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Tuesday, November 29

Tante Sarah, OBM

This week is the Sheloshim of our dear Tante Sarah, better known as Sarah Beck, a trade name for a Sheitel Macher (wig stylist) for generations of Stamford Hill ladies.
As is said about Soroh Imenu: "Bas 100 KeBas 20", her life was one long story of sacrifice and suffering.
Born during WWII, she came into a world that was in turmoil, which made a lasting impression on her future life. She never really settled down after having to move five times in nearly as many different countries on two cintinents before reaching her tenth birthday.
Sarah was born in a refugee camp on the Swiss border with France, barely a year after her grandmother - after whom she was named - was deported in broad daylight from Belgium to the infamous death factory called Auschwitz. 
In a way, she was instrumental in saving her whole family from the same fate, even before she was born: the Swiss authorities would have returned this group of 'illegal immigrants', were it not for the fact that there was a heavily pregnant woman amongst them.
After a short while living in the nascent State of Israel, she moved to Letchworth Garden City in the UK.  When Reb Shmelke Pinter זצ"ל heard the daughter of his Landsnan - they both hailed from Vienna, Austria - attends the local non-Jewish school, he dispatched Rebbe Dominitz זצ"ל to 'hijack' her and bring her back with him to attend the Yesode HaTorah school. After appearing unannounced at their front door he managed to convince her parents that their daughter will be well looked after.
Rebbe Pinter put her up in his home for quite some time until the Beck family moved to Stamford Hill.
She eventually helped out in the school office with administration and also worked as a teacher, but this all changed when she realised how her parents were struggling to make a living in their new surroundings.
She started to work from home as a Sheitel Macher and so was able to not only support her war-weary parents but also a new generation of nephews and nieces.  Tante Sarah was extremely family minded, she delighted in taking us to the West End shopping and she beamed with joy when she could outfit us with the latest version of sailor's suits. Her dedication to the family was legendary, as is evident from the many photos in her rich archive, spanning decades of Nachas.
Her Emunah Pshutah and Emunas Chachomim came to the fore when she was faced with the many tests that life threw at her, especially during the time when her life hung in the balance after suffering double kidney failure.  
After marrying Rabbi Mordechai Alter Goldberg שליט"א from Yerusholayim, who went on to become the Safra Dedayna in the London Beth Din.
The Goldberg's placed the education of their children at the top of their priority list and indeed Am Yisroel can be proud with these Doros of the upstanding, refined and courteous children and grandchildren of the extended family.
In these wintry weeks, we learn in the Sedrah that Yitzchok Ovinu brought his new wife Rivkah into his mother Soroh's tent and was consoled when the three miracles - that disappeared when his mother was Niftar - re-occurred. One of the Nissim was that the candles burned from Friday night until Friday afternoons the following week.
This year, this writer's family was in Kiryat Gat for the Shabbos after Yom Kippur and when my wife finsihed candlelighting she said 'Gut Shabbos' and just then the candles went out.  I quickly lit the candles and forgot all about it, until a couple of days later wehn we were informed that Sarah departed this world.  Yes, she doted over us when we were young and expressed her love and affection to us her nephews when we already garndchildren of our own - just like a matriarch worrying about her flock.
This is our wish and hope, that Sarah bas Mordechai Elyokim (Getzel Beck) will continue doing what she loved most: making others happy; with your place up in heaven near all the Tzadikim and Tzadekos, implore and beg in fron of the Kise haKovod that we merit the coming of Moshiach, speedily in our days.
Her nephew, MBD

Thursday, November 24

וויאזוי ס'זעט אויס אין ענגליש

וויאזוי ס'זעט אויס אין ענגליש

ווייבוואס הערט זיךהאסט עפעס א גוט ווערטעל פאר מיר?
מאןאיך האב נישט קיין צייט יעצטאיך בין אין כולל...
ווייבחחחגוטהאסט נאך א ווערטעל?

 א פייג און א הויקער =  a date and a hunch
נישט געשטויגען און נישט געפלויגען
נישט געשטאננען און נישט געגאנגען
זאלל עס בלייבען בייא זייא
אזוי ווי ס'קריסטלט זיך אזוי יידלט זיך
פאר א נער ווייזט מען נישט קיין האלבע ארבייט
א יאהר מיט א מיטוואך
כ'האב דיר אין לויוויטש

וויאזוי ס'זעט אויס אין ענגליש
Eggsterday = אייער נעכטען
Empty egg = ליידיג גייער
I packed you by the deed = געפאקט ביי די מעשה
It's doing itself on tables and on benches = ס'טוט זיך אויף טישן און בענק
I whistle at you however big you are = כ'פייף אויף דיר ווא גרויס דו ביסט
It's holidays in the week = ס'איז יו"ט אין די וואכען
I have you in the attic = כ'האב דיך אין בוידעם
I'm laughing myself out = כ'לאך מיך אויס
I'm driving on Monroe = כ'פאר אויף מאנרא
If u want to remember, piggy it over = אויב די וואלס געדענקן חזר איבער
I'm gonna put u over! = כ'וועל דיך איבערלייגן
Stop being such an empty walker = הער אויף זיין אזא ליידיגייער
Ripped off animal = אפגעריסענע חיה
Chopping a life = האקט א לעבען

It's me good = ס'מיר גוט

It's worth a plague in the ground = ווערט א מכה אין די אדמה

A date and a radish = א פייג אין רעטעך

It's not risen and not flew = נישט געשטויגן אין נישט געפלויגן

Talking to the thing = רעדט צו דער זאך

U're twirled well = ביסט גוט פאדרייט

Its turning itself a world = ס'דרייט זיך א וועלט

Hard to believe, but true.

Communicated: "WE DO LIVE IN SUCH A DUMB COUNTRY!!!"
By Jeff Foxworthy: Hard to believe, but true. 
If plastic water bottles are okay, but plastic bags are banned, - you might live in a nation (state) that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If you can get arrested for hunting or fishing without a license, but not for entering and remaining in the country illegally - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If you have to get your parents' permission to go on a field trip or to take an aspirin in school, but not to get an abortion - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If you MUST show your identification to board an airplane, cash a check, buy liquor, or check out a library book and rent a video, but not to vote for who runs the government - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If the government wants to prevent stable, law-abiding citizens from owning gun magazines that hold more than ten rounds, but gives twenty F-16 fighter jets to the crazy new leaders in Egypt - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If, in the nation's largest city, you can buy two 16-ounce sodas, but not one 24-ounce soda, because 24-ounces of a sugary drink might make you fat - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If an 80-year-old woman who is confined to a wheelchair or a three-year-old girl can be strip-searched by the TSA at the airport, but a woman in a burka or a hijab is only subject to having her neck and head searched - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If your government believes that the best way to eradicate trillions of dollars of debt is to spend trillions more - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If a seven-year-old boy can be thrown out of school for saying his teacher is "cute" but hosting a sexual exploration or diversity class in grade school is perfectly acceptable - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If hard work and success are met with higher taxes and more government regulation and intrusion while not working is rewarded with Food Stamps, WIC checks, Medicaid benefits, subsidized housing, and free cell phones - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If you pay your mortgage faithfully, denying yourself the newest big-screen TV, while your neighbor buys iPhones, time shares, a wall-sized do-it-all plasma screen TV and new cars, and the government forgives his debt when he defaults on his mortgage - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
If being stripped of your Constitutional right to defend yourself makes you more "safe" according to the government - you might live in a nation that was founded by geniuses but is run by idiots. 
THINK BEFORE YOU VOTE IN ALL UPCOMING ELECTIONS. 
MOST OF THE IDIOTS RUNNING THIS COUNTRY SAY ONE THING AND DO THE OPPOSITE KNOWING THAT THE PEOPLE WHO VOTED THEM IN DO NOT PAY ATTENTION LET'S SEE IF I GOT THIS RIGHT!!! IF YOU CROSS THE NORTH KOREAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU GET 12 YEARS HARD LABOR. 
IF YOU CROSS THE IRANIAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU ARE DETAINED INDEFINITELY. 
IF YOU CROSS THE AFGHAN BORDER ILLEGALLY, YOU GET SHOT. 
IF YOU CROSS THE SAUDI ARABIAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU WILL BE JAILED. 
IF YOU CROSS THE CHINESE BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU MAY NEVER BE HEARD FROM AGAIN. 
IF YOU CROSS THE VENEZUELAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU WILL BE BRANDED A SPY AND YOUR FATE WILL BE SEALED. 
IF YOU CROSS THE CUBAN BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU WILL BE THROWN INTO POLITICAL PRISON TO ROT. 
IF YOU CROSS THE U.S. 
BORDER ILLEGALLY YOU GET... 
A JOB, A DRIVER’S LICENSE, SOCIAL SECURITY CARD, WELFARE, FOOD STAMPS, CREDIT CARDS, SUBSIDIZED RENT OR A LOAN TO BUY A HOUSE, FREE EDUCATION, FREE HEALTH CARE, A LOBBYIST IN WASHINGTON, BILLIONS OF DOLLARS WORTH OF PUBLIC DOCUMENTS PRINTED IN YOUR LANGUAGE, THE RIGHT TO CARRY YOUR COUNTRY'S FLAG WHILE YOU PROTEST THAT YOU DON'T GET ENOUGH RESPECT AND IN MANY INSTANCES, YOU CAN VOTE. 
I JUST WANTED TO MAKE SURE I HAD A FIRM GRASP ON THE SITUATION!!!
PLEASE KEEP THIS GOING!!!
FORWARD TO ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY IT'S TIME TO WAKE UP AMERICA!!!

First published: 24/05/2016 on Jewish P.O.S.T. - the Jewish Voice for the People Of South Tottenham

Wednesday, November 23

ShabbatUK: Fifty Weeks and counting!

There are just fifty weeks to go until ShabbatUK 2017. Time is fast running out for making your preparations. 

If you still don’t have any plans for this wonderful Shabbat, click here to see what events are taking place. It’s not too late to join in the celebrations (or if you’re playing host, to squeeze in another invitation). 

ShabbatUK is just around the corner, (or just the other side of Sukkos, to be precise). 

Here are a couple of tips that will put you on the path to success:
 - If you haven’t started planning how you will be part of this gigantic step forward for Yiddishkeit (Lit. Judaism), what are you waiting for?
Enrol into one of the many learning sessions that are springing up in your area - geared to coincide with this communal event. For more information contact your Start Your Day the Torah Way in your area (if you can’t find the details, contact me by eMail or on my mobile number as shown below).
- Give 'em a taster: invite your as-yet- non-Frum neighbours, work colleagues or distant family members into your Sukkah on Chol HaMo’ed (the in-between days between the first and the final days of the Yomtef).

The benefits of doing so is twofold:
a) They will not travel on Shabbos or Yom Tov and
b) You will be able to give them a non-restricted experience of how it feels to be with Frummers, without too many strings attached...

Here is an idea that can easily be implemented: Put up a “ShabbatUK” poster in your Sukkah, to act as a reminder - and to remind others - to prepare for it.

One of the many ways to begin the ShabbatUK experience is to book a place at the Great Challah Bake follow the advertisements in the press and online.

If any of the above doesn’t seem to work for you, just add something to your own Shabbos  experience, be it either during Davening (prayers), Leyning (Reading of the Bible) the Se’udos (meals)  like a Devar Torah (learning) or Zemiros (songs) or enliven someone else’s Shabbos by paying a short  visit. 

