This week, we are making our first ever public appeal. This appeal will be repeated weekly because it’s a victiger inyan (important topic) and a great mitzvah.
Back in 2008, a newly minted Sefer Torah (Torah Scroll) was loaned out to a local institution. Unfortunately, this Torah Scroll was a victim of hurricane Sandy. It could not, despite herculean efforts, be saved. In an effort to replace the Torah Scroll, significant funds need to be raised. The Oisvorfer is asking all his readers to participate in this, the last and 613th mitzvah recorded in the heylige Toirah which states that it a mitzvah upon each person to write one’s own Sefer Torah. And while this mitzvah may seem elusive to those who are not adept in Jewish calligraphy or don’t have the means to afford a personal Sefer Torah, you can get full credit by participating and purchasing even one letter. Of course, the more you sponsor, the more mitzvois you have and who among us and especially those who receive this email or logon to the site or find us on Facebook or get the review from a friend, cannot afford to have a few extra? No one!
You can participate in this great mitzvah for as little as $5. Feel free to sponsor but one letter, word, posik (sentence), perek (chapter), a specific reading, a complete parsha or even a complete Sefer (Book). You can sponsor a letter for as little as $5. Of course we would like you to sponsor more than one letter but will be grateful for every single donation to this cause.
There are no administrative fees (a generous sponsor will cover the credit card processing fees.) Donate as little as $5 to purchase a letter in the new Torah, and the entire amount will be used for the Torah.
You can dedicate in memory of a loved one, in honor of a loved one, or for anyone you deem worthy. Making a simcha and spending thousands for a big party? Please consider adding at least $5 to help bring a new Torah into this world. Thank you!
To participate and to see the list of possible dedications, please click here.
Last year this very parsha, we shouted out Norman Bigel as he was celebrating the 84th anniversary of his bar mitzvah. And with great joy, we wish him mazel tov again, this time as he approaches his 98th birthday on Monday, July 6th and the 85th anniversary of his bar mitzvah this coming shabbis.
In the past year Norman has graced our shabbis tish on several occasions and has enhanced everyone’s spirits with his war and other life stories. Norman served in the US Army during WWII, which for most readers is like reading ancient history. He was an officer and served with distinction. While visiting with him this week, I learned that he retired from racquetball at the age of 82 and from tennis a few years later. As they say in Yiddish oif inz gizugt (we wish it upon ourselves). Though he has slowed down, Norman remains as sharp as ever and can bring a smile to anyone’s face. He is a treasure. So happy birthday my friend Norman Bigel and as they also say biz hindred un tzventzig (may you live in good health till 120).
And while wedding season is over for us, and will gear up again in August, this week we have the great pleasure of wishing a big mazel tov to the Oisvorfer’s close friend and yidid-nefesh, Dovi and his eishes chayil Devora Wachsler on the bat mitzvah earlier this week of their daughter Rikki, which was celebrated over in Yirusholayim. Instead of a big party here in the states -aroisgivorfine gelt mamish- Rikki and her parents decided to share their simcha with the girls over at the Girls Town Orphanage. Nice! Mazel tov to both extended families and a special mazel tov to the grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. David & Chava Wachsler and to Mr. and Mrs. Barry and Sherry Iskowitz.
Dovi had been looking forward to and was scheduled to guest-write this week’s review. He started but never finished, accordingly, his debut as the assistant Oisvorfer has been delayed. In the coming year, once we complete our fifth cycle with Parshas Devorim, the Oisvorfer will, from time to time, be featuring a few guest writers who will be sharing their views on the parsha.
This coming shabbis we will be making our annual trip to Westhampton Beach where we will be spending shabbis with our friends Terri and Andrew Herenstein. Though Andrew is up at the crack of dawn and has for years been filling the inboxes of many with thousands of emails which include quotes, jokes and news – mostly about Israel- and though he must read and skim many thousands more that are junkbox worthy, for reasons that remain inexplicable, he refuses to read the heylige Oisvorfer’s weekly parsha review. So he says…
This past Sunday we attended two weddings, both very special, and both featured beautiful brides and families. Mazel Tov again to Adeena and Dov Kerner upon their wedding and to long time friends Shani and Dr. Charlie Traube.. And yet another mazel tov to Anne and Richie Fuchs upon the very lively and spirited wedding of their daughter Alex to Seth Frankel.
