The Shmooze

An Expensive Option for Israelis Looking for Love

By Renee Ghert-Zand

  • Print
  • Share Share

Israel’s Channel 2 News reported yesterday that it’s not just the price of cottage cheese that is high in Israel. Many Israelis are boycotting and going without their favorite dairy food, but going without a spouse is another matter. Desperate single men and women are shelling out the big bucks — or, rather, Shekels.

These lonely hearts parted yesterday with their money to the tune of NIS 2,700 (close to $800), basically for the sound of a shofar. Actually, it was the sound of thousands of shofars blown at the same time Tuesday evening by Yeshiva students under the direction of kabbalist Rabbi David Batzri at Amoka, near Safed in the Galilee. The ceremony took place near the gravesite of Rabbi Yonatan Ben Uziel, who lived during the time of the compilation of the Mishna two millennia ago. Ben Uziel died a bachelor, but single religious Jews ironically come to pray at his grave for luck in finding a mate.

Rabbi Batzri is apparently reputed in certain circles for having mystical powers that aid individuals in finding their soul mate, and evidently some think what he is charging is worth it. For the NIS 2,700, you get your name and up to four other names you submit read aloud during the prayer service led by Rabbi Batzri. And if you forego the payment plan of 28 payments of 96 NIS each and pay everything up front, you get a blessed bottle of wine, a Kiddush cup and your choice of a tallit or shofar.

When the Channel 2 reporter tried to cut a deal with the organizers of the event, it wasn’t easy. In the end, he was offered two bargain options. In the first, he could pay NIS 50 less, but he would get only two names read. The other was an NIS 1,800 discount, but in that case the names he submitted would not be read by either Rabbi Batzri or his close circle, but rather by some run-of-the-mill students. And he could forget about the tallit or shofar, too.

This is by far the not the first time that Rabbi Batzri has made the news. Other mentions include reports of his being investigated for incitement to racism against Arabs back in 2006.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Israel, Love, Rabbi David Batzri, Rabbi Yonatan Ben Uziel, Shofar

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • Is it better to have a young, fresh rabbi, or a rabbi who stays with the same congregation for a long time? What do you think?
  • Why does the leader of Israel's social protest movement now work in a beauty parlor instead of the Knesset?
  • What's it like to be Chagall's granddaughter?
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.