Thursday, April 2, 2009

Cordoba's Maimonides & Rabbi's Blessings

The interior of the Jewish Synagogue in Cordoba

Being of jewish faith it was only natural that when in Cordoba I should want to visit the old jewish synagogue built in 1350 .

But first I went "to pay tribute" to the two famous impressive sites of the city: La Mezquita ( The Mosque which is now Cordoba's Cathedral and has huge arches and about 1000 pillars) and The Alcazar ( the fortress with three towers, inside - mosaics , sarcophagi, Moorish baths, outside- surrounded by magnificient gardens) .

View from La Mezquita. Quadelquivir river.

At The Alcazar

And now back to Cordoba's old Jewish Synagogue. It is located on a small street and it has a tiny courtyard which houses the monument of Maimonides (Moses Ben Maimon). Inside the small , modest synagogue there are some carvings and decorations with Biblical texts in Hebrew.

The statue of Maimonides

Maimonides ('Harambam' in Hebrew) was a preeminent rabbi, physician, and philosopher who was born in Cordova in the 12th century. His main contribution to Judaism was the composing of the Code of Jewish law.

Rabbi Abraham Yechiel Fish

I'd like to mention here another rabbi , one that I had the highest luck and privilege to meet in person , and even though he has been dead for almost ten years I still turn to Him in my thoughts and ask for his Blessing . He was neither a physician nor a philosopher like Maimonides, and yet he cured people and guided them through life. His name - Abraham Yechiel Fish זצ"ל

Rabbi Fish lived in the city of Tel Aviv, near my place of work. My office was relatively new in that neighborhood, so I knew nothing about the rabbi . Soon enough I noticed that when I'm out of the office I'm often approached by people, especially women , who ask me to direct them to a certain nearby street and a certain number.

One day , I decided to find out what was that address about. I entered a tiny courtyard much like the one of Cordoba's synagogue, climbed up some narrow stairs leading to a long hall at the end of which there was an open door to the room where the rabbi was sitting at a table, and receiving the people waiting in line in the entrance hall.

The Rabbi and his wife lived in great modesty, on the verge of poverty. That's because they gave away their money to charity. They didn't have any children, and yet He became famous for his successful blessing given to women who had difficulty in becoming pregnant. This taught me a big lesson: even if you cannot help yourself with the gift you have, you can still help others with that gift.

At that time, I was recovering from a rare disease for which there was no specific treatment. The doctor gave me a certain medicine to take ,but didn't hide his hesitation about it. I told the Rabbi of my fears concerning the medicine. He just kept saying "don't worry".

The next time I went to see the doctor, while still at the door, I heard him saying to me in a very strange voice "I want you to stop taking the medicine". Just like that, without any explanation.

Well, if I am alive and well today it's due to the Rabbi's Blessing for Good


  1. Wow! I also am a firm beleiver in traditional healing and spiritual medicine. You certainly are a living example that it does work!

  2. Really nice post, Duta. I love when you say,
    "Even if you cannot help yourself with the gift you have, you can still help others with that gift." So true. Isn't it wonderful how some people just don't let their trials get them down, they use all the knowledge gained from living through them to help others. I love that and I'm glad you met Rabbi Fish! Beautiful pictures too :)

  3. Indeed Ron, I am a living example that spiritual healing ( a rabbi's blessing in my case) does work.

  4. Thanks Kelly. I suppose that as religious people, the Rabbi & his wife wanted children but could not have any for one reason or another. It seemed that the Rabbi could not help himself with his gift of blessing with which he helped those women that had difficulty in getting pregnant.Who knows, but this is a lesson for everyone. In certain cases, we cannot help ourselves, but we can help others.

  5. Hi Duta :) Just stopping by to say hello and hope all is well with you.
    Have a Wonderful Day!

  6. Thanks a lot Kelly. I was away from home and computer for our Passover Holiday.

    Have a wonderful time you too.

  7. Hi Duta...what a wonderful experience to share. There are far more ways in the world than modern medicine with which to heal! While doctors and medication can play a vital role, there are things of the mind and spirit and of nature that should also be explored.