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
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The world is full of wonders and miracles but man takes his little hand and covers his eyes and sees nothing.
According to a Kikar Shabbos report, the initiative failed in Jerusalem as well as in other cities and therefore, it is being halted in the capital. The other cities offering the service include Ashdod, Rishon L'Tzion and Tel Aviv.
There are only two trips, one going and one coming and vans and minibuses are used, not buses due to the lack of response.
In Jerusalem, the request for the Chilul Shabbos service is so minimum that it has been decided to halt the service.
According to the report, the notices received by those operating the service simply states "the service is being temporarily halted" until the organization running the service holds a gathering in Jerusalem, which is set to take place on Shabbos, November 30, 2019. At that time, they hope to design a new route for the service in the capital. "The service in Ashdod, Rishon L'Tzion and Tel Aviv continues" the notice concludes.
The organization, which also funds the service, is now asking for donations to assist in financing it. It is a private initiative which is not funding by any government agency. Organizers also claim credit for the Shabbos public transportation in some Gush Dan areas on Shabbos.
The organizers also point out that if the secular residents of Jerusalem left the city, numbering 200,000, adding 45,000 students, and the Arab residents and the 'traditional residents' who travel on Shabbos, they would comprise one of the largest cities in the nation.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)
25 Reasons You Should Live In Israel By Tzvi Fishman (A Religious writer)
Recently I published 25 reasons to live in Israel by a non-religious writer. Now I publish 25 reasons by a religious writer--these are better:
The last time I happened to be in America, it was around Parshat Lech Lecha. On Shabbat, I prayed in three different shuls and heard three different sermons. Not one of them mentioned Eretz Yisrael.
In one opulent shul, there were a plethora of free brochures in the lobby on the fundamental building blocks of Judaism – talmud Torah, tefillin, Shabbat, kashrut, family purity, and the like. A brochure on the Land of Israel, though, was nowhere to be found.
I glanced through some of the books in the shul library. In many of the scholarly English books on Jewish philosophy and belief, Eretz Yisrael didn't even appear in the table of contents or index.
Last year, The Jewish Press published a list of top excuses for not making aliyah, such as: taxes are too high, we don't want our children to serve in the army, the government is too secular; the hot water takes too long to heat up, etc. etc.
The truth is, though, that the mitzvah of aliyah is not dependent on the level of religious observance in Israel or whether you can find a New York bagel there. Avraham Avinu made aliyah when only idol worshipers filled the land. He came even though there were no deluxe apartments, no Jewish army, no flourishing yeshivot, no synagogues, and no kosher pizza shops as there are in abundance today.
He came because he believed in Hashem. Therefore, in honor of Avraham and Parshas Lech Lecha, let me list some of the top reasons to make aliyah:
To come closer to Hashem.
To perform, according to the vast majority of poskim, a biblical mitzvah incumbent on everyone.
To live in the place where the commandments were meant to be performed.
To dwell in the land of our forefathers.
To live in the land of prophecy.
To actualize our daily prayers for the in-gathering of the exiles.
To play an active role in the redemption of Israel.
To make the proclamation "Next Year in Jerusalem" a reality.
To live under a sovereign Jewish government.
To have the privilege of serving in the Israeli army.
To live in a country run according to the Hebrew calendar, where Christmas and Easter decorations are hardly seen.
To live in a country where Hebrew is the official language.
To live in a place where your children and grandchildren won't intermarry.
To live amongst Jews.
To live in the place where prayer ascends in purity to Heaven without the spiritual pollution of chutz l'aretz.
To live in the place of the Shechinah – in the land that Hashem watches over from the beginning of the year to the end of the year (Deuteronomy 11:12).
To live in the land where the patriarchs and matriarchs of the Jewish nation lived and are buried.
To live in the Torah center of the world where there are more gedolim than anywhere else in the world.
To live where frum communities are everywhere, with an endless choice of yeshivot, cheders, Talmud Torahs, religious colleges, and religious ulpanot for girls.
To live in the only place where kohanim bless the congregation each day because of the unique simcha of living there.
To perform the extra mitzvot you can only fulfill there.
To live in a place where your taxes support yeshivot, Tzahal, Jewish charities, Jewish hospitals, the city of Jerusalem, and the ingathering of the exiles.
To be near Jerusalem, the Kotel and the Temple Mount.
To live in a country where the national radio station begins broadcasting with "Shema Yisrael" in the morning.
To live in the place where Jews truly belong and where Hashem wants them to be – as the Torah states over and over and over again.
