Sunday, December 28, 2014

Re: Leaf Bag Lesson by Avi Shafran

Leaf Bag Lesson

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Re: Candles and Candor by Avi Shafran

Candles and Candor

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Friday, December 19, 2014

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Re: What Is Chanukah? by Avrohom Gordimer

What Is Chanukah?

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: How G-d Relates to Non-Jews by Yitzchok Adlerstein

How G-d Relates to Non-Jews

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: A Chanukah Message From the LAPD by Yitzchok Adlerstein

A Chanukah Message From the LAPD

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Re: Punditry With Prudence by Avi Shafran

Punditry With Prudence

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Monday, December 8, 2014

Re: Finding G-d by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Finding G-d

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Monday, December 1, 2014

Re: Terror Comes to Our Door by Jonathan Rosenblum

Terror Comes to Our Door

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Re: Sometimes, We Get It Right by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Sometimes, We Get It Right

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: R. Eliyahu Stewart, z”l by Yitzchok Adlerstein

R. Eliyahu Stewart, z”l

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Unknown Unknowns by Avi Shafran

Unknown Unknowns

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Re: Peres’s Folly by Jonathan Rosenblum

Peres’s Folly

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Monday, November 24, 2014

Re: When I Drifted Off the Path by Avi Shafran

When I Drifted Off the Path

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Re: Strong and Subtle Slanders by Avi Shafran

Strong and Subtle Slanders

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Re: Pair of Pieces in Haaretz by Avi Shafran

Pair of Pieces in Haaretz

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Re: Status (Quo) Update by Avi Shafran

Status (Quo) Update

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Friday, November 7, 2014

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Re: by Guest Contributor



Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Re: Moral Climate Change by Avi Shafran

Moral Climate Change

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Re: Elon Musk Can Sleep Easier by Yaakov Menken

Elon Musk Can Sleep Easier

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Monday, October 27, 2014

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Re: Rabbi Elimelech Goldberg – CNN Hero, and Mine by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Rabbi Elimelech Goldberg – CNN Hero, and Mine

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: “Personal Torah” by Avi Shafran

“Personal Torah”

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Misplaced Zeal by Avi Shafran

Misplaced Zeal

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Re: Malignancies by Avi Shafran

Malignancies

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Re: Letter in NYT by Avi Shafran

Letter in NYT

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Time After Time by Avi Shafran

Time After Time

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Re: Stubborn Spirit by Avi Shafran

Stubborn Spirit

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Re: Living with Emunah by Jonathan Rosenblum

Living with Emunah

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Jewish Action – Fall Issue by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Jewish Action – Fall Issue

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Re: by Guest Contributor



Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Travels In Israel and the Tochachoh For Moderns by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Travels In Israel and the Tochachoh For Moderns

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Monday, September 15, 2014

Re: Two For Elul by Guest Contributor

Two For Elul

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Re: Immoral “Morality” by Avi Shafran

Immoral “Morality”

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Friday, September 12, 2014

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Monday, September 8, 2014

Re: Showing We Care by Jonathan Rosenblum

Showing We Care

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Achdus: An Appeal For Ideas by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Achdus: An Appeal For Ideas

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Re: Decommissioning Emunah by Avi Shafran

Decommissioning Emunah

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: The Israeli Seminary Scandal by Yitzchok Adlerstein

The Israeli Seminary Scandal

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Re: The Final Test? by Jonathan Rosenblum

The Final Test?

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Re: Kidneys, Cash and Caring by Avi Shafran

Kidneys, Cash and Caring

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Re: Much Ado About Something by Yaakov Menken

Much Ado About Something

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Re: The End is Near by Avi Shafran

The End is Near

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Responses to the Shidduch Proposal by Yitzchok Adlerstein

Responses to the Shidduch Proposal

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Re: Enemies, Real and Imagined by Avi Shafran

Enemies, Real and Imagined

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Re: Your Narcissism is Showing by Jonathan Rosenblum

Your Narcissism is Showing

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Re: Death of an Icon by Yaakov Menken

Death of an Icon

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: Max Steinberg, zt”l, as Rorschach Test by Jonathan Rosenblum

Max Steinberg, zt”l, as Rorschach Test

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Re: Ugly Times by Avi Shafran

Ugly Times

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Re: A New Look at Tehillim 144 by Guest Contributor

A New Look at Tehillim 144

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Re: Victory is OURS! by Guest Contributor

Victory is OURS!

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Monday, August 4, 2014

Re: The Punker’s Lesson by Avi Shafran

The Punker’s Lesson

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Re: Pain and Gain by Avi Shafran

Pain and Gain

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Re: A View From the Citizen Trenches by Guest Contributor

A View From the Citizen Trenches

Please feel free to share your thoughts on this matter

Use the social media buttons below to help us bring more voices to this discussion

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Re: Some Jewish Thoughts on Understanding Hobby Lobby: Religious Freedom Did Not Really Win or Lose

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/07/13/some-jewish-thoughts-on-understanding-hobby-lobby-religious-freedom-did-not-really-win-or-lose/

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Friday, June 27, 2014

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Re: The PCUSA and the Banality of Evil by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/26/the-pcusa-and-the-banality-of-evil/

Re: Driving Lesson by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/26/driving-lesson/

Re: It’s Not Your Mother’s Knesset by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/25/its-not-your-mothers-knesset-2/

Two harros
How about condemning those who participate (UTJ)
And why for you is the most spiritually signifigant part of Jews getting together to pray something as trivial as a michetzah do you think what God found most meaningful in there prayer?

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Re: The World Comes Looking for President Obama by Jonathan Rosenblum

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/22/the-world-comes-looking-for-president-obama/

The idiocy that mascarades as political analysis in the yated

Re: From The Mouths of Secularists by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/22/from-the-mouths-of-secularists/

Yes you believe yours is the only true way and there are still some people outside your cult who also think so

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Re: Defining Deviancy Down by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/20/defining-deviancy-down/

the views expressed by this the cross crusader are so deliciously unnuanced and contrived to reach his forgone conclusion!
while the author stated the obvious about the kids complete lack of talent and him only getting his slot because of the kippah/dirty joke combo drawing alot of views, his second point about the interest that this has to so many people is precisely were menky misses the mark, the general public does not share the charidei rwmo/yeshievish "downward spiral of morality in america view" that is preached by this group while they see everything from kendeys hatdoffing and on-wards as degenerate deviant promiscuity, the genral orthdox who are in touch with the cultural realities of america see a shifting of socital norms that are simply diffrent but not nessicarly the root of all evil the point that this spectale brought home was that even those who still practce traditionl observance are able to acclimate to a different socital norm than what was preached in the 80's in usa 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Re: Marriage: Not to be Taken for Granted by Jonathan Rosenblum

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/20/marriage-not-to-be-taken-for-granted/

Bottom line only the Torah has the path to good marriage and it looks nothing like this article sets out

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Re: A Prediction Fulfilled — Sadly by Jonathan Rosenblum,

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/18/a-prediction-fulfilled-sadly/

