Life Equated With Hate

Does anyone get this sign from the Pro-Life rally last week?

Pro-Life is Pro-Hate

But equating Pro-Life with hate doesn’t add up.

It actually seems the opposite that if you want to sanctify and protect life that you are loving people, not hating. 

Sometimes to make a point, people will just say anything. 

It’s related to “gaslighting” where they want to manipulate you into questioning your own beliefs, values, and sanity.

Perhaps, throwing around terms like hate just dilutes the real meaning of it similar to making other false accusations against people. 

We need to argue the issues, and not attack each other. 😉

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Listen, Empathize, Give A Little

A colleague was talking to me about negotiating and working with others:


He said something I liked: 


Listen, empathize, and give a little. 


Yes, we each have our beliefs and positions on things.


But we don’t live in a vacuum.


Other people have their own views, sensitivities, and wants. 


We have to get along so we can work together, and get things done. 


It starts by listening–not just hearing, but really listening to what the other person is saying. 


But that’s not really enough. 


To really understand the other person, we have to try to empathize with what they are feeling–we need to try to walk in their shoes even if just for a moment. 


But that also isn’t enough. 


We can’t have it all our way–we need to give a little to get a little. 


No one can have everything and have a good relationship like that. 


We need to compromise–as long as it’s not on things of integrity, conviction, or G-d. 


Everything else we have to listen, empathize, and give a little.  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Purim Prayer

Religions.jpeg

Tonight is Purim and it’s a holiday of joy and celebration. 


It commemorates when the Jews where saved from Destruction by the Persian Empire and the evil Haman as told in the Megillah Esther.


So on Purim, we dress up and make fun and it this vein of humor that I post this sign about religions of the world. 


– Taoism:  Sh*t happens.


– Buddhism: If sh*t happens, it really isn’t sh*t.


– Hinduism: This sh*t has happened before.


– Islam: If sh*t happens, it is the will of Allah. 


– Catholicism: Sh*t happens because you deserve it.


– Protestantism: Work harder or sh*t will happen.


– Judaism: Why does this sh*t always happen to us?


It’s funny how each religion of the world has a perspective on life. 


Are we all so really different?  


Maybe we have more in common than not.


The hope and prayer is that the true evil Hamans out there utterly perish, and that for all good and decent people–whatever your religion and perspective in this world–may we all get along as loving brothers and sisters, and let there be true peace for all of us! 😉


(Source Photo: here with attribution to RamblingsDC)

Love The Flags

israel-flag

So while we were in Florida, we went into one of the many art galleries. 


And on the wall was this painting of the Israeli Flag with the Star of David and inside was a beautiful red heart. 


Out of curiosity, I inquired how much this was and the lady says, “Oh, that is $55,000!”


While we were impressed with the painting of the Israeli flag and what it represents as one of America’s greatest allies and friends, we must’ve looked really puzzled at the price, because the lady goes, “Well, of course it’s worth it!  It’s by Peter Max, the most famous artist in the world.”


My wife and I nodded and left the store, and immediately were asking each other why every gallery says with a straight face that the artist that they represent is the “most famous in the world.”


Anyway, at the same time this was going on we were following in the news about the controversy with people burning the American flag and the question of whether this is just an expression of free speech or something more that should be prohibited as disrespectful and unpatriotic or even traitorous to the country. 


In that respect, the flag that represents our values, beliefs, and patriotism is valuable beyond pure artistic sense or money, it is who we are and what we love. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

What does 600613 Spell?

As per my previous blogs on the mystical number 613 (corresponding to the G-d’s commandments in the Torah), today we have a technological twist.



Recently, Google paid an award to a former employee of $6,006.13.



The amount is special in two ways as you can see:



First of all, Google saw that, if you look closely, this number spells Google. 



Secondly, it has the number mystical number 613 in it. 



613 is a winner and so is Google, which is now the the most valuable company in the U.S. (worth more than Apple) at $554 billion!



If you use simple Gematria, where each letter is a number (A=1, B=2, C=3…Z=26), then Guess what other successful technology companies has the mystical 613 in their names:





















(Also, see which amazing technology company has 613 twice in their name!)


