July 14, 2023 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm #2208277amiricanyeshivishParticipant
Just heard lately that the whole Golem thing is a fabrication of someone Reb Yudel Rosenberg from Montreal about 100 years ago.
Is this true and verified? Is there really no mention of the Golem of Prague before that time?
I feel like my childhood had been robbed!! I might need years of therapy for this.July 14, 2023 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm #2208409
R Rosenberg did not invent it rather popularized it. There are plenty of mentions before him but not far back enough to believe it took place. Read Sid Leimans article on it.July 14, 2023 3:13 pm at 3:13 pm #2208430Sam KleinParticipant
Biden is a serious golem. Everything he does is just talking out of the teleprompter and being an actor but he doesn’t really do anything. That’s what you call a golem versus a true human beingJuly 14, 2023 4:07 pm at 4:07 pm #2208434July 14, 2023 5:38 pm at 5:38 pm #2208441
>>>Just heard lately that the whole Golem thing is a fabrication of someone Reb Yudel Rosenberg from Montreal about 100 years ago.
Whether the golem is real or not isn’t something I’ll argue about but it certainly wasn’t made up 100 years ago in Montrea, Canada. Marcus Lehman who wrote his books about two hundred years ago in Germany makes a reference to it. Rav Yaakov Kamentsky who was a child over 120 years ago told someone I know that when he was a child everyone had heard of the Maharals’s golem. I asked my grandfather who grew up in the same period around a 100 miles away from RYK (a very far distance considering the limited communication) and he also said that in his place too everyone had heard of itJuly 14, 2023 7:00 pm at 7:00 pm #2208445commonsaychelParticipant
I’v joined cr couple of months ago. In beginning it was exciting. But recently came to see everything is just rehashed again and again. The anti zionists, the pro Trumps, the pro establishment (not many) and the anti establishment. The more Yeshivesh than thou and the “I take pride in bashing the Yeshivesh/chasidesh/MO/Rabbanim/The ones who bash Rabbanim”.
Nothing new and not much which is thought provoking.
You forgot to mention the ‘CR posters are repetitive and boring’ bashingJuly 15, 2023 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm #2208453jdbParticipant
Yes, this is an older story. And no, there is no reputable source for it.July 15, 2023 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm #2208528
>>>Just heard lately that the whole Golem thing is a fabrication of someone Reb Yudel Rosenberg from Montreal about 100 years ago.
As other posters have mentioned, discussions about the golem are recorded much before 100 years ago.
Don’t worry, you can still trust your childhood.
The Rebbe Rayatz traveled to Prague with his father (the Rashab – definitely over 100 years ago), and he went up to the attic to see the remains of the golem.
This is the Rebbe’s response to a kuntres that doubted the truth of the Golem (due to the lack of credibility of Yudel Rosenberg):
בנוגע לס’ נפלאות המהר”ל והאגרות וכו’ שמזכיר – לא עיינתי בהם ובמילא איני מחוו”ד בזה כלל.
ובנוגע לעיקר הענין (שהמהר”ל עשה את הגולם) – בעצמי שמעתי מכ”ק מו”ח אדמו”ר שראה הנשאר ממנו – בעליית ביהכנ”ס דמהר”ל בפראג. ודיבר עד”ז עם אביו כ”ק אדנ”ע וכו’.
הקושיות שבהמצו”ב על הס’ הנ”ל – אין נוגעות כלל בהעיקר, כי מכו”כ עשירויות שנים לפני ההו”ל של הס’ הנ”ל הי’ מפורסם בתוך בנ”י שהמהר”ל עשה גולם, ואפילו – אצל הא”י, ועיין בהס’ בהספריות (כמצויין באנצקלפדיות)July 16, 2023 9:55 am at 9:55 am #2208554☕️coffee addictParticipant
“You forgot to mention the ‘CR posters are repetitive and boring’ bashing“
And what about one mention of trolls!?!
Nothing?!?July 16, 2023 9:57 am at 9:57 am #2208557amiricanyeshivishParticipant
Thank you everyone for your info
Sorry for boring you. It wasn’t my intention.July 16, 2023 9:58 am at 9:58 am #2208560
Regarding the story from the Riyatz, I believe there are sources which make it clear that he never said he saw it, rather that’s the interpretation of the Rebbe of his reaction when he asked him.July 16, 2023 10:36 am at 10:36 am #2208633
Ely: Your are saying that is the Riyatz’s interpretation of the Rebbe?July 16, 2023 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm #2208710
>>>Regarding the story from the Riyatz, I believe there are sources which make it clear that he never said he saw it
There are many versions of that story. According to his daughter, Chana Gurary, he told her that he saw the form of a man wrapped up and covered. Which of course could have been anything that was wrapped and covered in that size and shape. According to the Lubavicther Rebbe his FIL the Rayatz said he saw “what remained of the golem” which is even less clear. Other versions say he refused to discuss it.
