Do rabbis create an upside-down world in closing synagogues and The jelly balls that destroyed the neighborhood and tulips on King David Street and Dennis Prager on Coronavirus: Panic or Pandemic? and What happened to the Israeli left? by Caroline Glick and finally BREAKING: Due to the massive spreading of the coronavirus - join us for a universal prayer from the Temple Mount for the well-being of humanity, led by President of the Shalom Jerusalem Foundation Rabbi Yehudah Glick.
Yehuda Lave is an author, journalist, psychologist, rabbi, spiritual teacher, and coach, with degrees in business, psychology and Jewish Law. He works with people from all walks of life and helps them in their search for greater happiness, meaning, business advice on saving money, and spiritual engagement. Now also a Blogger on the Times of Israel. Look for my column
Love Yehuda Lave
A Cool Customer
Rabinowitz is coming back to Israel. The customs officer asks him what he has in his heavy suitcase and Rabinowitz responds: "Bird-feed for my parrot."
The officer is still suspicious and opens it. It's all coffee! "Didn't you say it was bird-feed for your parrot?" asks the officer.
Rabinowitz responds: "If she doesn't eat it, that's her problem."
Do rabbis create an upside-down world in closing synagogues
In Israel, a favorite in many Israeli coffeehouses, café hafuch (upside down in Hebrew הפןך) is the latte's milkier cousin.
What is café hafuch? It's often compared with a latte, but it's creamier. It's also made in reverse. In a latte, the milk goes on top of the espresso. A café hafuch uses steamed milk on the bottom, and then a shot of espresso is carefully poured on top of the steamed milk. Finally, it's topped with milk froth as well as nutmeg or cocoa powder. It can be sweetened or unsweetened, depending on personal taste.
Café hafuch's popularity may be due to Israelis' love of pastries. "Really, nothing is better with pastries than a delicious coffee."
Now we have a situation in Israel and many parts of the rest of the Jewish world, where the world is upside down. We are facing a modern Pandemic and normally the reaction of the great Rabbis is do repentance (chuva in Hebrew תשובה). This means going to synagogue with minions and praying to G-d for forgiveness.
Instead, because over night in Israel, the government recommended maximum group size went from 100 people to 10 people, many synagogues closed up and canceled their prayer services.
Most reformed and conservative Jews seldom go to synagogue and if they do it is usually only on the Sabbath or high holidays. Orthodox Jews pray three daily prayer services and hence go to their usual places three times a day any many have been doing it all their lives. Can you imagine doing this for 80 years and then changing your routine. During wars and attacks and poverty and deaths the only thing consistent was our routine of going to the synagogue.
Now the government says don't go, and like sheep no one shows up.
Now nearly everyone agrees that we should follow government protocol and keep the big "Virus" from spreading, but I have seen very little creative effort to preserving the minion. The simple solution every one offers is to turn on the computer or phone and do everything virtually, but this has always been shown previously as limited in its scope. This year we were told that we could hear the Magilla by computer, but in previous years everyone agreed this was not the hallacha. Suddenly it is?
Further, we know from many sources that G-d loves us much better when we pray with a minion, all of sudden that has changed?
I think we must be much more creative. Unless it is raining outside (still a problem here in Israel for a few more weeks), meet at the synagogue and then move the minion outside where there is no problem. Don't encourage people to break their life long habits. Believe me, it is very easy to break a good habit like going to a minion every day, but hard to put it back into place.
Let's have move creative solutions and more chuva, not less.
Love Yehuda Lave
Here is one thing that hasn't changed:
A Costly Alarm System
Opening his front door, the Rabbi found himself face to face with the local priest. "Rabbi, may I have a few words with you?" asked the priest.
"Of course, Father," replied the Rabbi somewhat nervously.
"Rabbi," began the priest, "It must be evident to you that in this town we are plagued by thieves. Scarcely a day passes without one of my flock coming to me bemoaning the fact that his house has been broken into. On the other hand, I have noticed that thieves do not bother you Jews nearly as much."
"Father, you are correct."
"Yes, but why is that?" inquired the priest.
"Look at this little box here on the side of my doorpost," said the Rabbi. "It's called a mezuzah. We Jews believe that when we put a mezuzah on the entrances to our houses, the Holy One, may His Name be blessed, protects both us and our property."
"In that case", replied the priest, "I must have one!"
Not wishing to be the cause of an incipient pogrom, the Rabbi reluctantly handed over a mezuzah to the priest.
Some two weeks later the Rabbi was awakened by the sound of someone pounding violently on his door. Dressing himself hastily, he made his way down the stairs.
"Who's there?" the Rabbi asked tremulously.
"Open the door! Open the door!" screamed a voice on the other side.
Leaving the door on the latch, the Rabbi cracked the door wide enough to see the priest standing in front of him, his eyes wild with great distraught.
"What happened?" asked the terrified Rabbi. "Were you not protected from robbers?"
"I was! But these people were worse than robbers!" screamed the priest.
"Who?" asked the rabbi.
Ideas, that help explain how the world works
Boomerang Effect: Trying to persuade someone to do one thing can make them more likely to do the opposite, because the act of persuasion can feel like someone stealing your freedom and doing the opposite makes you feel like you're taking your freedom back.
Ep. 125 — Coronavirus: Panic or Pandemic?
You can't expect to live a full life without assuming some risk. There's a spectrum between precaution and panic, and if isn't well-calibrated you can miss out on the best things life has to offer.
BREAKING: Due to the massive spreading of the coronavirus - join us for a universal prayer from the Temple Mount for the well-being of humanity, led by President of the Shalom Jerusalem Foundation Rabbi Yehudah Glick.
Participate in this prayer by joining our live feed from the Temple Mount tomorrow, Thursday, March 19, at 1 PM Israel time (GMT+2) on our Facebook page: Shalom Jerusalem Yehudah Glick.
Please share this link and opportunity with all your friends and family so we can make up a massive prayer group, praying simultaneously around the world while broadcasting from the Temple Mount.
"Hear the supplication of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling place, and when you hear, forgive...When famine or plague comes to the land...whatever disaster or disease may come and when a prayer or plea is made by anyone among your people Israel - being aware of the afflictions of their own hearts, and spreading out their hands toward this temple - then hear from heaven, your dwelling place. Forgive and act; deal with everyone according to all they do, since you know their hearts (for you alone know every human heart)" (I Kings 8)
View in the clips below Rabbi Yehudah Glick speaking from Jerusalem about the spiritual aspects of the coronavirus outbreak, how to understand this challenge from a biblical endtime perspective, how God is using this to remind us of an important aspect of our lives, and how we can survive the challenges of isolation imposed on us by the virus.
We continue our worldwide efforts to raise the awareness of the centrality of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount and advocating for free access and total freedom of religion for all on this holiest site. Our success in this vital mission is due to God's providence and the continuous support of our dear friends. Would you join us in our efforts by giving a monthly offering?
May God bless you from Jerusalem!
Shalom Jerusalem Foundation
What happened to the Israeli left? by Caroline Glick
We don't know how the political Gordian knot will be cut, but it is clear that Blue and White's eagerness to form a coalition dependent on anti-Zionist Arab MKs does not inspire confidence in its leaders
Knesset member Ofer Shelah of Israel's Blue and White Party is the architect of his party's current efforts to form a government with the support of the Joint Arab List. If Shelah succeeds, he will have formed a radical, post-Zionist minority government entirely dependent on 15 Arab lawmakers, who reject Israel's right to exist, just to stay afloat.
As Shelah blazed forward in his efforts, political philosopher Yoram Hazony recalled an earlier bid by Shelah to force the public to accept post-Zionist positions hostile to the very right of the Jewish people to self-determination.
In February 2001, the Yitzhak Rabin Center convened a meeting of Israel's elites from across the political spectrum to compose a document that would set out the Jewish goals of the State of Israel. The meetings led to the drafting of the Kinneret Charter, which in later years served as the basis for the 2018 Basic Law: Israel, the Nation-State of the Jewish People.
The Rabin Center was spurred to action by three dramatic events. First, in July 2000, PLO chief Yasser Arafat rejected Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak's offer of statehood and peace at the Camp David summit, effectively ending the Oslo peace process. In September, Arafat ordered his forces to initiate a campaign of terror against Israel the likes of which hadn't been seen since the 1930s. And in October 2000, the Arab Israeli community joined the Palestinian onslaught. In two weeks of violent riots, Arab Israelis throughout the country assaulted their Jewish neighbors and countrymen and called for the destruction of the state.
The third event—the Arab Israeli riots—shook Israeli society to its core because it called into question the very survival of the state as a coherent political unit.
As a well-known journalist, Shelah was invited to participate in the inaugural meeting. Hazony recalled that the politician now pushing the hardest to form a government reliant on the Joint List which rejects the legitimacy of the Jewish state, stood up and announced that he refused to participate in a Jewish-only forum and demanded that Arab Israelis be invited to participate.
Prof. Ruth Gavison, perhaps the most influential intellectual on the left at the time, responded that Jews have a right to convene to discuss their future just as Arabs do. Most of the participants, including some on the far left, like former Education Minister Yuli Tamir of Peace Now, agreed with Gavison.
With his demand rejected, Shelah walked out. A handful of participants joined him.
This week, with the liberal mass media providing wall-to-wall support for Blue and White's efforts to form a post-Zionist government dependent on the anti-Zionist Joint List, it appears that over the past 19 years, Shelah's post-Zionism has moved from the margins to the mainstream. The media's energetic attempts to defend Blue and White's efforts show that post-Zionism is the predominant position of the Israeli left.
How did this happen?
Dozens of leading lights of Israeli society signed the Kinneret Charter in July 2001. The next month, the ideals they embraced were bludgeoned by the international community. In late August 2001, the United Nations convened its anti-racism conference in Durban, South Africa. At Durban, U.N. member states and the most prominent non-governmental organizations in the world came together to libel and criminalize the Jewish state and people with unprecedented brutality.
Just ten years before, in 1991, the United States used its post-Cold War clout at the United Nations to repeal U.N. General Assembly Resolution 3379 from 1975. Resolution 3379 defined Zionism, the Jewish national liberation movement, as "a form of racism." At that time, it was still taken for granted in the Western world that it is anti-Semitic to deny the Jewish people's right to self-determination in their homeland.
Two conferences were convened at Durban—a conference of U.N. member nations and a conference of non-governmental organizations. In both, Resolution 3379 was not merely brought back from the dead, it was transformed into the cri de coeur of the United Nations and the international NGO community. The NGO conference produced a shocking resolution that called for Israel's destruction as a Jewish state and accused Israel of being a Nazi, apartheid regime that was committing genocide and other war crimes. U.N. member states and NGOs were directed to enact a total boycott of Israel.
The international boycott campaign against Israel was initiated shortly thereafter.
One of the groups most responsible for the diplomatic pogrom at Durban was an Israeli Arab legal advocacy organization called Adalah. The heads of Adalah played leading roles in drafting the resolution. Adalah, which is funded by the European Union and anti-Israel foundations in the United States, set about organizing the Israeli Arab community around the NGO resolution. Arab MKs all parrot the language of hatred and rejection of Israel and Jewish peoplehood that was so violently expressed in the Durban resolution.
Together with other subversive, anti-Zionist NGOs, Adalah works through Israel's post-nationalist Supreme Court to block elected officials in the government and Knesset from enforcing the laws of the state towards Arab Israelis. In accordance with the Durban NGO resolution, they demand that Israeli Arabs be accorded "communal rights," and so effectively undermine Israel's ability to operate as a democracy governed by the rule of law. Internationally, Adalah is actively involved in boycott efforts against Israel whose goal is to criminalize Zionism, Israel's supporters abroad and Israel's very existence. The anti-Israel portion of the Black Lives Matter charter was reportedly written by Adalah.
Among Israeli Jews, views like Adalah's have long been dominant in many universities. Already at the outset of the Palestinian terror war against Israel, professors from Israel's premier universities signed petitions calling for Israeli soldiers to refuse to serve in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, and for the economic boycott of Israel.
