.

This is Yehuda's editorial comment. I wish I could say we were arguing with people who love us..At this point, most of the world would still like to exterminate us.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Israel Test and Baby boomer test and sign up to protect a soldier

Commence With An Apology 

If you have to speak to someone in a position of authority, and you are afraid you might irritate him/her, starting with an apology will frequently prevent their becoming angry.

For example, you can say, "I realize this may get you angry, but I feel I need to say it." By telling someone you might make him angry, paradoxically this will frequently prevent his becoming angry.

Love Yehuda Lave

Take the baby boomer test to see if you are baby boomer

Take the Israel test to find out if you are racist.
The Israel Test
George Gilder (not Jewish) a famous economist

Displaying IMG-20140717-WA0000.jpg
please take a moment to sign up for this important effort to help protect our chayalim (Israeli Soldiers) currently on duty.

It's very easy to do. Fill out the short form here - http://www.shmiraproject.com/en-us/signup.aspx and ask for the name of a soldier to "pair up" with. By doing so, you give that soldier a share in every prayer or mitzva you do.

The Shmira Project did this during the last Gaza war and there were only 13 Israeli casualties, which was both a miracle and a record for any Israeli war!

Please visit this website to sign up:

Please,   PASS this email ON!


Friday, July 18, 2014

How To Roll A Car (Mercedes) and you don't have to be Jewish to go to heaven

Joy in the Face of Death

The Talmud (Brachot 31) relates that at the wedding of Mar, the son of Ravina, the Sages asked Rav Hamnuna to sing a song. This is what he sang: "Woe to us that we die! Woe to us that we die!"
Since we have an obligation to rejoice with the bride and groom at a wedding, how was it proper for Rav Hamnuna to say something that would cause sadness?
When you are able to recall death and nevertheless rejoice, this is true joy. This is possible when one is committed to serving the eternal God. But if someone needs to forget death in order to rejoice, the joy is incomplete.
Love Yehuda Lave

5 Surprising Facts about Judaism

Including you don't need to be Jewish to get to Heaven.

by Rabbi Nechemia Coopersmith

1. We are meant to savor the pleasures of the world:

The Jerusalem Talmud says that God will take us to task for not partaking in permissible pleasures of this world (Kiddushin, 4:12). God didn't put the delights of this world here to tease us. Enjoy that hot fudge sundae, but do it mindfully, like a connoisseur, savoring each mouthful. That way you're controlling the physical and it's not controlling you.
Towards the end of his life, Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsh, the great 19th century German rabbi, asked his students to accompany him to the Swiss Alps. He wanted to make sure that when he goes to the Next World and appears before the Creator and He asks, "Samson did you see My magnificent Alps?" he'd be able to answer in the affirmative.
It is not a Jewish ideal to divorce oneself from the material world. In fact, holiness can be attained only by properly using the physical world. Think of all the Hebrew words related to kedusha, holiness: kiddushin (marriage) that brings a man and woman together, Kiddush over wine, Shabbat Kodesh, the holy Sabbath when it is a mitzvah to eat delicious food and sleep a little extra. They all center around physical activities because according to Judaism, holiness comes through elevating the physical, not denying it.

2. Judaism believes in Heaven and Hell:

But probably not the version you're imagining.
The Afterlife is an expression of the relationship to God and spirituality that we have nurtured and developed in this world. The way one experiences the Afterlife is totally dependent upon his preparation beforehand. Each choice in this world shapes who we are and creates either connection or disconnection to the Next World.
Imagine two people listening to a concert. One of them studied music composition, read about the composer and is highly attuned to all the details involved in creating this symphony. For him the concert is a rich and deeply fulfilling experience. The other person was dragged along and hates classical music. For him the concert is boring, even painful.
One concert, two very different kinds of experiences.
Our essence does not undergo a major transformation when we leave this world. It's just the opposite. Our essence is fully expressed in the Next World. The pain of disconnection and the acute awareness of what we could have been if we would have chosen differently is the Jewish view of Hell.

