besalel

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  • in reply to: Cherem on sefer “Pshuto Shel Mikra” #2143742
    besalel
    Participant

    midwesterner: halacha has a methodology and that methodology tells us that beis shamaya “eina mishna” (see, e.g., berochos in the neighborhood of lamed vov). That has nothing to do with rishonim providing various pshat, drush, agada, etc on the mikra. eilu ve’eilu divrei elokim chaim but not all of them are pshat.

    quite frankly, i do not understand how certain segments simultaneously tell us that mikra should not be taught and at the same time tell us how to study mikra. I am sorry but if your hashkafa tells you to ignore the study of mikra, then your opinion on how to learn mikra doesnt matter.

    in reply to: Cherem on sefer “Pshuto Shel Mikra” #2143683
    besalel
    Participant

    I have not read the sefer and can only comment on the comments here but it seems universally accepted that rashi is more often than not – not pshat. the rashbam himself in his intro to his peirush claims that Rashi had told him that if he could have had his time over again he would have put more emphasis on the pshat of the text. so if you set out to write a sefer focused on pshat you by definition have to be giving the ramban, rambam, ibn ezra, rashbam, ralbag, etc. to the detriment of rashi.

    as anyone who learns mikra can tell you, the ramban is not really a peirush on the torah but rather a peirush on rashi (and to a lesser extent the rambam and ibn ezra). virtually every ramban begins with rahsi’s pashat and why rashi’s pshat is not pshat.

    would rabbi feldman put the ramban in cherem?

    in reply to: Who is a bigger threat in America #2141906
    besalel
    Participant

    As a famous Rabbi used to say, “May Hashem save us from both Jesse [Helms] and Jesse [Jackson].” He also used to say that the Earth is round so if you keep moving to the far right or to the far left you end up meeting at the same point.

    in reply to: Should Tanach be Taught in Cheder? #2134839
    besalel
    Participant

    avira: from the passage quote from Rav Sternbuch, above, the Chasam Sofer seems to be saying not to learn Tanach without meforshim.

    ujm: did you know that Rabbi Avigdor Miller was a real master of the Tanach – having mastered it at a very young age when his only form of Jewish education was his grandfather’s teaching? I do not know whether Rabbi Miller would agree with Haruv Sternbuch on this issue.

    Perhaps Rav Sternbuch is reacting to his society where Israeli public schools teach tanach the same way they do shakespeare and in the way the chiloni public venerates the tanach (for the sole purpose of disparaging the talmud).

    in reply to: Which country had the most Tzadikim? #2134280
    besalel
    Participant

    ujm: interesting take. doesn’t it discount the chazon ish, the steipler and the post-war gedolim of israel, though?

    in reply to: Is every Yid a big tzaddik? #2133483
    besalel
    Participant

    of course not every yid is a tzaddik. the reform and conservative leaders imach shemam are reshaim. as for the passuk. veamcha kulam tzadikim, our chachamim already explained that this refers to oseh maaseh amecha – one who behaves like a jew. bernie sanders? norm finkelstein? howard zinn? noam chomsky? there is a mitzah to hasten their deaths.

    in reply to: Succos In Israel-whose money? #2127026
    besalel
    Participant

    מאה מיתות עדיפות על פני קנאה אחת (דברים רבה ט ט).

    רקב עצמות קנאה (משלי יד ל)

    הקנאה והתאוה והכבוד מוציאין את האדם מן העולם (אבות ד כא)

    in reply to: Can we have an adult conversation about education? #2125052
    besalel
    Participant

    I think there are good arguments to be made in favor of educating our youth.

    For one, it seems to me that absurd ideas generally find root in woefully uneducated societies. I think there is a pretty straight line from being severely educationally-disabled to refusing to vaccinate your children against polio, for example.

    But an ignorant society also can be easily manipulated. There is a reason slaves were not permitted an education. Consider this North Carolina law from the days of slavery:

    “AN ACT TO PREVENT ALL PERSONS FROM TEACHING SLAVES TO READ OR WRITE, THE USE OF FIGURES EXCEPTED
    Whereas the teaching of slaves to read and write, has a tendency to excite dis-satisfaction in their minds, and to produce insurrection and rebellion, to the manifest injury of the citizens of this State:
    Therefore, Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of North Carolina, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same, That any free person, who shall hereafter teach, or attempt to teach, any slave within the State to read or write, the use of figures excepted … upon conviction, shall, at the discretion of the court, if a white man or woman, be fined not less than one hundred dollars, nor more than two hundred dollars, or imprisoned; and if a free person of color, shall be fined, imprisoned, or whipped, at the discretion of the court, not exceeding thirty nine lashes, nor less than twenty lashes …”

    Thomas Jefferson is credited with saying: “An educated citizenry is a vital requisite for our survival as a free people.”

    The success of the Satmar business expo can be deceiving, in my opinion. According to the NYT article, there are 200,000 chasidim in NY and we know the starting point for that was the Holocaust (meaning, a very small community). Like a giant bucket of water that keeps doubling in volume every year, it takes a long time to get from the very first drop in the bucket to a quarter of the bucket being full – but it takes only two more years to go from being a quarter full to becoming completely full.

    I cannot ignore the fear that we are standing today, economically, at the bucket being a quarter full and for now, there are enough jobs in our own community to employ everyone who wants to be employed. But without an education system in place, I fear that we stand at the precipice of an economic meltdown. We risk suffering a Detroit-like meltdown within the prosperity that surrounds us.

    I see the chassidishe community as an upside-down pyramid with fewer money makers at the bottom point of the pyramid and a crushing weight readying itself to pile on to the top. Sticking to the Detroit analogy, one day the manufacturing plants will close and the entire city will falter.

    To make matters worse, many (but concededly not most) of the money makers at the bottom point of the pyramid did get an education before it became passe.

    We cannot continue this way.

    Why make it near impossible for a chassidishe boy to become a CPA? Why can’t we have more chassidishe men and women (who do not leave the community) become doctors? Why can’t a bochur with a great mind find a comfortable living in the legal profession instead of stocking shelves at the minimum livable wage?

    Defenders point to Europe and say “hey it worked for us there” (as if hashem allowed that story to end well for us) but the world was a far different place then and having an education was far less common among the greater society. Today, an overwhelming majority of decent jobs require (for better or for worse) and degree and/or a basic education (and they are not the same thing). This is especially true in the Northeast US.

    And I have a sneaky feeling that if given a choice between two schools identical in social acceptance, hashkufa and Torah, one with a secular education option and one without, there would be droves of parents (and eventually most) that would choose to educate their children. But today, parents have to sacrifice either Torah, hashkufa or social standing in order to educate their children. It is a real shame and I pray that Hashem helps us as a society see the nolad before it comes crashing down on our heads.

    in reply to: Russia is losing the war in Ukraine #2124841
    besalel
    Participant

    As regular followers of the news from Israel, we should know better than to simply accept the media narrative as is.

    How many times did Israel go into Gaza and later withdraw after reaching its objectives only to see the fake news declare that Hamas kicked the Jews out and won the war?

    I am not saying I support the Russians or the Ukrainians and I am not saying the news that Russia is losing is most definitely fake but what I am saying is: you cannot believe the media at face value.

    in reply to: Can we have an adult conversation about education? #2124036
    besalel
    Participant

    AviraDeArah: so now that we are on the same page, I am going to put the question to you. If you were a parent of a child in the system would you want the school to improve on English, Math and/or Science? Or any other subject? From within, of course – no state involvement. Or do you see no room for improvement?

    in reply to: Can we have an adult conversation about education? #2123999
    besalel
    Participant

    Honestly, AviraDeArah’s argument that once we let the state dictate, it will devolve into teaching all kinds of toeivos is a good argument. Clearly, the improvement, if necessary, must come from within and certainly not from the state. On that point we should all stand united.

    There was a famous meme from long before Yaffed or any other sonei yisroel came along that showed a picture of a chossid and it said on the top “i baked my mother in the oven” and on the bottom it said “a cake.” This meme was popular because this is how so many of us speak and while cartoonishly playing on stereotypes, we all know exactly why the meme was popular. Certainly there are many excellent Gerrer yeshivas and others that teach secular studies on the level but its hard for me to believe that there is no problem to address (especially in Satmar).

    But if the parents on the front lines do not see the need for improvement then there really is nothing to talk about. If there is to be change it will only come about if the parents want it and push for it.

    in reply to: Can we have an adult conversation about education? #2123747
    besalel
    Participant

    Avira: this is not about them.
    Commonsechel: when you come around to the point I was making about the reform (who don’t believe in the Beis hamikdash or prayer) you’ll get a good laugh and wish you could delete your posts.
    Gadolhadorah: sorry but my post is directed at the oilam further to the right of where you generally stand. I’m glad you agree but I am hoping those further to right would contribute their thoughts.

    in reply to: Israel LAnguages #2116727
    besalel
    Participant

    ujm: if you delete the conservative/reform/unaffiliated jews of the usa from your definition of who is a jew, as i do, then not only do a majority of the jews speak modern hebrew but they speak it as their first language. Most certainly, in 40-50 years those fake American “Jews” will not fit anyone’s definition of Jewish and so by then, an overwhelming majority of Jews will be speaking modern Hebrew as their primary language. I view it as most unfortunate, as Yiddish is a beautiful language and culture, but Yiddish is shrinking fast and has absolutely no future. It is sad. BH some chassidism will still teach Yiddish alongside Modern Hebrew and English so that Yiddish does not complete die off in our lifetime.

    in reply to: Israel LAnguages #2116642
    besalel
    Participant

    When the British ruled, they made all signs in English for the ruling British, in Hebrew for the Jewish population and in Arabic for the arab population. When Israel returned as the sovereign, it kept the British practice in place in all cities and even on the money. The new Israeli cities don’t continue the same tradition and the signs in all new cities are in English and Hebrew and not arabic.

    in reply to: I personally view ben gvirs rise concerning #2115950
    besalel
    Participant

    kahane was banned from running in the 1998 elections because polls showed him reaching 10-12 seats. He was a growing force and had he not been assassinated in 1990, who knows? It took Ben Gevir a long, long time to get back to where Kahane was in 1990 but he may be there now.

    ujm, your comment about Kahane being a typical zionist reminds me of a saying by leftist Kahane biographer Shaul Magid who accurately said, “many people love Kahane and many people hate Kahane but very very few people actually bothered to read Kahane.”

    in reply to: “Frum” female singers on YouTube #2112058
    besalel
    Participant

    You what this sounds like to me? Like Barry Freundel complaining that the women in the mikveh were not being tzanua. Why the aitch are you looking, man? An ehrlich yid knows what he should be avoiding – including all of youtube.

    The productions are by women and for women and you are not invited to participate. Stay in your own lane, brother.

    in reply to: “Frum” female singers on YouTube #2111237
    besalel
    Participant

    The idea here is that women don’t live in a man’s world. Rather, men and women share this world and need to learn how to give each other the privacy and respect so that each gender has an opportunity to enjoy it.

    Women like to remember the good times they had at a wedding and they like listening (and creating) music and would like to participate in these healthy kosher activities without being encroached upon by men. So if men would kindly give women the privacy and respect we can share this planet without abusing each other’s rights.

    in reply to: Monkeypox — The new AIDS #2109359
    besalel
    Participant

    Mesora from rabbi Miller. That’s rich. Rabbi Miller was a very nice pulpit, young Israel rabbi.

    in reply to: Monkeypox — The new AIDS #2109225
    besalel
    Participant

    ujm: i think you’re making my point. Of course there is some absolute emes in what the tosfos YT says – we believe that because who TYT were – but how are we supposed to digest this truth? Talking in shul is bad. Kibalti. Talking in shul formed a straight line to children being slaughtered in cold blood in front of the parents? What?

    Mishkav Zachor appears a whole lot worse in Hashem’s eyes than talking in shul but monkeypox does not compare in any way at all with the horrors of Tach VeTat.

    So is there any real, constructive, point in this exercise?

    If the point here is to recognize that there is a boreh olam and he is mashgiach and he rewards and punishes, i understand the point – but any attempt to oversimplify Hashem’s cause and effect seems like a waste of my time.

    in reply to: Monkeypox — The new AIDS #2109108
    besalel
    Participant

    I am not convinced that ascribing motives to Hashem’s actions is a healthy activity. There is no question that Hashem wants us to act in a certain way and not act in a certain way and we also believe with complete emunah that Hashem rewards and punishes – but how can one be so pretentious as to draw a straight line from A to B and say Hashem did A because of B?

    And when Hashem zeros in and punishes very specific babies r”l with Tay-Sachs who is he angry at?

    Oy Lanu Miyom HaDin – when we see Magefa in the city we ALL need to examine our ways and look to improve ourselves first.

    in reply to: Ywn is it really “yeshiva” world news #2106964
    besalel
    Participant

    moish26: even if your tafkid was not to be a writer, there is value in being able to express yourself in the written word. not everyone is a Shakespeare or need be one, but everyone should be able to deliver his thoughts in writing. the fact that you do not value literacy is an indictment of the education you received (not something you should personally take as an insult).

    in reply to: Ywn is it really “yeshiva” world news #2106790
    besalel
    Participant

    Moish26, I don’t disagree with your sentiment, but your syntax plays very well into the hands of YAFED.

    in reply to: Inefficient and Sketchy Non Profits / Tzedaka organizations #2105540
    besalel
    Participant

    According to public filings released in 2021, in 2018, one well known tzedaka reported revenue of $65.6 million and expenses of $59.8 million. Are we ok with this?

    in reply to: Inefficient and Sketchy Non Profits / Tzedaka organizations #2104647
    besalel
    Participant

    edit

    There was one organization whose mission was to lower yeshiva education costs but since they came to power, yeshiva tuition has increased significantly.

    in reply to: Neo Orthodoxy #2103460
    besalel
    Participant

    Neo Hasidism is a movement that began in the 1960’s among the conservative movement. it has nothing to do with rabbi weinberger. also, calling rabbi weinberger by the term”of yeshiva university” is a bit of a misnomer. Rabbi Weinberger is no more “of YU” than Rav Shimon Shkop.

    in reply to: Herzog’s column #2094385
    besalel
    Participant

    Yserbius: herzog is an avowed anti-frum leftist? do you have any evidence of that? the truth is, an overwhelming majority of israelis are either observant or traditionalists who share the same love and respect for the torah. it is but a tiny fraction that have subscribed to the lieberman/meretz world view.

    in reply to: Slavery — The Torah True Way (with Reb HaLeiVi) #2093239
    besalel
    Participant

    I dont think it is not really possible, halachaclly, to acquire an eved nowadays, as it requires the eved’s participation; see, e.g, (יורה דעה רס״ז:ט׳) and (יורה דעה רס״ז:ד׳) and while there may have been a time in history, long ago, where there may have been some benefit to being an eved (as r eliezer alludes to in his post), in today’s society it is so repugnant that no one will ever cooperate.

    in reply to: Sensible gun laws #2092319
    besalel
    Participant

    I agree wholeheartedly with OP. We should pass strict gun control laws AND every school must have an armed guard. Gun laws will not have an immediate impact but will help in the long run. Guards are needed NOW.

    in reply to: Flag Parade and Our Jewish Values #2092313
    besalel
    Participant

    harry yid: your logic falls apart the moment you recognize you will never tell a jew not to wear a yarmulke anywhere and you agree all humans should have freedom of expression everywhere but for some reason you believe the only person in the universe who does not enjoy the freedom of expression is the jew expressing jewish identity in israel. shame on those who appease the aggressor.

    in reply to: Every Yids a safek mamzer #2091001
    besalel
    Participant

    Menachem: I appreciate your brief demonstration on why european-style yeshiva learning misses the mark. don’t lose your head.

    in reply to: WHY DO LITVOCKS ALWAYS SAY TACHNUN?? #2090353
    besalel
    Participant

    Because Mitzvah Gedola Lihyos Besimcha. The Litvish are never happy so they are oyver this mitzvah so they need to reprent by saying tachnun which makes them sad because theyre saying tachnun. Its a vicious cycle.

    DISCLAIMER: This post is a joke that plays on popular stereotypes and is not meant literally.

    in reply to: 13 years in a cave #2088206
    besalel
    Participant
    in reply to: Is zelensky jewish? #2066639
    besalel
    Participant

    The gemoro in a number of places (like tamid 29a) say that chazal exaggerated about things. The rambam in הקדמתו לפרק חלק talks about the important role guzma plays in divrei chazal.

    yayin stam is mederbunun so sufek derabunun lekoola is the general rule but i would agree that as a mumar his yayin is passul even if he was a jew.

    in reply to: Ukraine Fundraisers #2065656
    besalel
    Participant

    lakewhut: arent the native jews the same jews we complain about taking advantage of israel’s law of return? i may be completely wrong but that is the general sense i have always had. and which jews are being helped by the appeals we see? the natives or the transplants?

    in reply to: Ukraine Fundraisers #2065621
    besalel
    Participant

    ubiq: for me a refugee is someone who was born and lived in a place which for some reason becomes uninhabitable. As far as I can see, these people left Crown Heights and Kfar Chabad to resettle a Jewish population in the Ukraine – one that did not exist from the time WWII ended and until these people got there. So its not exactly the same, in my view. They put themselves in harms way for no obvious reason and now need money for what? To get back to crown heights and kfar chabad?

    in reply to: Ukraine Fundraisers #2065403
    besalel
    Participant

    Quite frankly, I had no idea CHABAD was resettling the Ukraine and I still have no idea why. Before I give anyone any money I want to know what I’m gods name were you doing there.

    in reply to: Simple Solution #2065330
    besalel
    Participant

    i’ll admit i am a novice to this dispute and am learning as we go but I really have a hard time understanding any of OP’s points. Ukraine made a political decision to align itself with the western world. no one in the western world and no one in ukraine was an actual physical threat to russia. russia could have given ukraine a better deal than the west and tried to win their favor. instead, it decided to erase the country from the face of the world. how is that not a war crime? the only excuse i heard from the russians is that “well ukraine is not really a free, independent country anyway. it should be part of russia anyway.” that sounds like literal crazy speak. its like if mexico opened war on the usa because of texas.

    in reply to: Why Whoopi Goldberg’s asserion was hurtful #2057383
    besalel
    Participant

    avram: maybe she meant that there are other evils in this world besides white v black. not that white/white evil is lesser than black/white evil. If there was any priors with whoopie and anti-semitism (like if it was AOC who said such a thing or Ilan Omhar) then I get why everyone would rightfully assume the statement is designed to minimize the atrocity but why do we assume whoopie meant it that way?

    i think this whole tumhult exposed a very simple fact: there is no such thing as race. it is a made up word that people use to divide and hate on one another. race cannot be the pigmentation of the skin because Moroccans, african americans and dominicans all run the same color but are three different races. how are indians and chinese both of the same race – asian? it makes no sense. there is no such as thing as race and i wish people would stop using the word. i know i long ago refused to answer any questions anywhere on race. as a child, already. i never imagined that “sex/gender” would get eliminated before race.

    in reply to: Not thanking God #2053246
    besalel
    Participant

    The article did not bother me and actually touched upon a point I feel strongly abouit. I think we in the Orthodox world have to be more vocal about the fact that unaffiliated American Jews or those who are Reform (and probably Conservative, too) are not actually Jewish. We need to treat them and consider them non-Jews – unless there is evidence to the contrary.

    The fact is, most Americans who consider themselves Jewish (but are not Orthodox) are not the child of a Jewish mother. They may have a Jewish relative or they may have a relative who converted into Judaism under a non-orthodox “conversion” but that is about it.

    And long gone are the days that non-orthodox Jews had something, anything, Jewish about them. A majority do not believe in God (and that goes for their rabbis, too). They don’t care about kosher, pesach, nothing. The last vestige of Judaism they held on to was Israel but that is not the case any more, either.

    So to recap, they were not born Jewish, they do not believe in Judaism (or any religion for that matter) and have no connection to Israel. In what way are they Jewish? The answer is, they are not.

    So thankfully intermarriage is diluting these people – more and more every year – but the time has come to stop looking at them as Jews, at all.

    Now, I do not hate them in any way. I am delighted the rabbi and his congregation were saved. Unlike R’ Avigdor Miller who says he hated reformed, I do not. But I do not hate people just because they are not Jewish. They are not Jewish. Full stop.

    God willing, if more Jews take this approach, we can stop hearing about “Jews for [insert liberal/anti-Torah phrase here]”, women of the wall, etc. We can stop hearing about these goyim masquerading as Jews and supporting all sorts of anti-Jewish and anti-religion causes.

    I wish them nothing but the best, as goyim. We do not need them and do not want them. Don’t let the door hit you on your way out.

    in reply to: What Steps Will the Charedi World Take to Try to Prevent Abuse #2050763
    besalel
    Participant

    user176, i am somewhat offended by the idea that the parents of victims are to blame. and even more than the abuser? come on, man.

    ujm: a little tricky since sharing links us forbidden. Maybe you can do a google search for “Eida Hachareidis Bans All Chaim Walder’s Books” and look for the blog entry dated june 17, 2021.

    in reply to: What Steps Will the Charedi World Take to Try to Prevent Abuse #2050664
    besalel
    Participant

    It is interesting to note that the Edia Charedis Yerushalayim banned Walder books about six months before the allegations about him came to light in a written publication. The reason for the ban at that time was very murky. Something to do with the fact that he writes in a goyishe style. I really do wonder now whether the Eida was privy to the allegations and were doing what they thought was best to remove him from his position of power.

    in reply to: Vaccine Mandates #2050247
    besalel
    Participant

    AviraDeArah: I meant in children. Flu is more dangerous, hospitalizes more, kills more.

    Ubiquitin: ive long ago been a supporter of legalizing marijuana. I don’t know if you are doing covid mandates any favor by defending them with marijuana laws that society today recognizes was a giant mistake.

    Yankel der ganaf: you’re missing the point. i am pro-vax. I got vaxxed, my parents are vaxxed and my children are vaxxed. the point is if someone wants to be an idiot and not vaccinate thats their problem. they might die but that is the choice they made. why should it bother me or you.

    in reply to: Vaccine Mandates #2050209
    besalel
    Participant

    ubiquitin: i think the point is that there seems to be no single rule. for example, it is much more important, for children’s safety, that every child get vaccinated against the flu every year – yet society has long ago accepted that we can’t force parents to do that. why is it that when it comes to covid, all societal norms, morals and ethics have gone out the window without any real debate on the issue? higzimu.

    in reply to: My Poasts/Comments are not getting Approved. #2046049
    besalel
    Participant

    “2 – Loshon Hara will not be tolerated at all. We are not and will not become Lashon Hara central (keep this in mind when starting a thread).”

    Now, I don’t care who you are: that’s funny right there.

    in reply to: “Frum” therapist #2046041
    besalel
    Participant

    the little i know: i loved your response.

    in reply to: Political Bechira Chofshis #2045211
    besalel
    Participant

    Republican: DeSantis and then Haley
    Democratic: Tulsi Gabbard

    in reply to: Ashkenazic Trauma #2034560
    besalel
    Participant

    absurd. come on, man.

    in reply to: Lev Tahor Proclamation #2032852
    besalel
    Participant

    I would need some more evidence of authenticity including proof of chain of custody. A few questions: the letter is dated April 17, 2019. How did it come to light now? (mendy said he left the cult in 2018) In the recording the woman is telling us they were commanded to slaughter the children. The letter seems to suggest poisoning. When was the recording made?

    An actual news article looking to inform the public would have included some of these facts.

    I am not looking to defend Lev Tahor but i would like to know more before reaching any conclusions. We know that one individual at the head of the hunt of lev tahor also called the goy from lebanon/texas a hezbollah terrorist and we now know that this was not true. Can we hold up a second before we rush to judgment? This letter could very well be authentic and if it is, there are no words to describe the evil and horror but can we just make sure that it is, please?

    in reply to: The most unexpected place where you met yid. #2031118
    besalel
    Participant

    Common saychel: I’m pretty sure you can inn hike that stretch.

    in reply to: The most unexpected place where you met yid. #2030332
    besalel
    Participant

    common saychel: was he thru hiking? i always wondered if its possible to thru hike the at as a frum jew.

Viewing 50 posts - 1 through 50 (of 464 total)