Forum Replies Created
“Bein Hazmanim is not vacation”
Call it what you will. It’s effectively the same thing. (I don’t think it’s less torah-dik to call it “vacation” because of course a Jewish vacation includes torah, tefillah, adherence to halacha etc. It’s really more of a semantic thing).
“Real Yeshiva ketanas and Mesivtas don’t have any midwinter vacation”
I take offence at that. It’s simply not true. (And I don’t mean only for modern schools)
“A yeshiva bochur is supposed to be learning yomam valaila
Vacation by definition is the exact opposite of that therefore the concept of vacation cant be al pi torah
By saying that yeshivas give vacation is not a proof to the argument rather ha gufa kasha.”
1) No he isn’t, at least not if you mean without breaks (which is what you seem to be saying). Even Moshe Rabbeinu had breaks. Even in Volozhin where they had learning 24/7 – they had *one person* learning 24/7, not the whole yeshiva. The chafetz chaim used to tell bachurim that “the desire for (excessive) hasmada is the yetzer hara.”
2) Meiheicha teisi? First of all the concept of breaks is a torah concept. Rav Yaakov Kamenetsky ran a learning-focused summer camp which had a few hours break. A visiting RY wanted to give a shiur then and Rav Yaakov didn’t let him – he said it’s very important not to push people too hard. Obviously it’s slightly different for each person which is why people’s learning schedules during bein hazmanim/vacation will differ and that’s totally fine.
3) When institutions with talmidei chachamim at their head do things, we can say ma’aseh rav, your personal kasha notwithstanding.
Vacation is certainly not just a Western idea. All yeshivos have been hazmanim; the difference is only that full time yeshivos usually give longer breaks around YT and virtually no winter (and a short summer) break. Having experienced both systems, I actually the thing the secular/college schedule is better for avoiding burnout (and, I think, is about equal in terms of net vacation length)
GadolaHadorah: I’m not saying I agree or disagree with the substantive points you raise, but why do you have to constantly belittle people, be they anonymous online posters or actual people? It isn’t nice and doesn’t make your arguments any more compelling.
Chash – your first pshat is from an earlier Rav Avraham Hager, quoted in Tosafos Kidduahin 71a.
@CTLawyer “hundreds of years before there was a Romania”
Don’t confuse the State of Romania (late 1800’s) with Romanian-speaking areas. According to your logic, Germany and Italy are also younger than the USA.
I see. From what I understand, since MTA is so large and has such a wide variety of students, your chevra is really based on which shiur you’re in and who you choose to associate with. However much you put in in terms of commitment and putting yourself on the right path, that’s what you’ll get out of it. Because of the wide range, it’s not possible to say that every student or aspect of MTA is a good environment, but it’s easy to only stay in those places that do have a good influence on you. What I’m trying to say is, unlike other yeshivos where maybe the overwhelming student body and therefore feeling of the yeshiva is positive (or chas veshalom negative), in MTA it isn’t set for you, you can find both and you need to make a small effort to seek out the right chevra. I know a BT who went to MTA and it really worked for him.
I know a lot about MTA because many of my friends went there. If you have any other specific questions, please feel free to let me know.
It’s modern but there’s a very wide range of students. They accept very serious and bright talmidim as well as less motivated ones, through a multiple track system and many different level shiurim for each grade. All of the rebbeim are fantastic, many different styles and levels. Many many students come from Teaneck but there are also buses from Monsey, Brooklyn, Riverdale and others. There is a small group of people who dorm, either because they live too far away or because of convenience. What specifically do you want to know?
The aruch hashulchan mentions a minhag to make put saffron in foods on shavuos, because it has a good smell, like torah which is compared to a rei’ach tov. He also brings some lesser-heard but interesting explanations of why we eat dairy on shavuos. For example, we find a remez to this in the rashei teivos of the last three words of the pasuk “????? ???????? ???????? ???? ???? ??’ ??????????” (????? ??,??). Also, another interesting reason:
??? ???? ??? ?? ??? ???? ?????? ?????, ??????? ?????? ????? ????? ?????. ??? ?????? ??? ??????? ???, ????????: ?? ???? ????? ???. ??? ??? ??? ????? ????? ??????.
