web analytics
January 25, 2015 / 5 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


More On The Tefillin Controversy


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.

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.

One Response to “More On The Tefillin Controversy”

  1. I think the topic of Tefilin is out of focus. If the girls want to put on Tefilin – are the first committed to learning the laws of Tefilin and their spiritual implications? Are they ready to take on the responsibility for their thoughts and speech while wearing Tefilin? If so… its not a bad idea. But to use them as a toy, fad or show off… then its wrong.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends an event held at the International Conference Center in Jerusalem of the Taglit Birthright program, where Netanyahu was the guest speaker. January 14, 2015.
Netanyahu ‘Will Go Anywhere Invited’ to Prevent Iran from Achieving Nuclear Weapons
Latest Indepth Stories
Golan map

Obama’s Syrian policy failures created the current situation in the Golan Heights.

Social Media pic

Our journey begins by attempting to see things differently, only then can we be open to change.

Middle-East-map

Despite Western ‘Conventional Wisdom&PC,’ the Arab/Israeli conflict was never about the Palestinians

Salamon-012315

Confrontation & accountability, proven techniques, might also help dealing with religious terrorists

In fact, wherever you see soldiers in Paris today, you pretty much know you’re near Jewish site

Inspired by the Perek Shira pasuk for “small non-kosher animals” we named the bunny “Rebbetzin Tova”

The abuse following publication proved a cautionary tale: no one followed in Peters’s footsteps

Plainly, there is no guiding hand dictating choices across the board.

How many sites that tell you to check your politics at the door have 10,000 likes?

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.

While we recognize the Republican Jewish Coalition is hardly a non-partisan outfit, a snippet from a statement the group released is worthy of note:

“These are good matzah balls,” my aunt Robertine would say, but her sister Irma would counter “No, not compared to Mama’s. They were always so light yet they never fell apart.”

Despite the 2005 Koby Mandell Act no Palestinian implicated in harming an American has been charged

The NY Times suggestion that HaMavesar cropping women from a photo is Israeli censorship is absurd.

More Articles from Editorial Board

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.

According to Natan Sharansky, director of the Jewish Agency for Israel, France was the largest source of Jewish emigration to Israel last year and he believes as many as 15,000 French Jews may make aliyah in 2015.

Despite the president’s respectable anti-terrorism record, he doubtless has little interest in being identified with anything that might suggest, however tangentially, criticism of Muslims or Islam.

One wonders what connection that rejection has with turning to the ICC, which would allow the Palestinians to bring war-crime charges against individual Israelis and is certainly one more step away from seeking a negotiated settlement.

In the NPR interview, Mr. Obama said Iran could become a “very successful regional power” if it agreed to a long-term nuclear deal.

Thus, despite the increasingly serious problems for the mayor arising out of the current anti-police protests, Mr. de Blasio apparently will be cut no slack by those who seem to be aiming for a significant role in running the city from the streets and who will do whatever they can to prevent their momentum from ebbing.

Despite strong pressure to throw the book at the accused, Mr. Thompson allowed him to plead guilty to assault.

It seems to us that while the Jewish entitlement to the land of Israel transcends the Holocaust, the Jewish experience during that tragic time is the most solid of foundations for these “national rights.”

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: