A Half Truth

So everyone is always playing with the truth. 

They don’t want people to really know the truth, but they don’t want to call it a real lie.

Hence the saying:

“It’s just a white lie!”

A white lie is usually taken as in “pure” or “righteous”–in other words, there is a good reason (like to prevent someone from getting hurt) for lying, .

Yes, sure there is (LOL).

Sometimes people lie to themselves:

“What you don’t know can’t harm you!”

Most often, people tell what they call half truths.

This is commonly referred to as:

“Beating around the bush!”

However, don’t tell anyone:

A half truth is a lie!

And just like beating around the bush arouses the birds to fly and get caught in a net–that’s what telling half truths do too. 

Why is it so hard to tell the whole truth, because that would make most people look pretty bad. 

If people only knew.

But someday, of course, they will. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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Touched By An Angel

Angel.jpeg

So the other night I dreamed.


And in the dream, an angel came to me and was over me as I lay down. 


The angel had it’s finger pointing at my head in the right temple area. 


The finger was all white and while I could feel it having a solid state, it was able to pass in a non-solid state, transparently through the surface and slightly into my head. 


I felt pressure applied there and almost like a healing feeling.


The angel was pure white–like a holy marble, but not like marble. 


It was majestic, slender, and tall.


It had white feathery wings that were taller than it’s body. 


It’s face was like an adult, but also like a child–it was both. 


Its feet were like a smooth and solid arch, and did not have toes.


The angel hovered over my upper body, head area, and was looking at me and touching my right temple–with care and love. 


It was absolutely clear to me that the angel visiting me was my dear, dear father. 


Although, I woke with a slight headache, I felt happy and at great peace by his visit.


The experience was caring, loving, holy and I was uplifted by it. 


With his unbelievably pure and giving heart, it was beautiful to see my father as an angel–this was him all along. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Got To Be A Caveman

Andy At Crystal Grottoes Caverns
So this was an awesome caveman experience.



We had seen a sign a number of weeks ago from the highway for Crystal Grottoes Caverns.



Today, we decided to try it out, and made the trip to Boonsboro!



I wasn’t expecting much, since I had heard a lot about Luray Caverns in Virginia, but never anything about this one in Maryland. 



Well we were really pleasantly surprised.



Half an hour tour underground through a literal maze of caves filled with the densest formation of stalactites (hanging from the ceiling) and stalagmites (springing from the floor). 



These things grow only like a centimeter every 150 years, so when we saw literally countless that were meters long, we were really looking at thousands of years history. 



Incredibly, these beautiful mineral rock formations come into being from water seeping through the limestone a drop at a time, and we saw rocks sparkling with crystals, and in shapes ranging from hands to turtles and much more. 



The guide even showed us a special place (almost like a chamber) where a number of couples had gotten married down there…sort of an appropriate place to tie the knot ever so tight in those caves. 



It was also nice that we had our own tour guide for this thing, and that made this all the more interesting to ask questions and really get to see everything. 



At one point, the guide suddenly shut the electricity in the caves, and we were left in complete and utter darkness…it was so surreal and sort of scary, but peaceful to be in a complete void. 



The guide explained that if you were down in the blackness for 6 or 7 months, you would actually go blind from not using your eyes whatsoever. 



Overall, it’s sort of a oxymoron, but we just felt so alive down there…breathing this super pure and clean oxygen (no real carbon dioxide down there, because basically nothing grows there) and the cave is this marvelous perfect 54 degrees all year round.



The owner is third generation and you can tell that he truly loves owning this precious jewel of a cavern, and he meticulously cares for it and continues to expand and improve the spectacle. 



However, from a business perspective, I definitely don’t think he has took advantage or capitalized on this priceless property.



There were basically no concessions (except that you could buy some samples of the rock from a single display case under the front counter), and there was no cross-selling of t-shirts, pins, posters, hay rides, animal petting, hiking, boating, or food stands!



We took some (as in like 20) brochures from the owner on the way out to give out at Rebecca’s school (especially, since she is taking Environmental Science this year), but this guy otherwise doesn’t seem to even advertise. 



This place was a hidden underground gem…50 feet down underground, but no Starbucks. 😉

Ten Commandments – Good News, Bad News

Ten Commandments - Good News, Bad News

This was a funny joke told over in the Wall Street Journal today:

When Moses was coming down from Har Sinai, he said to the people of Israel, “I have good news and bad news.”

“The good news is I kept him down to ten.”

“The bad news is adultery stays!”

Aside from the joke, the editorial posited why there are so many Jewish comedians–from Jackie Mason to Joan Rivers, and from Jack Benny to Jerry Seinfeld?

But maybe it should’ve asked, why do all the Jewish Comedians names seem to start with a J.

Thinking this through a little more, I realized so many other Jewish comedians out there–Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller, Billy Crystal, Chelsea Handler, Gene Wilder, George Burns, Jack Black, Larry Fine (from the Three Stooges), Mel Brooks, Rodney Dangerfield, Seth Rogen, The Marx Brothers, Woody Allen, and so many more.

So what is it that makes the Jewish people so funny?

Ms. Wisse, the author postulates that maybe it has to do with the dichotomy of the Jewish people being historically chosen to receive the Torah and hopefully serve as good examples of G-d’s law and morality while at the same time “being targeted by some of the world’s most determined aggressors”–Oy vey! and this list is even longer than that of the comedians!

So as Ms. Wisse points out, the Jewish people are on one hand “exalted” by G-d, but attacked by the wicked among nations.

I guess that would give just about anybody a severe complex–where do I find this one in the DSM?

Up, down, rewarded, punished, chosen, reviled–can make anyone’s head spin–maybe that is why we wear Kippot (head coverings)–I was always taught it was to remember that G-d is above us and always watching and guiding us, but maybe it’s also to help us keep our heads on straight with all the mixed messages we get in the world.

People mistake what “chosen” means–they think maybe Jews think they’re better than others, but this is a mischaracterization.

I learned in Yeshiva–that chosen means we have a great burden to bear in fulfilling G-d commandments–when we do it well, things are good, but when we fail, we learn the hard way.

It’s good to be Jewish–and it would be even better, if Jews accepted themselves and each other.

None of us are perfect–some of us are more imperfect than others.

But we are still brothers and sisters.

There is a Torah, but even the most righteous among us, don’t do everything right–is anyone free from sin?

I always believed that religion is our guidepost, but as we are taught “every person is a world unto themselves” and that there is room for all of us to serve Hashem.

We each have to find the spark within and fulfill Hashem’s destiny that he has for each of us–we all have what we can give and we should do it with a pure heart. 😉

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Home Videos)

Amazing 60’s VW Van

Band_kamp

Driving toward Rockville, I saw this incredible 60’s VW van with all the flaming rainbow designs for peace, love, and rock & roll.

It was parked on top of this bright orange and blue garage–not sure how it got up there.

I asked my wife to quickly snap a photo as we went by, and she was successful.

While I wasn’t even born yet, when this van would’ve been all the rage, I can still feel reminiscent for the times–when things seemed so much simpler and in a way, purer.

In my mind, it was a time when people rallied around democracy, freedom, human rights, peace and diversity.

While they didn’t know from personal computers, smartphones, and the Internet, people were full of hopes and dreams–perhaps that what ushered in all the great technology that soon followed.

(Source photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)