I think Jonathan is spot on for once when the chareidim espouse taliban like hostility to all that do not follow there fundamentalist system the lapids want those people destroyed shmaded if you Will the only chariedim he has any interest in reconciling with are those with more tolerant understandings of there religion

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Re: A (for now) Final Post About Jewish Authority by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/17/a-for-now-final-post-about-jewish-authority/

So we do believe in palpal in infallibility

does our brilliant legal eagle fail to recognize that in matters that effect the entire nation there must be a final authoritative law for all to follow

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Saturday, June 14, 2014

An Evil Report by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/13/an-evil-report/

Wow the drivel that menky produces is so bad I can't even think of a proper response

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Re: Walking to the End

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/11/walking-to-the-end/

Of course the criticism is spot on but didn't the rishonim a thousand years ago already "know" the messiah was coming any second

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Re: Letter in June 5 Wall St. Journal by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/07/letter-in-june-5-wall-st-journal/

Two pieces in a row calling people out for violating your orthodox Judaism trademark

Re: Dangerous and Defective Products by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/07/dangerous-and-defective-products/

TiT (Tempest in a teapot)

Re: JFNA Should Not Advocate For Civil Marriage in Israel by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/06/jfna-should-not-advocate-for-civil-marriage-in-israel/

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Re: Learning Torah Is Equal to them All by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/03/learning-torah-is-equal-to-them-all/

Instead of lamenting that articles are not written romanticizing yeshiva how about asking the question why are they no longer being written

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Monday, June 2, 2014

Re: A Catholic Understanding of the NY Times vs. Rav Yaakov Perlow by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/06/02/a-catholic-understanding-of-the-ny-times-vs-rav-yaakov-perlow/

http://www.lisagraas.com/2014/05/30/rabbi-yaakov-perlow-falsely-accused-of-hatred-for-remarks-about-heresy/

Any one surprised that these jesus loving Catholic fundamentalist nutters who believe that if you believe you are saved and have a nerotic obsession with heresy are the ones who agree and sympathize with perlows cause? I just believe that menky is to dimwitted to realize that being in hashkafik agreement with these guys is a pirchah on you not proof of your correctness

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Re: Children’s Programming by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/31/childrens-programming/

How about comparing the education of a 12 year old boy from meah sherim who spends shabbos afternoon protesting the cars on sarie yisroel and is taught to hate all the enemies of hashem who are forcing his family to live in abject poverty

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Re: The “Monsey Summit” – Round Two by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/27/the-monsey-summit-round-two/

The upshot we should care about pain caused by bad community policy only if it causes people to leave if bear it and stay or are leaving over philosophical ideas let them suffer

Monday, May 26, 2014

Re: Retroactive Prophecy Redux by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/25/retroactive-prophecy-redux/

http://rabbiavishafran.com/retroactive-prophecy-redux/

I think the concept of ain cholkim kavod larav can also be applied when rebuking those rabanonim that degrade the torah by insisting it has given them a magical sixth sense called das torah

Re: Leading the Blind by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/25/leading-the-blind/

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Re: A Chasidic View of Parnasah

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/25/a-chasidic-view-of-parnasah/

Re: Retroactive Prophecy by Avi Shafran,

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/25/retroactive-prophecy/

Why shafaran's such a useful idiot he suddenly seems incapable of understanding that the mistakes of the gedolim are being highlighted to discredit the claim of there followers that that somehow havea ruach hakodesh like divine foreknowledge and therefore it is wise to follow there advice even against the expert advice of people who are qualified to give an opinion

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Re: The Assault on Free Speech Creeps Off Campus

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/23/the-assault-on-free-speech-creeps-off-campus/

I think the yated Is hubrisly blinded and cant see the slippery slope this article can be for charidim

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Re: Silence – Approaching Chumash Bamidbar

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/22/silence-approaching-chumash-bamidbar/

Well if it makes you feel better that there's an excuse for our communal problems that's fine with me but can we try to suggest something concrete to correct them?

Re: A Different Kind of Shivyon BaNetel by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/21/a-different-kind-of-shivyon-banetel/

Is it so different?

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Stranded on Torah Island by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/21/stranded-on-torah-island/

I would take a set of daat mikrah tanach

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Re: Punishing American Learning in Israel by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/19/punishing-american-learning-in-israel/

Ok menky you think the evil seculars hate and are trying to destroy Torah is that all you came to tell us today

Re: The Monsey “Summit” and the Courage to Confront by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/19/the-monsey-summit-and-the-courage-to-confront/

And the million dollar question still is what do you do with the overwhelming majority of thinking modern ffb people who don't believe in the perfection of your late bronze age book not due to any pain (which only came as a result of there nonbelief) but because it is obviously ridiculous like most religions are there's a good reason atheism is on the rise

Monday, May 19, 2014

Re: The End of the Begin-ing

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/19/the-end-of-the-begin-ing-2/

Can somebody read theirs and tell me if worth my time to read

Sunday, May 18, 2014

A Place Called Doubt by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/18/a-place-called-doubt/

Is r nissan kaplan one of the gedolim? He just said in the previous posts that doubt is amelak

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Comments from deadly serious

67 comments:

AviMay 15, 2014 at 7:20 AMIt saddens me, but does not surprise me. I believe that Charedi society is xenophobic and paranoid delusional. They are afraid of outsiders and feel that everyone is out to get them. You can't reason with such people. Lock them up and/or medicate them. Don't bother trying to fix them.ReplyRepliesDan GambieraMay 15, 2014 at 8:30 AMThose delusions could be self-fulfilling. If you start by demanding a living and refuse to shoulder the burdens of citizenship and end by preaching treason and murder people will hate you. If they keep this up, especially if their terrorism rises from arson and assault to murder and rebellion, they may yet see every Jew's hand raised against them. And they will have nobody to blame but themselvesReplyRabbi SedleyMay 15, 2014 at 7:39 AMIt may be my computer, or something, but the link to the daf yomi review website is not working. Can you post a direct link to the shiur? Or has the link been taken down already? (In which case, is it possible to repost it somewhere - logistically and halakhically)?ReplyBen WaxmanMay 15, 2014 at 7:40 AMso why hasn't anyone sent this link to the police, to reshet bet, to arutz 2? they, especially the latter, would eat this up?ReplyDan GambieraMay 15, 2014 at 8:26 AMSaddening, sickening, but not surprising. These people do not deserve to live in Eretz Yisrael. They are traitors inciting murder of fellow Jews and sedition. The least they deserve is exile, confiscation of all their goods and the same demolition of their homes that Israel visits on Arab terrorists.ReplyRepliesNatan SlifkinMay 15, 2014 at 8:27 AMDon't make the same mistake of extremist rhetoric.ReplyElon WeintraubMay 15, 2014 at 8:35 AM"לָמָּה תַרְאֵנִי אָוֶן וְעָמָל תַּבִּיט וְשֹׁד וְחָמָס לְנֶגְדִּי וַיְהִי רִיב וּמָדוֹן יִשָּׂא."I don't know what to say. What has become of us?ReplyAlfredMay 15, 2014 at 8:40 AMThe lecture can be found at:https://mega.co.nz/#!voZlnAoY!G2t4PufKfNnIhGQ2L64RpPODtkec53pXFxFfMUWFKNkReplyRepliesmaskilMay 15, 2014 at 11:59 AMthank you the other link seems to have been take downReplyshlomo zalmanMay 15, 2014 at 8:42 AMNot surprising at all, as I had mentioned a few weeks ago regarding Rabbi Elya Weintraub's vitreolic rhetoric during "Oferet Yetzukah".The silver lining is that now I understand fully the famous chazal "halachah Eisav sonei es yaakov" Eisav is a goy, how is it possible that a goy would observe a halachah?But now I understand. I am a Jew and I am Eisav.ReplyShades of GrayMay 15, 2014 at 8:54 AMWhile I am disturbed by the language quoted and the implications for chinuch, consider this analogy from a 2007 article by R. Yitzchak Adlerstein:“A question arose about John Chrysostom, the fourth century Church Father who put the charge of deicide on the map, and whose vitriol against Jews was surpassed by none, and embraced for centuries thereafter, including by the Nazis. Chrysostom remains a Saint in the Church, and many Jews get unhinged by the mention of his name.The priest, however, was completely unfazed by the question, and calmly related that in the fourth century the Church was fighing for survival, and felt very pressured by Judaism, and therefore used language and methods that contemporary Christians completely reject. Essentially, he said, “that’s the way we once behaved, regrettably. We’ve moved on since then.” What’s good for the goose is good for the gandz. Mutatis mutandis, the disparaging remarks – if in fact directed against Yeshu – must be understood in the context of struggle between mainstream Judaism and early Jewish-Christians.”(Feldman’s Folly (Part One)”, Cross Currents, July 27th, 2007)ReplyRepliesAvi ShevinMay 15, 2014 at 9:10 AMThe difference is, the Church admits that they acted poorly and that they have regrets. Charedim, despite having this example, choose not to learn the lesson.NachumMay 15, 2014 at 12:30 PMThe Christians' survival wsn't threatened by Jews in the 4th Century, and Charedim's survival is not challenged now. End of story.ReplymonikerMay 15, 2014 at 9:22 AMIt's incitement to violence. It's illegal. Report it to the police.ReplyYoel BMay 15, 2014 at 10:06 AMBoko Haram, ביכער און יפאָנע אסור....At least so far, the "nice, down to earth" people don't have swords. Oh, and how do you translate "just sayin' " into Yeshivish?ReplyMichael SedleyMay 15, 2014 at 10:22 AMI don't get it, the Charedim are protesting being drafted into army, and want to establish their own army (with swords) to show how opposed to armies they are - they won't fight to defend their lives (and the lives of those around them), but they think that it is OK to fight to defend their right not to fight?ReplyRepliesJoe in AustraliaMay 15, 2014 at 10:33 AMI have the same problem. I suppose that the Rav is OK with fighting as long as nobody is forced to do it? But if it's a milchemes mitzva ...Natan SlifkinMay 15, 2014 at 10:38 AMhttp://www.rationalistjudaism.com/2014/02/going-to-fight-rather-than-going-to.htmlReplyYaakovMay 15, 2014 at 10:31 AMThe problem is not just "the Charedim" or Rav Shteinman: it's that this shiur was given in the most mainstream of Charedi yeshivos to moderate Charedi chutznik yeshiva bochurim from regular chutznik Charedi (or even Modern Orthodox) families. Do parents of the impressionable young men in this shiur know what sort of education their sons are being given? Do the donors to Mir yeshiva condone this sort of rhetoric?Replywhere is itMay 15, 2014 at 10:41 AMI can't get access to the talk on either link. Can anyone help before it gets pulled down? Thank you.ReplyRepliesPloniMay 15, 2014 at 10:43 AMThe second link works. Try again: https://mega.co.nz/#!voZlnAoY!G2t4PufKfNnIhGQ2L64RpPODtkec53pXFxFfMUWFKNkBen WaxmanMay 15, 2014 at 10:48 AMi put it on dropbox:https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/13066250/kaplan/022-5774-tzav.mp3ReplyYossi BaumolMay 15, 2014 at 10:48 AMWhy you reject everything this Kaplan says, yet believe his quotes from Rav Shteinman is beyond me. I don't think that even Rav Shteinman's protaganist Rav Auerbach would say these horrible things. Rav Shteinman, who gave the original thumbs up to the Nachal Charedi has been attacked verbally and even physically for being "too moderate". When they planned the big demonstration, Rav Shteinman refused to back it unless it was a "prayer meeting" rather than a demonstration against the government. His behavior has been very consistent with an approach Rav Kook once described: When there are no great Torah leaders big enough to make a "horaat sha'ah", the change comes from below. While writing against what this Kaplan said is certainly a mitzvah, it is very wrong to accept his ignorant loshon hora about Rav Shteinman and even use Rav Shteinman's picture. Are we descending to their level?ReplyRepliesNatan SlifkinMay 15, 2014 at 10:50 AMהרב שטיינמן נגד הממשלה: יימח שמם, שירדו לגיהנוםמנהיג הציבור החרדי-ליטאי שובר את הכלים בהתבטאות קיצונית נגד הממשלה: ”שנזכה בקרוב שכל אלה יירדו לגיהינום ויגיע להם כל מיני צרות“ http://www.nrg.co.il/online/11/ART2/566/959.htmlYehudah P.May 15, 2014 at 2:51 PMBut that quote of Rav Steinman doesn't call for שפיכות דמים, though, just for Divine retribution.(I'm not saying that it's all right to do that, either. Just that this is a whole different level, to get an impressionable 5 year old boy to want to attack other Jews.)I remember a recent story of a particular Admur here who chastised his chassidim for throwing rocks at passing cars on Shabbos. He said something to the effect that anyone that they'll hit with a rock, will never come to keep Shabbos as a result.G*3May 15, 2014 at 4:51 PMDoes it really matter what R' Steinman said? A maggid shiur in the Mir told his students he thought it was great that his five-year-old wants to murder people with a hammer!NachumMay 15, 2014 at 5:31 PMYehudah: So basically it's OK to throw rocks so long as it's not counterproductive? I can believe he said it, because you seem to believe it to, but that's kind of shocking. Don't charedim have a moral sense that can be appealed to, as in "It's wrong to throw rocks. Period."ReplyYaakovMay 15, 2014 at 10:53 AMYossi - Rav Shteinman has said similar things in the past. I think it's almost a mistake to focus on whether he said it or not - the point is that this incitement is being conducted by the most popular (numbers-wise) English-speaking maggid shiur in Israel, in an utterly mainstream yeshiva, that is highly regarded even among many non-Charedim.ReplyY. Ben-DavidMay 15, 2014 at 12:46 PMI suggest we remain calm. No ideology that denies the reality that everyone sees around them can last for long. Recent history has repeatedly shown this, and in fact is the reason that most Jews abandoned religious observance in the late 19th and 20th centuries due to the fact that the Judaism they were raised with was unable to face the radical changes and challenges of that era.The fact that such extreme rhetoric is used now indicates that their leadership feels under extreme pressure and that they are going to lose the next generation. It appears that they believe that speaking in such extreme terms is going to motivate their students to think like them somehow. My basic feeling is that it won't work and most won't take it seriously. Our job (i.e. those of us who support Rationalist Judaism and agree that the Jews are a people and the Torah is our constitution instead of viewing it merely as a "religion" or ideological clique that rejects all those who don't conform) is to provide a safety net to provide a Torah alternative to those who are going to flee from such an inflamed, paranoid, disconnected world.ReplyMoshe David TokayerMay 15, 2014 at 12:55 PMhttp://www.nrg.co.il/online/11/ART2/566/959.htmlFrom the end of the article that R' Slifkin quotes above:בימינו אשר זרע עמלק