An Atzeres Tefillah

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11 Responses

  1. Baruch says:

    So why were there literally hundreds of placards handed out at the so-called “atzeres tefillah” with vile declarations about “shmad” and religious persecution? Don’t you think it’s “venom and hatred” to hold signs saying בכל דור ודור עומדים עלינו לכלותינו?

  2. Mr. Cohen says:

    Since the topic of this message is tefillah:

    Rabbi Avigdor Miller (a popular Chareidi Rabbi,
    born 1908 CE, died 2001 CE) delivered a free
    public lecture in the last year of his life, in which
    he taught that Jews should pray for the Israeli Army.
    I personally witnessed this; I was there.

  3. BTG says:

    I was, like you, heartened to hear that the assemblies were to be for prayer only and not protest. There were several things about the gatherings that I was unhappy with (detailed extensively on this blog), but at least the idea was sound. My one complaint is that as much as you (and presumably the people behind the gatherings) want to compare it to Mordechai and Esther in Shushan, there is one glaring omission. The gedolim here only called for tefillah; there were no calls for T’shuva or introspection – just a lot of “there’s a g’zeriah against us”. The rallies (and the sign-bearers relfected this attitude. To contrast, Mordechai realized that g’zeiros don’t just happen and called for fasting and T’shuva. I find this lack of self-awareness disturbing.

  4. Zadok says:

    That basic calculation applies today. In politics alliances change frequently and today’s adversary may well become tomorrow’s ally. As threatening as the Shaked Report is – particularly the criminalization provisions — it is far from representing the limit of possible damage to a vulnerable Torah community, and we will in the future need every potential ally we can get, including MKs from the national religious community.

    Now that Bayis HAyehudi voted for the criminalization provisions the Charedi community has a better chance of forming future alliances with the Arab parties then the national religious community.The settlers who supported Bayis Heyudi should also be told to keep that in mind

  5. lawrence kaplan says:

    A thoughtful and subtle critique of the many rather vociferous recent Haredi protests against the various government proposals to draft Haredim, as well of rabbinic leaders who append YM”S to the names of their secular political opponents. Bravo Jonathan Rosenblum!

  6. Bob Miller says:


    There has been a long history of politicians in the Dati Leumi camp being at odds with their own Roshei Yeshiva and Poskim, and much of their rank and file, on important issues—so don’t write off the whole group so quickly.

  7. Bi'aniyus Da'ati says:

    My own take was that the tefilos were inspiring. The lack of protest banners was gratifying. Thankfully, unlike in Eretz Yisroel, the dancing was minimal, at least from my vantage point. Overall, it was an afternoon well spent.

    One very minor gripe: I’d like to reserve kabalas ol malchus shamayim for Neilah on Yom Kippur. It’s very special when it’s only once a year.

  8. Moshe Tokayer says:

    Thank you for this article. Halevai that the Chareidi members of Knesset would take it to heart.

  9. Katriel Reichman says:

    “the ultimate support for the atzeres tefillah, however, comes from Megillas Esther”. It is not quite the case, however, that Mordechai called upon the Jews of Shushan to fast and pray for Esther. It was Esther herself who called for the fast (4,16). Mordechai’s original response was to tear his own clothes (4,1). Mordechai’s organization is described in the Megilla as carrying out Esther’s instructions (4,17).

    It’s also interesting to note that the outcome of the three day fast/atzeres tefillah (Chapter 4) was the taking up of arms authorized and described later in the Megilla (Chapters 8 and 9).

  10. David Weiss says:

    R’ Rosenblum writes that the gathering was “styled as an atzeres tefillah (a prayer gathering), and not as a protest.” This is inaccurate. While he is correct in stating that it WAS styled as an atzeres tefillah, he is not correct in stating that it was not a protest. The Kol Koreh explicitly explained that the reason for the gathering was “to pray and to protest.” The official statement read at the gathering included the phrase, “and to express their [our] pain and protest regarding this proposed new law.” The very fact that it was in Manhattan (hardly the prime place to daven) was obviously chosen so that the gathering could serve the dual purposes of being a tefillah AND protest rally.

  11. a says:

    The poster signed by everyone said מחאה.

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