Showing posts with label G-d. Show all posts
Showing posts with label G-d. Show all posts

June 22, 2021

Bicycle and Flowers

Why do flowers and bicycles go so well together?

Either way a beautiful display! 

G-d has made such an amazing world for us. 

And all our senses get to enjoy it. 

If you let yourself stop and experience it, your heart and soul can be uplifted with the joy of it all!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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June 5, 2021

G-d’s Redemption Is A Promise

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "G-d's Redemption Is A Promise."

The Jewish people’s exile was only temporary and that is what G-d promised us. But the anti-Semites of the world somehow want to make us believe that G-d has forsaken the Jew permanently, and thus they chant “Free, Free Palestine!” and call the Jews occupiers.
In short, the worst punishment is not just being hurt, but also feeling exiled, abandoned, and hopeless. This is where we must look up to the Heavens for G-d’s salvation, and work to merit His bringing us back towards His divine presence. As with anyone who has experienced personal “exile” and suffering in life, we know those are the darkest of days when G-d’s face is hidden from us, and we may feel alone and abandoned. But G-d is always there, waiting for us to seek Him out and return to Him, and that is when we can finally not only see the light at the end of the darkest of tunnels, but also when we can feel G-d reach out to us and bring us back home again to Him.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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May 25, 2021

Tefillin and Talit Bag

This is my new Tefillin and Talit bag for daily morning prayers. 

It even has a beautiful siddur (prayer book) inside and my Hebrew name on the outside. 

I just wanted to thank my wonderful family for this and especially, my son-in-law, Itzchak for ordering this for me from Israel. 

I love it, and thank you guys so much! 

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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May 17, 2021

How Hashem Was Found

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "How Hashem Was Found."
This disabled man was then charged with DUI and spent the next 8 1/2 years in prison. But the Rabbi of the prison helped him to find G-d in all this suffering and slowly he returned to his Jewish roots. Now, for the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, commemorating the giving of the Torah to all the Jewish people, he was in synagogue, holding his prayer book and receiving the Ten Commandments with the rest of the congregants.

If this man who's body was crushed, leg lost, and who spent so many years in prison could find the good and his way back to Hashem, then there is hope for all of us who can learn, grow, and turn our lives around as well. G-d is there in the darkness and in the light, and we have to find Him and believe.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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May 8, 2021

Shabbat: Time Vs. Space

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called "Shabbat: Time Vs. Space."

When we choose to keep the Sabbath, we mark a day of the week in time, where we reject all the worldly pursuits of space and materialism in lieu of recognizing that there is a higher power, G-d Almighty, and that as Ahmari says 'everything else is ephemeral and passes away with time.'

What we do to make things holy in time rules over what we do purely physically in space, that nothing but G-d is timeless, and everything material reverts back to its origins and is gone from time as if it never even was. In the end, we need to live our lives with the forethought that the spirit goes to the everlasting afterlife, but the body goes to the physical grave.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 11, 2021

Never A Doubt: Not An Inch


 Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Never A Doubt: Not An Inch."

In an effort to make peace with the Palestinians, some perhaps well-meaning politicians have attempted to negotiate to give away parts of the holy land of Israel, and this is a big mistake. In contrast to these politicians and some diehard “peaceniks” (i.e. who believe in peace at almost any cost), there are many people in Israel, from Zionists and nationalists to settlers, messianists, and the religious who maintain a deep underlying faith that the land of Israel, in its entirety, belongs to the Jewish people. Moreover, they trust that our current and miraculous possession of Israel, after 2,000 years of exile, is anchored in our transition from helpless, stateless, and victimized Jews to instead those of self-reliance, bold action, and faith in the Almighty that we are living in the times of redemption and Mashiach.

It’s not easy to stand firm in the face of delegitimization, boycotts, terrorism, and even war. For Jews, it’s a matter of faith over fear. If we have faith that G-d has brought us back to Israel and that he will not forsake us, then we will neither fear the absurdly biased resolutions of the crooked United Nations or the nations and their terror proxies roundabout that have sought our destruction. In the end, G-d decides, and not man, the fate of Israel and its people, and let it be for blessings only.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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March 27, 2021

In The Hands of Heaven

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called "In The Hands of Heaven."

From Passover, we learn the Egyptians didn’t earn the riches, but built their wealth on the backs of the starving people of the world and of course that includes their Israelite slaves. As the Egyptians gloated on their arrogance, power and wealth, eventually the Master of the World showed them who is really boss. All the money, materialism, fancy titles, and honors are all just fleeting. In Hashem resides the glory and He has the say over who gets what and when.
G-d can redeem 600,000 men, women and children, and a large mixed multitude of people with them and very many flocks and cattle in the Exodus and to Him, it’s just another day on the throne of Heaven. In our own times, we have experienced a miraculous redemption from the death camps of Europe, and have returned like the Israelites to the Promised Land of Israel. G-d decides then and now what the plan is and how it unfolds, and everything we have is by G-d’s grace, and these are Seder lessons worthy of celebrating.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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March 17, 2021

Fiery Star of David

Sharing this beautiful Magen David (Star of David). 

Saw it on Facebook and thought it's really dazzling!

Man, we're on fire  and in a good way--rebirth after the horrors of the Holocaust, redemption to and flourishing of the Promised Land of Israel, and what looks like many more incredible things to come.

Hence, my reading of the three stars: our past, present, and future. 

G-d's plan for the world is happening, and it's hopefully very bright indeed.  ;-)


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March 14, 2021

Preparing for The Third Temple

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Preparing for the Third Temple."
In essence, the Jewish Temples have been not only physically buried over, but also the site has been historically Islamicized despite the Temple Mount’s intrinsic holiness to all three major religions (Christianity, Islam, and Judaism). In short, this is a very sensitive issue that is likely anchored in facets of intolerance and religious rivalry, as well as pretenses of superiority and dominance, rather than ultimately on the shared connection we have through both our genetic and spiritual lineage as Abraham’s decedents.
We absolutely want to have a peaceful and productive coexistence with all people, but just as Israel has risen from the Valley of Dry Bones, so too the day is coming soon when the Jewish Temple will be rebuilt in shinning glory and we can worship G-d just as we did in times before. What will be special about the 3rd Temple is that it will not only be for the Jewish people, but for all the world’s people to come together harmoniously to recognize and worship the one true and faithful G-d of us all.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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February 26, 2021

It’s Never About Luck

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "It’s Never About Luck."

Today is Purim, when we celebrate the Jewish victory over the evil Haman and his conspiracy to annihilate the Jews in the Persian Empire. Haman drew a lottery to determine what he thought was a fortuitous day, the 13th of Adar, to murder the Jewish people and pursued this plot through a decree by King Achashverosh. But as we know, G-d made miracles through Queen Esther and her uncle Mordechai, and Haman and his ten sons ended hanging by the noose that he built for Mordechai. 

This has been my personal experience as well, as I can see both now and in 20/20 hindsight that there is a definite Divine method and not just a world of random chance and madness.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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February 20, 2021

The Power of Love

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "The Power of Love."

When we act up and fight with each other, then in the end, we will really only end up hurting ourselves.
Tomorrow can be better than today and yesterday, if we learn to live in peace and brotherhood with each other, and understand that hurting another is really only hurting ourselves in the end. G-d’s holiness dwells among us only when we stop the silly bickering and infighting, and love each other, and Him, with all our heart and soul.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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February 13, 2021

A Reason For Everything

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "A Reason For Everything."

Reincarnation actually makes so much sense, especially when you see that G-d can and does bring people back to the world when they still have life lessons to learn and growth to be achieved. It’s part of our preparation and our soul’s purification process to go back to Hashem.
Obviously, we are not G-d, and don’t have the time and event perspective of Hashem who was, is, and will be. However, if we understand that G-d has a plan, everything is connected, and there is a reason for everything, then we can go through life inspired to do the right thing ourselves even when we are challenged by our circumstances.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 5, 2021

Success, Israeli Cuisine Style


Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, Success, "Israeli Cuisine Style."
This notion of success and failure in life makes you think about not only the imperative to be successful in our lives, but also to question what does that success even mean and look like? Is success really the goal or is the journey with its growing pains and lesson learned the real goal towards purifying our souls?

When we read the Ten Commandments, we are reminded of what the foundational elements of success in life actually are all about: How did we treat others (were we compassionate and giving)? Did we behave as Mensch’s in our lives? Did we try our best to do the “right thing” by our fellow man and by G-d? If you can answer in the positive to these latter questions then maybe you have achieved real success, regardless of what any culinary chef or life maven would tell you!

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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January 30, 2021

Faith and Fight in Defense of Israel


 Please see my new article in The Times of Israel, called "Faith and Fight in Defense of Israel."

From Amalek to Iran, Israel can never be caught off-guard again and this means both operationally as well as from mistaken assumptions and thinking. Operationally, we need to always have the best technology, intelligence, planning, and training, as well as continually test those with Red Teaming to simulate enemy attacks and our readiness to counter with winning defensive and offensive operations. Moreover, we need to be on our guard in our thinking, as former Prime Minister Ehud Barak says in his book, My Country, My Life, that when he became head of Aman (Defense Intelligence), he sought to address the problem of misperceptions, overconfidence, and groupthink by strengthening “a unit whose sole function was to play devil’s advocate.” They would begin “with the opposite conclusion, and through a competing analysis of data and logical argument, try to prove it.”

Just as when we left Egyptian servitude, we defeated Amalek through a combination of our faith and fight, so too we will be successful in defeating those that threaten the modern State of Israel. Like Moses we all must turn to Hashem, and like Joshua, the Israel Defense Forces must stand ready to defeat all our enemies, as many times as it takes, to achieve a secure and lasting peace.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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January 17, 2021

Privacy Is Dead


I though this was a fascinating ad for the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP).

The little girl hanging onto to the UAV drone.  

Reminds me of the wonderful classic film, The Red Balloon, where after the balloon follows the little boy everywhere, in the end, off he flews with it into the wild blue yonder. 

As much as we all wish privacy wasn't dead, for the most part, it really is!

Between ubiquitous and persistent satellites, drones, and video cameras, audio and video surveillance, call intercepts and eavesdropping, computer monitoring tools, smartphone location tracking, facial recognition, body implants, and more, let's just say you are never truly alone. 

For those who continue to dream the impossible dream of privacy, it is a noble endeavor but quite fruitless without either going deep underground or significant legislative and policy changes that can actually be enforced. 

My grandmother used to say that G-d sees everything and she was right. 

These days, others are watching as well!  ;-)


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December 24, 2020

The End of Times


I am looking for a good book on the Jewish view of the End of Times.

  • Who fights who?
  • What happens and how does the fighting finally end?
  • Who will live and who will die?
  • Who from the dead will be resurrected?
  • What occurs in practical terms when the Mashiach arrives?
  • What does G-d's revelation to the whole world look and feel like?
  • Where is Israel at each step in unfolding of the redemption?
  • How does the 3rd Temple actually get built?
  • Is world peace not only possible, but also enduring? 
Wow, would love to read a layman's book like this.  

Can anyone recommend anything really good?  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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December 19, 2020

I Know He Exists

                             

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "I Know He Exists."

G-d, who is infinitely compassionate, did the most compassionate thing, which was to create us and give us the ability to be compassionate on others. The way we bring Hashem to reside with us is to transform the world (tikkun olam) “to make it a place that G-d can call home.” We do this by performing acts of loving kindness, making the mundane holy, and manifesting G-d’s divine providence. In essence, it’s not enough for us to know G-d exists, but we need to be a light unto the nations to reveal G-d’s unity, sanctity, and ongoing relationship with his creations to everyone in the world.

Like the story of the priest from the Holocaust, we don’t believe G-d exists, but rather, we know He exists. And when we perform our mission in this world by doing good deeds and manifesting G-d’s oneness and divine providence then we make this a place where G-d wants to reside with us in this world as well as in the world to come.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 29, 2020

Mastering Cheerfulness

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Mastering Cheerfulness." 
During Covid-19, it is easy to get down about all the people getting sick (many dying) and for the rest of us the intense feelings of isolation. However, during this time (and particularly this week of Thanksgiving), I am learning the importance of staying positive and appreciating all G-d’s blessings that we do have. More broadly, I am coming to understand that inside a person, G-d exists amidst love, kindness and cheerfulness: these are elements that nourish the flame of our soul and wherein G-d happily coexists with us. It makes a lot of sense that when we are angry, jealous, or sad, the holy Shechinah (presence of G-d) cannot fully reside inside us. Because G-d Himself is gracious, kind, and loving and created us from this, so His spirit within us (our soul) flourishes amidst these feelings, but diminishes within us like a flame without oxygen when we distance ourselves emotionally and spiritually.

Just like one candlelight extinguishes the darkness around it, so also the light that we nurture within ourselves can extinguish the darkness that we occasionally feel inside.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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November 22, 2020

There's Someone For Everyone

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "There's Someone For Everyone."
I'm sitting resting on Shabbat, minding my own business, and reading the Favorite Tales of Sholom Aleichem, but then my wife tells me a story circulating in the news that seemed like it could even be one better. At least my exaggerated version of it did as a tall tale in the making.

It starts like this: There is a woman who did not have a lot of luck with men...

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 20, 2020

Modeh Ani - Thank you G-d

Beautiful song after the prayer, Modeh Ani that Jews say every morning immediately when we wake up. 
I give thanks to You, living and eternal King for you have restored my soul within me with mercy; Your faithfulness is great.

Thank you G-d for everything you do for us.

Your mercy endures forever!  

As Sholom Aleichem say: we should not know the taste of hunger.  ;-)

(Credit Video: Omer Adam עומר אדם)

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