Every person is obligated to be aware that he has great worth. This does not refer to the illusory self-worth of arrogantly feeling better than others, but a true self-worth, enormous in size and scope. The Talmud says: "Every individual is obligated to say: 'The world was created for me.'" Rashi explains that we must think "I have the importance of an entire world."
Every human is a one-time phenomenon, with a unique blend of character traits and personality. Each is born in a specific time of history and in a specific environment. Never before and never again.
This uniqueness gives you great importance. Only you can accomplish your unique life tasks.
Tomorrow we celebrate the uniqueness of the thousands of Jews that gave up their lives to make Yom Yerushalim possible. It is an inheritance that we must not take lightly.
Love Yehuda Lave
Jerusalem Day - Main Events
Many celebrations and event in Jerusalem for the 50th year of the unification of Jerusalem. The Main Events are at the President Residence, Safra Square and by the Walls of the Old City
Welcoming the Mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barkat and his wife, Mrs. Barkat
A live exhibit – Characters from the history of Jerusalem and present.
Training and observation stations
Jerusalem activity centers
The Andalusian Orchestra Jerusalem with the singers Emil Zrihan, Orit Atar and Idan Amadi.
The mayor and his wife will greet the guests between 15: 30-17: 30 free entrance
Special Yom Yerushalayim and Shavuot shiurim including full Shavuot schedule at the OU Israel Center, 22 Keren HaYesod Street, Yerushalayim:
Wednesday May 17 @ 8pm-Searching for Jerusalem with Candles: Where is Jerusalem in the Torah?-with Rabbi Shai Finkelstein, Rav of Kehilat Nitzanim, Baka , 30 NIS
Wednesday May 25@ 8pm- Im Eshkachecich Yerushalayim-–with HaRav Herschel Schachter, Rosh Kollel RIETS/Yeshiva University and Senior Halachic Consultant to OU Kashruth, 30 NIS
Sunday May 28@ 8pm- JCHAT Presents a special Pre- Shavuot class- Kabbalat HaTorah:Rising Up to Our Full Potential with Rabbi Sam Shor- 30 NIS, Light dairy dinner will be served-RSVP's encouraged to 02-560-9110
Shavuot @ the OU Israel Center Tuesday, May 30th • Erev Yom Tov Candle lighting – 7:04pm
(Jerusalem) 7:15pm – MINCHA followed by Shiur by Rabbi Ephraim Sprecher
8:15pm – Yom Tov Maariv
Festive (meat) meal – advanced reservations only 130/140å per person – Call Ita Rochel 560-9125 to reserve
11:00pm Rabbi Yaakov Moshe Poupko- Matan Torah in Major and Minor
12:00am Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb- Torah Min Hashayim, the 8th Ani Maamin. What exactly do we believe when we believe in Torah min hashamayim?
1:00am Rabbi Neil Winkler- Shavuot: It's all in the Timing
2:00am Rabbi Chanoch Yeres- Angels arguing with HaShem and man
3:00am Rabbi Sam Shor -How Sweet It Is:Cheesecake, Eretz Yisrael and Birkat HaTorah
Refreshments throughout the night
Walk to Kotel (4:00am) or mini-shiur followed by Vatikin Davening at the OU Israel Center – Megilat Ruth (4:45am)
Shiur on Yom Tov day (Wednesday, 5:00pm) by Rabbi Ephraim Sprecher
Reciting a Blessing on Seeing President Trump
Yeshivat Ateret YerushalayimFrom the teachings of the Rosh YeshivaHa-Rav Shlomo Aviner Shlit"a
Question: If someone sees President Trump should he recite the blessing of "Baruch…She-Natan Michvodo Le-Vasar Ve-Dam - Blessed are You…who has given of His glory to flesh and blood"? (In the Gemara in Berachot 58a, our Rabbis teach that one who sees a non-Jewish king recites the blessing. It is recorded in the Rambam, Hilchot Berachot 10:11 and Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chaim 224:8. The Chatam Sofer, Orach Chaim #159, rules that even if one sees the king outside of his area of "rule," one must still recite the appropriate blessing). Answer: No, the President of the United States is not a king. Halachic authorities mention four criteria in order to be considered a king for this purpose:1. One must be the absolute ruler of his kingdom or country (Orchot Chaim in name of Sefer Ha-Eshkol, Hilchot Berachot #49, Shut Ha-Radvaz vol. 1 #296). The President of the United States does not have absolute authority. He must bend to the will of the Congress whether he likes it or not. 2. The king must have the ability to administer capital punishment (Shut Chatam Sofer ibid.). The President does not possess this power. While he does have the power to grant life by issuing a pardon, he does not possess the power of death (Shut Be'er Moshe of Rav Moshe Stern vol. 2, # 9). If he allows Jonathan Pollard to make Aliyah, we can discuss this further. 3. The king must have royal clothing. The President of the United States wears a suit like everyone else (Shut Yehaveh Da'at, vol. 2, #28 and Shut Teshuvot Ve-Hanhagot vol. 2, #139). 