Menachem Shmei

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  • in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2246280
    Menachem Shmei


    I agree with most of what you wrote, but I would still disagree about the flag.
    The very issue with the flag was that zionist nationalism was being seen as a replacement for authentic Judaism. Our flag is Torah and mitzvos, not some symbol of a secular government.

    The fact that it’s seen as a “more general symbol representing the jewish people” is exactly what the Rebbe was afraid of. We already have 613 flags of Judaism (“מצוינים במצות”), no need to add secular ones to the bunch.

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2246279
    Menachem Shmei

    Yesterday Menachem Shmei said

    Qwerty, we already went through this topic at length in the past, no need to rehash it in this thread.

    You claimed that I tried convincing you of something, and you haven’t been able to show me one post where I’ve done so. Don’t fall back on your classic rhetoric.

    I’m still waiting for you to either find me a post where I tried convincing you, or retract what you said.

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2246188
    Menachem Shmei

    I only wrote this to demonstrate my integrity

    Sorry Qwerty you failed to demonstrate this.

    I didn’t try to convince you anything about the holiness of the Rebbe. I pointed out that you were misunderstanding sechel when you thought that he was retracting his opinion, and I pointed out that this must be a mainstream Chabad view since it is a quote from the Rebbe.

    Here is my original post (brackets added now. Go back to the original for context):
    “This is ridiculous. Sechel never denied about G-d enclothed in a body.
    Why would you prove [that this is a mainstream Chabad view] from “eight senior rabbis” when Sechel himself just quoted it from the most senior Chabad rabbi of all – the Lubavitcher Rebbe!?
    He denied your understanding of that statement, which is perfectly fine.”

    Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher

    This does not constitute as “trying to convince me that the Rebbe is god clothed in human form” as you claimed.

    If I believe that you don’t even understand what this statement means (as I’ve written many times) – then how would I try to convince you that it’s true!?

    Sorry, try again. Waiting for a single post.

    in reply to: Reasons for the Dreidel #2246184
    Menachem Shmei

    Dear Ujm, That is a great reason except for the minor details…

    UJM’s reason happens to be brought down here:

    Not sure who this is or how reliable he is, but just putting a source out there.

    this is well before the advent of seforim
    In the source it says that they were learning בעל פה.

    the Yivanim weren’t searching for them learning Torah privately; and they would have killed them simply because they weren’t hellinized

    What’s your source?

    Isn’t the simple pshat of להשכיחם מתורתך that the Greeks tried preventing Jews from learning Torah? As the Rambam writes, בְבַיִת שֵׁנִי כְּשֶׁמַּלְכֵי יָוָן גָּזְרוּ גְּזֵרוֹת עַל יִשְׂרָאֵל וּבִטְּלוּ דָּתָם וְלֹא הֵנִיחוּ אוֹתָם לַעֲסֹק בְּתוֹרָה וּבְמִצְוֹת – they didn’t allow them to learn Torah.

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2246036
    Menachem Shmei

    You might want to check out your thread(question of an ignorant). Ypu spent about a month trying to convince me that the Rebbe is god clothed in human form

    Point out ONE POST where I try convincing you of this, and I will leave YWNCR for good.

    in reply to: Mods? Mods? #2246018
    Menachem Shmei

    Please fix the “” at the end of the first line of my post here:

    Menorah in your face

    Thanks so much!

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245986
    Menachem Shmei

    because most poskim disagree

    Since when is halacha a number game, where if you find 8 names with one opinion and 5 names with a different opinion so you are forbidden from following the 5?

    Do all sfardim have to follow ashkenazi halacha because there are more ashkenazi poskim (or vise versa)?

    Do you know how many variations there are in halacha between different poskim?
    Do you think that in every question, we must compile a list of how many rabbonim say what, and then follow majority? Or does this only apply to issues that involve Lubavitch?

    My rov, and most Chabad rabbanim, paskened like the poskim who encourage making a brocha, so why in the world should there be an issue? Because you compiled a list with more names on the other side!?

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2245866
    Menachem Shmei

    Regarding the line, “All who expand on Sippur Yetzias Mitzrayim are praiseworthy.” Rav Dovid commented, “People talk about what’s important to them.” When we look at the Lubavichers in this and other sites do they ever mention Hashem?

    אִם הָיָה קָטָן אוֹ טִפֵּשׁ אוֹמֵר לוֹ בְּנִי כֻּלָּנוּ הָיִינוּ עֲבָדִים כְּמוֹ שִׁפְחָה זוֹ אוֹ כְּמוֹ עֶבֶד זֶה בְּמִצְרַיִם וּבַלַּיְלָה הַזֶּה פָּדָה אוֹתָנוּ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא וַיּוֹצִיאֵנוּ לְחֵרוּת. וְאִם הָיָה הַבֵּן גָּדוֹל וְחָכָם מוֹדִיעוֹ מַה שֶּׁאֵרַע לָנוּ בְּמִצְרַיִם וְנִסִּים שֶׁנַּעֲשׂוּ לָנוּ עַל יְדֵי משֶׁה רַבֵּנוּ הַכֹּל לְפִי דַּעְתּוֹ שֶׁל בֵּן:

    When telling the story of Yetzias Mitzrayim, the foolish child is told that only Hashem redeemed us because if you told him about Moshe he would start accusing you of Avoda Zara.

