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Thursday, January 08, 2009

What Can We Do When Israel is at War?

Gaza Updates roundup #12 and 12.5 are now UP at Jack's, here and here, respectively.

What can we do, those of us who are not in the IDF? We can continue to do good deeds, mitzvot: help others, give tzedakah, study and learn Torah, do acts of kindness, and send an email to
The Office of Rabbi Kook, Rehovot, at the following email address:



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1 comment:

Baruch Eliezer said...

I haven't watched the video yet, but am excited that someone has the initiative to pass along what we all can do during the war. Leave it to a mother of an IDF soldier to do this, but nevertheless we have help. Listening to a shiur last week I was struck by an interesting remark that we are all soldiers. That's right we're all soldiers. Some of us just happen to have more weapons than others, chosing to fight both in the spiritual and physical realms. That's right. The soldiers in Gaza have more weapons than we do. They have chosen to fight in both realms. They recite tehillim, daven shachrit, do hitbadadut (secluded conversational prayer with Hashem), plus they fight in the physical world.

I want to touch on something that I believe may have been overlooked. There is a third front in which the war is being fought and that is in our own mind. We ponder, we dwell, we worry, we make ourselves a nervous wreck because we have neglected that front. The question then becomes if we recite Tehillim, daven 3 times a day, and give tzedakah doen't that mean we've sufficed our obligation in the spiritual realm. The answer, I'm sorry, is a resounding no. As the spiritual is made manifest into the physical, the spiritual funnesl its way through our mind, occupying that space and time that drives us to physical consequences, and G-d forbid illness.

The Sh'ma is very clear that we are to serve Hashem with all of our body, with all of our mind, and with all of our soul (maybe not in that particular order, but you get the point). Hashem considers all three to be important enough to mention them and we recite the Sh'ma every day, when we rise and before we go to sleep.

What is the best weapon against the enemy on this front? Many things can help. Music and song are especially successful on this front, but it shouldn't be a music that has too much energy in it, but yet enough to withstand the onslaught of the mind. I would suggest Shlomo Carlebach, Yosef Karduner, Simply Tzfat, and the like. Stay away from secular music. Turn off the television and especially the news. This is the major culprit of allowing continued attacks on this front. Turn off the radio. Turn off your computers. Yes. Turn them off. The key is to protect the 7 candles: 2 eys, 2 ears, 2 nostrils, and the mouth. Sing with the music. Sing as loud as you can and if it strikes your fancy start talking to Hashem as if he were standing right next to you, having a cup of coffee with you. Pour out your heart. Let go of what you've been hanging onto. Let it go and just let Him have it all. There is no such thing as despair if we fear the One.

I hope all have a peaceful Shabbat.
Shabbat Shalom,
Baruch Eliezer

 
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