A Doctor’s Dilemma

I made an appointment to see my doctor complaining of fatigue and lower back pain. He examined me and said that the problem could be easily cured and he gave me instructions what to do.

Following his medical advice, I drove to the supermarket and bought twelve containers of yogurt with fruit. Over the course of a week I had consumed all twelve containers of the yogurt but the fatigue and lower back pain remained.

So I called the doctor and told him that I had done what he suggested but I saw no relief from my discomfort.

There was silence on the other end of the telephone followed by immense laughter.

“Tembel ”(dummy), he said. “I did not tell you to buy yogurt. I told you to take lessons in yoga”.

Yoga, shmoga. I can’t see myself siting in a twisted position like Mahatma Ghandi. With the pains I have in my lower back now, how does he think I can lift my legs in an initial yoga position?

My doctor has a dilemma with me. He is thorough and patient but obviously doesn’t speak clearly. So how did my yoga turn into twelve fruited containers of yogurt? And how did I gain 3 kilos in one week?

It’s very simple. The correct answer is that mistakes happen.

I recall an unhappy mistake from several years ago. Only Hebrew speakers and readers can understand.

A man’s beloved wife had died and after the first thirty days of mourning (shloshim) he ordered the stone to be erected on her grave. Using the proper word for “my wife” in Hebrew is “zugati”. However, the letter gimel and the letter nun are very similar and by mistake the engraver mistook the letter gimel for a nun and carved the word “zonati” (my whore) instead of “zugati”, (my wife). Mistakes do happen. But this one was tragic for the man and his mourning family. Happily, the error was corrected in one day.

When a man reading aloud from the Torah, which has no vowels, and makes a mistake in the correct pronunciation of a word, he is immediately stopped and told to correct the word which he then repeats.

Some mistakes can be corrected immediately. Others can take longer times.

In the recent events in Jerusalem concerning metal detectors at the entrance to the Old City, the alarm was sent out to all the Muslim countries in the world to protest the Israeli “violation” forbidding prayer on the Temple Mount until the detector could indicate whether or not a weapon was being smuggled into the Al-Aqsa And Dome of the Rock holy mosques.

The King of Jordan was inundated by tens of thousands of his people demanding retribution in the form of closing the Israeli Embassy in Amman and even demanding the repeal of the 1994 peace treaty between our two countries.

President Donald Trump sent his envoy to Jerusalem to remedy the situation. And in the end, our Prime Minister surrendered to the Muslim world and ordered the metal detectors to be removed. He capitulated to the Arabs. His action was a source of shame and outcry from the Israeli nation which saw it as a victory for the Arabs who were rejoicing that they had “defeated” the Israeli Jews.

Many say that it was his big mistake. Israel now looks weak in the Arab eyes. But Netanyahu does not believe that he made a mistake given the threat of a national Arab uprising with the support of all the Muslim countries . The removal of the metal detectors temporarily ended the Muslim protests and they were permitted to ascend to the holy mount for prayers.

I personally have mixed feelings. I do believe it is necessary to check every non-Jewish person who attempts to worship on the Haram al Sharif (Ha HaBayit) in order to assure the security and safety of the entire population. Weapons have in the past been freely hidden under clothing and brought into the mosques to be used at some time in the murder of Jews.

Did we capitulate to the Muslim world?  Yes, regrettably we did. Was it our mistake? Only time can tell.

In the meantime, I have resolved not to eat another yogurt for the rest of the year. And as for yoga……………….!!!


About the Author
Esor Ben-Sorek is a retired professor of Hebrew, Biblical literature & history of Israel. Conversant in 8 languages: Hebrew, Yiddish, English, French, German, Spanish, Polish & Dutch. Very proud of being an Israeli citizen. A follower of Trumpeldor & Jabotinsky & Begin.
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