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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Sefirat Ha'omer 5774

As with all of my posts, the following is a work in progress.  I am aware of the stretches needed for this to work.  Take it as it is.  If you have ways to improve upon this, please let me know.

In Parshat Emor, it talks about Sefirat Ha'omer:

וּסְפַרְתֶּם לָכֶם, מִמָּחֳרַת הַשַּׁבָּת, מִיּוֹם הֲבִיאֲכֶם, אֶת-עֹמֶר הַתְּנוּפָה: שֶׁבַע שַׁבָּתוֹת, תְּמִימֹת תִּהְיֶינָה
עַד מִמָּחֳרַת הַשַּׁבָּת הַשְּׁבִיעִת, תִּסְפְּרוּ חֲמִשִּׁים יוֹם; וְהִקְרַבְתֶּם מִנְחָה חֲדָשָׁה, לַיהוָה

Perhaps, it's telling us the following as a Remez:

וּסְפַרְתֶּם לָכֶם, מִמָּחֳרַת הַשַּׁבָּת
And you should count for yourself from the day after the original Shabbat Bereishit - 

מִיּוֹם הֲבִיאֲכֶם, אֶת-עֹמֶר הַתְּנוּפָה
From the day you collectively - as souls within Adam Harishon - brought the Korban that Adam Harishon brought on the first Sunday after he was created (as per the Rif on Ein Yaakov on Avoda Zara 8a) -

שֶׁבַע שַׁבָּתוֹת, תְּמִימֹת תִּהְיֶינָה
2850 years, as the gematria of this phrase (שֶׁבַע שַׁבָּתוֹת, תְּמִימֹת תִּהְיֶינָה) is 2850.  Multiply by 2 after saying this verse twice in שנים מקרא ואחד תרגום to get 5700.

Already at the next verse, add another 74 years to get 5774.

מִמָּחֳרַת הַשַּׁבָּת הַשְּׁבִיעִת, תִּסְפְּרוּ חֲמִשִּׁים יוֹם
50 days after Pesah is Shavuot.

וְהִקְרַבְתֶּם מִנְחָה חֲדָשָׁה, לַיהוָה
We will again all bring a new Korban Minha to Hashem then, G-d-willing, meaning the Shetei Halehem, which is a communal offering.

(Alternatively, since Adam Harishon was created in Year 2, this is for 5776, which is also considered ממחרת השבת השביעית as it is a year associated with Yovel.)

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Before Kerry's "Apartheid" was Kerry's "Poof", which Followed Rav Ovadia's "Poof"

Secretary of State John Kerry has gotten himself into lots of trouble lately.

His latest faux pas of saying Israel is heading towards being an apartheid state if the accursed "2-state solution" doesn't pan out - on the eve of Yom Hashoah no less - has brought him well-deserved condemnation from the (Jewish) House Majority Leader, an outspoken Texas Senator, an op-ed on Fox News, and pretty much any person who understands the meaning of the word and its incongruity with anything that is happening or could happen in Eretz Yisrael.  Mr. Kerry subsequently issued a clarification, but not really an apology, and even the clarification left a bad taste in the mouths of those who really do know what Israel is all about.

But even before the "Apartheid" speech was the "Poof" speech, where, talking about the final batch of murderous prisoners to be released, he said:
Unfortunately, the prisoners weren't released on the Saturday they were supposed to be released … day (one) went by, day two went by, day three went by, and then in the afternoon, when they were about to maybe get there, 700 settlement units were announced in Jerusalem, and poof, that was sort of the moment.
This generated headlines in the Jerusalem Post, for example, of "Israel 'deeply disappointed' with Kerry's 'Poof Speech'".  That was putting it mildly.  It was downright shameful.

Not to worry, though.  Secretary Kerry's "Poof Speech" was - by almost 13 years - preceded by Rav Ovadia Yosef ZT"L's "Poof Speech".  In 5761, Rav Ovadia ZT"L prefaced his remarks by bemoaning then-former PM Netanyahu's and then-current PM Sharon's lack of courage when talking to foreign leaders. Speaking during the time when Arabs were blowing up buses all over Israel, killing and maiming hundreds of Israelis R"L, Rav Ovadia ZT"L described what Mashiah would do to these people (my translation):
יבוא משיח צדקנו יפחד מעליהם? יפחד מהם? יצפצף עליהם, יוקיע אותם, 'ברוח שפתיו ימית רשע'. יעשה פוף אחד יעיף את כולם, מי זה אומות העולם? מה הם? 'מי את ותיראי מאנוש ימות ובן אדם חציר ינתן'. בוטחים בקב"ה שיבוא משיח צדקנו הוא לא יפחד משום אחד. ואת כל הערבים האלה ישלח אותם כולם לג'הנום.
Mashiah Tzidkeinu will come - will he be afraid of them?!  Will he be afraid of them?!  He will blow upon them and will denounce them.  "And with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked."  He will do one "Poof" which will make them all fly away.  Who are the nations of the world?  What are they?  "Who art thou, that thou art afraid of man that shall die, and of the son of man that shall be made as grass?"  We trust in HKB"H that Mashiah Tzidkeinu will come.  He will not be afraid of anyone.  And all these Arab [terrorist]s - he will send them all to Geihinom.
So, just as the Jewish people's Shekalim precede Haman's Shekalim and nullify them every month of Adar, similarly, Rav Ovadia's "Poof" preceded Secretary Kerry's "Poof" and we hope and pray that it nullified it.  May his words and the words of our prophets be fulfilled speedily in our days, Amen.

Friday, April 25, 2014

NYC Yeshivas Rise in an ולאם מלאם יאמץ Trend

Rashi on  ולאם מלאם יאמץ says:
לא ישוו בגדולה כשזה קם זה נופל וכה"א אמלאה החרבה (יחזקאל כו) לא נתמלאה צור אלא מחורבנה של ירושלים 
[Yaakov and Eisav] will not be equal in greatness. When one rises, the other falls. And it similarly says (Ezekiel 26) "I shall be filled with her that is laid waste" [, which is expounded to mean that the alias for Edom called] Tzor is only filled up from the ruins of Jerusalem
NY1 (h/t YWN):
It's been a difficult decade for the city's Catholic schools - a steady and significant decline in enrollment means there are now 47,000 fewer students and a hundred schools where the doors are closed for good.

It's the exact opposite of what's been happening with the city's Jewish schools, where a growing Orthodox population has fueled a boom in Jewish education.

Now these opposing trends have crossed, and for the first time, the city's Jewish schools serve the most students outside of the public system.

"That trend of growth is certainly going to continue, particularly in the yeshiva and more Hasidic circles, where the growth is really exponential," said Yeshiva University Vice Provost Scott Goldberg.

Looking at state data, the city's Independent Budget Office found that 10 years ago, there were 134,948 Catholic school students compared to 73,254 Jewish school students. Now the number in Catholic schools has dropped to 87,301, significantly fewer than the 94,589 in Jewish schools.

NY1 also analyzed the state's numbers and found the enrollment differences will likely increase rapidly over the next few years.

As of now, the state says Jewish schools have about eight percent more students than Catholic schools. But when you compare enrollment for the first and second grades, Jewish schools have 53 percent more students.


In fact, Goldberg says the State Education Department is likely undercounting the population. Census reports conducted by a Jewish foundation have found thousands of additional students attend city yeshivas beyond those in state records.

That census comes out every five years, and the latest is about to be released. Many expect it to conclude that the city's rapidly expanding Jewish schools are already serving more than 100,000 students.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Rebuilding Gates

Sanhedrin 98a: (Daf|Text|English):
שאלו תלמידיו את רבי יוסי בן קיסמא אימתי בן דוד בא אמר מתיירא אני שמא תבקשו ממני אות אמרו לו אין אנו  מבקשין ממך אות א״ל לכשיפול השער הזה ויבנה ויפול ויבנה ויפול ואין מספיקין לבנותו עד שבן דוד בא אמרו  לו רבינו תן לנו אות אמר להם ולא כך אמרתם לי שאין אתם מבקשין ממני אות אמרו לו ואף על פי כן  אמר להם אם כך יהפכו מי מערת פמייס לדם ונהפכו לדם
The disciples of R. Jose b. Kisma asked him, 'When will the Messiah come?' — He answered, 'I fear lest ye demand a sign of me [that my answer is correct].' They assured him, 'We will demand no sign of you.' So he answered them, 'When this gate falls down, is rebuilt, falls again, and is again rebuilt, and then falls a third time, before it can be rebuilt the son of David will come.' They said to him, 'Master, give us a sign.' He protested, 'Did ye not assure me that ye would not demand a sign?' They replied, 'Even so, [we desire one].' He said to them. 'if so, let the waters of the grotto of Paneas turn into blood;' and they turned into blood.
I, along with others, had used this gemara in the past to link it to a few different items as possible scenarios where this gemara could play out:
Let's now add another one to the list of possibilities (which fits nicely with the 100-year process theory that Rav Fish mentioned previously):

Gavrilo Princip was the assassin of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, which started WWI 100 years ago - in Tamuz, 5674.

The house where Gavrilo Princip lived in Sarajevo was destroyed during World War I. After the war, it was rebuilt as a museum in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. Yugoslavia was conquered by Germany in 1941 and Sarajevo became part of Independent State of Croatia. The Croatian Ustaše destroyed the house again. After the establishment of Communist Yugoslavia in 1944, the house of Gavrilo Princip became a museum again and there was another museum dedicated to him within the city of Sarajevo. During the Yugoslav Wars of the 1990s, the house of Gavrilo Princip was destroyed a third time; no attempts to rebuild it have yet been announced. Prior to 1992 the site on the pavement on which Princip stood to fire the fatal shots was marked by embossed footprints. These were destroyed as a consequence of the 1992–95 war in Bosnia. There is still a plaque in front of the museum at the spot where Gavrilo Princip stood when he fired the shots. Bosansko Grahovo municipality has announced a plan to reconstruct Princip's birth house in Obljaj before the centenary of the assassination in Sarajevo.[14]
OK, so no plans to rebuild his Sarajevo home, but there are plans to rebuild his Obljaj home that was destroyed in 1995 by the Croats.  Perhaps, all his homes are considered the same entity.  And this "gate" is much closer to Rome (which Rashi says is the location of the gate) than any of the other "gates" I mentioned above.   And they plan to open it this summer as a museum in time for the centennial.

Will they get the chance to do so?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Waters Splitting in the Merit and Presence of Yaakov Avinu

Shemot Rabba 21:7 brings down varied opinions for whom to credit the miracle of the splitting of the Red Sea.  That Midrash credits Avraham Avinu, Yaakov Avinu, and Moshe Rabbeinu.  Other Midrashim credit Yitzhak Avinu and Yosef Hatzadik.  The other opinions notwithstanding, I'd like to continue along the opinion of Ribbi Akiva that credits Yaakov Avinu for the sea splitting.  His prooftext comes from the verse וּפָרַצְתָּ יָמָּה, where ופרצת has a second connotation of "breaking open" and ימה has a second connotation of "sea".

This opinion is seconded by a Ba'al Haturim on Parshat Vayeshev, which notes that the word ויגער appears twice in all of Tanach - once there: ויגער בו אביו - where Yaakov Avinu rebuked Yosef, and once in Tehillim 106:9 וַיִּגְעַר בְּיַם-סוּף, וַיֶּחֱרָב [And He rebuked the Red Sea, and it was dried up].  The Ba'al Haturim concludes from this that it was in Yaakov's merit that the sea split.

The Ba'al Haturim ends by quoting a passage from the Zohar (Beshalah 53a), where the Zohar is bothered by the verse:  וַיַּרְא יִשְׂרָאֵל אֶת-הַיָּד הַגְּדֹלָה, אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה יְהוָה בְּמִצְרַיִם, וַיִּירְאוּ הָעָם, אֶת-יְהוָה since the verse starts off with the subject of "Yisrael" [Israel], but continues with the subject of "Ha'am" [the people].  If the subject of the verse is the same, why the change in description of the Israelites?  The Zohar answers that the "Yisrael" mentioned at the beginning of the verse does not refer to the Israelites, but to the original "Yisrael" - meaning Yaakov Avinu, who himself went down to exile in Egypt.  HKB"H brought Yaakov Avinu down to the Red Sea to see the redemption that was taking place for his children.

The Zohar continues and says that when Yaakov Avinu was going down to Egypt, he was worried that they would be eradicated there forever.  HKB"H told him not to worry. "I will go down with you to Egypt and I will surely bring you up again."  The wording is וְאָנֹכִי, אַעַלְךָ גַם-עָלֹה - the double-expression tells us that 1) Hashem will bring his body up from Egypt for burial in the Land of Israel and 2) at the time of the Exodus, Hashem will bring him back to show how his children will be redeemed from Egypt.  All this explains how the sea split in Yaakov's merit.

In addition to the Red Sea, we also have a Midrash that the Jordan River split for Yehoshua and the Israelites in the merit of Yaakov Avinu.  Shir Hashirim Rabba 4:6 brings a verse in each of Torah, Nevi'im and Ketuvim as prooftexts to this.  In Torah, it says  כִּי בְמַקְלִי, עָבַרְתִּי אֶת-הַיַּרְדֵּן הַזֶּה [for with my staff I passed over this Jordan] and as Rashi points out, he himself split the Jordan with his staff, paving the way for his children to do the same in his merit.  In Nevi'im, it says: וְהוֹדַעְתֶּם, אֶת-בְּנֵיכֶם לֵאמֹר: בַּיַּבָּשָׁה עָבַר יִשְׂרָאֵל, אֶת-הַיַּרְדֵּן הַזֶּה [then ye shall let your children know, saying: Israel came over this Jordan on dry land] and the "Yisrael" referred to there is also the original Yisrael - meaning Yaakov Avinu, who crossed along with his children, showing that it was done in his merit.  In Ketuvim, it says: מִלִּפְנֵי, אֱלוֹהַּ יַעֲקֹב [at the presence of the God of Jacob], meaning that the crossing of the Jordan was due to Yaakov's merit since his name is mentioned there.

