Thinking out loud; discussing and debating the current issues and challenges affecting the Torah and yeshiva communities such as population growth, dangers of technology, parnassah, shidduchim, financial support of Torah and Chesed institutions, news of the yeshiva world and reviewing frum blogs,Torah media outlets.
With a few days left until Rosh Chodesh Iyar 5774 here is the listof places where one could make a Bracha on a tree for Birchas ilanos 2014/5774. The list is courtesy of Misaskim a comprehensive list of fruit trees throughout the USA and Canada. Although the list is from 2012 we can assume most of the trees should still be standing except for those that were knocked down by Hurricane Sandy. Most poskim agree that the halachah mentions Nissan since generally, that is the month in which trees begin to bloom one may recite the Bracha even after Rosh Chodesh Iyar as long as the tree is still Blossoming. see Mishna Berurah 226:1HERE click HERE for the list. or here http://fruittrees.citykol.com/
When it comes to the attacks on Metzitza B'peh we strongly support and defend it in the frum Torah circles. We chastise those who question it and vow to fight it. Same with kappores or other minhagim that have come under attack from various groups both Jewish and secular.
How hypocritical when just a few days after Pesach, articles and blog posts in the frum Torah and yeshiva world websites not only question, but make light of the segulah known as shlissel challah. When posting an article about the dangers of shlissel challah why not do the same for metzitza Bpeh. These articles would be expected to appear in the left hating Forward not on the website that prides tself as the online voice of Torah Jewry. No one is saying that yiddishkeit begins and ends with shlissel challah. There is more that one can and should do for parnassah and avodas hashem. Segulos alone will not get you to far-but to make light of it and question the concept of minhag yisrael Torah, is worse.
Wondering why there is no Yated Neeman this week? due to the short work week with Pesach the Yated Ne'eman did not print this week of parshas Kedoshim. However despite the challenges, Hamodia, Ami, Mishpacha Magazine did go to print. They either prepared their issues ahead of time or on short notice. To be fair the magazines can afford to prepare in advance as they are more feature based, the newspapers are the ones with the challenge.
However the mega Pesach issues of all frum papers and magazines should still provide enough reading material for this shabbos too. Many did not get time over Yom tov to read the over 2000 pages of news, features and articles in the current 2014 pesach issues of various frum papers and magazines.
Ami Magazine had over 600 with a special section- Jaccuse! by Rabbi Yitzchok Frankfurter
When reporting on the recent news story on Williamsburg were NYC prosecutors charged 5 individuals for beating a black man, one would think he is reading it in the biased NYT but no, its rather on the Yeshiva world news and other frum blogs and websites. We expect the frum news sites who we rely on for news reporting to keep it kosher and clean, but sadly that is not the case. The NYT actually had a pretty fair and balanced report. HERE
A blaring headline on YWN, HERE, NYPD arrests 4 members of williamsburg Chasidic community. A poor attempt to paint chasidim in a bad light. Then, no shock a quick look at the comments section were its up to the anons to spew their hate against yidden such as " Chasidism is not Judaism" or a full out attack against the Williamsburg Shomrim members and satmar chasidim in general.
The frum print Newspapers have a responsibility and accounting for what they publish. The frum blogs and websites is a wild west with no oversight and all anonymous. We must not get fooled by the name Yeshiva world or another yiddish sounding name as vos iz nies. For now you might as well rely on the NYT, at least there you wont expect them to be held for a higher kosher standard.
On the second night of Pesach 2014 as the seder began, the tri state area experienced a rare April snow fall. Those who live in Monsey, Brooklyn, Lakewood looked outside as the children began singing kadesh urchatz.. and saw snow coming down mixed with hail. The tzadik Rav leibeleh Eiger the first Lubliner Rav, writes in his Sefger Toras Emes( see below) that it is a good sign, a siman tov when it snows at the time of the seder since it means that klal yisrael has rectified the sins and that is also why we wear a white kittel just as we do on Yom Kippur. He writes that it is particularly the second night of pesach as we begin to count sefirah.
There is a new Gadol in town. Actually hes been around for a while but no one heard of him before. He kept pretty quiet and out of the lime lite over the years. He might have published a sefer or issued a halachik psak to individuals where the outcome only mattered for themselves. It appears this Gadol has now emerged out in the open, he is quoted by everyone, yet he has a great advantage others don't have- that's because hes anonymous.
He is only referred to as an " אדם גדול הרוצה בעילום שמו " a Gadol that wishes to remain anonymous. He is protected from any challenges and can not be approached to explain his position on any topic or area. By simply quoting his name, it gives backing to any position or ruling people arm themselves with. There is no way for anyone to defend themselves