Showing posts from July, 2018

Where Do You Find Faith?

I look to the Heavens and see God there, waiting patiently.
Shabbat starts tonight. For so many people the quiet doesn’t bring a respite from the toil of the workweek. For them the stillness brings back pain. Pain they would rather ignore.
I remember when my father in law, a”h, went to assisted living. 
He promptly acted like he belonged there. You would never know if he was sitting quietly all day along with the other people as if he belonged, but didn’t. As if he wasn’t fully aware, but was. 
I think he simply did not want us to have to worry about him.
Looking back on the people who we encountered there, how many were trying to forget all the bad memories that sitting quietly all day can bring?
Trauma lives forever in the body. That is the sad truth. The most one can do is acknowledge one’s feelings and sit with them.
Where do you find your faith?
This Shabbat I hope that you don’t need to. I hope He reaches out and holds your hand. Finds you. ___ Copyright 2018 by Dr. Dannielle (Dossy) Blum…

Becoming Brand-Driven: A Cure For What Ails You

The key difference between the terms "brand management" and "management" is the term "brand." Here, we use it to refer to the intangible value added by the customer's feelings toward the organization--a combination of awareness, trust, loyalty and positive identification. While visual and verbal symbols matter (the logo and the tagline), they are only a limited expression of the entity.
Yes, Marketing Is Management -- and Vice VersaBranding is everything: Because customers include everyone who deals with the organization, branding actually encompasses all facets of operations.Cutting costs matters: The point of branding is to add value. You want to find and leverage value where it lives while minimizing time spent on wasted efforts. 5 Symptoms of a ProblemEmployees are there for the paycheck only. Morale is poor. They're disengaged, unenthusiastic, inexplicably angry. Executives manage upward well, but have lost touch with the customer. They tend t…

A Warm and Welcoming Members-Only Shul Meeting

It was a tossup as to whether we would go to the special shul membership meeting last night. Hadn’t there been enough unpleasantness?
“But this is all there is, OK? When one of us dies (God forbid but nobody lives forever), these are the people who will help to bury them.”
Such is decision-making here. The most morbid scenario wins.
“But no running your mouth like you did the last time, and making a whole scene.”
“I promise,” I said and as usual was thinking, “except if...”
He gave me a sidelong glance as if to say “I know you have your fingers crossed behind your back but fine, we’ll go anyway.”
Well I guess they anticipated a ruckus because there were not one, but two security guards. They stood there flanking the doors as if expecting a riot.
And I was scared. Personally. This was such new ground for me. You have to know I did not even go to synagogue for many years. It was just too awful. All the judging eyes. The dynamics. The fear of not being good enough. The closeted nature of being …

Ahavas Israel Is Not "Inclusive"

"Inclusive diversity"--meaning "creating an inclusive environment where diverse perspectives are encouraged and embraced"--is appropriate at work. But it is not appropriate for a religious Jewish environment, such as a shul, yeshiva or camp. Rather, simple love and compassion is appropriate, combined with an emphasis on beliefs and behaviors that are consistent with what the Torah teaches us.
Why can't religion be inclusive too? It's not rocket science: A religious Jewish environment is based on the Torah, which is God-given and as such not at all a model of "inclusive diversity." The Torah is very definitive about privileging certain people, and certain views, based on certain behaviors.
As a God-given body of law, the Torah is not subject to negotiation. It can only be interpreted based on certain generally accepted principles. And when it comes to religion, we only honor as valid the interpretations of people considered both legitimately Jewis…

Halacha Is Not A One-Man Show

If you believe we need to change the normative view of Halacha, okay. But then bring other normative practitioners of Halacha along with you. This is how the Jewish community has always functioned, and it is how we can tell who is within the mainstream and who is not.

Unfortunately one person who is believed to be an Orthodox Jewish rabbi has diverged from this path.  What this rabbi says sounds great: You can be observant AND—use tap water for a mikvah, and chametz dishes on Pesach. You don’t need an eruv. Married women are not required to cover their hair. You can have a meat potluck with people who don’t necessarily keep kosher, because you should trust that they wouldn’t break your trust (Purim 2017). Pretty much any cheese, supervised or not, (with a few exceptions), should just be considered kosher, and vegan restaurants don’t require kosher supervision.

He issues halachic rulings that sound well reasoned and maybe they are.

