Parashat Hashavua

Portion Bamidbar ... these numbers don't lie

Portion Bamidbar ... these numbers don't lie
So this Shabbat we read Torah Portions
Bechukotai in the Diaspora
and Bamidbar in Israel
Murders in Texas have a "Bchukotai" ring to them ...
Liars on CNN - lead us to need a BAMIDBAR - desert protection formation!
CNN quoting an Arab politician claimed Israeli soldiers killed a journalist -
But this is totally not fact-based -
It is used to inflame anti-semitism and Israel hatred -
to help Arabs steal more and more of Israel. while politicians debate -
CNN'd claim disputs 3000 years of history-
So let's take a look at the Bamidbar story:
Moses and our Leaders in the desert
Are Counting "the troops",
and organizing lines of defense in the desert
- and lines of command...
Similar to the Israel Defense Force (IDF) today - our Army -
whose purpose and functioning is to DEFEND Israelis - Jews and Arabs alike!
Someone in Shul suggested the Bamidbar Counting is to show
Individual Responsibily ... and for the Torah and the Almighty - everyone "counts" -
But remember - the People of Israel get promises "to the People" -
and while individuals all count -
The Torah Binds Us Together
To teach the WORLD that G-d's purpose is for us to LOOK OUT FOR EACH OTHER
Blessings of Love Frendship Sharing and Health
Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Beh Choo Koa Tai in Israel - Blessing or Curse

Portion Beh Choo Koa Tai in Israel - Blessing or Curse
It's Lag B'Omer in Israel -  today Thursday And
instead of  250,000 visitors in Rebbe Shimon's (Meron ) tomb - only 16000 at one time are allowed - switching every 4 hours, 
because of the tragedy last year when many people were crushed.
It was necessary ... and enforced by the police.
So today reminds me of visiting there with my friend Rabbi Itzik (so long ago)... 
and he was mostly in a wheelchair, and I pushed him up the hill (BIG HILL)
To pray at the tomb, 
Of the Rebbe Shimon of the Kabala (Zohar).
So how does hardship or tragedy or disability play a role in our lives?
It depends how we choose-
So why do people complain individually about "the world" ?
 G-d's promises are always to the Whole People of Israel-
not to Harry
Not to Gwen!
For lots of reasons Harry and Gwen should pray to the Almighty - it's positive to the soul.
but BLAME - it's always a negative to the spirit -
Life is a cycle - sometimes up sometimes down - no matter what the Portion teaches us.
I often took a subway and went to visit him . He was a very upbeat person.
He loved his grandchildren.
He helped many people and holocaust survivors - even without having much money -
Collecting charity from the rich and delivering food to poor families
( a few times I helped him Thursday night leave packages outside poor peoples' homes).
I am thinking of dovening at the kotel now 
- the Western Wall tonight, and to say kaddish there - for friends,
For family,
For the victims of last year,
the victimes of Putin's war... and
For all those victims of the ancient tragedies foretold in the Torah Portion this week!
But also for the living - because Kaddish is a prayer of Hope and Renewal
 for a better, holier world.
Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion COUNTING COUNTS (Behar in Israel/Emor in the vast diaspora)

 Portion COUNTING COUNTS (Behar in Israel/Emor in the vast diaspora)
So are we really far apart? In time - in space - in our hearts?
First - get a Mitzva by simply reciting "today is the 27th day of counting the omer"
and tonight after dark say 
 "today is the 28th day of counting the omer"
(it's good to recite and add a day until Shavu-Oat - early June - would be the 50th day) 
Emor (read last week in Israel) includes the Mitzva of Counting 7 Weeks (49 days)
from Passover to Sha-Vu-Oat
Behar (reading tomorrow in synagogues all over Israel) - includes the Mitzva of counting 7 year cycles 7 times (totalling 49 YEARS) - until the 50th year - Yovel / Jubilee
For me I know that's true!
Is that enough?
There's LOTS in both portions - like
what's incribed on the LIBERTY BELL in Philadelphia
Even a review of ALL the holidays (so we don't forget...?)
But I will just add one piece of NEW HISTORY
Many Arab leaders (forget about Putin today) spread lies about Israel
(and some "Jewish Leftists" -  like pro-Russian leftists in the world
also feel a need to keep pushing lies against Israel)
Let's just start with what I just wrote: 
what's incribed on the LIBERTY BELL in Philadelphia?
"Proclaim Liberty throughout the Land"
that is scary to dictators and their thugs
Who gave the world a day off every week? -
See the "review of ALL the holidays (so we don't forget...?)"
including the Sabbaths!
That is scary to workaholic bosses - and tyrants all over
Are they JEALOUS to the Point of Hatred?
Or just want to STEAL our little land and Kill all the Jews -
who built up in 100 years a desert that lay WASTE  
since the Roman Destruction 2000 years ago? - 
the only people that really has no interest in controlling the world?
Stealing Lies and Hatred are non-Jewish
Anti-Jews rely on all those things
Enjoy and be proud of being (counted) Jewish
Lag B'Omer Samayach (happy 33rd counting day next week!)

Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Emor in Israel - Big Things are Happening

 Portion Emor in Israel - Big Things are Happening
Israel Independence, Holocaust Rememberance Day, and Putin makes new threats, and is it all connected?
In the Torah portion Emor-which is read on Shabbat - it
 continues with Jewish Rules of Holiness from last week - 
which are read this week -In The Diaspora -outside of Israel
Whats that got to do with a story about a boy built from diamonds -
 written by Rebbe Nachman of Breslav 200 years ago?
In short thrre are rules about men women and marriages in both portions
And in the story there is a very smart but jealous sister who gets a magician to curse the Diamond boy (son of the King), and in short...
The sister in cahoots with the devil
 is found out by the Holy Man,
 who figures iut how to end the curse, thank G-d
One theme is that a kind Queen is better than a Jealous princess ...
Is putin jealous of Zelinsky? Or of Israel -
or of Stalin?
On Israel Independence Day today:
Celbrations last night were fireworks, and 
Today BarBques are customary ....
So the portion gives some rules of behavior -
and tries to get us towards more family values
 Like positive occasions
Attached please see a short clip from the celebration at 
The Old Railway Statio  in Jerusalem last night
So don't fall for the lies about Israel and Judaism
Just celebrate the miracles we are living through!
Yom HaAtzMaUt Samayach (happy Israel Independence Day)
Shabbat Shabbat
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Kedoshim (Part 2 with Holocaust and the Bus Drivers) Kedoshim (HOLY PEOPLE) in Israel

 Portion Kedoshim (Part 2 with Holocaust and the Bus Drivers) Kedoshim (HOLY PEOPLE) in Israel
Remember : In Israel Passover ended Friday
But OUTSIDE ISRAEL Passover continued Saturday until nuightfall
So this week I  present THE SECOND HALF  of AchrayMoess -( related to the End of Kedoshim)
Which we also read on Yom Kippur afternoon (SO It must be Super Important if we read it then)
But first - today is Holocausr Remembrance day in Israel (So next week is Independence Day here)
Sadly 15000 holocaust survivors died last year! Last Night on the radio 6 people told their stories
One each from Hungary Holland and Libya etc ...
And I heard this from a Frenchman elder survivor in the Great Synagogue Senior Learning Center
The Holy Bus Driver...? The French guy speaks Arabic and asked an Arab bus driver why he looked so angry
He said "I work 12 hours a day and just got my paycheck for only 19000 shekels (about $6000)
So - my French friend asked him "How much would you make in Syria" - and the driver laughed-
You are right - my brother drives a bus in Damascus and makes $1000 a month for working harder and 7 days a week
So - my French friend asked him "why are all the drivers for this company Arabs?
The driver laughed again and said- the company is owned by a Saudi Arabian Sheikh!
Holocaust Rememberance means NOTHING to most of the world - not even the laughing bus driver.
Remember - he works for Saudi Arabia!
How soon the world has kearned to ignore the holocaust as well as the History of the Torah!
Where is the sense - in Putin and the Iranians and North Korea?
Did they lose their senses or just gave into animal acts?
G-d created us with senses - and some  "horse sense"
But when it gets lost - the "devil" comes out.
Remember - the word Devil is "Do Evil" - in so many ways!
So the portion adds a level of punishment to last week's warnings about losing humanity in the rush for ego excitement.
Wake  Up World!
Too many tragedies await if we forget how we got here!
Shabbat Shalom from pIsrael
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Passover Shabat - the FOUR Questions

