This week is Parshas Bamidbar (the Torah portion starting the book of Numbers), and on this coming Shabbos we bless the month of Sivan (according to the Jewish calendar), which is the 3rd month, the month of the giving of the Torah (the holiday of Shavuos), which is a 'threefold light' given to a 'threefold people'. And those people are never at a loss for things to say...
Torah is always a key topic in the J'sphere (as in Jewish life). We lead off with a parsha of the week commentary by a most unusual source, DovBear on the Parsha, quoting from the Lubavitcher Rebbe! If this isn't a sign of the imminent geulah, I don't know what is. In discussing mitzvot, Critical Mastiff reminds us about the mitzva of maintaining your health, while Hirhirum posts an essay on the various religious-zionism positions.
In the prophetic and mystical department, Lazer Beams explains that Jews indeed don't have horns and an opinion that Gog u Magog is over (may it be so!), End of Days explains the Secret of the Vav in Hashem's Name, and A Crisp Elul Morning delves into desires from Ashlag's Intro to the Zohar.
In honor of Lag B'Omer this week, A Simple Jew has a saying of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai from the Gemora (Talmud), and so does Cosmic X, Mystical Paths links to a Lag B'Omer in Miron video, and Treppenwitz has Lag B'Omer bonfire pictures!
In Israeli news and views, Chayyei Sarah has a beautiful way to help Israel, Smooth Stone has a series of Did You Know info about Palestine, Cosmic X has a series about the Israeli government considering legalizing gambling (G-d forbid!), here, here, and here, and Elder of Ziyon has posted a series of newspaper clippings from the 1930's about historical illegal Arab immigration to Palestine.
Yiskadal v'Yiskasah, with the saying of Kaddish we note the passing of a surprising number of J'blogs in the past few weeks: leaving the J'sphere are MOChassid, Mis-Nagid, Godol Hador, AddeRabbi, Pravda Ne'eman, and OrthoSceptic. All were highly opinionated, with comments running high. All (except MOChassid and Pravda Ne'eman) also chose to delete their content, leaving them only a memory. While not all will miss their opinions, they're voices added to the rich content of the Jewish'sphere (everybody loves a good argument). Bloghead has her own thoughts about it here.
As some have left, a hearty Mazel Tov goes to those new voices that have joined in and/or are standing out from the crowd. Yeranen Yaakov joins with this Gog u Magog round up, Yeshayah 62:1 (for Zion's sake) comments on the media contrasts reporting Palestinian versus Israeli reactions to the visit by Mrs. Bush (which may not have been what you heard), Ha-Mikdash (the Temple) is dedicated to issues relevent to Kohanim (the Jewish priestly class), a regular commentor on the always controvertial DovBear has opened her own doors at AskShifra, the Algemeiner Journal has come to life as a Yiddish language blog, and as mentioned last week The Hall aka Steg is a bit odd with no interesting posts but a really interesting J'blog link list in Yiddish/Hebrew with interpreted meanings. Check it out.
Speaking of (or in) Yiddish, Chasidei Umot HaOlam (the righteous among the nations) notes an interesting find, the Yiddish Radio Project.
In other changes around the Jewish'sphere of note, Mirty Get's Married has settled in and is now Mirty's Place and gives us this heart rending story about her brother, the Renegade Rebbetzin has restyled hers and tells us about doing the hospital clergy visit thing, and Mystical Paths has a cool new header and an unusual post with A Wifely Answer from Heaven.
Various opinions leads to interesting arguments and cross-blog interactions, especially on Torah topics: Soccer Dad takes Dovbear to task over the issue of the Ramban and Miracles / Magic, Mirty's Place questions AddeRabbi over trees, while Hirhurim takes himself to task for taking on the positions of the Satmar Rav.
Regarding Havale Havawlim, this Jewish blogosphere round-up, last week's edition can be found here at Rachack, next weeks edition and a full list of all past editions is here at Soccer Dad. Two weeks from now, Mirty's Place is the place to find it. Soccer Dad is the man to see for suggested entries or round-up info as well. See the links in the top left corner of his blog.
Shevua Tov, a good week, and as we move forward in the holy mitzva of counting of the Omer..."Teach us to count our days, that we shall acquire a heart of wisdom." Tehillim (Psalms) 90:12 -- If we will learn to count our days, to make sure that they do not go to waste, we will then increase wisdom into our hearts. (Rav Zalmen Sorotzkin, z"l - from here)
May we meet again for only good occasions and good news!
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