by Reb Akiva at Mystical Paths
About 100 years ago, a Rav challenged the non-supervised and not-(necessarily)-kosher milk production and consumption in New York City. The members of the community that were involved in the milk and dairy product business came after him, hounded him, threatened him, even tried to take him to a beis din for harming their business.
In his lifetime, as required by the Shulchan Aruch, chalav yisroel (properly supervised kosher dairy products) became available in the city.
About 35 years ago, a rav challenged the method of schechita (kosher slaughter) in the New York area kosher slaughterhouses. The factory developed process had developed certain methods that were straight forward violations of halacha. The slaughterhouse owners came after him, hounded him, threatened him, and even tried to take him to a beis din for harming their business.
Today no kosher slaughterhouse follows those problematic methods.
About 20 years ago, a rav challenged the method of production of klaf (parchment) for mezuzahs, tefillin, and sefer torahs. The factory method used in Israel at the time had a step that was a clear violation of halacha. The owners and distributors came after him, hired thugs to attack him and shoot up his car, and even tried to take him to a beis din for harming their business.
Today kosher certified klaf is readily available (though more expensive) for soferim writing mezuzahs, tefillin, sefer torahs, and megillahs. (You should ask the question when buying if it was written on kosher certified kalf. Not every sofer or source is aware of this issue.)
We recently have been in touch with a few major publications in the Jewish world about our position on Yoga, as well as in direct communication with various people who have emailed us. Without violating anyone's privacy, here's the kind of responses we're getting...
- I will not forgive you no matter what kinds of arguments/posts you'll bring later on against yoga, even if it comes from Rebbe's (I won't even read them). You're a control freak. An adult is someone who's capable and mature enough to listen to ALL views before he replies and who RESPECTS people whose views he might not understand (yet) or approve of. I'm only interesting in debating with adults and g-dfearing and g-dtrusting rabbis. You may not agree with Yoga but it's a democratic country. Doesn't it also say in the torah that your forbidden to lie, deceive and be false? Hashem will not forgive you. You're not only a lier but you're a control freak who's not mature enough to debate anything openly and RESPECTFULLY. I have no respect for people like you and I will never ever read your blog again. Do not try to "save me". In fact I'll block your address right now. (Excerpted pieces from a larger letter.)
- I can only tell you I am truly sorry but I tried (to get my Jewish publication to pick up on your article and this topic). The boss is too afraid to post the article and therefore has decided not to use it. I worked ... but to no avail.
Certain types of opposition show you that you're headed the wrong way. OTHER types of opposition show you that you're headed the RIGHT way. A little zealotry L'shem Shamayim is not necessarily a bad thing.
BS"D - בסיעתא דשמיא