Friday, June 29, 2007

Farfur Is Dead!!!

Farfur - the Mickey Mouse of Hamas - is dead.

Jpost, quoting AP, reports:
Jun. 29, 2007 20:34
Hamas Mickey Mouse dies in his last episode
By ASSOCIATED PRESS
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip


Hamas TV on Friday broadcast what it said was the last episode of a weekly children's show featuring "Farfour," a Mickey Mouse look-alike who had made worldwide headlines for preaching Islamic domination and armed struggle to youngsters.

In the final skit, Farfour was beaten to death by an actor posing as an Israeli official trying to buy Farfour's land. At one point, Farfour called the Israeli a "terrorist."

"Farfour was martyred while defending his land," said Sara, the teen presenter. He was killed "by the killers of children," she added.


Bil'am Harasha at least wished to do Teshuva at the last minute, as the Or Hahaim Hakadosh explains on the verse תמות נפשי מות ישרים:
אלא שנתאוה שבשעת מיתה ישוב ויהיה ישר כישרים שבאומות ולפי שעמד על מזגו והנה הוא רע בתכלית הרע ונמנע ממנו עשות יושר, לזה שאל דבר שיכול להיות בשעת דכדוכה של מוות יהיה ישר.

Farfur, who represents Hamas mentality, stayed a Rasha throughout - even right before death.
May the fate of Farfur befall the entirety of Hamas.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Mar'it Ha'ayin (or Ha'ozen)

Interesting article in jpost about a male singer who sounds too feminine being banned from radio stations for that reason, but I don't understand it. Mar'it Ha'ayin reasons don't seem to make sense to me.
If you can put pareve cream on tables at dinners and say "The cream is pareve", you can announce the name of the singer before playing his songs.

The article continues:
Toker, who said he would play Faizkov's music on his own hassidic music show, which is broadcast on Radio Jerusalem, a legal station, predicted that the ban on Faizkov's music would probably destroy his budding career.


It will actually probably help his budding career, knowing what bans have done in the past.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Gilad Shalit הי"ו

I listened to the voice of Gilad Shalit today.
His words were obviously fed by his Hamas captives, but it was good to hear his voice nonetheless.

In Parshat Pinehas, we read the following Pesukim:

כט בְּנֵי מְנַשֶּׁה, לְמָכִיר מִשְׁפַּחַת הַמָּכִירִי, וּמָכִיר, הוֹלִיד אֶת-גִּלְעָד; לְגִלְעָד, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַגִּלְעָדִי.
ל אֵלֶּה, בְּנֵי גִלְעָד--אִיעֶזֶר, מִשְׁפַּחַת הָאִיעֶזְרִי; לְחֵלֶק, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַחֶלְקִי.
לא וְאַשְׂרִיאֵל--מִשְׁפַּחַת, הָאַשְׂרִאֵלִי; וְשֶׁכֶם, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַשִּׁכְמִי.
לב וּשְׁמִידָע, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַשְּׁמִידָעִי; וְחֵפֶר, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַחֶפְרִי



Perhaps, the names of the sons of Gil'ad can be attributed to the status of Gilad Shalit,הי"ו

איעזר - can be broken up into אי עזר - or "No help". No person has yet succeeded in helping him escape the situation he's in.
חלק - from the word מחלוקת - there's constant arguing and disagreements on the correct method in freeing him.
אשריאל - this has a שין שמאלית, which makes it like אסריאל - Hashem has imprisoned me.
שכם - Shechem.org has an article, where at the very end, it tells you the difference between the word חלק and the word שכם. As opposed to the word חלק, the connotation of the word "שכם" means unity and togetherness, as in the Pasuk in Tzefania 3:9 "לעבדו שכם אחד". Even though we are divided as to the means of freeing him, we are completely united in our resolve to get him freed.
שמידע - can be broken up into שמי דע - or "Know my name". News of his capture and even the latest video made world headlines.
חפר - digging. The way he was captured was by the terrorists digging tunnels under the Gaza fence to kidnap him.


May we hear good tidings of Eliyahu Hagil'adi to herald in the Mashiah, when we know all the captives of the Jewish people will be freed, as it says:

וּפְדוּיֵי יְהוָה יְשֻׁבוּן, וּבָאוּ צִיּוֹן בְּרִנָּה, וְשִׂמְחַת עוֹלָם, עַל-רֹאשָׁם; שָׂשׂוֹן וְשִׂמְחָה יַשִּׂיגוּ, וְנָסוּ יָגוֹן וַאֲנָחָה

Peret and Olelot

More Mitzvot done in the Holy Land.

This time Peret and Olelot.

See here (Hebrew).

