Tuesday, August 4, 2009

who knew?



If hundreds of thousands of Jews never heard of him, never saw him, never asked him an Eitzah, or didn't make use of his hadrochoh, does that make him any less of a person, of an influence, of a mentor? UPDATE 8/5/09: Truth be told, I had no idea what the niftar's opinions were regarding Lubavitch, I was just asking the question. Meaning, if a person is based only on popularity and acceptance, where does that put Reb Zelig? The one that was supposed to have been the Chochom, Tzaddik, and Gaon HaDor? Can't you people think for a second without inserting your fourth grade line of logic?!

Here

71 comments:

The Bray of Fundie said...

not at all. There are tzadikim nistorim and even those that are nistorim while in full public view.

just remebre the gemara of עולם הפוך ראיתי

Anonymous said...

If many people never heard of him it makes him:An onov and boreach min hakovod.
The only thing it would "licheora" disqualify him from, would be from the newly minted Lubavitch title "Nosi Hador"
One cannot be an unheard of Nosi Hador (although for some reason that has not disqualified another "candidate" who, today,15 years after vechu,lacks one very basic credential, that is even more elementary than being unknown)

Anonymous said...

I also would have loved to know what this Chakima Deyuhudoi thought about Lubavitch.
It appears that he believed that opposing them only strengthens them.

anon3 said...

"The only thing it would "licheora" disqualify him from, would be from the newly minted Lubavitch title "Nosi Hador"
One cannot be an unheard of Nosi Hador (although for some reason that has not disqualified another "candidate" who, today,15 years after vechu,lacks one very basic credential, that is even more elementary than being unknown)"
Can you please explain to us peons what your above slanderous and totally uncalled for "profound observation"has to do with Hirshels post?
Must everything no matter how innocent always be twisted into some form of slander against the Rebbe or Lubavitch by some farbissene bigot like you?

Anonymous said...

Anon,
a Neshoma kelolis has to be the Nosi Hadoir, a litvak could be a talmid chochom a onev but no nossi hador, he will never have the profund hasogah in nishmas yisroel.

Anonymous said...

Was it not the matzeive of one of the Rebbes (perhaps R' Ahron of Karlin) that said he made over 80,000 bal teshuvas, yet travelled very little.

The point is that a tzadik doing what he does has an influence on yidden and yiddishkeit the whole world over, even without ever meeting them.

Publicity does not make someone a Rebbe or Rav.

Rav Zelig has thousands of talmidim over the last 50 years in America alone, who have been inspired to live a life of bnei torah and are themselves marbitzei torah.

He was in Queens so the Brooklyn oilem may not have been gores him. He never said hardran at siyum hashas or sought to become nasi of any rabbinic organisation.

He was kulo torah and kulo kodesh. He is irreplacable.

All klal yisrael are in avelus....

yehupitz said...

I discovered fairly recently that I am distantly related to R' Zelig Epstein's family through marriage. I undertook to discover something about him.

He had an independent streak of geonus and clear thinking that made him the address for complex shailos and dilemmas that called for non party-line thinking. That is also why he didn't fit into any groups, AI or otherwise. His anava, while setting an important example, was Klal Yisroel's loss.

Anonymous said...

tzig, if only you'd know what he said about your rebbe...

The venom you'd be spewing, the controversy you'd dig up or invented...

Shmuel said...

Rav Zelig ZT"L was extremely well known in the Litvishe Yeshiva World.

I found your posting distasteful.

However,the article you linked to was a beautiful appreciation.

Not Brisk said...

Tzig

I am surprised. You linked to an article that was 80% a repeat of the speaches at the levayah. You couldn't find any other hesped online?

BTW, he felt that the Klausenberger's derech halimud was close to the true one.

SDR said...

Does anyone know how his wife is R' Shimon's einikel? Was she a Shkopp or a Hindes...? Y'hi zichro baruch!

Hippy said...

Googled him., First page was all obits but he is in Wikipedia before
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zelik_Epstein
So he existed ;)

Maybe you would have listened to his psak.

chabad shliach said...

It is well known that rav zelig had tremendouse respect for Lubavitch and their work and had a big kovod for their rabonim especially his summer neighbor and friend Rav Kalmonson of New Haven whom rav Zelig gave a beautiful haskamah.
I myself was his talmid many summers and he was very fond of the Chabad oilum of Ohr Shraga and yet there were many.

It is intresting that as was posted on VIN that Rav schach said that there was not sucha big godol in america as reb zelig "nivah velo Yadah Ma Nivah"

The reason why he deint make it that big in the yeshivah world was becouse he was not a soneh chasidim.

Yehi zichro boruch

ich hob a kashe said...

Why is his name spelled Zelik, mit a k, instead of Zelig??

Zichreinei livrocho!

Anonymous said...

SDR, she's the daughter of Reb Moshe Mordche Shkop, Reb Shimon's son.

Anonymous said...

BTW, I never fully appreciated how much it defames someone by using his name for sinah, but seeing my Rosh Yeshivah's name being used to bash lubavitch's realy brings it home. The best zecher you could give him's to hold back those kind od comments.

Shmuel,Ner Yisroel alum said...

Chabad Shliach,

You wrote the following:"The reason why he deint make it that big in the yeshivah world was becouse he was not a soneh chasidim."

Which makes you a bigot!
Why are you being "mekarev" yidden, when you have no shame slandering a whole klal of lomdei torah?Shame on you!

Yehupitz
Where are you when a guy like this slanders the Yeshiva World?Just because he claims to be a Chabad shliach, justifies anything he says, including that one cannot make it "big" if they do not hate chasidim??

Richard said...

Reading some of the comments here makes me wonder: Did some of you fast and mourn during Tisha B´Av just for show, to impress the yid next to you? Didn´t you learn anything of the meaning of that Day?

Feivel ben Mishael said...

Um you accusation against Yehupitz doesn't make any sense...

"... you have no shame slandering a whole klal of lomdei torah?"

The slander is against the yeshiva velt because they arent sonei chasidim or is it against the sonei chasidim because they are in the right?

Anonymous said...

I think he writes against Chabad Shliach who made the comment.Yehupitz is a poster who defends Chabad regularly

yehupitz said...

Shmuel NY Alum,

Where was I? At 11:56pm I was asleep. Then when I woke up, I gave a shiur and davened Shacharis. Thanks for asking.

And I never assumed that a person's commenting moniker is necessarily a biographical truth.

Now that I am up, I will tell you that I know nothing about R' Zelig's relationship to Chabad, or how that might have affected his standing in the Yeshiva World.

But I do know that there is a Litvish "Daas Torah" position on Chabad, and I doubt a Rosh Yeshiva or Rov could climb the Litvish Godol/Moetzes ladder if he was a stated friend of Chabad. I know this was RSYW's view. One of RSYW's eineklach told me that his Zeide was speaking of a well-known European-yeshiva-educated American rov as someone who, though a Talmid Chochom, possessed "no Daas Torah". His raya? This rov was friendly towards Chabad. That was RSYW's proof that the Rov in question was not a possessor of "Daas Torah". (I didn't hear who he was speaking about. I can guess, but I didn't hear it.)

The Israeli-Yated-on-the-web once said as much in a hesped for R Hutner, that any Rosh Yeshiva whose yeshiva espoused anything other than Talmud Torah (Gemara) as the sole primary ideal (e.g. emphasizing Avoda or Gema"CH) could not be part of the Daas Torah system. (I can't find the page now, but I remember it clearly.) As such, Chabad with its emphasis on המעשה הוא העיקר, or כל האומר אין לי אלא תורה אפילו תורה אין לו could never be sanctioned. This was true even before "Dor Shvi'i-Moshiach" concerns came into play.

Once again, I am not connecting this to R' Zelig at all.

Snag Jr. said...

"It is well known that rav zelig had tremendouse respect for Lubavitch and their work"

What are you smoking. Sure, he might have liked certain Lubavitchers as individuals, but what do you think he held of the movement? What do you think he held of the Rebbe?

snag said...

I don't understand how people here can claim that the niftar was not a misnaged. If that was the case, would Moreinu HGH"TZ Rav Schach ztvk"l have been mishabeiach him so highly?

Noch a zach - Did the niftar ever go to a farbrengen? Have yechidus with the Rebbe? Have any contact at all with the Rebbe? Was he mekabeil malchus of the Rebbe? Go to lag boaymer parade?

Maybe he was friendly to some Lubavitchers on a personal level, but that doesn't mean that he wasn't a misnaged. Maybe he was friendly to them, maybe he thought he could be mekareiv them, ver veist.

Written on yuntiff tu be'av, yaym shehutru shevotim lovay zeh bozeh. A gutten yuntiff!

HT - nice farbrengen today??

Friendly Anonymous said...

Snag wrote:"Written on yuntiff tu be'av, yaym shehutru shevotim lovay zeh bozeh".

So are you ready to make shiduchim with Chabad families, or are you still trying to push Chabad to the situation that Shevet Binyomin found themselves in?

Michoel said...

Chabad Shaliach writes:
"The reason why he deint make it that big in the yeshivah world was becouse he was not a soneh chasidim."

Hashem Yerachem on whoever you are m'karev. Actually, m'karev to what? Not Yiddishkeit, that's for sure. I really wish you would have signed your name differently so as to allow me to maintain my delusion that shluchim are idealists that really believe in what they are doing.

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...

Michoel

your "hashem Yerachem" righteous indignation is laughable....

