New York – Op-Ed: Rav Malkiel Kotler Issues Official Statement About Rumors On Chabad Internet Asifah Comment


    VIN News received today the Official Authenticated Statement directly from BMG Rosh Yeshiva, Harav Aryeh Malkiel Kotler. The letter reads: 'It was noted at a meeting recently held about the upcoming Citifield Asifa that Chabad Lubavitch has traditionally not formally participated in such events. This was chas v’shalom not intended in any way to cast any negative light whatsoever on them or on any other chug in Klal Yisroel by anyone at the meeting.   Any other inference or understanding of what was said is wholly mistaken'New York – It is an event that unfortunately, has been in the blogosphere headlines, not for its potentially lofty message but rather for the sideshows and distractions surrounding it. The latest of these diversions we can call “The Third Wave.”

    The idea for the Citi Field Kinnus was to present how best to deal with the challenges of the internet – a challenge that has caused enormous damage to the spiritual well-being of Klal Yisroel. The easy access to the pornographic content readily available on the internet, not to mention the lashon harah, rechilus, and motzi shem rah, have been a source of pain and challenge to thousands of Torah homes. This event was designed to show how to best confront those challenges.

    Invariably, such an event fosters criticisms and questions. Why did we not give these strategies years ago? Why do we not have heart to heart talks with our children as to what to do when pornography and the like, pop up on our screens? Why did we not develop effective filtering techniques combining physical lock and key methods with filters on routers, browsers, and computers?

    These criticisms and questions comprised the first wave of the sideshows. Some of these points may be, in fact, very valid. But the first wave on the blogosphere involved the predictions that no one would show up, unless they forced people to come, and the conjectures as to what would be said at the event.

    The second wave of the sideshows involved the tumulting as to who exactly would partake in the event and who would not.

    Then came the third wave of the sideshows and distractions. This one, unfortunately, involved character assassinations of leaders in Klal Yisroel.

    A delegation of Rabbis involved in helping to build support for the Citi Field event approached Rav Aharon Ttielbaum, the Satmar Rebbe in an attempt to encourage him to join the event. Rav Matisyahu Solomon, the Skulener Rebbe, the Vinner Rav and Rav Malkiel Kotler Rosh HaYeshvia of Lakewood went to speak to him.

    Reports were made of the exact conversation. Supposedly, Rav Malkiel explained that all of Klal Yisroel was participating and that Satmar Rebbe should too. Satmar Rebbe allegedly asked Rav Malkiel if Lubavitch was participating. The scurrious report has Rav Malkiel allegedly answering that they were not participating because “they were not a part of Klal Yisroel.”

    Then, fingers were pointed that if it did not happen why didn’t Rav Malkiel deny it?

    The fact is, however, that he did deny it and he did so several times. He denied it to others when he first heard of the reports, to other Hanhallah members of BMG, and to family members as well. Indeed, this author was told by BMG CEO R’ Aharon Kotler how distressed he Rav Malkiel was at the
    mis-information that was reported and that, he must immediately issue the enclosed statement” to counter the mischaracterization.

    The rule of thumb whenever you hear of a strange type of conversation is to ask oneself whether it makes sense. Does it make sense that Rav Malkiel would say such a thing, even in banter, in front of many dozens of other people? It especially does not make sense when we consider that there are numerous Lubavitch Talmidim in Beis Midrash Gavoha and supporters across the country.

    This is not to say that Rav Malkiel does not consider the meshichist movement to be a grievous error in the direction of a substantial segment of Lubavitch. But the misinformation must certainly be corrected. Nor is it simply mis-information. The fact that in one of the news sites Rav Matisyahu Solomon, was both stripped of the title of Rabbi and further described as “hate-mongerer Matisyahu Solomon” is appalling and indicative of the unspeakable level of decency to which we have fallen.

    It should be unnecessary to state that Rav Matisyahu Solomon is one of the Gedolei Hamussar of our times, who dedicates himself b’Laiv V’Nefesh to Klal Yisroel. His participation in this event is indicative of his sincere Ahavas Yisroel – especially when we realize the precarious state of his health and that of other family members.

    So what really did transpire between Rav Malkiel and Rav Aharon?

    Rav Malkiel did respond that Lubavitch was not participating and that normally they do not partake in these tyope of activities.

    Denigrating our Torah leaders and scholars with misquotes and lashon Horah does not bring us to greater Dveikus Bashem. Indeed, the very Asifah under discussion was designed to deal with and prevent this very scenario. It was conceived to stop the type of lashon Harah and character assassination that these Torah leaders are now experiencing.

    The author can be reached at

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    1. I know Im gonna take flak for this but it must be said. the Messiahnists in Lubavitch are Chutz Leparged. they are Ausvorfs. they are no better than X-tians. They are totally off the wall. get the drift? No bones about it. They can quote texts from today till tomorrow, they are not part of klall Yisroel until they come to their senses.Meanwhile, they are Apikorsen, Choteh Umachteh es Harabbim. They will burn in the deepest part of Gehinnom.
      R’ Salamon is a Tzaddik and a Bal Mussar and a Godol Hador.
      Whoever caused the current rift and Machlokes in Satmar or bobov or any other similar Chassidus is almost on the same level as the Messiahnists. Whatever their arguments Lishmah, their path to Machlokes and Chillul Hashem will cause them to burn in the next to deepest parts of gehinnom. Better they should have stayed with the status quo than succumb to their Yetzer Harah and Taiveh for kovod and Momon. The elder rebbis are turnng in their graves. the Pgam they have placed on Klall Yisroel will never be forgotten or forgiven. Lo Zu Haderech. Maybe they would died with less money, or real estate, or Talmidim, but what they are doing is Keneged Hatorah. Now for the flak.

