Do you have a TV at home

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  • #722569
    ElleVa
    Member

    This is my first post… hi! 🙂 I’ve been reading the forums for a while but I never have much to say… until now. I found this post and realized I actually have something to add to it… so here I am.

    Firstly, to say this is “just a simple question” is ridiculous! Of course this isn’t just a question! a simple question is “do you prefer coffee or tea?” …NOT “do you own something that is very controversial in the frum community, or not?” There is NOTHING simple about that question. Let’s stop trying to hide behind that facade and call it what it is. It’s a personal question that can (and likely will) be used against a person at any given time in the future by people who answer opposing to you. Why else would anyone ask!?

    I’m not sure how to copy quotes here so I’ll do the best I can…

    It was said here that TV is worse than internet b/c TV can’t be filtered.

    Is this 1984?!? Of course is can be filtered! It’s not rocket science and much simpler than computer filters (and much more reliable!) so throw that notion out because it no longer applies.

    secondarily consider this – most people with umm… shall we say “problems” don’t have TV-problems, they have INTERNET problems. That stuff is FREE on the internet, not on TV. enough said.

    weather girls entice you with their immodesty? Well find a channel with a dorky weather guy dressed from head to toe in a old suit like I did 🙂 you’ll have no problems keeping your mind on the weather! Or… don’t watch it. nobody is making you have to watch anything you don’t want to. The TV does have an off button you know. It doesn’t turn on unless YOU push the button. take responsibility! don’t blame the gun for shooting you.

    Consider another problem – there is FAR more available for FREE on the internet than by TV. You can find any show, program or movie out there by googling it. Not to mention all the trashy ads on even respectable websites. And no matter what TV you watch, there will be commercials, even on kids programming, that you shouldn’t be watching.

    what concerns me the very most on this thread is that it seems people have an idea that they are “safe” from the world’s trash by not having TV or simply having an internet filter. that is a delusional ideal that can get people into big trouble. the truth is, trash will often find you. You must be proactive against it… not just assuming so long as you don’t look for it that you will be safe. Putting up fences is great, but you also need to keep your eyes peeled for people jumping over their fences… b/c they will.

    Having a TV and internet is a big responsibility. some people like to avoid the work that goes into that responsibility all together, and some don’t mind putting in the work. There have been times where i got rid of TV b/c it served me no good purpose, and times when I brought it in again b/c I found it useful (like when I had a colicky baby that kept me up all night for months and I was very happy to not just have to stare at the wall all night long!) And perhaps if i was born into a religious household like some of you all were, I wouldn’t understand the depths of this concern, but because I was raised “secular” for a long time in my life I see just how serious a problem this can be. I’m astonished with how naive people are here thinking they are safe from the world simply b/c of a filter! wake up!!

    Have a TV, dont have a TV…. but whatever you don’t ever fall into the trap that you’re safe just because you have internet filters or don’t own a TV. that’s just asking for trouble.

    #722570
    mamashtakah
    Member

    We own a TV.

    I actually watch much less here than I did in the states. On Sunday nights in season, I watch football. During the rest of the year, I may watch a show here or there, but that’s about it. Occasionally, I’ll watch the news if something really important is happening.

    We also have unfiltered internet.

    And, we have a dog.

    And, we have a child in Tzahal.

    That about sets the record straignt.

    #722571
    aries2756
    Participant

    “The Gedolim — across the board — have been disparaging TV ownership (the principle not the people in violation necessarily) and viewing for many decades now”

    Well TMB, here is some news for you! Gedolim across the board have assured the INTERNET filtered or not, so what gives the holier than thous the right to judge others and pick and choose when they are going to listen to the Gedolim and Daas Torah and when THEY choose not to and turn around and judge others for what they deem as not being on THEIR madreigah. That’s the pot calling the kettle black, Hypocrisy with a capital “H”!

    #722572

    Wrong again aries. Read the kol koreh. It specifically says to use fiters. The TV kol koreh says assur lchol hadeios.

    #722573
    TheGoq
    Participant

    “This is my first post… hi! :)”

    welcome elleva!

    #722574
    klach
    Member

    There is no blanket assur on the internet that is 100%. Most Gedolim agree that sometimes it is necessary, just in those cases you must have adequate shmirah etc. And if you noticed, many yeshivas have internet in their offices for administrative use.

    #722576
    klach
    Member

    on what grounds can any religous person defend possession of a TV?

    Ramchal says in Mesillas Yesharim that anything that leads to an issur is assur under that same issur, and it’s galuy v’yadua what a TV can lead to. . .

