Sunday, January 16, 2022

R' Tendler & Temple Mount/ Rejects criticism

update see oh ii #113 page 304

Jewish Press reports (excerpt):

"The rabbanim are not talking halacha," Rabbi Moshe Tendler told The Jewish Press. "They're issuing a political statement."

Last week two leading haredi rabbis, Rabbi Shalom Elyashiv and Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, and former Sephardic chief rabbi Rav Ovadia Yosef, sent a letter to Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovich - who is in charge of the Western Wall area - asking him to reaffirm a 40-year-old ban on Jewish entry to the Temple Mount. The move came a month after Israel's Haaretz newspaper published photographs of Rabbi Tendler atop the Temple Mount, which set off a storm in the haredi community. Rabbi Tendler, a Yeshiva University rosh yeshiva and biology professor, is the son-in-law of the late Rav Moshe Feinstein, the leading American halachic decisor of his time.

"As time passed," the three rabbis wrote, "we have lost knowledge of the precise location of the Temple, and anyone entering the Temple Mount is liable to unwittingly enter the area of the Temple and the Holy of Holies."

Rabbi Kanievsky added that "entrance to the Temple Mount, and the defilement of the Holy of Holies, is more severe than any of the violations in the Torah."
However, Rabbi Tendler argues that "everybody, certainly every rosh yeshiva and every talmid chacham, knows exactly" where a Jew may walk on the Temple Mount thanks to the research of such rabbis as the late Rabbis Shlomo Goren (former Israeli chief rabbi) and Yechiel Michel Tikochinsky.

The letter's expression, "We have lost knowledge," Rabbi Tendler said, refers to the "99 percent of tourists" who walk in forbidden areas. "I wouldn't accuse the rabbanim of talking halacha," he said, "because then I'd have to accuse them of being am haratzim [ignoramuses]. The rabbanim, baruch Hashem, are talmidei chachamim and know exactly what I know I believe they're just backing up a government position."


  1. > Rabbi Kanievsky added that "entrance to the Temple Mount, and the defilement of the Holy of Holies, is more severe than any of the violations in the Torah."

    Not pedophilia. Not cruelty to workers. Not insurance and charity frauds. Not assaulting women that don't meet someone's definition of "tznius".

    Talk about being off the derech!

  2. Rabbi Kanievsky added that "entrance to the Temple Mount, and the defilement of the Holy of Holies, is more severe than any of the violations in the Torah."
    This is normal rabbinic language and should be understood as "it is very serious"

    See E.H. 23 That states that zera lvatal is the worse sin of all.
    שולחן ערוך אבן העזר סימן כג סעיף א

    אסור להוציא שכבת זרע לבטלה ועון זה חמור מכל עבירות שבתורה
    The Beis Shmuel says lav davka.
    בית שמואל אבן העזר סימן כג ס"ק א

    א אסור להוצי' ש"ז - כתב ח"מ בשם ספר החסידים אם מתירא שאל יכשל בא"א או בנדה ח"ו טוב לו להוצי' זרע לבטלה רק יתענה מ' יום בימי הקיץ או ישב בקור בימי החורף לפ"ז מ"ש בזוהר וכאן דעון מוציא ש"ז חמיר מכל עבירות לאו דוק':
    This is also discussed in the Igros Moshe and Maharetz Chajes.

  3. Rabbi Tendler must be bored and looking for excitment. Even the amah is a debate and so not everything can be decided precisely. We do not and cannot know everything.

    Yes, some Rabonim have looked into it, but, it is has not been reviewed by peers. R. Gorin and Tuketinzky are not the whole world. Not all their pesokim were accepted by all. Why should this be? I do not see this as politics only. I have no doubt that R. Elyashiv and Kenaivsky can support (halachically) their pesak. What . gorin and Tuketinzky stated was an opinion. There are others.

    Rabbi Tendler should not have acted like he did. It is a matter of respect to other rabonim. But, maybe, he did not realize where he was walking.

  4. Levi,

    To paraphrase:

    Yes, some Rabonim have looked into it, but, it is has not been reviewed by peers. R. Elyashiv and Kenaivsky are not the whole world. Not all their pesokim were accepted by all. ... I have no doubt that R. Gorin and Tuketinzky support (halachically) their pesak. What . R. Elyashiv and Kenaivsky stated was an opinion. There are others.

    If R. Elyashiv and Kenaivsky can back it up halachically then they should do so and not make sweeping statements. R' Tendler would then have the opportunity to engage in halachic debate (responsa) which is the way things are supposed to work. They are all respected talmidei chachamim.

  5. Rabbi Tendler is not in their league. It is silly to compare. The world knows who they are. If he wants to undo a pesak of these "live" gedolim then he must ask first. R. Elyashiv is accepted enough that one does not publicly insult them. It is called chutzpah to call it politics.

    He is creating anarchy and showing disrespect. He (I hope) fell into it and now is embarresed. He is setting an example not to listen to Rabonim. "Kuloni chachomim kulonu.."

    But, maybe, a teshuvah from them would be a good idea. It is always good to learn. Ask them.

  6. I cannot say for certain but my gut instinct is that Reb Moshe zt'l wouldn't have gone to Eretz Yisroel and acted openly against the opinion of the local Gedolim.

  7. Reb Moshe once paskened that a certain cholunt was to be eaten on the Shabos. R. Auerbach send him a letter with questions and tells him that he is a machmir. Reb Moshe answers the questions, but, starts off by telling him something to the effect "you know the minhoge Eretz Yisrael and you should pasken on it".

  8. Garnel has made some intelligent comments here and other places but I think his comment on this thread is tantamount to being m'vazeh a true gadol baTorah and should therefore be deleted.

  9. Michoel,

    I was not happy with Garnel's comment either. To refer to possibly the greatest talmid chacham of our time as being "off the derech" is both offensive and foolish.

    Nevertheless, the proper response was the one made by Rabbi Eidensohn, which focused on Garnel's core issue, rather than his poorly chosen language.

    The kinds of discussions which take place on blogs such as these involve people from the entire range of the Jewish world. If these discussions are to accomplish anything, people who make improper comments need to hear real explanations for why their comments are incorrect, not simply shut down.

  10. Lazera,
    I hear. But the host of the blog also has the option of writing something like:
    "Garnel, I saw your comment and I'd like to explain.... Please don't take offense but I will need to delete your comment since it could be easily read as being disrespectful."

    This would allow the communication to hopefully remain open and also save the offensive poster from from being oiver continued issurim when others read his post.

  11. I agree with the comments that I should have either edited or rejected the original comment. At this point I would like Garnel to decide whether his comment be edited or be rejected or left as is - since the common perception is that it reflects poorly on him.

  12. The issue discussed is whether it was proper for R. Tendler to take on these gedolim. Let me present R. Tendler's argument which can be found in many seforim. Look at the Techumim series.

    There is a platform in the Mt. area which has to be (there is no other choice) where the Sanhedrin sat. Using that and taking the minimum opinion for the amah we can without hesitation mark off a large area that is permissible.

    I have not seen the aguments of these sages and have no doubt that they can justify their pesak. So, I do not believe it is politics.

    Perhaps, someone knows their reason. Has it been published? Maybe, tthey think that there was another platform and it was destroyed.

  13. Rav Goren wrote a book on the subject, and he brings the rambam to show that it is permissible in certain areas. He doesnt rely on the Raavad who says that impurity is not binding nowadays.

  14. Tendler is an oisvorf.

  15. how about skipping ad hominems

  16. As did the Aruch laNer


please use either your real name or a pseudonym.