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JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
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The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
IN A SERIES
"HOW DOES ONE CONTROL HIS URGE WHEN HE FEELS HE HAS TO TALK IN SHUL? ONLY WHEN HE REALIZES THAT WHAT HE IS DOING IS THE SAME AS HOLDING COUNTERFEIT MONEY...ITS WORTHLESS AND WILL ONLY GET YOU INTO TROUBLE AT THE END.."
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The Week In News
Community Happenings. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5
JEWISH THOUGHT Overcoming Human Nature. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Snap or Stretch? Dealing With Life’s Challenges . 10
FEATURE Can a Host Be Liable for Serving Alcohol in California?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
LIFESTYLES Proactive Parenting: Who Wants To Work Hard?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Quotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Fifty Years of United Jerusalem: A Celebration. . . 20
Global. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
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JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Dear readers, The name Korach has become synonymous with division. Yearning to have more power and jealous of his relatives, Korach split the Jewish people to the point of no return. Interestingly, his claims were the exact opposite. “Everyone is holy” he declared. “Why do you raise yourselves above the Lord’s assembly?” There is nothing inclusive about tearing down boundaries, nor peaceful in ignoring differences. Indeed, adherents of Communism killed tens of millions of people in the name of equality. A challenge against the ruling class many times turns out to be nothing more than a justification for violence by a budding tyrant yearning of power. Korach claimed he was there for the common man. He was really there for was himself. (He would be perfectly fine if he were the one chosen!) This is an important lesson for us in our time. Today it’s popular to speak of unity, acceptance, and equality but we need to be careful that A is genuinely connecting with B, not that A is looking for B to turn into an A. Statements such as, “Can’t we all just get along?” can easily mask the real feeling of “Why are you insisting on being unique and different than me?” For a hand to fulfill its purpose, it needs to function as a hand. It would be detrimental to itself and the body if it tried to be a foot. This is true in society as well. There are different functions and jobs people do so that civilization can function. Declaring self-respect and respecting each other’s differences to be a hindrance to unity is like stating that colors of a rainbow diminish each other’s beauty. It’s the exact opposite. When we honor each other and our own unique mission, we become a healthy people expressing our singular source through our different expressions. Wishing you a wonderful 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
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
The Week In News
Congregation Bais Naftoli Celebrates Silver Anniversary On Sunday morning, Congregation Bais Naftoli honored radio and television personality Larry Elder and Judge (Dayan) Rabbi Yuval Noff during the standing-room-only celebration of the congregation’s 25th Silver Anniversary. Los Angeles County Assessor Jeffrey Prang; Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell; former mayor and gubernatorial candidate, Antonio Villaraigosa; and Councilman Paul Koretz delivered congratulatory remarks. In his acceptance speech, Mr. Elder noted that his entire career was supported by Jewish friends and mentors. He indicated that two Jews – Dennis Prager, a fellow syndicated Salem Radio host, and George Green, retired President-General Manager of KABC Radio – were responsible for his successful run at 790 AM. Rabbi Noff, who is an RCA dayan and President of Kol Simcha Charitable Foundation in Baltimore, thanked the Los Angeles Jewish community for recognizing his charitable work, mostly with cancer patients being treated at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore. Former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was lauded for his constant support of the State of Israel, both as Mayor of Los Angeles and while Co-Chair of the Democratic National Committee at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Andrew Friedman, President of the Congregation, emphasized that since only 1.5%
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of the U.S. population is Jewish, it is crucial that the Jewish community builds bridges, makes coalitions and reaches out to the gentile community. As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. marched together with members of the Jewish community in the Civil Rights movement, members of the Latino, African American, and Jewish minority groups should march together in support of the State of Israel. Consuls General of Hungary and Germany, Tamas Szeles and Hans Jorg Neumann, as well as members of the Los Angeles Fire and Police Departments, Special Agents from the FBI, DEA, ICE and CHP, joined the event.
Historic Persian Rabbinic Conference Held in Los Angeles Rabbi Arye D. Gordon The first National Conference of Persian Jewish Rabbinic Leaders was held in L.A. from June 5th through 7th, 2017. Rabbis from the major Persian Jewish communities in the United States attended the three-day conference to brainstorm on the ongoing challenges that confront Persian Jews in America. With the downfall of the Shah in January of 1979, the Jews of Iran saw the writing on the wall and knew enough to leave the country as soon as possible. Most of the Jews that fled Iran settled in Los Angeles and New York. Acclimating themselves to a foreign country with a different language, lifestyle, customs, and climate was not an easy transition. A major concern for the community was the effect of America on this ancient and unique Jewish community. Would this country be a major driving force leading to assimilation, disconnecting community members from thousands of years of Jewish Persian continuity? “Instead,” said Rabbi Michoel Segankohanim, “the Persian Jewish community has grown in vibrancy and religious commitment. In the greater Los Angeles area, there are now more than 25 Persian shuls – all Orthodox.” Added to that are the numerous religious school founded and formulated to generate the continuity and customs of Persian Jewish traditions. In response to this amazing growth and expansion, The Persian Rabbinical Council (PRC) of California saw the need to organize a gathering of rabbis and hosted this historic
at the newly renovated
conference of workshops and discussions to structure and inspire the rabbis and leaders of their American Persian kehillot. Most of the attending rabbanim were alumni of Yeshivas Ner Israel of Baltimore. Ner Israel, and Rabbi Naftali Neuberger, zt”l, played a great role in educating the future rabbanim of the kehillot, thus ensuring continuity of Torah-true Judaism within the Persian Jewish community The sessions during the conference included discussions led by Rabbi Dr. David Fox, a renowned forensic and clinical psychologist, who discussed challenges and tools for working with baalei Batim; Rabbi Zev Cohen, Rav of Congregation Adas Yeshurun in Chicago and an international speaker, who discussed the role of the synagogue rabbi and dealing with youth; and Rebbetzin Bella Gottesman, a top mechanechet in Los Angeles and a sought-after speaker, who ran sessions for the rebbetzins about sharing with and role modeling to congregants. Others who participated included Rabbi Dovid Shofet of Nessah Synagogue; Rabbi David Akhamzadeh of Beit Knesset Ohr HaEmet; Rabbi David Zargari, Dean of Tashbar; Rabbi Shmuel Khoshkerman, Rabbi of Congregation Ner Mizrach of Atlanta, Georgia; Rabbi Michoel Segankohanim of Congregation Ahavat Shalom; Rabbi Shemuel Soleimany of Persian Congregation in Brooklyn, New York; Rabbi Eliezer Ben-David, founder and spiritual mentor of Kollel Ohr HaEmet in Great Neck, New York; and Rabbi Yischak
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TheHappenings Week In News
already received many emails from the attending rabbis expressing praise and thanks for this historic gathering. Rabbi Nissin Davidi said to him, “Congratulations for a job well-done and a mission acPersian Rabbis conference Persian Rabbis conference Persian Rabbis conference complished,” and Rabbi David Akhamzadeh of Rabbi Eliezer Ben David, founder summed it all up: “The conference Beit Knesset Ohr HaEmet and spiritual mentor of Kollel Ohr Rabbi Yehuda BoHaEmet in Great Neck, New York roosan from Atlanta wrote, “It was an incred- set out to unite the rabbis from our em, witnessed various communities, to provide direction and ible event and remarkably inspiring.” a rebirth of the Rabbi David Akhamzadeh of Beit Knesset assistance in their avodat hakodesh, to educate Persian Jewish Community. May it continue Ohr HaEmet, one of the conference organizers and inspire on the ways to keep our community m’chayil el chayil.” cohesive and Jewish. We have, baruch Hash-
Photos: Arye D. Gordon
Baalness, Rabbi of Az Yashir Torah Center in Brooklyn, New York. While the conference was arranged for the rabbis, on Wednesday evening the community was invited to a lavish dinner. This event offered an opportunity to meet, greet, and hear divrei Torah and encouragement from the prominent leading Persian rabbis from around the world, including the renown Rabbi Eliezer Ben-David and Rabbi Yischak Baalness, rabbis who have influenced and inspired Torah learning and religious adherence to Persian communities worldwide. Rabbi Michoel Segankohanim, who in addition to serving Ahavat Shalom is currently Rabbinic Administrator of PRC, related that the conference was very successful. They have
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Ohr Eliyahu PTA Organizes HairCutting Drive Elizabeth Solano Photography
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The main mission of the PTA of Yeshiva Aharon Yaakov Ohr Eliyahu is to connect the teachers with parents and students, making Ohr Eliyahu a true family unit. Last year, after many events and activities connecting those three branches, the PTA dreamed bigger. Why not incorporate the community at large? That is when the collaboration of Ohr Eliyahu and Zichron Menachem was born. Zichron Menachem is an organization in Israel benefiting those with cancer. Following the model of England, Australia, and other states in America, a hair-cutting event was organized through the PTA of YAYOE to benefit those in need of wigs due to illness. The response was overwhelming and beautiful. This past Thursday evening, June 15, 2017, 22 women and children donated their hair at the second annual hair-cutting event in Los Angeles, California. Participants were pampered in return for their altruism. A special thank you is owed to all the girls and women who donated their hair to such a worthy cause. The organizers also send a special thank you to the official Corporate Sponsors of this event: Vincent Hair Artistry, Rosie Bowsie, Sarah Chloe, The Event Detail, Events Enchanted, and Elizabeth Salano Photography. For more information on the next Hair for Wigs event and how to be involved, please contact PTA@ Yayoe.com. For more information about Zichron Menachem and the wonderful work that they do please contact ester@zichron. org or visit www.zichron.org
TheHappenings Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
AMIT LA Leadership Council’s Inaugural Event Celebrates Jerusalem’s 50th Anniversary On June 8th, the AMIT LA Leadership Council hosted their inaugural event, celebrating and honoring the 50-year anniversary of the reunifica-
tion of Jerusalem. A Sushi & Dessert Reception was held in the beautiful home of David & Lauren Lunzer in Hancock Park. The event was MC-ed by the Council Chair Evan Green and the featured presenters were Rabbi Abraham Leiberman and Moshe Uziel. Rabbi Leiberman is a community leader and a respected lecturer on topics of Jewish history. He presented a thought-provoking talk about Jerusalem. AMIT Alum, Moshe Uziel – currently Director of the Center for Technology and Leadership Values at AMIT Kfar Blatt – then shared his personal journey. Born into a difficult home life, Moshe Uziel has overcome tremendous adversity to become a success in his professional and personal life. At the age of seven, Moshe was nurtured at AMIT’s Frisch Beit Hayeled’s surrogate home and continued onto AMIT’s Kfar Blatt Youth Village from the ages of 14 to 18. It was at Kfar Blatt that Moshe was inspired to “give back” to society.
Upon enlisting in the army, Moshe was recognized by the IDF for his dynamic leadership skills and was awarded a scholarship to study for his bach-
elor’s and master’s degrees. Moshe became a commander in the IDF’s Golani Brigade and credits AMIT for his success. After 13 years of service
in the IDF, Moshe has come home to AMIT to fulfill his mission in life of “inspiring the future of Israel.”
Living with In theNews Times The Week
By Rabbi Pinchos Lipschutz Publisher of the Yated Ne’eman
It was, in a sense, the first gathering of the Bnei Yisroel, the twelve pillars of our nation surrounding the bedside of their father. Yaakov Avinu looked at each of his sons in turn, focusing on their gifts and challenges, studying their destiny, before bestowing the brachos and tefillos that would accompany them and their progeny for eternity. Looking at Levi, Yaakov foresaw a road with some bumps, but one that climbed to the loftiest of callings, the right to serve in Hashem’s earthly home, standing guard over the Bais Hamikdosh and its sacred keilim. But he also saw something else, the dark and turbulent events of this week’s parsha, the uprising of Korach and his people against the leadership of Moshe Rabbeinu. “Bekehalam al teichad kevodi. I want no part in it,” Yaakov Avinu pleaded. Therefore, Rashi tells us, Korach’s lineage is traced back to Levi, but not to Yaakov Avinu. It’s puzzling. If Yaakov foresaw the incident, why did he not ask that there be no machlokes altogether? Why not daven that Hashem’s trusted messenger be untarnished by this rebellion? Why didn’t he daven that Klal Yisroel should not rise up against Moshe? When his grandfather, Avrohom Avinu, sensed that Sedom was on the verge of destruction, he began to daven, as improbable as the chances were of there being many tzaddikim in Sedom in whose merit the city could be saved. Yet, his concern for all mankind led him to daven in a valiant attempt to prevent the judgment from being carried out. Why didn’t Yaakov attempt to use tefillah to try to prevent the ugly story from happening? Perhaps the explanation is that at the root of the machlokes was jealousy. Korach was jealous of Moshe and Aharon, and
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Overcoming Human Nature he was upset that he wasn’t recognized for his greatness and given the position of leadership that he felt he deserved. Yaakov wanted it to be clear that this middah ra’ah was not traced back to him. Jealousy is part of the teva with which Hashem created the world. Back at the very onset of creation, the great luminaries, the sun and the moon, fell prey to jealousy. “Who will rule? Who will be bigger?” they questioned. The upper waters and the lower waters
Yanai said that a person should not stand in a dangerous place and say that a miracle will occur for him. Firstly, perhaps he won’t merit the miracle, and even if he does, it will diminish his zechuyos. Rabi Chonon adds that this is derived from Yaakov Avinu, who said, “Katonti mikol hachassodim umikol ha’emes.” Yaakov felt that it would be fruitless for him to daven to change the teva ha’odam. He felt that he could only daven that he shouldn’t be included in the rebellion that
It is the goal of the human experience to try to cultivate the G-dly and subjugate the animalistic tendencies. got locked in an epic and enduring battle, each pining for Divine closeness at the expense of the other. Jealousy is built into creation. It is part of human nature. Kayin encountered Hevel and revealed the most basic human emotion. Man ventured forth into the world, interacting with other humans, engaging in commerce and conversation, and there were always undertones of jealousy, competition and rivalry. Perhaps we can say that Yaakov didn’t feel it proper to ask that Hashem change the teva ha’adam, as per the general rule that we are not mispallel to change teva (see Pachad Yitzchok, Rosh Hashanah, Ma’amarim 10 and 33). Additionally, Yaakov was the av who declared, “Katonti mikol hachassodim umikol ha’emes.” The Medrash Hagadol Toldos relates that Rabi
would ensue years later on account of jealousy, praying that the machlokes shouldn’t be traced back to him. Human nature is not always what we want it to be. Ki yeitzer lev ha’adam ra mine’urav. It requires much work for man to break his inclinations and middos ra’os and make a mentch of himself. It is the goal of the human experience to try to cultivate the G-dly and subjugate the animalistic tendencies that combine to make us what we are. Those whose lives follow Torah can subdue their base human inclinations, such as the trait of jealousy and the propensity for machlokes. Torah has the ability to cure man of pettiness and help him rise above societal ills. Yaakov was an ish tom yosheiv ohalim. He was purified and cleansed by Torah and its mussar. Having devoted his energy and strength to rising above human frailties,
he felt that the machlokes had no connection to him. He wanted to demonstrate that although teva dictates that human interactions lead people to be consumed by jealousy, the condition is not terminal, as one who is a yosheiv ohalim and works on himself to be subservient to the precepts of Torah until he becomes an ish tom, can win these battles and actually change his teva. When Yaakov Avinu beheld Levi, he saw the unfortunate results of jealousy and rivalry, but he also saw something else: the lofty destiny of the shevet and the koach they possess to rise above it all. The fruition of this vision is found later in this week’s parsha. The pesukim in perek 18 following the tragedy of Korach relate that Hakadosh Boruch Hu tells Aharon what to do to ensure that there won’t be another catastrophe such as the one that took place with Korach and his eidah. Hashem tells Aharon that he, the kohanim and shevet Levi, should be “shomer mishmeres” and then there will be no more “ketzef” on the Bnei Yisroel. The posuk explains that Hashem has separated the kohanim and Leviim from the Bnei Yisroel. They will not engage in everyday commerce with the rest of the Jews. They will perform their work in the Temple of Hashem. They will do the avodah in the Ohel Moed and will receive no nachalah, portion, in Eretz Yisroel. Hashem will be their cheilek and nachalah. To understand the correlation, we examine the famous words of the Rambam at the end of Hilchos Shmittah V’Yovel (13:12-13). He explains that Levi did not receive any nachalah, because he was chosen to serve Hashem in the Mishkan to teach His righteous ways and laws to the rest of the people. Therefore, says the Rambam, they were separated - “huvdolu midarkei ha’olam.” In other words, in order to ensure that there would never be another ketzef such as that which took place in the time of Korach, shevet Levi was separated and removed midarkei ha’olam, from the ways of the world. They didn’t engage in regular business and interactions, as others do, because to do so would once again cause them to become jealous and argumentative. To prevent them from reverting to the teva of man which leads to jealousy and rivalry, allowing human failings to manifest themselves and cause “ketzef,” they could no longer engage in the type of human interaction which exposes mortal weakness-
Living with In theNews Times The Week
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
From that point forward, Levi would not be subject to these pressures, but would instead be dedicated fully to Hashem’s work. For the only way a person can overcome issues which lead to machlokes and bitterness is by dedicating himself to the avodah of Hashem, and rising above mundane everyday commerce. It is only by dedication to the precepts and teachings of the Torah in all we do that we are able to rise above the subliminal earthiness which seeks man’s downfall. Thus, the Rambam states in the following halacha that this mode of life is not only reserved for kohanim and Leviim, but can be followed by anyone who sees the light and wishes to earn for himself a life of blessing and peace, walking a straight path and cleansing himself of human trivialities and foibles. Korach was blinded and hindered by his negios. His desire for personal advancement grew out of his jealousy of Moshe and Aharon. He couldn’t rise above the teva. It seems strange to us, but he was able to convince all the great men of Klal Yisroel to join him in his rebellion. For it wasn’t only Korach who was consumed by jealousy, but others as well. They all wanted the “big job.” Their vision was hampered as well, and they were unable to perceive Moshe’s greatness. Jealousy so clouded their vision and dulled their senses that they were rendered unable to appreciate the significance of what happened to the meraglim, who had doubted Moshe. They weren’t able to rise above the teva of anoshim and thus brought ketzef upon themselves and others. As we study the parsha, we have the benefit of hindsight, the clarity of Rashi’s lens, and the Rambam’s lucid perspective. We delve into the explanations of the tale and think about how such smart and righteous people could sin so terribly and err so badly. We learn the pesukim, the Rashis and the Rambam, and we resolve to become better bnei Torah, baalei mussar and anshei tom in order to rise above the middos ra’os that can bring down lesser men. It is possible for a human being to rise to such heights at which he soars above agendas and pettiness, and his sole concern is for the will of the Ribbono Shel Olam and the good of His children. May we all merit to aspire to, and reach, that level.
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Torah Musings The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Snap or Stretch? Dealing With Life’s Challenges Sarah Pachter
After a recent lecture of mine, a woman in her early sixties approached me. She was in great shape, so I was quite caught off-guard by her statement. “You know, Sarah, I feel like the older I get, the less resilient I become. It’s not just that my body isn’t capable of what it once was. I look back on my life and think, how did I manage to do that? I don’t want to take the same risks because I can’t bounce back the way I used to.” I realized at that moment that resilience is not exclusive to a certain age bracket, and can present a challenge at any point in one’s life. I’ll never forget when a young professional shared the following sentiment with me: “Things are so chaotic right now. I feel like my string is being pulled in so many different directions, I’m just going to break.” We all get overwhelmed at times and feel as though we may snap. If only we could visualize ourselves as a rubber band instead of a
string, able to stretch instead of snap when life challenges present themselves! Resilience is something we often view as a specific trait that we were either born with or not. As in, “Oh well, I didn’t get blue eyes,” or “Darn, I didn’t get the bouncing back trait; it must be recessive…” However, a study performed by the American Psychological Association in 2006 actually showed that resilience is not something that you either have or don’t. It can be developed within anyone. Within my own research, I have discovered a fascinating insight. No matter what country, or what year the study was performed, I found a pattern that kept resurfacing. The same four tools to acquire resilience kept popping up. I developed an acronym to help remember these techniques: BAND (yes, as in a rubber band). We don’t want to view ourselves as a string with limited flexibility, but rather a rubber band that can stretch itself when faced with
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stress. 1. Bouncing back. This is about never giving up. It is having the tenacity to get up and keep pushing through, even when things get tough. 2. Allowing the Almighty into one’s life. Of course, this tool is repeatedly mentioned in the Torah, but I was surprised to find that almost all of the secular literature on the matter wrote that recognizing a higher power was a huge part of developing resilience in everyday life. 3. Nimbleness – the ability to be flexible. This is the willingness to go with the flow and change ourselves and our plans when curve balls come our way. 4. Drive, determination, and desire. Perhaps this is the glue that keeps everything together. Ratzon, desire, is the fuel to it all, for nothing can stand in the way one’s desire. I had an experience that opened my eyes to the comfort of bringing Hashem into the picture. I was expecting a child, and anxiously waiting as the doctor was performing the very first ultrasound. She discovered a healthy heartbeat, and I breathed a sigh of relief. But my feelings were short-lived, as she discovered a blood clot close to the baby. My heart fell as I asked her what all this meant. She said, “Well, yours is small. I once saw a patient with a huge clot, and I thought, ‘This baby isn’t going to live.’ But sure enough, she had a full-term, healthy baby, so anything is possible.” It doesn’t matter how small the risk is, when dealing with pregnancy, statements like my doctor’s are bound to create some uncertainty. I thought about Miriam in the Torah, who epitomized resilience when she sang out to G-d, despite her suffering. Additionally, I remembered seeing a teacher of mine, Mrs. Aviva Finer, singing Hashem’s praises despite discovering her child had a rare congenital disease. In that moment, I gathered my strength and prayed, “G-d, I’m no Aviva Finer, and I’m certainly no Miriam. But I’m going to try this thing called resilience. I will turn to you, despite my fear. Right now, I’m uncertain, but this is my song to you because I know, deep in my heart, that you know what’s best.” After turning towards G-d in that way, I was able to continue my day with a calmness I didn’t previously feel. Faith is a tool to achieve resilience, but it also helps us simply become more flexible. The more faith we have, the more we are willing to bend ourselves to whatever life brings us. Desire is similar, in that it is the fuel to achieve tenacity. “The way in which a person wants to go, that is the way Hashem leads him (Maseches
Makkos 10a).” My friend’s parents are from Iran, and they escaped the Revolution in 1982. They allowed me to interview them to uncover their chilling story. Her father was a prestigious surgeon living a very comfortable lifestyle. Then the Revolution began, and Jews were disappearing left and right. (Even today, people still do not know where their loved ones are.) Interestingly, her family had a last name that was not recognizably Jewish. Her father’s close friend, who was Muslim, warned him, “They discovered you are Jewish, and plan to come after you. You must leave immediately.” Pretending they had no exit plan, the family escaped, in the middle of the night, via a motorcycle through the desert – each parent with a small child on their lap. They left everything behind. They walked 11 days at a time between checkpoints, going days without food. The water they were given was brown and mucky. At first they couldn’t let themselves touch it, but eventually succumbed, as they were dying of thirst. They endured experiences we cannot even fathom, yet they survived. I asked the family, “What gave you the courage to leave? How did you have the strength to keep putting one foot in front of the other?” They answered quite simply, “Because we wanted, more than anything else, for our children to have a better life.” We see this element of desire and determination as the story continues. Her father arrived in America only to discover that his prestigious surgeon title in Iran was worthless here. He had to retake his exams several times, as he barely understood English. Finally, he passed and landed an interview for a medical residency. Although it was pouring rain, he walked 45 minutes in order to make it. He arrived at the hospital completely drenched. The interviewer asked, “What happened to you? Did you walk here or something?” With a fire in his eyes, he responded, “I am desperate. I don’t have a car or even an umbrella, but I didn’t care. I walked. I need this position. Please don’t turn me away.” The man saw the look of desire in his eyes, felt compassion for him, and sent him back in a cab. “Go home,” he said. “Get warm. I’ll let you know when you start.” With every such story that I heard, the common thread among them was desire. Determination gives people the ability to keep pushing, but desire is the fuel to keep the spark of tenacity alive. The goals may always different, but drive is the common link between them all. My friend’s family is the prime example of BAND. They were bound to succeed when they fled Iran and they put their trust in the Almighty when they left all of their possessions behind. The nimbleness they applied to their travels while being flexible with the uncomfortable and foreign circumstances they were put through is what kept them alive in their journey! And the drive and determination my friend’s father possessed to succeed is what got this family a steady income and their eventual U.S. residency. This family’s circumstances were not ideal by any means, and they had every opportunity to give up, but with desire, tenacity, flexibility, and faith, they were able to bounce back from the nearly impossible. Resilience is achievable for anyone. All you have to do it stretch.
The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Boro Park Williamsburg Monsey Monroe Meron
Feature The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Can a Host Be Liable for Serving Alcohol in California? Michael Rubinstein, Esq.
A member of your shul hosts a simchah at his house, where alcohol is served. Someone consumes alcohol at the event, and later injures someone else while driving under the influence. Can the injured person sue the host? My office recently received this question, and it illustrates a common scenario in our community. It turns out, in some situations, the host can be liable for furnishing alcohol to his guests, and in other situations he is immune. A bit of background is appropriate. California’s Alcohol Liability Laws: Pre-1970s For many years, California maintained a tradition of immunity for those who provided or sold alcohol to others. This tradition was known as the “common law” – a body of legal precedent dating back to thirteenth-century England. Under the common law, bars and establishments could not be held responsible when a patron became intoxicated and later caused injuries to others. These laws were known as “dram shop laws.” Dram shops were the name given to bars in England, and dram shop laws are still in existence in some form or another in many states. During the 1970s, several Supreme Court cases in California deviated from the common law. These decisions imposed civil liability on bars for serving alcohol to patrons who later caused serious injuries to others. The rationale the Court used had to do with foreseeability. By providing alcohol to a patron, it was foreseeable that the patron would need to drive home, and by extension drive home drunk as a result of drinking at the bar. Therefore, the Court ruled, a subsequent collision was a foreseeable consequence of the bartender serving alcohol to the bar patron. 1978: Common Law Immunity Restored California’s deviation from common law alcohol liability laws was short-lived. In 1978, the State Legislature amended the Civil Code. The Legislature overturned the California Supreme Court’s decisions, reinstating the immunity for serving alcohol that had been the law for centuries. The Legislature was very specific: It is the intent of the Legislature to abrogate the holdings. . . and to reinstate the prior judicial interpretation of this section as it relates to proximate cause for injuries
incurred as a result of furnishing alcoholic beverages to an intoxicated person, namely that the furnishing of alcoholic beverages is not the proximate cause of injuries resulting from intoxication, but rather the consumption of alcoholic beverages is the proximate cause of injuries inflicted upon another by an intoxicated person. (Civil Code 1714.) This means that establishments that serve alcohol are immune from civil liability when a patron consumes alcohol and later injures someone else. The act of consuming the alcohol led to the third person’s injuries, not the bartender providing the alcohol to the patron. The Civil Code contains exceptions to the above-mentioned law: When alcohol is sold to a minor, and when an adult provides alcohol to a minor at a residence.
Serving Alcohol to Minors An establishment licensed to dispense alcohol is prohibited from serving alcohol to a minor. In fact, California law makes it a misdemeanor to do so. The Civil Code also makes it clear that if parents serve alcohol at their residence to minors under the age of 21, civil liability can be imposed for subsequent injuries: Nothing (in the previous section) shall preclude a claim against a parent, guardian, or another adult who knowingly furnishes alcoholic beverages at his or her residence to a person whom he or she knows, or should have known, to be under 21 years of age, in which case…the furnishing of the alcoholic beverage may be found to be the proximate cause of resulting injuries or death. What this means is that parents who
serve or allow alcohol to be served in their homes to minors can be held liable for subsequent injuries caused by an intoxicated minor. In fact, if an adult serves alcohol to a minor and the minor thereafter injures himself, cases have held that the minor can also sue the adult who gave him the alcohol. What about a host who serves alcohol to his guests who are above the age of 21? The Code states “no social host who furnishes alcoholic beverages to any person may be held legally accountable for damages caused by that person…resulting from the consumption of those beverages.” This means that a host who provides alcohol to his guests who are 21 and over is immune from civil liability. Alcohol at Shul What about serving alcohol at a shul kiddush? According to our discussion, so long as the alcohol is served to an adult, both the baal hakiddush and the shul would be immune from civil liability. But if the alcohol is furnished to a minor at the shul, the answer would not be so clear. It’s not a residence, where serving alcohol to a minor can create parental or other adult liability. And an establishment licensed to sell alcohol could be liable for selling alcohol to a minor. But furnishing the alcohol at a shul to a minor who did not pay for it? While it’s a misdemeanor to do so, the civil consequences are unclear. We can all agree, though, that alcohol at shul must be properly supervised. Conclusion California provides immunity to social hosts and licensed establishments who serve or sell alcohol to their guests who are 21 and older. If a parent or other adult gives alcohol to a minor at his or her home, the parent or adult can be held liable for subsequent injuries. It is also a misdemeanor to provide alcohol to anyone under 21. “The enormity of the damage, death, grief, and suffering caused by driving motor vehicles after the consumption of alcoholic beverages is so well known that it needs neither pleading nor proof.” This quote, from a frequently cited Court of Appeals case, says it all. Whether it’s Purim, Simchas Torah, a melaveh malkah, or any other simchah, we can all agree that alcohol must be consumed responsibly, both at home and at shul.
Book Review The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Early Years: The formative years of the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson As told by documents and archival data, 1902-1929, edited by Boruch Oberlander and Elkanah Shmotkin (JEM/ Kehot Publication Society 2016) Review by Rebecca Klempner
When a friend shares a story about this rebbe or that one over shalosh seudos or we hear a Chassidic tale during a drash in synagogue, we often listen to the details with skepticism. Any story told and retold over time gets affected by the uncertainty of memory. A recently-released book takes a more factual approach to Chassidic history. In Early Years: The formative years of the Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, as told by documents and archival data, 1902-1929, Boruch Oberlander and Elkanah Shmotkin assemble primary sources about the last Lubavitcher Rebbe’s youth. The result is a remarkable
a new light, and in others, it revealed facts that were hitherto totally unknown (Preface, p. x).” Through the eyes of his contemporaries, we see Menachem Mendel as a small boy already engaged deeply in Torah learning, truly a prodigy, but simultaneously so drawn to science that he placed a model of the night sky on his bedroom ceiling. He fed the poor and comforted the sick as a teenager – and yet also engaged in games and larks with classmates. Some mysteries get cleared up. The Rebbe never attended a formal Jewish school beyond cheder, nor did he ever
city. Even his family contained secular and less-than-fully-observant members, and while his parents carefully nurtured the souls of young Menachem Mendel and his brothers, diligently teaching them Torah and fostering their fulfillment of mitzvos, they also didn’t isolate their children from those who were far from these activities. Many Torah greats of the Rebbe’s generation were born and raised in shtetlach with a more homogenous and insular population. Perhaps his more cosmopolitan upbringing contributed to his welcoming attitudes towards less-observant Jews? We also gain insight from images of
about major female figures in Chabad. The movement has long been notable for the more public role of women in the Chassidus relative to other types of Chassidim. To see the delight of the Rebbe Rashab over his granddaughter’s birth; to learn the extent of Rebbitzen Chana’s activities assisting the poor, ill, and displaced members of her community; and to examine the power of attorney the Rebbe Rayatz assigned to a young Chaya Mushka when he went into internal exile is to see that women within Chabad were seen as valuable, capable, and reliable. Again, the reader gets a sense that the Rebbe’s later attitudes – in this
volume which will astonish and engross readers. The number and variety of sources examined by Oberlander and Shmotkin is staggering. They include the memoirs of Rebbitzen Chana Schneerson, the mother of the Rebbe; the private correspondences of his relatives; photos; postcards; official documents; and more. “In some cases,” Oberlander and Shmotkin write, “the documentation substantiated previously-known events and encounters; in many others, it allowed us to correct erroneous information that was commonly believed to be true, or to bring new context – to shed
attend a secular educational institution before his college years. How then did he obtain the extensive knowledge – in Torah and in science – for which he was renowned? Also, given his birth date, people were puzzled as to how he evaded conscription into the Soviet army. We get answers to all these questions and more. One of the things Early Years best communicates is the diversity of the world in which the Rebbe grew up. Yekaterinoslav, Ukraine (now Dnepropetrovsk) – where the Rebbe spent most his childhood – was filled with Jews of all types, particularly as war and famine drove refugees into the
the Rebbe as a devoted chassid. We observe, through diaries and letters, a young Menachem Mendel developing a relationship with the Rebbe Rayatz, who would eventually be his father-in-law. During this period, the Rebbe became more and more integral to the running of the movement, using his immense talents and skills to expand Chabad and protect Jews living under Soviet oppression. Touching notes, sometimes shown in the writer’s own handwriting, demonstrate the genuine affection between major personalities in the history of Chabad. Also, of personal interest, we learn
case, regarding women – likely emerged from his family background. All in all, Oberlander and Shmotkin’s accomplishment is impressive. Their thorough documentation of the Rebbe’s early life creates a dynamic picture which both humanizes him and makes his later accomplishments all the more astounding. This well-organized and stunning volume – which contains many pages of photographs and personal notes – makes a wonderful gift for those interested in Jewish history as well as for library and school collections.
The Week In News
The Week In News
Germany’s Longest Serving Chancellor Dies at 87
Germany’s ex-chancellor Helmut Kohl died at the age of 87 last week. The prominent politician led Germany for 16 years, from 1982 to 1998. Among other things, he is credited with bringing together East and West Germany after the fall of the Berlin Wall. German Chancellor Angela Merkel,
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
a former protégée of Kohl, said his death filled her with deep sadness. “Helmut Kohl’s efforts brought about the two greatest achievements in German politics of recent decades – German reunification and European unity,” she said. “Helmut Kohl understood that the two things were inseparable.” She is referring to the key role Kohl played in introducing the euro, along with his French ally President Francois Mitterrand, to the region. Born in 1930, Kohl had been enrolled in the Hitler Youth, and he no doubt sincerely hoped that his country’s future would not be an extension of its past. At the time the Berlin Wall fell, no one could have anticipated that the Soviet Union would have allowed East Germany its freedom. Kohl knew that Germany would have to embrace a new character as a member of the European Union, lest it resort to its sordid past. The first German chancellor to address the Knesset in Jerusalem, Kohl took Israeli interests to heart, and invited emigrating Soviet Jews to rebuild the community in Germany. He handpicked Angela Merkel to succeed him as chancellor. When prosecutors discovered that he had been illegally taking large sums of money from anonymous donors for his Christian Democrat party, this cozy relationship became kaputt, as Kohl expressed it. He was obliged to repay $100,000, and the scandal of it darkened the end of his life. Former President George HW Bush
paid his respects to Kohl saying that he was a “true friend of freedom” and “one of the greatest leaders in post-war Europe.”
Too Many Lose their Lives in London Blaze
A faulty refrigerator seems to be the possible cause for the Grenfell Tower fire that occurred on June 14. The owner of the apartment in which the fire started, cabdriver Behailu Kebede, reportedly tried to warn his neighbors about the fire in his kitchen when the flames broke out. The residence was located on the fourth floor of the large apartment building. Kebede reportedly woke up his neighbors to alert them because he thought the fire was going to spread. Investigators have repeatedly said that inquiries into the devastating fire are at an early phase and
that no information has been confirmed. Within minutes of breaking out the fire engulfed the building. Reports have suggested that the fire was accelerated by cladding that had recently been added to the facade of the tower in an effort to improve the block’s appearance. As of Monday, authorities said that 79 people lost their lives in the blaze. The number of those who perished is expected to rise as searchers locate and identify remains. One report stated that searchers found 42 bodies huddled together in just one room of the building.
Explosion in Attempted Car Ramming
Once again, terror hit the capital of
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
The Week In News
The Week In News France on Monday. A man died in Paris after ramming his car filled with explosives into a police envoy on Champs-Elysees Avenue. An investigation has been opened by France’s anti-terrorism prosecutor into the attempted terror attack. Despite tourists and others walking down the crowded avenue, no one aside from the driver was hurt. After he rammed his car into a police envoy, the car exploded. Authorities managed to get the terrorist out the vehicle. He later died. Gerard Collomb, the Interior minister, called the incident an “attempted attack” and said it “shows once again that the threat level in France is extremely high.” The attack will be used to support the continued state of emergency in Paris, which has been in effect since 2015. The minister is planning on proposing an extension until November 1 to the French cabinet. The attack marks the fifth time that police forces have been targeted in Paris since the beginning of the year. According to police, a handgun was found on the driver, who was badly burned after the vehicle exploded. The driver was a 31-year-old man who had been previously flagged for links to Islamic extremist groups. He was under what is known as a “Fiche S” file, a French terror/radicalization watch list composed of thousands of names, of which some are under active surveillance. Active surveillance
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
means that they are on law enforcement’s radar, not necessarily under rigorous surveillance.
America Has Its Eyes on Russia
Twenty years ago, the Arctic island of Vardo had double the population than it does now. But last month the local power company cited a surge in demand. They even installed a new cable in a tunnel under the icy waters that separate the island from the Norwegian mainland. Previously, locals supported themselves from the fishing industry but now it has mostly collapsed. Additionally, earth-moving equipment has been spotted atop a rocky plateau overlooking Russia across the sea. Experts believe that this is a not-so-un-
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dercover attempt to keep a close eye on Russia’s expanding fleet of nuclear submarines armed with ballistic missiles in the Barents Sea. This theory would explain the need for more power. The electricity is also desperately needed to power an American-funded radar system under construction on an island in sight of the Kola Peninsula, a freezing Russian territory with high-security naval bases and restricted military zones. It is no secret that Russian President Vladimir V. Putin has made his country’s military and economic role in the Arctic a priority. He has made it his mission to make Russia the dominant player in the high north as climate change opens up new shipping routes from Asia to Europe, new gas and oil prospects, and a new arena for great power rivalry. The joint American-Norwegian radar project, set to cost hundreds of millions of dollars and devour substantial amounts of electricity, has enraged Moscow, which views it as the Pentagon’s ambition to encircle and contain Putin’s resurgent Russia. The Russian ambassador in Oslo, Norway’s capital, recently warned Norway that it should “not be naïve” about Russia’s readiness to respond. “Norway has to understand that after becoming an outpost of NATO, it will have
to face head-on Russia and Russian military might,” the ambassador, Teimuraz Ramishvili, told Norway’s state broadcaster, NRK. “Therefore, there will be no peaceful Arctic anymore.” “This place is very, very important for America and for the Western world so that they can keep an eye on what the Russians are doing,” explained Lasse Haughom, a former mayor of Vardo and a veteran of Norway’s military intelligence service. “Russia wants to look into our secrets, and the United States and Norway want to look into their business. That is the way the game is played.” Despite the open secret of what is going on in the country, the chief of Norway’s military intelligence agency, Morten Haga Lunde, says the radar system is simply being upgraded from the original American-built radar system that was planted to track space debris like defunct satellites and to “monitor our national area of interest in the North.” Russia’s generals and many Norwegians have disregarded that explanation as merely a cover-up. Most believe that the new Globus 3 radar is part of the Pentagon’s efforts to develop a global missile-defense system, making it a prime target for attack in the event of a conflict.
The Week In News Kids in Camp OutdoorTrips
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
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Quotes The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Notable Quot Notable Quotes “Say What?!”
Impeachment and removal from office are only the first steps; for America to be redeemed, Donald Trump must be prosecuted for treason and — if convicted in a court of law — executed.
On days like today, there are no Democrats or Republicans, only Americans united in our hopes and prayers for the wounded. – Minority leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), immediately after a liberal shot at Republican congressmen playing baseball, seriously injuring Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA)
– From an article that appeared on Huffington Post one day before the baseball game shooting of Republican Congressmen (the article was removed from the website after a liberal shot Republican congressmen playing baseball last week)
How dare they say such a thing?
– Ibid., several hours later, responding to some Republicans suggesting that the rhetoric on the left may have led to the shooting
Oh my G-d. I’m such an idiot. I blew it. I completely
So this sick individual does something despicable — and it was horrible what – Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr after he forgot to mention star-player Steph Curry in his speech at their he did, hateful — but for them to all of a championship parade sudden be sanctimonious as if they’ve never seen such a thing before… And I don’t even want to go into the It’s rumored that President Uber CEO Travis Kalanick announced that he Uber CEO Travis Kalanick announcedThree today that he killed Palestinians after deadly stabbing in Jerusalem. president of the United today States, in terms Trump’s upcoming trip to the isBBCtaking aBut leave of of absence the company. But – headline after three terrorists who murdered anthe Israelilanguage policewoman were trying some offrom thatshot hewhile has is taking leavebecause of absence U.K. is onahold he’s from the company. to stab other people he’ll be back in three minutes — no wait, hold on, used. he’ll be back in three minutes — no wait, hold on, spaced.
worried about angry protests. Ibid. nowCanceled?! it’s saying five–minutes. Six? Oh, no! Canceled?! now it’s saying five minutes. Six? Oh, no! Fatah condemns the war crime carried out by Israeli I– Seth have to admit, of all the – Seth Myers Myers occupation forces in Jerusalem against wars I thought Trump might If I were shot and three killed Palestinian tomorrow half teens. The international community’s silence emboldened of Twitter would explode in applause restart, I wasn’t counting on If Comey will be under the threat of persecution, we are Israel to further spill the blood ofpolitical Palestinians. If Comey will be under the threat of political persecution, we are and excitement. “Revolutionary.” – Statement by Fatah’shim spokesman ready to accept here.– Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway on Fox News discussing the ready accept him here. – Conanto O’Brien – Russian President Vladimir Putin at a press conference last week
of vitriol from thelast left,week after the Republican congressional – Russian President Vladimir Putin level at a press conference baseball game shooting
So-called real Americans are [messing] up America. I love bringing people from America We are kicker in athat warcould with selfish, Anthe 18-year-old field-goal bereplace thefoolish firstthem Maybe they should leave, so we can to Holy Land field-goal who’ve never beencould be Anthe 18-year-old kicker first & narcissistic rich people. Why is it woman toand playbetter in theones. NFL. Scouts say she has the with new here. woman to play in the NFL. Scouts say she has the a shock when things turn violent? – From a New York desire. Times op-ed All by immigration advocatenow Bret Stephens – New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, in an interview talent and she needs is the criminal talent and desire. All she needs now is the criminal with JTA, about a trip he took to Israel this week with several #HuntRepublicanCongressmen
Hall of Fame players
– Conan O’Brien
– Conan O’Brien
– Tweet by Democrat strategist James Devine, after the shooting
Sean got fatter.
