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  • in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663656

    “Harav HaGoan”– Rabbi Dr. Revel had been the persident of YU since 1915 or so. Note the “Dr.” Now does that sound MO or Hareidi to you?

    By the 1940s, (the period that we are discussing, YU’s direction was already clear. Rabbi Dr. Belkin took over in 1943. Again, note the “Dr.” Both men established extensive secular studies in YU. Now, does that fit more into MO or Hareidi philosophy?

    Nevertheless, YU faculty, staff, and students–and their congregations, did a great deal to help establish the institutions such as BMG.

    I understand that the MO world will not get any appreciation form such as you until you cross that big river. You know, denial.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663652

    “Harav Hagoan”:

    Interesting that you assume that the supporters of these Mosdot were every stream BUT MO. And MO did certainly exist at the time, YU was already there.

    I also find it interesting that you assume that we “seem feel that you have no obligations yourselves to support Torah mosdos and feel that you deserve eternal gratitude for every cent you contribute?”

    Many of us offer considerable suport to Torah Mosdot. However, we can choose which ones to support, and could–if we so desired–support institutions such as YU, numerous Yeshivot Hesder, etc. Hareidi institutions are not the only representatives of Torah–whatever you might believe.

    Nor do we expect “eternal gratitude”. However, for those of your ilk (and I most certainly do not include all Hareidim in this) we receive no gratitude whatsoever, only condemnation and contempt.

    The evidence regarding Rav Elchana Wasserman’s talmidim is out there. Do a Google search. I could post some of it, but it is a little too heartbreaking for me to deal with.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663648

    Joseph, the spiritual dangers most definitely did not exceed the physical benefit. Those people died in horrible circumstances. There was no way to predict how they would have lived their lives had they emigrated. Wheter or not they had the opportunity–the advice was not to emigrate–and that advice was given to some few who did have the opportunity.

    Sorry–but if you think that that was a correct decision to give that advice– I just cannot possibly convey the degree of my disagreement.

    Of course, I do not think that that advice was given because of evil intent. But it was a horrible mistake in judgment (which can happen to anyone, and it implies no disrespect). Again, these were unprecedented times, and those of us who are now alive cannot possibly understand what our parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, brothers, sisters, etc. went through. Blaming our own for the atrocities committed by the bnai belial is an evil act in and of itself. I brought this up originally in this thread to make a point to those who accuse the Zionists of complicity with the nazis–that you can take any quote out of context, and the priority for those who could rescue people was to rescue their own first. Any and all of us can be accused of the same thing–that does not make anybody complicit with the nazis. We are all human, and to judge how people act under those circumstances is beyond human justice. For that, we have a Dayan Emet. In my opinion, until that Dayan makes His judgments known to us, it is better to have a care as to how we refer to our fellow Jews.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663646

    Joseph, some people advised the Jews to leave very early on, when there were still places for them to go. These people were condemned by many Rabbanim.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663643

    “Harav Hagoan” posted: “starwolf: are you living in a vacuum? if you’ll reread my previous posts you’ll see that i already listed several books. you ask what the chareidi world has accomplished? nothing much, aside from rebuilding Torah from the ashes (despite the hindrances of your ilk). i know that thats probably meaningless to you, but its only fair to judge a society by their own ideals. “

    Do you refer to your citation “Another great book that might remove some of your ignorance is “The Holocaust In History” by Prof. Michael R. Mauruss. “

    First of all, when citing, learn to spell the name of the author. Second of all, where does Dr. Marrus accuse Zionists of complicity in the Shoah–which is the argument that you brought?

    The Hareidim rebuilt Torah from the ashes? Once again, you neglect to bother to thank those that helped establish the Hareidi centers of learning–i.e. the Modern Orthodox. How did “my ilk” hinder the building of these institutions? Do you feel that we do not give you enough support?

    I could also make the point that had those Torah community leaders in Europe listened to the Zionists and others who urged them to emigrate while there was time–the ashes of Europe would have contained fewer flowers of Torah than they did. Would you care to blame the Zionists and Modern Orthodox for that as well?

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663639

    “Harav HaGoan” posted: “starwolf: can you quote anything relevant to back up your statements (books, articles, research papers)? Just spare us any more MO pride drivel. “

    Sure, just as soon as you post a few references for your point of view–sparing us any sinat chinam drivel. But if you are referring to the Shoah, the list of Yad Vashem publications is a good place to start.

    You don’t like the fact that I am proud of the accomplishments of the Statre of Israel and the Modern Orthodox? Too bad. We have accomplished so much. What makes the Modern Orthodox unique is that we know that it is not only Am Yisrael who have accomplished so much–only with the help of Avinu Shebashamayim have we done this.

    I do understand why “MO pride” bothers you. What exactly has the Hareidi sector accomplished in the same amount of time? Yes, there are a great many Torah institutions around, also built with the help of Avinu Shebashamayim–and what percentage of them have been built without the help of the Modern Orthodox?

