WWRAS-What would R’ Aharon zt”l say?
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Tagged: Lakewood yungerman
- This topic has 42 replies, 21 voices, and was last updated 7 months, 4 weeks ago by torahlife.
June 11, 2022 11:37 pm at 11:37 pm #2095606
Since the peirah of R’ Ahron 60 years ago Lakewood has morphed into a city that would surely shock R’ Aharon Kotler if he would rise from the grave today and visit it. Surely he would marvel at the sheer numbers of kollel yungerlight and the numbers in the yeshivos and Bais Yaakovs. My guess is that the rally in Philadelphia today will focus a lot on Lakewood being the fulfillment of R Aharon’s dream.
But is it?
Yes, there are a lot of great amazing things to say about the community and the yeshiva but I don’t hear about anyone addressing the negatives. Many of these are interrelated
A) Materialism: The average kollel family lives a more materialistic lifestyle than a bal habos of 30 years ago and even of a bal habos of the average “out of town” family today. The problem is that the needs are much higher now in a way that it is a detriment to ruchniyus.
B) Entitlement/expectations: The society has created a system that puts undue pressure on parents to support children in kollel even in cases where children don’t need it and parents can’t afford it.
C) Lack of Mesorah and guidance: The only Rebbe most Kollel yungerlight have are from their High School early Bais Medrash days. There is hardly anyone giving them direction in learning and life.
D) Goals/Ignorance: How many yungerlight have worthwhile goals in learning and are striving to accomplish them? A guy can leave several kollel being totally ignorant of halacha, Tanach, 80-85% of Mishnayos and 90-95% of shas. What does the average guy really know after leaving kollel?
E: Idealism/Achrayus: It is nearly non-existent. Gone are the days when the yeshivos were promoting and inspiring young men and women to go out and teach their fellow brethren through the country and the world.
I myself am a product of the American yeshiva & kollel system. I believe that the system is producing products much better than all the alternatives out there. I also understand that there are many many exceptions to these issues. There are probably dozens of guys really being moser nefesh for Torah and accomplishing tremendously in their learning. Are these the exceptions or the norm? If more than 50% or even 40 or 30% that struggle with a few of these issues isn’t it worth addressing?
Would R’ Aharon zt”l or any of the gedolim of past generations recognize a flaw in the American kollel system of 2022?June 11, 2022 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm #2095618Yserbius123Participant
The world has changed and so has Lakewood. It’s pointless to wonder what he would or would not have thought considering had he survived all this time he would have had different things to say.
Would he be upset at all the small communal eruvin around Lakewood? What about the restaurants? When Rav Aharon was Rosh Yeshiva, only a minority of the talmidim stayed in learning/klei koidesh for their whole lives. Would he be upset that it’s now flipped, the norm is to stay in Kollel for ten years and only a minority get jobs that don’t require them to be called “Rebbi”?June 12, 2022 12:20 am at 12:20 am #2095622ujmParticipant
What rally in Philly today are you talking about?
OP/Rocky: The five concerns you identified (other than the last one, which isn’t a criticism but rather your opinion of what should be) are, by far, the exception. And inapplicable to most Kollel Yungerleit.June 12, 2022 1:25 am at 1:25 am #2095634guteyidParticipant
Rocky: You bring up valid points. I don’t agree with everything you wrote, particularly about ‘most’ Kolel yungeleit being more materialistic than the average out of town bal habos. This is incorrect. However, I don’t think this is the correct forum to address this. If you are sincere in your desire to create change, and your letter does give that impression, then you would do better to approach those that can achieve this. Anonymous letters on forums such as this one only give voice to slanderers and haters and do more harm than good.June 12, 2022 7:14 am at 7:14 am #2095650takahmamashParticipant
” . . . Lakewood being the fulfillment of R Aharon’s dream.”
I would imagine that being in E”Y would be the fulfillment of R. Aharon’s dream, at least that’s supposed to be the fulfillment of everyone’s dream. I don’t see Lakewood mentioned anywhere in Tanach.June 12, 2022 7:15 am at 7:15 am #2095663interjectionParticipant
It’s hard to know what he would say because the entire world was different.