    However, when talking to the wise child, only Moshe is mentioned, since the child is wise enough to understand that Moshe is just Hashem’s shliach (שלח נא ביד תשלח) to redeem the Yidden.

    [Of course, this is דרך הצחות.
    The Eibeshter is the center of my life and the life of anyone I know.
    Thanks to chassidus, I and my fellow Lubavitchers possibly think more about Hashem every day than the average frum Jew, because in our yeshivos, in addition to learning Gemara (which is Torah, but rarely discusses the נותן התורה) we spend time learning parts of Torah that specifically teach about Hashem (chassidus).  😳-mod

    Qwerty’s false accusations are just another example of his baseless hate for groups of Yidden which he disguises in his claim of helping them “realize the folly of their ways.” If he actually cared about them, he wouldn’t need to come up with false accusations.
    It also displays Qwerty’s lack of knowledge of how to check and search through a poster’s previous posts… Or maybe he doesn’t know that G-d with a hyphen refers to Hashem?]

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245872
    Menachem Shmei

    1) I’m afraid I find Rabbi Yair Hoffman’s article (to which the article you quote is a response) far more convincing.

    In other words, you think that it’s forbidden for Lubavitchers to follow the psokim of Rav Binyomin Zilber, Rav Sholom Messas, and other tremendous poskim (including most Chabad rabbonim)? Why?

    in reply to: Reasons for the Dreidel #2245723
    Menachem Shmei

    In EY where they day say that a great miracle was here it also adds up to Meshiach through the name Tzemach.

    And the name Menachem – “Menachem shmei” 😌

    Menachem Shmei

    The CR is a very diverse place where we debate many opposing views in Yiddishkeit.

    This is not a great place to find practical direction.

    Each one of us has the groups that we might think you should stay away from.
    As a Lubavitcher, I think a wonderful way to get closer to Yiddishkeit is with Chabad (I know Rabbi Levin, he’s a great guy!)

    Practically, I think you should find a local orthodox Jew (or better, a rabbi) whom your family is already acquainted with, even a little bit (I’m sure there’s someone), and ask him to connect you with someone to move forward with.

    Much hatzlacha,
    it may be a bumpy journey, but stay strong and don’t give up!

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245666
    Menachem Shmei

    My answer to your question is that we survived 2130 years without it is proof enough that we dont need it.

    Who survived? You and your small community of Jews who are still frum?

    Are you really oblivious to the fact that there are hundreds of thousands (or millions) of Jews in America who wouldn’t know about Chanuka if not for the public Chanuka campaign?

    Thanks to this campaign, these Jews not only know about it, but celebrate it with lighting menorah every night!

    Do you know the effect that this can have on a Jewish household!?

    Do you know how many hundreds of Jews in countries all over Europe and the US that I’ve lit menorah with in their homes thanks to the Chanuka publicity?

    It is completely absurd to say that since so many Jews knew nothing about Judaism for so many years and NOTHING was done about it, therefore we should continue doing nothing about it!!!

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245528
    Menachem Shmei

    Lighting the menorah anywhere other than a Jewish house or a Shul is simply a brochoh levatoloh

    1) Is it really a brocha l’vatola?

    Defense of “Controversial” Public Menorah Lightings

    2) No one makes a brocha on rooftop menoras. You’re bringing up a separate issue than the OP

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245529
    Menachem Shmei

    On Thursday night, I was turning out of a parking lot, and two children came running toward my car waving.

    Their mother told me that when they saw the menorah on top of my car, they began begging her for a menorah of their own, which she unfortunately didn’t have.

    Boruch Hashem, we had a menorah, candles and Chanuka guide (and some donuts 🙂) with us in the car, which they happily accepted and promised to light every night of Chanuka.

    The effect that lighting menorah for the next eight nights will have on this “secular” Jewish family, who possibly never celebrated Chanuka (or any other yomtov) properly before, is immeasurable.

    I cannot fathom why common, avira, or gedol are perturbed by this.

    Is it really because this wasn’t done in Poland and Hungary?
    In the heim, did they use internet forums to publicize their opinions on Yiddishkeit?

    Again, I ask all those who are upset:
    Do you believe that even if public menoras inspire many Jews in their Yiddishkeit, it still should not be done? If so, why?

    in reply to: Reasons for the Dreidel #2245374
    Menachem Shmei

    There is the famous בני יששכר where he explains that the four sides of the dreidel represent the four gentile kingdoms of golus. The point represents Klal Yisroel.

    נגה”ש is gematriya משיח (as RebE pointed out).
    When Moshiach comes, all the nations will recognize that their focal point and foundation is Klal Yisroel.

    He also says that there is special significance to a wooden dreidel (gotta go buy myself one!) since it’s connected to the posuk about Moshiach קח לך עץ אחד
    (בני יששכר מאמרי חדשי כסלו טבת מאמר ב סוסכ”ה)

    I’ve also heard (not sure where this is written) that since on Chanuka the miracle was fully מלמעלה, completely beyond nature – we spin the dreidel from the top. Whereas by Purim the miracle was in a more natural way, מלמטה – so we spin the grager from the bottom.

