web analytics
July 29, 2014 / 2 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
Blogs
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Rabbi Sacks is All that Is Right with Judaism

I do not envy Chief Rabbi Elect, Ephraim Mirvis. Lord Sacks’ shoes will be hard to fill.
The Prince of Wales with Lord Sacks, Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth.

The Prince of Wales with Lord Sacks, Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth.
Photo Credit: Facebook

Miriam Shaviv has penned one of the most important articles in recent memory. It highlights what we will truly be missing when the current Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom officially enters retirement in September.

This may sound a bit fawning or overblown. But I don’t think it is. Rabbi Sacks is all that is right with Judaism. He is a brilliant thinker who has written numerous books on Jewish thought. Largely through his efforts Jewish education for the masses has increased to record numbers in his country.

Those items alone makes his retirement regrettable. But in perhaps one of his most important functions as a Chief Rabbi – he has done the ultimate Kiddush HaShem.  He has made Judaism among British leadership something to look up to. Something to respect and admire. A religion that more than any other has taught lessons about ethics and leadership to world leaders. In short he has done a lot to spread the light of Torah.

His final farewell dinner was attended by not only British government leadership, both past and present, it was attended by British royalty. From the Times of Israel  article:

The guest of honor was Charles, the Prince of Wales, who in a deliberate misquote of the prophet Isaiah, called Lord Sacks “a light unto this nation.”

…Prince Charles admired Lord Sacks’s “lightness of touch and elegant wit,” and said that he had personally benefited from his advice.

 “Your guidance on any given issue has never failed to be of practical value and deeply grounded in the kind of wisdom that is increasingly hard to come by,” he said.

The heir to the British throne actually read his books to much acclaim. The effusive praise did not stop there:

In a video message, former prime minister John Major said, “As a student of your books over many years you have absorbed more hours of my time than I can possibly remember,” while Labour’s former prime minister Gordon Brown, with whom Sacks was reputed to have had a particularly close relationship, praised his book “Politics of Hope” for suggesting a way “between markets and state… He saw that the ethics of markets were an issue long before the financial crisis.”

Prime Minister David Cameron said that “The Home We Build Together” “had a significant influence on my own mission to build a bigger and stronger society right here in Britain,” which was a cornerstone of his platform in the early years of his premiership.

Lord Sacks had an excellent relationship with clergy of other faiths as well, particularly with the Chief cleric of England, the Archbishop of Canterbury.

It is also rather well known that former prime minister Margaret Thatcher thought so well of Lord Sacks’ wisdom that she turned more often to him for advice than she did to clergy of her own religion.

It is also a tribute to Lord Sacks that clergy of other Jewish denominations attended this event too:

In a rare display of solidarity amongst Britain’s Jewish religious leaders, there were representatives from all the denominations, including Reform’s Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner and the Liberal movement’s Rabbi Danny Rich.

The only ones apparently not in attendance were England’s Charedi establishment rabbis.

The well deserved accolades from the distinguished speakers were far too many to quote here. But aside the huge Kiddush HaShem that Lord Sacks has made during his 22 year tenure, another important issue was addressed that evening. It was on the subject of the shrinking moderate center at the expense of the growth of Ultra- Orthodoxy. He considers this phenomenon ‘worse than dangerous’:

Lord Sacks drew an equivalence between assimilated Jews “who embrace the world and reject Judaism, and those who embrace Judaism and reject the world.”

“It is an abdication of the role of Jews and Judaism in the world. We are here to engage with the world, to be true to our faith and a blessing to others regardless of their faith.”

It is important to point out that Lord Sacks does not reject the philosophy of Charedim. I’m sure he supports their right to interpret  ‘Talmud Torah K’Neged Kulom’ as learning Torah full time and leading as holy a life as possible. What he rejects is their isolationist approach to the world. This is something we should all reject.

