January 10, 2018 9:03 am at 9:03 am #1446879
square root of 2Participant
does yeridas hadoros mean that people are intrinsically on a lower level than they used to be: i.e. the environment of the world by default will have a negative impact on people and/or hashem sends down neshamos on a lower level each generation
or does it mean that the later generations have the same potential for greatness as earlier generations, but the fact of the matter is that more people succumb to their yetzer hara in later generations than in previous ones?January 10, 2018 11:48 am at 11:48 am #1447021
Every generation is tasked with a unique mission and is given the powers needed to accomplish it. We are working through the world and refining it. Once we are done= Geula.
Yeridas hadoros is because each generation had an easier / lower mission to work on than the generation before so they get progressively weaker as well, as our power matches our mission.
For example, the generations of the Tannaim and AmoraiMy were tasked with refining the intellect of the world’s. They were brilliant, and the nations of the world were as well. That was the time of philosophy.
Contrast that for today and no one cares for Aristotle…
Since we don’t need to refine the wisdom of the world anymore, we are lacking in the wisdom they had… There is alot more to be said but here’s for starters.January 10, 2018 11:51 am at 11:51 am #1447046
the farther you get from Sinai, the less influence that pivotal experience has on a person’s spiritual level. The impact of Matan Torah, of direct contact with Hashem’s Word, the clarity of the Torah, gets diluted as generations move on. I don’t think it means that the people are of less potential or have lower level neshamos, it’s just harder to bring out the potential.January 10, 2018 2:02 pm at 2:02 pm #1447067
We see here the difference between Yidden and Goyim. Yidden look back at our Zaidas and earlier and crow how much greater than us they were. Each earlier dor was greater than each later ones. They wrote the Mishna, the Gemorah, Rashi, Tosfos, Rambam, Chasam Sofer, etc. Each later generation didn’t reach the greatness of the earlier ones.
By the goyim it is punkt fakert. They each tell how great they are and how their grandparents and earlier generations were Neanderthals and we are the great ones. We invented computers something they never dreamed of! Their parents said we invented robots something the earlier generations wouldn’t even think of. Earlier they said we invented electricity something our ancestors couldn’t even conceptualize. Before that they had the industrial revolution, showing how great they were. So each one sees themselves greater than their ancestors. We Yidden see our ancestors much greater than ourselves.January 10, 2018 2:02 pm at 2:02 pm #1447074
Now that the wisdom of the world is all refined, we can check that item off the list and forget about it?January 10, 2018 4:03 pm at 4:03 pm #1447231
Not sure I understand your question. But yes today our avoda is just to do the right thing! (And in the world people just do what they want, even if they know it isn’t good for them)
Moshiach is about to come so the world is refined (can always get better) We’re at the lowest level of refinement – just do what’s right without being a great chochom.January 10, 2018 4:24 pm at 4:24 pm #1447252
just do what’s right without being a great chochom.
אין עם הארץ חסידJanuary 10, 2018 8:32 pm at 8:32 pm #1447309
@daasyochid true but how is that relevant here?January 12, 2018 1:32 am at 1:32 am #1448500
☢️ 🚭 ☣️ Rand0m3x 🧠🕴️🎲Participant
does yeridas hadoros mean that people are intrinsically on a lower level
than they used to be … or does it mean that the later generations have the same
potential for greatness as earlier generations…
The former.January 12, 2018 7:30 am at 7:30 am #1448521
square root of 2Participant
why did hashem even make our generation?January 12, 2018 11:19 am at 11:19 am #1448608
√2: To perfect ourselves.January 12, 2018 11:19 am at 11:19 am #1448624
I agree significantly with Joseph here. As a nation we may aspire to more or better or higher levels, but we as Jews have, it seems, always recognized that we stand on the shoulders of Giants. I think it comes from our prayers and supplications that have always first reminded ourselves and depended on HKBH’s recognition of the Tzidkus of our Avos . That degree of humility though not always evenly held is a distinction that if other groups do so I think they have been influenced by the Jewish experience.