3. You don't need to be Jewish to get to Heaven:

Contrary to popular belief, a non-Jew can be spiritually fulfilled and even merit a place in the Next World. The obligation to observe the mitzvot of the Torah is upon Jews only. The Torah proscribes seven commandments for non-Jews  and Maimonides states, "Whoever among the Nations fulfills the seven commandments to serve God belongs to the righteous among the nations, and has his share in the World to Come."

4. Jewish beliefs have a rational basis.

The first mitzvah of the Ten Commandments is to know there is a God.
Some religions demand a blind leap of faith – assume something is true because emotionally you wish it to be true. The Torah commands us to build a rational basis of belief. Believe in God because you have enough compelling arguments that lead you to conclude that God actually exists. Use your mind, not your heart.
You may have questions and doubts, you may never reach 100% knowledge, the mitzvah "to know there is a God" is telling us don't be complacent with your belief. Confront your questions, gain clarity and strengthen your basis of belief by getting more information and facts. Know there is a God; don't just blindly assume it.

5. It is a mitzvah to be healthy:

Mezuzah? Check. Kosher food? Check. Running shoes? Huh?

Living a healthy spiritual life requires living a healthy, robust physical life as well. Maimonides, the great philosopher and physician, wrote in the Mishne Torah, "Since maintaining a healthy and sound body is among the ways of God – for it is impossible to have any understanding and knowledge of the Creator when one is sick, it is a person's duty to avoid whatever is injurious to the body and to cultivate habits that promote health and vigor" (Laws of Character Traits, 4:1).
He is also a strong proponent of exercise: "As long as one exercises, exerts himself greatly, does not eat to the point of satiation… he will not suffer sickness and he will grow in strength… Whoever is idle and does not exercise…even if he eats the proper foods… he will be full of pain for all his days and his strength will fade away" (ibid, 4:14,15).
So put down the leftover cholent and go for a run. Your body will thank you. And so will your soul.
Charles Krauthammer on moral equivalency

No one can beat God.
Displaying IMG-20140717-WA0000.jpg

Defensible borders for Israel


No words needed for this comment on CNN

The roll your Mercedes video is too big for the blog..Write me if you want to see it.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Amazing Tires coming soon and conflict resolution by Rabbi Sacks and how mothers deliver babies by Bill Cosby

Stand Before The Creator

When you pray or do a mitzvah, you are standing in the presence of the Creator. This awareness is known as "fearing the Almighty."

The next time you pray, feel yourself standing before the Creator and actually speaking to Him. Feel the love of the Creator permeating every cell in your body. Feel the white light make you whole.

Love Yehuda Lave

Here's a  change of pace from the daily news which you may have forgotten, or perhaps not yet seen, but will find amusing.  Enjoy!
I have seen this before and every time I laugh again! 
Now for something serious a prayer for our troops under fire!!!!

No more Fix-a-flat, no more air compressors, no more spare tires, no more auto jacks, no more tools rattling in the trunk. Will it reduce the price of cars? Will it reduce the cost of roadside service? Will some businesses go out of business? 

Coming soon! 

They have been testing these for several years now.

Resilient Tech was developing them for the military.


Amazing new tires...

Michelin Tires... Absolutely SCARY looking...

Look for 'em in August.
These tires are made in South Carolina , USA


Radical new tire design by Michelin.

The next generation of tires.
They had a pair at the Philadelphia car show.

Yes, those are 'spoke' like connections to the inner part of the tire from the outside tread 'wrap!' The next picture shows how odd it looks in motion...

Makes you wonder how the ride feels doesn't it?



These tires are airless and are scheduled to be out on the market very soon.
The bad news for law enforcement is that spike strips will not work on these.
Just think of the impact on existing technology:
A. No more air valves..    B. No more air compressors at gas stations...                 C. No more repair kits..D. No more flats...
These are actual pictures taken at the South Carolina plant of Michelin.


Conflict Resolution
Mattot - 19 July, 2014 / 21 Tammuz, 5774

One of the hardest tasks of a leader – from prime ministers to parents – is conflict resolution. Yet it is also the most vital. Where there is leadership, there is long-term cohesiveness within the group, whatever the short-term problems. Where there is a lack of leadership – where leaders lack authority, grace, generosity of spirit and the ability to respect positions other than their own – then there is divisiveness, rancour, back-biting, resentment, internal politics and a lack of trust. Leaders are people who put the interests of the group above those of any subsection of the group. They care for, and inspire others to care for, the common good.

