Sunday, May 29, 2011

Revisionism and the Rav Strikes Again

Rav Yosef Dov Soloveitchik, also known as Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik or simply "the Rav," was one of the seminal rabbinic figures of the twentieth century. He was also a thorn in the side of Charedim, since he was a Gadol B'Torah by any standard, and yet espoused many views that were at odds with Charedi norms. This problem is particular acute for Rabbi Moshe Meiselman, who is a nephew of the Rav, but who moved very much to the right and is now staunchly charedi. His solution is to simply convince himself that the Rav was entirely misunderstood and was in fact a true Charedi--and to attempt to convince others of this, asserting that he possesses an "insider's view." But as Professor Lawrence Kaplan, in his famous article "Revisionism and the Rav," points out, this is a grave distortion:
First, R. Meiselman's "insider's view" is, at many points, clearly contradicted by the insider views of other distinguished members of the Rav's family who were also his close disciples... Second, and even more important, wherever it is possible to check R. Meiselman's claims against the Rav's writings, it turns out that those claims are clearly and explicitly contradicted by clear and explicit statements of the Rav.

Professor Kaplan documents R. Meiselman's revisionism in the context of the Rav's positions on the value of philosophy, the nature of Daas Torah, universalism, and Zionism. To this list, I would like to add another item, based upon R. Meiselman's article in Dialogue that I have been critiquing over the last few days: the Rav's position on the age of the universe.

At the conclusion of R. Meiselman's article, he discusses the view of Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan that Rav Yitzchok of Acco, a medieval Kabbalist, wrote that the universe is fifteen billion years old. R. Meiselman argues that Rav Yitzchak of Acco does not actually support this view. In this, he is quite correct. In fact, in The Challenge Of Creation, I gave additional reasons as to why Rav Yitzchak does not support such a view - as well as citing a report that Rabbi Kaplan later acknowledged his error and retracted his claim.

But there are two deeply disturbing problems in R. Meiselman's presentation. One is that he claims that when R. Kaplan described this approach as being "very different than that of many frum Jews who see Torah and science at loggerheads with each other," he was "specifically referring" to Rav Soloveitchik and making a "barb" at him. As evidence for this accusation, R. Meiselman notes that Rav Soloveitchik gave a presentation to the rabbinic alumni of Yeshiva University in 1971 in which he spoke about Judaism being "at loggerheads with modern science."

Now, unless there is something that R. Meiselman is not telling us, this seems like an extraordinarily slim reed on which to pin an accusation that R. Kaplan was making a "barb" at Rav Soloveitchik. R. Kaplan uses this phrase after discussing how R. Yisrael Lifschitz (the Tiferes Yisrael) was thrilled about the discovery of dinosaurs and sees it as vindicating the kabbalistic belief in previous worlds. The full paragraph reads as follows (and you can download the entire lecture as a PDF here):

This approach is very different than that of many frum Jews who see Torah and science at loggerheads with each other. Many of us feel that whenever science makes any statement with regard to paleontology or geology, we must get our bristles up and fight it. The Tiferes Yisroel, on the other hand, sees it as a vindication of an important Torah shitah.

The phrase "being at loggerheads" is surely not so unusual that one can assert that R. Kaplan must have been referring to Rav Soloveitchik - especially since Rav Soloveitchik's speech was not published and took place eight years earlier!

Furthermore, there is additional reason to believe that R. Kaplan was not referring to Rav Soloveitchik, which brings us to the second problem with this part of R. Meiselman's article: Rav Soloveitchik was not saying that the scientific view of the age of the universe is at loggerheads with the Torah view! He was talking about the creation of the universe, not the age of the universe. (As noted in the first part of this critique, R. Meiselman has already blurred the two in order to claim that that latter is a fundamental of faith for which the mesorah may not be reinterpreted.) Let us look at Rav Soloveitchik's words:
We are still at loggerheads with modern science. There is no way to somehow, to try to eliminate that conflict or to try to reconcile it. There is no reconciliation and I will tell you quite frankly that I’m not worried and not concerned that there is no reconciliation. We were confronted many times with those who try to deny briyah yesh me’ayin... Science has no right to say anything because it is not a scientific problem; it is a metaphysical problem... But again we are still at loggerheads... We have something which the goyishe world has not understood.

The issue here is briyah yesh me’ayin - creation ex nihilo. Modern science does not in fact deny this - it says nothing about what caused the Big Bang - but there certainly have been those, especially in the past, who denied creation ex nihilo. It is this view which the Rav is placed at loggerheads with Torah, not the idea of the universe being billions of years old! If we look at a more extensive quotation from this lecture by the Rav which I transcribed from an audio recording, as opposed to R. Meiselman's truncated citation, this becomes even clearer:

The foundation on which our emunah rests is Briyat HaOlam... ex nihilo, yesh me’ayin. You see here we are at loggerheads… from antiquity, with Greek philosophy, Greek science. We are still at loggerheads with modern science. There is no way to somehow, to try to eliminate that conflict, or to try to reconcile it. There is no reconciliation and I will tell you quite frankly that I’m not worried and not concerned that there is no reconciliation. Because, science absolutely has no right to make a certain statement about briyah. We believe in creation ex nihilo, which means that there was nothing before, there was only HaKadosh Baruch Hu… We had a lot of trouble with Greek philosophy… We were confronted many times with those who try to deny briyah yesh me’ayin. We are in the same situation and the same condition nowadays. No matter, whatever, it’s completely irrelevant what theory of evolution science accepts – whether the big bang theory, or the instantaneous birth of the universe, or it is the slow piecemeal emergence of the universe, whether it is the emergent evolution or the instantaneous so-called birth of the universe. But science will always say, as far as matter is concerned, particles were always here. Of course, science has no right to say anything, because it is not a scientific problem. It is a metaphysical problem. And in my opinion, it is just as good as the opinion of Einstein about everything. But again we are still at loggerheads... We still have something which the goyishe world has not understood. Yesh me’ayin! Yesh me’ayin is our Jewish heritage... HaKadosh Baruch Hu created everything from nothing.

The Rav makes it absolutely clear that his objection is to those who deny creation ex nihilo. It is creation ex nihilo which Torah demands - but it is irrelevant how the universe developed after that. In fact, in a series of lectures on Genesis that is currently being edited for publication, the Rav explicitly states that one can interpret the six days as referring to long periods of time, or even as stages or sefiros:

Indeed, one of the most annoying scientific facts which the religious man encounters is the problem of evolution and creation. However, this is not the real problem. What actually is irreconcilable is the concept of man as the bearer of a divine image and the idea of man as an intelligent animal in science. Evolution and creation can be reconciled merely by saying that six days is not absolutely so, but is indefinite and may be longer. Maimonides spoke of Creation in terms of phases and the Kabbalah in terms of sefiros, the time of which may be indefinite. However, our conflict is man as a unique being and man as a friend of the animal. (Genesis Notes, Lecture XII)

And the Rav's subsequent resolution of this conflict with evolution is to explain that man is indeed a part of the animal kingdom, but with the power to ascend beyond it. Man’s unique identity as possessing the “image of God” does not refer to a metaphysical, other-worldly entity housed in his body, but rather to the application of his evolved intelligence. This is elaborated upon at great length, and with plentiful use of the word "ontic," in The Emergence of Ethical Man.

It is true that Rav Soloveitchik did not believe that the development of the universe was entirely naturalistic - he did insist on ten points of creative intervention by God, following the Mishnah in Avos which speaks of ten utterances with which the world was created. Nevertheless, he most certainly did not object to this development taking place over billions of years, and he forcefully argued for the Torah authenticity of the view that man was fundamentally created as part of the animal kingdom. In these areas of modern science - precisely those that Rabbi Meiselman is declaring to be at loggerheads with Torah, and invoking the Rav as support - the Rav did not see science as being at loggerheads with Torah at all.

I will conclude with another citation from Professor Kaplan's article, which is equally applicable to this case:

...The fact that a distinguished rabbinic scholar like R. Meiselman, despite his having been a close disciple of the Rav and despite his having been "privileged to be part of his family and household," could write such a flawed article, an article that presents such a narrow, distorted, and almost unrecognizable picture of his uncle, only serves to underscore the dangers of the revisionist drive on the part of the "right" and the impossibility of refashioning the Rav to fit a Haredi mold.

33 comments:

  1. I'm not sure what's worse - when I read Rav Kook I have to check my Hebrew-English dictionary every couple of lines. When I read the Rav, I have to check my English-only dictionary just as much.

    At any rate, much of what you've been describing over the last few posts has the air of a manufactured crisis. Having posited a mesorah which is incompatible with science, Rav Meiselman then goes and attacks science and those who hold it has some value. But the initial assumption was never valid in the first place!

    How about you start your own magazine?

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  2. Great post (as usual). There is one point I'm a bit unclear on. You write that, "The issue here is briyah yesh me’ayin - creation ex nihilo. Modern science does not in fact deny this - it says nothing about what caused the Big Bang". I'm not sure if this is exactly true. There are physicists such as Neil Turok and Lawrence Krauss who maintain that science can and does address this question. I am not at all qualified to judge their science, but I'm not sure that one can state definitively that modern science says nothing about what caused the big bang.

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  3. You're right, there are scientists who write about it, but I think that the general consensus is that these are nothing more than vague speculations, and that science cannot (at least yet) postulate anything with any confidence.

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  4. Hope those lectures will get published some day :)

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  5. "You're right, there are scientists who write about it, but I think that the general consensus is that these are nothing more than vague speculations, and that science cannot (at least yet) postulate anything with any confidence."

    Steven Hawkings would disagree with you.

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  6. Well, if so, then the Rav's point still remains true.

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  7. BTW I have published a revised and corrected version of Rabbi Kaplan's speech at:

    http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/the-age-of-the-universe---a-torah-true-perspective/11191031

    All that has changed is some formatting and footnotes.

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  8. Just a small point for the purpose of clarity:

    You write: "He was also a thorn in the side of Charedim, since he was a Gadol B'Torah by any standard, and yet espoused many views that were at odds with Charedi norms. This problem is particular acute for Rabbi Moshe Meiselman, who is a nephew of the Rav, but who moved very much to the right and is now staunchly charedi"

    This is just factually untrue- in the sense that the Charade world does not, and has never taken the Rav seriously for him to be considered a 'thorn in their side."

    This is for a variety of reasons including
    a) There are plenty of charedim who deny that RYBS was a Gadol BTorah, as he was 'krum', and while he may have been a genius and knew a lot, his Torah doesn't give him the authority of an "godol".

    b) Even granting that he was great in Torah, his haskafa was rejected by the majority of gedolim and his hashkafa is krum and therefore invalid. It is explained that RYBS, having been involved in secular studies and philosophy, corrupted his Hashkafa which was not a pure Torah philosophy.

    Note : I am not agreeing to any of the above, I am just reporting on what is actually believed (by most) in the Charedi/Yeshiva world.

    R Slifkin, I have seen you make a similar error in your defense of your works, where you wrote with amazement that some of the things that you wrote were already quoted by R Kook! It seems that you really don't have an insider's grasp on the Charedi/Yeshiva world if you are unaware that much of the C/Y world dismisses both R Kook and RYBS as people who's hashkafa is not to be taken seriously. (R Kook is even considered a Kofer in some of the C/Y world- especially the Briskers and the Hungarians- but his Hashkafa was not accepted even by those who do not consider him a Kofer.)

    I say this without malice- I just think that when you write things such as this, you discredit yourself somewhat, as it makes you seem naive and out of touch with the world that you are attempting to criticize.

    R Meislelman, being a nephew of RYBS and a talmid, is one of the only Charedim that take him seriously.

    And for the record, almost everyone agrees that RYBS had a habit of "shading" his words depending on whom he was speaking to. (There are those who characterize in a much less charitable way, but most all agree that he may have sounded one way to one person and very diffrently to others.)

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  9. It seems that you really don't have an insider's grasp on the Charedi/Yeshiva world if you are unaware that much of the C/Y world dismisses both R Kook and RYBS as people who's hashkafa is not to be taken seriously

    I'm well aware of it - I used to be that way myself! But it's something that is difficult to justify, so it's still worthwhile for me to say, "But this was said by Rav Kook/ RYBS."

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  10. Rabbi Meiselman's inside view is flawed for a deeper reason. For even if it is true that he alone had the "insider view" of RJBS's view of the world (which I do doubt), it is still irrelevant. It is not RJBS's private views which are to be studied, rather his public views. He should be analyzed by that which he wished the public to perceive as his views.
    (Similarly, a posek may forbid something in his responsa and privately permit it.)
    Rabbi Meisleman once wrote that the Rav only used Zionism as a way to mekarev Jews, even if true, his 5 public speeches shows that that is not his wished perception.
    Rabbi Meiselman is stuck in a rut of being yeshivish and wishing his rebbi was as well. Or perhaps, to his credit he wants the yeshiva world to accept his rebbi more so he kashers up his views for them, and mistakenly (I think so) ignores the sheker that he is creating.

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  11. >But it's something that is difficult to justify, so it's still worthwhile for me to say, "But this was said by Rav Kook/ RYBS.

    That I wouldn't disagree with, but you say it as if it will be a point with which to convince those in the Charedi world. Which it won't. (In fact it may do just the opposite.)

    Also, my main point is that it is inaccurate to call RYBS a thorn in the side of Charedim.

    He is at best ignored by the C/Y world, and often he is held in low esteem and dismissed.

    Again, this is not my personal view, but an accurate description of typical C/Y views.

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  12. " You're right, there are scientists who write about it, but I think that the general consensus is that these are nothing more than vague speculations, and that science cannot (at least yet) postulate anything with any confidence."

    Yes, but the idea the the question itself falls into the category of metaphysics and not science seems to me to be, at best, a baseless assertion.

    Nevertheless, this is all beside the point, which is that Meiselman is more than willing to distort to back up a point he wishes to make.

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  13. The irony is that Meiselman himself believes - unlike the Rav - that science is not even claiming to answer such questions. I quote: "Questions such as, “What caused the Big Bang?” valid as they may seem to the layman, are relegated by modern science to philosophy—or worse, to theology—because scientifically speaking, they are meaningless. Not every question that can be formulated is meaningful, note the scientists, and a meaningless question cannot be given a meaningful answer."

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  14. Should just mention, at the time when the Rav said that science was at loggerheads with Torah, the Big Bang theory was not widely accepted by the scientific community. He explicitly mentioned this in one of his sichot, published in Reflections of the Rav (volume one page 34). Given the facts that the Big Bang is widely accepted today, im certain the Rav would be even less perturbed...

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  15. "I'm well aware of it - I used to be that way myself! But it's something that is difficult to justify, so it's still worthwhile for me to say, "But this was said by Rav Kook/ RYBS.""

    I think you concede too much. It's true that the average young charedi isn't gores these two other than with a disrespectful quip. But the persistence with which the older guard continues to disagree with their ideas (more "JB" than RK here in America) reveals that he is still on their mind. Further, Mark believes no on took either seriously but whether or not that comes close to true today, it's obviously historically inaccurate.

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  16. "Given the facts that the Big Bang is widely accepted today, im certain the Rav would be even less perturbed..."

    Probably true, but I believe he also said he wasn't bothered by evolution. My impression is that RYBS was ready to believe whatever he felt like believing and empirical reality was not his main criterion.

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  17. Rabbi Slifkin: Thank you for your kind words about my article.

    As the Rav says in EEM, we could find a solution for the problem of divine creation vs. mechanistic evolution. The problem with which the Rav is concerned is the contradiction between the biblical view of man as the bearer of divne image and the naturalistic view of man put forward by evolution. However, since thew Rav goes on to say that the Bible itself assumes man starts off as a naturalistic creature and his spiritual personality is a product of development, that problem can be solved.

    In Thinking Aloud, Sefer Bereishit, the Rav recommends the derashah Or Chayyim of the Tiferet Yisrael to his audience and says it can solve many scientific problems. Again, however, his concern is not with the scientific issues, but with the theleogical issue of what it means to say that God created worlds and destroyed them.

    Had R. Meiselman not been so vicious in his attacks on you, I would feel sorry for him, for how he has to bend himself into a pretzel to enlist the Rav in his cause.

    Lawrence Kaplan

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  18. In Thinking Aloud, Sefer Bereishit, the Rav recommends the derashah Or Chayyim of the Tiferet Yisrael to his audience and says it can solve many scientific problems.

    That is really ironic. First of all, R. Kaplan was davka contrasting the approach of Tiferet Yisrael with those who claim that Torah and science are at loggerheads. Second, Meiselman seems to indicate that the approach of Tiferet Yisrael is not acceptable!

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  19. >Further, Mark believes no on took either seriously but whether or not that comes close to true today, it's obviously historically inaccurate


    Perhaps no one is a bit strong, but certainly today, you don't hear many Charedim/Yeshivish quoting them even to knock them down.

    There isn't even any campaign to discredit YU or RYBS, because they aren't on the C/Y community's radar screen.

