But wait, there’s more from Matzav

Check this out. One of the Satmer Rebbes, R’ Zalman Leib, organised the purchase of the Divrei Chaim’s alleged Sefer Torah, which was in the hands of other (jewish) Yorshim, for $1,000,000!

Am I alone in thinking this money could have been spent in a more productive manner? Is there a mitzvah to spend money for such a purpose? Perhaps it’s actually אסור given what the alternatives could have been?

Author: pitputim

I've enjoyed being a computer science professor in Melbourne, Australia, as well as band leader/singer for the Schnapps Band. My high schooling was in Chabad and I continued at Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh in Israel and later in life at Machon L'Hora'ah, Yeshivas Halichos Olam.

8 thoughts on “But wait, there’s more from Matzav”

  1. I am baffled by this sort of criticism whenever I hear it. He had the money, they had something he wanted very much, so he bought it. Is that not the normal way of the world? It’s not as if the money disappeared; it’s simply in different hands. If you want some portion of it to go to tzedokoh, now would be the time to approach the sellers, who have presumably made a profit and should give maaser. The aniyim won’t care whether the money came from the buyer or the seller.


  2. The ST was purchaed on behalf the Satmar rebbe – who is a descendent of the Divrei Chaim zt’l – by a wealthy chosid. he certainly did not demand it.

    And far, far better that this ST is cherished and used by a great tzibbur chassidishe Yidden than lying as some ‘historic Judaica artefact’ in a museum somewhere

    And if you check the facts you’d realise that it is actually the Satmar chassidim who are renowned for their maasei tzedaka vochesed – to Jews of ALL stripes. Probably more than all other groups combined.

    Yes, plenty of of us talk about about ahavas yisroel, chesed and helping. Satmaractually does it.

    (Though reading the lines and between the line sof your posts, I doubt that you will ever acknowledge anything positive about them.)


    1. This is a straight out Halachic question. As a Charedi fan, you seem to think I’d only post this if it was Satmar or their ilk. Of course, you are wrong. Look at the issue, not the Rebbe.


  3. Milhouse is looking at it rationally: the money was in Jewish hands; it is still in Jewish hands; if you wish it to go to tzedaka then approach the vendor.

    In any event, who’s to say that we would have any right to reproach the purchaser even if the money had been used to buy, say, a yacht? The money may be a tiny fraction of his wealth and I think it’s accepted that wealthy people discharge their charitable obligations with 20% of their income.


    1. I understand. Furthermore, as a Rebbe, he was imparting an important lesson to his Chassidim. Notwithstanding that, from a Brisker standpoint, was this the (dry) halachic thing to do? One can give more than 20% after all, and the Rebbe wasn’t about to buy a yacht 🙂


  4. I was replying to this comment of yours:
    “And you don’t consider it better to invest this in other Jewish causes”

    Whether you like them or not, you have no right to mussar them about “investing in other Jewish causes” – as nobody does more of that then they do.


    1. Your statement is, of course, false. Hilchos Tzedaka uses no such criteria. Your statement is derived from questionable Western sensibilities.


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