For more information click here

Wishing you a very good year,

Tuesday, November 22

The Key to Jewish Survival - Part XX

The Key to Jewish Survival - An article for the month of Tishrei, in Memory of R’ Meir ben R’ Mordechai Zvi HaCohen Zt”l
מ ק ו ה is an Acronym for מקוה (Mikvah) "ואותנו קדשת מכל העמים” - “And You Have Sanctified Us of All the Nations”.
There are three partners in the creation of Man: G-d, his father and mother (הקב"ה אביו ואמו).
The Hebrew word for Man, אדם (Adam): א, the first letter, refers to אלוקים (G-d), אלופו של עולם (the Almighty). The Hebrew letter, א (Alef), is made up of a slanted 'ו' (Vav) and two 'י' (yod). Together, in Gematrya (Jewish numerology), they equal 26, which is equal to the value of the Divine name of G-d: י – (ק) – ו – (ק) = 26 [1].
אדם – the numeric value of the second two letters דם(dam, which means blood) = 44, the Hebrew words for mother and father, אם (Em) and אב (Av) are equal to 44.
From G-d: facial features, spirit and soul, mind and intelligence, speech, sight, hearing, and gait
From his father: a brain, bones, tendons, fingernails, and the white of the eye.
From his mother: flesh, hair, skin, and the pupil of the eye (according to Pirkei D'Rabbi Eliezer)
Nothing elevates G-d as the principle “partner”, as much as the mitzvah of immersion in a Mikvah. Aside from the fact that the waters from above (rain waters) and those from below converge in the Mikvah waters, indeed, the very immersion in a stooped and crouching position, completely surrounded by water, intensifies the feeling of the fragility of life within us, and shouts from the depths of the silence the obliteration of man’s pride, his surrender to and recognition of his Creator, at exactly the point of connection between life and death – one opposite the other is the cessation within the water, and the exit into a new life as a baby exits from its mother’s womb[2], where it was surrounded by water.
This is a mitzvah that through its performance the body approaches the spirit and connects at its peak. In preparation for it, we are commanded regarding pure and simple bodily functions, and in the actual immersion one can sense a spiritual uplifting. If we were to imagine the mitzvoth by colors; for example, red for Kashruth and saving of a human life, blue for tzitzit and so on. The mitzvah of immersion is transparent (as water), a primordial mitzvah with no color, which is located at the highest rungs of holiness and purity.
The universe, as an infant was surrounded with water. The waters gathered to one place and the dry land came out of the waters similar to the exit from the Mikvah – thus the dry land was created. When the land sinned and produced trees bearing fruit and not fruit trees, as per
G-d’s commandment, it was not punished. However, at the time of Noah, when man strayed,
G-d took account with Man and with earth because it produced crops quickly and Man was idle for he had no need to work hard (the crops produced by the earth were sufficient to provide sustenance for 40 years) and he sinned. In order to atone for its sin the earth was once more immersed in the waters of the Mikvah, in the flood waters that covered it, and it was restored as new and different.
40 - a number that symbolizes a type of perfection, after which one passes to a new perspective: immersion in 40 se-ah סאה (a biblical-era liquid measure) of water in the Mikvah is purifying.
Moses stayed in heaven for 40 days and nights. Only afterwards did he become known as “a man of G-d”.
The flood waters came down for 40 days and nights and transferred the world to a new stage of purity.
The foetus receives all of its organs in his mother’s womb after 40 days. From the 41st day on, the woman is already called mother (Em – אם) = 41.
אב (Father) – Meaning; the א equal to 1 becomes a father when there are 2 (ב) only from the moment the child is born.
The life of the foetus begins from the third day of conception: On the first day, the foetus receives six Nitzotzot, on the second six more and on the third another six, together 18 – חי (Chai – life). (According to the New Zohar).
________________________________________
[1] The middle Hebrew letter ל, the tallest of all the letters also indicates the Divine name, as it is built of the letters ‘ו of numerical value 6 and ‘כ of numerical value 20 = 26
[2] The Hebrew word for womb, רחם (Rechem) has a mutual root with the words for mercy רחמים (Rachamim) and tomorrow מחר (Machar) - How much mercy does the foetus require when in the womb, and for tomorrow when it leaves for life.

Compiled and edited from articles of Rabbi Imanuel Ravad, founder of the Mikvah – Tikvah organization ravad@mikvatikva.org © All the rights are protected, October 26, 2016 – 5776. It is a mitzvah and one is permitted to copy to benefit the public, not for commercial purposes.

Monday, November 21

May Day in Antwerp Waters

May Day in Antwerp Waters

Heavy rains have turned Antwerp into a wetland, with torrential rains accompanied by thunder and lightning.  Roads were turned into rivers, with vehicles slowly making their way through rushing waters and pedestrians had to navigate the rivulets that formed all over the pavements.

