Gerim needs a place to learn

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  • #911074

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    MO shuls do not hire conservative Rabbis, they hire them from YU not JTS

    #911075

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    What is an orthodox shul? You are defining them as orthodox first, and then saying that anything they do must be orthodox!

    You should first look at what they do, and if it is orthodox, then define them as orthodox.

    A shul that has no mechitza, is not orthodox. Even if it is Beth HaMedrosh Hagodol-Beth Joseph in Denver and is affiliated with the Orthodox Union. (They recently hired a YCT grad, if that fascinates you).

    A shul that has women davening for the amud, or getting aliyos, or layning–is not orthodox. They may be very nice people–and many of my friends go to such shuls and are very nice and sincere people. But they are not orthodox.

    And a shul that hires one of these guys (or gals) is not orthodox. You can ask your own shaila about if you are allowed to walk inside or daven there; but that won’t make them orthodox.

    #911076

    yytz
    Participant

    Popa, you didn’t answer my question about whether there are Orthodox shuls that have (in the last few years) hired Conservative (JTS) rabbis (thereby becoming Conservative). Are you really aware of that happening? Or maybe you are saying that if an Orthodox shul (a shul that has only had rabbis with Orthodox semicha and has a mechitza and doesn’t have women laining or getting aliyos) hires a YCT grad then they are no longer Orthodox?

    #911077

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Popa, you didn’t answer my question about whether there are Orthodox shuls that have (in the last few years) hired Conservative (JTS) rabbis (thereby becoming Conservative).

    I am not aware of any. The point I was making is that the people who choose rabbis should not be considered by anyone to have any normative authority. As evidence I presented the fact that many jewish congregations hire conservative rabbis. The same way the local Jewish Center baal habatim hire conservative rabbis and it says nothing–when some shul in Boston hires a YCT rabbi it means nothing.

    Or maybe you are saying that if an Orthodox shul (a shul that has only had rabbis with Orthodox semicha and has a mechitza and doesn’t have women laining or getting aliyos) hires a YCT grad then they are no longer Orthodox?

    I am saying that.

    #911078

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    How many YCT grads have gotten real pulpits (And I dont mean a shul with 30 familes), as opposed to YU grads

    #911079

    rebdoniel
    Member

    YU placed 50% of its musmachim in mixed seating pulpits and HTC/Skokie placed as many as 90% in such pulpits, according to research done by Professor Jonathan Sarna.

    Mechitza doesn’t even have any firm textual requirements, and people will make a big hullabaloo over this, while not batting an eyelash while many carry in string eruvin that also violate the Gemara and Rambam’s understanding of carrying.

    (Rambam and the Shulchan Aruch mention nothing about mechitza).

    #911080

    rebdoniel
    Member

    And the shul in Denver you reference, with mixed seating, apparently IS Orthodox enough to belong to the ORTHODOX union.

    #911081

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Mechitza doesn’t even have any firm textual requirements, and people will make a big hullabaloo over this, while not batting an eyelash while many carry in string eruvin that also violate the Gemara and Rambam’s understanding of carrying.

    Thank you for clarifying where you stand. For a proper discussion, the most necessary factor (besides for willing participants) is honesty. I appreciate your honesty. You are a good person, even if we disagree.

    And, if you think mechitza is not necessary, you are not orthodox.

    #911082

    yytz
    Participant

    Zahava’sDad: Look at YCT’s website, and click on Alumni. You’ll see that a lot of them are rabbis at Orthodox shuls. I can’t tell how big the shuls are, though (though I don’t know why that matters). YCT seems unique in that it charges no tuition — are there other semicha-granting yeshivas like that?

    RebDoniel: The study you mentioned is from the 50s. I don’t think any YU grads are taking jobs at mixed-seating shuls now. I don’t think there are more than a small handful of self-described Orthodox shuls with mixed seating nowadays. That was a temporary mid-20th century trend — maybe it had something to do with the meteoric rise of the Conservative movement around that time?

    #911084

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    I dont get why the synagogue is affiliated with the OU, The only thing I can figure is they were grandfathered in for some reason and they are unwilling to boot them and nobody else can do the same

    #911085

    nem621
    Member

    going back to the OP since the conversation now has nothing to do with that.

    i read at some point someone mentioned that you should rush to convert so that you get zchar for your learning instead of learning and then convert. although i am probably one of the least knowledgeable people in this website i disagree with that. i think that weather or not you get more zchar that is a different discussion but you should really try to learn and make sure this is something you want to do because once you are jewish there is no coming back. as a gentile you can keep the noachide laws and be ok but as a jew you have to keep all commandments that aply

    #911086

    yytz
    Participant

    One thing to keep in mind, regarding the discussion of YCT and mechitzas and what counts as Orthodox, is that YCT requires that its students studying for semicha belong to an Orthodox shul with a mechitza.

    #911087

    I heard that it was forbidden for a goy to study Torah and goyyim should be encouraged to get jobs not to study Torah which belongs to Jews only.

    #911088

    abc12345
    Participant

    wow! sorry for the late reply. i didnt get a msg notification; on my own i decided to check my post. i will try to answer a few questions here.

    @CharlesShort, you are correct about most yeshivot, however i was referring to more baal tshuva yt such as Shor Yoshov. I am a male, and the rest of your questions are quite private, well at least about my reasons for wanting to convert. It may seem like a simple question but in fact its the most private question you can ask a prospective gerim. i dont have a problem telling people my reasons once we know each other.

    @rebdoniel I have been learning on my own and making great progress. but i feel that i need more intensity. there is a rabbi in my corner (flatbush), and i am all set with the bet din. i am only looking to learn.

    @amichai thank you

    @theChassidisheGatesheader Yes i do know! the rav you speak of in Yerushalayim, this is what I am looking for. A place to learn, but not necessarily a big yeshiva. i am actually quite far in the gerim process. i am shomer mitzvot. i have a strong desire to advance my torah and talmud learning, but i want to do it in Yisroel. if this is something the rav you speak of might be able to help me with, yes please lets be in touch.

    @yytz I will look into rav Lazer Brody thank you

    @nem621 thank you for the reply, however i am way past the point of wondering if this is something i want to do. this is the life i want, to be a jew and raise a jewish family.

    #911089

    nem621
    Member

    i understand, my comment was more of a reply to someone who said something that sounded like someone who wants to convert should convert and then learn i was just saying that it is an important decision that need consideration

    #911090

    abc12345
    Participant

    @nem621 ok thanks. can you explain exactly what ‘zchar’ means

    #911092

    nem621
    Member

    reward

    #911093

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    One thing to keep in mind, regarding the discussion of YCT and mechitzas and what counts as Orthodox, is that YCT requires that its students studying for semicha belong to an Orthodox shul with a mechitza.

    Their making such a rule should tell you something about their students.

    I can assure you that in Lakewood they don’t have a rule like that. Keeping the Torah is assumed; it is the whole point.

    #911094

    just my hapence
    Participant

    This whole discussion of ‘Orthodox’ and ‘Non-Orthodox’ shuls reeks of the ‘no true Scotsman’ fallacy from both sides…

    abcd12345 – hatzlacha rabba! I applaud you and your bravery. Completely changing your entire life in such a radical way is something I cannot even imagine.

    #911095

    rebdoniel
    Member

    PBA:

    Professor Jonathan Sarna authored that historical study very recently. It is based on what Orthodox institutional practices were at the time.

    Granted, times have changed, but we also cannot be revisionists. And, prior to R’ Moshe Feinstein and Rav Soloveitchik, who were very homiletic and polemical in their respective arguments on the issue of mehitza due to the height of Orthodox//Conservative competition in the 1950s (at that time, there was still little which divided the 2, since many American Orthodox Jews were exceptionally lenient then, and many ignored certain halakhot, and the Conservative movement then was rather frum), there was no mention of mechitza being a requirement, let alone something d’oraita, in any literature of the rishonim or acharonim.

    In fact, the Igros Moshe’s argument derives the fact that mechitza is a chiyuv from Divrei haYamim, which violates a klal psak- we don’t derive halakha from sifrei Nach. Karaites do that, whereas Chagigah 10b tells us that this is not how we deduce halakha.

    Furthermore, he says that the “tikkun” made on the day of simchas beis hashoevah (Sukkah 52) is the source for mechitza, as a mechitza was somehow made based on an obscure pasuk in Divrei HaYamim.

    One does not derive Torah law from a Biblical book that is post-Torah, and the Chronicles were among the last books of Hebrew Scripture to have been written, by all accounts. Second, the idiom tiqqun, enactment, is a human made law that by definition cannot be a Scriptural obligation.

