|Window into the Charedi World | Mordecai Plaut, director|
OPINION & COMMENT
We are painfully forced to hand over parts of Eretz Yisroel in pursuit of the greater goal of peace. The economy is rocky as unemployment is still high, the shekel weak and the outlook uncertain. Yet what concerns us today is the inclusion of Reform and Conservative representatives in the Religious Councils.
Imagination and Computers - the Danger for Us
"There was a small city with only a few men within it and a great king fought against it and besieged it, and built great fortresses surrounding it. In this city lived a poor wise man and he with his wisdom saved the city. Yet no man remembered that poor man" (Koheles 9:14-15). See Rashi (v. 16) who cites the Midrash that this is an analogy to man's war against the yetzer.
My rebbe, Maran HaRav Chaim Shmuelevitz zt'l, pointed out that the posuk does not at all tell us how the wise man actually saved the city. How did he manage to destroy the great fortresses with only his wisdom?
"My Meirka, Your Meirka"
Upon receiving the Divine Command to strike Amolek, Shaul Hamelech was tormented by an inner conflict. "Vayorev banachal." Rashi quotes the Chazal (Yoma 22:), "About the matter of `Nachal,' he (Shaul) struggled (Vayorev) with himself and considered; if because of one soul (that was found murdered) the Torah says to break the neck of a heifer by the nachal (with all the accompanying procedures that demonstrate the great value the Torah places on each and every life), then surely [we should consider the value of] all these souls (that Shaul had been commanded to destroy). And if man sinned, but how did the animals sin? If the adults sinned but what did the children sin? Thereupon a Bas Kol went out and stated, "Al tehi tzaddik harbei," do not be overrighteous!
The Heavenly Stock Exchange
Tuesday. The international stock exchange is plummeting to frightening lows. The Wall Street exchange has shut down due to the drastic drops and the Dow Jones index has fallen almost 600 points. In Tel Aviv there has been a corresponding plunge. Wednesday: stabilization. The Dow Jones is up again, by 480 points. Thursday: after the sharp decline of the past few days, there was a hopeful recovery in the world markets, and stocks and commodities in the Tel Aviv exchange shot up in the tailfire of the Wall Street market's skyrocketing. Friday: again steep drops on the world exchanges. Many investors have lost millions and even billions, and top economists predict a recurrent decline in the world bourses.
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