Over the past generation, inspired by retired Supreme Court president Aharon Barak, these positions have come to dominate the legal fraternity as well. Barak is the father of Israel's legal revolution, which gave unchecked powers to the Supreme Court and state prosecution. Barak's morally relativist, post-modern world view holds that every nation—including Israel—has the potential to act like Nazi Germany. Barak's view ignores the plain fact, borne out by hundreds of years of German history before World War II, that Nazism was not alien to Germany, but in many ways, intrinsic to it. So too, his view discounts thousands of years of Jewish history and heritage, as well as the character of contemporary Israeli society, which all negate the prospect of Israel ever adopting the characteristics of Nazi Germany.
Aside from its historic and sociological inanity, Barak's view is also problematic from the perspective of anti-Semitism.
Like most Western democracies, Israel embraces the definition of anti-Semitism conceived by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance. According to the IHRA definition, "Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis," is an example of anti-Semitism.
So by claiming that Israel can potentially become a Nazi state, members of the Barak-influenced Israeli legal fraternity have embraced perceptions of Israel that are substantively anti-Semitic.
Perhaps the most problematic place where echoes of the Durban conference are heard is the Israel Defense Forces officer corps. These echoes are heard loudest in IDF discussions of the lessons of the Holocaust.
In 1993, then education minister Shulamit Aloni, from the post-Zionist Meretz Party, joined then prime minister Yitzhak Rabin at the newly inaugurated March of the Living, which brings Jewish groups to Auschwitz. Aloni remarked that she believed the trip would be destructive to Israeli schoolchildren, who would go to Auschwitz and come home as right-wingers.
Over the past decade, distressing signs appeared that the IDF senior brass shares Aloni's position on Auschwitz and the right wing.
On the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day in 2016, then IDF deputy chief of staff and current Meretz MK Yair Golan gave a speech at an official ceremony. There, he explicitly drew a comparison between contemporary Israel and Nazi Germany. Golan alleged that "nauseating trends that occurred in Europe generally and in Germany specifically back then—70, 80 and 90 years ago—are now present among us."
When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu demanded that then-defense minister Moshe Ya'alon instruct Gen. Golan to retract his remarks, Ya'alon refused. Ya'alon (who now prefers forming a minority coalition with Meretz backed by the pro-Hezbollah Joint List to forming a unity government with Likud), insisted that Golan's straightforward defamation of Israeli society had been distorted and taken out of context. He then attacked his fellow politicians for having the temerity to criticize Golan's scandalous remarks.
In his words, "The attacks on [Golan] … which stem from deliberately distorted interpretations of his remarks … are yet another attempt in the worrying and irritating campaign to politically harm the IDF and its officers. Woe to us if we permit this to happen."
Ya'alon then claimed that it is the duty of IDF commanders to shape the values of their soldiers, and to serve as their "compass and conscience."
The storm of controversy that Golan's slander of Israeli society provoked came in the midst of another public outcry, over the brutal treatment that Ya'alon and his fellow generals meted out against IDF Sgt. Elor Azaria for killing a wounded terrorist in Hebron. Ya'alon and his generals castigated Azaria as a criminal before the IDF even investigated the allegations raised against him by a video taken by anti-Israel activists from the radical B'Tselem group. The widespread sense of the public was that Ya'alon and his generals rushed to side with radical leftists who seek to criminalize IDF soldiers against Azaria, a young conscript who claimed he acted out of fear that the terrorist was about to detonate an explosive vest.
Two years ago, a mid-level IDF career officer who had just returned from an IDF delegation to the March of the Living told me that the post-modern, anti-Israel views that Golan gave voice to in his 2016 speech were among the central themes of the lessons he and his colleagues received from the Education Corps before and during their trip to Poland.
In other words, put lightly, post-Zionism, which views Israel as atavistic at best and xenophobic at worst, is not unfamiliar to IDF commanders.
Gantz, Ya'alon and Gabi Ashkenazi, the three former IDF chiefs of staff who lead Blue and White, (together with Shelah's friend Yair Lapid), were at the helm of the IDF when these events occurred.
