Rabbi Yaakov Yitzchak, the Chozeh of Lublin, once praised someone in the presence of other people, and the person's face turned red. The rabbi told him, "You have not yet reached the proper level. Work on yourself to react to praise and insults in the same manner. Try to rise above caring whether someone praises or insults you. You are still too self-conscious about being praised."Love Yehuda Lave
based on Twerski on Chumash by Rabbi Abraham J. Twerski, M.D.
The Torah states, "And he (Avraham) trusted in God, and God reckoned it to him as righteousness" (Gen. 15:6). Why was Avraham's trust in God considered to be righteousness? If God spoke to any of us, would we not have an unshakable faith? We do not have faith that there is a moon or that two plus two equals four. That which we see or understand does not require an act of faith.
The answer was given by Rabbi Mordechai of Lechovitz, who cited the Talmud that on a person's Judgment Day he will be asked, "Did you transact in faith?" (Talmud Bavli, Shabbos 31a). This is usually understood as asking whether one transacted business honestly.
Rabbi Mordechai said that is has an additional meaning. When a person transacts in business, he negotiates and tries in every way to maximize his profit. He does not settle for a meager gain. This is what one will be asked on Judgment Day: "Did you transact in faith? i.e., did you do everything possible to maximize your faith, or did you just accept whatever you were given?
Abraham transacted in faith. He, of course, knew there was a God. He did not have to have faith in His existence. However, he tried to strengthen his faith by coming to an ever greater knowledge of God, and believing even that which they could not see about God.
Some people take their faith in God for granted. Of course they believe that there is a God. However, they may not have gone beyond that to try to know more and more about God. We have great works available to us to increase our knowledge and therefore our faith and understanding of God. If we fail to do so, we will have no answer on Judgment Day when we are asked, "Did you seek to improve the quality of your faith? Did you transact in faith?"
A man was sick and tiredof going to work every daywhile his wife stayed home.He wanted her to see what he went
through so he prayed:
I go to work every day and put
in 8 hours while my wife
merely stays at home.
I want her to know what
I go through.
So, please allow her body to
switch with mine for a day.'
God, in his infinite wisdom,
granted the man's wish.
The next morning, sure enough,
the man awoke as a woman...
He arose, cooked breakfast
for his mate,
Awakened the kids,Set out their school clothes,
Fed them breakfast,
Packed their lunches,
Drove them to school,
Came home and picked
up the dry cleaning,
Took it to the cleaners!
And stopped at the bank
to make a deposit.Went grocery shopping,
Then drove home to put
away the groceries.
Paid the bills and balancedthe check book.
He cleaned the cat's litter box
and bathed the dog.
Then, it was already 1 P.M
And he hurried to make the beds,
Do the laundry, vacuum,
Dust, And sweep and mop
the kitchen floor.
Ran to the school to pick up
the kids and got into an argument
with them on the way home.
Set out milk and cookies and
got the kids organized to do
Then, set up the ironing board
and watched TV while he
did the ironing.
At 4:30 he began peeling
potatoes and washing
vegetables for salad,
breaded the pork chops
fresh beans for supper.After supper,
He cleaned the kitchen,
Ran the dishwasher,
Bathed the kids, And put
them to bed.
At 9 P.M. he was exhausted
and, though his daily chores
weren't finished, he went to
bed where he was expected to
make love, which he managed
to get through without complaint.The next morning, he awoke
and immediately knelt by the
bed and said:Lord, I don't know what
I was thinking.
I was so wrong to envy my
wife's being able to stay
home all day. l
Please! Oh, Please!Let us trade back.. Amen!'
The Lord, in his infinite wisdom, replied:'My son, I feel you have
learned your lesson and
I will be happy to change
things back to the way
You'll just have to wait
nine months, though.
You got pregnant last night.'This has been voted
E-mail of the Year!
The Stabbings in Israel
Calling evil by its rightful name.by Rabbi Benjamin Blech
My pain at the ongoing news of stabbings and murders of innocents in Israel reached an unbearable level when I learned that a member of our family, Rabbi Yeshayahu Krishevsky, 60, was mown down and brutally butchered with a meat cleaver in Geula, Jerusalem.
He was but one of many who were heartlessly massacred or critically wounded. It is the new reality of Israel – civilians living in fear of their lives for the sole crime of being Jewish. To add yet another element to the tragedy, if fortunate enough to slay the attackers the intended victims are then condemned by the media for the sin of defending themselves with "inappropriate force."
It seems the one thing the world will never permit the Jews, perhaps as a manifestation of unacknowledged guilt in the aftermath of the Holocaust, is to allow them once again to be identified as victims. That is why the most obscene acts of barbarity we are witnessing today perpetrated against Israelis must be explained. Explained in a way that is able to rationalize the murder of parents in the presence of their children, leaving them orphans. Explained so that axing Jews to death while wrapped in their prayer shawls praying to a universal God of love will be understood. Explained so that those who teach their young children to murder are really the victims and those who carry out killings are courageous heroes fulfilling the ideals of a justifiable cause.
Here lies the most terrible sin of all in these varied attempts to describe the events tearing apart the fabric of enlightened society in the very land of the Bible which long ago marked the cradle of civilization. To explain is to begin to excuse – to exculpate. To displace guilt from evil act to seemingly rational motive. To offer reason for the unreasonable – a step down the path to Spinoza's famous maxim that "To understand all is to forgive all."
We need to understand, says our Secretary of State, more in sympathy with the offenders than the victims. With supposed objectivity, he announces that "We refuse to point fingers at the guilty party." There is a mutual cycle of violence, the "wise" pundits tell us. It is the occupation, and the settlers, and the apartheid system, and the lack of opportunities for the Arabs, and the cruelty and insensitivity of the Israelis, and so many other justifications for "moderate" Palestinian President Abbas to proclaim, "We bless every drop of blood spilled for Jerusalem, which is clean and pure blood, blood spilled for Allah" and to openly incite acts of terrorism and violence.
The Muslim world repeatedly holds up murderers of innocent civilians as heroes, as the West refuse to brand evil as evil.
Giving the lie to these rationalizations are the background stories which failed to gain prominent mention. Isra Abed, 30, an Israeli-Arab divorcee with a young child living with her parents in Nazareth, took a large knife, traveled to the central bus station in the northern town of Afula, and tried to stab Jews. Not too long ago, Abed graduated from the Technion, one of the world's finest institutions of higher learning, which she attended on scholarship. With her prestigious degree she was able to join the Israeli workforce, where a Technion grad's average monthly salary is much higher than the average wage in the local economy. What motivated her? Was she too a victim of apartheid? Was it the despair of an occupied people granted no privileges who had no opportunity for education to better their lot?
Have you seen the picture of Hassan Manasra, the young Arab teenager who stabbed and critically wounded an Israeli boy who was riding his bicycle in Pisgat Zeev? Hassan , who President Abbas claimed was cruelly executed for no reason in an incendiary speech to his people, is resting comfortably in a bed in Hadassah hospital. He is alive and well, provided with free food as well as the best medical care – as are all terrorists who managed to survive their murderous killing sprees.
The Muslim world repeatedly holds up murderers of innocent civilians as heroes, names streets and parks after them, and portrays them as revered role models for their children. And we in the West refuse to brand evil as evil.
Has our infatuation with moral relativism brought us so low that we can no longer recognize pure evil and call it by its rightful name? When innocents are routinely murdered and I grieve for my family's loss, it's time for the supposedly civilized world to identify it as crime and demand its unequivocal end. There are moments when it is much more important to denounce than to seek supposed reasons to justify barbarism.
Latest update: October 20th, 2015
The spiritual leader of the Beit Yehudah community in Jerusalem, Rabbi and philosopher Uri Sherki (Cherki), a member of the religious Zionist Machon Meir organization, rejects the calls to bolster the study of Torah during this time of terrorist attacks in Israel. Instead he insists that at this time we must become stronger at hand to hand combat and self-defense, Srugim reported Monday.
During a class Rabbi Sherki was teaching about recent events, he said, "There are attacks, and then they say, gentlemen, we must strengthen our study of Torah, our charity, our prayer. Utter nonsense! (the Hebrew term he used was Shtuyot B'mitz agvaniyot — nonsense in tomato sauce). How is this related to the attacks? If there are attacks, we should be strengthened in Krav Maga, in self-defense and in imposing Israeli sovereignty [in Judea and Samaria]."
Rabbi's Sherki's son, Yochai Shalom Sherki was murdered by Arab terrorists on April 15th this year, when an Arab terrorist drove into him and Shira Klein as they waited at a Jerusalem bus stop.
Known for his habitual thinking outside the box, Rabbi Sherki added that "there is dejection. What is the source of this dejection? That we don't pore over the overall significance of the Torah. We're seeing a lot of people who learn Torah, and they have no satisfaction! Torah is not reviving them. Why? Because [their Torah] is not whole. It's not meeting all needs of the soul. It is limited to highly technical and detailed pilpul-Talmudic rhetoric, and does not deal with the overall scope, the meaning of that Torah."
"The spiritual thing that's missing here is courage. There is no courage, so we get this agony. Courage is something spiritual. And when you deal with small-minded Torah and suffering comes, you are slack-handed and can't solves the problem."
"Instead of organizing a public prayer, demonstrate!" Rabbi Shaerki continued to surprise his students. "It's more serious, it's a real answer. It is true Tshuva-repent. Don't hide behind slack-handed religious activity, which has nothing to do with what's happening."
Rabbi Sherki clarified that "it is obvious that we must always strengthen the study of Torah and fear of Heaven, but it's beside the point."
Rabbi Sherki went on to say that "someone told me there is a great virtue: when there are attacks, recite the sacred incense passage [in the prayer book]. Utter silliness! The incense passage was recited at the time of a pandemic, that's brought by Rabbi Isaac Luria (the ARI zl). During Rabbi Luria's time they did not know how to handle an epidemic, there was no antibiotics, so at least they recited the incense passage. But when it's something that's in your power to do, what's the point in your reciting the incense passage? Bring on the medicine."Next Saturday night is the Yarseit or Rabbi Meir Kahane who has been proved right by time. On his Yarseit we should all ask for his forgiveness and ask G-d to send us the Messiah who can get us out of this mess.
Rabbi Meir Kahane HY"D on Jewish victims of Arab terror
In an explosive report we learn that ever since 2012, the United States has been spying on Israel in order to prevent the Jewish State from attacking suspected Iranian nuclear sites, according to Friday's Wall Street Journal.
The White House had sent an additional aircraft carrier to the region after learning that Israeli aircraft had flown into Iranian airspace in what U.S. officials feared was a test run for an attack on Iran's Fordow plant. The carriers had attack aircraft on board prepared to respond to any Israeli attack on Iran.
If that wasn't enough to strain the conceit that the U.S. is Israel's strongest supporter, U.S. officials also revealed to the Journal that Israel was responsible for the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists.
Several U.S. officials also claimed that Israel wanted to strike Iran in 2012, and that the United States pressured Israeli officials into retreating.
The U.S. attempted to keep its nuclear power negotiations with Iran concealed from Israel because of disagreements over the extent to which Iran should be permitted to pursue a nuclear program. Israel took the position that because Iran has an abundance of energy resources, it had no peaceful purposes for its nuclear program.