Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

17 Shevat 5766 - February 15, 2006 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










Produced and housed by
Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network












Never Give Up

by Sara Gutfreund

Nechama had always been a dreamer. She used to sit in the back of the class staring out the window at the branches of the trees arching towards the sky. Due to her frequent daydreaming, she had a hard time following her schoolwork. Nevertheless, she brought home average grades, and she was blessed with parents who never pushed her to snap out of her reveries.

The Chanukas Habayis Masquerade

by Yisca Shimony

The members of the Jewish community in Krakow were very busy. All the women were baking for an unofficial friendly competition as to who would produce the most and the best condiments for the upcoming celebration. Leading the friendly rivalry was Rebbetzin Rochel Heller, wife of R' Yom Tov Lipman Heller, the town's rabbi, who was supervising the culinary preparations. In the crowded Jewish neighborhood, the tantalizing aroma of baking filled the air.

Surprise! Surprise!
by R. Chadshai

The definition of surprise is the emotion caused by anything sudden or contrary to expectation. Something that causes or is intended to cause someone to be taken unawares. A surprise can be pleasant or unpleasant, but is only a surprise as long as the listener or recipient did not have a clue that it was coming.

The Jewish Cabbage

by Bayla Gimmel

While planning the menu for an upcoming get-together, I decided that stuffed cabbage would be a nice thing to serve. I would make cabbage twice, one head at a time, and freeze it. Off I went to the fruit and vegetable store to purchase the cabbage.

Seeking Forgiveness
by Rosally Saltsman

Most of us, I would venture, don't give forgiveness much thought except for the six weeks from Rosh Chodesh Elul to Succos, during which time we seek forgiveness for whatever wrongs we can't redress and beg same for wrongs real or imagined that we may have committed. I would like to think that six weeks of this a year is quite enough but I recently discovered that perhaps that may not be the case.

I Didn't Realize
by Tzvia Ehrlich-Klein, Jerusalem

The municipality has been doing major repairs on several roads in Jerusalem lately. I was walking along one of them recently because it is not too far from my home and it is flanked by several small stores, several of which I needed to go to.

Your Medical Questions Answered!
by Joseph B. Leibman, MD

I have been asked to speak about mental health, specifically depression. Thank G-d, the community in Bnei Brak has excellent and discreet centers of treatment including Maayanai HaYeshua and Tel Hashomer. I am not as aware of the situation in Jerusalem, and I imagine that as you get further out the options are limited, although I would like to hear more on the subject.


What Mothers Know
by Ruth Lewis

"Did you rest?"
he asks expectantly.

(Here's what I answer me:
True, it was quieter
With them out of the house.
But mothers never really rest.
From the second you're a mother,
You're changed forever.
Sounds you never noticed -
A sudden screech,
A cry, a call — "Mommy!"
A thump -
Now make you jump.
And silence is the scariest of all.)

Still, only another Mom could understand in any way.

So: "Yes! Thank you so much!
It was just wonderful!" I say.

Contemplations of a Convert
All That Glitters is not Gold

by Zipporah Zien

When I was young I loved to dream
Of palaces and knights of old
My parents feared that life would seem
Too dreary for a child so bold.
They served us milk with ample cream
While stirring hero's tales were told
Of "all that glitters is not gold."

As I grew up I noticed, too,
That if it were not for the cold,
Clear, shiny rhinestone's brightened blue,
True friendship's warmth could not be sold,
Nor selfishly be stored on hold,
Yes, all that glitters is not gold.

When youthful charm began to shine
And character took on its mold
The intellect with mighty signs
Began its magic to unfold.
Then spirit, in the darkness holed -
Up cried, "All glitter is not gold."

Alas, that fateful die was cast,
And stricture bore the pain untold
How one desired to right the past!
With agony the heartache doled
Out greater pain and, not consoled,
Lamented, "Glitter is not gold."

Quite suddenly the Truth broke through:
Such glory all the world can't hold,
Revealing paths, where rock was hewn
By Jewish saints. Their deeds cajoled,
This heart, which came to join the fold
Abandoning the lure of gold,
The Torah's Light, thus to behold.


by Drora Matlofsky

Everything I look at
Looks back at me . . .
There is nowhere to hide.

Turn off the light . . .
Close my eyes
Don't look at me please!

I don't know . . .
Slowly, I open my eyes . . .
Light a candle.
Take a peek.

It's all right, isn't it?
Bring more light . . .
A bit more . . .
It's all right.

Life is just a mirror.

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