Category Archives: Israel

A Menorah And A Message

A Menorah And A Message (Randyjw; November 21-22 2019)

HAPPY  CHANUKAH !!!

 

CHAG CHANUKAH SAMEACH !!!

 

 

A few new doughnut  (sufganiyot) recipes for your gustatory pleasure:

 

New Sufganiyot:

(https://mayihavethatrecipe.com/the-8-donuts-of-chanukah/)

 

 

A few videos for your viewing pleasure:

 

The Perfect Chanukah Greeting SONG – CHANUKAH MEANS DEDICATION!; Published – November 29, 2012:

(https://youtu.be/ze1udTZ6mxM)

 

 

Alex Frankel – ‘Hanukkah in ’96’ (Official Audio); Published – November 22, 2019:

(https://youtu.be/YzJr6yP84vE)

 

 

Six13 – Bohemian Chanukah (a Queen adaptation); Published – November 27, 2018:

(https://youtu.be/9P30ckBf1wk)

 

 

Chanuka Medley with Micha Gamerman (Official Animation Video); Published – December 12, 2017:

(https://youtu.be/S0gbvH_LqP4)

 

 

Chanukah Day #8: Chanukah in Auschwitz: The Ninth Flame; Published – December 18, 2017:

(https://youtu.be/4ywifg9DJY8)

 

 

Amazing Chanukah Video Maoz Tzur Hanukkah Song; Published – November 20, 2013:

(https://youtu.be/9GDhRAolw1k)

 

 

For Hanukkah Light that Menorah Technion Rube Goldberg Machine Chanukah; Published – November 25, 2012:

(https://youtu.be/We-KRSy64r4)

 

 

THE GREAT BOWLING GREEN MENORAH 1997-2019; Published – November 21, 2019:

(https://youtu.be/Le36FlXG3Ro)

 

 

Chanukah candle lighting at the Western Wall; Published – February 24, 2011:

(https://youtu.be/J33TEtHlXbA)

 

 

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TODAY ONLY – Up to 80% Off Koren Books

 

TODAY ONLY – Up to 80% Off Koren Books (Randyjw; December 10, 2019)

 

People sometimes ask for guidance in selecting help to choose Hebrew works of interest. While each person has their own needs, style of learning, and other factors which make them unique, I have often cheered this particular Tanach (Torah, Nevi’im, Ketuvim) by Koren Publishers in Jerusalem. This Tanach was the same set I used to have. And, today only, Koren Publishers is offering up to 80% off many products.

 

Here’s the page linking to the Tanach:

(https://korenpub.com/products/the-koren-jerusalem-bible-sethardcovercompact)

 

Here’s their website:

(https://korenpub.com)

 

 

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Free Online Class: The Bible in Light of the Ancient Near East

 

Free Online Class: The Bible in Light of the Ancient Near East (Randyjw; October 28, 2019)

 

 

Sign up, quickly!

 

Tomorrow begins the start of a free, nine-week online course from Bar-Ilan University called The Bible in Light of the Ancient Near East.

 

For more information, see the course sign-up:

 

 

https://www.edx.org/course/the-bible-in-light-of-the-ancient-near-east-2

 

 

Hope you get an “A” in class!

 

 

 

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Yitzhar

 

Yitzhar (Randyjw; October 5, 2019):

 

See this video from Boomerang about Yitzhar:

 

(https://youtu.be/XlNXtzYr8iA)

 

 

 

 

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Beit She’arim

 

Beit She’arim:

 

(https://youtu.be/N_eDWi46h7o)

 

 

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The “Numbers” Map

 

The Numbers Map (Randyjw; June 22, 2019)

 

See the locations of the places mentioned in the “Numbers” portion of the Torah, as presented by Rabbi Tuly Weisz, of the infamous Israel 365 and Breaking Israel News websites, which I love, and link to so very often… (Rabbi Weisz has also recently completed The Israel Bible™):

 

(https://theisraelbible.com/numbers-map/)

 

 

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Avraham’s Journey

 

Avraham’s Journey (Randyjw; June 18, 2019)

 

I was slowly setting out to do, in a way, what Rabbi Tuly Weisz, in his The Israel Bible, has already done. Within this digitally-modern, Google map, you’ll be able to visually review, en masse, location markers for Biblical sites attenuated to the travels of Avraham:

 

(https://theisraelbible.com/genesis-map/)

 

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Jerusalem Day

 

Jerusalem Day (Randyjw; May 31, 2019)

 

 

Happy Jerusalem Day!!!

June 2, 2019

 

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Illegal Peace Prayers

 

Illegal Peace Prayers (Randyjw; May 16, 2019)

 

 

I’m admitting to post-facto supposed “war crimes” of having placed a note in the Western Wall/Wailing Wall/Kotel and joining Alan Dershowitz’s satirical call of rebellion in doing so, to protest the designation of parts of Israeli land as being called “occupied.”

 

Does this designation apply retroactively to 587 BCE, 70CE, the actual placing of my note circa 2003/4/5 or so, the UN Security Council Resolution (fake news) of 2016, or what? Am I a satirical 2,600-year criminal, a 2,050-year criminal, a 16-year criminal, or just a mere 3-year criminal? Better round those criminal Jews up, again.

 

Dershowitz, Alan. “War Crime!: Placing a Note in the Western Wall”. gatestoneinstitute.org; May 14, 2019:

(https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/14223/western-wall-note)

 

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Yom HaShoah (This Evening)

 

Yom HaShoah (This Evening)

 

In remembrance of the six million who perished in the Holocaust.

 

Hannah Szenes wrote this poem. She escaped from Hungary in the second World War, and went back over enemy lines to help her fellow Jews in trouble. She gave her life, in doing so.

 

(https://youtu.be/R1hH5c4k51Q)

 

 

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Shomron

 

Shomron (King Omri bought hill for two talents of silver from Shemer; hence, the name) / Christian: The City of Sebastia (Randyjw; April 24, 2019)

 

(https://www.jewishpress.com/multimedia/photos/the-city-of-sebastia/2019/04/24/)

 

 

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Land Theft In Judea/Samaria

 

Land Theft In Judea/Samaria (Randyjw; April 24, 2019)

 

This is another really important and informative article toward understanding what is occurring now in Judea/Samaria (the so-called “West Bank”):

 

 

Linder Kahn, Naomi. “The European Union: Nurturing Instability and Terrorism in the Middle East”. gatestoneinstitute.org; April 24, 2019:

https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/14011/european-union-palestinians-instability

 

 

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Be’er Sheva

Be’er Sheva:

 

Brummer, David. “Evidence of Second Temple Era Settlement Found Near Abraham’s Biblical Home”. breakingisraelnews.com; April 4, 2019:

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/125971/second-temple-era-settlement-abrahams/

 

 

 

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Beit Shemesh

 

Beit Shemesh:

Brummer, David. “Tel Beit Shemesh Excavation Reveals Pivotal First Temple Remains”. breakingisraelnews.com; March 7, 2019:

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/123918/pivotal-first-temple-period-remains/

 

 

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United States Embassy – Jerusalem, Israel

United States Embassy – Jerusalem, Israel (Randyjw; May 15, 2018)

 

 

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Purim 5778

Purim 5778 (Rachelgv; February 28, 2018)

*** The following is a re-posted article from Purim 5777


 

It is the Jewish festival of Purim. The background to this story is that the Jews had lost their First Temple in Jerusalem in the Babylonian conquest of King Nebuchadnezzar, during which many of Judah’s educated and talented Jews were made captive and exiled to Babylon. This is where the famous Psalm (“By the rivers of Babylon”…) has its origins, which you can read, here:

 

Biblehub.com; Psalm 137. JPS, 1917:

(http://biblehub.com/jps/psalms/137.htm)

 

Here’s a wiki from Wikipedia.org about the period of Babylonian Captivity:

 

Wikipedia.org; “Babylonian Captivity”:

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylonian_captivity)

 

Babylon was then overrun by the Persians, under King Cyrus, who allowed some of the Jews to return to Judah to rebuild the Temple.

 

Eventually, King Achashveros came to power. He was married to Queen Vashti, who, through her disobedience to the King, earned her despatch goodbye, and a new search was enacted to replace the Queen.

 

In a procession of sorts, eligible matches were brought before the King, until his interest was piqued by the Jewish woman, Hadassah, who adopted the name of Esther to hide her Jewish identity.

 

Esther’s Uncle, Mordechai, had overhead a conspiratorial plot being hatched among the King’s disloyal entourage and had given warning to the palace, thus saving the King’s life. His deed was recorded in the records and archived for later readings.

 

Esther made the King extremely happy. One day, though, the King’s men had sown discord against the Jews by reporting false rumors that they were going against the King’s rulings. Incensed, the King declared that the Jews should be killed for their treachery.

 

Still unaware that Hadassah was Jewish, it became an urgent matter that she should intervene to try to plead for the life of her people. Her Uncle Mordechai girded her confidence, and she did so.

 

The King learned that his life had been spared through the deeds of Esther’s Uncle, Mordechai, and that the real traitors within his entourage were the man Haman, and his scheming ten sons.

 

While it was the rule that the previous edict could not be annulled, it could still be amended — and that is what the King did. While the attack upon the Jews was still, therefore, imminent, they were allowed to defend themselves, and won… thereby sparing their lives.

 

This victory of our miraculous saving is celebrated in commemoration of this event. It is a time meant to be celebrated in utmost joy and revelry, with the drinking of wine and the donning of costumes and masks. Gift baskets of food are exchanged with friends and neighbors and are provided, along with charity, to the poor.

 

I saw the movie, “One Night With The King” in the theater, when it came out in 2006. I enjoyed it immensely, even though, as usual, none of the actors actually seem, and probably weren’t, Jewish. This YouTube link seems to offer a full-length version of the movie. I recall it being advertised on TBN, a Christian broadcasting network, and I believe it was made by Matt Crouch, one of the family founders of the station. I hope that, because of this, this is why it is being offered in the public forum, as such, and I hope it is okay to air. Anyways, here it is:

 

(https://youtu.be/r4saPofrlbA)

 

Chag Purim Sameach (Happy Purim Holiday)!

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Chanukah And The Menorah

Candles Burn In The Chanukiya

 

Chanukah And The Menorah (Randyjw; December 14, 2017)

 

Here is an interesting article in Breaking Israel News about recent finds regarding the Jewish menorah:

 

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/99216/historys-5-incredible-menorah-discoveries-eve-hanukkah/#zRpL83RUpCAtoKSD.97

 

Another great article at Breaking Israel News teaches fascinating and factual information about the events, people and times, which led to the humanly-designated celebration of Chanukah by the Jewish people:

 

https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/99256/ancient-oil-lamp-traced-back-first-ever-hanukkah-maccabee-era/#yWzDErRRRAGu3vOF.97

 

Here is a map of the Jewish fighters, the Hasmoneans, and locations, in Israel:

 

http://www.jewishpress.com/multimedia/photos/sites-of-the-maccabees/2017/12/12/

 

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Machaerus Mikveh Unearthed

 

Machaerus Mikveh Unearthed (Randyjw; June 23, 2017)

 

A Jewish ritual immersion pool, known by its Hebrew name of “mikveh”, has been located in the Machaerus palace complex on the eastern side of the Dead Sea, in what some people reference as today’s country of Jordan.

 

Read the interesting articles and see photos, here:

 

JNi Media. “Hungarian Archaeologists Unearth Herod’s Fortress, Ritual Bath, East of Jordan River”. June 15, 2017:

 

http://www.jewishpress.com/news/israel/hungarian-archaeologists-unearth-herods-fortress-ritual-bath-east-of-jordan-river/2017/06/15/

 

Reblog:

Mandal, Dattatreya. “Archaeologists excavate (and reconstruct) a massive ritual bath inside Herod’s fortress of Machaerus”. June 21, 2017; Realm of History:

https://www.realmofhistory.com/2017/06/21/ritual-bath-herod-fortress-machaerus/

 

Additional Reading:

 

http://www.jerusalemchai.org/education.cfm?categoryID=145&categoryName=Coins%20of%20the%20Realm%20

 

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Saint Catherine’s Monastery – Sinai

 

Saint Catherine’s Monastery – Sinai (Randyjw; April 19, 2017)

 

There is a document, known as the Achtiname of Muhammad (spelled variantly as “Ashtiname”), delineating a written treaty, of sorts, between the monks at St. Catherine’s monastery in the Sinai, formally known as the “Sacred Monastery of the God-Trodden Mount Sinai”,  and the founder of Islam, Muhammad, which is stated to exist in its original form, someplace, within the Topkapi Palace in Turkey, in what was previously called Constantinople — named after the Byzantine leader, Constantine, who had moved the seat of Orthodox Eastern Christianity to this location — which later was replaced with its Muslim incarnation, Istanbul. Only copies are presently available of the document, given certification by various Islamic scholars, from which we can draw inferences regarding the encounter of Christianity to Islam in the early seventh century, when Muhammad was said to have either given or sent this letter to the religious order at the mountain retreat (1).

 

 

A Wikipedia.org entry on the Achtiname of Muhammad, edited presently by Harryson56, cites a 1902 Board of Council, New York reference to the English translation made by Anton F. Haddad of the Achtiname of Muhammad, which reads:

 

 

“This is a letter which was issued by Mohammed, Ibn Abdullah, the Messenger, the Prophet, the Faithful, who is sent to all the people as a trust on the part of God to all His creatures, that they may have no plea against God hereafter. Verily God is Omnipotent, the Wise. This letter is directed to the embracers of Islam, as a covenant given to the followers of Jesus the Nazarene in the East and West, the far and near, the Arabs and foreigners, the known and the unknown. This letter contains the oath given unto them, and he who disobeys that which is therein will be considered a disbeliever and a transgressor to that whereunto he is commanded. He will be regarded as one who has corrupted the oath of God, disbelieved His Testament, rejected His Authority, despised His Religion, and made himself deserving of His Curse, whether he is a Sultan or any other believer of Islam. Whenever Christian monks, devotees and pilgrims gather together, whether in a mountain or valley, or den, or frequented place, or plain, or church, or in houses of worship, verily we are [at the] back of them and shall protect them, and their properties and their morals, by Myself, by My Friends and by My Assistants, for they are of My Subjects and under My Protection. I shall exempt them from that which may disturb them; of the burdens which are paid by others as an oath of allegiance. They must not give anything of their income but that which pleases them—they must not be offended, or disturbed, or coerced or compelled. Their judges should not be changed or prevented from accomplishing their offices, nor the monks disturbed in exercising their religious order, or the people of seclusion be stopped from dwelling in their cells. No one is allowed to plunder these Christians, or destroy or spoil any of their churches, or houses of worship, or take any of the things contained within these houses and bring it to the houses of Islam. And he who takes away anything therefrom, will be one who has corrupted the oath of God, and, in truth, disobeyed His Messenger. Jizya should not be put upon their judges, monks, and those whose occupation is the worship of God; nor is any other thing to be taken from them, whether it be a fine, a tax or any unjust right. Verily I shall keep their compact, wherever they may be, in the sea or on the land, in the East or West, in the North or South, for they are under My Protection and the testament of My Safety, against all things which they abhor. No taxes or tithes should be received from those who devote themselves to the worship of God in the mountains, or from those who cultivate the Holy Lands. No one has the right to interfere with their affairs, or bring any action against them. Verily this is for aught else and not for them; rather, in the seasons of crops, they should be given a Kadah for each Ardab of wheat (about five bushels and a half) as provision for them, and no one has the right to say to them ‘this is too much’, or ask them to pay any tax. As to those who possess properties, the wealthy and merchants, the poll-tax to be taken from them must not exceed twelve drachmas a head per year (i.e. about 200 modern day US dollars). They shall not be imposed upon by anyone to undertake a journey, or to be forced to go to wars or to carry arms; for the Muslims have to fight for them. Do no dispute or argue with them, but deal according to the verse recorded in the Quran, to wit: ‘Do not dispute or argue with the People of the Book but in that which is best’ [29:46]. Thus they will live favored and protected from everything which may offend them by the Callers to religion (Islam), wherever they may be and in any place they may dwell. Should any Christian woman be married to a Muslim, such marriage must not take place except after her consent, and she must not be prevented from going to her church for prayer. Their churches must be honored and they must not be withheld from building churches or repairing convents. They must not be forced to carry arms or stones; but the Muslims must protect them and defend them against others. It is positively incumbent upon every one of the followers of Islam not to contradict or disobey this oath until the Day of Resurrection and the end of the world. (2)”

 

 

Do note that the paragraph of Haddad’s translation indicates an exemption to the payment of taxes or tithes by those who worship G-d in the mountains or from those who cultivate the Holy Lands:

 

“No taxes or tithes should be received from those who devote themselves to the worship of God in the mountains, or from those who cultivate the Holy Lands…”

 

 

This separation between those who should not pay the tax, from those who must, is delineated in the paragraph following the exempt class, with one which denotes that the poll-tax is to be taken from those “who possess properties, the wealthy and merchants” and must not exceed “twelve drachmas a head per year”:

 

 

“As to those who possess properties, the wealthy and merchants, the poll-tax to be taken from them must not exceed twelve drachmas a head per year…”

 

 

The poll-tax, or what is known as the “jizya” in Arabic, represents a tributary payment to be made by non-Muslim people who have fallen under the yoke of Islamic conquerors. This payment is an extortion of funds from the subject people — an arrangement much like the mafia-like concept of “protekzia” — whereby the domineering invaders are bought off with a gesture of appeasement, in order to spare the subjugated peoples’ lives, who would otherwise be required to convert to Islam, or be killed in their declination of this “invitation” to do so.

 

 

While it may seem comparable to the arrangement of our present-day tax collection practices in a fair democracy, the opposite can be shown to exist: it is a discriminatory practice incumbent upon only the non-Muslim subjects under the aegis of ancient Muslim society; Muslims did not have to pay the jizya.

 

 

This particular delineation noted in this entreaty within Muhammad’s declaration of intent to the monks at St. Catherine’s monastery, said to have been presented at that time, given as being in the second year of the Hajirah by Muhammad from Mecca to Medina, begun in 622 C.E. (making the date 623, or 624, then), purports an implied state of recent victorious conquest by the Muslims upon this regional site in the Sinai Peninsula. But, the Muslim regional conquest of the area did not occur until supposedly later — between 639 and 641 C.E., following upon Muhammad’s death in 632 C.E., seven years earlier. There had not yet been a conquest at that time of Muhammad’s alleged presentation in 623/4 C.E. of the said document.