My hunch is that he would be proud. He set out to create a Torah-centered society and that is exactly what we have now. He set out to create a culture of Torah learning as the antidote to assimilation and if you look around, it seems he exceeded way past what he could’ve even dreamed of.June 12, 2022 10:56 am at 10:56 am #2095710
My guess, R Aharon would be looking at google maps, planning a remote location for a place where Torah learning can happen without distractions. Maybe WV or KY.
As an insight into his thinking, one prominent South American Rav was thinking about moving to Israel. He asked R Aharon and he replied: I think the Jews in your country still need you. Maybe later, we will both go to EY … When many years later, that Rav finally decided to move, he encountered R Aharon’s levaya joining him on the flight from Paris to TLV and recalled that conversation.June 12, 2022 11:31 am at 11:31 am #2095726
60 Years have past since Rav Aron pitirah and the whole world changed, looking at the overall picture Rav Aron would have been proud, a generation of holocaust survivors and fledgling frum community rebuilt yiddishkiet to a point were it is strongerthen pre war Europe obviously things changed from his original vision but so do most things, fact of matter is torah and yiddishkeit is thriving in Lakewood in particular and the USA in generalJune 12, 2022 2:59 pm at 2:59 pm #2095761BIGBOCHURParticipant
He would cry seeing you waste your time inciting rechilus about our kollelim and masmidim who sit and learn all day. Maybe you should try it @Rocky.June 12, 2022 2:59 pm at 2:59 pm #2095770ujmParticipant
Rav Ahron would be immensely proud of what Lakewood has achieved and spread, not just through Lakewood, but throughout the entire United States and other countries.June 12, 2022 6:24 pm at 6:24 pm #2095838GadolhadorahParticipant
Unlikely he would be Tweeting or posting in the CR about the so called “evils” you enumerate. The BMG velt is unlike anything that the Rav Z’L or anyone for that matter could ever have imagined 60 years ago in terms of the resurgence of yiddishkeit in the U.S. You could have asked the same question about the gadolei yisroel in the Alte Heim during the late 1800s looking ahead.June 12, 2022 9:39 pm at 9:39 pm #2095852
Well then, I guess that settles it. The CR has spoken. Everything is just peachy creamy in the American kollel system and there is nothing that can be improved. I am glad that I am wrong on all these issues.
BTW-Guteyid-I have brought up several of these points to big Roshei Yeshiva and they agreed with me that they are serious problems contrary to the CR consensus. Their reaction was more one of throwing up their hands and saying that the problems are too big to fix. B”H we are wrong and may the bliss continue.June 12, 2022 9:44 pm at 9:44 pm #2095853
Gadol > gadolei yisroel in the Alte Heim during the late 1800s looking ahead.
I don’t recall a source, probably a British rov, someone was musing about Jews picking up various valuable midos from each country in galus. For America, he mentioned – scale, ability to create institutions that scale in size amazingly, from McDonalds and MSFT to Yeshivos …
Without denying these successes of Torah institutions in America, we can’t be complacent just with numbers without worrying about middos and haskafos. R’Akiva’s mega-hevrusos were somehow less deserving than the four high quality students.June 12, 2022 9:44 pm at 9:44 pm #2095855
I also presume that R Aharon would welcome advent of, at least, email and Zello. He wondered what was his punishment that he spent so much time travelling to fundraise for the Yeshiva and attributed it to possibly not being sensitive enough towards his students.June 12, 2022 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm #2095875GadolhadorahParticipant
” Everything is just peachy creamy in the American kollel system and there is nothing that can be improved.
Rocky, your sarcasm notwithstanding, there are obviously aspects of EVERY element of Jewish life that always can be improved. However, you seem determined to focus on the fewer negatives rather than the much greater number of positives.June 12, 2022 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm #2095876
A. Rav Aaron Joey people that were learning despite being wealthy with a matching lifestyle. He could not understand it. He said it was one of his biggest kushyos.