מתגברים מאוד אצלנו והדבר ברור כי הוא מעשה שטן, העצה האמיתית היא להילחם נגדם בזרוע ממש, מסירות נפש להריגה", אמר הרב שטיינמן בשיעור שהעביר בביתו בשבוע שעבר, במהלכו הסביר כי הכוונה למלחמה בעמלק היא דרך חיזוק לימוד התורה. Nothing here about swords and killing anyone. He says that the way to fight the war against "Amalek" is by learning more intensively.ReplyRepliesYechielMay 15, 2014 at 4:35 PMHow does that square with "זרוע ממש" and "מסירות נפש להריגה"?Or,He keeps using that word. I don't think it means what he thinks it means.ReplyBaal Ha BossMay 15, 2014 at 1:31 PMI personally am horrified by this rhetoric.However, how do we reconcile our attitude with the Maamar Chazal 'Godol Hamachtio Yosair Min Hahorgo'? If the Israeli Charedim really feel the Zionists are hellbent on being Machti them, this might explain their attitude towards them (albeit not the language, but they have always been given to dramatics).ReplySolomonMay 15, 2014 at 1:59 PMThe indoctrination of an 5 year old with murderous desires is as abhorrent and evil as one can go. It is way to close to the other nearby enemies of Israel and their "Pioneers of Tomorrow" TV show. Can he get further from G-d? (Isaiah 1:15)   וּבְפָרִשְׂכֶם כַּפֵּיכֶם, אַעְלִים עֵינַי מִכֶּםגַּם כִּי-תַרְבּוּ תְפִלָּה, אֵינֶנִּי שֹׁמֵעַ:  יְדֵיכֶם, דָּמִים מָלֵאוּ.Replyshlomo zalmanMay 15, 2014 at 2:30 PMI listened to the tape, and these awful statements looked worse on paper than they were to the ear. The shmuess was at a sixth grade level, devoid of any insight or demonstration of deep thought, much less creative thinking.It was probably a typical shmuess, though I can't prove that. It's content and message was mostly rubbish and probably not very effective. On another level, it was amusing to see that Rabbi Kaplan thought it important to not only show us the poor chinuch he gives his children, but also that his taxi driver is far superior to him in social intelligence.ReplyRepliesSolomonMay 15, 2014 at 3:29 PMI disagree with your analysis. It is precisely the issues of 1) his position as a popular educator, 2) 6th grade intelligence that works for his audience and 3) his indoctrinating his child that make the comments so dangerous and his act of saying them an evil act.Replyani yehudi/tMay 15, 2014 at 2:57 PM“Meharsayich u’macharivayich mimech yetzeu”Where is OUR tzeakah gedolah u'marah?! Hashem Yishmor!1. If only this could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. May all those still hanging on to, and making excuses for, the chareidi world we grew up in, and partially inhabit, open our eyes and begin to revolutionize the system. (Tiny example. What if Americans who don’t subscribe to this view remove their sons from Mir Yeshiva in response?) 2. I’m curious Rabbi Slifkin, whether you, or others in “normal” Torah leadership, have ever gone to Rav Shteinman to discuss these things. (Personally, my naïveté has me wanting to head to bais gadol hador, lehitchanen about the real anshei tzar ve’oyev she’mevakshim lehashmid ulabed et kol ha’Yehudim.)3. BTW… For any interested. Rav Chaim Soloveitchik will be speaking tonight, at Beit Avi Chai in Yerushalayim, on the topic of “Daas Torah Revisited.”ReplyHhhmMay 15, 2014 at 3:36 PMObviously this shmuz is nauseating, but I'm sorry, le'toeles it must be pointed out that whilst Rav Nissan Kaplan may be nice and down to earth on a personal level, his shmuessen are well known for the overblown rhetoric. He often tells the 'inspiring' story of Rav Eliyah Lopian davening that his own son should die before he disembarks the boat to America to become not frum (yes - his prayers were answered and the boat sank - hooray!), and how 1 minute of personal Torah learning is worth thousands of times more than the merit of supporting all the hospitals, kollelim, and chessed organizations forever, combined.Your average Chareidi Rebbi/Mashgiach doesn't quite talk this way, and people still 'generally dismiss him as being not serious'.ReplyRepliesBorisMay 15, 2014 at 4:13 PMBut the whole point of his shmuess is that it is Amalekite to claim that this is not seriously comparable to killing our other enemies!hhhmMay 15, 2014 at 4:52 PMSure, he is badly wrong and irresponsible. But my point is that this is overblown rhetoric, and it is wrong to present this as some type of transformation from rhetoric into genuine action, coming from a moderate. He is not seriously contemplating or advocating murder (although his son may be).NachumMay 15, 2014 at 5:35 PMI'm disturbed that his son is handling muktza on Shabbat. :-)One note rings false: A hammer in a Jewish home? Don't these people know the works of R' Yaakov Maza (Jackie Mason)?ReplyMighty Garnel IronheartMay 15, 2014 at 3:41 PMTo once again quote the eminently quotable Rav Eliashiv, zt"l, "If you didn't hear it directly from me then don't assume I said it."ReplyShlomoMay 15, 2014 at 3:42 PMRav Shteinman is 100 years old.Rav Nissan Kaplan is perhaps 45.The boys listening to Rav Nissan are perhaps 21-22.Most striking to me is not what a 100-year-old man would say, but what a 45-year-old would find reasonable.So reasonable and so wise that he would not only say it over to his 5-year-old, but to a random taxi driver.And more striking than that is that 21-22 year-old Americans from normal homes would find it reasonable as well.And more striking than that-- and more scary is that the infantile level of this shiur (in general) is considered just about right by these 21-22 year-old attendees.These are America's future ba'alei batim.Hashem Yishmor.ReplyRepliesAnonymousMay 15, 2014 at 4:47 PMCalm down. Just because they're in the class, doesn't mean they accept what the teacher says. Every week the rabbi of my shul gets up and says narrishkeit, which people laugh about afterwards in the Kiddush club. (22 year olds, especially those reared in the argumentative world of orthodox Judaism, don't just blindly accept everything they're told.) If there's one true thing Obama ever said, its that you can be part of a church and still not agree with what the Pasteur says.By the way, I didn't listen to the shiur, but somebody above did, and said it looks a lot worse on paper. I'm sure that's true. Most things look far worse on paper than in actual live oral context.WazerReplygroinemMay 15, 2014 at 4:09 PMThere is a context here that seems to be missing. When the reports if communist anti-religious activities reached the Chofetz Chaim, with the yevsektzia organization of secular jews, purporting to improving the lot of their fellow Jews, oppressing anyone who tried to teach or practise Judaism, the Chofetz Chaim said "We made a mistake. When the communists started fighting the Torah we should have gone against them with a physical fight. We may have been killed, but the mesiras nefesh would have weakened their strength. When Haman tried to kill us we prayed for salvation , but when the Greeks came to shmad us we fought physically."That was not meant or taken practically (there is a famous story repeated in yeshivos about the Talmid who told the Chofetz Chaim 'let's go' but was not taken seriously) , and Rav Shteinman was paraphrasing that sentiment.Of course, someone who cannot fathom why Rav Shteinman could legitimately consider this a gezeiras shmad may find the connection disingenuous, but a person of his stature deserves some benefit of the doubt that he is absolutely serious.ReplyRepliesNachumMay 15, 2014 at 5:41 PMPerhaps because it's pretty obvious to anyone clear headed that this *isn't* a time of shmad, and a man supposedly as wise and connected and R' Shteinman should realize that?ReplyMenachem LipkinMay 15, 2014 at 4:14 PMWhether or what R. Steinman said is a separate issue. Kaplan was advocating murder, extolling the concept and was proud of his child's desire to do so.ReplyCarolMay 15, 2014 at 4:15 PMCould it be that we ourselves are responsible for anti-Semitism? Transplant chareidi and Jewish financiers to Europe and why wouldn't they be hated? How was Abarbanel different from Rubin, Geitner or Sommers. If the Jews behaved in Europe like the charedim behave today in Israel and US need we wonder? If I, coming from Russia, share Eastern European hatred for gypsies and think that no country should keep that parasitic and criminal element, maybe their hatred for Jews is justified? Read an excellent book 'Beyond Hitler's Grasp: The Heroic Rescue of Bulgaria's Jews' byMichael Bar-Zohar. The Bulgarian government's refusal to hand over its Jets was articulated by the king, himself an ethnic German: 'They are just like us, they serve in the army and work in trades. They are Spanish Jews and are different from the Ashkenazim of Eastern Europe'. And this is from a country that hates gypsies and is still trying to get rid of them.Zionism understood this and tried to create a new normal Jew and human being.ReplyRepliesNachumMay 15, 2014 at 5:40 PMGeitner isn't Jewish.Hitler did blame his anti-Semitism on charedim, but I don't believe him.Replyslogans by slonaginMay 15, 2014 at 4:48 PMAt least we can count on saychaldik cab driversReplyG*3May 15, 2014 at 4:59 PMI have a sword. And my kids know how upset I would be if they ever suggested hurting someone.I’m trying to wrap my mind around how the image of a five-year-old beating someone to death with a hammer could make someone think, “So cute! What a good boy!”Even granting that the government really were Nazis, and it were necessary to violently oppose them, that would be a deeply unfortunate reality from which children should be sheltered. The image of a little boy attacking an SS officer is sad. For a child to be put in a position where he has to kill to survive is horrific. It’s not cute.> We must not have any doubt!That’s fundamentalism in a nutshell. Absolute certainty in the rightness of a cause, with no room for doubt.Doubt is a good thing. It keeps us from being so certain we’re right that we encourage innocent children to murder people.ReplyIsaac RichterMay 15, 2014 at 5:17 PMR' Natan,I see groinem beat me to it, but here is my response:Rav Shteinman was referring to a famous question brought in Koveitz Maamarim; historically, when the Jews faced physical persecution the response has been religious in nature i.e. on Purim, when the danger was extermination, the response was prayer and fasting. When the danger has been spiritual i.e. Chanukah (the Greeks didn't necessarily want to kill the Jews, they wanted to assimilate them), the response has been physical in nature - The response was a call to arms by the Chashmonayim.Basically, when the Jews are in danger we rely on Hashem to ensure our physical survival. However, when it is the Torah being threatened, we (physically) defend the Torah.The Chofetz Chaim therefore asked (this was in regards to the Maskilim) why, when the threat is against the Torah, do we not actually take up arms following this historical precedent.Rav Elchonon answers that ideally this is how we would respond, but for lack of proper leaders, we are unable to do so.Rav Shteinman was simply applying the above to the current situation which the Chareidi world interprets as "shmad".It most certainly was not a call to kill Israeli Government officials.This is what "Divrei Chachomim Tzrichin Limud" means. In our internet soundbite age, every Tom, Dick and Natan, thinks they can understand the words of the Gedolim at face value without considering their context and create a tumult on their blog.ReplyRepliesNatan SlifkinMay 15, 2014 at 5:18 PMAnd what do you think of Rav Kaplan's understanding and elaboration of Rav Steinman's words?Isaac RichterMay 15, 2014 at 5:33 PMR' Natan,I am certain that Rav Kaplan was saying it over in the same context as I explained above. His delight in seeing his son's literal acceptance of his words is easily explained as taking pleasure at a five year old's naive response unclouded by ambiguities. It does not mean he would want his son to go kill anyone.You are surely groaning now and thinking that I'm not only drinking the Kool-Aid, but perhaps swimming in it. I'm fine with that.Natan SlifkinMay 15, 2014 at 5:40 PMI think that you are completely missing the entire point of his conversation with the taxi driver. Did you listen to the recording? Also, what exactly are you trying to say was Rav Elchonon's point? That ideally, we would indeed kill the maskilim, but we lack the authority to do so? And that's supposed to be an okay thing for him to have said?NachumMay 15, 2014 at 5:44 PM"Rav Shteinman was simply applying the above to the current situation which the Chareidi world interprets as "shmad"."Wow, you sound like you agree with that nonsense. Why?"It most certainly was not a call to kill Israeli Government officials."Of course it was. What do you think the Chashmonaim did to the Hellenist Jews? They. Killed. Them."This is what "Divrei Chachomim Tzrichin Limud" means."I got a better one: "Chachamim hizaharu b'divreichem." And Chazal said that *before* an Internet. Kal V'Chomer they'd say it today.Yoel BMay 15, 2014 at 5:58 PMMaking this explicit:Rav Elchanan says that ideally the Torah world should take up arms against Maskilim, but there need to be proper leaders. Rav Steinman extends that to the State of Israel because demanding that Chareidim serve in the Army or learn a trade and work is shmad, and therefore ideally the Torah world should take up arms against the State of Israel, (but there need to be proper leaders.) Rav Kaplan says if there were a general to lead him, he'd take up the sword since Rav Steinman says the government is Haman and Amalek.Rav Kaplan not only tells this to his shiur, it's table talk in his house, and he kisses his son for wanting to kill the government and thinking creatively (no sword... would a hammer work?) about how to do it: "I was so proud of my son, he's looking for a sword to kill all these government ministers..."Then Isaac Reiner says the problem is every "Tom, Dick and Natan" hearing the words of the gedolim out of context. Should we infer from that that Nissan, on the other hand, heard the words and the context and is right to be proud of his son, who heard him correctly?Yoel BMay 15, 2014 at 6:55 PMThank you. Rav Elchanan: "maskilim = Amalek; if we had the right leaders (obviously saying he himself was not such a leader,) good to take up the sword against them;" Rav Steinman: "government ministers = Amalek. Replace them."Rav Kaplan: "Rav Steinman says 'government ministers = Amalek' and we really should take up the sword against them; that's the ideal way to replace them but we just don't have the general to give us the order. I said this to my family at the Shabbat table; my 5 year old son said,'Aba, we don't have a sword in the house, I'm looking... maybe a hammer is also good?' I was very happy, I gave him a kiss... I was so proud of my son, he's looking for a sword to kill all these government ministers..."Such nachas. It'll be interesting to see how the Mir responds.ReplyAnonymousMay 15, 2014 at 5:27 PM*SOME of the ministers, government, media and the leftist elite definitely ARE Amalek no doubt about it. They want to and worked and work to destroy the Torah and Am Yisrael. Its a fact. Not saying that I agree with the "Haredi" approach, but it is known that their are extreme anti-Jewish Behemot who worked and work tirelessly to uproot everything Jewish. This is why they kidnapped Jewish babies and put them in Kibbutzim. This is why they make all sorts of anti-Jewish films. This is why they now promote the Sudanese to take over Israel because they don't want a Jewish majority. And this is why they want to and do cut the budget of the Religious even though their is a lot of $ in reserve- to cut the amount of children that Religious Jews have and to prevent a (real) Jewish majority and Jewish State from becoming. Warren B.ReplyRepliesNachumMay 15, 2014 at 5:55 PMWell, the media and "elite" have no actual power beyond what the government gives them. So let's concentrate on "ministers and government": Can you name ONE- just one- minister or member of the governing coalition who fits your smear? One is all I ask. You've got nearly 70 Knesset members to choose from. I'll even throw in Labor. Maybe even Meretz, and you've got nearly every Jew in the Knesset. One, please.ReplyAnonymousMay 15, 2014 at 5:36 PMThis extreme rhetoric by Hareidi leaders appears likely to lead to tragedy if the aftermath of the rhetoric against Yitzchak Rabin is any guide. It only takes one radical taking such talk seriously to precipitate a tragedy. Should that happen, we'll see how quickly said leaders deny their culpability and seek to cast the blame elsewhere. Meanwhile, calmer voices and more independent thinkers need to take this rabble-rousing to heart and to stop supporting or tolerating those who would inculcate violence. The same can be said of those who advocate violence towards other religions and ethnic groups. Incitement to violence is a crime and should so be treated.Y. AharonReplyDavid JMay 15, 2014 at 5:46 PMCharedi extremism is real. The apologetics on this blog are disturbing.ReplyIsaac RichterMay 15, 2014 at 5:48 PMI understand Rav Elchonon bgeder גדול המחטיאו יותר מן ההורגו.ReplyRafi FarberMay 15, 2014 at 5:57 PMNatan, if some random person were to kidnap your child for three years into his personal army, you would probably want to kill that someone too. What's the difference if someone with "legal authority" to kidnap does it? I don't endorse killing, but that's what it may lead to if we keep worsening the culture of kidnap (draft) and force.ReplyRepliesmoisheleMay 15, 2014 at 6:44 PMWell said.When our refusal to accept or recognize the authority of the state of israel(uganda) as legitimate is clearly expressed, we can explain our feelings of oppression under a mafia, who have no problem murdering people for there purposes. They even have an army with a hierarchy, advanced weapons and an intelligence service at their disposal. We cannot fight back, but we certainly can want to.ReplyIsaac RichterMay 15, 2014 at 5:58 PMThough we frequently find statements to the effect of "so and so is Amalek" the Halacha of killing Amalek only applies to Amalek Zera Eisav. Rabboisai, the Amaratzus is stifling here. This is not apologetics, it is Torah Hashkafa 101. If you want to create a scandal where there is none, by all means. I find the captcha on R' Natan's blog too cumbersome for me to continue in this conversation from my phone.ReplyEzraMay 15, 2014 at 6:09 PMIt's sick.What worries me is this: historically, once a large group is in the grip of such a delusion, it doesn't free itself without some really nasty things unfolding. Take the witch hunts of the 16th - 17th centuries in Europe. It is true that eventually, the fever broke, and they stopped projecting their fears onto those poor women. But not before an estimated 100,000 women were burned at the stake.Right now, even the more sensible Chareidi leaders are trapped by their own rhetoric. They can't back down, so the level of vitriol increases every year. Eventually, I think it will lead to violence.Say a young kanai actually kills a government official. What will happen? Will it break the fever - the way the murder of Rabin brought many DL back to their senses?Or will the inevitable gov't crackdown only further feed t he Chareidi narrative of oppression by the Israeli government?EzraReplyAnonymousMay 15, 2014 at 6:27 PMThis may be an argument against conscripting Haredim. Do we really want thousands of armed soldiers who can be incited to anti-government violence by religious demagogues whom they obey without questioning?

Post 2 unrelated to cross currents

Some Perspective on "Deadly Serious"

by Natan Slifkin, rationalistjudaism.comMay 16
Since thenotorious lecture by Rabbi Nissan Kaplan was first publicized on TorahMusings two days ago, it's spread like wildfire. Almost everyone is, appropriately, horrified at what Rav Kaplan reports in the name of Rav Steinman, along with his own elaboration. Almost everyone is weighing in with their feelings about it and their proposal about what should be done. I seem to be one of the few people who hasn't yet articulated a perspective - all I said when I passed on the recording wasHashem yerachem - so I'd like to share my own thoughts on two aspects of this.First of all, the attitude that Rav Kaplan expresses should be condemned for what it is, not for what it isn't. There's plenty to condemn. There's the basic repugnancy and anti-Torah attitude that charedim have a right to be supported by the rest of Israel and not share in the burden of military service. There's the shocking statement of Rav Steinman, as relayed by Rav Kaplan, that government ministers deserve to be killed. There's Rav Kaplan's frightening and clear message that it is absolutely forbidden to doubt this. There's the appalling pride that he displays with his five-year-old, who is creatively looking for ways in which government ministers can be killed.But Rav Steinman and Rav Kaplan didnot say that, practically speaking, people should actually go ahead and kill them. (This is apparently due to their simultaneously subscribing to the charedi approach of leadership paralysis.) Yes, what they said could lead to that (as described in my post "It's Not An Aberration"), and the lesson that Rav Kaplan is imparting to his students and children is loathsome and dangerous. But that is not the same as telling people to actually go ahead and kill them, and we must not claim that he said that. One commentator here went even further and described him as a "murderer." No, he's not! His words might - unintentionally -lead someone to murder, which is (one of the many reasons) why they must be condemned; but he is not a murderer. It's ironic that some people, in their zeal to condemn him for inflamed rhetoric, engage in inflamed rhetoric themselves.(UPDATE: Rav Kaplan hasissued a response in which he stresses that he considers it wrong and unthinkable for a person to actually go and kill anyone. While I don't think that this is remotely sufficient - it's also wrong to say that government ministers are Amalek and Haman and deserve to die, which he does not retract - he is not differing from what he said in the original lecture. It's true, of course he considers it wrong and unthinkable for a person to actually go and kill anyone. But there's still plenty of serious problems with what he said.)Second, I don't think that Rav Nissan Kaplan is the problem. I don't mean that there isn't a serious problem with what he said - of course there is, and it requires rectification. But I think that it would be a mistake to focus too much on him. He is simply a product of his environment. Rav Kaplan is the result of the incendiary language that comes from the uppermost echelons in charedi society. Whatever Rav Steinman actually meant when he said that the government is Amalek and that they should go to Gehinnom where they should suffer and be totally annihilated, the words themselves are wrong and dangerous.Furthermore, the attitude that Rav Kaplan expresses is quite common in charedi circles. Does anyone really think that he is the only one teaching students that Lapid and Bennett are Amalek, with all the repercussions of that? That attitude is rampant in charedi society. Even in the much more minor matter of the Beit Shemesh elections, those who supported Eli Cohen were routinely screamed at for being heretics,goyim, Amalek, etc. The problem is not Rav Kaplan; it's the widespread attitude that if someone is opposed to the charedi lifestyle, then they are utterly evil and thus there are no holds barred as to what one can say about them. That is what needs to change.