Shoin, it’s almost page three, let’s learn some parsha. And what a parsha it is, OMG! Though it’s taka July 4th weekend and some of you won’t be in the mood to make it to shul, while others might be sitting poolside without a hava mina (initial intention) of going, and, will instead be looking at halb-nakite-mydlich, avada you should not miss the reading of pashas Bolok which will tell us how the RBSO intervened to foil the plot of two minuvulim (bad guys) who wanted to curse His chosen people and also what happened to over 20,000 Yiddin, 24,000 to be exact, because they spent too much time checking out the mydlich. You will also meet a fellow named Zimri though not by name. His Toirah shout out will last but two or three pisukim. His shouting when speared through his baytzim (genitalia) by a fellow named Pinchas, who is the subject of next week’s parsha, undoubtedly lasted longer. This one will amaze and astound as it features in great detail a cat and mouse game between two people, two goyim (gentiles) who seemingly hated one another but found some common ground: they both hated the Yiddin more and in some awkward collaboration and in an early version of the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, joined forces to (try to) curse the Yiddin. But, it’s the back of the parsha that will pique and hold your interest, chazerim that you are, as it describes a mass orgy and what followed. We will avada cover that; halt zich eyn (keep your pants on, chazir that you are).
It so happens, that of the 54 parshas found in the heylige Toirah, only five are named after individuals: Noiach, Yisroy, Koirach, Bolok, and Pinchas? And what do they all have in common? All but Pinchas were goyim! Weren’t our heylige ovis and emohis (forefathers and foremothers) parsha worthy? What about Yoisef the Tzadik? And still other good people? Avada we all know that Koirach was very wealthy, some say the wealthiest man of his time and mistama he paid and made a shtikel dedication, ober the others? And wasn’t it Moishe who schlepped up to the mountain (a few times) and brought back the Aseres Hadibrois (Ten Commandments) twice? Why was that parsha named after his shver (FIL) Yisroy? Ver veyst. There is good news: This week you can make a shtikel dedication and buy a parsha; do it!
Shoin………..here we are one shabbis later, and the Yiddin are mamish on shpilkis (pins and needles) waiting to cross the river and enter the Promised Land. It’s been a good while since parshas Bishalach when 40 years ago they were miraculously redeemed from slavery. Along the way, that generation of men lost their moral compasses and were nebech doomed to die in the midbar. Seemingly they were all dead by now ober what about this next generation? Were they any better? Were they Promised Land worthy? Seemingly, many weren’t and as mentioned above, by the time we read the last few pisukim of Bolok, another 24,000 will be stricken down.
Shoin, let’s taka begin as we have in past years, at the very end of the parsha where we will read the amazing story of how the second generation Yiddin, those slated to enter the land, entered some other areas first, if you chap, which they did. How could this happen? Simply stated, the heylige Toirah will tell us that they were seduced by a combination of the hot shiksa Moabite mydlich (whores), and were seemingly also affected by the waters they drank. Could water be bad for a person?
Last week Moishe Rabaynu, our fearless leader and the only person with whom the RBSO had mouth to mouth conversations, was punished for shtekin abuse (mishandling his staff). Ober did the Yiddin chap that such abuse was not in accordance with the RBSO’s wishes. Did they learn? Seemingly not and shoin, welcome a week later, here in parshas Bolok, shtekin abuse, this time by oversexed men, will again come into play.
Efsher you’re wondering azoy: Why is the Oisvorfer constantly highlighting shtekin abuse? Because the heylige Toirah does not hide these stories,. Punkt farkert (quite the opposite): the heylige Toirah highlights them and is efsher teaching us that shtekin abuse –be it from Moishe or from stam azoy Yiddin, will not be tolerated. In every iteration, it’s not tolerable. And this week, the Yiddin are shtekin abusing the Moabite shiksas. In one of the wildest stories the heylige Toirah will ever tell us, of course with much additional color and efsher some embellishment by the myriad medroshim who were all over this myseh, a number of Yiddin will have sinned by combining shtekin abuse and avoido-zoro (sexual immorality + idol worship), always a lethal and deadly combination. And how many times has the Oisvorfer told you that the RBSO typically gets rid of real troublemakers almost immediately. Unlike Doson and Aviram who, despite their less than stellar behavior, lived throughout much of the midbar experience, this last batch, the Shittim dwellers who partook in the shrekliche orgies coupled with avoid zoro, didn’t last nine pisukim. The arrived to Shittim, they came, if you chap, and they went! Ober what really took place and how did this happen?
Following Bilam’s colossal failure to curse the Yiddin, he left for home and the Yiddin settled in Shitim where all hell would break loose. Nu what could be so giferlich, what could they have already done? What’s so special about this place called Shittim? Say the medrish: Just before Bilam left for home, he came up with one last plot, an oldie, but time tested and kimat (nearly) always guaranteed to work. It involved Yiddin and hookers, a deadly combination! There are many versions of the story, let’s try one or two so you can chap the scene. Oh and before you start calling the Oisvorfer all sorts of names, please be reminded that we only discuss what’s already been printed. In this case, in the heylige Toirah itself and then further elucidated by the heylige Gemora, the medrish and many others. Seemingly no one could get enough of this myseh. Says the heylige Toirah (Bamidbar 25:1).azoy: And Israel dwelled in Shittim. “And the people began to go astray after the daughters of Moiov.”
What does dwelling in Shittim have to do with the Yiddin going astray and epes getting involved with Moabite shiksas? Was Shittim in Las Vegas? Ober says the Medrish Rabbah azoy: Some fountains rear strong men and some weaklings, some handsome men and some ugly men, some chaste men and some men who are steeped in lewdness. The fountain of Shittim promoted harlotry and it was the one that watered Sedoim. Not since the days of Avrohom had any Jew broken loose in whoredom, but as soon as the Yiddin arrived to Shittim and drank its waters they succumbed to whoredom. Seemingly they really came to Shittim, if you chap. You hear this medrish? Blame the water, why not? Why else would the otherwise well behaved, heylige and tirerer (worthy) Yiddin get involved is such dastardly acts of minuvelikite? Say it’s not so please. Nu, is it a wonder that we are warned to only drink bottled water and under great supervision. Who knew that one drink from a brook and shoin, all hell would break loose? Ober what taka happened?
Says the heylige Gemora (Sanhedrin 106a) azoy: Bilam told his newfound friend Bolok to ensnare the children of Israel with Moabite girls. Bilam explained that the RBSO hates promiscuity and that the Yiddin are very partial to linen. Come, and I will advise you what to do. Erect for them tents enclosed by hangings, and place in them zoinas (harlots), old women outside, young women within, to sell them linen garments.
Bolok, by this time desperate and ready to try anything, erected curtained tents and staffed them with zoinas (harlots). Older women on the outside, younger ones inside. The trap was set and when an unsuspecting Yidil ate, drank, and was merry, and then took a shpatzir (walk) in the market place, the old women would say to him, “Do you desire linen garments?” The old women offered the goods at retail ober the younger whores, offered the goods for less. Avada every Yid loves a bargain and shoin, soon enough they were inside the tents. This happened two or three times. On e comfortable, the girls would say, “you are now like one of the family; sit down and choose for yourself.” Gourds of Ammonite wine lay near her, and we should avada recall that back then, Ammonite and heathen wine had not yet been forbidden. Said she to him: “Would you like to drink a glass of wine?” Having drunk, his passion was inflamed and he exclaimed to her, “Yield to me”. Or in plain English: I want you right now! Thereupon she brought forth an idol from her bosom and said to him, “Worship this.”
Nu, when a man has had some fine wine and is in a tent with a hot shiksa and needs badly to chap, he is definitely compromised. Moreover when he is also surrounded by beautiful linens, and at the last second the service provider demands that he worship an idol, is he not going to succumb? What chance does he have and what chance did the other 23,999 have? They were mamish doomed. Ober what has sexual desire to do with idol worship? How were they connect and what the hec is a Ba’al Peor? And how was this worship manifested?