    RYBS is at best an afterthought, and R Kook is as well. The most charitable take on R Kook is the position that the gedolim of the last generation had that "ahava m'kakeles es hashurah" i.e. R Kook's love for his fellow Jews took him to places which were off the beaten path in Hashkafa.

    Or as it is reported (in the C/Y world) in the name of the Chazon Ish, that one may learn R Kook's Halacha seforim, but one should stay away from his hashkafa.

    My main point, which I still believe is valid- that RYBS is not a thorn in the C/Y world's side as no one (or almost no one) today is 'gores' (as they might say) him enough to care.

    Not acknowledging this makes R Slifkin seem out of touch with the reality of today's C/Y world.

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  20. I can confirm that the current "yeshivish" world more-or-less completely dissmisses the Rav.
    As an anecdotal point of fact - I have VERY close cousins who are Lakewood lifers - who pejoratively refer to the Rav as "Joe B", "Joe", "JB", etc...and dismiss anything related to the Rav when I bring something up regarding him. He is a total non-entity, non-factor there.

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  21. I have always found it disturbing how MOs seek Charedi approval. Its like a child with a withholding parent or older brother who is constantly seeking approval but is met with a turned up nose.

    But instead of just rejecting the parent, the child tries to get approval again and again. The more the child seeks approval, the more the parent withholds approval. For its the seeking of approval that gives the parent power. The parent gets a kick out of seeing the child twist himself into contortions to get approval.

    I think part of the MO insecurity is rooted in the Rav himself who in a certain sense tried to cast himself as a traditional Rosh Yeshiva. I didn't know him, but he strikes me at having been torn between wishing to set out his own path and seeking Charedi approval (of course for him this was quite literally his parents and family).

    A dominant Charedi attitude to the Rav (and more generally to MOs) is expressed in a story I heard in Yeshiva about how the Rav visited his uncle the Griz who was sick. The Griz spoke with him but turned his back to him refusing to look at him.

    I think its high time that we MOs quit giving Charedim power over us by seeking their approval. We must grow up, stand on own two feet and realize that we have a distinct path, which is *superior* to their path.

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  22. Mo:
    I never heard that story about the Rav and the Griz. When did it take place? The Rav was in America from 1932 on, except for a visit to Palestine in 1935 (before the Griz arrived there). In addition, he wasn't affiliated with Mizrachi until after the war.

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  23. DLZ:

    The story about the Rav and the Griz is an anecdote. I have no idea if it happened or not. But it does express how many Charedim view MOs.

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  24. Ten Jew Very MuchMay 30, 2011 at 5:39 PM

    Baruch,

    That they feel the need to denigrate the Rav by calling him nicknames could suggest that he is very much on their minds.

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  25. The story re the Rav and the Griz is nasty and absurd and just reflects on the pathetic need of the Charedi community-- or some segments thereof-- to denigrate the Rav-- not to mention their lack of concern for emes.

    Laweence Kaplan

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  26. The distorted picture of the personality and views of Rav Soloveitchik (RYBS) given by his nephew is a well-known reality. The issue of whether or not RYBS was considered a "thorn in the side of Charedim" is a question of what Hareidim. Certainly, the large majority of the poorly learned or unintellectual Hareidim don't know and don't concern themselves with RYBS and his views. The scholarly element among them are more acquainted with his torah and teachings. I once discussed the matter with a knowledgeable and well-connected Kollel guy. He stated that RYBS and R' Shaul Lieberman were recognized as great torah scholars, possibly the greatest in their generation. As such, their views could be considered a threat to more typical Hareidi thinking.

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  27. If Rav Yitzchok of Acco did not actually support the fact that the universe is fifteen billion years old, then why did he write his thesis with the utmost clarification, leading many people (even the brilliant Rav Aryeh Kaplan) to believe that he dose in fact support this view.

    It seems to me on the surface of it all, that Rav Yitzchok was pressured to retract, by none other then the charedim of his time.

    Perhaps this is why R. Kaplan's book "The age of the universe" contains no such related statement and is still being sold today.

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  28. >There isn't even any campaign to discredit YU or RYBS, because they aren't on the C/Y community's radar screen."

    This is true for the more ignorant of charedi yeshivas (eg, the Yurnpike yeshivas in NJ, Staten Island, etc.) These yeshivahs dont know anything about RYBS, simply because they dont know much about anything. Very little intellectual curiosity in those circles, which I have the misfortune to know well. In the better educated, and hence "liter" charedi yeshivas, like Ner Israel or Torah Vidas, where they actually know something, they know about RYBS.

    The problem, of course, is that to the extent these latter types know about RYBS, its mainly through the Nefesh and Peninei Harav series. This creates the image of RYBS as more or less your typical rosh yeshivah, and leaves one wondering what all the controversey was.

    Rav Kook's thought is less known than RYBS, even in the better educated type of charedi yeshivas I mentioned. Then again, because his writing style is so abstruse, Rav Kook's thought is less known everywhere, even in the MO circles.

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  29. "I have always found it disturbing how MOs seek Charedi approval."

    This comment is similar to the comment expressed above by Mark, which tries to affect a disdainful superiority on the part of the Charedim. (ie, "the charedim dont reckon with MO, because they are so insignificant they dont even register on the radar screen. Not trying to insult, just saying.") Likewise, this commenter seems to think the MO somehow is interested in currying favor with the charedim.

    I've heard this notion before, and have never seen any evidence of it. From what I have seen, its usually espoused by charedim themselves, perhaps seeking ways to raise their self-image by imagining other groups to be subservient to them. I think the error comes from certain forms of courtesy which are common in the general and MO world, but are entirely lacking among charedim. (not trying to insult, just observing a fact.)

    Thus, among the more modern Jews there is a desire to reach concensus on points. A will to present a united front. Anyone who has worked in organizational life understands the need for this. For this reason you will see modern Jews or organizations stretch themseles to accomodate the chumrahs of the charedim, where possible.The charedim mistake this admirable goal as a sign of their own influence, ie, "they're trying to get Charedi approval". Foolish, but there you go.

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  30. Getting back to the contents of the article :) ,
    I don't understand the point of the Rav that MAN was an elevated form of animal by dint of its self improvement. Doesn't the posuk say that MAN was created from the earth? ie: not another form of animal?

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  31. DF:

    As one example, I refer you to RNS's post from a couple of months ago: "When the Gedolim Visited Teaneck"

    http://www.rationalistjudaism.com/2011/03/when-gedolim-visited-teaneck.html

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  32. Mo, I can see why you would interrpet this as looking for charedi approval, and maybe for that reason that event shouldnt have been held. But dont forget these charedi rabbis b'davka wanted to go to Teanek and present their viewpoints - you can intepret this as them wanting to be on the good side of the MO, the same way the opposite can be inferred.

    Also, look at the previous posts on this website. The Charedim have now started some a thing called Dialouge. It's pretty obvious the Charedim know their viewpoint is on the attack, on this website and on many others just like it, and in the general world of ideas. That's proof positive that the MO world is not out there looking to cozy up with the Charedim.

    Some individual MO guys yes, will always be guilty of your charge, just like some charedim think that people like R. Yaakov Horowitz are too interested in the MO world. It's the nature of things. But on the whole, both MO and Charedim have plenty of adherents, and are not in danger of brainwashing the other anytime soon.

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  33. >In the better educated, and hence "liter" charedi yeshivas, like Ner Israel or Torah Vidas, where they actually know something, they know about RYBS.

    I guess there is no point trying to convince you, but "knowing" about RYBS is not the same as saying that he is as serious thorn in their side.

    Even if I was to grant your premise (which I don't) that C/Y in those Yeshivos take him seriously or take him to be an odom godol, the fact is that he was at best a Daas Yachid in approach, and the majority of Gedolim from R Ahron, to R Moshe et al, disagreed with him.

    No (or almost no) C/Y who knows and even respects RYBS, is going to get too worked up about what he may or may not have held regarding Torah and Science.

    It's R Meiselman who, due to his personal connection to RYBS feels that he has to answer (or Kasher as he sees it) RYBS.

    This is just the simple facts of the matter and it has nothing to do with whether or not the MO have a complex about Charedi acceptance.


    >This comment is similar to the comment expressed above by Mark, which tries to affect a disdainful superiority on the part of the Charedim.

    Again, I am not saying that
    RYBS deserves to be off the C/Y radar screen, just that he is, in fact, off it!

    Do you deny this? Are you claiming that most C/Y even the educated ones who know about RYBS take him to be thorn in their side?

    This is a factual question which need not have a value judgement attached to it.

    I invite you to talk with people in the Yeshivos that you mention and see how bothered they are by the Rav's position on these issues.

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