05 March 2021

MOSHE UNMASKED

21 Adar 5781
Erev Shabbat Kodesh
Parashat Ki Tisa - Parah 

Are there any spiritual implications involved in the masking of human beings?  Our parshah does shed some light (pun intended) on this issue.

When Moses descended from Mount Sinai - with the two Tablets of the Testimony in the hand of Moses as he descended from the mountain - Moses did not know that the skin of his face had become radiant when He had spoken to him.  Aaron and all the Children of Israel saw Moses, and behold! - the skin of his face had become radiant; and they feared to approach him.  Moses called to them, and Aaron and all the leaders of the assembly returned to him, and Moses would speak to them.  After that, all the Children of Israel would approach; he would command them regarding everything that Hashem had spoken to him on Mount Sinai.

Moses finished speaking with them and placed a mask on his face.  When Moses would come before Hashem to speak with Him, he would remove the mask until his departure; then he would leave and tell the Children of Israel whatever he had been commanded.  When the Children of Israel saw Moses' face, that Moses' face had become radiant, Moses put the mask back on his face, until he came to speak with Him.  (Shemot 34.29-35) 

CommentaryAnd placed a mask on his face.  Moses wore the mask to spare the people the embarrassment of seeing how they had so deprived themselves of closeness to God that they could not even look at his prophet (Be'er Moshe).

When Moses taught the word of God to the people, he did not wear the mask, so that nothing would interpose between God's teaching and the people of Israel.  Then, he would put the mask back on and wear it until God spoke to him again.   (Source: Stone Edition Chumash)

And clearly, Moshe did not wear the mask when speaking with HKB"H.  If the mask was an actual barrier between the people and God's instructions, how much more so would it be a barrier during prayer when one enters the actual Presence of HKB"H.

From this, we can understand that it is permissible to wear a mask in order to spare the feelings of other people, for example, in the public domain among those who believe their own health is at risk from those who do not mask.  On the other hand, it would seem to be impermissible to wear a mask while in prayer or when giving over words of Torah, even in the public domain.

I would go even further and say that anyone who has so little faith in HKB"H that they believe their health depends on a piece of paper covering the faces of his co-religionists, should be the ones to remain outside or at home during davening and let the unmasked hold sway in the synagogues and yeshivahs. 

~ SHABBAT  SHALOM ~

04 March 2021

GUEST POST: "Lessons From the Golden Calf"

20 Adar 5781

Lessons From the Golden Calf

This week we read about the original golden calf. Many have compared the cult-like worship of masks, medical products dubiously referred to as vaccines, and establishment "experts" to the golden calf. This comparison is more apt than people realize.

We tend to look down on ancient idolaters as primitive fools. They were nothing of the sort. Idolatry was deeply intertwined with the prevailing science and philosophy of the times, and its proponents were intellectually sophisticated. Those who believe that people today are intellectually advanced compared to the people of ancient times are sorely mistaken. We compare favorably to them only in the realm of technology, and only because we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us. Intellectually, religiously, and morally we have nothing to brag about.

The Rambam in Moreh Nevuchim writes at length about ancient idolatry, based on their own books. The dominant belief at the time was that celestial bodies controlled the world, and Man's survival depended on worshiping nature. They believed that physical idols could draw power from these celestial bodies to influence world events or give people prophetic dreams. They built temples for their presumed life-preserving rituals, offered sacrifices, planted idolatrous trees to draw power from the stars, and committed immoral acts while planting fields.

Idolatrous practices were outlined in scientific books about nature and agriculture. Science and idolatry were one and the same. Challenging idolatry was synonymous with challenging established science; it was considered a threat to public health and safety, and dealt with accordingly.

The Rambam explains in great detail that a high percentage of mitzvos in the Torah were given specifically to counter this and other false ideologies. Anything that smacked of idolatry or nature-worship was strictly prohibited, and the Jews were given positive commandments to do the exact opposite of the prevailing "science".

They were also warned that engaging in these presumed life-preserving practices would only have the opposite effect. Idolatry would lead to plague, drought, famine, poverty, death, and destruction. Keeping the Torah – doing the polar opposite of the "science" of the time – would bring rain, prosperity, health, and protection.