The rainy season in Antwerp usually runs between the first of September until the 31st of August, so it was not surprising for rain to fall so late in the spring.  However the ferocity and unrelenting downpour caused many in the largest Belgian port town to react with worry.  Most of its citizens cannot remember such enormous amounts of water descending on the city. 

The fact that its sewer system hails from the late nineteenth century, combined with the development of the subterranean Tram network - or the 'M', as it's called in local parlance - couldn't cope with the watery onslaught didn't help; water was everywhere.  People were seen struggling with household pumps, trying to stave off flooding of the communal basements in apartment blocks, whose inhabitants were threatened by electrical outages and antiquated fire engine trucks were seen rushing to and fro, seemingly trying to outrush the raindrops.  Out of the 1,750 calls that were handled by the emergency services, only 1,500 were dealt with, for lack of equipment to deal with such an unforeseen storm.

The motorways around Antwerp, as in the whole Flanders region didn't fare better.  The flat open space that gives the low countries their name allowed the wind and sleet a free hand, tossing the smaller cars about on the motorway. 

Travelers to and from Antwerp are advised to take precautionary measures, especially this weekend, if reports from the Belgian meteorological office are to be taken seriously: Monday's gloomy weather has been forecast to be repeated on Shabbos with the tail end of the storm to last until Sunday next week.

Published in the Jewish Tribune 02/06/2016

First published online on 03/06/2016 on Jewish P.O.S.T. - the Jewish Voice for the People Of South Tottenham

