We are Spiritual beings clothed in a a physical body
We are spiritual beings clothed in physical bodies. Yet we will be blind to our Godly essence if we do not recognize and value the moments when we act in a Godly manner - despite the urge to do the opposite. It takes practice to notice our victories – especially the seemingly mundane acts of courage, kindness or self-discipline which we all have from the moment we awaken in the morning.
The talmud teaches that any generation that does not build the temple it is as if they destroyed the temple themselves. We don't have to blame Moshe Dyan. In our own lives, last week, we gave away sovereignty on the temple mount. I am a temple mount activist and was unable to do anything to stop it, so I am guilty of destroying the temple. May G-d have mercy on me.
Love Yehuda Lave
Police Bar Families of Umm al-Fahm Cop Killers from Temple Mount
Prior information that reached Jerusalem District Police regarding plans of family members of two Israeli Arab terrorists from Umm al-Fahm who murdered two Israeli Border Guard officers on the Temple Mount last month to disrupt the public order near the Al-Aqsa Mosque, has led to a decision to bar them from entering the compound on Tuesday. They were sent back to their homes in northern Israel.
According to Ma'ariv, at noon on Tuesday police received credible information that a group of Umm al-Fahm residents, all members of the families of the two killed terrorists, intended to disrupt the public order on the Temple Mount. A police force was prepared in advance, and indeed, upon the arrival of the family members they were asked to make a U-turn and leave without being permitted to enter the Temple Mount area. Police confirmed this report.
The attack, on July 14, took place just after 7 AM in the Temple Mount compound. The three Israeli Arab cop killers were killed as they were attempting the flee the scene. Then, in less than an hour, a Facebook post entered by one of them attracted more than 1,200 comments, a symbol of the way social media celebrate ruthless hatred and bloodshed.
Umm al-Fahm, with its 52,000 residents, is the third largest Arab city in Israel, and the hometown of radical Islamist Raed Salah – a frequent visitor in the Israeli security prison system. Thousands attended the night-time funeral of the three killers, and, shortly thereafter, an Israeli court revoked the citizenship of an Umm al-Fahm terrorist who was involved in ramming and stabbing Jews.
Here's why some of America's top cheese brands are now going kosher
While the availability of less expensive kosher cheese has been a boon to observant Jews, greater culinary sophistication in the Orthodox community is also having an effect on the dairy market, experts say. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)
It's early morning in the Sardinian countryside and a farmer is milking his sheep while an Orthodox Jewish kosher supervisor looks on.
The supervisor, known as a mashgiach, is sleeping in the farmer's barn, and he'll be there all week.
Welcome to the world of kosher cheesemaking.
The weeklong kosher cheese run in Sardinia is just one of a number of methods that artisanal kosher cheesemaker Brent Delman, owner and founder of The Cheese Guy, uses to manufacture products for kosher consumers who have developed a taste for fine Italian cheeses.
"I like to partner up with the most authentic suppliers of non-kosher cheese and see if we can replicate it. This requires flying in Jews from mainland Italy and bringing them to Sardinia to watch the milking of the sheep," said Delman, an Ohio native, explaining that many of the farmers he works with have never met Jews before the mashgiach shows up to inspect their operation.
The incongruous sourcing partnerships are a sign not only of the complexity of kosher cheese production, but also of the growing taste among kosher consumers for artisanal cheeses and greater cheese variety.
A number of mainstream cheese producers have begun large-scale kosher cheese production in recent years. In 2015, the Kraft subsidiary Polly-O generated excitement among consumers when it began producing Orthodox Union-certified kosher string cheese, undercutting the existing kosher competition significantly on price. Wisconsin's Lake Country Dairy, a subsidiary of Schuman cheese, has been making millions of pounds of kosher Italian-style Parmesan, Asiago, Romano and mascarpone for about a decade. Smaller artisanal cheesemakers, like the Seattle-based Beecher's, are also making kosher versions of their flagship cheeses.
Many hard cheeses use rennet, an animal byproduct, in production and therefore are not kosher. To be certified as kosher, hard cheeses not only must use synthetic rennet, but all the equipment and ingredients must be kosher and a mashgiach has to supervise the production.
Until recently, kosher Danish blue cheese and fine parmigiana were almost impossible to find; likewise for Brie and other fine soft cheeses. But with the market for kosher products growing – studies show that in addition to the burgeoning Jewish kosher market, many non-Jews prefer kosher because they associate it with increased cleanliness and healthfulness – increasing numbers of cheesemakers are getting into the kosher market.
