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  • in reply to: Heartwarming, inspiring stories of Jewish community #1023322

    147, if you don’t mind me saying, you should be rooting for your fellow Yidden in EY and davening for them. The situation in EY is already Messi and the Arabs are way too Klose for comfort. And by the way, why choose this topic to make your comment?

    in reply to: Life before Israel #1013746

    HaKatan, you are quite correct that the Brisker Rov had a much more hardline approach. So hardline that he also said one must not vote in state elections. The vast majority of the chareidi israeli community that I am part of follow the Gedolim who have a less hardline approach and allow voting. The Chazon Ish although allowing voting, also was well known for his strong opinions on the medinah.

    And you are quite correct that both of them were greater than my grandfather. However there are many Gedolei Torah (who lived in EY) over the last 80 years who have the approach I described.

    They include:

    Rav Isser Zalman Melzer zt’l

    Rav Yosef Shlomo Kahaneman zt’l

    Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach zt’l

    Rav Chaim Shmuelevitz zt’l

    Rav Naftoli Horowitz (Bostoner) zt’l

    Rav Ovadia Yosef zt’l

    I am quite sure that none of the above would say that they are zionists in the way the term is used today and they would all consider themselves chareidi and yet each one, in their own way, used this day to thank Hashem for his precious gift.

    I am told that throughout Rav S.Z. Auerbach’s life, Yeshivas Kol Torah did not say tachanun on YhA out of respect for him.

    And I am sure no one had the chutzpah to go up to him (except maybe a Katan) and tell him he is deluded and he has been fooled by the zionists.

    Similarly, despite the fact that he stood down with regards to electricity on Shabbos out of respect to the Ch’I, he never did with regards to this issue. He therefore held that it was acceptable for a Chareidi to hold a different view.

    So HaKatan, while you are welcome to follow your own Gedolim, there are enough Gedolim within the chareidi world to support my approach.

    Those Chareidim who would like to grab the opportunity to connect to HKBH and thank Him for the constant kindness he bestows on us are welcome to follow that approach.

    in reply to: Life before Israel #1013730

    I write this as a member of the Chareidi community in EY. My grandfather, a Yerushalmi chareidi told me that when BG declared independence everyone was dancing in the street apart from a tiny group of NKs. Almost all the chareidim at that time understood what this meant and there was little doubt that Hashem had given them a tremendous gift. The Yated, the mouthpiece of the chareidi world had a headline which read – Shehecheyonu V’Kiyimonu etc. etc.

    As time went on and it became clearer what the politicians were trying to achieve so the chareidim have turned more and more negative.

    My Grandfather who survived the pogroms in ’29, and many of his generation (the few who are still around), prefer to still see this as a gift from Hashem, but a gift that humans have partially destroyed. If someone gives you a gift and then your kid rips it up do you not still thank the giver? And in this case it is not even completely ripped up, there are still many positive aspects that remain.

    Whether or not one ‘celebrates’ the day, we are chayav to give thanks for every good thing that happens to us. So we have to thank Hashem that we can learn in a country that has more Yeshivos than anywhere else in relative safety, that we can live in a country where we can keep mitzvois hateluyois bo’oretz in relative safety, that we can live in a country where we can visit mekomos hakedoshim in relative safety. We have to thank Hashem for these things even if reshoim have taken it and tried to use it against us.

    But in reality we need to thank Hashem every day for them. It is sometimes difficult to feel motivated/inspired every day though and therefore I use these days to help me in my inspiration. So even though I do not celebrate, I and several others that I know have a greater kavono in the brochos of v’liyrusholayim, es tzemach and moidim.

    I can only encourage others to use every opportunity available to connect to HKBH

    (Please note, this was directed at chareidim like me. If you are NK or Satmar who think it is a maaseh soton, you will obviously disagree, so please don’t bother to reply, my comment was never meant for you)

    in reply to: When is the Official Day.. #1014112

    This is so painful

    in reply to: Smart thing that people say #1010666

    When attending a Shiva the Halacha is that one does not say anything until spoken to or brought into a conversation. I have heard the most horrendous things at a Shiva, mainly because people felt uncomfortable keeping quiet or felt a need to ‘make things better’. If you need to say something, it is best to tell an anecdote about the niftar, something that you personally experienced or witnessed. If you didn’t know the niftar, then asking those sitting shiva, please tell me about (e.g.) your father, is an appropriate statement and allows them the option of opening up and beginning the long journey towards nechama. Giving drashos or vortlach about how special the niftar or the family must be will almost always not be appropriate unless you are extremely great. I don’t know if that is helpful

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