Eich Omrim "Home Plate" Be'Ivrit?

I got a kick out of this article about the new Israel Baseball League.

Friday, June 22, 2007

To'eva Display Aftermath

Tamar Yonah sums up the parade that transpired yesterday.
Let's hope that's the last we see/hear from these organizations.

Yosef Family Simha

Ladaat.net reports that the grandson of Hacham Ovadia Yosef Shlit"a - the son of Rav Yitzhak Yosef (author of the Yalkut Yosef) Shlit"a - has gotten married.
Rav Sheinberg got the Beracha Aharita.
Rav Yosef the younger authored 2 halachic books for the occasion.

See the pictures there.

Mazal Tov!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Lessons from the Perasha on the Parade

As many rabbis have shunned protesting the Abomination Parade, and instead told us to focus on prayer, they may have noticed the Midrash on this week's Perasha. The verses read:


א וַיִּשְׁמַע הַכְּנַעֲנִי מֶלֶךְ-עֲרָד, יֹשֵׁב הַנֶּגֶב, כִּי בָּא יִשְׂרָאֵל, דֶּרֶךְ הָאֲתָרִים; וַיִּלָּחֶם, בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל, וַיִּשְׁבְּ מִמֶּנּוּ, שֶׁבִי.
ב וַיִּדַּר יִשְׂרָאֵל נֶדֶר לַיהוָה, וַיֹּאמַר: אִם-נָתֹן תִּתֵּן אֶת-הָעָם הַזֶּה, בְּיָדִי--וְהַחֲרַמְתִּי, אֶת-עָרֵיהֶם.
ג וַיִּשְׁמַע יְהוָה בְּקוֹל יִשְׂרָאֵל, וַיִּתֵּן אֶת-הַכְּנַעֲנִי, וַיַּחֲרֵם אֶתְהֶם, וְאֶת-עָרֵיהֶם; וַיִּקְרָא שֵׁם-הַמָּקוֹם, חָרְמָה


The Midrash, brought down in Yalkut Shimoni, after explaining that these Canaanites were really Amalekites, says:

א"ר תנחום בר חנילאי כיון ששמעו שמת אהרן זיינו עצמן מבפנים ולבשו עצמם מבחוץ והן באו כבני אבלים אמרו יודעין אנו שיש להן מאבותיהם פטריקא שאמר להם הקול קול יעקב שהן מתפללין ונשמעין ואנו באין עליהם סבורים בני כנענים הן והן מתפללין על הכנענים ואנו הורגין אותן, כיון שבאו ראו צורת פניהם משל עמלק ולבושיהן ושיחתן של כנענים, אמרו רבש"ע אין אנו יודעין מי הן, מכל מקום עשה בהם מדת הדין שנאמר אם נתן תתן את העם הזה מיד וישמע ה' בקול ישראל



Similar to this Midrash, we don't know if the parade organizers and participants are willing to do Teshuva or not. Therefore, our prayer should be the following:

"Ribbono Shel Olam: These people act and dress like the Egyptians and Canaanites of old, but their faces tell us that they are Jews. Please help them realize their insides have a Jewish Neshama, and help them do complete Teshuva before You. Please help them realize that holding such a parade in the Holy City is a desecration of Your Holy Name. א-ל נא רפא נא להם א-ל נא רפא נא להם. If they won't do Teshuva, please let them leave the Holy Land that You have given us."

Hopefully,

וישמע ה' בקול ישראל

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

MK Eli Yishai's Daughter's Wedding - Where Gedolim and Politicians Meet

Ladaat.net has pictures of Shas MK Rav Eli Yishai's daughter's wedding. It's basically a who's who of the Torah world and a who's who of Israeli politics coming together for a Simha.

הנה מה טוב ומה נעים שבת אחים גם יחד

Bava Kamma Review

What would the Din be in this case?

Would the mare's owner have to pay Nezek Shalem?
Would the mare's owner have to pay Hatzi Nezek since this is a case of Be'ita, which is like Keren?
Or would the mare's owner be Patur completely due to the Din ofכל המשנה ובא אחר ושינה בו פטור?

Friday, June 15, 2007

Tamuz

Shofar.net brings down a nice idea about Rosh Hodesh Tamuz. It says that Rosh Hodesh Tamuz is 100 days before Yom Kippur, and that the word "תמוז", if you mix the letters, stands for זמני תשובה ממשמשים ובאים - which means that the time for Teshuva is quickly approaching.

In the U.S., when a new U.S. President starts his term in office, at the 100-day mark, the media talks about his progress up until that point. We should think in those terms as well. We are our own president. We are commander-in-chief of our own actions. On Rosh Hodesh Tamuz, we start our presidency. Will the Media-On-High think of us favorably on that awesome day 100 days from now?

Thursday, June 14, 2007

2 Great Geula Posts

In what must be described as one of the best Ge'ula posts I've seen in the past year, Rav Pinchas Winston comes through again with his brilliance. Read the whole thing, but I will provide an important excerpt.

Excerpt:
...It is hard to believe that it has been seven years since the last Sh’mittah year, especially given all the excitement of that time. Last time, the sixth year of the Sh’mittah cycle coincided with 5760, or 2000, the year of Y2K. True to Rashi’s explanation of the Talmud, there was talk of Moshiach’s imminent arrival, based upon the anticipation of world-wide chaos.
Also true to the Talmud’s prediction, there was war in the seventh year, when the Arab world, as if following the Talmudic script, began the second phase of the Intifadah. It began with rocks being thrown down from the Temple Mount on Rosh Hashanah, it led to the lynching in Ramallah, and all the war that has followed since then. In spite of great efforts to make peace with the PLO, the Palestinians returned peace initiatives with war-like ones, and for the most part, straight-out terrorism.
And, when in the eighth year of the cycle, the year that Ben Dovid is supposed to arrive, the World Trade Center was attacked and the war against terrorism began in earnest, it seemed too close for comfort. Many Kabbalists hold that the American attack on Afghanistan signaled the beginning of the final phase of the War of Gog and Magog. It really seemed then as if history would come to a close just as it is scripted by the Talmud.
But it didn’t. Instead, history has shlepped on since then, and only gotten worse, especially inside Israel....


Rav Dov Bar Leib has a great post of his own, and also talks about the Shemitta cycle, and its effect on the Ge'ula.

Excerpt:
...Rav Kaduri ztl. is quoted as saying that the Gaon of Vilna's iterpretation of the word shvi'is is just that, the sabbatical year. The Gaon according to the Saintly Rav Kaduri even said that the seven years of Gog U Magog would begin on Hoshana Rabbah (the seventh day of the Feast of Booths) in the first year of a shmittah cycle and would conclude in the eighth year, which is the first year of the next Shmittah cycle. The seventh year would be the year of the war. The eighth year would be the year of Mashiach's timely arrival....

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Peres Becomes President - Foretold?

Shimon Peres will become the next President of Israel.
The curse of the Gerrer Rebbe has been broken.

The following may be quite interesting. It is a quote from ספר זרובבל (hosted by Hashem1.net), an ancient book that talks about the years preceding the Mashiah. Note that Peres will become Israel's ninth president.


ואלו הם העשרה מלכים, אשר יקומו על האומות בשבע שנים (בתקופה שלפני ביאת המשיח, כמתואר למעלה):

הראשון: סליקוס מאספמיא.
השני: ארטימוס ממדינת הים.
השלישי: קילוס (נ"י: טליס) מגיתו.
הרביעי: פאולוס מגליא.
החמישי: דומטריס ממרטניא (נ"י: מאדור).
השישי: מרקולוס מאיטליא.
השביעי: ארכטונוס מאדמוס (נ"י: מרודמא).
השמיני: מספליסניס (נ"י: אפעלסטוס) מארם-נהרים.
התשיעי: פרוס (נ"י: שירון) מפרס, יבוא ויערוך מלחמה בבקעת ארבאל, ויצא עליו ‘נשרב’, ויכהו, ויבוא וימלוך באותו בקעה. הוא מתחיל ליטע אשרות אשר שנא ה’.. וארבע מזבחות יבנה, ויכעוס לה’ במעשיו.

ורעב גדול יהיה על פני כל הארץ חמשה וארבעים יום, וישראל ומלכיהם ונביאיהם יפוצו על מדבר ירושלים ועל נחל השיטים, ומלוח על שיח קוטפים למחיתם. בו ביום: ומעיין מבית ה’ יצא, והשקה את נחל השיטים.

ומלך העשירי, הוא ארמילוס בן אבן שיש, שבבית התורף של ליצים. וכל הגויים בכל המקומות יבואו ויעמדו לפני האבן, ויקטירו לפניה, ולא יוכלו לראות פניה מיופיה, וכל אשר יגבה לבו להביט אליה לא יוכל.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Reishit Hagez in Beit El

Arutz Sheva reports on a Reishit Hagez ceremony in Beit El.

"These commandments bring us closer to our dream of rebuilding the Holy Temple and supporting the Priests," Rabbi Melamed said, "who will be wholly involved in Temple service...."


Update: CosmicX has more info and pictures. Check it out!

Monday, June 11, 2007

Do We Really Want Mashiah?

Rafi G. has an interesting discussion going on regarding whether we really want Mashiah or not.

Check it out!

Friday, June 08, 2007

On Shas's Decision

Comment #8 here, which I did not write, but I agree with:

כל הקופצים בראש, ההחלטה היא דעת תורה
מאת : ש"סניק
כל אלו הקופצים בראש, אתם יודעים על מי נאמר שקופץ בראש. זכרו שההחלטה היא דעת תורה וכך צריכים לנהוג, לא תסור ימין ושמאל.
לא תמיד אנו רואים מה שמרן רואה, וכבר היו דברים מעולם. באופן אישי הייתי שמח אם היה ניתן הוראה להצביע לריבלין, אבל משכבר ניתנה ההחלטה לפרס, כך צריך לנהוג



Avraham Avinu was ordered to do something that went against his conscience, but he did not question, and did as he was told.

The Torah says "את ה' אלקיך תירא" and the Rabbi Akiva was Doresh:

את - לרבות תלמידי חכמים

We are not privy to the minds of our sages, and we cannot say we know better than them, because we don't.

Any comment that disrespects any rabbi will be deleted

Monday, June 04, 2007

Kinor Almost Done

ShofarNews has an article (Hebrew) on the almost-completed Kinor (harp/lyre) for the Levi'im to play when the Third Beit Hamikdash will be rebuilt בב"א. The Temple Institute (Mechon Hamikdash) is behind the project, as usual.

Here's a link to pictures of the in-progress development of the Kinor.

Men's vs. Women's Belief in Redemption

Updated and corrected

I came across a sefer of Halacha last night that was discussing the laws of Tish'a Be'av. It quotes a Hasidic Rebbe who lived over a century ago who said the Kol Bo, a Rishon, who said that there was an old Minhag which we don't hold by which held that women are allowed to bathe on Tish'a Be'av afternoon. (This is not meant to be a Psak Halacha - please consult your Local Orthodox Rabbi if this Psak is right for you.) The reason given is that women need more encouragement in believing in the Ge'ula, and since we know that Mashiah will be born on Tish'a Be'av and it will be turned into a joyous day, we allow them to bathe on Tish'a Be'av afternoon to instill this belief into them. Men, who know the words of the prophets, have this belief instilled in them already. They therefore don't need this extra amount of Emuna-boosting. Women, however, aren't as learned, so they need this extra step of encouragement.

This idea troubled me, and I frankly find it hard to swallow. We know that in the previous redemption from Egypt, women were at the forefront of belief. בשביל נשים צדקניות נגאלו אבותינו ממצרים. Their belief by far surpassed the men's. It was the men who, when Moshe was late coming down the mountain, decided that a golden calf was the answer - not the women, who didn't want to part with their jewelry for such a purpose. It was the women who brought along the musical instruments to praise Hashem for the miracles that were not yet performed. This should tell us that their belief is greater in general.

But even specifically for the upcoming redemption, I would venture to say that women are better believers than men. Even if you want to say that it may not have been true a century centuries ago, it is certainly true nowadays. Nowadays, B"H, we have schools that teach girls Nevi'im, and they learn those Nevi'im much better than boys ever do. We men often envy the knowledge of our cross-gender counterparts when it comes to knowing Na"ch.

And besides, the nature of women is to believe. The Pasuk says "כה תאמר לבית יעקב ותגיד לבני ישראל", which teaches us that the women didn't need harsh language to accept the Torah. They were already believers in nature. We know this from מעשים בכל יום as well.

Let us hope that the merit of the righteous women of our generation will bode us well for a final redemption speedily in our days.

Friday, June 01, 2007

QOTD

Quote of the day (from YNet):

"I unequivocally reject the attempt to focus a state-sponsored campaign on a delusional minority that suffers from a normative defect," Yishai said, "Jerusalem and Amsterdam are the same for these people. Therefore, those who fail to recognize Jerusalem's holiness had better stay away from it."


- Deputy Prime Minister Eli Yishai, on the Israeli Tourism Ministry's planned tourism campaign, aimed at GLBTs.

Fourth Beast Killed?

The Pasuk in Daniel says:

חָזֵה הֲוֵית עַד דִּי קְטִילַת חֵיוְתָא, וְהוּבַד גִּשְׁמַהּ, וִיהִיבַת, לִיקֵדַת אֶשָּׁא.

I beheld even till the beast was slain, and its body destroyed, and it was given to be burned with fire.

Was this it?

What's written 2 Pesukim later?

חָזֵה הֲוֵית, בְּחֶזְוֵי לֵילְיָא, וַאֲרוּ עִם-עֲנָנֵי שְׁמַיָּא

May that Pasuk be fulfilled speedily in our days.

Hat tip: Elisheva's email