Avodah Mailing List

Volume 16 : Number 030

Wednesday, November 16 2005

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 23:34:45 -0500
From: "S & R Coffer" <rivkyc@sympatico.ca>
Subject:
RE: Eliyahu was not a Cohen?


On November 15, 2005, Micha Berger wrote:
> On Sat, Nov 12, 2005 at 09:28:06PM -0500, S & R Coffer wrote:
>: Who says a navi needs the technical parameters of eiss la'asos to
>: temporarily change something in the Torah? Eiss la'asos has to be used
>: by people who are not neveim in order to contravene the Torah such as
>: the sages at the time of Chasimas haTalmud (to write down Torah shba'al
>: peh) ...

> Do you have another example? That one is suspect. There is no actual issur
> in writing down TSBP. "Ee ata resha'i" means it's a bad idea, not assur.

I don't think so but I'm too lazy to research the sources. In any case, I
don't see your point. No one denies the fact that Rabbeeinu haKadosh
employed the mechanism of eiss la'assos to permit the writing of the Mishna
and thus, although you may be correct that eiss la'assos can't permanently
uproot a full-blown issur in the Torah, that has nothing to do with the
point I was making which is that a navi does not require this mechanism,
regardless of its strength or weakness, to temporarily suspend a biblical
injunction (other than AZ).

Simcha Coffer


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 05:30:11 -0500
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Eliyahu was not a Cohen?


On Tue, Nov 15, 2005 at 11:34:45PM -0500, S & R Coffer wrote:
: I don't think so but I'm too lazy to research the sources. In any case, I
: don't see your point. No one denies the fact that Rabbeeinu haKadosh
: employed the mechanism of eiss la'assos to permit the writing of the Mishna
: and thus, although you may be correct that eiss la'assos can't permanently
: uproot a full-blown issur in the Torah, that has nothing to do with the
: point I was making which is that a navi does not require this mechanism,
: regardless of its strength or weakness, to temporarily suspend a biblical
: injunction (other than AZ).

It may well mean that being a navi is necessary to uproot an actual
chiyuv or issur. Which would therefore require Eliyahu hanavi to act al
pi nevu'ah that he would save the boy in order to violate his kehunah --
if you're using "eis la'asos" as the mechanism for explaining how he
could have been a kohein.

-mi


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 11:14:23 +0200
From: Eli Turkel <eliturkel@gmail.com>
Subject:
aggadot


[R Simcha Coffer:]
> If this is so,
> it would seem that whenever a maamar Chazal, aggadic or otherwise, is
> duly established, the CS would understand the Ramban to be saying that
> it must be accepted without reservation. Essentially, this is precisely
> what I am attempting to demonstrate.

I certainly hope you are not accepting aggadot literally virtually
all achronim warn against this. Most Aggadot are meant to give ethical
lessons not teach nature, history or science.

See the Juggler and the king br R. Aharon Feldman to an introduction to
aggadot. In his words aggadot are codes to teach esoteric wisdom.

--
Eli Turkel


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Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2005 23:08:56 -0500
From: "S & R Coffer" <rivkyc@sympatico.ca>
Subject:
RE: Ikkare Hashkafa


On November 15, 2005, Micha Berger wrote:
> On Sat, Nov 12, 2005 at 10:20:41PM -0500, S & R Coffer wrote:
>: O.K. So please explain to me how the Baal haIkkrin derived the issur of,
>: say, sha'atnez from one of the three ikkrim.

> Ikkar 2 implies shoresh 2.3 (the binding nature of the Torah) in which
> is halakhah.

But we're not talking about implications. We're discussing the strict
parameters of the concept Ikkar and form the second Ikkar you cannot derive
even a single mitzvah of the Torah.

>: Although the belief in mashiach is not necessarily an ikkar (depending on
>: the machlokes the Rambam and the Ikkrim) that doesn't mean that a lack
>: in belief of mashiach would not invalidate one's wine halachically. The
>: only difference between the Ikkrim and the Rambam is in semantics,
>: that is, what is technically able to be referred to as an ikkar as I
>: defined it in my last post...

> Since the point of my first post that they differ over what they call
> an ikkar, and only minorly over what beliefs are mandatory, I'm not sure
> why you started a debate to begin with.

Silly question. I started a debate because I'm Jewish...

On a more serious note, I don't see your issue. You wrote: The Rambam
is addressing the question of who is "Yisrael" WRT "kol Yisrael yeish
lahem cheileq". The Ikkarim isn't. He instead is seeking the minimal
list of primary principles that from which you can reason your way to
a complete emunah. They both use the same word "ikkarim", but to mean
different things: necessary belief vs postulate." I started the debate
because I disagree with this paragraph. You maintain that the Rambam and
the Ikkrim are arguing about the definition of the concept Ikkar and I
hold that they agree. Sounds like a debate to me.

> You are right in questioning my assumption that stam yeinam would not
> depend on the acceptance of anafim. However, if RYAlbo holds it does,
> he is VERY machmir, excluding many Jews the Rambam would not call a min,
> kofeir or apiqoreis.

Sorry R' Micha but I disagree. The Rambam has thirteen Ikkrim and RYA
has 11 (including the anafim) If anything RYA is maykil, not machmir. In
fact, one of the primary reasons that he wrote his book was for the
purpose of mitigating the severity of the Rambam's Ikkarim.

Simcha Coffer


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 05:44:40 -0500
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Ikkare Hashkafa


On Tue, Nov 15, 2005 at 11:08:56PM -0500, S & R Coffer wrote:
:>: O.K. So please explain to me how the Baal haIkkrin derived the issur of,
:>: say, sha'atnez from one of the three ikkrim.

:> Ikkar 2 implies shoresh 2.3 (the binding nature of the Torah) in which
:> is halakhah.

: But we're not talking about implications. We're discussing the strict
: parameters of the concept Ikkar and form the second Ikkar you cannot derive
: even a single mitzvah of the Torah.

You're trying to debate what I meant when I wrote:
> He instead is seeking the minimal list of primary principles that from
> which you can reason your way to a complete emunah.

and
> It's clear from the structure of Seifer haIkkarim that R Yoseif Albo
> used ikkarim primarily from which to derive the rest of the faith.

Trust me, I know what I meant without you telling me what we are or
aren't talking about.

....
: On a more serious note, I don't see your issue. You wrote: The Rambam
: is addressing the question of who is "Yisrael" WRT "kol Yisrael yeish
: lahem cheileq". The Ikkarim isn't. He instead is seeking the minimal
: list of primary principles that from which you can reason your way to
: a complete emunah. They both use the same word "ikkarim", but to mean
: different things: necessary belief vs postulate." I started the debate
: because I disagree with this paragraph. You maintain that the Rambam and
: the Ikkrim are arguing about the definition of the concept Ikkar and I
: hold that they agree. Sounds like a debate to me.

Whereas you say the machloqes is semantic. Which where I come from
means they DO argue about the word "ikkar". Don't throw in the extra
word "concept", as in "the concept Ikkar", since that's twisting my
words. Rather, I said they used the word to mean different things, and
therefore there is an illusory debate. Both agree there is a concept
corresponding to the Rambam's use of the word "ikkarim" -- to RYA it's
ikkarim + shorashim. And both agree, as can be seen from the Moreh,
that there is a concept corresponding to the one RYA calls "ikkarim".

:> You are right in questioning my assumption that stam yeinam would not
:> depend on the acceptance of anafim. However, if RYAlbo holds it does,
:> he is VERY machmir, excluding many Jews the Rambam would not call a min,
:> kofeir or apiqoreis.

: Sorry R' Micha but I disagree. The Rambam has thirteen Ikkrim and RYA
: has 11 (including the anafim) If anything RYA is maykil, not machmir...

RYA has 11 that covers the same as 12 of the Rambam, as I outlined. But
those 11 are 11 SHORASHIM *NOT* anafim. (This is the third time I'm
pointing out the difference including the outline post and the one last
night where I point out you misused the word "anaf".) There are dozens of
anafim in his system. If the belief in machiach is mandatory for wine
not to be stam yeinam because the belief is an anaf, it would mean that
all of those dozens would be mandatory as well.

And so, leshitaskha of including mashiach, RYA would be far far more
machmir.

-mi

-- 
Micha Berger             You will never "find" time for anything.
micha@aishdas.org        If you want time, you must make it.
http://www.aishdas.org                     - Charles Buxton
Fax: (270) 514-1507      


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 13:12:59 +0200
From: Daniel Eidensohn <yadmoshe@012.net.il>
Subject:
Re: Only one opinion


S & R Coffer wrote:
>RDE wrote:
>>*Chasam Sofer**[ii]* (O. H. 1:16): *The Ramban has stated in his debate
>>with the apostate that the obligation to believe agada and medrashim
>>only applies to those found in the Babylonian and Yerushalmi Talmud. The
>>validity of other medrashim can be accepted or rejected.

>I couldn't find the above in Shu"t Chasam Sofer O.C. siman tes zayin
>(am I reading your mareh makom incorrectly?)

It is there

??"? ??? ???? ??? ? (??"?) ???? ??

???? ??? ???"? ????? ?????? ???? ?? ?? ??? ???? ??"? ???? ???????? 
???????? ??? ??? ?????? ??????? ??????? ?????:

[Umm, Hebrew doesn't work on this list. Hopefully RSC got a non-mangled
copy. -mi]

> but I'm not sure what you
>mean to add with this source. The Ramban himself states that there are
>three types of seforim, Bavlayi, Talmud and Sermons (hagada) and the
>latter does not necessarily have to be followed.

This establishes the validity of the position stated by the Ramban in 
the dispute. That he wasn't saying it just to avoid problems.

>It would seem from the CS that he understood the Ramban as differentiating
>between maamarei Chazal that were universally accepted by klal yisroel
>as opposed to maamarei Chazal whose authenticity were not as well
>established as those found in Bavli and Yerushalmi. If this is so,
>it would seem that whenever a maamar Chazal, aggadic or otherwise, is
>duly established, the CS would understand the Ramban to be saying that
>it must be accepted without reservation. Essentially, this is precisely
>what I am attempting to demonstrate.

Chasam Sofer  is simply saying is that the authenticity of the statement 
has been established. It doesn't of necessity mean that it has to be 
accepted literally - especially if there are other authentic sources 
which disagree.

For example the original discussion concerned the gemora Shabbos 55b 
which also discusses whether suffering and death occur without sin. The 
gemora rejects the necessary linkage between sin and suffering. Yet you 
find many rishonim who insist that the gemora means that there is a 
linkage. These rishonim clearly felt that they were not bound by the 
theological statement of this gemora.

*Meiri****(Shabbos 55a): *It is one of the foundation principles of 
Judaism to believe that all happens to a person--both the good and the 
bad--is determined by G-d according to the person's deeds. One should 
not be confused by what seems to contradict this principle i.e., the 
suffering of the righteous and the pleasures of the wicked. It seems 
that the righteous and wicked are treated the same. In fact, the nature 
of justice is hidden from us and we don't know why a particular person 
is punished or is rewarded. We do know the general principle that G-d 
does not withhold the reward due to any creature--whether pleasure or 
punishment. This principle is what our sages meant when they said, 
"There is no death without sin and there is no suffering without 
transgression." You shouldn't be disturbed by the fact that this 
principle is apparently refuted in the gemora when it says that four 
died by the sin of the Serpent--thus indicating that death is a 
universal punishment because of the Serpent and was implanted in Nature. 
It should not be taken literally because we know that there is no one 
who hasn't sinned. Furthermore, even though the gemora appears to reject 
the principle that death and suffering is caused by sin since it uses 
the term "tiyuvta"--that conclusion is incorrect. That is because our 
religious beliefs are not dependent upon proofs from the simple meaning 
of verses and agada. There is the established principle that one does 
not resolve issues entirely on the basis of agada. The fact is that even 
Moshe and Aaron died because of their sins so obviously so has everyone 
else.

Furthermore concerning the list of those that if we assert they sinned 
the gemora (Shabbos 55) asserts we err - we find an apparent conflicting 
authentic understanding that Dovid in fact did sin.

Avoda Zara (4b) states:  "This last statement accords with what R. 
Johanan said in the name of R. Simeon b. Yohai: David was not the kind 
of man to do that act,27 nor was Israel the kind of people to do that 
act.28 David was not the kind of man to do that act, as it is written, 
My heart is slain within me;29 nor were the Israelites the kind of 
people to commit that act, for it is said, O that they had such a heart 
as this alway etc. Why, then, did they act thus?[God predestined it so] 
in order to teach thee that if an individual hath sinned [and hesitates 
about the effect of repentance] he could be referred to the individual 
[David], and if a community commit a sin they should be told: Go to the 
community.1 And both these instances are necessary; for if [the case of] 
the individual only were mentioned. [it might have been thought that 
pardon is granted] because his sin is not generally known, but in the 
case of a community whose sins are publicly known it might not be so; 
if, on the other hand, the case of a community only were mentioned, it 
might have been thought, because they command greater mercy,2 but with 
an individual, whose merits are not so numerous, it is not so; hence 
both are necessary. This accords with the following saying of R. Samuel 
b. Nahmani, who said in the name of R. Jonathan: What is the meaning of 
the verse The saying of David the son of Jesse, and the saying of the 
man raised on high.3 [It means this:] The saying of David the son of 
Jesse, the man who elevated the yoke of repentance.4

Rashi notes that Dovid could not control his yeter harah

An additional example concerns mazal. There is no question that chazal 
believed in the impact of mazal. Yet we find that the Rambam rejected 
the validity of mazal.The Meiri stated the following

*Meiri****(Shabbos 156a): *.... The gemora here says that in general 
Jews are not controlled absolutely by mazal. Don't pay attention to the 
alternative view that says that Jews are in fact controlled by mazal. 
That view is the result of some of the sages becoming confused after 
they saw the lack of order in the manner of mankind's reward and 
punishment. This confusion is also manifest in Moed Koton(28a) which 
states that "Lifespan, children and livelihood are not the result of 
merit but rather mazal." This statement was made only because the author 
saw someone who was a tzadik and great scholar who was unsuccessful in 
these three areas. Another one of these confused sages stated in Bava 
Kama (80b): "A door which is locked is not readily opened" and "All 
those who suffer misfortune do not quickly obtain good fortune" while 
another one of this group said, "He will never obtain good fortune" . 
This statement was only made because of bad personal experience as the 
gemora itself concludes that it was not a general rule but he was only 
describing his own personal experience. All this shows that these 
statements asserting the importance of mazal were only made in response 
to their authors' personal experiences or what they observed with 
others. Thus these are only exceptions to the general rule that "Jews 
are not governed by mazal." In other words reward and punishment 
typically determines what happens to a person and not mazal. Our gemora 
here (Shabbos 156a) provides testimony concerning incidents predicted by 
astrologers such as being on the verge of death and yet nevertheless 
being saved through the merit of giving charity. There is no need to 
repeat the events described in this gemora because they are clearly stated.

In sum, to assert that  one must accept the simple peshat of a view 
stated in the gemora -  is problematic.

Daniel Eidensohn


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 13:21:47 +0200
From: Daniel Eidensohn <yadmoshe@012.net.il>
Subject:
Re: Kabbalah today


S & R Coffer wrote:
>>I assume that you mean that I could be right but you feel that there is
>>an alternative understanding which doesn't necessitate any spiritual
>>accomplishments or kabbalistic knowledge - which you prefer.

>Your assumption is only partially correct. I feel that the spiritual
>accomplishment part is incorrect however I am not disputing your proposal
>regarding the knowledge of kabbalistic concepts by either one of these
>rishaim (ST or Y). ST's knowledge of Lurianic kabbala is well known
>and documented and Y could very well have been familiar with kabbalistic
>concepts. 

I just want to verify that we are in agreement that Yashka was familiar
with Kabbalaistic concepts. Thus you admit the possibility that the
religion Yashka started might be based on kabbalistic concepts. Our
only point of disagreement is whether Rav Tzadok is indicating that both
Yashkoa and ST were at some time on high spiritual levels prior to their
spiritual collapse.

Daniel Eidensohn


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 08:02:49 -0500
From: "Rich, Joel" <JRich@Segalco.com>
Subject:
RE: Kabbalah


>> Bear in mind that what we call the Zohar is largely an invention of 
>> the printers in Cremona and Manuta in 1558,

[RBK:]
> This opinion is not accepted by mekubalim. If there are any that do accept
> this I would request a mekor. The opinion that it was written in the 13th
> century when it was found by R. Moshe De Leon is that of the maskilim.

Listen to R' Brill's 1st 2 or 3 Kabbalah classes www.yutorah.org

KT
Joel Rich


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 17:55:37 +0000
From: Arie Folger <afolger@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: Kabbalah


RBK wrote:
> This opinion is not accepted by mekubalim. If there are any that do accept
> this I would request a mekor. The opinion that it was written in the 13th
> century when it was found by R. Moshe De Leon is that of the maskilim.

Correction: Of Rav Ya'akov Emdin.

... and in fact, a thought at least entertained by Rav Moshe de
Leon's contemporary Rav Yits'haq DeMin Akko. (that is in the famous
manuscript Gershom Sholem published in the 1926 inaugural issue of
Mada'? haYahadut.) By the way, the Komarno attributes the Zohar to "gaon
e'had". (I read that piece, probably have it somewhere in my archoves, but
sorry, I can't recall where it is.) The 'Hatam Sofer is more conservative
here, but still says that it was not written by RSBY's hand, but rather
several decades after his death. (Quoted in the 1st volume of Shorash?
Minhag Ashkenaz)

Arie Folger


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 22:41:14 +0200
From: Eli Turkel <eliturkel@gmail.com>
Subject:
using aggadata


> BTW, RMF also uses an aggadic story as a ra'ayah in declaring the child
> of IVF a non-mamzer by invoking Ben Sirah as precedent.>

In Nefesh harav it is from RYBS that the reasons for covering the
Challah are in remembrance of the Manm and "embarrasing the challah"
are only aggadic and dont affect halacha. The "real" reason is so the
meal occurs "be-yikrata beshabbat". He concluded that therefore all food
on the table should be covered.

--
Eli Turkel


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 03:55:32 -0800 (PST)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Subject:
RE: TIDE


S & R Coffer <rivkyc@sympatico.ca> wrote:
> The following might annoy some list members on Avodah but I can't resist
> translating the last two lines of Parshas Kedoshim in the sefer haChinuch.

> Quote: "And one who distances himself from all of their customs and all
> of their culture and puts all of his heart and mind to Hashem and his
> precious mitzvos will live on in joy forever and his seed will inherit
> the earth".

Maybe we should all move to Qumran? 

HM


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 12:55:57 -0500
From: "S & R Coffer" <rivkyc@sympatico.ca>
Subject:
RE: TIDE


On November 16, 2005, Harry Maryles wrote:
> Maybe we should all move to Qumran?

Only if you're an archaeologist. Otherwise, a nice Jewish neighbourhood
in Chicago will do the trick as long as you stay away from your goyish
neighbours. The Chinuch says "one who distances himself from all of
their customs and all of their culture" not all of their cities.

Simcha Coffer


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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2005 07:42:49 -0500
From: Avodah - High Level Torah Discussion Group <avodah@aishdas.org>
Subject:
Re: TIDE


S & R Coffer wrote:
>This comment is entirely incomprehensible and is contrary to the facts
>of history. Anyone familiar with the Haskala movement knows that by the
>time RSRH reached Frankfort am Main, Haskala was so firmly entrenched
>that there was no prayer of entirely uprooting it from Germany. RSRH
>came to Frankfort almost 75 years after Haskala began! And by the time
>Rabbi Yoseph Breuer escaped the Nazis in 1937, Germany was a spiritual
>wasteland. Almost all of German Jewry had assimilated with the Germans
>and lost any semblance of a Jewish tzura.

*Haskala* was almost nowhere to be seen - outside Berlin. You continue 
to conflate Reform with Haskala.

As to Germany being a "spiritual wastedland," the charge is offensive. 
It is difficult to see the cradle of the Agudah, the land of Breuers, 
Carlebachs, Hildesheimers, Hoffmans, not to mention the Lithuanian 
transplants, as a "spiritual wasteland."

>Not only isn't it a davar pashut, it is the furthest thing from the truth.
>It is the people who drop their guard and allow themselves to integrate
>into gentile culture that stand the biggest risk of falling prey to the
>hevley haGoyim chs'v. V'heim dvarim brurim umivurarim.

You commit a fundamental error. TIDE is not about integration into 
gentil culture. In fact, I do not even think TuM is about that - except 
perhaps in its most extreme manifestations.

 From my Dr. Breuer essay (aishdas.org/rygb/drbreuer.htm 
<http://aishdas.org/rygb/drbreuer.htm>):

            _Rabbinical Approaches_

            Many great /Rabbonim/ held on to yesteryear's realities.
            They fought to maintain the past. History did not allow them
            to succeed. The spirit of social emancipation captured the
            youth.

            Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch's viewed emancipation neither as
            a Divine gift nor as the work of the /Satan/. It was a
            challenge, a challenge to the nation to apply Torah to the
            new reality. In theory, the more areas of endeavor open to
            the Jews, the greater the possibilities to develop a
            comprehensive Torah driven national life. Fighting to
            maintain the past would be a terrible indication that the
            Torah was weak, that it could not address, harness and
            influence history. The key to success: Not to tremble, not
            to fear. The Torah can overcome and govern any reality,
            engage any vision, meet and conquer any noble spirit with
            its spirit.

            Rabbi Hirsch engaged the prevailing focus on nature and
            humanity. His premise: Nature and man's perfection are both
            attained through Torah. The comparison of our history to the
            history of all the other nations of the world yields the
            inevitable conclusion: The /Am HaTorah/ is the nation most
            concerned with and most accomplished in human perfection.

            In a Torah state, all areas of endeavor, all of /derech
            eretz/, must be model applications of the overall mission of
            /Am Yisroel/ to specific activities. /Torah im Derech
            Eretz/. Emancipation provided the /Am HaTorah/ with the
            opportunity to develop in that direction. From that
            perspective, emancipation could be seen as the final stage
            of /Galus/, the road to /Ge'ula/. /Torah im Derech Eretz/
            meant, in short: "Be /Am Yisroel /in the full meaning of the
            term."

            _The First Battlelines are Drawn - The Separate /Kehilla/_

            If even in its exile, /Am Yisroel/ was to be an /Am
            HaTorah/; If in lieu of a state there was a /kehilla/; if
            the autonomy of Judaism is the autonomy of /Hashem/; then
            how could Torah-true Jews join in a /kehilla/ together with
            "Reformers" who systematically sheared Judaism of its entire
            identity? Even if the general /kehilla/ was to grant the
            "Orthodox" a special status, to sustain their institutions
            and "ritual requirements" - how could a Jew in which the
            fire of national destiny burned identify with a framework
            that tolerated rebellion and transgression. Rabbi Hirsch
            battled mightily for the right to separate from the overall
            community. In doing so, he laid the cornerstone of the
            future Agudah's ideology.

            Others disagreed. They saw in the general /kehilla/'s
            concessions a glimmer of /teshuva/. They thought to
            influence their estranged brethren. They did not understand
            that although one must extend a hand to individual sinners,
            the /kehilla/, the /Am/, can have but one constitution, one
            basis - the Torah. In failing to draw that distinction, they
            laid the cornerstone of the Mizrachi.

            _Eastern Europe_

            The ideological warfare of the West was foreign to the East.
            Emancipation did not reach them. In the East, they fought a
            different foe, /Haskala/, on the terms of the old reality,
            and were mostly successful. They knew Germany, primarily, as
            the source of their woes. They saw the Torah-true doctors
            and bankers in the West, but did not relate to the vision
            and to the dynamic that led to these phenomena.

            _Modern Nationalism_

            Ironically, the assimilationist tendencies, the
            "Protestantization" of Judaism, just led to a new and more
            terrible form of Anti-Semitism. The animosity no longer
            centered on the Jewish religion, but on the Jewish race.
            There was an assimilated Jew of the West who heard - and was
            shocked by - the racial slurs. He thought that the slurs
            were a product of low esteem, and thought, in turn, that the
            low esteem was a product of a lack of status. He thought to
            rectify the "Jewish Problem" by enhancing the Jews' status -
            by empowering them, by seeking for them a land and a
            country. He boldly spoke the language of independence and
            Jewish national identity, as no man had done in the past two
            thousand years. That man was Theodore Herzl.

            At the same time, the /Maskilim/ of the East, who knew all
            along that assimilation was an impossible proposition,
            looked for a way to "renew" Jewish culture. /Achad Ha'am/
            reasoned that Jewish culture was stifled by the oppression
            of the exile. Give the nation its freedom in its own land,
            and who knows what new spiritual achievements they might
            attain. They might create some new book for humanity, just
            as they once created the Torah...

            Herzl's Zionism came as a shock to the West. He did not
            identify himself as an "Austrian of the Mosaic faith," but
            as a "Jew, part of the Jewish nation." The very idea turned
            many Jews who were on the verge of baptism back to their
            roots. Here lies the positive aspect of Zionism, its success
            at changing Judaism back from a faith to a nation. It
            restored the Jewish nation to the center of history, to its
            rightful place as a nation playing a decisive role in the
            history of nations.

            And here, precisely, lies the danger of Zionism. Reform is
            not an alternative to real Judaism - it has no place for /Am
            Yisroel/. Zionism is an alternative. It focuses on an /Am
            Yisroel/, but not the /Am/ of the /Am HaTorah/. Zionism's
            nationalism is that of all the other nations. To the extent
            that it has "Jewish values," they are but the values of
            Mendelssohn's successors - those of personal faith, not
            those revealed at Sinai.

            Some Torah-true Jews attempted to work with the positive
            aspect. They formed the Mizrachi. They became "Religious
            Zionists." The term itself reveals its fallacy. Judaism is
            not a religion, it is an /Am/. Yet it cannot be the /Am/ of
            Zionism, because Zionism stands in diametric opposition to
            the /Am HaTorah/.

>>TIDE addresses *all* problems of Judaism with far greater hatzlachah than
>>the shittah which promulgates isolation from goyim. 

>This statement is so foreign to my perspective on yahadus that I find it
>difficult to define precisely where to start in expressing my dissent so
>I'll just let Bilam do the talking. "Hein am livadad yishkon u'vagoyim
>lo yischashav" This is a definitive statement about how the Torah views
>the nature of our relationship with our surroundings and thus I couldn't
>have said it better.

Again, you misunderstand TIDE. Take a look at RSRH on that pasuk and you 
will see that he agrees with you! Because you are misrepresenting TIDE, 
you *suppose* that he disagrees. That is not the case.

YGB


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