This was demonstrated over and over again in real life as the nation vacillated between keeping the Torah and idolatry, but it never really clicked. Old habits die hard, especially when it means going against the majority. People will suffer almost anything to be accepted.

With this introduction in mind, let's examine the story of the golden calf.

Moshe ascended Har Sinai to receive the Torah, and was supposed to return after forty days. Due to a misunderstanding of when the clock started ticking, the Jews believed the forty days had passed and Moshe was gone. The Erev Rav declared that Moshe was dead, and the Jews needed an immediate replacement to lead them. This replacement needed to be an intermediary between the Jews and God, just as Moshe was.

This replacement needed to be an idol.

The commentators all grapple with how the Jewish people, who had experienced the highest degree of human revelation just forty days ago, could fashion a golden calf and declare "This is the God that took you out of Egypt." The very idea is ludicrous. How could anyone believe that an idol that was minutes old did anything for them in the past?

When we understand what idolatry really was, it's far more sensible. The Jews still believed in God and everything that had happened. The golden calf was intended not to replace God, but to draw His power down into the world. This was an entirely accepted belief, one they had grown up with and experienced all their lives. In a time of crisis, it was natural to fall back on these deeply ingrained ideas, which they had only recently been taught to oppose.

So the first important comparison between the present situation and the golden calf is that in a time of uncertainty or crisis, people will naturally follow the most familiar, comfortable path.

This brings us to the next parallel. In hindsight, it is obvious to us that worshiping the golden calf was incredibly foolish. How could it be that the dor de'ah, the most enlightened generation of Jews, could so quickly succumb to such folly?

The answer is fear. When people are afraid they do not think rationally, and they will take extreme actions to assuage their fears – often at the expense of everything else. A day earlier the notion of worshiping a golden calf would have been preposterous, but once the Jews were afraid they immediately panicked and rushed to do it.

Compare to the current situation. In hindsight, when sanity is restored to the human race, people will look back and wonder how so many people could have behaved so foolishly. We are not the most enlightened generation, but no generation has been more educated and had greater access to information. Yet so many intelligent people quickly turned into hysterical zombies, taking extreme actions at the expense of everything else – just to assuage their fears. The outcome will be no better than what the golden calf turned out to be.

The third parallel is directly linked to the fear and panic. The Jews could not wait an extra moment to create the golden calf. What would have been the big deal to sleep on it, organize a panel to debate the pros and cons of the idea, and have a committee investigate if they counted the forty days correctly?

No. They had to create the golden calf now. Why? Because it was a matter of life and death. If Moshe was dead, then creating a replacement was an urgent need. It was an emergency situation. Otherwise they might die of thirst and hunger, or from the elements, or from the snakes and scorpions in the desert, or from an attack by enemies. It was a choice between creating a golden calf or the extinction of the Jewish people.

If only they could have calmed down, deliberated, and waited a few more hours, we would have been spared thousands of years of suffering that continues to this day. If only they could have realized that being calm and deliberating was actually a third valid choice.

Today there is the same phenomenon. We are being relentlessly urged that if we don't take an experimental "vaccine" today we will die a horrible death from covid tomorrow and bring down the rest of humanity with us. There is no time to think or deliberate. No decent person who cares about human life would dare think and deliberate, we are told. This is an emergency! It's a war on covid! Either you are a friend or you are a foe!

This leads to several more parallels. We would imagine that the suggestion to create a golden calf was quite controversial at the time. There were many righteous Jews who opposed the idea, and quite likely a healthy majority that was seriously disturbed by the idea even if they were unsure. How did the idolaters succeed in pushing the idea through so quickly and without opposition?

First of all, they engaged in brutal censorship. No less than Hur, the son of Miriam, objected to the idea, and they murdered him. We might have expected the righteous Jews to immediately rise up and avenge his death, but just the opposite occurred. They acquiesced. They were intimidated. The good guys lacked strong leadership and were unsure of themselves, while the bad guys were organized and determined. This enabled the bad guys to easily prevail, even though they were an extreme minority pushing a radical agenda. They made an example of Hur, no one else dared confront them, and the idolaters conquered the masses just like that.

This describes the current situation to a tee.

Next the Erev Rav idolaters needed to convince the masses to join them. This was a big change. The fear was powerful, but so was the inner turmoil about worshiping a golden calf. The Jews needed reassurance that it was okay, that it was more than okay, that it was the greatest idea.

