Anything about JUDAISM
Anything about JUDAISM
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MODERATOR Posted - 21 December 2004 19:54
Rav Kook's vast knowledge of Torah, which is not contested, does not diminish the accuracy of the charges leveled against him. As I have said many times on these boards, if you can respond to those charges than please do so (so far nobody for the past 75 years has been able to defend him) but if your response is that he was a great Talmid Chacham it is irrelevant. The contention is that he is a Torah giant like Korach and Yeravam, and Shabse Tzvi, all from who we see that a person's Torah learning is no guarantee of reliability.

The charges against Rav Kook are that he believed in values that are directly opposed to those of the Torah, most prominently the idea that people who do not believe in G-d, are not even Tinokos Shenishbu, and are even anti-Torah, are considered "holy", if they contribute, physically and not even spiritually, to the building up of civilization in Eretz Yisroel, and will do teshuva because they live there. Then there are the other super-Zionist teachings, and bizarre things in that direction, things about Moshiach and the like. (There are other strange teachings as well, though less conflicting with basic Torah prinaiples, such as his ideas about vegetarianism and other things, but they are are ireelevant to this discussion).

The problem is that the quality of his Torah and reasoning for his conclusions in these areas are much much weaker than his Torah in other, non-Zionistic areas, so much so that if we would not know better, we would say that they for sure were not said by him.

But unfortunately we know they were. They are in his seforim, and well documented. And, again, we are not talking about plain errors or mistakes - everyone can blunder, even the greatest - we are talking about values and hashkafos and statements that are against the very fundamentals of our Torah, the simplest being that Mitzvos make you holy and aveiros make you unholy. Its like Aleph Bais. And nobody, including Rav Kook, has ever come up with anything close to making sense out of this.

As I mentioned elsewhere, there are different opinions about what all of this makes him. Opinions range from respecting the man himself but dismissing his bizarre statements (such as Rav Yosef Chaim Zonenfeld's statement that he was "drunk on ahavas yisroel" and therefore we should take what he says as if it came form a drunkard") to the Chofetz Chaim's "Kook shmook" - to the Satmar Rav's psak in a Teshuva to Rav Yosef Chaim declaring him an Apikores and his halachic rulings assur to follow across the board.

The Imrei Emes (Gerrer Rebbe) claimed to have had a letter form Rav Kook where he says he regrets many of the things he said, including the statements about Apikorsim being holy. The problem is that even so, his seforim still contain those "pre-teshuva" teachings, and it is that Rav Kook - the one described in his seforim, the one that everyone knows of, that we are discussing here, not the private, repented one. If he indeed do Teshuva and regretted what he said, that is between him and Hashem, and I hope it is so, but so long as the public still uses his seforim and his old teachings, it is those seforim and teachings that we are referring to here. A Chilul Hashem that was done in public cannot be removed by repenting in private.

The stories that you write about Gedolim praising him are mostly undocumented. The true ones, however, if you check them out, mostly took place before he came out with and spread the problematic Torahs. As you said, he was known as a prodigy. Things changed as he developed and publicized his teachings.

Twerpchicago Posted - 21 October 2005 17:33
You can burn a sefer torah? Even if it was written by an apikores, isn't anything with His name on it holy? I mean, Baruch Shem Malchuso Le'Olam Va'ed, right?
MODERATOR Posted - 21 October 2005 17:59
yes, you are supposed to burn the sefer torah with Hashem's name. The Rambam says this is in order to eradicate the fruits of the Apikores (kdei shelo lehaniach shem lapikorsim). From here we see that the importance of neutralizing the Apikorsim is so vital that we even burn sifrei torah to accomplish it.
minhashamayim Posted - 23 March 2007 18:33
mod, im sorry, i know that this site is supposed to be informative and answer our questions- but who are we to criticize ppl so much great than we? to call Rav Kook an apikores? how can us little ppl point fingers and say- yes he was a big Talmid Chacham- but his Hashkafas were wrong- so- apikores!!!!
I think that we are dealing with ppl who are way beyond us and it is not in our realm to make such a severe accusation against them.
yes, he was wrong- but did Rav Sonnenfeld call him an apikores?????? its a very strong word to use moderator!
he made mistakes. major mistakes- the zionists used him- they trickied him and he fell for it b/c of his intense ahavas yisrael, and yes, he didn’t have the clarity that rav sonnenfeld and other gedolim had at the time to stick by the hashkafos that u hold by and not bend around to accommodate the zionists.
However, despite the seriousness of the clashes between them- Rav Chaim would display high regard for Rav Kook when they would meet at simchas- do u think that Rav Chaim would "respect" him if he were a total apikores?
Furthermore, Rav Chaim would constantly refer to rav Kook as the "Jaffa Rav"- why? b/c, in his words "I am still of the opinion that Rav Kook is eminently suited to the position of Rav of Jaffa, but not rav of Jerusalem; Jerusalem is different..."
do you think that Rav cahim would say that he should be rav of Jaffa, who were ber secularized as apposed to yerushalayim which was the old yishuv preserving the traditions- if he were an apikores! we don’t recommend apikorsim to be a rav- anywhere!
and, the gerrer rebbe refers to rav kook in a letter of his as "Harav Hagaon R' Avraham Kook..."
how can we go and just simply write him off as an apikores?
furthermore, the Rav of Sokolov said about rav Kook-
that "although he is a great talmid chacham... cannot be considered to be following the approach of the geonim and tzaddikim of the earlier generations..."
this is very differnt then calling him an apikores.
he was so wrong, and so off in his hashkafahs and he caused a lot of harm to the chareidi camp at the time, but Rabbi Sonnenfeld, although he disagreed with him, still revered him, and so should we.
sitrakafka Posted - 25 March 2007 15:37
i have some things to add about rav amnon yizchak.

