Being Spanish Sephardi

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    I have a question about a problem I am seeing often among Spanish Sephardim. I love the minhag I observe, but increasingly it seems my minhag is an excuse for bad behaviour as people reject tradition in the name of “Sephardi tradition.” I fear that it may soon be the case that the popular perspective of individuals in Spanish Sephardi synagogues may force these synagogues away from being Orthodox. I genuinely hope the Spanish minhag remains for the sake of my children and others of our posterity. Are there any suggestions for how traditional Judaism could be maintained in this environment?


    Neville ChaimBerlin

    The CR has several times danced around discussion about the particular Spanish shul in NYC to which I presume you are referring.

    Any place that tries to change their minhagim “back to a purer form” of the mesora as opposed to following the contemporary poskim within their circle is bound to become problematic.

    Suggestions would include, actually finding a contemporary Sphardi posek to go by, like Rav Ovadiah Yosef, instead of acting like they’re all not truly Spanish enough. If you are referring to the shul to which I think you’re referring, then there probably isn’t a lot of hope. I think they’ve been a stronghold of the Open Orthodoxy/Conservadoxy for as long as anyone can remember.

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