Thursday, December 27, 2018

Xtian New Testament in Yiddish

In the late 19th and early 20th century Protestant Christians made a concerted effort to convert American Jews. Key to this mission was translating the New Testament into Yiddish, the community’s lingua franca. But for Henry Einspruch, the author of the first complete Yiddish translation, the motivation was as much literary as religious. Einspruch, a Jewish-born Polish convert who eventually became a Protestant minister, was a writer and editor steeped in Yiddish literature.
Einspruch’s translation, not published until 1941, gives Der Bris Khodeshe a distinctive Jewish flavor. At the Last Supper, Jesus and his disciples munch on matzah and, in the Book of Revelation, seven shofars are blown instead of seven horns. Even the volume’s illustrations seem designed to appeal to Jews. In one, an old man with a long white beard, a tallit, and a yarmulke reads a book by candlelight. The image places the New Testament in the familiar context of scholars studying ancient texts late into the night.
Der Bris Khodeshe was appreciated in the Yiddish literary world despite its author’s mission. Meylekh Ravitsh, a Yiddish writer in Mexico City, praised the translation and encouraged Jews to read it. “The New Testament [is] one of the most important books in the world. How, then, can we Jews afford to ignore it?” And with details like matzah-munching disciples and shofars ringing in the air, why would they want to?

Sunday, August 5, 2018

LGBT Pride Participants - LISTEN WELL

Siddur Avodos Yisrael lists psalms to recite each Sabbath of the year, corresponding to the Torah readings. How fitting that Tehillim 65 was this past Shabbat's Parsha Eikev reading. It came on the hills of the LGBT pride parade in the holy city of Jerusalem! Shame on the LGBT community - as well as the instigators.

Artscroll heads the chapter with the following: A prayer for the time when people will realize the futility of rebelling against G-d, and will completely accept His mastery.

And the verses that stood out for me when I read it.....

5 I said to the perverse, "Do not behave perversely," and to the wicked, "Do not raise the horn.
 ה אָמַ֣רְתִּי לַ֖הֽוֹלְלִים אַל־תָּהֹ֑לּוּ וְ֜לָֽרְשָׁעִ֗ים אַל־תָּרִ֥ימוּ קָֽרֶן
6 Do not raise your horn on high, [do not] speak with [your] fat neck.ואַל־תָּרִ֣ימוּ לַמָּר֣וֹם קַרְנְכֶ֑ם תְּדַבְּר֖וּ בְצַוָּ֣אר עָתָֽק:

Artscroll translates:
I said to the unruly revelers, be not unruly; and to the wicked, raise not your pride. Raise not heavenward your pride, with a haughty neck nor speak insolence.
Teshuva is in order. I would very much like to see my Jewish brothers and sisters written in the Book of Life.As of now, they are the walking dead. The month of Elul begins in a few days. Please do teshuva!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

We Protest the Gay Parade in Our Holy City of Jerusalem

Posted 7:00 AM Israel Time


We, the undersigned Jewish bloggers, hereby protest – in the strongest terms possible – the parading and glorification of an “alternative lifestyle”, one that is classified in the Holy Torah as an abomination, especially through the streets of the holy city of Jerusalem. 

The Torah demands that we live by a certain code of sexual morality, and as such, we are forbidden from certain relationships that a moral society cannot tolerate.  These include incest, adultery, bestiality, and homosexuality.  All these are considered grave sins in Judaism and incur the punishment of Karet, or excision from the Jewish people.  An act performed with witnesses during the time of the Sanhedrin would incur an even worse consequence – namely, capital punishment. 

And this is only on an individual level.  When the sin is committed on a societal level, it is much worse.  The Torah and our sages record how these acts were catalysts for both the Great Flood during Noah’s lifetime and the destruction of the Five Cities of the Plain.

As such, we consider any attempt to glorify acts that the Torah vehemently forbids by parading any such lifestyle through the streets with horror and utter disdain.  Such parades in New York and San Francisco would be bad enough, but through the streets of the Holy Land of Israel is a thousand-fold worse.  The Torah specifically warns us not to act in sexually abominable ways lest we be vomited out of the land.  One can only imagine how it is viewed in Heaven when people brazenly display to G-d how abominable one can be.  And if the Land of Israel cannot tolerate such acts of utter gall, all the more so in the holy city of Jerusalem, a city that is overwhelmingly religious. 