In light of all this, we can perhaps say the following:

We know that the Future Redemption is in the merit of Yaakov Avinu.  We know this from, among other sources, the oft-quoted gemara in Pesahim 88a, where Avraham calls the Beit Hamikdash a mountain, Yitzhak calls it a field, and Yaakov calls it a house, and as the Maharsha explains there, the first Beit Mikdash was in the merit of Avraham, the second was in the merit of Yitzhak, and the third, a permanent structure, will be in the merit of Yaakov.

We also know from the Haftara that is read in the Diaspora on the 8th day of Pesah that the prophet Yeshaya mentions a future path (as the Malbim explains) for the return of the exiles along the seas and rivers just like what occurred at the Red Sea and the Jordan.  If you notice, the verse there says:  וְהָיְתָה מְסִלָּה--לִשְׁאָר עַמּוֹ, אֲשֶׁר יִשָּׁאֵר מֵאַשּׁוּר: כַּאֲשֶׁר הָיְתָה לְיִשְׂרָאֵל, בְּיוֹם עֲלֹתוֹ מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם [And there shall be a highway for the remnant of His people, that shall remain from Assyria, like as there was for Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.]  Just as in the verses in Beshalah and Yehoshua, perhaps the "Yisrael" here is also referring to Yisrael Saba - meaning the original Yisrael - Yaakov Avinu, and it says עלתו, meaning "he" (singular) came up.  And the verse compares the two redemptions, perhaps meaning that Yaakov Avinu is destined to cross the rivers and seas with us in the future as well just as he did back then across the Red Sea and the Jordan.

May we merit to see the day.

With thanks to the Tomer Devorah blog quoting R' Daniel Pinner for a couple of the sources quoted here.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Caption Contest: Chimp Eating Matzah

Source: Kikar
This picture was taken from the safari in Ramat Gan, but it needs a caption.

My submissions:
  1. "I'm not sure yet if I've eaten a shiur of KeBanana"
  2. "Okay, I know I say Al Achilat Matzah on this stuff, but do I say Meshaneh Haberiyot on the guy who gave it to me?"
  3. "Al Matzot Umrorim Yocheluhu-hu-hu-hee-hee-hee-ha-ha-ha"

Friday, April 18, 2014

Interesting Recent Links - Pesah 5774

(I haven't done one of these in a while again, so a lot of catch-up from some old links up to 3 weeks old.  So call it "somewhat recent".)

Baruch Mizrachi HY"D


Refael Elisha Cohen Z"L

Refael Elisha Cohen z”l
Petirah of 6-Year-Old Rafael Elisha Meir Cohen A”H, Child Who Had 100,000 Sign Whitehouse Petition On His Behalf

How a Gentile Converted to Judaism Because of the Sale of Chometz

Did Sandy Koufax Put on Tefillin During the 1965 World Series? (h/t R' Gil)

Safed Stabbing: Exclusive Report!

10 הסרטונים הכי מעניינים של הרבי מליובאוויטש (the ten most interesting videos of the Lubavitcher Rebbe ZT"L)

האנשים שמוכנים לביאת המשיח • צפו (  The "Korban Pesach" of the Temple Institute and Rav Yisrael Ariel)

כשהרוסים שרו "אני מאמין" בקרמלין

Rav Mazuz Shlit"a: Shas is Rashei Teivot "Shehora and Seruga"

There were 3 separate big events for religious Sepharadim in Israel yesterday.

One was the coronation of Rav Shalom Cohen Shlit"a as the new "Maran" of the Shas party.  He will now lead the Mo'etzet as its president, a position left vacant since the passing of Maran Rav Ovadia Yosef ZT"L six months ago.  Rav David Yosef Shlit"a gave the introduction speech, as one can see here.  In his own speech, Rav Cohen called for Ahdut within the party, saying the worst blow is when there is no Ahdut.  Rav Cohen later went to see the Rishon Letzion Rav Yitzhak Yosef Shlit"a.  Rav Yosef asked Rav Cohen to assist in preventing the "wave of anti-religious legislation that is set to cause a Hurban in Medinat Yisrael".  Rav Cohen noted there that public figures should really listen to Da'at Torah and not consider it just a recommendation.

The second was a Kabbalat Penei Rabbo BeRegel event for the Rishon Letzion Rav Yitzhak Yosef Shlit"a in Yeshivat Hazon Ovadia.

The third was a Kabbalat Penei Rabbo BeRegel event for the Rishon Letzion Rav Shelomo Moshe Amar Shlit"a.  Attending was Rav Mazuz Shlit"a, Rav Benayahu Shmueli Shlit"a, and MKs Eli Yishai and Nissim Ze'ev.  Ladaat reports (with a video) that Rav Mazuz gave a speech there saying that Shas (ש"ס) is Rashei Teivot for Shehora and Seruga - meaning that both those with black Kippot and those with knitted Kippot have a place within the party.  The video camera panned to the audience showing quite a few Kippot Serugot in attendance.

May we only have Ahdut in Kelal Yisrael, Amen.

[Comments are disabled and all comments on other posts on this topic will be deleted.]

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Rav Yaakov Emden: The Kefira of the Wicked Son is in Denying Mashiah

In Rav Yaakov Emden's commentary on the Haggada, he notes that there are 4 problems with the question of the wicked son:

1) Its brevity and terseness
2) That he called it "Avoda" instead of "a statute and law"
3) Not basing it on Hashem
4) Saying "To you"

For the first 3 problems, we can give him the benefit of the doubt, but not for the fourth, and that's what sealed the deal for him, and we therefore consider all four problems real problems.

Now, regarding problem #2, it shouldn't be a problem since the Torah itself calls it "Avoda". However, the Torah only calls eating Matzot "Avoda" - not eating the Korban Pesah. This is why Matzot are eaten for 7 days since there was still a Shibud (same root as "Avoda") to Par'oh until Keriat Yam Suf. It tells us that the Redemption is not complete and that there would be other exiles in which we would be subservient to others. The Korban Pesah, however, represents complete Redemption.

The wicked son's problem was that he was calling the Korban Pesah an "Avoda". Why did he do so? The wicked son considered the fact that we are in exile - even when we had the Beit Hamikdash, but under foreign sovereignty - and is asking: "What is this Avoda of the Korban Pesah? The Korban Pesah represents Redemption, and there is no Redemption! Just look around - there are Greeks and Romans everywhere! We already have an Avoda - a Shibud to the foreign rule. We don't need a second servitude!"

And this is similar to what happened in Hizkiya's Pesah, where he sent for the 10 tribes, who were almost completely exiled, to come bring the Korban Pesah and many of them laughed his messengers out of town. They were basically subservient to the Assyrians - they were going to start another Avoda?! The wicked son therefore removes the yoke of Heaven from upon him, and thereby takes himself out of the Jewish unit.

The truth is, however, that the Korban Pesah represents the Final Redemption, and this is what the wicked son is denying. He's denying that there will be a coming of Mashiah and a Final Redemption in which we will not be subservient to other nations. That is the Ikkar that he is denying [- the 12th Ikkar of the Rambam].

Due to this, he's considered a Mumar and can therefore not eat the Korban Pesah so his teeth must be blunted.

