May 22, 2006

by Reb Yudel
Warning to Arnie Eisen: As Orthodoxy shifts left, be very afraid

Interesting paragraph found on a live journal blog:

Three Jews. One raised and still practicing Reform, one raised Con-form and practicing egalitarian neo-Chassidism, one raised Orthodox and practicing flexible halachic observance (got that?).

All sitting in the campus coffeeshop and discussing the future of the American Jewish community as inspired by Rabbi Avi Weiss, the founder of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah.

Among the topics discussed: How do you create community? What does "open Orthodoxy" mean? what are its limits, especially vis a vis women's participation and welcoming queer Jews?

How amazing is it to have a charismatic leader who understands the importance of making religious Judiasm emotionally supportive, socially conscious, and spiritually creative, all while maintaining the credibility of respect for halacha?

Isn't it so much cooler to be a modern Orthodox rabbi with wide-ranging knowledge about topics secular and religious, with a sharp critical perspective, than to be a cookie-cutter parroter of a movement's party line (*cough* JTS *cough*)?

Emphasis added.