This week, we will be reading Parashat V’Zot Habracha. The fourth Passuk of this Parasha states,
תּוֹרָה צִוָּה לָנוּ מֹשֶׁה מוֹרָשָׁה קְהִלַּת יַעֲקֹב:
The Torah that Moses commanded us is a legacy for the congregation of Jacob (Deuteronomy 33:4)
The only other time in the Torah that the word Morasha is used, is in reference to Eretz Yisrael.
וְהֵבֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם אֶל הָאָרֶץ אֲשֶׁר נָשָׂאתִי אֶת יָדִי לָתֵת אֹתָהּ לְאַבְרָהָם לְיִצְחָק וּלְיַעֲקֹב וְנָתַתִּי אֹתָהּ לָכֶם מוֹרָשָׁה אֲנִי יְ־ה
I will bring you to the land, concerning which I raised My hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, and I will give it to you as a heritage; I am the Lord.’ (Exodus 6:8)
The word Morasha does not mean the passive acceptance of an inheritance. It is an eternal inheritance that you must work for. You must toil in it, struggle and fight for it, only then it truly becomes yours. I believe we see this today with both Torah and Eretz Yisrael. It’s hard to keep the Torah and to fulfill all the Mitzvot. It’s not easy, it’s not cool, and it means you have a ton of assignments due at the end of the semester while missing three weeks of uni. But we struggle and try, because of our commitment and love for our heritage.
Similarly, these days it might not be so easy to love Israel when Zionists are characterised as baby killing, evil, occupiers. We have to work hard at our Ahavat Ha’aretz and learn as much as we can in order to defend ourselves and our homeland from the media, the Socialist Alternative, the far right, academics and many more.
May this year be the year we merit to live our Morasha, in our Morasha, fulfilling the Torah in our homeland.
Tisha B’av is considered the most dangerous day in the Jewish calendar. How much more dangerous then for our soldiers fighting in Gaza.
This idea is simple. Get together with a group of friends or family and divide between you the entire sefer tehillim (book of psalms). Recite your allocated part at some point over Tisha B’av, ensuring that between you the entire sefer is recited.
Together we can recite sefer tehillim many times over Tisha B’av in an effort to protect our soldiers who are defending our country and our people. Please invite your friends so this can spread further!
Am Yisrael Chai! Have and easy and meaningful fast.
תשעה באב הוא היום הכי מסוכן בלוח השנה היהודית. השנה הוא אפילו יותר מסוכן לחיילים שלנו שלוחמים בעזה.
הרעיון פשוט. תתארגן קבוצה עם החבריך או המשפחתך, וחולק ספר תהילים. כל אחד יקרא חלק אחד בט’ אב, וביחד תקראו את כל הספר.
ביחד אנחנו יכולים לקרא ספר תהילים מאות פעמים בתשעה באב כדי להגן על חיילינו שמגנים על מדינתנו ועמנו.
שנאת חינם גרמה לחורבן בית שני, אבל השנה נתאחד להגן על חיילינו, על עם ישראל. בעזרת ה’ האחדות הזאת תהיה תיקון לעבירות שלנו בעבר, ונזכה לראות את בית המקדש השלישי והגאולה השלימה במהרה בימינו אמן.
עם ישראל חי!!!
תזמינו את כל החברים שלך לאירוע הזה
It’s chilling to read the last passuk of this week’s Parasha.
“You shall not fear them, for Hashem, your God – He shall wage war for you”
Despite the stress, the security tensions, the pain and the tragedy, the fact that so few rockets have hit civilians and populated areas, is simply a miracle. When watching footage of the Iron Dome in action on YouTube it’s easy to see God’s Zeroa Netuyah defending us, waging war for us.
This Shabbat in Shule we witness a microcosm of Jewish history. In Kriat Hatorah we once again discuss the conquering of the east bank of the Jordan. We conclude with Moshe reiterating Hashem’s promise that the Jewish people will inherit the other side of the Jordan and settle it with God leading the war.
In the Haftarah, we read about the destruction of the Beit Hamikdash and the deterioration of Eretz Yisrael.
Yisahayahu prophesies, “Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire, your land before you, strangers consume it; it is desolate as if overturned by strangers”(Isaiah 1:7).
Unfortunately, we have seen Yishayahu’s prophecy come to fruition. It was mournfully recorded by Mark Twain in his famous work, The Innocents Abroad.
He wrote, “Of all the lands there are for dismal scenery, I think Palestine must be the prince. The hills are barren, they are dull of colour, they are unpicturesque in shape. The valleys are unsightly deserts fringed with a feeble vegetation that has an expression about it of being sorrowful and despondent. The Dead Sea and the Sea of Galilee sleep in the midst of a vast stretch of hill and plain wherein the eye rests upon no pleasant tint, no striking object, no soft picture dreaming in a purple haze or mottled with the shadows of the clouds. Every outline is harsh, every feature is distinct, there is no perspective—distance works no enchantment here. It is a hopeless, dreary, heart-broken land.”
However, in the past century we’ve seen the flip side. We’ve begun to see Nevuot of Nechama that we’ll start reading next Shabbat. We’ve resettled our land, we’ve never surrendered our inheritance. And in the past few weeks, we’ve clearly seen Hashem waging war for us, for His Holy Land.
May we merit to see the Geulah Shleima and the rebuilding of the Beit Hamikdash Bimheirah B’yameinu, AMEN.
salixj said: I agree. I called someone out on their comparing Lapid to a Nazi. I was very upset by the whole discussion. The person also compared me to a Nazi, but later claimed s/he didn’t.
It’s horrible and people still keep doing it! Do I have to spell out word for word why it’s wrong for people to call other people Nazis? And Kal Vachomer why it’s wrong for Jews to call other Jews Nazis?
sarah-bracha said: I’m sorry about your previous experience but if you had been there yesterday you would know it was not a demonstration. It was literally davening and saying tehillim. There were no speeches or yelling or rioting, just Jews praying.
That’s really positive that yesterdays demonstration didn’t sink to what I saw. I have friends who went and they told me all about it. They told me it was hectic, they got trampled and probably stepped on a bunch of a children accidentally.
jewishatheist said: nice piece. and awesome that you got it published! (do you normally write for them?) cheers
Thank you so much! I write for them as a blogger occasionally. I try not to make it like a job where I feel like I have to churn out pieces. I write when I feel passionate about something.
The major Haredi demonstration yesterday, protesting the end to draft exemptions reminded me of what scares me most about……
Something small I’ve written about what scares me most about Jewish debate. Looks like we haven’t learnt our lesson after 2000 years of Galut.
This week’s Parsha begins with G-d telling Moses that He has heard the cries of His people and He will redeem them. In addition to this, at this point, G-d tells Moses that He will give the Land of Israel to the Israelites as their “inheritance” (also translated as “heritage”).
A handmade silver menorah is the first thing you see after you check in at Ben Gurion airport and before you head through security.
I think this is the perfect item to place in that spot. For thousands of years the menorah has been a symbol of jewish pride and integrity. Just as you’re about to leave the Jewish state, this menorah is standing there as a reminder of your identity. It whispers to you that even though you’re leaving Eretz Yisrael temporarily for the Diaspora, you’re Jewish. Don’t be seduced by the yavanim, you have your own culture and people that are waiting for you back at home.
Chabad Chanukiah Kikar Tzion
1 December 2013
Bargained down the price of of a box of oil and a box for my Chanukiyah today in Geula…feeling accomplished :)