What, though, are the implications of the concept of Yeridas Hadoros? Are we capable of less? Are our needs more? Can we say that now when there are more Jews learning more Torah than at any time in our entire history, more Jewish Hashpo’oh on the Umos Haolom, and more inklings that the geula is nearing that we have descended to a level of tumah below our ancestors? Maybe. Maybe we are closer to the geula because we need it more now than ever. Maybe we need to measure ourselves against our potential, and that is where we are lower. Yes, there is more Torah being learned than ever, but what could we have accomplished, and not yet reached. Yes, there is more Jewish Hashpo’oh in the world, but could we not have accomplished more, brought more peace or more righteousness to the world?
I think that the most logical understanding of yeridas hadoros is this. Our potential grows, but our accomplishments do not keep pace, or even diminish. And with every passing generation, the potential gap grows, with our accomplishments as a Jewish generation achieving only part of what we could have and part of what our parents could have. We have more resources and opportunities now. How are we going to use them?January 13, 2018 9:43 pm at 9:43 pm #1448749
@yichusdik the way I always learned it was in a positive way. Im harishonim kmalachim anu kbnei adam… Yes previous generations were on a much higher level than us because they were tasked with greater things. Our work is building on theirs, as you said.
Therefore the world is a much better place than our used to be because the Torah and mitzvos of previous generations has brought it to this much more elevated, refined state (think emperor is the murderer of the previous emperor vs today’s politicians trying to impress the public with their good deeds)
Yes we aren’t as capable and our mission is lower, we just need to add the final touch, and that’s why we are called ikvasa dmishicha, the heels of moshiach because we’re are much lower, yet at the same time – we the lowest ones are gonna be the ones to bring moshiach and finish off all the work for everyone else. Vain hamlocha nikra ela al Shem gomra – we will be the ones to get the credit for that, abs everyone is applauding us, although our work is miniscule compared to previous generations…January 13, 2018 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm #1448850
CS, are you trying to claim that the world is a better place today than, say, during the time of the Beis HaMikdash or during the time of Har Sinai?January 14, 2018 5:37 am at 5:37 am #1448877
CS, our world is in a worse state than ever before, our mission is to fix it up and bring it to some state of normalcy.January 14, 2018 8:18 am at 8:18 am #1448890
The world as a whole – definitely. Our personal spiritual heights, no that’s what this thread is about…
But yes the physicality of this world is much more refined.
Like in your examples:
The time of Shlomo hamelech is compared to the time of moshiach,as all the nations were at peace with us, but the fiend is that then the nations were temporarily overwhelmed by the kedusha emanating from eretz Yisrael, but still remained the same evil nations, and so it didn’t last.
Now however, the nations themselves are allot more refined, they admire chessed more than brute strength etc, and some are already serving Hashem.
When moshiach comes he will finish it off with “Az ehpoch el hoamim safa brura likro *kulam* bshem Hashem.” Bimheira vyameinu amen!January 14, 2018 9:09 am at 9:09 am #1448916
“Now however, the nations themselves are allot more refined”
You really believe that? It was only a few short decades ago that the nations engaged in a worldwide war, for the second time in a very short period, and wantonly murdered six million of us while everyone else watched and applauded the murderers even if they didn’t actually participate. Most of the occupied countries helped the Nazis murder.January 14, 2018 10:12 am at 10:12 am #1449013
The time of bais shaini was pretty bad. And towards the end of the first also
Hence them both being destroyed. There were great times for short periods here and there. But lots of bad too.January 14, 2018 11:54 am at 11:54 am #1449085
Sorry I had another post explaining the matan Torah one but I guess it’s wasn’t politically correct even if there is not one sentence that is incorrect/not true, so the whole thing just wasn’t allowed through (am I getting how the moderating works?) so I’ll try again in a more acceptable post and if it isn’t allowed through, what can I say, it’s hard to answer questions in half statementsJanuary 14, 2018 1:40 pm at 1:40 pm #1449099
And just wanted to clarify, this is NOT an attack on the mods at all – every site has the right to post what they want – just with col for example, I will not post more than happy comments on happy news because I know anything not to their liking is unlikely to go through. Just trying to figure out what’s acceptable so I don’t waste anyone’s time 🙂January 14, 2018 1:47 pm at 1:47 pm #1449110
@joseph does it have to be perfect or barbarian to you? It’s a process and yes nothing will be perfect till moshiach comes and Hashem “removes all impurity from the land” but I for one can appreciate the difference between living under the barbaric Roman rule and western democracy today…January 14, 2018 1:57 pm at 1:57 pm #1449111
So for the matan Torah one just consider our bodies weren’t able to handle the revelation (that’s why our neshamos flew out) and when moshiach comes we will have the greatest revelations from Hashem in our bodies, no problem.
And that will be because we have refined our physicality all these years.
I’m leaving out an important point because it’s not pc but I hope this helps somewhat.January 14, 2018 1:58 pm at 1:58 pm #1449114
This doesn’t address the original post, but I am dubious of Joseph’s statement that this is some sort of intrinsic difference between the Jewish and Gentile worldview (as if there was only one Gentile worldview!). It is, perhaps, a commonly held view in modern secular society that modern society is more refined and advanced than past societies , and of course this is obviously correct in terms of scientific discoveries in technology.
However, the idea that current society was inferior to the greatness of the past is quite common throughout history. Note that even today it is common to refer to the generation who lived through the Depression and World War 2 as “the greatest generation”.January 14, 2018 1:59 pm at 1:59 pm #1449142
CS, I said Nazi Germany. That was in very recent times. The Russian pograms wasn’t all too long ago either. Even Tach V’tat is within memory. Crusades is a bit longer ago. When did this great utopian “Western Democracy” that you so love begin?January 14, 2018 3:43 pm at 3:43 pm #1449201
The 20th Century Weimar Republic was one of the most “Western Democracies” coming from the great German civilization, the most “civilized” people and nation on Earth. And that democracy democratically elected as their Chancellor and Fuhrer Adolf Hitler ym’s.January 14, 2018 3:43 pm at 3:43 pm #1449191
Joseph, the United States, where Jews are allowed to attend any shul, yeshiva and even incorporate as a political entity ( KJ, New Square ) to practice Judaism as tjeey see fit.January 14, 2018 3:43 pm at 3:43 pm #1449162
There is certainly elements that are much better than it always was. Anyone claiming not is missing facts. Although the stories make it sound like there was once a perfect world. Torah was in many ways looked down upon.
There were thousands of Am Haratzim who barely could read. There were ע”ה דורי דורות
There were many Bnei Torah who couldn’t even find a shiduch, being that they were looked down as being disconnected and as batlanim etc.
All this has changed in the last few generations, you wouldn’t find too many that can not read a siman in Mishnah Brurah or Kitzur etc.
There are thousands in Isreal and the US who are sitting and learning in depth sugyas on all aspects of the Torah.
On the other hand, there has been a shortage of true and ethentic Gadolim as there once was. All you need to do is look on the seforim of today’s Gadolim and compare it to the seforim of prewar Gadolim. It’s not even close. What we have today are “experts”, each on his own issues, there aren’t any that are truly sufficient in all areas if the Torah.January 14, 2018 3:43 pm at 3:43 pm #1449161
First you said matan Torah and bayis sheini. I was addressing that.
As far as anti semetism yes it is always brewing and an outburst could happen today in America cvs if Hashem didn’t protect us…
Esav sonei lyaakov and the won’t be a complete end to anti semetism until moshiach comes.
That being said there are more Chassidei umos haolam today – there are whole movements of christians United with usual and Jews against anti semetism than ever before – there are also even bnei noach today.
Kindness is valued in the world today whereas it wasn’t in past times. As far as the cossaks etc – yes our Avodas Hashem, Torah and mitzvos has continued to refine the world since then, and bh it is much better.
As for Nazi Germany – the nazis yemach shmom also prided themselves on kindness, education etc on being civilised, but when it came to the Jews, all of a sudden none of those values applied.
But even then the world valued civilised behaviour even as it allowed incredible anti semetism to happen, as it would today if it was allowed.
Moshiach will fix this of course, but today the difference between the world now and eras past is that the world today world be happy to serve Hashem with moshiach as the ultimate civilised, G-dly leader, leading the way.
The days where cruelty, paganism, and even immorality were ideals to uphold are far gone.January 14, 2018 3:43 pm at 3:43 pm #1449153
“CS, I said Nazi Germany. That was in very recent times. The Russian pograms wasn’t all too long ago either. Even Tach V’tat is within memory. Crusades is a bit longer ago. When did this great utopian “Western Democracy” that you so love begin?”
… says the guy who can publicly write whatever he wants about the government and citizens and local religion and customs of the country he lives in, without fear of being jailed or beheaded or burnt at the stake or even fined or told to be quiet.
I don’t know when the “utopia” began, but clearly it was sometime before you started using the Internet.January 14, 2018 3:43 pm at 3:43 pm #1449152
BITP, the world at large and general society spit at their “ancient” ancestors as barbarians and nowhere near as advanced and civilized as themselves.January 15, 2018 2:41 am at 2:41 am #1449343
*curiousJanuary 15, 2018 2:41 am at 2:41 am #1449342
Good q op. Im if anyone has any legitimate sources on this…ya that would be great….January 15, 2018 1:44 pm at 1:44 pm #1449620
@oyoyoy if you want me to bring a source for anything I said just ask me and I’ll look out for it next time it comes upJanuary 15, 2018 2:58 pm at 2:58 pm #1449670
“The days where cruelty, paganism, and even immorality were ideals to uphold are far gone.”
I guess you don’t read the news. Cruelty seems to be dished out on a regular basis in many parts of the world. Immorality has been put on a pedestal to admire. OK, I’ll give you paganism (although there are places in the world it is still practiced). But the western world is far less religious nowadays than it was in the past. Is atheism any better?January 15, 2018 6:08 pm at 6:08 pm #1450499
The athiests of today are also on a lower level. In previous doros, an atheist was a philosopher that thought about things but came to the wrong conclusion because of mistakes and negios. Nowadays a guy goes, (t.t.t.o. a question) “well, i believe that blah blah blah, because thats whats in style and i dont really care that much to even think about it.”
And negios.January 15, 2018 7:11 pm at 7:11 pm #1450471
There is a fascinating piece of Rav Tzadok HaKohen ZTL of Lublin explaining why there are times when the Gadolim are of a lower level and the rest is of a higher level, and some times the other way around.
Why was it after Navuah ceased did the Chachmos haTorah of the Anshei Kenese haGdolah and Talmud emerge?
He basically explains that there is a concept that Dargos and Chachmoh is of Klal Yisrael as one, and some times it is as Idchei m’Kamei Gavra, the dargos are sort of condensed into a few, and there are times when all is spread out among all of Klal Yisrael.
See below link for more, he explains it and elaborates in other places as well (As of now, I do not remember where…)
http://www.hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=14377&st=&pgnum=10January 16, 2018 10:20 am at 10:20 am #1450740
“Is atheism any better?”
I recall that its much worse, one who believes in nothing has no Tikun, whereas A”Z he still believes in a concept of a G-D but in a form of Shitfus etc. thus he can still have a Tikun.January 16, 2018 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm #1450813
Anyhow this is off topic to put in short –
Yes we are nothing compared to our ancestors (although the world has become a more refined place and is ready for moshiach.)
Avraham frieds song “On giants shoulders” expresses this theme quite well :
“Holy and pure
Our fathers were
Giants, righteous men
We are strong compared to them
But our deeds
Upon their deeds
Together we will bring
Moshiach our king
And we will do it brothers
After us there will be no others
You and I will do
What giants wanted to
So stand and take the credit
Golus! Well be the ones to end it
Though were small were standing tall like soldiers
Riding high because we’re on our father’s shoulders….
Its up to us
Our fathers started long ago
Waiting for us to follow…
Great song!January 16, 2018 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm #1450849
oyoyoy, You make the point that today’s atheists are at a low level. I find that curious. Do you have any evidence for your assertion? Because if you have read Bertram Russel, or Christopher Hitchens, Jean Paul Sartre or Richard Dawkins, you will find that though they come to dramatically wrong conclusions, and when specifically addressing the issue of HKBH make several dramatically wrong assumptions, these are among the most articulate and informed non-Torah scholars of the last 100 years. Russel and Hitchens especially, because unlike Dawkins they write about much more than atheism, and unlike Sartre they avoid existentialist philosophy and the determinist outcomes it presupposes. I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of 20th and 21st century writers who are more articulate than Hitchens. Maybe George Orwell, but he was likely an atheist as well, certainly an agnostic.
My point is that you don’t have to diminish an individual’s acumen in comparison to earlier generations to conclude that he is wrong. He can be brilliant and utterly wrong, too. He can even prophesy and be inspired by HKBH, as Bilaam was, and be utterly wrong.January 16, 2018 2:07 pm at 2:07 pm #1450795
@wtp if you notice the wording I used is ideals to be admired. Cruelty exists but it isn’t looked up to a an ideal anymore. (Besides in the Muslim world and they would also be ready for moshiach because in their world irs all about serving G-d even if He asks your to do the weirdest Cruel things. They just need to be corrected on what HE wants.)
Science isn’t the absolute god replacing religion as it used to be regarded.
Even immorality – is seen in a confused way – they don’t see objectification of women or assault against them as a good thing (think priestesses of idol worship temples in the past) they just don’t mind if people do what they want as long as they don’t hurt anyone.
But many many of the youth are hurt from this hedonistic lifestyle as if it’s against Torah, it goes against the fabric of the world, so it’s impossible for it to work well.
And there are many voices speaking up against it. Modesty is more in fashion now. So I would say they’re confused but don’t hold immorality as an ideal.
The only places you will probably find that is Hollywood and california, not mainstream goyim, and with the recent scandal even they are rethinking their ideals…
editedJanuary 16, 2018 6:20 pm at 6:20 pm #1451212
ychusdik- frst of all, no havent read them. I beieve its stupid (and probably assur) for someone trying to grow in emunah to read them. In fact, many hold jewish philosophy or debates “proving” that there is a Gd isn’t safe.
Regardless, i admit they are intelligent and articulate (articulate wasnt really my point btw). I was referring to the average joe.
There is a level of depth required to actually care enough about Believe it or Not, i dont think people are deliberating while theyre waiting for netflix to load.January 16, 2018 9:29 pm at 9:29 pm #1451294
ychusdik, yeridos hadoros would compel us to compare those thinkers to minds of the past, not just ask if they’re intelligent or not. It also clear from your post you haven’t read their works(names are incorrect – not just spelling – and not differentiating agnostic and atheist even though you mention both terms, no mention of any particular work), it’s disingenuous to call others out.January 17, 2018 1:46 am at 1:46 am #1451319
“I recall that its much worse, one who believes in nothing has no Tikun, whereas A”Z he still believes in a concept of a G-D but in a form of Shitfus etc. thus he can still have a Tikun.”
Where are you getting this from?January 17, 2018 1:11 pm at 1:11 pm #1451583
Ah, K-Cup, aren’t we clever. Typing on my IPhone and I used Bertram instead of Bertrand, and dropped an L in his last name.
All of the authors I mentioned read the same authors of the past and have quoted them, on both the theistic and atheistic sides. I don’t need to compare if they are doing it themselves and involving past philosophies in their works. I would have thought that was obvious, but alas, no.
I’ve actually had the experience of hearing Christopher Hitchens speak in person – though it was about politics and not about religion. His adversarial report on Mother Theresa for thew Vatican in opposing her beatification was brave and eloquent. I read his columns in the Nation, Vanity Fair, and The Atlantic, and of the several books of his in my library, the best is “Why Orwell Matters”.
I’ve read almost everything Orwell ever wrote, and his “Politics and the English Language” has been influencing how I write for almost 30 years. I’ve even lectured on using its principles in current political advocacy to dozens of university aged participants in programs I have run. His novels are some of my most dog-eared paperbacks.
I only own one of Bertrand Russell’s books, “A History of Western Philosophy” but I have read several of his more well known books and essays on philosophy, science and his particular criticism of Christianity.
I admit that I haven’t picked up a book by Sartre since I was 25, but two university courses on Existentialist philosophy and its application in post war political discourse were enough to give me a good sense of his perspective on God.
As for Dawkins, I’ve only read “The God Delusion” and found it occasionally lucid but oddly misdirected. When he writes about God with every negative adjective he can think of, he’s describing Man and his choices.
Of all of these I found Dawkins the least interesting, most dogmatic, and most absolute. But when Russell describes himself as 6.9 out of 7 on the scale of atheism, I feel comfortable describing him as an atheist rather than an agnostic. I wonder where you get your scale.
Oyoyoy, It wasn’t clear that you were referring to the average Joe. I understand better now what you were saying. But I think many of the average Joes you are describing don’t necessarily fit the bill of atheist, or even agnostic, because they haven’t and don’t care or think enough to put the time in to actually articulate what they truly believe., and that’s sad. As an aside, I wasn’t advocating that you read what I read. For me, it has strengthened rather than weakened my emunah to, as Sun Tzu suggested, “know my adversary”. But I acknowledge that isn’t an approach advisable for everyone.January 17, 2018 1:11 pm at 1:11 pm #1451539
We have been fortunate in our lifetimes to have had some of the greatest gadolei yisroel in generations share with us their daas torah and ahavas yisroel to an extent I cannot imagine was exceed in any prior generation. We still suffer from a level of sinas chinam that some would say is the biggest obstacle to z’man morishiach but its hard to imagine from a spiritual perspective we are on a downward trendline. Some will invoke the internet as the biggest contributor to moral decline but over the long term, I think this will be shown to have resulted in greater access to torah knowledge than any other single development in our history.January 17, 2018 2:52 pm at 2:52 pm #1451654
then were basically in agreement. chodesh tov.January 17, 2018 2:54 pm at 2:54 pm #1451704
Yichusdik, you aren’t discussing what yeridos hadoros is at all, I don’t understand what the point of saying those authors quote past authors is. Your post was in response to low level. This is in the context of yeridos hadoros. Are just saying intelligent atheists are around? Russell routinely described himself as agnostic, in Why I’m not a Christian as well as his essays in religion and science., ect. That was the scale. Your post seems to me like a forced opportunity to mention atheists names. Even your response doesn’t seem to have a point other than you are familiar with atheism, but doesn’t say why it might be more developed than past athiesm, or more developed than past theology wich would be heretical to judaism. You’ve read one book of Dawkins (the one everyone read), know a lot about existesialism due to two courses therefore speak to sartre positions, and own one of Russell’s works wich has the least of his own opinion in it. But you’re an Orwell expert, and heard Hitchens speak. I maintain your post was very disingenuous.
If you’re interested In Dawkins, Hitchens, Harris ect., Dennett is the best of the lotJanuary 17, 2018 5:25 pm at 5:25 pm #1451766
I’ll try to maintain the decorum that seems to be escaping you, K-Cup.
If it needs elaboration, I read Hitchens for years and years before he passed away, both his articles and his books. I studied Russell in school, read him in different contexts afterwards, and while I am familiar with several instances where he describes his approach in agnostic terms, I was also familiar with the scale he gave, which, it seems to me, is pretty close to absolute in its assertion of non-belief. I mentioned Sartre, and I could have used Camus as an example ( I have read much more of his work) , but as you know, not all those writers and philosophers described as existentialist were atheists, so I didn’t, for example, use Kierkegaard. As for “knowing a lot about existentialism” because I took two courses on it, I didn’t make that claim, and I don’t appreciate being gaslit.
I’m actually not that interested in Dawkins. Referencing him and these others spoke to the point I was making to Oyoyoy, that’s all.
Also in the context of the discussion, these authors, and several more I am not as familiar with addressed the issue of belief within the context of the 20th century, its movements, its horrors, and the way in which most if not all of them built upon the religious, political, and social movements of the past – where the earlier generations of non believers and their philosophies resided. Hence their relevance in discussion of previous generations of thinkers.
As I indicated, I was responding to oyoyoy’s assertion that today’s atheists were at a low level. In the context that is escaping you, it is the corollary of the Jewish experience we are discussing. I thought he was talking about the philosophers who discuss belief and non belief, while he later clarified to me that he was talking about the average Joe, who we both agree doesn’t even think about belief enough to consider himself an atheist or not. We’ve come to a mutual understanding. You, however, seem to need to tear a strip off of me. I hope that it gives you some satisfaction.January 18, 2018 5:37 pm at 5:37 pm #1452397
In the context of this debate, how should we understand the pasuk in Koheles (7:10) “Do not say, “How was it that the former days were better than these?” For not out of wisdom have you asked concerning this.”?
It sounds as though Koheles does not consider the earlier times necessarily “better” even factoring in yeridas hadoros.
On the other hand, perhaps “former days” refer to more recent times than prior generations? Could “better” focus on the gashmi and not the ruchni? Does his limiting his critique to “wisdom” allow that the observation may be correct, yet nonconstructive to worry about?January 18, 2018 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm #1452670
There are also frequent assertions here on various threads that the pre-War generation of gadolim in the alte heim were somehow on higher madragah than those of today. From there, it is presumed that the downward spiral implied by the concept of yeridas hadoros continues unabated and will not be remedied until z’man moishiach. Ultimately, we go back to the notion that there are objective standards through which one can measure the “gadlus” of the gadolim of today versus those of prior generations and the kedushah and spirituality of yidden today versus those of our grandparents in the alte heim.
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