Friday, May 22, 2009

This Year

Just when you thought you knew it all, today I’d like to introduce to you a Jewish holiday that I’ll bet most readers of this blog have not heard about. Do me a favor, after reading this email, click “reply” and tell me if you knew all about this before or if you learned something new.

The holiday is called "Yom Yerushalayim" - Jerusalem Day.

It's often wrongly called an "Israeli holiday".

In fact, it's a Jewish holiday.

Question 1 for your table: Who knows when and why it was created?

Here’s the answer:

In June, 1967, after 1,897 years of saying “Next year in Jerusalem!” at our Passover seders, a united Jerusalem was returned to the Jewish People.

The mystics teach to relate to Jerusalem as the navel of the world. It has been the geographic focus of Jewish thought for about 3,000 years. All synagogues (and churches by the way) face it. There are special Jewish customs and rules that apply to Jerusalem and nowhere else.

Question 2: What is the significance of the Hebrew name, Yerushalayim?

Answer: The “-im” ending in Hebrew denotes a plural. E.g., yeled means boy, yeladim means boys. The name Yerushalayim alludes to the concept that there are really two Jerusalems, the one below and the one above, and one who enters the one below properly can also enter the one above....

Others say that the name means “city of peace”. Ideally or ironically?

I would be derelict in my duty if I did not point you to this:

Question 3: How do you feel about the French vision to re-divide Jerusalem?

Shabbat Shalom

PS – here are photos of the celebration last night in J’lem:

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