"Companies that never would have considered making kosher cheese now do because they see their competitors succeeding with it," said Rabbi Avrohom Gordimer, a dairy expert in the O.U.'s kosher division. "These major cheese companies have taken the kosher plunge and chosen the O.U. certification, as it is the most recognized kosher symbol today."
Typically, rather than convert entire facilities to kosher production or keep kosher supervisors on site year-round, large companies will do a special kosher run – perhaps once a month, or in some cases for a few hours each day. During the kosher campaign, non-kosher production is shut down, all relevant equipment is cleaned and rabbinical supervisors oversee production.
"Take a cheddar cheese company in Vermont, where the good cheddar comes from," said Rabbi Abraham Juravel, the supervisor of technical services for O.U.'s kosher division. "They're not going to pay a rabbi to stay there whenever they make cheddar cheese; it's too expensive. They'll make a run once or twice a year with a rabbi present, and then they can market the cheese from those days as kosher."
To be certified as kosher, hard cheeses not only must use synthetic rennet rather than animal-byproduct rennet, but all the equipment and ingredients must be kosher and a mashgiach must supervise the production. (Orthodox Union)
Lake Country Dairy produces some 26 million pounds of cheese per year, including 4 million pounds of kosher mascarpone, Parmesan, Romano, Asiago and fontina sold under the brand names Bella Rosa, Cello Riserva and Pastures of Eden.
Kosher certification "symbolizes higher quality and more attention to detail in selecting the ingredients," said Jesse Norton, Lake Country Dairy's quality assurance director, who said the company's entry into the kosher market a decade ago "dovetails well with our philosophy of meeting the needs of customers and doing what other groups find difficult to do."
For a large company capable of mass-producing cheeses, going kosher makes good business sense, giving the company a competitive advantage, Norton said. As more companies go kosher, consumers should see better prices, he noted.
While the availability of less expensive cheese has been a boon to observant families, greater culinary sophistication in the Orthodox community is also having an effect on the dairy market, according to Gordimer.
"People want more variety. Their tastes have become more sophisticated," he said.
This trend is of a piece with American consumers generally, where in recent years consumers have developed a taste for artisanal foods, locally sourced products, craft beers and other high-quality offerings. U.S. retail sales of natural and specialty cheeses reached $17.4 billion in 2015, an increase of 4.1 percent since 2011, according to a report by Packaged Facts.
Cheese consumption is rising, too: In 2016, Americans consumed 5.35 million metric tons of cheese, a 7.6 increase from 2014, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
For the major cheese producers like Kraft, economies of scale means that prices for kosher-certified products can be similar to non-kosher cheese. Not so for smaller companies, which typically charge a premium for kosher cheese to cover the costs of kosher production and certification. Products made with cholov yisroel – milk produced solely by Jews, reflective of a more stringent level of kosher preferred by some strictly Orthodox consumers – can be two or three times as pricey as non-kosher cheese.
Until about a decade ago, the kosher cheese world was like the kosher wine market 30 years ago: There were the basics, but little for the discerning connoisseur, according to Delman, The Cheese Guy. Just as fine kosher wines from Israel replaced the ubiquitous Manischewitz at kosher dinner tables, fine kosher cheeses are also now commonplace, he said.
Delman's production shows the challenges of small-scale, fine-cheese production. For example, to manufacture a beer cheddar he is producing in cooperation with a dairy farm in Vermont, Delman first must arrange for kosher supervisors to accompany him to the facility. They clean the lines and check that all the ingredients are kosher; only then does production start.
Cheeses like Swiss and feta are made in brine, which must be kept separate from non-kosher cheeses. Because most facilities don't have extra brine tanks, Delman has to bring his own brine and cheese molds, further driving up costs.
"All of my products are small-batch artisanal productions, so the challenge of the kosher fees automatically makes the product more expensive," he said.
Juravel says mass production is particularly difficult when it comes to cheese, so kosher cheese will always be something of a challenge. But it's worth it.
"Cheesemaking is an art," Juravel said. "There's science behind it, but it's an art."
(This article was sponsored by and produced in partnership with the Orthodox Union, the nation's largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, dedicated to engaging and strengthening the Jewish community, and to serving as the voice of Orthodox Judaism in North America. This article was produced by JTA's native content team.)
5 Facts That Prove Jerusalem Was NEVER a Muslim Holy City or Arab Capital
Let's play a game of association. What is the first thing that comes to mind when I say JERUSALEM?
If your answer was "Holy City", then you are either Jewish or you believe in the Jewish connection to the city of Jerusalem. If you are Christian, Jerusalem is holy to you because of Jesus, who was a Jew who lived there. Jerusalem is holy ONLY as the Jewish capital and the home of the two Jewish Temples that stood in the Old City.
If you are a Muslim, I am sure you are probably offended by the mere suggestion that Jerusalem was NEVER a Muslim holy city or an Arab capital of any kind, but since you cannot hurt me or blow me up, you're going to have to face these historical truths and be content with writing violent reactions in the comments section below.
5 Facts To Prove Jerusalem Was NEVER A Muslim Holy City 1. The Quran
While Jerusalem is mentioned in the Bible (Tanach) over 500 times, it is NEVER mentioned in the Quran, not once! Many Muslims claim this is a lie and claim the word Al Aqsa means Jerusalem. Al Aqsa literally means "The Farthest Mosque" and in no way does it mean Jerusalem.
The mosque is believed to be the second house of prayer constructed after the Masjid al-Haram in Mecca. Post-Rashidun-era Islamic scholars traditionally identified the mosque as the site referred to in the sura (Qur'anic chapter) al-Isra ("the Night Journey"). The specific passage reads "Praise be to Him who made His servant journey in the night from the sacred sanctuary to the remotest sanctuary." Muslims identify the "sacred sanctuary" as the Masjid al-Haram and the "remotest sanctuary" as the al-Aqsa Mosque. Initially, Rashidun and Umayyad-era scholars were in disagreement about the location of the "remotest sanctuary" with some arguing that it was actually located near Mecca. Eventually scholarly consensus determined that its location was indeed in Jerusalem.
The Quranic passage that talks about the "night journey" of Mohammad to the "farthest mosque" took place sometime in the year 621 while the mosque in Jerusalem was not built till the year 705 CE! Which means, to whichever mosque Mohammad flew, it certainly was NOT in Jerusalem!
Let's say for arguments sake that I were to accept Mohammad's flight and let's say I also accept for some reason that it was to the small sanctuary in Jerusalem, that still does not make the City of Jerusalem holy to Muslims, but rather a small mosque that didn't actually exist at the time!
2. Direction of Prayer
Muslims turn their back on the Temple Mount when they pray. While Jews face ONLY Jerusalem and while we mention Jerusalem in every prayer and when we say grace after meals, the Muslims do NOT consider Jerusalem as a holy city, EVER! Here is a picture from the Temple Mount – would you stick your backside out to a place that was holy to you? 3. Jerusalem Was Never An Arab Capital
While King David made Jerusalem the capital of the Land of Israel, never in the history of the world was Jerusalem ever a capital city of an Arab country, certainly not one called Palestine which NEVER existed! You show me a single Arab country in the history of the world who held Jerusalem as its capital, I take down the Israel Shield blog! In fact if you can show me when Jerusalem was EVER an Arab capital I raise a Palestinian flag on my house in Judea Israel!
4. Desecration of the Temple Mount
Whether you're Jewish, Christian or Buddhist, you treat your temples and churches with respect and violence is simply not allowed in a place of worship. Watch these Muslims actually destroy furniture and carpets from the Mosque on the Temple Mount. Their lack of respect is witness to the fact that they clearly know that there is nothing holy to them and that the only reason they are holding on to that site is because they are fully aware that it is where the Jewish Temple once stood and will soon stand again. The mosque located on the Temple Mount was originally called Bayt al-Muqaddas which literally means built on the Mikdash (the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem)
No one who disputes the fact that King David was the first to make Jerusalem a capital city.
No one disputes that David's son Solomon built the first Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.
No one disputes the second Temple was also built on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem
No one disputes the fact that the Romans ransacked the Temple, slaughtered the Jews and kicked them out of Israel.
No one disputes that Muslims forcible conquered and occupied Jerusalem and built their mosque on the place of the Jewish Temple
For those of you who are planning on visiting Rome, you might want to check out Titus Arch which clearly depicts the Roman ransacking of the Temple vessels.
The fact is, Jews were in Jerusalem before Islam ever existed. Jerusalem was the Jewish capital of Israel before Washington was called the capital of America or London was the capital of England and Paris was the capital of Franc. Before you demand we, the Jewish people give our Holy Capital City to those who come with a fictitious claim backed with terrorism and Jihad, I would ask you to give your capitals to those who call for your destruction as well! As Binyamin Netanyahu put it so eloquently: "The French build in Paris, the English build in London and Israel builds in Jerusalem. Should we tell Jews not to live in Jerusalem because it stirs things up?"Even the Israeli Shekel comes from the Temple times. On the right is what the new shekel looked like and on the left is a coin from the Jewish revolt against the Romans. For those of you pointing a finger at Israel, you are not only strengthening lies, you are actually motivating those who burn your flags and behead those who believe in freedom. —Don't forget to join me on the IsraelShield Facebook Page as well as on @israel_shield on Twitter!
