Showing posts from January, 2008

Corner of Chaos

When the world was young and still innocent, a few very high souls in heaven that were very close in proximity to Hashem became aware of a most tragic catastrophe that was to occur, far down below, in Gan Eden. These very few, high souls fled to the far reaches of Heaven and when they were beyond its borders, hid in a tiny little corner of chaos. The Chet (mistake) that was made in the garden would go on to stain every other soul in Heaven with its sour and unclean stench and every soul that would be born to the Earth from that time onward would also be soiled by it. These few untainted souls, hiding from this mistake in the corner of chaos, have been brought down by Hashem to give us a light to see by, but only in the darkest of times. They have given us the courage to see beyond our stomachs and front doors and to become visionaries. They were men such as Avraham, Itsik, and Yaacov and they were men such as Noah and Moshe. One day, may it be soon, the prince of these souls will a

The World, According to Josh

About one month ago, the weather started to cool down a lot. Not like in Boulder, but cold never-the-less. There is a damp breeze that can blow in sometimes, and when it does it can really take you by surprise. When we moved to the Middle East we pretty much gave away most of our warm stuff, bringing our snowboarding stuff, of course, but mostly out of a sense of sentimental attachment. We have been through one winter here, but this one really seemed to hit us hard. Maybe it was the extended (shvitah, strike) from the kids’ school that threw us all off. Maybe we were just so overwhelmed from the move that we didn’t notice the first time around. Whatever reason it was, we all got sick this year and, of course, we all handled it in our own unique ways. During the year Zach got sick, pretended he wasn’t so he could stay out all night on the weekends, and made it to about Tuesday each week, and then, oops… needed to stay home from school on that one really hard day with all the math and st

Was there a Plague of Mud?

At the end of last week, Yom Shishi (Friday) started great! I opened my eyes, said the Moday Ani Prayer for the first time (I just memorized it the day before at work), and started the laundry. Don’t worry, this is not another I lost my phone in the mechona ha’kvisah (washing mashing) story, however it does involve my bike. You see, since I am now Shomer Shabbat I can’t ride my mountain bike on Shabbat. Why you ask (for those of you non-Jews or non-religious)? Don’t ask, it is a long story that maybe I will tell another time. So, I needed to get a mountain bike ride in that day, on Yom Shishi. And it didn’t matter that it had been raining for a few days prior. I got all geared up for the rain and the cold. I had 2 liters of water, a banana, warm leggings, gloves, and a rain jacket. I stuffed everything in the Camel-Back tarmiel gav (back pack), jumped on my bike and headed up the street with Dude the dog in tow. Well, I guess I should back up a little. You see, after my blog about my b

War of Soul

Last week, at a Shabbat lunch with friends and family, a momentary flash of understanding hit me and as powerful as it was for me, it left with only a trace of what it had been. I had remembered something from the Parsha of the week, Shemote, and somehow had a realization of how it connected to something insidious and entwined within our natures. In hindsight, as I recall, this flash had been building and had come from a few sources. The first source was and is, of course, an ongoing battle within me; namely, ‘What is our nature and why do we fight so much?’ Does this go all the way back to the Garden of Eden, the original sin, and the freedom of choice, or is it just selfishness about who gets to eat the biggest portion? The second source was the Dvar Torah by the Rabbi at Beit Knesset (Synagogue) on how the second book of the Five Books of Moses, Exodus, started with a list of names which indicated that it was about the people of Israel as opposed to the Fathers of Israel like in Gen