Friday Photos: Seraphic Secret in Israel

In Ben Gurion airport we met a young Christian Zionist who wore his Zionism quite openly and proudly.

In Ben Gurion Airport we met a young Christian Zionist who wore his Zionism quite openly and proudly.

Karen and I attended our niece Ariella’s wedding in Israel two weeks ago. It was a quick trip, just four days, but it was still enough to create a lifetime’s worth of memories.

 

In Ben Gurion airport, there is a spectacular waterfall in the central atrium. The water falls from the dome in the celiling to a pool below.

In Ben Gurion Airport, there is a spectacular waterfall in the central atrium. The water cascades from the dome in the ceiling to a pool below.

 

We went from the airport to our friend Rahel Jaskow's apartment to change clothing. Then, we grabbed a taxi right to the wedding. Karen and Offspring #2, who flew in from Teaneck, danced the night away. Here, they are doing the Travolta-Thurman dance from “Pulp Fiction.”

We went from the airport to our friend Rahel Jaskow to change clothing. Then, we grabbed a taxi right to the wedding. Karen and Offspring #2, who flew in from Teaneck, danced the night away. Here, they are doing the Travolta-Thurman dance from “Pulp Fiction.”

 

 

The groom's buddies from the army all looked like Paul Newman in “Exodus.” Let me be the first to say that having a platoon of armed IDF soldiers at a wedding makes for a peaceful and secure celebration.

The groom’s buddies from the army all looked like Paul Newman in “Exodus.” Let me be the first to say that having a platoon of armed IDF soldiers at a wedding makes for a peaceful and secure celebration.

 

We spent Shabbat with our beloved Tzvi, Toby and their children in Mitzpei Netofah, a yishuv in the Upper Galelee. Their new home is adorned with spectatcular art, all done by Toby's father, Dr. Morton Freiman, a Florida surgeon who retired to Netofah. Here, one of his dynamic and lovely art works hangs in the dining room.

We spent Shabbat with our beloved cousins Tzvi, Toby and their children in Mitzpei Netofah, a yishuv in the Upper Galilee. Their lovely home is adorned with spectatcular art, all by Toby’s father, Dr. Morton Freiman, a Florida surgeon who retired to Netofah. Here, one of his lovely assemblages hangs in the dining room.

 

This is another visually dynamic assemblage by Dr. Freiman. When you get up close to examine all the elements you become paralyzed by the beauty and balance of the piece.

This is another visually dynamic assemblage by Dr. Freiman. When you get up close to examine all the disparate elements, you become paralyzed by the beauty and balance of the piece.

 

Detail of the free standing assemblage.

Detail of the free-standing assemblage.

 

Dr. Freiman has been commissioned by the famed Golani Brigade to sculpt a menorah for their base. Here, Dr. Freiman, is interviewed by an IDF unit as he displays the giant chunk of granite that contains within it a menorah.

Dr. Freiman has been commissioned by the famed Golani Brigade to sculpt a menorah for their base. Here, Dr. Freiman is interviewed by an IDF unit as he displays the chunk of granite that contains within it a menorah.

 

Dr. Freiman's most accomplished and arresting art work is a twnety foot, free standing sculpture in the living room. As you can see, it's made up of empty Bartenura wine bottles, stacked one on top of the other and contained in a steel support. When the morning light streams through, it is a transendental experience.

Dr. Freiman’s most accomplished and arresting art work is a twenty-foot, free- standing sculpture in the living room. As you can see, it’s composed of empty Bartenura wine bottles, stacked one on top of the other and contained in a custom-fabricated steel support. When the morning light streams through, it is a transcendental experience.

 

There are 49 bottles in the sculpture. Thus, another layer of meaning, for this is also an Omer counter.

There are 49 bottles in the sculpture. Thus, another layer of meaning, for this is also an Omer counter. The Omer are the forty-nine days between the festivals of Passover and Shavuot. Okay, it’s not very practical, but the reference and clever abstraction make this a profoundly great work of art.

 

Our Christian Zionist friend had another tattoo to show us. “I want to join the IDF,” he said, “but I'm afraid they may not take me because I'm not Jewish.” We assured our young friend that the IDF would be thrilled to induct him into service.

Our Christian Zionist friend had another tattoo to show us. “I want to join the IDF,” he said, “but I’m afraid they won’t take me because I’m not Jewish.” We assured him that the IDF would be thrilled to induct him into service.

Karen and I wish all our friends and relatives a lovely Shabbat and a joyous Chanukah.

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  1. No profanity.
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18 Comments

  1. Brianna
    Posted January 17, 2013 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    OK, I’m a Zionist, but I ABSOLUTELY draw the line at tattoos!  You will all just have to satisfy yourselves with the fact that I speak some Hebrew :-)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted January 18, 2013 at 8:12 am | Permalink

      We do not advocate tattoos. As you know, they are halachically forbidden. But I have to admit that I use my iPhone to take photos of tattoos. I’m like the Claude Levi Strauss of tattoo anthropology.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. Earl
    Posted December 18, 2012 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    Doc Mort’s art is outstanding!  Robert, the closeup illustrates your comment about being paralysed by the beauty and balance, I could pass an hour or two investigating it.
    Several years ago at the Australian National Gallery, I sat in a room looking at the American Abstract Impressionists, Rothko, Pollock and such.  My wife walked in and said ‘Are you still here?  I’ve seen everything, let’s go.’  Small wonder we divorced.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 20, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

      Earl:

      Yes, Doc Mort’s art is spectacular. I do not show a fraction of the collection. More in future posts.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. coticlan
    Posted December 15, 2012 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    Congratulations!
     
    This post actually helped me in a special way. I now know I am a Christian Zionist. I never knew there was a “title” to what I believed, now I do. Thank you!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      coticlan:

      Yes, you are a Christian Zionist and we Orthodox-Conservative Jews have more values in common with our Christian friends than we do with Jewish liberals.

      Thank you for your friendship and support.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. Bill Brandt
    Posted December 14, 2012 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    Israel seems like an oasis in the desert – which it is.
     
    …and I sure know Karen’s and Offspring #2’s feet after all these years ;-)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 8:47 am | Permalink

      Bill:

      Some day, you must visit Israel. I suggest a tour with Michael Medved.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  5. DrCarol
    Posted December 14, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    How wonderful that you got to go to the wedding!
    I remember that fountain in Ben Gurion airport.  Wish I could go back.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 8:48 am | Permalink

      Dr. Carol:

      When you do go back, we look forward to another guest post by you.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  6. Posted December 14, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

    It’s a funny thing, but I never feel as safe anywhere as I do in majority Jewish neighbourhoods. Perhaps some comedian needs to riff on this somewhat obvious urban fact. I imagine that armed Israeli Jews might sort of multiply that effect, even considering the context. And the Christian Zionist impresses me; I hope he gets his wish and serves. Israel might need all the help it can get in the next few years.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 8:50 am | Permalink

      Rick:

      I feel safe in Jewish neighborhoods, except when I take my morning walk and dogs assume that my legs are food.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • Brianna
      Posted January 17, 2013 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      I was in Israel last September (among other things, I also attended a wedding, I was/am friends with both the chatan and the kalah :-) ).  I must say that I was surprised how safe I felt.  The one time I didn’t feel safe was when I was in the Arab section of the Old City in Jerusalem; it was getting late and I had forgotten that it would get dark earlier in the Old City because of the walls.  Once I got back to the Jewish section and the exit (it was not dark yet, but getting close) I was very relieved. 

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

      • Robert J. Avrech
        Posted January 18, 2013 at 8:13 am | Permalink

        You do not want to get caught after dark in an Arab section. Especially as a woman. Be safe.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. Johnny
    Posted December 14, 2012 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    Okay, as one who is violently opposed to tattoos, I have to say those are awesome.

    Seeing soldier friends carrying weapons at a wedding makes me think of the uselessness of gun-free zones here in the states such as the school in CT or the movie theater in CO or Va Tech or Columbine or………

    Sounds like you had a great time – blessings to the newlyweds. 

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      Johnny:

      I’m no fan of tattoos. It’s against Jewish law to have your skin inscribed, but our friend is not Jewish and he is a wonderful and sincere young man. And yes, even I was sort of thrilled by his tats.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  8. Posted December 14, 2012 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Mazel tov!  And, wonderful!  The daughter, whom we’ve know from when she was a child, of very close friends is getting married mid January in eretz Yisroel.  We can’t really afford to go;  it is not a good idea financially to the point that it would be irresponsible….
    For the last couple of months, my wife has brought it up and I keep on explaining why it is simply not the responsible thing to do with our finances so tight…   We are still discussing it…
    Oy.  And, I think you just tipped the scale…  I’m sure you’re familiar with the moshul of the condemned prisoner who promises the King that he can make his horse sing….  And, the punch line is “Who knows, the horse might sing!”
    Who knows when we will get the chance to go to Israel again….
    Thank you. Guten Chodesh; Freilichin Chanukah; Gut Shabbos! 

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

    • Robert J. Avrech
      Posted December 16, 2012 at 8:53 am | Permalink

      Moishe3rd:

      Money is not just money, as you know, how you make use of it is a moral decision. Good luck with that one.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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  • Annual Ariel Avrech
    Memorial Lectures

    Young Israel of Century City
    Eleventh: June 8, 2014
    Michael Medved: "Shifting Alliances: Why Liberals No Longer Reliably Support Israel — And Conservatives Do." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 97MB)
    Tenth: June 9, 2013
    David Horowitz: "The War Against Judaism on the University Campus." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 16MB)
    Ninth: June 3, 2012
    Joel B. Pollak: "The Mainstream Media's Betrayal of Israel." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 15MB)
    Eighth: June 5, 2011
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    Dennis Prager: "Happiness is a Mitzvah, Not an Emotion." Blog Post | Audio (mp3 80MB)
    Sixth: June 21, 2009
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