And Yadda Yadda Yadda ... I Made Aliyah


I just added a new category to my blog:


I hesitated before I clicked.

I’m a superstitious kind of girl, for one. And, two, I do think our thoughts impact our reality.

If I add a war category to my blog, how does that impact my reality?

Call it what you want: law of attraction; positive thinking; pessimism; subjectivity. I’m someone who believes that we see the world the way we see it.  The world is interpreted by us. And every time we put an idea or an action into the world, we receive an idea and action in kind.

If we want our world to be different, we need to start thinking and acting differently.

If I want a world without war, what happens to that desire when I start blogging about war?

*   *   *   *

This morning, on my drive to work, I spotted a blossoming olive tree on the main road in the kibbutz. It made me so happy to see the baby green olives peppering the branches. On a macro level, it reminded me of what makes me happy about living on a kibbutz in Northern Israel. On a micro level, it reminded me that this August heat is half way out the door and autumn is just around the corner.

I snapped a photo of the tree and shared it on Facebook. I wanted my joy to spread. Spreading joy makes the world appear joyous.

I think it worked, at least a little. I smiled as I left Hannaton and turned left to drive towards Misgav.

Each weekday morning, I pass by Kfar Manda, the Arab village next door to ours. And every morning it’s a stark contrast of how we in Hannaton see the world differently from the people in Kfar Manda.

Of course, I can only guess that we see the world differently: Arab Israelis living in a mini city and Jewish Israelis living in a small kibbutz. I don’t have any friends from Kfar Manda so I have no one to interview and discuss this with.

Today, as I drove by Kfar Manda and held on to the joy that began with an olive tree, I saw smoke coming up from above the Western, residential side of the city. I felt my joy dissipate.

When I rounded the curve and passed the main entrance to the city, I saw the source of the smoke.

I couldn’t tell from my car if it was one of the trash fires I often see or smell burning in Kfar Manda. (A trash fire is exactly that –> burning trash.) Or if it was  intentionally set for an agricultural reason, since the fire was on the edge of a vegetable field. How an intentional fire serves any of us in this dry, scorching hot month of August is beyond me.

In any event, there was no one nearby trying to put out the fire. It just burned. And the smoke seeped into my nostrils as I rolled the car window down to take a picture of it.

And my joy disappeared.

My world was no longer olive blossoms. My world was fires burning at the edge of a beautiful field.

Jen Maidenberg is  a writer, editor, activist and former assistant editor at the Arizona Jewish Post. She posted the above on her blog on Aug. 16, 2012. Visit her website at