Matzav.com: they must live on another planet

From the sometimes sycophantic website matzav.com

There’s “help wanted” and then there’s “help wanted.” In a demonstration of the ahavas haTorah and bikkush ha’emes that reflects the atmosphere found amongst the talmidim of America’s largest yeshiva, a sign found hanging on a wall at Beth Medrash Govoha in Lakewood, NJ, shows the desire of its talmidim to uncover the truth behind often-overlooked or taken-for-granted portions of Torah, mesorah, or, in this case, tefillah.

The sign, which can be seen at the link below, has a simple heading: “Help Wanted!” But it is not just a “Help Wanted” sign seeking assistance or a job. It’s a “Help Wanted” sign seeking the emes – literally. The emes behind Emes Vetaziv, the tefillah we say each day in tefillas Shacharis.

The sign-hanger, assumed to be a yungerman at Beth Medrash Govoha, asks whether the phrase “Ein Elokim zulasecha,” is kodesh, meaning holy and referring to the Ribono Shel Olam, or chol, mundane, meaning referring to other gods. To further elaborate on the writer’s analysis and question regarding this phraseology in tefillah is beyond the purview of this post, and readers are welcome to read it in its entirety below in Lashon Kodesh. Perhaps printing it out will aid the reader.

Nevertheless, it is inspiring to witness the pure, unpretentious desire for truth of bnei Torah. We often look past these things, not giving it a second glance. It’s a sign on the wall; who cares? We should care. Let us appreciate and pay homage to those whose bikkush ha’emes and love of Torah usually fly under the radar – unless, that is, someone decides to make a Matzav out of it….

May we merit the day when those words, “Ein Elokim zulasecha,” are recognized by all of humanity. May that day arrive speedily.

Okay, what’s wrong with this? There is nothing wrong with the question and issue. It’s עמלה של תורה and who can be critical of that? What irritates me is that this online, web-based news source gets so excited about this as if it’s some new phenomenon. Well, hello there Mr Matzav. Did you ever go online? Have you seen the myriad of people who raise issues like this on blogs, and lomdishe forums, let alone audio shiurim and the like? Surely you have. Are these people who do so somehow lesser than the Lakewood yungerman? I’m just surprised they didn’t use the customary appelation of “Moiredik”.

Sheesh. Get with it. The internet is gushing with Torah and you get excited only because someone asks on a piece of paper and hangs in at the back of the Beis Medrash? Perhaps what you could have done Mr Matzav, was to start encouraging Lakewood to start recording their shiurim and putting them online; heaven forbid.

But wait, there is more. The readers of Matzav (yes, the internet folk who shouldn’t be reading it) answer online.

Perhaps I’m beyond cynical.

שבת שלום from Singapore

Author: pitputim

I'm a computer science professor in Melbourne, Australia. I skylark as the band leader/singer for the Schnapps band. My high schooling was in Chabad and I continued at Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh in Israel.

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