|Maggid ben Yoseif / Jerusalem Torah Voice in Exile|
Credentials of Maggid ben Yoseif|
Title: Maggid. A maggid is a "story-teller" but also has the commission "to reprove erroneous teaching in accord with Isaiah 45:19 to speak the Truth and maggid (declare) what is right. Hence, the maggid was also called mokhiach (one who exposes, reproves, rebukes or admonishes). – “ A Book of Jewish Concepts, Philip Birnbaum, Hebrew Publishing Co., New York, 1964, page 323.
Names: ben Yoseif (son of Joseph) . Although ben Yoseif is a "junior", who shares the given name of his late father, neither are named "Joseph." Rather the name ben Yoseif was given by a bat Kol (voice from Heaven) in 1994, confirmed in Torah code of ben Yoseif's father's and his given name in 1998 and has been validated by a number of rabbis in Jerusalem since 2000. ben Yose' (south of the border); Tohokwahu (used primarily between he and a few Hopi friends, this is ben Yoseif's given name -- Griffin or Lioneagle -- in Hopi).
Native American credentials
In the fall of 2009, Chief Joe Sittingowl White, then principal chief of the Central Band Cherokee, invited ben Yoseif to serve his great-grandmother's Tsa-la-gi (Cherokee) people as one of the 13 Equahiyi-Wasi (EH-KWAH-HE-YEE WAH-SEE). With the help of Creator, this Abraham-Moses society is researching Native American origins, prophecy and spirituality and specifically their Hebrew ties. After presenting Apache demands to the George W. Bush White House that the skulls of Geronimo and other Apache be returned in a sacred manner "before the curse grows much worse", he was adopted as an elder by the Sundance warrior lodge of the Membreno Apache. He is "keeper of the gate" at Eldersgate American Indian Council, in SW Colorado at the eastern extremity of the Four Corners region anciently known as "Aztlan." During an exchange of gifts at his first meeting with Membreno spiritual leader Jimmy Tenrivers Atencio, he was gifted with his medicine from the land of the Aztecs. In 2004, he was asked by the Bear Clan elder Abe Walkingbear Sanchez, of the Zuni nation, who along with Tenrivers helped ben Yoseif envision Eldersgate, to serve on the board of directors of Turtletribe and begin a working version of the turtletribe.org website. He has also served as an ex-officio board member of Iglesia de Aztlan. His long-standing interest in Native American affairs stems from moderating a debate between representatives of the American Indian Movement and the Bureau of Indian Affairs as a news editor on the campus daily at Louisiana State University in 1973.
Degrees and advanced studies
ben Yoseif holds a B.A. degree in journalism, an M.B.A. degree in business administration and the equivalent of a Ph.D in theology and advanced Pentateuch (Torah) including three years of study at the ORU Graduate School of Theology, where he pursued Hebrew and Aramaic. Leaving ORU before completing required systematic theology courses, he instead moved to Israel in 1987. He studied Koran with a Moslem imam as a condition of living as a missionary in an all-Moslem West Bank village where he declared to the East Jerusalem Palestinian population, "the God of Israel is returning the children of Israel to their possessions and if you resist it, it will be like spitting against the wind." Although never converting to Judaism, he has studied Torah and Halachah with several rabbonim in Jerusalem including Rabbi David bar Chaim, then rosh yeshiva at Yeshivat B'nai Y'shai (Yeshiva of the sons of Jesse); Rabbi Chaim Richman of the Jerusalem Temple Institute and the Breslov Hasid Rav Yisrael Tzvi Yehudah Schneider, with whom he also studied Kabalah and the Likutey Ha-Moharan (the writings of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov).
Authority from Jerusalem
Following three arrests and imprisonment in Israel after publishing columns and other writings protesting a Palestinian State in the birthright territories of Joseph and proposing instead the Zechariah Plan -- a biblical Palestinian state contiguous with the Gaza -- something unprecedented occurred. ben Yoseif despite remaining non-Jewish, was given smichah (spiritual authority) from his friend and mentor of 19 years, the Rebbe Shani-Dor of the revived Jerusalem Sanhedrin. As a maggid/mochiach, he has authority from Jerusalem to begin reconciling doctrinal divisions between Joes and Jews and has been commissioned to locate and prepare Joes wanting to return to their ancestral homeland currently sought as part of a Palestinian state. In the summer of 2003, in cooperation with Texas law enforcement and the Women in Green organization, ben Yoseif led the protest rally against the Bush Administration's Road Map to Peace in the Middle East, the first demonstration allowed with a march through the town of Crawford, TX. That march was attended by about 150 "Joes" from ben Yoseif's Beit Yoseif (House of Joseph) email list who arrived from 10 states on two weeks notice but were supported by thousands more. But ben Yoseif says it has only delayed the declaration of the state. The alternative population -- a remnant of Joes across the world -- must be made ready. This was the commission from the Rebbe Shani Dor, "Go find Rachel's kids!"
ben Yoseif has never been charged with a crime and was exonerated of all accusations after being imprisoned incommunicado by the Israeli Secret Police. After his second arrest, an elderly tzaddik (holy man) in Jerusalem arranged for him to study at Yeshiva Ohr Someah as the first "Joe" allowed to study with the rabbinical House of Judah since the exile of the House of Joseph in more than 2,720 years.
Summary of experience
ben Yoseif is a career daily newspaper writer/editor and university journalism instructor who turned theologian, spiritual seeker and Torah teacher. He has experience stateside as a sportswriter, investigative reporter, city, state and managing editor, and award-winning executive editor before joining the broadcast media in Israel. He was chief news writer and features producer for Middle East Television (Marjahoun, S. Lebanon), covering the last year of the Iraq-Iran Persian Gulf War including the battle preceding the ceasefire that united Sunni and Shia against America, the Israeli-Hizbullah conflict in South Lebanon and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since its beginning in December 1987. As a senior member of the editorial staff at The Jerusalem Post, he performed the duties of an assistant editor of weekly news-analysis special sections, and news editor, relief religion writer and columnist for the daily and international editions. His national and international awards for writing and editing include special recognition from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation and two instant citations within two weeks from the Associated Press International. He is the author of two books (both free, online manuscripts): "'05 Thesis: The Disputations -- Reconciling the Stumbling Blocks between Joes and Jews" and "Od Yoseif Chai," (Joseph is Still Alive). As a poet, he is author of the 77-stanza epic, "Thy Light Is Come: A Song to the Lost Sheep of the House of Israel" and many poems parroting and parodying Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during his first administration.
A more complete bio as well as autobiographical vignettes being compiled about ben Yoseif's spiritual adventures with the Return of the House of Joseph message he promotes are available through the About Maggid ben Yoseif link.
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