Avodah Mailing List

Volume 06 : Number 079

Monday, December 25 2000

< Previous Next >
Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Fri, 22 Dec 2000 13:11:34 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Re: Mixed dancing

This initially went to Areivim, but Micha obviously wants it on Avodah, so 
here we are.

This is actually *not* a RW/LW issue. It is a Mussar/non-Mussar issue. I am 
reminded of a story that my Rebbe, R' Shimon Zelaznik zt"l said over 
concerning Maran R' Yisroel Salanter zt"l, that once a Jew came to him for 
a heter to eat on Yom Kippur, and R' Yisroel said, al pi din I can be 
mattir (we know he did so in the cholera outbreak in Vilna, against, I 
believe, the Beis Halevi), but how can I be mattir, because I suspect that 
the reason he is seeking the heter is because he has had a thought of 
minoos (heresy).

To a Brisker, such thinking is an anthema - yikov ha'din ed ho'hor! Devorim 
she'b'lev einam devarim!

But to those of us - including, of course, the membership of the Aishdas 
Society - who find Mussar imperative to our existence, the internal 
workings of the soul are critical issues in determining not just "Hashkafa" 
(a dirty word in Mussar circles) but also, in the relvenat areas, Halacha.
(Don't get your hackles up, Briskers and pseudo-Briskers, there is 
precedent for this in the sugya of devorim she'b'lebo u'b'lev kol odom - 
Kiddushin 49 IIRC).

(And, as an aside to those who might say that we are exposed to worse, and 
habituation has set in, ani omer, arvach arva tzorich. Unt TV is nisht ken 
ra'ayah - erva ba'ashashis is not the same as in person.)

Education has nothing to do with this matter, human nature does. A Ba'al 
Mussar must take human nature into account (and I have said nothing about 
"negi'os"- extraordinarily fine vested interests that play on the nimei 

Read the R' Yisroel again. This is his thesis.

I know I have not addressed RMS's sources and his lomdishe (of course, to 
my mind, arbitrary and incorrect :-)  ) chillukim. Yishma chochom v'yosif 

At 11:05 AM 12/22/00 -0500, Shinnar, Meir wrote:
>In this case, there is a variety of halachic literature that deals with
>mixed dancing, and none seem to be concerned with the issue that RYGB
>raises, and indeed suggests fairly explicitly, by allowing some types
>of mixed dancing, that they are not worried about causing hirhurim.



ygb@aishdas.org      http://www.aishdas.org/rygb

Go to top.

Date: Mon, 25 Dec 2000 00:39:57 -0600
From: "Yosef Gavriel and Shoshanah M. Bechhofer" <sbechhof@casbah.acns.nwu.edu>
Tzelem Elokim

Interesting Exchange, perhaps, to some (I think we discussed this here once):

At 10:19 PM 12/24/00 -0500, (deleted) wrote:
I had a discussion with Rabbi (deleted) (the Chabad rabbi of our shul) on 
the concept of TE. Specifically, the question was whether non-Jews (e.g., 
Arabs) have TE. He said (and seemed ready to quote lots of Chabad sources 
starting with the Alter Rebbe) that Adam, Hava, and all Jews are made in 
TE, but nobody else, more or less. If one restricts attention to people 
alive today, then only Jews are made in TE.

This came as quite a shock to me, as it seems to say that non-Jews are less 
human... which is a very slippery slope.

Is this also the position of other Orth. Jewish philosophers? For instance, 
does Rabbi Chaim Volozhiner hold this way in Nefesh Hayim? How about 
contemporary Jewish groups? Rav Kook? The Rov?

I don't mean to set this as a problem for you to research. Please tell me 
what you know about the situation off-hand.

Many thanks.

To: (deleted)
Subject: Re: tselem elokim (TE)
The dichotomy is between the Kabbalists, who view TE as a mystical thing, 
and hold that after Mattan Torah goyim no longer possess it (i.e., the 
mystical capacity to have Godlike impact upon supernal spheres and thus on 
the physical universe as well), and this applies to the Nefesh Ha'Chayim et 
al as well, vs. the rationalist philosophers who hold it is the intellect 
and higher power of reasoning and functioning that constitute TE. Rav Kook 
and the Rav, if they address the point, would likely address it from 
different angle depending which of the two perspectives (both of which are 
not mutually exclusive) they were speaking from at the moment.
I am taking the liberty of forwarding this, anonymously, to Avodah.

Go to top.


[ Distributed to the Avodah mailing list, digested version.                   ]
[ To post: mail to avodah@aishdas.org                                         ]
[ For back issues: mail "get avodah-digest vXX.nYYY" to majordomo@aishdas.org ]
[ or, the archive can be found at http://www.aishdas.org/avodah/              ]
[ For general requests: mail the word "help" to majordomo@aishdas.org         ]

< Previous Next >