 

 

As originally revealed by Robert Spencer of Jihadwatch.org in Part VII of an ongoing series of articles which appeared on PJMedia.com, excerpted in the Wikipedia.org entry about the Achtiname:

 

 

“Muhammad is supposed to have died in 632; the Muslims conquered Egypt between 639 and 641. The document says of the Christians, “No one shall bear arms against them.” So were the conquerors transgressing against Muhammad’s command for, as Considine puts it, “no Muslim to fight against his Christian brother or sister”? Did Muhammad draw up this document because he foresaw the Muslim invasion of Egypt? There is no mention of this document in any remotely contemporary Islamic sources; among other anomalies, it bears a drawing of a mosque with a minaret, although minarets weren’t put on mosques until long after the time Muhammad is supposed to have lived, which is why Muslim hardliners consider them unacceptable innovation (bid’a). The document exempts the monks of St. Catherine’s monastery from paying the jizya. While it is conceivable that Muhammad, believing he bore the authority of Allah, would exempt them from an obligation specified by Allah himself in the Qur’an (9:29), the Achtiname specifies that Christians of Egypt are to pay a jizya only of twelve drachmas. Yet according to the seventh-century Coptic bishop John of Nikiou, Christians in Egypt “came to the point of offering their children in exchange for the enormous sums that they had to pay each month. The Achtiname, in short, bears all the earmarks of being an early medieval Christian forgery, perhaps developed by the monks themselves in order to protect the monastery and Egyptian Christians from the depredations of zealous Muslims. (3)”

 

 

Secondly, the Achtiname of Muhammad states that those exempt from the payment of any jizya, taxes, or tithes, would also include those “who cultivate the Holy Lands.”

 

 

If it was one ummah at the time, until Arabia burst forth in 632 C.E. to conquer more lands for Islam, then what “Lands” in the plurality can he mean at the time of 623/4 C.E., when the document was supposedly given by Muhammad to the monks at St. Catherine’s?

 

 

Islam, as a concept which began during the aegis of its founder’s lifetime, given as between 570 – 632 C.E., presides on the basis of being a one-nation land for all Muslims, under one Caliphate. The foremost emphasis is placed on the unity of the one land as its most significant aspect, after the dominant factor of Islamic rule. At the time of Muhammad’s interaction with the monks, the Sinai prior to the conquest by Egypt, between 639 and 641 C.E., could not have yet been considered Islamic “holy land” in 622 C.E., when Muhammad supposedly gave this document. The only people to whom the Sinai might have had holy connotations was to the Jews, being considered as one of the probable locations for the Wilderness of Sin, the desert location where Moses received the Tablets of the Covenant of the Jewish faith.

 

 

In fact, the monastery built there in 522 C.E. for the monks uses this probability as its sole basis for its foundation on that site. When Queen Consort Helena, the mother of Constantine, came to Israel, it’s told she set about denoting the locations where Biblical incidents took place according to her suppositions and the feelings she got from the land upon where she set her feet (I believe this “feat of the feet” is possible, as I’ve delineated in my “Wild Theories” postings; I’m just not so sure whether it applies as accurately to non-native peoples of the land — although some atmospheric ambience may, indeed, “come through”).

 

 

It is, therefore, apparent, that the only connotation of “holiness” that his words can mean is because the site is already known as being holy to the Jews. This aspect of Islam, with its supercessionary superiority complex of replacement theology, being the last in a line of previously wrongful interpretations of religion and G-d now supposed to have been “righted”, means that all transgressors are wrong, as well — at least, according to their religion. Therefore, appropriating Jewish and Christian holy sites and land for conversion to the Islamic Empire (Caliphate), or ummah (the one motherland), and ridding those lands of their Kaffir (non-believing infidels), is the ultimate goal, as described in various writings in the Koran (Islamic holy book) attributed to G-d through the messenger, Muhammad, and through the sayings attributed to Muhammad through the reports (Hadith) by his contemporaries, compiled some hundreds of years after his death.

 

 

A prescient commenter, declared as T. Ibn Ibrahim from USA, on November 28th, 2006, responding to an article on the Achtiname, “Relations with Christians According to Muhammad (s)”, appearing September 17th, 2006 on Islamicity.org, refutes the defense of Islam as a benevolent protector of Christian religious rites and their adherents as asserted by Dr. Aslam Abdallah, the author of the article, validating the important context left out during the analysis of the document, with the following astute observations:

 

 

“Abdullah’s conclusion of Islam’s peaceful coexistence with “Christians” based on the charter with the monks of St. Catherine Monastery in Mt. Sinai is sadly myopic. Muslim historians record that Muhammad had several letters written at that time (ca. 628 CE) to various rulers. I visited Topkapi Palace Museum, Istanbul,Turkey in 2004 and saw the letter to the Egyptian ruler. Translated: “From Muhammad, the servant and Prophet of Allah, to al-Muqawqis, the leader of the Coptic tribe. There is safety and security for those believers who follow the correct path. Therefore, I invite you to accept Islam. If you accept it, you shall find security, save your throne, gain twice as much reward for having introduced Islam to your followers. If you refuse this invitation, let the sin of the calamity which awaits your followers be upon you. You too are People of the Book; therefore, let us come to a word common between us and you, that we worship none but Allah and shall not associate anyone with Him. Let us not abandon Allah and take others for Lord other than Him. If you do not consent to this invitation, bear witness that we are Muslims.” This sentiment against “People of the Book” (Jews & Christians) is consistent with the Quran: “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. The Jews call ‘Uzair a son of Allah, and the Christians call Christ the son of Allah…Allah’s curse be on them: how they are deluded away from the Truth!”(9:29-30). Furthermore, “O ye who believe! take not the Jews and the Christians for your friends and protectors: They are but friends and protectors to each other. And he amongst you that turns to them (for friendship) is of them. Verily Allah guideth not a people unjust” (5:51). (4)”

 

 

The monastery was recently besieged by ISIS gunmen, who have gained a foothold in the territory, which was once a part of Israel. In an attack on a police checkpoint outside the monastery on Tuesday, April 18, 2017, ISIS gunmen killed one police officer and wounded four others (5).

 

 

See this cool picture of the monastery, here:

 

 

(https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Saint_Catherine%27s_Monastery,_Mount_Sinai#/media/File%3AKatharinenkloster.jpg)

 

 

In its past, the Sinai became a province of Egypt, when Egyptians overtook the region. Due to the Egyptian Army’s closures of the Gulf of Aqaba, cutting off Israel’s shipping routes; due to provocations with the same in the passageways through the Suez Canal; due to the U.N. removing peacekeeping forces from Egyptian land, allowing the Army to build up and mass at Israeli borders and from which positions attacks could (and have) begun — Israel and Egypt were at war in 1967, and Israel prevailed in regaining the Sinai land area. This map of Israel shows Israel with its Sinai land. In a later peace treaty signed by Egypt and Israel, the Sinai was given to Egypt.

 

 

The new Israeli land mass chops two-thirds of that area away. If you draw a straight line, tilted like a back-slash between the top of the right-hand fork of the sea at the bottom (which looks like the antenna tip of a slug) and the point approximately at the dot noted as El Arish by the Mediterranean sea curve, the land to the east of that line is noted as Israel, today. In further lines, if you draw a small strip from El Arish to about the next dot east, that area was removed and handed over to Gaza. If you draw a half-moon from northward of Jerusalem, beginning on Israel’s eastern edges, all the way around to the dot which appears to read “Ein Yachav”, that is the Judaean and Samarian rolling foothills known as “Shfelah”, in Yesha/The Shomron (Judah/Samaria), which people want to give to the Arabs for their “West Bank” to Jordan, of which Jordan was removed from the Jewish Homeland, declared in the Balfour Declaration of 1917, and illicitly ceded to the Arabs, as well.

 

 

 

 

Egypt is supposed to prevent terrorism in this area, but that doesn’t always happen.

 

It is unfortunate that more people do not heed the reality of what is true, let alone have the courage to report it, as such, much like the commenter, above. The agreement, though, has an expiration date at Judgement Day, when it is preordained in the Koran that the Muslims should fight the Jews and kill them. But, we have no direct indication, in any holy books, as to when this time should appear. Those acting on Jihad, and those who are killing due to other cultic denominations, believe it is already an engagement in progress.

 


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(1) Wikipedia.org; Ashtiname of Muhammad:

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(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashtiname_of_Muhammad)

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(2) Haddad, Anton F., trans. The Oath of the Prophet Mohammed to the Followers of the Nazarene. New York: Board of Counsel, 1902; H-Vahabi: Lansing, MI: 2004.

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(3) Spencer, Robert. “The Hypocrisy of the Huffington Post’s Praise of Muhammad”. PJ Media.com; January 26, 2014:

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(https://pjmedia.com/lifestyle/2014/1/26/the-hypocrisy-of-the-huffington-posts-praise-of-muhammad/)

 

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(4) Abdallah, Dr. Aslam. “Relations with Christians According to Muhammad (s)”. Islamicity.org; September 17, 2006:

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(http://www.islamicity.org/3365/relations-with-christians-according-to-muhammad…)

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(5) Khoury, Jack. “Egypt: ISIS Gunmen Attack St. Catherine’s Monastery in Sinai”. UPI/Reuters via Haaretz.com; April 18, 2017:

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(http://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/egypt/1.784140)

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Additional Reading:

 

ECAW’s Blog. “Mohammmed’s Apocryphal Covenants”; April 23, 2015:

https://ecawblog.wordpress.com/2015/04/23/mohammeds-apocryphal-covenants/

 

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Purim 5777

 

Purim 5777 (Rachelgv; March 11, 2017)

 

It is the Jewish festival of Purim. The background to this story is that the Jews had lost their First Temple in Jerusalem in the Babylonian conquest of King Nebuchadnezzar, during which many of Judah’s educated and talented Jews were made captive and exiled to Babylon. This is where the famous Psalm (“By the rivers of Babylon”…) has its origins, which you can read, here:

 

Biblehub.com; Psalm 137. JPS, 1917:

(http://biblehub.com/jps/psalms/137.htm)

 

Here’s a wiki from Wikipedia.org about the period of Babylonian Captivity:

 

Wikipedia.org; “Babylonian Captivity”:

(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Babylonian_captivity)

 

Babylon was then overrun by the Persians, under King Cyrus, who allowed some of the Jews to return to Judah to rebuild the Temple.

 

Eventually, King Achashveros came to power. He was married to Queen Vashti, who, through her disobeyance to the King, earned her despatch goodbye, and a new search was enacted to replace the Queen.

 

In a procession of sorts, eligible matches were brought before the King, until his interest was piqued by the Jewish woman, Hadassah, who adopted the name of Esther to hide her Jewish identity.

 

Esther’s Uncle, Mordechai, had overhead a conspiratorial plot being hatched among the King’s disloyal entourage and had given warning to the palace, thus saving the King’s life. His deed was recorded in the records and archived for later readings.

 

Esther made the King extremely happy. One day, though, the King’s men had sown discord against the Jews by reporting false rumors that they were going against the King’s rulings. Incensed, the King declared that the Jews should be killed for their treachery.

 

Still unaware that Hadassah was Jewish, it became an urgent matter that she should intervene to try to plead for the life of her people. Her Uncle Mordechai girded her confidence, and she did so.

 

The King learned that his life had been spared through the deeds of Esther’s Uncle, Mordechai, and that the real traitors within his entourage were the man Haman, and his scheming ten sons.

 

While it was the rule that the previous edict could not be annulled, it could still be amended — and that is what the King did. While the attack upon the Jews was still, therefore, imminent, they were allowed to defend themselves, and won… thereby sparing their lives.

 

This victory of our miraculous saving is celebrated in commemoration of this event. It is a time meant to be celebrated in utmost joy and revelry, with the drinking of wine and the donning of costumes and masks. Gift baskets of food are exchanged with friends and neighbors and are provided, along with charity, to the poor.

 

I saw the movie, “One Night With The King” in the theater, when it came out in 2006. I enjoyed it immensely, even though, as usual, none of the actors actually seem, and probably weren’t, Jewish. This YouTube link seems to offer a full-length version of the movie. I recall it being advertised on TBN, a Christian broadcasting network, and I believe it was made by Matt Crouch, one of the family founders of the station. I hope that, because of this, this is why it is being offered in the public forum, as such, and I hope it is okay to air. Anyways, here it is:

 

(https://youtu.be/r4saPofrlbA)

 

Chag Purim Sameach (Happy Purim Holiday)!

 

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Astral Harmonies

 

Astral Harmonies (Randyjw; February 9, 2017)

 

Tomorrow after sundown will mark the beginning of the Jewish holiday, known as Tu B’Shvat. The Jewish day is marked from after sunset, when at least three stars are visible in the sky, through the morrow and following sunset. The reason this is so is due to the wording of the Torah in B’reishit (which means, “In the beginning…”), or “Genesis”, by its anglicized name, in which the sentence describing each day puts the evening before the morn: “And there was evening, and there was morning Day One”, and so on.

 

Judaism is also based on a lunar, rather than a solar, calendar cycle, which is why holidays don’t fall on the same Gregorian calendar cycle that we use today. Tu B’shvat has its origins in lunar-based festival celebrations, and is considered to be the “New Year of the Trees”.

 

This particular year of 2017 will see a confluence of incredible astronomical events to enhance the spiritual aspects of the festival. In addition to a full moon, there will be a penumbra eclipse and the passing of a nearby comet.

 

What wonders in the heavens and how mysterious G-d’s ways.

 

For additional details on these events and their pertinence from the Talmud and the Zohar, please read Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz’s Breaking Israel News article, below:

 

Berkowitz, Adam Eliyahu. “Astonishing Astral Confluence Will See Eclipse, Full Moon, and Comet on Jewish Holiday”. Breaking Israel News.com; February 9, 2017:

 

(https://www.breakingisraelnews.com/83422/astonishing-astral-confluence-will-see-eclipse-full-moon-comet-jewish-holiday/)

 

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The Israeli West Bank

 

The Israeli West Bank (Randyjw; February 3, 2017)

 

I wrote an article a number of years ago in which I stated my premise that there had never been an Arab Palestinian state, since there had never been defined borders for such.

 

The so-called “Palestinian” entity of ancient times was actually the land of Israel/Judah, which the Romans had come to occupy (while still, for a time, operating with Herodian kings of Israel) over 1,800 years ago. Our conquerors renamed the land after our long-ago Philistine enemies, said to be THEN in the land during the time of David, our second Jewish king.

 

A state of government can exist in exile, if it had once been an actual state. A body of people who have never had a state to rule over can not be said to be a government in exile, although the replicated provisional bodies may have formed. They hold no real legal status as a government corpus over any real entity, since the entity is imaginary, to begin with.

 

To use the example I gave in my initial article, I stated that I could call myself President of Randyland — but, I wouldn’t be President over one square inch of land, if the entity of Randyland never existed, to begin with. This is the actual status of the Palestinians trying to declare themselves a state, when the realities are that they are still occupying lands within land that is Israel.

 

For that matter, the state of Jordan is an illegal creation wrested from the eastern portion of this so-called “Palestine”, when Britain took over a mandate of the League of Nations to administer the stewardship of the land, and to see to the “close settlement” of the Jews within it, according to the 1917 Balfour Declaration, which recognized Jewish historical claims to its rights to the land, and not based on suffrance.

 

Furthermore, when the Jordanians joined the collaborative 5-state Arab attack upon Israel in 1948, launched from their illegal portion of land designated for the Jewish state which was illegally hacked off from the whole of Israel/Palestine to begin with, the Arab victories in winning the Old City in Jerusalem and by Egypt’s win of Gaza in the south, and a small northern bit bordering Lebanon, were all considered illegal and were never recognized, but by one country, because they were won in an AGGRESSIVE attack upon the sovereignty of another nation, and not through the acquisition of lands via a DEFENSIVE action during a time of attack. These have legal meaning, which the world ignores in condemning Israel. These lands were legitimately regained by Israel in a defensive action to stave off the massing of Arab troops at Israel’s borders in 1967, and so have never lost Israeli designation. However, the world continues its anti-Semitic stances, and so favors the illegitimacy of the short-termed 19-year Arab occupation of Israeli land. Turkey, being the seat of the Ottoman Empire which previously held that land (in a chain of conquerors stretching back to Israel as the first, real recognized people indigenous to the land, being that the Canaanites no longer exist), legitimately lost it by continuing to take the losing side in the World Wars, as well as by the fact that it was never closely settled by them and was only tended, if at all, in an absentee ownership state of effendi-fellaheen relations, where a serfdom of indenturehood, such as that of a sharecropper, was practiced, with the serf living on the land in order to cultivate the produce of which was turned over, minus his own percentage in payment-in-kind, toward the effendi’s (absentee-owner’s) coffers.

 

My article, dated January 13, 2014, declared that there was no true government of Arab Palestinians, let alone a state in any part of the land. This is quite contrary to the actual Jewish government-in-exile status that Israel had had as a corporeal body of land in factual historicity. Theirs, if I’m using the correct legal terminologies here, were both a de jure state and a de facto state, ratified many times over in the reaffirmation of countless declarations, such as the Balfour Declaration and others.

 

I find it rather bothersome, and it’s unwarranted here for my proceding to do so, but it rankles me when we pretend that knowing such things, as we have known throughout history, is suddenly such a big surprise; and that we also pretend not to have such long-standing thousands-of-year ties to the land so that when we “rediscover” an ancient connection, like an archaeological item or ancient scrolls, we suddenly feign astonishment at the revelation. I don’t know what’s up with that, but we need to stop these pretenses, because others are starting to believe them!

 

In this vein, another “new” analysis by Ezequiel Doiny helps to synthesize many salient points, via his discovery of an article ©Jean-Patrick Grumberg for http://www.Dreuz.info addressing the Appeals Court ruling in Versailles, France that Israel, and not the Palestinians, were the rightful historical claimants to the land, even beyond the 1949 Armistice lines, which are not territorial demarcation lines by any account.

 

The article had, according to Doiny, taken into consideration the outside ruling of a foreign court in a matter involving Israeli land sovereignty, as it applied to a case involving the light rail system. Mahmoud Abbas was listed within it. An appeals Court date lists March 22, 2013, but there is no further pages attached here beyond this first, to follow along with the decisions as they had been made, per se, by the Court, as far as what looks to be the case to a non-French speaker, such as myself.