But like they say about schemes to make a million do…

Judith Light in Transparent, & the Hidden Abuse of Jewish Women

Just finished Season 4, Ep. 8 where Shelly (Judith Light) tells her kids about the ongoing molestation she experienced at the hands of a beloved teacher when she was only 10 years old.
“I was only 10,” she practically whispers.
It is impossible to capture in words the expressions on her family’s faces as she reveals her “secret.”
Her ex-husband is transgender and almost completely obsessed with himself, and his long-held secret: “I thought you were talking about me.”
Her character in the show is 69 years old and she has to whisper this because it is so bad.
She went to the mental hospital twice; is it any wonder?
“I thought you went to Fresno,” says her daughter.
“There was this teacher, this Mr. Stenger, who said that he saw my talent. Or so I thought.”
We see a grinning teacher. He doesn’t “look” like a pedo.
“And then, when we were alone, the things happened. And I stopped eating.”
The pain of that scene is so vivid, my hands are shaking just writing this. 

I'm Not Orthodox. Why Do I Write About Orthodox Judaism?

From a Jewish point of view, the world depends on a few basic things to survive. Two of them are the province of every human being -- a belief in God, and acts of human kindness. But the third is the province of the Jewish people -- the Torah. "Shimon HaTzaddik was from the remnants of the Great Assembly.
He used to say:
On three things the world stands.
On Torah,
On service [of God],
And on acts of human kindness."  - Pirkei Avot (Ethics of the Fathers) 1:2 If we fail to understand, practice and teach the Torah -- or failing that, to support those who do -- then the world loses out on an authentic understanding of it, and a fundamental basis of the world's survival is jeopardized.
This is why, although I am not Orthodox, I write about and support Orthodox Judaism. Jews represent a tiny fraction of the world's population - just .2% (that's point-two, not two). As of 2013, just 10% of American Jews were Orthodox. Meanwhile, in Israel, only 15-20% of the Jewish populat…

The 85 Theses of #QAnon (All Quoted)

Fed/Banking: The US Federal Reserve is a privately-owned company, sitting on its very own patch of land, immune to the US laws. The Fed was formed under the direction of powerful banking families e.g., (Morgan, Rockefeller, Rothschild, more…) and works on their behalf.9–11 / Bin Laden: Truth about the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in 2001. The schemes made by the Bush family, Bin Laden family, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. The money exchange for Osama bin Laden’s capture/death in Pakistan.Airplanes/TSA: 7 out 10 Airplane crashes are targeted kills. Planes flying cash pallets into Iran & Syria. Private planes ferrying out Bin Laden family on 9/11. Military planes crashing at unprecedented rates (evidence of the silent war).Antifa: Domestic terrorist organization sponsored by Soros. Goal is to promote hate, violence and division across the USA. Antifa rhetoric and symbolism (see Antifa flag) parallels the Nazi party. Antifa is NOT an organic movement.Armenia: Armenia,…

ICE: The Department of Terror?

Let’s see the "cruel and inhuman" folks at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) and Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) in action. Shall we?

In this photo we see the Border Patrol saving a little girl stranded along the Rio Grande.

The Border Patrol arrested 4 in this human smuggling attempt.

Here’s the Border Patrol working with its partners in San Diego to stop human smuggling by ship.

The cruelty!

Smugglers put 29 people in the back of a tractor-trailer. The Border Patrol rescued them all.

Border Patrol agents rescue a man who got stuck in a storm drainage tunnel as smugglers tried to take him into the country in this dangerous way. (2010)

Locking 3 children in a hot car trunk is something smugglers have zero problem doing. The Border Patrol in Tucson, AZ rescued these kids.

This is the inside of a processing center for people who have tried to cross illegally. It’s in McAllen, TX. (Photo taken June 17, 2018.)

Not dramatic enou…

God Is Sending You A Notification

You signed up for a mission in this life, and when you were born an angel touched a spot under your nose and over your lip that left an indentation. That spot indicates your forgetting your mission altogether, making it possible for you to have the free will (all important) to discover it.

But God knows it's hard to chase The Meaning Of Life when life is full of unexpected twists and turns and you're working so hard and you're tired.

So you encounter people, situations, opportunities, and so on over the course of your life that seem "coincidental" but they're really notifications from God about your mission.

When you download an app, the whole thing is the notifications, right? Sure we all get too many of them, but they're also like brain candy, setting off a little "high" every time we see one. It's just like the old AOL slogan "You've Got Mail!" which was supposed to be exciting as we stopped whatever it was that we were doi…