This author has used the expression before, but this year it is truly appropo; What a difference a year makes. Last year, on Shushan Purim, rather than partying with the Rav in Jerusalem on Shushan Purim, a group of us were in Neve Dekalim installing a Sefer Torah. It was a gala celebration against that looming expulsion, then 4 1/2 months off. We installed the Sefer Torah and davened to Hashem that the gezeira be lifted.
Over Shabbos, this author spotted a vort from Rabbi Artscroll in the Stone Chumash (Parsha Terumah, Perek 25, posukim 31-40, page 451 in Stone Chumash) which bears repeating;
“The Menorah, whose flames were fed by the purest oil of the olive, symbolized by the illumination of the intellect. It was placed near the southern wall of the Tabernacle (Mishkan), opposite the Table (Shulchan) on the north. The Ark (Aron HaKodesh) … was equidistant from both. … The Ark , containing the word of G’d, cast its spiritual emanations, as it were, upon the Menorah and the Table, which represented intellectual achievement and material prosperity. This symbolized the conviction that both our spiritual and temporal lives must be guided by, and work to serve, the dictates of the Torah. Jewish life cannot be compartmentalized in the realms of sacred and temporal, or in the modern vernacular, Church and State; the Torah regulates all aspects of life, and demands purity in all of them. Indeed, the requirement that the entire, very intricate Menorah had to be hammered out of one ingot of gold (posukim 31, 39) symbolized the indivisibilty of the Torah; a Jewish life must be constructed entirely from one set of values. It may not be a hodge-podge of separate bits and pieces, grafted together to suit anyone’s convenience. All areas of life must derive from the same set of values.”
Parsha Yithro concludes with the high moment to date in world history; The Asseret HaDibrot(The 10 Statements) on the 6th day of the month of Sivan.
In our parsha Mishpatim, many basic laws of civilized existence are enunciated for B’nai Yisrael. The purpose of the Mishpatim, the civil laws, are to protect the moral fiber of society by regulating relationships between men, ecouraging truthfulness, sincerity and kindness while condemning immorality and deceit.
“‘Hamas was strong before the disengagement; there is no connection between disengagement and Hamas’s win,’ Acting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Tuesday night in an interview with Nissim Mishal on Channel 2.”
“Olmert called the Likud an ‘extreme right-wing’ party, whose policies allowed no possibility for change.”
“The Likud approach, Olmert said, would present a scenario of endless struggles, in which Israel would find itself alone in the world.”
“The State High Court ruled that those Jewish families could be moved out, because certain paperwork had not been completed before they moved into the homes, in the Shalhevet neighborhood.”
What “certain paperwork had not been completed”? MB
“The IDF was going to stop enforcing the “closed military zone” rules in Hebron on Thursday morning, in light of the calm that has recently replaced the violence.”
“‘We thought we would only be here for 10 days,’ Miriami said, ‘but that has turned into four months.’ The Naumburgs would like to move to as-yet unready temporary housing, but are not keen on leaving the Hyatt for another Jerusalem hotel.”
Parsha Vayeishev 5766: Yosef and the Pit & Kassam’s, Mortars in Neve Dekalim By, Moshe Burt
I read the short article on the INN website; “Mortar Shells Filled With Chanukah Light” about the Menorah made from some of the spent Islamic mortal shells which were launched on Neve Dekalim over the years.
“After years of producing bug-free lettuce and other vegetables for Jewish farmers, the sands of Gaza have reverted to their old ways. PA farmers report failure in keeping the bugs away.”
“The Gaza Arabs who have taken over the hothouses of what used to be Gush Katif reported to the Israel-PA Coordination Office that they have failed in raising bug-free vegetables.”
“In addition, the PA workers complain that their wages from their compatriots and brethren are significantly lower now than what they received from the Israelis.”
Parsha Vayeitzei: Distinguishing Good from Evil — Revisited.
By Moshe Burt
In view of events of 3 1/2 months ago as well as the current election campaign, this author reflected back on last year’s word on Parsha Vayeitzei.
In last week’s parsha Toldos, we learned about Yaakov, the “Ish Tam”, one who was “totally honest, a man of great integrity”, who was master over the trait of being “tam”, a “‘plain man’, … without trickery, but he did not allow this character trait to dominate him. He knew when and where to act otherwise.”
Prediction: T.O. Time — Kadima’s Self-Destruct Getting Closer! Taking this latest disgruntled free agent is a big step along the way. It’s gonna be fun watching this bunch of infants self-destruct. MB
“The Israel Police recommended to the state prosecutor’s office on Wednesday that interim Likud party Chairman Tzahi Hanegbi be indicted for making illegal political appointments when he was environment minister from 2001 to 2003.”