Can One Get an Aliyah to the Torah if One Has a Phone With Internet Connectivity?

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droidMispallalim of the Mosiyoff (מוסיוף) Shul in the Bucharim neighborhood of Yerushalayim have been informed the gabbai will no longer give an aliyah to persons who have a phone with internet connectivity. The shul is affiliated with a number of Sephardi Gedolim including Maran HaGaon HaRav Ovadia Yosef ZT”L.

The gabbai also announces that anyone without a kosher cellular telephone may not be a shaliach tzibur as well.

Interestingly, Rabbi Yosef Cohen last week in his weekly shiur in the shul spoke out against the rabbonim who are machmir, explaining that everything in this world can be used with kashrus and while he admits he does not have a smartphone, and he does not how to use them, he explains people who are Yirei Shomayim have told him they are blocked to prevent them from any avreira despite having a smartphone.

During the shiur, which is quoted on the Chareidi 10 website, Rabbi Cohen explains his opposition to the position taken by Ashkenazi rabbonim against the smartphones. “Everyone should have a kosher phone. Why? Because Ashkenazim must steel people’s money? Where is this written? They go to rabbis who do not understand the phone or how one speaks on the phone and persuade them that every person must have a kosher phone. This is not correct”.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)


12 COMMENTS

  1. This is just awful. Posting that some sfardi rabbi accused Ashkenazim of stealing Sfardi money? What’s wrong with people?

  2. Reiquiring someone to have a “kosher phone” because he may(or may not) come to sin. Is like requiring an obese person not to use a fork so he won’t come to over eat. You need to address the root problem,the phone only does what its owner tells it to do. The need is to rehabilitate the owner not the machine. If a person is ill the rest of the world does not need to take his medicine.

  3. I’m sorry … what? I’m sick and tired of this perverse presumption that anyone who uses a smartphone is a sick pervert. If only people had the seichel to learn about the various great technological gifts Hashem has given to this generation (and how to use them safely and responsibly)! Technology is not to be feared (especially if such disgusting libels and lashon hara are spread in the process about about every G-d-fearing Jew who utilizes it for good). It is to be embraced to enhance our lives as Torah Jews. Sure, there are horror stories, which become increasingly exagerrated through biased retellings, but they are NOT the norm.

    To paraphrase the good Rabbi, ignorant people who do not understand technology go to rabbis who also do not understand the phone or how one speaks on the phone and persuade them that every person must not have a smartphone.

    And Rabbi Cohen admits he has no idea how this beautiful piece of technology works. What makes him (or anyone else with the same level of expertise) so qualified to speak for or against it? It’s a rule of thumb of online decorum to not post a review of a product you’ve never actually used.

    Oh and…. “Rabbi Cohen explains his opposition to the position taken by Ashkenazi rabbonim against the smartphones. ‘Everyone should have a kosher phone. Why? Because Ashkenazim must steel people’s money? Where is this written?'” About that. Statements like that sound like the same unfounded, hateful trash that comes of an antisemite’s mouth – except that Ashekazin in specific are being tarfeted. And how can one use a smartphone specfically to “steel” money? I’m Ashekazic and I’ve never done that before! Maybe someone in his community who knows how this works, or perhaps the good Rabbi himself, can show me how?

    Again, what makes this man, who has never used a smartphone in his life, so qualified to make these statements, which range from ridiculous to outright libelous?

    Sent from my Android.

  4. We need to strictly enforce this in our dor. This is a plague that if left unwatched will destroy many as it already has. Even with filtering it is questionable whether it is permissible.

  5. I wonder how many of you subscribe to “guns don’t kill people, people kill people” because that’s exactly the same logic all of you are using. So it would be safe to assume you are all also pro guns.

  6. I am an Israeli Ashkenazi and I am slightly offended by the rabbis statement but I know what he means. The same fone which costs $20 in the United states (which is the most basic flip fone u can buy here) costs over $75 here. And yes the owner of the company is unfortunately Ashkenazi 🙁 but if u want a “better” fone (still not great) it will cost u over $150!!!!

  7. right, is it better to have a kosher phone and look at treif, or have a non kosher phone and not look at treif.

    Once again, we Jews have dived into the depths of externalities in judging our fellow Jews.

    sick!

  8. Anyone with a smartphone, who has ever tried to access a news site with graphics will tell you that it take forever to load.

    The odds of someone using a computer to access shmutz is far greater than using a cell phone.

    also, from what I’ve read in computer magazines, those shmutz sites are loaded with viruses. You’d have to be crazy to go there.

  9. Yosef Jr., who purports to be a leader of the Separdeshe community, is a shadow of the gadlus of his tatah…he takes mindless and absurd positions to prove his legitimacy but all he succeeds in doing is marginalizing himself and his followers. Smart phones are increasingly a necessity of modern living and any Rav who seeks to ban their use will find himself ignored and ridiculed.