The idolaters knew exactly what to do. They approached Aharon, the Kohen Gadol, and made him an offer he couldn't refuse. Aharon played along, hoping to buy time until Moshe returned, but was unsuccessful. His participation provided critical legitimacy, a de facto rabbinic stamp of approval that no one would dare challenge.

The same propaganda tactic was vital to get religious Jews on board with the golden calf of today. Establishment rabbis have abused their positions and the public trust to become spokesmen for idolatrous behavior. One wonders what offers the purveyors of the golden calf made these rabbis, and if they were even slightly tempted to refuse. Considering the shallowness, deceit, and bullying that pervades the rabbinic pronouncements, it seems they needed little encouragement to jump on the bandwagon. At least Aharon tried to slow it down.

There was no classical Torah debate that covered the various sides of the issue in depth. These establishment rabbis have not been made to respond to serious questions. The public was simply bombarded with declarations from so-called "leading rabbis" (a propaganda term that has never been defined), and the social pressure took on a life of its own from there.

This brings us to the sixth parallel. It wasn't enough to just make the golden calf kosher, or even a religious obligation. They needed to eliminate any nagging reservations people might have harbored about worshiping it. After all, the Jews understood that if they got this wrong, they were going to be in very big trouble with God.

The Erev Rav needed to make it fun.

Party time! Music, dancing, an ecstatic celebration! The idolaters wore down people's moral reservations with fear, they nudged them forward with peer pressure, and they eliminated the last bit of hesitation by replacing the fear with ecstasy. How they manipulated people's emotions to drag them down from the greatest of heights to the lowest of depths!

In present times we have seen exactly the same methods of manipulation. How can it be that so many people would line up to get injected with an experimental drug and not display the slightest concern? Even if they were convinced by the "science", the "experts", and the "rabbis" that it was safe, there is still so much that is unknown and no recourse if something goes wrong. How could any reasonable person not be even a little nervous?

Not only are they not nervous, they are ecstatic. They are high. The Erev Rav have turned an experimental medical procedure with grave risks into a big fun party. After a relentless diet of fear, everyone wants to join a big fun party. The doctors are dancing. The libations are flowing. Everyone is celebrating. How can this golden calf not be a good thing? Who would want to spoil the fun by worrying?

As the Rambam explains in Moreh Nevuchim, ancient idolaters convinced parents to sacrifice their children to Molech in exactly the same way. The prevailing science of the time was that a child needed to be offered so that the other children would be protected. A mother's natural instinct is to fight like a tiger to protect her child. The idolaters used fear to wear down her natural instinct and actually corrupt it; destroying her child was the best way to protect her children. The idolatrous priests played loud music to replace the last vestiges of hesitation with celebration, while also drowning out the screams of the child being sacrificed. Instead of fighting like tigers, the mothers folded like paper tigers.

Today we see the same tactics being used to convince pregnant women to get injected with an experimental drug, no questions asked. A pregnant woman by nature constantly obsesses over doing whatever is best for her baby. She won't take the slightest chance. But scare her enough and turn up the music, and this primary survival instinct can be corrupted.

The seventh and final parallel somehow escapes even "very religious" Jews. Where is the connection to God in all this? The Jews in the desert were facing what they believed to be an existential crisis. Moshe was seemingly gone, and they had to decide whether or not to worship a golden calf. Why did they not break their hearts, examine their ways, and cry out to God for guidance? The Jews were blessed to have real prophets among them. They could have sought a message from God, but they did not.

In the span or a few hours they went from fear and confusion to utter certainty that God wanted them to make a golden calf. They imposed their will on God, then claimed it was exactly what God wanted them to do.

Nothing has changed today. We lack prophets, and rabbinic guidance has unfortunately become unreliable in our generation, but we see no effort on the part of the average Jew to seek guidance from God in this time of confusion. Instead, we see them imposing their will on God – or simply kowtowing to others who do this on their behalf – and then claim that this is God's will. God wants them to serve the golden calf, and this is the only way God will save them. God gave them the golden calf as a blessing just for this purpose, and will only save those who worship it. Everyone else is a heretic and a danger to society.

The following day Moshe descended, the party came to an abrupt end, and the entire nation faced annihilation. In the aftermath of the golden calf episode we can be confident that the people declared "Never again!" Never again would they behave so foolishly. Never again would they fall prey to sinister propaganda and diabolical schemes to erode their defenses.

Of course, their descendants created two more golden calves that were worshiped for generations, and idolatry filled the land of Israel until it was destroyed. Most people just refuse to learn from history, and they become outraged at those who observe the same warning signs repeating themselves. How dare we say it's happening again? That's disrespectful to the people who went through it. Of course, just the opposite is true. Dismissing the warning signs is the greatest slap in the face to those who lost everything just so we could be here and learn from them.

King Menashe was one of the greatest idolaters, before repenting in his later years. Many centuries later Rav Ashi, one of the editors of the Talmud, made a disrespectful remark about him to his students. That night Menashe appeared to him in a dream and demonstrated his vast superiority in Torah knowledge to Rav Ashi. Rav Ashi asked Menashe how someone so wise could have served idolatry. Menashe retorted: "Had you been there, you would have grabbed the edge of my garment and run after me." Rav Ashi was chastened and thenceforth spoke of Menashe with respect. (Sanhedrin 102B)

Who among us is greater than Rav Ashi? Who among us, for that matter, is greater than Menashe?

Chazal teach us that the temptation to serve idols has been destroyed (Sanhedrin 64A). Nevertheless, the temptation to find substitutes for God remains unaffected, and the psychology behind idolatry is as strong as ever.

It is easy to scoff at those who served idols, engaged in bizarre rituals, and even murdered their own children "for the greater good"...but are so many of us not doing much the same? We are not really more advanced and intellectually sophisticated than our predecessors; we pale to them in so many ways. The people worshiping needles, masks, experts, the media, the "leading rabbis", the hype, the fear, the propaganda, the peer pressure are serving a golden calf. Technically they are not worshiping idols, which is a capital crime, but they have succumbed to exactly the same spiritual and moral demons. In a desperate, panic-driven attempt to save themselves and others, they are actually destroying themselves and others.

As in ancient times, serving idols only brought the opposite of what people hoped to achieve. Every time it backfired, the people doubled down and hoped that this time it would bring salvation. Today people continue to get strung along the failed path of idolatrous behavior, moving the goalposts and intensifying the worship as the situation continues to deteriorate. It's time to get off the merry-go-round and really turn to God.

One final lesson. Chazal teach us that instead of punishing the Jews in one shot for serving the golden calf, which would have destroyed the nation, God let them pay back their debt on the installment plan. The worst violaters were killed immediately, and the rest of the nation gets a little extra added on to every punishment to slowly expiate the ancient sin.

While this was most generous to those who served the golden calf, it seems quite unfair to all those who came after them. Why should we have to get punished for other people's sins? Why should we have to pay back their debt?

The answer is also found in this week's parsha, when Hashem taught Moshe the 13 attributes. Hashem only holds children partially accountable for the sins of their ancestors when they follow the same evil ways. It follows that we can only continue to get punished for the original sin of the golden calf if we continue to follow the same idolatrous path.

Considering the numerous striking comparisons between the present situation and ancient times, it seems much of the nation is doing just that. Much of our nation, even those who are "religious", have allowed their minds to be corrupted by Erev Rav. They have seen Menashe running to serve idolatry, grabbed his garment, and begged him to take them along.

They have put all their hope and faith in evil, deceitful, godless people and their golden needles, and convinced themselves that this is exactly what God wants them to do. They have turned against their brothers and sisters who express hesitation, let alone opt out completely, and bared their teeth with murderous rage.

They have allowed their moral principles to become eroded, and what would have been unthinkable just a short time ago they now believe to be a mitzvah. The public good, as defined by godless people, has become the new god. The Torah has nothing further to say on the subject, except to follow along and follow orders. There is no room for doubt, or dissent, or how our sages taught us for thousands of years to respond to plagues and crises. Raise the music and drown out the screams. We're saving lives.

I'm far from perfect, and pale to my ancestors, but I've learned this lesson. I will not serve the golden calf or any facsimile thereof. I will protest like Hur and give my life if necessary. I will wait patiently for Moshe, or Moshiach, to come and put an abrupt stop to the party. When he calls out "Whoever is for God, come to me", I won't have to think about it, because I already have. I never stopped thinking, and I never will.

When this is all over, there will be a truly great party, the greatest party of all time, celebrating the final deliverance of the Jewish people and all mankind. It's worth waiting for, and it's worth fighting for. Those who cling to the golden calf are not invited.

I hope to see you there.

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https://chananyaweissman.com/

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03 March 2021

The Destructiveness of Fear

19 Adar 5781

On at least two other major occasions in our national life, the people lost all their senses in response to an overwhelming fear.  One time was on the occasion of Moshe Rabeinu's delayed return at Har Sinai when a golden calf was created to take his place.  The second time was when the Meraglim brought back an evil report against Eretz Yisrael.  Both occasions sent destructive ripples right down the flow of history to this very day.  And it appears that we have now reached a similar level of fear, this time in response to a microscopic entity known as the coronavirus.

Fear and doubt are inextricably intertwined.  When a believing Jew experiences fear, it is because he doubts HKB"H - His mercy, His love, His ability or willingness to help, to save.  That is a place lower even than Gehinnom, in my opinion, because in that moment of doubt, it's like HKB"H has ceased to exist for that person - they are alone in the world seemingly without God.  This is the Yetzer HaRa's favored mode of attack and one of Heaven's major tests for humanity.  We have all been there (or will be) at some point in our lives.  

I don't think anything in the world can send the stab of fear deeper into our hearts than a perceived threat to our children's safety.  Of all the slander that the Meraglim brought against the Land, what seemed to resonate the most was the implied threat to the children's lives. 

Why does the Lord bring us to this land to fall by the sword; our wives and children will be as spoils. Is it not better for us to return to Egypt?"  

...As for your infants, of whom you said that they will be as spoils, I will bring them there, and they will come to know the Land which You despised.  (Bamidbar 14.3, 31)

At Har HaMoriyah, Avraham Avinu demonstrated his absolute and unshakeable faith and trust in HKB"H when he did not hesitate to place his son's life into the hands of HKB"H - to take or to preserve as He willed.  The merit Avraham Avinu earned in that incident was so powerful, it has accompanied his progeny throughout all succeeding generations. 

Not even in the name of our children's safety are we excused from doubting HKB"H and letting fear run rampant in our hearts, causing us to act in insane and unthinkable ways.  Fear and doubt travel hand-in-hand and destruction follows in their wake.

Now, more than ever before in our lifetimes, we have to strengthen ourselves in faith and trust in HKB"H - not in doctors, not in medicines, not in governments, not in any of our own efforts, but in simple faith and trust in the ONE Above.  

We live as He wills it and we die when He wills it.  HE is all there is - ayn od milevado!!!

01 March 2021

GUEST POST: "21 Questions That Demand Answers"

17 Adar 5781

21 Questions That Demand Answers

  1. They used to define a vaccine as a substance that prevents a disease. Now to qualify as a vaccine it only needs to reduce the chances of developing a serious case of a disease. On that basis, can vitamin D be considered a vaccine for Covid-19? What about Hydroxychloroquine, Ivermectin, Zinc, et al. If not, why not? Are we just splitting hairs?

  2. Why are people who took the "vaccine" more afraid of contact with unvaccinated people than they were before they took it? Shouldn't just the opposite be true?

  3. You claim there is no evidence that anyone died from the vaccine. What exactly would constitute evidence? Be specific.

  4. How does "evidence" that someone died from Covid-19 differ from your answer to the above question?

  5. Since when is a healthy person considered a murderer for refusing to take an experimental drug, or any drug, for that matter? Since when does speculating that someone might get sick and get others sick render someone a murderer who should be preemptively punished with less due process and presumption of innocence than an actual murderer?

  6. If you believe such people are murderers, what punishment would be too great for them? Why would you stop there? Explain. Please also provide historical parallels that did not directly coincide with tyranny.

  7. Do you consider smokers murderers? Should smokers be isolated from society, denied medical care, and otherwise punished?

  8. If we care so much about human life above all other considerations, why is smoking still permitted? Why is it acceptable to remove a mask to smoke a cigarette?

  9. If a healthy person who never got anyone sick is considered a murderer, what would you call a person in authority who orders Covid-19 patients to be placed in nursing homes, directly leading to the death of many elderly captives? Is it fair to call such a person a mass murderer?

  10. If a drug is safe, effective, and just glorious, why can't it sell itself? If you claim "anti-vaxxers" are so powerful and influential, why is it only with this particular drug that they have fooled such a high percentage of people?

  11. By what right do you smear people who have concerns about this experimental vaccine, and only this vaccine, as "anti-vaxxers"? Is this not just a dishonest effort to put them on the defensive, discredit them, and silence criticism? Since this can potentially lead to the loss of life, would it be fair to refer to those who engage in this rhetorical device as murderers?

  12. Why is "anti-vaxxer" a smear altogether? Is there not legitimate cause for people to be concerned about other such drugs and to prefer alternative treatments? On what moral basis can you defame people who have different views of medicine, especially when they have evidence to back up their positions?

  13. Do you believe it is to the benefit of science or the public good for those whose beliefs do not align with the establishment to be slandered, bullied, and marginalized? Does the establishment have a 100% "truth" rate to merit such blind adherence?

  14. What would it take for you to change your position on masks, lockdowns, and the "experimental vaccine"? Please be specific. Would you accept "evidence" and studies from outside the establishment? If not, why not?

  15. Do you really believe that there were literally zero cases of flu in the UK and Israel this year, as the establishment "experts" claim? If so, how do you explain this in scientific terms, especially because they also claim the flu spreads more easily than Covid-19? If not, why do you believe them about anything else, when they tell such preposterous lies with a straight face?

  16. They keep saying there are new strains of Covid-19. We are told that they are "more deadly, more dangerous, spread more quickly, and will require endless new vaccines". Lots of fear-mongering. Can you explain in specific scientific terms what is actually different about these strains?

  17. Being that children are at virtually no danger from Covid-19, how is it ethical to force them to wear masks – which damages them physically and psychologically – be kept in solitary confinement for weeks at a time, and inject them with an experimental drug, merely for the presumed benefit of preventing them from spreading it to others? Since when does the government own them and their bodies?

  18. In hindsight, knowing all that we know now, would you agree that the situation should have been handled very differently from the beginning? If not, why not? If yes, would you agree that those in charge have either been grossly incompetent or criminally deceitful? In light of that, why should they be entrusted with continuing to manage the situation? What do they have to do to deserve getting fired and replaced?

  19. Why do you believe it is ridiculous that rich and powerful people, most of whom are godless, would conspire with one another to become more rich and more powerful? Isn't that the way it's always been? Why is it crazy to believe that now?

  20. What have the rich and powerful people of the world, the establishment media, and large corporations done to earn your loyalty and blind trust in the past year? What could they possibly do to lose it?

  21. Is it possible that no matter how much information comes to light you will refuse to rethink your beliefs because the ugly truth you would be forced to accept is unbearable? Is your position truly based in science, or human psychology? What would it take to make you step back and humbly reflect on your beliefs and your behavior over the past year?

__________________________

See www.chananyaweissman.com for much more.

If you would like to receive future articles directly, please send a request to endthemadness@gmail.com.

28 February 2021

Happy Purim Meshulash!

16 Adar 5781

When Shushan Purim falls out on Shabbat as it does this year, the residents of Yerushalayim give their gifts ot the poor and read the megillah with the rest of the nation on Thursday night/Friday morning, but defer their seudah and mishloach manot delivery to Sunday.  This spreads the holiday out over the course of three days, hence the term Purim Meshulash (shalosh is "three").

In keeping with the spirit of the day, therefore, I am happy to bring you news of developments which may very well presage the ultimate downfall of our enemies ... as in those days at this time.


"We will not be silent. The Iranians will pay a heavy price for any aggression against the Israeli state," former Israeli ambassador to the UN Danny Danon said, referring to the damage caused to an Israeli-owned cargo vessel that was damaged by a mysterious explosion in the Gulf of Oman.

Defense Minister Benny Gantz has said that Iran is the main suspect behind the attack, which took place overnight Thursday.


Questions are swirling about whether an Israeli-owned cargo ship used to transport vehicles was damaged overnight Thursday by an active attack by Iran and if it will lead to a deterioration between Jerusalem and Tehran.

The cause of the mysterious explosion in the Gulf of Oman is still unclear, but both defense Minister Benny Gantz and a US defense official who spoke to Reuters seemed to point the finger at the Islamic Republic.

...All of this could lead to deterioration and even a broader conflict.


Israeli security officials view the attack on an Israeli-owned ship in the Persian Gulf on Friday as a crossing of a red line on the part of Iran, and support an Israeli response, according to a report Saturday.

Kan News said Israel unequivocally believes Tehran was behind the explosion, and high-level discussions on the matter are expected to take place Sunday.

“We are considering an appropriate response,” senior officials told Ynet. “This will not be accepted silently.”
One year ago, on Shushan Purim, the coronavirus outbreak was declared a global emergency.  If we are really on track for geulah this year (5781), war is the next stage of the process.  The Big War has been threatening for literally years now.  It heats up and then it cools back down, like labor pains building and receding.  

If there is going to be a birth, we have to get past all these false labor pains to the real deal.  Ask any mother, false labor can be exhausting and it robs a person of the strength she needs to face the hard job of delivery.  No one looks forward to that pain, but when you realize it's the only way to get the baby into the world, we just focus on the eventual joyful outcome, and then we know we can get through it.  Nonetheless, HKB"H should have mercy on His children and grant us renewed strength to face all that is set to come.  

Wishing for us all to see the unfolding of the geulah shleimah by Rosh Chodesh Nisan!

* * *

DRUDGEREPORT CITES DAILY STAR ON YALKUT SHIMONI !!!!!
...An 800-year-old prophecy predicts "the US will go to war with Iran before the coronavirus pandemic ends".

The source is based on precise methods to reveal a code in the holy book the Torah. It claims a month before the pandemic fades a global conflict, involving the United States, will break out between bitter enemies Saudi Arabia and Iran.

It also claims that the fighting will "bring great strife and darkness into the world".

The version of events is revealed in Yalkut Yishayau, a book published in 1939 based on a section of the Yalkut Shimoni, a compilation of Jewish commentary on the Bible believed to have been composed in the 13th century.

The text reads: "Rabbi Yitzchak said: 'In the year that the Messiah will be revealed, all of the leaders of the nations will provoke each other.

"The king of Persia will provoke the king of Arabia, and the king of Arabia will go to Edom to receive advice from them.

"And the king of Persia will go and destroy the entire world, and all the nations of the world will shake and panic and fall on their faces and feel contractions like those of giving birth, and Israel will shake and panic and ask: 'Where will we go?'

"And (God) will say to them, ‘My children, do not fear, because everything I did, I did for you. Why are you afraid? Don’t be afraid. The time has come for your redemption’.”

26 February 2021

The Purim of Messianic Times?

 14 Adar 5781
Purim - Erev Shabbat Kodesh
Parashat Tetzaveh - Shushan Purim

There is a very good chance that we will look back on this day and say, it all started on Purim.

EXCLUSIVE-U.S. carries out airstrike against Iranian-backed militia target in Syria, officials say

* * *

"They shall make a Sanctuary for Me - so that I may dwell among them..."
(Shemot 25.8)

Hashem is surely watching all his little children running around trying to find a place to hear the Megillah of Esther to fulfill His will and getting more and more incensed at those who would prevent them.  Surely, He is thinking, well, if they won't let them into the synagogues, I'll just bring them their Temple and let's see anyone stop them then!  And so may it be His will!!

PURIM SAMEACH and SHABBAT SHALOM!!!!

25 February 2021

GUEST POST: "The Longest Word in Tanach"

14 Adar 5781
Purim - Erev Shabbat Kodesh
Parashat Tetzaveh - Shushan Purim

The longest word in Tanach, tied with two others, is "והאחשדרפנים", which appears in Megillas Esther 9:3.  We know the Achashdarpenim were officers of the Persian king, but their specific duty is unclear and generally unknown. 

Remarkably, none of the commentators mention the following Midrashic source, which tells us exactly what they did. The word "אחשדרפניא" appears in Daniel 3:27, and the meaning of the word is the subject of a dispute between Rabbi Acha and the Rabbis in Shir HaShirim Rabba 7:9:

אֲחַשְׁדַּרְפְּנַיָא, רַבִּי אַחָא וְרַבָּנָן, רַבִּי אַחָא אָמַר אֵלּוּ הָאַרְכּוּנוֹת שֶׁהֵן נֶחְשָׁדִין וּפוֹנִין דִּין לְכָל צַד, וְרַבָּנָן אָמְרֵי שֶׁמְהַדְּרִין פָּנִים וּפוֹנִים דִּין.

Rabbi Acha says they were corrupt legal advisers who would turn the law in all directions.  The Rabbis say they show favoritism and turn the law accordingly.  These opinions appear very similar; in essence, their job was to twist the law to suit the purposes of the ruler.

My, how little things have changed in our "enlightened" generation.  The leaders of so-called democracies around the world are determined to wiggle around laws that exist to protect the rights of the people.  These laws are nothing but nuisances to them.  If they cannot revoke these laws, they create emergency laws that suspend them indefinitely, or they redefine words to render the laws meaningless.

The democracies of today are little different than the Persian monarchy.  Their kings too were restricted by laws, and they too massaged the laws to get away with anything they wanted.  Instead of allowing the law to restrain them from corrupt behavior, they used the law to sanitize their corruption.  First they decided what they wanted to do, then they deployed their Achashdarpenim to find a way to make it legal.  

Once again, there is nothing new under the sun, and even an obscure word in Megillas Esther teaches us a timeless lesson.

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The Zera Shimshon has a remarkable insight in his commentary on the Haggada, Chapter 7. He cites the Drasha that the Egyptians first enslaved the Jews by cajoling them, and then imposed backbreaking work on them.  He then asks as follows: "Why did they accept upon themselves in the end to do backbreaking work?  And why were the Egyptians not afraid of them that they might protest, being that the Jews were already a large and more powerful nation than them?  And the Zera Beirach asks the same question on this Pasuk.  And he answered that this was the scheme of the Egyptians to first enslave them in this way with mortar and bricks, in order to make foolish the wisdom of the Jews..."  He goes on to explain that this type of menial work demoralizes people and has a negative effect on their intellect.

Indeed, this helps explain how so many intelligent people all around us have lost their ability to think clearly, and have so readily forfeited their most basic freedoms.  How have the 99% been enslaved by the 1% of degenerate "elites"?  They were cajoled into being slaves "just a little bit", then they were easily demoralized and lost their minds.  Once someone allows himself to be enslaved just a little bit, he is a slave all the way. 

The degenerate people in power cannot possibly control the masses with force.  Their greatest fear is that the masses will realize this, unify, and take back their freedom together.  They prevent this from happening by demoralizing the people and dumbing them down, so they forget how much power they collectively have. 

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It just gets crazier and crazier. How many people will die because of a drastic reduction of Hatzalah volunteers? What next? Will they only respond to calls from people who got injected?

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Netanyahu made it clear that despite the vaccines, restrictions must still be maintained. "The masks? It will take more time. The children are a quarter of Israel's population. We will have to develop another capability. We live in the age of viruses. I made sure that the State of Israel will be the world leader. Not only by purchasing - for the next vaccine, once a year or once every six months, but also by domestic vaccine production. I talk to the CEOs of the two companies, Pfizer and Moderna, about two essential factories. I want Israel to be a leader in this field as well. To make Israel a necessary link in the global supply chain of vaccines."

Lord Gates and King Bibi have decided that all Israelis, including children, will have to be injected with new vaccines every few months forever and ever, and they will continue to be restricted forever and ever. Israel will be a leader in the field of lab rats for drug companies.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is not a "conspiracy theory", it's out in the open. These corrupt, inhumane tyrants no longer represent the Israeli people, and must be removed from power.

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I thought this was someone from the Ministry of Health coming with a syringe for someone on King Bibi's list. Just a bit premature.

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Yesterday I passed through Machanei Yehuda. They had set up a place in the market for people to get injected. The IDF deployed two female soldiers to walk up and down the market with a bullhorn urging people to get "vaccinated". I'm sure their parents and the crazy feminist organizations are bursting with pride.

We need a name for this impressive military operation on behalf of Bibi, Gates, and Pfizer.

Operation Guinea Pig? Operation Blazing Needles? Operation Safe and Effective? Operation Gates of Hell? Operation Operation?

Please vote for your favorite name from the list above or suggest your own.

Happy Purim,
Chananya

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