Monday, May 15, 2006

?מאי שנא ל"ג בעומר


ל"ג בעומר has recently, and in America very recently, become a Yom Tov celebrated by one and all, Chassidim as well as non-Chassidim. The fact that so much good can come from singing, dancing and lighting bonfires is something that everybody is excited about. Add to that the fact that it all comes without the expense of food or drink (save for the Chai Rotel) and it's a real winner. I see Yidden dancing and singing the praises of RaSHBI yet to them his teachings (Chassidus and Kaballah) are taboo, but that's part of his greatness, that we cannot help but dance on the day of his Simchah.

Standing and watching the crowds illegally blocking off streets and singing to a burning fire while the fire truck sirens were blaring all over the neighborhood, I wondered. First I had somewhat unJewish thoughts of how strange this seems to the Non-Jews passing by in the buses and cars, and what the Irish Firemen were thinking about our strange customs. I then realized that me riding on the train, with lots of extra hair on my face and sides was just as strange to them.

I then wondered why to these people dancing, taking a Yid and putting Tefillin on him "on 5th Avenue" was strange and unacceptable, yet doing a "raindance" in middle of the street while blocking all forms was traffic was just fine. Now, far be it from me to Chas VeSholom laugh in the face of Minhogei Yisroel, but you can see my point. The point of accepting that what you do is fine and what others do is strange at best.

כדאי הוא ר' שמעון לסמוך עליו בשעת הדחק

11 comments:

zezmir said...

HT,
Sorry, I'm a bit slow today: What are you saying?

Hirshel Tzig said...

Zezzy

I should post a disclaimer here somewhere. "We take no responsibility for slow or uneducated people not understanding the topics discussed herein."

snag said...

Real Litvaks who know their mesoira don't celebrate lag baoimer.Maybe Ungarisher Litvaks do.
You think it's okay to illegally block off streets and make hadlokos now?So why were you against the BP riot recently,isn't that what they did?

n said...

HT said: "We take no responsibility for slow or uneducated people not understanding the topics discussed herein."

Why when you are not clear do you blame it on the reader...be humble about your writing abilities and restate your point. i don't get it either..i could try to infer what your point may be, but if you are presenting, we'd like to know what you mean....

and snag, what mesoira do you really have? Real litvaks are probably nearly extinct because there never was a real litvak community outside of europe after the war....so what you have is a hybrid movement that has some ties to some elements of mesoira yet is in transition (like any live body) absorbing other elements of contemporary yiddishkeit and either calling them their own retroactively (revising history) or just going with the flow and absorbing that which is attractive or that the masses are influenced by.
and lets be honest, snaghood is just a reaction to something that exists....there is no reality or continuity in a reaction...

zezmir said...

Thanks N!
H, for dummies like me can you just give one sentence to sum up your gripe?

Hirshel Tzig said...

Zezmir

you yourself said that you're slow, I just obliged you. The "uneducated" line wasn't intended for you.

As far as summing it up; I can see that you gentlemen feel it too much of an effort to re-read the post, so why should I? But I'll do it anyway:

1) We dance for RashBi although we do nothing that he says, or rather, we don't learn his teachings, which is what he's known for, and which was his mission on his world. It would seem to this blogger that if you celebrate a man and his teachings the least you can do is learn what he taught.....

Also, being that part of the celebration of Lag BaOmer is the lighting of bonfires and the dances around them, I thought it appropriate to make a small yet important observation. Dance in the street around a bonfire, block traffic and cause a Chilul Hashem, which looks a quasi-raindance to the average passerby, and say that's absolutely normal. But if G-d forbid I ask a Jew to put on Tefillin on a main thoroughfare and you're deemed to be crazy!

I'll be happy to further clarify this point if necessary.

zezmir said...

HT,
Thanks for your indulgence...

First of all Chassidim do learn Toras haRashb"i vi zei zenen melubash in Toras HaChassidus. Second of all, would you say that it is unheard of to celebrate a person, even if one has not studies their works?
We celebrate many things that we no very little about, as do all people.
As to strange practices, Judaism has a plethora of weird practices, so? And we all “relativise” which practices we approve of, or vice versa...

Vaboylniker Chossid said...

n wrote 'snaghood is just a reaction to something that exists'.
That is not true.Maybe that's a cheilek of snaghood but there's more to it than that.Snags have a mesoira,but some don't know it too well,cause many of them are busy learning gemara and are not miayen that much into other inyonim.

n also said that snaghood is 'a hybrid movement that has some ties to some elements of mesoira yet is in transition'.
I must be moideh that there is some emes to that, whether I like it or not, but the same could be said about Lubavitch,let us say the emes.

Vaboylniker chossid said...

n said 'snaghood is just a reaction to something that exists'.
Funny to see that on a blog that is itself an anti.According to that logic,tzig is nothing by himself,he's just a reaction.I don't think you would agree to that though,neither would I.

Kurenitzer said...

Layder there was no Litvishe (NOT LITVAK) kehillah after the war.
Very few orthodox Litvishe Yiddn survived and only 1 rav from the Independent Republic of Lithuania survived the war because he happened to be in South Africa raising money.
Those Lithuanian orthodox Jews who survived were primarily young men (unmarried) connected with the Mirer yeshiva.
Most spent their years from bar mitzvah on, away from their homes and thus failed top pick up a genuine messorah of Lithuanian Jewry. After all most minhogim are either connected with the home or the shul and these bachurim spent klittle time in either institution in their formative years.
In addition unlike their chassidic, German, and Hungarian counterparts the roshe yeshiva were interested only in 1 thing - talmudic learning. Minhogim, frumkeit, kashrus, rabbanus all did not interest them very much. Just learning.
All the above aspects were left to other groups until the end of the 20th century. At that point a new "briah" came on the american scene a yeshivashe Mann who claimed to be of Lithuanina origin, but in 95% of cases came from a Hungarian, Polish, German or American Young Israel background ( some even came froma genuine Chassidic background). so much for a Lithuanian messoarh today.
An institution like Telz could have become a bastion of real Litvishe culture but alas they too adopted a pan talmudic viewpoint.
Rav Oschry too bemaoned this fact, but his reactino was abandoning his background as far as his children went and raising them in the Galician Chassidic background of his rebebtzin.

n said...

vaboy, the reaction comment is not all ecncompassing but refers to a yiddish culture. Regardin tziggy, he just spends a lot of time worrying about what other people think...

perhaps another name is more in order rather than litvish, like flatbusher yiddden or if they come from hungarian stock and want to reclaim some portion of that, maybe flatbishers... or if they are kids perhaps flatpishers or..perhaps...