Time for Mechila: nobody is perfect

This statement most certainly includes me. When writing my blog posts, I’ve occasionally unintentionally upset someone or have been misunderstood given the fact that perhaps I unwisely tend not to spend too much time actually writing my posts or proof-reading them.

Sometimes people send me a private email, and I act on it. Other times they send me a fake comment and when I try to reply, it bounces because there is no such address. Given that it’s Erev Yom Kippur, if there is a current or past post that you feel is unfair or has stepped over a halachic boundary, I ask you sincerely to email me, and most certainly, if it is a real email address and doesn’t bounce, I will reply accordingly.

I chanced across a comment about two? years ago where someone said I had it in for Rav Beck of Adass. Let me be very clear. Rav Beck is a holy man, a Yirei Shomayim, who has never done anything to me and I do not seek to belittle him in any way. I do have differences between the views of my Rabonim and his Shita on some things, and I do not resile for those. That should not be confused with a “personal vendetta” which I think I saw someone on the internet describe it.

So, for the sake of the record I will state those things (some of which also apply to Satmar, Toldos Aron and various other extreme groups within Adass)

  • I utterly and completely condemn their approach to the state of the Israel, and consider Veyoel Moshe, not Halacha and not LeMaaseh and it has been taken apart as a Sefer many times by people more learned than I. It’s also just reminded me of a story:
    • In the early days, Rav Kook זצ’’ל was the then Chief Rabbi, and he was informed that there were some Jewish Builders working on Rosh Hashono. What did he do? He didn’t send people to scream at them and throw stones at them etc This were before the State came to be. He immediately called his Shamash and a few others and instructed them to go to the building site, and blow the mandatory number of notes of the Shofar with a Brocha to be Motzi the Builders. The builders were bewildered. They asked who are these people. They were told these are the direct emissaries of the Chief Rabbi, the Holy Tzadik, Rav Kook. They asked what are they doing here on Rosh Hashono. They were told that Rav Kook has personally requested that they be given the opportunity to share in the Mitzvah of Tekias Shofar. The Builders were bewildered but stayed silent. They put down their tools. The Shofar was blown. Rav Kook’s emissaries then quietly left the building site and returned to Rav Kook. What transpired was the approach that I subscribe to. The builders were overcome. The sound of the Shofar and the care and indirect admonition of Rav Kook left them in a state of shock. They downed their tools, went home, and many of them apparently changed clothes and attended Shule.
  • I utterly condemn anyone who quietly visits and stays in contact with his brother Moshe Ber Beck. For those who don’t know this is the “personage” who went and continues to kiss Arafar, Ahmadinejad and all שונאי ישראל and give us the “problem” of we aren’t against Jews (like moshe ber beck) just Zionists. Well everyone should answer them truthfully. EVERY Jew is a Zionist. Every Jew believes that the Land of Israel is the Land of Jews. Some might differ with timing and method, but we pray this three times a day and more. Don’t anyone ever fall for the trick that a Jew is not a Zionist. EVERY JEW IS A ZIONIST. There is no need to go into Rashi and Tosfos on when, how, etc. To the שונאי ישראל there is NO difference. All you are doing is giving them hate fodder.
  • I utterly condemn and person who fails to alert authorities about a danger in our midst (e.g. a pedophile, a wife basher etc)
  • I utterly condemn anyone who on the basis that somebody reports such a danger, discriminates against such people. We must encourage those affected to get all the help they need to cope with what in some cases is a life long struggle.
  • I utterly condemn the infamous blog authored by Scott Rosenberg which is spite filled hate for Torah.

That being said, I am sure I have made someone unhappy and may have crossed a line in one of my many posts. If so, please feel free to email me personally or if you like write a comment and I won’t publish the comment.If on reflection (and I will reflect) I will apologise one way or another,

My blog posts are there mainly to help me. They are therapeutic. I write what’s on my mind, and I also have an outlet to spread Torah. At all times I try to be fair, but I far from perfect. If you are unhappy and don’t tell me some way (even write me a hand written letter and drop in my letter box) please do so. My email address is very easy to find i s a a c @ B A L B dot IN … just don’t send to my RMIT address as I am on leave at the moment and not reading those emails.

Wishing EVERYONE כתיבה וחתימה טובה בברכת כהן מוחזק

May all your Tefillos go straight to where they have to, and be successful, and may we all be Zoche to שופר גדול לחירותנו

Outcomes of anonymous commentors

During June and July 2013, I published articles on my personal blogsite relating to press reports of statements allegedly made by Rabbi Boruch Lesches concerning child sexual abuse. Although I criticised Rabbi Lesches in respect of some statements he had made I also called upon the person who had recorded Rabbi Lesches’ remarks and provided the recording to the press to immediately release an unedited transcript of those remarks. I wrote that a failure to do so would amount to profaning God’s name with all that flows from that.
My article did not explicitly name any victim of sexual abuse or the person who had recorded the remarks of Rabbi Lesches. I did not know the identity of that person or persons.  Regrettably, and unbeknown to me at the time, a comment posted on another blogsite referred to my article and named a particular person as the person who had recorded Rabbi Lesches’ remarks and referred to that person in insulting terms. I also regret that other comments posted on my blogsite, although not naming anyone, referred to the person who had recorded Rabbi Lesches in derogatory and disparaging terms.
The person named in the other blog subsequently commenced legal proceedings against me & my employer. I accept that that person has acted in accordance with both halacha & secular law. I regret that my articles or any comments published on my blog may inadvertently have led to that person or his family being subjected to any harm, hurt or criticism. I wish that person and their family well & am grateful that the proceedings brought against me and my employer in connection with this matter have been amicably resolved.

Statistics, for what their worth

I must admit that I pay little or no attention to stats unless something sticks out wildly and I try to discover why. My blog reflects things that concern me. They aren’t constructed to make me loved, hated or controversial. It’s just my attempt at understanding the winds of thought, through my head. There are various reasons. I sometimes delude myself into thinking I’ve written something people agree with!

What I did notice is that around 50% of those who follow my blog and those of guest posters, are from the USA and not Australia. I guess it shouldn’t be surprising, but I don’t comment as much as I used to as I’m time poor.

I don’t care too much about the number of comments. Even one great comment is worth more to me than 30 pieces of shallow unfounded attacks, especially ad hominem attacks, from behind anonymous mushrooms, with little, if any, credible evidence! Oh I get them. I have collected a series of horrible insults directed against me and my family which curiously are reflected in similar words in various other places. Yes, there are rumours and yes, those rumours already walk the street well before my blog may mention them in context.  Many have been true, but I’ve backtracked from this style for various reasons. In particular, the message of my post can sometimes be transmitted effectively without them.

It’s best to always pursue truth and have that as one’s ultimate progenitor and never ever be afraid of protecting one’s true and plainly published intentions without spurious conspiracy theories.