Thursday, September 10, 2009
by Reb Akiva at Mystical Paths
Rabbi Student at Hirhurim wrote the following, specifically written with "permission to copy". He subsequently took it down "on rabbinical advice" but without explanation.
(Originally at Hirhurim) There is an obnoxious new blog called Authentic Judaism whose author keeps e-mailing me and offering to educate me on how his particular version of right wing Orthodox Judaism is the only authentic type of Judaism. I have been ignoring him but in today's e-mail he bragged about his high Google ranking. In response, I would like to request the help of fellow bloggers in driving down his Google ranking.
As I write this post, the second result for a Google search on "Authentic Judaism" is a post of his titled "JB Soloveitchik, The Authentic Impostor" (the first result is to a Secular Humanist Temple!). Yes, that is the kind of hateful things he writes. He is spending Elul this year writing about "the idiot Natan Slifkin", which is incredibly offensive. What he might not realize is that by insulting people like Rav Soloveitchik and Rabbi Slifkin, he is opening the door for others to insult his mentors, both in public and in private. It is practically guaranteed to happen (although I ask readers to please refrain from doing so).
[ On an aside, I'd note that the Internet teaches us a lesson for Rosh Hashanah. Like we learn about our deeds in Heaven and say on Rosh Hashana, the book of our is opened and it reads itself - and there's an eye that sees and an ear that years, on the Internet there's always a site that records and saves. ]
Rabbi Student subsequently took down this post and wrote, "On the advice of rabbinic counsel, and against my own judgment, I have taken down my post from the other day attempting to manipulate search results and will no longer engage in such attempts. Thank you for those who assisted. I apologize for involving you in the effort."
I don't know Rabbi Student or his rabbinical adviser. And I certainly understand in Chodesh Elul (the Hebrew month of Elul, right before Rosh Hashanah) it's a poor time to start confrontations. Yet shall we sit quietly when one with the title of Rabbi starts attacks against gedolim and honest members of the community trying to address tough questions???
Personally I say NO. If we do not stand against such approaches, well...finding our women in burka's and our teenagers laughing at us as flat-earthers while walking away from Judaism will be no surprise.
There are zealots for truth, and zealots for zealotry. In Judaism we respect zealots for truth - those who cry as they take action to protect the community. Zealots for zealotry, who take pleasure in their actions and revel in their holy zeal - they are just dangerous and to be avoided.