who is "The Gadol Haddar" of America

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  • #619438

    lkwd lamdan
    Member

    I would like to know who the ywn coffee room members consider the gadol haddar of America, I would personally say that its Rav Elya Ber Wachtfogel for the Yeshiveshe and Rav Shmuel Kamenatzky for the baal habatim…. Please let me know who you consider to be “the gadol haddar of America”

    #1228530

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Joseph. Oh sorry, that’s just for the Coffee Room.

    #1228531

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    Crackers. (you asked about the Gadol Haddar – that’s the only Haddar product I’m familiar with…)

    #1228532

    Joseph
    Participant

    Skulener Rebbe, Rav Aharon Schechter, Rav Elya Ber, Rav Shmuel, Rav Dovid are a few of the names that come to mind. There are a handful.

    #1228533

    lkwd lamdan
    Member

    Reb Dovid as in reb Dovid Schustal or Feinstein?

    #1228534

    lkwd lamdan
    Member

    Joseph I would like to know what makes you consider someones as “a gadol haddar” if he has a lot of followers, how much power he yields or how great you look at him to be?

    #1228535

    Joseph
    Participant

    Torah, Avoda, Gemilas Chasodim.

    #1228536

    golfer
    Participant

    I learn so many interesting things here.

    Case in point-

    The “Yeshivishe” and the “baal habatim” (his terminology not mine) have a different “gadol haddar”.

    I’d call troll, but zrizim makdimim and in the spirit of “kol haposheit yad…” maybe we should try and answer the llamdan.

    (Sorry I personally can’t oblige.

    When I see gadol haddar the only thing that comes to mind is one of those huge Teimani Esrogim I saw in E”Y. I notice LU, probably already packing her Mishloach Manos, is thinking of cookies.)

    #1228537

    “for the Yeshiveshe” / “for the baal habatim”

    What do you mean by that?

    #1228538

    yytz
    Participant

    It’s still Rav Moshe. 🙂

    #1228539

    Lilmod Ulelamaid
    Participant

    YYTZ – 🙂

    #1228540

    kj chusid
    Participant

    Rabbi Moshe Ber Beck

    #1228541

    yehudayona
    Participant

    lkwd lamdan points out an interesting problem. When one refers to gedolim by their first name, it can be ambiguous. I have a modest proposal: use their full names. In some cases, you may even have to add a location or affiliation in order to disambiguate.

    #1228542

    Joseph
    Participant

    Some gedolim are universally known by their first name. Take Rav Chaim, for example. Everyone knows when you simply refer to Rav Chaim you’re referring to Rav Chaim Kanievsky.

    #1228543

    yungermanS
    Participant

    every chasidus will tell you that their rebba is the gadol hador of america today

    #1228544

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    I dont think there is one, If there is a real Shaiala they just call Rav Chaim or Rav Aharon on the phone

    #1228545

    Joseph
    Participant

    There certainly are a number of gedolei hador in America.

    #1228546

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    I know for a fact when there is a real shala they called Rav Chaim or Rav Aharon

    #1228547

    apushatayid
    Participant

    The mechaber, the rma, the mishna berura and my shul rav who guides me based on their words according to the understanding he has from his rabbeim.

    #1228548

    Joseph
    Participant

    Who guides him when *he* has a shaila?

    #1228549

    shebbesonian
    Participant

    I sure hope he bases his answers on more than just the mechaber, rama and MB, otherwise you should probably find a new rabbi. What does he do when a question arises that is not in ???? ????? He just paskens straight mechaber and rama? How does he answer questions about ????? ??????? ????, which is barely covered in ???? ????? What does he do about questions about technology that didn’t exist in the time of the MB? What happened to ????? ????, ???????, ??? ?”? ?”? ?”? ?”? ??”? ?????

    #1228550

    apushatayid
    Participant

    Joseph and shebbo. you guys are way to literal.

    I have a Rav. so does he. so does his rav. its called a mesorah.

    its a shame some people are too caught up in who is bigger, or noisier, or flashier (not you, but the fact that this is a topic of discussion to begin with…) or more prestigious.

    #1228551

    Joseph
    Participant

    Do you think it would be okay for you to ask a shaila to his rebbe?

    #1228552

    apushatayid
    Participant

    If that question is aimed towards me….

    I dont have access to “his rebbe”. I have access to my Rav, therefore I ask him. I also do not see the need to ask his Rebbe because I know that if my Rav needs clarification he goes to his Rebbe for it. In fact, a number of times when we needed practical guidance, he told us he consulted with his Rebbe for clarity. I know he has a mesorah, and I am comfortable asking him my questions.

    #1228553

    apushatayid
    Participant

    as far as the gadol haddar, you could probably ask them info@haddar.net

    #1228554

    Joseph
    Participant

    Doesn’t your family have its own mesorah?

    #1228555

    apushatayid
    Participant

    Sure. It has a mesorah of following rabbonim.

    #1228556

    Joseph
    Participant

    No other mesorah?

    #1228557

    american_yerushalmi
    Participant

    Regarding the OP’s question. “Who is the Gadol Hador?” (There can be more than one, BTW.) This is not a popularity contest, or a democratic electoral system. The biggest, the greatest Talmidei Chachomim in a given generation all know who — among them — is the biggest expert. That person is the Gadol Hador.

    #1228558

    Avi K
    Participant

    Each group has it own gadol/im.

    #1228559

    Joseph
    Participant

    Who are the Conservative gedolim?

    #1228560

    lkwd,

    That sounds positively marxist

    “How many tanks and divisions does he have?”

    american_yerushalmi,

    well said

    #1228562

    Who are the Modern Orthodox gedolim?

    #1228563

    apushatayid
    Participant

    “No other mesorah?”

    This one is quite adequate.

    If the family kept changing mesorah, what type of mesorah would that be?

    #1228564

    mik5
    Participant

    Rav Belsky was before his petira.

    Now it’s Rabbi D. Feinstein, Rabbi S. Kamenetsky, and a few others.

    #1228565

    Geordie613
    Participant

    Assuming this isn’t another trolling thread…

    The premise of the question is all wrong. What does it mean a Godol Hador for yeshivishe and for baale batim?! Godol Hador by its very definition means for the whole generation; the one person who is looked up to by ALL the Rabonim, Roshei Yeshiva and Rebbes as the last word and authority and Daas Torah. For example, Rav Moshe Feinstein, or in Eretz Yisroel, The Steipler.

    BTW, ZD, who do you mean by ‘Rav Aharon’?

    #1228566

    visitor1
    Participant

    Hagaon Harav Mordechai Marcus Shlit”a, a tzadik and the biggest talmid chachom in America for many years. Rav of Lakewood Minyan of Flatbush, Chief editor Artscroll Sha”s. Someone called him “The Torah World’s Greatest Secret.”

    #1228567

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    Rav Aharon Shteinman

    #1228568

    visitor1
    Participant

    I should have qualified my posts with “‘possibly’ the biggest talmid chochom…” (Not claiming that it is really possible to know.)

    #1228569

    Avi K
    Participant

    Randomex, Rav Herschel Schachter, Rav Gedalia Schwartz, Rav Mordechai Willig.

    #1228570

    Joseph
    Participant

    Avi, who are the RZ/Dati gedolim?

    #1228571

    yichusdik
    Participant

    The historian in me is curious. When/where was the first known usage of the specific term “gadol hador” referencing a generational Rabbinic leader in any widely recognized source? Who used it? In reference to whom? TIA.

    #1228572

    Geordie613
    Participant

    This is a most interesting discussion.

    Visitor1, far be it for me to judge the merits of anyone as Godol Hador. However the very term implies someone who is known and to whom the world’s Rabonim, Poskim and Roshei Yeshiva turn to for advice. There are many many ‘Shas Yiedden’ in the world who keep to themselves and for some reason are not known. Tzadik Hador, maybe, but Godol Hador implies more a leader, than a great, learned but hidden tzadik.

    To me, and this is maybe an answer to yichusdik, I think Godol Hador may be interchangeable with the term that used to be used, Rabban shel kol b’nei Hagolah. This was used relatively recently, as a title for the Chofetz Chaim and R’ Chaim Ozer, and in my lifetime, R’ Moshe Feinstein.

    ZD, I don’t know how it is in the American Torah World, but in EY and in Europe, Rav Steinman is known as Reb Aharon Leib.

    #1228573

    Joseph
    Participant

    Godol is a relative term; it means someone who stands out among his generation in greatness, which is measured in terms of Torah knowledge, and righteousness. There is no measurable threshold beyond which you are categorically a “godol”, like there is when a person gets a medical degree and becomes a “doctor.” Being that the term is relative, different people apply it to different levels for people, and even among those who are commonly referred to as Gedolim, they are not all the same. Rav Shach was a Godol, but he was not the Chazon Ish, for example.

    The Tzitz Eliezer uses the term posek hador all over the place in his titles. The Teshuvos Maharshal writes it among the titles to the Ramah, or the Teshuvos Ramah about the Maharshal, I think.

    #1228574

    bmyer
    Participant

    Is there a difference between gadol hador and posek hador?

    Rav Dovid Feinstein is the posek of the yeshiva world in America (and maybe the world).

    I don’t think anyone argues…

    #1228575

    zahavasdad
    Participant

    In America the gedolim dont get invovled in politics as much as they do in Israel, so they are also more political leaders in Israel and in America they are mostly religous leaders

    #1228576

    Geordie613
    Participant

    Bmyer,

    I would say yes, and to illustrate, I would say, Rav Steinman is the Godol hador, but he is not known as a posek.

    #1228577

    Avi K
    Participant

    Joseph, a gadol hador must also have extensive secular knowledge or at least access to those who do. For example, before the Tzitz Eliezer paskened on listening to the radio on Shabbat he read a book on radio engineering and took a guided tour of the station with the chief engineer.

    #1228578

    american_yerushalmi
    Participant

    “… a gadol hador must also have extensive secular knowledge, etc.”

    In which “Handbook for (Prospective) Gedolei Hador” does it say that? I’ll reiterate what I wrote previously. It’s not a popularity contest or an election. It’s the consensus of leading rabbonim at any given time who among them is the biggest expert. The “vote” and even the opinion of laymen and certainly amei-ha’aretz do not count for much in arriving at this determination.

    #1228579

    Geordie613
    Participant

    Avi K. The Tzitz Eliezer was a prolific posek who obviously researched his subject exhaustively before issuing a psak. But that is called being a posek. Any Rov who doesn’t know everything about a subject will refrain from paskening on it. A few years ago, I had occasion to ask a world famous Rov and Posek about a certain subject. He said to me, Ich bin an am ho’oretz in dem inyan. (I am ignorant in that subject). It is quite a specialist area of halocho. He sent me to another Rov who was well versed in that area.

    This is the point where the Godol Hador question begins. Who is the final address where all difficult questions end up?

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