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September 25, 2016 / 22 Elul, 5776
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Stop Citing Halachah

Using the term "Halacha" for policies which are not in fact Halacha, delegitimizes those who differ and causes ill-will towards Jewish law.

what me worry

Photo Credit: Yori Yanover

But finally, if a legitimate point of view, amongst many, is branded as Halacha, we will, G-d forbid, see many Jews begin to despise Jewish law. Like the example quoted above, when a personal agenda of pre-Pesach cleanliness [not Chametz-free, per-se] is sounded as a dictate of Halacha, the enmity towards the beauty of Jewish law will grow in a disastrous way. In place of a Jew priding his or herself in being part of a religion “who’s ways are pleasant and all it’s paths are peaceful,” [Mishlei 3/17,] they will begin to see Jewish law as a bitter pill that they must swallow, and worse yet, one that they will not want to be part of!

Let’s try to promote a community where, many who keep the dictates of “Halacha,” have different, and sometimes opposing views, as to how to lead the community beyond its dictates. And when we argue as to which way is the correct one, let’s not use a non-Kosher tool of demagogy in the process.

Rabbi Yehoshua Grunstein

About the Author: Rabbi Yehoshua Grunstein is Director of training and placement at The Straus-Amiel Institute at Ohr Torah Stone.

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