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#21 foncused

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Posted 02 January 2012 - 01:58 PM

Wow, I must say that I'm truly amazed of the way you argue and the way you present the truth.

I'm still waiting to see if any Zionists would try to make any sense of their position.

It's about time someone make them realize they have no clue of what they are talking about, and that their labeling us as haters just shows how little they truly know about us.

Keep up the good work.

#22 danceInTheRain

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 06:46 AM

why should they not. this is an issue our world is grappling with. and schools are supposed to give their pupils the proper outlook on the world around them

#23 ilavHashem

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 07:16 PM

don't you feel that chibas eretz yisroel supercedes the fear of falling in2 the grips of zionism! if we teach it properly without any zionistic ideas i think we can learn to love and appreciate our land
make sence?

#24 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 09:16 PM

don't you feel that chibas eretz yisroel supercedes the fear of falling in2 the grips of zionism! if we teach it properly without any zionistic ideas i think we can learn to love and appreciate our land
make sence?

I don't know what I said that discusses whether "chibas haretz supecedes falling into the grips of Zionism"? All we are discussing is why religious Zionists treat Israel the way they do. I don't see how your question relates to that.

But as to the question itself, we need to go one step at a time. This topic has been the subject of so much confusion, meretricious propaganda, and simple lack of information that we really need to go one step at a time. So for example, in your question, the phrase "our land" can mean different things.

"Our land." We own it? We have rights to its sovereignty? Weren't we kicked out of there because of Sinas Chinam? מםני חטאינו גלינו מארצינו - it's still called ארצינו but we were exiled. So in what sense is it "ours?"

Or do you mean, like, homeland? Like, the Spanish have Spain; the Italians have Italy; the Greeks have Greece and the Jews have Eretz Yisroel? But the Jews are a nation equally so with or without any land. As Rav Samson Raphael Hirsch says, the Torah was given in the desert to show that the Jewish nation needs no land to be a nation. Our nationhood is because we have the Torah, not because we have a land.

If so, in what sense is the land "ours"?

Don't get me wrong - the land is most definitely "ours." We just need to define exactly what that means, because it means something very different than when the Italians say Italy is "our land."

And we also need to understand exactly what it is we are appreciating about it. As Chazal say about Moshe Rabbeinu - he had no desire to go into EY because of the physical land. He wanted to enter because of the Mitzvos that he could fulfill. So is it the opportunity to do Mitzvos that is Chibas HaAretz? If so, do Kohanim have a similar "Chibas HaKehunah"? Since the Kehuna does give them the opportunity to do more MItzvos.

So you see, before we can even discuss your question - if Chibas HaAretz overrides falling into the clutches of Zionism? - we need to define what is Chibas HaAretz and also what is Zionism.

So far we are dealing with the second.

#25 7-yipol-tzadik-vekam!

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Posted 04 January 2012 - 11:05 PM

I haven't clarified anything yet. Nor have I even begun explaining why to reject ZIonism. All I have been doing so far is asking some questions to people who consider themselves Zionists for them to clarify what it is. I have been down this road before. Unfortunately, many people are taught things in religious Zionist institutions about Zionism that - forget right now if it's good or bad; correct or incorrect; against the Torah or in line with it - simply does not explain their attitudes and behaviors towards Israel. Once they - not me but they - clarify what it is that they believe in, then we can explore whether it should be rejected or accepted. But until people know exactly what they are discussing, it is not possible to have a productive discussion.

...

Before I explain why Zionism should be rejected, I need those to whom I am explaining it ti understand what ZIonism is. And I don't (only) mean the Zionism of Herzl. I mean the Zionism of those who are asking me the question.


Thank you Rabbi Shapiro for answering, and with such seriousness and thoughtfulness. I really appreciate that and I am sorry that I was not as prompt.
OK, you are asking a lot of questions. First i would like to clarify, that although i made it sounds like this was my first time reading something on the subject, I heard several speeches on the topic in seminary and i had read a lot of what the Rabbi wrote on the previous website, and my comment was sort of a response to all that i had ever read against zionism. But you are right, I am getting ahead of myself. Let me start at the beginning like the Rabbi suggested.

So your first question: I said a certain amount of sense. That is because, as Rabbi Shapiro was saying, I do not know too much on the topic and I would be hesitant to throw away what my elementary/ h.s. / and parents taught me because of what i read on a website without serious thought and thorough discussion. Its a big step, and i do need to hear from those who support it what they mean.

I think Rabbi Shapiro's next question is why do I celebrate the day Israel became a state. Because Hashem gave us EY. EVen though i may not understand why it is special, i don't understand why shabbos is special as opposed to sunday, but Hashem said so. So Hashem said EY is special, is kadosh, is the best place to serve Him. The place that He is always Doresh to, the place where there is special hashgacha. The formation of that state made it possible or at least easier for me and other Jews to live there/ visit there. Additionally, which i know i might get killed for ;) it is somewhere where very jew is "guaranteed" to be accepted. After the episodes in WWII when Jews weren't allowed in America or anywhere, knowing there is a place a Jew can always go is a comforting thought.
WHy do i treat EY different then other holy objects? honestly never though about it. I also didn't know it wasn't a halacha to love EY. I have often thought i was some sort of mitzvah as i understood that the aveirah of the meraglim was largely not appreciating EY.
And I hear the Rabbi's point about how MO is so "machmir" on that and not on real mitzvos. point taken.

For the record: i think i made myself out to be more zionistic and less familiar with the topic then I am. My hs would have classified as Zionistic but it was never discussed except in the context of thanking Hashem for the opportunity to live in EY. Same with my parents. My seminary was very on the fence about it with many teachers giving speeches around yom haatzmaut which just served to confuse me more.

So I concede- I am confused and i dont know.

About the Sinah and Achdus, I guess like the Rabbi said that will be addressed later so Ill wait. But for the question of why there is such vehemence against "anti zionists" as opposed to other mitzvos, well I think that is because that is a central issue we are arguing today. In the days of "rationalists" against "kabalists" there was plenty of sinah then too, at least how i see it. Now, its not such a central issue to most ordinary Jews, while zionism is on our minds. And true, people argue against bris milah today, but those people are totally removed from Judaism. The people arguing against zionism are obviously religous. Additionally, which might really be mainly, many people feel the "chareidim" are for lack of a nicer word "leeching" off Israeli society and dont send their kids to the army etc etc which makes them angry. WHile I try not to see charedei Jews in such a sense, i hear why it would bother them.

Thank you again for your long thought out response.

#26 SilverShoes

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 12:04 AM

Why I am a Religious Zionist
Please allow this to go though.
I apologize that i am not quoting directly from other peoples comments (questions i am responding to)
Rabbi,
While you mention that we are a nation that doesn't need a land based on the fact that hashem gave us the torah in the desert, a very very large chunk of that torah-- revolves around eretz yisroel.
How can one say they are for Judaism but be against a Jewish state?
How can you or I decide that part is no longer relevant?
Even if we are not ready for masiach, we need to put in an effort - and i was always taught/ brought up with the concept that all the wars we fought hashem was in complete control. Are you not aware of the miracles upon miracles that have occurred to actually make Israel reestablished as a country? (regardless whether you feel for it or not - its the state of israel) How can any of those events occurred if hashem's hands were not involved? I learnt about hertzl and all those men AFTER i was brought up with the concepts of hashem hand truly in it.

Our whole lives are revolved around the land and the desire to return (to where? tzion= zion!) - weddings (broken glass), holidays (seasons, reasons for holidays) ,davening, Tisha b'av (asteret b' tevet!) when we were just kicked out of eretz yisroel till today. How can we not grasp the opportunity to return and attempt to return to the days of old? These reestablish-ers, many did not want to make a jewish state just stam - the saw the need of rebuilding a jewish homeland.

And since you are going to attack me for my choice of words of "homeland".
We are not like any other nation ( greeks- greece, spanish- spain etc)
We are not like any other religion.
Nation = nationalism, specific lang, culture, common land of origin.
Religion= belief system- how one beliefs in a greater being, temples, rituals.
We are both.
To say we are not a religion would be completely and utterly false, to say we aren't a nation would be as well!
We have a lang, culture, we are all originally from eretz yisroel, we are not limited to ritual/ religious law! In our torah we have how to live our lives and create and run a nation/ country ( criminal law, prop, biz, gov, army etc etc)

Zionism is NOT the desire to have a land so we can be culturally or even worse just by name Jewish, maybe that is what you view it as but it really isn't.
Along with the army (doing histaglus) there are hesderim - people learning - sinning is not rampant, the goal is not to just be there, the goal is reach the ultimate goal.
To say you are anti-zionist is to say that you are against returning home ( the days of old).
The idea of being so rampantly anti-zionist could and is to the point of saying "Israel is not, was not , will not be the home of the jews.
These are my feelings.
If you misunderstood me, please don't attack me- i do have a nesumah! please just question what i said specifically, i tend to be confusing sometimes!

#27 shifpifer1

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 09:43 PM

Just like false religions this is engraved in your heart and you have to try your best to yank it out. Torah should be the forefront of your life and Hashem is better than any land movement out there. Zionism is just a way to distract you from your true avodah in life.

#28 taon

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 09:52 PM

You're confusing the state of Israel with Eretz Yisroel. Zionism is about having a land like other nations, the fact that most of it is also Eretz Yisroel is secondary. Adaraba, it's also the love of our land which keeps us from accepting this corruption of it. We have not waited two millenia for this. Not for a mass emigration, directed by athiests, to a country that tries to assimilate us. Hashem tells us to wait, so we wait.

Additional points:

You say we need to put in effort to bring mashiach. the Rav has a shuir on this Geulah. our histaldus is not to force it, we are forbidden to.

As for the wars, while they weren't the miracles you may think, it doesn't matter. Hashem does miracles that help our -His, enemies too. For whatever reason, Hashem oesn't want the state to be destroyed. Possibly becuase of all the Jews who would have been killed had those wars been lost. Who knows? But Chazal talk about Hashem sending satan to do miracles for idol worshipers, because the way people want to go, they are led.

#29 ilavHashem

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 01:43 PM

(ur 100% right...Zionism is a def no-no! i ddnt evn kno wat it is!)
so y not chibas erets yisroel?....n i cud bring u many quotes about tht! so ik it shuddd be sumthng we learn...n dusnt chibas haaretz supersede the fear of zionism?!? (i rlly thnk it shud be incorporated into our curriculum!)

#30 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 02:54 PM

why should they not. this is an issue our world is grappling with. and schools are supposed to give their pupils the proper outlook on the world around them

It's mostly because most people do not know enough about the topic to teach it.

But also, there were two ways different Gedolim decided to fight Zionism. Some people protest it proactively and others ignore it, throwing it into the same category as Buddhism for example. They don't treat is as a Jewish topic, because it is not. The Brisker Rav once told Rav Amram Blau that he (Rav Blau) who protests Yom HaAtzmaut still recognizes it as something that needs a response. He (The Brisker Rav) on the other hand, thinks even less of it than Rav Amram Blau, because he does not even recognize it as something that gets a response.

The Brisker Rav treated Yom HaAtzmaut the way we treat Christmas. It comes, it goes, it's nothing to us.That's the message he wanted to communicate. It is not different than Christmas or any other celebration that has nothing to do with us.

As far as how to educate people who are pulled by the Yetzer Horah to Zionism that they should stay away, here, too, they responded with minimal involvement. Rav Schach used to say, "If they ask me in Shamayim why I was not a Zionist, I will point to the Chofetz Chaim and say 'Because he wasn't.' Any questions they have he will be able to answer."

It's quite simple. You look in the Torah, Zionism is not there. The Gedolei HaDor were against it. Issue dealt with. Now back to Gemora Rashi and Tosfos.

#31 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:22 PM

I think Rabbi Shapiro's next question is why do I celebrate the day Israel became a state. .. The formation of that state made it possible or at least easier for me and other Jews to live there/ visit there

OK, so you make a national holiday because it became easier to visit EY. Let's assume this is a good thing. But the question is, why do make a national holiday out of this good thing as opposed to bales of other good things that happened to the Jewish nation throughout the centuries.

When the Shulchan Aruch was printed, it made it much easier to do MANY Mitzvos. Yet nobody had an idea to make a national holiday out of it. The day the printing press was invented made it easier for us to have Seforim; the day the cotton gin was made made it easier for us to make Tzitzis; Sidurim make it easier for us to pray; technology makes it easier for us to do many Mitzvos.

Yet something that makes it "easier to visit EY" deserves a national holiday with Hallel and a parade and/or however else it is celebrated? There are those who even - I am not kidding - make a "Seder," with a special Hagadah and everything (OK, I know they are extreme but still).

Since the closing of the Tanach, only two events were determined to be worthy of national holidays - Chanukah and ... Yom HaAtzmaut?! Nothing else in the 2,000 years I suppose "helped us" perform Mitzvos as much as the creation of Israel? And even before Tanach closed there were many events that were good for our nation. Yet nobody made a holiday out of them. Why this?

Additionally, which i know i might get killed for ;) it is somewhere where very jew is "guaranteed" to be accepted. After the episodes in WWII when Jews weren't allowed in America or anywhere, knowing there is a place a Jew can always go is a comforting thought.

Comforting thought does not mean making a national holiday -- as opposed to everything else that has happened in history. America has been marvelous to the Jews, and actually without America and its support how safe would the Jews in Israel be? But nobody makes a Jewish holiday out of the 4th of July.

And how do you know all Jews will always be accepted in Israel? Judging from the Zionists' behavior during the holocaust, where they worked to CLOSE DOORS for the Jews who wanted to go to other countries, and often SUCCEEDED (read Min HaMeitzar), in order to force Jews to need Israel, and to escape only to Israel (Palestine then), what makes you think the leaders of the State of Israel will stick their necks out to help Jews if the time comes, unless it fits with their agenda?

And even if that were so, at what price does this come? Upwards of 20,000 Jews were killed so far in Israel since '48, which equals more than all the Jews killed everywhere else in the world put together. And what if there is no future holocaust? Are these lives worth it? Tell me - this premium that you say we are paying in Jewish lives to purchase this insurance policy in case of another holocaust - how expensive a premium is this policy worth? How many lives should we sacrifice to maintain this State? And more importantly, who gets to make the decision that we should pay it altogether? Those Jews of the old Yishuv did not want Israel. It was forced on them by the Zionists, sometimes even with murder (please see that link). How many Jews have to die for this "safe haven"?

And none of this of course yet addresses the bad Hashkafa involved in what you said. I'm just talking now about the Metzius.

But in any case, the question still remains (I will answer it as soon as we realize the magnitude of the question) - why is the creation of Israel a reason to make a holiday more than anything else that happened to us throughout history when we did not make holidays?

#32 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:41 PM

WHy do i treat EY different then other holy objects? honestly never though about it. I also didn't know it wasn't a halacha to love EY. I have often thought i was some sort of mitzvah as i understood that the aveirah of the meraglim was largely not appreciating EY.

And I hear the Rabbi's point about how MO is so "machmir" on that and not on real mitzvos. point taken.


There is in fact a reason that Zionists treat Eretz Yisroel - the State of Israel, more accurately - different than other Mitzvos. I merely want to establish that this is in fact a red flag.

As far as the Meraglim, Hashem said they could conquer the land. They said they couldn't. Perhaps they loved Eretz Yisroel or perhaps not.

For the record: i think i made myself out to be more zionistic and less familiar with the topic then I am. My hs would have classified as Zionistic but it was never discussed except in the context of thanking Hashem for the opportunity to live in EY. Same with my parents. My seminary was very on the fence about it with many teachers giving speeches around yom haatzmaut which just served to confuse me more.

Yeah I know that about many of those "on the fence" seminaries. They do what they need to do to get more students from wherever it is they want more students. They don't care much if the students are confused, as long as they are happy. And pay their tuition.

So I concede- I am confused and i dont know.

Great! That's a major step up from many who have those Hashkofos who think they aren't confused.

About the Sinah and Achdus, I guess like the Rabbi said that will be addressed later so Ill wait. But for the question of why there is such vehemence against "anti zionists" as opposed to other mitzvos, well I think that is because that is a central issue ..

Yes, you're absolutely right. But that's the question. Why is Zionism such a central issue to the ZIonists?

Additionally, which might really be mainly, many people feel the "chareidim" are for lack of a nicer word "leeching" off Israeli society and dont send their kids to the army etc etc which makes them angry. While I try not to see charedei Jews in such a sense, i hear why it would bother them.

This doesn't explain the fact that regardless of whether the anti-ZIonist lives in Israel or America or Mexico' regardless of whether he "leeches" off Israeli society or not; regardless of ANYTHING else except his stance on Zionism, he is treated that way. Take a Jew like Yakov Rabkin, for instance. More Modern Orthodox than Yeshivish, he is a a Baal Teshuva who came from Russia and is presently a professor of History in University of Montreal. He wrote a book describing the Orthodox Jewish opposition to Zionism from an historical perspective. He is an expert in Russian history and he describes, for example that the roots of the Zionist methodology (i.e. brainwashing) in trying to change the identity of the Jews from a religion to a nationality comes from Russian Communism.I read the book. I recommend it. It was a scholarly work.

