Sunday, February 07, 2010

Two Great Posts From My BIL (not to the exclusion of his other posts!)


  1. But as I recall from your shiurim in OS, one does NOT have to beleive in kabbalistic sources and can still be a believing Jew (although perhaps an idiot).

    Have I misunderstood, or must a Jew beleive in kabbalistic works/ideas?

  2. I do not think Reb Tzadok's precise position is accepted as the standard, but it is important to know, and makes the "idiot" appellation far more apt.

  3. R.M.:
    Hypothetical: Imagine a Jew who did not believe R' Chaim Brisker existed. Ch. haGR"Ch -- a forgery. Brisker torah -- a corruption of the "true" intent of Chazal. Of course such a person would have a blog where the readers, some of whom have never read a R' Chaim, nonetheless debate the gilyonos Chazon Ish proving R' Chaim wrong. Is such a person an apikores? Of course not! But such a person is depriving himself of the opportunity to better understand the dvar Hashem. He has cut himself off from a world of ideas that greater minds than his own have found insightful and meaningful, and he has cut himself off from the conversation about these ideas that goes on in the olam ha'yeshivos.

  4. I like the Rama MiPano's remark- you can't blame people for not believing something that has been carefully and intentionally obscured.

    It occurred to me that to some extent, this question is similar to the debates between the Prushim and the Tzedukim long ago, in that the Tzedukim held that the overlay of the oral law, the TSbP, that interprets and adds to TSbK was an false innovation. (The Tzedukim probably published scrolls saying that TSbP was introduced by some thirteenth century BC group and made canon by Ezra and Nechemiah, those notorious iconoclasts.)

    And happy birthday, RYGB.

  5. Speaking of a new magazine, such a putative magazine ought to publish translations of great old essays, such as Rav Birnbaum's in Ha'ne'eman, as a monthly feature. I'll bet there are many eye-opening essays that speak to our times despite the passage of years. Or the Ramchal's alleged secular poetry. Hopefully, they would cause a gnashing of teeth in some quarters.

  6. RM etc.
    And just what would you do with the Bet Yossef, the Rema, the Magen Avrohom etc. etc. - the gedlei haposkim on whose rulings we are dependent, on who did accept Kabalah at face-value and even based numerous rulings on it? Are you now saying that they were mistaken and pick and choose what to accept and reject?
    If they can be mistaken in so fundamental an issue - could they not also be mistaken in purely non-kabalistic issues?