Public service unrelated to cross currents

There were two very important posts plus a large and important comments thread removed from reb nossons Rationalist Judaism site (most probably due to threats he received from chariedi sympathisers upset that he was exposing them for who they really are I am reposting the text for those who missed them first the two posts and then the comments I was able to recover as a third post.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Deadly Serious

There's been so much wild rhetoricfrom the charedi world in the last year that we've become accustomed to it. We're used to hearing polemicists scream that Lapid and Bennett and anyone else who wants charedim to share the mitzvah/burden of military service, and who wants charedim to follow Chazal and the Rishonim in not demanding financial support from the rest of the country, is Amalek and Haman and Hitler. This kind of talk is shocking, but ultimately it is generally dismissed as not being serious. A person could argue that this kind of talk comes from politicians, not from rabbinic leaders, and that even if it comes from rabbinic leaders, it is meant as a rhetorical flourish, and is not to be taken literally.Until now.One of the most popular maggidei shiurim in the Mir Yeshivah is Rav Nissan Kaplan. I used to know him, and I always found him to be a very nice and down-to-earth person. Over atTorah Musings, R. Joel Rich posted a link to a recording of a lecture that Rav Kaplan gave. R. Joel introduced the link by describing it as "A must listen for those who think that the reports of Chareidi Yeshivot/chinuch antipathy towards the government of Israel is overstated." Indeed. In the lecture, Rav Kaplan reports the view of Rav Steinman, widely considered the leader of the Litvishe charedi world (except by those who find him too moderate). Starting at 36:50, Rav Kaplan says as follows: On Shabbos I spoke to my kids, and I said that Rav Steinman spoke thatlemayseh, we have today Haman and Amalek, all this [Israeli] government, and really the way is to take knives and to kill them, just as with the Yevanim. This is what Rav Steinman said. You have to take a sword and to kill them. So why are we not doing it? Because, he said, I don't know yet who is the general who could run the war. But if I would know who's the general, we'd go out with knives. This is what Rav Steinman said. There's a war against religion... I explained this to my kids... then, in the middle of the meal, my kid, five years old, says, "Aba, we don't have a sword in the house, I'm looking... maybe a hammer is also good?" I was very happy, I gave him a kiss... I was so proud of my son, he's looking for a sword to kill all these government ministers... Rav Kaplan proceeds to say how his taxi driver was not thrilled to hear about his conversation with his son. He told the taxi driver that it is no different from how we had to kill the Greeks and the enemies of the Jews in Shushan. But the taxi driver was wondering if perhaps there is a difference. Rav Kaplan explains that the conceptual threat of Amalek is doubt, making us wonder if perhaps the government ministers are in a different category from those enemies that we had to kill. We must not have any doubt!This is the message that the charedi world is teaching?! That the ministers of the Israeli government are Haman and Amalek, that (barring a technical obstacle) we should actually kill them, that we should teach this to our children, and that it is utterly wrong to have any doubts about this?! Hashem yerachem.Natan Slifkin

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Re: The Death of Free Speech on Campus by Jonathan Rosenblum

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/15/the-death-of-free-speech-on-campus/

Is this rosenblooms subtle way of getting the largely ultracharidie yated readership to make the obvious parallels to there own yeshiva system and apply his criticism to change that or is this his way of justifying our system by saying the goyim do it to? Any guesses

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Re: Bias Vs. Backbone by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/11/8791/

Avi has set the record straight charidim never do wrong it's just the antisematic goyim again

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Re: Approaching Shemitah by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/08/approaching-shemitah/

This is an excellent review

Monday, May 5, 2014

Re: Outmaneuvered by Dossim by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/05/outmaneuvered-by-dossim/

Re: The Sounds of Silence by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/05/the-sounds-of-silence/

You are clearly missing emunas chachomim and complete loyalty to the gedolim you might as well become an atheist if you think that you can argue with the true dass torah of our gedolim based on your understanding of a shever gemara

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Re: Jungle Jurisprudence by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/04/jungle-jurisprudence/

while i tend to agree that animals should not be given rights to insist that the argument has to be made based on fundamentalist literal readings of a late bronze age book is to concede that the 99.9 % of the world that does not share your religious convictions should grant monkeys human rights this is a surprisingly childish apologetic strategy even for avi

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Re: The Secular Sky Is Falling! by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/02/the-secular-sky-is-falling/

History has thought us that for any civil society to remain free safe and democratic its citizens must be educated. no governing system can survive the ravages from the ignorance of all advances in every subject of human inquiry  produced by charadie"educational" system the inevitable result will be a totalitarian state under the guise of theocracy
This has nothing to do with what the short sited people leading this cult intended

Friday, May 2, 2014

Re: Cults and the War of the Jewish Magazines by Yair Hoffman

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/01/cults-and-the-war-of-the-jewish-magazines/

For all of his phumphering he has not given a coherent distiction besides for saying its a matter of degrees
At least this time yair isn't stating his opinion under the guise of a halachic ruling as he is often does

Re: What Do They Really Think About Us? by Jonathan Rosenblum

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/05/01/what-do-they-really-think-about-us/

Now for some intense naval contemplation based on the unshakable belief that they think about us at all

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Re: The (Almost) Rude Jewish Man by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/28/the-almost-rude-jewish-man/

Is part of careing also that you must broadcast as all must hear every stay thought that moves through avis dass tirahdik mind?

Re: Incitement on Memorial Day by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/29/incitement-on-memorial-day/

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Re: Social Injustice by Avi Shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/24/social-injustice/

Ok avi so no wrong doing was done but it is dangerous for frum jews if they speak out against a procieved abuse? I think its a kiddish hashem and shows that not all frum jews are cheats and some Will even stand up for what's right and not play cronyism

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Re: And Now For Something Completely Different by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/23/and-now-for-something-completely-different/

Was anyone else bothered with this boys complete lack of respect for something that a lot of people take very seriously also did it cross his charidie centric mind that the gaurd might suffer as a result of his antics
Perhaps even more troubling is the fact that menkin finds this immature harassment amusing

Sunday, April 13, 2014

So They Don’t Really Want To Stamp Out Torah, After All by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/13/so-they-dont-really-want-to-stamp-out-torah-after-all/

Didn't r ahron feldman apologies for his outrageous statements about the man more thana year ago

Re: the second son Avi shafran

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/13/the-second-son/

http://forward.com/articles/196441/rejoicing-at-the-presence-of-the-wicked-son-at-the/?p=all

Re: The Tikvah Yeshiva Fellowships – Exciting New Program by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/13/the-tikvah-yeshiva-fellowships-exciting-new-program/

Will the discussions there be as open and engaging as the ones at cross currents?

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Re: At Least Some Of Us Can All Get Along by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/08/at-least-some-of-us-can-all-get-along/

Well said the only thing that is left to see is if when one of your charidie friends launches such an attack are you willing to publicly call him out on it if not all your general platitudes to the virtues of civil discourse are empty

Monday, April 7, 2014

Re: A Letter to a Troubled Charedi Father by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/07/a-letter-to-a-troubled-charedi-father/

Well this is definitely better than his last post in fact in theory he is correct. The isssue that needs to be addressed is at what point will charedim say ok we do not see the army as a threat to our level of observervance? My hunch is never

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Re: The (Not So) Subtle Racism of the Draft Bill by Yaakov Menken

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/06/racism-in-the-idf-draft-bill/

Wow This menken fellow is the most offensive of the lot. The hatefulness of his condensing words towards the Sephardic community is breath taking.
I am not skilled enough to supply a well reasoned reply to such utter nonsense based on his charidie revisionist history but i will note that if indeed the sfardic boys are sent to fill the draft quota it will be a result of the moraly bankrupt charadie leadership not dov lipmans tests

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Re: a brief response to rabbi slifkin

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/02/a-brief-response-to-rabbi-slifkin/

A heorah will appear shortly meanwhile flee free to hit the comments

Re: Women and Tefillin: R. Twersky’s Magisterial Approach by Yitzchok Adlerstein

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/04/02/women-and-tefillin-r-twerskys-magisterial-approach/

A comment on this artical will be published soon

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Re: More on Drafting Yeshiva Boys by Rabbi Doron Beckerman

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/03/28/more-on-drafting-yeshiva-boys/

sigh the same old charadie apologetics rehashed in Q&A form. These answers are so unconvincing to any one familiar with the situation that i don't even feel a critical comment is necessary.
i will just point out that he only asks the questions that have nice pat answers but the really relevant questions for example, in a democracy were all are equal before the law, how can it be fair or just to insist on the majority of a population that doesn't share your value system, bearing an extra burden that is only justifiable as a result of your religious belief?

Thursday, March 27, 2014

re: A New Dialogue in Eretz Yisroel – The Transformative Model. By Binyomin Wolf

http://www.cross-currents.com/archives/2014/03/25/a-new-dialogue-in-eretz-yisroel-the-transformative-model/

This is a puzzling aspect of Cross Currents that applies to a lot of what fills there pages, for Rabbi Wolfs suggestion to help it must be read, considered and adopted by the policy makers for the charidie world i think rabbi wolf himself realizes this whole proposition may be read by a YU Rosh Yeshivah or two, but the "real" gedolim that are dealing with this issue do not even read English and it is doubtful if they are capable of even grasping let alone implementing strategic diplomacy on such a complex level

That aside, the basic problem which seems to me to underlie this essay is it assumes there is a two sided conflict my experience as an avrech in yerushalim is that we have some askenim that try to whip up a frenzied siege mentality amongst the masses while the other side is just trying to fairly govern our fragile Jewish state, they do not see themselves or there core identity as at war or attacking the charadim, that is merely how the yated et-al try to project them. Therefor rabbi wolfs suggestions to try to deceive our "attackers" by putting on an air of cooperating with there efforts, while knowing that we can not and will not concede an inch will not accomplish anything on the practically as acceptance of any compromise offered to us is impossible.  What he writes in his penultimate paragraph is the only possible result of his strategy, now that is a worthy goal by itself but do not hold your breath for much else.

in way of explanation, disclaimers & discloser

THIS SITE IS IN NO WAY CONNECTED TO CROSS-CURRENTS.COM
Cross Currents writers, Avi Shafran, Emanuel Feldman, Eytan Kobre, Harvey Belovski, Jonathan Rosenblum, Sarah Shapiro, Shira Schmidt, Toby Katz, Yaakov Menken, Yitzchok Adlerstein feel that they are gedolim by proxy and therefore immune to all the harsh criticisms that mere mortals must endure when putting there thoughts in to the marketplace of ideas.
The recent Jonathon Rosenblum article and ensuing censoring of comments followed by a tremendous backlash was the straw that forced something to be done about the sorry state of affairs vis-a-vis the oppression of ideas at Cross Currents. unfortunately the comment policy of Cross Currents has caused Cross Currents to lose legitimacy in the eyes of many who would otherwise read and consider the generally well articulated and occasionally well founded arguments of the Cross Currents posters. also by not letting ALL the voices and POVs on a topic to be heard they are loosing a lot of the possibility for improved practices and understandings to emerge and take root in our community also by not allowing there ideas to be freely critically reviewed it becomes hard for those not as informed of the facts or philosophically inclined to really believe they are reading a honest counting of the issues being discussed and not some slick propaganda. with this in mind i am opening a blog were i will post a short haeroh on every Cross Currents post and open up the comments thread  in which a free unmoderated discussion of the entire article can take place(i will try my best to post it promptly). Here you will not have to fear that your well thought out insight that you took the time to formulate and type may not see the light of day because it has been arbitrarily decided that it does not tow the party line or is overly critical of the author or may harm the honor of some greatly venerated charadie. Also you do not have to worry that your comment on a CrossCurrents article here will not be read by the articles author if you comment here i can guarantee that the authors will be following this blog and very likely will use a pseudo name to defend there dogmatic doctrines.
I will try to foster as transparently as possible the conditions under which a free and open discussion can flourish because only in such an atmosphere can any truly meaningful ideas be formed. I am not looking for or encouraging Cross Currents bashing however if a commenter feels that some is in order i humbly request that he keep it as short and moderate as he humanly can while still getting the job done (same goes for charadie "gedolim" bashing)

Dovbear (one of the Gedolim of the Jblogosphere) makes a very strong case (more) for the merits of anonymity in an open discussion, particularly in a community were the real life consequences of saying your opinion of the truth can be quite harsh. On this site we understand there may be many reason's that you do not feel bold enough to use your real name and although you may be displaying a weakness of character we believe that even imperfect or intimidated people may have important and valid insights to contribute to a conversation so by all means if you would rather comment anonymously you are still encouraged to share. that being said i would strongly suggest that you consistently use the same pen name to comment so that others can get to know your alter ego and have some context and continuity in ongoing discussions.
as the success of this endeavor is going to depend on getting the word out as Cross-Currents.com will obviously not be publishing or promoting this site i am asking any one with a platform for letting people know were to direct there comments regarding a Cross Currents article should please shout this site out thank you, the management