When he wrote this book, he was told - I heard this from him - that he is no longer qualified to get an Aliyah in the Shul he used to daven in.

There are people in that Shul who do much worse Aveiros than writing a book about the history of Zionism. Yet - do you hear this? - he is no longer qualified to get an Aliyah.

I'm sorry but this has nothing to do with people in Eretz Yisroel without jobs.

#33 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 03:44 PM

(ur 100% right...Zionism is a def no-no! i ddnt evn kno wat it is!)
so y not chibas erets yisroel?....n i cud bring u many quotes about tht! so ik it shuddd be sumthng we learn...n dusnt chibas haaretz supersede the fear of zionism?!? (i rlly thnk it shud be incorporated into our curriculum!)

I will explain. I must ensure that this thread follows in an organized manner or else it will not be very useful for readers. One thing at a time.

So far we've established that nothing in Judaism is not a sufficient explanation for the way Zionists treat Israel. Even the Zionists cannot explain it.

But there is something that does explain it. I will get there shortly.

#34 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 04:33 PM

SILVERSHOES -

I allowed your post to go up even though, as you read on the sign-up-rules page, this site is not a forum for everyone to air their views. It is for Q&A and comments that further discussion thereof. But OK. The site is new. And most people are used to the ";anything goes up unless it has Nivul Peh" kind of rules. No problem.

After I address your post here, I am going to ask if you can please wait until we deal with the topics in your post. We will. I promise. But you need background first. You need to walk before you can run. One topic at a time. Otherwise we'll be all ove rthe map and the forum will just be a bunch of arguing and no use to anyone.

While you mention that we are a nation that doesn't need a land based on the fact that hashem gave us the torah in the desert, a very very large chunk of that torah-- revolves around eretz yisroel.

Yes but not the State of Israel.

And yes but, as Rav Elchonon Wasserman mentioned, we survived for a few thousands of years without EY. We would not survive a few moments without Torah. The Zionist emphasis on EY is a misplaced priority. As important as EY is, there are things that are more important.

How can one say they are for Judaism but be against a Jewish state?

I guess all those Rabbonim who were against a Jewish State - including the ones who lived in EY - were not for Judaism. Obviously they have a vastly different idea than you do of either (a) Judaism or (b.) a Jewish State or (c.) both.

The truth is, (c.) Both.

That's why you need to be patient. And I want you to please understand something.

When I was 19 years old in the Lakewood Yeshiva dormitory, I got to know people from England for the first time. We all found it amazing how totally different versions we were taught the American revolution. Totally. To them, the Colonists were the bad guys and the British were the heroes. As the saying goes, "One man's history is another man's mythology"; It wasn't just an issue of interpretation or perspective. Our two versions of history could not both be true. But we were taught - and assumed as a given that what we were taught was more or less right - one version, and they were taught a totally different version, and assumed as a given that what they were taught was right.

Now I really don't care much whose version was right, or maybe neither was, or a mixture. It doesn't really matter to me. But I did see that a community can be taught things as a given, live all their life believing them, and that they are totally not true, and that somewhere, someone else is learning a completely different version of things that maybe is true.

And then, many years later, when I got to know Russians, the discrepancy between the history I was taught and what they were taught was even much greater than between me and my English friends.

You get the idea.

So I want you to be prepared to hear from me, not a different explanation of the Meraglim, or an alternate perspective on how to deal with anti-semitism, or a different Hashkafa on non-religious Jews. No. You are going to hear a majorly different version of many core Torah ideas, such as Golus and Geulah, and even a majorly different definition of what is the Am Yisroel. You will hear a different version of history - recent and ancient. And much more. I am going to say that much of what you were taught is not true. And I am going to show you why.

Zionism is not just a different Hashkafa; Zionists created a revised version of history, current events, Torah interpretation and even Jewish identity.

Like the Russians. Actually, very much like the Russians.

So please. Be patient. But for now:

Even if we are not ready for masiach, we need to put in an effort - and i was always taught/ brought up with the concept that all the wars we fought hashem was in complete control.

Yes, and Hashem was in complete control of the holocaust as well. Does that mean He approved of killing 6 million Jews? Since when does Hashem being in control mean He approves of everything that happens in this world?

Are you not aware of the miracles upon miracles that have occurred to actually make Israel reestablished as a country?

First, miracles do not prove correct ideology in Judaism. The Bnei Efraim miraculously escaped Egypt and they were all killed as a punishment for leaving the Golus early. The Egel was made by Jews who miraculously saw an image of Moshe dead on Har Sinai. The Gemora says idol worshipers walked into a Church and came out cured. Miracles mean nothing in terms of right and wrong.

Besides, contrary to what they teach in religious Zionist institutions, Israel's military victories were not miracles, as any and ALL military experts and historians know. See here.

Our whole lives are revolved around the land and the desire to return (to where? tzion= zion!) - weddings (broken glass), holidays (seasons, reasons for holidays) ,davening, Tisha b'av (asteret b' tevet!) when we were just kicked out of eretz yisroel till today. How can we not grasp the opportunity to return and attempt to return to the days of old? These reestablish-ers, many did not want to make a jewish state just stam - the saw the need of rebuilding a jewish homeland.

No. None of what you describe has to do with rebuilding a Jewish homeland. It has to do with the desire for Moshiach and the Geulah.

We are not like any other nation ( greeks- greece, spanish- spain etc)
We are not like any other religion.
Nation = nationalism, specific lang, culture, common land of origin.
Religion= belief system- how one beliefs in a greater being, temples, rituals.
We are both.
To say we are not a religion would be completely and utterly false, to say we aren't a nation would be as well!

As Rav Sadiah Gaon said, the Jewish nation is not a nation because of a common land culture or language. it is only a nation because of the Torah. Nothing else contributes to our nationhood.

We have a lang, culture, we are all originally from eretz yisroel

No. We originated from Har Sinai. That's where the Jewish Nation was created. As Rav Hirsch said, Hashem did that on purpose - gave us the Torah in a no-man's land wilderness - to show that our nationhood does NOT have to do with a common land.

#35 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 04:33 PM

, we are not limited to ritual/ religious law! In our torah we have how to live our lives and create and run a nation/ country ( criminal law, prop, biz, gov, army etc etc)


We also have laws in the Torah of how to divorce our wives. That doesn't mean doing so is part of our national identity. </div>

Before '48 the Jews were just as much a nation as they were afterwards. To say differently is Kefirah.

To say you are anti-zionist is to say that you are against returning home ( the days of old).

</div>
Now you're telling me what I hold? What you wrote is a total Sheker. Not a difference of Hashkafa but a plain Sheker, sorry. I am one of these people you are talking about and neither I nor anyone like me is against returning home. Who told you such a thing? (Never mind, I can imagine)

The idea of being so rampantly anti-zionist could and is to the point of saying &quot;Israel is not, was not , will not be the home of the jews.

Israel is not, and will not be.

Eretz Yisroel is.

<

.If you misunderstood me, please don't attack me- i do have a nesumah! please just question what i said specifically, i tend to be confusing sometimes!

Nobody's attacking you but in general if you don;' want people to attack you, it would be wise not to go around saying things about them that they know not to be true, such as: To say you are anti-zionist is to say that you are against returning home ( the days of old). If you put words in other people's mouths they're going to throw them back at you.

#36 FS613

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Posted 11 January 2012 - 11:36 PM

Is there an English version of the above-quoted web site ?

http://yoel-ab.com/

Thank you.

#37 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 13 January 2012 - 01:02 PM

Is there an English version of the above-quoted web site ?

http://yoel-ab.com/

Thank you.

Unfortunately, no.

#38 7-yipol-tzadik-vekam!

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Posted 15 January 2012 - 02:07 PM

Rabbi Shapiro,

Thank you again for answering. I hear what you are saying that Yom HaAtzmaut does not qualify for a holiday because of "the comforting thought idea". It makes sense, that how do we know we need this insurance policy, maybe all those deaths for the state of Israel were never meant to be ideally. And I hear your other points as well.

