web analytics
February 27, 2015 / 8 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


‘Ultimately, Scientists Always Realize The Torah Is Correct’: An Interview with Rabbi Moshe Meiselman


Rabbi Moshe Meiselman

Rabbi Moshe Meiselman

Why did you decide to open Yeshivas Toras Moshe?

Yeshivas Toras Moshe was founded to enable young men who were coming to Eretz Yisrael for a certain period of their lives to experience guidance in a close manner by gedolei talmidei chachamim in a structured environment. All of the rebbeim are world-class talmidei chachamim who give themselves completely to their talmidim. The yeshiva follows a very thought-through plan of structure in which the talmidim can climb step by step in Gemara, halacha, mussar, and machshavah.

Baruch Hashem, our talmidim have gone on to become very accomplished talmidei chachamim and bnei Torah, and we feel we have accomplished our original goal.

Returning to your book, what are some of the specific aspects of Torah and science that you discuss?

The book discusses many aspects of this subject. One topic that is discussed is what parts of the Torah are to be taken literally and what parts are to be taken as allegory. Throughout the generations there have been people who have been very loose with the literal translation of the Torah, and the Rishonim have been sharp in rejecting this approach completely. Nowadays there are individuals who, in the name of science, would like to have a license in terms of taking many aspects of Torah not literally. Our job is to understand the Torah under the guidelines and rules set forth by the Rishonim. In the book I go through various opinions of Rishonim on this topic, and each of the Rishonim gives strict limitations as to when the Torah is to be taken absolutely literally and when it is to be taken as allegory.

In another part of the book I discuss the fact that the Torah contains all of the chachma, wisdom, of Hashem on this world. Torah can be understood on many different levels. The deepest level of understanding includes in it all of the chachma of the world. It is for this reason that one can find many aspects of the briah (physical world) within the Torah. This concept was universally accepted by all of the Rishonim.

This point is conveyed through the following story brought in both a Gemara in Bechoros and a Midrash in Bereishis: Rabban Gamliel was in Rome and met a Roman scientist. The scientist asked Rabban Gamliel if he knew how long the pregnancy of a nachash is. Rabban Gamliel replied that he did not, and they departed. Rabban Gamliel subsequently met Rabbi Yehoshua who immediately noticed that something was bothering Rabban Gamliel and inquired as to what it was. Rabban Gamliel told him he had met a Roman scientist and that he was unable to answer his question concerning the pregnancy of a nachash. Rabbi Yehoshua responded that it is seven years and derived it from a pasuk. Rabban Gamliel returned to the scientist and told him the answer was seven years, as derived from a pasuk. Upon hearing this, the scientist began banging his head against the wall and said he had spent many years studying this subject and in a matter of minutes “you figured it out by expounding on the Torah.”

There are many lessons one can learn from this story. One thing to note is that Rabban Gamliel was disturbed by the fact that he did not know the answer to this scientific question. He could have brushed off the question by responding that he is not a scientist and not thinking twice about it. The reason Rabban Gamliel was disturbed when he did not know the answer is that this was an indication that he was lacking in his Torah knowledge. He felt if he had a more complete understanding of the Torah he would know this as well. Indeed, Rabbi Yehoshua deduced the correct answer from the Torah itself.

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.

No Responses to “‘Ultimately, Scientists Always Realize The Torah Is Correct’: An Interview with Rabbi Moshe Meiselman”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
18,000 Iranian Centrifuges
Reducing Iran’s Number of Centrifuges Makes a Bomb More Likely
Latest Indepth Stories
Netanyahu in a previous address to Congress-

Bibi’s speech to Congress will bring respect and honor to the Jewish Nation from the US & the world

Korenblit-022715

Obama & Putin have handwriting/signature clues indicating differences between public & private life

NY City Councilman David Greenfield: "They are angry because Hitler did not finish the job."

It’s time for a new Jewish policy regarding Ramallah, NOT just because of the yarmulke incident

Levmore-022715

“GETT’s” being screened for Israeli Rabbinical Court judges at their annual convention.

If Jackson were alive he’d denounce Democratic party’s silence towards virulent anti-Semitism

Victim of Palestinian Arab terrorism, a victor in NY federal court, after years of being ignored by Justice Dept.

March 2013: Arabs hurled stones hitting the Biton’s car; Adele’s mother swerved the car-into a truck

The real issue is that in many respects the president has sought to recalibrate American values and our system of government.

Former Connecticut senator Joe Lieberman, writing in the Washington Post on Sunday, provided one of the clearest and most compelling analyses we’ve seen of the importance of the prime minister’s speech.

A central concept in any discussion about happiness is achieving clarity. “Ain simcha ela k’hataras hasefeikos” – there is no joy as that experienced with the removal of doubt.

“Je Suis..,” like its famous origin 400 years ago, implies the ability & freedom to think & question

Many anti-Israel demonstrations at universities have a not-so-latent anti-Semitic agenda as well

Believing a few “extremists” hijacked Islam is myopic in history and geography, numbers and scope

More Articles from Jewish Press Staff
French Aliyah

“Israel is the home of every Jew,” the Prime Minister told the Cabinet Sunday.

Screenshot of Copenhagen terrorist before police killed him.

Rabbis and Jewish leaders soon will take self-defense courses to protect themselves against terrorists.

Most Swedes have never realized that one minority group may expose another minority group to violence and intimidation.

Pres. Reuven Rivlin launches joint project with ‘Collective Impact’ to integrate Israeli Arab workers into private business sector.

Eulogies for the fourth Jewish victims at the attack on a kosher deli in Paris last week were held in Bnei Brak Tuesday.

The Declaration of Independence is the first document reflecting Jewish sovereignty since the time of the Hashmonean kingdom.

Aliyah was up by 32 percent compared with 2013.

Just in time for the United Nations Security Council to think twice about recognizing the PA.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/interviews-and-profiles/%e2%80%98ultimately-scientists-always-realize-the-torah-is-correct%e2%80%99-an-interview-with-rabbi-moshe-meiselman/2011/11/23/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: