Vizhnitzer Rebbe Calls Upon Chasidim to Give Him Their Smartphones for Entirety of Chanukah

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In a fiery drasha delivered at shalosh seudos this past Shabbos, the Vizhnitzer Rebbe called upon his chasidim to bring their filtered smartphones to his home and keep them there for the duration of Chanukah.

The Rebbe said that he had the idea after receiving an unspecified sign min hashamayim that something had to be rectified. The Rebbe noted that unfiltered smartphones must be immediately thrown away, but even filtered smartphones should be kept by him over Chanukah so as to bring a yeshua to klal yisroel.

The Rebbe noted that, although he would be returning the phones after Chanukah, the act itself would show klal yisroel that they can do without their phones, adding that his call to turn in filtered smartphones applies to everyone, not just his chasidim.

The Rebbe said that anyone who follows his order to hand in their smartphones for the duration of Chanukah will be zoche to have children oskim b’torah u’mitzvos.

Many chasidim were seen handing their phones in to the Rebbe on Motzei Shabbos, and numerous businesses owned by Vizhnitz chasidim posted on their WhatsApp statuses that they will not be having any access to their phones until after Chanukah.

(YWN World Headquarters – NYC)


20 COMMENTS

  1. Wow. So impressive. They should also forfeit any crowd funding campaigns going forward as smartphones and the internet are used for that purpose.

  2. Cellphone radiation has been shown through significant research to be a weakener of the immune system. Anyone not handing in their phone for Chanukah – and if taking it back afterward, should consider generally keeping it on ‘airplane mode’ (no communication with the radiation-producing satellites), and checking for incoming messages and texts on the hour or only as needed.

  3. If you have a few moments, and its a bit of an oxymoron, but scroll down on the YWN news page and find the archived video of the keynote speech last night at the Agudah Convention by Rav Ephraim Wachsman, rosh yeshiva of Meor Yitzchok in Monsey (it also can be accessed from the Agudah homepage). His lengthy presentation on the risks of smartphones for anyone in the frum velt was actually quite balanced, compared with his equally passionate but less objective presentation following Rav Wosner at the internet Asifa several years ago.

  4. Is it technically feasible to install in all the phones something that will copy everything that happens on the phone to a trusted guardian appointed by the Rebbe so that the chassidim will see that the Rebbe is standing over their shoulder and watching everything they do? Ideally it should be enough that Hashem is standing over our shoulders and watching everything we do, but maybe this would give an added level of security and deter unwanted behavior.

  5. Do people really believe this nonsense – “The Rebbe said that he had the idea after receiving an unspecified sign min hashamayim that something had to be rectified.” ? Or did those who handed in one of their phones do so due to peer pressure?

  6. The Ebeshter told the Rebbe to check whether all the phones had updated their filtering software. Nothing unusual since this is standard practice among maalachim in shamayim.

  7. as a Rav-Hamachshil i applaud this effort lead by the holy ADMOR SHLITA. the yeshuos this will bring about are off the charts and will IYH Be Mechper for all my chassidim

  8. @Shimon Nodel – sure lots of Haredim have two phones, one old fashioned phone that can be used just to make calls, which has a mehadrin hechsher and is good even according to shitas Beis Yosef [isn’t that what kosher means?] and the other is a smartphone they use for contacting family and friends who they want to exchange pictures and videos with, doing business to support the holy Rebbes who continually knock on their door, that is when the heilige Roshei Yeshivas are not begging for money and also supporting their own families and making money to pay tuition on time. Sure there are dangers in having a smartphone but there are dangers in driving a car, flying in a plane, and breathing without a mask on. The name of the game is to balance the dangers. Those are decisions everyone should make for himself because there is no such thing as a “kosher” phone. There are kosher people though, and many of them do quite well with smartphones.

  9. POR There are accountability programs that take screenshots at random intervals and send them to your assigned accountability partner. Similar to a web chaver concept, but with screenshots instead of URLs (so actions taken not utilizing browser are monitored also). Truple is a popular example of such a program.

  10. Yayin: Why would you knowingly allow your Iphone to forward screenshots of your pritzus web browsing to your online chavrusah? That would mean you are both choteh (by viewing that site) and machti es harabim (assuring that at least one other yid also views your favorite pritzus).

  11. “The Rebbe noted that, although he would be returning the phones after Chanukah”
    Once you’ve given your phone to the Rabbe you might as well forget it….