Monday, July 23, 2007


Once in my life I saw a full on halo around someone's head.

There was an Arab man, an older man, very kind, gentle and loving, who worked as a street cleaner when I lived in the desert.

When I would learn Torah, I would sometimes look out my window pondering something and I'd see him going about his work. I was always amazed how he did his work year in year out faithfully, without the least resentment in his demeanor.

Sometimes Ramadan would fall out during the summer. He would continue to work apace, without food or water, in the 40-50 degree heat.

The children loved him and he would always have a big smile on this face when the children came around.

So it went for five years.

Then, one day, I saw him crying. He told me that he had received a letter from the town council saying there would be cuts in staff and that he would be laid off. I cried with him. Furious, I wrote to the Mayor, with whom I had a good relationship and tried to plead for the man's job, but to no avail. I told him that I tried to help him, but was unsuccessful.

Just before he was to end his work there was a hail storm. Marble-sized hail fell. When it stopped the children wanted to go outside and play with the hail stones. We ran down and they were scooping up handfuls of hail and eating them, when suddenly this man appeared, seemingly out of nowhere.

He began to explain to me how the Angel Gabriel is commissioned to create the natural phenomena. I did not understand most of what he explained to me, but I listened respectfully as something inside me told me he knew of what he spoke.

I asked him: "How do you know so much about the Angel Gabriel?"

He smiled in response to my inquiry. Then a gentle gust of wind came along and his kaf'i'eh billowed in the breeze.

The halo around his head was enormous. I can still see it. It was a turquoise color and gold, at once. It was rarified, yet looked almost solid. There appeared to be some sort of beings moving within it, but I could not see them clearly.

I was shocked by what I saw. Then he was gone, just as he came, he left. He simply vanished.

I turned to the children. They were both standing there agape.

I asked them: "Did you see what I saw?"

They both nodded yes, obviously stunned.

As we went into the house my daughter said: "I didn't know you speak Arabic."

I answered that I didn't.

She said: "Mom, you spoke to him in Arabic."

I said: "I spoke to him in Hebrew, not Arabic."

My daughter answered: "Mom, Hebrew is my language. If you would have spoken in Hebrew I would have understood you. You were speaking to him in Arabic."

Doreen Ellen Bell-Dotan, Tzfat, Israel

Join the Blue Ribbon Online Free Speech Campaign
Join the Blue Ribbon Online Free Speech Campaign!