The Yom Kippur War shattered my humanist conceptions and ended my participation in the Israeli so-called peace camp. As Egyptian soldiers shocked Israeli soldiers with shoulder missiles on the other side of the Suez Canal, I wrote a poem to myself entitled "The Good Life of the Everyday." During those terrible first days of the war, I in Jerusalem felt in danger of losing everything. But did I have anything to lose? What kind of life was I living? My every day was empty and lonely. How could I fill my days and make them good? I prayed to enter the good life of the everyday and set upon a search. After much trial and error I found that the Torah makes all the details of every day good.

Twenty-nine years later, my main problem is that I can only fit in a fraction of what I want to do everyday. The small joys of life are a blessing, and my many problems contain challenges for growth. I don't always understand G‑d's ways, but I trust them and have much to learn.

Yesterday after the suicide bombing on the No. 32 bus in Jerusalem five minutes away from my house, I thought to myself: What if I had been on that bus? If I were one of the sixteen innocent people eviscerated and killed, who would take care of my home and family? Who would bring B'Or HaTorah to the printer, and plan the next volumes? Whom will Professor Branover call to write letters and proposals to initiate new projects? How will the next Torah and Science conference in Miami get organized? If I were injured, would I be able to overcome the pain, the physical handicap, and the trauma?

On the late night news last night an expert on Palestinian politics was interviewed. He said that fundamental Islam has won over even the secular Palestinian Arabs. It is not religious belief that has won, but a cult of killing and being killed. The Arabs look upon the Jews as weak because the Jews want to live.

I thank G‑d that I want to live and that I enjoy my life. I pray that all Israel will live in the good life of the everyday. Let us enter Your house and learn Your ways.

The empires of Persia, Greece, and Rome that conquered, oppressed, and exiled us have withered. The Inquisition came to a halt. The Nazis and their collaborators who hunted us down and tried to exterminate us were defeated. The fierce anti-Semitic policies of Communism have been overturned.

Our enemies vanish, and we remain. But is it enough merely to survive? What must we do in order to live securely in the good life of the everyday?