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245372
    Menachem Shmei

    my grandmothers public school class picture in Poland has the priest in the picture and lets go back a few centuries forced shmad

    Exactly. In those years, there was government mandated Christianity and countering that carried many risks.

    Nowadays, everything is decided based on popularity. This has nothing to do with religion. People decide their foods, clothing styles, political ideologies, etc. based on billboards, social media and public icons.

    This is a terrible unfortunate thing, and it creates a vacuum for millions of Jews who are searching for something to connect to in all of those public icons. If we don’t give them Yiddishkeit, they will grab other things.

    we are not in the business to compete with S.

    You’re making as if this is a S. thing in order to make it sound more extreme, as if we’re trying to make Chanuka like another religion’s winter holiday.
    It obviously has nothing to do.
    Sukkah mobiles on Sukkos, Lag Baomer parades, etc.

    The culture of Big Macs on billboards did not exist in the heim, and also Jews were much more in touch with their traditions. The ones who left was due to ideological disenchantment.
    Now, things are very different.

    Let me ask you: Do you feel that even if many Jews would get major chizuk from these icons and feel more in touch with their Yiddishkeit – we still shouldn’t do it since in the alte heim it wasn’t done?

    unless Santa is a frum guy like the one in Atlanta

    in reply to: Menorah in your face #2245318
    Menachem Shmei

    Jews these days need a tremendous boost of Geon Yaakov.

    When the goyishe mindset became that everything you like and believe must be fully blasted in public, this causes a major challenge for millions of Jews who look around and see goyishkeit on full display, while Yiddishkeit is buried away in their grandfather’s attic.

    To counter this, we need a full force proud display of Yiddishkeit to show loud and clear that Yiddishkeit is relevant and important today just as it was thousands of years ago.

    See here (ס”ח-ט):

    the gedolim of yesteryear would have done it.

    1) The challenges of today aren’t the same as those of yesteryear.

    2) Did gedolim of Europe take to the streets and make mass protests against the government? If not, why is this allowed by the gedolim of today in Eretz Yisroel?

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2244605
    Menachem Shmei

    I fully understand that Lubavichers will not be swayed from their beliefs, but why don’t you guys get into discussions that are nondenominational

    כל הפוסל במומו פוסל

    If you go through my replies, you will find me commenting on a wide variety of topics in many different threads.
    Of course, a very big and noticeable portion of my comments are regarding Lubavitch, since I’m a Lubavitcher and I love Lubavitch.

    The question turns over to you, Qwerty:
    EVERY SINGLE one of your posts since you joined the CR was in the three or four threads about Lubavitch. You have not posted ONE COMMENT in any other thread.

    Being that you aren’t Lubavitch, what’s the reason for this?…

    In summary: I’m obsessed with defending a certain Jewish group because I’m in love with it, you’re obsessed with condemning and accusing a certain Jewish group because you………

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2244235
    Menachem Shmei


    Do you intentionally spend so much time around Chabad (a Chabad shul, Chabad meals, etc.) in order to collect statements that you don’t like and put them online?

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2243735
    Menachem Shmei

    Qwerty, when you follow up your “innocent” question about the Holocaust with your classic “G-d in human” rhetoric, you make it clear that your entire goal is לקנטר, and you’re not actually interested in an answer.

    I’ve learned from the months I’ve spent on this site, Lubavichers rarely answer any question

    This is a good reason for me to not answer your question. After hundreds of posts that I’ve written to answer the silly arguments here, you still have the audacity to write this. What a disgrace.

    Anyone can go back to previous threads and see how your questions were answered time and time again.

    This reminds me of what the Rebbe once told Rabbi Tzvi Kahana by dollars (10 Sivan 5750):
    ע”פ דין איז “מילתא דעבידא לאיגלויי – לא משקרי אינשי”. איז ידוע אין דערויף די שאלה וואס מ’האט געפרעגט בא א גדול אין דורות שלפני זה: היתכן, מ’זעט דאך אז “משקרי אינשי מילתא דעבידא לאיגלויי”? האט ער אויף דערויף געענטפערט: דער תירוץ אויף דערויף איז א פשוט’ער, ס’שטייט “לא משקרי אינשי” – זיי זיינען ניט בגדר פון “אינשי”! עכ”ל, והמבין יבין

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2243570
    Menachem Shmei

    the Rebbe believed that the Holocaust was a Gezerah and therefore it shouldn’t be discussed. The Friediker Rebbe, on the other hand, basically held like Rabbi Miller that the Holocaust was a punishment from Shamayim for the breakdown of European Jewry.

    Again, as I mentioned in my previous post, nuance and context is very important.
    Your quotes of the Rebbe and Frierdiker Rebbe are anything but that.

    Did the Rebbe ever say that the Holocaust “shouldn’t be discussed”?
    Did the Frierdiker Rebbe ever say that “the Holocaust was a punishment from Shamayim for the breakdown of European Jewry”?

    Please provide the statements that you’re actually referring to, and then we can properly discuss it.

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2243569
    Menachem Shmei

    the expression pops up in indices and descriptions provided by editors, who assimilated in part into general community and lost sensitivity.