That is why an episode in this week's parsha is of the highest consequence. It arose like this. The Israelites were on the last stage of their journey to the promised land. They were now situated on the east bank of the Jordan, within sight of their destination. Two of the tribes, Reuben and Gad, who had large herds and flocks of cattle, felt that the land they were currently on was ideal for their purposes. It was good grazing country. So they approached Moses and asked for permission to stay there rather than take up their share in the land of Israel. They said: "If we have found favour in your eyes, let this land be given to your servants as our possession. Do not make us cross the Jordan" (Num. 32: 5).

Moses was instantly alert to the danger. The two tribes were putting their own interests above those of the nation as a whole. They would be seen as abandoning the nation at the very time they were needed most. There was a war – in fact a series of wars – to be fought if the Israelites were to inherit the promised land. As Moses put it to the tribes: "Should your fellow Israelites go to war while you sit here? Why do you discourage the Israelites from crossing over into the land the Lord has given them?" (32: 6-7).

The proposal was potentially disastrous. Moses reminded the men of Reuben and Gad what had happened in the incident of the spies. The spies demoralised the people, ten of them saying that they could not conquer the land. The inhabitants were too strong. The cities were impregnable. The result of that one moment was to condemn an entire generation to die in the wilderness and to delay the eventual conquest by forty years. "And here you are, a brood of sinners, standing in the place of your fathers and making the Lord even more angry with Israel. If you turn away from following him, he will again leave all this people in the wilderness, and you will be the cause of their destruction" (Num. 32: 14-15). Moses was blunt, honest and confrontational.

What then followed is a role model in negotiation and conflict resolution. The Reubenites and Gadites recognised the claims of the people as a whole and the justice of Moses' concerns. They propose a compromise. Let us make provisions for our cattle and our families, they say, and the men will then accompany the other tribes across the Jordan. They will fight alongside them. They will even go ahead of them. they will not return to their cattle and families until all the battles have been fought, the land has been conquered, and the other tribes have received their inheritance. Essentially they invoke what would later become a principle of Jewish law: zeh neheneh ve-zeh lo chaser, meaning, an act is permissible if "one side gains and the other side does not lose."[1] We will gain, say the two tribes, by having land good for our cattle, but the nation as a whole will not lose because we will be in the army, we will be in the front line, and we will stay there until the war has been won.

Moses recognises the fact that they have met his objections. He restates their position to make sure he and they have understood the proposal and they are ready to stand by it. He extracts from them agreement to a tenai kaful, a double condition, both positive and negative: If we do this, these will be the consequences, but if we fail to do this, those will be the consequences. He leaves them no escape from their commitment. The two tribes agree. Conflict has been averted. The Reubenites and Gadites achieve what they want but the interests of the other tribes and of the nation as a whole have been secured. It was a model negotiation.

Quite how justified were Moses' concerns became apparent many years later. The Reubenites and Gadites did indeed fulfil their promise in the days of Joshua. The rest of the tribes conquered and settled Israel while they (together with half the tribe of Manasseh) established their presence in Trans-Jordan. Despite this, within a brief space of time there was almost civil war.

Joshua 22 describes how, returning to their families and settling their land, the Reubenites and Gadites built "an altar to the Lord" on the east side of the Jordan. Seeing this as an act of secession, the rest of the Israelites prepared to do battle against them. Joshua, in a striking act of diplomacy, sent Pinhas, the former zealot, now man of peace, to negotiate. He warned them of the terrible consequences of what they had done by, in effect, creating a religious centre outside the land of Israel. It would split the nation in two.

The Reubenites and Gadites made it clear that this was not their intention at all. To the contrary, they themselves were worried that in the future, the rest of the Israelites would see them living across the Jordan and conclude that they no longer wanted to be part of the nation. That is why they had built the altar, not to offer sacrifices, not as a rival to the nation's sanctuary, but merely as a symbol and a sign to future generations that they too were Israelites. Pinhas and the rest of the delegation were satisfied with this answer, and once again civil war was averted.

