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ב"ה
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Sunday, 18 Cheshvan, 5782

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

Born in 1932, Meir Kahane was a controversial American-Israeli rabbi and activist. In 1968, he founded the Jewish Defense League in New York. With the motto of "Never Again," the stated goal of the organization was to protect Jews from anti-Semitism in all its forms. In 1971, he moved his family to Israel, founding the Kach political party, and he was elected to the Knesset in 1984 (the Kach party was later outlawed in Israel).

In 1990, after concluding a speech in a Manhattan hotel, Kahane was fatally shot by an Egyptian-born terrorist. While strangely acquitted of the murder, El Sayyid Nosair was later convicted in relation to the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.

On Shabbat morning, Cheshvan 18, 5779 (Oct. 27, 2018), Pittsburgh’s peaceful Jewish enclave of Squirrel Hill was shattered by gunshots as a crazed anti-Semite attacked worshippers at the Tree of Life congregation, killing 11. It was the deadliest attack on Jews on American soil. Reeling from the pain, Pittsburghers struggled to make sense of the tragedy that had befallen their city, and people around the world responded with an outpouring of love, support, mitzvahs and faith.

Daily Thought

Look deeply and you will see that the Torah does not know of man and woman as separate beings.

Each act is performed once through a single body—a body that in our world may appear as two, but which the Torah sees as one.

On the contrary, for both to be assigned the same mitzvah would be redundant, for why should one half of the body do that which the other has already accomplished?

Just as a man fulfills the mitzvah to be fruitful and multiply through the agency of his female counterpart, so does a woman wrap tefillin or wear tzitzit on the body of her male counterpart.

For just as man and woman were first created as a single form, so too, before each soul descends below, they begin as one.

It may be at times that only half a soul must descend for its divine mission, while the other half waits patiently above. And when it will return, they will merge once again.

Sefer HaSichot 5751, pg. 84, citing Taamei Hamitzvot of Rabbi Isaac Luria on the command to be fruitful and multiply (Breishit).