An Article for the Month of Cheshvan - In Memory of Our Mother Rachel


בס"ד
The date of her passing – the 11th of Cheshvan - י"א חשון
Rachel was endowed with the virtues of modesty and silence.[1]
Rachel and Leah grew up without their mother who had passed away.[2]
Jacob[3] arrives at Lavan’s house after staying 14 years in the Yeshiva of Shem and Ever, where he learned Torah. When he met Rachel, a handsome and beautiful woman, he knew she was meant to be his wife, and the next seven years pass with anticipation to their marriage while Rachel embroidered and prepared her wedding gown.
Leah on the other hand, even before Jacob arrived at the Lavan’s house, knew that she was Esau’s intended, as the oldest was paired with the oldest (Leah to Esau) and the youngest to the youngest (Rachel to Jacob) and on hearing of his acts and evil deeds she prayed and cried ‘til her eyelashes fell out (and Leah's eyes were soft). And she begged G-d that she be blessed with a righteous groom at that she not end up with Esau. And she suddenly heard that Esau sold his birthright to Jacob and her hope to marry Jacob was closer than ever.
Jacob taught Rachel the laws of family purity, candle lighting and challah; the three basic commandments unique to women in establishing a Jewish Home. Since he suspected Lavan’s deception, he arranged with her that on their wedding night he would ask her the laws, and her answers would be the signs that in fact it is Rachel.
Lavan required partners to his deception, he gathers the locals and reminds them that the plenty and the blessings in the drinking water, food and sheep, began when Jacob arrived. With their help, Leah will arrive at the chuppah (wedding canopy and ceremony) and in order to marry Rachel, as well, Jacob will have to remain an additional seven years and the blessings will continue.
They collaborate with him and sing all night “Ha Laya, Ha Laya” (meaning he deserves such a bride - לַיָאֶה מגיע כלה כזו). If Jacob would protest against them, they could defend themselves by saying that they hinted to him all night, saying: “she is Leah, she is Leah” according to Medrash Raba Chapter 70, section 19.
The lofty highlight from that hour until the end of time, was our Mother Rachel. The minute she saw her father preparing Leah for the chuppah, and she understood how embarrassed and humiliated she would feel, in her modesty and silence she magnanimously surpassed her virtues in a manner unlike any other.
“And she said to her (Leah to Rachel) Is it a small matter for you to take my husband? And would you take my son's mandrakes also?" (Genesis 30:15)
Leah’s grievance against Rachel, years after their marriage, sheds precious light and intensifies the luminous soul of Rachel, who gave her soul for Leah, when she taught her the laws that Jacob taught her, family purity, challah and candle lighting and did it in such a natural manner, without letting her know of the signs that she and Jacob had agreed upon. Leah never knew of Rachel’s sacrifice and devotion on her behalf.
Rachel, that night, surpassed her virtues nobly. Had she cried out against the wrong done to her, the evening would have become a fiery quarrel and disagreement with strife of shame and disgrace, which at once, Rachel prevented with her concession and silence. Rabbi Dessler explains in his book, “Michtav MeEliyahu”, when a person surpasses his virtues and prevents a rift and divisiveness and creates peace and unity, it is there that G-d’s presence is found.  Therefore, if a person overrides his virtues, it is atonement for his misdeeds. He becomes another person, and his lot is changed with a golden opportunity to ask G-d for a blessing. The extent of the difficulty of restraint and devotion to avoid hurting others also opens the door to the greatest reward.
And Jacob, despite his grief and disappointment that it was not Rachel still increased his love for her "and he loved ... Rachel from Leah" (Genesis29:30) meaning from the story of Rachel giving the signs and her dedication to Leah, his love and appreciation for her increased.
“And G-d remembered Rachel and opened her womb” he remembered her for her transferring of the signs and blessed her with the creation of a womb and as such she is a partner to the blessings of the 12 tribes.
Her grave site has become one of the centers of prayer for generations, and even the other nations knew this and it says “by the rivers of Babylon there we sat down and wept” the crying began after the destruction of Jerusalem but captors received orders from above to run the Jewish captives who were bound, not allowing them to stop on the way at the tomb of Rachel; then their cries and prayers there, may change their destiny for the better. Therefore, the first time they were allowed to sit, to rest and cry of their bitter lot after the malicious run, when they arrived at the rivers of Babylon. Only then “we sat down and we wept”.
And it is told, the forefathers and mothers went to appease G-d’s anger over Menashe’s placement of an idol in the Temple. Our father, Abraham, who sacrificed his life when he entered the fiery furnace and publicized the name of G-d in the world, came. Our father, Isaac, came with a pure offering, prepared and ready to sacrifice on the altar, and Jacob who was the chosen among the forefathers, the only one whose name is engraved on the Seat of Glory. They all tried to appease unsuccessfully until Rachel arrived and said: Ruler of the Universe, I brought trouble into my house when all the work that Jacob did in my father’s house was for me, and when I was ready to come to the chuppah and they brought my sister instead, and it wasn’t enough that I was silent, but also gave her my signs. If they brought your trouble (idolatry) into your home, you should also be quiet for them. G-d immediately said to Rachel, you have learned defense well, and there is merit to your actions and your fairness. G-d was appeased and his anger at Israel subsided.
King Saul and Johnathon his son[4] were descendants of Rachel.  There was a wonderful friendship between David and Johnathan to the point where Johnathan was prepared to give up the crown for David. King Saul and his sons were killed at war, and in King David’s eulogy of Johnathan (descendant Rachel) he adds “your love for me was greater than women’s love”. He wants to say: The power of your concession, Johnathan, “my brother” to give up the crown that you were supposed to inherit from your father, King Saul, stems from the power and merit of Rachel (your grandmother) who relinquished on behalf of Leah (my grandmother) on her wedding night.
When Jacob returned to the Land of Israel with his entire family, his flock and his possessions he meets Esau, who asks him who are they to you? Jacob answers him: ”the children who G-d endowed to your servant.”
He uses the Hebrew word חנן – each of those three Hebrew letters are an acronym for challah - חלה, ner -נר  and nida - נידה, referring once more to the three basic commandments unique to women of challah, lighting candles and family purity; the basis for family life among the Jewish people.
By observance of the mitzvah of immersion in the mikveh, which involves relinquishing the closest connection during the banned period, we merit the virtue of Rachel and are worthy of the blessing of G-d upon us and our descendants.
By Rabbi I. Ravad, founder of the Mikvah-Tikvah organization  ravad@mikvtikva.org  ________________________________________
[1] She imparted these virtues to her offspring: Benjamin, King Saul and his son Jonathan and Queen Esther
[2] Lavan’s wife’s name: Adina
[3] His additional name: Yisrael, from which the nation of Israel begins based on the forefathers and mothers who are hinted at in the name. According to the Hebrew letters of Israel  י ש ר א ל:
י –  יצחק, יעקב (Isaac and Jacob), ש – שרה (Sarah),  ר-  רחל  ,רבקה (Rivka and Rachel), א- אברהם (Abraham),
ל – לאה  (Leah)
In addition, the total number of letters in all of the Hebrew names of the forefathers and mothers is 26, which equals the numerical value of the Divine name of G-d (י-ק-ו-ק = 26).