Sam: I can testify that it is, indeed, quite a sight to behold.
ItcheSrulik: I don’t know what you’re referring to, but in YU they have the minhag (I believe started by Rav Dovid Lifshitz) to sing odeh la’keil right before shacharis. It’s in some bentchers for friday night.
Sam: Rav Schachter said that Rav Soloveitchik thought they might be, but then he (Rav Soloveitchik) said since they’re worn by everyone nowadays and not just one particular nation, they aren’t. I am 100% serious.February 12, 2016 3:47 am at 3:47 am in reply to: Gut chodesh! Are we supposed to be marbeh b'simchah now? #1137278
My rebbi told us a dvar torah about simcha in adar. He said, we see a connection between the sadness of Av and the simcha of adar, because the gemara says “k’sheim shemishenichnas av m’ma’atin b’simcha, kach mishenichnas adar marbim b’simcha” implying a connection between them. What is the connection? He quoted a pshat that we know the sadness of av was caused through the cheit hameraglim. What was that? According to one understanding, the meraglim were so used to having nissim geluyim done for them in the midbar, they couldn’t accept going to eretz yisrael where they would see less nissim geluyim and more of just seeing hashem’s yad in nature. So, the flip side of that is adar, where we davka emphasize the hidden nissim hashem does every day, as in the story of the megillah. According to this pshat, marbim b’simcha means seeing hashem’s influence on the world more (which makes sense because simcha is often used in the torah in context of serving hashem, such as usmachtem lifnei hashem) My rebbi ended with, if seeing hashem more in teva is how we increase simcha (and not through shtick or bittul torah) then kol hamarbeh, harei zeh m’shubach and I don’t think there’s any problem of doing this in adar I too, or indeed, any time of year.
I actually have done just that. It’s quite interesting how when I look at a lightbulb through the side of my glasses, I see the individual pieces instead of just a bright shining light.
Yes, of course yeshivish and chareidi mean different things to different people. But generally speaking, it’s usually about a type of person who dresses a certain way, holds certain shittos, and attends certain types of institution, while there isn’t that universality in “Modern orthodoxy” – YU calls itself that, fully observant people call themselves that, but YCT and Yeshivat Maharat call themselves that too (they use “open orthodox” and “modern orthodox” pretty interchangeably, see both of their websites), as well as do non-fully observant people. So it is a very bad identifier for colloquial usage.
Quote from the Shtefanesht Rebbe, R’ Menachem Friedman (son of Ruzhiner Rebbe): “Personally I do not know at all what is the meaning of the word frum also my father did not mention such a word to me. But it appears to me that it is a type of garment whose outward cover is pride, whose lining is anger, and which is sewn with the black of depression.” (The House of Rizhin, by R. Menachem Brayer)
I believe that instead of judging people by their label (whether it’s imposed on them by someone else or self-chosen), look at their actions and beliefs instead. There is less of a difference in the different people who call themselves chareidi or yeshivish than there is in the words Modern Orthodox, which mean different things to different people. To quote Rav Schwab (when asked a question in which someone who was embezzling money was referred to as a frum yid), “If he is embezzling from the government, he is not a frum Yid!”
Even if someone claims they don’t keep whatever aspect of halacha because they’re “Modern Orthodox,” that no more implicates other Modern Orthodox people who don’t feel the same way as he than that “frum yid” who was an embezzler represents all shomer torah yidden.
mik5 – it doesn’t take almost any more time than the way most people do it.
I agree with RebYidd. We still have tisha b’av once a year even though we’re supposed to mourn over the destruction of the beis hamikdash all the time.
#3 just means saying your own bracha instead of being yotzei with the ba’al habayis. I’m not from chabad and I have this minhag too, though we pass the challas to everyone to say hamotzi before they are cut.
I just wanted to see the url. I do like tennis, though.
Joseph, does the fact that YU is both a college and a yeshiva change it from being those things into a “business”?
Ok then, so probably “modern orthodox” was used by chareidim to describe those they saw as acting too modernish.
I don’t know why the RCA accepts him, and I can’t speak for them. That still doesn’t mean they actually approve of his actions
Joseph, allow me one more post, and then I will b’n not stray off topic anymore.
I respect your opinions, and your right to them. However,
A) The fact the the Oxford Dictionary does not contain the etymology of some obscure words is irrelevant to any of our discussion. We see the terms “ortho-” and “orthodox” used many times in various languages, such as orthopedist, orthodontist, “orthodoxie” in French, related words in other Euroean languages, “orthodox” as the word referring to standard/normal, “orthodox” as referring to a sect of christianity, and lehavdil orthodox referring to frum judaism. I am unaware of any argument amongst historians as to the origins and definitions of these words. Therefore, to say that reform or any other position disagreeing with orthodox judaism would use the term “orthodox” as reffering to frum judaism, is implausible as I see it.
B) Now, the term “chareidi” is the way that many more right wing jews refer to themselves. It is accepted to be taken from “chareid l’dvar hashem” – trembling at the word of hashem, to perform His will properly. If you ask me, that sounds like a nice label; and I don’t see, again, why anyone who disagreed with chareidim or wasn’t part of their klal would coin this extremely complementive term. Once it’s in use, it is in use by all, except certain news sources who like to call them “ultra-orthodox”, which to me and Rabbi Lamm sounds perjorative (Seventy Faces: Articles of Faith, KTAV Publishing House, 2001, p. 1. “…I prefer the Hebrew term Haredi because it is not pejorative and is the one used by the Haredim to identify themselves”); but who would coin this term if they were not trying to complement and raise up this form of judaism as the best.
Now on your previous post:
C) The “cavemen” quote was taken out of context and misused. This may have been unintentional, but if you actually know of what Rabbi Lamm said, it’s quite clear as to what he means. Could he have been more careful? Yes. Was he calling bnei torah cavemen? Absolutely not.
D) I agree that BMG is yeshiva and not a business, because regardless of its techinical status, its mission statement is that of a yeshiva. The same goes for YU, regardless of its slightly different philosophy of what a yeshiva should teach, so it appears we are now in agreement
E) When Avi Weiss taught at YU (I apologize for not knowing this occured; it was at Stern actually) he was not (at least known as) “Avi Weiss” in all of his neo-conservative glory we see him today.
F) Last: charedi judaism is absolutely a movement and a label (as much as MO is). Members feel a pride in doing the things mostly exclusive to them, such as wearing white shirts, black hats and jackets. They would not be caught dead mistaken for MO. They need a clear dissociation from MO jews; not just because they don’t agree with them, but because they need to preserve the individuality of their movement. This (and vice-versa for MO jews) has kept us from achdus all these years
PS: I like your response that you are simply “a Jew” and would concur for myself.
“Orthodox” = “right opinion” in Greek. Where is your proof that this was made by non-orthodox, and why does that make any sense to call them the “right opinion”?
Chareid = tremble. I’m pretty sure chareidim gave themselves that name, to show that they “tremble” in their service of hashem
Joseph: I have no time for this now. I will bring a few quotes. We don’t need to debate points, because it’s futile – you want to see Modern Orthodoxy as bad, and find a way you shall.
“Modern Orthodoxy is nothing but a label.” True, in the sense of yeshivish or chareidi being nothing but a label.
“The only coherent explanation of Modern Orthodoxy comes form (sic) Rav Soloveitchik in his Five Addresses, which is, in a nutshell, we must compromise our standards in America because traditional Torah standards will not survive here.” Completely untrue. Rav Soloveitchik never once advocated compromising standards, chas veshalom. Read the quotes you yourself provided, and see how he is not compromising anything.
“Rav Aharon Kotler ZT’L, and Rav Schneur ZT’L after him, would under no circumstances even walk into YU.” Source? A) I know that Rav Aharon gave a shiur there B) Certainly someone who wouldn’t enter YU would not meet with the Rosh Yeshiva of YU; yet strangely, I recall several stories and pictures which show the mutual respect between Rav Soloveitchik and both Rav Aharon and Rav Schneur. (see here: http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/ou-mo )
“Please understand, YU is a business, not a Yeshiva” If you make the terms exclusive, so is BMG (Rav Aharon Kotler’s position was “CEO”)
“In YU, Dr. Lamm, though he was merely President, and not Rosh Yeshiva,” – Let me stop you there: patently false. Rabbi Dr. Lamm held the official title of Rosh HaYeshiva
“The unacceptable socializing that goes on between the YU boys and Stern girls” – How much do you know about it to deem it unacceptable?
“the partying” – huh?
“the teaching of Gemorah to girls” – they hold it’s ok; that’s what this thread is about
“the Zionism” – come on, now.
“the allowance of toeiva clubs” – see here: http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/ou-mo to understand how this is not true
“The fact that the President of a “Yeshiva” can get up and refer to Bnei Torah as ‘cavemen'” – a hateful twisting and misquotation of his words
“And you can have an Avi Weiss and others like him teaching under its auspices” – Excuse me. I must be on another planet.
“Not all roshei yeshivos are equal” means what to you, exactly? That Rabbi Rakeffet was lying?
I also saw your “modern orthodox judaism” thread, riddled with sinas chinam, misinformations (I didn’t want to say lies) and utter disrespect for gedolim. Pasting the link to a thread doesn’t prove anything, if it’s a bad and inaccurate thread.
Another story: It was Motzei Tisha B’av, and Rav Lichtenstein was learning (he hadn’t broken his fast yet). Someone was sent to get him, but he said he wanted to finish the sugya and would be there in a few minutes. The boy asked, “Rebbi, but aren’t you hungry?” Rav Aharon said, “I missed more than just food today.” (because we can’t learn torah regularly on tisha b’av)
Because on a weekday, you could say the day starts with maariv or shacharis – since it’s circular, it doesn’t really matter. But shabbos starts with maariv.
I heard another story today: Someone was walking in the halls and saw his friend, whose name happened to be aharon. He called out “Aharon, can I borrow a pencil?” Rav Aharon Lichtenstein was in the hallway also, and turned around and said, “Sorry, I don’t have one with me.” He wasn’t trying to be funny; he was such an anav that he thought people would call him by his first name. I can only imagine the bachur’s mortification!
Sam, would that depend on what type of halel you say? I also heard quoted from Rav Schachter that only things that are specifically celebratory in relation to the day would be permitted, i.e. dancing, but not haircuts which we don’t generally do to celebrate.
Sorry to interrupt but on an unrelated note, the person who started this thread is Ivdu Es Hashem Bisimcha, while I am IvduEsHashemBsimcha, and a helpful mod has added a subtitle for me: BauLfanavBirnana (I like it!). So don’t confuse us.
I think depends on what the thing is, and the person involved. For example, many talmidim of R’ Schachter wear what he believes to be techeiles. Many others who are not his talmidim also do so. I feel like it may depend on the individual’s opinion and analysis on the issue, whereas by yeshivish rabbonim people may be more likely to follow no matter what.
DaasYochid and PBA: Without knowing too much on the matter, I believe your paradox can be solved in this way: YU Roshei Yeshiva and YU people may not believe in “Daas Torah” when it comes to non-torah related matters, but they certainly (at least, the majority who are truly “modern orthodox”, not the small minority of non-frum people trying to keep themselves called “orthodox” who make everyone else look bad) believe in daas torah (aka Psak) in halachic matters! If a YU rosh yeshiva tells his talmidim to do something halachically required, they would do so. (I have not seen that this agreement was portrayed as something everyone must do)
Side note: the prenup website also lists Rav Ovadia Yosef zt”l as being supportive of their prenup
Joseph, I am well aware of the contents of the letter, and have read them previously. I was just pointing out that when you call “your” translation “closer to the authors intent” than “mine”, we were both using the same translation: that which you so kindly provided.
This thread is not about YU. Rav Elchonon’s letter could have any number of explanations (see here: http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/coffeeroom/topic/ou-mo/page/3 ) but regardless, he was not endorsing death over YU, and to say he was is dishonest, both in general and as a telling over of a halachic shittah.
Joseph, I was quoting your translation. And yes, people may have had the impression that YU is such a grave place – we have discussed on previous threads how this has no practical bearing on anything.
Joseph, your translation does not match what you read out of it. To quote,
“[YU and Beis Midrash L’torah] are places of danger in terms of spirituality because they conduct themselves in a spirit of freedom. And what benefit is there to flee from a physical danger to a spiritual danger.”
Note that he said there is danger in both, but he does not say (or imply) that if one has a specific choice: Be killed or go to one of these places, that they should choose being killed. Rather, he says that the danger is similar in both places, and there is no use to flee because danger is at those places too, but he doesn’t say that the choice between certain death and YU, as it were, is death.
Joseph, you are lying when you say that Rav Elchonon Wasserman said it is better to die than be saved physically and go to YU. He said “what’s the use?” to be in danger physically than to be in (what he believed to be) danger spiritually. There’s a big difference.
PBA, I have always liked your hilarious posts. This, though, is my favorite post of yours. Thank you, and I’m impressed.
Everyone else: Like Sam said, I beg you not to argue on this thread. Please, as a favor to a fellow Jew.
Another story: When Rav Aharon became ill and as a result gave less shiurim, he went to the hanhala of the Yeshivas Har Etzion and asked them to reduce his salary because of it. This made me think: how many of us, in a similar position, would act with such a love for emes?
Another time, Rav Aharon had a “press conference” – basically, a chance for the talmidim to ask their questions, halachic and hashkafic. One wanted to be very careful in the phrasing of the question, because Rav Aharon would take the questions very seriously and took every word into account. A talmid wanted to ask a question about learning tanach, and how to balance it with other sedarim. Because of his fear and awe of Rav Aharon, however, he lost his composure and it mistakenly came out as simply, “Why do we learn?” Rav Aharon reacted instantly. “Why do we learn?!” he thundered. “Why do we breath?!?! ‘Ki haim chayeinu v’orech yameinu!'”
Rav Aharon had hip surgery and was absent from yeshiva for a short while. Soon after his return, he gave a two hour long shiur klali, as we would normally do during the year. By the end, he was visibly exhausted. A talmid asked him, “Would the Rosh Yeshiva like a glass of water?” Rav Aharon responded with thanks, but said he tries not to drink water in the Beis Medrash. He also would try not to answer his phone in the Beis Medrash.
Another Rav told over how once when Rav Aharon was still in YU there was some sort of rally at Washington D.C., and Rav Aharon was in attendance. After the bus returned to Washington Heights very late at around 1:00 AM, this then-talmid was to take Rav Aharon home, a few blocks away. He exited the bus, but couldn’t find Rav Aharon. Bewildered, he wondered if Rav Aharon had left on his own. He went back into the bus to double-check, and there was Rav Aharon: on his hands and knees picking up the garbage the boys had left on the bus so the driver wouldn’t have to.
When Rav Aharon was still in YU (before he moved to E”Y), he once visited Rav Soloveitchik zt”l’s apartment in the Morgenstern dormitory. It was late at night, around 12:00, when suddenly everyone in the dorm was woken and urgently sent out by security – there was a bomb scare. My rebbe was there, and everyone including Rav Aharon was waiting on the street. Suddenly, a “kol korei” went around: Rav Aharon was going to give a shiur. Everyone was woken up, kicked out of the dorm, worried about what would be, but Rav Aharon’s first priority was to pass the time properly with a shiur.
Once, there was a three-day Purim in Eretz Yisrael. This talmid would be spending shabbos with a chevra, and for some reason was convinced by someone to invite Rav Aharon and his family for shabbos lunch. Rav Aharon said he had to check with his wife. As it turned out, that week was not a good time to come because he had a lot of guests. However, he offered to come and schmooze on shabbos afternoon. In shocked awe, the talmid accepted. Rav Aharon came and answered the questions of the chevra, which had somehow expanded from four or five guys to about 15.
Baruch Dayan Ha’emes. Yasher Koach to YWN for realizing that the loss of R’ Lichtenstein zt”l is a loss for the entire torah world.
ubiquitin, I wouldn’t describe myself as chassidish (not my community, attire, etc) only that my ancestors were and I have some of their minhagim. Now I’m thoroughly confused: first you speak against schlissel challah, then you say you do it too?
I have “shabbos secrets”; that’s where I was bringing the special challahs from. Yet you didn’t respond to my post…
Also, I know these minhagim didn’t come from moshe rabbeinu or anytime near then, and wasn’t implying that at all.
ubiquitin, I’m not worrying about the rabbit, I’m worrying about this minhag. I come from a chassidish background and have this minhag, and it would be terribly upsetting to learn if it really did stem from christian practices because of, in my opinion, its beauty and meaning (besides even the halachic aspect, which I am completely ignorant about). And many chassidish people have minhagim regarding challahs yearround – round (dunno why), bird shaped (alluding to passuk in yeshaya “like birds appearing form nowhere, so will hashem’s help arrive”), shofar, or hand shaped challah (dunno why) for rosh hashana, round challah with outstretched arm for hoshana rabba (to accept a “good kvittel”), crown or torah challah for simchas torah, menorah challah for chanukah, fish or hamantash shaped challah for purim, etc. These are events with more symbolism to put on a challah than the time between pesach and shavuos, which could be why the key challah is specifically at this time. In any event, just because there could be other times this minhag could apply doesn’t mean it isn’t appropriate here. I’m not trying to fool myself, but I am skeptical about believing that the minhag stems from a non-jewish source. If there is a problematic correlation, anyway, why didn’t previous rabbonim point it out and stop the practice?
The thing is, ubiquitin, that the minhag isn’t really so similar: the dough is merely pierced with a key, and another form of the minhag is just shaping the dough or some seeds like a key. Also, who’s to say that the christians didn’t get their idea from us? And not all similar things come from one another; for example, some old haggadas have a picture of a rabbit by yaknehaz, because “haz” means hare or rabbit in german or something like that (at least, that’s what I’ve been told.) But would you suggest that due to the proximity in time of pesach to lehavdil easter, it means that the rabbit was taken from the christians? Of course not, because we have a separate reason to explain the rabbit, or in this case, the key.
And. when you say that yidden make schlissel challas specifically this time of year: it’s true, but the time of year is the source of the minhag. At least one explanation is that the key is to remind us that we have the “key” to unlock great spiritual achievements in this great time leading up to matan torah.
shtark4ever: I for one have never heard of a metzitzah b’peh chol hamoed trip.
I have heard Rav Schachter say that there is absolutely no mekor for saying that eliyahu comes, and that to say that to children is l’havdil like christians telling their kids santa claus comes on christmas (Rav Schahcter’s own example).
We use a blowtorch. It’s pretty cool, actually.
Chag kasher v’sameach – a gut yom tov!
Joseph: exactly my point. People decide what they think is right and then do it. They don’t say “I don’t know if I’m right or wrong”. You just have to think hard about what you’re doing and whether you consider it proper. And what Sam said holds true: if you’re supposed to wait until you get accepted, the Rambam wouldn’t have been the Rambam at all, because he wasn’t accepted very much close to his lifetime.