Newspaper Archive of
Heritage Florida Jewish News
Fern Park , Florida
August 10, 2012     Heritage Florida Jewish News
PAGE 16     (16 of 20 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
PAGE 16     (16 of 20 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
August 10, 2012

Newspaper Archive of Heritage Florida Jewish News produced by SmallTownPapers, Inc.
Website © 2019. All content copyrighted. Copyright Information.     Terms Of Use.     Request Content Removal.

PAGE t6A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, AUGUST 10, 2012 Linda Gradstein The Media Line The next time you're passing a church, a mosque or a synagogue, you might want to pop in for a few moments. A new American- Israeli s.tudy has found that praying regularly can reduce the risk of develop- ing Alzheimer's disease by 50 percent. - The study, which was funi~ed by the National Institutes of Health in Washington, D.C found that w omen, who have a sig- nificantly larger chance of developing forms of demen- tia of which Alzheimer's is prayer a one form--could stave off the disease through prayer. The findings confirm earlier studies that indicated reli- g!on can play a positive role. "We found that people with higfler levels of spiritu- al well-being had a signifi- cantly slower progression of AIzheimer's disease," Yakir Kafman, the head of the neuropsychiatric depart- ment at Herzog hospital in Jerusalem, told The Media Line. The Israeli organization Melabev has 10 centers serving about 600 Alzheim- er's patients for whom prayer is part of the daily routine. "if prayer is done in a center or a religious facility, it is communal and there is a social aspect," Susan Sachs, the director of public relations and de- velopment at Melabev told The Media Line. "Itgives hope and perspective, and for many people it helps re- tain their dignity. They're doing something that they did all their lives.'! Melabev provides an al- ternative to institutional- izing Alzheimer's patients" by providing a full day of activities. Sachs estimates there are 100,000 people suffering from the dis- ease in Israel. The centers provide them with lami- nated cards with the most popular prayers printed in large type, although many of the patients rely on memory, which also helps strengthen their cognitive function. While prayer has some cognitive elements, it strengthens emotional functioning even more. As the patients' cognitive function declines, his or her emotional function may be strengthened, according to Leah Abramowitz, the head of the Institute for the Study of Aging at Melabev. She told The Media Line that, "It's like a baby who can feel his mother's emotions and will start crying if she is angry Or tense. It's like the person who is fully blind will have more acute hearing." Prayer, whether public or private, can also lower stress levels - one of the risk factors for Alzheimer's. Other risk factors include high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes. Ac- cording to medical sources, as people live longer, there is more chance that l hey will develop dementia. Is- rael's life expectancy--80 years for men and 84.2 for women--is the world's fourth-highest, exceeded only by Japan, Hong Kong and Switzerland. Professor Rivka inzel- berg of Tel Aviv University. who led the research, told a conference recently that the study indicated that 50 percent more women than men suffer memory impair- ments, and that formal schooling decreases the risk of getting Alzheimer's, which also has a genetic component. Abramow- itz agreed that rituals, like prayer, are especially comforting to Alzheimer's ~atients. "Prayer is something that went into [the patients'] long term memory many many years ago," she said. "It is a ritual that is very comforting for them." By Ron Kampeas WASHINGTON (JTA)m The U.S. State Department's report on religious freedom described a"global increase" in anti-Semitism and said the "rising tide of anti- Semitism" was among the key trends of last year. The executive summary of the report for 2011, released 6# Rabbi Aaron D. Rubinger, Senior Rabbi Congregation Ohev Shalom Starting Wednesday, August 15th and Thursday, August 16, 2012 The same class will be taught twice each week: Wednesdays at 12 noon and Thursdays at 7 PM Rabbi Rubinger just returned from a 7-month sabbatical in which he visited over 10 countries investigating Contemporary Anti-Semitism in Europe. He will share with the community his findings in a 4-week course beginning August 15th. RSPV to Susan at 407-298-4650 or, as enrollment may be limited. Free o Charge The Adult Conservative Yeshiva is funded thanks to a grant from Arnold and Barbara Sager through the "Sager Fund" of Congregation Ohev Shalom. Classes held at Congregation Ohev Shalom 613 Concourse Parkway South, Maitland, FL 32751 Monday, also detailed the "impact of political and "demographic transitions on -religious minorities" and "the effects of conflict on religious freedom." The increased anti-Semi- tism was "manifested in Ho- locaust denial, glorification, and relativism; conflating opposition to certain policies of Israel with blatant anti- Semitism; growing national- istic movements that target 'the other'; and traditional forms of anti-Semitism, such as conspiracy theories, acts of desecration and assault, 'blood libel,' and cartoons demonizing Jews," the sum- mary said. It was not clear from the report how its authors assessed an "increase" in anti-Semitism. There was no overall quantification of the phenomenon, and individual country reports, while list- ing instances of official and societal anti-Semitism, did not compare rates to previ- ous years' reports. The emphasis on anti- Semitism reflects a policy initiated by Hannah Rosen- thal, the current special envoy on anti-Semitism. Rosenthal has pressed for the incorporation of anti-Sem- itism monitoring into the department's overall human rights reports, arguing that it increases awareoess of the issue among U.S. diplomats. The George W. Bush ad- ministration, which ex- panded monitoring of anti- Semitism by creating the post of an envoy to combat anti-Semitism, kept its re- ports on the issue separate. Countries singled out for special notice on anti- Semitism included: * Venezuela, where Presi- dent HugoChavez described Israel's treatment of th, Palestinians as "genocide" and called-Zionism racism, and an Op-Ed in a govern- ment-owned newspaper that described Norwegian mass killer Anders Breivik as a "sabbath goy." * Ukraine, where there were several instances of vandalism targeting Jewish buildings and cemeteries, as well as incitement by ultra- "nationalist figures. * Hungary, where the rise of an anti-Semitic political party was noted. * Egypt, where anti-Se- mitic cartoons and articles persisted in government-run and oppositiofi media after the revolution in early 2011 that ousted the regime of Hosni Mubarak. * Iran, where the report said that "the government's anti-Semitic rhetoric, along with a perception among radical Muslims that all Jew- ish citizens of the country supported Zionism and the state of Israel, continued to create a hostile atmosphere for Jews." The report also said that President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad "continued to question regularly the existence and the scope of the Holocaust and publicly called for the destruction of Israel, which created a more hostile environment for the Jewish community." * The Palestinian areas, where the report noted an instance of a Hamas imam in the Gaza Strip calling for the death of Jews, as well as a documentary on Palestinian Authority TV that character- ized Jewish rites as "sin and filth." The country report on Israel said that "government policy contributed to the generally free practice of" religion, although govern- ment discrimination against non-Jews and non-Orthodox streams of Judaism contin- ued." It noted that Christian missionaries were turned away at the airport in some instances and also.noted the Interior Ministry's refusal to recognize some U.S. con- verts to Judaism as Jews. "A minority of Jews in the country observes the Orthodox tradition, and the majority of Jewish citizens objected to exclusive Ortho- dox control over fundamen- tal aspects of their personal lives," the report said. It noted the practice on some public buses of seg- regating men from women. The Israeli Foreign Min- istry had yet to formulate a response to the report, an official at the Israeli Embassy in Washington said Tuesday. Recording instances of societal discrimination, the report listed organized efforts to persuade Jewish businesses not to hire Arabs, as well as attacks by extrem- ist settlers on mosques. It also noted extremist Muslim riots, including several instances in which rioters at the mosques over- looking the Western Wall stoned Jewish worshipers.