Category: Religion

2014 Chag HaSemikhah 105

An Open Letter to my Chaveirim

I am dismayed by the actions of a few of our fellow RIETS musmachim. Our chaveirim founded Open Orthodoxy and are ordaining women, defending the questioning of Torah MiSinai and mocking rabbinic traditionalists. What in the world is going on?

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Pharoah and the Jews: a Case Study in Anti-Semitism

It’s possible to read the story of the Exodus repeatedly, yet fail to notice that the same lies that Pharoah told about the Jews over 3300 years ago are the same ones circulated today. If you think BDS is something new, or that there is a problem of “occupation,” it’s time to acknowledge the reality of hatred.

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Blame Terrorists, Not Songs

Some politicians and pundits – including several writers in Haaretz – seem misguidedly intent on extending blame for Jewish terrorism across Orthodoxy, even to the charedi community and its Torah...

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Prominence ≠ Importance

When President Obama called the recent U.S. military announcement that all combat roles will now be open to women a “historic step forward,” the image that came to mind was...

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“Marriage Redefined”

Newly posted online is a video of an Agudah convention session titled: “Marriage Redefined: Should I Care?” I was one of the presenters, and if you have interest in the...

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Merits, Not Munitions

The reporter’s question: “Should the chareidim serve in [Israel’s] military, or at least serve in some other capacity such as recognized public service commensurate with military service?” The query was...

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The Model is Working

Twenty years ago, no one thought it was “triumphalism” to refer to the exponential growth of the observant community. At that time, it was termed “unrealistic” — though then, as now, it was very real.

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Through Others’ Eyes

There were ample arrows in my quiver for shooting down the question, or at least for deflecting it. But our Shabbos night seudah guest, a young Jewish woman with limited...

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Denominational Déjà Vu

In 2001, I predicted that the Conservative movement would soon enough “halachically” approve what halacha forbids in no uncertain terms. [It did so 5 years later.] I perceive precisely the same Conservative approach to halacha in what bills itself today as “Open Orthodoxy.”

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Black Power

Australian political advisor Robert Hoge was born with a severe facial deformity and describes himself as “the ugliest person you’ve never met.” When he was born, his parents burst into...

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Rav Aharon Feldman on Open Orthodoxy

The positions Open Orthodox leaders have espoused put them unmistakably beyond the pale of Torah Judaism, no different than the Reform or Conservative movements. Open Orthodoxy is leading the Jewish people away from the Torah.

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What We Build and What We Are

As the 93rd takes place, the 78th comes to mind. Agudath Israel of America’s national conventions, that is. The 93rd gathering is featuring a constellation of topics and speakers, include...

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Misguided Mounters

“As if the situation here was not sensitive enough,” groused an incredulous MK Yoel Hasson (Hamachaneh HaTzioni). He was referring to Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely’s comment that her...

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The Symptoms are Not the Problem

The statement regarding Open Orthodoxy by the Council of Torah Sages of Agudath Israel is not about women rabbis, politics, or excluding Jews from the Jewish community. It is about integral components of traditional Jewish belief, and truth in advertising.