Rabbi Yossi Banaa

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Rabbi Yossi Bana'a was a fourth generation Tana, living during the time of Rabbi Meir. He would hired himself out as a day laborer for construction jobs to earn a living. In the Midrash he is referred to as Abba Yosef HaBanai and carries a deep conversation with the non Jewish philosopher Avnimus HaGredi regarding the creation of the world.

[edit] Kever Rabbi Yossi Banaa

Rabbi Yossi Banaa is buried in the Banaah Synagogue of Tzfat's Old City that is named after him. His tziyun is located in a side room under the women's section. Towards the top of the tziyun, where a stone slab lays, is buried an ancient Torah scroll. Traditionally the Jews of Tzfas would gather to pray at his kever on the first day of Pesach. There is a segula to leave a sick person in the room overnight and generally this helps cure him. Unfortunately today the actual Tziyun is almost always locked up, although the adjacent Beit Knesset is sometimes open for minyonim.

[edit] Mikva

In the room next to the tziyun is the entrance to an old mikva which is supposedly attached to a natural spring. Just like the kever, the mikva is always locked up.

[edit] The White Tzadik

One of the cruel Ottoman rulers of Safed, demand that the Jews provide him with hundreds of white chickens or face dire consequences. Since white chickens were almost impossible to find, the residents went to pray at the gravesite Rabbi Yossi Saragosi, former chief rabbi of Tzfat. After fasting and praying at the Yossi Banai Shul for three days and nights they went back to Ein Zetim and left many colored chickens by the grave of Rabbi Yossi Saragosi, returning in the morning to find them pure white. In reference to this miracle the location became known as the “Tzadik HaLavan” -- the White Righteous One -- synagogue.

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