The negotiation between Moses and the two tribes in our parsha follows closely the principles arrived at by the Harvard Negotiation Project, set out by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their classic text, Getting to Yes.[2] Essentially they came to the conclusion that a successful negotiation must involve four processes:

  1. Separate the people from the problem. There are all sorts of personal tensions in any negotiation. It is essential that these be cleared away first so that the problem can be addressed objectively.
  2. Focus on interests, not positions. It is easy for any conflict to turn into a zero-sum game: if I win, you lose. If you win, I lose. That is what happens when you focus on positions and the question becomes, "Who wins?" By focusing not on positions but on interests, the question becomes, "Is there a way of achieving what each of us wants?"
  3. Invent options for mutual gain. This is the idea expressed halakhically as zeh neheneh ve-zeh neheneh, "Both sides benefit." This comes about because the two sides usually have different objectives, neither of which excludes the other.
  4. Insist on objective criteria. Make sure that both sides agree in advance to the use of objective, impartial criteria to judge whether what has been agreed has been achieved. Otherwise, despite all apparent agreement the dispute will continue, both sides insisting that the other has not done what was promised.
Moses does all four. First he separates the people from the problem by making it clear to the Reubenites and Gadites that the issue has nothing to do with who they are, and everything to do with the Israelites' experience in the past, specifically the episode of the spies. Regardless of who the ten negative spies were and which tribes they came from, everyone suffered. No one gained. The problem is not about this tribe or that but about the nation as a whole.

Second, he focused on interests not positions. The two tribes had an interest in the fate of the nation as a whole. If they put their personal interests first, God would become angry and the entire people would be punished, the Reubenites and Gadites among them. It is striking how different this negotiation was from that of Korach and his followers. There, the whole argument was about positions, not interests – about who was entitled to be a leader. The result was collective tragedy.

Third, the Reubenites and Gadites then invented an option for mutual gain. If you allow us to make temporary provisions for our cattle and children, they said, we will not only fight in the army. We will be its advance guard. We will benefit, knowing that our request has been granted. The nation will benefit by our willingness to take on the most demanding military task.

Fourth, there was an agreement on objective criteria. The Reubenites and Gadites would not return to the east bank of the Jordan until all the other tribes were safely settled in their territories. And so it happened, as narrated in the book of Joshua:
Then Joshua summoned the Reubenites, the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh and said to them, "You have done all that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded, and you have obeyed me in everything I commanded. For a long time now—to this very day—you have not deserted your fellow Israelites but have carried out the mission the Lord your God gave you. Now that the Lord your God has given them rest as he promised, return to your homes in the land that Moses the servant of the Lord gave you on the other side of the Jordan. (Joshua 22: 1-4)          

This was, in short, a model negotiation, a sign of hope after the many destructive conflicts in the book of Bamidbar, as well as a standing alternative to the many later conflicts in Jewish history that had such appalling outcomes.

Note that Moses succeeds, not because he is weak, not because he is willing to compromise on the integrity of the nation as a whole, not because he uses honeyed words and diplomatic evasions, but because he is honest, principled, and focused on the common good. We all face conflicts in our lives. This is how to resolve them.  

[1] Baba Kama 20b.
[2] Roger Fisher and William Ury, Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, Random House Business, 2011.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

AUSTRALIA Slide show, and if looks could kill, and Jay Leno

Patience Is Attainable

If someone lacks patience, the way he perceives the root cause is a key factor in how he will approach seeking a solution. Looking at a lack of patience as being rooted in factors over which one has no present control is not the most effective and efficient way to find a solution.

Consider this: "I'm not patient because I haven't yet mastered this mental skill." This attitude will motivate you to gain mastery.

Love Yehuda Lave

Jay Leno comedy routine in Israel a couple of months ago, At this point we need all the comedy we can get:


by Rabbi Benjamin Rapaport

Looks Could Kill

How the Hebrew month of Tammuz parallels the faculty of sight.

The Sefer Yetzira, one of the oldest kabbalistic texts1, teaches that the month of Tammuz parallels the faculty of sight.2 The Arizal states further that the 12 tribes parallel the 12 months, with the tribe of Reuben3, whose Hebrew name comes from the root that means sight, corresponding to the month of Tammuz.4 To appreciate the special quality of Tammuz we need to understand the inner meaning of sight and how it impacts our lives.

Moses sent spies to scout out the land of Israel in preparation for the Jewish people to enter the land. The majority of their sojourn occurred during the month of Tammuz. The Sages taught that the counsel of the spies' mouths preceded their seeing.5 They first advised each other that the Jews coming into Israel would cost them their positions of power that they held in the desert and subsequently everything they saw was interpreted to prevent that from happening. Their perverted sight ended up costing the Jewish people of their generation the opportunity to enter Israel, and earned them another 40 years in the desert.

When the spies entered Israel, Providence arranged that the inhabitants of the land should be busy burying their dead so that they would pay no attention to the spies. Instead of appreciating this Divine kindness, the spies concluded, "It is a land that consumes those who live in it." The spies saw huge, beautiful fruit. Instead of commenting on the beauty and plenty of the land, they reported, "Just as its fruits are strange, so too are its inhabitants."

The spies epitomized Milton's famous words, "The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, and a hell of heaven."6 Their selfishness brought them to see everything backwards, making them ready to sacrifice the good of the entire nation for their own personal aims.

We are wherever our thoughts are. How we see and what we choose to focus on shapes the world we live in. It is possible for two people, standing next to each other to look at the same thing and to have completely different experiences. It all depends on what we see.

King Solomon, the wisest of all men understood this well. He wrote, "The one with a good eye, he is blessed." (Proverbs, 22:9). The Maharal of Prague explains that those who desire the wellbeing and benefit of others, and look at them from such a perspective, attach themselves to the source of blessing and are blessed.7

The converse is true as well. Looking at others with a "bad eye," begrudging them any benefit, has a negative spiritual power which can actually be destructive. 8 For this reason, the Talmud prohibits one from standing in the field of another when the crop is fully-grown, lest they damage it with their destructive sight.9

Anyone can be disparaging. It takes no effort. A wise person, on the other hand, understands the value of training oneself to notice and speak of that which is good and praiseworthy.

It is no coincidence that the Holy Tablets were broken in the month of Tammuz. When the Torah was given to the Jewish people, they were one people with one heart.10 This was a necessary precondition for the giving of the Torah that parallels the heart of the Jewish people.11 Once our unity was lost, a casualty of begrudging eyes, so too the Holy Tablets became broken as well.

This Tammuz, let us take to heart not to be like the spies. Let us actively work on seeing the good and praiseworthy in those around us, wishing them every blessing in the world. With the power of such vision we can reconnect to the source of all blessing, returning to the unity and glory we once possessed as a nation.

  1. Attribute to the patriarch Abraham, and arranged in Mishnaic form by Rebbe Akiva
  2. The Sefer Yetzira teaches that each month has a particular human faculty that is its parallel.
  3. When Leah gave birth to her first son, she called him Reuven (whose root form is sight), saying, "God has seen my suffering." (Genesis, 29:32)
  4. In a special ma'amar on the Sefer Yetzira
  5. Medrash Eicha, In Chapters 2,3, and 4, which are arranged alphabetically, the letter Pay (meaning mouth) precedes the letter ayin (meaning eye), which is out of order. This is indicative of the fault of the spies "who spoke before seeing."
  6. John Milton, Paradise Lost
  7. Maharal, Nesiv Ayin Tov
  8. Maharal, ibid
  9. Talmud Bavli, Bava Basra, Ch. 1
  10. Rashi
  11. Zohar

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

50 Cal - Missed by an inch and the King of Shlock Rock, Lenny Solomon and the Fast of Tammuz

Care For Your Health

The bible obligates you to be as careful as possible not to do anything damaging to your health.

When you do something to guard your heath, elevate your behavior from merely a routine procedure, to the awareness of performing a mitzvah.

Love Yehuda Lave

Documentary on my friend the King of Shlock Rock, Lenny Solomon


Read the info below BEFORE you watch the video.  This has got to be one
of the luckiest guys on the planet!

Subject:  50 Cal. - Missed by .........that much!!

This is a very,very lucky sportsman. The guy is shooting a 50

caliber rifle. Watch the dust, when the bullet returns, after

he fires.

The target, a  steel plate was 1000 yards away You can hear

the ping of the hit, next the ricocheting bullet comes back, and

then hits his earmuffs. He thought he was  hit.

The footage is amazing, you can hear the bullet as it tumbles

through the air on its course back toward the shooter. He's

lucky, it hit the dirt first. He is okay, and obviously very

lucky. It could have been  between his eyes.....

The bullet grazed his earmuffs, What a difference  an inch

makes !!!!


The fast of 17 Tammuz is Tuesday July 15

The Fast of the 17th of Tammuz is Tuesday. According to Torah Tidbits, the fast starts at 4:19 AM and ends at 8:16 PM in Jerusalem. In Tel Aviv, the fast starts around 4:19 AM and ends at 8:19 PM. 

The fast of the 17th of the Hebrew month of Tammuz, known as Shivah Asar B'Tammuz, is the start of a three-week mourning period for the destruction of Jerusalem and the two Holy Temples.

The fast commemorates five tragic events that occurred on this date:

  1. Moses broke the tablets when he saw the Jewish people worshiping the Golden Calf.
  2. During the Babylonian siege of Jerusalem, the Jews were forced to cease offering the daily sacrifices due to the lack of sheep.
  3. Apostomos burned the holy Torah.
  4. An idol was placed in the Holy Temple.
  5. The walls of Jerusalem were breached by the Romans, in 69 CE, after a lengthy siege. (Three weeks later, after the Jews put up a valiant struggle, the Romans destroyed the second Holy Temple on the 9th of Av.)
    The Jerusalem Talmud maintains that this is also the date when the Babylonians breached the walls of Jerusalem on their way to destroying the first Temple.

  6. The period of the Three Weeks begins with the fast of 17th of Tammuz
  7. from dawn of Tuesday, July 15, 2014 until nightfall.
    Tisha B'Av and the 3 Weeks

    The 17th of Tammuz is a fast day commemorating the fall of Jerusalem, prior to the destruction of the Holy Temple. This also marks the beginning of a 3-week national period of mourning, leading up to Tisha B'Av.

    The 17th of Tammuz is the first of four fast days mentioned in the prophets. The purpose of a fast day is to awaken our sense of loss over the destroyed Temple – and the subsequent Jewish journey into exile.

    Agonizing over these events is meant to help us conquer those spiritual deficiencies which brought about these tragic events. Through the process of "Teshuva" – self-introspection and a commitment to improve – we have the power to transform tragedy into joy. In fact, the Talmud says that after the future redemption of Israel and the rebuilding of the Temple, these fast days will be re-dedicated as days of rejoicing and festivity. For as the prophet Zechariah says: the 17th of Tammuz will become a day of "joy to the House of Judah, and gladness and cheerful feasts."

    What Happened on the 17th of Tammuz?

    Five great catastrophes occurred in Jewish history on the 17th of Tammuz (see above):

(Originally, the fast was observed on the Ninth of Tammuz since that was the day Jerusalem fell prior to the destruction of the First Temple in 586 BCE. However, after Jerusalem fell on the 17th of Tammuz – prior to the destruction of the Second Temple – the Sages decided upon a combined observance for both tragedies, the 17th of Tammuz.)

How Do We Observe the 17th of Tammuz?

  1. No eating or drinking is permitted from the break of dawn, until dusk.
  2. Pregnant and nursing women – and others whose health would be adversely affected – are exempted from the fast.
  3. Should the day coincide with Shabbat, the fast is delayed until Sunday.
  4. Bathing, anointing, and wearing leather shoes are all permissible.
  5. The "Aneinu" prayer is inserted into the Amidah of Shacharis and Mincha by the chazan. Individuals insert it in Mincha only.
  6. Slichos and "Avinu Malkeinu" are recited.
  7. Exodus 32:11, in which the "13 Attributes of Mercy" are mentioned, is read at both the morning and afternoon services.
  8. Isaiah 55:6 – 56:8, which discusses the renewal of the Temple service, is read as the Haftorah at the Mincha service.

with thanks to Rabbi Moshe Lazerus.