    My point is that using the term “kiruv rechokim” is not any assimilation. It depends on context.
    The publishers of the Rebbe’s seforim in Kehos can hardly be classified as assimilators.
    I showed how even the Rebbe used it in a certain context.
    Nuance is very important here. No one said the term is ossur, it is just disliked in certain contexts.

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2243145
    Menachem Shmei

    I agree, I brought quotes from L Rebbe about that. But, to clarify the issue, maybe someone can find L Rebbe’s quotes where he used the word kiruv?

    There are many. Here are some:
    לקוטי שיחות חלק ט”ו ע’ 496 (“הדרך לקירוב הלבבות ליהדות ומצותי'”)
    אגרות קודש חלק ח ע’ צז (“דורך קירוב קען מען אויפטאן מער ממה שע”י דיחוי וריחוק… לקרב את אחיו וב”ג תחי’ יותר לדרכי היהדות)

    It is necessary to point out that while there may be general dislike for the term קירוב רחוקים, this is not to say that it is completely taboo. The term does get used in Chabad circles in certain contexts (e.g. in the indexes in back of the the Rebbe’s seforim, you can usually find an entry called “קירוב רחוקים”).

    As a matter of fact, I have actually found one place (I think it’s the only one) where the Rebbe himself writes a private response using the term קירוב רחוקים!
    נלכה באורחותיו ע’ 220. וכ”ה בליקוט מענות קודש תש”מ ע’ 17:
    “כיון שמוכרח קירוב רחוקים, ובמילא צ”ל הפעולה צעד אחר צעד”
    However, in that context the Rebbe is specifically highlighting the idea that they are (meanwhile) רחוקים (he actually underlined the word) in the context of the manner of dealing with them.

    in reply to: Political Conversations of Old #2241967
    Menachem Shmei

    I remember a SCOTUS decision during his brief Presidency that stopped me from being forced to say Christian prayers in a public elementary school.

    “Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence on Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers, and our country”

    What exactly makes this Christian? The fact that it’s in English?

    Sounds like a translation of Modeh Ani to me.
    “I acknowledge before You, living and eternal King that You have returned my soul to me with mercy, great is Your faithfulness.”

    CTL, were there other prayers that they forced you to say in your school?

    Menachem Shmei

    If they’re smart, they’ll inject them with subcutaneous tracking devices.

    And if they’re even smarter, they won’t tell us about it.

    Please answer the following questions, so we can evaluate your expertise in this area…

    Then entire idea of the CR is for people to hash out their non-professional opinions on random matters that they know little about. No one is claiming that this is a military panel.

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2241821
    Menachem Shmei

    But what does that have to do with Zionism?

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2241820
    Menachem Shmei

    I just saw in an internal shlichus journal a photo title; shaliach X and a mekurav at a yechidus

    The idea of kiruv in itself was never a no-no in Lubavitch.
    Perhaps we named our work “shlichus” while the name “kiruv” is mainly used by other organizations, but you’ll ALWAYS find the term “to be mekarev a Yid” or “someone brought a mekurav” – going back all the years.

    There may be more of a dislike in Chabad for the term “kiruv rechokim” since we try not to label a Jew as rachok.

    Hence, it WOULD be surprising if a Chabad magazine would say: “Shliach talking to rachok. Trying to be mekarev”

    in reply to: Why not 3 Israeli hostages for 1 Palestenian prisoner? Not the opposite! #2241567
    Menachem Shmei

    especially if they were arrested only for opposing the regime (as opposed to terrorism)

    Many of those being released have attempted to kill Jews; they should have received the death sentence long ago.

    JERUSALEM RESIDENTS BEWARE! Terrorists Who Attempted Murder May Be Released To Their Homes

    By halacha, killing non-combatants is only allowed if Ha-Shem, or at least a Navi, or at least a Kohen Gadol with Urim ve-Tumim says its okay.

    Source in Shulchan Aruch?

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2241282
    Menachem Shmei

    its the sicha of Purim תש״ט in the foot note at the end ״ער האט אונז געשיקט אין גלות און ער וועט אונז ארויסנעמען אליין גייט מען ניט״

    Indeed, the Rebbe Rayatz expressed this often. (See his letter from ח’ מנ”א תש”ח (אג”ק חי”ג) – regarding “הכרזת הציונים מלכות ישראל”. Also י”ד אייר תש”ח (אג”ק ח”ט)….)

    The Rebbe also spoke about this often, perhaps even sharper than the Rebbe Rayatz.

    My point remains. No change in ideology. But there was a change in manner of vocalizing opposition.

    P.S. The Rebbe once wrote to someone:
    וכמה פעמים אמר כ”ק אדמו”ר (מהוריי”ץ) נ”ע גלוי, ובפעם האחרונה אמר זה בשנת תש”ט-תש”י, שאף שיסד כפר חב”ד בארץ הקודש ת”ו, אבל אין כל שינוי בהשקפת ליובאוויטש על הענין דארץ הקודש ת”ו ואביזרייהו

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2241203
    Menachem Shmei

    are you also as strict regarding movement members who sign another “infamous nigunim” of maschihistim or you are more understanding about that?

