. Z-Trek lightweight sport sandal . . Kosher Casual Dynamic .

Sep 2, 2015

Billy Joel & Itzhak Perlman - The Downeaster 'Alexa' (MSG - March 9, 2015) (video)

what a great performance.. enjoy

this qualifies because they are both Jewish and one is Israeli... :-)




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Bennet talks about his vision as Education Minister (video)





the first thing he talks about his putting into effect his plan for smaller classes. it sounds great but he doesn't talk about what happens to the other kids - meaning, if classes are being dropped from say 35 kids to 28.9, where will those other 6.1 kids per class be going to school? they are going to have to build hundreds of more schools for this.

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the story of the Dakar (video)








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Brit Fighting ISIS: 'My hassidic graffiti brings light to the darkness (video)

here he is, in the flesh..





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Avraham Fried Kumzitz For Rav Kalman Goldschmid (video)








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Sep 1, 2015

Quote of the Day

whoever has to wait more than 2 weeks for an MRI should call me and I'll take care of it..

  -- Health Minister Yaakov Litzman, in regards to the MRI reforms he is implementing in order to cut drastically the waiting time for these exams

ok. what's your phone number

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The Holocaust Museum showers are a good educational tool

Last night I saw that the story about the cooling off mist showers installed at the entrance to the Auschwitz Museum had really picked up steam and had spread wildly. People were expressing surprise, shock, outrage, bewilderment and more, all negative reactions.

I had a thought. Something different, and something different than what I thought when I posted yesterday the initial image that had come out.

Perhaps it is a good thing.

I think the Holocaust education has mostly become a rite of passage for many by now. All the Holocaust Museums, along with the trips to Poland and March of the Living and whatnot. Every year we hear about a group of kids who somehow find the ability to act insensitively at this or that Holocaust memorial site. Many people feel the Holocaust memory has been overused and even abused - even Israeli public officials in recent years have been [a little bit of] talking about the obligatory visit for foreign dignitaries to Yad Vashem being overdone by now and perhaps not giving the right message about the foundation of the State of Israel...

Perhaps these mist showers are a good thing. While the museums and visits make most people reflect for a bit about the Holocaust, these mist showers seem to have really woken people up - shocked them - into thinking about the Holocaust.

Visitors are being quoted in news articles about being shocked, about how it reminded them of gas chambers, how it reminded them of prisoners being showered down and deloused.

While we really heard anything more than some sad sentiments after visits to the Holocaust Museum, maybe these mist showers shocking people is actually a good part of the holocaust education. Maybe it is the surprise and unexpected experience that is out of the ordinary and unexpected that really gets people thinking and understanding of what prisoners went through.


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Brother of Slain Youth Sings About His Pain (video)








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President Rivlin hosts diplomatic Rosh Hashanah Reception (video)








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Bennet surprised by his Hebrew language teacher on air (video)

this is very cool






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Who gave me the right to speak? (video)

and in this episode of "Monday and Thursday" Lipa tries to discredit the entire hassidic style of leadership...




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Ari Reich Hihiyu Leratzon )הןגקם(








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Aug 31, 2015

Shul as a social experience

In what is most likely an unscientific poll, Bangitout.com tried to find understand why people got o shul.. Here is their inforgraphic of the results of the poll:



I always say that shul needs to be more than just a place to daven and talk to God, and it needs to also be a social experience, where we socialize with our friends. Obviously talking during davening is not good and is prohibited in some parts of davening, and the "social aspect" of shul needs to not violate the sections of davening where one cannot talk. But shul, the place, the experience, needs to include some social aspect - a regular kiddush, talking and socializing before and after services, and at other times.

People are busy all the time with work and family and learning, and it is important for people to be able to socialize a bit with their friends. it keeps people in the community, and it keeps them mentally healthy. the one place most frum Jews get to see their friends is in shul, thus turning the shul into the one place where socializing must be  apart of the experience.


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The Reform bresaver who sp[prayed Na Nach graffiti in Syrian ISIS areas

This is strange. And that is one heck of a title!

A fellow named Timothy Wordsworth, from the United Kingdom, using the name Batn El Ghoul on Facebook, has posted some unusual pictures.

El Ghoul joined a group of Kurdish fighters in fighting against ISIS. While in Northern Syria they took over a school building that ISIS had been using as a prison.

El Ghoul is Jewish (he should stay safe and hopefully won't fall into captivity, especially now that this fact is known), and he posted a series of pictures of him in the school-prison - after he followed the great minhag of Breslav and graffitied the wall with Na Nach grafitti.

El Ghoul wrote on Facebook:
ISIS turned this school, 50 km from their capital in Al-Raqah in to a prison. I was part of horrible fighting in the area, my friends and I fended ISIS off when they tried to recapture the prison from the next village. ISIS left women's clothes and underwear on the floors of the cells, a lot of it, evidenice of un-holy crimes. I wrote Rabbi Nachman's name here to bring some light in to this black sink hole of torture, rape, murder and savage war. Amen.

Here are some of his pictures:











In another Facebook post, El Ghoul posted the following thoughts with another picture:

Peace to the whole world and a hand of reconciliation and new beginnings to all States.
All States have murdered people, in the past, the Islamic State have done it in the modern day but I would like to extend to them a hand of Peace and New Horizons. I would like to see the British and French 'Sykes- Picot Agreement' created States of Iraq and Syria dissolved and cut in to three new countries all spanning the old borders of Iraq and Syria. In the South of what was Iraq and Syria a new Shiite Muslim State, in the centre of what was Iraq and Syria a new Sunni Muslim State 'ISIS' and in the North of what was Iraq and Syria a new Kurdish State ' Kurdistan'.
For all sides to exist peacefully and for the Kurds to give up claims to territory in Turkey and Iran.
Everyone in the middle East should learn from Israel. Biblical Israel is a huge country but the modern State of Israel settles for a small strip of land and tries to live peacefully with neighbours.
If the Kurds, The Islamic State and the Shiites would, like Israel be willing to settle for less than their ancient dreams then at least everyone in the region could have their own beautiful little homeland instead of 'coveting his neighbours land' and each destroying the other. An end to war NOW.
God bless you all.



El Ghoul explained in an interview to Ynet that he always knew he was Jewish, and his grandfather was a Holocaust survivor. Being that he was raised as a Christian, as his father converted to Christianity, he did not qualify for the Law of Return and after spending some time in Israel he was eventually made to leave when his visa expired. While in Israel he somehow got connected to the Breslavers and took a liking to them. When back in the UK a friend convinced him to spend Uman in Rosh Hashana, which he says he has done now three times.

ElGhoul says he is a member of a Reform temple in London and plans to try to make aliyah again.

I don't know what is cooler - the daring graffiti he sprayed in Syria in an area under ISIS control or the fact that he is a Reform Breslaver!


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bike rentals coming to jerusalem..maybe

If you can't get the movie theaters shut down, at least get the bikes locked up. Then nobody can get to the movie theaters! two birds with one stone!

According to a report on Galei Tzahal news the Haredi askanim in Jerusalem are now fighting against the plan to open a cross-city bike rental program, similar to what exists in Tel Aviv (called Tel Ofen).

the program will have the bike rentals throughout downtown jerusalem and some of the surrounding neighborhoods.

the reason for the opposition to the plan is because the bike rentals are planning to be in operation on Shabbos just like during the week.

everything, no matter how big or small, has to be a fight.

I won't support chilul shabbos, but I have no interest in telling other people how to live, or that they have to live like me, or that they have to follow my understanding of Judaism and the laws..

I wonder if this program will be scrapped, or altered to not include shabbos, as part of the supposed compensation Barkat conceded to the Haredi community by enforcing the Shabbos laws on a number of stores after they lost on the movie theater fights...

I think the rentals and returns are all done via machines, and not through rental agents. If that is the case, I am not sure why its functioning on Shabbos disturbs anyone. People ride bikes, and drive cars, in Jerusalem on Shabbos already, and if people get these bikes by a mechanized system I am not sure why they should view this as being any different or more disturbing than the normal bike and car riding already happening.





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The rodef and the nirdaf

Rav Aviner was asked about the status of people who "harass" the Rabbanut and work to its demise. Rav Aviner's response was that it is very serious, and he quoted Rav Shapira who said such people have the din of a rodef.

While personally I am [relatively] confident Rav Aviner was employing hyperbole in his answer and did not actually mean such people should be killed, as is the common understanding people get when the term rodef is used, I do think it behooves our leaders, both rabbinic and otherwise, to tone down the level of speech.

The term rodef is highly charged nowadays and we need to take extra care to not give people an excuse to act, especially in the name of the Torah, in a violent manner.

And really? Is a person really a rodef every time he does something you don't like? Have we not overused the rodef title by a lot?

And nothing to do specifically with Rav Aviner, as I have wondered about this in the past, if you use the term and call someone a "rodef" when he isn't one, using hyperbole or whatever, does that person then become a nirdaf and the speaker become the rodef?


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