Wednesday, July 06, 2005

The Godol Hador goes ballistic ......

..... over the Slifkin affair, episode #867. Vintage Godol! I cannot for the life of me understand why Rabbi Aharon Feldman, who at an earlier stage I had acknowledged as one of the few O rabbis to come out with some honour in this bizarre and destructive affair, now seems to have totally reversed his position. His letter (assuming it is genuine) is correctly shredded line by line by the GH. Only question: Is he still eating tehina? Mycroft / Steve - can you give any info?

But - a more serious question. The Slifkin affair has brought squarely onto the table a whole range of issues regarding contemporary Orthodox policy and belief, and a whole range of questions about the quality and nature of rabbinic leadership in the Chareidi / Yeshivah world. Not just the localised Israeli world, where extreme views have always been accepted as part of the local anthropological map; but leadership in the "western" yeshivot of North America. [A similar question was raised in the clash between Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and Gateshead - but Gateshead is now much more peripheral to UK orthodoxy and Judaism in general than Lakewood is to N America.] So - what is the contemporary definition of Orthodoxy? How many Orthodox Judaisms are there today? Given the speculation about the future of the Conservative movement (and its leadership) -- can someone make sense of what's going on??

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