Monday, September 18, 2006

Al-Qaeda Terrorist Leader Warns Muslims to Leave New York and Washington D.C.

In a recent post I noted the threat posed by Iran and Al-Qaeda on the West, including the United States.


In a recent interview with a Pakistani journalist, the Al-Qaeda commander in Afghanistan said, "Our cycle of warnings has been completed, now we have fresh edicts from some prominent Muslim scholars to destroy our enemy, this is our defending of Jihad; the enemy has entered in our homes and we have the right to enter in their homes..."

According to Islam, the "enemy" must be invited to convert to Islam before they may be attacked. The president of Iran (yimach shemo) invited President Bush and all Americans to become Muslim in the conclusion to his letter sent to President Bush this past May. Apparently, based on what the Al-Qaeda commander says, ignoring the letter is tantamount to rejecting it.


Furthermore, he issued a particular warning to Muslims living in New York and Washington D.C.: "The American Muslims are like a human shield for our enemy; they must leave New York and Washington."

We must be open-eyed to the future and do what we can, but, rest assured, whatever happens, the enemy, the terrorists will no longer exist, for good can never be extinguished, only evil can.

"Tolerant" "Supreme" Court and "World Pride" leaders push Parade on Jerusalem's Population

Though I detest mentioning "World Pride" due to their perverse lifestyle, I feel that I must do my part to defend the sanctity of our holy city of Yerushalayim. With HaShem's Help and our efforts, we will overcome the intolerant forces who are attempting to "spit" on the holiness of Jerusalem and its population.

Latest News:

Though a vast majority of Jerusalem's residents oppose a so called "Pride" parade through Jerusalem, the "Supreme" Court has, of course not surprisingly, sided with "World Pride" and ruled that the municipality of Jerusalem must allow and provide security for the march scheduled for November 10. While the proponents of perversion turn to the extremely secular "Supreme" Court of flesh-and-blood to parade their perverse lifestyle in Jerusalem, we should do what we can in respect of HaShem, The true Master and Judge, and oppose this parade. Remember what we say each day in Shemonah Esrei - "Hashivah Shofteinu K'Varishonah", we want our judges back who uphold the Torah and thereby the Jewish People will prosper all the more. Remember to have special kavana on that b'racha, as well as all other brachos.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Is it Tolerant to Have "WorldPride" in Jerusalem, especially before Rosh HaShanah?

This is an update on the planned "WorldPride" parade through Jerusalem. The police have refused to grant a permit for the parade so the self-proclaimed lovers of "tolerance" - the planners of the parade of intolerance are petitioning the "High-Court" in Israel to allow the parade right before Rosh HaShanah. We should not let our guard down before these perverted individuals who petition the "High Court" of flesh-and-blood to "allow" them to display their immorality publicly in Jerusalem. This month is Elul - the time when "The King - HaShem - is in the field", a time when we have a greater opportunity to petition HaShem. We should do what we can and petition HaShem to truly have the parade canceled. We should also improve ourselves in the way of the Torah. Finally, we should petition people in positions of leadership in Israel to put in the effort to block such a parade. Surely, not having the parade would be great, all the more so before Rosh HaShanah.

Monday, September 11, 2006

"Midnight Selichos" vs. "Chatzos Selichos": Which times to Recite Selichos are Kosher? Best Times and Worst Times to Recite Selichos

As we approach Rosh HaShanah, it is essential to be aware of the halachically permissible times to recite Selichos (Prayers asking HaShem to forgive us), as well as point out somewhat "commonly accepted" times to recite Selichos which Jewish law forbids or strongly discourages. The following is taken from a halachic ruling by Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt"l, relating to whether one may recite Selichos before chatzos. Chatzos refers to halachic midnight. Chatzos is the precise midpoint of the night. When calculating chatzos during the daytime, we take the midpoint between sunrise and sunset. If the daytime chatzos is at 12:45 pm, the nighttime chatzos would be at 12:45 am. It is perfectly fine to have a post halachic midnight Selichos, however to have a post-midnight Selichos (12:00 am) is problematic, no matter how many people decide it to be "an accepted custom".

Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt"l on When to Say Selichos: Igros Moshe: Orach Chaim (section 2), Siman 105

In response to the question whether Selichos may be recited prior to chatzos, Rav Moshe Feinstein, zt"l, ruled as follows:

Rav Moshe on reciting Selichos during the last third of the night/the end of the night:

Last third of the night:We learn (I believe in maseches Avodah Zarah) that the last third of the night is the best time to recite Selichos as HaShem's Divine Presence floats though this world at that time. Selichos should be recited at a "favorable hour", therefore, when HaShem's Presence "floats around" this world, it is a time of Divine favor and therefore is a recommended time for Selichos. Rav Moshe quotes the Machatzis HaShekel as defining the night as ranging from nightfall (time when three mid-sized stars are viewable) until the first rays of dawn. The RaMBa"M rules that one should wake up shortly before daylight in order to conclude reciting Selichos shortly before it starts becoming light outside.

Chatzos: The gemara notes that chatzos is also considered a time of Divine favor and therefore many communities recite Selichos after chatzos.

First third of the night: The Rosh and the Tur rule that one may recite Selichos one-third of the way into the night as at each third of the night (each ashmura), it is a time of Divine favor (i.e. the conclusion of the first-third and second-thirds of the night are times of favor). When they rule that Selichos may be recited a third of the way through the night, they refer to at one-third of the way through the night, not after. Therefore this ruling does not permit 12 am Selichos.

Halachic Problems With Reciting Selichos Prior to Chatzos on Saturday Night:

The Sha'arei Teshuvah (Siman 581) rules that it is forbidden to recite Selichos and
Vidui (confession of sins) prior to chatzos due to the holiness of Shabbos. As Shabbos recently concluded, we should not recite Selichos until after chatzos. In the siddur of the Rivatz, he notes that the Ari z"l did not permit mourning for the destruction of Yerushalayim on Saturday night. Rav Moshe notes that the Ari z"l must have meant that mourning for Yerushalayim was forbidden after Shabbos until chatzos, for that is the time when people may begin reciting Selichos on Saturday night. Rav Moshe notes that only in a type of situation where it would be impossible to recite Selichos after chatzos, one may recite Selichos earlier, provided that no one Selichos would not be recited; otherwise, there would not be an awakening to repent. If a community would fulfill the aforementioned criteria, they would have to announce that an exception is being made this year to recite Selichos earlier due to the pressing situation where Selichos would not be recited otherwise, thereby making early Selichos a necessity. In addition, they should inform everyone that next year the Selichos after Shabbos will be recited after chatzos.

My Addition: Morning Selichos: Many people find it difficult (possibly even unhealthy) to recite
Selichos late at night. Often, those people recite Selichos in the morning, prior to Shacharis, (close to the conclusion of the night). When one recites Selichos during the night, he must make sure to not recite the phrases that would indicate that he is reciting Selichos at night. So, if one's choice is to recite Selichos at 12 am midnight (if it is not after chatzos) or the morning, recite it in the morning. 12 am is an arbitrary time which generally does not occur at either third of the night nor at chatzos.

Everything else being equal, I would recommend the following times to recite Selichos (in order of most recommended to least recommended):

1) Recite Selichos at the last third of the night and finish Selichos before it gets light outside.

2) Recite Selichos at chatzos.

3) On all nights except Saturday night, after a third of the night has passed.

4) In the morning.

5) Do not recite Selichos on Saturday night before chatzos - Beware of those 12 am minyanim.

With that, I conclude and wish all of Bnei Yisrael a successful Selichos and a happy and healthy year. K'siva V'Chasimah Tovah!