In contrast, some ailing technology companies that do not have 613:


– Yahoo


– Twitter


– LinkedIn


613 is a reminder of G-d’s benevolence to mankind in that he G-d us the commandments as a roadmap to live by.  613 is a symbol of faith in G-d almighty and in his holy Torah (Bible). 


For those that keep His charge, we believe that Hashem will bless them and keep them. 


Indeed, technology used for the good of mankind is a blessing to us all.  😉


(Source Graphics: Andy and Dossy Blumenthal)

Taking The Spin Off Things

Spin

Ok, so here is what I learned over the years about communication…


Question everything, believe nothing (except in G-d).


It’s not just that a lot of people out there are full of sh*t–yes, that is true too. 


But also that many powerful people are experts at manipulation and spin. 


Take just some recent some examples:


– We didn’t just give America and Israel-hating “suicidal, apocalypse-seeking” Iran a clear path to the bomb and in just half a generations’ time (along with hundreds of billions to continue funding global terror and a lifting of the weapons and ballistic missile embargo), instead we have a “comprehensive long term deal with Iran that will prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”


– With the hackers who not only showed how to take wireless control of a moving Jeep Cherokee, but also released information on how to do it, they didn’t put another tool in the toolkit of the cyber attackers and terrorists out there, instead “they are bringing atttention to an issue auto makers have for too long ignored.


Could go on and on to issue after issue…


The point is that from a young age we are primed to respect, listen, and automatically believe figures of authority and experts–when our parents, teachers, spiritual leaders or a policeman or fireman says something, we naturally believe them, who they are, and in them. 


This is what politicians and executives and other people in power prey on–that we will believe them over everyone else or any other facts to the contrary. They have the title, the uniform, the badge, or whatever, and so they must be good, honest, and trustworthy.


However, good parents and teachers make sure to tell children not just to take people or what they say at face value. For example, if someone comes to the door and says they are delivering a package, don’t just open the door.  Look through the peephole, ask for identification, or have them come with a neighbor, etc. 


I remember in the very first movie of “Death Wish” with Charles Bronson, where his wife and daughter answer the door expecting a simple delivery from the supermarket that they were just at and instead they get a brutal gang that murders the wife and rapes the daughter. 


Similarly, in cases where women get pulled over, attacked, and raped by someone with flashing lights, siren, and even a fake uniform/badge–even as you believe you are obeying the law, others are taking advantage and fooling you.


As comforting as our beliefs are and perhaps even that we just want to believe–things often are not as they appear or what we want or expect them to be–what goes on behind the scenes and the spin that comes out in front are designed to intoxicate the masses. 😉


(Source Photo: here with attribution to Kristian Niemi)

Return Of The Hare Krishna

Hare Krisna 1 Hare Krisna 2
I hadn’t heard the rhythmic chanting of the Hare Krishna since my days in New York City probably 20 plus years ago. 



Today, we see them on the streets of downtown Silver Spring, MD singing their Hindu mantra…again and again. 



The boys sitting on the rent-a-bikes are banging the drums to the chanting across from them. 



As they chant, they implore people to take their literature and chant along with them. 



Whether you see them as a cult or just practitioners of another faith…these people seem mesmerized by their own chanting “meditation”, which was a steady beat but also had no meaning whatsoever to me.



As a kid, we were told and would steer clear of anything that smelled of Hare Krishna, Jews for Jesus, or others trying to pluck away at the souls of our youth. 



While Jews have wonderful people like Chabad who try to bring Jews closer to Judaism, we really don’t proselytize others…it’s not our belief and is more of a live and let live attitude for all. 



I never quite understood why some feel literally a mission or compulsion to convert others to their beliefs, instead of practicing what they believe themselves, being devout and good people, and letting their actions speak for themselves and inspire others, if truly deserving.



There really is no need to stand on street corners with megaphones or at the auto-da-fe stroking flames of burning flesh to get others to your way of thinking.


In my opinion, honest belief and genuine faith is not gotten through yelling the loudest, standing the longest, or even threatening or menacing others. 



Be sincere and good, and let your actions speak for themselves. 😉



(Source Photos: Andy Blumenthal)