Author: Yossi Belz

Judaica Musings

We are happy to add another gifted blogger to our Guest Post section! 🙂 Today we are hosting Miriam Hendeles,  a mother of grown children, grandmother and mother-in-law. She blogs at  about being a grandmother. At her website, she discusses topics related to being a mother-in-law. Miriam is a music therapist who works with elderly in hospice care. You are welcome to read “Judaica Musings” guest post by Miriam Hendeles. Whenever I enter a Judaica store, I’m like a child in a toy store. I’m usually one to buy lots of yarmulkas, CD’s, books and other tzochke’s. It takes a lot of self-control for me not to buy out the entire store (okay, I’m exaggerating here a bit). But seriously, I’m a mom of five grown sons and a grandmother of five (bli ayin horah) adorable grandsons. This one needs a yarmulka, that one needs some new reading material, and then there are all the gifts I have to buy for this or that upsherin, bar mitzvah or Shabbos invitation.I mean, come on? The local Judaica store is the best gift shop ever. Nowadays, we have online Judaica shops and lots of them. You can simply sit at your computer and buy endless amount of Judaica products from kiddush cups, to menorahs, to Pesach ke’aros. I remember when I was a little child growing up in Brooklyn before there were...

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A New Start

We love guest posting idea! We are also excited to host popular bloggers on blog. We will feature bloggers from all over the world, each sharing with us their area of specialty.  This tradition begins today! 🙂 We’re happy to introduce Ruchi Koval, the mind and soul behind her own great blog and here are some of her thoughts about Rosh Hashanah: There’s a really haunting phrase that we say in the Rosh Hashanah prayers: “May the year and its curses end; may the new year and its blessings begin.” As I mentally scan the year, I shudder to think...

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The View from Bnei Brak.

Today, it hit me. We are a country at war and one of the battle fronts is right here in my home town of Bnei Brak. I have lived through quite a few wars in Israel, starting with the Yom Kippur war in 1973. We were in the shelter for a brief few hours on Yom Kippur afternoon and later, a strict blackout was enforced so that if the enemy flew overhead, he would not know where to drop the bombs. I remember when a tiny crack showed through my shutters and my neighbor banged furiously on my door. Her husband had been called up and was at the front. How could I neglect my share in the war effort? You bet, after that I double checked my shutters every night. Since then, we never used our air raid shelters but of course, there are vivid memories of the gas masks and sealed rooms of the Gulf War. War remains part of our calendar. Israel is always fighting for its survival and Israelis are always arguing about the best way to do it. Every inch of our borders needs to be defended. Millions of Arabs want us wiped off the map. Until this war, I knew that our vulnerable country was a sheep and that thousands of wolves were waiting to pounce on us. Now, I feel it. This...

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From Mourning to Celebration

Some say that we can only really appreciate the good after having experienced the bad. I’ve always had trouble with that theory- why can’t good just stand on its own? Do we only enjoy dessert because it comes after the broccoli? I, for one, enjoy dessert no matter what time of day it is. Every year on Yom Hazikaron, Israeli Memorial Day, Israel in its entirety and the Zionist community across the world mourn for all of the Israeli soldiers who fell in battle, and all those killed in terrorist attacks. The entire country mourns together- the radios are...

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Ways To Express Your Affection For Israel

For me, it was important to publicly display my commitment to the Promise Land both as a testimony to others and as a reminder to myself. There are endless ways to for a person to express their affection for Israel both publicly and privately. Some people like to have an outward expression either as a discussion piece or simply as a way of meeting like-minded people. For others, having a constant reminder of Israel helps serve the commandment of never forgetting Jerusalem – on a personal level. I suggest choosing something that has particular meaning to you, none-the-less it...

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