Monday, December 26, 2011


Bad Charedi, Bad!

by Reb Akiva @ Mystical Paths


Commentor “Dovid from Modiin” wrote:

Maybe the zealots are to blame for Mattityahu’s change of hashkafa.  Maybe the Charadim Rabbanim and their handlers are also to blame for Mattityahu’s change of hashkafa.

I think most readers and contributors here would agree that what the zealots are doing by the girls school in Beit Shemesh is completely wrong.

It is also wrong that the Charadi Rabbanim don't actively protest the zealots corrupt torah life style. I know there has been a handful who have in the past mentioned that it was wrong, but that is not enough. They need to speak louder, they need to make tapes, video and actively condemn and protest the zealots. They need to send 10,000 men to the zealots own community and protest against them so it is loud and clear for the entire Jewish community to hear. They need to stop worrying making arguments against other charadim and show the other Jews and the world that the zealots have crossed a line and gone to far.

(Video – Reb Akiva confronts the zealots of Beit Shemesh, hebrew, 8 min.)

In this case you are either for or against and if you don’t speak up you are against the school girls and for the zealots. It is as if all the Charadi Rabbanim have called that girl names and spit on her.

I don't think anyone is perfect and we should work on following real Mitzvot and not make up new chumrot that have no torah basis or past customs, especially when they effect other people who may not want to follow those made up chumrot. The Charadim Rabbanim need to fight against crazy made up chumrot that have no Torah source and put a stop to it.

This situation is a mess.  I’ve directly confronted the zealots and participated in community protests against the zealots actions, doing both in my own “full charedi garb”.  And I didn’t do so alone, but rather arrived (all independently) with many other charedim from Ramat Beit Shemesh.  There are people standing up.

The people doing this are thugs and as a group acting as a gang.  That they dress as ultra-orthodox Jews is irrelevant.  As I’ve said before, the yezter hara, the evil inclination, doesn’t come to the ultra-orthodox and say “eat treif (not kosher)”.  He comes and screams “defend the Torah!  defend your rav or Rebbe!”.  There is absolutely no Torah, halacha or Jewish basis for what they are doing!

P1040938Not only am I verbally against it, I’ve personally gone and stood to defend the school girls being verbally and otherwise assaulted.

That said, have no doubt that the news is throwing gasoline on the fire.  This has been 10-20 very problematic ultra-orthodox dressing thugs taking actions that should be responded to by the authorities. 

The Israeli news and leftists anti-religious Israeli politicians are using this situation to promote their own agendas.  For example, this has become a “women’s equal rights issue”???  Yet a year ago there was a similar protest against a new boys school 2 buildings down from the girls school.  (It faded away after a few months and some charedi-thug vandalism, which also wasn’t handled seriously by the authorities.)

Whether people make up chumrot (extra stringencies in their Torah observance) or not is not yours or my business.  We can have a long and Torah based discussion of whether chumrot are appropriate or not.

The mistake being made here is taking these people taking their personal chumrot and trying to enforce them as a public standard.  If they, as a group, choose to do that in the isolation of their synagogue and don’t welcome anyone in their synagogue who doesn’t keep their (extra) standards, again that’s their business. 

When they try to physically enforce their personal standards in public, then they are violating Torah law and secular law.  When violating Torah law in such a fashion they should be isolated and certainly not supported!  When violating secular law the secular authorities have to take appropriate action or they will empower the thugs to increase in such actions. 

Like any gang when they see they can get their way, they exercise it more to carve out their turf.  And that’s exactly what’s happened.

I should note I’ve been advised, multiple times, not to write such things.  The thugs may come and get me, they don’t like people taking positions against them.  And this is exactly part of the problem, they’re acting like a gang threatening (and taking actual actions) against those who stand against them.  Your average rabbi is not prepared to deal with a gang.

But the News is stirring up a riot!


#1 – Rav Nati was assaulted in the neighborhood in question today!  He was waiting to meet a friend and pulled out his netbook (mini-laptop) inside his car, which does not have a cell-internet-connection, to jot down some Torah thoughts.  He was harassed, which reached the point of 2 (supposedly) ultra-orthodox thugs attempting to pull him out of his car and hurt him.  (This did not end well for the thugs, Rav Nati is a trained self defense professional. but did degenerate into rock throwing against Rav Nati – who is a charedi rabbi and dresses as such!)

#2 – To give an idea of the area in question, I prepared this map of Beit Shemesh, neighborhoods Ramat Bet, Kiryat Charedit and Sheinfeld which abut each other…



  1. The rabbis who should be protesting against these zealots should refer to the Gemara in Gittin that is customarily learned on Tisha B'Av about the zealots who burned 22 years worth of food that was saved for the Jewish community in order to get the Jews to fight the Romans. Not only did this not work at the end for shortly afterwards, the Beis HaMikdosh was destroyed along with murder and exile of Jews, but these zealots were the very ones who later committed suicide in Masada because they themselves were afraid at the end of what the Romans would do to them if they would have been captured.

  2. Kol hakavod for speaking out on this issue. It takes courage to speak out when there are no leaders doing so. Please make your effort more organised with other rabbanim. These men should be ostracised for their chillul Hashem.

    Btw, are you sure zealot is the right word for them? Are they really zealous for Hashem, or just thugs dressed up as hareidim.

  3. They like to call themselves zealots, but indeed they're zealots like the Gemora says...zealots who cause only damage with misdirected inappropriate zealotry.

  4. Zealots, is not the right word
    because we find kinan in the side of kedusha.
    Rather this behavior is an
    erev rav symptom

  5. This is getting reported on big time now by the main stream press. It even found its way to Drudge...this is getting very bad.

  6. dont these f..... rabbits i mean rabbis know the whole torah is dont do to your neighbor as youd want your neighbor to do you . Didnt the teacher of rasbi akiva say this didnt hillel hazakain say this ?Is this what the holy torah has come to today ?

  7. the erev zeir has so many chumrot with women its insane !

  8. People should not give a single milimeter to these Jewish terrorists/mafiosos. Everyone, especially charedim, need to stand up to them and let them know physical intimidation with earn them nothing but disgust and universal denunciation.

    If Israelis have it in them to stop thousands of terrorist attacks (several prevented for each one that actually occurred), then they can stop the zealots. Do whatever is necessary. This is war, like Italy's war against the mafia. If certain things (like spitting at schoolgirls?) need to be made illegal if they're not already, so be it. If 24-hour security guards with automatic weapons, able to call up back-ups at a moment's notice are necessary, so be it. Thug violence cannot rule Israel -- all charedim must understand it's unacceptable and will get them nowhere.

    Some brave charedim should go to these "zealous" neighborhoods and have an open, rational, non-violent discussion with them, showing them the different views on interacting with those different from them. In my view, the Chabad view, as articulated by the Lubavitcher Rebbe, is so powerful that if people actually hear the arguments, and see the evidence on the results of Chabad's actions versus their actions,
    the kinder, gentler, softer approach will convince many. After all, "Who is wise? He who discerns the consequences of his actions." "Be among the disciples of Aharon, loving peace and pursuing peace, loving all creatures and bringing them closer to Torah." The Temple was destroyed because of baseless hatred, etc.

  9. The way we can fight this craziness is NOT by protesting. We have to learn the laws of Bein Adam L'Chavero. We have to make kenneses about this issue. Someone has to TELL the Gedolim about what is going on . Chances are that Rabbanim like R'Chaim Kanievsky, R'Elyashiv and others do not listen to the news!!!

    We need groups gathering together to put our heads together to form achdus . These thugs are violent. They need to be arrested. YET, what is more powerful would be to post pesukim from chazal , gemara etc etc about how wrong this is right near the homes of these people. If they can have signs of where women can walk then we can make signs with pesukim , mishnayos, etc etc..

  10. I believe Efraim is correct. If this does not cool down it may provoke our Heavenly Father to intervene, and it might not be pleasant. It seems this will push off the Geula.

    Please read Kavod haTorah


Welcome to Mystical Paths comments. Have your say here, but please keep the tone reasonably civil and avoid lashon hara. Due to past commenting problems, all comments are moderated (this may take a few hours.)

Your comments are governed by our Terms of Use, Privacy, and Comments policies. We reserve the right to delete or edit your comments for any reason, or use them in a future article. That said, YOU are responsible for YOUR comments - not us.

Related Posts with Thumbnails