[4] By Harav Shlomo Levinstein

Thursday, November 17

Rabbi Moshe Davis, Ahavas Torah, South Tottenham:

By Rabbi Moshe Davis, Yeshivas Ahavas Torah, South Tottenham, North London

Food for thought, regarding today's events in Eretz Yisroel 

See the commentary of the Kli Yokor on Chapter 8 of Shemos (Exodus): 

Amalek only had power over us when there was Machlokes...  

The message is crystal clear: "When we're unitedthey have no power over us!

Let's increase peace, piece by piece.

First published on 18/01/2016 on Jewish P.O.S.T. - the Jewish Voice for the People Of South Tottenham

Elections in the Holy Land (aka Israel)

Jews all over the world are waking up the a bitter sweet reality: 'Bibi' won again and by a fair margin over Likud's nearest contender.
What we can learn from this victory (or loss, if looking from the perspective of Likud's opposition) is that people in Israel are sick and tired of politics.
They have witnessed the mud slinging, dirty tricks and outright lies that were bandied around and took a pragmatic decision: better the devil we know.
Whilst this is a forgiveable human fallacy, the other ones are not: the amount of money, energy and hype that was wasted on this twentieth election campaign could well have covered the Pesach (=Passover) expenses of the middle-to-lower classes of society, who are literally living in poverty in the Holy Land.
King David says: "From my enemies, you teach me to be clever" (Psalms).  This is the first time that the Arab factions came together, with the intent to grow their influence in politics - especially the contested Arab-Israeli land disputes.  This unity must have taken quite some power brokering and peace making, to ensure that the bickering and differences of opinion don't stand in the way of progress.
The day will come when the Charedi parties will realise that in order to help their constituents, the unification of Agudah, Shas, Yachad and other Torah-true factions is in order.  It's a crying shame that this day will dawn after the Arabs have shown the way.
Against the arguments that more parties mean more votes, that more choice means more coverage and any other logical reasoning, let me say this:
GOne are the days when politicians, Rabbi and their cronies (in whichever order you fancy) can dictate the Charedi agenda.  The new generation is fed up with the power struggles between Yeshivah-leavers or unemployed crooks, who have found in the Frum electorate easy prey.  If they want quick money, let them go abroad and wander the Chinese outbacks for a good deal.  Leave the holy Yeshivahleit (alumni) alone and let them voice their opinions unrestricted.  Yes, in the digital age when anyone can access the multitude of news outlets, there is no pulling the wool over the eyes anymore.
Instead of arranging or protecting jobs for the nearest and dearest, the politicians should ensure there are enough workplacements for the workseekers, that there is ample space in the education system and that hospitals have the resources to treat the Heimishe Olam with dignity.
The picture could have been totally different: 4.14% from the parties that didn't cross the threshold (Yachad, U'Bizchutan, Na Nach etc.), together with the blank votes.  Add to it the combined votes from Shas and Agudah (UTJ): 10.97% and you have a nice 15.11%, coming in third - a comfortable place thank you.  Add to it the 10% of Charedi voters who stayed home due to the infighting and the UTP (my proposed acronym for United Torah Parties) would easily have been at the helm of a Jewish government in a Jewish populated land that has been promised to the Jewish people all this time ago.
This in no way means that a milestone would have ben reached; the goal of every Torah-true Jew is the belief in the coming of the anointed: Moshiach, may he bring us peace, unity and prosperity speedily in our days and let us say Omayne!

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First published on 18/03/2016 on Jewish P.O.S.T. - the Jewish Voice for the People Of South Tottenham