Gog vs. uMagog = Modern orthodoxy vs. Charaidism

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    The Netziv says in his pesicha to sefer bereishis that the 2nd beis hamikdash was destroyed because of people that called people apikorsim and tzidukiim because they did not accept what they said. This is what is happening now. If you’re serious about mashiach coming, stop


    thank you. its about time someone puts their foot down. there must be a really lenient mod on now thats letting this all get through. mod which one are you? its not 80!


    Abelleh – But there were real Tzedukim and Apikorsim in those days too, right? It’s just that judgmental people labelled people who weren’t in those groups as being in those groups. The reason this will not get anywhere is because those labelling others will just say that these are the real Tzedukim an Apikorsim of our generation, and you will have no response to that.


    1. Note that most “Modern Orthodox” (a.k.a. “Religious zionists”) are cousins of the Hareidim, especially the leading rabbanim of each movement.

    2. They learn from the same sefarim.

    3. Compared to the goyim, they dress alike (don’t believe: take the typical American/Israeli shiksa/hiloni and compare her to a Boro Park girl or a modern suburban orthodox girl or even a Williamsburg/Bnei Brak girl). It’s the shiksa/hiloni who stands out.

    4. The underlying ideological differences pertain to events that happened 70+ years ago, and you need to be a historian to understand. In terms of modern issues, there isn’t much difference anymore (there are both Hareidi and modern doves, and a lot more hawks on both sides; they are support Keynesian stimulii with little concern for paying for it; opposition to abortion and support for large families is the rule among both).

    The goyim have a phrase “making a mountain out of a molehill”. The Hareidi/modern differences may be colorful, but they are a molehill. The difference between the Shomer Mitsvos and the Hilonim is the mountain, which is rapidly growing.


    There is a bias on this site…MO bashing seems to get past the MODs no problem.


    Akuperma nails it once again!


    There is a difference between intellectual debates and hatred. Love of fellow man does NOT mean blindly accepting said fellow man’s views, and it does NOT mean abandoning one’s own beliefs.


    akuperma – EXCELLENT post!

    I agree with Jothar also that despite the differences among us being a molehill, the fact that someone points out something wrong in another group’s hashkafa is not equal to sinas chinam.


    Tzedokim were people who believed that the mesorah of Torah sheb’al peh was invalid, and that the Rabbanan have no authority.

    Modern Orthodox?

    I’m Modern Orthodox. I keep the mitzvos, de’oraisa and derabbanan. I keep halacha strictly. I’m not sure what you’re talking about. Unless you think I’m an apikorus, of course. Well, I certainly hope I’m not.

    Now, what is an apikorus? The gemara in Sanhedrin 99b gives the following definition: “Rav and Rabi Chanina both said, ‘He is one who degrades a talmid chacham.'” There are some very big talmidei chachamim, gedolei hador, who would consider themselves Modern Orthodox. So just be careful what you say, especially if you’re calling other people “apikorsim.”


    Not everyone one might consider a gadol is necessary a true gadol.


    The differences between us and the Tzadukim (who some feel ended up as the Karites) are more analagous to the differences between us and the Conservative. Carrying this analogy further, the Mityavanim (Hellenists) are equivalent to the Reform. THe Modern Orthodox equivalent would be the supporters of the rabbanim who also learned enough Latin/Greek to hold jobs for the goyim, while still supporting Torah and staying Shomer Mitsvos. If someone accepts that there is a creator, and he told the Jews to hold by Torah and Mitsvos), and the person keeps Shabbos and Kashrus, etc., he’s one of us – which is why MOdern and Orthodox and Hareidim are “us”, and the Conservatives (who have trouble with the idea that Torah is min ha-shamayim) and the Reform (who have trouble even with the idea of a Creator) are “them”.


    akuperma, you’re a great poster, but the last sentence was unintelligible.


    Jothar: I’m saying we should be more accepting. When Rav and Shmuel had a machlokes, Rav thought Shmuel was wrong and Shmuel though Rav was wrong. Shmuel still respected Rav’s opinion and didn’t call him an apikores. Rav still repsect Shmuel’s opinion and didn’t call him an apikores.

    Now you say, wait a minute… both Rav and Shmuel actually had basis for what they were saying… they weren’t going against the mesora… they knew what they were talking about….

    Well wake up! “Modern Orthodox” people also know what they’re talking about, they are following the mesora, and they also have basis for what they’re saying!!!


    where does Gog u Mogog come into all this?


    abe- except that jb admitted he was wrong, and the president of yu called hareidim cavemen. we’re not. why be so narrow minded?