    I was wondering how long it would take for a thread on Chabad’s attitude to Zionism to become a thread about the Rebbe being Moshiach… Only 15 posts in!… 😏

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2241136
    Menachem Shmei

    5783: look at שיחת אחרון של פסח תש״ט to see what was the שיטה of the Rayatz towards the state of Israel in his later years

    I’m sorry, I couldn’t find anything in the source that you gave, please be more specific.

    P.S. I would like to clarify again that by “change” – I’m referring specifically to the MANNER of opposition, not ch”v a change in ideology.

    The Rebbe Rashab (and Rayatz in his early years) fought strongly and publicly to prevent the actual establishment of the “state”.

    However, once the state became more of a reality, the manner of public opposition changed by the Rebbe Rayatz and the Rebbe, despite the fact that they continued reject the zionist ideology (as can be found in their sichos).

    in reply to: I guess ChaBaD is Zionist now? #2240969
    Menachem Shmei


    Great question!

    My response as a Lubavitcher:

    Since the “founding” of the “state” in 1948, Lubavitch has become less VOCAL about their opposition to Zionism, the reasons for which are discussed in the sefer mentioned by sechel, and other places.
    (This change was already brought about by the Rebbe Rayatz. As a matter of fact, the Rebbe was much more vocal about anti-zionism than his father-in-law was in his later years).

    Due to this, unfortunately, there are Lubavitchers nowadays who are ignorant of our shita on zionism and may confuse strongly supporting Eretz Yisroel with promoting zionist symbols r”l.

    The Rebbe was adamantly opposed to the hanging of the flag, singing hatikva, celebrating yom haatzmaut, and even referring to Eretz Yisroel as “state of Israel.”

    The Rebbe stripped his נשיאות from Tomchei Tmimim (the central Chabad yeshiva) in 5715 when they allowed a balebos to sing “הניגון הידוע” (the Rebbe wouldn’t even refer to it by name) at a dinner.
    On a separate occasion, the Rebbe wrote that singing this can interrupt Hashem’s brochos to the institution.

    The Rebbe railed against the concept of אתחלתא דגאולה in no uncertain terms, even saying that this idea has brought much darkness and hardships to klal Yisroel (I won’t get into specifics due to the public nature of this site).

    At the Lag B’omer parades, children would march with American flag and Tzivos Hashem flag, but the zionist flag was not allowed.

    B”H, most Lubavitchers and shluchim know this info, and keep a proper balance between supporting the Yidden in Eretz Yisroel while rejecting the zionist ideology and symbols.

    Unfortunately, there are indeed some who are either uneducated on the subject, or were unable to withstand the נסיון of appealing to the wider Jewish public and have allowed such symbols and ideologies to infiltrate their Chabad Houses, etc.

    These are B”H not many (though they may be vocal), and I and others have done our best to reach out to these people and influence them to correct their ways.

    It’s also important to note that some may call themselves Lubavitchers while being totally rejected by Lubavitch. Figures such as Shmuley Boteach who has been banned by Chabad rabbis and doesn’t represent us whatsoever.

    In conclusion: No, Chabad is not zionist. Our IDEOLOGY has not changed one iota from the times of the Rebbe Rashab (as opposed to the manner of vocalizing our ideology).

    P.S. Joining IDF is a completely separate issue that has nothing to do with zionism. However, I would still venture to say that it’s still the same type of bochurim that you described (though I wouldn’t describe them that way) who join, because for the most part, the way for yeshiva bochurim to protect Eretz Yisroel is solely through limmud hatorah.

    Re magen davids: While there are issues with the symbol, it’s in no way comparable to the zionist flag.

    in reply to: The Israel Pogram of 2023 Jewish Massacre #2233973
    Menachem Shmei

    I strongly agree with Marxist.

    Avira, the problem isn’t (necessarily) with “politicizing a tragedy” – rather doing so during this time of war. Same goes for all those who are looking for government officials to blame. All of this can wait.

    in reply to: Goodbye, Bibi? #2230660
    Menachem Shmei

    Resigning in a time of war would be a cowardly and dangerous move.

    Let’s wait till the dust settles to start pointing fingers.

    in reply to: Biden or Trump #2228794
    Menachem Shmei

    It seems pretty clear what the results will be; anything else is wishful thinking.

    Biden and Trump are WAY ahead of any other nominee, so they will probably run against each other.
    In the last four years, despite many people coming to dislike Biden, it seems that there was an increase of many more never-Trumpers, but not many more never-Bideners.

    Consequently, if Biden won last election, there isn’t much of a reason for him to lose this time.
    If he stole last election, there isn’t much a a reason for him not to steal it this time.

    The best hope for Trump would be a third party. While they wouldn’t win presidentship, it could take many votes away from Biden, paving the way for Trump.

    Something to think about is what will happen if (when?) Trump loses the election.
    Is it possible that he would incite something terrible? Even without much incitement from his part, we saw January 6. Trump had to remain (somewhat) diplomatic since (a) he still had a chance to win 2024, and (b) he wanted to stay out of jail.

    This election, Trump (probably) has neither of these incentives, and it’s possible that in his self-centered rage (which is definitely not foreign to Trump’s character, whether you hate him or love him) he could incite something never seen before.

