Avodah Mailing List
Volume 03 : Number 109
Saturday, July 3 1999
Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 14:26:56 -0400 (EDT)
From: Shalom Carmy <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To amplify Eli Clark's account of Newman:
He was an Anglican priest (not a bishop) at Oxford. When he concluded that
Anglicanism was not the authentic repository of Christian tradition, and
acted accordingly, he was isolated from all the people and the way of life
he held dear. The Roman Catholic Church, which was rather weak
intellectually, didn't know what to do with him. One assignment was to
found a liberal arts college under Catholic auspices in Ireland, out of
which came the lectures on the Idea of a University.
Newman was elevated, from being a simple monk, to the cardinal's hat, in
his eighties, after many years of obscurity. He was not the darling of the
Catholic establishment for most of his lifetime.
His last major work is Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent. It is
unsurpassed as a philosophical analysis of what it means to really believe
something and what happens when an individual changes, or remains faithful
to, his beliefs. I can say with confidence that quite a few individuals,
exposed to what passes for reflection in our community, who are
consequently inclined to reject traditional religious belief on
"philosophical" grounds, have been favorably affected by encountering
Newman's work. I daresay that quite a few of our religious educators,
barricaded behind their walls of impregnability, would find it easier to
avoid thinking, and pontificating, stupidly about these matters if they
had studied Newman.
I hope it is unnecessary to add that readers of Newman are not to follow
him uncritically, as if he were a 25 year old high school rebbi whom we
are not allowed to question. Also, that there are clear-headed and
healthy-minded individuals who do not need to read and study and think in
order to internalize, and even articulate, a healthy outlook on the nature
of belief. But most of us cannot justify such confidence. R. Bahye,
addressing a more insulated society than ours, commented that if we don't
understand the Apikoros, we risk adopting his outlook unknowingly. As R.
Lichtenstein put it: In every Garden of Eden there is a serpent, and if
one wants to reject the Apikoros within, one may need to read a treatise
of serpentine psychology.
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Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 14:26:30 -0400
From: Shlomo Yaffe <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: Avodah V3 #107
Please: nothing in our medieval Poetry to rival Dante?
what about "Akdamot" or R. Shlomo Gabirols' "Keter Malchut"?
Augustinian fervor is as nothing compared with the fire of Selichot or
Gabirols "Tzion Halo-tishalee".Plato is the direct ideological ancestor
By our tradition Aristotle wrote a letter to his pupil Alexander the
Great abjuring his earlier philosophy and accepting the truth of the
By the way, as we enter the three weeks and we all know why the second
temple was desroyed - a result of Sinas chinam (causeless hatred).
How sad to read that this Orthoodox Rabbi in Sacremento (according to the
report) doesn't want to use the Chabad facility to house his Shul Because
he "want's nothing to do with Chabad"
As Jerusalem burned the Biryonim were still killing their fellow Jews
(see Josephus's "Wars of the Jews").
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Date: Fri, 2 Jul 1999 16:26:47 -0500 (CDT)
From: "Shoshanah M. & Yosef G. Bechhofer" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Being Mahmir on Hazal
On Tue, 22 Jun 1999, Clark, Eli wrote:
> I would like to go back to this issue. A specific example I can think
> of is hilkhot shehitah, where, if you learn the sugyot and Rishonim,
> then read the Mehabber and Rema, you will find that the Ashkenazic
> minhag on virtually every defintion of pesul is simply to be mahmir
> across the board.
Sorry it took so long, but I am finally back! I do not know of any
examples where the Poskim are more machmir - except in cases of chisaron
yedi'ah - over Chazal. Perhaps you might give an example?
> I cannot understand how any talmid hakham, let alone a gadol like R.
> Ahron Soloveichik, could say that being mahmir on Hazal renders one
> deserving of herem.
> I think some clarification is in order.
I am not sure what the problem here is. Chazal are the final arbiters of
Halacha. Those who would be more machmir than they are undermining that
authority. In YD, there is a Pischei Teshuva somewhere - I will look up
the exact source another time, where he cites an opinion that he who is
machmir not to eat something batel b'shishim "nizreka bo apikorsus" or
something like that. While in that specific case there are those who
argue, the principle underlies RAS's position.
Yosef Gavriel Bechhofer
Cong. Bais Tefila, 3555 W. Peterson Ave., Chicago, IL, 60659
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Date: Sat, 3 Jul 99 21:11:03 PDT
Subject: RE: Avodah V3 #108
I haven't seen here any mention of the Bnei Akiva Yeshivot and Ulpanot. As some of you
know, I have B"H 3 daughters studying at an Ulpana in Israel. I must say it wasn't an
easy choice to make, but for my daughters it appeared to be the one they wanted and the
choice best suited to them.
I have noticed a few things during the years when my brothers and family have studied
at these schools. Each Yeshiva/Ulpana is different. Each is to a certain extent a
reflection of the Rosh Yeshiva or Rosh Ulpana. While the curriculum is the same, the
after hours (these are dormitory schools) emphasize different sides of Judaism. Some
schools emphasize B'ki'ut; some in depth study of G'mara, some tanach or Machshava;
in the girl schools there is usually a higher level of emphasize on the study of
Machshava, though extra Tanach and G'mara are available after hours. All the schools
place high emphasise on Ezra La'Zulat and the building of a Torah personality.
I would also like to comment that even though my daughters are studying outside the
home since the age of 14, we are still totally involved in their lives and experiences
(besides when they come home unexpectedly... <g>). We visit and talk to them
regularly, and from discussions with other parents I know this is the same for them:
the kids aren't truly leaving the home -- when they need advice they call home, when
they have choices to make, they consult with their parents. So the picture I have of
the issue is different than what has been provided on list.
Name: Shoshana L. Boublil
Time: 09:11:03 PM , Israel
This message was sent by Chameleon
Torah U'Madah Ltd. is developing a DB on the topic:
"Environmental issues and the Halacha (Jewish Law)"
any and all related information would be welcome.
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Date: Sat, 3 Jul 1999 23:11:22 EDT
Subject: Re: Being Mahmir on Hazal
In a message dated 7/2/99 5:27:01 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> I am not sure what the problem here is. Chazal are the final arbiters of
> Halacha. Those who would be more machmir than they are undermining that
> authority. In YD, there is a Pischei Teshuva somewhere - I will look up
> the exact source another time, where he cites an opinion that he who is
> machmir not to eat something batel b'shishim "nizreka bo apikorsus" or
> something like that. While in that specific case there are those who
> argue, the principle underlies RAS's position.
I had also referred to it, it is in Y"D end of 116 Ois 10.
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