I'm not sure I understand it, but it's thought provoking.
Via The Daas and the Diybur.
edit: come to think of it, I might say "traditionally the victors write the history books..."
Clearly that is no longer a certain given.
All those bringing down proofs of why learning history is important are missing the point. It is certainly interesting and perhaps even important to know the reasons given for not learning history. However, the important thing to know is whether there is a genuine view that history should not be learned.What struck me is the assumption that if there is a "genuine view," which is the commenters translation of "shittah," it means that every angle of the issue was explored in order to formulate that view. Including, I suppose, some sort of study of history. But is that so? Have those who advocated not "learning" history (telling word) done an exhaustive exploration of the matter?
If there is a genuine shittah that people should not study history, then whatever proofs you will bring were considered. You will not be able to Shlug up the shittah. At most you will be able to decide whether to feel bound by the shittah yourself.
If things work smoothly at the Berlin's Schoenefeld Airport, I'll be in Tel Aviv tomorrow morning. This is huge for me.One of the cooler things I've heard lately. I don't know enough about the situation to know how gutsy this is, but it sure is encouraging.
This might mean that I won’t be able to go back to Iran for a long time, since Iran doesn't recognize Israel, has no diplomatic relations with it, and apparently considers traveling there illegal. Too bad, but I don't care. Fortunately, I'm a citizen of Canada and I have the right to visit any country I want.
As a citizen journalist, I'm going to show my 20,000 daily Iranian readers what Israel really looks like and how people live there. The Islamic Republic has long portrayed Israel as an evil state, with a consensual political agenda of killing every single man and woman who prays to Allah, including Iranians.
I'm going to challenge that image.
Via Velveteen Rabbi
Regarding bans, what makes them most distasteful to me is that the reasoning isn’t open source so the logic can be followed by the average literate observant lay-Jew. Instead, we get books and wigs banned and the news spreads like wildfire by phone—and bonfire in the street—and the responsible Jew wants to hear the specifics… without a game of “telephone” along the way corrupting the original message. It’s like testing to see who will dare to break a chain letter.
(My ten-year-old daughter believes that Abraham was conflicted and that the angel represents his "better instinct" [yetzer ha-tov], which eventually prevailed. If so, the "angel" was an internal, rather than an external, source.)Years ago I read this book and quite liked this thought. So, as recounted earlier on my sidebar I conducted a little experiment. In a discussion with a certain respected rosh yeshiva I broached this peshat, worded appropriately, and without revealing its source. The RY was modeh al ha-emes. Yes, its a nice peshat.
SC: What truth-seeking person would close his, or her, eyes to a newly discovered inscription clarifying the geography or vocabulary of a pasuk that baffled the Rishonim? The Ramban's delight when, upon his arrival in Eretz Israel, he was able to revise some of his perushim in the light of the realia, should put to shame the kind of piety that disdains such knowledge. Interesting realia should never overshadow the study of devar Hashem; yet I would rather model myself on the Ramban than on the professors of Ramban.It is a shame that I need to mention this, but I feel that I do. A comment on Godol Hador's blog reads "The skeptics amongst us care little for similarly nazi-like gemarahs, of which there are many more examples." In truth, the commenter who said this does not normally say things like this, so I don't want to be too harsh on him. I also am willing to believe he said it as a polemical point, but to "the skeptics amongst us" who are beginning to regard our own heritage, both intellectual and spiritual, as "nazi-like gemarahs" I would suggest not to be like the Ramban, but to be like Richard Elliott Friedman:
Studying the Torah with Rashi's commentary is a joy....What Rashi and the other commentators taught us to do was to look at a text critically. They were teaching us to do philology: the art of reading well, reading with care, and thinking about what the words of the text mean. ( read)It is entirely possible to be a "skeptic among us" without the unabiding disdain for and frankly anachronistic views of the great teachers and teachings of Judaism.
One of the issues of Arts of Asia magazine had an article, about four or five years ago I think, about the calligraphic masterpieces sent by South East Asian chiefs, rajas and sultans to each other as letters and diplomatic missives - formal letters with top-border scrolls, a main panel in Islamic arch form, the bismullah in glorious calligraphy at the top of the text, followed by salutations and mentions of titles, with, sometimes overshadowed by everything else, the actual message text - "Sultan Babullah respectfully requests that his honoured cousin Raja Dhi Lumpor return the two fishing vessels and the goat which were inadvertently apprehended off Pulau Bukit Island, and sends twenty Spanish reales and a cloak of honour in appreciation of the consideration" - followed by end statement and scribal notations of date, time, place, and any attachments. All, of course, in fancy court Malay - which was probably not the first or even the second language of either sender or recipient (many "Malay" noble families were actually Bugis or Makasarese, and the Achinese often spoke Arabic with greater fluency than they read Malay).Ne'um At the Back of the Hill.
דכתיב (שופטים יט) ותזנה עליו פילגשו רבי אביתר אמר זבוב מצא לה ר' יונתן אמר נימא מצא לה ואשכחיה ר' אביתר לאליהו א"ל מאי קא עביד הקב"ה א"ל עסיק בפילגש בגבעה ומאי קאמר אמר ליה אביתר בני כך הוא אומר יונתן בני כך הוא אומר א"ל ח"ו ומי איכא ספיקא קמי שמיא א"ל אלו ואלו דברי אלהים חיים הן זבוב מצא ולא הקפיד נימא מצא והקפיד אמר רב יהודה זבוב בקערה ונימא באותו מקום זבוב מאיסותא ונימא סכנתא איכא דאמרי אידי ואידי בקערה זבוב אונסא ונימא פשיעותא
Commenting on the text, And his concubine played the harlot against him, R. Abiathar said that the Levite found a fly with her, and R. Jonathan said that he found a hair on her. R. Abiathar soon afterwards came across Elijah and said to him: 'What is the Holy One, blessed be He, doing?' and he answered, 'He is discussing the question of the concubine in Gibea.' 'What does He say?' said Elijah: '[He says], My son Abiathar says So-and-so, and my son Jonathan says So-and-so,' Said R. Abiathar: 'Can there possibly be uncertainty in the mind of the Heavenly One?' He replied: Both [answers] are the word of the living God. He [the Levite] found a fly and excused it, he found a hair and did not excuse it. Rab Judah explained: He found a fly in his food and a hair in loco concubitus; the fly was merely disgusting, but the hair was dangerous. Some say, he found both in his food; the fly was not her fault, the hair was. (trans. from Soncino Edition)Here we see the oft-mentioned, rarely invoked principle of אלו ואלו דברי אלהים חיים, elu ve-elu divrei elokim hayyim, 'Both [answers] are the words of the living God.'
One reason for Al-Aqsa's sanctity [Ahmad Agbariya] explains, is that it was the world's second mosque, built by Adam forty years after the mosque in Mecca....Archaeologist say [what Muslims call Old Al-Aqsa--a pair of long vaults directly under the mosque building] were built in roman times, as passages that led from the Mount's southern gates into the Temple....Agrabiya says the halls are the mosque that Adam built at the begining of time. If so, there's a Roman style to Adam's stonework, like the pair of columns topped with floral capitals at one end of the passageway.What is a modern halakhic discussion doing without apparent recognition of the plain fact that the kotel is Herodian and a retaining wall for a platform built atop the peak of har ha-bayit? I wonder (okay, facetiously) if such discussion and such a shiur is divrei elokim hayyim. Is this Negative-Historical Judaism?
A sociologist of American Jewry at Queens College, Samuel Heilman, said that the hat Abramoff wore would be more typical for so-called yeshivish Jews. "It would be the kind of hat you might see in Lakewood, [N.J.]," the site of a large, Orthodox rabbinical college, Heilman said.is pretty silly. I suppose for the sake of simplicity when talking to the press he might just say its yeshivish and leave it at that, but I wonder if Heilman is really aware of the nuances he is supposed to be aware of. For an expert on Orthodox Jews he doesn't seem to realize that the hat Abramoff was wearing is about 99 parts former YU yeshivish-leaning 50 year old from Queens and 1 part yeshivish Lakewood.
Produced by Diaspora Yeshiva Kollel Mount Zion Jerusalem, Rabbi Chaim Faecher project-coordinator.
An original and unique CD “Hokol Kol Yaakov.” Recorded in the halls of Torah study of the holy Eretz Yisrael, and presented in a special way. A background, serving as an aid to strengthen your private Torah study, creating a holy atmosphere and providing the experience of the pleasantness and life of Torah at all times and at all hours. From now on, the Torah world is with you in your home, with the endorsements and blessings of leading Torah authorities.
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From my chaver ha-blog ADDeRabbi
... Verse 21 informs us: "And the population: He removed (he'evir) it (le'arim) from one end of the territory of Egypt to the other." Our first hurdle is le'arim: Should we read it woodenly as "to the cities," describing a population transfer — moving the farmers from the parched fields into the cities?...This is a very nice Historical-Critical vort and an editorial. But this is a devar Torah?
...There is another possible understanding of the verse, not found in any traditional Jewish commentary because it relies on a reading different from that of the traditional text of the Torah...
...The Samaritan version of the Torah has a slightly different wording of verse 21, and the Jews' Greek translation, the Septuagint, reflects that same wording. There, Joseph is said not to transfer the populace to cities but to subjugate them as slaves: he'evid instead of he'evir (a simple shift of one letter to another shaped very similarly) and la'avadim instead of le'arim (the same shift with another letter added). The advantage of this reading is that it picks up on the people's own language in verse 19, cited above, when they offered themselves as chattel in exchange for sustenance. But Joseph's actions are now even more repugnant: He doesn't just resettle them, he makes them into serfs....
...Whatever the "correct" version of our verse, Joseph's actions can hardly be thought meritorious. Our narrator tried earlier to get us to focus on the lifesaving genius of Joseph's 14-year plan for food storage and distribution. Now he has to admit — tacitly, as good narrators do — that Joseph also engaged in profiteering and exploitation on a grand scale...
However, the novelty is intensified in that you have completed this entire endeavor without the counterfeit aid (siyu'a she-ein bo mamash) of machines that are being innovated constantly (ha-mitchadeshim la-bekarim), like the invention of the "computer" and the like. For anyone who touches one of them is touching the apple of the eye of the Torah! For the Torah cannot being acquired through the pressing of the finger on a button, rather through strenuous labor that literally brings one close to death!This is an interesting topic. The truth is that serious progress in Torah is in fact acquired with great effort. Rabbinic cites in this regard are legion, as well as common sense. No one becomes a scholar of anything via a short cut.