I was at the King David with my wife in 1963 and I remember being so – White House chief strategist SteveWould Bannon responding to thein Atlantic’s inquiry as why White rather be jail than attohome. I’m the bothered by the lack emerging evidence about the underlying House Spokesman Sean Spicer has of been holding less live briefings recently I’m bothered by to thebe lack emerging underlying disappointed soofclose to theevidence Old about – What 71-year-old Lawrence John Ripple toldbetween his wife when crime –between that there was actually collusion or coordination crimeand – that there wasable actually collusion City not being to go to the or coordination he robbed a bank in front of her (A Kansas judge sentenced him the Trump White House this [and the I’m actually getting more week to Russians]. 6 months of...home confinement) the Trump Whiteof House [and thesoldiers Russians]. I’m actually getting more Kotel because Jordanian The White House using fat shaming to justify increased uncomfortable with this whole deal. uncomfortable this whole deal. on the walls. Iwith can’t describe the opacity. 2017. –New York Times columnist David Brooks on “Meet the Press” excitement I felt and recognition –New York Times columnist Davidthe Brooks on “Meet the Press” – Tweet by Chelsea Clinton who was not tickled by Bannon’s joke I felt for G-d that we were allowed to MORE QUOTES go back to our holiest place. Now 50 years later, I’m here to stand before Watch whiteness work. He wasn’t a “kid” or “innocent.” You can’t go to you and I’m able to help Jerusalem do another country and try to steal from them. Respect their laws. this. – Tweet by alt-left magazine, Affinity, about Otto Warmbier, after he died from brutal treatment – Kraft, at the opening of the new $6 million Jerusalem sports complex that he built
while sentenced to 15 years of labor in North Korea for attempting to take home a political poster
It’s been an amazing trip.
– Joe Montana who went on the trip along with Kraft
On days like Democrats Americans prayers for
– Minority leader N a liberal shot at Re seriously injuring R
How dare t
– Ibid., several hou suggesting that th shooting
So this sick despicable he did, hate sudden be never seen And I don’t president o of some of used. – Ibid.
If I were sho of Twitter w and excitem
– Trump advisor K level of vitriol from baseball game sho
We are in a & narcissisti a shock wh #HuntRepu
– Tweet by Democ shooting
– What 71-year-ol he robbed a bank this week to 6 mon
Quotes The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
The results speak for themselves. – Otto Warmbier’s father’s response when asked if he feels that President Obama, who urged him to have “strategic patience,” could have done more to secure the release of his son, who was finally released from North Korea last week but died a few days later from his brain injuries
President Obama left him there. President Trump got him back… Warmbier’s father learned the hard way that results among progressives are less important than symbolism, intent and high-minded nuance. – Tom Shattuck, The Boston Herald
There is no greater threat to the innocent than the deranged logic of liberals. It often disguises itself as compassion, usually spoken in a thoughtful tone, lyrically elegant at every turn. But deadly and destructive — and former President Obama was a master.
A United Airlines employee is under fire for pushing over a 71-year-old passenger, or as the CEO of United put it, “We’re back, baby!” – Conan O’Brien
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Israel The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Fifty Years of United Jerusalem: A Celebration Dr. Ernest H Agatstein, Co-President of the Religious Zionists of America
My wife and I joined thousands of visitors from around the world in the World Mizrachi Mega-Mission held in Jerusalem, May 21-May 24, 2017. It was a once in a lifetime event for those who attended. Shortly after my return from Israel, I gave the drashah on the first day of Shavuot to our shul, Kehilat Yavneh in Hancock Park, California, and was asked by many in the audience to put my words into print. One of the feelings I had in Jerusalem, over the week I was there, was akin to what our ancestors may have felt when making aliyah haregel, visiting the Temple on the three national holidays when Jews from all over the Diaspora would join their countrymen in the land of Israel in celebration. On this mega-mission celebrating the 50th anniversary of the re-unification of Yerushalayim under Jewish control after nearly 2000 years of foreign rule, delegations with their rabbis took time off from their work schedules and came from the USA, South Africa, England , Canada , Australia, Mexico and France. They all shared a purpose – to give thanksgiving to Hashem for the miracles of the Six Day War and to participate with hundreds of thousands of Israeli citizens in their celebration of this special Yom Yerushalayim. The Mizrachi program would only begin Monday night. My wife and I arrived before Shabbos to experience what is known as Shabbat Yerushalayim. Davening kabbalat Shabbat at the Kotel was truly magical. The plaza in front of the Kotel was completely filled, unusual for a regular Friday night. Sitting down in chairs in the middle of the plaza were hundreds of white shirted, kippot srugot-wearing yeshivot hesder students who praying in a Carlebach nusach without a chazzan, all singing in unison. To the sides of them were shtreimel-wearing Chassidic Jews davening in their own nusach. Behind them was a group of Litvish yeshiva students with their leaders. In terms of numbers, the religious Zionist contingent was by far the dominant group on this Shabbos. At the end of “Lecha Dodi,” when they came to the verse “Bo’ee b’shalom…” the men formed a large circle, as is typical for a Carlebach kabbalat Shabbat. Each group formed their own circle. At one point, I thought to myself, Wouldn’t it be a great kiddush Hashem for all the groups to join in one circle and demonstrate achdus? But then in a flash, I remembered the midrash of Krias Yam Suf, the splitting of the Red Sea. The sea split into 12 rows, one for each tribe, demonstrating that for
Klal Yisrael, we can have different modes of dress, different customs, different niggunim, but as long as we are devoting our thoughts to avodat Hashem, the service of G-d, all groups are considered equally pleasing in the eyes of Hashem. Shabbos before Yom Yerushalayim is designated Shabbat Yerushalayim. In honor of this auspicious Shabbos, the two Chief Rabbis of Jerusalem sat on the dais with the chazzan and the choir at the Beit Knesset Hagadol, the Great Synagogue, in the heart of Jerusalem. It felt like a yom tov. Every seat was filled. Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi Aryeh Stern spoke before kriat haTorah. He asked, “Why is Mount Sinai, after the giving of the Torah never given any prominence? We don’t even know where it is! On the other hand, we say ‘Ki miTzion tetzeh Torah, u’dvar Hashem miYerushalayim – from Zion shall go forth Torah and the word of G-d from Jerusalem.’” Rav Stern answered that Torah must have mesirut nefesh, self sacrifice, connected with it, for it to be spread. Chazal say that the ultimate way to gain Torah knowledge is to study “pas bamelach tochal – while eating bread with salt” – a euphemism for studying in deprivation and with great self-sacrifice. He pointed out that Akeidas Yitzchak, the binding of Isaac (which is the ultimate example of mesirut nefesh), occurred on Mount Moriah, the site of the future temple. In 1967, 175 paratroopers gave their lives to liberate the Kotel. With great mesirut nefesh, Tzahal, the Israel Defense Forces, continues to protect all the people of the State of Israel to allow them to study Torah in peace. Thus indeed does Torah disseminate throughout the world due to the mesirut nefesh that emanates from it. Rabbi Stern noted that the Omer period has traditionally been associated with mourning for the 24,000 students of Rabbi Akiva who died during the Omer. In our own generation, we have seen the beginnings of comfort to Klal Yisrael during this very same period. At the beginning of the Omer, close in time to Pesach, when we were born as a nation, comes Yom Ha’atzmaut when Klal Yisrael once again is reborn as a nation on its own sovereign soil. At the end of the Omer period, close to Shavuot when we received the Torah, comes Yom Yerushalayim, when spirituality was re-infused into a modern secular State of Israel. The Jewish people return to the Kotel, Kever Rachel, Maarat Hamachpela, Judea and Samaria, and we have witnessed an overall refocus on Torah, yeshivot, and ba’al teshuvah movements.