We don't know how Israel's political Gordian knot, the product of yet another inconclusive election, will be cut. But what is clear enough is that Blue and White's eagerness to form a coalition dependent on lawmakers who reject Zionism and support terrorists is the consequence of a decades-long process that led to the post-Zionist takeover of the Israeli left. This process will not be reversed by the simple formation of a government, regardless of who leads it, and who supports it.
Caroline Glick is an award-winning columnist and author of "The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East."
The jelly balls that destroyed the neighborhood
The jelly balls may seem innocent, but a little play with them managed to hurt an entire neighborhood
YouTuber who copied viral craze for filling a bath with Orbeez beads that expand in water blocks his entire neighborhood's drain system when he tries to empty it by pulling the plug
Social media influencer Cyril Schreiner, from France, uploaded the viral video
He filled a bath full of orbeez, beads that expand in water, and pulled the plug
The beads filled his sink and toilet when they poured into the drainage system
Mayor is on the hunt for the culprit after the beads blocked the town's drains
A French social media influencer has gone viral after he filled his bath with orbeez and managed to block his entire neighborhood's drainage systems with the jelly-like balls.
YouTuber Cyril Schreiner, from Alsace, poured three boxes of Orbeez - beads that expand in water - into a bath for his latest video.
But events took a turn for the worst when he decided to unplug the bath to try to get rid of the jelly balls down the drain.
Events took a turn for the worst when he decided to unplug the bath to try to get rid of the jelly balls down the drain
The balls filled the pipes and flooded into the toilet and sink. Cyril then made it even worse by trying to flush the toilet, which only resulted in it overflowing and flooding his bathroom.
A further update revealed the entire neighborhood's drainage system had been blocked and the mayor was looking for the culprit.
Although the videos were all in French, one English-speaking Twitter user - with the username @yuqheis - translated the events in a thread that has been viewed six-million times.
They wrote: 'This French guy filled his tub with orbeez then had no idea how to get rid of them so he just pulled the plug which resulted in orbeez overflowing both in his toilet and sink.'
The orbeez filled the drains around the French town and the mayor sent a letter to each house explaining they were searching for the culprit
It was one disaster after another when his vacuum cleaner caught on fire while he tried to clean the mess.
The Twitter user added: 'His hoover caught on fire when he tried to hoover them up, then he found out the Orbeez invaded the entire sewer system in his neighbourhood.
'Someone suggested to use salt and it actually worked until poop started flooding not only his house but the neighbourhood too. There are genuine tears streaming down my face at this point.
What are Orbeez - the tiny balls also known as water jellies, water beads, water gems? +8
Orbeez are superabsorbent polymers that grow to 100 times their original size when submerged in water.
They absorb liquids and a version of Orbeez are used in babies' nappies to keep them dry.
Why were they created?
They were originally invented as a way to keep moisture in soil for plants.
The plant roots can take the water out of the beads as soon as the soil gets dry, and then the beads absorb more water again once they're watered.
So the plants are always the perfect level of damp.
What are they used for now?
The beads are hugely popular with children and YouTube content creators.
Many videos have been created showing people filling paddling pools and baths with the colourful jellies.
Are they harmful to the environment?
Orbeez are non-toxic and biodegradable but they can clog up waste and pipe systems so should never be flushed or poured into plugs.
'The Orbeez actually blocked the entire water system in his neighbourhood and he received a letter from town hall saying cops are searching for the culprit.'
Cyril, who has half a million subscribers, originally posted the full video on his YouTube channel.
And when he saw the English translation of his antics on Twitter he commented: 'HELLO IT'S ME THE IDIOT.'
Other Twitter users couldn't believe what they were seeing and commented their shock underneath the post.