Alarmingly it went something like this. The girls had an idol called Ba’al Peor and the worship procedure required the worshipper to defecate on the idol. They did what? And while this makes little sense for who combines defection with fornication, ober says the heylige Gemora that this is how it and they went down. Exactly what roles the linens play ver veyst? Did the Yiddin need linens to get aroused? Would they not have succumbed to the zoinas (whore) with but food and wine? Or wine alone? Or just for cash? And since when does taking a good dump constitute idol worship?
And listen to this shtikel Gemora (Sanhedrin 64a) which tells us azoy: There was once a shiksa woman who was very ill, and who took the following vow: If this woman recovers from her illness, she will go and worship every idol in the world. She recovered, and proceeded to worship every idol in the world. Taka a woman of her word. When she came to Peor, she asked its priests: How is this one worshipped? Said they to her: One eats greens and drinks beer, and then one defecates before the idol. Said she: I’d prefer that this woman return to her illness than worship an idol in such a manner.
Did this myseh really happen, ver veyst? On the other hand, who are you or I to argue with the heylige Gemora? In any event, the heylige Toirah itself tells us that the Yiddin, 24,000 of them did mamish whore around with these girls. Maybe they were just on duty, ver veyst? In any event, the RBSO did not take kindly to this behavior and as stated above, He brought a plague during which these 24,000 were laid, this time to rest. And the emes is that it epes appears from the scrip that there were way more than 24,000 sinners and participants and that the heroic actions of one fellow, Pinchas, about whom we will read next week, who saved more from dying.
And before we close out, let’s quickly meet Zimri. Who was Zimri? He was the Nosi (prince) of Shayvet Shimon and the most prominent individual to take part in the midbar orgy. And his big sin? Zimri brought a Midianite shiksa named Kosbi into the Camp of the Yiddin, had sex with her before The Assembly (read: in public view).
Shoin, let’s chazir what went down besides the Moabite shiksas. Seemingly, the Moabite and Midianite kings had learned they could defeat the Yiddin by turning them away from the RBSO, by tempting them to commit sexual sins, the oldest trick in the book. In fact so deep was the hatred for the Yiddin from the Midianites, that one of their chiefs recruited his own daughter into prostitution to lure the Yiddin into sin. Says the Medrish Rabbah (2 1: 3) azoy: One chief (Tzur) aimed to seduce the Israelite leaders by using his daughter, Kosbi, to entice Zimri, a prince of the tribe of Shimoin. Rashi tells us that Kosbi and other young Midianite women seduced thousands of Yiddishe men into the worship of their god Ba’al Peor by holding out the goodies, which avada the aroused participants wanted: Sex always sells.
Zimri brought Kosbi to Moishe and asked if she was forbidden to him (for sexual relations). What was he thinking? Should Moishe tell me she’s forbidden, then I’ll remind him (Moishe) that his own wife Tzipoira is from the same place. And efsher you taka recall that Moishe ran to Midyan and eventually married Tzipoira. Ober Moishe, now 120 years old and was efsher a shtikel forgetful or maybe in total shock. He drew a blank. As an aside, the Medrish tells us that Tzipoira converted making her mutir (permissible) to Moishe. Another medrish says that avada Moishe married Tzipoira before Matan Toirah and yet another says (not really) that because she was black and beautiful she didn’t have to be Jewish. Veyter: The halacho (law) of what to do in the case of Zimri and the Midianite woman was concealed from Moishe, so the Yiddin cried.
The Maharsha, through some calculation, proves that Zimri was at least 250 years old when he ridiculed Moishe Rabaynu and showed up with this younger Midianite woman. Pretty impressive! One also has to wonder how Zimri was able to perform at 250. Did he have some Shittim water?
What happened next? When Pinchas, the son of Elazar, saw the public display of Zimri and Kosbi, he was mamish disgusted (wouldn’t you be if you chapped a 250 year old with a teen?) and told Moishe that he remembers the halocho (law). A person having sex with a shiksa is to be executed during the act (only if she’s ugly) but not before or after. Without seeking counsel, he took his spear and stabbed them in their male and female organs, a direct hit. In other words: while Zimri was mounted on Kosbi, Pinchas, who seemingly had but one spear, took aim, piercing them both in the genitalia; X marks the spot! Immediately thereafter, and after 24,000 died, the plague stopped. Only a real religion would share such information about its leaders: the Toirah is real!
A gitten shabbis-
The Oisvorfer Ruv