About the Author: Harry Maryles runs the blog "Emes Ve-Emunah" which focuses on current events and issues that effect the Jewish world in general and Orthodoxy in particular. It discuses Hashkafa and news events of the day - from a Centrist perspctive and a philosphy of Torah U'Mada. He can be reached at hmaryles@yahoo.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

Please use the Facebook Tab below to leave your comment:

4 Responses to “Rabbi Sacks is All that Is Right with Judaism”

  1. Hasson Alberto says:

    How about appointing Lord Sacks as Chief Rabbi of Israel, many would certainly benefit from his vision of Judaism and respect for diversity.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Unfortunately- due to the worst levels of morality and sexual liberalism and corrupted media and social scene Isolationism seems to be the only way to really protect one's childrens just to make sure they stay frum. Just look at the results of modern orthodox children- they are leaving the path in droves. They can't handle all the exposure- they are drawn to the impurity. Better to be isolated then be burned and lose one's kids. In a war you- if you can't beat the enemy you must hide. The kids are not strong enough; we are doing them a disservice. The charedim are smarter- they realize the weakness of the human condition. king Solomon said "Don't trust yourself till the day of death". The stats are out- the modern orthodox and less religious are hurting from the non isolationist approach.

  3. I would like to see some sources on the "modern orthodox children leaving in droves" because just from my personal experience it does not be the case. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I would trust statistics more than either of our subjective perspectives.

  4. You might also be interested in this:

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
Current Top Story
rocket in a field near Kibbutz Mefalsim
Heaven on Earth (With Rockets)
Latest Blogs Stories
Douglas Goldstein

This week Doug speaks with David S. Rose, entrepreneur, former angel investor, and founder of Gust.

WW making licht

Israeli’s are a religious people; even secular Jews believe that God is active in this world.

Israeli-flag

The beauty of a Jew is his relationship to other Jews and his involvement with Medinat Yisrael.


A ceasefire not only gives Hamas a victory, it will destroy the morale of the IDF and the country.

So-called US military aid props up US military industries while disposing of surplus supplies.

If Hamas would simply stop firing rockets into Israel, all the carnage would stop instantly.

Doug’s interview with engineer and personal finance blogger Len Penzo.

In Islam, there is no such thing as peace with accursed dhimmis as the Muslims refer to us infidels.

A reader claimed the Disengagement from Gaza was good, because it reduced the number of murdered Israelis. Examining the numbers tells a different story…

JoeSettler points out that most Gazans want to leave, and most Jews want to go back home to Gush Katif. How about a solution that actually resolves the conflict?

These are the photos of our soldiers (and a citizen) killed in action during the current IDF ground operation in Gaza.

Jameel went on a pizza run down south, and translated a letter from a soldier on the border, along with some of his own personal observations…

Rabbi Kahane spoke of transfer, because it was what the Torah spoke of.

Her message to her soldier son on the battlefield: “Complete the Mission! Sayyem et HaMissimah!”

JoeSettler contemplated some new El Al slogans like: “El Al – Our pilots are trained in evasive maneuvers”…. Let’s hear your new El Al Slogans…

More Articles from Harry Maryles
WW making licht

Israeli’s are a religious people; even secular Jews believe that God is active in this world.

soldiers praying

If Hamas would simply stop firing rockets into Israel, all the carnage would stop instantly.

Inevitably when tragedies like this happen there is a sudden burst of Achdus. Tragedies unite.

Looking for a spiritual cause of a tragedy is a time honored tradition in Judaism.

It would be tragic beyond all proportion if Yeshiva University were to fold. I don’t think that is going to happen.

Radical Islam is an idea, not an organization. It is the enemy, not terrorism.

Unfortunately it really doesn’t matter what the common Muslim wants. Fanatic religious fervor trumps it all.

It seems like now more than ever Frumkeit has replaced sincerity as the primary focus of the right.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/rabbi-sacks-is-all-that-is-right-with-judaism/2013/06/26/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: