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The Week In News B”H

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

a time to heal

the Rebbe’s Response to tRagedy With Rabbi Mendel KalManson

monday, FebRuaRy 8th · 8 pm

chabad oF noRth hollywood 13079 chandler blvd, sherman oaks, ca 91401 desseRt buFFet Entrance Fee: $15 lecture and book signing books will be available for purchase Rabbi mendel Kalmenson is the rabbi of beit baruch and executive director of chabad of belgravia, london, where he lives with his wife, chana, and children. mendel was an editor at the Judaism website— and is also the author of the popular books seeds of wisdom and a time to heal.

Register online at or call 818-989-9539

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



The Week In News


COMMUNITY Community Happenings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6

FEATURE Rav Yisroel Belsky zt”l . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 The Facts about Zika. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

HUMOR & ENTERTAINMENT Quotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

LIFESTYLES People - Olivia Schwartz: A Jew that Moves . . . . . 14 Amulets, Accusations & Controversy: The Devastating Polemic Between Rabbi Yaakov Emden And Rabbi Yonason Eybeschutz. . . . . . . . . 24 Life Coach: Purpose and Decision. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Travel Guide: Spokane. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Ask the Attorney. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 What Is The Deal With “Clean Eating”?. . . . . . . . . . . 38

NEWS Global. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Israel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 National. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 That’s Odd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36




FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Dear Readers, Sometimes we might wonder, Isn’t it a bit risky to educate our children about Moshiach coming to take us out of exile? Isn’t it possible that it will lead to disappointment? For starters, it’s the same answer to the question, “What happens if there is no G-d?” Although the answer might frustrate the person professing to be a non-believer, the believer is left wondering what the question is in the first place. Our belief that the long journey traveled by the Jewish people will eventually come to an end is not a cooked-up fantasy created in some cellar as a good way to cope with our challenges. It’s the subject of the twelfth and thirteenth principles of faith enumerated by the Rambam. In his words: “All the books of the Prophets are filled with this.” Looking deeper than the superficial shell of events and finding the redemptive spark in each of our actions is a fundamental part of Judaism. It’s why we’re here in the first place. By now, leaders of all traditional Jewish communities have stated that current global events are nothing less than the process of the final redemption. When? Only G-d

knows. But could it be now? Absolutely. Last week marked the 14th yahrtzeit of Hakadosh Daniel Pearl hy’d. His parents’ pain must still be indescribable. This gives us all the more reason to focus on what Daniel taught the rest of us Yidden through his final words: “I am a Jew.” We are Jewish. We are Jewish despite our shortcomings. We are Jewish not because we attend minyan three times a day or eat in kosher pizza shops. The opposite is true: we attend minyan and keep kosher because we are Jewish. We are Jewish not because we have a beautiful culture we seek to impart to the next generation; we keep mitzvos and follow our minhagim because we are Jewish. Being Jewish isn’t because of what we do, it is who we are. And since it’s us, it’s what we do. May we soon see the painful parts of the redemption process in the rearview mirror, and going forward experience the celebratory aspects of the prophesies of old, culminating in the return to our home, the promised land. Wishing you a peaceful Shabbos,


T H E P R E M I E R J E W I S H N E W S PA P E R H I G H L I G H T I N G L A’ S O R T H O D OX C O M M U N I T Y The Jewish Home is an independent bi-weekly newspaper. Opinions expressed by writers are not neces­sarily the opinions of the publisher or editor. The Jewish Home is not responsible for typographical errors, or for the kashrus of any product or business advertised within. The Jewish Home contains words of Torah. Please treat accordingly. FOR HOME DELIVERY, OR TO HAVE THE LATEST ISSUE EMAILED TO YOU FREE OF CHARGE, SEND A MESSAGE TO EDITOR@JEWISHHOMELA.COM

The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home






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TheHappenings Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Trees for Ezra Tu B’Shvat, the Birthday of the Trees that we just celebrated, took on new meaning as hundreds of people from all walks of life planted trees in memory of Ezra Schwartz in the newly established Ezra Schwartz Vineyard in Israel. Ezra, a young

American Yeshiva student from Sharon, MA, was tragically murdered while learning and volunteering in Israel. The newly created vineyard has the complete endorsement and blessing of Ezra’s parents. A one-minute video on the website



ANY WAY YOU WANT shows Ezra’s parents and grandparents talking about the vineyard and shows them planting its first trees. They encourage others to plant trees as a meaningful and supportive gesture with their hope that the Ezra Schwartz Vineyard

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will become a beautiful and everlasting tribute to the young man they lost. The charity has asked people around the world to plant trees in this special vineyard. Ezra was proud of his heritage and his land. He loved his fellow Jews until his final breath. He was so young, yet his enthusiasm and vitality were infectious even after his tragic death. This project is a way for everyone to join the Schwartz family in carrying on Ezra’s legacy. Schools across the world have joined the effort and are sharing this opportunity with their students. Synagogues, houses of worship, and religious and communal organizations – recognizing that people want to be part of this initiative – have offered this opportunity to their members. Among the many schools which are involved are Striar Hebrew Academy (Sharon, MA), SAR Academy, Yavneh Academy, The Frisch School, Westchester Day School, Ben Porat Yosef, Yeshiva University High School, Nancy Reuben School of London, Torah Day School Atlanta, Mazel Day School, Denver Academy, Gross Schechter Day School, Shulamith of Brooklyn, Hebrew Academy Day School of Tampa Bay, Ida Crown Academy (IL), Solomon Schechter High School, Abraham Joshua Heschel Day School (CA), HAFTR, and North Shore Hebrew Academy. This project, which started on Tu B’Shvat, will continue for several months. It is being run by Zo Artzeinu – Israel Trees, an organization that has planted 150,000 new fruit trees in Israel and whose farmers keep all aspects of Jewish agricultural law. Those interested in planting trees in the new Ezra Schwartz Vineyard can visit Israeli farmers will plant and care for the trees and the vineyard can be visited by anyone at any time. By inviting people from all over the world to take part in this project, its organizers hope it will unite people who love Israel.

TheHappenings Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Jewish Teen Joins Lakers - for One Day Devorah Talia Gordon

Lifelong L.A. Laker’s fan Yitzi Teichman joked, “My first word was Kobe,” at a press conference on Sunday, January 31, referring to the team’s star player, Kobe Bryant. As reporters looked on, the MakeA-Wish Foundation offered Teichman, a native of Valley Village who now lives in Baltimore, the opportunity to join his favorite basketball team for one day. Yitzi Teichman almost went blind when a tumor in his brain started bleeding, damaging a facial nerve. Surgeons at Johns Hopkins removed the tumor several months ago, and Teichman is currently undergoing cancer treatment. According to, Bryant sent a video to Teichman before his surgery. When asked by the Foundation what he wished for, Teichman said he wanted to be a Laker. At the conference he quipped, “I didn’t have much of a shot considering my height; so it was either I’ve got to be good at basketball or get cancer. So I went the cancer route.” Yitzi Teichman’s signed a one-day ceremonial contract on Sunday for the game against the Charlotte Hornets. Teichman shot some baskets with the team during warm-up – he even hit a three-point shot – but sat on the bench during the game. He wore the jersey the team gave him. Fittingly, it bore the number 18. “Well, I’m 18 years old and I’m Jewish and 18 is chai (life),” explained Teichman. The same jersey was once worn by two-time champion Sasha Vujacic. Teichman’s parents and seven siblings joined him at the Staples Center. As a gift, he was given a signed ball and the players’ game shoes. “I’ve got all the player’s gaming shoes. Kobe [Bryant] signed a ball. Kobe signed shoes. My room is going to look nice when I get home.” Teichman is now back in Baltimore, completing his last year of high school and deciding between college acceptances from the University of Maryland and Towson University. The teen brought his own message of hope and courage to the Lakers, who lost their 10th straight game on Sunday. “Keep fighting. Never give up. Stay strong. Especially in such a bad season, these guys know what it’s like to go through tough times.” Clearly, Yitzi Teichman knows what it means to stay strong and keep fighting. “A lot of good happened…People think this is crazy, but it needed to happen, I guess. I’d rather it happen to me than anybody else. I can deal with it, a lot of people can’t.” The Make-A-Wish Foundation grants a wish, on average, every 37 minutes to children with life-threatening illnesses. The organization granted more than

14,200 wishes in 2014 alone with the goal of impacting not only the recipient but the sponsors, donors, and communities who are involved in the wish. Wishes can be a

“game-changer” for a child with an illness such as Yitzi’s; hopefully the fulfillment of his wish will inspire optimism both for him and those around him. The Lakers may have lost the game, but the wish granted to

Yitzi warming up with the Lakers

Yitzi Teichman on Sunday was a true win for him and the basketball team.


Is now accepting applications for Elul ‫תשע"ו‬

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Aspire to begin a career in community leadership within 5 years Are between 25-30 years old this coming Elul and married Have a strong learning background Are prepared for a rigorous program involving Three sedarim a day Weekly tests in all areas Delivery of shiurim to chaverim in kollel and to people in the Englishspeaking community around Yerushalayim Writing of articles on a variety of topics Written and Oral Semicha examinations

Then don't miss the opportunity and apply now for the third year of the CKD!

During their five-year immersion in Shas and Poskim, the Avreichim in the program Are tested repeatedly on over 900 daf gemara Receive shimush and guidance in darchei psak from Rav Asher Weiss, ‫ שליט"א‬and Rav Efraim Kirshenbaum, ‫שליט"א‬ Take smicha examinations in Issur V'Heter, Hilchos Shabbos, and Hilchos Tahara from prestigious poskim and batei din in Eretz Yisroel, as well as from the Israeli Rabbanut Do limud b’iyun in Nefesh HaChayim, Daas Tevunos, Kisvei Rav Yisroel Salanter v’Talmidav, Maamrei Rav Yerucham Levovitz of Mir and Kisvei Rav Shlomo Wolbe Participate in a classical mussar vaad Give regular shiurim in Chumash and Mussar Participate in year-long courses in Chinuch and Sholom Bayis Participate in several seminars in psychological interventions and support systems.

Apply online at:

*The Center for Kehillah Development was founded in Elul ‫ תשע"ג‬and is led by Rabbi Yosef Kamenetsky, Shlita and Rabbi Leib Kelemen, Shlita. The program’s goal is to cultivate leaders who – through their mastery of Shas and Poskim, their self-development, personal refinement, and their writing and speaking skills – will inspire and strengthen communities.

** The Avreichim receive a generous stipend for their participation in the program



TheHappenings Week In News

ny years of looking for a shidduch, 30-year y was terribly despondent and at the verge up all hope. As a diligent yeshiva bochur, he to offer but the right shidduch seemed to . best friend at yeshiva felt his pain and y wanted to help. One day the friend was ide from someone who had told him about ting yeshua that a relative of his had Eli Stern ed when he established a partnership with tzos. friend had exhausted every option possible ezky a shidduch, he decided he had nothing LINK hosted contacting Kollel The Chatzos to Kollel arrange for two special programs during week of Parshas hochomim to learn at Chatzos as athe zechus Beshallach. Rabbi Boruch Hirschfeld, y. er Rosh Chodesh Shvat, posek, Kollel presented Chatzos a major shirenowned call from the ecstatic friend who informed ur on Hilchos Brachos on Monday night, Chezky had finally got engaged. January 18th. At the end of the week, ning partnership with Kollel Chatzos had Rabbi Yisroel Kaminetsky, Menahel of ay remaining in the cycle when we learned the Hebrew Academy of Long Beachabout Chezky's engagement," recalled the HALB (Long Island) led a shabbaton on is truly amazing to see what can happen in the subject of chinuch. rt time," he added. Rabbi Hirschfeld, native of Austraoint, the friend immediately signed upaas a lia and a talmid of Telshe, is a rav, potner to support Torah learning in order to and rosh in Cleveland Heights, bringing aboutsek yeshuas andkollel brochos into WhenYisroel. he spoke to a full beis mef his friend andOhio. all of Klall

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Rabbis Hirschfeld and Kaminetsky Speak at LINK Kollel in LA

drash in honor of Tu B’Shvat, he first provided a brief hashkafic overview of the holiday’s significance and of the concept of making brachos in general. Following that, Rabbi Hirschfeld offered a masterful halachic presentation on the major issues that arise in making brachos. For example, what are the criteria for choosing which food within a dish gets priority in choosing the bless-

ing? This is especially relevant in terms of the seven species for which the Land of Israel is praised. Where does one’s personal preference come into play? What if a particular fruit is whole, as opposed to another being cut up? Rabbi Hirschfeld also discussed when a “fruit” (ha’aitz) or “vegetable” (ha’adoma) lose their status because they’ve been pulverized, squeezed, or otherwise transformed. What types of mezonos can become hamotzi if a person establishes their meal over them? When will the brocha of ha’adoma take precedence over ha’aitz? Endeavoring to answer all these questions and more, Rav Hirschfeld elucidated the major underlying principles with a clarity that left the packed bais medrash with thorough understanding. He stayed on to answer many practical shailos from his audience after the shiur. Over the course of Shabbos, more than 150 people came to LINK to listen to Rabbi Kaminetsky speak on various

the zechus of torah


A er many years of looking for a shidduch, 30-year old Chezky was terribly despondent and at the verge of giving up all hope. As a diligent yeshiva bochur, he had much to offer but the right shidduch seemed to elude him. Chezky's best friend at yeshiva felt his pain and desperately wanted to help. One day the friend was offered a ride from someone who had told him about a fascinating yeshua that a relative of his had experienced when he established a partnership with Kollel Chatzos. Since the friend had exhausted every option possible to find Chezky a shidduch, he decided he had nothing to lose by contacting Kollel Chatzos to arrange for talmidei chochomim to learn at Chatzos as a zechus for Chezky.

Soon a er, Kollel Chatzos received a call from the ecstatic friend who informed them that Chezky had finally go en engaged.

Soon a er Rosh Chodesh Shvat, Kollel Chatzos received a call from the ecstatic friend who informed them that Chezky had finally go en engaged.

"The learning partnership with Kollel Chatzos had only one day remaining in the cycle when we learned the news about Chezky's engagement," recalled the friend. "It is truly amazing to see what can happen in just a short time," he added. At that point, the friend immediately signed up as a yearly partner to support Torah learning in order to continue bringing about yeshuas and brochos into the lives of his friend and all of Klal Yisroel. Every midnight our talmidei chachamim illuminate the world with Torah.



1.855.CHaTZOS 24


4 locations:






and experience the zchus of 46 Main St #104 Monsey


sustaining Torah learning.

facets of chinuch habanim. A principal for over 20 years of the DRS Boys High School Division of HALB, Rabbi Kaminetsky is a long time chavrusa and friend to LINK’s Founder and Dean, Rabbi Asher Brander. (He is also the scion of a family steeped in chinuch. His grandfather, Dr. Joseph Kaminetsky, Z”L, was the Founding Director of Torah Umesorah for over 30 years; his father, Rabbi David Kaminetsky, was the long-time Menahel of the Manhattan Day School.) At the Friday night oneg, Rabbi Kaminetsky spoke about the importance of inculcating the mitzvah of Limud HaTorah into our children. He posited that this commandment was the most effective way of inspiring our children to greater spiritual growth. However, he reminded the audience that the best teaching is by example; no lectures about Torah study could possibly equal the example a father sets by his own fixed times for Torah study. Likewise, if parents are excited about fulfilling mitzvos and manifest the joy of Torah living, that’s the best method of inspiring our children to follow suit. According to Rabbi Kaminetsky, the experience of learning Torah with one’s own parent leaves an indelible imprint on a child’s spiritual psyche and is unparalleled in its effectiveness. Last, but certainly not least, he stressed the importance of praying for our children’s success in learning and all their spiritual undertakings.

During the drasha, Rabbi Kaminetsky stressed the importance of teaching the depths of hashkafa and the meaning of the mitzvos to our children. At the luncheon that followed, he spoke about the importance of simcha in raising our children. A home permeated with peace between spouses and simchas hachaim is a fertile atmosphere in which to raise children who love their Yiddishkeit. If the parents do not feel a sense of joy in their personal lives or in their Torah, they will not inspire their children. He especially stressed the importance of singing zemiros at the Shabbos and yom tov table as well as a general demeanor of simcha that parents need to exude all week long. He spoke upon many of those themes during shalosh seudos, as well. Mrs. Elisheva Kaminetsky, a veteran educator in her own right, gave a shiur for women on Shabbos afternoon. In honor of Tu B’Shevat, she tied together raising resilient children and the resiliency of trees after a long winter of sleep. The broad swath of young parents who attended Rabbi Kaminetsky’s many talks over Shabbos found themselves deeply moved and inspired. The many children sitting with them at the luncheon provided an ever-present reminder of the sacredness of their task. Eli Stern is the Director of Outreach for LINK

The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home


‫ברוך הבא בשם השם‬ ‫שמחים אנו להודיע בשער בת רבים ולהזמין‬ ,‫תושבי עירנו לאס אנג'לס למעמד רבתי עם‬

‫קבלת פנים‬ ‫שאנו עורכים לכבודו הרם של אורחינו הגדול‬

‫הוועדה‬ ‫המכינה‬

‫כ"ק מרן אדמו"ר מויז'ניץ שליט"א‬

‫למסע הקודש‬

‫שתתקיים אי"ה ברוב פאר והדר‬

‫של כ"ק מרן‬ ‫אדמו"ר שליט"א‬

‫ביום א' לסדר תצוה‬

‫לאס אנג'לס‬

6:30 ‫ | מעריב‬5:30 ‫ | קבלת פנים‬5:15 ‫מנחה‬

The Committee

‫באולם שע"י ביהמ"ד עץ חיים‬ 303 South Highland Avenue ‫ הוא הדרה‬,‫ הוא זיווה‬,‫צדיק בעיר הוא הודה‬

for the

Rebbe’s Historic Visit

‫הוועדה המכינה‬

to Los Angeles 5776

Tzaddik Ba La’Ir

Kabulas Punim

Committee Members Moshe Chopp ‫ץ‬ Baruch C. Cohen, Esq ‫ץ‬ R abbi Shlomo Einhorn ‫ץ‬ R abbi Shmuel Einhorn ‫ץ‬ David Hager ‫ץ‬ Motty Herzog ‫ץ‬ Moshe Ingber ‫ץ‬ Chaim Kassirer ‫ץ‬ Michael Kest ‫ץ‬ Jeff Mendell ‫ץ‬ Meir Leib Rosman ‫ץ‬ Elie Ryzman ‫ץ‬ Barry Weiss

Join us for a special kabulas punim to welcome the venerated

Viznitzer Rebbe shlita Sunday evening, February 14th ‫ ה' אדר א' תשע"ו‬,‫יום א' תצוה‬ 6:30 ‫ | מעריב‬5:30 ‫ | קבלת פנים‬5:15 ‫מנחה‬

In the hall of Congregation Etz Chaim of Hancock Park 3 0 3

S o u t h

H i g h l a n d

A v e n u e

It will be a special opportunity to hear

Divrei Chizuk from The Rebbe Shlita Valet


Followed by

Live musical entertainment

Hot Food Will Be Served

The Rebbe will be available to give personal bruchos. The Welcoming Committee

February 14 - February 23 2016

‫ יום ג' כי תשא תשע"ו‬- ‫יום א' תצוה‬



The Week In News


FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Valley Night Kollel presents

at the

Sheraton Crescent Hotel


Pesach program

with the perfect balance of ‫רוחניות & גשמיות‬

Non-Gebrokts | Shidduchim Program with Lisa Elefant of Binyan Adei Ad | Outdoor and Indoor Dining Venue Options in Guaranteed Weather

INSPIRATIONAL SPEAKERS: Rabbi Zechariah Wallerstein Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb Rabbi Binyomin Ginsberg Charlie Harary, Esq | Lori Palatnik Signature Garden Concert Series by Yanky Katina Productions PERFORMERS:

8th Day | Gad Elbaz

Benny Friedman | Beri Weber Mentalist David Blatt



HOSTED BY: Rabbi Zechariah Wallerstein Rabbi Moshe Fuchs | Yanky Elefant | Esther Zicherman


FOR INFORMATION & RESERVATIONS: Daytime 855-300-1873 Evenings & Weekends 800-522-1850

The energetic and entertaining Rabbi Dovid Orlofsky recently appeared in the Valley as the scholar-in-residence at Toras Hashem. Toras Hashem was founded by Rabbi Block over 40 years ago. Recently he passed the torch on to Rabbi Yisroel Majeski. In three short months, the shul has grown by leaps and bounds. New members join every week and young families seem to be finding their place in a very special community. The shul is known for its warmth and passion. Exciting new shiurim go on every week, and members enjoy the beautiful davening, an amazing children’s program run by Rabbi Tropper, and a spectacular kiddush. While Rabbi Orlofsky was in town, Toras Hashem threw the Valley Night Kollel & Toras Hashem Cruise Event. Set overlooking Dock 52 in Marina Del Rey, the event brought together a diverse crowd from both the Valley and the City. As the sun set, the festivities had already begun on the Fantasy 1, a multi-level yacht. Celebrants enjoyed entertainment, music and friendly faces throughout the evening. Level One consisted of a photo booth and a beautiful lounge with plush couches and chairs from which they could enjoy the scenic view. Level Three featured a sushi station, carving station, and many more delicious treats made by the one and only La Gandola. Level Four provided a stunning open-air view of the harbor and the bay. The evening program took place on Level Two. A delicious dinner was served, and Boruch Levine serenaded the attendees, contributing to the ambiance. Humorous and inspiring videos of the Valley Night Kollel and of Toras Hashem members entertained the guests. Rabbi Yisroel Majeski addressed everyone and then Rabbi Orlofsky, who delivered his signature blend of Torah and humor. Rabbi Orlofsky spoke about imitating Nachson by

joining the amazing work of the shul and the Valley Night Kollel. The night went on to be a huge success. The raffle drawing took nearly 20 minutes. Overwhelmed by the amazing turnout, Rabbi Majeski took quite some time to announce the raffle winner. While guests consumed the sumptuous desert, he read the name of the winner and the remaining attendees made their way off the boat for a late maariv. To quote one of the overjoyed guests, “This was one of the best events I have ever been to in my life… actually the best!” The night was such a hit that the shul will be looking for a bigger boat for next year.

The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

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TheHappenings Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Los Angeles Receives Firsthand Security Assessment of Judea and Samaria Natalie Sopinsky, Susya, Israel, One Israel Fund

On Saturday night, January 23rd, an audience of 100 met with Marc Provisor, One Israel Fund Director of Security Projects and Natalie Sopinsky, OIF Director of Community Development. They described life in the communities of Judea and Samaria on the front lines of the latest Palestinian terror assault. Nessah Synagogue and Beth Jacob each hosted talks by Provisor, who tied in the weekly parshah with life in Judea and Samaria. Nessah hosted the One Israel Fund pair at a 200-person luncheon and at a post-Shabbat dessert reception. The rooms were full of Israel supporters from the Los Angeles community, including Simon Etehad, Past President of Nessah; Dr. Shahid Sadik; Rich Bloom, Esq; Sari and Ariyah Arshadnia; Fran and Stuart Miller; Seth Swirsky; and Denis Bieber. Natalie Sopinsky told her story of life in Susya, a community in the Har Hevron region south of Hebron. She described living just twelve kilometers from Otniel, the community where Dafna Meir was brutally murdered the prior week. Sopinsky stood at the podium with clenched fist and steady voice and related that she will always remember exactly where she was and what she was doing when she learned Daf-

na was murdered. “Dafna was a mother of six and was murdered because she was a Jew, living in the heartland of Israel. Just like me.” One Israel Fund Director of Security Projects, Marc Provisor, is a former IDF paratrooper who served ten years as civilian security chief (Ravshatz) for the Shilo region. Provisor, a straight-talking counter-terror expert, regularly consults and coordinates with the Israeli Defense Forces

to enhance security for the Jewish residents of Judea, Samaria, and the communities bordering Hamas-controlled Gaza. One of his recent contributions to the security of these regions is an armored ballistic vest he designed and developed for civilian security directors. Provisor’s vests proved so effective that the IDF has recently adopted the design. Provisor regularly conducts security assessments throughout Judea, Samaria and the Gaza-border

communities, recommends technological security upgrades, and plays a central role fund-raising to acquire needed defensive equipment. Urgently needed equipment includes thermal cameras, burn kits and emergency medical equipment. One Israel Fund also raises funds for daily life improvements, including playgrounds and community centers for the Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria. Sopinsky and Provisor noted that the residents of these communities uniformly report a high quality of life, though objectively their standard of living is disturbingly low. 400,000 Jews now live throughout Judea and Samaria. These residents love their families and love life. As Sopinsky noted, “We are the same as you. I invite you to come and see where I live; to come see the beauty I see every day.” For more information, to get involved with One Israel Fund, to schedule a tour of the Judea and Samaria communities, or to invite a representative of One Israel Fund to your community, contact Natalie Sopinsky, Director of Community Projects, One Israel Fund at or call 516-239-9202 ext. 22.

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Rav Asher Weiss‫ שליט”א‬, Rav Efrayim Kirshenbaum, ‫שליט”א‬, and other well known talmidei chochomim and poskim in Israel. Avreichim at CKD learn halacha during morning seder and Shas in afternoon seder. They also get serious shimush in inyanei chinuch and Sholom Bayis from b’keyim in Eretz Yisroel.

They even get special seminars in counseling and crisis intervention from some of the biggest experts in the world. Last year, all CKD avreichim received smicha from Rav Shlomo Zalman Ulman, ‫ שליט”א‬of Bnei Brak and earned some of the highest marks on the smicha exams given by the Rabbanut (known to be among the most difficult in the world). The CKD winners from previous years, who are now enjoying the privilege of five years of learning in Yerushalayim ih”k, are hardworking, idealistic, and will take communal positions upon graduation from the program. If you are age 25-30, married, headed for rabbanus, chinuch, or kiruv, and interested in spending five years in an amazing kollel in Yerushalayim, check out the 3rd-Annual CKD awards at

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Olivia Schwartz: A Jew that Moves Rebecca Klempner Today, Olivia Schwartz teaches Jewish women about Torah and Chassidus through the Chai Center. She hosts dozens of Shabbos guests weekly, and many of her students turn to her for advice. Upon the suggestion of mutual friends, I spoke with her recently about her personal journey to leadership. Shabbos in the Mountains Shabbos captured Olivia’s imagination for the first time at a Reform summer camp in the mountains near Yosemite. Everyone wore white, and they prayed at the edge of a cliff, overlooking the valley, with guitars strumming. Compared to these services, those in her family’s synagogue appeared “empty.” When Olivia showed up for college in the 1960s, Eastern spirituality was all the rage. Although she didn’t consider herself a “seeker,” she studied Buddhist and Hindu philosophy and took yoga classes. After graduation, her parents paid for her to travel to Israel and Europe. Olivia hated Israel, except for 6 months she spent on kibbutz at Kfar Blum in the Galeel. She much preferred Germany and Austria, and only left Vienna when she realized how much settling there would hurt her grandmother, who had fled Europe due to the Shoah. Returning to the States, Olivia entered a Master’s program in Education at San Jose State. While there, a friend told her that she planned to move to India with her children to study with her gurus. Intrigued by her friend’s description of their teachings, Olivia saved up her money until she had enough for an indefinite stay in India. “Not What I Wanted to Hear” When Olivia arrived in India, she studied at the ashram of Sri Aurobindo and Mirra Alfassa (known as “The Mother”). Later, she would recognize many of their teachings as overlapping with Chassidus. Indeed, she eventually learned that The Mother was Jewish and had access to this knowledge during her early life in France. Over time, though, Olivia gravitated towards Tibetan Buddhism. “In 1974, I was sitting in a tiny coffee shop in the village of McLeod Ganj, where the Dalai Lama lived, and sitting at another table were two Israeli backpackers…I was very excited to see them, and they told me there had been the Yom Kippur War. That moment was very pivotal for me. Israel had been in danger, and I hadn’t known about it.” Not long after, Olivia moved to Katmandu, Nepal. She lived there for six months to continue her study of Tibetan

Buddhism. A teacher told her, “I can teach you to be an enlightened being (the goal of Buddhism) in three years. But you were born Jewish, and I think you need to serve G-d, and I don’t know what that means.” He told her that there are no accidents and that if G-d had decided that she be born a Jew, there must be a reason. “Judaism is the highest spiritual path,” he told her, “but also the hardest to find spirituality in.” Smiling, Olivia says, “This was not what I wanted to hear.” Reluctantly, she consented to go for a month to Israel, to learn “how to serve G-d.” After that, she planned to return to India, where she intended to spend the rest of her life. In Israel Olivia had had a positive experience on a secular kibbutz during her previous visit to Israel, so she sought out a religious kibbutz upon arrival back in the country. The administrators in the central office for kibbutzim attempted to dissuade her from choosing a religious setting. “You’ll have to live separately from the men,” they told her, and “You’ll have to dress modestly.” “But I already did those things on the ashram,” she said, undeterred. Eventually she found her way to a Daati moshav that had an ulpan program. In the evenings, she studied Judaism with a tutor. “I wasn’t happy, but I felt compelled to learn more. I’d felt stuck, you see, and I hoped that learning Torah would help me move past that block.” The single month she planned to stay in Israel stretched out when she realized how much more she needed to learn. After six months, she looked for a seminary and ended up at the Diaspora Yeshiva in the Old City. Olivia studied Torah there for four years. “[The rosh yeshiva] Rabbi Goldstein attracted musicians, artists, yoga practitioners. Many of us shared experiences with Eastern philosophy, and we supported each other.” Her teachers included Rabbi Yitzchok Ginsburgh, Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach and other Chassidishe instructors even though the Diaspora Yeshiva had a Litvish approach overall. Most of what they said went over her head. While at the Diaspora Yeshiva, Olivia also made a lifelong friend, Chana Rochel Schusterman. However, Olivia struggled to find a deep, spiritual connection to mitzvos. For example, she lit Shabbos candles for many months feeling no joy or special connection with the Divine. This frustrated her. Then, Olivia spent one Friday afternoon busily planning a trip to Europe with

friends. As Shabbos approached, she still hadn’t finalized her flights. She felt anxious and distracted right up until candlelighting time. And then everything stopped when she kindled the flames. No worries, no thoughts about the trip zipped through her head. She simply experienced peace. Despite this experience, she continued to struggle with finding joy in daily Jewish practice. “I’d been wearing dirty glasses my whole life.” On a visit to the U.S., a friend from Israel encouraged Olivia to visit Rabbi Manis Friedman’s seminary in Minnesota. Olivia turned down the suggestion because she had attended a Litvishe style seminary. However, the next time Olivia returned to the U.S., that friend had settled in Crown Heights. It turned out that Rabbi Goldstein had a sister who was close to the Lubavitcher Rebbe. She arranged for the ladies from the Diaspora Yeshiva to meet him. “I walked out transformed,” Olivia says today. Heading to Minnesota, she enrolled in Rabbi Friedman’s seminary. “After 20 minutes of learning Tanya, I felt like I’d been wearing dirty glasses my whole life and could suddenly see.” Tanya continues to be her favorite thing to teach to this day. Later, Rabbi Friedman arranged Olivia’s marriage to Rabbi Shlomo Schwartz, better known as “Schwartzie.” Leadership Starting in the 1950s, the Lubavitcher Rebbe spoke about women as integral parts of Jewish communities. He believed that the world needed female leadership, and encouraged them to to take visible leadership positions. Nonetheless, Olivia did not feel obligated to lead just because she’d married a rabbi. “I really grew into it. You might not believe it now, but I was painfully shy when I was young.” While Schwartzie was co-founding the first three on-campus Chabad Houses, UCLA, Berkeley, and San Diego, Olivia took on a leadership position in an entirely different venue: La Leche League. At meetings, Olivia saw whenever a child had a Hebrew name, their mother was not Jewish, but their father was. If the child had a Hindi or Sanskrit name, the mother was almost always Jewish. With this realization, Olivia now understood the Rebbe’s call for kiruv. Olivia believes that women make ex-

At the Venice boardwalk with her husband Rabbi Shlomo Schwartz

ceptional leaders because of their feminine qualities. “Leadership means bringing out the best from each other. Men can sometimes be competitive, but women champion each others’ successes…[They] raise each other up to a higher level.” She admits, though, that leaders who are also wives and mothers have struggles. For example, they may forget to take care of their own needs and desires. “You can nurture others and still nurture yourself. It’s not an either/or proposition.” Reflecting, she continues, “It was hard when I had small children…I had challenges, but I didn’t ignore them. I put them aside. I learned and studied, and then re-examined the problems...” For example, when her eldest children were small, the Schwartzes lived outside the eruv. She studied the halachos of carrying on Shabbos, then decided to hire help for Shabbos so that she could leave the house. This method – confronting the problem, setting it aside while studying the Torah view on the subject, then figuring out a solution – is one she still embraces. Final Words of Wisdom The Chai Center has a unique tagline: for any Jew that moves. Jews from all walks of life find their way into her home. However, Olivia points out that all Orthodox Jews interact with people who are not Orthodox. “Our role was always just to be normal with each other, and balance our differences by finding commonality.” She adds, “I am not a pusher…I make a connection and don’t ask anything but for them to show up.” Before we part, I ask Olivia to share a final piece of advice. She points out that the prophet Isaiah tells us that the word of the Lord comes out from Jerusalem. “[E] very Jew has the responsibility…to give light to other people, but [also] to talk about Israel.”

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By Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz Publisher of the Yated Ne’eman

The most joyous occurrence in our world is a wedding. People whose children have gotten married know that following the emotional highs and joy experienced at the wedding, there is an entirely different delight as they watch the new couple go about life together when sheva brachos is over. After the music, noise and laughter have faded, the supreme nachas takes over as they watch the couple adopt the blessings, happiness, hope and optimism that have been expressed over the prior week and transform them into their new lives together. The excitement of potential is replaced by the exhilaration of realization. They descend from flying in the clouds to living in the real world. In last week’s parsha, Yisro, we experienced the drama, thunder and roar of Kabbolas HaTorah, as Hashem’s nation was presented with a gift that would change them and their identities for all time. Hashem and Klal Yisroel entered into an eternal bond. This week, in Parshas Mishpotim, the glory and splendor of Har Sinai is distilled into concepts as perfect and precise as creation. The magnitude, scope and depth of Torah are filtered down to reflect the realities of this world. How can it be? How can a celestial Torah be constricted to human limitations? Had you ever spoken to or just observed Rav Yisroel Belsky zt”l, you would have the answer. In an age when talmidei chachomim and gedolei Torah are regularly vilified, Rav Belsky was an example of a person with expansive understanding of the entire Torah, with no personal agenda or bias, who could not be bought or cowed into a position. Blessed with a brilliant mind and sterling character, he ignored other opportunities and chose to spend his life in the beis medrash, where his brilliant mind and hasmodah gained him comprehensive yedios and havonah. Though he was smarter than most others, his greatness wasn’t arrived at through superficial study. Rather, he immersed himself in Torah and spent every free minute horeving in learning. Hashem blessed him with a superior mind, but that is not enough. There are many smart people whose intelligence is squandered on trivialities and never develops, eventually withering due to passivity. He worked hard to utilize his gift to grow and advance in Torah study and dissemination. He accomplished much and was in-

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Rav Yisroel Belsky zt”l volved in many different organizations and causes, but Torah was his calling. From his youth, he was seen as a prodigy destined for greatness. Despite that, he always remained a simple, humble person, with time for everyone who sought him out. The same giant who could rule on the most intricate issues would spend much time explaining sugyos to talmidim, elucidating complicated concepts for young people seeking to grow and excel in Torah. He was so kind and sweet, and nothing was beneath him. No person or situation was irrelevant. No matter what it was, he was prepared to discuss it and explain it to anyone. The man who knew all of Torah and could point out every star, figure out complicated mathematical calculations, play every musical instrument, write and appreciate piyutim, would also daven for the amud and lain. It was said that the only things he

questions from across the landscape of Jewish law. He addressed so many issues that day. Though his body was weakened, nobody could detect any weakness in his knowledge and ability to incisively analyze all types of situations through the prism of Torah. It wasn’t the shiur they were expecting. It was a lesson in gadlus ha’odam. They got to see how high a man can reach if he lives a Torah life. My son once attended a shiur delivered by a leading contemporary posek, who discussed whether turning on a fluorescent light on Shabbos is a melochah d’Oraysah or derabbonon. The posek concluded that it was a sofeik. My son told Rav Belsky about the shiur and the conclusion. The rosh yeshiva smiled and shrugged. “You should know that there are things that are sefeikos, situations where you cannot achieve clarity,

HE DEMONSTRATED THAT HUMAN GREATNESS CAN BE ATTAINED HERE AND NOW. didn’t know was how to braid challah and repair cars. Everything else was revealed to him and understood by him to the degree that he could patiently explain anything to anyone. His mind was always engaged. He never stopped thinking until his final sickness. He didn’t just learn halachah. He didn’t only pasken shailos. He knew and understood the issues better than most. He understood the practical implications of every halachah. When he would learn something, he would immediately figure out how to adapt and apply what he had learned, along with the limitless flow of information in his mind. Once, although he was ill, he arrived at a scheduled halachah shiur. Apologizing, he explained that his illness left him too drained to prepare a shiur for that day. He told the talmidim that he regretted that he could not say the shiur, but he didn’t want to leave them without imparting Torah knowledge. Instead of saying shiur, he asked if they minded asking him questions on sugyos that troubled them. What could they ask? Anything. Any shaylah or halachah or p’shat in Shas or the daled chelkei Shulchan Aruch. In his weakened state, he sat there, answering

but this isn’t one of them. “When there is a machlokes haposkim and there is no accepted way to rule, that constitutes a sofeik, because the matter is really in doubt. But if one can take apart the light bulb and study it and see how it works, then the halachah is not in doubt and it is not a sofeik.” With total humility, Rav Belsky nonchalantly said that he had done that, and proceeded to explain to the young man how a bulb works and at what conclusion he arrived after studying fluorescent electricity. When he looked at a chicken, he saw Hashem’s creature. He saw dapim of Gemara, Rambam and Shulchan Aruch. He saw halachah and Shas in full display. And when he would teach Shulchan Aruch, it was with the fascination of a genius who had thoroughly examined every aspect of the chicken. His knowledge was overwhelming. He seemingly knew everything there was to know and so easily conveyed it. When he looked at a potato chip, he didn’t see a snack. He saw hilchos brachos, and bishul Yisroel, and everything else involved in producing the crunchy delight. There is Elokus everywhere, and ev-

erything can be understood from the Torah. Rav Belsky knew that every component of the briah is an expression of Hashem’s will and that there are halachos that govern every particle of the world. Thus, halachah tells us which brochah to recite on thunder, which to say when blossoms sprout, how to be mekadeish the levonah and the chamah, and how to approach so many aspects of the world, because everything in creation is, in reality, a sugya cloaked with holiness by the ratzon Hashem. The Torah we received on Har Sinai is the oxygen of the universe. To understand Torah is to understand the world as well. Someone who studies all of Torah comprehends that stars, flowers, apples, fields and oceans are all part of a bais medrash. Rav Belsky studied the stars and heard them sing about Hashem’s magnificence. He couldn’t help but share his knowledge with all who fell under his wing. During the summers, he would sit across the grassy expanse of lawn at Camp Agudah surrounded by wide-eyed campers, teaching all types of lessons about the constellations. It was an eye-opening experience for the campers. Here was a man they knew as a rov, the camp’s posek and spiritual guide, yet he was also the source of so much knowledge and wisdom about Hashem’s creation. Early on, they learned that it was all one. Mah eilu miSinai, af eilu miSinai. One night, during a star-gazing walk, Rav Belsky noticed a cluster of stars forming a pattern in the sky that he had never previously witnessed. The next morning, he called NASA to report what he had seen and ask them if they could explain it. Scientists there told him that they had also noticed the formation and were as perplexed as he. The Camp Agudah administration noticed - how could they not? - that he rarely got to eat his meals without numerous interruptions. They arranged for him to take his meals in a private dining room. He rejected the offer, explaining that he wanted to eat together with the campers. He understood that his presence in the dining room would encourage young people to approach and ask their questions. They asked the usual “What brochah do you make on corn flakes?” questions, as well as, “How many pretzels do I have to eat for a shiur?” and, “Should I wash on pizza?” By seeing him sitting there in such an approachable fashion, they were empowered to ask questions that had been lying dormant and find answers for things that bothered them. Rav Belsky, like the most accomplished rabbeim, understood that the avodah Moshe Rabbeinu faced following Ma’amad Har Sinai was “Vayeired Moshe el ha’am - Moshe descended to the peo-

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ple.” The master of halachah sat among the people hungry for counsel in all matters of Torah, allaying their concerns and providing guidance and direction. Rabbi Menachem Genack of the OU described at the levayah how Rav Belsky would calculate shiurim for bittul without use of pen, paper or calculator. He would figure out the area and circumference of a large barrel in a moment and issue his ruling. He would also just as quickly size up the nuances of a person. Rabbi Duvie Frischman recalled entering Rav Belsky’s office in Camp Agudah. As he approached the room, he noticed a young bochur running out and Rav Belsky was sitting at his desk with tears in his eyes. He asked why the rov was so pained. Rav Belsky told him that the bochur had a severe stutter. The camp’s rov had overheard him speaking and approached him, saying, “I can help you. Come to my office.” Rav Belsky explained that if the boy would come to his office every day, he could cure him from the speech handicap. Camp being camp, as much as the boy wanted to speak properly, he couldn’t pull himself away from the activities to sit in the rov’s office. He found his way there two or three times and that was it. The boy had come to the office to say goodbye, and Rav Belsky was overcome with grief when he heard the boy speak and realized he had failed in rectifying his stutter. The next summer, the boy returned to camp and Rabbi Frischman noticed that he had been cured of his stutter. Remembering how upset he had been at the end of the camp season, he went to Rav Belsky and shared the good news with him. “Remember that stuttering boy you were feeling so bad about? He’s back and he is cured. I thought the rov would want to know that.” Rav Belsky smiled broadly. It later turned out that the boy had gone to Rav Belsky throughout the school year for speech therapy. The rosh yeshiva who delivered shiurim, sat on botei din, was a rov, served as a posek for the largest international kashrus agency, and was a mohel, shochet, baal tefillah, baal kriah and father and grandfather to many talmidim and a large family, carved out time to administer speech therapy as well. He comprehended greatness where it was, and had compassion and understanding for all of Hashem’s beings. He cared for all, loved all, and was treasured by all who knew him, despite his self-effacement. Gadlus ha’odam. The Satmar Rebbe once commented, “Oib nisht fahr di alte Vilhelm,” if not for Rav Binyomin Wilhelm, who established Yeshiva Torah Vodaas, “volten aleh farvisht gevoren,” Yiddishkeit in America would have been wiped out. Rav Binyomin Wilhelm’s eldest grandson was Rav Belsky, who inherited his ach-

Rabbi Lipschutz with Rav Belsky zt”l

rayus and strength. No challenge was too intimidating, no charge too daunting. He trained young mashgichim in the complexities of machinery and equipment, taught young shochtim and mohalim how to excel in their meleches hakodesh, answered the most complicated and thorny medical shailos, and helped doctors understand the interface between medicine and halachah. He and his wife had the courage to travel to the Soviet Union when such a journey was fraught with danger, sharing Toras Hashem with desperate neshamos locked behind the Iron Curtain. In time, when the walls would fall and a stream of Russian Jews would arrive in New York, the connection would be revealed as Divinely ordained. Many new immigrants settled in Kensington, near the rosh yeshiva’s home, and he and his wife would emerge as their surrogate parents. For several years, the rosh yeshiva led his Pesach Seder in three languages - English, Yiddish and the Russian he’d taught himself - in order to accommodate the many guests at his table. His rebbi, Rav Yaakov Kamenetsky zt”l, the consummate ish emes, showered upon this talmid the ultimate praise, referring to him as an ish emes. His devotion to the truth empowered him to be able to withstand pressure and personal attacks. He was rooted in the words of the Shulchan Aruch, his actions defined only by what he saw there. As strong as he was outside of the classroom, he was soft, gentle and caring when dealing with his talmidim. For despite all he did and accomplished, teaching talmidim was the crown of his many achievements and what he viewed as his main obligation in this world. He tolerated their questions, welcomed their difficulties, and was metzamtzeim his brilliance to joyfully help a mediocre bochur understand p’shat, just as he brought his brilliance and encyclopedic knowledge to bear when he would discuss complicat-

ed rulings with distinguished colleagues. His comprehension was so clear that he was able to transmit the knowledge precisely and clearly in a way anyone could understand. He loved people and he loved to learn, so what could be better in life than learning with people and teaching them and explaining the beauty and depth of Torah, halachah and maasei bereishis? Following the Second World War, a Holocaust refugee arrived in Bnei Brak with the gold bars he had hidden throughout the war. He related that he was wondering what to do with the gold bars and where to keep them. “I was walking [one night] down the street that would come to be named Rechov Chazon Ish, and I met an elderly man who I recognized to be the Chazon Ish. I had never met him before, but I had heard that he was a person people went to for brachos and eitzos, so I decided to ask him what to do with my gold bars. “He picked up his cane and pointed in the direction of an empty mountain. He said to me, ‘Reb Yaakov Halpern is going to be selling lots on that mountain. Take as much gold as you have and buy property from him.’ “I had come from a different world and didn’t really know who he was. I was furious about his advice. What? Take the gold I risked my life for and invest it in an empty, dusty hill? “I didn’t argue with him. I said, ‘Thank you,’ and walked away. “Halpern was selling property there for next to nothing, but I didn’t buy even one acre from him. Instead, I tried all types of investments, none of which panned out. Had I listened to that old man, oh how wealthy I would be today! I’d be worth millions upon millions.” The Torah advises us what to invest in, how to live our lives and how to spend our time. Those who follow the Torah and its gedolim lead productive lives and merit

happiness and nachas. The Torah stands as a light post, as a guide in the dark. Those who excel in Torah, the Chazon Ishes of every generation, calmly convey its lessons to those fortunate enough to listen. This Shabbos, we read about a people fresh from the inspiration of Sinai learning to incorporate the lofty ideals into the practicalities of monetary dealings, of boundaries and damages. They were given the tools to elevate themselves so that they would approach widows and orphans with halachah as their guide, the dinei haTorah teaching compassion and heart. To encompass the fullness of Torah and the grandiosity of Ma’amad Har Sinai is to recognize that what we have is a gift from Hashem. It is our duty to use those gifts to perfect the world by studying Torah, living Torah lives, and being affected by it, treating all of humanity as we want to be treated, loving all and being loved by all. Rav Belsky’s ability to grasp the massive picture never precluded him from seeing the small parts of the intricate puzzle that is Torah. The greater a person is in Torah, the more humble he is. Rav Belsky was as humble and simple as can be. As great as he was in learning, as brilliant as his mind was, that is how diffident he was. How appropriate for Rav Belsky’s soul to return to its Maker during the week of Parshas Yisro and for his kevurah to take place during the week of Parshas Mishpotim. The parshiyos that deal with the receipt of the Torah and its practical application to man so typify Rav Belsky. He was deathly ill four years ago on exactly the same date on which he passed away. But he was spared and given exactly another four years to live, teach, guide, learn and rise. Four years later, 208 Shabbosos from when he was clinically dead, he left this earth as we learned the parsha of Kabbolas HaTorah and naaseh venishma. Life is a matter of perspective. Ours is formed by Torah and gedolei Torah. People such as Rav Belsky, who forsook all other careers, had no use for any of life’s pleasures and dedicated themselves to farming in the vineyard of Hashem, propagating his Torah, teaching and guiding others with humility, simplicity, kindness and grandeur. It is people such as he who make our people great and ensure that we remain a mamleches kohanim vegoy kadosh. Rav Belsky wasn’t a throwback to a past generation. He lived here with us until last week. He demonstrated that human greatness can be attained here and now. He showed that we can be humble and walk with Hashem and with all types of people. He raised a generation of children and talmidim like he, great and distinguished, dignified and noble. The story of our nation, the story of our greatness, is the story epitomized by the rosh yeshiva of Torah Vodaas, Rav Chaim Yisroel Belsky. May his memory be a source of brochah.


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Health & F tness

The Facts about Zika By Hylton I. Lightman, MD, DCH, FAAP


he phone was ringing off the hook even before Margaret Chan, Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), announced this week that a disease linked to the Zika virus in Latin America is posing a world health threat. In fact, WHO’s announcement puts Zika into the same category of threat as the Ebola virus. Let’s inhale and exhale slowly while we provide you with the facts. The Zika virus is spread to people through mosquito bites. The most common symptoms of Zika virus disease are fever, rash, joint pain, and conjunctivitis (red eyes). The illness is usually mild with symptoms lasting from several days to a week. Severe disease requiring hospitalization is uncommon. Zika virus, which is related to dengue, yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis, and West Nile viruses, is not new. Since the 1950s, it has occurred within a narrow equatorial belt from Africa to Asia. In 2014, the disease spread across the Pacific Ocean to French

Polynesia, and in 2015, to Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and South America, where it is now reaching pandemic levels. In May 2015, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) issued an alert regarding the first confirmed Zika virus infection in Brazil. The outbreak in Brazil led to reports of Guillain-Barré syndrome and pregnant women giving birth to babies with birth defects, especially small heads, and other poor pregnancy outcomes. Unfortunately, there is no vaccine at present to prevent Zika nor medication to treat it. Until more is known, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that women who are pregnant or are trying to become pregnant should consider postponing travel to the areas where the Zika virus transmission is ongoing. Women who travel to one of these areas should talk to their physician or other healthcare provider first and follow the steps to avoid mosquito bites during the trip ( page/avoid-bug-bites).

Using an insect repellent is safe and effective when travelling through Zika-affected areas. This is a viable option for pregnant women and nursing mothers, provided the repellent is EPA-registered and used according the directions on the package. What happens if you travel to a Zika-affected area and you think you may have contracted the virus? See your healthcare provider if you are pregnant and develop a fever, rash, joint pain, or red eyes within 2 weeks after traveling to a country where Zika virus cases have been reported. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider where you traveled. Because specific areas where the Zika virus transmission is ongoing are difficult to determine and likely to change, the CDC will update this travel notice as information becomes available. Consult http:// w w w nc .c dc .gov/t ravel/page/z ika-information. The CDC has issued guidance for physicians called the Interim Guidelines for the Evaluation and testing

of Infants with Possible Congenital Zika Virus Infection. Further, our office (Total Family Care) is in daily contact with the New York City Department of Health as well as the CDC about the latest developments. The U.S. and international governments worldwide are pushing forward with a Zika vaccine, as are three pharmaceutical companies. At present, no vaccine is imminent. As always, pray. Pray for excellent health. Pray an appropriate vaccine is developed in a timely manner. No prayer goes unanswered. Questions? Please feel free to email me at

Dr. Hylton Lightman is a pediatrician and Medical Director of Total Family Care of the 5 Towns and Rockaway PC. He can be reached at, on Instagram at #lightmanpeds or visit him on Facebook.

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Week In News



Jewish The WeekHistory In News By Rabbi Pini Dunner Rav of Young Israel North Beverly Hills

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Jewish History

Amulets, Accusations & Controversy: The Devastating Polemic Between Rabbi Yaakov Emden And Rabbi Yonason Eybeschutz Part III THE STORY SO FAR: Despite the conversion to Islam of false messiah Shabbetai Tzvi in 1666, and his death in 1676, secret societies of Sabbatians who still believed in his messianic mission thrived in communities across Europe. They continued to be active well into the eighteenth century. Watchful rabbis worked hard to expose them, fearing the injection of their warped ideas into mainstream Judaism. In 1725-6, a concerted effort to root out Sabbatians uncovered a connection between Sabbatian deviants and an up-andcoming rabbinic celebrity, R. Yonason Eybeschutz of Prague. R. Yonason forcefully denied any ties between him and Sabbatianism and promptly signed a toughly worded ban against the movement and its adherents. Most people believed he had been the subject of mistaken suspicion, and his star continued to rise. He became the head dayyan in Prague, and in 1741 left for Metz, where he took up the position of chief rabbi. In 1749 the longstanding chief rabbi of the prestigious ‘triple-community’ of Altona-Hamburg-Wandsbeck, R. Yechezkel Katzenellenbogen, took ill. It became evident he would not recover. Speculation about who would replace him was rife, with many hoping that the community leadership would invite R. Yonason Eybeschutz to fill the position when it became vacant. Also in the frame was R. Yaakov Emden, the son of a previous triple-community chief rabbi, Chacham Tzvi Ashkenazi. Slightly younger than R. Yonason, he was also an acclaimed rabbinic personality, and already resided in Altona, where he had been given permission by the community leadership to run his own private synagogue. R. Yaakov’s experience in the professional rabbinate was limited to a three-year stint in the tiny community of Emden, but he was highly regarded as a man of integrity and deep scholarship, as well as someone who was fearless in facing up to reprobates, whatever their social status. On Wednesday, July 9, 1749, R. Yechezkel Katzenellenbogen passed away and was buried within a matter of hours. It quickly emerged that the late chief rabbi had requested for the community to appoint his son, R. David, as his replacement. Other names began to emerge as contenders for the coveted position, among them R. Shmuel Hillman, who later filled the vacan-

cy left by R. Yonason in Metz, and R. Arye Leib of Amsterdam, who was married to R. Yaakov Emden’s sister – as well as R. Yonason Eybeschutz and of course R. Yaakov. R. Yonason was certainly the most prominent of all the candidates. Almost sixty years old, and with an incredible reputation as a great scholar and public speaker, he had many admirers in the triple community dating back to the time he lived in Altona with his wife’s family for two years, between 1713 and 1715. Murmurings about his alleged Sabbatian leanings were dismissed as tittle-tattle generated by jealousy, or as tactical maneuvering by supporters of the other candidates. And while it was true that the other candidates, including R. Yaakov, were free of any association with Sabbatianism, none of them could match R. Yonason’s renown or acclaim. There was a small but powerful group of individuals in the triple-community who considered it both appropriate and necessary to appoint R. Yaakov as the new chief rabbi. Firstly, they felt there was an unsettled ‘debt’ owed to Chacham Tzvi, who had been forced to share the chief rabbinate position with another rabbi owing to communal politics at the time of his appointment. The dual chief rabbi idea had proven to be untenable, and had been the main factor that had resulted in Chacham Tzvi’s resignation and move to Amsterdam. The pro-R. Yaakov faction felt it was only right for Chacham Tzvi’s eldest son to reclaim the position his father would have bequeathed him had he remained in the position until his death. More importantly, they saw R. Yaakov as the kind of rabbi who would elevate the standards of Jewish observance in the triple-community. In their opinion, R. Yechezkel had been far too easy-going, tolerating laxity, and turning a blind eye to the inappropriate actions of those who were wealthy. If R. Yaakov were appointed, he would be a very different kind of chief rabbi – the type who would ensure that any infraction of halacha was acted upon immediately and appropriately, whoever the offender might be. But the lay leaders of the triple-community were not eager to appoint R. Yaakov. While they respected his scholarship and were aware of his claim to the position, they felt that his disdain for the late R. Yechezkel – a feeling of contempt that on a couple of occasions had burst into the open – made R. Yaakov an inappropriate replacement. Appointing him would demonstrate a lack of respect to the rabbi who had led the community for almost thirty-six years. What was more, the community board perceived R. Yaakov as a hothead with no political acumen, whose leadership of the commu-

nity would inevitably result in a multitude of flashpoints and problems. Truth be told, R. Yaakov himself was not eager to take on the chief rabbi role, despite the urging of his confidants. Nonetheless, he certainly thought that any other rabbi who took the position knowing that by rights it was his would be guilty of having perpetrated a grave insult and an injustice against him and his late, revered father. Almost a year went by without a decision, as different factions within the community jockeyed for and promoted their preferred candidates. Eventually, on May 14, 1750, the rabbinic selection committee sat down to make the fateful choice. A vote

R. Yaakov Emden’s house at 155 Breitestrasse in Altona, which he bought and remodeled extensively in 1738. Besides for family rooms it contained a private synagogue and a printing press. This illustration appeared in a German Jewish magazine in 1928. The house has since been demolished and the land on which it stood is now the site of an apartment building

was taken and the winner declared. The triple-community’s new chief rabbi would be R. Yonason Eybeschutz. An official letter was dispatched to R. Yonason, and he sent back word that he was delighted to accept the position and expected to arrive in the triple community before Rosh Hashanah. He left Metz as soon as he could and slowly made his way, town by town, to his new home. One of those towns was Frankfurt-amMain, where he stayed for a few weeks. In the period immediately before his arrival there, several pregnant women had either died in childbirth or lost their babies at childbirth, or both. For several years, R. Yonason had been known for his expertise as a writer of amulets believed to help people in these kinds of situations. While he was in Frankfurt, he had several requests for such amulets from women who were pregnant. In an age before reliable medical care, these kinds of requests were not unusual. People often sought amulets from an expert rabbi as a protection against hazard. But the use of amulets was not a practice

welcomed by everyone. One of the major consequences of the Shabbetai Tzvi disaster was that any form of Kabbalistic “hocus-pocus” was automatically considered dubious. Only rabbis with the highest approval rating would dare engage in practical Kabbalistic remedies, as any lesser rabbi would run the risk of immediately being suspected of Sabbatianism. The fact that R. Yonason was willing to write and distribute amulets meant that he believed himself to be a rabbi whose reputation was so strong that no one would ever suspect him of being a Sabbatian, despite – or perhaps as a result of – his 1725 run-in with the anti-Sabbatian enforcers. He was widely acknowledged as a ‘gadol hador’ – one of the select group of rabbis considered the greatest of their generation. Therefore, he assumed his Kabbalistic amulets would never be called into question. He could not have been more mistaken. Even before he had departed from Frankfurt, a number of R. Yonason’s amulets were opened and reviewed by local rabbis. Their conclusion was that the amulets contained Sabbatian heresies, and references to

The entrance to Altona’s synagogue, where R. Yonason Eybeschutz delivered his inaugural speech in September 1750. R. Yaakov Emden was not in attendance, although at that stage there was no history of enmity between them, nor any hint of the controversy that would soon erupt. The synagogue was destroyed by the Nazis in November 1938

Shabbetai Tzvi through the use of cryptic Kabbalistic codes. But rather than confront R. Yonason in Frankfurt, the rabbinic investigators instead sent letters to their friends in Hamburg and Altona to warn them that their new chief rabbi was not what he appeared to be. Although externally he behaved in complete conformity with normative Judaism, he was, they wrote, a crypto-Sabbatian who dispensed blasphemous amulets to unsuspecting folk seeking his help in difficult circumstances. At this stage, R. Yonason was entirely unaware of these new accusations, and in the late summer he departed Frankfurt for the triple-community. The numerous rabbinic students who had accompanied him from Metz had traveled ahead so that they would be there to welcome him when he arrived. His entrance into Hamburg in September 1750 was extremely dramatic. A huge crowd gathered at the gates of the city to greet his carriage. As he drew close, his students formed a guard of honor. When the carriage windows opened and his face appeared, a huge cheer went up, as the community, most

Jewish The WeekHistory In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

of whom had never seen him before, laid eyes on their new chief rabbi – the first new chief rabbi of the triple-community for over thirty-six years. A few days later, R. Yonason delivered his inaugural address at the main synagogue in Altona. The sanctuary was packed to the rafters, and people crowded in the aisles so that they could be present at this historic occasion. In the introduction to his oratorical tour-de-force, R. Yonason paid tribute to numerous community notables, including R. Yaakov Emden. But R. Yaakov was not there. He had decided that as the only rabbinic candidate in the selection process who lived locally, his attendance would turn into a distraction and might be very awkward, so he stayed at home. When R. Yonason finished his speech, the entire community danced him through the streets to his new home. As he walked through the front door, he kissed the mezuzah and quoted a verse from Tehillim (132:14): “Zot Menuchati Adei Ad; Po Eisheiv Ki Ivitiha” – “Let this be my resting place for ever; I will dwell here, for this is what I desired.” It was a moment of high emotion, and many of those who witnessed it wept openly. But even as the community celebrated R. Yonason’s arrival, rumors circulated that he was a Sabbatian, and there were predictions that R. Yaakov Emden was going to expose him. Local gossips quoted R. Yaakov’s wife,

One of R. Yonason Eybeschutz’s amulets, as reproduced later by R. Yaakov Emden in one of his numerous books on the controversy. For many years R. Yonason regularly distributed amulets to pregnant women and others who sought spiritual protection. When he arrived in the triple community this practice generated a fierce controversy

Batya Tzviya, as having declared before R. Yonason’s arrival from Frankfurt, “Let the new chief rabbi come – my husband has already sharpened the knife to cut his throat.” It is unlikely she had uttered this statement, but the fact she was being quoted as having said it clearly indicated that R. Yonason’s honeymoon was over even before it had begun. Lurid stories about his affinity with Sabbatianism became the staple topic around every Shabbat table across the triple-community. R. Yonason himself seemed completely unruffled, laughing off the rumors as a recycling of the accusations against him a quarter of a century earlier. He even continued to write amulets for those who requested them, and seemed to be of the view that firm denials would be enough to kill off rumors of his alleged heresy. After all, it had worked twenty-five years earlier! But this time it would not be so simple. In the anti-Sabbatian campaign of 1725, no one had been able to find the ‘smoking gun’ to positively identify R. Yonason as a Sabbatian. Even though there had been numerous Sabbatians willing to take an oath confirming R. Yonason’s commitment to their cause, and

his authorship of the heretical tract “Ya’avo Hayom El Ha’ayin,” it was entirely possible that they had been fantasizing a scenario in which a completely innocent rabbi was somehow their leader. Alternatively, their assertions about R. Yonason’s Sabbatianism could easily have been contrived, a web of lies deliberately disseminated as part of a dastardly conspiracy to besmirch a rising star of the rabbinate. Perhaps they hoped to sow confusion in the mainstream Jewish world. Whatever the truth actually was, R. Moshe Hagiz had never been able to prove anything against R. Yonason, and this lack of evidence coupled with R. Yonason’s convincing denials had resulted in his complete exoneration. Things were very different twenty-five years later. This time around there was physical evidence –the amulets. R. Yonason had been writing and distributing amulets for years before he came to the triple-community, and now, as the new accusations of heresy began to surface, his detractors started tracking them down and opening them up. They discovered that the amulets were undecipherable unless you were a Kabbalistic expert. The resident expert on Kabbalah in the triple-community was none other than R. Yaakov Emden. Consequently, at some point during the winter of 1750, a group of concerned triple-community members brought one of the amulets to R. Yaakov for an evaluation. It was this fateful meeting that would be the genesis of the raging controversy that ultimately engulfed the entire Jewish world, although at this stage no one would have dreamt that R. Yaakov would emerge as R. Yonason’s principle critic. As a matter of fact, although R. Yaakov later became the person most identified with the anti-R. Yonason campaign, during the early stages of the controversy, he was not the principal player. And while he may have had a reputation as a tough and demanding rabbi, R. Yaakov had no history of battling those with whom he disagreed, nor had he ever played any role in an anti-Sabbatian crusade or previously tangled publicly or privately with R. Yonason Eybeschutz. That fateful winter day the small group arrived at R. Yaakov’s home and was immediately shown into his study. The mood was serious and pensive. One of the group explained the purpose of their visit, and handed R. Yaakov a small handwritten amulet. R. Yaakov shook his head and handed it back. They all looked at him, puzzled. He sighed. “My dear friends, I have absolutely no desire to involve myself in this situation. You see, unless I completely exonerate R. Yonason I will be accused by everybody of harboring sour grapes. They will dismiss my opinion and claim that I hate R. Yonason for accepting the chief rabbi position I believe should have been mine – even though we all know that I had no interest in the position, and do not want that job under any circumstances. I’m sorry to disappoint you, but I simply cannot offer you my help.” After a moment, the leader of the group, Joseph Prager, spoke up softly but with great determination. Prager was a longstanding friend of R. Yaakov – an upstanding man whose devoutness and sincerity were indisputable. “Honored rabbi,” he began, “while I totally understand your position, please let me present you with another angle, for your consideration. If it is true – as many people are

saying - that R. Yonason is a Sabbatian, how can we allow him to lead our wonderful community, and to guide us all down the wrong path? R. Yechezkel, may he rest in peace, may not have been an ideal rabbi in every respect, but he was not a heretic. We all know that Sabbatianism is reprehensible heresy, and a grave danger to true Judaism. You must surely agree that as responsible members of our treasured community, we are compelled to either expose R. Yonason as a Sabbatian, or to confirm his claims of innocence. And, honored rabbi, you are the only one in this city who has the knowledge and expertise to guide us in this matter. So we have no choice but to ask you, and, respectfully, surely you have no choice but to honor our request for your guidance.” R. Yaakov was quiet as he reflected on what Prager had just said. After a few moments he nodded slowly and reached for the amulet – and then stopped. “I have one condition,” he said, “if I do discover that the amulet contains heresy, on no account can you mention that I was the one you consulted. I will show you what I see, and how I see it, and then it will be up to you to take things forward, without ever mentioning my name. Do we have a deal?” They all nodded their consent. R. Yaakov took the amulet and carefully unfolded it. It contained a roughly drawn Star of David, with Hebrew letters inside and surrounding it. The letters seemed random, forming unintelligible words that only made sense to someone familiar with the craft of writing Kabbalistic formulae. The rabbi was quiet as he turned the amulet this way and that. He held it up to the window to examine it in the light. Suddenly his face creased into a frown, and he gazed intently at one of the words on the amulet. He looked up. “Are you absolutely sure this was written by R. Yonason?” he asked. “We are completely certain,” Prager replied. “It was received directly from the pregnant woman he gave it to.” “That is not good, not good at all. Come over here and let me show you something.” The men shuffled over to the window, and R. Yaakov held the amulet up to the light, pointing to the handwritten word he had just closely examined. He looked at them, but they all shrugged their shoulders. They did not have a clue what the word meant. R. Yaakov’s voice was shaking with emotion. “This word is made up of an acrostic using a cryptic code known as ‘ATBASH,’ where an ‘alef’ is a ‘tav,’ a ‘beit’ is a ‘shin,’ a ‘gimmel’ is a ‘reish,’ and so on. What this

word actually says is ‘King Messiah Shabbetai Tzvi.’” Everyone gasped in shock as they realized the magnitude of what R. Yaakov had just told them. Here was the “smoking gun” R. Moshe Hagiz had never managed to find. Here was actual proof that R. Yonason Eybeschutz, one of the greatest and most celebrated rabbis in Europe, was in reality a secret believer in the messianic mission of the charlatan messiah Shabbetai Tzvi. R. Yaakov seemed lost in thought, and his visitors waited for him to say something. When he finally spoke his words were slow and deliberate. “This amulet is devastating, worse than anything ever produced by those cursed heretics Hayyun, Prossnitz, and Hassid. I’m begging you to please listen very carefully to what I am about to say. Whoever wrote this amulet is an extremely dangerous Sabbatian. Right now I have no idea who wrote it. It’s not that I don’t believe you, but your affirmation of its authorship is only hearsay. My advice to you is to keep this discovery very quiet for the moment. Over the next few weeks gather up as many amulets written by R. Yonason as you can. Make sure to keep them closed and locked away. At some stage they will need to be opened in front of witnesses, or a notary, so that no one can ever claim they have been tampered with. You need to realize something very important - the only way anyone will ever believe R. Yonason is a Sabbatian is if you produce evidence, hard evidence, that leaves him no room to deny it. My friends, you have a very hard task ahead of you. May G-d be with you.” R. Yaakov solemnly shook hands with all his visitors and showed them out, totally unaware that he had just launched a process that would dominate the rest of his life. NEXT TIME: Despite R. Yaakov Emden’s precautionary instructions, his views concerning this amulet and other similar ones soon became public knowledge. Although R. Yonason tried desperately to prove his innocence to R. Yaakov, it was to no avail. Within a matter of days the community board became involved – although not to adjudicate between the rabbis, but rather to prevent any controversy from occurring before it began. Their strategy was to silence R. Yaakov and his supporters, even as more evidence emerged substantiating the view that R. Yonason was a Sabbatian. The scene was set for a showdown that neither side could afford to lose. The question was, who would pull the trigger first? Questions, comments welcome –



Coach The Life Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Life Coach:

Purpose and Decision Muriel Levin Certified Life Coach

Targeting clients, mastering a new phone setting, choosing a menu for your next simcha, carpooling, making lunches, offering a listening ear to a relative – these activities all keep us busy. It’s wonderful, but can we take time off to think for a few minutes? In its very first sentence, Mesillat Yesharim explains the importance of reflecting on our life’s purpose. We are constantly making decisions that determine how we live our lives. How do we align those decisions with our own purpose? First of all, we have to accept that it’s a process. We gain clarity over time and with searching, freeing ourselves from culture, circumstances, and outside influences. We try to get to the authentic expression of our soul. The Torah gives us many laws to perfect ourselves. They help us reach our inner core of goodness by refining our character traits and training us to restrain our desires. Following the To-

rah’s tenets even when they run counter to our preferences overcomes arrogance and makes us mindful of Hashem’s presence. This frame of mind comes in stages and takes time and courage. Choosing the Right Goal Very often, coaching clients come to me to address a specific issue that is troubling them. Before addressing the issue at hand, we go back to basics and try to clarify their goals in life as well as their values and beliefs. Once this is straightened out, the rest very often falls into place. They find themselves happy, motivated, and alive. It’s a common fallacy to think that obtaining a sought-after status or acting a certain way will secure an identity. That is backward thinking. We create our own sense of value not by what we wear or drive, and not because of our possessions or position, but by feeling and appreciating who we are.

Realize Who You Are This is the first item to clarify. Appreciating ourselves requires daily practice. Because it directly influences everything we think and do in life, it should be our very first thought when we wake up in the morning. As we say Modeh Ani, we state that Hashem has great confidence in us. So who are we? As it says in Morning Blessings, we are a soul: “The neshama You gave me is a pure one.” We should accept ourselves and be ourselves, in pure, unadulterated form. Clarifying who we are requires constant attention. Ironically, we spend little time on the subject. Let’s make a commitment right now to appreciate our uniqueness. The better we feel about ourselves, the easier it will be to make the right choices in life. Every decision we make, from dieting to choosing a career or life partner comes down to feeling love and appreciation for oneself. Ask yourself: What is endearing about me? What did it take to make me alive on this planet? What is my genuine joyful spirit? What is my inner beauty? Then you can ask: What do I want to do with it? How do I improve? The lack of appreciation for who we are often leads to all kinds of activities and choices that are detrimental to our inner soul. We see it all the time. Instead of searching for their real value, young and not-so-young people turn to addictions and/or immoral behaviors of all sorts. If they do not feel who they truly are, how can they be true to themselves? People need to look into themselves with bountiful gratitude and generous love in order to vibrate their truth. Give yourself the biggest gift today, right now: look at yourself with gratitude and love. There are specific questions and routines to do every day that can keep us on track for this learning process. I wish this ABC of life would be taught in school but it’s not. Most people have not come to grasp their inner value nor the tremendous gifts they have been given by just being born in this world. If you want a brighter life, be curious and ask questions. Don’t be afraid to see yourself for who you are. Your goals and action plan will become clearer. Engage in the process. Get help from a therapist or life coach. Position yourself strategically within an environment that will support your growth. Obstacles Along the Way Part of clarifying our inner purpose is to identify the stumbling blocks on our way. They originate from two sources: external and internal. It is so easy to get fogged up by outer values, getting unconsciously caught in mimicking what a friend or the competition is doing, falling for the external pressure to fit in, wearing the clothes without the feelings, acting the part without the spirit. Real growth will put a stop to all of this. But the biggest threats to our soul-calling are undisciplined desires within us. Because these come from inside

us, we are automatically blinded as to their true nature. Here is an important concept to know when striving for clarity: We cannot feel good while being incongruent between the set of beliefs we hold true and our actions. If a married person is having an affair and also believes in a Torah that plainly forbids adultery, it’s going to create a conflict. The same thing is true if a businessperson makes illegal transactions while the Torah says, “You shall not steal.” In order to escape unwanted desire-versus-soul conflict, people’s brains do all kinds of summersaults. We make excuses and imagine elaborate justifications. A dishonest businessman tries to justify himself by giving all sorts of charitable donations or by invoking the fate of his company staff. An unfaithful husband treats his kids with extra largesse or even sends his wife flowers. The last thing such a person does is tell the truth and ask the rav or their mashpiah for Torah guidance. Lack of integrity and poor choices will create inner conflict, which in turn will create soul blockage and more bad decisions. Over time this leads to frustration, regret, and misery. It is only by aligning our thoughts and actions with our beliefs and priories in life that we can access the resources and blessings our pure neshama offers. Mustering Courage Once we are aligned with our purpose, the next step is to muster courage. The word “courage” comes from the Latin root cor, which means “heart.” To be courageous means to be brave and follow our heart at core level – not on the level of going after our desires or fighting imaginary trolls, but on the level of being congruent with our beliefs and totally in synch with the needs of our neshama, our divine soul. This is not always an easy task. Imagine if, at any given moment and however small our current decision were to be, we remained constantly aware of our purpose and stood with integrity. It would make life so much easier! If you find it helps you, close your eyes for a few second to access the glowing inner vision of who you truly are before making any decision. Pay attention. If you experience feelings of uneasiness, it’s a sign you are not living aligned with your purpose. If doubts show up when making a decision, examine without fear the real message your pure soul is trying to send you. Don’t let your fleeting desires and weaknesses block the pure source of your spirit. The mind very often tries to maintain routines. But your higher soul knows you want to change and grow. Get the help you need to live with total clarity, free and courageous. Then go and teach it to others. If you have any question you would like to have addressed in this column, please email Muriel Levin at nlp.lacoach@gmail. com or leave a message at (323)363-9140


OCTOBER 29, 2015 Jewish Home FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The| The Jewish Home

Quotes The Week In News

Notable Quotes “Say What?!”

The current president of the United States, when he tells us that Britain should remain in the EU … when the U.S. has an open border with Mexico, and they have a court that can overrule the Supreme Court in the United States, then maybe they can start giving us some advice. - Former Secretary of Defense in the United Kingdom, Dr. Liam Fox

Trump is the leading GOP votegetter tonight among naturalborn American candidates. There was more than 2 feet of snow in Washington, D.C., and New York. All nonessential federal workers in Washington, D.C., were told to stay home today. How do you know if you’re nonessential? Do they call you? “Steve, I have some good news and some bad news. Good news is you have the day off today. Bad news, you’re worthless.”

- Trump supporter Ann Coulter after Ted Cruz finished first in Iowa

In the West, we have probably hit peak stuff. We talk about peak oil. I’d say we’ve hit peak red meat, peak sugar, peak stuff ... peak home furnishings.

– Jimmy Kimmel

-Steve Howard, head of sustainability for Swedish retailer Ikea

Particularly in American society today, but maybe business society generally, you’ve got a glorification of folks who say, “Oh, I only sleep three to four hours a night” – which is dead wrong. That’s the wrong philosophy… Those of us who do sleep should be proud of saying we sleep. It’s really important to make sure you get that sleep.

A new poll shows that in Florida Donald Trump has the support of nearly 50 percent of Republican voters. However, since it’s Florida, at least 25 percent of those voters probably won’t make it till Election Day.

.- Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson at the annual World Economic Forum meeting in Davos

Ben of Ben & Jerry’s has come out with an ice cream inspired by Bernie Sanders. A carton costs $3.99 but when you include tax, it’s $200 million. – Conan O’Brien

I’m not a robot. I do the best that I can. I try to win every point but realistically I can’t. Maybe someone else can. - Serena Williams, after losing at the Australian Open

– Conan O’Brien

Declaring war on China’s currency? Ha ha. — Headline in the People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party, warning billionaire George Soros not to bet against the renminbi and Hong Kong dollar




Quotes The Week In News

The Jewish Home OCTOBER 29, 2015 FEBRUARY 4,|2016 | The Jewish Home


I thought one of these days we should get “none of the above” on the ballot. - Sheldon Bergson, who had his name legally changed to “Above Znoneofthe” before announcing his run for the Ontario legislature

Donald Trump said that Ted Cruz is a liar who looks like a jerk. Not to be confused with Trump, who is a jerk who looks like a liar. – Seth Myers

Ben of Ben & Jerry’s is coming out with an ice cream for Bernie Sanders called “Bernie’s Yearning.” It’s selling a lot better than Jerry’s ice cream for Hillary, “Pantsuit Email Crunch.” – Conan O’Brien

I was stabbed, and now I’m going to join the army and give it my all.

I think the death penalty should be appropriate for people who kill Mainers. We should give them an injection of the stuff they sell. What we ought to do is bring the guillotine back… I like French history. - Maine Gov. Paul LePage during a radio interview, talking about what to do to people who traffic drugs in his state

–A 17-year-old Brooklyn teenager who recently moved to Israel in an interview with Ynetnews while recovering from being stabbed in a terrorist attack

Obama even appeared on Jerry Seinfeld’s show, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.” How about less “comedians in cars getting coffee” and more “presidents in the White House getting legislation passed through both houses of Congress.”

Is it really necessary to immediately mention he had a Quran? Would they mention if he had a Bible?

– James Corden

- Tweet by John Haltiwanger, senior politics writer for Elite Daily, a leftwing website, after a Muslim man was arrested at a Disneyland Paris hotel with two handguns, ammunition and a Koran

The next president can honor the simple notion that nobody is above the law, but it will happen only if voters demand it. - Tweet by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) , who is often mentioned as a possible replacement for Hillary Clinton if she were to be indicted

Ted Cruz has been joined on the campaign trail by former candidate Gov. Rick Perry. So in other words, Ted Cruz is the No. 1 choice of the guy who was nobody’s choice.

If certain Muslims are to be cornered where they cannot defend themselves, except through these kinds of means, and their local religious leaders issued fatwas to permit that, then it becomes acceptable as an exceptional rule, but should not be taken as a principle. - Imam Mohamad Adam el-Sheikh, who served for eighteen years at the mosque that President Obama visited this week, in a 2004 interview with the Washington Post about Palestinian suicide bombers

Some scientists say it’s theoretically possible that there may be a universe where time moves backwards. So finally, some good news for Lakers fans. – Conan O’Brien

– Conan O’Brien



OCTOBER 29, 2015 | The Jewish Home FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Quotes The Week In News


Everything you ask them is either “It’s no problem, it’s no problem,” or “No, that’s impossible.” It’s all or nothing. - Jerry Seinfeld discussing the Israeli mentality on Comedy Central, after returning from a comedy tour in Israel

I’m the only homeless guy in America who can take a credit card. - Homeless man Abe Hagenston (AKA “Honest Abe”), who lives under the 8 Mile overpass of 1-75 in Detroit and solicits credit card donations from passing commuters, in an interview with CBS News

There is no shadow to be cast! An early spring is my forecast! Take your jackets off, you’re not going to need them! Get your Bermuda shorts! - The emcee at Gobbler’s Knob, PA, on Groundhog Day, after Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow

U.S. News & World Report today released their annual list of the Best Jobs for 2016. The two best jobs are orthodontist and dentist… The best part of an orthodontist’s job is when she asks you how your holidays were while you’re gagging on half a pound of cotton. – Jimmy Kimmel The Jewish Home | OCTOBER 29, 2015



As we come here tonight, it’s time to officially suspend the campaign. Not because of the votes, it’s because of the illness. Obviously, the voters are sick of me and I need to acknowledge that. - Gov. Mike Huckabee, withdrawing from the Republican race after not gaining traction in the Iowa caucus

On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders is acting a little Donald Trump-y and said he wants more debates but not on Hillary Clinton’s terms, he wants them on his own terms, specifically two hours long with a half-hour break in the middle so he can watch “Wheel of Fortune.” President Obama is planning to visit a U.S. mosque for his first time as president. When asked why, Obama said, “I wanted to go to the one place in America where I won’t see Donald Trump.”

– Jimmy Kimmel

- Conan O’Brien

Who’s going to watch a debate between the two Cuban guys?

Glenn is a failing, crying, lost soul!

— MSNBC’s liberal host Chris Matthews, on Donald Trump skipping the Fox News debate and questioning whether people will want to watch Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz debating

- Part of Trump’s tweet after Glenn Beck endorsed Ted Cruz


Travel The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Travel Guide: Spokane Aaron Feigenbaum Washington State’s second-largest city, Spokane, is one of the best destinations in the Pacific Northwest for arts and culture, as well as outdoors activities. Located in the eastern part of the state, the area surrounding Spokane is dotted with numerous lakes and lies in close proximity to the Rocky Mountains of northern Idaho. From hiking to fishing to golfing to skiing and more, the Spokane region offers no shortage of fun outdoors adventures. Spokane’s museums, shows, and festivals show off the vibrant culture and history of this tranquil, nature-loving city. If you’re looking to combine the amenities and lifestyle of a modern urban metropolis with the excitement of exploring the great outdoors then look no further than the beautiful city of Spokane. History The area now called Spokane was inhabited by the tribe of the same name prior to European colonization. The area was an important meeting place for trading and hunting. David Thompson of the North West Fur Trading Company was the first European to explore this region, and he established the first significant trading settlement in Washington State. Oregon and Washington were first explored jointly by America and the U.K. per the Treaty of 1818, but a rapid influx of American settlers led to the Oregon boundary dispute and the the creation of what is now the U.S.-Canadian border between Washington State and British Columbia. The Spokane region developed rapidly in the 19th century with the building of an U.S. Army outpost and the arrival of the Northern Pacific Railway. Spokane was officially incorporated as a city in 1881 and quickly became the economic and cultural hub of eastern Washington. This development was further fueled by the discovery of gold in the neighboring Coeur d’Alene region of Idaho. Spokane became the outfitting and transportation center for mining operations. Logging and agriculture soon replaced mining with the construction of Spokane’s first sawmill in 1871. However, because of the high rates charged by railroad companies for shipping, Spokane never became a leader in the lumber industry. The city’s growth stagnated and its economy became increasingly dominated by corporations rather than small businesses. After the Great Depression and WWII, Spokane slowly entered a revitalization phase. Spokane earned its place on the map by hosting the 1974 World’s Fair. That event that single-handedly transformed downtown and left the city with some of its most recognized buildings. Spokane today is one of the most important cities in the Pacific Northwest. It has expanded in the past few decades to include the River Park Square shopping mall and Convention Center in addition to other attractions. Spokane has a relatively low cost of living and is mainly visited for the surrounding region’s incredible natural beauty. Attractions Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture: As Spokane’s premiere museum, the Northwest is the perfect place to learn about eastern Washington’s history and culture, as well as arts and cultures from around the world. Overall, the museum’s collection includes almost 70,000 artifacts representing cultures in Europe, Asia,

Crystal Gold Mine

Manito Park

Mount Spokane State Park

and the Americas. The regional collection explores the Spokane region with exhibits focusing on areas ranging from textiles to transportation to communication. The American Indian collection has artifacts from a variety of tribes with special attention paid to the local Plateau tribes. The museum’s fine art collection highlights commissioned art from the Works Progress Administration era of 1938-1941, as well as modern work from renowned artists in the region. The museum’s current special exhibits are Art With Lego Bricks, a collection of giant Lego sculptures made by artist Sean Kenney, and Treasure!, which explores the history, technology, and personalities of treasure-hunting. The latter exhibit includes shipwreck artifacts and displays about treasure in popular culture, protecting treasure, and more. On the grounds of the museum is the Campbell House, home to 19th century mining figure Amasa Campbell. The furnishings and house itself are largely preserved as they were when Campbell lived in it. Riverfront Park: This beautiful park is home to some of Spokane’s most iconic attractions. Kids will enjoy taking a ride on the 1909 Looff Carousel, one of America’s oldest and best-preserved carousels. Take a trip on the park’s SkyRide, which offers incredible views of America’s second-longest urban falls. March through June is the best time to see the raging falls in action from the safety and comfort of what several travel magazines have deemed, “one of the top 12 scenic cable rides in the world.” Left over from the 1974 World Expo, the Pavilion has a number of fun amusement rides for both kids and adults. If you’re coming in wintertime, check out the park’s Ice Palace for great ice skating. Lastly, the park’s IMAX theater will be showing four films starting this spring. Their topics include the adventures of Lewis and Clark, the D-Day invasion, climbing Mount Everest, and exploring the South Pacific. Manito Park & Botanical Gardens: Comprising almost 100 acres, this beautiful park is nationally renowned for its diverse floral displays. It’s split into five main areas that include over 150 species of roses, over 100 different kinds of lilacs, a Japanese garden, and a tropical greenhouse. Cat Tales Zoological Park: Get up close with some of the most impressive wild felines on the planet. From pumas to jaguars to the rare white tiger, this zoo is the best place to interact with and appreciate these beautiful creatures. Mt. Spokane State Park: As one of Washington State’s largest parks, Mt. Spokane offers a wonderful array of outdoor activities yearround. Drive to the summit of the mountain in summer through early fall to get a panoramic view of park. If you’re here in winter you can enjoy skiing on 15 miles of well-groomed snow, as well as snowboarding and snowmobiling. Summertime visitors will get to hike the trails, go horseback riding, pick berries, or just take a stroll along the lake. Whatever time you visit, Mt. Spokane is a world of adventure just waiting to be discovered. Day trips: The Centennial Trail just outside Spokane provides over 30 miles of hiking/ biking through dense woods and rural scenery.

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Palouse Falls

There are plenty of areas for picnicking and horseback riding. The trail begins at the tranquil riverside community of Nine Mile Falls and ends at the Washington/Idaho border. The Sierra Silver Mine in nearby Wallace, Idaho, gives an insider view of this 128 yearold mine. Hop aboard the trolley and take a one-hour ride into the bowels of the earth as a retired miner explains how the silver ore was processed and what miners’ lives were like when it was in operation. Also check out the nearby mining museum, which contains genuine artifacts relating to the Idaho silver rush of the late 1800s. Not to be outdone, the Crystal Gold Mine in Kellogg, Idaho, gives its own tour of a mine and lets visitors pan for gold. Palouse Falls State Park is home to one of the most impressive waterfalls in the Northwest. With a drop of over 200 feet and surrounded by a picturesque basin, there this is the perfect place to snap some photos. Gardner Cave in Crawford State Park (lo-

cated right near the Canadian border) is one of the longest limestone caves in Washington State. It provides impressive displays of stalactites, stalagmites, and rimstone pools. Lastly, be sure to head to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, to go out on the pristine lake. Take the Tubbs Hill Nature Trails for a two-mile hike around the lake shore. Daven and Eat Spokane’s only Orthodox shul is the Chabad Center located at 4116 E. 37th Ave. There are a number of supermarkets, such as Albertson’s and Safeway, that sell kosher products. Kosher food is also available directly through Chabad. Getting There Flights from LAX to Spokane currently start at around $220 per person round trip. Another idea, if you have extra time and want to take in the scenery, is to fly to Seattle (flights start at $130 per person round trip) and drive 280 miles to Spokane. Driving from L.A. to Spokane takes about 19 hours at a distance of 1,200 miles.

Spokane Cat Tales -

Travel The Week In News



The Week In News

The Week In News

Eichmann’s Court Papers Released

Newly released court documents portray that the evil Adolf Eichmann, ym”sh, an architect of the Nazi Holocaust, protested his innocence till the very last minute. The papers depict how the delusional Eichmann believed that the Israeli judges who oversaw his trial had “made a fundamental mistake in that they are not able to empathize with the time and situation in which I found myself during the war years.” Supposedly Eichmann insisted to Israel’s then-President Yitzchak Ben-Zvi that he was simply following orders and therefore was not responsible for “the unspeakable horrors” of the Holocaust. Eichmann told Ben-Zvi: “It is not true ... that I myself was a persecutor in the pursuit of the Jews ... but only ever acted ‘by order of.’” Eichmann, who is responsible for playing a vital role in the 1940 Wannsee Conference at which the Nazis’ annihilation of European Jewry was planned, spoke in his appeal of the “unspeakable horrors which I witnessed.” “I detest as the greatest of crimes the horrors which were perpetrated against the Jews and think it right that the initiators of these terrible deeds will stand trial before the law now and in the future,” he wrote. However, he added: “I was not a responsible leader, and as such do not feel myself

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

guilty.” Eichmann was captured by Israeli intelligence agents in 1960 in Argentina, where he was living as a fugitive, and smuggled to Israel, which put him on trial. Of course, as we know from history, his plea for clemency was rejected and he was given the death sentence. Eichmann was convicted in Jerusalem and hanged in 1962 in Ramle prison. The papers were released in time for Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day when the country and world remembers the six million murdered Jews of World War II. Marking the publication of the hand-written documents, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said: “Not a moment of kindness was given to those who suffered Eichmann’s evil – for them this evil was never banal, it was painful, it was palpable. He murdered whole families and desecrated a nation. Evil had a face, a voice. And the judgement against this evil was just.”

U.S. Customs: West Bank is Not Israel The U.S Customs department has issued a reminder that all products that have been imported from the West Bank or Gaza Strip should not be labeled “Made in Israel.” The move seems to have been designed to highlight the United States’ opposition to Israel’s settlement policies. Sources in the Israeli Foreign Ministry have said that they are studying the new U.S. notice.

alleging that Israel has two standards of law in the territory — one for Israelis and another for Palestinians. Shapiro’s remarks prompted a furious critique from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said that the U.S.’s decision to reissue its labeling policy had been taken after complaints that some West Bank products had been mislabeled prior to U.S. import. “U.S. Customs and Border Protection reissued guidance on their marking requirements,” he told remarked. “It in no way supersedes prior rulings or regulations. “And nor does it impose additional requirements with respect to merchandise imported from the West Bank, Gaza Strip or Israel,” he added. The U.S. Customs statement, visible on the agency’s website, restates the terms of 1995 and 1997 laws requiring that goods from Gaza and the West Bank be labeled as such. “It is not acceptable to mark the aforementioned goods with the words ‘Israel,’ ‘Made in Israel,’ ‘Occupied Territories-Israel’ or any variation thereof,” the statement said. Some Israelis living in the West Bank are known to label products for export as being from Israel, and the European Union recently acted to ban the practice. The U.S. reminder, unlike the EU guidelines, does not mention the Golan Heights, seized from Syria in the 1967 Six Day War and effectively annexed in 1981. Shapiro later apologized for the timing of his remarks — which came a day after a Palestinian teenager killed a Jewish mother of six in the West Bank settlement of Otniel and on the day that a pregnant woman was stabbed in another Palestinian attack in the Tekoa settlement.

Closures in Ramallah Following Attack

The move came soon after U.S. Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro sharply criticized Israel’s West Bank settlement policy,

If you aren’t a resident of Ramallah, then don’t expect to be allowed entry in the West Bank city as of Monday. The IDF set up a blockade outside the city after Sunday’s shooting attack that left three soldiers wounded. The entry ban applied to foreigners and tourists as well, posing a problem for the many Palestinians, aid workers, and diplomats who commute to Ramallah for

work on a daily basis. A military spokeswoman announced, “In accordance with situation assessments following yesterday’s shooting attack in Beit El, security measures have been taken in the area and only residents of Ramallah are allowed to enter the city.” On Sunday, Amjad Sakari, 35, a member of the Palestinian Authority security forces who worked as a guard for the attorney general’s office in Ramallah, opened fire at a checkpoint just outside the city near the West Bank Israeli settlement of Beit El, wounding three Israeli soldiers before being shot dead. The same checkpoint, regularly used by diplomats, journalists and humanitarian workers, was closed on Monday morning, as were other entrances in the area.

The spokeswoman said the prohibition would be lifted in accordance with security assessments. Interestingly, despite the announcement, several foreigners and locals reported that they traveled to Ramallah for work on Monday without any problems. “We heard the news last night, so everyone was surprised this morning when we found no extra checkpoints. People came into the office today from many places in the West Bank outside of Ramallah without any problems, as well as from Jerusalem. There was some heavy traffic last night, however,” one source told The Times of Israel.

A Global Controversy

When they opened the store Typo, they couldn’t have imagined how apropos that name was. Recently, the stationery chain in Australia made headlines when it erased the name of the Jewish state on a globe and replaced it with the word “Palestine.” According to the store Typo, the word Israel was not placed on the globe “purely be-

cause there wasn’t enough space to include the name.” Clearly, not only do they have trouble with facts, they apparently never learned enough math to know that the word “Palestine” contains more letters than the word “Israel.” The globe with the funny geography was first spotted on January 21 on the store’s Facebook page and angry shoppers warned they’d take their hard earned dollars elsewhere if the globes weren’t corrected. One customer directly asked why Typo was selling a globe “that has wiped Israel from the face of the earth.” Initially, Typo justified that the globe was produced from “an official map from an international body that has been approved for export,” but then quickly got the hint that that wouldn’t pass muster. Two hours later, Typo agreed to remove the globes and halt future production of the erroneous product. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, though, was brought to the fore with this incident. Anti-Israeli shoppers showered in complaints and threats of a boycott. When one reader wrote that he’s lost, a pro-Palestinian writer responded: “Could you be lost because you don’t know how to use a map. Use the correct one with Palestine and it will help!” while another spewed: “The road less traveled is one that DOESN’T bow down to Zionist sentiment.” On Monday Typo tried to put an end to the matter, writing on Facebook that it will release new globes that include all countries. Perhaps they should employ a spellchecker on their staff. Erasing Israel and including the nonexistent country of “Palestine” was in fact not the only typo on Typo’s globe; the map also labeled the Caspian Sea twice and misspelled Azerbaijan. So much for education in the Land Down Under.

New $100M U.S.Israel Scholarship Mortimer Zuckerman, a real estate and media mogul, has announced a new $100 million science scholarship program that is to partner with four Israeli institutions. The scholarship will give grants to American postdoctoral researchers and graduate students in science, technology, engineering and math.

The four institutions in the partnership are Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the

Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Tel Aviv University, and the Weizmann Institute of Science. Grants will also go to the schools to help them develop laboratories and compete for top scholars in North America. The Wall Street Journal reported that Zuckerman, the 78-year-old owner and publisher of the New York Daily News, said he got the idea for the scholarship at 5 a.m. one morning last summer, when he couldn’t sleep. He had been thinking about how he could give back to America, which he reached as a young immigrant from Canada. “I got started in this country with a few friends and virtually no family but was able to find acceptance, opportunity and success beyond anything I ever imagined,” he said in an interview. “This is one way to give back.” Zuckerman said he seeks to help talented scientists with leadership skills pursue advanced research abroad in a program that is not unlike the Rhodes scholarships. It will bring together American and Israeli researchers, in the hope that the collaboration will lead to new discoveries. “This would be a collaboration of thought and discovery,” he said, predicting that the scholars’ leadership abilities would create a “multiplier effect” that would spread their influence in academia, government and business. The program will give $100 million in grants over the next 20 years, starting in the 2016-17 academic year. U.S. postdoctoral applicants must propose specific research projects with faculty members, and those with the most potential will be approved.

Cruz Cruises into First; Hillary Gets Lucky

Trump’s promise that under his leadership America would win so much that “you will get tired of winning,” didn’t exactly pan out on the Iowa caucus this week. Although polls had him several points ahead in the days leading up to the caucus, Ted Cruz cruised to a comfortable first place victory, taking close to 28% of the votes. Although Trump came in second place, with approximately 24% of the vote, his second place finish was weighed down by

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a surprising strong finish by Marco Rubio, who, with his 23%, nipped at Trump’s heels. Neurosurgeon Ted Carson garnered close to 10% of the votes. The rest of the candidates all received less than 5% of the vote each. Unlike Gov. Michael Huckabee, who immediately dropped out of the race after his abysmally performance in the Iowa caucus, the other under-performing Republican candidates gave no indication that they will follow suit. Jeb Bush, who has been unable to escape the “low energy” label cloaked on him by Mr. Trump, only garnered 2.8% of the vote, despite having spent $14.9 million in Iowa, which means that the former frontrunner spent $2,884 per Iowa vote. As of now, though, it is onto New Hampshire for Bush and the others. Rubio, who is seen as the only viable “Republican establishment” candidate, treated his third place finish as an all-out victory. “So this is the moment they said would never happen... They told me we have no chance,” declared Rubio with a big grin in his “victory” speech which echoed a similar speech by another candidate who did surprisingly well in the 2008 Democrat Iowa caucus, Barack Obama. “They said this day would never come... They said our sights were set too high,” declared the first term senator from Illinois in 2008 after a surprise win in the Iowa caucus.

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Although the disappointment of Monday’s results was evident on Trump’s face, he was gracious in defeat. In a un-Trump fashion he said that he was honored to finish in second place in Iowa, before he turned his attention to the next races and declared, “We love New Hampshire. We love South Carolina.” Despite the surprises on the Republican side, the real drama played out on the Democrat side which turned out to be a virtual tie with Hillary Clinton taking 49.9% and Bernie Sanders taking 49.6%, according to initial calculations. So close was that race that in six precincts the winner was decided by a coin toss – as mandated by official state rules – when caucus-goers were at an impasse and unable to agree whether Clinton or Sanders should be deemed the winner of that caucus. What Hillary lacks in campaign skill

– she started the campaign with a 50 point lead against her elderly socialist opponent – she makes up in luck: she won each of the six coin tosses. The odds of winning six of six coin tosses is 1.56 percent. Even before the race was called for Hillary, she rushed for the stage to declare victory. In Clintonian fashion she declared, “I’m breathing a big sigh of relief,” even though the results were still unofficial. Perhaps sticking with their theme of being positive, the Sanders campaign shut down the live feed into their gathering when the crowd which was watching Clinton’s speech on big screens began chanting, “You’re a liar.” Now it is on to New Hampshire in an election season which is just getting started. And, as the political saying goes, “What Iowa gives, New Hampshire takes back.”

Eat More, Lose More Want to lose a couple of pounds? Eat more! Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, it’ll work if you’re going to be munching on grapes – so put those chips down. Researchers at Harvard University concluded that increasing daily intake of fruit

can actually prevent weight gain, even when eating the same amount of calories. Scientists explain that flavonoids, naturally occurring compounds which occur in fruits and vegetables, have been linked to weight loss.

In order to determine which specific flavonoids were most effective, researchers closely monitored nearly 125,000 people between 27 and 65 over a span of 25 years. They consistently tracked their diet, lifestyle habits, and weight. The final figures strongly suggested that increasing levels of anthocyanins, flavonoid polymers and flavonols – which are found mainly in blueberries, strawberries, apples, pears and oranges – had the greatest overall impact. Tea and onions were also beneficial. According to the research, each additional portion of these fruits a day decreased weight by a quarter of a pound over four years. Meaning, if one would religiously stick to a five-a-day regime they could potentially lose 1.2 lbs. over the

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

same time period – and that’s without the weight gain that is supposedly prevented. The study adjusted for a range of dietary and lifestyle factors that may have influenced the results, such as smoking status and physical activity. Results were consistent across men and women and different ages. Monica Bertoia of the Department of Nutrition at Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health commented, “These data may help to refine previous dietary recommendations for the prevention of obesity and its potential consequences. Losing even small amounts of weight can improve health.” There are overall health benefits of losing or avoiding even minor amounts of weight gain. According to medical research, it can reduce the risk of diabetes, cancer, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. As expected, this research was met with some criticism. British experts say the conclusion may be skewed by the obvious fact that generally people who eat more fruit are generally healthier and more educated. Naveed Sattar, professor of metabolic medicine at the University of Glasgow, said, “Consider the type of person who would eats lots of colorful fruit – you can imagine they may be more health conscious, better educated, etc. and lead healthy lifestyles in general. All this study says is that folk who tend to eat more fruit or vegetables tend to put on less weight but whether it’s the foods they choose or their other behaviors, or both, that account for less weight, one cannot tell from this work. … It’s the foods one chooses in broad concepts that matters – less fat, sugar, salt and more fiber, rather than magical nutrients.” Despite the recommended daily dose of four to five servings of fruit each day, the average adult consumes less than one cup of fruits and less than two cups of vegetables daily. Time to break out the blueberries.

The Week In News

weighted average score between 0 and 5. The seven scored components included in that average score were Median Salary (30 percent), Employment Rate (20 percent), 10-Year Growth Volume (15 percent), 10Year Growth Percentage (15 percent), Job Prospects (10 percent), Stress Level (5 percent) and Work-Life Balance (5 percent). Even with all the healthcare reform complaints by doctors and hospital staff, nine out of ten of the top ten careers in the United States are in the field of medicine.

The overall top ten best jobs in the nation are: Orthodontist Dentist Computer systems analyst Nurse anesthetist Physician’s assistant Nurse practitioner Psychiatrist Pediatrician Anesthesiologist OB/GYN (Tied) Oral maxillofacial surgeon (Tied) Some other careers you may have been wondering about… Accountant ranks number 24 after occupational therapist at number 23, speech-language pathologist ranks at 28, and financial advisor at number 31. As for some jobs that you may not have been wondering about…a cartographer, a person who creates maps, ranks at number 21, statistician at number 17, and massage therapist at 50.

America’s Rapidly Declining Freedom Orthodontist is Best Job in the U.S. Some people stay true to their young career goals and become firefighters and astronauts, but the majority of us end up pursuing careers that fit our lifestyles, are accessible, and of course bring home the dough. However, the best jobs in the U.S. are constantly changing due to rapidly evolving technology and the economy. For this year, according to the U.S. News Best Jobs rankings, the best overall job is an orthodontist. To gather the data, researchers considered salary, the number of expected openings, advancement opportunities, and career fulfillment. Professions are ranked based on a calculated overall score, which combines several components into a single


While many immigrants come to the U.S. in pursuit of religious freedom, many Americans are questioning the country’s economic freedom. According to the 2016 Index of Economic Freedom, an annual publication by The Heritage Foundation, America’s economic freedom has plummeted. With losses of economic freedom in eight of the past nine years, the U.S. has tied its worst score ever, obliterating a decade of improvements. Economists blame the declining

score on government spending, subsidies,

and bailouts.


The Week In News


When President Barack Obama was sworn into office in 2009, the U.S. was ranked the 6th freest economy in the world. It is now in 11th place. Since then, government spending has peaked to $29,867 per household in 2015 and national debt has mounted to $125,000 for every tax-filing household in America, a total of over $18 trillion. Economic freedom is one of the core foundations of America. U.S. economic strength, has created high living standards for the average American, helped formulate a powerful military, and established the country’s status as a world leader. Experts are concerned that the failing economic freedom can threaten all those factors. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, keynote speaker of the official release of the 2016 Index, recently questioned, “It’s been almost seven years since the Obama ‘recovery’ began, and our economy is barely out of neutral. Why does America have to settle for this?”