State Department blames Israel for terrorism, praises PA
Illinois congressman, Zionist organization slam State Department report blaming Israel for terrorism, whitewashing PA incitement.
Contact Editor David Rosenberg, 25/07/17 14:37 Share Rex TillersonReuters
A new report published by the US State Department criticizing Israel and largely ignoring the Palestinian Authority's financial support for terrorists sparked a bitter backlash, with some characterizing the document as "anti-Semitic".
The State Department's annual Country Reports on Terrorism for 2016, published last Wednesday, laid the blame for violence against Israelis at the feet of the Jewish state, while praising the Palestinian Authority for rarely making "explicit calls for violence against Israelis".
In the report, the department claimed that terrorism against Israel was fueled not by anti-Semitic incitement in the Arab sector, but Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria and "a lack of hope" among Palestinian Authority residents.
Incitement in the Palestinian Authority was only indirectly alluded to, with a passing reference to what the report calls "the perception" that Israel is seeking to alter the status quo on the Temple Mount.
"Continued drivers of violence included a lack of hope in achieving Palestinian statehood, Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank, settler violence against Palestinians in the West Bank, the perception that the Israeli government was changing the status quo on the Haram Al Sharif/Temple Mount, and IDF tactics that the Palestinians considered overly aggressive," the report claims.
Immediately after this paragraph, the report praises the PA for having "taken significant steps during President Abbas' tenure (2005 to date) to ensure that official institutions in the West Bank under its control do not create or disseminate content that incites violence."
The report acknowledges that "some PA leaders have made provocative and inflammatory comments," but claims that the "PA has made progress in reducing official rhetoric that could be considered incitement to violence."
Evidence of the PA's improved behavior, the report claims, is the alleged rarity of open calls for violence against Jews and explicit denials of Israel's right to exist.
"Explicit calls for violence against Israelis, direct exhortations against Jews, and categorical denials by the PA of the possibility of peace with Israel are rare and the leadership does not generally tolerate it."
No mention is made in the report of funding by the PA and the ruling Fatah party of terrorists and their families, who receive generous stipends if relatives are killed during or jailed after terror attacks against Israeli Jews.
The State Department also attempted to compare the relative handful of Jewish "extremist" actions – mostly vandalism and graffiti – to Arab terrorism, dedicating more space to documenting acts by "extremist Israelis" than "extremist Palestinians".
To hide the lopsided ratio of acts, the report discusses even minor acts of vandalism by Jews, while ignoring the thousands of stone-throwing incidents, firebombings, and other attacks by Arabs to only list fatal terror attacks.
While the report was based in part on work done during the Obama administration, according to the Conservative Review, much of the anti-Israel rhetoric found in the report was not present in similar Obama-era reports produced by the State Department, suggesting it was added by department officials after Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was sworn in.
Illinois Congressman Pete Roskam (Republican) slammed the report last Thursday, calling upon the State Department to retract the report.
The report, Roskam wrote, undermines "the prospect for Israeli-Palestinian peace and wrongly blame[s] Israel for Palestinian terrorism against Israeli civilians."
"At the highest level," Roskam noted, "the Palestinian Authority leadership directly incites, rewards, and in some cases, carries out terrorist attacks against innocent Israelis." Roskam added that the root cause of terrorism in the area was not Israel, but the PA leadership.
"The State Department report includes multiple findings that are both inaccurate and harmful to combating Palestinian terrorism. This report wrongly insinuates Israeli security measures on the Temple Mount and a stalled peace process as key forces behind terrorism. Most egregiously, it portrays the PA as innocent peacemakers far removed [from] being the source of terrorist activity."
Congressman Roskam went on to note the full extent of Arab terrorism since September 2015, which included 1818 stabbing attacks, 159 shooting attacks, "60 vehicular ramming attacks," which combined "killed over 50 Israelis and injured nearly 1,000. President Abbas, who deemed this terror wave a 'peaceful uprising', was a key supporter of these heinous attacks."
On Monday, the Zionist Organization of America issued its own response to the State Department report, calling the document "bigoted, biased, anti-Semitic, Israel-hating," and "error-ridden".
"This Tillerson State Department Report blames Israel for Palestinian Arab terrorist attacks on innocent Jews and Americans, ignores and whitewashes the Palestinian Authority's (PA) 'pay to slay' payments to Arabs to murder Jews, and among other travesties – contradicts both President Trump's insightful Riyadh speech, and Ambassador Haley's outstanding work at the United Nations."