 

Doiny applies additional further considerations for the legal case for Israel’s sovereignty to the land, which is a nice addition to all of the other legal bases for determining that Israel is the true owner of the land. It’s unfortunate that such legal rulings are overturned by the popular vote in such bodies like the United Nations, whose supposed function is to clear any confusion of such issues.

 

Here is my original article:

 

Randyjw. “Any Leader of a State Without Recognized Borders is Illegitimate”. News Notes 1.wordpress.com; January 13, 2014:

(https://newsnotes1.wordpress.com/2014/01/13/any-leader-of-a-state-without-recognized-borders-is-illegitimate/)

 

And here is the article by Ezequiel Doiny:

 

Doiny, Ezequiel. “French Court Ruling: Israeli Presence in the ‘West Bank’ is Legal”. Israel National News.com; January 31, 2017:

 

(http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/20111)

 

The main site link of origination, as per Doiny’s mention: / ©Jean-Patrick Grumberg for (http://www.dreuz.info)

 

Update: February 4, 2017: Added additional paragraph.

 

 

(Update: December 30, 2019):

 

Israel, David. “Prosecutor Bensouda Asking Hague Court to Rule on Indicting Israel for ‘War Crimes’; jewishpress.com; December 21, 2019:

(https://www.jewishpress.com/news/eye-on-palestine/palestinian-authority/prosecutor-bensouda-asking-hague-court-to-rule-on-indicting-israel-for-war-crimes/2019/12/21/)

 

 

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Tiles of the Temple Found

 

As a child and throughout the all-important developmental years of my youth, I was fortunate to be raised by hard-working parents who struggled to afford me the privileges of providing cultural opportunities to enrich my growth.

 

I attended day camp and summer camp, and had occasional treats of museum or aquarium visits, the Nutcracker suite ballet (back when it was the real, visiting Russian Moscow ballet, to whom nobody has ever held a candle to, to this day), and ice shows. There were piano-, ice-skating and tennis lessons (skiing I had to pay for myself).

 

These are important things, which I think that many of today’s families just don’t bother undertaking with their children. I spent many after-school days at my friend’s house, and she was also a fixture at ours, accompanying my mother and I to an occasional outing. My favorites usually involved trips to the museum. I particularly took a shine to the polished gemstones for purchase for between $1.00-to-$3.00 in the museum’s gift shop, as did my friend, and I had a small collection of a few good rocks: micah, pyrite, and others.

 

I was also really enraptured of the Egyptian artifact collections, as well as the heiroglyphic and ancient writing systems of the ancient Middle Eastern cultures, spending some time in youthful pursuit, which is to say, not so seriously, unfortunately, in trying to learn some of these systems. Odd how it was that when my friend and I concocted our own secret alphabet code, we happened to have used some of the same symbols formulated by the ancients of old. I believe there must be some type of universal symbol usage, or perhaps more narrowly Middle Eastern, that perpetuates in ancient memories of the mind. I bet that if today’s coded kids’ alphabets were studied, they’d find the same symbols still in effect (add this to my Crazy Theory subset: #2, if I remember to do so).

 

I never extrapolated my love in my youth for the Egyptian archaeological finds early enough to realize that it could be a field of study for me, applied to Israeli/Jewish culture. Most study of archaeology in its beginnings were conducted mostly under the auspices of societies/Foundations/schools studying Egyptian, Assyrian and Hittite culture. Jews were excluded from among such groups due to anti-Semitism, and via the fact that they weren’t allowed entrance in such a capacity to those other Middle Eastern countries, anyways. Israel was still being referred to by the old designation of “Palestine”, in any case, as well.

 

In really recent times, though, I was briefly able to realize this great honor in studying Israeli archaeology via the Israeli Ministry of Tourism acceptance of me into its program of licensure to be a tour guide. In a participating academic program I enrolled in (I was unable to complete the full course of certification, due to personal circumstances I let get in the way), my course studies took me on field trips accessible only to archaeologists behind locked gates and other areas way beyond that which even the scope of a tourist trip could reveal. It was incredible.

 

One day I was watching t.v. with my mother about Israel and its sites, and there was one of my classmates, described as an expert, leading a televised tour of a particular ancient site, and I excitedly pointed him out to my mother.

 

Israel’s top archaeologists were my classroom and field guide teachers. One spoke of his Yemeni wife and related tales of his visit with the Princess of Bhutan, as he led us up mountains and past old water drainage systems cut into the hillsides. Another, whom I really related to and admired immensely, is one of Israel’s leading archaeologists. Dr. Gabriel Barkay is the archaeologist whose excavations uncovered the oldest found Biblical text, incised in proto-Hebraic script onto two silver scrolls: that of the Aharonic Blessing (one of my favorites) of Numbers 6:24-26 and the other of Deuteronomy 7:9, dating to approximately the 7th Century BCE, according to information I found at the Israel Tour Guide / Israel Tours blogsite of Shmuel Browns (read his article, below).

 

Prior to the beginning of my educational training, I participated briefly in a project known as the Temple Mount Sifting Project, where dirt which had been removed during illegal Arab construction and excavation on the Temple Mount was being sifted and combed through for any archaeological artifacts it might yield. While I did not find anything….

 

Stone tiles matching the new Roman foot measurement of 29.6 cm used by Herod such as at his other palaces, like Masada, Jericho, and Herodion, of flooring installed in the inlaid opus sectile, or “cut work” style, unknown in Israel prior to Herod’s time, have since been found of imported marble and stone from Rome, Asia Minor, Tunisia and Egypt.

 

King Herod was responsible for many great building projects throughout Israel under vasselage of the Roman Empire. The tiles dating to this time confirm the Jewish Temple having been built then (37-4 BCE, according to the information found at Breaking Israel News), and there. Other contemporaneous sources during Temple period times comes from the historian Flavius Josephus, in his First Century book, “The Jewish Wars”, who writes of the courtyard of the Jewish Temple being paved with multicolored stone, as well as Talmudic literature speaking of colors of green, blue and white. More than 100 of the 600 tiles found date to this period.

 

The timing couldn’t have been a better counterpoint to 9-11 this year (as well as BDS, EU labeling, UNESCO declaration of the Temple Mount being solely holy to our sworn enemies, etc…).

 

G-d sure does have a great sense of humor, doesn’t He?

 

See the archaeological evidence at Breaking Israel News (scroll through entire article to see the different geometrical patterns posited in reconstruction and refurbishment, about halfway down the page) at: http://www.breakingisraelnews.com/75233/first-time-ever-undeniable-evidence-jewish-temple-discovered-photos/

 

Berkowitz, Adam Eliyahu. “For First Time Ever, Archaeological Evidence Proves Jewish Temple Stood On Temple Mount [PHOTOS]”. Breaking Israel News.com; September 6, 2016: http://www.breakingisraelnews.com/75233/first-time-ever-undeniable-evidence-jewish-temple-discovered-photos/

 

Browns, Shmuel. “Ketef Hinnom Silver Amulets”. Israel Tour Guide / Israel Tours; March 16, 2011: https://israel-tourguide.info/2011/0316/ketef-hinnom-silver-amulet/

 

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Gracias, Santana

 

The Santana song, “Smooth”, will always make me think of this great girl I really loved so much. We used to work together, and our lives before meeting had had similar parallels. We both had wound up applying to some of the same companies in our job searches, which we had also done so many times before, and we had lots of laughs over shared coincidences and other things. We had both turned down further consideration for work at the same place, which was a good thing, cuz there was some bad stuff which happened there later, and we both would have been a part of it.

 

We only got together on two or three occasions outside of work, cuz I’m funny that way. It’s kindof the old-school professionalism idea of not mixing business with pleasure, but we really got along like peas in a pod, and so we got together. We went for Mexican food once at this place I loved, if I’m remembering correctly; and we went to a Santana concert.

 

Her boyfriend came along with us, of course, and took our picture in the parking lot before the start of the concert. It was a great concert — they played ” Smooth” and “Black Magic Woman” and all the good stuff. I’m lucky to have still been able to see some of the rock-and-roll greats in my lifetime, and Santana is among the top.

 

Eventually, I wound up leaving the company we worked at, because I couldn’t get accurate shipment details from our corporate headquarters, and my position within the organization was being compromised as a result. My friend left shortly after I did, and I think the whole company tumbled after that point.

 

In the interim, we never did get the photos back from the pharmacy photo-finisher; they say they lost the film. Things that run through my mind: that movie with Robin Williams, who plays a pharmacy film-developer who gets caught up in the imagined lives he vicariously inhabits of the people whose film he develops. Egads — creepification! I’m thinking “Jumanji”, but that was another creepy Robin Williams film about a gameboard which comes to life. I liked Robin Williams’s HAPPY, goofy roles. Let me go look up that movie name — I never saw it, but actually think I wanted to.

 

Got it. It’s ” One Hour Photo”. The release poster popping up on Wikipedia is even more creepy in the pre-release film critic reviews printed on the poster, given the events of Robin Williams’s circumstances. Trust me — don’t look.

 

My friend ran off and did some crazy stuff, and I love and admire her immensely, even though I’m a strange bird that rarely keeps in touch. I still think of her, and always will, as my friend. I know you’re out there, and I love and I miss you, friend.

 

It brings me happiness to learn that Carlos Santana will be playing in Tel Aviv sometime soon. Supporters of the Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel are really trying to bully artists to cancel their performances in Israel. Some have caved in, and others have refused. I’m proud of those who take a stand to these intimidators and come, anyways. In fact, Carlos Santana made a YouTube video message announcing his concert and sending love and peace (in both Hebrew and Arabic) to the people of Israel.

 

That is just so smooth, Carlos. So smooth!

 

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World Refugee Day

You may not know this, because it was a long time ago and its happenstances were thrust upon a minority people representing probably less than 1/2 of 1% of the population, at the time.

The days were the austere periods of war enveloping the efforts of the United States, and, indeed, those of the rest of the world, in the battle for the nations’ places upon the world stage. In each nation, there were those who contributed actively to their battles, and citizenry who still tried to go about some semblance of normality, attempting to live their daily lives as if there were no war on.

The wars’ effects were felt, though, in all strata of society, regardless of participation level. Resources were rationed, manufacturing facilities were retrofitted toward war industry production, and patriotic men signed up to pledge their skills and determination to aid their country in this war effort.

Women civilians were tasked in voluntary roles to assist in previously male-dominated employment, now that the men had left the workforce to join the fighting forces. Suddenly, the stenography skills of the secretary were utilized in the war rooms, and the homemaker found yet further work as airplane riveters and Red Cross nurses, tending to the men and non-combat duties which propel the effort forward, nevertheless. There was no glory, not much pay, no war medals for these roles.

Yet, without these individuals, the war would have been lost.

I’m not sure, today, whether we know what the mindset was among the fighters in this war. We could ask, but most don’t like to tell. It was only seven, eight decades back, and there are still a few citizens left from that time who we could approach…

Thankfully, now, some are beginning to open up. We learn that war is not really glory, but a messy battle where friends are killed, families are torn apart, lives are forever altered. Yet, I think in those times that the people realized that it was a necessary sacrifice to fight for the ideals of what the country represents, so that others cannot impose their tyrannies over us. As much as it would be nice to ignore battles occuring elsewhere, it’s important to step-in to preempt, or at least, to meet, the enemy when they come a-calling.

At first, the United States held back in joining the battles raging in Europe during World War II. It was most unfortunate for the Jews, who were targetted by Germany for extermination. The roads of escape were narrowed, and those that could flee tried to do so through as many modes they could find: smuggled through borders, rail-lines, passenger ships.

The United States, as well as various other countries, maintained quotas of the numbers of people they would admit from each nation into the country, and also had a total maximum amount which were pre-determined to be allowed to enter. These amounts could be waived, essentially, if desired — and often, countries would do so for humanitarian purposes, etc.

But, for the Jewish people, the rules were enforced; worse yet, they were often changed, and not in a manner biased toward their favor. Administrations, like the British one, entrusted to administer the Mandate for Palestine when the Turkish Ottoman Empire lost the war, and, therefore, their territories (which included “Palestine”, at that time), illegally ceded land from the Jews to the Arabs. This included trans-Jordan, some small areas of land along the eastern side of the Jordan river, as well as the rest of what is, today, now called Jordan.

This land was recognized as belonging to the Jews based on factual historicity, and not based on suffrance (meaning just based on the events of the Holocaust, and other such notions). Its rule was recognized as Jewish in the decree issued by the overseeing adminstrator of the territories by the English; again, the Turks had lost this war.

The 1917 Balfour Declaration recognizes these rights of the Jewish people over the land — including on both the eastern and western sides of the Jordan river. It also reminds of the humanitarian aspect of rulership in not prejudicing rights of other people present in the area.

The Jewish people are well aware of this — in fact, are rather instrumental in bringing judicial matters and notions into the world, from the tablets of the Ten Commandments, to the Torah and its 613 mitzvot, both positive and negative, as well as other ideas regarding humanitarian principles. Even the etymology of the English word pertaining to matters of law, such as “judge”, and “judicial” are derived from the land, tribe and religion of “Judah” and “Judaism” (I can hear the grinding of Israel-haters gnashing their teeth now).

Yet, despite what the government position recognized and upheld to be Jewish property, many of the foot soldiers in the English operation were anti-Semitic, and constantly undermined the facilitation of Jewish immigration to Israel (Palestine). There were still some Arab “fellaheen” living on the land of Israel/Palestine, peasants who would tend small plots for absentee Turkish “effendis”. The situation under this arrangement worked out worse and worse for the poor Arab farmer, who became basically an indentured serf beholden to their overlords via crushing taxation and tributary-like payments in this sortof sub-letting arrangement.

The effendis were so far away to even bother with the oversight of any plot of land in Israel/Palestine, and it became, under Turkish rule, such a wasteland of neglect, that many Arabs just abandoned the land altogether. That is the reason for so many reports of outside travellers visiting this supposed “Garden of Eden” and “land of milk and honey” and finding it to instead be a malarial, overgrown area devoid of many people and pretext toward any civilization. The words of Mark Twain, and many others, attest to its reality.

The Jews always lived there, since their settling in the land called Canaan, for many thousands of years, even in dwindling amounts. Its populations rose and fell. Those that had been driven away always thought of return, although it was a much more difficult endeavor in the days preceding freedom of movement, mechanical transport, vast fortunes, and even the ideology to consider travel a non-event, as we do today. There was disease without vaccination, piracy during sea voyage, robbery via land-passage (especially in Mid-East areas of the world).

But, come, we did — or at least tried to. Away from our oppressive abodes of exile and back to our lands. Some of us still have the “Galut” (“Exile”) mentality — more a matter of realizing that we have reached a point of being able to physically possess the means — the money, the ease of travel, etc. — that would allow us to pick ourselves up and transport our families’ lives back to the “Promised Land”, where we belong.

It isn’t so easy. We were still discriminated against in society, barred from beaches, universities, clubs, schools and other places where citizens dwell. A few Jewish people began to become successful, developing their own contributions outside of the society from which they had been barred. The film industry is a notable example, with Jewish people pioneering an entire industry.

Jewish people developed their own businesses and slowly worked their way toward achieving more commercial and personal success. Eventually, there were quite a number of established people of Jewish origin; but, that certainly didn’t encompass all. In time, it became almost like competitive sport — a “keeping up with the Joneses” phenomenon, where appearance was more important than reality, in the community. It is unfortunate that this development briefly occurred, but there are some still afflicted by the lingering mindset.

I recently thought that more Jewish people who could possibly make “Aliyah” by moving to Israel were stubbornly stuck in the comfort of the “fleshpots of Egypt”, alluding to the ease of life to which the Jews had attained in Egypt, under the reign of second-to-the-Pharoah, our own Israeli Joseph, prior to the successive Pharaonic dynasties which eventually grew to forget the contributions of Joseph toward saving their society, to the final disdain amongst the citizenry for the now-perceived successful “others” in their midst as non-native foreigners competing for jobs and resources.

I realized, after that initial thought, that I was wrong for thinking that Jews were all willfully ignoring the call to return to Israel. Somebody else came up with the same thought, and even wrote an article about it, declaring that Jewish people living in the Diaspora are actively boycotting Israel by not living there, in a surely worse-conceived notion than the actual Boycott/Divestment/Sanctions (BDS) discrimination being carried out by the world against the Jews right now actually is. I realized that, while there might be some truth in it, for those who truly have the resources to do so, but won’t; there are still many of us who are actually quite poor and can’t. We don’t fit the stereotypical profile of being independently wealthy, as so many are apt to think. So, please — return your pointing finger back to its holster.

I was glad to volunteer the practical equivalent of a basic-training regimen, on my own dime (and, unfortunately, extended into my families’, due to unexpected costs) with the duties of a non-combat Jewish “soldier” (not technically; just a civilian volunteer) linked, by volunteer work, to a Jewish Army somewhere on Jewish land in Israel, so that my brethren could take a much-needed break and come to the relative safety of the U.S. instead of having to always save our collective heinies against constant murderous assault from middle-east Arab maniacs bent on our destruction. I agree — my almost nine-months’ does not a lifetime make — but, it is enough time to create life. Never mind all the pocket money collectively spent by the volunteers purchasing much needed things they were always short of supply in. If you think Israel receives top-drawer funds and supplies, you’d be surprised. Loan guarantees are still loans, which must be paid back. The stuff ain’t all free, like you think. Korean war-era castoffs, etc. don’t necessarily advance the Israeli Army to number one. Our determination, brain power, inventiveness and G-d, do.

Jews were fired upon and turned back from most of the lands their boats approached during flight from the Nazi horrors preceding, during, and following World War II. My Jewish families’ efforts as active military meant nothing in the lack of extending refugee asylum to the Jews leaving persecution in Europe during that era. The same attitude was served to the Jews as they reached Palestine; the English administrators did not facilitate entry into the land recognized as ours: we were turned away, imprisoned in barracks or sent to internment camps on the island of Cyprus; or turned away completely — contrary to their own British government’s Mandate. The remaining Arabs, or those recently taking up residence in the land, had caused enough chaos with constant killings and attacks to cow the English to submissive subserviance, kowtowing to their demands and limiting Jewish immigration, against the directive to do otherwise.

The Jews were betrayed — and it wouldn’t be our first time to know such treatment. Indeed, we know the precious price of freedom and how it feels to be persecuted for being born a Jew. We could never be more grateful to G-d for being born, as such. We are cognizant of everything that entails what it means to know nationhood, peoplehood and freedom. We champion it, everyday. For those who would accuse us otherwise, you have yet much to learn.

On World Refugee Day, today, you may view, on-demand, the ceremony of induction and the Oath of Allegiance of refugees and asylum-seekers and new citizens to the United States via the streaming site of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum at 2:00 E.D.T. (sorry my article surpassed that time frame; guess I had alot to say). I feel honored that Emma Lazarus received the privilege to pen the words upon the sentry statue of welcome to the harbors of the United States at Ellis Island, where many Jewish people came to shore and reached safety.

USHMM: https://www.ushmm.org/watch

 

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Peace Out and Peach Out

 

 

This evening after sunset (because the day has officially ended, and the holiday starts “tomorrow”) marks Shavuot, when G-d gave us the Torah to Moshe on Mount Sinai. This is the revelation of His words and teachings. It’s a time of joy and happiness. We celebrate often with a meal of dairy.

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It also commemorated harvest times and festivals in days of old. In honor of my father and my brother, in their memories, for relatives who are no longer here with us, and in order that there be food still growing on earth for whoever might be here to enjoy it, perhaps for the poor, or those of us who can’t afford to spend eight dollars for a peach, in all of your honor, and in honor of the L-rd’s blessings and in gratitude, I planted a peach pit. Peace Out and Peach Out!

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And the peaches were delicious in my Green Zeitim recipe (see “Green Zeitim” post, below).

 

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Chag Shavuot Sameach

 

Bar’chu et Adonai ha’m’vorach

Baruch Adonai ha’m’vorach le’olam va-ed

Baruch Atah Adonai

Elokeinu Melech Ha’olam

Asher bachar banu mi-kol ha’amim

V’natan lanu et Torah-to

Baruch Atah Adonai

Notein ha-Torah

(V’chayei Olam Nata b’tocheinu

Baruch Atah Adonai, Notein ha-Torah)

 

Thank you for your Torah, L-rd. Thank you for the gift of life. Thank you for your love and for finding and placing me with good Jewish parents to raise me in my faith. Thank you for allowing me to say these words to you on the bimah and for allowing me to reach this day. Thank you for the beautiful world you have created and all that’s in it. Happy Shavuot back to you.

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Jerusalem Day! Today! Yay!!!

 

Today marks the anniversary of our soldiers liberating our land from the illegal Arab attack upon us and subsequent 19-year illegal occupation of our land. These areas were Gaza (liberated from Egyptian occupation), the Golan Heights (taken back from the Syrians), and the Old City of Jerusalem (kicking out the illegal Jordanians and their Legion). Let me do a dance on my screwed-up knee, and I’ll be right back…..

 

I just sang “Haveinu Shalom Aleichem”, and I clapped and walked around in a circle or two. Kitty celebrated with me with a small piece of cheddar cheese; she likes Jerusalem Day, too!

 

Here’s a nice article describing some of the Jewish history which fully backs our rightful ownership claims to the land (there are so many, that they can hardly ever be fully compiled, since they include, not only our own claims [which, see: The Tanach/Bible], but those of most other Middle Eastern, and other foreign, countries):

(http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/18991)

 

Here’s a nice article on the Temple Mount, the substructures and the olden pathways used by the Jews in transversing the pathways between the gates of the walled city and the interior crossways to the Temple and other areas inside and nearby to the compound, etc., now lying below the Islamic structures atop the plaza and courtyard areas:

Ben David, Lenny. “Secrets Under the Al Aqsa Mosque”; June 4, 2016, Arutz Sheva/Israel National News.com: (http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/213261)

 

And, here is Ofra Haza in a video singing “Jerusalem of Gold” (which demonstrates our cultural connection, longing, love, and heritage to Jerusalem and Israel): (https://youtu.be/YBNV8L7qjGE)

 

Here is a nice, rhyming transliteration of the lyrics to “Jerusalem of Gold” (so you can read what it means to us, for yourself, and see how much we revere her): (http://www.hebrewsongs.com/song-yerushalayimshelzahav.htm)

 

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Randy’s Recipes: Green Zeitim

 

“Zeitim” is Hebrew for the English word “olives”. One most associates the old olive trees in Israel with the green variety, some trees living for thousands of years back to the times when all three monotheistic faiths could witness their growth, both the trees and their religions, through the Jewish lens of Jerusalem and Judah/Israel. Both the trees and the Jews were there to witness these births and the impacts they have had on humanity — and, not to mention, on the Jews and the trees, themselves.

 

The Jewish people, and its faith, believe that the Messiah will arrive to usher in the G-dly reign by walking through the double gates in the city walls of the Old City of Jerusalem, opposite Har HaZeitim, or, as it’s English name is called, “The Mount of Olives”. This physical site is the rising mountain located next to and over-looking the Beit HaMikdash, the Jewish Temple, which stood upon the Mount opposite, which now is home to the famous gold-domed and silver-roofed house of Islamic prayers.

 

Because we believe that the Messiah will arrive  at that spot, it has behooved us to build our graves there, so that we can be closest to meet the Messiah, at that time. In life and in death, we believe in G-d. It is for this reason that Har HaZeitim, the Jewish cemetery, is situated directly across from the expected arrival spot. Har HaZeitim is the oldest known cemetery in the world. It’s gravestones are graves of stone.

 

Stone has a lasting permanence; it is what G-d has chosen in creating the bedrock and mantle of the crusts of the earth, and of its many interesting geological formations in the composition of the mountains. A small rock or pebble is placed atop the gravemarker upon visiting the site of a Jewish grave location. The tectonic plates which are pushing against one another as they slowly contort the landscape might be riding on the waters which separate firmament from firmament, and from the waters above of the firmaments above. Careful reading of the Bible would show this as a possible meaning to the wonders of our worlds — things we only don’t discover until much later, if at all.

 

The love of the Jewish people for the words of G-d, and their belief that the land He delivered them and the place that He requested as His abode, within the Beit HaMikdash (Jewish Temple) upon its mount, resting on the bedrock of Jerusalem, in the land of Judah/Zion/Israel/etc., has prompted the correlation by the derivative monotheistic faiths to develop tandem, or occasionally, replacement-based theological viewpoints, sometimes leading to major movements.

 

These three evidentiary details should be clear proof that the Jewish claim, not only to the site of the Temple Mount, but to the land of Israel, is legitimate: the Jewish cemetery built on Har HaZeitim to greet the Messiah shows that the Jews cherish and respect the Holiness which G-d accorded it. The cemetery is the oldest in the world, continuing to serve its intended function as a Jewish cemetery. This precedes any possible other claims, being an original, archaeological physical proof, as well as a faith-based demonstration of the Jewish spiritual reality and attention to its fulfillment. The retaining wall to hold the Temple Mount in place has been known as the “Wailing Wall” to successive generations of faithful believers (the “Western Wall” to Jewish sources, translated from the Hebrew “Kotel HaMa’ariv”) who have undertaken specific pilgrimages of faith to visit there throughout the centuries. It is known in extant extraneous sources of written literature attesting to these travels to the revered site in Jewish history and its lore from a broad range of faiths and people throughout history. These documents are being ignored in ceding the site to Arabs, but should not be. The site was built to support a massive structure, requiring the placement, right down to the very bedrock, of 144-ton stones to support the distribution of weight across its surface and to raise it upon its pedestal. There is nothing built below bedrock — no other culture found below this level. It’s walls rise up through the striations of following levels of human existence, but it remains rooted to the earth at its very foundation level. Knowing its importance in relation to the Jews’ perceived relationship with G-d, other faiths built there to receive the glory, as well. It is the reason for the abundance of structures of all faiths, throughout the centuries, enjoining that they receive their share of spiritual accord, too. Some, such as the Arabs, meant to take all the glory away from the Jews; during the time of their actual reign here, too, they made certain to stop the Messiah’s arrival, which would bring the Jews back to their glory, by blocking-up the entry-gates of the walls to the city through which He is supposed to enter. The difference in workmanship, and that this bricked-up addition to already existing entrances to a much older structure, should be obviously apparent (– but, it’s ignored).

 

The wood of the olive tree has had major Biblical significance, as well. Because of the olive tree’s significance, mentioned throughout testaments of varied faiths, it and its wood, used in the Bible, are extremely revered and imputed with hallowed significance in the industry built up around its usage for keepsakes. Carvings from its wood are especially helpful as a means of employment, particularly among the Arabs who carve and sell such figurines from its wood to the burgeoning Christian pilgrimage visitors, as well as casual tourists, visiting Israel’s sites. Olives are among the species of Israel listed in the Bible. Its oil and the millstones and vats used for its pressing are found in ancient archaeological excavations around Israel.

 

My first encounter with a green olive occurred many, many years ago. Our family was the home where Thanksgiving took place, and my cousin coaxed me to try one. Perhaps it was profaning the sanctity of its species in a secular observance which embittered its taste in my mouth, and my reaction was rather exaggerated and it had to go; and go quickly it did, in a rather irrational manner.

 

My next attempt to try one came directly from a tree in Israel at the site called Gan HaShlosha (or, “Garden of the Three”), a paradaisical oasis of natural hot springs, date palms, olive trees and unbelievable beauty in the sandy desert-like conditions mostly surrounding it. A pool containing the visible portions of this spring has been built to enhance its comforts, and it is definitely a must-see place to visit. It also has another name called Sachne Oasis. I tried the bitter offering of the olive straight from the tree before being brined or preserved, and again, had the same reaction; I wasn’t alone in this — the entire group did, as well. But that was, again, a less commital exertion, on my part, to comply reasonably with facets of our faith’s practices and observances — So, no-go.