RABBI SCHWARTZ'S TERRIBLE TRAVEL JOKES OF THE WEEK
Why are mountains the funniest place to travel? They're Hill Areas
Where do math teachers go on vacation? Times Square
What do you drink while traveling through the desert? Camel-mile tea
Where do sheep go on vacation? To the baaaaaahamas
I never travel to Finland, I'm afraid I'd disappear into…FinnAir!
I'd love to go to Holland one day …Wooden Shoe?
A time traveler was in a restaurant. He liked it so much …He went back four seconds.
My friends were concerned that my old car may break down during our road trip throughout Canada. I told them not to worry. I have Triple Eh.
I refuse to take my dog on road trips any more…He can be such a bark seat driver
A group of college buddies were about to graduate, and near the end of their exams, they decided to live it up on the weekend, so they took a little roadtrip to a resort town nearby. They laughed, drank and partied hard. They had a final exam Monday morning, so late Sunday night they packed it up and drove home. Monday morning rolls around, and they all sleep in and miss the exam. When they wake up, phone calls are made, and they decide that they will tell their prof. about the weekend road trip, but tell him that they got a flat on the way home on Sunday afternoon, didn't have a spare, and could not get back in time for the exam, since there were no tire shops open to fix their flat.
So, they all troop down to the prof's office, tell him their tale of woe, and ask to be allowed to write the exam the next day. The Prof agrees to let them, and they head home feeling pretty good. Tuesday morning comes around, and the buddies show up for their exams. The prof sets them up in four separate study rooms, and gives them each a test. The first page is some pretty basic multiple-choice questions, worth 10%. At the top of the second page, it says:
WRITTEN RESPONSE, 90%. WHICH TIRE?
A group of hikers were being led through the wilderness by a guide. On the third day, the hikers noticed that they had been traveling in circles."We're lost!" One of the hikers complained."And you said you were the best guide in the United States.""I am," the guide answered, " but I think we may have wandered into Canada."
Yankel gets on a plane and sits next to the window. A few minutes later, a big, heavy, strong mean-looking, Skinhead plops down in the seat next to him and immediately falls asleep. Yankel starts to feel a little airsick, but he's afraid to wake the big guy up to ask if he can go to the bathroom. He knows he can't climb over him, and so Yankel's sitting there, looking at the skinhead, trying to decide what to do. Suddenly, the plane hits an air pocket and an uncontrollable wave of nausea passes through him. He can't hold it in any longer and he pukes all over the heavy guy's chest. About five minutes later the big guy wakes up, looks down, and sees the vomit all over him. "So," says Yankel, "are you feeling better now?"
Taxiing down the tarmac, the jetliner abruptly stopped, turned around and returned to the gate. After an hour-long wait, it finally took off. A concerned passenger asked the flight attendant, "What was the problem?" "The pilot was bothered by a noise he heard in the engine," explained the flight attendant, "and it took us a while to find a new pilot."
A plane was taking off from Kennedy. After it reached a comfortable cruising altitude, the captain made an announcement over the intercom, "Ladies and Gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. Welcome to Flight number 293, non-stop from New York to Los Angeles. The weather ahead is good and therefore we should have a smooth flight, Now sit back and relax. – OH MY GOD!" Silence Then, the captain came back on the intercom and said: "Ladies and Gentlemen, I an so sorry if I scared you earlier, but while I was talking the flight attendant brought me a cup of coffee and spilled the hot coffee in my lap. You should see the front of my pants!" A passenger in Coach said: "That's nothing. He should see the back of mine!"
Why Are We Embracing Tohu Va'vohu? By Helena Hawkins
There are no boundaries anymore.
Life used to be simpler. A man was a man, and a woman was a woman. They would marry, procreate, and pass on. The same cycle would then repeat itself, over and over again, in much the same way.
Over the last 50 years or so, barriers between men and women have been torn down, leading to a loss of respect for others and oneself. Procreation is now delayed or completely neglected, gender is considered fluid, and marriage is no longer exclusive to a man and a woman.
Rather quickly, our society has been transformed into an Orwellian dystopia. Language is usually the first element in society to be poisoned; the rest follows. In Orwell's 1984:
WAR IS PEACE FREEDOM IS SLAVERY IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH
In our society:
EVIL IS GOOD UNGODLINESS IS SACRED VIRTUE IS SIN
A society in which words are stripped of their meaning is a society that has reintroduced tohu va'vohu into the world. Tohu va'vohu – that initial formless void, a kind of unfathomable chaos that existed before creation.
In essence, we have rejected the act of creation by embracing the tohu va'vohu that preceded it, in which distinctions and boundaries didn't exist – in which male and female were one, heaven and earth were one, and light didn't exist.
We have even rejected the act of creation in our own selves, treating the murder of fetuses in the womb as though it were nothing. We treat our own wombs, pregnant with the ripening fruit of human life, as a formless void, devoid of meaning or substance. We conveniently hit the "delete" key on our mistakes, turning the other cheek to our own perversions.
Two weeks ago was ParshatBereshit. We read:
In the beginning, G-d created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was unformed and void (tohu va'vohu), with darkness over the surface of the deep, and the spirit of G-d was hovering over the face of the water. And G-d said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light. And G-d saw the light that it was good, and G-d separated between the light and between the darkness." (Genesis 1:1-4)
The first act of creation involved making boundaries. What does this mean? That without boundaries – without distinctions between light and dark, heavens and earth, man and woman – we live in chaos. In tohu va'vohu. We, as a society, have thrown away the very first lines of Bereshit.
And it will come back to bite us – hard. Fleeing from reality only works for so long. At a certain point, reality will hit us with more force than a bullet train in Japan. We will reap what we've sown, and if we've sown chaos, we will reap chaos. We have flaunted our new immorality with all the fervor of a child who has finally gotten his way. But that child inevitably later learns his lesson – and so will we.
Only when we finally learn to redraw G-d's boundaries will we prosper. At that point, we will become partners again in creation, and G-d will create a new heaven and a new earth – on a higher dimension. As the navi says, "For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the first ones shall not be remembered, neither shall they come into mind" (Isaiah 65:17).
May that day come soon.
The Left-Right Divide Is About Reality Itself
Dennis Prager There is an unbridgeable divide in the way left and right perceive this reality.
The left-right divide in America is, unfortunately, unbridgeable. There are three reasons:
First, we are divided by our vision of what we want America to be. The right believes the founders' vision was brilliant and moral, that bourgeois middle-class values are superior to alternative value systems; that rights come from G-d, not man; and that the state must be as small as possible. The left (not liberals) shares none of those values.
Second, we are divided by the means we use to achieve our vision. Given their different ends, left and right obviously differ on what means to use to achieve their ends.
Third, and perhaps most troubling, there is a reality-perception divide. Left and right have different perceptions of reality.
I have been aware of this for many years, but it was dramatically brought home last week when I was a guest on "Real Time With Bill Maher." Given that the other two guests on the panel and more or less the entire studio audience were on the left, their reactions to what I said proved my point.
For example, I said that though there are, of course, racists in the United States, America is the least racist multiethnic and multiracial country in the world.
I was booed.
I said the United States military has brought so much liberty to the world it deserves the Nobel Peace Prize.
I was booed.
Clearly, there is an unbridgeable divide in the way we perceive the reality of the American military's role in the world.
I said that it turned out the Russia-Trump campaign collusion never happened.
I was booed.
There is an unbridgeable divide in the way left and right perceive this reality.
I said the Trump-Ukrainian president phone transcript did not show a quid pro quo.
I was booed, and one of the other panelists said it actually showed "extortion."
I said John Brennan, the former CIA director, has voted communist. (He admitted that he voted for the Communist Party USA presidential candidate Gus Hall in 1976.) I was dismissed as having made something up. Bill Maher sarcastically responded that he didn't recall Mao having been on any ballot.
On each of these issues – all the issues for which I was booed – right and left have different perceptions of reality. That – even more so than differing values – makes the left-right divide unbridgeable. When you cannot agree on what is real, there is no possible bridging of the gulf.
The left believes the president colluded with Russia to win the 2016 election. The reality is that there was no collusion. This is the conclusion of the Mueller report, but still, the left doesn't accept it.
The left is certain President Trump said the neo-Nazis are "very fine people" when referring to the protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia. The right is certain the president didn't say there are good neo-Nazis any more than he said there are good Antifa members. When he said there were "very fine people on both sides," he was referring to those demonstrating on behalf of keeping Confederate statues and those opposed. See "The Charlottesville Lie" by CNN analyst Steve Cortes.
The left believes socialism is economically superior to capitalism. But the reality is that only capitalism has lifted billions of people out of poverty. This is, therefore, not an opinion divide – "You prefer capitalism. I prefer socialism" – but a reality divide.
The reason this is so frightening is that it means one side has lost its grip on reality. If half of this country cannot distinguish truth from falsehood, that is not a good sign for the nation's future. On that point, ironically, left and right can agree.