First of all hes had many debates with secular israeli scientists, philosphers etc and each and every time hes put them to shame. i know because i've seen quite a few of these debates on tape. so it isnt all about miracles and such.

But as the moderator said - most of the people he deals with are sefardic israelis who have basically been completely neglected by the zionists/israeli governments. im kind of glad rav kook and zionism came up in the same topic so that i can tie it up all together:

when the sefardic jews were brought into israel from north africa and asia and yemen they were basically stuck in tents and forced to do the black labour that none of the ashkenazic zionists would ever agree to do. were talking about rationing food and sleeping in the cold. they were tricked and taken away from yidishkeit as well. A lot of them have been dirt poor and uneducated (in Torah) until this very day. just take a drive into sderot, kiryat malachi or any other developement town and youll see. the same things happening with the ethiopians.

now back to rav amnon yizchak - sefardic israeli chilonim are much easier for him to bring back in teshuva than other chilonim and thats why in some cases it only takes him a simple miracle story and theyre already putting on tefilin everyday. most of them already always believed in Hashem and Torah from the beginning. they were just educated in the zionist school system but it never *completely* brainwashed them. the ikar was always there.

rav amnon yizchak is also vehemently anti-zionist - probably more than our moderator :)

in one of his tapes his people are basically going around and quoting herzls ugliest statements and asking simple Israelis on street who they think said them. in most cases they're answer was "hitler?" im not kidding.

its funny how the MO and religious zionists think that Zionism and Israeli leadership are so noble. lets put all the halachik issues of the oaths and such aside (even though they are dead serious) and ask ourselves- whats noble about forcing so many jews to live in such horrible conditions? whats noble about opressing millions of people who are of your own blood pretty much the way black slaves were in america???

But theres more – Israel really is a rotten country! Its embarrassing how low its leadership has come. Just open the paper and youll see there are dozens (really) of Israeli politicians who are corrupt. The right wing ones are usually prosecuted and found guilty. The leftist ones are usually let off the hook.

i spoke to one kid who was sent up north to fight in the recent war. he told me that for days all they ate in the war was tuna!! there was not enough water for everybody and most of them slept outside because they had no tents either. I mean- the poor kids are risking their lives and they don’t even have food to eat!! But it shouldn’t come as a surprise: its a known fact that israel neglects its soldiers. there were also a couple of cases where the government completely left soldiers to die!! Like in kever yosef… look that one up why don’t you…

Israeli culture and art is hedonistic and full of kefirah. Apart from the fact that its quality is very low (I mean look at Israeli art, literature, and music from objective POV and you'll see its GARBAGE, I mean really…) but besides that – all of it is completely anti-religious.

Even if you could *somehow* get past the issue of the oaths – you can change the fact that everything Zionist has always been completely against Torah. You cant change the fact that Herzl, Ben gurion, and every other leader, lawmaker, and artist was a pig-eating kofer who made no secret of his/her interest to bring jews away from Torah. That's why religious Zionism is also destined to fail.

taon Posted - 25 March 2007 16:28
minhashamayim <<who are we to criticize ppl so much great than we? to call Rav Kook an apikores? how can us little ppl point fingers and say- yes he was a big Talmid Chacham- but his Hashkafas were wrong- so- apikores!!!!>>
we're not doing. It we're just passing on the message declared by people who were worthy to say that

<<did Rav Sonnenfeld call him an apikores?????? >>
exactly what it says above.


<< Rav Chaim would display high regard for Rav Kook when they would meet at simchas- do u think that Rav Chaim would "respect" him if he were a total apikores?>>
when was this? and maybe he held he was fooled, not an apikores. and there were major problems between them.

<<furthermore, the Rav of Sokolov said about rav Kook-
that "although he is a great talmid chacham... cannot be considered to be following the approach of the geonim and tzaddikim of the earlier generations..."
this is very differnt then calling him an apikores.>>
see above
<<Rabbi Sonnenfeld, although he disagreed with him, still revered him, and so should we.>>
did he?

