Sunday, January 4, 2009


After reading Frumskeptics posts on teachers saying stupid things; I remembered all the stupid thing I have heard, over the course of my years in yeshivah.

My Rabbi told a story, of another rabbi, trying to prove to us its wrong to read English books. This rabbi, in the story, praised his mother for not letting him read English books. Not just any English book, even the ones written by great rabbis concerning halacha. This was because, the mother was afraid that her children will read a question in the halacha sefer, and will not read the answer for 24 hours, for whatever reason it may be. This will then leave an impression on the child, even after reading the answer. That's why we shouldn't read English books.

Is that not stupid? You could read any sefer or book, in any language, including Hebrew and yiddish!! Then get the same impression, why is that you are afraid of English books, even the ones that have to do with halacha! The reason is, there is no basis to this argument; its just so weird that maybe you'll be confused enough to listen to it.

My rabbi also said: Don't do kiruv. He didn't want to help people who had no chance at becoming frum. He felt that we cant stick our feet in the mud, to save someone in quick sand. He didn't want us to be exposed to the outside world through helping people. I found this to be disgusting. I couldn't believe he would say such a thing. Why should we not give an opportunity to these less fortunate people. I guess its no wonder they turn away the BT's, when they do become frum.

My Rabbi tried brainwashing us, lucky for me it didn't work. I know what is right and wrong, and my Rabbi was definitely wrong.

25 people gave their 2 cents:

Ookamikun said...

messed up
I get more and more depressed about sending my kid to school...

Originally From Brooklyn said...

On reading English books, the argument is ignorance is bliss.

On Kiruv, the argument is "do by example" because any other way may harm you more than it helps him(or her).

Both points are valid to a certain extent. You can't discount everything.

Lion of Zion said...


no need to get depressed. just send him to the right school for you.

Ookamikun said...

Is there such a thing?

Lion of Zion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lion of Zion said...


probably not. i should have said it a little differently. don't choose the right school for you, but rather the best school for you.

no school is ever going to be the "right" one, as in the perfect one. unfortunately all jewish schools have issues, and those issues can often become exaggerated in importance when you're paying as much as $30K for the said school. when you pay hard earned cash you expect everything to be perfect.

so the trick is at least to pick the one that is best for you, as in that one is most suited for you from the ones that are available. even though it won't be perfect.

this is a big issue that i have with brooklyn jews (and this includes a *lot* of the anonymous bloggers). they bitch and moan about the schools, yet instead of choosing the one that is really best for them, they choose the one that is best for their neighbors/friends/shul/etc.
there is an entire orthodox world out there if people would only open up their eyes.

Mikeinmidwood said...


There is such a thing, just hard to find.

Child Ish Behavior

The argument is illogical. You can argue on what I just said, but that would be illogical.

Lion O Zion

so where did you send your kid.

Barb Chansky said...

Guys, count me naive, but I firmly believe it is time to start homeschooling our kids.

ChildIsh, forgive me, but your blissful ignorance usually translates into somebody else's headache. You have to be stay informed, exercise your mind, and broaden your horizons. As for Kiruv, you need lots of brain and heart; otherwise, do not bother.

frumskeptic said...

the first one...soooooo messed up.

second...I'm anti commercial kiruv. SUPER anti-commercial kiruv. I'm going to write a series of posts on that and explain it (eventually). lol.

"these less fortunate people."

I hope you meant that sarcastically, because if you didn't, THAT is the reason why you shoudn't do kiruv. You can't be mekarav someone if you consider them "less fortunate" or inferior than you in anyway. Just because they're ignorant of their ancestory, that doesnt make them less fortunate.

frumskeptic said...

barb- I hope I'll be able to homeschool.

I actually heard on the radio TODAY that more people are choosing to homeschool in NY since 2003. They say the reason is because of the internet. I say its because of all the awesome available programs to allow it to happen, things similar to Niel Bush's C.O.W. (Curriculum on Wheels) school program. Not saying its a good one or anything, just saying generally those thigns are available. :)

frumskeptic said...

and btw...thanx for the link. :-)

Mikeinmidwood said...

Barb Chansky

If there is homeschooling, than there wont be anyone to bring home a misspelled devar torah for shabbos.


It was sarcastic. your welcome for the link.

Dina said...

My sister's high school teacher once told the class that the toilet lid needs to be closed so the shedim don't come out. And that her relative's vacuumm cleaner broke because she didn't take it to a rebbe to get a bracha on it.

Yeah, my brain broke too.

Ookamikun said...

What about Vista? Or is that an evil that's too powerful even for a rabbi's brocha?

Can I get an antivirus brocha?

mlevin said...

Moshe - you could get an anti-virus brochah, but I doubt it would be any good fighting computer viruses. Most I would expect, you'd be healthy for a few years. That's great, too. Isn't it?

Ookamikun said...

Did you get your car blessed?
It's important, you know.

Anonymous said...

hey mike i was bored and i just checked your whole entire site of stories and i think you and all your friends should stop blogging bec. all it does is cause lashon hara to come out not all the time ofcourse but, somrtimes

you dont hane to listen to me but you can

i know you started this bec. of a hobby that you needed but,

dont listen to me
listen to halacha

a friend
(a very close friend indeed)

Anonymous said...

Homeschooling is the worst! A child won't have any social connections.

Ookamikun said...

Why? You'd keep your kids inside the house and never let them out?

Mikeinmidwood said...




I got a bracha for my windows XP, its still working. ;)

Anon #1

If you are so worried about that, dont go on the internet. Second you should learn halachos of loshon hara. rule number 1, a name must be mentioned.

Anon #2

Social connections are the least of their worries, and they still have kids on the block to socialize with.

Ookamikun said...

Anon, when are you people gonna stop calling everything a halocha.

A rav of a community, erev shabbat, sees a broken plate on the floor of the kitchen and decides to help his wife. He takes a broom and starts sweeping up the pieces. He glances up and sees half the town staring in through the windows at what he's doing. He continues sweeping while saying loud enough for the people to hear, "this is not a minhag and not a halocha, I'm just sweeping".
Next week, all of the men were in their kitchens with brooms, sweeping, while saying under their breath, "this is not a minhag and not a halocha, I'm just sweeping."


frumskeptic said...

"Homeschooling is the worst! A child won't have any social connections."

Extra curricular activities (karate, dance, swim, gymnastics, ice skating, etc) create friendships too!

Plus who would want their kid friends with frummies anyway? Atleast with homeschooling you can keep the frummy friends exclusive to the shul (which usually fits better hashkafically than the schools available).

frumskeptic said...

moshe- that is one AWESOME Story!! :-)

Ookamikun said...

fs, all those activities are shtus and will only lead to your kids going off the derech. That, and watching TV, or internet, or reading english books.

Ookamikun said...

oh, and learning spelling and grammar is against the torah because of the halocha of not imitating goyim.