Tuesday, September 19, 2006

M. Mu. Muqa. Muqata not going to Uman.

Preparing to depart from Ben-Gurion airport last week on Wednesday, a chareidi-dressed person approached as I was walking towards the ticketing line.

"Please, please, you have to help me...I need tzedaka...100 dollars is all I need", he implored.

I thought to myself -- does he need to fly for an operation, to see someone urgently, maybe attend a simcha...or maybe, tragically, for a funeral? He seemed very distraught and the tone of his voice was rather urgent.

"Why do you need to fly? Is everything OK", I asked...trying to be as sympathetic as possible...

"I need money...so I can pay off my ticket to Uman...I want to fly there for Rosh HaShana..."

Uh Oh. Pet-Peeve. Now, I was upset.

Background info: There is a custom among Breslover Chassidim to fly to the gravesite of Rabbi Nachman from Bresolv, who is buried in Uman, and spend Rosh HaShana there, davening.

The saying goes that Rabbi Nachman promised all sorts of salvations and merit to those who come and pray at his grave. That's not my problem with this guy's request. You want to go to Uman? Fine.


1. I don't think that with all the major problems we have to deal with in Israel; poverty, sick people, supporting Kolellim, and the costs of raising a family here, that my primary tzedaka payments...should go to someone wanting to fly to Uman.

2. And Uman? Rabbi Nachman of Breslev was a lover of Eretz Yisrael. If he knew that thousands of his Chassidim would LEAVE Eretz Yisrael for Rosh Hashana, to spend it in Uman, he would probably be rolling his in grave.

I tried explaining this to the guy, but he wouldn't hear of it. For him...the most important use of my money was positively, 100%, to send him out of Israel, to Uman.

The sad thing is, I bet he raised the 100 dollars from others.

Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael


DTC said...

J Ja Jam Jamee Jameel
Jameel MeMuqata ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!

Ketiva VaChatima Tova!

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

DTC: You crack me up :)

Thanks - Ketiva va'Chatima to you as well!

Mike Miller said...

I always hate people who shameless promote themselves... but what's another self hating Jew? ;)

When I was in KBY, for Purim, we put a giant Yarmulka on the dome that said Ya, Yav, Yavn, Yavneh. Due to insufficient planning, it was too hard to read the writing clearly, but I suspect we may have the record for the world's largest Breslov-style kipa.

Close-up of the writing
Full Album

Being as how this was in the days before digital cameras, I didn't realize that some of the pictures weren't so clear.. oh well.

YMedad said...

Hey, even Aryeh Deri went for 3 years in a row. And the NYTimes several years ago had a piece in its Magazine section. But you're right. And after all, he promised that those you come to his grave would be pulled back out of Gehenna by their payot. I don't have any.

DTC said...


I was told that a particular RA"M at KBY used to go around ripping down any "Na Nach Nachman" stickers that he found.

bec said...

instead of kvetching, you should take a lesson from him.
you should go out there and shamelessly self-promote yourself and raise the money you need to do the things that you want to do, no matter how unnecessary to your existence.
now go out there and hop to it!

The back of the hill said...

Given where Uman is, and what happened in that neck of the woods, I am surprised that anybody would even go there.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Both: Not only do people go there, but they pay the locals a ton of money...

dtc: but what can you do about spraypaint!?

bec: hmm...perhaps I should start a line of "Jameel's Grilled Chicken" for shabbat?

Me Kvetching? ;-)

Just Passing Through said...

No free tickets there?? Here in NY, there are free tickets available to Uman. Seems some sponsor is chartering planes and offering free tickets.

A Frum Idealist said...

I think this whole Uman thing was a brilliant marketing plan by some local shop-owners in Uman.
As it says in this past week's parsha..... Lo me'ever layam hee. You don't need to go to Uman.... All you need is right in your own backyard, "bficha uvilvavcha...."

A Simple Jew said...

Regarding point #2, Breslov.org states:

"Rebbe Nachman taught that the holiness of the graves of the Tzaddikim is in the same category as the holiness of the Land of Israel (Likutey Moharan II, 109). Thus, "those who travel (from Israel) to the graves of Tzaddikim are actually traveling from the Holy Land... to the Holy Land!" (Rabbi Shmuel Shapiro)."

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