    Avelleh, it depends on your definition of Modern Orthodoxy. Orthodoxy means accepting Hashem, His Torah and mitzvos, and His rabbonim as supreme. What does “Modern” mean? How does it modify the previous commitment? If it changes it to weaken the commitment, then it is no longer Orthodoxy. if it means using modern technology but the commitment remains the same, then all chassidim are Modern Orthodox.


    Jothar: My point was not to justify charade-ism or Modern Orthodoxy. I’m trying to say that the labels themselves are destroying achdus.


    I am becoming rapidly more convinced on this site that what people refer to as “Modern Orthodox” here are actually just people with certain Halachic positions that others are uncomfortable with.


    For the record, nothing I just wrote should be taken seriously.


    Sam2: Agreed.


    And I am becoming convinced that certain things claimed in the Coffee Room as “halachic positions” are actually untenable from the point of view of Orthodox halacha. But that is neither here nor there.

    Abelleh, a main tenet of modern Western thought is pursuit of truth, intellectual vigor and the open analysis of ideas, not the stifling of ideas because it might offend those who don’t understand the process of questioning and examining. Ahavas chinam means loving each and every Jew as a child of G-d, not accepting beliefs which are in contradistinction to your own. The gemara in Yevamos (13b, iirc) makes it clear that the talmidim of Beis Shammai and Beis Hillel would respect each other’s beliefs, and let them know which of their children would be incompatible based on the others’ beliefs. Let the debates continue.


    Chazon Ish said Mizrachi (Modern Orthodox) Jews are ‘-ve’.

    The purpose of a Jew is to be completely committed to become a Tzaddik Gammur (a perfect Tzaddik) most of us are Benenim (in between), we aim, though, to completely subdue our evil inclination, and reach the highest level although this may be hard, this must be our aim. The 13 Principles of Faith instruct all Jews to reach this level.

    Without commitment to completion, there can be no beginning of a quest (to be a Jew), the philosophy of the Mizrachim where they are satified to be ‘middle of the road’ is wrong.

    This can be illustrated the following story.

    There was a Aguda Cheder in Isreal that needed to fill its quota to get governmental grants, they had to join with another school (Mizrachi). The Menahalim of the Aguda Cheder asked Chazon Ish’s opinion. The Chazon Ish requested to speak to the Mizrachi administration, if they listened to his request, he would agree to let the schools join. He made a deal with the Mizrachim, that if they would agree to hang pictures of Rabbi Yosef Sonnenlfeld and and the Chofetz Chaim and other Gedolim in the Cheder, he would agree to the joining of the schools. The Mizrachim refused.

    Another story once occurred where a Isreal Mizrachi Rabbi came to collect funds for his school, he asked a great Aguda Rabbi to give his Haskamah, the great Rabbi asked, ‘do you want Moshiach to come out of your school’ the Mizrachi Rabbi answered that was a bit of a tall order. The Rabbi replied in that case, I am not giving you the Haskamah, as it says in the Talmud on the verse in Psalm’s and what we say in Shacharis, ‘el tigu b’moshicho’-do not touch my annointed one’s (Moshiach) says the Talmud this refers to Tinokes Shel Beis Rabban (the school Children), if your aim is not to make your Talmidim, Moshiach, then I will not give my Haskamah.

    (From the Chazon Ish Biography)


    I’m not sure what your story proves. Are you saying that not putting up certain pictures shows a “middle-of-the-road Jew” attitude? There is clearly something more going on there.


    Sam2: Yes, that is exactly what he is saying. You are not a good Jew if you do not teach your children to revere images.

    Dr. Seuss

    The Chazon Ish’s point isn’t that hard to understand. The Chazon Ish saw that the Mizrachim had no respect for the Chofetz Chaim and other Gedolim. The pictures were just secondary and used to illustrate that fact, by the Chazon Ish.


    First of all, I do not see anybody (sane) calling MO “apikorsim and tzidukiim”. They may vehemently disagree with certain positions or segments of MO, but I don’t think anybody goes so far as to call it apikursis.

    Second, there is such thing a thing as standing up for what’s right, and that usually requires pointing out what’s wrong. If the president of a certain institution insults and demonizes full-time learners, and if the said institution doesn’t so much as blink an eye at open chillul Shabbos, homosexuality, and kol davur usar, it must be pointed out that such an institution cannot by any stretch of the imagination be called Orthodox, Modern or not. This does not mean that anybody who steps foot into YU is a rasha gamur, but that YU as an institution is not shomer Torah u’mitzvos. And that is a problem. Again, there are many wonderful Bnei Torah and Yirai Shumayim in YU, but that does not take away from the many legitimate taynos against the place.


    “what is an apikorus? The gemara in Sanhedrin 99b gives the following definition: “Rav and Rabi Chanina both said, ‘He is one who degrades a talmid chacham.'” There are some very big talmidei chachamim, gedolei hador, who would consider themselves Modern Orthodox.”

