Sunday, November 6, 2011

בד"ה - הגאון האדיר ר' דובער (בערל) שווארצמאן ז"ל



















Yeshiva World Calls him the "father of Rav Yaakov Eliezer Shlita, who is the eldest grandson of Hagoan Rav Aaron Kotler ZATZAL, and is presently the Rosh Yeshiva of Lakewood East in Yerushalayim..." Berel Shvartzman was from Nevel. Yes, that Nevel. I was told that he was boki in Tanya and Likutei Torah. His mother was HaYitzchaki, a cousin to the famed Reb Zalman Moshe of Nevel. His family left the USSR during the 30s and Berel learned in Eitz Chaim, IIRC. [ I'm told now that he was a Chevroner.] Once during a visit by RAK to Israel he gave a shiur in his shver's (RebIsserZalmanMeltzer) Yeshiva Chevroner Yeshivah and Berel was not impressed by the shiur... And told him so... So RAK took him to America and married him off to his daughter. That marriage ended rather unfavorably, but his kids did manage to get pedigree that was more to their liking than a Neveler balagoleh... כאטש אז יעדער חסיד וואלט אנדערש געזאגט.  The frum webistes seem to not want to recognize that he had a wife and life after the divorce, and several children too... Reb Berel was married to a sister of Rav Uri Chountal's of Yerres, France, wife, who passed away a month ago.

I heard that he would say that he was Tinok Shenishbeh...

25 comments:

Kovner said...

He learned in chevron yeshiva. He was a boki in all sifrei kabbolah, and once said that his tachlis in this world was the chelek hanistar shebatorah!

Yitzchok said...

IIRC he attended the Rebbe's farbrengeng. He stood among the crowd, and most of the עולם had no idea who he was. He was an extremely warm and friendly person. My father was very good with him.

Anonymous said...

Who was he named after?

Kovner said...

What would the Litvishe world be like today if all those Lubavitcher descendants would not have defected...
R' Schwartzman
R' Meir Chodosh
R' Ruderman

Who else?

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...

after a zeide...

MIB said...

he was named after his maternal grandfather's brother, Dovber HaYitzchoki, who was the father of Reb Zalman Moshe.

dovy said...

he also gave the highest shiur in ohr samayach for a while, although he did have much patience for the bts.

sarah schwartzman (who r' dershowitz comicaly calls rebbetzin sarah schwartzman in his book) was a profesor in philly for a while. at the end, she was back in lakewood. she was a sad and lonely old lady.
by her levaya, R' Yisroel gave his world famous "hoizen" speech.

Pinchas said...

R'Berel learned in the Chevroner Yeshiva, even if he ever learned in Etz Chayim, he was not learning there at the time R'Aharon Kotler said a shiur there.Just do the math:R'Aharon was not in Eretz Yisroel, till the late fourties at best, by this time, R'Berel would have been in his late twenties long past the appropriate age for Etz Chayim.
I studied in Bais Hatalmud and I remember that the boys had a very strong yiras hakovod from R'Berel.If boys were battling outside and R'Berel would pass by, one stare would have the boys quacking in their boots.
I really don't remember any Chabad connection at all, though for some reaaon R'Berel wore on shabbos, a silky bekitsha, not the Lubavitch kind, and a gartel.During the week, he wore a regular frock and HOmburg.I wouldn't be surprised that he knew Tanya and Likutei Torah, because he knew everything.
He was especially knowledgeable in Maharal, though.
R'Berel was a good man with a big heart

yankel said...

You chassidim are welcome to the baalagolo pedigree.
BTW, a chassidishe talmid of Reb Aaron said that when he saw Reb Aaron saying shiur it looked like his Rebbe when eating the fish on Shabos. The answer is that when the Rebbe was learning he looked like Reb Aaron eating fish.

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...

Kovner

so what does that say about the Litvishe velt if so many of their prize talmidim - and later leaders - are from Chassidim?

why is Lubavitch always told that they have to go outside to get the good talent??

Nyles said...

The past is interesting for those who are historically inclined. The real question,however, is what is happening in Lubavitch today.How many aroyos like Rabbis Ruderman and Schwartzman are being produced today?I know the list of names and for a movement the size of Lubavitch it's not impressive. Read the pieces about" lubavitch lite" on Crown Heights.info and you'll see what i mean.

schneur said...