There are no even semi reliable versions claiming that he saw the actual golem the way it would have looked when it allegedly existed or that he saw it in uncovered form.July 16, 2023 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm #2208712
ujm: No, the Rebbes interpretation of the Riyatz.July 16, 2023 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm #2208720
smerel: Either way, any way you explain it, the Rebbe and/or the Riyatz seems to be saying that the story of the Golem is true.July 16, 2023 1:11 pm at 1:11 pm #2208726
>>>Either way, any way you explain it, the Rebbe and/or the Riyatz seems to be saying that the story of the Golem is true.
Not saying otherwise but the evidence here is based on the perception of the Riyatz of what he saw in the alteneushul attic. By his own account it wasn’t the actual golem. Even had the Riyatz not gone into the attic of the alteneushul they probably would have felt the same way about the golem.July 16, 2023 2:01 pm at 2:01 pm #2208732yiddishe froiParticipant
I remember learning in school many, many years ago that the Noda BeYehuda saiad that no one is allowed to go up to the atticc. I don’t remember if it was a cherem or just a ban.July 16, 2023 5:48 pm at 5:48 pm #2208760The Shady CharediParticipant
When I was much younger, just becoming frum, I had of course heard of the Golem. I was travelling some of Europe and went to visit a friend near Prague. I went one afternoon to see the old Shul and the Maharal’s kever. I asked one of the attendants there to let me go up to the attic. They laughed and said the door is locked and no-one even has a key any more. I came back later that night. On the outside of the Shul there is another door, and two windows set far apart. But the door is very high up and there is on direct way to reach it. There are metal rungs in the wall below the door, but even those rungs begin about 4m from the ground. Anyway, I came back later that night with a ladder from the caretaker of the place where I was staying. I used it to reach the rungs and climb up. That door was also locked, obviously. The right window was way to far to see anything. The left window, if I stood dangerously with one foot on the top rung and left foot on a ridge in the brickwork that ran around the building, and held kind of onto the raised feature in the brickwork between the window and the door, then I could look through some of the deep-set window , but the angle wasn’t great to see towards the centre of the room at all. I even brought a torch (USA = flashlight) with me. The window was not covered (other than bars) or particularly dirty, but I couldn’t see anything really. Then, for some reason, I decided to try banging on the door. About 10 seconds later I CLEARLY saw a large human figure glide slowly to the left-side of the window, pause for half a second and then carry on across the window to the right. I got scared it was coming towards the door so I climbed down as fast as I could. My friend, who came with me, and held the ladder said he thinks he saw something move in the window too, but he wasn’t sure and I think he might have just been saying it for my sake. But I am positive what I saw.July 16, 2023 5:49 pm at 5:49 pm #2208762motchah11Participant
Others have been said to make a golem. The Gra, for instance. And various people in the Gemara. The ones in the Gemara can’t be doubted.July 16, 2023 7:42 pm at 7:42 pm #2208793
ujm: The Rebbe saying that it was true, doesn’t mean it actually happened.July 16, 2023 8:11 pm at 8:11 pm #2208798
The Shady Chareidi,
Your story fits your name perfectly.
Are you saying that the golem came back to life?July 17, 2023 1:31 am at 1:31 am #2208835
As a matter of fact, it should be noted that extensive renovation took place in the attic of the Altneu shul in 1883. No evidence of the Golem was discovered then.8 A film crew visited and filmed the attic in 1984. No evidence of the Golem was discovered then.July 17, 2023 1:31 am at 1:31 am #2208834
Maybe the ones in the gemara are some sort of metaphor. It’s strange to say that a golem every existed. This is not the same thing but, for example, Rav Sadya Goan says that the Satan in Iyov is a real person who just didn’t like him. Not an angle. Most people wouldn’t understand it that way but that’s gow he understands the TANACH. I’m sure there is a way of understanding the Gemara without saying that matter came to life without any internal organs.July 17, 2023 8:56 am at 8:56 am #2208884
Dan, there were dozens of documented golim made by geonim, rishonim, and achronim. The only one that has had questions raised on it was the maharals, because his talmidim don’t mention it. Poskim debate if a golem counts for a minyan.
It’s a very real thing.
Allegorizing chazal without a mesorah or rishonim who say so is possible apikorsus. There are many scientific things which are incredible but understood to those who study them, so it is wise to not form opinions on things (kabalah…) Withoit knowing about them, wisking them away with flippant kashos with preconceived notions about what makes something living.July 17, 2023 8:58 am at 8:58 am #2208861ubiquitinParticipant
When I was much younger, I was frum, I had of course heard of the Golem. I was travelling some of Europe and went to visit a friend near Prague. I got locked out of the room where I was staying so I looked for a place to sleep. Earlier that day I had gone to see the old Shul and the Maharal’s kever. I noticed that On the outside of the Shul there is another door, and two windows set far apart. But the door is very high up and there is on direct way to reach it. There are metal rungs in the wall below the door, but even those rungs begin about 4m from the ground. Anyway, I came back that night with a ladder from the caretaker. I used it to reach the rungs and climb up. That door was not locked so I went in locked it so no one should come bother me and went to sleep , A few hours later there was some banging on the window. I CLEARLY saw a samaller human figure looking through the window and shining his flashlight (torch in UK) then quickly climb down ta ladder Isaw another figure at the bottom holding a ladder But I am positive what I saw.July 17, 2023 10:46 am at 10:46 am #2208935
The most Litvishe answer to this question is a story I heard from a Rebbi of mine.
Sometime in the 70s, a man who worked for Philly (The Philadelphia Yeshiva under Rav Shmuel Kamenetsky and Rav Elya Svei L’havdil) wrote a whole kuntrus documenting all the sources of the Golem of Prague and cross referencing them with historical dates, other mentions of golems, the Maharals writings, etc. His conclusion was that there is no way that any of the Golem stories were true.
Anyways, he brought his sefer to Rav Shach for a haskama. Rav Shach asked him, “Do you think it’s possible for the Maharal to have made a golem?”. “Of course he could of!”. “Then what’s the difference whether he did or didn’t?”.July 17, 2023 11:40 am at 11:40 am #2208953
Yserbius: That’s a very Chasidish answer.July 17, 2023 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm #2208967hujuParticipant
To Sam Klein: Golem existed long before teleprompters. Think before you post, especially when you’re just making it up.July 17, 2023 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm #2208968
>>>Yserbius: That’s a very Chasidish answer.
It’s not. Rav Yaakov Kamentsky also expressed his discomfort with the golem deniers to someone I knew (a talmid of Rav Boruch Ber) . Not because Rav Yaakov Kamentsky was so convinced that the golem had actually existed. It was just the whole academic approach and discomfort with belief in the supernatural that motivates so many of the deniers that Rav Yaakov had issues with.
People who believe that someone of the level of the Maharal could make a golem whether they believe he actually did so or not usually would not care enough about the subject to write entire seforim on it. Just like they don’t write seforim on other debated legends or questionable well know stories.
That is why Rav Schach (and Rav Yaakov) were saying.July 17, 2023 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm #2208971
>>>I’m sure there is a way of understanding the Gemara without saying that matter came to life without any internal organs.
Why is that difficult to understand? Are there no robots in human form carrying out some human functions and activities without internal organs? They came to being through mechanical methods and golems came into being spiritual methods but they are relatively similar in function despite lack of internal organsJuly 17, 2023 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm #2209005
smerel: Your comment to me is well said and entirely correct. But I don’t understand why you think the answer isn’t very Chasidish. You didn’t even address that point.July 17, 2023 2:09 pm at 2:09 pm #2209026RoshYeshivasTainaParticipant
In the end of the Lubavitcher Rebbe zatzal’s letter he asks: how is this helping you in Avodas Hashem?July 17, 2023 2:10 pm at 2:10 pm #2209016
Forget golems, we have amoraim making calves out of nothing! The gemara says two of the amoraim would make calves for their dhabbos meals using sefer yetzirah.
Is everything a mashal because you can’t find a scientific explanation of it? When the rambam dismisses magic and demons, he doesn’t say that they’re not true because they’re not scientifically provable; he says they’re just narrishkeit.
Whereas he accepts the existence of angels, and nowhere does he object to the created calves or golems described in chazal. Nor does he reject the Salamandria or other wonderous animals with seemingly supernatural powers.July 17, 2023 5:32 pm at 5:32 pm #2209037
@ujm It’s a Chassidishe mindset to write books and tell stories about fantastic things that Tzaddikim did in order to inspire awe in people regarding those Tzaddikim. It’s a Litvishe mindset to derive awe from a Tzaddik’s Torah and look at stories as nice things, but inconsequential compared to their Torah.July 17, 2023 5:34 pm at 5:34 pm #2209055
>>>In the end of the Lubavitcher Rebbe zatzal’s letter he asks: how is this helping you in Avodas Hashem?
Thanks for pointing this out, I actually didn’t notice that part.
Here is the last line of the letter I quoted above, responding to someone who was doubting the golem’s existence:
הפס”ד בשו”ע: בכל דרכיך דעהו. מה יתוסף אצלו (השואל שי’) בתומ”צ ע”י בירור הנ”ל?July 17, 2023 5:43 pm at 5:43 pm #2209041
What about conservation of energy?July 17, 2023 7:18 pm at 7:18 pm #2209072
Dan, you’re referring to the law of conservation of matter, not energy.
And rav saadya gaon said it centuries before scientists did.
I’m guessing there’s parts of the briah that they used, or some sort of dark matter, or any number of things that I’m not educated in enough to talk about.July 17, 2023 7:19 pm at 7:19 pm #2209069
Is there any reason to doubt that some of our Gedolim today are capable of creating a Golem, if he deems it necessary?July 17, 2023 8:45 pm at 8:45 pm #2209088
Ujm, i personally think that the gedolei yisroel even in our time could, but one might wonder why we haven’t had golems for hundreds of years… They say about the Gaon that he was going to make one when he was young, but in shomayim they didn’t let him.
Could be for the same reason that the chofetz Chaim said regarding not having dibukim anymore until moshiach comes… He or another gadol said that there will be a time that people will be so overcome with materialism that they’ll beg to see something supernatural such as a dibuk.
And that’s our time. And not only are we deprived of spirituality and the existence of the non physical, but some of us turn around and say that the world was always this way! Minimizing miracles and supernatural phenomenon as much as possible, allegorizing everything in chazal and even trying to do so in chumash,to make the world as far away from godliness as possible…. It’s very sad.July 18, 2023 11:22 am at 11:22 am #2209221
@ujm The rationalist in me says no. We do not have Gedolim on the level of the gedolim of previous generations, and compared to the Maharal and the Gra, even our Gedolim are dust. The misnaged in me says “Maybe. But who cares?”July 18, 2023 3:06 pm at 3:06 pm #2209318yeshivaguy45Participant
Rabbi Paysach Krohn and Rabbi Ephraim Tenenbaum talk about it on their trip to Prague in Eternal Luminaries (can be found on Rabbi Krohn’s website). If I remember correctly, Rabbi Krohn said that there was no golem as there was no mention of the golem in any writings until many years after the maharal was niftar. Rabbi Tenenbaum said that even though the Maharal’s golem wasn’t true, other gedolim have made golems.July 18, 2023 6:23 pm at 6:23 pm #2209360
>>>Rabbi Krohn said that there was no golem as there was no mention of the golem in any writings until many years after the maharal was niftar.
That doesn’t prove anything. According to all versions of the Golem story it was a strictly kept secret at the time it existed. From the few people who did know about it was the SIL of the Maharal who helped make it. The way the story allegedly became known to the public was after it was found in that SIL’s private writings about a hundred years after his death. Therefore the question of “why wasn’t it mentioned/known?” doesn’t really prove anythingJuly 19, 2023 10:25 am at 10:25 am #2209546HaLeiViParticipant
Avira, who are his close Talmidim that you would expect it from?
There actually is a mention of it very few years after his Petira, in the complaints of the Meshumad Samuel. It’s in the Otzar Vikuchim. He doesn’t mention the Maharal by name, so for all you know it is about the one from Reb Eliyahu Bal Shem.July 20, 2023 12:46 am at 12:46 am #2209782Always_Ask_QuestionsParticipant
Avira> chofetz Chaim said regarding not having dibukim anymore until moshiach comes
and then, I recall, he actually cured a girl with a dibbuk…July 20, 2023 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm #2209850
Halevi, the tosfos yom tov writes a lot about the maharal, who was his main rebbe, yet makes no mention of it.
Aaq, the chofetz chaim made that remark after removing the dibuk from the girl.July 23, 2023 8:55 am at 8:55 am #2210274HaLeiViParticipant
Avira, he only quotes his Sefarim, and a general description of thr Maharal’s Mishnayos groups. I don’t think there’s any Halacha or Pshat that he says he heard from the Maharal. He doesn’t seem like a close Talmid.July 24, 2023 8:49 am at 8:49 am #2210438Abba_SParticipant
You do know that the Chacham Zvi poses the question as to whether a Golem can be counted towards a minyan.July 24, 2023 9:47 am at 9:47 am #2210495
Abba, nobody serious about hashkofa has ever doubted the existence of golems; there have been people who questioned or denied specifically the maharals golem, because of historical kashas, not hashkafic ones.
But most gedolim say like what’s been quoted here; he could have made it, so who cares if he did or not? And we also shouldn’t expend effort to minimize things like this… The motivation could be maskilishJuly 24, 2023 11:55 am at 11:55 am #2210507commonsaychelParticipant
The Gingerbread Man (also known as The Gingerbread Boy) is a fairy tale about a gingerbread man’s escape from various pursuers until his eventual demise between the jaws of a fox.July 26, 2023 4:26 pm at 4:26 pm #2211393n0mesorahParticipant
“Allegorizing chazal without a mesorah or rishonim who say so is possible apikorsus.”
It’s defintely a problem for those who need to defend everything without learning anything.
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