And what brought him toward this statement of mockery against the Korban Pesah? His impatience with having to say all the words in the beginning of the Seder. He wants to eat the meat raw already like a glutton - without roasting it! We therefore don't let him eat that which he craved as measure for measure.

We then tell him "Ba'avur Zeh" - only those who would keep Mitzvot would be redeemed from Egypt, but this wicked son, since he removed the veil and mocked without shame like an Apikorus, he must not have lineage from those who left Egypt or those who stood at Mt. Sinai and therefore cannot eat from the Korban Pesah.

Rav Uri Zohar Quotes Gedolim on Mashiah

In a Kikar article that is taken from the Israeli Yated, Rav Uri Zohar was interviewed for Lev Le'achim and tells us what Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlit"a and Rav Shteinman Shlit"a said about Mashiah.

I'll translate a couple sections. In the first section, Rav Zohar mentioned that in the coming year, there will be more than half of the State's children in a religious school. He was then asked about the 2 conflicting progressions: that of the government enacting laws that contradict religion and that of the great amount of Ba'alei Teshuva returning. Here's his answer:
As always, and at every moment, HKB"H controls the world. It says in Daniel "Many shall purify themselves, and make themselves white, and be refined." These are the 3 processes of "Birur" [filtration], and this is not only among our far-away brothers - this is also among ourselves. We are asked to withstand the test of faith to Hashem and to His Torah and to Gedolei Yisrael. This is the "Birur" of before the Geula.

My friend R' Natan Heifetz and I went in to Maran Sar HaTorah Hagaon Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlit"a and we asked about a family from the United States whose sons are in need of Shidduchim, and they want to know what they can do to have a salvation.

Maran Shlit"a [Rav Kanievsky] answered: "They should make Aliya to Eretz Yisrael."

We continued and asked, "And if it's hard for them to leave the land in which they were born and to make Aliya to Israel?"

Maran Shlit"a answered, "What's so hard for them? Either way, Mashiah Tzidkenu is coming in a little bit and they will go up to Zion with joy..."

When we returned to our homes, we thought to ourselves, "Did the words of Maran Shlit"a - about Mashiah Tzidkeinu coming - have a special meaning or were they just as a prayer and a hope?"

We turned to his loyal trustee Harav Yeshaya Epstein Shlit"a to ask Maran Shlit"a what was hidden in this expression. He answered our request and asked Maran Shlit"a as he specified the entire contents of the question and the answer and our wanting to know about the wording of the answer. Maran Shlit"a answered and said, "Indeed, all the signs that are written about Ikveta Dimshiha are being fulfilled one by one, and especially, Haza"l's statement that in Ikveta Dimshiha, Hutzpa will increase..." The intent is also among us - one needs to know what is the authority of Gedolei Yisrael!
[It's interesting to note that this statement is consistent with a few other statements Rav Kanievsky Shlit"a made recently.]

Later in the interview, Rav Uri Zohar was asked to give stories that made him cry. Here's one:
A 4-year-old girl in Yokne'am was a daughter of completely secular parents. The father took her a few times on Saturday nights to her grandfather's house to say "Shavu'a Tov". Once, they got there early and she saw her grandfather making Havdala. The girl was very interested. "What is this?" she asked her father. He stuttered a little.

The grandfather heard and asked his son, "You never brought her to the synagogue?"

"No," answered the father.

The girl didn't let go. "Abba, I want you to take me to the synagogue."

The father decided to bet on something that would ensure his standing. He stipulated with her, "If you will stop sucking your finger, I'll take you."

He was sure that the condition would never be met. However, the girl paid the price. The first night, she didn't sleep, but she didn't suck her finger. She wanted the right to go to the synagogue. The second night, the same thing. On the third day, the daycare teacher called, "What happened with your daughter? She is sleeping in the middle of daycare." The mother was embarrassed to tell her.

On the sixth day, the mother already decided that the payment must be paid... She informed the father that he must take the girl to the synagogue, "and if not, you're not going to just deal with the girl, but with me!"

And he took her!! The story goes on that the mother started lighting Shabbat candles, and this family in Yokne'am today is getting others to become Ba'alei Teshuva all around them.

I was moved to tears when I heard this story. The soul of a Jewish girl.

And when they told over this story to Maran the Rosh Yeshiva Hagaon Rav Aharon Yehuda Leib Shteinman Shlit"a, he was amazed and declared, "This is the light of Mashiah!!"
He mentions some other Geula concepts in the interview. If you know Hebrew, check it out.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Ella Shebechol Dor VaDor...

In every generation, they rise up against us to destroy us:

White supremacist ID'd as gunman in deadly shootings at Jewish centers

Erev Pesach Terror: One Killed, Two Wounded In Palestinian Shooting Near Chevron

May Hashem be Shofeich Hamato on these people.

Also, on this Zeman Heiruteinu, we again hope for the release of the following people, who remain imprisoned, it seems, because they are Jewish:

May everyone have a חג כשר ושמח and a Joyous Pesah!

כִּימֵי צֵאתְךָ, מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרָיִם, אַרְאֶנּוּ, נִפְלָאוֹת

Friday, April 11, 2014

Historic Shabbat Hagadol This Year

Read my post last year (including a chart) on how this year (5774) is the last of 4 Aharei Mot leap-year Shabbat Hagadols in a row, which hasn't occurred in almost 250 years!  Also, Shabbat Hagadol will not fall out on Parshat Aharei Mot again for another 21 years.  Instead, the leap-year Shabbat Hagadols will fall out on Parshat Metzora in the interim.

I wrote last year:
Perhaps, the significance is that we will no longer be cast away as a Metzora, but rather, we will be Aharei Mot - after the period of death and into a new era of life for all mankind. And after 4 times of Aharei Mot in this era of Ikveta Dimshiha, we can finally achieve הנה אנכי שלח לכם את אליה הנביא, which is read on Shabbat Hagadol.
May it be so.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Another Kanievsky Family Miracle Story

Apparently, just sitting in the waiting room for a Beracha is enough merit to have a miracle performed.

Kooker reports (my translation):
Harav Hagaon Rav Tzvi Neker (sp?) Shlit"a tells over in his new book entitled "Emunah Sheleima" the amazing following story that happened recently:

A short time ago, a Magid Shiur in one of the Yeshivot told over to me the following amazing story:

The Mashgiah of that Yeshiva's neighbor had a great Simha. His daughter gave birth to small and cute baby boy. The baby was premature and was born weighing just 55 grams! However, then a strange thing happened.

Immediately after the birth, the mother felt that her legs were paralyzed and she couldn't move them at all. First, the doctors thought that this is a temporary paralysis that came in the wake of the woman's exhaustion after the birth. However, that was not the case. A day passed and another day and her legs remained paralyzed without being able to move them.

The doctors started to worry and arranged a series of tests that all showed the same thing: paralysis of the legs. The doctors had no cure or solution to suggest for such an occurrence. They summoned the woman's father and her husband and informed them that in the wake of this out-of-the-ordinary and strange event, they have no solution but to move the woman to rehab in "Beit Levinstein".

