Friday, July 01, 2005

The so-called Slifkin Affair distilled

Well one aspect of it anyway. Apart from the issue of book bans themselves, there is the matter of what R. Slifkin has been teaching.

R. Micha Berger distilled the matter very well in a comment on this thread
What really is happening is that our leadership is teaching something the masses are incapable of swallowing. That's why the subsequent controversy is about the Age of the Universe issue and not about chazal's science. Too many authorities have taught us for too long that Bereishis 1 need not imply a young universe for people to accept this total change of position as representing mesorah.
I really have nothing to add to all the electrons that have been moved around over the Slifkin Affair. I think there are a few issues and they are larger than even the content of what R. Slifkin has written and taught, but the above puts things into context. After all these years of R. Aryeh Kaplan books and Aish HaTorah seminars and the like becoming accepted and attached to mainstream Orthodoxy, telling people to turn on a dime did not go down well, especially as the matter ostensibly deals with matters of metziyus (what happened), the age of the universe and related issues.

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