Tagged with controversy

The Dangers of Writing Hilchoth Lashon Hara

The Dangers of Writing Hilchoth Lashon Hara

Speaking of contrasting Maimonides’s writings with those of early 20th century Aharonim, I was recently reminded of a sermon I delivered on Rosh Hashana a year and a half ago. When you read Maimonides’s summation of the laws of lashon hara, he connects the prohibitions thereof to the commandments to love fellow Jews, to love … Continue reading

An Open Letter To Rabbi Nachum Eisenstein

Sir, recently you made the claim that because R’ Elyashiv was the greatest Torah authority of his time, all of K’lal Yisrael should follow his opinion regarding modern-day attempts to identify the biblical T’cheileth, namely that such an endeavor is impossible because we lack a positive Mesorah. Further, it is your own position that because … Continue reading

The Bright Ideological Future

A Historical Joke by Rabbi Amichai Gordin, Yeshivat Har Etzion and Shaalvim High School At the end of the Six Day War, Ephraim Kishon and Katriel Gorodish (using his regular penname “Dosh”) published a book of cartoons and satire. The last cartoon in the book, which is called “Excuse Us for Winning,” was a very … Continue reading

Q&A: Prozbol

I was surprised that this year I signed so many prozbol documents for my neighbors. I did not sign any what so ever last time sh’mitta came to an end. The following questions were addressed at our minyan as the Rosh Hashana holiday started and have been translated from the Hebrew. Question: Why would someone … Continue reading

Thoughts on the Kosher Switch

1. For obvious reasons, you can not find the halachoth of switches and electricity in the classical codes. Electricity only became a household item a little more than a century ago, depending upon where you lived, and despite the many halachic authorities who did not see electricity as a sabbath-problem in and of itself, it … Continue reading

The Most “Radical” Positions of Rabbi Bar Hayim, Why They Do Not Bother Me, and Why They Should Not Bother You, Either.

Short story: they do not undermine the Torah, or lead to public and private policies that could undermine the Torah. The only possible problem is that Rabbi Bar Hayim is advocating halachic positions which happen to have very few advocates today, but there is nothing inherently wrong with his positions. Further, if someone would choose … Continue reading

Torah Inbalanced

Personal trainers teach about balanced workouts. You have to exercise all of your muscle groups evenly to get a proper workout, and there can be deleterious effects if one works out in a way that is unbalanced. The best example is if someone were to workout his chest muscles without also working out his back, … Continue reading