    He has enough supporters who would go through fire and water for him even if he would “stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody.”

    Could we possibly see something similar to the BLM riots, but this time by people who own (lots of) guns?

    I just pray that he won’t direct any anger at the “Jewish traitors” that he often complains about… We know who usually suffers first from political unrest, may Hashem protect us…

    These are just my thoughts. I wonder what others have to say about this

    in reply to: Thought on Chabad #2226333
    Menachem Shmei

    I must say that I like 741’s point

    in reply to: Thought on Chabad #2225717
    Menachem Shmei

    but if you’re offended, it’s probably best not to be on here, or to engage in discussions with anyone outside of crown heights

    Judging from his previous posts, Emunas disagrees with everyone in Crown Heights as well.

    Just pointing this out.

    in reply to: Thought on Chabad #2224465
    Menachem Shmei


    you do not realize the unbelievable chashivus ascribed by Chabad to the statements of Arizal.

    You’re not the first one who asked this strong question.

    In the letter of the Rebbe that I quoted above, he writes: צריך עיון גדול

    Indeed, this is a great question.

    In a later letter (אגרות קודש טז שבט תשכ”ב – אגרת ח’שלב), the Rebbe points out a possible way to solve the argument: The difference between the Rambam and Ramban (that the Arizal meant) is that the Ramban studied Kabbalah during the main part of his life, because this was connected to his שרש הנשמה.
    Whereas, the Rambam only studied at the end of his life, as it’s possible that it was בבחינת עיבור (neshoma stuff – I don’t understand exactly).

    it is accepted by Klal Yisroel – from the Litvishe to Sefardi Mekubalim that Rambam did not learn Kabbolah

    Were the Shomer Emunim and Avodas Hakodesh not great mekubalim?

    Is the Migdal Oz not an accepted peirush on the Rambam?

    And the Abarbanel?

    in reply to: Thought on Chabad #2224316
    Menachem Shmei


    Rambam never learnt Kabbola.

    The fact that the Rambam learned Kabbala (at least at the end of his lifetime) has been discussed and passed down by all of the Chabad Rabbeim in the name of the Baal Shem Tov.

    Here are some non-Chabad sources:

    The Migdal Oz (student of the Rashba) writes in his peirush to Mishneh Torah (הל’ יסודי התורה פ”א ה”ט) that he found proof that the Rambam learned Kabbala at the end of his life:
    ולדעתי שר”מ ז”ל ידע בהם בסוף ימיו שאני מעיד שראיתי בספרד ארץ מולדתנו כתוב במגלה של קלף ישן מיושן ומעושן לשון זה. אני משה ב”ר מימון כשירדתי לחדרי המרכבה בינותי בענין הקץ וכו’, וקרובים היו דבריו לדברי המקובלים האמיתיים שרמז רבינו הגדול הרמב”ן ז”ל בתחלת פירושו לתורה. גם ראיתי תשובה אחרת ממנו והיה ז”ל מגיד בה שהתחיל לפרש הגדות על דרך נסתר …

    Shomer Emunim (ויכוח ראשון יג – brought also in Avodas Hakodesh) writes that a certain Rav Yaakov traveled to Mitzrayim and taught the Rambam Kabbalah, and the Rambam would praise it to his students:
    גם הרמב”ם בסוף ימיו זכה לקבל זאת החכמה מפי מקובל, כמו שכתב אחד ממפרשי הרמב”ן בפרשת בשלח וזה לשונו ורבי יעקב זה הלך למצרים ומסר הקבל להרמב”ם ז”ל, ולרוב שמחתו בה היה משתבח בה לתלמידיו, אמנם לא זכה לזה עד קרוב לאחרית ימיו כו’

    Abarbanel (נחלת אבות ספ”ג) writes that the Rambam was taught Kabbalah, and the Rambam lamented that if he would have discovered it earlier in life he would have retracted several things that he wrote (!!):
    וגם אני שמעתי שהרב הגדול המימוני כתב באגרת שלו אלו הדברים: ‘בסוף ימי בא אלי אדם אחד ואמר לי דברים של טעם ואלולי שהייתי בסוף ימי ונתפשטו חבורי בעולם הייתי חוזר מדברים רבים שכתבתי בהם’. אין ספק שדברי קבלה היו אשר שמע באחרית ימיו.

    The same idea was written in Seder Hadoros:
    וראיתי בספר אגרת חמודות שחיבר רבי אליהו חיים שכתב: וראיתי איגרות הרמב”ם שכתב מירושלים למצרים לתלמידו, והיה אומר אחרי בואי לארץ הצבי מצאתי זקן שהאיר את עיני בדרכי הקבלה, ואילו ידעתי אז מה שהשגתי עתה, דברים רבים שכתבתי לא הייתי כותבם

    So why, dear mdd, do you state so unequivocally that the Rambam didn’t learn Kabbala?

    P.S. There are indeed other sources that imply (from the Arizal) that the Rambam did NOT learn Kabbalah. There are source both ways.

    The Radziner Rebbe (Rav Yerucham Leiner) once wrote on the topic of the Rambam knowing Kabbalah (הגר”א איש הנגלה והנסתר).
    The Lubavitcher Rebbe wrote him a letter (אגרות קודש י”ח כסלו תש”י – אגרת תקנא) with several he’oros, and among them:
    ג) ע’ 174. שהרמב”ם ידע תורת הקבלה, כעין זה סיפר כ”ק מו”ח אדמו”ר שליט”א שקיבל מרבו (הוא אביו) ורבו מרבו עד הבעש”ט, אז דער רמב”ם איז געווען א גרויסער מקובל (נדפס בספר השיחות-קיץ ש”ת ע’ 41)15. וכבר העירותי שם בשולי הגליון שלכאורה צע”ג ממש”כ בשער הגלגולים להאריז”ל הקדמה לו ובספר הגלגולים בלקוטים, אשר הרמב”ם לא למד חכמת האמת וזה מתאים לשרשו. וציינתי שם לשה”ג לחיד”א וכו’ וכו’.

    There were several other occasions where the Lubavitcher Rebbe commented on this as well.

    in reply to: Thank you Anonymous in Lakewood #2223887
    Menachem Shmei

    Does Chabad of Lakewood do kiruv?

    I know of a Chabad in Lakewood that does kiruv for OTD youth.
    Shabbos seudos, shiurim, and often giving them a place to sleep (many are kicked out of home).

    Unfortunately, many were very smart bochurim who dropped out yeshivos for various reasons.

    in reply to: Is there a Drug Problem in the “Frum World”? #2223493
    Menachem Shmei

    I live in a very frum yeshivish neighborhood and drugs is unheard of

    It has less to do with neighborhoods, more to do with who you hang out with.
    Sometimes, people can be oblivious to what’s going on with other crowds in their same neighborhood (unless it’s tiny).

    in reply to: Is there a Drug Problem in the “Frum World”? #2223392
    Menachem Shmei


    while thank G-d I never became an alcoholic, I developed a very unhealthy relationship with alcohol to deal with anxiety and depression.

    I’m curious to understand what you mean in differentiating between alcoholism and unhealthy relationship?

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223386
    Menachem Shmei

    The Rebbe took Purim seeiously. That’s when he “killed” Stalin. I guess in 1956 he decided to…

    עפ”ל עפ”ל

    I am mocheh for the kavod of the Chazon Ish.

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223363
    Menachem Shmei


    We previously established that the Rebbe stated in a letter that every Nasi Chabad is also Nasi Hador for all Klal Yisroel. Therefore he was referring to himself as well as the Rayatz.

    The Rebbe never officially considered himself nossi Chabad. He always considered his father-in-law as such. Chassidim accepted the Rebbe as nossi. No great rabbi ever crowns himself as rabbi. He is crowned by his talmidim.

    For more explanation, refer to my response to ARSo.

    I actually have a guess for the answer you’re going to provide.

    I hope that you indeed were able to guess the answer, since it is fairly simple.

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223362
    Menachem Shmei


    He said it about the Rayatz and not about himself. So did he or did he not mean to imply it about himself?

    Oy, this is so simple. The fact that it’s about Lubavitch seems to be clouding your mind (as yankel says, shochad y’aver…)

    Again, imagine if Reb Chaim proved from a Gemara that “Talmidei Chachamim go straight to Olam Habah.”

    His talmidim will probably say, “Wow, our dear teacher, Reb Chaim, will go straight to Olam Habah!”

    Here’s the question: Was Reb Chaim referring to himself in his statement?

    If yes – that’s gaava!

    If not – why did his students say that it was about himself?

    I think the answer to this is simple common sense, and that applies also to your question about the Rebbe.

    Wasn’t it R Yoel Kahn who said after 3 Tammuz that the mistake of the chassidim is that they decided the rebbe was Mashiach when he didn’t say so explicitly

    No. He said that it’s the mistake of chassidim to OBSESS with the Rebbe being Moshiach since he didn’t say so explicitly and it can cause lots of damage.

    Reb Yoel considered the Rebbe his Rebbe even though he never ever said “I’m the Rebbe.”
    Why? Because a Rebbe doesn’t decide that he is Rebbe, chassidim decide to accept someone as their Rebbe.
    This has been throughout history.
    Teachers never taught their students how to look at them and how to respect them.
    The students learned from the respect that the teachers had for THEIR teachers to learn how to relate to them.

    Reb Elimelech never said “I am one with Hashem, connect with me!” He said: “Tzaddikim are one with Hashem.”
    I’m sure that his talmidim inferred from there that Reb Elimelech is one with Hashem, and treated him with great respect. Does this mean that really he was referring to himself so this is gaava?

    I feel like I’m explaining a concept to a five year old.

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223356
    Menachem Shmei


    It’s amazing how even after I posted a link to the sicha, you’re not afraid of quoting a twisted version; skipping out the important parts which you know will make the whole thing sound different.

    Let’s break up the way you quoted it:

    [1] [2] [3]
    These weren’t said by the Rebbe himself!!! The Rebbe said (paraphrasing, see link): “I received many angry letters from Eretz Yisroel complaining that Reb Foleh Kahan was farbrenging recently in Kfar Chabad, and he said about ploni ben ploni…” [then he quotes what he said about jealous etc.]

    And the Rebbe continues (in a PURIM SPIRIT – as you can hear clearly in the recording (it’s a Purim farbrengen)): “We can answer their complaints with a Gemara in Bava Basra…”

    Doesn’t say such a thing. But great way to make it sound worse.

    Again, according to the Gemara in Bava Basra.
    [Your whole “guess who that is” thing is ridiculous. Doing that every time the Rebbe mentions Moshiach is like illuminati conspiracy theorists who go crazy every time they see a triangle or an eye].

    The Rebbe does NOT say that’s how it will be fulfilled. He uses the term in passing (the Rebbe’s manner of talk was always peppered with maamorei razal and pesukim. If you watch farbrengens or dollars you’ll know what I mean.)

    Why did you skip that it wasn’t the Rebbe’s vort, rather he was saying what Reb Foleh said and that people complained about?
    Why did you skip that all that the Rebbe added pretty much (again, in a Purim spirit) was explaining how this fits with a Gemara in Bava Basra?

    I’m sure you’ll find some excuses to show why it’s still “a terrible statement” etc.
    But the very fact that you chose to skip the main parts of the sicha shows how inconvenient they are for you.

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223236
    Menachem Shmei


    On page 16 you stated that the Rebbe said he’s god clothed in human form. Is he the only person to reach that madregah. Sounds like a real Anav to say that about himself don’t you think?

    This is one of the things that you guys are going to repeat again and again until you convince yourself that it makes sense.

    The Rebbe never said this about himself. The Rebbe said this about his father-in-law, the Rebbe Rayatz.
    The sicha, said a few months after the passing of the Rebbe Rayatz, is about getting brochos at the kever of the Rayatz after his passing.

    Do you do this every time tzaddik talks about tzaddikim!?
    “I can’t believe it! Reb Chaim Brisker is praising Talmidei Chachamim, this must mean that he’s praising himself. Such gaava!”

    The fact that posters keep writing this ridiculous sevara again and again shows a true lack of logic in this discussion.

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223222
    Menachem Shmei


    By the gaon, they said that his neshoma literally belonged to tekufas harishonim

    Nu nu. You need me to find something like this about the Alter Rebbe?
    No problem, but does it make a difference?

    Rav Yosef Kotkovsy (rov in Ukraine in the late 1800s) writes immense praises for the Shluchan Aruch Harav in the introduction to his sefer Darkei Hachayim, and then he writes:

    “I have heard from someone trustworthy who saw a handwritten note by the Rav of Barditchov as follows: I can testify that if Rav Shneur Zalman of Liady [the Alter Rebbe] would have lived in the days of the Rif and the Rambam [rishonim…] he would have been like one of them… His golden language is literally [yes, “literally”] like the language of the Rif and Rambam.”

    וכאשר שמעתי מפי מגידי אמת שראה כתיבת יד קודש של הרב הגאון האלקי מבארדיטשוב שכתבו וז”ל מעיד אני עלי שמים וארץ שאלו היו הרב הגאון אלקי ר’ שניאור זלמן מלאדי בימי הרי”ף והרמב”ם היו כאחד מהם . . לשונו הזהב הוא ממש כלשון הרי”ף והרמב”ם ז”ל.

    And, talking about “neshamos”, and being that this week was Chai Elul, I guess I should bring the sicha of the Rebbe Rayatz from Chai Elul 5705 (Sefer Hasichos pg. 129) where he describes the events surrounding the birth of the Alter Rebbe:

    On Chai Elul 5505 [the day the Alter Rebbe was born] the Baal Shem Tov was in a very joyous mood. After davening, he arranged a seuda for his students and said “Today a neshama chadasha [new soul] entered the world which will light up the world with nigleh and chassidus, and will have mesiras nefesh for the derech of chassidus, and succeed until bias hamoshiach.”

    The Rebbe Rashab famously said: “Every neshama is sourced in the world of Atzilus, but the Alter Rebbe was a neshama d’Atzilus even as a נשמה בגוף בעולם הזה”

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223186
    Menachem Shmei


    I’d like to add the Rebbe abandoning the plain Pshat in Chelek and announcing that Moshiach will redeem every Jew.

    Why do I have to defend the way my Rebbe understood a Gemara because you think it’s not the plain pshat?

    Should I start bringing Avi Esris that change the plain pshat of Gemaros and demand that you explain them? And of course, if you can’t explain them, that means that you’re admitting to some sort of fault in litvish Jewry!?

    the Rebbe announcing that Gehinnom no longer exists because there’s no such thing as a Jew who sins.

    Where? I’ve never seen this, and I don’t know what you’re talking about.
    (Maybe you think that rabbi on youtube with a long white beard and glasses is the Lubavitcher Rebbe? No. It’s Manis Friedman. I don’t know if he says this either, but I’ve definitely never heard the Rebbe say this. And I’ve seen LOTS of what the Rebbe says…)

    The oy problem is no real Jews are buying any of that nonsense.

    The blacks are the real Jews.

    in reply to: Question of an ignorant, closed-minded Lubavitcher #2223113
    Menachem Shmei

    The siyum Ramban each year should have continued to come out on his b’day. However, one ibbur yohr throws it off.

    The Rambam was split into 339 days, so siyum couldn’t have been on the same day every year.

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