Monday, August 18, 2014

How beautiful the orchids and must you live in the land of Israel if you are Jewish??

Welcome Being Questioned

It is the nature of the wise to appreciate questions on their viewpoints more than agreement.

A person who wants approval is disturbed and irritated if someone questions his attitudes and opinions. But a wise person seeks truth and therefore gets pleasure if someone raises objections -- since this helps him correct his mistake.

Love Yehuda Lave

Beautiful orchids and wise sayings.

How beautiful...........

Wait till you have the time to relax and enjoy.........Ponder and learn.


Is One Required To Live In Israel? (Megillah 17b)

Published: August 14th, 2014


It is universally accepted in halacha that the continued existence of the Jewish people is dependent upon the uninterrupted settlement of Jews in the Land of Israel.

However, the extent and structure of the Jewish settlement in Israel before the Final Redemption and the coming of the Messiah is the subject of an ongoing halachic debate.

Should just a few communities settle the Land of Israel? Should there be a mass emigration of all Jews worldwide to Israel? Should the Land of Israel be acquired by peaceful means, such as land purchases, or should it be conquered? Should the Jews in Israel organize themselves as a sovereign state or should they live in Israel under foreign rule?

The halachic opinions on these questions range across the board. There are those, to whom we shall refer as the "Yishuv School," who would restrict settlement to individual communities living under whatever foreign sovereign power happens to reign in the Land of Israel at the relevant time.

There are others, to whom we shall refer as the "Kibutz Galuyot School," who would require all Jews to return to Israel under a Jewish sovereign state. And there are yet others, to whom we shall refer as the "Territorial School," who would, in addition, require the conquest of all of the Land of Israel that remains in non-Jewish hands. The fact that the holders of these diverse opinions live side by side in Israel is a tribute to the unifying power of the Land.

This article focuses on the Territorial School of thought.

Based on the opinion of the Ramban, the Territorial School believes that leaving any territory of the Land of Israel in the possession of non-Jews is a violation of a biblical mandate. "You shall take possession of the Land and dwell in it" means there is a biblical requirement to conquer the Land. According to the Ramban, a war waged to conquer the Land of Israel is in the category of milchemet mitzvah, an obligatory war, not milchemet reshut, an optional war. Accordingly, war must be waged not only in self-defense but must also be initiated to rescue the Land from non-Jewish hands.

The requirement to wage war applies today as much as it did in the days of Yehoshua. Spurning the commandment to conquer the Land is, in the eyes of the Ramban, rebellion against God. Indeed, Moshe criticizes the spies who shrank from waging war against the inhabitants of the Land: "Go up and possess the Land which I have given you; then you rebelled against the commandment of the Lord your God and you neither believed him not nor hearkened to his voice."

The establishment of the Jewish sovereign state and of the Israel Defense Forces is a biblical commandment because without them, there is no way to conquer the Land.

Conversely, no part of the Land within the boundaries delineated in Numbers 34 may be relinquished for any purpose whatsoever. "There is no doubt," writes Rabbi Yaakov Moshe Charlap "that if circumstances require the heads of state to sign an international agreement that will include a statement relinquishing any of our rights to the Land of Israel, it is preferable that the signatories amputate their thumbs rather than amputate the heavenly garden of Zion."

"If we have the capability to acquire all of the Land of Israel," writes Rabbi Tzvi Pesach Frank, then we do not have the permission to relinquish our claim to even one clod of earth and to hand it over to foreigners."

Inherent in the commandment to wage war to conquer the Land is the commandment to sacrifice one's life if necessary to achieve that purpose. The rule that survival, pikuach nefesh, takes precedence over all the commandments of the Torah (except for murder, idolatry and incest), does not apply to the commandment to wage war to liberate the Land because war, by definition, means sacrifice of life. Furthermore, when the practice of any commandment of the Torah is prohibited by a decree of a non-Jewish legislature, a Jew must risk his life rather than obey the decree. Accordingly, if other nations decree that Jews may not conquer the Land, it is incumbent upon each Jew to disobey such decree even at the pain of death.

Underlying the Territorial School is the concept that the Land of Israel is intrinsically holy. "The eyes of the Lord thy God are always upon it from the beginning of the year to the end of the year." The holiness of the Land is not dependant on the observance of the mitzvot. Rabbi Abba kissed the stones of Acco and Rabbi Chia Bar Gamda adorned himself with its dust.

Like the Kibbutz Galuyot School, the Territorial School sees the historical juxtaposition of the Holocaust and the state of Israel as no coincidence. Both these schools of thought view the Holocaust as the amputation from the Diaspora.

The fact that mainly secular, non-observant Jews govern the state of Israel does not bother the Territorial School at all. God chooses his agents of Return without our approval. Indeed, the prophet Isaiah refers to Koresh, the gentile king responsible for returning the exiled Jews to Zion, as the Messiah. Besides, the mitzvah of settling the Land is equal to the observance of all the other mitzvot.

Every war in Israel is a stage in the redemption of Israel (Megillah 17b). The Redemption occurs in stages, war after war.

I don't know another nation on earth which since its founding, than seventy years ago, had to sacrifice 23,000 soldiers.

I don't know another nation on earth without recognized borders.

I don't know another nation on earth whose population lives under a perpetual emotional strain.

I don't know another nation on earth threatened to be wiped off the map.

I don't know another nation on earth so threatened by boycotts all over the world.

I don't know another nation on earth where the winners tend to lose wars.

I don't know another nation on earth which provides its own enemy with water, electricity, food, weapons, and medical treatment.

I don't know another nation on earth where guests on official visits utter disrespectful and offensive words.

But I also don't know another nation on earth which has recorded so many miracles.

Imagine a helpless, naked  Jew at the gas ovens facing a Nazi official, who thinks he will get rid of the "Jewish cancer", get rid of this unique phenomenon of 2,000 years.

Could that helpless, naked Jew imagine that in 50 years other Jews will be flying F-16's in the skies over Israel?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel's population today would be nine times that of 1948, the year of the state's creation?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is much happier than all the European countries?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel has the highest production of scientific publications per capita in the world?

Could that helpless Jew imagine  that Israel has the highest worldwide publication of new books?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is the only nation which began the XXI century with a net gain in the number of trees?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel has with largest number of chess grandmasters per capita of any city in the world?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is the nation whose academics produce more scientific papers per capita than anywhere else in the world?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is the nation with the highest ratio of university degrees to the population in the world?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is the country which, in proportion to its population, with the largest number of startup companies in the world?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is the country with the highest percentage in the world of home computers per capita?

Could that helpless Jew imagine that Israel is the nation with the largest immigrant-absorbing model on earth?

Unfortunately, you will not find Israel's goodness and superiority in the media (also Israeli), because it doesn't fit in with the stereotype of the colonialist Zionist occupier.

In the world's consciousness, the word "Israel" must be equated with fear.

Israel just came out of another war against terrorists whose value is less than that of animals. Do you know of any animal species sheltering behind its own children?

But the Jewish State, despite its media, its cynical politicians, establishment, once again showed the world it is the best humanity has to offer.

This hope is impressed in the faces of Israel's fallen soldiers, its wounded and injured soldiers. In those faces there is joy de vivre, not sadness or hatred.

Terrorists and their Western appeasers want to destroy Israel because it is a light unto the nations.

The only one in the world in which we live. Love It.