As Purim approaches, thousands of Israeli children and families grapple with poverty
In our Jan. 31 editorial “Who Speaks for Modern Orthodoxy?” we addressed the announcement by two prominent Modern Orthodox yeshivas that female students can don tefillin if they wish to. We said we saw this as the latest indication of a widening schism among Modern Orthodox Jews led by “[t]he movement’s outliers, apparently intent on defying consensus and going where none have gone before.”
We also stated that “Halachic decisions affecting the community are not properly made by self-appointed agents of a popular movement. That is a function of those with the greatest erudition in the Talmud and halachic sources…”
This week Rabbi Hershel Schachter, one of the most prominent roshei yeshiva of Yeshiva University’s Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary, not only issued a stinging rebuke of the practice of women wearing tefillin but also the process by which such decisions are made.
Rabbi Schachter’s responsum is a broadside against the growing practice of many in Modern Orthodox rabbinic or educational positions who arrogate to themselves the right to determine profound and far-reaching halachic decisions without support or even input from the great Torah scholars of the day.
Referring to a decision of the Ramah in the Shulchan Aruch that frowns on the notion of women putting on tefillin, and whether that ruling could be ignored, Rabbi Schachter said:
It is not within the purview of every musmach or local rabbi, even those with good intentions, to offer his private opinion on a question of such magnitude as this, and certainly not take to the media or Internet to publicize it. Such a profound question applies to all of Klal Yisrael that believes in the mesorah and only the greatest among our Torah leaders can properly address it. [Our translation from the Hebrew]
Hopefully Rav Schachter’s responsum will prove to be the first many authoritative responses to the growing leftward lurch in parts of the Modern Orthodox movement.
About the Author:
If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.
Comments are closed.
Values at the very heart of the UN are threatened by extremist ideologies targeting our way of life
Any Jew who ties his fate to Israel should be able to vote in Israel’s elections-even before aliyah
Israel’s full sovereignty over a united Jerusalem is the only path for true peace in the region.
The president has made clear – I can’t state this more firmly – the policy is Iran will not get a nuclear weapon.
Obama has an apparent inability to understand Islam in particular and Mid-East culture in general
Pesach is a Torah-based holiday whose fundamental observances are rooted in Torah law; Purim is a rabbinic holiday whose laws and customs are grounded in the rabbinic tradition.
In honor of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s successful speech before Congress.
Mr. Spock conveys a message with painfully stark relevance to our world today, especially in the context of PM Netanyahu’s speech to Congress.
Obama created the “partisan politics” by asking Dem. party members to avoid Bibi and his address
Enough is enough. The Jewish community has a big tent, but the NIF should have no place in it.
The real issue is that in many respects the president has sought to recalibrate American values and our system of government.
Gone are the days when an anchorman sitting in a New York studio could, after sharing 22 minutes of carefully selected and edited news items, trumpet in stentorian tones, “And that’s the way it is.” No it wasn’t. It never was.
President Obama has frequently cautioned that Americans should take great care to avoid fomenting anti-Muslim passions in our reaction to the murderous activities regularly being perpetrated by terrorists in the name of Islam. One wonders why, though, he seems to have no concern with the potential for anti-Semitic fallout from his full-court press against Israeli […]
Typical of the administration’s milquetoast approach is the lack of any call for a substantial increase in military resources in order to crush ISIL, only a tepid mention of the need to “ultimately defeat” it.
He spent the first leg of his daylong visit to the French capital at Hyper Cacher.
In this particular case, the issue was whether the Arkansas prison system could prohibit, for security reasons, a devout Muslim’s maintaining a beard of a certain length as a matter of religious practice.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/editorial/more-on-the-tefillin-controversy/2014/02/12/
Scan this QR code to visit this page online: