Losing the connection

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10 Responses

  1. Moshe says:

    Possibly, a factor that accounts for these issues is globalization. At one point, each Rav was the ‘Godol Hador’ of his town or city, and had the utmost respect of all those involved. Nowadays, there is one or a handful of “Gedolei Hador”, and everyone else is diminished. That leads to a lessening of Kavod HaTorah, as the myriad of excellent Rabbonim who are not considered the “Godol Hador” are not given the proper respect and honor that they deserve.

    Does a Rav need to agree with Rav Elyashiv in everything? Is it possible that a Rav who is an independent thinker will agree with Rav Elyashiv in everything? Obviously not. Yet, to the eyes of the youngsters, this Rav is arguing with the “Godol Hador”, and as such, deserves to be marginalized.

    As long as we continue the ‘godol hador’ madness, this disturbing trend will continue.

  2. Steve Brizel says:

    This is an important article on a topic of grave importance. WADR, IMO, Vaadim for any young man and woman in this parsha should by no means be limited to the very important halachos, chumros, kulos and hanhagos of Hilcos Nidah, etc but also focus on the views of Chazal and Rishonim on how to be a spouse and a true partner at all times and Bchadrei Chadorim-at the most intimate moments-which Chazal in many sugyos and Rishonim ( Raavad and Ramban in Igeres HaKodsh and Baalei HaNefesh)dealt with in very clear and unabashed detail. We need to remember that a Torah based life neither is hedonistic nor Victorian in nature. There is a wonderful vignette in D S Heilman’s book on Charedi life that underscores this issue in full detail.

    Today, given the size of most Batei Medrashim in Yeshivos Gdolos, sometimes one is better off verifying the bona fides of a young man with his peers or someone slightlty older who is a Kollelnik or Rosh Chabura than a RY or Mashgiach.

  3. Maran says:

    The Rosh Yeshiva of Slobodka was Rav Moshe Mordechai Epstein, not Mordechai Moshe.

  4. Tzipporah says:

    Maybe this shows that the Chareidi/Israeli shidduch system is showing some wear and tear due to the materialistic pressures (the price to pay) for a good groom. Between the “dira” and everything that comes with it, funding a suitable mate is becoming more and more based on external factors than what really matters. Marriages based on business deals don’t have much substance.

  5. Joel Rich says:

    How about the young man’s father as a role model?
    KT

  6. Aharon Hakohen says:

    I could’t agree more with Yonatan’s observations regarding the present state in yeshivos regarding the Rebbi-talmid relationship. Looking back at my years in a yeshiva and mechina, I have come to recognize the limitations that a good yeshiva education provides when it is in an atmosphere of detachment between the educators and the students. Although learning skills can be developed in such a system, the warm flavor of Yiddishkeit doesn’t get transferred adequately. The importance of Tefillah and reliance on the Almighty’s favor and help are not stressed , in favor of developing Iyun (in depth analysis) skills in Talmud. These components of a Jewish education are required to strive beyond one’s time in Yeshiva, yet yeshivos often don’t deliver them.

    looking forward to my own son’s time in Yeshiva, I consider these issues and hope, with the help of the Almighty, that he finds a yeshiva that values and delivers these goals.

  7. Ahron says:

    Does a Rav need to agree with Rav Elyashiv in everything? Is it possible that a Rav who is an independent thinker will agree with Rav Elyashiv in everything? Obviously not. Yet, to the eyes of the youngsters, this Rav is arguing with the “Godol Hador”, and as such, deserves to be marginalized.

    I think there’s no question that the trends of centralization and “efficiencies of scale” that have become so popular in Western societies–e.g. centralized healthcare, powerful central governments, centralized sources of media, books & information, merged and centralized corporations, mass-production and distribution, etc. etc.–have come to the Jewish community also. The same trends of deindividuation, homogenization and blandness that are often the fruits of centralization for society, are also the tested and predictable fruits of centralization in our “velt”.

    Most of frum society is not willing to even acknowledge this (after all we’re (somehow, magically) supposed to be “immune” to the trends that affect the rest of humanity…) Some sectors of the wider society do acknowledge it but even there, there’s no real program to address it.

  8. Elozor Preil says:

    How about the young man’s father as a role model?
    KT

    But when the young man goes away to yeshiva, perhaps as young as 13 or 14, and thereafter has limited contact with his parents and much more with his rebbeim, some of whom may denigrate the lifestyle and choices of the parents (if they are not full-time “learners”, but are rather “earners” who pay tuition and the rebbis’ salaries), how much of a role model will the father still be? And this phenomenon is exacerbated when the young man goes to Israel for a year (or more).

  9. Ori Pomerantz says:

    Ahron: I think there’s no question that the trends of centralization and “efficiencies of scale” that have become so popular in Western societies—e.g. centralized healthcare, powerful central governments, centralized sources of media, books & information, merged and centralized corporations, mass-production and distribution, etc. etc.

    Ori: Western society seems to be going the other way – back into decentralized information distributin. See, for example, http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1401302378?tag2=thelongtail-20 .

    However, western society can do it because it’s a free marketplace of ideas. Of course, that doesn’t mean the truth wins every time, it just means that the most attractive ideas, true or false, tend to win.

    Once you set up a certain group in charge of deciding what views are “beyond the pale”, it is almost impossible for members of that group not to abuse their position. Yetzer haRa loves to masquerade as doing good, such as protecting people from falsehood.

  10. Jewish Observer says:

    “Reb Yaakov Kaminetsky, zt”l, often remarked that that his primary rebbe in learning when he was in Slabodka Yeshiva, was not the Rosh Yeshiva, Rabbi Mordechai Moshe Epstein. Rather it was an older bochur whose style in learning attracted him”

    – what is the source, please?

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