In the old world Lita- White Russia there was a free exchange of ides.Besides Chabad people joinging the litvishe world in terms of yeshivoth, children of pashute balebatim not Chabad were the main corps of the new Tomche Tmimmim yeshiva.
Most of the people you mention were children of Chabad families but I doubt their parents were mekushorim or studied Dach. They davened Nusach Ari , honored the early Rebbes, honored the Tanya kadisha and were part of the chasisidshe eylem.

Superintendant Chalmers said...

Dovy,
What was the famous "hoizen" speech?

yehupitz said...

These are not my final thoughts on the matter, but I've been thinking as follows: The loss of Rav Gustman presaged a development that is unfortunate. Namely, there is nothing inherently shameful about one kreiz making more lamdonim than another. Does every chassidishe group need an equal ratio of balebatim, rabbonim, rebbeim, kiruv/hafatza workers, computer programmers etc.?

Let Chabad yeshivos hire Roshei Yeshiva from the Litvishe.

But I think that we are sadly past the time when that was reasonable. But maybe in some communities we can return to that time.

snagville said...

Her son in law (I wont name) from Baltimore not exactly a native Yiddish speaker said by her Levaya, "ze flegt drayn by the yungeliet in de hoizen tzu tun chesed" only he meant the Yiddish word for houses

Anonymous said...

Yehupitz
"The loss of Rav Gustman presaged a development that is unfortunate."
if you think that Gustman is the refuah for Lubavich, then you don't know Lubavich and not the Yeshiveshe velt
Gustman had no following in the yeshivesher velt, his lackluster shiurim have no excitement, there are 4 to 5 wierdos that were his Shomei Likcho, and thats it, his seforim are collecting dust in all batie midrashim of the yeshivah velt.I am chas vesholem not belittling his gadlus in torah, but to say a good shiur is a skill that not too many were blessed with.
Lubavich have very good Roshei Yeshivahs, in Israel, Europe and the US. they are not 1 iota less then any Litvisher Rosh Yeshivah.

meir said...

Anonymous,
You must be dreaming.Rav Gustman said one of the best shiurim and I heard that even the Rebbe would listen from the side to his shiur whenhe was Roshyeshiva in Lubavitch

Chaim Berlin tragedy said...

Rav Dov Schwartzman (RDS) has a great place in Yeshiva Rabbi Chaim Berlin history. He was both a hero and villain as time went on.

Here is the outline: After the bitter, but not surprising, divorce of RDS from Rav Aron Kotler's (RAK) brilliant but opinionated daughter (supposedly they were already squabbling under the chupa and RAK twisted their arms to get married), Rav Dov was granted refuge in CB by none other than Rav Yitzchok Hutner (RYH) regardless of what RAK may or may not have thought.

None other than the rising star Rav Aron Schechter (RAS) who learned privately in the CB library became the chavrusa of RDS. All CBers were in awe enamored with RDS's gadlus baTorah and they took his side in the get proceedings. Such was the esteem for RDS, even though RAK was held in the highest regard by the CBers as well. Quite a tough tightrope but RYH could care less and he walked it without sweating.

A few years later, RDS had moved to EY, RYH makes plans to move to EY and build a yeshiva there and he decides that RDS would be his partner. The USA CBers raise the money for the Bais HaTalmud-Or Eliyahu building that would house RDS's and RYH's followers.

Two big problems arose: One, RDS had more chasidim and talmidim and they disliked RYH and his gaava dekudsha style, and secondly RYH tried to foist his own son in law, Rav Yonosan David (RYD) as his memale makom and be RDS's partner. At this point RDS balked and told RYH that he had a deal with him (RYH) and NOT with RYD. Next, RDS's talmidim threw out RYH's shtender with bizyones, they basically threw him out of the place standing by RDS.

RYH and RDS decided to go to a din Torah in Yerushalayim. The pesak was that RDS could keep the building but must pay RYH and the CBers back a a fairly nice sum, it was not the full value for the efforts and money the CBers put into it.

RDS was happy to get the building and RYH claimed to have "won" to get money back -- his own "didan notzach" in this case is taken VERY seriously by the CB anash.