    And there are many universally accepted Gedolei Hador who have said things about MO that, would they have been said by a charedi on this site, would have generated accusations of sinas chinom and, apparently, starting milchemos gog u’magog. R’ Shimon Schwab, R’ Aharon Kotler, and R’ Elchonon Wasserman, to name a few.


    “MO bashing seems to get past the MODs no problem.”

    I have a funny feeling that if you saw all the MO-bashing posts that didn’t get through you’d be singing a different tune.


    “I’m not sure what your story proves.”

    The story proves that the Chazon Ish held that it is absolutely crucial that becoming a Godol, not a baynoni, is held up as the highest ideal. A movement that aims to produce merely “good Jews”, not great Jews, is inherently flawed.

    Dr. Seuss:

    “The Chazon Ish’s point isn’t that hard to understand.”

    …unless you’re trying no to understand it.

    “The Chazon Ish saw that the Mizrachim had no respect for the Chofetz Chaim and other Gedolim.”

    I wouldn’t say that they didn’t respect the Gedolim, only that they did not hold of teaching their students to try to become Gedolim.


    Sam2 is correct in that MO means so many things to so many people that it’s easy to create a straw man and attack it. Joseph, please be clear which definition of MO you are attacking before attacking it. Rav Hershel Shachter is held of by many outside YU circles, as is Rav Adlerstein. They are MO according to some definitions and right-wing by others .


    I’m confused, who is Joseph this time?


    The Breuer community has cautiously applied Torah im Derech Eretz to American life, narrowing its application over time.[13] Rabbi Schwab warned of the dangers of contemporary moral attitudes in secular culture and literature, and emphasized that followers of Neo-Orthodoxy therefore require a strong basis of faith and knowledge, and must exercise caution in engagements with the secular world.

    Rabbi Schwab also frequently emphasized that Torah can never be regarded as parallel with the secular knowledge. “Torah study is the highest duty of the Jew”, and “even to suggest that anything can be parallel to Torah is a blasphemy of the highest order; Torah is above all, and everything else in life must be conducted in accordance with the Written and Oral Torah.” Still, entry into commerce or the professions is seen as a valid component of Torah life, to be facilitated by an appropriate secular education (with the caveat that campus life is “incontestably immoral”). “Carrying on one’s professional life in consonance with the halakha is in itself a practice of Torah.” One must “establish the Torah’s primacy over the modes of business and professional life so that his behavior transforms even that ‘mundane’ portion of his life into a sanctification.”

    The community is positioned ideologically outside of both Modern Orthodoxy and Haredi Judaism (“Ultra-Orthodoxy”). As regards Haredi Judaism, Rabbi Schwab acknowledged that although Neo-Orthodoxy is not the path openly espoused by the majority of today’s Roshei Yeshiva, the “Torah Only” and Torah Im Derech Eretz camps can exist side-by-side. “As long as one is prompted solely by Yiras Shamayim (“fear of Heaven”) and a search for truth, each individual has a choice as to which school he should follow.” Practically, the community is fully engaged with haredi Agudath Yisrael of America, while it shuns the more modern Orthodox Union.

    The movement is somewhat distant from Modern Orthodoxy. Rabbi Schwab regards Modern Orthodoxy as having misinterpreted Hirsch’s ideas: regarding standards of halakha as well as the relative emphasis of Torah versus secular.

    (Torah im Derech Eretz, Wikepedia).


    this is insane. i see here many people quoting gemaras off kileachar hayad, but terrible lashon hara on gedolim. but what i also see is horrible perception of a community they most probably barely touch. modern orthodox(as i see it):complete and utter obedience to halacha while at the same time allowing exposure to western culture which is not against halacha. you do not know the gedolei dor of this community. i dont think these people you speak about are comparable to apikorsim! is it possible you skipped rambam on apikorsim? he speaks of five people, and you might find it surprising-but modern orthodoxy is not in there. all of these narrow minded people who cannot truly examine the beauty of this community- cannot understand it. read some “mizrachi” books! read some tzionut datit! read rav kuk! they are important just as any anti-zionist charedi book- as they are written by gedolim.


    ilthinker- if the gedolim of the previous and current generations came out against the things you demand we read your not going to make much headway.



    “modern orthodox(as i see it):complete and utter obedience to halacha while at the same time allowing exposure to western culture which is not against halacha”

    Perhaps; yet many Gedolim were very against such a concept.

    “i dont think these people you speak about are comparable to apikorsim!”

    Again, whoever said anything about MO being apikursim?!

    “all of these narrow minded people who cannot truly examine the beauty of this community- cannot understand it”

    Hmm… “what i also see is horrible perception of a community this person most probably barely touches”. Rings a bell?

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