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A New Version of the Biblical tale of

Some people say Doniel went to Shushan. Knowing how clever he was, he probably went to Jerusalem and to Shushan. What a remarkable young man Doniel was: so bright and spirited, so good at figuring things out, so loyal to his family and friends, so devoted to prayer and good deeds, and above all so filled with faith in his G-d. The End.


Forward This story book is dedicated to, who else, my grandson Doniel Chaim Kilimnick On the occasion of his bar mitzvah. Doni, it seems like only yesterday that I celebrated my bar mitzvah in Beth Israel Center in Madison, Wisconsin, under Rabbi Max Lipshitz. Your mother celebrated her bat mitzvah in the Riverdale Jewish Center under Rabbi Avner Weiss. And now you will be celebrating this rite of passage in Congregation Beth Sholom in Rochester, NY, under your Zaydie Rabbi Shaya Kilimnick. As you chart your course through life, remember to be guided by our rich tradition. Follow the example of your namesake Doniel and let your faith in G-d be your GPS through good times and bad. Make the study of sacred texts your lifelong pursuit. You will be amazed and delighted by what you find in them (you may even spot your siblings in this version of Doniel). I’m sure you will also come to enjoy and appreciate the rich storehouse of secular knowledge which can also enrich your life. I will leave you with some lines from an English poet whom our own Rabbi Jonathan Rosenblatt likes to recite on these occasions. They were written by Rudyard Kipling, and they are a beautiful expression of everything we hope you take away from your bar mitzvah and from this little storybook which I have prepared for you: If you can dream and not make dreams your master; If you can think and not make thoughts your aim, If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster And treat those two impostors just the same: If you can fill the unforgiving minute With sixty seconds' worth of distance run, Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it, And - which is more - you'll be a Man, my son! Grandpa Val Karan February 2010

Doniel is described as living in Yankalonia during the entire reign of Steinbrenezzar, and he assisted 5 succeeding kings. As he correctly predicted, Yankalonia was conquered by other Kingdoms, some of whom allowed the Jews to return to their own land. Some people say Doniel made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.


Besides interpreting the dreams of other people, there were also special dreams that G-d sent to Doniel to tell him what would happen in the future. Some things that Doniel saw in his dreams have now happened. Other things that G-d told Doniel in his dreams have not happened yet. But G-d is in control of the future. Doniel had faith that G-d will do what He has promised.

This is Doniel. He is an Israelite boy. He lives peacefully with his family and friends.


Doniel lived in the time of King Steinbrenezzar. This mean king conquered all the other Major League Empires, gloated over his victory, and he put Doniel, his family and his friends in exile. They were sent to live in Yankalonia.

Hankazzar once made a great feast. Then a hand appeared and wrote upon the wall a strange phrase. Not one of his magicians could figure out those words. Only Doniel knew that the words were a message from the L-rd that the time of the Kingdom of Yankalonia had ended.

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Steinbrenezzar was succeded by his son Hankazzar. “I have heard of you,” Hankazzar told Doniel, “that you can give interpretations and explain enigmas.” He offered to make Doniel a ruler in the kingdom if he would read the writing and make known to him its interpretation.

Doniel remembered the beautiful fields of Queens, now in ruins, where his team once ruled supreme.


King Steinbrenezzar saw that Doniel and his friends were fast learners. He gave them nicknames like Morris, Joey, Eli and Aryeh. He took a liking to them and had plans for them.

But everyone was cheering the next day when Doniel was safe among the Lions. G-d protected Doniel, and the Lions didn’t hurt Doniel at all; they even liked him.

The King was sad when the guard told him that Doniel had been caught praying to the One True G-d. He had no choice but to order Doniel to be thrown to the Lions!

Doniel and his friends and family were treated well. They were taught the King’s language and writings so that they could better serve King Steinbrenezzar. But Doniel kept kosher and was careful to not defile himself with the royal food and drink. So he ate pasta, pasta, and more pasta.

Doniel never forgot who he was and where his loyalties belonged. He was a great dreamer and interpreter of dreams, He hoped some day his Team would find the “Wright” way to return to the top.

So the King freed Doniel’s friends. But there were troublemakers who wanted to get Doniel in trouble. There was a law that forbid anyone to pray to anyone but King Steinbrenazzar. But Doniel said, “No way, I pray to the One True G-d.”

Doniel’s three friends did not bow down, so they were thrown in with the Flames. “Look,” said Doniel. “My friends are not hurt!” King Steinbrenezzar saw them walking among the Flames and he praised the G-d of Doniel and the Israelites.

One night King Steinbrenezzar had a bad nightmare. His mind was troubled and he could not sleep. He called his wise men and demanded that they tell him what the dream was and what it meant or he would punish them very badly.

“Wait,” Doniel told the King, “I can figure out the dream.” First he consulted his favorite book. Then G-d came to Doniel in a night vision and explained the dream. Doniel then told the King who said, “By George, you’ve got it!”

But later on King Steinbrenezzar turned meanie again. He took an image of gold and put it in a public place. He warned that whoever did not bow down and worship this image would be immediately thrown into a blazing furnace!