    #722577
    Sam l Am
    Member

    One of the gedolim said watching TV is a guaranteed ticket to gehenim.

    #722578
    aries2756
    Participant

    I would like to see some form of heter that any godol agreed to “allow” internet with a filter! Whether or not “some” yeshivas have internet in their offices for business purposes or not, does not prove that Gedolim or Daas Torah have changed their minds on the subject! Adarabah, you are using such an excuse to justify your OWN use of being on blogs.

    #722579

    Here is one of many examples:

    Belzer Rebbe Shlita: Kosher Internet for Those Online

    http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/article.php?p=19497

    #722580

    As far as television, about 40 of the leading Gedolei Yisroel wrote:

    “It is incumbent upon every man and woman, every family and circle of friends, to purge television-viewing from their homes”

    http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/television-a-cry-of-anguish-and-appeal-to-our-jewish-brethren

    #722581
    aries2756
    Participant

    TMB, you just proved my point again. What does being on this blog have to do with making a livelihood?

    EDITED

    #722582
    klach
    Member

    the only point that i am proving from yeshivas’ use of internet is that there are some situations when it is obviously mutar to use, not what those situations are and not to any individual.

    #722583
    klach
    Member

    and some of these yeshivos are run by acknowledged Gedolei Torah, so yes they absolutely signed off on it.

    #722584
    aries2756
    Participant

    Just as ANYONE can choose when and how to use the INTERNET even though the INTERNET is only MATERED by the Gedolim for business use and yet we see many VERY FRUM people on blogs and other areas on the INTERNET because they use their common sense and “bechirah”. So too do others use their common sense and bechirah when they make use of TV even though there are many various programs on TV as there are many various areas on the INTERNET.

    So after many days of discussion we come to the conclusion here that it doesn’t really matter whether you have a TV or not, what does matter is your connection to Hashem, your devotion to the Torah, your emunah and bitachon, your conviction to halacha, mitzvos and maasim tovim!

    One cannot and should not judge their fellow Jews especially not by questions such as the original posted.

    #722585
    myfriend
    Member

    This is a verbatim quote from one of the Gedolei Yisroel. Audio available at a Torah Tapes library near you:

    “No question, anybody who has a TV in his house should know beforehand that his life is wasted. He has no chelek L’Olam Haboa. No question at all about it.”

    #722586
    Homeowner
    Member

    If the internet is muttar for business, why isn’t TV (specifically certain channels with no commercials) equally muttar? What’s wrong with CSPAN, for example? Or how about The New York City Council channel?

    #722587

    CSPAN (Congress) and the NYC Council channel show female congresswomen and representatives that aren’t dressed tznius (pants and shirt sleeve shirts.)

    #722588
    smartcookie
    Member

    Myfriend- please tell us WHICH godel said that? Name please?

    #722589
    myfriend
    Member

    The one I quoted was Hagoan HaRav Miller ztvk”l. But at the Torah Tapes library, you can get quotes from any number of Gedolim.

    #722590
    klach
    Member

    aries – a prominent rosh yeshiva said that it is a good idea to let kids watch kosher videos as opposed to disallowing all forms of TV viewing altogether because if they don’t experience TV viewing at all, there will be a very strong desire to do so, and it won’t manifest towards kosher stuff, nor is it guaranteed that they will find a kosher way to do so even if they wanted to, because people have a strong desire to do things they don’t often get to do or thngs they haven’t done to “taste” it. There is an inyan to “feed” the yetzer hara a little because that diminishes the desire of whatever the yetzer hara is pushing for.

    So by the internet, sometimes it’s better that people have a kosher way to use the internet than ultimately use it in a non-kosher way. This in no way is saying that people should use the internet, just that for some people, not using it at all will build a super strong desire to do so, which is unhealthy etc.

    #722591
    Homeowner
    Member

    TMB, for someone who claims not to watch television, you sure seem to know (actually not know) a great deal about how some people are dressed, first the “weather girls” and now about the members of Congress and the City Council.

    Who is the rav who says looking a congresswoman in a pants suit speaking at a congressional hearing on video is assur? And if it is assur for you, is it assur for someone else who needs to watch it for parnassa?

    #722592

    no TV. Ch’v

    #722594
    mw13
    Participant

    I do not own a TV, and I never plan to. Just watching people sit and watch those things for hours and hours every day, with little to no physical and mental activity, was enough to scare me away.

    aries:

    “One cannot and should not judge their fellow Jews especially not by questions such as the original posted.”

    Who said anything about judging people by whether or not they have a TV?

    Taking this one step further, why isn’t assuming that people are judging others jumping to conclusions and judging itself?

    #722595
    oomis
    Participant

    MW13, no, because you know full well that YOU are judging. Otherwise,t here was absolutwely no reason for anyone to ask if any of us has a TV set? What difference does it make? (You know what difference it makes to you, so don’t be so coy).

    #722596
    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    For many years I never owned a TV. However, I bought a small set for use on infrequent occasions. Aside from a major sporting event that I might let my kids watch, I like to watch election debates, election returns and other important things that may come up. For instance, during the current storm, it is very helpful to see the weather news, and what is operating, and what is not.

    For those who dislike modern technology, and that includes radio and internet, as well, how do you in fact get your news? I doubt YWN has reporters all over the tri-state area monitoring the trains and airports at this hour.

    In addition, in any type of emergency, there could well be important info on TV, like where to evacuate, chas vshalom, etc.

    I do not advocate watching entertainment shows, or subscribing to all kinds of premium services. I am talking a simple small set with broadcast channels only, like your grandmother has. It seems that it is a very good idea to have one that works for the rare occasion you may need it. It is said Reb Yaakov went to a neighbor to watch the moon-landing.

    I have not read this thread, so I apologize if I duplicated any points made by others.

    #722597
    ItcheSrulik
    Member

    You haven’t. You have one of the few sensible and original replies other than the yes-no ones.

    #722598
    mw13
    Participant

    Pashuteh Yid

    “I doubt YWN has reporters all over the tri-state area monitoring the trains and airports at this hour.”

    True. weather.com, however, does.

    “In addition, in any type of emergency, there could well be important info on TV, like where to evacuate, chas vshalom, etc.”

    That is also on weather.com. And not only weather alerts, but all alerts. Actually, I once saw an alert for a kidnapper on the lose at a certain zip code.

    #722599
    aries2756
    Participant

    Klach, I don’t really care whether you watch, own, use the internet or not. It is NOT my business what someone else does or does not do. My point however is, those who keep spouting and judging those who watch TV, and quoting Gedolim who have assered it are hypocritical since the Gedolim have also assured the Internet except for making parnasah and here you all are on an internet blog that has nothing to do with parnasah and on who knows where else (which again I personally don’t care because It is NOT my business) filtered or not, which has nothing to do with parnasah. That is the pot calling the kettle black.

    #722600
    klach
    Member

    you can always have the news from radio, or internet (gasp!) if you already have it. But it’s not worth bringing a TV into your home just for the news. And besides, once the tv is already in the house, it’s easier to then get more programming. Just give yourself enough time and you’ll rationalize it away easily.

    #722601
    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    MW13 and Klach, you both seem to ignore my point that internet is just as bad, (if not far worse) than TV. So what is the mayleh of forbidding TV if you have to get your news from internet?

    #722602
    shev143
    Member

    Yes, I’m proud to say we have a TV at home but it’s only to watch the commercials, (we like to see the sales etc.)

    #722603
    mw13
    Participant

    PY:

    If the internet is filtered, it is not dangerous at all. And the internet does not have quite the same spend-countless-hours-blankly-staring-at-the-screen effect that TV does. On the internet things tend to be written and/or read rather than just watched, which automatically ups both the level of intellectualism and the level of the user’s participation.

    #722604
    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    Shev, that is ironic, because even though I let my kids occasionally watch a major sporting event, they know that we shut off the set during all commercials. They are often far worse than any shows.

    #722605
    Aishes Chayil
    Participant

    I posted something yesterday and for some reason it didnt go through.

    Perhaps I didnt word it well.

    Why can’t people accept that those who were brought up with a TV, are not more at risk to go off that those who were overly sheltered.

    Many times, pressure will lead to a desparate struggle to find out whats going on in the outside world, and with devastating results.

    Whereas, when there is a bit (not much but a bit) more freedom, young people dont feel so curious.

    #722606

    AC: It isn’t a matter of necessarily “not more at risk to go off”. Television viewing is an aveira gomur in of itself. Many of the reasons were previously mentioned on this very thread.

    #722607
    aries2756
    Participant

    Those who have internet and not TV will fight to the bitter end to justify their use of the internet even though they know that Daas Torah is just as against the use of the internet as they are against TV. The only heter that is given is for its use in making a parnasah. There is just as much shmutz and more on the internet as is on TV if you want to find it and you can be just as surprised on the internet as you can be on commercials. You can waste just as much time on the internet, excuse me, more time on the internet than TV with games, shopping, blogs, gambling, chats, TV shows and movies etc. There is much more to do in cyberspace than the idiot box brings into your home.

    And although they will continue to yell “but OUR internet is filtered, you can still stay on it day and night as your posts reveal. OUR TV is also filtered. It is called, our common sense, which allows us to use bechira, the channel switch dial and an amazing invention called the on and off button.

    #722608

    I know of several children that went off the derech and their parents had no TV. TV is not the issue per say, it’s making sure there is a proper flow of communication between parents and kids. Sometime too many restrictions can backfire as well…

    #722609
    oomis
    Participant

    Shev, commercials can be disgusting. If you are watching tv for the commercials, you may as well get rid of your tv.

    #722610
    SJSinNYC
    Member

    My Rav says watching TV is not an aveira. He says its muttar, provided you are watching proper programming.

    But apparently, if TMB watches, it is an aveira, so he should refrain from even the weather channel.

    #722611
    Aishes Chayil
    Participant

    SJS,

    I think what TMB wanted to say was that sometimes watching TV can LEAD to aveiros. Not that it is directly an aveiroh.

    #722612

    oomis1105

    Member

    Shev, commercials can be disgusting. If you are watching tv for the commercials, you may as well get rid of your tv.

    POSTED 28 MINUTES AGO #

    oomis, if you can admit “commercials can be disgusting”, how can you ever watch TV, considering the commercials you admit are disgusting?

    #722613
    Homeowner
    Member

    Aishes Chayil, please re-read TMB’s statement:

    Television viewing is an aveira gomur in of itself.

    Despite the grammar, it’s clear what he believes.

    #722614

    TV, like the internet and books is what you make of them. They can be used for both good and bad. Banning things outright, is never a great idea…

    #722616

    Automatic machine guns can also be used for good. Every TV owner should have one next to every TV. The Dining Room is a good place for both.

    If you think they are dangerous, the TV is more dangerous.

    #722617
    Aishes Chayil
    Participant

    TMB,

    Thats a very bad analogy. Your making a sweeping generalization by insinuating that TV has absolutly nothing positive to offer. Thats ridiculous.

    If you control the situation properly, at worst, its a time waster!

    #722618

    Trying my best, I like TV, my Kids and wife like it to. are we all doomed?

    #722619
    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    TMB, in my house it is in the closet, and everybody knows it is only for special use, and one must ask before shlepping it out and setting it up with the antenna.

    The fact is that in any emergency, a live person on TV will have more up to date info then a web news site. It takes time to type out an article and format a page with correct fonts, and upload it, etc. It is not the same thing as a reporter talking to an expert, live, in real time, which is virtually instantaneous. Many times a web site will copy from another site, etc.

    There is also nothing wrong with educating one’s kids to listen to a State of the Union address and see the gov’t in action. One learns respect for the country and its system of government. Whether or not one likes Obama is irrelevant here.

    The fact that the RBSH allowed this technology to be created, and the tremendous chochma that the engineers and scientists developed during the past 60 years to make this feat possible of transmitting pictures and sounds thousands of miles means it is worth something. Kol mah shebara HKBH b’olamo lo bara davar echad lbatalah. There is a similar mishna in Avos something like ein lcha davar sh’ein lo shaah.

    It is an amazing technology, and it has its purposes. Like anything else, it can be used for good or for bad. Same with books.

    #722620
    #722621
    Pashuteh Yid
    Member

    Is Reb Yaakov going to go to gehenom because he watched the moon-landing? Will the Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation go to gehenom because they show videos on Tisha B’av. It is not television per se that is the problem, but the culture that one may absorb if one is not careful. Same with walking down the streets of NYC. I do not recommend watching bimbo shows, or say that relaxing in front of a TV every night for 5 hours is proper. However, to deny that there are very valuable educational uses for a TV every so often, or even to give a child a treat for getting good marks, and let him watch a world series or super bowl (without commercials) is also incorrect in my eyes. Not all of us follow the hashkafa that everything in the outside world is treif.

    Many of the Rabbonim cited in that list hold that all college (or even high school in EY) is assur and that the Medinah is treif, etc. It is a particular hashkafa that works for some people, and many of those in the list are the proponents of it. But there are many Rabbonim who feel otherwise, and do not hold that everything in the outside world is bad, rather, there are positive things that the non-Jewish or non-religious world has accomplished that we can benefit from.

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