`taon
questions? search for the appropriate thread here:

www.frumteens.com/forum.php?forum_id=38

Tortured_Soul Posted - 26 March 2007 14:05
<<(I mean look at Israeli art, literature, and music from objective POV and you'll see its GARBAGE, I mean really…)>>

That's too much of a sweeping generalization.

Itzhak Perlman, The Israel Philarmonic Orchestra, Yaacov Agam, Nathan Rapoport...Is there work all "garbage"?

Not that I'm defending Zionism or even the state itself in any way but fair is fair.

taon Posted - 26 March 2007 16:23
is there any good iin it?

`taon
questions? search for the appropriate thread here:

www.frumteens.com/forum.php?forum_id=38

Tortured_Soul Posted - 26 March 2007 16:23
<<You cant change the fact that Herzl, Ben gurion, and every other leader, lawmaker, and artist was a pig-eating kofer who made no secret of his/her interest to bring jews away from Torah.>>

This is also far too much of a sweeping generalization; there are many examples for each of the categories you list that do not fit this description.

In the case of leaders and lawmakers, even if serving in the ‘Knesset’ or holding other public office in the medinah is itself a terrible aveiroh, there nonetheless are many such people– both past and present– who are Shomrei U’Mitzvos and others who at least were not kofrim. Your statement above therefore libels many people.

Again, this is not to defend or justify Zionism or the State of Israel in any way; they are both fundamentally and inherently in violation of Torah but this does not justify the reckless disregard for truth, accuracy and fairness that these statements of yours are.

<<That's why religious Zionism is also destined to fail.>>

Actually, no, religious Zionism – as _any_ strain of Zionism– is destined to fail because the _ideology_ itself is _inherently_ and _fundamentally_ in violation of Torah.

taon Posted - 26 March 2007 19:36

<<This is also far too much of a sweeping generalization; there are many examples for each of the categories you list that do not fit this description.>>

The majority of medionah leaders were anti-Torah, and the ones that aren't are barely heard of. Israel has always had a secular leaning. can you name a single Shomrei Mitzvos leader who poeople have heard of, aside from the mayor of Yerushalayim, I agree that's good. but the fact that he is looked upon as an oddity and caused so much scandal that a religiouys Jew held office, kinda disproves your point.

<<Actually, no, religious Zionism – as _any_ strain of Zionism– is destined to fail because the _ideology_ itself is _inherently_ and _fundamentally_ in violation of Torah.>>

as well as all other false ideologies. Bimehera Biyamenu.

`taon
questions? search for the appropriate thread here:

www.frumteens.com/forum.php?forum_id=38

sitrakafka Posted - 26 March 2007 19:36
ok i've gone over my last post in this thread and can see that i definitely did make some harsh generalizations. sometimes the thrill of no one ever knowing who i am gets the better of me and causes my emotions to take over the post.

anyway - regarding the composers you mentioned above - sorry, but i havent heard any of their work, so until i do, im going to have to assume that it probably isnt that good. im glad you enjoy it though...

regarding relious zionism - i understand that from the very beinning its ideology was against torah. but today, "bashetach" as the israelis like to say, the thing thats actually causing so many dati-leumi kids to become chiloni (which imo is the biggest sign of failure) is the strong tolerance (and acceptance) their parents and teachers have towards chilonim and their lifestyle and culture. imo anyway...

i'd just like to know - can a religious zionist could never be religious to begin with? can he be a zadik?

-sitrakafka

"Shyness is nice, but shyness can stop you from doing all the things in life you'd like to."

sitrakafka Posted - 26 March 2007 22:11
ugh this board *really* needs an edit function!!
Tortured_Soul Posted - 26 March 2007 22:36
B”H

Taon, Please re-read my post carefully.
I never stated or implied that frum people holding office in the Medina was a good thing or anything else that in any way contradicts anything you wrote.

My point was simply that there were and are many such people and therefore the statement I was responding to was inaccurate, unfair and downright libelous.

(And the statement certainly does not categorize every Israeli artist either; there certainly are many Israeli artists who are frum and I’m sure more than a few who are even quite devout.*)

*Let me just clarify that I did not mean to imply _anything_ about the level of observance or righteousness of any of the musicians or artists I listed in my first reply above. I was simply citing them as examples I thought-off hand of work that by no means could ever be considered “garbage”.

taon Posted - 26 March 2007 22:38
Sorry, I misunderstood what you wrote.

`taon
questions? search for the appropriate thread here:

www.frumteens.com/forum.php?forum_id=38

MODERATOR Posted - 27 March 2007 21:16
I'm moving this discussion to the Jewish Music forum. please try to stay on topic, thanks.
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