As far as the reasoning the fact that it makes it easier for us to do the mitzvah of living in EY but why don't we make holidays out of all other things that make it easier to do mitzvos, my question is that it sort of seems to me that maybe E"Y s different then "just" another mitzvah, that its more like a context for the mitzvos to be performed at their best or a more of a fundamental part of Judaism. Sort of like i think the Ramban says on "vesamtem es devarai eleh" that when the mitzvos aren't performed in EY they are just tziyunim- markers/ reminders. I mean it could just be i think this way because that is how I have always been taught, but just thinking about Chumash, Navi Jewish history- EY isn't treated as "just" another mitzvah- it is something special- I mean think about Moshe Rabbienu wanting to enter more than anything, or with David Hamelech how when he was running away from Avshalom (?) he told someone he was going to do A"Z because he was leaving EY, which is like is like worshipping AZ. Or think of all the Rabbis and people in Jewish history who risked so much to travel thee- like Rabbi Yehudah HaLevi. I don't know, maybe I am too much a product of the religious zionist education system that I think this way, but still it seems like EY is a bigger concept in Judaism then, say the mitzvah of tzitzis- NOT that I CH"V want to put down that, or any other mitzvah at all.

#39 Rabbi Shapiro

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Posted 15 January 2012 - 03:31 PM

Do you really think that, even if what you are saying would be true (it's not, but be patient) anyone believes that whatever happened in '48 is more of a benefit to our fulfilling our religion than anything else that has happened to us in history except for Chanukah and Purim (and on Purim we don;t even say Hallel, but on Yom Haatzmaut they do!) But not only that - the declaration of the State of Israel is so much greater than everything else that ever happened that nothing else came close to becoming a national holiday, but Yom Haatzmaut easily did? DO you really think that is the real reaosn they made Yom Haatzmaut into a national holiday?

Don't forget - whereas the printing of the Shulchan Aruch, the Rambam's birthday, the day the Jews returned to Eretz Yisroel under Ezra or Zerubavel - were never even considered as a forethought to become a national holiday - take note especially of that last one - it is basically accepted across the board by every religious ZIonist in the world as a given that Yom Haatzmaut should be? When Yehoshua brought the Jews into Eretz Yisroel, or when the Golus of the first destruction ended and the Jews returned to EY - nobody had a thought to make it a holiday? But Yom HaAtzmaut is?

And don't forget - this holiday is celebrated even by those Zionists who do not live in EY, and have no intention of ever doing so. What exactly are they celebrating? The State of Israel did not nor do they ever plan for it to assist them in living in EY.

As far as Moshe Rabbeinu and the rest of what you mentioned, all Mitzvos done in EY are intensified. So are all Aveiros. For Moshe Rabbeinu, EY would have been a goldmine. That's why he wanted to enter. No other reason. For evildoers, it is a terrible place to be. For people in between, it is in between. That's the beginning and end of it. Remember what Rashi says about Moshe Rabbeinu's wanting to go into EY - that it was not for the land, but for the Mitzvos he was able to do there. The fact that it was good for Moshe Rabbeinu to be there does not mean it to all of us.

And as for that "Ramban" that you were taught, please allow me to quote Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveichik:

[Question:] What do you do with the Ramban in Devarim which says the kiyum mitzvos in chutz la'aretz is not on the same level as in Eretz Yisrael?

[Answer:] I knew that Ramban before you were born! [audience laughter] Kook comes out with the Ramban as if he is the only one to which the Ramban  has entrusted the text. I knew about it, and I sweated out the Ramban. I sweated out the Ramban and the Ramban never said it. This is a Sifri, a difficult Sifri ... and we don't know exactly the text of the Sifri. And no matter who says it, I don't care. The three words, כי לי כל הארץ settles everything ... it means chovos hamitzvos in chutz laaretz is not to be considered a prologue or introduction to kiyum hamitzvos in eretz yisrael. They are of the same importance..." (Thinking Aloud, p. 230-231, emphasis mine)

Religion will not explain why this day became a national celebration for Zionist Jews across the globe. Religion, including what our religion says about Eretz Yisroel, will not explain the Zionist attitude and behavior toward the State of Israel.

There is something other than Judaism driving the religious Zionist attitude here.

#40 7-yipol-tzadik-vekam!

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 12:41 AM

I hear... especially in light of the fact that the chachamim did not see fit to make a holiday out of the return of B"Y to E"Y with Ezra or Zerubavel- it really doesn't make sense why would we do it now. And that is an interesting quote by Rav Solovetchik- it makes me feel a little better about keeping the mitzvos here in america anyways.
I wondering though about what it is that is Rabbi Shapiro is hinting that "something other than Judaism driving the religious Zionist attitude"-
For many of the religious zionist i know, they genuinely think they are keeping Judaism correctly- they just don't realize that their emphasis on E"Y is not called for. I am not sure that something other than Judaism is driving them.