Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Aharon Davidi z'l

My Israel wanted some coverage after the passing of a man they view as an Israeli hero – not zero coverage of Houston’s untimely passing. Their political leaning shouldn’t be the reason their stance on Davidi is denounced, nor a reason their valid concerns about the media’s attention to ratings (versus all that is newsworthy) should be ignored.

To read my first piece in the Times of Israel, please click here.

Friday, February 17, 2012

9 Lives

Been too busy to write something meaningful for #9 ... #9 ... #9 ... #9 (I'm sure someone gets it)!

Other aliya'versary blogs: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8


Friday, February 10, 2012

Judge Every Person Favorably, V

Rabbi Noah Weinberg z"l was speaking to a group about judging people to the good. He was asked how to deal with people who seem so negative and evil. He replied, "Imagine you were at a corner ready to cross at a light. All of the sudden from behind someone shoves you into the street. You fall and get up scratched and dirty; you turn, ready to give the person who shoved you some of the angriest words you know. When you turn around, ready to pounce, you see that the person behind you is wearing dark glasses and holding a white cane. How do you feel now? Instantly you calm down, and your anger dissipates. He couldn't help it. he was blind."

"That," Rabbi Weinberg said is how we deal with people who appear to us to be evil and mean. "The person is blind. S/he doesn't wake up in the morning and decide to hurt people that day. The person literally doesn't know what they are doing. They are blind". "The next time your parent, in-law, coworker etc. does something to make you crazy, picture them wearing dark glasses and holding a white cane. They are blind. They can't see that they are doing wrong. Help them, guide them, and show them gently the error of their ways. But don't expect them to change. A blind person can't see overnight. It takes time, and sometimes they will never see."

This is taken from Lori Palatnik & Bob Burg's Gossip.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Judge Every Person Favorably, IV

Over the past few months, E. has been a regular member of the Kurdi beit knesset I pray at. When you see him, you can tell - unfortunately - that something is wrong. He's been through something. After wishing him 'Shabbat Shalom' a few weeks ago, a friend came over and said, "Do you know who that is?" Obviously I didn't, so he proceeded to tell me, "That's E. - he was the last 'casualty' of the hitnatkut." Curious as always, I asked for more information, "A terrorist attack resulted in tank fire, and a tank mortar exploded right next to him." My friend continued, "He was in a coma for months, and the doctors told his parents he'd never come out of it." I guess E. had something to say about that. He's married now, and while the trauma of what he went through will sadly always be visible, the man breathes, jokes and smiles.

E. has talked to me about that day. He's quite a character, a man who's will to live pushed him through hell. I guess that just as one can actually get to hell, one can also come back out. I know I won't be looking at him the same way again.