Rabbi Shlomo Amar Sephardic Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem spoke before mussaf. He quoted from the parshah of that week, Parshat Bechokosai, when after recounting the calamities of the tochechah, the Torah speaks in comforting tones: “Vezacharti es brisi Yaakov – and I will remember my covenant with Jacob.” Here Yaakov is spelled with a superfluous vav . Only five times in Tanach is Yaakov spelled in this full format. Says the midrash: Elijah the Prophet is spelled five times without a vav as in the verse of Malachi 3:25, “Hineh Anochi sholech lachem es Elia Hanavih – Behold I shall send you the prophet Elijah.” There Eliyahu is spelled without a vav – Elia. Yaakov is homiletically holding Eliyahu’s letter vav hostage until he comes and announces the coming of the Messiah. Asked Rav Amar, “Why the letter vav and not another letter?” He answered, quoting Rabenu Bechaya, in Shmos 8:19: “Vesamti pedus beyni u’ven amecha – I shall make a distinction between you and the Egyptians.” There the word pedus is also spelled without a vav. The redemption from Egypt was destined to be incomplete. The Children of Israel wandered in the desert for 40 years with all of the yotzai Mitzrayim dying before entering the land. We, Klal Yisrael, wandered in exile for 2000 years. Yaakov holds Eliyahu’s vav hostage and says, “I am not making your name whole unless you return and announce the true full redemption with Mashaich Tzidkenu!” Why the vav? The vav is the letter of chibur, of connection, because its name means “hook.” The name Yerushalayim merges what Avraham called Jerusalem – yireh – and what Malkitzedek called it – shalem. However, the heh of yireh is replaced by a vav: Yer - U - Shalayim. Jerusalem is the ir shechubra la yachdav, the city that King David says brings all the tribes of Israel together as one. The vav is the ultimate connector, the unifier, and we know without unity of the Jewish people we will never merit full redemption. Nir Barkat, Mayor of Jerusalem, spoke in shul after mussaf as well. (A secular Jew, he nevertheless spoke about Isaiah the Prophet roaming the streets of Yerushalayim, showing how the term “secular” is a misnomer. It seems that all Jews who live in Medinat Yisrael whether they are shomer Torah u’mitzvot or not have a connection to the land and to our ancient past that is unbreakable and part of their daily lives and rituals.) He pointed out that Jerusalem today is one of the top five high-tech cities in the world. Mobileye, a company that was bought by Intel for 15 billion dollars,
is pioneering the technology that drives driverless automobiles. The same technology is being used to develop “Ohr Kam,” a company attempting to provide sight to the blind. Mayor Barkat noted that 2/3 of all students in Jerusalem elementary schools today are Charedi. He told us that Machon Lev, a religious science college, has a program to train Charedi students who have had no elementary or high school education. In 15 months, the school prepares them to start college, studying for an engineering degree. This year, the school received 900 applications from Charedi applicants for the available 40 spots. If “Torah” is taken broadly to mean “Torah Ohr” – wisdom of all types – then indeed Ki miTzion teze Torah – wisdom is emanating from Jerusalem to the whole world to better humanity. Sunday night was the official State of Israel’s celebration of 50 years since Jerusalem’s reunification. Hundreds of thousands of Jews of all types gathered at Jaffa gate outside the walls of the Old City, sitting in the streets with their children and grandparents. The massive crowd included secular and Charedim, but the majority were of the religious Zionist persuasion. In attendance were Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Reuven Rivlin; both addressed the throngs of humanity with stirring and inspirational words. Projected on the walls of the Old City were images of Akeidas Yitzchak and of Yaakov’s ladder along with more modern images of the tanks of 1967 breaking through to the Kotel. One heard the voice of Colonel Motta Gur announcing, “Har Habayit beyadeinu – The Temple Mount is in our hands,” Rabbi Shlomo Goren blowing the shofar at the liberated Kotel, images of the crying paratroopers as they hugged and kissed the ancient holy stones. As I watched the spectacular fireworks and glorious light show projected on the walls and over the walls as we sat in the streets, I could not help but remember the evocative phrases of the prophet Zechariyah – od yeshvu zekenim uzkeinot birchovot Yerushalayim – “once again will sit elderly men and women in the streets of Jerusalem!” – and the words of King David – Al chomotaich Yerushalayim hifkadeti shomrim – “on the walls of Jerusalem, we have appointed watchmen.” And od yeshama beharei Yehudah u’vechuzhot Yerushalyim – “once again will be heard joyous song in the hills of Judah and the courtyards of Jerusalem.” We saw all of this with our own eyes, in our own time!
Israel The Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
On Monday night was the opening event of the World Mizrachi Mega-Mission. Close to 3000 people thronged the Binayanei Ha’uma to take part in what could only be termed an extravaganza. The three iconic paratroopers whose image was seen in all of the newspapers in 1967 gazing up at the Kotel were there 50 years later. People clamored to have their picture taken with them at a makeshift Kotel, trying to recapture the magic of that time so long ago. Governor Mike Huckabee among many notable speakers stood proudly with the Jewish people in requesting the move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. A concert given by Yaakov Shweckey delighted hundreds of seminary girls and yeshiva students from all around Israel in the audience. The ruach of joy and celebration for the miracles of 1967 was palpable in the crowd. Tuesday brought a full day Mizrachi conference held at the Ramada Renaissance Hotel. Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, former Chief Rabbi of the British Commonwealth, opened the sessions. He told how he used to study Torah with Prime Minister Tony Blair. On one occasion, Prime Minister Blair asked him why did the Creator devote only 34 verses to the creation of the universe but devoted over 600 verses to the building of the mishkan? Rabbi Sacks answered evocatively – it is easy for the Creator to build a home for human beings in the universe, but very hard for human beings to build a home for the Creator here on earth. I thought of the midrash where on arriving in heaven to receive the Torah, the angels confront Moshe Rabbeinu and ask Hashem, “What is a human being doing here in shamayim?” Hashem charges Moshe to give the angels an answer. He asks them, “Do you work six days that you need a Shabbos? Do you have a yetzer hara that you can be given a command of do not commit adultery?” Rabbi Sacks reminded us that 2017 is also the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration. He asked the audience to whom was the declaration sent? Of course to Lord Rothschild, he responded casually, remarking that the Knesset building which houses Israel’s Parliament was donated by the Rothschild family (among the other countless projects in Israel they sponsored such as the magnificent Supreme Court building and the planned National Library). Rabbi Sacks invoked a vort by the Nazir, the prized student of Rav Kook. In English, the metaphor for thoughts and ideas is sight: one has “foresight” or “insight.” In Judaism, the metaphor is hearing: Shema Yisrael – Hear O Israel – and Tashma of the Talmud – come and learn. The exception in Judaism is when discussing Jerusalem. It’s irya yayefeffia – the beautiful city in all the land. We say mareh Kohen on Yom Kippur to describe how beautiful is the sight of the Kohen Gadol as he emerges from the Kodesh Kadoshim. The visual in Judaism is linked inextricably
with Jerusalem and the Beit Hamikdash. On one of the afternoons, my wife and I wandered into the new Museum of Hebrew musical instruments. At the end of the tour you put on a virtual reality headset and you are suddenly transported into the Second Temple. The beauty is overwhelming. You look right and left and you are with the kohanim and levi’im. As you approach the mizbe’ach, you feel warm (your brain playing tricks); you “smell” the incense. You are taken up by a lift that was used by the priests to clean the Kodesh Kadoshim, and you enter the inner sanctum – the Holy of Holies. On the way up you see the city of Jerusalem as it stood 2000 thousand years ago. You are connected in a powerful way to our ancient and glorious past but using 21st century technology in modern day Jerusalem. One final thought from Rabbi Sacks particularly resonated with me. He told a group of 700 seminary girls later in the afternoon about the value of spiritual goods over material goods. If you start with one thousand dollars and give one hundred away you are left with less. If you give love and add friendship to your life, you end up with more, and not less. Rabbi Hershel Shechter, Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshiva University, gave a shiur on Har Habayit to over 700 yeshiva students in the morning. Michael Oren, the former ambassador of Israel to the U.S. and author of The Six Day War, recounted the military miracles of the war. He noted that the day after the successful prosecution of the war, the United States – who had not provided even one bullet to the State of Israel pre-1967 – now switched its strategic alliances and became a staunch ally. In fact, that very day, President Trump landed in Air Force One in Tel Aviv, arriving directly from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Former Ambassador Oren was asked by someone in the crowd why, if Israel has the truth behind it, it often loses the propaganda wars. He gave the following brilliant metaphor: He noted that a modern warplane in the air is a powerful tool of war, capable of immense destructive power. However, if destroyed on the ground (as 450 Egyptian and Syrian planes were in the first hour of the Six Day War, ultimately causing the great victory) it is a worthless piece of machinery. So too, if we keep the truth about Israel and its rightful place in the Middle East to ourselves and don’t share it with the outside world, if we “keep it on the ground as opposed to in the air,” it will also not be the powerful tool it could be. Oren spoke to the need for all of us to be vocal ambassadors of that truth to all with whom we come into contact. Tuesday night, the start of Yom Yerushalyim was observed at the Great Synagogue with a packed house and the chazzan and choir leading a Tefilah Chaggigit with Hallel (no brachah) and a major address by Chief Rabbi of the British Isles Ephraim Mirvis and Executive Director of the Major Conference Presidents Malcom
Honlein. The following morning we joined thousands of our fellow Jews at the Kotel for shacharit at 7:30 a.m. There was one minyan with one chazzan leading the immense crowd that filled the Kotel Plaza. When we reached the Amidah, a hushed intense silence fell over the Plaza. The Hallel was recited with a brachah enunciated by thousands with great kavana. It honestly felt like Yom Kippur with the intensity of feeling, recognizing that we were standing and giving thanks to Hashem at the very site that was liberated by those brave paratroopers. Rav Chaim Drukman said the Tefilah L’shlom Hamedina, and Chief Rabbi Lau recited the Acheinu Kol Beit Yisrael with tears. After davening, we went on a walking tour, re-creating the very steps of the paratroopers who liberated the Kotel walking all the way to the Lions Gate. We could see Har Habayit through many doors that opened to it from the Arab Quarter. We were told that almost 1000 Jews went to the mikvah and physically ascended the Har Habayit, the Temple Mount itself, that morning. (The previous day, a seminar was held between Rabbi Glick and Rabbi Tarragon, debating the halachic arguments that govern whether we should or should not ascend to the holy site. It was thrilling and emotionally uplifting just to be in proximity to our Holy Temple site of the distant past.) On the march to the Lions Gate, we asked, why didn’t the soldiers stop at the Har Habayit itself? Why did they run only to the Kotel, the retaining wall that surrounds Har Habayit? They understood that the Kotel represented 2000 years of Jewish yearning to return once again to Jerusalem. Later that afternoon, we gathered at The Beit Knesset Hagadol to hear Chief Rabbi of South Africa Warren Goldstein recount some of the miracles of the Six Day War. He noted that between 7 and 8 a.m., when the Israel Air Force were destroying the Egyptian planes on the ground, the Egyptian commander of the base was asleep. He had been sent entertainers the night before and had overslept because of it. The Jordanians had radar that actually detected the Israeli armada in the air. They attempted to alert the Egyptians but the radio code had been changed the previous night, and the Jordanian messages had not gotten through. “Zeh hayom asa hash em nagila venismaechah bo – This day Hashem has made – rejoice in it!” sang King David. The open miracles seen during the Six Day War were indeed wondrous. Yossi Klein Halevi, the noted author, spoke next. He pointed out the ways in which Jewish history changed because of the Six Day War. It returned Judaism to the Israeli narrative. From 1948 to 1967, the secular narrative had predominated. Achad Haam’s quest had been to build “a new Jew,” with a new “Israeli” culture, strong and muscular, exemplified by the kibbutz movement. Now, after 1967, there is talk of messianism, a return to the holy places, a resurgence of Torah with blossoming of
new yeshivot and seminaries by the hundreds. Today there is more Torah being learned in Israel than in all prior generations. Jews from all over the world began to visit on a regular basis after 1967, many sending their children to study for a year after high school. Many make aliyah, particularly to establish new communities in the biblical lands of Judea and Samaria. A massive worldwide ba’al teshuvah movement began in earnest, returning hundreds of thousands to long lost customs and rituals. All of these events were triggered by the victories in 1967. The Six Day War returned G-d to many Jews. Many survivors of the Shoah, broken in spirit as well as body, had lost their faith in the Almighty. After the miracles of 1967, many forgave G-d when they saw the mighty hand of Hashem and His miracles which saved the Jewish people from potential destruction and returned the lost holy places to our control. Why no forgiveness after 1948 and the establishment of the State? Perhaps it was too soon. Perhaps because we had lost the Old City of Jerusalem. It was pointed out that perhaps the Old City was lost in 1948 because of lack of unity among the nascent Jewish army then, which was comprised of the myriad fighting forces of the Hagana, the Palmach, The Irgun, and the Stern Gang. Perhaps the Kotel was won in 1967 because of unity – Hashomer Hatzair (the left wing communist and thoroughly secular youth movement) kibbutzniks side by side with their Bnei Akiva (the religious Zionist youth movement) compatriots in fighting their way, inch by inch, to the Kotel. Finally, the Six Day War returned a million Soviet refugees – eventually – to the State of Israel. Many of the early refuseniks point to their hearing of the lightning victories by the Israeli army in 1967 as the catalyst to their return to Judaism after the 70 years of bitter Soviet persecution. Wednesday afternoon, 4 p.m., as Yom Yerushalyim began to wind down, the celebration began in earnest. Hundreds of thousands of marchers carrying Israeli flags filled the streets like rivers and danced and sang they way towards the Kotel. Streaming through the Damascus Gate, they were an unstoppable force. If one has not observed this sight in person, it is hard to describe. I certainly have never seen this display of patriotism in the United States or perhaps in any country on earth. This connection between the people and their state is visible and moving. It truly makes one feel that one who does not live here misses out on this aspect of our religion – the nationhood attached to its land as Hashem has destined us to be. Next year will be the 70th anniversary of the founding of the modern State of Israel. Let’s all make plans to be there to celebrate!
The Parenting Week In News
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
Who Wants To Work Hard? Sara Teichman, Psy D
Dear Dr. T., My young teens don’t like to work hard! If something requires effort, they prefer not to learn or master the skill. They have tasted success when I pushed them to practice things such as riding a bike or jumping rope, but they give up so easily and have a low frustration tolerance level, which makes every lesson very difficult. This carries over to schoolwork as well. They would rather do poorly on a test than put in the effort needed to succeed. I’ve tried different motivational tactics which work in the short term, but how do I instill the desire to work hard? Thanks, Raizy Dear Raizy, It sounds like your children are part of the “whatever” generation, happy to coast along in a blissful haze of unconsciousness. They are not distressed or discouraged; nor do they suffer from low self-esteem and feel that they “can’t.” They simply, like so many of their cohort, just go with the flow. Today, many of our youth fit this profile – relaxed, chilled, little get-up-and-go. They often spend lots of time socializing, but don’t show much interest in anything else. They are unwilling to put in much effort and are satisfied with the mediocre. They do what they need to do, but the drive for success or perfection is absent. In fact, they are the polar opposite of the grade-obsessed teens who are there classmates. So, how did your children – and their friends – get this way? There are many possibilities here, but the most obvious answer is that children are a product of their environment. In our world today, we want things to be easy and fast. From our up-to-date appliances to our self-driving cars, from ordering online to the proliferation of kosher eateries and takeout all over the country, easy is the driving force. Want a college degree? Take some online courses. Want success in just about any endeavor – parenting, business, health? Just find the right segulah. The concept of working hard for desired results has been lost in our society. It is no exaggeration to say that never have so many had so much, but with so little expenditure of time and effort. I certainly don’t want to minimize the stress of childhood and adolescence – the peer issues, parent/child conflicts, and lack of choice. Yet, in many areas our children have it too easy. And when there is nothing to work for, where is the motivation? With grade inflation, most students get an
A or close to it. In most sports activities and summer camps, each participant gets one award or another. And, while every child deserves to be recognized and lauded, some are beginning to question the self-esteem movement which gave rise to the notion that every child is always a star. I am certainly not suggesting that we go back to an earlier, more competitive, era where only a lucky few were recognized, but I do wonder if we can come up with a more nuanced approach that encourages hard work and effort. In addition, our children have become
used to getting, not doing. Often, they are passive participants rather than active agents. They watch videos rather than make an effort to read a book. They go to theme parks where they are entertained, rather than to a park to play a family game of machanayim. When they are bored, they ask their moms to provide them with a project or – at the very least – to pick up a friend for some diversion. Changing the status quo requires an effort, but it can be done. Here are some ideas that may help. 1. Locate your children’s interest and help them pursue it. We are looking to develop passion here, which is the opposite of “whatever.” Whether it is stamps or stickers, birds or rabbits, we are looking to stimulate enthusiasm that can then generalize into other areas of your children’s life. 2. Encourage your children to take music lessons, if possible. Music lessons take practice, patience, and diligence. Your child must work hard and delay gratification to meet their goal. They will have to give up preferred activities to excel. Introducing the concept that hard work pays off is what’s important here. 3. Do long-term activities with your children. 500-piece puzzles, model airplanes, knitting/crocheting – all these activities encourage your children to work at something until it is done.
4. Model what you want to see. Make sure your children see you working at something, rather than see you flit from one thing to another. 5. Have (realistic) expectations of yourself and your children. We don’t want to pressure our children, but we do want to encourage them to meet certain benchmarks. Whether it is homework or chores, tests or school performances, our children need to work towards appropriate goals. Let’s initiate our children into a world where striving and effort makes all the difference. There is pleasure in a job well done and joy in accomplishment – especially when it has taken hard work to achieve them. The Book Nook: The Ultimate Guide to Raising Teens and Tweens provides readers with strategies for unlocking their child’s potential. The author, Douglas Haddad, Ph.D., believes that we are unlimited in what we – and our children – can achieve. The book provides ideas for raising children who are successful and self-disciplined. Sara Teichman, Psy D. is a psychotherapist in private practice in Los Angeles and Clinical Director of ETTA, L.A.’s largest Jewish agency for adults with special needs. To submit a question or comment, email DrT@jewishhomela.com.
JUNE 22, 2017 | The Jewish Home
The Week In News
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