Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Problematic rabbis exist in the Sefardic world also

To be continued


  1. Problems with Sefardic rabbis? Who are they? How do you know? Do you have two witnesses who know personally that they are problems? How do the two witnesses know for sure that this sefardic rabbi is a problem? How do you know that he is a rabbi? And how do you define his being a "problem"?

    There is a famous case of a very great rabbi, perhaps the Ore Somayach or somebody of that incredible stature, who got a letter in the mail asking about a certain question. The Ore Somayach could not understand what the letter was all about, because the question it asked was a clearly taught Shach. Who would ask such a question when all you have to do is open the Shulchan Aruch and see the Shach? Thinking it over, the Rov realized that in the community that produced this question, the rabbi was suffering from people who wanted to get him fired because they considered him unfit to be a Rov. Now he understood what was going on. The enemies of the Rov had written this letter, knowing that the Ore Somayach would easily answer it by saying look into the Shach. Then they would use his response to damage their Rov who it seems was not familiar with that Shach.

    The Ore Somayach then wrote a letter of reply to the letter he received. He answered the question not like the Shach, in other words, his answer was a mistake, because it was not like the Shach. After he mailed the letter, he then wrote another letter, saying that they must ignore his first letter, because he erred in ruling differently than the Shach. When the people in the community who wanted to use this to hurt the Rov realized that the Gadol HaDor made a mistake and didn't know the Shach, they realized that even if they knew that their Rov did not know the Shach, well, so did the Ore Somayach make the same mistake, and nobody could confront him!

    We see from this to what extremes the Gadol HaDor went to protect a Rov who perhaps did not know the Shach. Talking about people who are "problems" is one of the great problems, unless you are a hater.

  2. Yes, they do exist. If your point if about get or suspicious heterim, this I don't know. But if your point is about other problems, there are many sephardic rabbis who have made the news by either being arrested or charged with serious accusations. There are good and bad apples everywhere and sefaradim are not exempt to this reality.

  3. My intention is not to put my head between two mountains. I just want to respectfully note that in the DC area there is large, wealthy, congregation that has the words "Sephardic Congregation" in its title. The rabbi affiliates with the Open Orthodox.

  4. I think that the intention of DT's provocative post was to inspire impassioned responses like yours. I don't think DT is talking about the likes of the rav in your story when referring to problematic rabbis. Indeed, how would you define a problematic rabbi?


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