Pass the Pretzels, Please

We’re all guilty of appeasing our toddler with a sticker or a lollipop after a rough visit to the doctor. It doesn’t make the pain of a vaccine go away, but it helps to distract for a moment. Now flyers on many

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

U.S. airlines are getting a taste of their own tactics and are on the receiving end of petty appeasements. Rejoice! The next time you fly domestic you will probably receive a complimentary mini bag of pretzels, just like in the good old days. This comes after 15 years of gradual stinginess from most major airlines. Maybe now since fuel is cheaper, there is more room in the budget. Airlines are slowly adding in small perks to attract flyers who have been receiving less and less as they fly. No, you won’t be getting more room to stretch your legs and you’ll still need to pay for that checked bag, but you may be able to watch a show midflight or even chow down as you sail the skies. On Monday, American Airlines announced the return of free snacks in the economy section and more free entertainment options on some aircraft. American, which recently merged with US Airways, hasn’t offered free snacks since 2003. In February, American will start offering Biscoff cookies or pretzels to passengers flying between New York and San Francisco or Los Angeles. By April, those snacks will expand to all other domestic routes. In May, American will bring back full meal service for coach passengers between Dallas and Hawaii. United recently announced they will resume giving out free snacks on its flights starting in February. Some other major carriers like Delta Air Lines never denied passengers of free snacks, even during bankruptcy. When Continental Airlines stopped distributing free cookies and mini bags of pretzels in 2011, after its merger with United Airlines, they claimed it would save $2.5 million a year. “What has changed,” Fernand Fernandez, vice president of global marketing at American, said, “is that the airlines have been able to fix our core business and be able to reinvest in our customers.”



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“These are token investments in the passenger experience that will not cost airlines a lot of money but are small ways to make passengers a little bit happier,” points out Henry Harteveldt, the founder of travel consultancy Atmosphere Research Group. “American and United realized: We don’t let other airlines have an advantage on price, why let them have one on pretzels?”

A Google Minute

Pass the Caffeine!

Is caffeine one of your vices? If it is, don’t stress about breaking your habit (or addiction) just yet. Contrary to the age-old belief that caffeine may cause heart palpitations that can lead to heart failure, new research in the Journal of the American Heart Association suggests otherwise. Researchers surveyed 1,388 people with an average age of 72 about their caffeine consumption, reports NBC News. About 61% of participants said they consume coffee, tea, or chocolate every day. After looking for premature ventricular and atrial contractions in the heart, scientists resolved that there is no definitive link between caffeine consumption and heart palpitations, heart fluttering, or other irregular heartbeat patterns. This holds true even when people consume large daily amounts of caffeine. “Clinical recommendations advising against the regular consumption of caffeinated products to prevent disturbances of the heart’s cardiac rhythm should be reconsidered, as we may unnecessarily be discouraging consumption of items like chocolate, coffee, and tea that might actually have cardiovascular benefits,” says the lead author of the study from the University of California-San Francisco, further defending caffeine’s reputation. Under current AHA guidelines, individuals with extra heartbeats are recommended to avoid caffeine, which can magnify the problem. Because “this was the first community-based sample to look at the impact of caffeine on extra heartbeats,” though, the researchers say further research is needed to make more conclusive statements.

How much is it worth to own Google. com for a minute? Turns out, not too much. In October, Sanmay Ved, researcher and former Googler, made headlines when he managed to buy the domain for one minute. He thought he was being cute – but Google decided to give him a reward to identifying a small flaw in the system. At the time, Ved declined to announce his reward, telling Business Insider only that it was “more than 10,000.” Now, though, the word is out. On Thursday, Google announced in a blogpost: “Our initial financial reward to Sanmay – $6,006.13 – spelled-out Google, numerically (squint a little and you’ll see it!). We then doubled this amount when Sanmay donated his reward to charity,” Google wrote. Hmmm. Seems like this is a case of Google humor, although even I was able to smile at that. Ved didn’t keep the big bucks to himself. He donated his winnings to the educational charity The Art of Living India. This is not the first time Google had fun with numbers. In 2015, Google parent company Alphabet bought back a bunch of stock for $5,099,019,513.59 — the square root of 26, the number of letters in the alphabet, times a billion. In 2011, Google bid $3.14159 billion, or pi billion dollars, for Nortel patents. This week’s blogpost was intended to share the results of Google’s bug bounty program, where it pays cash to hackers for finding flaws in the search giant’s services. Google says it paid out $2 million last year to more than 300 hackers and security researchers. In one case, Tomasz Bojarski, the most prolific Google bug bounty hunter of the year, was rewarded because he found a security flaw in Google’s web form to report security flaws. Takes one to know one.

The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

The Shopping Sea Lion Something fishy went on in the gift shop last week. Around closing time, a sea lion who seems to enjoy shopping managed to climb 145 steps to reach a beachside gift shop. The store sits on top of stairs that allows visitors to descend a cliff to reach Sunny Jim Sea Cave in La Jolla, California. As the sea lion entered the gift shop, a shocked shopper in a wheelchair came by. Other witnesses remained calm and enjoyed watching the slippery customer who was lured out of the shop by quick-thinking staff with a treat of salmon.

school’s writing, rhetoric, and digital studies department told Munchies. So what do students need to do to get an A in the taco tutorial? How does writing restaurant reviews, sampling tacos, and collecting data within their communities sound? Too tempting to be true? I’d say… This is not the first food-centric course to be offered in college. In fact, Pizza Hut partnered with a UK university to offer apprenticeships for students in the past. And there are beer-brewing programs for those who love the smell of hops. This course, though, is the first to test on tacos and may the best burrito win. Perhaps a class trip to Carlos & Gabby’s should be on the menu.

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“He wandered around the store for nearly 10 minutes, confused and scared before I got him out the back door, through the garden gate, and heading back to the ocean,” the manager posted on Facebook. Shopping and swimming – he sure knows how to do a vacation.

Taco U

What’s the right way to eat a taco? Don’t know? Maybe you should get lessons – or take a class. Students at University of Kentucky can now get cracking as they have the distinct privilege of getting college credits for eating tacos. The university is offering an undergraduate class called “Taco Literacy: Public Advocacy and Mexican Food in the U.S. South,” and the professor behind it wants to use tacos as an avenue for students to learn more about how people can forge social connections through food. “This class allows our students to explore the issues of immigration, inequality, workers, intercultural communication, and literacy through the prism of food,” Steven Alvarez, an assistant professor from the

There are around 20,000 homeless in Detroit and they are all looking for handouts. It takes an enterprising individual to stand out on the crowded streets and Honest Abe seems to be doing just that. Abe “Honest Abe” Hagenston knows that although cash is king, the 21st century is fast becoming all plastic. Now the homeless man is taking credit cards to help people donate more to the abode-less entrepreneur. “I’m the only homeless guy in America who can take a credit card. It’s all done safely and securely through,” Abe boasted to CBS Detroit. “I take VISA, MasterCard, American Express,” he said. Hagenston has been homeless for seven years. He uses a Square reader on his phone to swipe credit cards. In total, he receives around $20 to $50 a day due to the generosity of strangers who pass him by under the highway overpass he calls home. Using a Square reader just makes good “cents.” They cost around $10, plug into phones, and charge users 2.75% per swiped transaction through a free app. Honest Abe doesn’t disclose how many supporters have trusted him with their credit card. In case people can’t find Abe under the highway, he’s also on the information superhighway – the internet. He started a website using a computer at the local library. “My business is being homeless, now homeless is my business,” reads Hagenston’s catchy slogan on his website.

According to the site, in order to earn money, he does “a lot of painting, computer work and yard work for people.” The site also solicits job opportunities for other homeless people in Detroit and an option for the homeless to sign up for job postings. “Being homeless gives a person a lot of time to reflect on what went wrong, and what a person could do differently if given the chance,” Abe reflected.

Tardy for the Work Party Late for work? You’re not alone. According to a YouGov poll from 2014, one in five Americans arrive late for work. 48 percent, though, actually listen to their alarm clocks and never clock in late to the office. But what happens once you slide into your desk slightly out of breath? Do you keep your head down and blame the weather or maybe invent a “dog ate my homework” excuse? According to CareerBuilder, a workplace research group, over half of the tardy

folks blame traffic for their lateness woes. A third say that they overslept, 28 percent blame the weather, 23 percent admit they were tired, and 15 percent say their children’s care were to blame for their lateness at the office. There were other, more creative excuses that 2,600 human resource managers revealed to the research group from late employees. Here are the most outrageous – or truthful – ones. We’ll leave that up to you to decide. My hair caught on fire from my blow dryer. I was detained by Homeland Security. I had to chase my cows back into the field. A black bear entered my carport. My lizard had to have emergency surgery. I thought of quitting today, but then decided not to, so I came in late. All of my clothes were stolen. I was confused by the time change and unsure if it was spring forward or fall back. A Vaseline truck overturned on the highway. Sounds like some slippery excuses we have here.

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The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home

Ask the Attorney:


Self-Driving Cars: Are They For Real?

What Is The Deal With “Clean Eating”?

Michael Rubinstein Esq.

Ilana Muhlstein, R.D.N. Are self-driving cars really a possibility for our future? And if they are, how long will it be until they become mainstream? Automobile manufacturers are facing a harsh reality: Fewer people are interested in driving cars. Over the past two decades, there has been a dramatic decline in people under age 25 getting driver licenses. Since 2008, Americans over 70 holding driver licenses has also decreased. Ride-sharing apps such as Uber and Lyft have soared in popularity, especially among younger professionals in urban areas. While lower gas prices and interest rates helped automakers in 2015, many manufacturers are scrambling to make changes to stay relevant to consumers. Newer model cars now come with factory-standard technology improvements. These include backup cameras; lane-departure warnings; and rear-end collision avoidance systems pioneered by Israeli tech company Mobileye. General Motors just invested $500 million in Lyft, and the company recently launched Car2Go, a short-term car rental service that will compete with Zipcar. Against this changing automobile landscape, manufacturers are racing to create self-driving, or autonomous cars. Google is in the lead, while Toyota, Ford, General Motors, Tesla, and BMW are ramping up similar efforts. The goal is to improve safety on our roads and reduce traffic accidents. In 2014, there were an estimated 6 million car accidents across the United States. Over two million people were injured, and more than 32,000 people lost their lives, lo aleinu. But California regulators just put the brakes on self-driving cars in the state. The regulations, proposed by the DMV, include a requirement that there be a licensed driver inside the self-driving car ready to take over in the event of a malfunction. Other proposals include a special driver license for autonomous cars; imposing auto accident liability on the person inside the self-driving car even if that person is not driving; as well as a requirement that all self-driving cars include a physical steering wheel. This is particularly concerning to

automakers developing steering technology that does not rely on a steering wheel, but rather on electronic sensors. Critics who are disappointed with California’s proposals argue that the DMV’s proposals rest on flawed assumptions. They site statistics showing that roughly 94% of auto accidents are caused by human error. The notion that a human driver can take over the controls of a self-driving car and prevent a collision is faulty, when human drivers are more often than not the cause of collisions in the first place. Google has also expressed concern with California’s proposals. The company maintains a fleet of self-driving cars near its Silicon Valley headquarters, and is the farthest along in the development of a fully autonomous vehicle. The company is working with California authorities to work out the details, but California’s proposals have certainly dealt the company a setback. On the federal level, the Obama Administration recently announced an increase in federal spending for self-driving cars. Federal agencies have begun working with automakers to make the $4 billion government investment a reality. Key among this proposal will be a new framework of regulations enabling self-driving cars to proliferate with clear, national guidelines, instead of facing a hodgepodge of differing state laws, like those here in California. Self-driving cars could very well be a part of the future for American drivers. Many issues, like insurance and liability need to be clarified, and experts predict it will take at least 20 years for self-driving cars to infiltrate the mainstream of American drivers. Assuming self-driving cars begin rolling out in the near future, how will they affect driving conditions for the millions of cars still operated by human drivers? Only time will tell. Michael Rubinstein is a personal injury and accident attorney who can be reached at 213-293-6075. Website:

How is clean eating defined? Eating real wholesome, mostly plantbased, foods with minimal processing, and with no unnecessary unhealthy additives. For instance, roasted chicken would be considered a clean food, but a chicken nugget with added fillers, white breading, and fat, wouldn’t be. How does alcohol fit into a clean diet? It doesn’t really but nobodies diet is 100% perfectly “clean,” and it doesn’t have to be. As long as a vast majority of the foods you consume are whole and natural and “clean,” there is always room to enjoy treats. How does caffeine fit in to clean diet? One cup of coffee per day has actually been shown to have vast health benefits including reducing the risk of Parkinsons Disease and Type II Diabetes. It is typically the add-ins that are messy, such as artificial sweeteners and overly processed creamers. If your coffee tastes more like coffee cake, it probably isn’t very clean. Try buying organic, fair trade coffee and adding just a splash of milk or unsweetened almond milk. It will be different at first, but you will eventually get used to it. What is the easiest/most effective way to cut processed foods out of your diet? Don’t buy it. If you order junk foods or put them into your shopping cart, you will eat them. It is that simple. Out of sight, out of mind works every time. Even if you are just “picking it up for your spouse,” the second it comes home, it will eventually find its way into your mouth. My best recommendation is to order, shop, and fill up on only clean foods, and rely on bites of small treats from friends and coworkers to satisfy a craving. Should you cut out salt and sugar out of your diet if you’re trying to eat clean? It is hard to say you are just going to cut sugar and salt out because they have found their way into many foods and you’ve probably become very accustomed to eating them. I definitely recommend focusing first

on weaning off of sugar by choosing whole fruits to satisfy your sweet tooth cravings, rather than sugary desserts. Then, I would focus on getting rid of artificial sweeteners, high fructose corn syrup, and overly sweet foods, which make your sweetness addiction that much harder to kick. This includes moving from regular and diet sodas to water, tea and seltzer. Keep finding more ways to curb the sugar loads in your diet such as choosing plain rather than flavored yogurts, whole oats and cinnamon rather than sugary packets, and savory and spicy condiments like mustard and sriacha rather than super sweet ketchup and BBQ sauce. Eating too much salt usually means you are eating a lot of processed, restaurant, and packaged “unclean” foods. If trying to decrease your salt intake, I recommend cooking more at home. When cooking, I recommend trying to use other spices like cumin, garlic and onion powder, turmeric, paprika, and black pepper and lots of fresh herbs. Eventually, you won’t miss sugar and salt, but it takes time to adjust your pallet, you just have to stick with it. Is it necessary to eat organic on a clean diet? Again, there is no “perfect,” and it should be more about following a “clean lifestyle.” I hate the word diet- yuck! If organic fits into your lifestyle and you can afford to buy organic foods 100% of the time, I highly recommend it. If you don’t, I recommend prioritizing the EWG’s Dirty Dozen list for produce, and choosing organic eggs, dairy, and grass-fed meat when possible. What’s one good rule of thumb (or two) if you’re trying to get started on a clean diet? First, clear your house and work desk of junk foods so they are less accessible and tempting. Then, focus on eating just 1% cleaner everyday rather than thinking of it as an all or nothing process. For example, choose lemon juice and olive oil rather than a processed bottled dressing, or make a homemade soup with fresh ingredients rather than serving one from a can. Ilana Muhlstein, is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with a private practice in Beverly Hills. She is also the dietitian for A&E’s hit new reality show, Fit to Fat to Fit, and works at UCLA where she meets with occupational health patients and leads a weight loss seminar titled, the Bruin Health Improvement Program.

The Week In News

FEBRUARY 4, 2016 | The Jewish Home


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