Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Interesting Posts and Articles #373

1. Yated Neeman, roughly translated, means Trusty Shovel. It is a reference to the pasuk in Devarim 23:14:

יד  וְיָתֵד תִּהְיֶה לְךָ, עַל-אֲזֵנֶךָ; וְהָיָה, בְּשִׁבְתְּךָ חוּץ, וְחָפַרְתָּה בָהּ, וְשַׁבְתָּ וְכִסִּיתָ אֶת-צֵאָתֶךָ.14 And thou shalt have a paddle among thy weapons; and it shall be, when thou sittest down abroad, thou shalt dig therewith, and shalt turn back and cover that which cometh from thee.

which was used to deal with, and cover up, defecation. Similar to the newspaper. So it stands to reason that it would be perfect to line one's bat cage with.

2. Forbes Israel ranks Israel's richest rabbis. Among them are Nir Ben Artzi, Rabbi Pinto, Rabbi David Abuchatezeira and Rabbi Pinchas Abuchatzeira (at 1.3 billion shekels). (To be fair, the last inherited most of his great wealth from Baba Eleazar.) Last year, Mekubal was upset that people (meaning me) were not only speaking of his relative, Baba Elazar's praises. How could people be upset at the aggrandizement of someone who most likely took advantage of vulnerable people, using his fame and threats of the influence of his kabbalah to bilk people out of hundreds of thousands of dollars? And how could someone be upset that the famous rabbanim, in general, glossed over this and made him into one of the lamed-vav-niks, who saved the world by being murdered? This was lashon hara! And what is the toeles?! As he wrote:
In all honesty I have just lost a ton of respect for both those blogs. What kind of sinat hinam does it take to slander a dead man? There is no toelet to be had. This is simply lashon hara at best, motzei shem ra at worst of a person who, even if true, is far beyond any ability to continue such actions or to do teshuva.
Maybe one toeles is that, by promulgating this, and not letting the rabbinic leadership whitewash this, his relatives and others might not be so successful in becoming so wealthy at the gullible public's expense. And the gullible public might learn a lesson, or at least have a chance to learn a lesson.

A caveat: Note that I don't know how each of these rabbis became so wealthy, and just what their personal practices are. Maybe all these folks in this article are tzaddikim gemurim. But there are plenty of folks taking advantage of the gullible and superstitious.

Meanwhile, compare with a list of most influential rabbis.

3. At Mi Yodeya, why isn't Yemenite Jewry a sufficient eid echad to permit us to eat locusts. They probably are. But there is, IMHO, the separate issue of bal teshakatzu. It is disgusting to your typical non-Teimani, so they shouldn't do it. And they might be Biblically prohibited from doing so.

4. At Hirhurim, Modesty in Rus.

5. Blog in Dm does not think much of the new Miami Boys Chior Siyum Hashas video:

6. At Daas Torah, how a rav determines abuse allegations. And wondering whether Yehuda Kolko is supported by Rav Simcha Bunim Kohen.

7. At Circus Tent, passing the torch. He has the handwritten note from Rav Chaim Kanievsky. Also, a "true story" about the נצי"ב of Volozhin, זצ"ל, as told by הרב אברהם יהושע סאלאווייציק of Yerushalayim. Oh, snap!

8. At Havolim, respect for gedolim.

9. Haveil Havalim from last week and this week.

10. A view from under the bus.

11. Here at parshablog, I've greatly revamped my parsha source roundup. In addition to more sources than in previous years, I've added pictures, where available, of the people in question. Also, I've started organizing them in chronological order. I don't know how long I can keep this up, but I'll give it a shot.

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