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It’s matzah, but not as you know it

March 25, 2010 – 7:12 pm89 Comments

Image source: softmatza.com

By David Werdiger

“This is what Hillel did in the times of the temple: he would wrap the Pascal offering, matzah and maror and eat them all together” (text of the Hagaddah, quoted from Talmud Pesachim 115a)

The matzah most commonly used by Jews the world over is flat and crisp (of course how crisp depends on the brand, country of origin, and in some cases, the forearm strength of the Eastern European women in the area). However, this style of matzah is a relatively recent development in Jewish history. Until at least the times of the Temple, and probably for some time after that, the maztah was soft, like a pita or a laffa.

In more recent times, it is thought that Rabbis were concerned that the soft matzah was not baked sufficiently so as to prevent the flour-water mixture from becoming leavened, so they started baking them thinner, and for longer, so they became hard and crisp. Indeed, the custom among followers of the school of Brisk is to have their matzah so well baked as to be almost burnt, so as to eliminate any possible risk of chametz.

When you consider that the Pascal offering was a young lamb, cooked on a spit, and it was not permitted to break any of its bones, the whole seder is looking more and more like a family barbeque. Picture the lamb roasting on the spit, with people carefully carving off meat onto a plate. As per Hillel’s custom, they would then place a quantity of the lamb slices into their pita-style matzah, and add some bitter maror (shredded horseradish or perhaps harif), and voila! You have perhaps the first documented shawarma!

While it’s good to see that Wikipedia correctly acknowledges the contribution of Hillel in the development of the sandwich, hundreds of years before the Earl of Sandwich; it assumes (incorrectly in my view) that the lamb and maror were placed between two pieces of matzah. However, as mentioned, if the matzah was soft, it would either be placed inside the pocket (if it had one), or more likely the whole thing wrapped up (like a laffa or an esh tanur). Perhaps Hillel requires more credit for his culinary development than he is given?

For all of you who have broken teeth or been covered in crumbs as your korech sandwich demolished in your hands, soft matzah is now available in Australia! According to the web site, the stuff has been a big hit and has already sold out through some retail channels. Information is also provided on the history of soft matzah, and the kashrut of this product, which doesn’t look like traditional matzah for most of us.

It’s quite ironic that a product that might be seen as an innovation, from a “progressive” yet orthodox kashrut supervision agency, is in fact a throwback to how things were many hundreds of years ago!

Chag Sameach!

Disclaimer: the writer is a relative by marriage to the owner of Kosher veYosher, and was not solicited in any way to write this piece, nor consulted the agency.

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89 Comments »

  • Naf says:

    Well described David and, according my meager knowledge, correct.  But it appears that our conservative (note the small ‘c’) Rabbinate have already issued a proclamation against this ‘laffa’ matza.   As an halachically observant Jew I wonder is this just a knee jerk reaction to something new or do they have a basis for their issur.
    I look forward to the discussions in shul this Pesach.
     

  • rachsd says:

    Hi Naf,

    I’m not very surprised that the Victorian Rabbinate has come out against ‘soft matzah’. Every year, the kosher for passover book that is put out by Melbourne Kashrut seems to get more conservative. I’ve noticed than in the last few years, quinoa has gone from being classified as not kitniyot, to being considered kitniyot by some, to kitniyot. Not so in the various pesach kashrut guides available on the internet put out by Orthodox kashrut authorities in the US.

    Last year, I noticed that pumpkin was in the Melb Kashrut kitniyot category. I could not think of any possible reason for this so googled it, and could not find anyone else advocating this position. Indeed, I found various responsa explaining why pumpkin seeds were not kitniyot, but no one even asking about pumpkin itself.

    All of this begs the question, is the Melbourne Kashrut authority run by people who are so charedi that the communities who share their concerns do not even use the internet?

    There is also an ongoing difference of opinion between Rabbi Meir Rabi (who is certifying the soft matzah) and the kashrut authority, and although I’ve never heard of R. Rabi telling people not to eat food certified by the KA, the KA seem to encourage people not to follow R. Rabi’s hechsherim on a regular basis.

  • Chaim says:

    I wish I had some soft matzah.. It seems the frum world has gone insane with pesach giving hechsharim to products that do not need (because they are inedible even to a dog) and cost three times the amount.
     
    How are you supposed to actually have a happy or even kosher pesach these days?

  • Stuart says:

    Unfortunately by the time I went to Kraus’s to get some it had sold out! Does anyone have any spare?

  • frosh says:

    Sold out! :-(

    Hopefully they’ll have some more by Sunday – I have really been looking forward to trying it.

  • gedalia says:

    Nice to see the other side of the story.

    My parents and grandparents always baked “Passover rolls” which were made from matzah meal.  This seems to be common for “traditional” Jewish Australians, and there are even retail equivalents.   Seems similar to this type of product. 

    Why the concern over the softness if the product itself is not chametz?

  • Things made from matzah meal are very different to this – they are gebrockts (getting matzah wet), which is not done by many people, and also has changed form, so is no longer considered the same as matzah/bread/hamotzie. This stuff is genuine matzah and a valid substitute for the crisp stuff.

    The concern about it seems to be that because it’s soft, the flour & water mixture may not be fully cooked. If that’s the case, the two key ingredients have remained combined for more than 18 minutes and that is the halachic definition of chametz.

  • anonymous says:

    I know this is loshon hora, but I have [Eds: accusation removed since it comes from a completely anonymous commenter]. I don’t feel here is the time or place to elaborate them. Needless to say, I would not trust that the matzah is completely baked, It’s extremely difficult to ascertain to a 100% certainty, thats why we make them flat.
    When it comes to Pesach, Chometz is not a joke. The issue of the soft matzah is a wateva … but if the soft matzah contains chometz, it’s as bad as eating on yom kippur! Do you want to take that risk? The RCV is not sending out emergency rulings for fun
    Wishing Everyone a happy and kosher pesach.

  • Chaim says:

    anonymous – if you going to make accusations at least put your name to it.

    people always need to explore a hechsher and the Rabbis giving it to see if they conform to their level (which varies widely) of chumras/ stringency.

    E.g. tuna – OU ignore the possibility of dolphins caught in nets (buttel b’ shishim) yet they do not hold by mezonot rolls or bread on your airplane food!


    What did our forefathers do before alfoil, six kitchens,  three stoves, multiple sets of cutlery and pots etc..

  • ariel says:

    I understand Bukharan Jews still bake soft matza…
     
    And here’s something to get us into a freilich mood:
    http://www.jewishmag.com/101mag/passoverchumrahs/passoverchumrahs.htm

  • The Hasid says:

    Soft matzah sounds yum, normal, edible and logical… So of course Kosher Australia will veto it!
    Friends, I saw something in this week’s Jewish News about kosher le’pesach deodorant.
    Yes, that’s right. Deodorant.
    Does anyone else think that our national kashrut authority has better things to be doing than issuing proclamations about the acceptability of ROLL ON DEODORANT?
    Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

  • Chaim says:

    That is funny – reminds me the other week how Rabbi Yosef Elyashiv decided braces are not kosher for the mikvah being a “partitian” despite women needing to close their mouth under water anyway so the water does not touch the teeth  … and guess what they came out with removable braces!
     
     
     
     
     

  • Chaim says:

    CRC – pretty respectable –
     
    All varieties of body soaps, shampoos and stick deodorants are permitted for use on Pesach regardless of its ingredients.
     
    Colognes, perfumes, hairspray, shaving lotions and deodorants that have denatured alcohol (listed as SD, SDA, [or with a number or letter i.e. SD29C or SD40], SD Alcohol, Alcohol, Denatured Alcohol or Ethyl Alcohol) cannot be used on Pesach unless they appear on a reliable list. This only applies to products in a pure liquid state. – they have liquid alcohol…
     
    http://www.vosizneias.com/30018/2009/04/07/jerusalem-rav-nissim-karelitz-in-record-setting-psak-no-need-for-pesach-hashgocha-on-soap/
     
    Maybe some sanity is returning..

  • anonymous says:

    chaim, I dont want the issue to be about the hechsher kosher veyoshor, this discussion is about wether or not we should be eating soft matzos.

  • Chaim says:

    then you should not have mentioned it. it was overt lashon hara which is worse than…

  • Milhouse says:

    The reason we stopped using the soft matzot is actually very simple: they don’t stay soft very long.  Those who eat soft matzot bake them at home every day, including yomtov!   Shabbat is a big problem for them; matzot baked on erev shabbat will be almost inedible by the next day.  The common solution is to dry them out, and then soak them in water on Shabbat; not very appetising.  The only way this softmatza.com scheme works is by freezing the matzot immediately after baking, and putting them in the oven just before use.  This was obviously not a feasible way of distributing matzot over the previous century, and even today it’s not practical for the sort of quantities people need for the whole Pesach.

  • Matzah Man says:

    I recommend putting all matzah in the oven for 5-10 minutes uncovered to crisp up before eating even on yom tov. It makes a huge difference and you end up getting addicted to it – even the hard ones.
     
    even if you do not eat gebrochts – this is OK!

  • meir rabi says:

    Shalom Everyone and also to David.
    I will be happy, time permitting, to answer more questions and queries but at this time I wish to address the question – when is Matza baked.
    The Code of Jewish Law defines baking as, when the dough will not form stringy threads when the Matza is torn apart. I have applied this test to the Matza as it emerges from the oven, as per the instructions of the Mishneh Berurah, a universally accepted Halachic authority. I assure those interested that the Matza is thoroughly baked by this standard.
    There are many pages of information and sources on my website; all available at http://kosherveyosher.com.au/modx/index.php?id=288 with links from that page.
    I am also willing to engage in positive conversation with those who wish to remain anonymous. The entire world is my friend, it’s just that some don’t yet know that.

  • Jason says:

    At the very least, any rulings on Hashgocha should at all times be provided by a rabbinic authority who has a responsibility to a Kehilla, that is, occupies the position of a rav of a community, and is noted for his experience in matters of kashrut. Lone wolves are begging for criticism and/or rejection no matter how learned or pious they may be or perceived to be. There should be a minimum standard and that should be it.

  • anonymous,

    “I know this is loshon hora, but … ” What a disgrace! You make public, anonymous and unsubstantiated accusations against someone, and then later have the gall to say it’s about whether or not we should eat soft matzah, and not about KvY!

    Matzah Man,

    I also freshen up hand-baked matzahs (most of the stuff that comes to Australia is baked in December the previous year, and sits on a ship for many months). About 5 minutes in a hot oven works wonders.

  • Matzah Man says:

    yes.. I meant the hand baked shmurah baked six months ago in Israel or the US..
     
    I guess the rest is relatively fresher.
     
    Kol Hakavod for resurrecting authentic Judaism with new innovations!

  • frosh says:

    Anonymous,

    I find it curious that you are supposedly terrified of accidentally eating chometz, and yet you openly and admittedly spread loshon hora on the internet.

  • anonymous says:

    My intention was not to spread loshon hora, thats why I didnt mention specifics. I have heard alot of issues, all of which are very damning and inexcusable from a kashrus perspective.
     
    The reason I posted was to alert the otherwise unsuspecting kosher consumer that they would be ill-advised to trust anyone, let alone kosher veyoshor with such a huge responsibility. Bringing soft matzah to the aussie market is something that should not be taken lightly.
     
    I have no qualms telling the full stories, but they dont aid this discussion at all. Saying them would not constitute loshon hora, for 2 reasons.
    1) They are factual
    2) They involve [Eds: Accusation from anonymous commenter removed], and telling the public is in no way an infraction of any form of loshon hora.

    [Eds: This is a very sensitive topic involving someone’s parnoseh. We suggest you comment under your own name and provide a legitimate email address. Otherwise, we suggest you cease making serious accusations. Second and final warning]

  • Chaim says:

    anonymous..
     
    you need to learn the halachas of lashon hara.
     
    As the Baal Shem Tov taught: The evil you see in another is present in you. Work on that first and then get back to us.
     

  • ariel says:

    anonymous,

    I believe the very definition of lashon hara is that it be factual!

    Your 2nd point is completely subjective to your own level of observance.

    Reminds me of a friend who told me that “frum means you don’t shake hands with someone who eats gebrokhts..”

  • meir rabi says:

    I wish to post here a response and some queries expressed by many who contacted me.
    I also again extend, as I said in the previous post, an invitation for anyone who wishes to engage in positive dialogue. Please contact me I assure absolute confidentiality.
     

    I must say, with great reluctance and disquiet that there are a number of very troubling observations surrounding the actions of the RCV.*  Why has the RCV not published the letters they refer to?*  Why has the RCV not disclosed the authors of these two letters?
    It appears that they perhaps have now, Fri arvo, disclosed the authors.*  Why does the RCV “strongly advise the community against owning or eating” this Matza on Pesach? HaRav Wosner makes no such suggestion or allusion. It is clear that HaRav Wosner has no concerns other than his objection to this Matza being an innovation. Is it possible that this is the reason the letters the RCV refers to are not published?*  Some say that the RCV has created confusion by appearing to suggest that it is HaRav Wosner’s ruling that this Matza not be owned or eaten on Pesach. This is certainly not true.*  Is it possible that the RCV’s motivation, excitement and haste to act upon HaRav Wosner’s missive has contributed to this distortion?*  Is it possible that the RCV’s haste was due to their desire act against this new Matza rather than for the benefit of the community?
    *  Does the RCV recognise that there are many Jews who eat soft Matza exclusively on Pesach?
    *  Does the RCV recognise the many hundreds of generations (including their own ancestors) who ate and Rabbonim who endorsed soft Matza for Pesach?*  Which other rulings of the “world renowned” HaRav Wosner, has the RCV promoted? There are many rulings and customs that HaRav Wosner would be very pleased, indeed he would insist, that should be adopted in our community.*  Will the RCV be endorsing any other rulings of HaRav Wosner in the near future?

  • Jason says:

    Meir,
    Apart from Sephardim (even select Sephardim at that) who else uses this kind of matzah?
    Controversy is certainly not going to assist your cause.
    All the leading shuls have issued a warning.
    There is a message there, but if you receive some kind of pleasure from beating your head against a brick wall, by all means, go ahead.
    After all it is your head.
    This is no “laffing” matter!
     
     
     

  • Milhouse says:

    It’s funny that the Chasam Sofer’s quip about “chodosh” is quoted in this regard.  Because the Chasam Sofer did not eat thin crispy matzos like ours.   I don’t know how thick or soft his matzos were, and how they compared to these ones, but they were definitely thicker and softer than the ones we’re used to.

  • rachsd says:

    Jason,

    Do you not consider Sephardim to be part of the Jewish community? If you did, surely you would have to admit that there is a problem when the Rabbinical Council of Victoria, which is supposed to represent all Orthodox congregations, sends out such a press release. Indeed, you unwittingly bring up an important point – not only is it possible that soft matzah was the original matzah, but it has been eaten continuously until this day by some communities. Are you suggesting that the Sephardic communities who eat soft matzah, eat chametz on Pesach? What an insulting insinuation!

  • Jason says:

    Rachsd:
    Of course not.
    As another example, Sephardim eat kitniyot on Pesach wheras all the others don’t. That does not mean the Sephardim are on the wrong side of the tracks. Their authorities are tops, but the Ashkenazic Jews don’t follow their custom.You may be interested to know that not all Sephardim eat kitniyot, but those who do, certainly have solid sources to rely on.
    The same logic would apply to the laffas, at least from my perspective. An Ashkenazic Jew doesn’t have the leeway to follow a Sephardi custom when it suits.
    I don’t follow why and how you arrived at the conclusion that you did. No one was putting or trying to put down any branch of Jewry. I certainly wasn’t.
    If your sensibilities were offended, I humbly apologise, but I still adhere to my comments.

  • rachsd says:

    Jason,

    I’m glad that you weren’t trying to put down a branch of Judaism, but I have to disagree that this controversy is analogous with the difference between Ashkenazim and Sephardim on kitniyot. No one (including Ashkenazim) considers kitniyot to be chametz, but rather it is a longstanding and strong minhag of Ashkenazim not to eat kitniyot. Not so in this case, where people in this thread and elsewhere do not seem to be suggesting that it is simply not their custom to eat soft matzah, but rather that it should not be permitted by anyone.

  • meir rabi says:

    Shalom Jason,

    I have no wish to convert those who wish to use hard Matza, aside from my Halachic concerns about hard hand Matza not being suitable for Pesach, which is posted on my site.

    My first consideration is that there are many who do not enjoy hard Matza. I would like to offer them an alternative.
    There are many who as a consequence, cheat on Pesach and eat things they should not. I know that some of these people will use soft Matza rather than those other things.
    I am delighted to show that the Halacha has a broader horizon than what we may otherwise be led to believe.

    Best
    Rabbi MGR

  • frosh says:

    Jason,

    Kitniyot are not, and have never been chometz. Sephardim do not eat chometz.

    Therefore, the accusation that laffa matzah is chometz is not equivalent to saying that laffa matzah is akin to kitniyot.

    Btw, for your education and also edification: The Kitniyot Liberation Front

  • meir rabi says:

    Shalom Jason,

    I am very pleased you mentioned Kitniyot. These “legumes” are mentioned in Halacha as being Halachically by dint of custom, unacceptable to those of Ashkenazi extraction, unless difficult circumstances require their use as food.
    However, there is no mention in Halacha, not in the Mishneh Berurah, not in the Aruch HaShulchan and not in the BaAl HaTanya’s ShO; of any prohibition or even custom for Ashkenasim not to eat soft Matza.
    As I have said here and on my site Rabbis Bluth, a well known talmid of Reb Moshe Feinstein and Rah H Shechter, wo requires no introduction, both state categorically that any Jew may eat soft matza if they wish.

    Best
    Rabbi MGR

     

  • meir rabi says:

    It appears that I need address the false assertion being circulated, regarding the flour used for making our LSSM (Laffa Style Soft Matza)
    I assure everyone who is interested to know, that the LSSM is made from flour that has not been exposed to water in any manner; not in being washed clean from impurities, not in being milled and not in order to suppress flour dust and risk of fire and explosion.
    I have personally inspected the mill and its workings and viewed it with the head foreman and engineer.
    I also wish to inform all those interested that I have already made arrangements for next year’s production, to use Australian grown and milled flour that is Shemurah, guarded from risk of becoming Chametz, from the time of harvest. Next year PG we will enjoy LSSM which is Shemurah from KeTziRah; may it be in Jerusalem.
     
    Best
    Rabbi MGR

  • Jason says:

    Frosh:
     
    You miss the point.
    No one is suggesting that Laffa is Chometz, but it is clear that Laffa is problematic. References to Laffa being a staple source of Matza for (certain) Sephardic communities suggests that it it not widely accepted within other branches of Judaism, just as kitniyot is not. That does not mean that kitniyot or laffa is chometz. It means that both kitniyot and laffa are problematic for Ashkenzi Jews who are forbidden to switch particularly due to a culinary taste. If that is the traditional perspective, skirting around the edges may be inviting, but opens up a Pandora box in broader terms. It would be nice to chop and change at whim but it just doesn’t work that way. Another example which comes to mind. There are different customs as to how long one should wait until eating dairy after meat. I’m sure all of them have good halachic backgrounds, but once one has selected a particular branch/view to follow, wouldn’t consistency be expected? On that basis, no matter how Pesachdic kosher laffa is, no matter who eats it, people who do not generally subscribe to that particular view, can only sit and watch (with envy?) while others flitter round at whim as long as there is a  rav who puts an individual hechsher on an item of their choice. May as well do that with everything. May as well type in a question to Google, type in the desired answer and wait for Google will direct you which rabbi should be asked.

  • frosh says:

    Jason,

    I’m glad you are not suggesting laffa matzah is chometz.

    As for the kitniyot prohibition, apart from a number of authorities view as its silly rationale (ok, I accept that you and many other authorities do not consider it silly), the inter-marrying of Jews from different ethnic backgrounds will likely see the practice of kitniyot abstention virtually disappear this century – at least outside of the charedi community.

  • Milhouse says:

    Why would “intermarriage” cause the Ashkenazi minhag to disappear?   Ashkeanziyot who marry Sefardim start eating kitniyot, but Sefardiot who marry Ashkenazim stop eating them.   Since these marriages happen about as often in each direction, we can expect the overall prevalence of the minhag to remain the same.
    Don’t forget, this is not just some folk practise, it’s binding halacha.

  • frosh says:

    Milhouse,

    As I understand it, the trend in Israel (where ‘intermarrying’ between various Jewish ethnic groups is greatest) amongst srugim and certainly masortim (with a lower case ‘m’) is more consistent with my description, and less so with your model.

    Your model is probably accurate concerning charedim though.

  • Is there any evidence (i.e. writings from halachic authorities) that the soft matzah custom is something that is sefardic-specific, like kitniyot? There seems to be a paucity of documented discussion on the topic dating back a few hundred years.

  • Milhouse says:

    Frosh, this is not a matter of choice, it’s a matter of halacha.   An Ashkenazi does not get the right to eat kitniyot just by marrying a Sefardia, any more than a Sefardi gets the right to eat non-glatt meat by marrying an Ashkenazia.

  • frosh says:

    Milhouse,

    A trend is no less real, simply because you do not like it.

    Furthermore, I suggest you read the Kitniyot Liberation Front literature, because you seem to think yours is the only interpretation out there.

  • Henry Zelman says:

    Since when has it been right to denounce someone in public and create an atmosphere where Le’shan Hara is the order of the day.
     
    The RCA has done exactly the opposite to the example that our sages both great and not so great have tried to encourage us to follow.
     
    I may not know as much as some of them or some of you but “Evil speak” will not bring about the time of Jewish redemption.
     
    The only thing that is  not Kosher in this matter is the action of the RCA

    I may be stating what is obvious, but we the Jews of the Victorian community need teachers and leaders that consider us with respect, and give us the information so that we may learn and decide for ourselves.

     

     

     

     

  • meir rabi says:

    Dear Friends and Supporters,
    I am indebted to you all for your kindness and courage. I have received countless messages of support from all over the world. YeYasher KoChaChem.
    Let us rejoice in our great success and not be distressed by the shortcomings of human nature.
    I have prepared a 4 page PDF that I hope can be easily printed, circulated and distributed to friends. Let those who wish to know have the opportunity to learn.
    http://kosherveyosher.com.au/modx/assets/files/LSSM%20PDF%202%20CLMNS.pdf
     
     

  • Politics says:

    Unfortunately many Rabbis in Melbourne don’t like competition. Rabbi Rabi is the new boy on the block! . Rabbi Katz of Adass is no exception to reject competition.

    The letter from Rabbi Wosner in Bnei Brak was written by Rabbi Wosners secretary a Rabbi Klein who happens to be Rabbi Katz’s first cousin. Rabbi Klein is well known to get Rabbi Wosner (A Rabbi in his 90s) to back whatever he wants. This is not the first letter from Rabbi Wosner to help Rabbi Katz.

  • meir rabi says:

    Wow, you sure know a lot about Dayan Katz.
    I learn every weekday morning in the Adass Yisroel Kollel, of which Dayan Katz is the dean. Although we certainly have very different perspectives of life and Judaism, I respect him as the dean and also for the traditions he represents and fights to preserve.
    I would have been raising various issues to do with Matza baking for at least three weeks in the Kollel, before I arrived with a pack of Laffa Style Soft Matza. My word, you should have seen their faces and heard their reactions.
    I never anticipated that anyone of the core or even around the core of Adass would ever consider eating my Matza, and I was right, none of them did.
    I must also say that Adass are very loyal to HaRav Wosner and greatly committed to the principle of objecting to innovations, Chosh Assur Min HaTorah. Nevertheless I have continued my regular hours there and have not had a nasty word or gesture directed towards me. They are polite and respectful.
    Anyway I dont think I am a competitor, Adass only make very small batches of hand Matza. I am rather, a scallywag, a provocateur, but of a friendly, rascally nature.

  • Chochom says:

    If you follow Rav Wosner you cannot allow your wife to drive a car!

  • meir rabi says:

    Shucks, there’s a ton of stuff of HaRav Wosner that I would like to see the RACV promoting for Melbourne

  • meir rabi says:

    No  wait this has nothing to do with cars and women driving! – I meant the RCV

  • Henry Zelman says:

    Please forgive my curiosity, but how often would the community leadership (RCA) make such a proclamation without explanation in a way as they have about this Laffa style Matza ?

    I’m new to this forum and subject.

  • Jason says:

    Henry and everyone else.
    Those who are (genuinely) interested have been invited to ask their local rabbi or Kashrut authority.
    “Should consumers seek further information regarding this matter we urge them to consult their Rov or Kashrus authority as a matter of priority”.
    Then do so!
    If your rabbi is either unwilling or incapable of providing a  a reasonable response, then do what you believe is right.
    But think with you head, not your palate.
    With all due respect to this forum, does anyone expect a definitive answer here?
     
     

  • meir rabi says:

    Shalom Jason,
    Certainly this site can provide answers. and it can provide questions too.
    Everyone visiting here can find information and opinions that they can evaluate and consider. This enables them to ask their rabbi and their friends questions of a type and of a quality that they might otherwise not be able to.
    The great student of the Vilna Gaon, Rabbi Chayim of Vloszin, wrote in his commentary on Pirkey Avos, RuAch Chayim, Chapter 2, that the Mishnah advises that seeking advice gives one wisdom. He explains this to mean – ask many their opinion but it is your wisdom that must decide. And one can only acquire the wisdom by consulting others.
    It is our decision which binds us to Gd. We can not say to Gd, “I followed Rabbi Z, what was I supposed to do? I don’t know so much. I have not had the opportunities to learn that others have had.” I know this sounds unfair; unfortunately I do not have time to explain now. PG we can discuss this at a later time when we are less pressured.
    Jason, do not underestimate the value of thinking people and their conversations. I am confident that everyone, even those who seem to mask their comments with less than agreeable considerations, are in truth listening and  thinking.
     
    Best
    Rabbi MGR

  • Henry Zelman says:

    Jason, my palate was not the main issue, but my view on the sanctity of a Good Name”. I thank you for your advice and hope to learn more from honest and open discussion

  • Jason says:

    Dear Rabbi,
    After all is said and done, in addition to taking your comments on board, readers should consult their own rabbi. One would imagine that a rabbi would not have any particular axe to grind, and therefore would be able to give an honest answer, reflecting their interpretation of  Halacha and minhagim. It should certainly give you more comfort with the knowledge that if there are other local rabbinical authorities who share your view,  if it does turn out that your conclusions were incorrect or not applicable, the guilt load of having been instrumental  in that a fellow Jew/Jewess has been “nichshal”, would be shared. If on the other hand no other rabbi shares your view, I believe as a lone voice, particularly as “you have no flock” you should desist and accept that either you are way ahead of your time, or  simply……..wrong!
     

  • meir rabi says:

    Shalom Jason,
    I agree, everyone should ask their rabbi. The question is, what are they going to ask?
    This was the point that I tried to address in my earlier post. We should all be able to question, with information that is complete and accurate. in order to be able to engage in a coherent and mature discussion with our friends and with our rabbis.
    The other rabbis who share my view include Rav Bluth and Rav H Shechter. So I think even the protesters would have a hard time saying I am wrong. I can hardly be considered a lone voice. Why Jason, do you consider that I am?
    I encourage people to maintain their traditions. I respect HaRav Wosner. And I have no problem with people who do not eat LSSM because they want to keep tradition. And that is the extent of HaRav Wosner’s concern and protest.
    HaRav Wosner does not say that he suspects LSSM is Chometz. In fact by not having said that, he is certainly accepting that within the framework of Halacha it is not a problem. His concern is limited to one thing: he is opposed to innovation. This is a very strong commendation that LSSM is Kosher for Pesach.
    HaRav Wosner certainly knows that I have no “flock”; that does not concern him. Why does it concern you, Jason?
    The question you are really asking is: what do the rabbis who are opposed, know about LSSM? When they are asked a question, let’s say by yourself, what information do they have, upon which they make their Halachic decision?
    What do they answer to your question, Jason, “Rabbi, why are you instructing me not to eat or own this LSSM on Pesach?”
     
    Best
    Rabbi Meir Rabi
     

  • Jason says:

    Dear Rabbi,
    The local rabbis are well aware of the questions that will be asked, and what’s more what need to be asked. From my inquiries, it is clear that you have not made a new discovery, in fact the local rabbis are most concerned that people this year, may very well be eating chometz , a ‘la laffa. If you arguments and rationale are so clear and overwhelming, why have none of the local rabbis shown any support for your innovations, both past and current? Are they all thick? By the way, I also understand that Rabbi landau of Bnei Brak is has also thrown his hat in the ring and has come out very strongly against. Why?
    It begs the question that as this issue is so controversial why not err on the side of caution, or is this another case of  “break through at all costs”? Rabbinic maturity is required and sadly, it’s lacking. For the record, I’d love to have laffa matzah, but whilst it may pass the “palate test”, it certainly does not pass the “smell test”. I think I’ll play it safe and let you and others be the “experimenters.” If I am wrong, big deal, I’ll have missed out on a bit of fancy matza, however if you’re wrong….etc etc. Have a great Yomtov whatever you eat. L’Shana Haba B’Yerushalayim!

  • meir rabi says:

    Oh yes, and as a friend just notified me, on the website oif Rav Aviner, one of the most senior Rabbis of the religious Zionist movement in Israel:

    Q: Is it permissible for Ashkenazim to eat the soft matzah made by the Sefardim?
    A: Yes, it is not chametz or kitniyot.

  • meir rabi says:

    Jason Shalom to you.
    I apologise if I have offended you. I am sorry to perceive your tone of voice is altered.
    I respect your convictions to desist eating what you would love to eat on Pesach, due only to your loyalty to the principles of the Chasam Sofer. I am sure you will be rewarded for such integrity.
    You have not really answered the questions I asked you but have raised another issue, namely, there will be those who may eat any laffa rather than Matza since they see my LSSM as being Kosher for Pesach.
    As I said earlier, I can hardly be considered a lone voice, as I just posted here, from a friend; aside from Rav Bluth and Rav Shechter, Rav Aviner is in favour of permitting Ashkenasim to eat soft Matza. That soft Matza looks just like regular Pita or Maloach or some such stuff.
    As in many aspects of Rabbinics, there are a variety of opinions. That is Gd’s will. He does not want the Torah to be standardised. “As the hammer smashes the stone so are the words of Gd.”
    I beg you to please send me Rav Landau’s letter ASAP. I have not seen it nor had it verified that he has written a letter.
    Jason, dont you think that those who are trying to help should disclose what they know or what they have, at the earliest possible moment?
    The degree of controversy is determined not by what I have done. I was just doing what a number of well recognised rabbonim are supporting. My continued presence in the Adass Israel, a bastion of Chasam Sofer opposition to change and innovation, in both the Shule and Kollel where I learn and pray, and my continued engagement with my chaverim there, has not raised anyone’s ire or derision. On the contrary they are cordial and respectful.
    They ARE opposed but there is certainly no expression of outrage, disdain or revulsion since I was never seen as suggesting that Adass Israel should eat LSSM.
    Have a Pesach Kosher VeSameach, may we meet in Jerusalem and eat there of the Zevachim and the Pesachim.
     
    Best
    Rabbi Meir rabi

  • Milhouse says:

    Once again it should be pointed out that in all probability the Chasam Sofer’s own matzos bore more resemblance to the soft matzos than to our thin and crispy ones.   So citing him as an authority against the soft matzos, on the grounds that chodosh ossur, is ironic.

  • dovid says:

     
    < I would argue that for a city this size, a suitably governed unified kashrut authority is the best option>.
    I would argue that there is no difference between a single rov who knows gives a hechsher and a kashrut authority that is there only for the money. See:
    שו”ת אגרות משה יורה דעה ח”ד סימן א
    ח. המעלה שיש להשגחה על ידי רבים היא רק כשלועד הכשרות אין ריוח ממה שמכשיר.
    “ואני זוכר איך שהרה”ג ראזענבערג ז”ל שעמד בראש ועד הכשרות דהסתדרות הרבנים, שהוא החמיר מאד בעניני ההשגחות על עניני כשרות, והיה אומר שעיקר המעלה שהמשגיח נוטל שכרו מועד הכשרות ולא מהבעלים, שלכן א”צ להחניף את הבעלים שרוצים רק שיתירו להם הכל, כי ועד הכשרות משלם שכירותם והם הבעלים עליו, ולא בעלי בתי החרושת והחנויות שצריכין השגחה. שלכן עושה המשגיח מלאכתו באמונה דאין לו שום צורך להחניף לבעלים. והועד הכשרות הוא אלו שנמנו מהרבנים דועד הכשרות, שאין לועד הכשרות שום שכר יותר כשיכשירו משיאסרו. ואם עתה נשתנה שועד הכשרות יש להם ריוח מזה שמכשירין, ובכסף זה יכולים לשלם להממונים שכרם, הרי אין שום מעלה בועד כשרות ציבורי יותר מזה שמשגיחים רבנים יחידים בעצמן. ואולי גרוע, שאין האחריות מורגשת כל כך על רבים, כמו שהיא מורגשת על יחיד שכל האחריות עליו, שאיכא יראה עליו ביותר כשימצא שיצא איזה מכשול וטעות, והרבה רבנים ובע”ב בודקין אחריו, יותר מרבים שאין בודקין אחריהן. וגם צודק מה שהזכרת בשמי שהעולם חושבין שהשגחה בא ע”י שמשגיחים על פעולת עשיית האוכלין, ולא רק שפוסקים ומכריעים שכשר בלי השגחה. וכל רב שנותן השגחה בלי להשגיח על עצם הבישול, הרי הוא מרמה את העולם ועובר על גניבת דעת הבריות ועוד איסורים בין אדם לחברו, נוסף למה שאפשר שמכשילן באיסור מאכלות אסורות”.
    <a suitably governed unified kashrut authority>
    is it a joke for pesach or for all year around?
     

  • meir rabi says:

    This is the Teshuva of Harav M Feinstien I referred to earlier, thanks for posting it Reb Dovid.
    I will translate parts of this.
    If the kashrus org earns money through their certifications and these monies are used to pay the various employed officers, then the community Kashrus organization has absolutely no superior credibility than any individual Rov who would be giving Hashgacha.

    In fact the community Kashrut organisation may well be a less reliable option since there is no one individual to bear the responsibility and a group is less vigilant and caring since no one individual bears ultimate responsibility. Whereas an individual Rov must bear the consequences of his decisions and actions and is fearful of making an error and there are many who will check and pursue him. This is not at all the case for a communal kashrus authority.

  • Nu? says:

    Email received from Rabbi Mattis Kantor who will be in Australia the Shabbat after Pesach



    Who is Rabbi KVY?
    You may feel free to publicize the following.

    How is it that Meir Rabi can make such broad statements without basic proofs, and remain unchallenged on the simple logic?
    e.g.

    “..hard matza custom from the 1800’s…” Where does he get that from (certainly not from my Codex)? If it is so (which is highly unlikely – as chassidim would never change from what their previous Rebbeim did, and the Baal Shem Tov dates back 16-1700’s) – why was it (the “new” hard matza) not banned under the Chasam Sofer’s principal of “nothing new”?
    Hard matza is mezonos? Yes, there are many sefardim who make mezonos on hard matza “crackers” all year – BUT not on Pesach.
    Sefardim eat soft matza? Where? Which ones? Temanim still have remnants but by and large the North African Sedfardim? (BTW the Temanim are not Sefardim and many are insulted when so called.)
    Does Meir Rabi make mezonos on regular matza a whole year? Can he quote a Posek who tells him to?
    Not eating gebrochts (as in kneidlach) according to Meir Rabi is a “fringe group” minhag? In the USA it is a more thriving minhag than non-gebrochts, that supports  a major industry.
    He constantly says that the Gemara and Poskim all refer to matza as soft. 7 examples please (that should keep him busy till after Pesach – next years).
    How can anyone ignore the fact that the matza is soft because it is moist? So what if it was baked at 1,000c, after it is baked it has residuals of water and dough. One speck of flour in the dough… duh.

    I wonder what Meir thinks of the maamar chazal “kol haporetz geder yischenu nachash.”

    I personally welcome the advent of soft matza, but not a movement led by an arrogant upstart. My preference is to keep away from snakebites, and as a precaution, from snakes who hide in the grass.

    Let us have soft matza, but in a well researched way. (How about an industrial chemist analyzing both types of matza, for molecular evidence of a fermentation free product – or two.)

  • meir rabi says:

    How is it that Meir Rabi can make such broad statements without basic proofs, and remain unchallenged on the simple logic?
    Just have a look at the KVY website.
    · “..hard matza custom from the 1800’s…” Where does he get that from (certainly not from my Codex)
    From many places but let’s look at the BaEr HeiTev, that’s a famous commentator on the page of every ShO – it’s on the website
    · If it is so (which is highly unlikely – as chassidim would never change from what their previous Rebbeim did, and the Baal Shem Tov dates back 16-1700’s) – why was it (the “new” hard matza) not banned under the Chasam Sofer’s principal of “nothing new”?
    Who knows? Is this the best “proof” available to the critics of LSSM?
    · Hard matza is mezonos? Yes, there are many sefardim who make mezonos on hard matza “crackers” all year – BUT not on Pesach.
    What’s your point?
    · Sefardim eat soft matza? Where? Which ones? Temanim still have remnants but by and large the North African Sedfardim? (BTW the Temanim are not Sefardim and many are insulted when so called.)
    Thanks for your edifying comments but I know Sefaradim who do eat soft Matza and say they have done so for many generations.
    · Does Meir Rabi make mezonos on regular matza a whole year?
    I don’t understand your point?
    · Can he quote a Posek who tells him to?
    Cousin Mattis, have you not missed the point, again?
    · Not eating gebrochts (as in kneidlach) according to Meir Rabi is a “fringe group” minhag? In the USA it is a more thriving minhag than non-gebrochts, that supports  a major industry.
    I suppose it depends on how one defines “fringe”. It appears that Mattis and I differ on the definition.
    · He constantly says that the Gemara and Poskim all refer to matza as soft. 7 examples please (that should keep him busy till after Pesach – next years).
    Is there any point responding to those who don’t bother to read, never mind research, the prepared information?
    · How can anyone ignore the fact that the matza is soft because it is moist?
    Of course. Did we suggest otherwise?
    · So what if it was baked at 1,000c,
    Wrong again Mattis, it is not the LSSM that is baked at 1300F but the hand baked rock hard Matza. You really should take a little more time to read the website with a clear mind. Our Sages say one who becomes angry becomes confused and errs.
    · after it is baked it has residuals of water
    All Matza has some residual moisture.
    · and dough.
    Not according to the Shulchan Aruch. There is no residual dough in LSSM. What makes you think there is?
    · One speck of flour in the dough… duh.
    Mattis, you are thinking of Gebrochts, the custom of a fringe group. We are discussing Matza; no specks of flour in well made Matza.

    I wonder what Meir thinks of the maamar chazal “kol haporetz geder yischenu nachash.”

    I think about it occasionally. Why do you want to know what I think about that MaAmar Chazal?

    I personally welcome the advent of soft matza, but not a movement led by an arrogant upsart.

    I thought you were of the tradition that shuns changes. If you have not seen your Rebbe doing it then you will reject it. Did I miss something? Besides are you not worried about residual water in the Soft Matza?

    My preference is to keep away from snakebites, and as a precaution, from snakes who hide in the grass.

    Better to worry about other things our Sages taught us to learn from the snake.

    Let us have soft matza, but in a well researched way.

    And what will Mattis do if his hard hand baked Matza is shown to have more leavening than our soft LSSM?

    (How about an industrial chemist analizing both types of matza, for molecular evidence of a fermentation free product – or two.)

    I am surprised that Mattis thinks this type of test is a Halachically valid test, I am sure that HaRav Wosner would disagree.

    Shalom to all
    Rabbi Meir G Rabi

  • dovid says:

    the “issur” to change minhgim is for the rcv like Chicken soup,  they use it whenever they they don’t have or don’t know  a halachic reasn for their objection,  but  want to be seen Orthodox.
    they used it against shira chadasha.
     

  • Jason says:

    Nice!
    Now that’s a thought. Johnny Baker – Shira Chadasha could use R’Meir. There must  a hechsher loophole there somewhere. Dovid, if the shidduch comes off, you should put your hand out for Shadchanut money! A true match made in heaven if ever there was one. Grasshoppers for entree? There are kosher varieties, you know.

  • Malki Rose says:

    I am wondering why Jason feels that remaining an ardent eater of hard hand baked Matza would be ‘playing it safe’.
    Has he considered that perhaps it is the opposite? What if it turns out that the soft Matza is in fact the only really ‘safe’ option.
    After all, many sources refer to hard Matza as ‘cakes’. And it certainly appears that halachically, eating hand baked HARD matzah does not make you Yotzeh. (especially since it is deserving of the bracha of Mezonos)
    It is really quite clear in the Gemara that Hillel’s Korech was pretty much a ‘Souvlaki’.
    Most of those who have a problem with LSSM, are unwilling to engage in mature and informed debate, but rather, insist on citing immature and unhelpful phrases like “who is he to go against the RCV”, “he doesnt lead a kehila so he has no right”, “it couldnt possibly be right if most rabbi’s dont agree with him”  and my personal favourite (mentioned above by Dovid) “there is an Issur against changing minhagim”  – each one a more lame excuse for lack of discussion than the previous one.
    Not a single ‘excuse’ actually addresses the issue of soft vs hard matza.  They all just skirt merrily around the issue. (It seems to boil down to a rather stupifying case of the gutsiest race in the world being filled with lemmings, too scared to think for themselves and search for truth. Truths which can be found everywhere. If they’d only bother to look.)
    A proper discussion or debate needs to be had, in an honest forum. Of course the RCV would never show up to such a debate, because they keep demonstrating an unwillingness to do so.
    And so, in an alternate and more just reality if such a discussion were to take place (oh wait, I think there was one once upon a time.. ah yes, the Gemara)…
    …then Jason, Mattis and others what would you do, as Rabbi Rabi asked,  if hard matzah were found to be more leavening or chametz than soft matzah? Or in fact, not halachically matzah at all?
     
     
     

  • Sue from Sydney says:

    Malki Rose says:
    April 5, 2010 at 3:45 am

    Wasn’t that Yom Tov?

  • Sue from Sydney says:

    Malki Rose says:
    April 5, 2010 at 3:45 am

    Wasn’t that Yom Tov?

  • Judah says:

    Has anyone pointed out that  Sephardim in the Sephardic lands usually made soft Matza and in may places have now reitroduced this tradition.
    In fact the crisp/hard Matza is Mezonot to Sephardim outside of Pesach.

  • Observer says:

    Malki Rose –
    perhaps you would like to see my comments on the other thread “Rabbi Rabbi responds to RC criticism” and you will see that you have quoted very selectively from the criticism levelled against Rabbi Rabi.  There are people who genuinely wish to have the issues surrounding this local innovation cleared up.  However Rabbi Rabi has simply not answred the real practical questions asked regarding his local soft matza production.

    Please note that the issue regarding the local soft matza  is not, as some have attempted to portray it, whether soft or hard matza is superior or acceptable or what brachah is made etc.  There is certainly room for legitimate debate regarding those general issues.  Such debate has gone on for centuries. Where there is genuine concern is whether the locally produced soft matza is indeed the tradional soft matza used by the Teimanim today and by others throughout the centuries.  Has it been produced according to an accpetable traditional method from proper KLP materials etc.?  Any innovation such as this needs to be properly explained and the inevitable questions answered.  However attempts to elicite full and frank information have not yielded relevant results.  As such, in my humble opinion the issur issued by Rabbi Wosner and the subsequent caution issued by the RCV – ON THE LOCAL PRODUCT –  is the only advice that should be heeded by any truly objective frumer Yid  REGARDING THIS LOCAL PRODUCT.  

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    This article said, “The custom among followers of the school of Brisk is to have their matzah so well baked as to be almost burnt, so as to eliminate any possible risk of chametz.”

    How absurd. This is just one more example of our People following the letter of the Law and totally missing the point of it. If you have to make up traditions and rules and regulation in order for you to serve haShem right, then your heart is not in it and it is altogether the same as if you did not obey. Circumcise your HEART, not just your flesh – THAT was the command of haShem. Your righteous works do not make you holy before haShem; believing in Him with your whole heart does, as it is written, “And Abraham believed [haShem] and it was counted unto him for righteousness. The Almighty must be so incredibly sick to the teeth with all of unbiblical traditional stupidity. If you don’t put leavening in your bread you will have obeyed the law of Pasach. But to make laws about cooking times and thickness of the matzah, ridiculously baking it to death to the point of being burnt, these things are NOT the command of haShem or Moses but is self-serving self-righteous nonsense that will make the man who does these things a baffoon with horrible tasting matzah. Your water and flour will not suddenly turn into leavening. When will we stop adding to the Law of G-d the things He did not command? The Law of G-d is LIBERTY, not a straight jacket of misery! The Psalms tell us to have joy in the Lord our G-d, but there isn’t anything joyful about a people who insist on constantly adding their two cent to His Holy Words! In fact, that is the whole message behind the Matzah – it represents haShem’s perfectly undiluted and uncontaminated Word. But we keep adding our filthy leaven to His Word, thinking that we know better than G-d. Do we think haShem is an idiot? If He wanted us to do all these THINGS that we’ve invented, don’t you think He would have told us when He gave us the Law? He is not a cruel G-d.

    Do what haShem commanded – not what you THINK He commanded or what YOU want to do. Add water to flour; let it sit for one minute or five hours – who cares! You’ve done all that was required and trying to make yourself feel holier by adding regulations that G-d never commanded will not earn you extra point with Him. Why should he bless blasphemy?

    Well did haShem say of us, “A Stiffnecked and disobedient People!”

  • Milhouse says:

    Really?! Where exactly did God say not to add leavening to bread? You won’t find such a pasuk anywhere in the Torah. God told us not to eat chametz, and Chazal tell us that chametz is what results when flour and water sit together undisturbed for long enough, which they in normal conditions is 18 minutes. And God told us to trust Chazal and obey them, so defying them is defying Him. I’d suspect you of Karaism, but you’re not even that, since you’re simply making up what you claim is the Biblical requirement.

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    MILHOUSE – Anyone who esteems the writings of Chazal as equal with or superior to ha’TaNaCh is a blasphemer of the highest order. And any Chazal that adds to ha’Torah is a blasphemer, as it is written, “Every word of G-d is pure; He is a shield unto them that put their trust in Him. You shall not add unto His words lest He reprove you and you are found to be a liar!”

    It’s so sad to see that you put so much faith in the words of men rather than in the Almighty – a grave sin for which the Creator has punished our people again and again and again. Our people are ever learning yet never coming to the knowledge of the Truth.

    As to whether I am of Karaism, I do not affiliate myself with that. I will gladly listen to the preaching of our rabbis, but I am barMitzvah with as much right as any man to read and interpret Scripture, and I will have no God but haShem and no teacher of absolute authority but His Scriptures and His Spirit. And there is no high priest of Israel nor Sanhedrin nor prophets to which the Scriptures command me to obey except for they which are written in Scripture. If you wish to blindly subject the fate of your soul to the doctrines of uninspired extra-biblical men, whom you euphamistically call “sages”, then that is on your own head before haShem.

  • Milhouse says:

    Got it. You’re a filthy heretic, and have no portion in the Next World. Enjoy Gehennom.

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    I declare the Lord G-d of Israel and His Holy Scriptures penned by the hand of Moses and the Prophets. In what way does that make me a “filthy heretic”? You call me a heretic because I will not put my faith on the words of sinful men whom you bestow infalibility. That makes you an even greater sinner than they.

    And who died and made you G-d with power to condemn and damn to a person to Gehennom like the pope of the Catholics claim power to do? “Vengeance is MINE, says the Lord, I will repay.” Who are you, a sinner, to usurp the power and right of the Almighty? But rather than curse you for your blasphemy and your defiance of the Supreme Law (Love the Lord your G-d, and YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF), I will pray the G-d of Abraham, whom you do not know, to take pity on you and forgive you for your treason against Him and your damnations of me His servant.

  • Milhouse says:

    שלושה הן הכופרים בתורה: האומר שאין התורה מעם ה’, אפילו פסוק אחד, אפילו תיבה אחת–אם אמר משה אמרו מפי עצמו, הרי זה כופר בתורה; וכן הכופר בפירושה, והיא תורה שבעל פה, והכחיש מגידיה, כגון צדוק ובייתוס; והאומר שהבורא החליף מצוה זו במצוה אחרת, וכבר בטלה תורה זו, אף על פי שהיא הייתה מעם ה’, כגון הנוצריים וההגריים. כל אחד משלושה אלו כופר בתורה.

    http://www.mechon-mamre.org/i/1503.htm#17

  • Milhouse says:

    בית דין הגדול שבירושלים–הם עיקר תורה שבעל פה, והם עמוד ההוראה, ומהם חוק ומשפט יוצא לכל ישראל, ועליהם הבטיחה תורה: שנאמר “על פי התורה אשר יורוך, ועל המשפט אשר יאמרו לך–תעשה” (דברים יז,יא), זו מצות עשה. וכל המאמין במשה רבנו ובתורתו–חייב לסמוך מעשה הדת אליהם, ולהישען עליהן.

    http://www.mechon-mamre.org/i/e301.htm

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    Yes, Deuteronomy does say that. And I will gladly hear and obey any biblically authorized rabbi SO LONG as they do not contradict or defy or add to the law of haShem. the same law that you quote in Deuteronomy ALSO states that NO ONE may add to the Law of haShem and that anyone who says in the name of haShem that which haShem has not said is to be “cut off from among the people”.

    But what YOU are saying is that I should just blindly obey a sage even if they defy the Scriptures. I will never do that, because Law commands that such a sage be destroyed. You are also falsely insinuating that no man but the sages can know G-d and His will. The House of Israel is the people of G-d who are not only called by G-d but also commanded to know Him personally. If you knew G-d, He would be your Father and He would commune with you and write His Law on your heart, as He swore to do for them that love Him; but you do not know Him but instead you are filled with judgment and hatred and anger and bitterness – and worse, you are filled with arrogant pride.

    Lastly, you are confusing Christians with Roman Catholics. They are NOT the same thing. Christians observe only the Scriptures and defend Israel, which Catholics do not do. Calling a Catholic a Christian is like calling a Muslim a Jew or like calling a Toaist a Buddhist. They may use similar terminology but they are in no way the same.

  • Milhouse says:

    As I said, a filthy Hell-bound heretic. Not a real Jew at all. By the way, where did you see in the Torah anything about adding leaven to bread? You made that up yourself. YOU added it to the Torah, without any authority. You’re no better than a Catholic.

  • KMA says:

    Just great…A Jew 4 Jesus nutter posting here?

    Please , Jacob Betmelech (aka Drek ben Drek) give us a break..head back to your temple in Bambra Rd and leave us in peace.

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    Drek ben derk? Jew 4 jesus? You people are so demonically possessed that you are now talking babble. This is where I step away from your lunatic Mad Hatter’s tea party. Good bye.

    haShem have mercy on them and deliver them with your love, for they have lay false charges against You, Father of heaven, and speak against Your Word and spew out hate and death against Your people. Send Your Spirit to remove the veil from their eyes.

  • Pinchos says:

    Dear Rabbi Rabi, I am sorry you have to spend so much time on the web explaining yourself when so few are listening. Perhaps, instead, it would be nicer to take the family out and enjoy the beautiful sunshine.

    I am puzzled that the RCV are quoting Rabbi Yosef Elyashiv when at the same time Dovid Segal doubts his psak with convincing arguments.

    Could you not ask the sheilah from the Rabbi Yosef Elyashiv just as the RCV did and let us know the result?

    I am also confused as to why he is the only Rabbi in the world that can be asked about this. Will Yiddishkeit stop when he can no longer answer sheilahs. Is there no other Rabbonim in the world able to give their opinion on something that appears to have been the norm not that long ago?

    Good luck and a gut yom tov

  • Pinchos, you offer sound advice.

    We have enjoyed YmTv and the intermediate days as well. Beautiful weather and great friends, time to relax with family and learn as well.

    Re R Elyashiv please see http://www.realmatza.com/harav-elyashiv.html

    Some may be inclined to say that Yiddishkeit has already stopped and what we are observing is proof for that.

    Chag SaMeAch, Gutt YmTv

    Rabbi MGR

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    Here’s a thought.
    Why don’t you all stop seeking man’s opinion and try reading the Scriptures for a change. Why don’t you stop asking men what G-d wants and start asking G-d Himself. You all act like He’s some unapproachable heartless monster sitting on a throne of damnations. It is written that He grieves because His people refuse to respect Him like a Father and will not seek His counsel.

  • we follow Halacha. Halacha is shaped by the oral traditions. These traditions are in the Talmud. They are as authentic as the written Torah.

    It is not that complicated.

  • Sam says:

    Jacob

    This is where I step away from this mad haters tea party, goodbye. What is your problem, can’t you stick to your word?
    In any event, your brand of mishugas is boring as bat shit to readers here.

  • Pinchos says:

    Goodbye Jacob.

  • Jacob Betmelech says:

    You’ve rejected all of the prophets that haShem sent to us, like your forefathers who murdered them, so why should I be surprised that you would reject my defense of the Word that haShem gave us through them. You make the Word of haShem to have no effect by your traditions which you exalt as equal to the Word of haShem. I had thought such blasphemies had finally been put aside, after the repeated punishments of haShem since the days of Moses, buty you have not learned, nor have you heard the Lord, and still refuse to obey Him, risking your inheritance.

    I leave you to your blasphemy and the judgment you will receive for it; though I sincerely pray that you repent for your treason so that the Almighty can heal and deliver you. But make no mistake, when you blaspheme haShem, you can no longer be called sons of Israel, but traitors and outlaws.

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