The family was shocked to hear this news. "It appears that there is a nerve in the brain that was damaged during the birthing process and damaged the birthing mother's legs, so the chances are that she will no longer be able to walk on her own," said the doctors despondently. "Therefore, you must take her to rehab in Beit Levinstein - maybe you will be successful in saving her ability to walk a little bit."

The family was totally broken. The young mother would be crippled her whole life... so suddenly in the beginning of her life. The family prayed, cried, and went to accept blessings from Tzaddikim and Gedolei Hador.

The father of the family requested one of the neighbors if she would do a favor to go to Rabbanit Koldetzky Tlit"a, the daughter of Maran Harav Chaim Kanievsky Shlit"a, who blesses visiting women, that she should request mercy for his daughter.

The neighbor went to Rabbanit Koldetzky and waited to receive a blessing. In the meantime, exactly at those moments, members of the family sat around the bed of the woman who gave birth, and suddenly an amazing thing occurred... This woman was sleeping for a couple hours already and she suddenly woke up saying in a panic, "I feel strange "stings" in my legs! I am starting to feel my feet!"

The family jumped for joy and happiness while the woman continued:
Exactly, at this moment, I dreamt a unique dream and immediately afterwards, I felt my legs. You won't believe what I dreamt:

I saw myself in my dream at the wedding of my brother, which is to take place in a few weeks, and I was sitting on a wheelchair with my legs paralyzed. Suddenly, I saw opposite me the Rabbanit Bat Sheva Kanievsky ZT"L [the late wife of Rav Chaim Kanievsky] entering the banquet hall. She approached me and asked me, "Why aren't you dancing with everyone at your brother's wedding?"

"I can't - I'm handicapped with my feet since the birth," I answered her in the dream.

"What do you mean you can't dance?" asked the Rabbanit. "It's your brother's wedding. You have to dance!"

Suddenly, I turned to her and asked, "Hold on a second, Rabbanit, what are you doing here? I was at your funeral!"

Then, she turned to me and answered, "I came from the World of Truth to give joy to the bride and groom. Therefore, you should also get up and give joy to your brother and his bride at the wedding," she said and she offered her hand to dance with her.

Exactly, at that moment that the Rabbanit offered her hand, I felt stinging pain in my legs and I woke up...
she told over in astonishment to all those around her. The doctors came quickly to check on her and the miracle wasn't long in coming... After a quarter of an hour, the woman got up from her bed and started walking around the hospital ward in full sight of all the shocked doctors and family.
 And here's another interesting story I found online from the same book.

SA Chief Rabbi Goldstein's "Shabbos Project" Going International

After the great success and much-praised Shabbos Project that South Africa Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein inaugurated for South Africa last year, he has decided to raise the stakes and go global, reports YWN.

The International Shabbos Project is scheduled to take place on Shabbat Parshat No'ah, Oct. 24-25, 2014.

There is untold value in and of itself to keep Shabbat.  But besides its own sake and the sake of keeping Torah commandments, there is a well-known side benefit as well, as the gemara says happens when the Jewish people keep 2 Shabbatot:

אמר רבי יוחנן משום רבי שמעון בן יוחי אלמלי משמרין ישראל שתי שבתות כהלכתן מיד נגאלין שנאמר כה אמר ה' לסריסים אשר ישמרו את שבתותי וכתיב בתריה והביאותים אל הר קדשי
Ribbi Yohanan said in the name of Ribbi Shimon Ben Yohai: If Israel would keep 2 Shabbatot according to their laws, they would immediately be redeemed, as it says, "For thus saith the LORD concerning the eunuchs that keep My sabbaths..." and it is written afterwards "Even them will I bring to My holy mountain..."

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Geula Update from Rav Fish - Aharei Mot/Pesah 5774

