A Vision of Jewish Strength

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, “A Vision of Jewish Strength.”

 

With the rebirth of the State of Israel came the rebirth of the Jew. No longer the Jew cowering in the face of pogroms, Inquisition, Crusades, persecution, expulsions, and the Holocaust. The new Jew, as epitomized by the brave men and women of IDF, would be remade in the image of Moses who led the Jews out of Egyptian slavery, and King David who vanquished our enemies in our land, as well as the Jews of Purim and Hanukah, who fought ever so valiantly and to victory against the great empires of Persia and Greece or for us, whoever rises against us as the modern day equivalent.


But as important to the new Jew as our physical survival is that of our spiritual wellbeing. The persecution of Jews over thousands of years was not just a physical attack, as horrible as it was, but also a spiritual, religious, and cultural one, where Jews were prohibited from learning Torah, worshiping, and practicing as Jews. Thus, the second point of criticality in having the State of Israel is that it provides for Jewish sovereignty and ensures “the Jew as actor, determiner of his or her own destiny.” The Jewish people to truly thrive must be able to express themselves through their own language and history, religiously and culturally, and practically through their own leadership and decision-making to forge their own future.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Fire Stripes on Buggy

Thought this VW with the fire stripes was pretty cool. 


Black, white, and red.  


Definitely a standout!


The only thing better is the VW van with the psychedelic hippie colors and fantastical images for hope and love.  😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 

The Founding of Zionism

Zionism.png

I am reading the book Israel: “A Concise History of a Nation Reborn” by Daniel Gordis.

 

I’ve prepared this summary of the founding of Zionism, which I have briefly summarized above.


Hope this is helpful to those interested in the origins of the founding of the modern State of Israel. 


(Credit Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

Diamonds Under Pressure

So someone reminded me about stress and pressure in life. 


They said:

Pressure makes diamonds.


Diamonds are of the most beautiful and precious items in the world that we give to our loved ones as a symbol of our tremendous love for them. 


Diamonds are crystals made of pure carbon that formed under high temperature and extreme pressure. 


People too are often under extreme pressure in life from all sorts of demands and challenges whether it be work, family, threats, or illness.  


But just like from pressure comes diamonds, so too can pressure make us from rough and imperfect human beings into smooth, polished, and spectacular people. 


Rather than crack under pressure, we need to cope with it and let it strengthen us and shape us to be the gems we can be. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Problems Are Earthly

This was a saying that I really liked. 

“G-d is greater than you problem”

– Problems may seem like the end.


But G-d is the root of all BEGINNINGS!


– Problems may be overwhelming. 


But G-d is your HEAVENLY FATHER AND MOTHER!


– Problems may be big.


But G-d is INFINITE!


– Problems may be tough.


But G-d is ALL POWERFUL!


– Problems may be challenging.


But G-d has all the ANSWERS!


– Don’t let your problems get you down. 


See the bigger picture. 


Know you are not alone in the universe. 


Have faith that everything is in G-d’s hands and will be alright. 😉


(Source Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

Appreciate The Good

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel, called “Seeing the Good in Life.”

After synagogue services today, we sat at the Kiddish with a lovely couple, and the lady took the opportunity to go around the table and ask each person: “What good thing happened to you this week?” I really appreciated the idea of focusing on the good and the miracles we live through every day rather than the bad things. It was interesting though that people seemed to have trouble saying something really positive from their week. In truth, they seemed more enveloped in the problems of the times rather than the opportunities that each day brings.

But truly, there are so many good things that we can appreciate each and every day, and that inspires faith and hope for many more good things to come. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Beautiful Flowers

I just wanted to share these beautiful flowers. 


The colors and shapes are so amazing. 


It’s like you can see G-d’s amazing hand in creating these so intricately, delicately and with so much brilliance. 


There is comfort in His work and the life He has given.


I am grateful for each day to serve His purpose. 


Hope you enjoy the gorgeous flowers. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Awesome “Am Echad” by Ari Goldwag

When I am for myself

And you are not with me

What am I when I am separate?

For I am a Jew

I do not go alone

Just with you, my friend, hand in hand

One nation, one song

Come my brother and give me your hand

And we will rejoice and dance together

As one person, with one heart

I don’t want want to be alone,

Just forever brothers sitting together

To be a family

Is the secret of joy

For everything is better together

And we sing

All Israel are friends

We won’t give up on anyone

If we can successfully love

And sing ‘how pleasant..’

The Moshiach will come soon