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      Hollywood to the Holy Land
      by Tzvi Fishman
      Tzvi Fishman was awarded the Israel Ministry of Education Prize for Jewish Creativity and Culture

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      Before making Aliyah to Israel, Tzvi Fishman was a Hollywood screenwriter. He has co-authored 4 books with Rabbi David Samson, based on the teachings of Rabbi Kook, Eretz Yisrael, Art of T'shuva, War and Peace, and Torat Eretz Yisrael.

       

      Adar 15, 5767, 3/5/2007

      PURIM IN MY VEINS



      The story of the Megilla isn’t just something that happened back then. The story of the Megilla is being replayed today.

      It is a few hours after Purim in Jerusalem. The Almighty has blessed me with the ability to write, but I am not able to describe Purim in Jerusalem. I am not able to capture in words the incredible holiness and spiritual roller coaster of a Purim in Jerusalem. It is beyond time, beyond space. I am not the same person I was before Purim began. I feel like the last time I sat down at my computer to write was ages ago, in some past lifetime. My sons reminds that I have a blog to write. “I am tired,” I tell him. “But, Abba,” he says, “The blog must go on.” After all, there are people out there in cyberspace, perhaps not a lot, my brothers and sisters, who want to hear words of truth from Jerusalem.

      Readers, I am sorry to trouble you, but the wine and the meaning of Purim is still in my veins. Are we to move ahead to tomorrow, like flipping the pages of a book, and so easily forget about the Jews of Shushan and the wicked Haman? Brothers and sisters, WAKE UP! The story of the Megilla isn’t just something that happened back then. The story of the Megilla is being replayed today. We are the Jews of Shushan who want the nations of the world to love us, while the Haman of Iran is building his deadly arsenal of bombs and missiles to remind us that we are Jews! Brothers and sisters, WAKE UP! The United Nations isn’t going to help us. The nations of Europe won’t help us. The United States won’t come to our aid. Our political leaders don’t have the guts to NUKE IRAN NOW! Only the G-d of Israel can save us, just like in the days of Purim of old. That’s the message of Purim for today. And now is the time to cry out. Not when the missiles of Haman are already on their way!

      Yes, we have to use our air force. Yes, we have to use our bombs. But we just learned in Lebanon that our bombers and bombs can’t do the job if G-d doesn’t help us. This past summer, we learned that we have no defense against rockets from the north if G-d doesn’t help us. So what must we do? We have to paint on our bombs the message, “In G-d We Trust,” just as David declared before he went out to battle to smite the wicked  Goliath, “That all the earth may know that there is a G-d in Israel!” We must fight our enemies with all of the military power and weapons we have, but we must do so with the recognition that our salvation is from G-d.

      There is a Jewish law that says we are to begin learning about upcoming holidays 30 days before their arrival. Brothers and sisters, Pesach is on the way. On Pesach, the Almighty stretched his hand out from behind the curtain of history, and took our nation, Israel, out from Egypt to be His unique chosen nation. Our calling was to be a uniquely holy nation, with a uniquely holy lifestyle, the Torah, which was to be our holy national constitution, lived out in our uniquely Holy Land.

      What was true then is true today. The Almighty hasn’t changed. The Torah hasn’t changed. We are to be a holy people, living according to our holy Torah, and living in our Holy Land. Like it or not, that’s the way it has to be.

      G-d does not want us to be good American Jews who keep Shabbat. G-d does not want us to be Londoners who keep kosher. Nor does G-d want us to be Israelis who try to imitate the ways of the West. A Jew is to be holy. He is to live a distinctly holy life and be a part of a holy nation, and that holy nation is supposed to live in the Holy Land. It is as simple as that. Everyone can gage where he is holding according to this simple truth.
      If you don’t like hearing it, then don’t read this blog. Keep running away from the truth. Keep trying to be a good Jew in Shushan.

      This is our national destiny – to be a holy people in the Holy Land. Whether we like it or not, the Almighty will bring this to pass. “The eternal One of Israel will not lie.” Either we return on our own, by turning back to our Torah and Holy Land, or the Hamans of the world will persuade us the hard way, G-d forbid. Just as the tables were turned suddenly upside down for the Jews in Shushan, so it can happen today in Paris, and London, and yes, even New York. And yes, it can happen too in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, G-d forbid, if we don’t WAKE UP and return to being real, holy, true Torah Jews. This is the message of Purim. It is time to stop the masquerade of dressing up in the costumes of the good American Jew, and the loyal French Jew, and the cultured English Jew, and the Westernized Israeli Jew, and to start being 100% holy Torah Jews in G-d’s chosen Land.