    If you live in the US, not a wek goes by without receiving solicitations from Yeshivot, kollelim, and various other Hareidi enterprises–the volume can be staggering. And clearly, the MO give–otherwise it would hardly be worthwhile for these mass-mailings to be sent to the membership lists of MO Shuls. No problem there–happy to help. It is a different story, however, when people from that same stream of society spew sinah and contemptfor our way of life. And the sinah and contempt are NOT mutual; otherwise we would keep our hard-earned money for those institutions following our own derech.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663638

    A600KiloBear takes examples like people rideing on shabbat as a failure of Religious Zionism and the philosophy of Rav Kook. He takes racists attitudes toward Moroccan Jews (which have largely faded over the years–these days, only the Ashkenazi Hareidi community gets upset if one of their daughters marries a Sephardic Jew–it happens all the time in the other sectors of society) and condemns all of the State becauses of them. However, when one brings up Hareidi excesses (such as stone-throwing, he says that they are not representative of the ills of Hareidi society–they are firnge elements.

    Well, you can’t have it both ways. Either the fringe elements are representative of the larger society, or they are not.

    in reply to: Help Me Find The Good #662618

    I made no diagnosis–I offered an hypothesis that “tried to find the good”, as was requested by the original poster. Perhaps if everyone would do that instead of looking for the bad in the world–we would all be in a better place.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663627

    A600KiloBear posted (after the usual antizionist screed):

    “As for my information, I am an international entrepreneur and I wanted to establish just the type of program I mentioned in EY. Somehow, four times, my application for certain assistance offered to entrepreneurs planning to emigrate, was ignored or lost. That is the least of the first hand information I have about both what the medine (meaning the “branja”, leftists like Aharon Barak etc who really rule the country, not necessarily Bibi who at least says the right words) wants to do with charedim economically and the present manpower needs of the IDF.”

    Ahh, now I understand. you ran afoul of Israeli bureaucracy, and decided that things were difficult for you because of your worldview. Well, welcome to the club. Of course, may of us to whom that has happened stick it our and eventually succeed. And if not, at least they do not hate the entire idea of the country.

    “Stick to your science and your lab where perhaps you are doing some good . Your knowledge of history and the world outside your ivory tower is very lacking and your posts only show exactly what I am saying – that MO comes from a desire to partially assimilate and a lack of emunah.”

    Although I do stick to my science, like many residents of this country I am actively involved in a great many social issues. (Including education, by the way. And, of course, IDF reserve service.) I also have access to a number of extensive University libraries (US, European and Israeli), of which I make free use. Your slandering of historians with whom you disagree (without showing where they are “biased”) while defending an embittered screenwriter does not exactly give you high recommendations as a student of history–quite the opposite.

    As far as my “need to assimilate” and my emunah goes, I live here, not in the Ukraine–. What does that say? In addition, when I work in the US and Europe, I am openly identifiable as a Jew. I fail to understand how that is assimilation.

    “But don’t worry, your children will be haredi, even if they are professionals. The arrows are pointing our way “

    Will my children be Hareidim–even if they are professionals? I doubt it, but, again, I am not a Navi. I would hope, however, that for the Hareidi children–that they will be professionals –even if they are Hareidi.

    Which way are the arrows pointing? I don’t know–stores that sell MP4s on the fringes of Meah Shearim are vandalized and their owners intimidated. Preventing the use of technology is getting more difficult. You can know if a neighbor has a television, and threaten or ostracize him, but media products are becoming more difficult to detect, and the modern world is creepoing, slowly but surely, into Meah Shearim and the center of Bnei Brak. Unless you plan on strip-searching the Yeshiva boys, better get used to the idea. Even worse for your situation-sending women to work and support the men means that they are exposed to the internet in their workplace. Who knows what ideas they will get into their heads? They may find that there is a big world out there–much larger than what they are allowed to participate in by their society. Perhaps they might decide they want a piece of the action?

    In other words, if the Hareidim are so confident, why are they so afraid of a little technology? Other ideas, which might prove more attractive?

    in reply to: Help Me Find The Good #662616

    While I understand the difficulty in dealing with this situation–

    How old was the older lady? Perhaps she suffers from some sort of dementia. (Alzheimer’s Disease is the most common form, but not the only one.)

    In some cases, the dementia can manifest itself in cruel or aggressive behavior.

    Many times, such behavior was not shown by the individuals before they became ill.

    Any number of people who have been around patients suffering from dementia knows exactly what I am posting about. We need to remember that such behavior is not the people’s fault. They are not responsible for their actions. while those actions can be difficult to tolerate, we must do so as a caring society (and especially as a society of Torah Jews.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663620

    A600KiloBear posted:

    “I am talking about the proliferation of post yeshiva and sem practical training institutes, which even prepare haredim for advanced secular degrees such as law, in EY. The government discourages these efforts from getting too far “out of hand”. My information regarding this just so happens to be first hand, not what I read in some rag like Am Ha’Aretz.”

    Yeah, right. First hand information from whom in the government? They discuss state policy with Chabadniks in the Ukraine these days?

    “Army service? Too many soldiers as it is; the medine likes the present situation as they don’t need the charedim anyway and then can point to them as shirkers. National service would only expand the Meir Panims out there and yes, there we go again, more tshuva.”

    Now you are an expert on the needs of the army? Serve on the General Staff, do you?

    National service for Hareidim has been proposed many times, and in many forms. Guess who rejects the proposals each time? (Clue: Their clothing is somewhat monochromatic.)

    “As for the horrendous treason of the zionists during the Shoah, it was just proven beyond a doubt that instead of continuing a boycott of the Nazi government that could have brought this malchis harisha to its knees, the zionists accepted blood money and a pitiful number of Jews to stop the boycott. That is what happens when you take the concept of am Yisroel which is kedusha and turn it into the hepech hakedusha of modern, G-dless nationalism.”

    Hmm, I don’t see you complaining about the efforts of the Hareidi Jewish community to rescue their Rebbeim and Talmidim. And correctly so. Yet when the Zionists do the exact same thing, it is a crime, according to you. Not everyone need share your priorities. And again, I would be careful about getting into this. Some prominent Rebbeim, after their rescue, did absolutely nothing to rescue their fellows left behind. And they were certainly prominent enough to have made a difference. Do you really wish to get into this topic?

    “The present medine is a toeva that must fall (it COULD have been something else but as we are in golus and the medine is tiff in golus the misyavnim won and are running it into the ground) but to avoid bloodshed let it fall to Moshiach already. While it is our obligation to strengthen Jews living in EY by bringing them to Torah, and the fact is that the medine did happen, it is not any sort of geulah. The medine is to the geula as chas vesholom a malignant cell is to a healthy one. “

    I personally do not know whether Medinat Yisrael is the beginning of Geula; I can hope so, but I am not a Navi, nor do I think that anyone else in our day is. You think that “the present Medina must fall”? Is that a prediction? Or just a prayer? Do you consider yourself a Navi?

    The views of those who reject the Medina so completely are utter nonsense. Torah here flourishes as nowhere else–Modern Orthodox AND Hareidi, under the auspices of the state. As far as your comparison of the Medina to malignant cells–well, I would say that you know as much about biology and medicine as you do about the IDF. That is, enough to know a little about the terminology, but not enough to understand: ?????? ?????? ??? ??? ????

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663617

    So Harav HaGoan mis an expert in what “all historians” know, right. Which historians? An embittered screenwriter? How about a few historians with doctrates in their fields, working at numerous univeristies–not to mention institutions such as Yad Vashem.

    How many historians feel that there is Jewish (much less Zionist) complicity in the Shoah? You can find them–in Iran, and among the Holocaust deniers in general. And, it appears, right on these very forums.

    in reply to: 20 Years Old. Is That Old?? #662091

    20 is old?

    I dont think so…..My malt whisky is older than 20 years.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663605


    I have not slandered anyone. And you cannot make the problem go away. I have had some discussion about this with you in past threads, and read your previous posts on the subject. I am also aware of numerous testimonials by survivors documented by Yad Vashem. The subject is not as clear-cut as you seem to think.

    I do not bring this up in a vacuum. If people insist on blaming the Shoah on the actions of the Zionists, or accusing us of complicity with the Nazis, I think that it is appropriate to examine the actions of the nonzionist and antizionist leadership as well. These were difficult times for all of us, and for the followers of one Jewish hashkafa to think that the followers of another made a mistake is one thing. To accuse the other of active collaboration is another. I would certainly never stoop to the latter approach. Before you mention slander, you should look to the post that I replied to when bringing up the topic.

    Again, I do agree this particular thread is not the place to discuss this.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663602

    A600KiloBear has no idea of what he is posting about.

    The school system developed by Hareidi leaders has no secular subjects at high school level. This is true for both systems; Ashkenazi and Sephardi (which are adminstered separately).

    As afa as the secular government holding Hareidim back–quite the contrary is true,. Many programs are in place to train qualified Hareidim to work in specialized jobs. These programs are completely separate for men and women, and include a number of highly technical tasks, such as those dealing with satellite imaging. However, the Hareidim must be trained, and many do not meet even the minimum entrance requirements. Nevertheless, for those who do, the programs seem to be quite a success.

    The government is doing all that it can to encourage the Hareidim to enter the workplace. It is only the views of the Hareidim themselves and their Rabbanim who discourage this. Do not atempt to blame the Zionists for the problems caused by your (Hareidi population) lack of education; this was your choice.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663601

    The “Rav HaGaon” considers the Hareidi Shita reasonable, and brings up the tired, ridiculous accusation about Zionism and the Holocaust. This thread is not about Zionism–but does he really wish to go there? Should we discuss the role of his anti-Zionist Hareidi Gdolim in discouraging Jews to leave Europe? Should we discuss the advice of the Zionist Rabbanim at the time?

    There a a number of documented sources on this subject–although it is not a topic that is allowed to be discussed in Hareidi circles. However, we can discuss it here, if you wish.

    And, if “Haav HaGaon” thinks that the Israeli society founded by the Zionists is “besides the point”, he should not have brought up the Zionist enterprise. That society, whether he approves of it or not, is trhe outcome of the Zionist movement. In that society, Torah learning, by Hareidim and nonHareidim, flourishes. The desert indeed blooms–in many ways.

    in reply to: Labels – How Do You See Yourself? How Do Others See You? #662595

    SJSinNYC posted: “I don’t mind labels, provided you aren’t labeling people to be derisive. I also label myself female, Jewish, a Yankee fan, an engineer…the first two I had no choice in but the last two I do. I like perspective on people and how they label themselves generally gives a decent picture.

    I am Modern Orthodox. “

    Female, Jewish, an engineer, Modern Orthodox… no problem.

    But a Yankee fan? Feh!

    ;-{)> (smile and wink with officially approved beard)

    smiling and winking at others in the coffee room is prohibited. YW Moderator-72

    in reply to: Tznius #662354

    Smalltowngirl posted: “I believe that we need to acknowledge that the rebbitzen is just as human as we are.

    As far as the labeling…whether you label me or I label myself…it is very often improper, unkind, and maybe even inaccurate.

    We should also acknowledge that the Rav is as human as we are.

    Labeling people is certainly inaccurate. People are multidimensional, and do not neatly fit into little boxes. In general, the ones who classify (label) people use the most superficial attributes to do so. (How could it be otherwise, since nobody can read minds or intentions, and many midot are not apparent to the outside world).

    The fact that labeling is often cruel, and causes hurt or embarrassment to people, is too often overlooked.

    in reply to: Ban Against Texting #662128

    I honestly do not understand the problem here. B”H we are privileged to live in a time and place where we have a plethora of choices for Batei Medrash. One can choose the Bet Medrash to fit one’s hashkafa and level of learning. Of course, the major influence on a Yeshiva’s hashkafa is the Rosh Yeshiva. If you don’t agree with the hashkafa of a particular Rosh Yeshiva, why would you want to attend that yeshiva? For the name alone? That is no reason to choose a Yeshiva.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169532


    I do not judge people at all; I believe that there are many Torah paths.

    And I certainly agree with the idea of asei l’cha Rav.

    I do not think that college is necessarily for everyone. I do feel, in general, that education (including secular education) is a positive thing, and enhances our appreciation of the world. Ignorance (in any subject) cannot good. So, for example, as my Rav, I chose a man who excels in Torah and has a well-rounded secular education.

    Personally, I do not believe that the primary purpose of college is to make money. I believe in education for its own sake. However, being able to support one’s family is important, especially in times like these. There are so many truly needy people in our community, and those who could support themselves should–so that the families who are at true risk can benefit to the maximum.

    As far as undesirable social influences in college, I would be a fool to deny that they exist. However, I do believe that a good Jewish education should be able to serve as a defense against this. Does it always work? Unfortunately not.

    I am not defending college as a party experience. In many cases, tuition costs the parents dearly, and the efforts of one’s parents should not be wasted. The parents do not work hard so the children can party (whatever your definition of party is). Kibud Av vEm requires that the college attendee repay the parents by accomplishing the purpose that the parents work for, whether that is getting an education for general purposes, or a way to earn a parnasa. In any event, I believe that education is a serious thing, which does not leave time for much of a party life.

    As has been discussed, there are many ways to attend a college–single sex, Jewish oriented, living off-campus, etc. All of these may prove more easy environments to live a Jewish life. I regularly ask the MO high-school kids that I meet what their criteria are for their college choices. All reply that one of their criteria is “a Jewish environment”. Will that be a Lakewood environment? Hardly. But then, I do not believe that Lakewood is the only possible Jewish environment.

    I do not believe that one could take math classes above and beyond what one needs to be a successful teacher. More knowledge of the subject matter is better–how could it be otherwise. Could one learn more blat Gemara than is necessary to be a successful Rav? Hardly.

    Of course, all of the above are my personal opinions. As I posted, I do recognize that others may not agree.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169530

    Thinking posted:

    “If it is truly assur to go to college could someone explain how “gedolim” such as

    r’ hutner,

    the lubavitcher rebbe,

    r’ avigdor miller,

    r’ yb solovetchik,

    r’ zelig epstein,

    and r’ herschel schachter all go to college?”

    As far as I know, all of the Rabbanim listed made (make) their living as Rabbanim.

    This of course, leaves 2 possibilities:

    1) That they studied in college to acquire knowledge, as they did not derive the paranssa form their college studies.

    2) That they saw college as being necessary for their parnasa–even though their parnasa was via the Rabbanut. Therefore, they saw that secular studies would increase their Torah learning and service to their people–not decrease it.

    Either way, this argues for secular studies being more than simply permitted; rather, it seems a strong recommendation.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663546

    A600KiloBear posted:

    “Sorry, but the Charedi world is not represented by a bunch of hooligans stirred up by outside agitators. That Yoilish Krauss is as authentic a kanoi as I am an authentic bear, not that kanoius represents much of the Charedi world in any event.

    MO is dead. It was a horaas shooh with no real official backing, based on a misperceived need to assimilate and an underlying lack of emunah which led its founders to believe that real Torah Yiddishkeit could not be transplanted to the US – contrast that to the Rebbe Rayatz of Lubavitch ZYA who said “America iz nisht anderish,” let alone Reb Yoilish Satmarer ZYA, Rav SF Mendelowitz ZTL and others. Zionism is also dead, replaced by a vapid post-Zionism that has no connection to Judaism. If you want to see the failure of “religious” Zionism, walk on King George St in Y-m and check the name of the cross street from which taxis and sherut depart on Shabbos R”L L”A…. “

    You claim that “Charedi world is not represented by a bunch of hooligans”–but you think that religious Zionism is represnted by a street name? (By the way, I would have no way of knowing from which street the taxis depart for Tel Aviv on Shabbat.)

    I think that religious Zionism is represented by full Hesder Yeshivot, the young religious platoon leaders and soldiers in the IDF, etc. The streets full of dancing on Simchat Torah. The full Yeshivot. The institutions for the study of science and halacha, to actually determine the halachot of having to deal with new advances from a basis of understanding the actual workings of nature in concert with Torah. All the religious doctors to whom the Hareidi Rabbanim turn when they have medical problems.

    People see what they want to see. I see the above, you see a street name, and taxis departing for Tel Aviv on Shabbat (which of course, are not occupied by religious Zionists). Would you have us adoppt the Hareidi way, and stand there and yell “Shabbes!” at them? Or throw stones?

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169490

    A600KiloBear posted:


    I seriously hope you are far more accurate when dealing with measurements in your scientific work, unless you are working on something as earth shattering as how to make thirty-two more scents of Clorox bleach. In that case an addition of 10% to the weight of whatever odoriferous compound you are throwing in the bleach might actually give you better results. “

    As a scientist, I was taking into account all of your projected weight gain over the chagim.

    Actually, a typo, of course…..

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663537

    I think that thinking about a “split” in MO is a simplification. I think that MO is a continuum, just as is the Hareidi philosophy of Judaism.

    Just as one sees all sorts of behavior form people who define themselves as MO–from Hardal to conservative–one sees the same thing among Hareidim. It is dangerous to define people by their outward appearance, and definitions are not static.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169471

    I am sincerely sorry that you have met such “frum doctors”. Perhaps it is the company that you keep. They are certainly not the ones that I know, teaching and working in Universities in the US and Israel. Maybe on your next visit to your Alma Mater, you should stop in at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, and have a look at the folks with the kipot, and ask them a few questions.

    Ask them about the all-nighters, and the time away form their families. Ask them about the student loans that they take to pay for Medical school, and the salaries that they receive for 60+ hour work-weeks, following 7+ years of studies. Studies that were primarily things like organic chemistry, anatomy, biochemistry, physiology, etc. Those do not leave much time for partying. Those were the kids cracking the books when everyone else went out. What did you major in, by the way?

    You could also have a look around Israel, where doctors’ salaries are not exactly on par with their US colleagues, and ask them why they are in the field. Have a look at how much parting goes on in Israeli Universities–where the student all have jobs as well as their studies to contend with.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663511

    A600KiloBear–I was not referring to organizations like Ezra Mitzion, Yad Sarah, and such. I was referring to major Hareidi Yeshivot and day schools. And please, don’t tell me that they send people to “Yenem Velt”. I have seen many more YU Rabbis take posts in far-flung US towns than I have Chareidim–with the notable exception of Chabad.

    You say that MO contributions to Hareidi institutions are a “drop in the bucket compared to how your own communities support Torah.” Fine. Then don’t come to us. However, until these institutions open their books and let us know how much comes from whom–we will never know. Meanwhile, I believe that those institutions believe that quite a bit comes form the MO community–which is why they send shlichim to every Young Israel and other shul in Yenem Velt– including the ones with the YU Rabbanim.

    How do your communities support Torah for those of us outside of them? And please, do not cite Yad Sarah, Yad Eliezer, etc. The nonhareidi communities support those to a tremendous extent.

    The fact that you do not like Rav Tendler nor his shita is neither here nor there. I can quote any number of things that I do not like about certtain Hareidi Rabbanim or those close to them–still, I do not deny their legitimacy.

    Indeed, this seems to be one of the major differences between Modern Orthodoxy and the Hareidi viewpoint. The MO world–thught it may disagree with an halachic opinion or approach of a given Rav, still shows the Rav respect, does not refer to them as “Rav”, etc.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169466

    A660KiloBear posted: “BS”D

    Yawn. That is secular education in technical fields for the sake of parnosso through excellence in the field. Not for its own sake. Your attempt to be disingenuous does not fool me.”

    Be that as it may, science and medicine are not simply technical fields. Nor do those Orthodox scientists and doctors feel that they are in it for the sake of parnassa only. You might be surprised to know that this is a pretty common topic of discussion among Orthodox scientists, and we know ourselves better than you seem to.

    I’m sorry that I’m boring you. I am not trying to fool you or anyone else–I am expressing an honest opinion about myself and my colleagues.

    in reply to: Modern Orthodox Judaism #663500

    Three for three–all wrong.

    You posted:

    “Per popular request… The Summary:

    A) The Modern Orthodox consider themselves a separate movement from traditional Orthodoxy.”

    You have no idea of what we “consider ourselves”. You are not the “bodek clayot v’lev” and you have no insight as to what someone else is thinking. Especially someone else whose thought processes are foreign to you.

    “B) Modern Orthodoxy was created for the purpose of integrating into secular/Western society. It reluctantly believed that it had no choice but to do so, in order to maintain any semblance of Orthodox Judaism. They believed traditional Orthodoxy would disappear from the American scene, and they had no choice but to compromise traditional Torah values. It is obvious today not only were they wrong, but Ultra Orthodoxy has flourished by previously unimaginable proportions.”

    Please tell us how people like Rav Schacter, Rav Tendler, and countless others and others like him “compromise traditional Torah values”.

    As far as ultra-Orthodoxy flourishing–sure. They do so by the support of their MO brethren, who receive an endless line of collectors for the ultra-Orthodox institutions. There is not a MO congregation in the US that does not receive visits form the ultra-Orthodox representatives, and the amount of solicitations received by mail is staggering. Notably, the reverse is not true, as MO institutions know perfectly well that they will not receive donations form the ultra-Orthodox community–who are famous for only supporting their own institutions.

    The ultra-Orthodox institutions encourage talmidim not to work, so that their parents and in-laws (who in many cases did receive secular education, and are MO) can support them. Of course, this is unsustainable, as those talmidim will not be able to support the next generation without education. And, as Jospeh has pointed out, this is what many of the ultra-Orthodox institutions teach–no English studies in high school, etc.

    “C) One time this wayward movement posed a danger to Torah Orthodoxy, and Rabbonim condemned it in no uncertain terms. That threat has mostly subsided, with Bnei Torah today not taking the MO seriously anymore. Gedolei Yisroel have and continue to plead with them to return to the fold, and await their return with open arms. Baruch Hashem they have notably moved to the right in recent decades.”

    Allow me to requote: “Bnei Torah today not taking the MO seriously”. In other words, Bnei Torah cannot be MO, and MO cannot be Bnei Torah. Some seem to think that the two terms are mutually exclusive. This contributes to a rift in the Torah world, which is hardly a good outcome. It is also an insult to all of the Rabbanim, Talmidie Yeshiva, and Torah Jews who choose to live by the Modern Orthodox shita.

    EDITED…Let’s discuss the issues not the posters.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169462


    That the religious professionals are making a Kiddush Hashem b’rabim is undeniable. However, they could not do so without their secular education. And a great many of these folks–(especially MDs and scientists) continue their secular education long after their graduation, reading about new advances etc. One does not do this incidentally; the best doctors and professionals do it for the love of the work. Just as the best Torah scholars do it for love, and not because it is required of them.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661734

    Oh please. The depletion of Italian Jewry happened about the same time as the depletion of the rest of European Jewry.

    As far as the remnant, many of them did learn a lesson and move to a country where Jewish life and Torah are flourishing.

    in reply to: College, Secular Studies & Judaism #1169457

    Well, let me guess. Joseph will not be attending the Albert Einstein College of Medicine fundraiser this year. And I suppose that the willingness of prominent Rabbanim to associate themselves with Yeshiva University is also meaningless to Joseph and others of his ilk–perhaps he would classify them as “Modern Orthodox”–of which we know his opinion, posted in a different thread.

    So given Joseph’s ideal world, there would be no Jewish doctors, scientists, engineers, etc. Except, of course, for those who invested only a minimal amount of time learning their subject matter, and only do it for parnasa. Just the guys that I would want to perform my surgery, diagnose my illness or build a bridge in my city.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661732

    Joseph, as usual, you simply disregard the quotes that disagree with your position.

    See those by Truthsharer above. You pick quotations and believe that this was the position of a given Gadol, even when they may have given contradictory positions at different times (presumably under different circumstances). If that helps your black-and-white worldview, so be it; do not expect the rest of Am Yisrael to join in.

    There are numerous examples of Jews following professions, and excelling in them. Perhaps you should visit the Universities in Italy in which Jews (all religious) attended and studied (in addition to their Torah studies). The fact that such people are not mentioned in your Yeshiva education does not mean that they did not exist.

    As one example of such a person, try reading up on Rav David Gans.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661712

    A600KiloBear posted: “And if you want parnosso, skilled trades are just as honorable and more lucrative than all but the top tiers of the top paying professions….”

    He is correct. Especially when you compare the amount earned in dollars per hour.

    So we know that most people like doctors and scientists do not work “incidentally” or for parnasa alone–there are many more lucrative ways to earn money for less time invested.

    Luckily, many people in our history have disagreed with Joseph’s sources–people who are Torah Jews (although Joseph and others of his ilk may disagree). Our history is full of famous physicians and astronomers, who did not learn “incidentally”. And there are many full-time professional scientists and academics who are shomer mitzvot, who are living testimony to the erroneous nature of Joseph’s opinions.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661701

    I went to University to get an education. I guess I flunked the partying courses–by nonattendance.

    Perhaps Jothar should have a look at the curricula in the Universities where I currently teach.

    They do not leave much time for partying.

    That is not to say that one could not do those things. But, as I posted, that is not what we are discussing here; I think that we can all agree that partying is not a good use of one’s time. Of course, I also think that we should expect that a good Torah home education and 12 years of pre-college schooling should have taught that lesson. If not–why do people spend all that money and effort on Jewish education?

    As far as coed education, the few single-sex colleges that exist do not always offer a full set of majors, and they may also not be of the same quality as the coed universities (depending on the major).

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661687

    Joseph posted: “starwolf, Today for the right price anyone can get a piece of paper that says semicha on it. “

    Indeed. And they can bolster their credentials among some folks by forbidding all sorts of secular education, denying that any type of knowledge comes from the goyim,and insisting that previous Rabbanim could never ever have been incorrect in anything that they said. Its a good strategy.

    That is why we should not follow people blindly………

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661684

    In many cases, it is extremely impractical to postpone college until after marriage.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661683

    A600KiloBear, Yes, classical music can be used for Notzrut, or for other uses that I don’t particularly care for. Nevertheless, the source of the music–the spark of creativity used to write it, could only come from one source.

    Perhaps it is time that our schools taught people those kind of answers and the thinking behind them. So more of them will have the ability to go to college without fear.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661677

    I posted that “scientific knowledge and the great works of literature, music and other culture is also inspired by exactly the same source that inspires Jewish culture.”

    And Joseph posted: “Unequivocally incorrect. (And Jewish so-called “culture” is what the Torah defines it to be.)”

    So Joseph, you don’t feel that Beethoven’s 6th symphony or Bach’s “Art of the Fugue” is inspired by HKB”H?

    From where do you think that they received the inspiration?

    How about the inspiration for the ideas of Pasteurization of milk?

    Anesthesia in surgery?


    The periodic table of elements?

    The double helix?

    Blood typing?

    Atomic theory?

    Are you denying HKB”H as the source of human creativity/knowledge?”

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661674

    Of course, if someone can achieve their educational goals in a single-gender college, and feels more comfortable there, that is where he or she should be. In fact, too bad that those colleges do not have more options for courses of study than they currently do. This would expand the number of people that could achieve their goals in such institutions.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661673

    I had posted that “I personally know Hareidi Rabbanim who have Ph.D.s in such topics as you list above.”

    Joseph posted:

    “And they didn’t study the secular material they studied “for its own sake.” There was a tachlis to it. “

    No, Joseph, the Rabbanim to whom I refer are people that I do know personally, and have discussed the topic with them. I beleive that they tell me the truth when they say that they study the material for its own sake. Of course, you may know these people (whom I have not named) better than they know themselves.

    Some people may have a purpose for studying French literature other than simply for the love of the knowledge. Others may do so for the latter reason. Not everyone, and not all Torah Jews are the same.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661672


    I have little idea of what goes on in the “average office” if there is such a thing. Mea maxima culpa.

    I do not think that one need violate any issurim to research geniza manuscripts.

    As far as sakanot in mixed universities–I would like to think that part of a good religious education lies in teaching about those sakanot and how to deal with them. It is not really that difficult. Especially if one attends university to learn–not to fool around. University, in my opinion, should be a place where one concentrates on studying. I do realize, of course, that this is not always the the case. It seems to me that, these days, students attend college to:

    Acquire knowledge for its own sake

    Acquire knowledge to enter a profession for parnassa

    socialize at one level or another.

    While none of the above are mutually incompatible, we can assume that for the purposes of this discussion that #3 is not relevant. I think that the first two are both excellent reasons for attending a college, and #2 may even be necessary in many (not all) cases to support a Torah lifestyle, as income is correlated with education. For this reason, it is imperative on us to educate our children about the outside world–what is good and what is bad.

    One does not need to enter a college to see evils of modern society to which we do not wish to expose our children. We can see this on every billboard or every shop that we enter. The only way that we can teach our children to avoid the treif in today’s world is through education. If our schools are not teaching these things to our children well enough after 12 years, then something is VERY wrong with the system. Of course, it is primarily a matter for the parents–but the same thing goes. If a yeshiva boy or seminary girl does not know right from wrong–then what are we teaching them in the yeshivas and seminaries?

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661668

    Joseph, scientific knowledge and the great works of literature, music and other culture is also inspired by exactly the same source that inspires Jewish culture. The fact that you think that we should remain in a self-imposed ghetto by calling everything that does not come from (your particular flavor of) Judaism does not constrain the rest of us. I personally know Hareidi Rabbanim who have Ph.D.s in such topics as you list above, and they lead just as Torah-true lifestyles as anyone else.

    The people researching the Geniza material spend a great deal of their time authenticating it. Do you think that they spend years just copying it down? I know folks who have spent time travelling around Europe, the US and Israel simply to cross-reference piyyutim found in old Machzorim held in private hands and museums.

    What you (Joseph) believe about scientific and medical research is of no matter. I suspect that you have little knowledge of that world or the people who live in it. The best, and most productive people do it for the love of it, as well as the idea of treating people. In addition, those who are not clinicians do not directly treat people, and must hope for future benefits. The majority of those people do it for the love of discovery and knowledge.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661665

    Joseph posted “That is completely the antithesis of Judaism. ” and

    “The key part of the statement I was responding to was “may be interested in education for its own sake”

    Knowledge for its own sake is exactly what Judaism is about. The fact that Joseph seems to think that that knowledge should be limited to Gemara and commentaries notwithstanding–those of us who are willing to open our eyes to other subjects may observe that the world is full of wonders–and they may all be traced back to a single source.

    Joseph, if (chalila) you need a doctor, do you think that he or she should not have pursued his or her knowledge for its own sake? The best ones do, you know. Or do you simply think that medicine should be left to the non-Jews? What about medical research? Do you get vaccinated? Do you vaccinate your children? Do you have any cancer survivors in your family? Diabetics? Let the doctors know that the discoveries that help keep them alive are the “antithesis of Judaism”.

    I know a few people who did graduate work on the study of Piyyutim–by crawling into the material found in the Cairo Geniza and published previously forgotten Piyyutim and Kedusha’ot.

    Those people were working at mixed Universities, and they did the work because of the love of the material, and the feeling that it should not be lost to Judaism and the world. Only a relatively small amount of this material has been investigated. Who knows–there may be some lost works of Rav Kalonymous or even Rav Ibn Ezra included in that material. Should it stay lost because people like you think that this type of study is the “antithesis of Judaism”?

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661658

    Jothar posted: “A college is a more promiscuous environment than an office.”

    Promiscuity can be found anywhere by one who looks for it.

    A good education, on the other hand, is much more easily obtained at a university than anywhere else.

    in reply to: Frum and Gluten Free (Egg Free?) #810756

    Feivel, why do you say that? Some people are allergic to gluten (and/or eggs).

    Some families go without a given food if one member (especially a child) is allergic to it–it makes it easier for the individual to comply.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661655

    Jothar posted: “Why should a co-ed college be any more acceptable than a co-ed high school?”

    Because many single-gender high schools offer good education. However, for a really good education in many subjects, one can only find it in a mixed school. Not to mention graduate-level work.

    And some Torah Jews (men and women) may be interested in education for its own sake–whether in science, medicine, Yiddish culture, Tanach, English literature, law, etc.

    in reply to: Women’s Dancing on Simchas Torah #1018095

    I agre with Mod 42. I like alcohol as much as (or more than) the next guy, but if you cannot derive enough simcha from the Torah itself–well then you do not need to be dancing with it. In addition, under alcoholic influence, one’s judgment is impaired, and it is easy to drink just a little too much. A dropped Sefer Torah is no little matter.

    As far as women dancing goes- if that is what they want, then why not? If it gives them additional appreciation of the Yom Tov–more power to them.

    in reply to: Yeshivah Boy in a Co-ed College #661637

    It depends on the individual, and on his reasons for attending that college.

    in reply to: Lunch Ideas #661198

    In the US, you have those disposable, reusable containers. They are very handy for salads.

    If a vegetable salad is not enough for someone for lunch, try making a pasta salad. The amounts of each ingredient can vary according to taste. You can make a big bowl on Sunday (of for Shabbat lunch, if you wish, and take some each day to work.


    sundried tomatoes

    fresh tomatoes

    artichoke hearts or hearts-of-palm

    pitted olives


    feta cheese (if you want something chalavi)

    whole chickpeas or other beans

    basil (fresh or dried)

    fresh chopped parsley

    salt pepper

    a bit of olive oil. If possible, use the darkest green extra-virgin olive oil.

    Mix it up and you are ready to go.

    Vary to taste–feel free to add anything in the fridge that sounds good with it.

    in reply to: Silence Is Golden #661364

    I never heard of this phenomenon–cell phones in the bet medrash. Turning them off seems only common sense. Israel is a cell-phone heavy society, and our shuls are very informal–but I have never heard a cell phone go off where I daven or learn.

    University laboratories, lecture halls, and libraries have no-cell-phone rules. Cell phones in a Shul or Bet Medrash? And they need a Rav to tell them that this is unacceptable? I agree with Joseph–this is not drastic- call it a reminder of derech eretz.

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