Thursday, August 30, 2012

Picture of the Day

Here is  perfect example of people who think themselves very intellectual, brilliant, etc. but lack a heart, lack compassion --so much so that they are in a concealment within a concealment (i.e. they don't even know that they don't even know and so you cant tell them anything, they'll just deny it and dismiss it).

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Fear of the Abyss

If your like me, then you probably have this forboding fear of helping anything related to Africa.  As if the endless needs over there --or at least the projected endless needs there - is a bottomless pit that simply can not be fulfilled!

If I start... will there be an end???  Its like going to hell while still being alive...all the souls there are wont to attach to the one person with life...and in the process weigh her down so she in turn is stuck with them.  It is with great effort that she must carry herself and all those attached to her out of the abysmal hell they are all in!!

My goal is to do a sort of blitzkrieg fundraising to get funding for the Putti village mikveh and that is all!!! And yet, I am finding myself getting more and more involved in other groups asking for assistance and funding.

I have to put limits.  All I want to contribute is to help fundraise for the mikveh. and maybe if I can make storybooks for the children. THAT'S ALL.


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Boot


What do you do when someone wants to put a boot on your neck?

Another question:
Why do Black folks have such a hard time teaming up and accomplishing? Well, that's not really my question. My real question is why do they keep trying to despite the history that they have a hard time teaming up and accomplishing.  Am I wrong about that?

There is a midrash /saying that goes like this:

So G-d decided to make man and called his servants, Truth, Peace and Kindness.

He asked them, "Well, I have decided to make man! What do you think about that?"

Truth was vehemently against it. "No, Your Majesty! Don't do it! They will full of falsehood!"

Peace was vehemently against it. "No, Your Honore, Don't do it! They will have endless strife!"

Kindness was completely for it.  "Yes!!! Master do it!! They will do unbelievable kindnesses for each other!"

And so, G-d took Truth and cast him down to the ground and went and made Man.  The end.

So what we got here???

We got Man who was made from the stuff where Truth is hidden.  Truth is down here, on the ground with us.  Maybe I should walk around barefoot more and absorb it? lol.

I think people tend to hold Black folks to truth alot more stringently.  Do we have a tighter connection to truth? Or is it because people want to "smear" us with the "dirty Truth" and so they hold us to an exacting measure?

My mind is spinning.  

What do you do when someone wants to put their boot on your neck?

( If its my neck that I feel is in trouble... the mitzvah connected to neck is not doing idol worship. )

Monday, August 27, 2012

Putti Village 2000

Please let me know if you are game!!

Let's help the Abayudaya in Uganda.

Thanks so much!!!

****UPDATE:  WE HAVE 20% THE GOAL ALREADY*** people are just pledging, no one is giving yet.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Don't Know How?

Praise G-d I am blessed.

I have a huge house with plenty of space for running for the kids, plenty of space for planting and growing food, etc.

The only problem is...

i don't know how to maintain it!

Its funny, my real education came from life.  Yes, I went to school learned grammer (really, I did!), math, science, etc.   But all that didn't equip me sufficiently for life! At least, not the life that I am living.

(1) Ants.  Ants are SO diligent. And they want my house.  Every day is a battle to keep them out, to keep them from eating there way into the house. Its constant.  Is there a better way?

(2) Planting and growing.  Thank goodness, that is going nicely. we have an orange tree, lemon tree and a budding apple tree. Still working on the spices part of the garden. And it really helped to bring in a professional who knows about the drip irrigation system.

But somehow there is a section with tons of itty bitty rocks that needs to get picked up and moved out of the way. I hope the kids will listen to me and help me collect them.

(3) Plain ole House Maintenance.  If I clean at least one room a day... i mean serious cleaning, sweeping, sorting clothing vs papers, etc., sponja (moping)... after a while it will be okay.  The problem is that  Iam not maintaining the house yet...i'm trying to bring it to the level of maintaining. I'm starting from negative.  And truth be told, everytime I have stress --like an argument with the hubster, or trouble elsewhere, the whole schedule goes kapluey! And I have to regather my strength to keep the routine --which often takes days. And days are precious!

(4) Children.  That is going okay. I learn/teach Proverbs with one of my daughters (they all listen in, but the focus was one of them), now I suppose we should review.  I'm doing Pirkey Avot with another, but we always get stuck on the Rabbi's names --their all so colorful and interesting!! Like Nechunia ben Chalafta... Shimon ben Shatach...Chanina ben Dosa..etc. Not your typical Ashkenazi names, that's for sure!

I have to learn/teach Tannakh as well. G-d help.

(5) Healthy Eating.  okay. that needs work lol.

Not to mention work, the things I do re: Judaism in Africa, and  the ecomic blog.  Please forgive this post.  I am currently overwhelmed and a bit depressed and had to write all this to get a good focus on where i'm holding.

Innocent Man

A flash from the past...

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Friday, August 10, 2012

Some days...

Some days a mom's gotta do what a mom's gotta do...

This is my babysitter sometimes lol!!

Sefer Mishlei -Book of Proverbs

One thing I like about the book of Proverbs/Mishlei (and highly recommend it! ) is that it speaks "between the line" language.  Like for instance, there is a section that says,

"My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not. 11 If they say: 'Come with us, let us lie in wait for blood, let us lurk for the innocent without cause  12 Let us swallow them up alive as the grave, and whole, as those that go down into the pit;"

Proverbs 1:12

Now, if someone said that to me, I mean if someone said, "Hey, Miriam..let's go lie in wait for some blood! Hey let's lurk for the innocent without cause, it'll be loads of fun!!"   i'd laugh them off the planet. What? Lie in wait for blood? are you kidding me?!  But if we take that phrase and cloth it to how people talk nowadays, then its a different story.  I have fun with my kids trying to figure what how things would be said in the regular way of speaking.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Black Jews

Just musing...