Portion Passover Shabat - the FOUR Questions
Try this : 
What scent do you like? Roses? Or Spices? Bakery smells or BarBQ?
In Jerusalem the special Temple Incense permeated the Temple Mount
Hundreds of musicians and choralists of the Temple Levites 
performed songs composed by King David himself - in praise of
The Almighty saving us from Egyptian Slavery (thereby giving hope to the world)
Thousands of Holiday Visitors sat in groups 
Each with a sheep or goat for the Priests to prepare for the group to take home for the BarBQ at their Matza Seder
Portion Passover  - TODAYS QUESTIONS
When did Moses stop stuttering? At the
Burning Bush he was embarassed by it!
Maybe When he Sang at the Sea crossing!
Which proved G-d's true words?
Why didnt Pharoah let ANY of us out - to save the 10 HEADACHES  (plagues) he got
Maybe Gangsters
love blood, like frogs, and didn't suffer personally
 from ALL those 10 problems
Why do some Jews burn Chomets and
On Rosh Hashono throw bread in a river?
Maybe to tell THE WORLD 
(Hoping the world will realize that
Jews for all History have shared -
Depite the lies that keep getting spread)
Why dont ALL JEWS read the Hagaddah 
TONIGHT at their "Seder"?
Could it be that
Some like to eat more than to 
experience freedom 
or imagine the taste of thèir Matzas 
Of Freedom from Pharoan - ic Tyranny?
(Is that Like staying in Ukraine???)
Who wrote the Hagaddah anyway?
Maybe Elijah the Prophet, OR
Maybe Moses? Maybe King David or King Solomon
As one wonderful Rabbi Weinreb Wrote
Tonight should be a Seder of
Imagination and Empathy
The 4 questions beg the situation of American Jews.
When will we get our voice
 - get our act together?
Or will American Judaism be merged with every cute gentile who is intrested in 
" a less boring culture" than theirs?
When will the short sighted "leaders" of the world stop hurting their people 
Using lies to cover up their greed and thirst for control
Why do Jews bore themselves daily,
 instead of studyind some Torah Genius for  an hour a week for INSPIRATION AND WAKING UP THE HOLY SENSES we have
Could you tell the story of 3000 years 
Of Israelite History
if your grandchildren asked you?
Or co workers or friends?
Even with a little help from Elijah?
And Pesach Sheni - 
Is coming in a month- so
come for an hour or two...
Love and Shabbos and Passover Joy
From Jerusalem
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Metzora -Putin, Zelinsky, and Alexander the Great

 Portion Metzora -Putin, Zelinsky, and Alexander the Great
Look at the Fourth Aliya for this Shabbat - and learn what Rabbi Carlebach called "an inside" Torah (hidden).
There it says "When you come into the Land of Canaan (Israel)
... I (the Almighty speaking" will put leprosy on some of your inherited houses..."
What for?
RASHI (from 1000 years ago) writes that it helped the Israelites find HIDDEN TREASURES of GOLD"
which the Amorites hid in the walls!
 Alexander the Great conquerred the known world - but died young in India - his last conquest.
So what's that got to do with This Week's Portion about healing the leperosy -
or about Putin the Puerile (childish?)
And Why are so many Jewish kids named Alexander?
Alexander did not attack in Israel like elsewhere -
 but had a prophetic relationship with Shimon the Tzaddik - the high priest of Israel!
So atThat Time - a hundred years before the Chanukah story - to honor the PEACE,
children were named after Alexander the Great!
Why do conquerors have to do their damage?
Would Alexander maybe have lived if he had studied in Jerusalem with Shimon -
òr stayed there where he was obviously welcomed?
He recognized the High Priest -
The Tzadik
So why did he have to go conquer India and die there?
(The follow-through is in the Chanuka story)
We are here to teach the world - that just as in those leperous houses -
even for our people entering Israel after hundreds of years of slavery - 
and there is no reason for "conquerors" to do evil.
But somehow, enough of the Torah message did not rub off on that conqueror -
or maybe any of them - including the latest Putin and similar trouble makers.
But we read the Portion and the RASHI and tell the story -
until it sinks in - whenever the Almighty chooses the time!
Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Tazria - False Prophets False gods False Ideas and Kids

Portion Tazria - False Prophets False gods False Ideas and Kids
The portion begins with Childbirth Rules
And continues with Laws of Lepers
You know We have Mitzvas - and if we don't do them all ,
then  the Almighty gives us "make up mitzvas" - to keep us together on a Holy Path
So if you're not going to have kids now there is the
Efrat organization to help poor pregnant women to meet the costs!
And if you think there are too many peiple in Earth - 
so Do You think Russia has an answer - to bomb and kill and enslave??? Crazy!
Europeans have few children - but Muslims in Eurpe have been increasing their population percentages ...
Chinese slowed down birthrate, but, now recently loosened up to allow more kids.  
Where does that put the Israelite/Jew  today?
I was walking in my old neighborhood for work yesterday, 
And Bumped into an old friend who was waiting at a corner to help his little granddaughter cross the street.....
What a joy!
So the Torah says Atem ha me aht Mikol Ha a mim - we will always be a Small Nation
With a lot of Mitzvot.  -   to be Priests of Holiness to the world
Every Child is Holy to the Almighty!
So the portion continues with Laws of Lepers
Fighting Disease
And with healing the lepers!
Grandchildren are a miracle!
So is Healing!
And as to the mitzvas of childbirth of this Portion
Rabbi Carlebach says :
Yes you holy women hold the key!!!
For 9 months You and a Child are ONE
Wharever one breathes the other BREATHES
Whatever one eats the other EATS
The Mother Child bond is a
Metaphor for the G-d Humanity Bond!!!
While a few Arab and Israeli  Leaders met this past week with intent to expand Abraham's Accords, to bring hope to the Middle East
Others were expanding their murderous moves to Prevent Prosperity for the Masses of huManity (as well as FeMale Freedom from Opression ).
In The Jerusalem Talmud question I learned about this week was AND IS 
A prophetic statement as to WHERE WE MUST and CAN BE MOVING 
On the ancient issues of Levirate Marriage - if married brothers die
The Jerusalem Talmud version brings a story of 13 brothers 12 of whom have died
Not to go into details here, but the Former Sisters in Law band together and together support each other's families!!! That's  the Torah teaching.
Wishing us All a part In Raising Great Families and
Healing the World
Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz
תשובהתשובה לכולםהעברה

Portion Shemee Nee - What kind of Wedding was That???

Portion Shemee Nee - What kind of Wedding was That???
In a nutshell-
(Because the world is nuts,
And because my jetlag is hanging on,
And I am  still drying off from the downpour in Jerusalem on my 630AM walk to Shul) :
It's all about weddings (I went to one last night),
About Marriage and its connection to the Israelite People
So: Congratulations to my friend getting married last night- a miracle that such a
Fine Couple - widower and a widow - met and connected so beautifully!
What's that - about "connecting" in this portion?
Marriage and other connections from the portion?
After weeks of proscribing the rituals of the Temple Moses built,
In This Portion .the Actual Sacrifices start off  - dedicating the Temple
 to connect us to the Almighty!
Then, sadly, the
2  oldest sons of Aron are consumed by fire - and
While varous commentaries explain various reasons-
Some believe it happened because they never married - 
and how can one "connect with G -d" if one cannot connect with a spouse?
Then in the Portion - rules of Kosher Celebrations -
 the Kosher Laws -
To connect our people with eating "power foods" - especially for Holy Celebrations
And then - a rule about Mikva Immersion - and Spiritual Purity - such as
Mikva after touching by some Ritually Tamei (impure) animals -
and of course relating to marriage!
And then this week - the Red Heiffer -Parah Aduma Purification ....
All of this is to remind us
and Marriage and Holiness and Connection to the Almighty (and each other)
facilitate that G-dly purpose.
Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz

Portion Tzav - Purim Passover and Plebeian-IST Priesthod

Portion Tzav - Purim Passover and Plebeian-IST Priesthod
Questions - Is it STILL Purim? answer - yes - in Jerusalem! They celebrate the Second Day of Purim.
Is it possible to write a short holy thought on a short-friday? Yes - connecting purim passover and the Portion of the week
At Rabbi Carlebach's Shul yesterday - the Rabbi (Reb Shlomo's nephew)
was teaching a bit about the PURPOSE OF READING THE MEGILLA.
The Talmud explains it is for  - Pirsumei Nisa - to PUBLICIZE G-D's MIRACLE
(saving the Jewish people from wicked Haman).
What level of meaning is there for YOUR SOUL?
FOR the purpose of
Maybe for  30 DAYS now - as we PREPARE FOR PESACH - let's
help CLEAN OUT the CHOMETZ of RUSSIAN ABUSES in the world and
get ready for YETZIAT MITZRAYIM - getting OUT OF EGYPTian mentality
Aish Hatorah had a thought this week - 
about the WAY the Portion teaches that the Priests in the Temple had to do
"Not only do the masses need to understand the humanity of those with elevated status, but ... the need for the spiritual leaders themselves to appreciate their own normality ... in the material world. 
(NOT TO ALLOW THOSE) ... with great fame or fortune to let their status and their material riches define who they are to the extent that they think themselves above basic responsibilities. "
Maybe we should send that thought to those waging war today????
Shabbat Shalom
Rabbi Andy Eichenholz