Monday, September 20, 2010

Xtraordinary Xuberant Xtravaganza Xtended

The post Yom Kippur post

The September 15 Family First edition of the Mishpacha Magazine featured a poignant story written by Michal Eisikowitz about Rebbetzen Zehava Braunstein’s (A”H) first Yom Kippur Davening in a Yeshiva setting.

It’s remarkable how her first Xperience mirrored my own. Coming from a small Shul to a Yeshiva is quite a culture shock. She finished her Xtended Shmona Esrei, thinking she was the last one to finish, when in reality she was one of the first.

But what really Xasperated her was the fact that the time for fasting had Xpired, yet the Xplosive Neilah continued on for quite some time. And when the Tefilah finally completed, the Yeshiva burst out in song, led by the Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Yitzchak Hutner. Later, her husband Xplained to her that all the while the gates of Heaven are open, we beseech and plea, as we can yet Xcel, but once the gates close, we must have Bitachon that HaKadosh Baruch Hu has Xcepted our entreaties.

And if that’s the case, who wouldn’t sing? Who wouldn’t Xult?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Monday, September 13, 2010

Zissin Zogger Zingt Zmiros

Why did I title this Zingt and Zogt? Primarily because the song here is more or less chanted, not particularly "sung". [Also, I needed to post on the letter "Z" for my alphabet series]

One of the pleasures of older age is the joy of reminiscing on the music you were raised with. If one views my sidebar, there are quite a few Jewish music blogs linked - primarily for that reason.

As I went through elementary school, and was not yet conversant in Hebrew, the highlight of Davening was recognizing the various Pesukim that had been rendered to song. Rosh Chodesh was particularly appreciated, as much of Hallel's prose has been set to music by various singers, most noticeably, Shlomo Carlebach.

Anyone who has had to memorize portions of Tanach, such as Birkas Yaakov, Shiras Devorah and the like, knows that setting the text to song will alleviate much of the difficulty in memorization.

This past Shabbos, known as Shabbos Shuva, I heard one Rav extoll the virtue of a national anthem. Yes, the Jewish People have a national anthem, it is HAAZINU! This is the song that G-d told Moshe to teach to the nation.

Interestingly enough, I chanced upon this music video which aims to put the words of Haazinu to song. As mentioned above, it may not be so catchy, but it is a start. Anyone out there who can put the entire text to a popular tune will merit much Zechus.

Lawless Lyncher Lemrick Limerick

Pictured above Yankel Rosenbaum HYD

Nineteen years after he knifed a Hasidic student to death in the notorious Crown Heights race riots, Lemrick Nelson was stabbed in the head with an ice pick in Manhattan on Sunday...

Lemrick Nelson

There was a young man from Crown Heights
Who gravitated naturally to fights
Acquitted by Man
G-d had a different plan
and now others have violated HIS civil rights

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

NewYear Noise Noticeably Negligible

I once overheard some nurses marveling at the Jewish People, how on Rosh HaShana they are all in their synagogues praying, whereas the secular New Year is marked by drunkenness and gunshot wounds.

Whereas this post is more worthy of the Havdalah Blog, I dedicate this post to him and wish him a full Techiyas HaMeisim and A Kesiva VaChasima Tova to all my loyal readers.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Obedient Orthodox Official Orates (Yehuda Avner - The Prime Ministers)

One of the most fascinating epics in our time is the story of the rebirth of the State of Israel. Few are aware of the various competing Jewish armies that sprouted in Palestine prior to 1948, with the goal of removing the British Empire from ruling; thereby establishing the Modern Israel.

Most noteworthy in that long list of Freedom Fighters was Menachem Begin. In his books White Nights (about his time spent in Soviet Labor Camp) and The Revolt, he discusses his ideology and the narrative that led to that momentous event in 1948.

Fast forward to 2010, when one of Israel’s long-time statesmen has finally published his memoirs. Yehuda Avner moved to Palestine in 1947 and has had the ear of 4 of Israel’s Prime Ministers. His 700 page book is an eye opener as he takes us behind the scenes and sheds light on many of the most intimate decisions that have been made. The additional fact that Yehuda is a religious Jew makes the narrative all the more compelling. Mishpacha has featured a fine interview this past week. Also see his publisher and hear Yehuda on the radioNachum Segal Interview.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Venomous Vitriol Vaporates Veterans


Some of you may have noticed that my blogroll changes from time to time with newcomers added and veterans vaporized.

This past few weeks was a sad time in the J-Blogosphere as several character assassinations were perpetrated. While in the past I was more liberal in my selection of who graced that list, In these days of reflection I have decided to be vigilant and remove some virtual LH violators.
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