Tuesday, May 29, 2018

The Greatest Generation according to the Torah and Rav Avigdor Miller

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Yehuda Lave, Spiritual Advisor and Counselor

Allow Yourself to Experience Happiness Now

 You have a right to experience happiness right now, in the present. This is a very important concept to keep in mind. You don't need to wait until you accomplish your goals before you are happy.

Many people think, "Only after I accomplish my goals will I be able to be happy." These individuals mistakenly think that they need to wait in order to be happy. They feel that they can't be happy right now. They tell themselves that they first need to achieve what they would like to achieve before they can be happy.

But happiness is a birthright. You were born. You are now alive. You are breathing now. Right now you have a right to be happy. You can choose to be happy now.

Love Yehuda Lave


As we approach the subject of the Dor Hamidbar (the generation of the Wilderness), also known as the Dor Deah (the generation of True Knowledge), let us keep constantly before our eyes that this era was the time when Hashem's love was strongest. These men were chosen as witnesses of the most wondrous spectacles and demonstrations of Hashem's Presence among His people. At the same time, they were subject to the most severe chastisement, because "The one that Hashem loves, He rebukes, as a father to the son that He favors" (Mishle 3:12). The harshest punishments were bestowed upon this generation, as well as the greatest expressions of Hashem's love and the most sublime encomium and encouragement. All the chastisements and castigations of this period were because of Hashem's especial love: "to afflict you in order to test (or, to elevate) you, to do benefit to you in your end" (Devarim 8:16).
Rabbi Yochanan (Sanhedrin 110B) upholds the opinion of Rabbi Eliezer that the generation of the Wilderness is very highly regarded by Hashem, who declared: "I remember for you the kindness of your youth, the love of your bridal days, when you followed me into the wilderness, a land unsown. (Therefore) Israel is holy to Hashem" (Yirmiyah 2:2-3)
"Gedolah Deah!" "How great is True Knowledge!" (Berachot 33A). The greatest revelation of Hashem for all time was at Har Sinai. And we can look back and see that the purpose of Yosef being sold by the brothers was to bring Jacob and his family to Egypt. The exile in Egypt and the Nation's witnessing of the 10 Plagues and the splitting of Yam Suf were all to prepare us for the great and fearsome day when we were going to meet and hear Hashem. In fact the purpose of the Creation of heaven and earth was only to bestow the Torah upon the Nation of Yisrael.
The Rambam says, regarding the Revelation at Har Sinai, "We must Exhalt it over all others" (Igerret Teman). This means that we must build this scene in the edifice of our minds. Picture that there were 600,000 men between the ages of 20 and 60, along with women, children and converts. Total over 2 million people. The thick cloud of Shechina was on the top of Har Sinai. Thunder and lightning and the strong sound of Shofar.
The Voice is heard, "Anochi Hashem Elokecha", speaking directly to the Nation. The Nation was overwhelmed with the very greatest fear and the greatest love.
The revelation at Har Sinai was the greatest injection of 'Deah", the acquiring of True Knowledge combined with actual sensory perception, which has remained an intregal part of the Jewish Nation until today.                                                   
                                 Adapted from "Journey into Greatness" by Rabbi Miller ZT'L

The FIRST STEP Act, HR 5682.


We continue to be ecstatic over the miraculous release of Sholom Rubashkin -- thanks to your prayers and support. Hashem heard our cries!

But we cannot forget the too many others who languish in prison away from their families and communities. We believe that the definition of a human being is to be productive and accomplish something. Warehousing them with no productivity, is in essence the most inhumane thing because it defies their very humanity and very purpose of existence. Sadly, most inmates sit in prison playing cards and watching TV, wasting away. 

However, there is a new exciting piece of legislation in Congress that will literally transform our federal prison system.

It's called The FIRST STEP Act, HR 5682.

This bill will establish rehabilitation programs and job training for federal inmates, and participants who are nonviolent and a low risk to re-offend can earn up to 33% earlier release to home-confinement.  The bill will also provide early release to home-confinement to nonviolent elderly inmates who are 60 years old, have completed 2/3 of their sentence and are a low risk to re-offend. It will also fix good time credit and prohibit the shackling of pregnant women. 

It's an amazing opportunity that will have a tremendously positive impact on thousands of families.

Please go to www.firststepact.org and sign the petition on the front page in support of this incredible bill!

And call your "Representative" and urge them to vote YES for The FIRST STEP Act HR 5682 when it comes to the Floor for a vote: 202-224-3121 or find them here. Your support is needed and can truly help pass this bill into law. 

Thank you for joining this effort and doing your part to help make a difference!

Leah Rubashkin

New Immigrants to Israel Are Among Those Facing Call for Immediate Tax Data

Tax specialist says new immigrants and returning Israelis should exercise their right not to report income or assets abroad

 May 16, 2018 10:24 PM

Many new immigrants and returning Israelis have been receiving letters in recent weeks from the Israel Tax Authority demanding they report their sources of income from Israel and abroad within 30 days.

The letters, which are part of a four-year old crackdown by the authority, may come as a surprise to both groups because under the so-called Milchan Law they are exempt from disclosing their foreign income and assets for the first 10 years after they arrive.

The tax authority confirmed on Wednesday that the 5329 form that recipients are ordered in the letters to complete doesn't require new immigrants or returning Israelis to disclose their income or assets from overseas, only their Israeli income and assets.

"Concerning their assets and incomes abroad, they have the option on the form of saying they are exemption from reporting," the authority said. However, someone who opts not to disclose the information is at risk later of not qualifying for the tax authority's voluntary disclosure track later on because technically receipt of form 5329 means the taxpayer is formally under investigation.

Meir Nussbaum, a tax specialist at the law firm Nussbaum & Company, said new immigrants and returning Israelis should exercise their right not to report income or assets abroad.

Demolition Begins at Abandoned Dolphinarium on Tel Aviv Beachfront

High-rise towers and a sports and community center will rise on the abandoned site of a 2001 terror attack that killed 21 Israelis

The demolition of the Tel Aviv beachfront's abandoned Dolphinarium began on Wednesday, after a three-decade-long process involving the courts and urban planners.
The demolition, which will take two months, is being done by a group of real estate entrepreneurs who, in a land swap deal, will evacuate the Dolphinarium in exchange for rights to erect two high-rise towers across the road. A small sports and community center will also be built on the site. 

Police Shut Damascus Gate To Jews Shabbat And Shavuot

The Damascus Gate entrance to Jerusalem's Old City will be closed to Jewish worshipers on Shabbat and Shavuot beginning this Friday and ending Sunday.

The Israel Police said in a statement Tuesday that as part of preparations for the upcoming holiday it decided to stop Jews from going through the gate that leads to the Western Wall through the Muslim Quarter.
The partial closure will coincide with the first Friday of this year's Ramadan, during which large numbers of Muslim worshipers, including Palestinians from the West Bank, are expected to come to the city.

The decision was made "in order to keep the public safety, prevent overloads in the alleyways of the Old City... in accordance with a security assessment," the statement said, adding that it will not be possible to exit through the gate.

The move was criticized by some who said it discriminates against Jews.

Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan responded during an interview on 103FM Radio by saying he would look into the issue.

However, "Sometimes the police want to create a division that is necessary [between the religious groups]," he said.

"So in order to protect the lives of the people, [they decide] on street X one group goes, and on the other goes Y. There are no racist motives, just another way to save lives." 

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told The Jerusalem Post the move was in no way meant to discriminate against Jews, noting that in other cases restrictions on movement have been imposed on Muslims in the area.

He added that in such a complex situation, where one group celebrates Shavuot and the other celebrates Ramadan, the police are taking the necessary operative measures to prevent confrontations between the two.

"These are considered wide-scale preparations," he said. "We want all groups to arrive at the prayer destination safely, and if needed, we will divert them in other ways."

Rosenfeld added that in recent years, only a minority of Jews passed through the Damascus Gate, while most went through the Jaffa Gate.

A violent incident was reported on the eve of Simhat Torah last October, when a large group of Jews vandalized a Palestinian-owned shop on Al-Wad Street next to the Damascus Gate and injured the shopkeeper.

Police said at the time that an investigation into the case had been launched, however, seven months later the case has not been concluded.

Interesting take from a woman on the differences between men and women

Obviously steriotypes don't apply to everyone

2 wingsuit flyers BASE jump into a plane in mid-air. | A Door In The Sky

French wingsuit flyers recently completed an unbelievable stunt following a B.A.S.E. jump from the top of the Jungfrau mountain in Switzerland. Fred Fugen and Vince Reffet, known as the Soul Flyers, caught up with and flew into a plane in mid-air. As part of their project A Door in the Sky, which they had spent several months training for by completing more than 100 test flights in Empuriabrava in Spain, the duo B.A.S.E jumped from the top of the Jungfrau, one of Europe's highest mountains, and flew into a Pilatus Porter light aircraft in mid-air. Now that's a different way to catch a flight. _

Another good reason to have a concealed weapons permit.

  This is a story of self-control and marksmanship by a brave, cool-headed woman with a small pistol against a fierce predator.   Here's her story in her own words:   "While out walking along the edge of a pond just outside my house in The Villages with my soon to be ex-husband, discussing property settlement and other divorce issues, we were surprised by a huge   12-ft. alligator which suddenly emerged from the murky water and began charging us with its large jaws wide open.  She must have been protecting her nest because she was extremely aggressive.   If I had not had my little Beretta .25 caliber pistol with me, I would not be here today!   Just one shot to my estranged husband's knee cap was all it took. The gator got him easily, and I was able to escape by just walking away at a brisk pace.   The amount I saved in lawyer's fees was really incredible.  His life insurance was a big bonus!"  

See you tomorrow

Love Yehuda Lave

Rabbi Yehuda Lave

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