When he saw the English translation of his antics on Twitter he commented: HELLO IT'S Me the idiot
The Practical, The Rational
Breathes there a Jew with a mind so dead who never has proclaimed allegiance to rationality, pragmatism and the joys of being practical? To be a person who speaks of "faith" and " belief" is clearly to have one foot in the camp of the Ayatollah and no normal Jew would ever dare be brushed with the tar of "fanatic!" No, the Jewish people is a "normal" people, a rational one, and thank G-d that the normal people is also the most abysmally ignorant of its own Judaism and teachings – otherwise, it would surely burn all the Bibles and Talmuds that babble about "cursed is he who trusts in man."
And so it follows that trusting in G-d is a quaint thing, to be jollied over at the Jewish Museum and in lecture series, but only an extremist would take it to the light of modern-day. This is a practical world, one in which tough and pragmatic men understand the real realities and make their plans accordingly. Prayers are wonderful for the holidays and with which to open conventions but let them attempt to escape to the streets to demand equal time and to be taken seriously, and we shoot them down as dangerous fanaticism.
That is why the sophisticates from Peres to the AJC, from Moment to Olam HaZeh reject the past as a key to the future and indeed, hallow only the moment, the "zeh". We believe only in the things we can see and touch and feel and understand. Only the logical and rational play any part in our equations; guns, allies, realpolitik, those are the things and stuff of which the real is made of.
And that is why we dare not annex the "occupied territories" (Judea-Samaria-Gaza), and that is why we dare not even talk of removing the Arabs from the Temple Mount, and that is why only madmen should think of expelling or "transferring" the Arabs, and that is why we dare not ever anger the Americans without whom we would be in the sea.
Very well, I am convinced. Secular logic is, after all, so compelling. I have decided to convert. I have decided to accept the religion of pragmatism. You now behold, before you, a superb example of rationality and practicality. But to the bitter end. And here, fellow pragmatists and healthy rationalists is the bitter end.
Of course, this religious dependence on G-d is absurd. Of course, the reality is a weapon and the United States and allies and goodwill. Because it is only this that will stand us in good stead when the Arabs produce or receive their first nuclear weapon or decide to use the chemical-biological weapons that are today's "poor man's" nuclear arsenal.
Pakistan is on the verge of producing (and may, indeed, have already produced) its own nuclear weapon. It does not take very much to produce a "primitive", outdated, atomic bomb which is limited in scope, say as the one dropped on Hiroshima… And if Moslem Pakistan develops such a weapon does one believe that it's devoted faithful will not share it with their oppressed Arab Moslems and Palestinians? By all means, let us be hard headed and come up with a rational answer to that. Without the nonsense of faith.
And when the head of the Israel Defense Forces' Engineers, General Yoseph Ayal tells us (August 17) that certain Arab states are developing the capacity for chemical and biological warfare, there is no doubt that our practical senses will handle the matter with equanimity and without interference from G-d and his faithful. My only problem is that in all my pious rationality I really do not know how to deal with the above. Practicality somehow fails to give me answers as to how to deal with Arab nuclear, biological and chemical weapons in the hands of fanatical Moslems.
And bringing back tongue from cheek, the bitter reality is that the realists have nothing but bitter reality and not the slightest answer to the pragmatic and practical problems that defy rational solutions. The reality is that Israel faces such awesome practical threats just over the horizon that a normal, practical, rational Jew, would be insane to stay if he could, somehow, leave the country. It is only the "impractical", the "irrational", and the "dreamers" who have any rational reason to remain. They believe in G-d. They have faith in an Almighty and a Torah that decreed there never can be a third exile. They know that perfect faith and trust in G-d, while observing His commandments, will assure victory over our enemies. That is why they stay. That is why they are undeterred by the certainty of Arab nuclear and chemical and biological weapons. Because they pray. Because they do not miss a mincha – and evening service – or any other kind. Because they do know that "these may come with nuclear bombs and these with chemical warfare, but we shall proclaim the name of the L-rd."
A rational Jew? That is a rational Jew. Any other kind, the one who decides to trust in Ronald Reagan is mad, fanatic, extreme, a real Khoumeniite.
tulips on King David Street
Across the street from me they have planted rows and rows of beautiful Tulips.
A friend said that they are gift from Holland but I don't know the history, I just enjoy the beauty.
Here are two sets of pictures that I took a couple of weeks apart.