Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox (MO) world





  • One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is that they tend to view all Chareidim as being a monolith, having collective responsibility for the failings of individuals...


    One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is that, having adapted modern culture and values, they have difficulty dealing with dogmatic, absolute, hard-and-fast rules, which Judaism abounds with. It's much more "with it" to talk about touchy-feely moral relativism and call it Mitzvos Bein Adam L’Chaveiro (BALC), Tikkun Olam, and other trope. Not that they don't technically observe most of those rules, but they get much more excited about Tikkun Olam in Africa or serving in the IDF than they do about the mitzvah of Etrog for example...


    One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is that they adopted the ideology of Zionism where national identity revolves around a physical homeland, as opposed to Judaism where the true Homeland is the Torah and its Mitzvot. This leads them to all kinds of bizarre conclusions like equating millitary service with Jewish observance... 

    One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is that they have an inferiority complex vis a vi their cutting corners in various areas of Miztvos Bein Adam L’Makom (BALM). This leads them to accuse those more scrupulous than them in BALM, of being remiss in observance of BALC. This has nothing to do with reality (people are people with the same human shortcomings, but when a Charedi does it everyone screams (Chillul Hashem(CH), BALC, etc.), but who cares, as long as it makes them feel better about themselves...

    One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is that they have guilty feelings about their much lower birth rate and how they care more about their own comfort and convenience than about Jewish continuity. This leads them to always look for every real or imagined flaw in the parenting skills of Chareidim on issues including OTD, abuse, secular education, shidduchim, tuition, and baseball...

    One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is the myth propagated by the non Charedi world that Charedim are lax in BALC. Nothing can be further than the truth. A few examples. Chofetz Chaim Heritage Foundation. It's entire existence is to promote BALC through proper speech and promotion of better relations among people. Or what about the massive amounts of Chesed done by organizations such as Hatzoloh, Tomchei Shabbos, Bikur Cholims, Chai Lifeline, etc. 

    Or just looking in every Chareidi newspaper where there are 3 to 4 pages of various gemach listings for just about anything you can think of from clothes to furniture and anything and everything in between. Or enter many a shul on Friday night- especially in that awful neighborhood filled with hoodlums called Meah Shearim and people will be all over you inviting you to join them for the seuda.
    And who has not had personal encounters with Gedolim and yes even Rebbes who literally cry tears over listening to someone else's Tzorah and daven specifically for those people. I could go on and on but I think you get the picture. 

    One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is another myth propagated by the non Charedi that Charedim are "picking & choosing" like the Jews they disqualify regarding: BALM
    Again one of the primary misunderstandings of the Charedi world is that the leaders talk about hashkafos not people.

    The prime example is the biggest anti-zionist of this century, the Satmar Rebbe R. Joel whose BALC was legendary and when people came to him for assistance he never asked or questioned their hashkafic beliefs. He was known to help hand over thousands of dollars at a time to the truly needy, regardless of their affiliation.
    A prominent Rosh Yeshiva in the NY area who once railed against something written by a MO scholar. When one of his students asked him who he was referring to his answer was "Ich redt vegen shitos nisht vegen mentschen" or translated to English -"i speak about beliefs, not about people." That is an important distinction to understand.

    The MO claim to understand that, but then they turn around and endorse the opposite view for reasons of...

    They see no problem criticizing hareidim as a group, even while admitting in the same breath that there are "other hareidim". 

    To pull some isolated examples of where someone did not perform BALC properly and tar a whole community that practices it with the same hiddur as BALM is just silly IMO. It ranks right up there with Charedim are dishonest and unscrupulous since maybe a few dozen out of a population of a few hundred thousand may have been convicted of financial crimes.

    MO has to do some much needed introspection on that particular flaw in thinking."

      2 comments:

      1. You make some valid arguments, and certainly all communities can gain and grow from criticism. Self reflection is always constructive.
        However, the first of the 6 or 7 flaws that you list is, "One of the biggest flaws in the thinking of the Modern Orthodox world is that they tend to view all Chareidim as being a monolith". You just made the reverse mistake. The MO community (or I should say communities) is not monolithic either. The right-wing of MO is fairly similar to Charedi. The far left of MO is pretty close to Conservative (in my opinion). And there is much in between those two opposites on the MO spectrum. Even commitment to Zionism is on a spectrum.
        So, you need to be more specific as to which group you are criticizing.

        ReplyDelete
        Replies
        1. Radically ModerateJanuary 30, 2014 at 1:08 PM

          Maybe he just needs to stop criticizing.

          Delete

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