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Sunday, February 5, 2012

After Thirty-Four Years, The World Ought To Stop Predicting Our Demise

The Jewish return to our Biblical Locations is of Biblical proportions and significance for sure.  A hundred years before the 1967 Six Days War, the legendary Mark Twain wrote of the desolation he found here.  Nobody had been living here in Shiloh and in the other Biblical sites that are now filled with Jews of all ages from all different ethnic groups.

Progress moves quickly here in the HolyLand.  I've seen it in the thirty years we've been in Shiloh and the forty-one years we've been in Israel.

Photo by Miriam Feyga Bunimovich

Last night I attended the Celebrations for Shiloh's 34th "Birthday."  Maybe "birthday" is the wrong word, because Shiloh as a Jewish City wasn't born thirty-four years ago.   It was born thousands of years ago when Joshua established it as the Capital City of the Jewish People and the Kohanim brought the Mishkan Tabernacle to rest here.  Shiloh retained that status for 369 years.  The modern Jewish return is thirty-four years old, but it's foolish, especially in the PR sense, to call it a "birthday."

The first part of the evening was a chidon, quiz contest, which pitted the youth against the adults, trivia, history, Bible, culture all mixed and connected to Shiloh.  Just as I walked in, admittedly late, I heard the game m.c. announcing that the answer is אלדד ומידדת Eldad u'Medad, and then he called out:

"Are the Medad's here?"

I had planned on entering rather discretely, and just the opposite occurred.  G-d has a sense of humor; that's for sure.  So I played along and cheerfully waved to my neighbors.

In a few months it will be forty-five years since the 1967 Six Days War and the liberation of our historic Land.  Today there are grandparents who were born post-1967.  Two complete generations have grown up with the reality that Israel includes the Biblical heartland.  Those who think that communities like Shiloh, Beit El, Keddumim, Efrat, Elon Moreh, Kiryat Arba, Ofra and more can just be "folded up," destroyed, like a tent or trailer park, are totally unrealistic.  And if they think that the remaining State of Israel would be secure and viable, they're insane.

This year's theme was getting the know our neighbors.  Shiloh isn't the small community it was when we came.  Now there are many people living here whom I don't know at all.  I've made my peace with the reality that that's the way it should be.  It's important that we've grown to a size that makes it pretty impossible to know everyone.

I must admit that my neighbors are pretty talented.  Here you can see some of the artwork done by neighbors.   The entertainment was home-grown, too.

Re: Blowin' in the Wind.  You can easily interpret it to ask how many years until people recognize that we Jews have all the right in the world to be here. 


Anonymous said...

may you keep on growing, in quality and quantity!

Batya said...

Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Happy Purim. there is an error i the predictions. the demise is for haman and his cronies. they keep forgetting amidst all the sword swishing that purim is just round the corner and the merits of mordechai and ester and all the holy tzaddikim, are standing up for israel. may this be a purim mankind will never forget.

Batya said...

Thanks, 10! Well, when I consider how certain the doomsayers were 30 years ago...