Archive for the ‘Circumcision’ Category

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The Maccabee – Understanding the Enemies of Circumcision

October 5, 2011

‘Is not my word like fire,” declares the LORD, ‘and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?’

– Jeremiah 23:29

The Opposition to Circumcision

No son of a man may be forcibly circumcised.

– Yebamoth 48a

Jews have seen anti-circumcision agitations previously in history, so this new early 21st century round of attempts to criminalize male circumcision should be seen as nothing new, but a perpetual cycle of clearly Pagan, anti-Biblical, attempts to destroy Judaism, and quite possibly Christianity as well.

Of course, there have been anti-circumcision movements before, but most Jews historically have continued the religious practice of circumcision even under the threat of death.

– The Jewish Journal – North Boston

A quick look at the internet shows that opponents of male circumcision are organized and their numbers are growing more numerous with each passing day. Their rhetoric has also became far more belligerent. In short, there is ample reason to worry about the future of circumcision, both in this country and around the world. Here is a small sampling of some of the more strident, and scary, websites dedicated to the enemies of circumcision:

Anti-Circumcision Quotes from an Online Search for ‘Circumcision’ on Google

– Circumcision. A Barbaric Practice, A Human Rights Violation…

– Circumcision Is Barbaric And Unnecessary. Jews Against Circumcision

– Do not circumcise, it is barbaric, primitive and a human rights violation. Circumcision is barbaric and…

– circumcision is barbaric…Also, check out the links for more info on this evil practice.

– Is circumcision a barbaric ritual that harms a child physically? Or is it a deep meaningful…

– When our son was born, my wife decided circumcision was barbaric, but my parents insisted it was an essential…

– Circumcision (Bris Milah) is a cruel, barbaric procedure that can traumatize…

– I do find that male circumcision is barbaric and totally pointless for christians…

– Why circumcision should be abhorred- Circumcision is a barbaric tradition with deep roots in religious dogmas, like infant baptism….

Thus, it should come as little surprise that the enemies of male circumcision are at it again both in California and Massachusetts. A recent ‘San Francisco measure proposes to make the circumcision of males under 18 a misdemeanor punishable by a $1,000 fine or a year in jail.’ Also, Santa Monica is discussing a similar proposal. This attempted prohibition against circumcision is especially worrisome to Jews. As one source notes bluntly:

[The] measure clearly is aimed at a particular part of the community, and there’s no doubt that this proposition knowingly targets Jews. Marc Stern, a lawyer for the American Jewish Committee, had the matter exactly right when  he said: “This is the most direct assault on Jewish religious practice in the United States. It’s unprecedented in Jewish life.”

– The Los Angeles Times

Out on the east coast, there is an effort to ban circumcision in Massachusetts  where an anti-circumcision group has filed the Male Genital Mutilation Bill presented to the Massachusetts Legislature. The proposed new law ‘calls for a ban on circumcision for males under 18, unless medically necessary, and with no religious exemptions.’ The Jewish Journal of North Boston reports:

The leader of this current initiative, Matthew Hess, president of the group called the Bill to End Male Genital Mutilation, was quoted in the Boston Herald (February 21, 2010) as saying “circumcision is painful and unnecessary, violates a baby’s human rights and decreases sexual sensation in mature males.”

– The Jewish Journal – North Boston

It should not be too far of a stretch to say that the motivation behind the move to ban circumcision in San Fransisco and elsewhere is clearly anti-Semitic and possibly indicates a serious, and perhaps enduring, hostility towards the Judeo-Christian God and the Biblical tradition.

It would have been nice to see the force behind the misguided anti-circumcision campaign in Santa Monica…voicing appropriate disgust, from a movement that created a repulsively anti-Semitic comic to advance its cause online.

– The Los Angeles Times

Luckily, the state government of California has managed to come to the rescue in the name of religious freedom, especially Jewish religious freedom for trained Rabbis to practice infant male circumcision. Specifically, ‘Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill prohibiting cities and counties from banning male circumcision, his office announced’ recently. More good news came when the San Francisco ballot measure meant to outlaw child circumcision there was struck down by  ‘a judge in July [who] ordered the circumcision ban off the November ballot.’

Support against the enemies of circumcision also came from Assemblyman Mike Gatto, a Democrat from Los Angeles, who got a bill passed unanimously that heads off future anti-circumcision laws and bans their implementation. Mr. Gatto publicly stated that bans on circumcision amounted to ‘an affront to the exercise of personal, medical and religious freedom.’

These small victories for the forces of circumcision should not be taken for granted as the avowed enemies of circumcision will most probably only grow that much stronger. This is especially true in a nation where the number of males being circumcised has dropped below 50%. Some of the opponents’ arguments against the practice of male circumcision include the following:

Opponents of circumcision liken it to “genital mutilation” – the forced removal of a healthy body part from an unconsenting child.

– The Miami Herald

Opponents of circumcision claim that the outdated procedure affords no medical benefits, that it causes unnecessary pain for infants, and that the lack of a foreskin may reduce sexual pleasure and performance.

– Wiki-Answers.com

Given the history of anti-circumcision movements, ‘Jewish groups have decried anti-circumcision efforts as anti-Semitic.’ This is probably accurate, but the enemies of circumcision are now using more sophisticated reasoning in order to have the procedure made illegal and to deny accusations of anti-Jewish bias. Here are some of them, followed by the rebuttals of male circumcision proponents:

Accusations of Circumcision Opponents

– the procedure is out-dated

– Has no medical benefits

– Causes unnecessary pain for infants

– Reduces sexual pleasure and performance

 

 Advocates of Circumcision Findings

– The procedure is modern, clean, and hygenic

– May reduce cancer risk and other disorders

– Infant pain is slight and easily forgotten

– Does not affect either sexual pleasure or performance

One of the new opponents of circumcision, a Jewish professor named Ronald Goldman, began his opposition to Jewish circumcision sometime during the mid-1990s. He founded the Jewish Circumcision Resource Center which ‘serves to support the questioning of circumcision among Jews.’ Dr. Goldman has published two books, one entitled Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma, and another book called Questioning Circumcision: A Jewish Perspective. They have both met with success and now ‘both books have become primers on their subjects.’ Clearly, Ronald Goldman is an enemy of circumcision, who somehow envisions an uncircumcised Jewish future. One sources sums it:

Goldman says his organization decided to issue the statement because of the increased attention to the topic, accompanied by a general lack of awareness about the harm of circumcision. “There may be a misunderstanding of the reasons why many people question circumcision,” Goldman says. “We wanted to clarify that and take the opportunity to raise awareness about the practice.”

– Jewish Circumcision Opponents Grow More Vocal, by Rebecca Wald, Beyond the Bris

Dr. Goldman began his crusade after being made uncomfortable and a little nauseous at a traditional Jewish bris, an infant male circumcision ritual performed by a professional Rabbi. Ever since this ‘unfortunate’ encounter, Goldman has moved on to become a very well-organized and influential opponent of Jewish circumcision. Nonetheless, he claims that he wants ‘to assure Jews that questioning circumcision can be done respectfully and compassionately.’ The actual historical facts concerning Jewish male circumcision show Dr. Goldman’s concerns to be completely unfounded. As a reliable source writes:

Jews have circumcised tens of millions of their infant sons for over 3,000 years with few complications and without the dire pain, trauma, and other horrible effects claimed by opponents of circumcision.

– The Jewish Journal – North Boston

Another outspoken opponent of male circumcision is Dr. George C. Denniston, most probably a Gentile. He believes that history ‘shows that the arguments in favor of circumcision are questionable.’ He disparages studies that showed that circumcision may prevent cervical cancer in female sexual partners. Dr. George C. Dennistone also belittles the studies showing that circumcision can prevent urinary tract infection and penile cancer. Obviously, Dr. Denniston is a zealous enemy of circumcision and he makes this quite clear in the following statement:

Who has the right to order or perform such surgery on a newborn infant? I contend that no one does – certainly not the physician who should know better – since there is no proven medical reason to do so, and the procedure is known by many to be harmful. Circumcision can always be performed in adulthood for men who desire it, with fully informed consent.

– Unnecessary Circumcision, by George C. Denniston, M.D.

Notice that he now insists that newborn infants have rights, which is absurd considering they are completely dependent upon their parents and other adults for survival. Dr. Denniston also defames circumcision as being ‘harmful’. He even goes to extreme lengths in ‘proving’ that circumcision causes harm to sexual function by quoting Maimonides, a Jewish philosopher from the Middle Ages! No, Dr. George Denniston’s motivations are easily seen in this closing argument:

Physicians who continue to perform routine circumcision are not only harming infants but are also harming the integrity of the medical profession. It is hard to accept that these physicians – many of whom have been circumcised themselves – are using their medical licenses to continue this contra­indicated practice. This is tragedy perpetuating itself.

– Unnecessary Circumcision, by George C. Denniston, M.D.

As can be seen, the opponents of circumcision are growing bold and more dangerous everyday. Those who support circumcision and its practice, both religious and otherwise, need to become more vigilant and more wary in their understanding of the enemies of circumcision.

May the LORD God bless you in the name of St. Judas Maccabaeus.

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The Maccabee – 10 Simple Reasons why Christianity should Practice Male Circumcision

September 20, 2011

‘Is not my word like fire,” declares the LORD, ‘and like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces?’

– Jeremiah 23:29

For almost 2,000 years, the consensus of Christianity has been that male circumcision is not required for the faith. Nonetheless, there are numerous and fairly valid reasons to finally reintroduce this practice among Christians throughout the world. There are also some specific passages that seem to suggest that the religion of Judaism should also promote and perhaps even require circumcision among the Gentiles as a part of their own faith.

This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised.

– Genesis 17:10

The covenant of male circumcision started with Abraham, the founding father of the three major faiths of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. For Christianity to truly be a part of the House of Abraham, they should circumcise their male children. After all, Christians have fulfilled the prophecy that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky and the sands upon the seashore. There are some who would claim that Christianity obeys the Seven laws of Noah and that only Jews are actually required to practice circumcision. That is the wrong assumption as the following passages from the Jewish Talmud clearly show:

The Master said: Every precept which was given to the sons of Noah and repeated at Sinai was meant for both [Noachides and Israelites]

– Sanhedrin 59a

But circumcision, which was given to the Sons of Noah, for it is written, ‘Thou shalt keep my covenant, and repeated at Sinai, And in the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised,’

– Sandhedrin 59b

This law was not learned from the teaching of Moses our teacher, until Ezekiel came and taught, ‘No alien, uncircumcised in heart and uncircumcised in flesh shall enter into my Sanctuary to serve me’

– Sanhedrin 22b

One should remember that the compromise concerning uncircumcised Christian Gentiles found in the Book of Acts was not a unanimous decision and was probably not meant to be an eternal dictate that Christians didn’t need to circumcise their male children. What follows are ten excellent reasons why Christianity should practice circumcision as a standard aspect of their faith:

Ten Reasons Why Christianity should Practice Circumcision

I. The Covenant of Abraham

BIBLE: This is my covenant, which you shall keep…Every man child among you shall be circumcised. (Genesis 17:10)

CONCLUSION: Though many Christians are not blood-related to Abraham, they are a part of his House and subject to the same law. Many followers of Abraham practiced circumcision.

II. The Gospels of Jesus Christ

BIBLE: It is easier for Heaven and earth to pass away, than one part of the law to become invalid. (Luke 16:17)

CONCLUSION: Circumcision is one of the oldest Hebrew laws and was commanded by God Himself. Regardless of past Christian tradition circumcision is still the law.

III. St. Paul’s Obvious Approval

BIBLE: What value is there in circumcision? Much in every way! First of all, they have been entrusted with the very words of God. (Romans 3:1-2)

CONCLUSION: Although St. Paul appears to disapprove of circumcision in some passages, this is because he was fighting against those Christians who still believed it should be required. Paul himself was circumcised.

IV. To Be Like Christ – Christian

BIBLE: When eight days had passed for the circumcising of the child, His name was called Jesus. (Luke 2:21)

CONCLUSION: Jesus Christ was circumcised on the eighth day. To be like Christ is to be circumcised. To be a Christian mother is to be like Mary’s and to circumcise their sons

V. To Be Like the Apostles

BIBLE: And it came to pass, that on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child…His mother answered…he shall be called John.- Luke 1:59-60

CONCLUSION: All of the Apostles and all the Disciples were circumcised. Jesus Christ Himself was circumcised along with His father, his brothers and all his ancestors and early followers.

VI. To Honor the Christian Martyrs

BIBLE: They put to death certain women, that had caused their children to be circumcised.- I Maccabees 1:60

CONCLUSION: St. Peter, St. Jason, St. James, St. Stephen, St. Thomas, , St. John & many other Christian Martyrs were circumcised.

VII. To Renew the Hebrew Tradition

BIBLE: Abraham took…every male among the men of Abraham’s house; and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin.(Genesis 17:2)

CONCLUSION: To truly become a member of the House of Abraham, to distinguish oneself from the Pagans, and in order to fulfill the laws of God as commanded by Jesus, all Christians should now circumcise all their male sons by the age of 18.

VIII. To Remove all Pagan Customs

BIBLE: They…leave their children uncircumcised, and make their souls abominable with all manner of uncleanness and profanation. (I Maccabees 1:48 )

CONCLUSION: Today, a growing number of Jewish and Christian mothers leave their sons uncircumcised. In the years to come, more and more Pagans will become hostile to Christianity and to the practice of circumcision. Oppose the Pagans.

IX. To Convert the Jews & Muslims

BIBLE: Ishmael…was thirteen years old, when he was circumcised. (Genesis 17:25) Abraham circumcised his son Isaac at eight days old, as God had commanded him. (Genesis 21:4)

CONCLUSION: Jews and Muslims would more likely convert to a Christianity that practices circumcision. 

X. In Tribute to the Early Saints

BIBLE: Mattathias and his allies…forcibly circumcised any uncircumcised boys whom they found in the territory of Israel…They save the law from the hands of the Gentiles. (I Maccabees 2:45)

CONCLUSION: The first 5 Saints of Christianity, St. Judas, Jonathan, John, Simon, and Eleazar were all circumcised Jews who fought against the Greeks who butchered anyone that practiced or opposed the new law that banned circumcision.

Maccabee Christianity is fully supportive of the practice of circumcision by those of the Christian faith. Indeed, read carefully, Scriptures seem to indicate that the practice of circumcision may well be destined to become universal among all men on planet Earth. History, and the Bible, stands as a clear warning to those who would so blithely disdain male circumcision as a barbaric custom of the past. Here are just a few pertinent quotes:

In those days there appeared in Israel men who were breakers of the law, and they seduced many people…They covered over the mark of their circumcision and abandoned the holy covenant; they allied themselves with the Gentiles and sold themselves into wrongdoing.

– I Maccabees 1:11-15

Women who had their babies circumcised were put to death, in keeping with the decree, with the babies hung from their necks; their families also and those who had circumcised them were killed.

– I Maccabees 1:60-61

The King sent messengers with letter to Jerusalem and to the cities of Judah, ordering them to follow customs foreign to the land…to leave their sons uncircumcised, and to let themselves be defiled with every kind of impurity and abomination.

– I Maccabees 1:44-48

May the LORD God bless you in the name of St. Judas Maccabaeus.

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Hanukkah, the Maccabee Holiday

October 10, 2010

Basic Facts of Hanukkah

 

The Historical Facts of Hanukkah

 

NAME: Hanukkah, which means ‘Dedication’, ‘Establishing’, or ‘Consecration’ in Hebrew.
HEBREW NAME: חֲנֻכָּה or חנוכה.
TITLE: Festival of Lights, Festival of Dedication.
DEFINITION: An eight-day Jewish Holiday celebrated every year during the winter.
HOLIDAY: A joyous, family-centered Jewish religious festival pre-dating Christianity by nearly 200 years.
RELIGION: Ancient Holiday of Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform Judaism.
FOUNDER: Judas Maccabaeus and his fellow Maccabee brothers.
RECOGNITION: A perpetual, yearly celebration marking the retaking, purification, and rededication of the Temple of Jerusalem by the rebel Jewish forces of the Maccabees after defeating the Pagan Greek military occupation.
ORIGIN: First established and celebrated in Jerusalem on the 25th of Kislev, 165 BC.
DATES: Always begins on the 25th of Kislev and ends on the 2nd or 3rd of Tevet (Hebrew Calendar).
DURATION: Lasts for eight days with an additional candle being lit after sunset for each passing day.
LONGETIVITY: Annually observed by Jews from around the world for the past 2,175 years.
TRADITIONS: Ritual candle lighting, religious singing, specific prayers, gifts of money and games.
MEANING: Sometimes religious freedom must be defended by violent, armed revolution.
MIRACLE: When it came time to light the Temple Menorah, there was only enough holy oil left for a single day, yet somehow God was able to cause the oil to last and burn for a miraculous eight entire days.
WORDS: Hallel, Al-ha-Nissim, Hanukkah addition (Prayers), Brachot (Blessing), Ma’oz Tzur, Hanerot Halalu (Hymns), and Psalms 30, 67, 91, Numbers 6:22 through 8:4, Zechariah 2:14-4:7, I Kings 7:40-50 (Readings).
SIGNIFICANCE: Represents one of the most miraculous, statistically impossible, and highly implausible series of military victories in the history of the world.
BIBLE: Book of the Maccabees I (4:36-59), Book of the Maccabees II (10:1-8)
TALMUD: The Babylonian Talmud, Sabbath 21-24a, 45a, and 118, Sotah 41a, Gittin 57b,
REFERENCE: 1) Antiquities of the Jews, Book XII, Ch. 5-11, by Flavius Josephus, 2) The Scroll of Antiochus, (Megillat Antiochus), 3) The Gospel of John, mentioned in John 10:22

May the LORD God bless you in the name of St. Judas Maccabaeus.

Jason Nicholas Korning

SOURCE: Hanukkah, Wikipedia. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanukkah)

The Electro-Magnetic Spectrum of the Temple Menorah


The Menorah and its Components
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Basic Facts of St. Judas Maccabaeus

October 9, 2010

Maccabee Facts about St. Judas Maccabaeus

 

The Triumph of Judas Maccabaeus, by Peter Paul Rubens (1577 - 1640)

The Life of St. Judas Maccabeus
PLACE OF BIRTH: Modi’in, Judea
PLACE OF DEATH: Elasa (160 BC), near modern day Ramallah
MILITARY SERVICE: Rebel leader and commander of the Maccabees
YEARS OF SERVICE: 167-160 BC
BATTLES/WARS: Revolt of the Maccabees
LEGACY: Military hero, Defender of Judaism, Founder of Hanukkah
PRESTIGE: One of the Nine Worthies, which include nine of the greatest Judeo-Christian warriors of all time
JUDAISM: Seen as one of greatest Jewish warriors in history, alongside Joshua, Gideon and David
ESTABLISHMENT: Founded the holiday of Hanukkah and the Hasmonean Dynasty of Israel

 

The Faith of St. Judas Maccabaeus
RELIGION: Temple Judaism
FAITH: Devout, traditional
BIBLE: Book of the Maccabees I and II
APOCRYPHA: Book of the Maccabees III, IV, and V
OTHER BOOKS: Book of the Maccabees VI, VII, VIII, and the three Ethiopian books of Meqabyan
TRADITION: One of the only actual Judeo-Christian heroes in history
JUDAISM: Founder of the festival of Hanukkah (Dedication), an official holiday of Judaism
CHRISTIANITY: Considered a Saint residing in the Christian Kingdom of Heaven
RECOGNITION: Honored by Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox, Ethiopian and Coptic Christianity
CHURCHES: I. St. Mary and St. Shmuni Church, in Sinstorf (Hamburg, Germany), II. Chapel of the Maccabees, in Saint-Pierre, (Geneva, Switzerland), III. St. Maccabees Church, in Cologne, (Germany), IV. Church of St. Maccabees Brothers in Lady, (Poland)

Ancestry of St. Judas Maccabaeus
ROYAL LINE: Hasmonean Dynasty
TRIBE OF ISRAEL: Levi
FAMILY HOUSE: House of Asamoneus
PRIESTHOOD: Seven Watchtowers of Joarib
FATHER: Mattathias the Hasmonean
BIRTH ORDER: 3rd-born Son
BROTHERS: John Gaddis, Simon Thassi, Eleazar Avaran, Jonathan Apphus (By Birth Order)
FAMILY TOMB: Modi’in, Israel

Various Names of St. Judas Maccabaeus
STANDARD: Judas Maccabeus, Judas Maccabaeus
TITLE: The Hammer, the Hammer of God, the Hammerer
JEWISH: Judah Maccabee, Judah the Maccabee
YIDDISH: Yehudah HaMakabi
LITERAL ENGLISH: Judah the Hammer
HEBREW: יהודה המכבי
ORIGIN: From the Aramaic ‘maqqabba’, or ‘makebet’ in modern Hebrew
ALTERNATIVE SPELLINGS: Machabeus, Maccabeus,

The Eternal Laws of St. Judas Maccabaeus
GOD: I. You will accept death over idolatry.
LIFE: II. You will accept death over murder.
SEXUALITY: III. You will accept death over sexual perversion.

St. Judas Maccabaeus in Literature
Old English Homilies on The Maccabees, by Aelfric (c. 1000) edited by Stuart D. Lee
El Maccabeo, by Miguel de Silveyra. (Naples, 1638)
La chevalerie de Judas Macabe, by Pierre du Ryer (1600-1658)
Judas Machabaeus, (Rome 1695)
Judas Makkabaeus, by Josef Eduard Konrad Bischoff (Germany 1885)
The Hammer, by Alfred J. Church and Richmond Seeley (1890)
Alilot Gibbor ha-Yehudim Yehudah ha-Makkabi le-Veit ha-Hashmona’im, by Jacob Benjamin Katznelson (1922)
Judas Makkabaeus, ein Kleinvolk kaempft um Glaube und Heimat, by Karl Boxler (1943)
My Glorious Brothers, by Howard Fast (1948)
Yehudah ha-Makkabi in A Layter tsu der Zun, by Moses Schulstein (1954)
Yehudah ha-Makkabi in Sippurim le-Mofet, by Jacob Fichmann (1954)

St. Judas Maccabaeus in Theatre
Judas Maccabeaus, by William Houghton (1601)
Giuda Maccabeo, ossia la morte di Nicanore, an Oratorio adapted by Vallicella (1839)
Judas Maccabaeus, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1872)

St. Judas Maccabaeus in Art
The illustrated manuscript Libri Maccabaeorum (900s AD)
Josephus, illustrations by Jean Fouquet
Chapel of the Dead, in Tournai Cathedral, by Rubens
Illustrated English Bible, illustrated by Paul Gustave Dore
Nine Heroes Tapestries, at the Metropolitan Museum (South Netherlandish, ca. 1400-1410)
The Triumph of Judas Maccabeus, by Gerrit van Honthorst

St. Judas Maccabaeus in Music
Judas Maccabaeus, an Oratorio, by George Frideric Handel (1746)
Song of Judas Maccabeus Before the Battle of Maspha, by Rebekah Hyneman (1816-1875)
The Battle-Cry of the South, by James R. Randall (1860s)

St. Judas Maccabaeus Briefly Mentioned in…
The classic saga called the Divine Comedy, by Dante
The classic play called Love’s Labour’s Lost, by Shakespeare
The song Hanukkah in Santa Monica, by Tom Lehrer
The song Jerusalem, by Mirah
The book Treatise on Twelve Lights, Ch. 5 (Recourse to the Sword), by Robert Struble (2007-08)

May the LORD God Bless you in the name of St. Judas Maccabaeus.

SOURCE(S): – Judas Maccabaeus, Wikipedia. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judas_Maccabeus), Judas Maccabaeus on the web, by Tim Spalding. (http://www.isidore-of-seville.com/maccabeus/), Books of the Maccabees, Wikipedia.(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Books_of_the_Maccabees), Category: Holy Maccabees Churches, Wikimedia. (http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Holy_Maccabees_churches)

 

The Hebrew Alphabet

 

 

The Eye of the Hammer

 

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