Thursday, January 26, 2006

Bloggerai: Marvin Schick

At the risk of dragging on with a point that has been belabored ad nauseam mamash, I will add my two kilobytes to the ruckus.The omnipresent shallowness behind the response to Schick's article betrays one of the problems confronting us today. It is not only the profound am haaratzut, simple ignorance that characterizes our religious youth across the board; it is the institutionalization of this ignorance. Asking hard questions these days is more uncommon for a yeshiva bochur today than it ever was before. Things have come to the point that stagnation is formally encouraged. The form dependes on the sect; the responses to deviance range from bookbanning to excommunication to cries of "Nifrad!". The concept of emunah lema'ala misechel, as explained in Chassidut, has nothing in common whatsoever with what I am writing about: nowhere was this doctrine used to abolish Talmudic debate, works of the caliber of the Kuzari, and so on. Any attempt to connect the one with the other is lack of depth at best; at worst, it is willful falsification and distortion. The Lubavitcher Rebbe did not produce 200 volumes of brilliant discourse just to have it parroted blindly the world over.I just read Marvin's two articles again: whether I agree with him or not, his article was well-written and expressed genuine admiration tempered real concern. The tone reminded me of Pat Robertson's reaction to Ariel Sharon's condition; the reactions to both bore a striking resemblance.Manis Friedman's response is not new; he has been espousing this idea for a while. There is certainly some merit to it. That said, King Solomon said many thousands of years ago (Proverbs 21:30): אין חכמה ואין תבונה ואין עצה נגד ה.Let us hope that we will wisen soon. More than we imagine depends on it...
posted by Nathan

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