RYH returned to America to regroup and raise new funds while keeping up his small Or Eliyahu Kollel in Yerushalayim that would become the Yeshiva Pachad Yitzchok of today. But before that could happen, CB would have to deal with the Belzer Rebbe "stealing" their rights to land for his own BM and they would have to migrate to Har Nof where they are today.

RDS remained an "enemy of the [CB] state" from the time he split from RYH until today. When being at simchas or gatherings if RAS was in the room, RAS would make it a point to do a U-Turn away from RDS to uphold RYH's kavod.

Quite a strange story. But all too tragically true.

Anonymous said...

Lubavitch has nothing to apologize for, for a tremendous number of super Talmidei Chachamim, of real caliber and stature. The list is long and I will give some who only or mostly learned in Chabad (so I wont count R' Heller and R' Shochat or even R' Deitch).

R' Yisroel Friedmen, gaon oilem, R' Melich Zviebel, Goen nifla, R' Yitzcok Reitport, Kalmenson Brother's, Geonim nifloeim, Vilshansky brothers, Goldberg brothers (esp, from Migdal Eimek) Labkovski Brothers, Havlin Brothers, R' Avraham Fridlandler, goen meyuchod, Kaplan (r' leib z"l(also from montr.) The Greenberg brothers, and the list goes on. All of the above match the 4 RY of BMG etc (and also R eleyhu Levin and Shapiro etc)

Anonymous said...

Mier
"I heard that even the Rebbe would listen from the side to his shiur whenhe was Roshyeshiva in Lubavitch"
I never denied that rav Gustman was a big talmud chochem, and it is very posible that the Rebbe listened, since the Rebbe was not in to, populist in the box torah, as he loved the Ragochaver which is also a elitist not geared for the masses type of torah.
But he was not the Rosh yeshivah that the yeshiveshe world needed and not Lubavich. The reason for this is a long sugya not for this post.

Anonymous said...

reitport is no levin, shapiro or taplin by any means. mr. anon is either joking or knows not of whom he speaks

MIB said...

If I am not mistaken, Rebbetzin Yehudis Schwartzman, is the daughter of Reb Meir Müller from Paris, who I think was also the father in law of the recently departed Rav Chountal. So that would make Rebbetzin Schwartzman his sister in law not sister.

An Ailmesher said...

R. Yisroels's famous hoizen speech was said at the levaya of muma gruna, the yesoma raised by RAK. שרה האט זיך ניט געדרייט ביי די יונגעלייט אין די הויזען.

Anonymous said...

Another take on the partnership between RDS and RYH. What I describe here represents common knowledge in the yeshiva at the time, none of which I can state as fact.

What we were told then was that RDS had maintained his Yeshivas Beis Hatalmud in a location in Bayit Vegan that was too small for the growing number of talmidim. RDS had received a parcel of land in Sanhedria Hamurchevet, which had been territory that was taken in the 1967 War. However, RDS lacked the funds to build. Concurrently, RYH wanted to establish a yeshiva in Eretz Yisrael, but was constrained by the inability to receive a ptur from the military. This would mean that he could only have a yeshiva that took talmidim who were not Israelis. It would also restrict his yeshiva from receiving any government monies. The solution for both RYH and RDS was to merge, providing RYH the ptur and RDS the cash.

As a former talmid who was there at the time, there was a recognizable group of RYH followers. RYD gave a shiur, and was accorded all the decorum and honors as a Rosh Yeshiva. This left RDS, who was never kavod conscious, like a fifth wheel. The non-RYH followers were angered by this arrangement. There was no open machlokes while I was there, but there were little stories that displayed the growing feelings of upset between the factions.

I never heard the name "Ohr Eliyahu". The yeshiva name, as per the merger, was Yeshivas Beis Hatalmud - Gur Aryeh. I have letterhead from the yeshiva in my archive.

Mordechai Perlman said...

Could Dovy post some additional information about Rebbetzin Sara Schwartzman's position as a professor in Philly? Such as the name of the university, the years she worked there, in what faculty. I am not doubting the assertion. Perhaps she helped support the family while her husband was Rosh Yeshiva in Philly. I would just like to be more well-informed.