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

I know nothing about the niftar except that the father of one of my old chavrusas was close to him. If I wanted to find out about his relation to chabad, I suppose I could ask. Does it matter?

snag said...

"Friendly Anonymous said...
Snag wrote:"Written on yuntiff tu be'av, yaym shehutru shevotim lovay zeh bozeh".

So are you ready to make shiduchim with Chabad families, or are you still trying to push Chabad to the situation that Shevet Binyomin found themselves in?"

FA - You want me to be chayshed you that you want to make shidduchim with snags? Who are you kidding? For such a big Hassid like you, anash only!

Did the Rebbe encourage shidduchim with snags??

Michoel said...

Tzig,
I wish I could laugh also! Reb Moshe Feinstein was soneh chasidim, Rav Wolfson, where many chasidim daven is a soneh chasidim, Reb Shmuel Kamenetsky, in Philly many chasidish bochurim, a soneh chasidim, Rav Shustal the Rosh Yeshiva of Stamford (probably at least 25% chasidish talmidim and rebbeim, a soneh chasidim. Rav Gedalyah Schorr a chasidishe yid with thousands of litvish talmidim and gantz klal yisroel learns his sefer, a soneh chasidim.

Reb Zelig was asked to join the Agudah Moetzes and didn't want to! He was not interested in having a shem. You mistakenly confuse "making it that big" with being famous. He WAS "that big" in the yeshiva world.

I am really aggravated by your post, Chabad Shaliach. Have you never been to Shomer Shabbos, Veretzky, Stolin, many other large k'hillos with Litvishe and Chasidish and all sort of gradations in between davening tzuzamen? I feel bad for you and feel bad for your m'karevees if you still live in such a sad world were a large and chashuv segment of klal Yisroel "hates" chasidim. The segment of the Litvish velt that "hates" chasidim is two shlemazels pumping gas somewhere. NO-ONE hates chasidim so just stop clinging on to your self-righteous, self-important delusion so that you can continue to feel like a martyr and big moser nefesh.

snag said...

This whole thing about being 'soneh Chassidim' is funny. Limayseh, the way the velt is today, as Michoel states above, there is much intermingling and interaction between groups in many places. Hey, even a snag like me has Chassidishe friends. Some of my best friends are Chassidim! Hey, I even am somewhat friendly with Hirshel here! If Chassidim have derech eretz and don't come in and try to shove Chassidus down people's throats, people can get along.

We have to be mechaleik between being misnageid to certain Chassidishe ideas and practices, and our attitude to the people on a personal level. The Chassidim today anyway, many of them don't even know what regular non-Chassidic Yiddishkeit is. If we are nice to them, sometimes we can even be mekarev them. If they come into a Litvishe/Ashkenaz place and see how we are ayved Hashem so beautifully, daven bizman, daven erenst, not talking divorim beteilim, observing the inyan of mayreh mikdosh in our Shuls and botei medroshim, acting with middays tayvays, etc., they will see that hey, these guys have Tayreh and Yiddishkeit and middos, they are not the evil people that we were told about in the Hassidishe mayses (derech agav, they may then have a sort of crisis of faith in Hassidus, thinking, hey, they taught me that snags are terrible people, now I see that is not true, I wonder what other glatt kosher baloney they sold me).

yehupitz said...

Michoel, please 'red' tzum zach.

When someone who calls himself "Chabad Shliach" uses a phrase like "Sonei Chassidim", he obviously means "Lubavitcher Chassidism". He isn't even thinking of any other group, or children who go to Litvishe yeshivos. And he certainly wasn't talking about people davening in the same shul.

I read him to be referring to Leadership in the Litvishe Yeshiva Daas Torah World.

Argue on THAT point, if you wish to. But at least argue apples and apples.

Friendly Anonymous said...

Snag, there is takeh the concern "ki yosir es bincho meyacharay". However, when a Geza decides to go off the derech, he goes frai rather than become a snag, so the concern is not as great.

Michoel said...

Aderaba, I want to leave the door open for Chabad Shaliach or others to "talk straight" and admit that they mean "soneh Chabad" and not "soneh chasidim". But even calling Litvishe soneh chabad is sheker v'chazav. It is about fundamental shitos and not enjoying having a shita rammed down ones throat. In the overwhelming majority of cases, it is not a personally animosity from the side of the Litvishe and hope from the Chabad side as well.

evanstonjew said...

Michoel...You have to differentiate between tolerating chassidim vs. being chasiddish in the sense of hanhaga and teaching chassidisher seforim. Given the names you cited and speaking only of those deceased clearly Rav Schorr was in the second camp and Rav Shustal maybe. Rav Moshe was not. In fact I remember reading stories how the circle around Reb Moshe though less of many chassidisher rebbes because they were not masters of halacha and psak.

The self representation of the community really divides into 4 groups.

1. Chassidish learning in the old style, (e.g. Satmar and many satellites but maybe not Munkacz, Bobov or Chasam Sofer people.)

2.Chassidish but learning in a litvish style & Americans coming from chassidish backgrounds and learning in a litvish style but trying to stay attached at least somewhat to Chassidus;(Rav Schorr's core constituency.)

3.Litvish but friendly and tolerant of chassidim for one reason or other.

4.Litvish (American clones or born and bred) who are either haters or really far removed from chassidus;(maybe Rav Schach, Rabbi Saul Lieberman and the JTS FACULTY, Rabbi Eliezer Silver, and ...fill in the blanks yourself.)

I don't think the fourth group even today are bereft of members.I would have to get out of my chair and take a closer look, but I suspect good chunks of RIETS and places like S. Fallsburg fall into this group.

Michoel said...

"...who are either haters..."

It simply doesn't exist.

There are chilukei deos and some Litvish hold very shtark that their derech is correct just as is the case with many (nearly all) chasidishe. Would Rav Shach take a shtellar in a chasidishe yeshiva if he was a "hater" of chasidim? Or take very many chasidishe bochurim into Ponevich? In any case, the discussion really was started by a shaliach stating that hating chasidim was some kind of pre-req for greatness among the litvishe. It is the worst bald motzei shem rah. Pointing out that some talmidei Reb Moshe had a lack of hakara for some Rebbes that were not poskim is just a non-point and has nothing to do with "hating" chasidim. Adebara, Reb Yaakov, an old time Litvak if there ever was one, had great kavod for the Klausenberger because the Rebbe was a gaon and marbitz Torah, which satisfies the Litvish definition of gadlus. The fact that he was a Rebbe was not m'mayet in the kavod (k'nireh). And Reb Moshe, the acknowledged gadol hador of the Litvish, had huge kavod for the Lubavitcher (at least as would seem from the michtavim), a raya ge'dolah sh'ain k'mohu that Chabad Shaliach's taaneh is nonsense even vis a vis Chabad Chasidus.

Feivel ben Mishael said...

"If Chassidim have derech eretz and don't come in and try to shove Chassidus down people's throats, people can get along."

"We have to be mechaleik between being misnageid to certain Chassidishe ideas and practices, and our attitude to the people on a personal level. The Chassidim today anyway, many of them don't even know what regular non-Chassidic Yiddishkeit is. If we are nice to them, sometimes we can even be mekarev them. If they come into a Litvishe/Ashkenaz place and see how we are ayved Hashem so beautifully, daven bizman, daven erenst, not talking divorim beteilim, observing the inyan of mayreh mikdosh in our Shuls and botei medroshim, acting with middays tayvays, etc., they will see that hey, these guys have Tayreh and Yiddishkeit and middos, they are not the evil people that we were told about in the Hassidishe mayses (derech agav, they may then have a sort of crisis of faith in Hassidus, thinking, hey, they taught me that snags are terrible people, now I see that is not true, I wonder what other glatt kosher baloney they sold me)."

It is really hilarious that you made both of those comments in the same post.

Shmuel ner alum said...

Yehupitz.
Firstly,I did not expect you to immediately respond to the Chabad Shliach comment.I merely wanted to see if this kind of nasty implication would be something that would force you to register a protest of sorts.

shmuel, ner alum said...

Yehupitz
On your second point that "D'aas Torah" would not allow anyone close to Chabad to ascend leadership:"Close to Chabad" and a "soneh" are not interchangeable.To me at least.
The Chabd Shliach has accused the Yeshiva World of not allowing a person who does not "HATE" chasidim to ascend.

shmuel,ner alum said...

Yehupitz
"The Israeli-Yated-on-the-web once said as much in a hesped for R Hutner, that any Rosh Yeshiva whose yeshiva espoused anything other than Talmud Torah (Gemara) as the sole primary ideal (e.g. emphasizing Avoda or Gema"CH) could not be part of the Daas Torah system. (I can't find the page now, but I remember it clearly.) As such, Chabad with its emphasis on המעשה הוא העיקר, or כל האומר אין לי אלא תורה אפילו תורה אין לו could never be sanctioned. This was true even before "Dor Shvi'i-Moshiach" concerns came into play."

As someone who merited to just sit in Rabbi Kulefsky's shiur I can tell you that this type of logic would not pass muster with him.Firstly, you quote a yet unknown newspaper eulogy from memory, insert your own commentary to it "(e.g. emphasizing Avoda or Gema"CH) " and give it the unbelievable position of "Torah Misinai" for the Litvishe World.Please.On top of the problem that one need not be a "soneh" to disagree.

shmuel,ner alum said...

Yehupitz,
"When someone who calls himself "Chabad Shliach" uses a phrase like "Sonei Chassidim", he obviously means "Lubavitcher Chassidism". He isn't even thinking of any other group, or children who go to Litvishe yeshivos."

Again I have a problem with this logic.A Lubavitcher chosid when he mentions chasidim "obviously refers to Lubavitch chasidim".Obvious?Why?To whom?He is as he states a person who attended Ohr Shraga, which is a camp that is for boys from the Yeshiva World.That probably means that he went to Litvishe yeshivas or interaacted with them.Therefore he would be expected to know that many readers of this blog,in this context would understand him to be talking about ALL Chasidim.
And he probably is.


This fellows whole premise is also baseless.In America at least quite a few rabbonim had widespread respect in Olom Hayeshivos despite being parev or even somewhat close to Chabad.R'Moshe Feinstein was no soneh, neither was Rav Pam .


Just as "sinah mekalkeles ess hashura" so does "ahava".
This Shliach made a detestable comment which I believe you should have protested.A)Either from a purely altruistic point of view, such comments especially from a person who purports to be mekarev yidden have no place. B)To give yourself credibility.If you will defend anything as long as it is Chabad, you cannot expect to be trusted.

SHMUEL,ner alum said...

"B)To give yourself credibility.If you will defend anything as long as it is Chabad, you cannot expect to be trusted."

I want to state a general idea that I have noticed on Chabad blogs and with my interaction with them.

They are never agreeable to being critical of their own.Since Toras Chabad is quite strong into "Emes" it bothers me that at least towards outsiders they are seen as allowing partisan feelings to overcome truth.
I do want to point out that suprisingly inside Chabad circles there actually are lively debates.Which can be seen by the comments posted to internal Chabad sites such as CrownHeights.info COL.

yehupitz said...

I suppose I was able to tolerate Chabad Shliach's point because I interpreted certain terms in ways you did not. If I chose to take them at face-value, absent any context, I would have been more disagreeable.

Dos Heist I did not find it detestable because I saw and have heard many maasei rav (as I cited in my earlier comment) that point to the validity of the perception that climbing the upper echelons in the Litvish Yeshiva leadership often (not always) goes hand-in-hand with a deep philosophical aversion to Derech Chabad.

Because of this I find your indignation hard to accept.

I also think it's clear that I do not "defend anything as long as it is Chabad", although I am obviously an admirer of Chabad Chassidus.

As a rule, I don't find myself needing to protest all the Chabad-partizan shtus that comes up on occasion. For example, despite the vomit that comes up my throat, I don't think I have ever written a comment to protest Ariel whatshisnameowsky, the oveid A"Z. That should not be taken as "shtika khoda'ah".

Anyway Shmuel, I am still a lover of NIRC. So if you really are an alum, we should be able to get along. Email me if you wish at yehupitz@gmail.com

shmuel,ner alum said...

Yehupitz
Thanks for responding.

I don't want to nitpick (but I will...)"Because of this I find your indignation hard to accept."

Why so hard to accept? On the face of it this fellow was talking about the only way of getting ahead is "hating all chasidim",those were his words.It is only your "pshetel" that makes it more palatable to you.Many people reading his statement would inmho agree with my understanding.

shmuel, ner alum said...

Yehupitz,
Nobody believes that Ariel Sokolovsky represents mainstream Lubavitch, of either the Meshichist or antis.BUT,unfortunately this backs up the problems of where current Lubavitch ideology can take you.Sokolovsky, quotes sichos etc where it is very easy to see how he came to his conclusions.
Two small notes about him:He is a very bright individual and has non of the classic hate towards "snags" probably because he did not spend much time in yeshiva.

yehupitz said...

"On the face of it..."."Many people..."

Once one familiarizes himself with their shprach, their jargon, their colloquialisms etc, it's not so hard to see what I'm saying.

You can continue to pick nits on this point, but I think we have "come to terms" on this issue, even if we still disagree.

Once again, I do not know that any of this applies to R' Zelig at all. That was "chabad shliach"'s take on it, not mine. In my opinion, NOT BRISK has a nice write-up on R Zelig that does a better job attempting to understand his low-key status than "chabad shliach". But it's all theory to me, since I don't know.

You haven't emailed me yet.
yehupitz@gmail.com

shmuel, ner alum said...

Yehupitz,
Finally for now, a question.
You answer is important to me because of your non Lubavitch backround.

I have struggled to learn Tanya.The reason being that it is a very difficult sefer to read and understand.I'm referring to the way it's written not the ideas.The language to me, besides the basic unfamiliar terms is long and what would seem repetitive.Just as an example,I think Rav Zevin who was a great writer could write it in a much shorter form and a lot clearer.Interesting that Shulchan Oruch Harav is written in a terse and clear style
So is it just me?Kids in Lubavitch yeshivas grow up with it's study from a young age so they will not understand what I mean when I find it difficult,I'm sure you''ll know what I mean.
I have had some discussion with Lubavitchers about Sefer Hatanya and have felt let down.I feel that they have not "gotten" what he meant.I feel that they view it more as a Torah Shebichsav, which has a value just for saying the words and less as a Torah shbaal peh, which if I'm not mistaken the Baal Hatanya himself says on saying tora shebaal peh without understanding is not considerd "learning".Hence a lot of learning pages and even perokim of Tanya off by heart, and less of a dogesh on the understanding.
I may be totally wrong.I'd like your input.
Thanks

Anonymous said...

why didn't the kloyzenberger meet the rebbe?

Feivel ben Mishael said...

To shmuel:

WHat you are saying about Tanya makes alot of sense to me.
I am coming from a background that was clearly aligned with Chabad to the exclusion of anything without having actually been raised chassidishly. When I tried to learn Tanya on my own I found that I felt like I wasnt fully understanding that which was being presented.
You may find it helpful to either discuss/learn the perakim with a mashpia or else listen to a shiur to accompany your learning.
For whatever reason, the sever was written in such a way that it is impossible to unlock without the guidance of a mashpia. In the introduction the Alter Rebbe himself expresses that he has written the sefer to answer the questions he has been asked in yechidas and that those who are "in the know" need to explain what is written to those who aren't.

yehupitz said...

Feivel,
A sefer is a sefer. Even a special sefer is a sefer. I do not believe that a real sefer written by a single author is a "locked" book. You do need to understand the style etc.

Shmuel,

I found my way around Tanya eventually. I could give you tips if that's what you are asking. The way I finally broke the code was by learning one whole perek at a time, and finding its central point. Then connecting the dots becomes a whole lot easier. I discovered that Sefer Shel Beinonim is split into four parts. Part one is Ch.1-18. Part Two is Ch.19-25. Part Three is Ch.26-37. And Part Four is 38-53. That's how I see it at any rate. Seeing the divisions etc. made it easier to digest the sefer. I wrote a mini-sefer a few years ago [still in Ksav Yad :) ] that maps out the lessons and approaches of the sefer.

But the Tanya is my least favorite part of Chabad Chassidus. In my learning, I discovered that the real action is in the Maamorim. The claim of some that "all that Lubavitchers learn or care about is Tanya" is simply false. There is almost 200 years of literature that uses Tanya as its base. I think that is (mostly) what Lubavitchers mean when they refer to Tanya as the Torah Shebiksav of Chabad Chassidus.

I agree with you that Chabad seforim have a flow that is not mechanical and linear like the Ramchal's seforim. With Mesilas Yeshorim or Klach Pischei Chochmo, it's all mapped out like Mapquest directions. Some people prefer that order.

My experience has been that people do not grow or develop their ruchnius in that linear a fashion. E.g. Who becomes a total zahir before moving on to Zerizus?
So even though Tanya has a seder, it is far more fluid than other works. I happen to prefer it, but I can certainly see why others find it confusing or convoluted in style. I am currently relearning Tanya with a fellow NIRC Alum who finds the terminology maddening. (It was his idea to learn it, since he never went through it before.)

If you want to talk more, you can do it in this public forum. Or my offer to email me at yehupitz@gmail.com still stands.

Feivel ben Mishael said...

I did not Chas V'Shalom mean to say that the Tanya is a "locked" sefer.
I just meant that it is impossible to appreciate/understand fully without a mashpia and a mesora.
The same is true of most sefarim even Gemara.
It would be impossible to learn Gemora if all you had was the sefer and no rebbe, no shiurim, no rishonim, no achronim.

yehupitz said...

Feivel,
For sure Gemara can be considered sealed. That's what I was conveying when I wrote "a real sefer written by a single author", l'afukei Shas.

Feivel ben Mishael said...

Okay I hear what you are saying, but I still think that it is muchrach from the introduction that the Alter Rebbe understood that people likely wont fully understand what he wrote without guidance.
Ken zein that its possible, but I don't think that it is likely. It is certainly better to learn it with guidance.

chabad shliach said...

OK raboisai take it easy ,
Let me explain my words before you start atacking.
#1 when i say the yeshivishe velt i mean hard core ponovitch slabodka chevron bnei bran ect..
Rav wolfson and rav hutner and rav shore are only known due to their works on hashkafah not in the daass Taireh ____
of course there are thousands of many respected gedoilei hador that were very warm to lubavitch.
I can tell you that or gedalyahu or even pachad yitzchak or (rav wolfsons sefer -emunas itechah (like that chabad shliach knows the names, you could farher me on them as you can farher me on any mesilas yesharim or sfas emes.
the Dass taireh name that was created by rav schach and the litvishe misnagdishe world i meant.
You cannot make it in those circles if you are not anti lubavitch ---FACT.
Dont you think rav Pam zatzal was as big as rav shach or as rabbi gifter or svei but were it not for Torah vodath talmidim that PR him HE WOULD NOT HAVE MADE IT
Only the power speakers and kanoim so to speak are the ones that make it

I used to talk to hagaon rav rueven fine shlitah a born bread bnei braker who sat yomum voloailah learning was michaber seforim why didnt he make it????????
was he less a gaon than rav schach???
Did they have to put kol koras in the newspapers signed like clowns by all the gedailim that he was daas torah?

chabad shliach said...

Just for the record,
I was a talmid for many years of reb zelig Ztzal in Camp Ohr Shraga
I learnt dozens of sugyos in his shiurim which i loved. I can tell you KLUR that he may not have agreed with evrything Lubavitch did or believed which i respect but against the Rebbe he had the greatest kavod and respect he was a real mentch over and above him being the Rosh benei hagola
those of you that cant sleep at night to hear that rav zelig felt so despite rav schachs opinyons can smoke it up!!!
and geuss what SO did rav Pam whom I am also a big talmid tell me the same thing, these gedoloim were just scared of rav gifter rav shach rav svei giving them a nezifah.

Anonymous said...

Michoel
If you believe Eliach the author of the Hagoan that Rav Shach was his mentor and he pushed him to publish his book that rekindled the hidden anti chasidim streak in to a big bonfire. Then its ludicrous to claim to say that he is not a real misnaged, but he needed parnosa badly,and having the job by Karliner Chasidim was probably his only option before working for the Yevstika, I guess not everyone was enamored by his great geonois then in the Yeshiveshe world, so he had to find a job by the loonie chasidim that holler by davening.
Lately I reliazed that he has a idiotic theory in the Avi Ezri that learning nistar is not begeder torah and you are not mekayem Mitzvas Talmud Torah, leaving me to conclude that the Gra after 40, spent all his time in vain.

Anonymous said...

It doesnt pay to put so much effort and emphasis on the "Daas Torah" discussion since it is evapoarting quicker then Meshichissim, it is down to a fringe group with alot of megaphones, you can see it in Ponovich, Reb Berl is not into all this nonsense, Even Rav Shtienman is beyond the sinas yisroel industry that was forced fed on Klal Yisroel

Anonymous said...

Fievel, Shmuel,Yehupitz,
The baal hatanya was blessed with a talent to write his deep toughts in a very articulate fashion, it is the only chasidish sefer with a clear and organized goal, There are other works of chassidic rebbes as the Avodas Yisroel(which is probably the first chassidic sefer that quotes tanya) that have some deep toughts, but its impossible to comprehend. The baal hatanya pushed in every line of his, too many toughts, as you can sse it in his shulchan oruch that every word of his, is a shito of some rishoin or kadmon , plus his unique lomdus, this can only be realized if you studied that sugya beiyun. The same and even tougher it is by Tanya, its tougher because it takes awhile to get used to, to concepts that you were not brought up with.And then understand his take on these subjects, Stiensaltz Biurim on tanya are gevaldig for newcomers.

Twistelton-Twistelton said...

I used to talk to hagaon rav rueven fine shlitah a born bread bnei braker who sat yomum voloailah learning was michaber seforim why didnt he make it????????
was he less a gaon than rav schach???

I found the above comment by Chabad Shliach quite interesting. Because I knew Rav Reuvain Fine quite well. And was once privileged to hear him denounce all the Chassidishe Rebbes in E’Y’ who refused to join Rav Sachs anti Chabad crusade. This was quite uncharacteristic, as he normally did NOT talk about politics. But one of the Baal Battim that he felt indebted to asked him. This was in the height of the “Rebbe is Mosiach’ craze slightly prior to the Rebbes passing. He was adamant that they would all pay for it in the next world, and refused to accept any Limud Zechus at all.

Anonymous said...

Twist
So according to Rav Fine hashem has to expand the gehonim system for all chasidim and der rebbes,even in California some Fine judges are releasing a big percent of prisoners for overcrowding,I guesss its not Fine with Rabbi Fine to release, its the opposite we got to make it larger..
I was always thinking, according to us Chasidim(seen it in sources pre chassidim too) there is a known fact that Beis Din Shel Mailo have some Tzadikim sitting on the system.As the story goes they changed around the tzadikim to make room for the nu comers, since the elderly were harsh on the new genarations, but I never heard that a Misnagedisher Godul was ever included. Its my humble assumption that they go too harsh everything is black and white..

Anonymous said...

Chabad shaliach
I know you are telling the truth, since the world saw R'Shach going ballistic on Rav Pam after he went to Menachem Ovel the Tzadik hador. and Rav Pam being a eideler chofetz chaim style yidele, hid in the cave till the volcano passed.

Shmuel,ner alum said...

Yehupitz,
Thank you for your input on Sefer Hatanya.
Feivel,
I'm not looking for a Lubavitch style mashpia,and I disagree about not being able to learn Tanya without a mesora.You don't need to be a Lubavitcher to study Tanya.What I wanted to know and you and Yehupitz backed up for me was that it indeed is a sefer that needs extra work to learn through.

shmue,ner alum said...

Yehupitz,
After Chabad Shliach has "clarified" his position I think there is no need for any protest.His immaturity and illiteracy is so glaring that I"m sure he is a bored school boy and no Shliach (If he is, Hashem save us all!)

Look at this for example:"I used to talk to hagaon rav rueven fine shlitah a born bread bnei braker who sat yomum voloailah learning was michaber seforim why didnt he make it????????
was he less a gaon than rav schach???"
So R'Reuven Fein is "Shlit'a?He was niftar in '93!.He was not a "born bread"(sic)Bnei Braker.He was born in Poland and learned in The Mir.Why did he not make it?He did.Was rosh yeshiva in Eretz Yisroel and in Torah Vodaas and died relatively young, under 70 I believe, so he had time to "make it" had he lived longer.
This bochurs world of comparison is so weak.Without knowing the people involved he decides that if one studied "day and night and wrote seforim" everyone is equal.By the same token one could ask if R'Reuven Fein was not on equal footing with The Rebbe.
Kids will be kids.

Feivel ben Mishael said...

"I'm not looking for a Lubavitch style mashpia"

I didn't mean to impy you need to Lubavitch to learn Tanya.
I mean't you would be doing yourself a favor to take your questions to a Mashpia.
Please see the hakdama to the sefer.

Snag Jr said...

Feivel

You didn't mean to imply that you have to be a weirdo in order to learn Chasidus! I am shocked.

I thought that studying it is associated with dreamy eyes, weird mannerims and a dorky smile.

The affect it has on you guys gives a lot of credence to the philosephy that yaynuh she Teyruh should not be learnt by the simple folk; it has disasturous consequences. Just look around and Beware

Not Brsiker Yeshivish said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Twistelton-Twistelton said...

"Twist
So according to Rav Fine hashem has to expand the gehonim system for all chasidim and der rebbes,even in California some Fine judges are releasing a big percent of prisoners for overcrowding,I guesss its not Fine with Rabbi Fine to release, its the opposite we got to make it larger.. "

He didn't say a word about chassidim, just Rebbes. But you know what Rav Chaim Brisker said " Hell is big enough for the entier Warsaw too....".

Feivel ben Mishael said...

"You didn't mean to imply that you have to be a weirdo in order to learn Chasidus! I am shocked.
"

...

Snag Jr. asserted to me that "you don't need to be lubavitch to study Tanya"

so I clarified that I did not mean that.

Your sarcasm is unappreciated here.

The second half of your post is nonsensical.

"The affect it has on you guys"

what effect?

Using ambiguous and absolute statements might be an effective tactic in your community but it really just makes your accusations look silly and unfounded.
I am assuming that in reality there is some thought process that occurred in your brain, and that you actually were trying to express a thought out idea.
If that is the case please explain for those of who lack mind reading powers.

Snag Jr. said...

It is evident from your opening statements that you experience difficulty following nuanced and complicated complexities that are engendered by those who artfuly, expertly and skillfuly engage in meaningful and substantive discource.

The subtelties of the conversation are beyond your severly limited cognitive capabilities as you evidently struggle with focus and concentration, which is no doubt, a direct result, not merely a corroly, of extensive time in which your senses are stimulated via meaningful study of deep mystical works.

Concepts that by its very nature are abstract and can not be adequately comprehended by those who contemplate their mysterious paths and attempt to naviagte the labrynths that comprise the wisdom, have a propernsity to cause its students to lose sense of reality and live in a dream-like semi comatic state. The mind loses touch with reality and can not make succesful logical deductions.

DELETED NASTY, AD HOMINEM ATTACK

Feivel ben Mishael said...

"It is evident from your opening statements that you experience difficulty following nuanced and complicated complexities that are engendered by those who artfuly, expertly and skillfuly engage in meaningful and substantive discource.

The subtelties of the conversation are beyond your severly limited cognitive capabilities as you evidently struggle with focus and concentration, which is no doubt, a direct result, not merely a corroly, of extensive time in which your senses are stimulated via meaningful study of deep mystical works."


I like how you just pretended to have previously written meaningful things and that they were so "subtle" and "nuanced."
There was nothing subtle nor nuanced about the statement you made.You used purposeful ambiguity as a tactic in order to communicate things that might "sound true" (because they are oft repeated though never backed up)but lack any substance.
I am entertained by your efforts to dig yourself out of each hole you dig every time you post.
I hope you have a wonderful Shabbos.

Snag Jr. said...

deleted comments.... zzzz...

Feivel ben Mishael said...

I'm interested in seeing what you had to say. You are more than welcome to e-mail me.