There is an interesting phenomenon going on.  There are many Black Jews in existence... and ever increasing. However, there is a great disunity going on within that "community."  Disunity in the sense that many speak of wanting a shul together and yet, it is too hard to do... they speak of social events to participate in and that ends up being a strain on the organizers (trying to encourage people to come and contribute).

All this, when the Hebrew Israelites, people of "the Kingdom" etc seem very much so that they are traveling across the globe to Africa spreading their beliefs.

As the saying goes...

"Falsehood can get half way across the world before Truth can get its pants on!"

And why is that?

Just to backtrack, I want to look at the Black community in general.  I think there are alot of holy sparks there...but scattered.  We have been encouraged to think that we are lowly and nothing, etc., thus, with the amazing snowball effect occurring, Black folks have taken it upon their own selves to make sure each one knows that they are lowly and shouldn't raise their heads too high or expect to deserve anything. (there are exceptions of course) This is done out of training, out of protection that their loved ones aren't seen as "uppity," partly out of habit, and maybe partly out of not wanting to exert the effort to bring about positive changes and yet not wanting another to show us down either.

But nevertheless there ARE the holy sparks --plain as day-- all around.  And these sparks need to be elevated.  Every group has their share of holy sparks.  For Black folks you can feel it in the music, in the way many flock to the church as their center point-Madea definitely picked up on that one.  It is also seen in the fact that, until recently, a Black athiest was an oddity.

However these holy sparks are fallen.  Scattered on the floor and stepped on without people knowing that they are holy.  And some sparks being picked up but held backwards or upside down -such as listening to the loudest loud mouth.  Or being overly criticizing constantly.  Yes, you can spot a firey person with their "words of coals."  But still one must pay attention to what is being said; just because it's loud doesn't make it right.

The mandingo myth attributed to Black folks once upon a time.  Why? Interestingly there is a connection to sexuality and spirituality... the way the Bible explains how someone KNEW his wife...there is a connection to  knowing and sexuality. And knowing, knowledge, true wisdom is of the wisdom of Hashem.

A more ugly example is the gang rapes that occur, the trains, even that can be seen as a spark gone very wrong.

And in the Black churches, the members are so devoted you would think this was always their religion! They so took it to another level.

So what to do with these shards of holiness?  How to help those to see them laying about and to pick them up the right way? And since many are not Jewish, is it even up to them to pick up those sparks? Perhaps its just up to the Jews to reach out in that direction for the sake of those sparks waiting to be elevated?

I want to note that these "shards" are considered holy in Judaism, but I can not speak for other religions. So from the point of view of other religions these may not be holy sparks at all!

There are religions that are close to Judaism --not quite Judaism yet-  but a sort of stepping stone for some or a permanent dwelling place for others.  Hebrew Israelites, Messianics, Kingdom, Commandment Keepers, etc and so forth.  They may at least recognize the shards.

For those Black folks who choose Judaism either at bar mitzvah or upon conversion, among them still many would rather not see these sparks or not do anything about it. Even in the Black & Jewish community, I see folks speaking in the same "keepin' it real" way, but not saying anything different.  In debates, folks still try to talk down or insult others as a means of winning the argument, and most interestingly, many prefer to include amongst themselves Heb. Israelites and others simply because they are black and not necessarily because they share the same values.

At times I wonder if the reason Black Jews don't want to spread their wings or create their own shuls, or help communities in Africa, etc is they would rather enjoy the rich Jewish life --which is plentiful. Lots of holidays, the family or shul is the focus, one can be very busy with mitzvoth, with hitbodedut, with building one's own malchut (kingship).

Another possible factor is that perhaps there is a fear of maris ayin --the appearance of doing wrong.  With the many wayward groups of Black folks disgracing the Black community, I wonder of some are afraid that doing something that appears "too black" may have the scent of maris ayin?

At any rate, whatever the reason may be, there are still the holy sparks to be picked up, brushed off, and made to shine. B'ezrat Hashem (G-d willing) soon.

(and then there are the instigators that dwell among us, who wouldn't care one way or another about a topic really, but will run with the loudest idea just to appear knowledgeable or tough or I don't really know)

Asher Meza

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Picture of the Day

A big burly scholar in the making?

too sweet!!!

He reminds me of  Reish Lakish.  A talmid Chacham (Torah scholar) back during the times of the Roman rule in Israel.  He used to be a gladiator before he became a Talmid Chacham.

The Raven

Some interesting facts about the raven...

(you can read the whole list at )

The raven is the largest bird of the crow family.  Ravens can soar high above the trees, unlike crows, which rely on active flight.  Ravens are capable of aerial stunts similar to those executed by birds of prey.

They can act in pairs. one individual captures a dog's attention, while the other steals its food.  They also follow wolf packs for picking remains from their preys

Raven's calls can express a wide range of emotions..

Ravens are considered the most intelligent birds, displaying high learning ability and use of logic for solving problems in some tests bypassing the chimpanzees.

Ravens have been even taught to count.

Due to their intelligence, ravens love to play.  In Yellowknife (northwestern Canada) ravens perched on the roofs of supermarkets and waited for people to pass so that they could push snow on them.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Li'l Bit

And for the the comic strip side of things, we have "Li'l Bit". Say hi!!