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March 2, 2015 / 11 Adar , 5775
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Religious Pluralism Within Orthodoxy

My harsh criticism is reserved for extremist behavior that is a result of those Hashkafos – even if it is from my own.
Rabbi Yisroel Miller

Rabbi Yisroel Miller

Gil points to the author’s suggestion that the greatest amount of mental gymnastics will never be able to accomplish a reconciliation of views as disparate as those of (for example) Satmar and Religious Zionists. I agree. But Pluralism is more than just politeness as he also suggests. It is about respect. In Orthodoxy one must respect another point of view if it is based on solid Torah principles even if one does not agree with it. And most certainly it is about living together with a shared set of religious principles and behavior.

If only we could all unite under a pluralistic banner of Torah with Halachic observance as the standard that would include a healthy respect for our Hashkafic differences it would be a much better world.

Nor should we forget our heterodox brethren. Though it is impossible to respect views we believe to be heretical and accept as legitimate behavior that is against Halacha – we can learn to live together, be polite about our religious differences, and respect each other as individuals. We are all Jews with a mandate to be responsible for each other’s welfare.

Nor should we forget that we share a common bond with all of humanity – Jewish or not – in that we are all created in the image of God and are required to treat each other accordingly.

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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.


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Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
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