Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

26 Iyar 5759 - May 12, 1999 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly


















Dear Diary - Part One
by Rabbi P. Kantrowitz

Most of us live, boruch Hashem, in a very insular community, and tend to forget there's a world Out There. Which is fine, except for the occasional encounters we have with people from the other side of the Looking Glass who just happen to be our blood brothers, eager for some kind of contact with Real Genuine Yiddishkeit. You may be asked to host them at your Shabbos table, so we thought it might be insightful, if not downright entertaining (even moreso if it didn't hurt so much, here and there) to see how the other side thinks and looks - at us black-hatters'. So here is the first installment of "Dear Diary", which is really a continuation of the introductory piece we featured two years ago, "Cold Feet on a Hot Line", about Irwin, a student at a baal tshuva yeshiva.

Bessie Baalebusta
by Menucha Levin

Two hours till Shabbos on a sunny Friday afternoon in Jerusalem. Temporarily, I escape the steamy kitchen chaos -- the vegetable peel aftermath of cholent and salad making -- to hang up one more load of laundry. It's winter and I don't have a dryer, and wet laundry is anxiously awaiting its moment in the sun.

Day Off
by Chana Weiner

I had awarded myself a well earned `day off' from home and children. Everything was set up for me to be able to go away and "not to worry..."

So there I was with hours to call my own, to do whatever my heart desired...

Galilee Glimpses - Pekiin
by Rivka Tal

Every Jewish child knows the story of R' Shimon bar Yochai and his son, R' Elozor. The story is recounted in Talmud Bavli, Shabbos 33b [reminiscent of the 33 of Lag B'Omer]. Escaping from the Romans, they hid in a cave at Pekiin. A carob tree miraculously emerged from the ground to provide fruit for nourishment, while a spring brought forth water to quench their thirst. There they composed the Zohar Hakodosh.

What's So Special About Rayon?
by Nechama Berg

Rayon is a multi-faceted material. It can be found blended with cottons as well as with sumptuous velvets and taffetas. It is used in disposable diapers as well as in tire cords. What is this amazing fiber and is it the right choice for you?

Agression Kreplach
by Rivka Tal

Sefiras HaOmer is a propitious time to rid ourselves of any anger or agression. This is in order to merit to receive the Torah on Shavuos. In addition, dairy dishes are traditionally eaten on Shavous. Old-Fashioned Cheese Kreplach fit the bill on both counts.


Streets of Jerusalem
by Chaim Salenger

As I ride through the hills of Jerusalem
With the sky turning crimson as the evening falls,
There's a deep glow reflecting on the hills and the walls,
Of the city, gleaming-glowing like a gem.
As the bus moves in tune to our heightening mood,
We are pulled by this strange and unnatural light,
As her white wings unfold to my left and my right,
I discover I'm traveling home.
Oh, Yerusholayim,
How I have loved you.
Throughout my many wanderings, you're always on my mind,
And I wonder: can I leave, now that I have found you?
All through my days,
You are here, you are here,
But I've been unworthy of you.
As I walk through the streets of Jerusalem,
I see children unruined by a world gone bad,
I see faces alive, but their eyes are sad,
In their lives they have seen far too much.
Let these children awaken and wipe clean her dust,
She will gratefully rebuild her nest of stone,
She'll be singing the song of a promise foretold,
Many thousands of light years before.
Now I come to the gates of Jerusalem,
Like a bloodhound who's drawn to the scent of his prey,
I can feel that her heart beats a moment away,
So I follow the quickening stream,
But, alas, she is sitting all broken and bare,
With my eyes I embrace her glistening stone,
I have come from afar, for this moment alone,
So I sit in her silence, and stare.
Now I walk through the darkness,
The city is new,
I hear music that bellows to an alien beat,
And I feel like a stranger on these burning streets,
She is hiding and I don't know where,
Through the lights and the laughter I hear her soft moaning,
"My children have taken my glory in vain."
"I am buried beneath this exquisite facade,"
And I wonder: will she fly away?
Oh, Yerushalayim,
How I have loved you.
Throughout my many wanderings, you're always on my mind,
And I wonder: can I leave, now that I've found you?
We are here, we are here, we are here.
But are we still worthy of you?

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