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  • #948628
    🐵 ⌨ Gamanit
    Participant

    Daniel Rosen- I personally don’t have very expensive things or eat in restaurants. I just don’t think that something that didn’t exist in previous generations should be brought as a proof for now. I also don’t think it’s any of my business thinking into why someone does spend thousands of dollars on things they could have spent way less on.

    #948629
    sw33t
    Member

    “your “live and let live” attitude is responsible for much destruction in klal yisroel and is in apposition to what gedolim have been trying to change for decades.”

    little harsh dont u think? my “live and let live” attitude applies to how others spend their money… not to domestic and sexual abuse, fraud and cheating of non jews and government, and baseless hatred of Jews which NEARLY ALL frum people have an attitude of “live and let live” or “lets just ignore” about, which in my opinion MAY have a little bit more to do with the destruction in klal yisroel then whether someone spends money on designer items or not.

    “Your statement “And YES I do think that Rabbis telling people how much to spend on their weddings is completely ridiculous and authoritarian.” gives me an incite into your lack of reverence for our gedolim.”

    you’re right. I am not allowed to have an opinion that differs from some rabbonim. next time I will follow blindly without thinking on my own. what was that about destruction of klal yisroel?

    your words are very hurtful, but i’m sure hashem doesnt care about that, he only cares that you keep worrying about how people spend their money

    #948630
    thegra
    Member

    sw33t: I assure you my statement was in no way intended to attack you so much as what you had passionately professed. Regarding your statement: there is a fine line between disagreeing and disrespecting them by calling what they say “ridiculous”.

    I agree with the others here that flaunting these luxuries and even purchasing them leads to harm.

    What is wrong with giving tochacha to klal yisroel about this? I do not understand.

    #948631
    Sam2
    Participant

    There’s no Issur here. This is ridiculous. I’ll go stand at a street corner and start giving Tochachah about how people breathe too often. This is just silly. Read the introduction to Mesilas Yesharim. Nothing in there is an obligation or a Halachic statement.

    #948632
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Sam2: “There’s no Issur here. This is ridiculous. Read the introduction to Mesilas Yesharim. Nothing in there is an obligation or a Halachic statement.”

    I’m sorry you do not believe that Mesilas Yesharim ought to be followed. Unfortunately for you there is not one orthodox Rabbi that agrees with you or thinks that this topic is ridiculous.

    #948633
    Sam2
    Participant

    Daniel: Mesilas Yesharim is not Halachah. It is a very good outlook on life and is (if you even read the entire Sefer) meant to be done in steps. So who are you to tell others where they’re holding by? Maybe they aren’t at Prishus yet?

    Also, not one Orthodox Rabbi?? I guarantee you I can find you many, many Orthodox Rabbonim who think it’s ridiculous to tell others how to spend their money from an anonymous message board.

    #948634
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Sam2: “So who are you to tell others where they’re holding”

    There are no steps mentioned here. This is the most basic of steps. We are not talking about making a taanis every Monday and Thursday! We are talking about trying to get klal yisroel to stop iving like goyim: it is called mussar and is appropriate for all madreigos. To say that this does not reflect the message of mesilas yesharim comes from ignorance. I am judging no one. I am addressing the general public about our ideals. Why does this bother you. You are saying I cannot judge others because some people are not on the level of “abstaining” from Gucci and you call me “ridiculous”.

    “You are living like gentiles. Your homes are hardly different from the homes of the gentiles.” Do you think Rav Moshe Feinstein, Rav Aharon Kotler, or one of the Chassidic rebbes would come in with his wife to eat in such a place? Of course not! Would our Avos have gone to such places?”

    R’ Itamar Schwartz

    #948635
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    The Artscroll Mesorah Series of Pirkei Avos says in one of the commentaries that people should give more tzedaka instead of spend extra things on themselves. Rov Nosson Scherman goes onto say how the yetzer harah tries to deceive people into spending money on luxuries for themselves and how it is wrong to live such a lifestyle. Is that judgmental as well?

    If we threw out all the mussar seforim that view people’s lifestyles with a critical eye in the hopes of getting them to make changes then we would have none left.

    #948636
    cv
    Participant

    Daniel, if someone, who walks on a street with Gucci pocketbook, will hold in their hands a receipt stating they gave a Tzedaka for the same amount of money as pocketbook cost, will you sleep better?

    #948637
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    cv: No one (or nearly no one) does that. Even if they did:

    Suppose they paid $1500 for the Gucci pocketbook. Surely they could have gotten a very nice one for somewhere between $50-150.

    That leaves $1400 spent on luxury. That alone could pay for shabbos chicken for a poor family in EY for 2 entire years according to the chickens for shabbos website. If they did not wish to give the money to tzedaka, to save the money instead would certainly allow the husband and children to be able to devote more time to talmud Torah.

    Besides the point, when other women see her with the bag they will feel the desire to get one themselves….and on goes the cycle until it effects the entire community. Baruch Hashem we have Mesilas Yesharim to warn us of this. So I repeat, yes I do believe it to be immoral to purchase a Gucci bag- perhaps it is even lifnei iver though that is a discussion for another thread. Not even those admist the lowest madreigos of klal yisroel should be content with needing such things. This is clear and pashut to anyone who reads so much as one mussar sefer with an honest eye.

    #948638
    kkls45
    Member

    This is ridiculous Daniel! If someone wants to spend money on a Gucci bag, that is their business and completely not yours!!! Maybe if you were a gadol hador or were a complete tzaddik that was perfect in all areas you would be able to go around telling people that they should try to fix their bad middos (or in your case not spend so much money.) Until then how about sticking to things like working on yourself and not trying to work on other people.

    #948639
    Sam2
    Participant

    Daniel: Do you know what Mesilas Yesharim is? Have you ever opened it up? It is a level-by-level guide to growing. So tell me, in which level is the statement you quoted? Because not every step in there is for everyone immediately.

    #948640
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    From saksfifthavenue.com:

    Gucci

    Sukey Medium Guccissima Tote Bag: $1580.00

    Lustrous logo-stamped leather takes on a metallic sheen in this softly-pleated carryall finished with logo hardware.

    Top snap-strap closure

    One inside zip pocket

    Linen lining

    Made in Italy

    #948641
    mishpachashu
    Member

    I am with Daniel on this one. My rav actually recently gave a shiur on this trying to get people to change. It’s a real chilul Hashem to see frum people wearing these things. I always feel disgusted when I see a frum Jew driving a new Mercedes. It is 100% not the derech of the Jewish Mesorah and has never been a real issue in Europe- only since Jews came to the US. There is no Mahamad anymore!

    So if I had more courage I would go around rebuking the people who drive mercedes along with those that drive on shabbos.

    On a side note, even many non-Jews I know at work are embarrassed to wear expensive designer brands and would not wear it even if they got it as a gift. To see Jews doing this is a real chilul Hashem.

    #948642
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    kkls45: It is certainly not ridiculous (but we already went there).

    Sam2: Enough of this nonsense. Please put aside your ego and don’t try to argue only because you refuse to lose a machloches. It’s over, truly. Talk to your rav about this as I have with mine before you comment again, please I beg of you.In fact, it was my very rav that constantly beings this issue up in the first place.

    I have read Mesilas Yesharim probably 40 or so times by now. We learn it for our mussar seder everyday in yeshiva.

    I know there are various madreigos to climb, such as not socializing at all and fasting. Spending thousands of dollars on elegant clothing is not in that category. I cannot have a rational conversation with you if you believe that. The Rambam says it is pashut no one should wear these things.

    #948643
    kkls45
    Member

    New

    GUCCI chocolate Leather GUCCISSIMA Tote BAMBOO handles snap bag NWT Authentic!

    $699.99

    This is from ebay. People who know how to shop smartly can get the same bag that you mentioned for $880 less.

    #948644
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    kkls45: Irrelevant to the overall point of the thread.

    #948645
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    I am merely repeating what my Roshe Yeshiva says every other day in yeshiva. If you walk into any black hat (i.e. high level) yeshiva you will hear the same thing. I do not know why you are surprised by what I am saying. My chavrusa even gave me tochacha for moving into a 2 bedroom apartment! He said “cant you make by in a 1 bedroom”. If you think I am radical, try joining kollel and see what the real talmedei chachamim have to say about our dor and the destruction geiva and taiva has caused. My Roshe Yeshiva said that the amount of money our dor waist on things is “sick and perverted”.

    #948646
    kkls45
    Member

    It definitely is. The point is that you don’t know what others are paying for their belongings. You are accusing people of spending crazy amounts of money on certain items that can instead be used on better things such as tzedakah. However since you are not behind their computers as they are doing their shopping, there is no way for you to know just how much they are spending in reality.

    #948647
    Sam2
    Participant

    Daniel: When you give me a Halachic work Assering buying expensive things, I’ll start listening to you (citing the Rambam you just quoted would help). Until then, you found a line in a Mussar Sefer (albeit the most prominent of Mussar Seforim) and decided to create a new Issur out of it. Something tells me that you missed the point of Mussar.

    #948648
    mishpachashu
    Member

    Daniel: You are fighting an admirable but futile battle. People will rarely change their spending habits/addictions and at best be insulted and at worst will accuse you of being a jealous loser who covets what wealthy people have. People will not hear what they do not want to hear- such is the way of life.

    #948649
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Sam2: This is the third time you have asked me to cite a source when you have yet to cite one source. But as you requested and to the further detriment of your argument…..:

    Rambam: Deos:Chapter 5, Law 9:

    “His clothes should not drag on the ground like the dress of the haughty, but [should extend] to the heel and his sleeves [should extend] to his fingers. He should not let his cloak hang down, for that creates an impression of haughtiness”

    “First of all, clothes were basically long robes in the Rambam’s and Talmud’s day. The Rambam here states that long clothes which reach the ground are typical of the arrogant. Likewise, letting down one’s robe (from being hitched up at the belt) is a sign of arrogance. The basic idea is that lengthy clothes were impractical for the working class, as they interfered with manual labor. The wealthy leisure classes, who needed not work themselves, typically wore such clothes as a sign of their status. Thus, anyone who wore such a style was considered to be flaunting a high social status which the Sages deemed ostentatious.” ~Aryeh Kaplan

    Mishpachashu: Thank you!

    #948650
    Sam2
    Participant

    Daniel: Interesting. First of all, that Rambam is talking Davka about a Talmid Chacham because the Torah will be Bezuyah if he acts improperly. Thus, for an average person there isn’t the same problem. Second of all, these aren’t quite Issurim. If the Rambam had meant them as Issurim, he would use the word Assur. He doesn’t. Third of all, you should read that entire Halachah that you quoted. He says that just like a Talmid Chacham should not look as if he is overly rich, so too he should not look as if he is overly poor.

    #948651
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Sam2: Join the good side. I stand here with open arms.

    First: Who said anything about looking poor, I never mentioned that.

    Second: “Thus, ANYONE who wore such a style was considered to be flaunting a high social status which the Sages deemed ostentatious.”

    ~Aryeh Kaplan

    I have to go for now, perhaps I will come back here tom. All the best for now, kol tov.

    #948652
    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Do if he doesn’t west a Gucci belt, he looks overly poor?

    #948653
    agittayid
    Participant

    The focus seems to be on Gucci as a name brand.

    For those concerned about wasting money on name brands, does this hold true for Borsalino as well?

    #948654
    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    For those concerned about wasting money on name brands, does this hold true for Borsalino as well?

    In theory, yes. In practice, no, because Borsalino makes a much higher quality product than the competitors, both in look and in durability.

    #948655
    yytz
    Participant

    Although I think it’s better not to buy name brands (much less prestige brands), it isn’t necessarily wasteful to spend a bit more on brand-name products. I’m not sure if it’s always true, but this quote attributed to John Ruskin is worth considering:

    #948656
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Yes of course there are better quality products that would behoove one to spend the extra dollar and purchase. There are other products however called luxury products that cost thousands of dollars extra for little or no benefit apart from affording one a high social status- the superior quality of the product is illusory. B”H we have many reviews online to research in order to ascertain if Product A costs hundreds of dollars more than Product B primarily due to it’s superior quality and durability or due to the status it affords and the illusion of superior quality to a substantial degree.

    It is clear and obvious that a Gucci Pocketbook costs thousands of dollars more due to the status it affords. Therefore, it is immoral to purchase one. Even if you somehow manage to get it for cheaper, you are contributing the the “high status” persona and will force other women to purchase them as well in order to keep up.

    #948657
    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    There is an entire section of law called Trademark, whose entire purpose is to enable the existence of brands. They are very valuable to society.

    #948658
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Yes, certainly they are. What is your point and how is that relevant to what I just said?

    In my yeshiva high school, we were not allowed to wear brand named clothes to school for this very reason.

    #948659
    truthsharer
    Member

    What about rebbes buying silver tipped canes?

    #948660
    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    More to the point, who are you to decide whether I need something or not?

    As many of you know, I have a photography hobby. Some of you have seen my pictures and know that I can create some very nice images with my camera gear. You can often find me walking in the street with $1500+ of camrea gear(camera body, lens, tripod, flash, filters, etc.).

    You may say to yourself “why does he need such expensive gear when you can get a simple point and shoot camera for $70? Lots of people take nice images with point-and-shoots.” But who are you to make that determination for me?

    The Wolf

    #948661
    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Wolf, you paid more for a better product, not as a status symbol. That’s a different debate (I’m with you on that one).

    #948662
    🐵 ⌨ Gamanit
    Participant

    There is actually an opinion, I don’t remember who I heard this from, that rich people should davka buy expensive things. Like that they won’t be stingy with what they give to the poor. Going with your example of the Gucci bag. If a wealthy woman has a $10 bag, and a poor woman wants $20 to buy a bag, she’ll say here’s $5- you should be able to get something decent. Whereas now she might say here’s fifty- get a wallet to go with it.

    #948663
    cv
    Participant

    cv: No one (or nearly no one) does that

    ***

    Daniel, do you have any proof or this is only your assumption? How do you know what amount of money people give to Tzedaka? Are you standing behind their shoulder, when they cut a check? What make you think you have the rights to tell anybody what to buy? After people gave 10% of income to Tzedaka, they can spend their money in any way they wish, even if you don’t approve it.

    #948664
    writersoul
    Participant

    Perchik: Money is the world’s curse.

    Tevye: May the Lord smite me with it. And may I never recover.

    (Fiddler on the Roof)

    When you get cursed with this nisayon, please send us an itemized list of your expenses and expenditures. Until then, kol tuv and don’t judge.

    #948665
    writersoul
    Participant

    Mods- is there a reason why you took down my post? (That is, I think you did- it’s in yellow now while it wasn’t before.)

    we didn’t take it down. it was overlooked. have some patience. 🙂

    #948666
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    It has always been part of our mesorah to tell people what they should and should not spend their money on when it effects society as a whole.

    “His clothes should not drag on the ground like the dress of the haughty, but [should extend] to the heel and his sleeves [should extend] to his fingers. He should not let his cloak hang down, for that creates an impression of haughtiness”

    “First of all, clothes were basically long robes in the Rambam’s and Talmud’s day. The Rambam here states that long clothes which reach the ground are typical of the arrogant. Likewise, letting down one’s robe (from being hitched up at the belt) is a sign of arrogance. The basic idea is that lengthy clothes were impractical for the working class, as they interfered with manual labor. The wealthy leisure classes, who needed not work themselves, typically wore such clothes as a sign of their status. Thus, anyone who wore such a style was considered to be flaunting a high social status which the Sages deemed ostentatious.” ~Aryeh Kaplan

    #948667
    Sam2
    Participant

    Daniel: Let me ask you something. That Rambam says that a Talmid Chacham shouldn’t make it appear as if he is a member of the wealthy class. Where does he say that a Member of the wealthy class shouldn’t look that way?

    #948668
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    The Wolf: I too have a very expensive camera. I enjoy taking high quality photos. Is that a status symbol though? No, not at all.

    #948669
    writersoul
    Participant

    Mods: Sorry- it’s just that it was up and then it went back down, so I was a bit confused. Apologies :).

    it’s ok

    #948670
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Sam2: “Thus, anyone who wore such a style was considered to be flaunting a high social status which the Sages deemed ostentatious.”

    #948671
    lesschumras
    Participant

    Daniel, I’m curious as to your narrow focus. Some suggestions. Visit every Jewish newspaper and demand that they stop accepting ads that entice people to go away for Pesach or buy expensive goods. Insist that wives shave their heads and not buy expensive sheitels. walk into chassidish shuls and lecture people who spent thousands on fur trimmed streimels.demand that tzedakas publish exactly how much of every dollar disappears as administrative costs. Question YWN as to why they advertise 2013 cars

    #948672
    ☕ DaasYochid ☕
    Participant

    Sam and lesschumras, I think you’re missing Daniel’s point. He is not railing against gashmiyus per se, or against spending money. He is specifically referring to brand names, where the appearance and quality of the product alone do not justify the cost. The reason people are willing to spend the extra money is just because of the name, and the status which it affords.

    #948673
    daniela
    Participant

    DaasYochid I do not perceive a difference. People buy certain goods paying handsome money if they are convinced the goods are worth the price. It does not matter if their returns are in the form of financial gain, perceived satisfaction, higher social standing, valuable business connections, or something else. Of course if we buy machinery for a workshop we can expect the balance to be tilted very differently from (even the same person) buying a lady’s handbag, but all those elements coexist to a point in every purchase.

    #948674
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    DaasYochid: “He is specifically referring to brand names, where the appearance and quality of the product alone do not justify the cost.” Thank you, that is exactly my point.

    lesschumras: Actually, my mashgiach ruchani recently said light heartily that he wanted to take out a big ad in the local newspaper saying “Stay home for Pesach: great service, great fun”. A sheitel and a streimel is quite different than a Gucci bag. Regarding new cars, they will last longer and perhaps have important features. Do I think someone should buy a new Mercedes? No, I do not.

    #948676
    agittayid
    Participant

    Most people who prefer Gucci, Armani, Borsalino, Lexus or any other brand name will justify it on the basis of “quality.”

    Skeptics will say they bought it for “status.”

    #948677
    Daniel Rosen
    Member

    Gamanit: “There is actually an opinion, I don’t remember who I heard this from”

    Yea…that opinion would be the yetzer harah.

    This is why we post sources.

    agittayid: agreed.

    #948678
    thehock
    Member

    Actually, in a similar thread I posted the story Gamanit is referring to.

    People need to worry much more about what they do with their own lives than what others are doing.

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