Friday, July 21, 2006

Layers Upon Layers of History

We are now about a week into the period of the Jewish calendar called the "three weeks". This represents the time between the Hebrew dates of the 17th of Tammuz to the 9th of Av, where many tragedies happened to the Jewish people, including the destruction of both Temples in Jerusalem thousands of years ago. We remember this sad time by following mourning practices dictated by halacha (Jewish law), and on the ninth of Av we observe a full day fast (just like on Yom Kippur). These practices help us to remember our past, and urge us to repent for our sins and come closer to G-d.

My son is now on a week long trip to Poland, learning about the rich Jewish history of a Europe that was destroyed during World War II. He is visting the graves of famous righteous Jews - and of course visiting Auschwitz (today, Friday) - the "gravesite" of hundreds of thousands of simple Jews. We sent him on this trip to enrich his understanding of where his family came from (Europe to America before moving to Israel).

And today, like I have done for about a week already - I am writing about our Jewish present. Rockets falling both in the north and in the south of Israel, soldiers risking their lives to protect other Jews, and civilians trying their best to help each other out.

Ancient history, modern history, and the present. The places change, the names of the characters change - but the role of the Jew is the same. To remember our past, to repent our sins, and try to come closer to G-d.

Shabbat Shalom to all - I will G-d willing be back to blogging on Sunday morning (Israel time).

14 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You will never live in peace if you dont understand what is the reason for.
How can you occupy a whole nation?
N from Switzerland

3:34 PM, July 21, 2006  
Blogger Tracey said...

Hi,
I read your blog everyday. I tried to comment on an earlier post, but it didn't "take". Thank you for all the up to the minute news. I am concerned for your family and all the other bloggers I read who are from Israel. May G-d protect you and and your family and bring you comfort. Although I am not considered a Jew by rabbinic standards, I am of Jewish descent from my mother and my father's side of the family (lots of geneological research to find this out) and I have a deep affinity for those who are blessed to live in Israel even during times such as these.

4:03 PM, July 21, 2006  
Blogger jenifer said...

Thank you for continuing to give us the human side of these days. The media here (Seattle area) is sounding like Israel is the aggressor. I am reminded of this verse of scripture, "Thus says the Lord, Who gives the sun for light by day and the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night, Who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar; The Lord of hosts is His name: 'If this fixed order departs from before Me,' declares the Lord, 'The the offspring of Israel also will cease from being a nation before Me forever.'" I still see the sun outside! May the Lord my G-d protect you and yours.

6:43 PM, July 21, 2006  
Blogger Tracey said...

Jenifer! I'm just a little north of Seattle myself! How funny.

Oh, and I agree with your sentiments!

6:48 PM, July 21, 2006  
Blogger jvd said...

The difference is that these soldiers are not Americans, not Europeans, they are Israeli, they are mostly Jews. And many people in the west no longer consider Israel and its armed forces to be part of 'their' civilization. While an American soldier in Fallujah is blameless and absolved of all sin, because we think we know his heart, the Israel soldier is easily condemned for his 'savagery' because we have forgotten that they are like us, a honorable, democratic and freedom loving people like ourselves. Israelis don't hide behind women and children, they do not station their artillery amongst shops and homes. They man their tank and drive into the desert, shout out their challenge, and are willing to defend their own.

Shabbat shalom and mazel tov to you all, you are in our hearts and in our prayers.

6:30 AM, July 22, 2006  
Blogger Media Tycoon said...

Shabbat Shalom

7:09 AM, July 22, 2006  
Blogger westbankmama said...

Thank you all for your comments.

7:33 AM, July 23, 2006  
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