4. The king must have an entourage (see Shut Teshuvot Ve-Hanhagot ibid. Rav Sternbuch writes there that he heard that Ha-Gaon Ha-Rav Yosef Chaim Zonnenfeld, the great Rav of Yerushalayim before the establishment of the State, once had a private meeting in a tent with the King of Jordan and he recited this blessing even though he was without his entourage). While the President is traveling with 400 people, most of them are for his protection.People get very scared about what the President says, but there is no need. What he says does not mean that this is the way it is. This is for two reasons: 1. The United States does not help us simply to be kind, but because they profit from it. They need us militarily. We handle this part of the world. They need us technologically. They make planes in the US, and then bring them here and the "Chevra" makes them into super-planes. The biggest plane manufacturer has a plant here. It is not to be kind, but to profit. They need us no less than we need them. 2. The President must bend to the will of Congress. The Congress was pro-Israel even before the establishment of the State. They are sometimes even more pro-Israel than we are because he learned in the Exile to be weak and frightened. We need to add strength and courage and then the non-Jews will relate to us in a proper manner. The Monroe Doctrine was stated by President James Monroe that Europe would no longer interfere with the affairs of the US: America for Americans. Our Rabbi, Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah, applied this doctrine to us: We will not interfere with what America is doing and America should not interfere with what we are doing here.The President of the most powerful country, with the biggest army, the largest economy, the super-power of the world is visiting the tiny State of Israel, and some people say that this is not "Atchalta De-Geulah – the beginning of the Redemption." Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach in Shut Minchat Shlomo (the last responsum in vol. 1) writes that one is obligated to recite four blessings when the Messiah arrives: 1. "Baruch…Chacham Ha-Razim – Blessed are You…Knowers of secrets" which is recited when seeing 600,000 Jews together and certainly at least this many Jews will go out to greet the Messiah. 2. "Baruch…She-Chalak Mechomato Lirei'av - Blessed are You…who has appointed of His knowledge to those who fear him" which is recited when seeing an outstanding Torah scholar and the Messiah will certainly fit this criteria. 3. "Baruch…She-Chalak Michvodo Lirei'av- Blessed are You…who has appointed of His glory to those who fear him" which is recited when seeing a Jewish king. 4. "Shechechiyanu" – Blessing Hashem for having arrived at this moment. We still are waiting for this time to arrive, but we are continuing to advance. After all, the President of the United States is visiting the State of Israel. Instead of reciting a blessing over the President, I recommend reciting two prayers for the Nation of Israel which we recite every day before the Shema with extra proper intention: "Blessed are You, Hashem, who chooses His Nation Israel with Love" and "Blessed are You, Hashem, who love His Nation Israel."Q: Should we try to see the President since he is the most honored person in the world?A: You do not need to run to greet him. The Gemara in Berachot (9b) says that a person should strive to see non-Jewish kings, so that he will be able to perceive the difference between the non-Jewish kings and the Messiah. President Trump, however, is not a king. It is possible to have a king who is not honored and an honored person who is not a king. Our Sages established this decree for a king, and provided the definition of a king. Don't worry. We will be able to tell the difference between him and the Messiah!
Secretary Tillerson's political correctness
Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, "Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative" "Israel Hayom," May 19, 2017, http://bit.ly/2q3fzIr While the election of President Trump represented a setback to political-correctness, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's interview on May 14, 2017 NBC's Meet the Press reflected the State Department's political correctness on US-Israel and US-Arab relations, the Palestinian issue and the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem.
The interview may have sent a message of US procrastination on the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem, the ancient core of Judaism and Jewish history, which inspired the early US Pilgrims and Founding Fathers. Procrastination would be interpreted by Arabs as US retreat in the face of Arab pressure and threats, eroding the US posture of deterrence, triggering further pressure and emboldening anti-US Islamic terrorism.
Secretary Tillerson embraced the State Department's zero-sum-game philosophy. He assumes that enhanced US-Israel relations undermine US-Arab relations. However, since 1948, and especially in recent years, US-Israel geo-strategic cooperation has surged dramatically, simultaneously with expanded US-Arab security cooperation, and unprecedented counter-terrorism cooperation between Israel and Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, Jordan and Egypt, despite the lack of progress on the Palestinian front.