    R’ Soloveitchik also claimed mechitza was d’oraita, citing Devarim 23:15. However, there are two problems with this approach. Rabbis living after the Talmud, however great they may be in wisdom and learning, do not possess the authority to derive new Biblical laws out of Biblical texts. Such claims require not only their formulation, but the review and endorsement of the Supreme Court of Israel, the Sanhedrin. This juridic power has sadly lapsed in our day. Since the Talmud does not explicitly make the claim that mixed seating violates Biblical law, the claim that it does is, at best, hyperbolic

    It would have made more sense halakhically and textually to claim that mechitza is needed due to the prohibition against saying Shema near an erva. Yet, he allowed mixed torah learning at Maimonides School in Brookline! Like tefillah, torah study may not be done in the presence of either nakedness or excrement. And since classroom furniture is more separate than synagogue pews, there is greater danger of visual impropriety in the classroom than in the sanctuary.

    Furthermore, Tosafot and the Mordechai say that a mechitza can be erected on Shabbat for the sake of conventional modesty; yet in Eruvin 94, it is being erected purely because Shmuel wants his privacy.

    [Mishnah Eduyyos 2:2]

    #911096

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    PBA:

    Professor Jonathan Sarna authored that historical study very recently. It is based on what Orthodox institutional practices were at the time….

    Yes, I was hoping you’d go there. And now we can see truly that you are following a different religion.

    #911097

    rebdoniel
    Member

    YCT grads don’t get many senior rabbi positions at all. They mostly go into Hillel, hinukh at Pluralistic or community day schools, nonprofit work, chaplaincy, counseling, etc.

    #911098

    rebdoniel
    Member

    If I wanted to get shtellers, I’d go to RIETS. I’d like to get private semicha eventually as a personal accomplishment, not a means of parnassa.

    #911099

    EY Yid
    Member

    I am a gair tzedek. We, gairim, have a chabura of gairim. We are all in well respected chasidisher kehilas.

    There are a number of places to learn here in EY. The obvious ones are or samayach and Aish. But there are others. I could help you get in touch with them.

    #911100

    rebdoniel
    Member

    PBA,

    Why don’t you deal with the substantial arguments I make?

    #911101

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Because they are not relevant to the discussion we are having.

    The only point I am trying to make is that we are not practicing the same religion, and that I am mystified why some of you think we are.

    Each argument you make goes further to proving my point. So keep right on rolling.

    #911102

    yytz
    Participant

    Reb Doniel, it really doesn’t matter whether it is a Torah mitzvah, Rabbinic mitzvah, or minhag. A universally observed minhag is binding. There is only one, maybe two self-described Orthodox shuls without a mechitza (one of them recently switched affiliation to Conservative). So it’s universal. Not a single major posek has approved mixed-seating. It’s just part of what it means be Orthodox today (like wearing a kippah — which according to some authorities, like the Gra, is “just” minhag).

    #911103

    rebdoniel
    Member

    You know that what I said about mechitza is perfectly logical.

    Is logic and the use of facts against your weltanschauung?

    #911104

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    This whole discussion of ‘Orthodox’ and ‘Non-Orthodox’ shuls reeks of the ‘no true Scotsman’ fallacy from both sides…

    Hmmm.

    You defy logic. Any normative assessment will violate your “no true scotsman” rule. If I say that if a shul has a cross in it, it is not orthodox, you will also say that is a self fulfilling argument.

    And of course it is self fulfilling; that is what I am trying to do. I am trying to make a normative statement and define orthodoxy. And my definition will decide what is orthodox, not the other way around.

    If “true scotsmen” were defined by a set of behaviors and beliefs, we could do the same thing with them.

    #911105

    rebdoniel
    Member

    Yes, mechitza is binding, because it is a minhag nitpashet, just like kippah.

    Yet nobody would claim kippah is a d’oraita (except the Shach who classifies it as part of lo selechu), and the Gra says there’s no hiyuv at all in kippah.

    When it is claimed that a minhag hanitpashet is a d’oraita, that is highly troubling and disturbing to me. Although this radical thinking was probably undertaken as an eis la’asos since it seems uncharacteristic of Reb Moshe’s thinking in general

    #911106

    just my hapence
    Participant

    It falls foul of the no true scotsman fallacy because it starts with an idea and creates the definition around it, rather than starting with a definition and seeing if the idea fits. As I explained on another thread, if you have an absolute this creates a category, anything that violates the absolute cannot be part of the category. An orthodox shul is, by absolute definition, a place of worship according the religious beliefs of orthodox jewry. As a cross is, by absolute definition, a violation of said (it being the symbol of a religion whose beliefs are contrary to orthodox judaism), any place of worship with one in cannot be an orthodox shul. If a halachic case can be made for no mechitza this would mean that no mechitza is not a violation of the orthodox category (as it complies with the absolute, I.e. conforming to halacha). To start with the idea that mechitza creates the definition therefore falls foul of the ‘no true scotsman’ fallacy. A normative definition has to have a basis, it cannot be arbitrary. You are being arbitrary in your definition. Why should a mechitza define an orthodox shul any more than a bima?

    #911107

    just my hapence
    Participant

    Please understand that I do not hold that a shul does not require a mechitza, I don’t have the requisite halachic knowledge to even attempt to make such a claim. All I’m trying to say is that you’re approaching the issue in the wrong way. You should be making your point halachically rather than dogmatically. What is true is that at least here in England any shul that professes some form of orthodoxy has some form of mechitza, so perhaps orthodox shuls have taken mechitzos to be an identifier for themselves. Again, as I say, at least here in England. I have no idea of the situation in the USA.

    #911108

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Why should a mechitza define an orthodox shul any more than a bima?

    I think this was the only sentence that may have made sense. And it makes no sense.

    A bima does also define an Orthodox shul. If a shul has a bima in the front of the congregation, it is not an Orthodox shul.

    #911109

    rebdoniel
    Member

    PBA,

    Regarding the bimah, there are quite a few Sephardi poskim who would disagree with that.

    Synagogue architecture was polemicized in the wake of Reform by those who claimed hadash assur min hatorah, to which I’d reply, ein chiddush gadol mi zeh.

    #911110

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Synagogue architecture was polemicized in the wake of Reform by those who claimed hadash assur min hatorah, to which I’d reply, ein chiddush gadol mi zeh.

    Do you care to mention who you are talking about? The chasam sofer?

    I think we’ve had quite enough of your heresy. Isn’t there some rule about that?

    #911111

    rebdoniel
    Member

    What are you going to do? Burn me at the stake, Popa Bar Torquemada?

    #911113

    aurora77
    Participant

    Hello abcd12345,

    I wanted to congratulate you on your motivation, persistence, and bravery in your conversion process! I admire you greatly for these qualities and am working on the bravery part myself in this process. I wish you the best of luck in all your endeavors!

    #911115

    just my hapence
    Participant

    PBA – Care to explain what you couldn’t follow with my explanation of the no true scotsman fallacy? Just saying “you don’t make sense” really isn’t going to cut the mustard.

    I know you are capable of reasonable and logical halachic discussion, I had a very informative one with you on another thread (thanks for that, btw), so why can’t you do the same with rebdoniel here instead of just crying apikores?

    #911116

    just my hapence
    Participant

    abcd12345 – Sorry your thread has been somewhat hijacked…

    #911117

    abc12345
    Participant

    somewhat hijacked? lol

    #911118

    abc12345
    Participant

    @aurora77 thank you very much!

    #911119

    rebdoniel
    Member

    abc,

    Welcome to the am.

    Two Jews, three opinions.

    We like to argue for the sake of heaven, le shem shamayim.

    #911120

    a mirrer
    Participant

    just a reminder the gemara says kashe geirim lyisrael ksapachas

    #911121

    rebdoniel
    Member

    Yes, because they outdo born Jews in the performance of mitzvot.

    #911122

    just my happence: I don’t think this is that fallacy. The definition of orthodox in this case is that someone (or a shul) follows the views of competent orthodox Rabbis, not specifically halacha. In this case the argument is whether certain Rabbis fall into the category of “competent”.

    I don’t know who Avi Weiss is but my opinion is that if zahavasdad says an individual who isn’t Chareidi isn’t a Talmid Chacham then I’m comfortable believing that to be true.

    #911123

    popa_bar_abba
    Participant

    Yes, because they outdo born Jews in the performance of mitzvot.

    Oh you’re outdoing us all right. Remind us again of the mitzva to be mevazeh the chasam sofer, and the rema, etc.

    #911124

    dovid_yehuda
    Participant

    From opening post:

    “I am going through the conversion process and would like a more intense learning for maybe 3 or 6 months preferably in Eretz Yisroel. I have applied to the Ohr’S, however I have little money and would like more options if I am not accepted on a scholarship.”

    #911125

    ZeesKite
    Participant

    .. and sometimes they bring in their “deyos”. They think the little they’ve learned, heard is authoritative. Some have a need to make a mark..

    #911126

    katzleib
    Participant

    look up rabbi kuperwasser in har nof. his program is a bit more advanced but he doesn’t charge to learn by him.

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