web analytics
September 22, 2014 / 27 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Will Modern Orthodoxy Survive?

modern orthodox fun

Photo Credit: israelprograms.com.au

DovBear has an interesting guest post that generated a lot of responses (260 comments as of this writing). I admit I haven’t read the comments. But I do have some thoughts on the very legitimate question posed: Modern Orthodoxy: Are we witnessing its death throes?

The truth is that I have already given my opinion on this matter. Many Times. To review I predict that Charedim will win. But only in the form of moderate Charedism. Which is sociologically very closely aligned with the right wing of Modern Orthodoxy (RWMO). Integrated communities of moderate Charedim and RWMO already exist and are growing. The Haskafos are somewhat different but the values and lifestyles are very similar.

The problem for RWMOs is that there is a dearth of RWMO day schools and high schools. So that in most cases, RWMO parents will send their children to a moderate Charedi day school and high school that has a good secular studies department. That is far more preferable to a RWMO than would be a LWMO day school that for example allows its female students to wear Tefillin during Davening

Because of that, I’m not sure how the Centrist Hashkafos of RWMO will survive in any great numbers. The only saving grace is Yeshiva University (YU). They actually espouse the values of Modern Orthodoxy. But unless a RWMO family is very strong in espousing and living its values and is able to transmit it to their children, this Hashkafa will be buried in the Charedi schools their children attend. And those children will not be likely to attend YU – choosing a moderate Charedi school like Ner Israel for example.

YU will be left to those to left of RWMO. And those on the far left will opt for a place like YCT …or no post high school religious education at all – preferring to pursue their education in a secular university that will advance their chosen careers.

How all this will play out in numbers per Orthodox segment remains to be seen. It is really too complex to predict.

First let us define what MO really is and what it encompasses. Put in simple terms, to be MO is to live and accept the modern world and to see it in a positive light. This doesn’t mean that everything that exists in the modern world is good. But for those things which do not contradict Halacha, MO allows it and in some cases even embraces it.

This is in fact the Hashkafa of Rav Samson Raphael Hirsch called Torah Im Derech Eretz (TIDE). It is a mistake not consider TIDE part of Modern Orthodox Hashkafa. Rav Hirsch embraced all elements in secular culture that enhanced Torah. Which is why he made his famous speech extolling German historian, dramatist, and poet, Friedrich von Schiller. He saw Jewish values in Schiller. This is a Modern Orthodox perspective; not a Charedi one that would not even consider looking at a word Schiller ever said, much less praise him.

TIDE is of course not the sum and substance of MO. There is a wide spectrum of Hashkafos that is in included in the broad tent of MO. Included are RWMO, LWMO, and what I call MO Lite – which I define as those who focus more on a modern lifestyle thanthey do on a religious ideology. Unfortunately this is how most Charedim see all of MO.

But MO does not equal MO Lite. TIDE is certainly a part of MO. And it is certainly not a part of a Charedi world that rejects all of modernity and uses only those parts of it that they find absolutely necessary for their lives. Although there are many – probably the majority of – Charedim that do enjoy some of secular culture, they generally do so with a sense of guilt. MO has no guilt in partaking of that part of the culture which is permissible under Halacha.

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.

4 Responses to “Will Modern Orthodoxy Survive?”

  1. Rafi Finkel says:

    I work on a college campus (hence my choice to be anonymous), the truth is college modern orthodoxy is dead. They come from the MO yeshivas here with their kippahs and tzizus. With lines like, if we dont challenge ourselves how will we survive in the real world. Within 2 weeks they lose their yarmakahs, many engage in premarital relations many with non jews. Some are in frats and sororities, and many have the challenge of missing a test during yom tov. It is not much better at YU at least in the lower sections (BMP, IBC). On my campus i would say only 15 percent of those kids coming from MO backgrounds are frum throughout college. I would highly suggest the parents of these kids man up and make the choice between Secularism and Judaism . The truth is most of the readers here have really conceded Secularism has won. This is why MO is dying . The truth is in the push to be involved in the world you forgot Judaism . Please if you are smart let you kids go to Ner Israel and Hopkins . Sacrifice a few thousand dollars for your kid to remain a religious Jew

  2. George Harsanyi says:

    Other than the chasidism every other Jewish denomination loses significant number of young people to secularism.

  3. Modern orthodoxy is also losing its youth to anti-Zionist orthodoxy

  4. no clear answer but I hope it will!

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
Current Top Story
Ex-KKK Wizard David Duke.
Five Anti-Zionist Doctors ‘Hijack’ Medical Journal to Dump on Israel
Latest Blogs Stories
Obama and Netanyahu in the Oval Office

ISIS and Hamas are cut from the same cloth. Obama should listen to Netanyahu.

Rivlin

Last night I attended the big festive celebration of ten years of Menachem Begin Heritage Center and Museum. Security was tight, almost like at a foreign airport, because both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and President Ruby Rivlin were to be there. And yes, they were and yes they spoke. Officially the evening was a tribute […]

Teens-091214-Shofar

Hamas’ tunnels were destroyed as were plans for their unparalleled terror attacks on Rosh Hashana.

Doug Goldstein

Grandmaster Michael Adams talks about life as a professional chess player.

The Jewish Press stressed the possible ramifications of such a breach of Israeli political protocol

Why some countries are more economically successful than others? Tune in for the answer…

If not scared by God be scared by man; Hopefully ethics will integrate into lives for proper reasons

Smear campaigns by people with agendas other than justice do not faze him; He does what is right.

Countries like Turkey, Europe and even the US have proven fertile ground for recruiting terrorists

How many times have you heard anti-semites spew words like Israel are Nazis, or what you are doing to the Arabs is worse that what the Nazis did to the Jews?!…

My blog, Israpundit, was hacked, and I had to move to a new domain…

There’s much confusion about the definition of Daas Torah; simply put it means the wisdom of Torah.

We’ll never be able to negotiate a true, lasting peace with the Arabs.Their aim is our destruction.

Now I live in a country where every shop in the food court is kosher! I can have anything I want!

Pashkevil: “Come out today and battle the Zionist Amalek and all the traitors in Nahal Haredi…”

Jordan: Only M.E. country with no historical basis and ruled by occupiers placed by European powers.

More Articles from Harry Maryles
ethics

If not scared by God be scared by man; Hopefully ethics will integrate into lives for proper reasons

rgds

Smear campaigns by people with agendas other than justice do not faze him; He does what is right.

There’s much confusion about the definition of Daas Torah; simply put it means the wisdom of Torah.

Pashkevil: “Come out today and battle the Zionist Amalek and all the traitors in Nahal Haredi…”

Rabbi Fink: “There are many ‘true believers who can’t even be in the presence of Orthodox Judaism.”

“The Obama administration proved once again that it is the best friend of its enemies, and the biggest enemy of its friends.”

1st thing that must be done: tear down that wall; 2nd thing: allocate empty classrooms to Charedim.

The CBD has still stood its ground because there are teachers on staff that knew and did nothing.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/will-modern-orthodoxy-survive/2014/02/16/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: