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A big family

Picture: Freepik

Picture: Freepik

Some people think of people as if they were cars on a highway: each with its own origin and destination, relating to others only to negotiate lane changes and turns. For cars, closeness is danger, loneliness is freedom… And for us?

People are not cars. Living things are needed, they strengthen each other, share their destiny and achieve them together. When we are alive, closeness is warmth and loneliness is oppression.

People belong to families. Families establish communities. Communities are the many colorful people of the world. And all those people form a single, magnificent body, with one soul called humanity.

Some divide this body into six billion fragments and roll back into a single mass. They want each person to do their thing in their own way and at the same time deal with each individual on the planet. They see no difference between people.

But we are like extended leaves from twigs branching larger twigs on branches of larger branches until we reach the trunk and roots, common to all of us.

Each person has its place in the tree of life, its source of strength and trust in this tree for their very survival.

None of us walk alone. Each one of us carries the experiences of ancestors wherever he goes, along with his troubles, his traumas, his victories, his hopes and aspirations. Our thoughts grow from his thoughts, our destiny is shaped from his goals.

At the highest peak we reach, they are there, holding our hand, pushing us upward, providing the shoulders on those who stand. And we share those shoulders, that sense, that heritage with all the brothers and sisters of our people.

That’s why our own people are so important. If we want to be at peace with anyone else in the world, we must start with our own brothers and sisters. For that you must find peace within yourself. And only when you find it, you can help us find peace for the whole world.

Every Jew is a brother or sister of a large family of many thousands of years. Where a Jew walks, there walk sages and martyrs, heroes and heroines, legends and miracles, all the path leads us back to Abraham and Sarah, the first two Jews who challenged the world with their ideals.

Walk the shreds, blood and audacity of millennia with him, the legacy of those who lived, yearned and died for a world to come, a world the way it was meant to be. Their fate is our fate. They are satisfied with us. In each of us and all of us together. For us it is that we are one.

When a Jew does an act of kindness, all our hands extend with it. If a Jew falls, we all stumble. If one suffers, we all feel pain. When one rejoices, we all feel happy. In our unit we find our destiny and our destiny is to be one. We are one body, breathing with a single set of lungs, throbbing with one heart, driving in one sense of right.

We are one. Let it be with love.

More Gabriel
Sheliaj General
Shuva, Jewish community of Costa Rica
Picture: Freepik
My Citadel News

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Tracks of Jewish last names

España 7
Given the persecutions, many Jews or “converts” chose or were forced to use new last names, or hide their Jewish heritage, but they left traces to follow… small clues for those who know Hebrew…

Last names of professions as Moreno or our Maestro or like Perez using the K (Perek). Others changed the order of the letters, for example Rojas: Zajor.

Also in Hebrew, last names acquired during a trip were remembered, or associated with cities such as: Leon, Cordoba, Toledo and toledano. Moreover names of “new Christians” as: Santacruz, Santamaria, Salvador… or taken from the names of their Christian godparents: Diaz, Herrera, Pereira.

From: El Sefardita Costarricense
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Dispersion of Jews

España 3
After the expulsion from Spain, Jews were dispersed in distinct currents. One of those, which was installed in the Ottoman Empire and Asia Minor, was welcomed with benevolence. Another, seated in Portugal, did not have the same luck. More than thirty thousand families took refuge in the Lusitanian country, not only for its proximity but also because the promises made by their monarchs Juan II and Manuel. They offered shelter and protection of their faith, but these agreements were not respected and the Jews were subjected to forced conversions. It was a final path. New land: America.

From: El Sefardita Costarricense
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Inquisition…

Inquisition…

Confiscation of properties, confessions under torture considered as valid, a secret by the one who formulated the complaint… and what about the false claimants?

Use for personal revenge, to get money. Complaints to eliminate competition (or for the simple reason that someone was annoying to their own interests or tastes), all kinds of abuse (including sexual issues)…

Against Jews… No! The Inquisition didn’t take active action on the matter, for that, “the people” were first, that according to the above circumstances, Jews were forced to convert (or die or be expelled… or…) Later, the Inquisition had jurisdiction over new converts.

From: El Sefardita Costarricense
My Citadel News