Sunday, August 7, 2022

Spiritual abuse - is religion inherently abusive?

As a community rav, this dynamic is one that Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman of Passaic is all too familiar with. He sees this abuse play out in both parenting and marriage relationships. “It has nothing to do with Hashem,” he says firmly. “These abusers hide behind Hashem, to dominate people, to abuse people — all in the name of G-d.”

And while the abusers may cite halachah and maamarei Chazal, their actions are not rooted in any form of holiness. “You have parents who are abusive to their kids, so they jump on the kibbud av v’eim bandwagon,” Rabbi Eisenman says. “But their actions have nothing to do with halachah and everything to do with their world view and what they think is right, regardless of halachah.”

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