Contrary to conventional Western wisdom, the pro-US Arab regimes distinguish between challenges which are primary (e.g., the Iranian threat) and secondary/tertiary (e.g., the Palestinian issue). Therefore, when the machetes of Iran's Ayatollahs and other Islamic terrorists are at their throats, the pro-US Arab regimes recognize that Israel is the only reliable "life insurance agent" in the Middle East, regardless of the Palestinian issue.
Secretary Tillerson insinuated that the relocation of the US Embassy to western Jerusalem - which is within the boundaries of pre-1967 Israel – could undermine the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. Thus, he provided tailwind to the 69-year-old Department of State's view – which contradicts the position of the American people and their representatives in the House and Senate - that there is no legitimacy to Israel's sovereignty over any part of Jerusalem. It radicalizes the Arabs, forcing them to outflank the US from the maximalist side, deluding themselves that they have nothing to lose and time is, supposedly, on their side.
Tillerson also seems to subscribe to Foggy Bottom's view that the Palestinian issue is a core cause of the Arab-Israeli conflict and Middle East turbulence, and a top priority for Arab policy-makers. Therefore, he assumes that the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem could fuel anti-US terrorism and undermine US cooperation with pro-US Arab countries, such as Saudi Arabia, against the mutual threats of the Ayatollahs of Iran and additional sources of Islamic terrorism.
However, anti-US Islamic terrorism has been totally divorced from the Palestinian issue and Israel, as demonstrated by the blowing up of the US Embassy and Marines barracks in Lebanon in 1983 (300 US Marines murdered), at a time when the US brutalized Israel over its hot pursuit of the PLO. In fact, the 1998 suicide car-bombing of the US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania (300 persons murdered), and the October 2000 suicide attack on the USS Cole in Aden, Yemen (17 US Marines murdered), occurred while President Clinton refrained from relocating the US Embassy to Jerusalem, as prescribed by 1995 legislation, and while Israeli Prime Minister Barak offered the Palestinians a full Israeli withdrawal, including Jerusalem's Temple Mount.
Moreover, since 1948, contrary to the Department of State's conventional wisdom, Middle East reality has documented top-heavy pro-Palestinian Arab talk, but anti-Palestinian, or indifferent, Arab walk.
For example, no Arab-Israeli war was ever ignited by the Palestinian issue. It was highlighted by the conclusion of the 1948-49 war, when Egypt, Jordan, Iraq and Syria occupied Gaza, Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) and Al-Hama, but never contemplated transferring these areas to the Palestinians, strictly constraining Palestinian activities.
In addition, none of the recent Arab tectonic eruptions from Tunisia, in Northeastern Africa, through Egypt, Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Bahrain in the Persian Gulf are related, directly or indirectly, to the Palestinian issue or Israel.
The assumption that the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem would undermine US-Saudi cooperation in the face of the Ayatollahs and additional sources of Islamic terrorism, ignores the Saudi – and all other Arab regimes - view of the Palestinians.
They have always considered the Palestinians a role model of intra-Arab treachery and subversion. Hence, the severe constraints of Palestinian maneuverability in their countries, and the meager financial assistance to the Palestinians (compared with the US foreign aid to the Palestinian Authority), and the absence of military support. For instance, no Arab regime ever got involved in any of the Palestinian-Israeli wars in Lebanon, Judea and Samaria and Gaza.
In contrast to the recent Arab talk and State Department political correctness, the Arab countries have never considered Jerusalem to be their top holy city – status reserved for Mecca and Medina - capital or cultural center. Jerusalem was largely neglected during Islamic rule, serving – at most – as a political platform in their conflicts with "the infidel."
Reality-based political incorrectness motivated Israel and Egypt, in 1977, in defiance of US President Carter, to negotiate and conclude a bilateral peace accord with no Palestinian, regional or international involvement. It also motivated Israel and Jordan, in 1994, to conclude another bilateral peace accord. The US played a critical deal-closing role in both cases, but only after the two parties reached the framework of bilateral agreement.
Moreover, a litany of peace initiatives, launched by the US, failed when attempting to subordinate reality to the US own benevolent political correctness, which stipulated a multilateral peace process, focusing on the Palestinian issue.
Will President Trump and Secretary Tillerson embrace Middle East reality, and reject political correctness, by avoiding procrastination on the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem, thus sparing the US further erosion of its posture of deterrence in the Middle East and beyond?