Chasidus Without Context

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    A point about each scholar on your list.

    Shaddal was firmly on the traditional side in his place and time. Anyone who seriously learns the Tanach as a whole representation of Judaism, is using many [but not all] of Shaddal’s methods. Nobody did more to uncover how the Rishonim viewed Navi, than him.

    Rappaport in some ways is firmly within the most traditional camp of his day. In retrospect he is hard to place. His views and writings are not far out. And he published one the towering Torah waves that is still spreading throughout the world.

    Heschel grew up … And was supposed to be.. The war ruined a lot. His writings are all to that generation and are harder to relate to today. Those that were nearer his orbit still quote his many on point sayings. And his Chumash Torah is everywhere. Just not in his name.


    A counter point.

    The populist history that is common among the uneducated. Yeshiva guys who don’t look at history seforim, Bais Yaakovs, the public generic history shiurim, the lay class, etc. is not at all in line with Chazzal or tradition. There is as much of the modern Jewish school of historical thought as any other component. Rav Belsky got a bit passionate about this. He mentioned Rav Yaakov did as well.

    So while in watching tv or covering hair your system will usually come up on the side of proper observance, it clearly has a failing in assessing thought exercises.

    Though to be fair, systems can’t be made to evaluate ideology. That have to be thought out or they won’t make sense. You need to actually think the Ikkarim for them to have relevance. As a list, it doesn’t have any impact.


    A third point.

    Most of the observant scholars who grew up in yeshiva (or it’s equivalent) and ended up in academia, did not write for the masses. Especially the masses in a yeshiva. The only ones your system “proves” is against Graetz and Weiss. Those two wrote for the masses. And the masses ate it up in their day. Even more than that ridiculous blog in our day that you think I read.

    Point being, the idea that yeshiva guys don’t look at Albek or Sholem doesn’t prove anything. On these topics they don’t look at Hirschler or Margolis either.


    Another point.

    Imagine that we would make a mathematical model of you system. Acceptance by the leaders of the previous generations, their peers, and subsequent generations, would have impact to calculating how mainstream they are. We would see that many names would fluctuate wildly over a short hundred years. So the system doesn’t really mean much.

    It can be used as a handy rule of thumb. But not much more.

    One quick example. Maybe nobody was more accepted as within the pale than Rav Meshulam Igra in his day. But the frictions led to him being left without a clear following already in his lifetime. He soon became all but forgotten. Did you ever try his sefer? Impossible! I don’t know anyone who learns it. And I’ve seen it of the shelf at most five times.


    I think your last paragraph is a response to my last post.

    Though it doesn’t give any answers. Yes, that list and others are not openly common among the masses. But if they would be, it would not be a question on your system. They can be easily added to the historical chain.


    Dear Avira,

    Is that response to my most recent post? Help me figure your point.

    We’ve been down this one a bit. I don’t see why it’s relevant here.

    I’ll answer your post. But it’s more for fun as I don’t see it getting us anywhere.

    I think observance is the only legitimacy. It doesn’t matter which annuity or ideology you grew up with. The more observance, the more legitimacy.

    I don’t think the Gaon or Besht or most others have major priority for the Ikkarim. We had this one out and did not come to bony conclusion. It is evident to me, that most people can’t discuss at any length what the Ikkarim even are. If there was more general awareness about them, I wouldn’t mention my take. Regardless, it is not relevant here.

    I’m not sure what you mean with Lieberman. I’m not an academic or in any school. Maybe you mean that I’m well connected with the yeshiva crowd while not living among them. Okay, but I’m not part of any other crowd. Including…..

    Chabad. Outside of an occasional good beer or clean mikva in rural USA, it’s just some regular learning, stimulating discussions, and looking at a publication here or there. It’s a very open place. Take advantage. They love it.

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