B. I think he would say it is worth it. While he would do everything he could to help the children make it feel worthwhile to the parents.
C. Simply not true. They have guidance. Maybe it’s not the best guidance. Look how many Rabbanim there are in Lakewood today.
D. Maybe dens short term kollel guys there is some truth. Long term learners know a lot.
E. I disagree. The responsibility is there. Just there are less ideals today. It’s hard to see a cause worth dedicating one’s life to, in our times.
It’s obvious to me, that the merit of today’s system is as a supporting infrastructure for that thirty or whatever percent.June 12, 2022 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm #2095887
“He wondered …. punishment that …… for the Yeshiva ……. not being sensitive…..”
You have the wrong person. With every if phrase. Except that he attributed every retribution to a personal misdeed.June 13, 2022 1:45 am at 1:45 am #2095926
n0> You have the wrong person.
How do you know that you don’t have the “wrong” person!? It is possible that multiple people complained about fundraising duties.June 13, 2022 2:13 am at 2:13 am #2095947
Rav Aaron did not complain. It’s weird how you have your historical guesses about real and well known people.June 13, 2022 10:20 am at 10:20 am #2096045
I disagree with you on a few points but let me clarify my standpoint. I Agree that that it is amazing that we have a significant segment of American Jewry that sees kollel as not just admirable but even as a standard. The fact that there are so many couples looking to start married life based on Torah is a wonderful thing. I just think that there are issues (not “evils”). I don’t think it makes sense to ignore the issues by saying “yeah but isn’t it wonderful that so many people are doing it”. It could be that I don’t have enough exposure to the real situation on the ground and if so, I will step back and shut up. It is also important to clarify that my points are exclusive to the Kollel system in America, not EY or the UK.
A) It sounds like you agree with me on this point. My objection is to the standard that has been raised in the kollel world (new model cars, eating out, buying clothing shoes etc in the expensive local stores). If rich kids learn in kollel that is great. The problem is when the standards are raised and there is pressure on the “have nots” who end up living a higher lifestyle than they should.
B) I also don’t have a problem with wealthy people supporting children in kollel. I think it is admirable if a family decides not to go to a hotel for pesach and decides to give the $ to their kids in kollel. I do have a problem with parents being pressured to go into debt or take on an extra job to support their kids. If the kids know that their parents are doing this I think it would be proper to refuse to pressure them to do this.
C) There are a lot of Rabbanim in Lakewood today but there are also many more baalei batim and many more needs. Ask the average Kollel fellow in Lakewood who he goes to for guidance in both learning and and life. I don’t think most will answer “the local Rav”
D) I would hope that if a man is in kollel long term (10+?) he would come out knowing something. But how many 2nd or 3rd year kollel guys are still learning 8-12 blatt a year without any significant halacha seder? If I am wrong great!
E) It is sad that you don’t recognize the needs of klal ysirael. The gedolim of 60 years ago all encouraged their talmidim to to be moser nefesh for klal yisrael or at least be concerned. That meant going out and teaching and being mekarev. Believe it or not, the learned population of Klal Yisrael is still a small fraction of the whole. It’s not my issue. Ask any talmid of R’ Aharon, Rav Ruderman, Rav Yaakov etc. To think that we have solved our issues is sticking your head in the sand. If even 5-10% of the kollel population after leaving kollel would go into klei kodesh lishmah we would change the face of American Jewry.June 13, 2022 11:15 am at 11:15 am #2096074
What’s your preamble, what Rav Aaron would say or the issues that need improvement? Because it’s possible that there are solutions that Rav Aaron would not have implemented or desired. Either one is fine. Just we can’t reasonably expect both to be simultaneously true or possible.June 13, 2022 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm #2096090DasLakewoodParticipant
Just to come in as someone that actually learns currently in BMG
I’m B”H part of a nice size group of guy that are learning 10+ years I can tell you that a large part of them finished a majority of shas and halacha you can practically just ask them anywhere in learning and you will see the most Unassuming ppl have a Wealth of knowledge
In regard to Materialism you only see what you see you don’t see what you don’t if I tell you that most of them NEVER went out to eat don’t lease cars don’t eat take out don’t have cleaning help some don’t even have cell phones and they come everyday rain shine snow heat
And no they don’t have any money but they come just to learn
Don’t be blinded by the stores and the other ppl walking around with all the extras Focus on the real ppl the ones holding up the world
Yes rabbi Aaron is very proud that he created a place for such ppl to come and become what they areJune 13, 2022 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm #2096086
A. This issue may be more of a problem outside kollel. Even if it’s equal, it would require leaders from across the spectrum to solve it.
B. It would be proper for the kids to refuse it. With some exceptions. But that is on the individuals. Which depends on those guiding them in shidduchim. That leads into C.
C. Those that live in a solid neighborhood will mostly answer the local Rav. A large amount will answer the senior Rabbanim. I think your wrong on this one. A large majority of kolleliet have someone to go to. For the wives or the working fathers, not nearly as much. That’s a real issue.
D. In twenty minutes a day, they cover the whole Mishna Berurah every couple of years. If you mean a serious three hour Seder, why is that the standard of really knowing? How many start off still learning 8-12 blatt a Seder? A lot. Especially if yeshiva is doing a misechta they missed. But it quickly changes. At five years, those that are doing a few blatt a Seder three times a day, are a tiny percentage. And it’s almost exclusively those that are mentally but out for it.
E. My dear fellow poster, nobody is more aware of the issues than me. It’s a big factor in why I’m so far out of the system. Why is the Yeshiva so uninformed, as well as non idealistic? To me it seems like the yeshiva boy of yesteryear seamlessly interacted with his college and blue collar, friends, neighbors, and relatives. That doesn’t seem to happen anymore. The Yeshiva is really nervous about outside influences. That makes sense. It is their cornerstone. But when it comes to mature adults, the influence flows the other way. From inside the Yeshiva to out. In a positive way. Lakewood did not do a good job of promoting inter-lifestyle friendships within their expanding borders. So the non yeshiva crowd, has their own society. And it promotes the influences that the Yeshiva is so worried about.
With these last lines, I wrote you one solution.June 13, 2022 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm #2096102
Rav Aaron was too humble to be proud of them. He would insist that your crowd get’s all the credit.June 13, 2022 1:34 pm at 1:34 pm #2096155OrangeCountyChapperParticipant
Das, I was glad to see what you wrote, it provides some balance to my comments:
As a parent, if my son was clearly capable and motivated to learn at increasingly advanced levels, I would support him. If my son was only learning 8-12 blatt a year, I would push him to excel at something else. I would like to think that Rav Aaron saw Lakewood as a place where the Talmidei Chachomim and future Poskim can thrive, and their brothers who are not so inclined can be respected for becoming the best plumbers, doctors, etc. that they can be. And for those who do well in their jobs or businesses, I wouldn’t deny them buying nice dresses for their wives, as long as they also are giving back to the community.
We could have a long discussion about the “excesses” both for the people who pay for them, and the people whose parnossah is dependent on selling them. The bottom line is that we shouldn’t waste time judging others on matters like this, it only spreads contempt for the community, and hurts everyone. We should all be happy with what we have and focus on our own personal yiddishkeit.June 13, 2022 1:53 pm at 1:53 pm #2096166
Seventy years ago Orthodoxy in gereral and yeshiva velt in particular was viewed as a dying breed, now you have Kollelim from Portland Maine to San Diego CA. from Miami to Seattle and all parts in between, is it perfect? no everyithng in life can be improved, but when you see frum professionals who are very open about being frum and hold learning seder every day we came along way since the 1950s and Rav Aron would have been proud.June 13, 2022 2:34 pm at 2:34 pm #2096179
I support your last paragraph.
It’s really hard to guess at what Rav Aaron would say today, because the growth we experienced, was unthinkable sixty years ago.
Eight to twelve blatt a year is not a Lakewood invention. Rav Aaron insisted on two blatt a week in depth for just second seder.
Rav Aaron was not there for the future poskim, or even the future leaders. He was only interested in Torah for the sake of Torah.June 13, 2022 2:34 pm at 2:34 pm #2096182
When it comes to frum professionals, the credit is not Rav Aaron’s alone. Rav Moshe, Rav Silver, Rav Solveichick, the Chabadsker, Satmar Rav, and others, should be mentioned as well.June 28, 2022 11:52 am at 11:52 am #2100996
Dear Rocky, are you satisfied with my response?June 29, 2022 8:06 am at 8:06 am #2101291anonymous JewParticipant
Whdn it comes to professionals, a large share of the credit should go to COLPA. A voluntary association of frum attorneys, it was founded in 1965 to legally represent the frum community in thier fight to be shomer shabbos on the jobJune 29, 2022 8:09 am at 8:09 am #2101312tunaisafishParticipant
all i can say is you cant know what someone would say is unless they say it.June 29, 2022 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm #2101686
> you cant know what someone would say i
There are gemoras wondering “what would Rav say here”, most likely meaning that they re deducing his decision based on known positions. Same could be done here – as lng as you fairly take into account known positions. My guess that R Ahron would have moved is based on him saying that he established Lakewood on purpose far enough from the main community.June 30, 2022 8:42 am at 8:42 am #2101737Moish26Participant
@daslakewood if ur so shtark in bmg and bmg is great what are u doing on yeshiva world news??!!June 30, 2022 8:44 am at 8:44 am #2101754tunaisafishParticipant
I have no clue what the point was i just saw the topic titleJuly 4, 2022 3:23 pm at 3:23 pm #2103151crazy horseParticipant
gadolhadorah rav ahron predicted that lakewood will grow till it will be the norm.July 4, 2022 7:36 pm at 7:36 pm #2103190
For those of you who are confused by my title, the issue is not just what would R. Aharon say. Yes, I was being critical of the current American Kollel system most of which is based in Lakewood. I don’t think public criticism is a bad thing if the toeles is to encourage positive change.
Let’s take a parallel but theoretical example. Let’s say there is a kiruv organization that brings two families a year back to yidishkeit. Someone comes along and says, “Hey instead of using the current system, I think if you do XYZ you could be mekarev 10 families a year without spending any extra money or hiring new staff.
A legitimate response would be “we tried that 5 years ago and it didn’t work” or “you don’t understand the business like we do and x might help but y &Z would never work”.
A closed-minded response would be “do you know what it means to be mekarev 2 families?! Do you know how much nachas it brings Hashem and how many generations will be affected by these two families?”
So too by the kollel system. If people tell me that my observations are wrong and that the majority do not suffer from any of these ills, great. I will happily shut up and stand corrected. I don’t learn in BMG and don’t live in Lakewood, so for all I know my perspective is warped and there is no room for improvement. But if indeed a significant number (not all- a significant number) do fall into the descriptions then it appears we could improve. Instead of saying nothing but “rah rah we won” maybe we can take a minute of self-reflection and stop being so self-defensive.
Getting back to n0mesorah, I still agree with you on some points and disagree on others. I don’t think that many are regular learners of Dirsh MB and that is why Dirshu was mostly taken over by Chasidim (we can argue about this). Like I said before, if my numbers are off and the overwhelming majority (not just the guys who stay 10+ years) are really connected to a local Rabbinical authority (Rebbe or Rav), are covering ground in learning, living a minimalist lifestyle etc. then super. BH. But if people agree that I may have a point then everyone (not just gedolim) can speak up and change the system.July 4, 2022 8:28 pm at 8:28 pm #2103207GotAGoodPointParticipant
I dont have the time or koach to address each point, but one thing that keeps coming up that needs addressing –
learning ‘only’ 8 blatt or wa’ever, as if it’s too little.
I am not condoning this and there is certainly room for improvement in that area, Rav Shach spoke about it a lot and so did other Roshei Yeshiva
the way the baalei batim and others look at the ‘problem’ they are not seeing the issue with the same view as Rav Shach and the others.
A bochur or Yunerman who learns only 1 daf over two weeks is not stuttering, he is not checking the Artscroll for the translation (or transliteration) of every word, and he is not wasting time either.
He is carefully being madayek every word, contempalting every sevoro, and getting clarity in umpteen shitos, delving into the Rashi, the Tosafos, the Rashba, the Ritvo, the Ketzos, the Nesivos, the Shmayste, Rev Akiva Eiger, R’ Boruch Ber, Reb Chaim and the Brisker Rov etc. etc. (do you really want me to write another 20 names?)
He comes out with chiddushim based on nuance in the Rambam, he comes up with three tirutzim to the Ran’s kasha, and with a different Halachic ramification to each answer. He gets the the root of the sugya and does not just ‘read it superficially’.
At the end of the day (or zman) they are specialists, in the sugya that they learnt. No one would have any qualms about a professor who spent 20 years analyzing a specific enzyme or a strain of cancer.
No one complains that the doctors dont know mathematics, and no one expects a skin doctor to be knowledgable about heart diseases. Todays doctors all specialize in their specific fields, and so do the yungerleit. It is oftten more beneficial to be more focused on less subjects, and to get more of an encyclopedic knowledge of one subject, than to be a jack-of-all-trades and master-of-none.
It’s a decision that only the ones involved (aforementioned Roshei Yeshiva) who could decide how much bekius versus how much iyun.
Even the most basic learner knows a fantastic array of subjects, from Shtoros to Eidim, to Gittin and Kiddushin, to Kinyonim, Shevuos, Nedarim, etc. etc. etc. etc.
So yes, he might be clueless about the milky spoon, but he is not ignorant.
Also, his years of learning give him the keilim to know how to go about asking a shaila, looking it up, what to ask, and the ability to get into the sugya. They can apprecaite what is a machlokes, and the whose who, how to dissect a nosei and how to be machria.
All the above is true, but BESIDES all that, is the main fact. Learning Torah is the highest mitzva and should be done at every available minute, second and moment.
This is not a machlokes haposkim or even depending on Hashkofos – this is universally accepted.
The only room for discussion is the definition of ‘available’.
A working man who has a day off is 100% obligated to spend that day learning. If his responiblities do not require him to work, he is not potur from Talmud Torah just because he is not a learning person. He might not be capable of learning gemora, or not for 12 hours straight. But he has to learn. kitzur Shulchan Oruch, Chumash rashi, Shanyim Mikra, sifrei mussar, nach, ein yakov etc. etc. He could use english seforim, listen to shiurim, the choice is his, but he must learn.
Of course, at the point when health (mental of physical) does not allow, one may pause. If family obligations, or other issues do not allow, one is not expected to learn, but the rule learn, everything else are the exceptions to the rule.
Even is ones mental capabilities only allow for repeating the same posuk countless times, one is doing the mitzva – the greatest mitzva – with every word.
If someone dedicated his life to bringing korbonos in the Beis Hamikdash, he is the ‘PA’ of Hashem, every would understand that he is doing something amazing with his life. Learning torah, even if one retains nothing whatsoever, is better than bringing korbonos.
Chazal are full of what Torah does for the neshomo, how much it supports the world, how much shefa it brings to all the oilomois.
OK, i’d better stop here or i’ll go on forever….July 5, 2022 11:41 am at 11:41 am #2103370The little I knowParticipant
What would Rav Aharon ZT”L say?
I am intrigued by this topic. It calls into focus our critical need to examine what’s working and what’s not. And the question is similarly critical. But I suggest that we ask a different question first. Rav Aharon pioneered the kollel system as we know it in the 1940’s. His intention was to transplant the Torah that was destroyed in Europe to exist in America. There was a desperate need for yeshivos that would become centers for Torah learning, with products of yungerleit that could continue the chain of giving over Torah to future generations. And that was immensely successful. The Kol Torah achieves higher decibels continually.
But Rav Aharon was reportedly posed with a question. The Gemora (Sotah 42a) explicitly says that the proper way of the world is to establish a home, arrange parnosoh, and then marry, in that order. If kollel set marriage first, and parnosoh later, wasn’t this in violation of Divrei Chazal? To this, it is reported that Rav Aharon responded that his mission of creating the kollel system was a “horo’as sho’oh”. It was made for the moment, and was mandated by the situation.
The argument then becomes that this temporary “fix” has converted into a permanent state. Was this part of the plan? I can hear the argument either direction. But I rest my laurels on this approach. I do not believe we have the ability to say definitively what would have been. That sort of knowledge does not exist in our world, and it resides only in the Heavenly spheres. It goes under the category of “nistaros”.
All we can do is examine whether the system is working. Is the growing metropolis of Lakewood effective in promulgating the values of Torah life that was Rav Aharon’s life mission? Are the yungerleit continuing the banner of Torah, or are they just avoiding the responsibility of building their homes on their own backs? Has kollel life morphed into a culture of dependency, with the features of entitlement and egotistical ideas of klai kodesh? All good questions. What we cannot do is to reach into the crevices of the unknown, and to guess what Rav Aharon ZT”L would have said. I think he would have stated as I believe, and you feel the opposite. We’re right back where we started.
In summary. The community in Lakewood has grown immensely, and like anything else in life, it has its pluses and minuses. We should believe that Rav Aharon would have been genuinely pleased with the pluses. We might also believe that he would have been horrified by the negatives. What conclusion would he have reached? I have no ruach hakodesh, so I pass on that.July 5, 2022 1:22 pm at 1:22 pm #2103452
@Rocky. is the point of this thread to go on a Kollel rant? then please change the title, is the point to see where we were in 1963 compared to now?
PS there is no word as self defensive except one one protect him/her self in a physical way.July 6, 2022 3:44 pm at 3:44 pm #2103787
@gota good point: I don’t think you have such a good point. Yes, I understand the concept of learning b’iyun. However when it is taken to an extreme it may not be the most productive way to spend the precious years in kollel. Are most of the people who are learning so slowly indeed experts in their field? After trying to see every bit of “reid” on a sugya do they really have clarity about that sugya? If they were to be tested by a posek after they have seen all that you describe could they spell out with clarity” The issues are wxyz and we pasken like x? Or is it mostly mental gymnastics where many are really fooling themselves.
Another point to consider is that when there is no set goal of how much to cover it leads to accomplishing less. Most people who learn daf yomi say the best thing about it is that it pushes them to accomplish. Some masmidim in yeshiva have that inner drive but many do not.
One last thing. Who sanctions such a pace?Is there a bona fide gadol who says it is OK to go THAT slow? Why do we listen to gedolim when it comes to irrelevant issues but not when it comes to THEIR area of expertise. Shouldn’t someone who has mastered Torah be the one to tell you how to do it?
BTW I am not writing these from mere conjecture. After shavuos I was speaking to a BMG kollel fellow in his third year in kollel. He showed me what his chaburah did from pesach until the week after shavuos. It was a total of ONE amud i.e. half a blatt. No joke. I asked if that is normal and he said that there are plenty of chaburah that go slower than that. When I said 8-12 blatt a year I was being generous.
@common saychel: the point is not to compare 2022 to 1963. I know that we are better off today. But if everyone says “how dare you to criticize the kollel system!” then indeed things will never improve.July 17, 2022 9:12 pm at 9:12 pm #2106651GotAGoodPointParticipant
ROcky: It’s not a new thing that only a fraction of all those learning come out with a clarity and an ability to pasken. That is how Torah is studied, a huge group learn, [all of them are doing the highest possible mitzva – learnign Torah, and keeping the world going] and of all only a few get to the level of Halacha.
במדרש (ויק”ר ב’ א’) אדם א’ מאלף מצאתי אלף נכנסים לבית הספר יוצאים מאה למקרא עשרה למשנה וא’ להוראה
But all those were 100% needed
In fact, if the one person of each thousand would have been learning on his own, he would not have reached the level of Halacha. And if only those 1 in a thousand talmidei Chachamim would have learnt – we would only have ended with 1 of all of them being capable of paskening.
Anyway, the point you are airing should be kept internal. You make it sound like the Yeshiva system is failing, when in fact it is achieving unbelievable results. Could there be room for improvement? Possibly. Maybe even, probably, but overall it is producing talmidei chachamim of various levels, some who know a lot of everything, some who specialise in Lomdus, some in agada, some in halacha, some in bekius, and some are just ‘ merkava lishchina’ people who Torah is their bread and butter, it is their oxygen, it’s their life. Some go on to make wonderful rebbis. Some who bring up toradik families. But everyday that they are in the beis hamedrash, every hour they spend analyzing a point in Rambam or a lashon in Rashi, is Kodesh Kodoshim, they are being בונה עולמות, they are being משמח הקב”ה, they are the tachlis habria.
It says in תנא דבי אליהו
אפילו אין בידו של אדם לא מקרא ולא משנה, אלא יושב וקורא כל היום, ‘אחות לוטן תמנע’ שכר תורה בידו
even if a person simply repeats the same ‘boring and simple’ posuk all day, he still has the tremendous reward of learning Torah. He won’t know any halacha as a result, but he is – learning Torah!!!July 17, 2022 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm #2106664BalabusParticipant
I agree with you.
Lakewood is quite messed up these daysJuly 27, 2022 6:12 am at 6:12 am #2109298torahlifeParticipant
I think you are not focused enough on your “target market”.
It’s a critical thing. And you a bit scattered.
Materialism: That’s not a kollel problem. It’s a klal problem. Yidden have it. It is more profound in certain places…less so in others. Regarding kollel, people who are materialistic probably don’t stay too long anyway…why should they? They want to make a buck so they do whatever they need to do. It’s hard to imagine a materialistic person staying in kollel for years…unless he has other issues…ok so that is a personal issue. What is a good solution? Rabanim and also Kollel leaders should give schmoozin on aspiring to a life within one’s means and spiritually motivated.
Entitled I think is true. It’s no good. But as far as looking for a boy, I think if somone really wants a ben aliyah for their girl, they will find the type that doesn’t have big needs. The ones who are, likely aren’t the ” real deal” even if they learned in a brand name yeshiva…that said, even if he learns because he loves it and not because that is what everyone does, he still needs something so then it costs like anything else, only that if he is too demanding it demonstrates a problem…hopefully also he understands, even if he shteigs, that at some point he may have to get out and support the family…and it may also be hard then…so look ahead.
Lack of guidance: again it’s not just kollel guys but a big plus of small kollels is that they have that more…a big place has drawbacks. But who is our target market? Not the guy who goes to people for guidence…its those who dont…they benefit from being where they get it…and to fix it speak to the yeshivas..
I don’t understand how the rosh yeshiva or whoever you claim to have spoke to threw up his hands…it can be implemented internally in the yeshiva if they work on it…shmoozin…I mean it certainly can be made better by the Hanhalah..no?
Goals: in big places there are chaburahs for fast and for slow. You say, this guy said he only covered….well that is what he likes…another guy wants fast he goes to another building…this would be a plus for a bigger place over a smaller place
Idealism: it certainly is not gone…people do want to make an impact…for many people however it is safer to be in a frum place for them and their kids….kollel years ago was about that…today jt is also but it is broader so we are talking about all types of people in kollel not everyone is for that…
With all that said: I want to get back to target market. There are different intensities of yeshivishness out there…more specifically how much they are not only frum but socially frum…some types are more resistive to change or feeling compelled. Some types not so much. Some types are contrary bishita….even without realizing it or maybe on purpose…you can’t change the whole thing without clarifying not only the issues but the target market…different yeshivish types and intensities or heimish or what have you respond better to different things…I can give examples but it might get too touchy so so your homework is to figure it out.
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