From Rav Fish's latest (again, I'm omitting a lot of what he writes - click the link to see it all in the source):
  • Russia
    • The word ולדימיר (Vladimir) is the gematria of נמרוד (Nimrod), and the Megaleh Amukot says that Sanheriv is the Gilgul of Nimrod, who will again be reincarnated into Gog.
    • Russia = Paras and enemy of Turkey
      • The gemara (Yoma 10a) says that Tiras (from Bereishit 10:2) is Persia.  Sefer Yosifon says Tiras is "Russish".
      • The Lu'ah Davar Be'ito (1st day of Rosh Hodesh Iyar, 5760) quotes predictions by Nostradamus saying that "Persia" will capture Trabzon [, Turkey] along the shores of the Black Sea (see also here).  Rav Fish wants to say that the "Persia" referred to there must be Russia.  
      • It's brought down in the book "Kelilat Yofi" page 307 [couldn't find this online]  that 3 prophets prophesied using the same language: The Gr"a, Rav Yisrael of Ruzhin, and the Holy Jew of Pshischa: that when Russia will invade Turkey, we will need to wear our Yom Tov clothes to honor the coming of Mashiah.
      • According to Targum Yonatan on Bemidbar 24:24 talks about ships from Turkey going against Ashur, and many hold that Russia is the original Ashur (as is brought down in "Kelilat Yofi" p. 304).
  • Crimea and Ukraine [use your imagination with these]
    • Crimea (קרים) is hinted to in a verse that refers to the forming of fetus (Tehillim 139:15רֻקַּמְתִּי, בְּתַחְתִּיּוֹת אָרֶץ [and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth].  
      • R' Tzion David Siboni adds that the forming of the "fetus" of Kelal Yisrael during the Exodus from Egypt includes all 603,550 souls of Israel.   Amazingly, the area of Ukraine is exactly 603,550 square kilometers.
    • R' S. Reiskin adds: "Google Chrome" hints to Gog which started in Crimea.
    • Rebbe Nachman of Breslov's statement
      • [Rav Fish goes on at length saying that Rebbe Nachman says about Uman something similar to what the Gr"a said - that Uman is the end of Kedusha.  ע"ש]
    • [Rav Fish continues giving hints from names of cities in the Ukraine.]
  • More on 66 (see here)
    • The Zohar (Pinhas 252a) says: 
      (Bereishit 46:26) "all the souls were threescore and six" - 60 to awaken the first Mashiah and 6 to awaken the second Mashiah.  That leaves 6 years until 72 to fulfill what it says: "Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather in the produce thereof."  As it says: "Israel is the LORD'S hallowed portion, His first-fruits of the increase."
      • We see that the Zohar divides the 72 years of Hevlei Mashiah into 2 (or 3) parts.  66 years for the awakening of the 2 Meshihin, which is the Sod of the first Pekida, and another 6 that are hinted to in the two verses mentioned.  And it's possible that it hints to the 6 years of the Holocaust, which were very harsh, and had the aspect of "prune thy vineyard".
    • We also find the idea of the "Pekida of the left side" in the Zohar (No'ah 62b-63a):
      David said before HKB"H: There are 2 Kitzim, 1 to the right and 1 to the left, and they are 2 paths for people to go to the next world. There is a Keitz to the right, as it says: "לְקֵץ הַיָּמִין" and a Keitz to the left, as it says: "קֵץ, שָׂם לַחֹשֶׁךְ , וּלְכָל-תַּכְלִית, הוּא חוֹקֵר" - this is the Angel of Death, this is the Snake. [The verse] קֵץ כָּל-בָּשָׂר [regarding No'ah's flood is consistent with] קֵץ, שָׂם לַחֹשֶׁךְ because it comes from the side of melting gold. וּלְכָל-תַּכְלִית [And to the furthest bound] - when unmitigated justice is prevalent over the world - הוא חוקר [He searcheth out] - to be a prosecutor for the world, to darken the face of mankind. Here, David said to HKB"H: הוֹדִיעֵנִי יְהוָה, קִצִּי [LORD, make me to know mine end] - what is my ultimate purpose? And he didn't calm down until he was informed: שֵׁב לִימִינִי [Sit thou at My right hand].
      • That is, the Pekida of the left side is the Sod of Orlah that enclothes the fruit, just like anything new in the world - first, there's an Orlah.  Man is born with an Orlah and a tree first is Orlah.  And if we're careful from the Orlah and go in the path of Torah, it's possible to take only the good parts, as there is already an existence of Pekida, which is what occurred in the days of Koresh.  And also, in the days of Koresh, when they veered slightly from the path of Torah, the decree of Haman came upon them until they did Teshuva.  And that aspect is the State of Israel, which finishes 66 years on 5 Iyar, 5774, that if they were worthy, there would be an At'halta Dig'ula [beginning of Redemption] as the Gedolei Yisrael of the previous generation said.  However, since they didn't merit, and they allowed the Erev Rav to rule and destroy every good portion, we got a destruction over a destruction and an exile within an exile.  And even though they built up Eretz Yisrael, there is no place to say "At'halta" [beginning] on something that is a preparation, which is the [Kabbalistic idea of] preparing of vessels without lights, as with a cemetery.
    • R' S. Reiskin adds that Highway 66 in Israel goes from Megiddo until Tishbi Junction in the area of Yokne'am, which hints to Redemption: י-ה קנה עם [Hashem, acquire a nation].  And there is a hint that after 66 years will complete the Kingdom of Yosef in Megiddo, and Eliyahu Hatishbi will come.  As the gemara (Megilla 3a) says: 
      [The verse says:] "In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon." And Rav Yosef said: If it were not for the Targum on this verse, I would not know what it means: At that time, the eulogy in Yerushalayim will increase like the eulogy for Ahav ben Omri, who was killed by Haddadrimon ben Tavrimon in Ramot Gil'ad, and like the eulogy of Yoshia ben Amon, who was killed by Par'oh The Lame in the Valley of Megiddo.
      And we see in Sukkah 52a
      This eulogy, what is it for? Ribbi Dosa and the rabbis differ. One says it's for Mashiah ben Yosef, who was killed...
      That is, after 66 years, they will reach Megiddo, which is where the end of the period of MBY is, as we see from the verse that there is where he dies.  And even though our rabbis say that we need to pray for MBY that he doesn't die, the hint to the end of his kingdom in Megiddo at the time that Tishbi comes after 66 years is amazing, with the fact that Highway 66 takes you from Megiddo to Tishbi, by way of Yokne'am. 
      • And we see hints there in the verses about the heads of the Erev Rav, who enclothe the kingdom of Yosef.  Verse 12 says: בֵּית-נָתָן לְבָד, hinting to Netanyahu and verse 13 says: מִשְׁפַּחַת הַשִּׁמְעִי לְבָד, hinting to Shimon Peres.
    • Also, the number after 66 is 67, the gematria of בינה.  And it's brought down in the book "Sha'arei Orah" (Sha'ar 8) that the Sefira of Binah symbolizes the 8th world, from where comes Geula.
  • Yosele Schumacher 
  • Passing of Rav Avraham Nachman Simcha Veitzhandler ZT"L
    • I heard from Rav Tzvi Heshin Shlit"a about the sudden passing of one of the righteous men of Breslov who wrote books - Rav Avraham Nachman Simcha Veitzhandler ZT"L on כ"ד אדר ב' תשע"ד, and his passing awakened all Breslov communities to Teshuva.  The departed's name and date of his passing are hinted to in a very in an amazing way, where not one letter is missing or added.  This hint shows how there's nothing that is not hinted to in the Torah - up until the minute detail of every man.  
      • (Tehillim 90:3) תָּשֵׁב אֱנוֹשׁ, עַד-דַּכָּא.  The date כ"ד אדר ב' תשע"ד are the same letters as תשב עד דכא and grouped similarly.  
      • And the word אנוש, which means man, is the Rashei Teivot of the man אברהם נחמן שמחה ויצהנדלר.  
      • The verse continues: וַתֹּאמֶר, שׁוּבוּ בְנֵי-אָדָם [and sayest: 'Return, ye children of men.'] - since his passing awakened many toward Teshuva.  
      • Also, "Veitzhandler" in Yiddish means "Wheat seller" which shows a connection to Rebbe Nachman of Breslov who said about himself that נחמן is the gematria of קמח [flour].  And he had the names of Rebbe Nachman and his father Rebbe Simcha.  
      • And his death occurred when Am Yisrael was baking Matzot and selling wheat, especially since Matza is the food of David Hamelech - Lehem Oni, as is brought in the Zohar (Vayetze 157a) and the letters ציון, which symbolize David Hamelech are found in the name ויצהנדלר.
  • Erev Pesah Date this Year = Vayechulu
    • י"ד ניסן תשע"ד is the same gematria as the verse that concludes Creation and brings in Shabbat: ויכלו השמים והארץ וכל צבאם.  

Geula Update from Rav Fish - Metzora 5774 - Part 2

From Rav Fish's newsletter last week, I just want to translate one more thing that he mentioned in addition to what I already translated last week:

  • The missing Malaysian Jet is hinted to by the dove that No'ah sent away and didn't return to him (see Bereishit 8:12).  
    • The Zohar (Shelah 164b) explains where the dove went:  "It went to its place and was hidden in this doorway and it will in the future take the special crown (called עטרת פז) and place it on top of Melech Hamashiah, as it says (Tehillim 21:4): תָּשִׁית לְרֹאשׁוֹ, עֲטֶרֶת פָּז [Thou settest a crown of fine gold on his head]."
      • עטרת פז plus the words and letters = תשע"ד.
    • And the Zohar Hadash (Yitro 33d) says: "When the verse "The earth dried up" (from the flood) is fulfilled, they will go out of exile.  And the hint to this is ויהי כן [in the verse that deals with the dry land being seen in Creation] which is 70 years [as "כן" is the gematria of 70]."

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

More Statements Pointing Toward Geula Soon

I blogged yesterday how Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlit"a said we're in Hevlei Mashiah. Now, Rafi points to an article on Kooker, which stated that a certain Rosh Yeshiva wanted to collect money for his Yeshiva overseas and came to Rav Kanievsky asking for a blessing for his endeavor. Rav Kanievsky refused to give him the blessing, saying that the trip to fund-raise is unnecessary since Mashiah would be coming in the meantime. The article notes that Rav Kanievsky is not just saying Mashiah is close, but also taking the added responsibility that the fundraising is not needed. The Rosh Yeshiva, in turn, canceled his trip overseas and instead helped his wife with house cleaning for Pesah, not worrying about the money.

And here's another interesting article (in Hebrew) pointing to Geula soon.

Frozen for The Chosen - Turning "Let It Go" into Pesah Songs

(Hat tip to Rafi for all)


Now, I'm waiting for the Free Pollard and Free Rubashkin people to come up with a "Let him go" video...

Monday, April 07, 2014

Saved from MH370 Due to Shabbat - The Video

I posted on this already, but it recently was turned into a video:

(h/t a commenter here and Kikar)

Rav Kanievsky Shlit"a: We are in Hevlei Mashiah

A couple weeks ago, it was Rav Shteinman Shlit"a, and now, Rav Chaim Kanievsky Shlit"a said (my translation of one paragraph):
During [Rav Ezrachi's] conversation in the home of Maran Sar Hatorah Hagaon Rav Chaim Kanievsky, he [Rav Kanievsky] expressed - in a rare statement of this nature - that we are currently in Hevlei Mashiah.  Hagaon Rav Chaim quoted the gemara at the end of Mesechet Sotah that says that before Mashiah comes, the kingdom will turn to apostasy, insolence will increase, and the young men will shame the elders, etc.

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Rav Shternbuch Shlit"a Continues About Crimea and Geula

If you haven't yet, see what he said on Purim.  See also what Rav Fish said about this.

My translation of the latest article from Kikar:
In the latest words that the Ra'avad of the Edah Haharedit Hagaon Rav Moshe Shternbuch spoke, he related to the capture of the Crimean Peninsula by the Russians and said that the matter testifies the soon coming of Mashiah.

In the beginning of his words, Rav Shternbuch spoke about the sin of Leshon Hara and especially in circumstances when people are speaking evil against Gedolei Hador, as he asserts that the prayers of those who speak evil are not heard [in Shamayim].  "What is the guilt of all the Geonim and Tzadikkim of the generation that they should be so punished that they should speak so much Leshon Hara against them?" asked the Ra'avad.  And he said that the matter comes in order to increase their merits as for those Tzadikkim, it's not a punishment.

At this point of his words, Rav Shternbuch switched to deal with the capture of the Crimean Peninsula by the Russians and said:  "Our rabbi, the Gr"a, said close to his death that when the Russians will capture Crimea, we will know that this is a sign for the footsteps of Mashiah.

"It's accepted from the Gr"a that when Russia gets stronger, then Tum'a gets stronger.  The Kelipa of Russia is 'Dubiel' who inherited the Kelipa of Persia, and since they are Greek Xtians, they in turn have mixed in with them the Kelipa of Yavan with Edom," said Rav Shternbuch.  He added, "Also, the author of 'Binyan Olam', Rav Yitzhak Isaac Haver, the student of the Gaon Rav Hayim of Volozhin ZT"L said before his death to his student Rav David Luria ZT"L that 'If the Russians will capture the entire city of Crimea - and especially the fortification of Kerch - one should already expect the feet of Mashiah.

"Similarly, " continued Rav Shternbuch in his words, "The Gaon Rav Simha Zelig Rigger ZT"L, the Av Beit Din of Brisk, said that it was a tradition passed to him from the students of the Gr"a in the name of the Gr"a that the kingdom of Russia will strengthen before the coming of Mashiah and the nations will fear them.

"The Gaon Rav Hayim of Brisk ZT"L also saw the Russians as a Kelipa that gets stronger before Mashiah.  However, Rav the Gaon Rav Hayim added that the matter is dependent upon us - that only if we will be awakened and be strengthened in Torah and pure fear of Hashem, then HKB"H will hasten to redeem us at this time of Divine will.  However, if we don't awaken, then G-d forbid, we will lose the moment and we will need to endure Hevlei Mashiah.

"What comes out of his words," summarized Rav Shternbuch, "is that the capture of Crimea is calling us from Shamayim that this is an opportune time to now work on the coming of Mashiah by awakening, strengthening in Torah, and pure fear of Hashem."

At the end of his words, Rav Shternbuch related to the idea that many Kollelim are closing their doors recently and said: "There is a terrible decree upon hundreds of Avreichim Bnei Torah who remain without Kollels.  Nowadays, people are talking about the decree of the draft, but now, there is an even more terrible decree that worries me more - that hundreds of Avreichim who learned until now in Kollelim with diligence are now left without a Kollel in the immediate future.

"This is a great danger," said Rav Shternbuch, "We're not dealing here with those who are weaker that would fall from the path, like with the decree of the draft, but the concern is really about Talmidei Hachamim who are learning Torah day and night, and in this situation, when they don't have a source of Parnassa, they cannot continue their studies, and I am very pained from this and I have no rest from this at all."

Rav Shternbuch continued and said, "This matter even prevents the coming of Mashiah and strengthens the power of Amalek.  This is because when Israel weakens their hands from Torah, that is when the power of Amalek strengthens in the world.  And at this time, when the Torah world requires strengthening, both here in Eretz Yisrael and also in the Diaspora, then all we can do is pray and hope to our Father in heaven that He will have mercy upon us at this time of trouble."
See also the Mashiah is Coming blog who quoted Behadrei Haredim with a similar article.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Geula Update from Rav Fish - Metzora 5774 - Part 1

Remember the beginning of this post where I wrote that Rav Fish stopped before verse 8?  Well, now he wrote about verse 8.

Apparently, Rav Fish wanted to write about it for a year, but didn't since he didn't have permission to write it.  As he wrote in his latest newsletter, he just got permission from Gedolei Yisrael to write his words, of which I will summarize:

  • 2 Ingatherings of the Exiles, 66 years apart
    • The Malbim (Yeshaya 66:7) says that Kibbutz Galuyot is in 2 stages: first a small group will come to Yerushalayim and settle there, and after many years, the birth pangs of the Gog Umagog War will occur, followed by the more general Kibbutz Galuyot.
    • The Ramban (Sefer Hageula) says that there will be 2 Kibbutz Galuyot - the first will be the 10 tribes, followed by another Kibbutz Galuyot of the rest (this is supported by various verses).
      • [Update: The text in the above link was not written by the Ramban himself, but added to the end of his sefer much later.  I couldn't find these words in the Ramban himself.  Rav Fish mentions "Ma'amar Hageula", so maybe he refers to the Ramhal in his classic differentiating between Zechira and Pekida.  צ"ע.]
    • The Tikkunei Zohar Hadash references the number 66 cryptically, saying the left is "דוחה" with 66, corresponding to the 6 Sidrei Mishna and 60 Mesechtot, but the main thing is the right.  
      • The Gr"a there [couldn't find this online] explains that at first, there will be a Pekida of 66 years just like during the days of Koresh, who allowed the Jews to go up to Eretz Yisrael, and afterwards, there will be a true Pekida from the right side and Mashiah will come.
        • Rav Yitzhak Meir Morgenstern Shlit"a in Nishmatin Hadtin (Tzav, 5774) writes that the 66 years of the Pekida of the left refers to the State of Israel, which completes 66 years on 5 Iyar, 5774, and then, we transfer over to the Keitz Hayamin, which is the true Keitz.  Even though Rav Morgenstern was careful not to mention "Mashiah", so as not to calculate Kitzim, we can explain it according to our ideas.
  • After 65-66 Years, Destruction of Aram and the Northern Kingdom
    • Yeshaya Chapter 7 is a prophecy that takes place when Israel is divided into 2 kingdoms, the kingdom of Ahaz from the House of David, who ruled in Yerushalayim and the kingdom of Pekah Ben Remalyahu from Ephraim, who ruled in Shomron.  Pekah had made a covenant with Retzin, the king of Aram in Damascus and waged war against Yerushalayim.  Yeshaya prophesied to Ahaz not to fear them since they will not be successful to go up to Yerushalayim.  In addition, he prophesied that the kingdom of Ephraim will be exiled and finish its purpose after 65 years and would fall together with Aram, which is Damascus.  [YY - see here for more about this.]
      • When looking into the words of the Gr"a, it appears that the verses hint also to what will occur among the 2 Meshihim in the future - that the kingdom of Ephraim corresponds to the kingdom that will belong to MBY before the Redemption.  And afterwards, Emanuel, who is Hizkiya and corresponding to MBD, will be born.
      • It comes out that the period of MBY with the kingdom of the Erev Rav, who is related to this period, is hinted to in these verses, wherein an explicit verse states that the end of this period is after 65 years and the kingdom of Yosef and Ephraim will fall together with Damascus.  And then, the prophecy of the birth of Emanuel, who is Hizkiya and hints to MBD, will be fulfilled.  
      • However, when looking into the words of the Gr"a, it's implied that the intent of the prophecy is not exactly at the end of 65 years, but rather, a year later.  According to this, it's possible that it will be delayed to 66 years.  This fits nicely with the words of the Zohar, which we brought earlier about the Pekida of the left with the Sod of 66 years, and also fits with the period of MBY, who is related to the number 6.
    • Also, the independence of Damascus began about 2 years before the independence of the State of Israel.  Perhaps, due to this, they already suffered insurrection.  
      • And the name of the President of Syria who will fall is אסד (Assad), whose gematria is 65.
      • And the gematria of the verse that discusses the killing of Pekah Ben Remalyahu (Melachim Bet 15:30) equals 5773.
      • [See other Remazim, page 3 of the pdf.]
    • Really, we see from the commentators on the verses in Yeshaya, who were troubled about calculating the 65 years about Retzin and Ben Remalyahu, that it cannot work out like its simple meaning [i.e., the 65 years cannot be calculated from this prophecy] since Ephraim went into exile earlier.  They are forced to say that the calculation started from Yerav'am II's time.  However, according to the Gr"a, that it's referring to the future, it can come out according to its simple meaning;  
      • And it's known that all prophecies that are written for all generations hint to the future to come.  This is especially true with this prophecy, which is the sole time Hashem tells Yeshaya to take his son "She'ar Yashuv", where Rashi explains his name as an expression of Teshuva, hinting to the remnants of Jews who are like his son who will return in Teshuva in the Future Redemption through Yeshaya's prophecy.
      • Also, we see that the Haftara of Yitro [for Ashkenazim], which contains these verses, continues with verses from Chapter 9 which deals with the birth of MBD.
    • And we see today Damascus is about to fall and the rule of the Erev Rav is losing its merit of existence in its ploy against Torah learners.  And it's very possible that these verses can be fulfilled simply when 66 years of the State of Israel will be complete on the 5th of Iyar, 5774.
      • [What Rav Fish suggests that perhaps, it should be nine months later, is not comprehensible to me and the calculation doesn't seem to work either.]
      • [YY - skipping a few paragraphs as these were mentioned earlier.]
  • More on 66
    • בן דוד is the gematria of 66, which comes after the 65 years.
    • Chapter 66 of Yeshaya contains אִם-יִוָּלֵד גּוֹי פַּעַם אֶחָת: כִּי-חָלָה גַּם-יָלְדָה צִיּוֹן, אֶת-בָּנֶיהָ [Is a nation brought forth at once? For as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children.]  The words "כי חלה" have a gematria of 73 [כצ"ל], showing that that is how long Hevlei Mashiah will last, followed by 2 years of the birth of Mashiah. - From R' Tzion David Siboni.
    • R' Y.S. Tzur adds: The verse that refers to the 65 years - Yeshaya 7:8 - says: יחת אפרים מעם, which is the same gematria as משיח ישראל.
  • 999
    • R' Yosef Marciano adds that ה' אייר תשע"ג [which can be Hazal's way of referring to Yom Ha'atzma'ut this coming year] is the gematria of 999.
      • The Kol Hator quotes the Gr"a as saying there are 999 levels of MBY in Yesod, forming a "natural" Geula, while the 1000th level constitutes a MBD-type supernatural Geula of Malchut.  We see that the number 999 represents MBY attaining his purpose.
      • Yalkut Shimoni Yeshaya 402 says: In this world, even if 999 angels rule that a man is guilty, but 1 angel rules in one's favor, HKB"H tips the scale in his favor. [YY - I think he means that this implies that we are now transferring from the period of 999 to the period of 1.]
      • Also, Sha'ar Hapesukim by the Ariza"l says that the reason for exile is to complete the 999 lights that were taken from Moshe Rabbeinu during the Sin of the Golden Calf.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Interesting Recent Links - Metzora 5774

(Haven't done one of these in a while.  Hence the length.)


Forced Draft Issues and Related

Rav Weinberger on Pashas Tazria - Death Before Birth and the Matzav in Eretz Yisroel (very interesting perspective and Geula-related, but must be read along with his previous contribution to get the full picture.)

IDF Publishes “Ten Commandments for Chareidi Soldier”

More on Drafting Yeshiva Boys

Jonathan Pollard's Release before Pesah?

Pollard's release back on the table...


Report: Pollard to Go Free on Pesach?

AP: US Talking With Israel on Spy Release

(This might be the first time in quite a while where I disagree with Eli Yishai.  Perhaps a post on this later.)

Hikind: Don’t Trade Pollard for Terrorists and Murderers
Hikind Encourages Pollard To Reject Release

Kerry flies out of Israel with no breakthrough on new Palestinian demands. Pollard’s release on the table

Obama Admin Confirms: We May Free Pollard to Save Peace Talks

Cabinet Minister: Pollard Opposes Being Freed For Arab Prisoner Swap

US Parole Commissioner: Pollard Waives Hearing

Passing of Chief Rabbi of Iran

12-month Commemoration for Rav Yaakov Yosef ZT"L

Sued by Egypt For Exodus

Egyptian Columnist Advocates Suing The Jews For Damages Caused By Yitizias Mitzrayim and Eser Hamakos

Egyptian lawsuit for the Ten Plagues


The Real Meaning of Pesach

SHOCKING NEW DISCOVERY: Gas Chambers At Treblinka Had Magen David On Them; Victims Were Told It Was ‘Mikva’

Har Habayit in the news

5.1 Earthquake Hits L.A.

Parshat Tazria - HaChodesh 5774

May Orthodox Rabbis Permit Women to Don Tefillin?

Israel: Cop Has Rachmanus and Pays Traffic Ticket

When To Get Married

Where Oh Where Can I Get My Pesach Rice?