We in no way wish to minimize the struggles in temptation some may have in this area and view with positivity those who have such inclinations and bravely overcome them.  But those are not the people irreverently parading through the streets with rainbow flags, who show utter contempt for the Holy Torah and all we hold dear.

We therefore vehemently protest the “Pride” Parade in Jerusalem and everywhere else in the world where they may occur.  We hope and pray that those who take part in such parades do a complete Teshuva for their actions, and may we see a rebuilt Jerusalem, speedily in our days, Amen.

(in alphabetical order)

CDG from Hava HaAharona

Cosmic X from Cosmic X in Jerusalem

Dassie from Myrtle Rising

Devash from Tomer Devorah

Dov Bar Leib from End of Days

Goldie ZP from Geula613

Rabbi Lazer Brody from Lazer Beams

Yaak from Yeranen Yaakov

Yechezkel Hirshman from Achas L'Maala V'Sheva L'Matta

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Why I Need a Rebbe

I post the following because a fellow geula blogger wrote the following in her comments to a post she wrote. "Chabbad and Breslov are the most like xtianity." "I'm no expert on Hasidism, but the emphasis on a rebbe as a central figure in the movement makes it vulnerable. It depends on what people do with it, how it develops. I am a great admirer of Gur Hasidut, but the difference between most groups and the two most problematic are that they have a current rebbe to guide them and are not fixated on a dead one." 1) The Rebbe is not dead, he is alive through his talmidim. 2) to compare the Chabad's Rebbe and the Breslov Rebbe's teachings as alike to xtianity is falsehood. Shame on this blogger. She should watch this video and do teshuva.

What Exactly Is a Rebbe?

I post the following because a fellow geula blogger wrote the following in her comments to a post she wrote. "Chabbad and Breslov are the most like xtianity."  "I'm no expert on Hasidism, but the emphasis on a rebbe as a central figure in the movement makes it vulnerable. It depends on what people do with it, how it develops. I am a great admirer of Gur Hasidut, but the difference between most groups and the two most problematic are that they have a current rebbe to guide them and are not fixated on a dead one."

1) The Rebbe is not dead, he is alive through his talmidim. 2) to compare the Chabad's Rebbe and the Breslov Rebbe's teachings as alike to xtianity is falsrhood. Shame on this blogger. She should watch the video Why Do I Need a Rebbe and do teshuva. 

Editor's note: The following is a free translation of a letter written by the Rebbe several months after the passing of his father-in-law and predecessor, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn of Lubavitch. The letter was printed as an introduction to a booklet of maamarim (discourses of Chassidic teaching) by Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak.1 

   By the Grace of G‑d 3 Tammuz, 5710 [June 18, 1950] Brooklyn, N.Y. 

  Greeting and Blessing: Many seek and propose to explain the qualities and greatness of Chabad Rebbes in general, and, in particular, the Rebbe of our generation, my father-in-law, hareini kaparat mishkavo,2 in various areas: as a man of self-sacrifice, Torah genius, lofty character, prophetic ability, miracle-worker, etc., etc. 

 These qualities are further magnified when viewed in the light of Chassidic teaching, which explains what is true self-sacrifice, true Torah genius, and so on. 

 And yet, none of this addresses the primary quality of the Rebbe—a quality which is not only primary in essence, but which is most important to us, his chassidim and followers, namely: the fact that he is a nassi, and particularly a Chabad nassi. 

 A nassi, broadly defined, is a "head of the multitudes of Israel."3 He is their "head" and "mind," their source of life and vitality. Through their attachment to him, they are bound and united with their source on high. 

 There are several types of nesi'im: those who supply their constituents with "internalized" nurture,4 and those whose nurture is of a more "encompassing" nature.5 This is further divisible into the particulars of whether they impart the teaching of the "revealed" part of Torah, its mystical secrets, or both; whether they offer guidance in the service of G‑d and the ways of Chassidism; whether they draw down material provision; and so on. 

 There are also nesi'im who are channels in several of these areas, or even in all of them. 

  Such was the nature of the leadership of the nesi'im of Chabad, from the Alter Rebbe6 to, and including, my father-in-law, who embraced all these categories and areas: they nurtured their chassidim in both the "internal" and the "encompassing" qualities of their souls; in Torah, divine service and good deeds; in spirit and in body. Thus, their bond with those connected with them was in all 613 limbs and organs of their souls and bodies. Each and every one of us must know—that is, dwell upon and implant the awareness in his or her mind—that the Rebbe is our nassi and head: that he is the source and channel for all our material and spiritual needs, and that it is through our bond with him (and he has already instructed us in his letters how and by what means this is achieved) that we are bound and united with our source, and the source of our source, up to our ultimate source on high.

1. June 18, 1950. The letter is printed in Sefer HaMaamarim 5710, p. 254 and in Igrot Kodesh, vol III, p. 331-332.
2. "May I be the atonement of his rest"--traditionally added to the mention of one's parent or teacher within a year of his or her passing.
3. Tanya, ch. 2.
4. E.g., developing their minds and hearts.
5. E.g., stimulating their faith.
6. The founder of Chabad Chassidism, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi (1745-1812).

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Rebuilding the Temple -

Do you cry out only because you are told to do so? / The Rogatchover Gaon writes that according to Jewish law the Temples’s destruction is an ongoing event. It’s not that the Temple was destroyed 2,000 years ago—and we are mourning the events of the three weeks, and Tisha B’av, and praying every day for the Redemption, for HaShem to reverse an event that occurred over 1,900 years ago. 

No! The destruction of the Temple takes place every single day! - - so one can understand how much one should cry out for the exile to end, every single day. The Rogatchover proves this from a passage in the Jerusalem Talmud. “If the Temple was not rebuilt in your lifetime, it’s as if it were destroyed in your lifetime. Over 1,900 years have passed…But if today, Thursday, has passed, and the Evening Prayers are also over, yet the temple is still not rebuilt, a Jew should know that he’s expected to cry out for redemption as if he experienced the Temple’s destruction this very day

As to the fact that we’re gathered here to celebrate a joyous occasion…Jews are always expected to live with contradictions. HaShem forced your soul to descend into your body, as the Mishna states: “You were born against your will.” At the same time, a Jew is expected to joyously fulfill the commandment to guard his physical welfare; to love HaShem so much that you fell forced to remain in this body, and a the same time, to joyfully cling to physical life in the body, not allowing your soul to expire in Divine ecstasy… So too, if Jews cried out yesterday for the exile to end and they cried out the day before yesterday - - and all the days before that - -and nevertheless, the Temple is again being destroyed today it is obvious what kind of outcry is in order now for the exile to end! This isn’t some kind of sermonIt’s an explicit ruling in Torah that if one does not merit for the Temple to be rebuilt in his lifetime, then it’s as if he caused the exact opposite…. Imagine a Jew watching the Temple go down in flames at this very moment - - even a Jew with the hardest heart of stone, if he sees the Temple being destroyed before his very eyes, he’d turn the world over. Says the Torah of Truth and the Torah of Life, HaShem’s instruction for life, Turn the world over - - today. At the same time, joyously celebrate 12-13 Tammuz, draw happiness and joy to last you the entire year in order to “serve HaShem with joy and a glad heart,” and celebrate more intensely with each passing year… But there’s no contradiction - - the more a Jew increases in the joy of Torah and the joy of mitzvos, the more that joy will burn up the last vestiges of exile, and reveal Godliness within the exile itself. 

When you reveal the “Alef,” HaShem’s Unity, within the exile itself, then “golah - - exile” itself transforms into “geulah - - redemption.” That itself brings the redemption, completely and tangibly, through our righteous Moshiach, may it be speedily in our days. And this obligation is upon HaShem - - every single day anew. Aside from His 1,900-year-long obligation to rebuild the Temple since its destruction, HaShem also has the obligation each and every day anew, to hear our prayers “Rebuild Your House as it was! And more so greater than it was HaShem will build it with His very own hands, making it an eternal home. May it be speedily and immediately, and with joy and gladness. L'Chaim!