Thursday, April 02, 2009

Interesting Posts and Articles #136

  1. Maybe this is why chareidim want mehadrim buses. Otherwise, who knows?! People might get engaged on them!

  2. Some lunatic, or else crafty businessman, had a dream of Rav Nachman, and told him to paint his likeness, and spread it. This patterned after the Na Nach song, which also had its basis in a dream in which Rav Nachman of Breslov told to sing the song. Shirat Devorah has the details, and which rabbis in Breslov suppoer the claim, which condemn the claim, and which have not seen/commented upon it. Then, in an important followup post, reprinted from Rabbi Lazer Brody's site, she explains that Rabbi Arush does not support the claim, and that he says it is a scam from someone trying to make a fast buck. Rabbi Brody explains why the picture is not real:
    1) Rebbe Nachman was very reddish blond, not like the blond at left.
    2) Rebbe Nachman fasted much, was lean and wiry without an extra ounce on his body, not like the well-fed gent illustrated here.
    3) Rebbe Nachman rolled his payis forward, not backward.
    4) Rebbe Nachman had happy eyes that illuminated one's soul - the dude in the picture doesn't cut it.
    5) Rebbe Nachman was much younger - he died at age 38.

    Now, it is interesting that they have to go out of their way to declare this a fake. Any normal sensible person would hear this story and snort. But the problem is that in the past, people in this "mystical community" have lent credence to people's dreams, considering them prophetic in some way. And if a rabbi appears in the dream, that that is a real communication from him, as opposed to a random dream or a delusion.

    The result of this is that any fringe character is allowed to define the theology. Because anyone can have a dream, or claim to have a dream. And then the messages of those dreams, reflecting the moral and religious values of that person, are attributed to Hashem, or to great deceased rabbis. Perhaps it is because they do not have any real leader in control, after Rav Nachman's death; or the acceptance and promotion as leaders of baalei teshuva, often with their own fringe ideas. But the result is direction and leadership from the crazies. And that is why they even had to bother to respond to this.

    Another interesting point is that there is likely gaavah involved in this leadership from elements of the hamon am. It is not enough to be a frum Jew. You are special in some way, and God selected you to be the one to receive the dreams and deliver his message. And so the story of the Jews is about you, rather than about Hashem and Klal Yisrael. And of all the qualified candidates, Rav Nachman chose you to reveal his visage and direct that his likeness be portrayed.

  3. Orthonomics on lowering Pesach costs. And Lion of Zion on pre-Pesach car washes, and their cost.

  4. An article in Front Page Magazine on Obama Derangement Syndrome. He mentions the narcissist article I debunked here.

  5. Hirhurim about the ordination of women.

  6. YUTorah's Pesach to Go, 2009 edition:

  7. A Mother Is Israel on a local kabbalah cult, posted at DovBear and her own blog:

  8. London Rabbi spooked by Ghost. See the reactions at and at Vos iz Neias. Shtuyot. Rather than consulting a kabbalist, he should look into hiring a contractor to fix his creaky floorboards, faulty windows, and settling house.

  9. Why not boost them again? The Absolut Haggadah, 2009 vintage. Download here.


Michael said...

Bnei Baruch
Here is the guys blog. It
is a bit like a kabbalistic form of scientology.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Thanks for the link, and double thanks for posting the Absolut Haggada. I love it!


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