 

Then, when I had the right intent, or at least the best of intents on my part to commit further to Israel, the olive became an agreeable and loved and adored foodstuff from G-d that I crave in my diet and which provides me so much sustenance. Thank you, L-rd! And this came about in the most secular manner, by the way. I had visited a mall and there found a Kosher Domino’s pizzeria inside! Fancy that!? It was sortof expensive and I was going to have none of that, but somehow the pizzamaker had convinced me I needed to try it, and that was that. I don’t recall exactly, but I think that we were also debating the merits of an Israeli Jewish staple, at least in terms of pizza toppings, as pepperoni, sausage and bacon do not aspire to the list. It wss an “Ode to the Green Olive” (my title theme eventually to continue in the future, so I claim it as mine — no grabsies). Past occurences notwithstanding, there it was — now on my plate before me. He was right. I don’t recall whether I agreed or whether I received it by “accident”; but, perhaps, maybe there are never any real “accidents” in life. Perhaps this represents an ascension, an accedance, to the realm of the metaphorically-relevant existence operating in G-d’s spiritual realm.


This dish can be eaten as a side accompaniment, as a meal in itself, or used raw or cooked in entrees and hors d’oeuvres, like a tapenade. It’s flavors are spicy. Mixed with sweet apple, as I did here, it became a melding of perfection — peppery bite with underlying temperedness of sweetness. It reminds me of the Yiddish embodiment of Jewish expression.


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Green Zeitim (Randyjw; May 18, 2016)

 

Lemon rind (washed, ripe, edible — can be substituted with other edible citrus peels or the zest from non-edible rinds; other substitutes, and your favorites, might work, as well), cut fairly small

Sugar (any kind; I used white, granular; to be the base for the sweet, syrupy slurry that will be infused with the aroma of the add-in; other substitutes, like agave nectar or honey, etc. can be utilized additional to, or in place of, the sugar)

Green Olives, chopped

Cinammon, sprinkled

Apples, sliced (optional; never-ending adds: on toast; over rice; as a stock-starter to jump off on other dishes, etc… Also: on lettuce, as well as on lettuce and with a garlic-pasta all-together)


At least 1/2-day to 1-day in advance (it’s better this way, but if you must proceed otherwise, don’t let that stop you), prepare the slurry by zesting the peel (if hard and inedible) or cutting the edible, soft, ripe, washed rinds of citrus or other matter you are turning to a liquid-derived, flavor-infused slurry into a container and coat with sweetener, several times stirring and adding, until a thick slurry has formed. If you can, allow it to infuse for a time, overnight in the fridge, or so. Remove when ready to begin next steps of preparation. Using a bit of the slurry that has hopefully had time to “marinate”, add this to some chopped green olives in a bowl. Sprinkle and stir-in a couple dashes of cinammon — the flavor will really come alive and bloom by opening it up to the addition of the cinammon, just like an Israeli sabra in the desert.

9.1 Yums Up (Green Zeitim/Fuji Apple Version, only)

Update: Substitutes can also be used, though, the recipe is really just meant for the Fuji apples. Here, I used pears, and, since it needed a flavor changer/enhancer, I added about a half-jigger or so of Marsala wine. I made this version especially to show to Jyotee, who does not love apples (still, I think it should be apples, but…)

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Afterwards, I then turned it into a piecey poached-pear chutney, of sorts, here:

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Here it makes a delicious dressing atop plain iceberg lettuce:

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and, then, it was love at first bite when I threw-in a garlic-butter-pasta-green herbs side dish, (which had been uninspiringly dry as its plain, old left-over self):

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It was wonderful mixed with sliced peaches:

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Additional Reading (Added June 25, 2018):

 

Flatow, Stephen M. “‘Un-Settling’: The Royals Understanding of Jerusalem”; Reprinted in secondary source by JewishPress.com from Jewish News Syndicate (JNS); June 25, 2018:

http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/un-settling-the-royals-understanding-of-jerusalem/2018/06/25/

 

 

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Some Bunny Loves You

 

SOME BUNNY LOVES YOU!

 

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HAPPY ISRAEL INDEPENDENCE DAY!

 

 

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Israel Travel Deal: Mar/Apr/May/June – 2016

 

Israel Travel Deal:  5 Nights!!!

Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, or Both!

El Al Nonstop/Overnight from New York

Per Person, Double Occupancy

$999 – March/April (Selected Dates)

$1199 – May/June (Selected Dates)

Certain restrictions, dates, limitations apply.

Book with: https://exploreisrael.com/

(Mention TravelZoo)

A Top 20 Selection from TravelZoo.com

Released March 16, 2016

http://www.travelzoo.com/

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The Parable of King David

 

The individuals who make up the WordPress community, each and every one, are truly really special people.  I’ll call the camraderie and insight, along with some good sense and thoughtful interaction, a form of “comfort food”. It has become, to me, a sisterhood of sorts: trading recipes, lamenting lost loves, sharing bits of your soul through words and poetry.

 

They’re personal relationships on a public level, and public relationships on a personal level. It’s a great joy to share someone’s happiness and uniqueness — to celebrate with them their expressions of selves; the ups, the downs, and to offer your own conversations to the mix.

 

My profile gives a synopsis of my gratitude to be able to share viewpoints from my own perspective, on both a personal level, to an extent, and in a broad forum that the internet can provide. I would have no voice under tyranny. While circumstances are less than ideal to hear similar views from the mainstream media, on college campuses, in governmental and international forums — all of whom have declared mine as invalid; persona non-grata in a supposed democracy — still I yet fight for and find here the free expression of ideas which are representative of the ideals we strive for under democracy. We may not always reach fruition in our personal purpose, and it may not always work out fairly or to one’s own personal gain.

 

Yet still it is the ideal which to cherish.

 

As Jews, we are engaged in the fight for our lives, because in the “courts” of public opinion we are already condemned. I have stared down my self-declared enemies nose-to-nose, and I have bellowed like a bull; signed petitions; written the President; gone to Israel to help lighten the burden.

 

To use some Biblical analogies, there is a time and a season for everything. A time to hate and a time to love.

 

Our beloved King David was not a perfect man. In placing Uriah on the front lines of battle, he caused his death as surely as doing the deed. Because of this, the L-rd would not allow him to build the Temple. But David was allowed to gather the materials so that his son, Solomon, could build it. Thus was the first Temple of G-d’s abode created.

 

The Jews lived under a period of dayyanim (Judgeship/Judges) (if my sequence is correct), for a long time prior to their establishment of the successive monarchies, which would produce the likes of David and Solomon. It was the Prophets who first anointed the Kings, with Divine oversight.

 

Our first Jewish king was named Saul. His son, Yonatan, became the best of friends with David, the shepherd from Bethlehem. David would delight King Saul with music and melodies that he played. King Saul eventually grew paranoid in the power of his position, or in the recesses of his mind, where he began to suspect that David wanted to usurp his power and authority because David was blessed with many talents and success in applying them. It was David, the shepherd, who was able to defeat Goliath (Golyat) of the Philistines, as well as win many more battles against thousands more, the extent to which had eluded King Saul. The truth was blocked from Saul’s consideration in his mental incapacitation, as the insecurities and over-shadowing of David’s star exceeded his. He then began to persecute David as his alleged offender, to the point where he planned to get rid of him, once and for all.

 

Yonatan was able to warn David of his father’s intentions, allowing for his escape. He shuffled around from place to place, hiding amongst the varied population. Saul eventually caught up to David at Ein Gedi, I believe it was. But David remained hidden against Saul’s murderous intent. While Saul slept, David crept up to him and sliced off a corner of his garment. When Saul confronted David finally, David was able to prove that if it had been the murder of Saul for which he was being accused, than he had been close enough to do so while King Saul slept. The fact that he had the corner of the garment and that he did not kill King Saul was proof that he was being persecuted without reason. That David was wise enough to back away from King Saul’s wrath spared his life.

 

There is a time for war and a time for peace.

 

 

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Israel Includes Gaza/West Bank/Sinai

Security, In the Shape of an Under-Arm Holster

My Own Personal Conceal/Carry Preference

 

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Israel, shown with its Sinai Peninsula, Judaea and Samaria (West Bank) and Gaza — and without its eastern portion beyond the river (now known as Jordan) and Armistice lines.

 

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Jewish Temple Mount Heritage Claim

 

"The site is one of the oldest in the world. Its sanctity dates from the earliest (perhaps from pre-historic times). Its identity with the site of Solomon's Temple is beyond dispute. This, too, is the spot, according to the universal belief, on which "David built there an altar unto the Lord, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings". - A Brief Guide to Al-Haram Al-Sharif; Supreme Moslem Council, Jerusalem, 1924.

“The site is one of the oldest in the world. Its sanctity dates from the earliest (perhaps from pre-historic) times. Its identity with the site of Solomon’s Temple is beyond dispute. This, too, is the spot, according to the universal belief, on which “David built there an altar unto the Lord, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings”. – A Brief Guide to Al-Haram Al-Sharif; Supreme Moslem Council, Jerusalem, 1924.

 

 

 

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