        • so now you know my name, and what did it get you. Respond to the comments not the person. same for the other one who commented on not knowing my name. Im not a malach and youre not Yaakov Avinu.

      • No flak. silly comments do not deserve much response, though they do give many of us a good laugh. Since you are expecting some Mussar, it would be greatly appreciated if a) you would identify yourself and b) learn to speak English.

        Sorry that I will miss you at the event. I will be busy on the Net trying to insult more Jews….Chaim Toronto

      • So nice how you can be so ignorant yet be so hateful, even more, so quick to condemn any Jew to #ell. while i am not sure who made you the judge, jury, and executioner, I for one would do a lot more research into the matter. Not to say that i would agree with these moshiachistim though, the real question here is whether they have a right to their opinions and belief. If you are afraid of studying their “texts” and engaging with them from a proper torah perspective that’s OK just stop with the hate and don’t condemn. realize that they have some very learned rabbi’s as well that agree with their claim. That said, there are many of these so-called moshiachistim that have no clue and are blindly following a path that they themselves do not understand, those people are just plain nuts. Don’t take a legitimate movement, compare it to “X-tains” and blame your limited understanding of the situation on a few loud lunatics. I am certain that if you take the time to do the proper research (this should take a considerate amount of time) you find out some very interesting stuff. If you are too lazy or too scared to do this work, please do us all a favor and conceal your hateful comments.

      • No flak. Just simply to tell you that you don’t know how deep the Gehinom is and how deep exactly they will land is also not in your jurisdiction..That is not to say that we don’t need changes or that machlokes are the way. But cursing and passing your “own” judgement is not our way either. ….so don’t talk the talk….because you obviously didn’t walk the walk…Your way of expression is something that, in my humble opinion, also needs correction.
        Live and let live. Let’s be busy with ourselves. We’ve got lots to do before we go out and busy ourselves with everyone else. Your job is to be the best person you can be! It’s sfira now…We are not absolved from loving our brothers and sisters because they are imperfect…work on perfecting yourself.

      • No flak at all. Just a fond wish that you will be there to welcome these lubavitch meschichists in your own personal version of gehenom as a reward for such beautiful sinas chinam.

      • It is my experience that self rightous people such as yourself have deep seeded sever emotional and mental issues, lead sad lives, have few friends and whose children, if any, will go off the derech. Refuah Shilamah.

      • what flak

        what flak? I agree with you 100 % and I am sure there are many others out there who feel the same way as I do. ( some might be too scared to make this statement)
        These types of machlokes ( and maybe not it’s right for us mere mortals to get involved in rebbe fights,I am told its dangerous re; mystical reasons) were around already in the 60’s when the ambulances, and fire engines used to pay visits to keap st in wmsbg. Dont want to go into more details ve ha mavin uvin. nuff said. simply said very said.

      • “they are no better than X-tians”?

        First of all, the word is Christians, nothing will happen to you if you write it.

        Secondly, what is so bad about them? So long as they hold the shevah mitvos bnei noach, what is your problem?

        I personally believe that a righteous gentile is worth infinitely more respect than a Jew who is dishonest.

        Oh, and you don’t get to say what will be forgotten or forgiven, or who will burn in what parts of Hell. You are an ignorant, self-righteous, arrogant am oretz.

    2. “This is not to say that Rav Malkiel does not consider the meshichist movement to be a grievous error in the direction of a substantial segment of Lubavitch.”

      What does this mean?

      • It means that because there is no authoritative voice in Lubavitch condemning the Meshichist movement, Rav Malkiel does not (Rightly or wrongly) consider them to be a (regular) part of Klal Yisroel.

        • There are many instances in the Torah and Chazal that very often there is a Remez in the Oisyos (the spelled letters) of a name that by swishing around the same Oisiyos in a different order you come up with the Remez of it’s meaning.

          Similarly it is with the name Amaleik.

      • It means that altho R’ Kotler plausibly denies making any snarky comments about the Lubavitchers’ non-paritcipation, that’s not to say he condones something significant numbers of Lubavitchers have done, which is to ‘crown’ as Moshiach a man who, besides being dead, shows no other signs of leading the Jews out of golus, was not indicated by any other leaders to be Moshiach, never proclaimed himself to be Moshiach, and, again—died 18 years ago.
        Some folks call that a grievous error in the context of milennia of Jewish tradition.

    3. and WHY did the satmar rebbe want to know? Cuz he wanted to make sure that truly all segments attend or to refuse participation if chabad takes part……

    4. Reb Aron himself said yesterday berabim at a shier in kolel that those rumors about Rav Kotler is Shayker and it was never said by anyone at his table…

    5. 1) this letter is not the regular yeshiva stationary.
      2) why wasn’t it signed?
      3) the letter doesn’t refute the claim that “they are not part of klal yisroel”.
      4) sounds like this letter is to calm their chabad financial supporters.
      5) weather it was said or not- nobody knows since all laymen were sent out of the room when it was supposedly said. Doubt anybody there would come out and contradict him.

      • Whether ,as opposed to weather–sunny, rainy…
        P.S..Reb Ahron said so himself…at a shiur. It’s your choice to believe either some shmo or an ehricher yid whether he expresses himself in such a manner. Most of us would choose to believe the latter.

    6. The question is, did he ask Lubavitch to join the event?
      The facts are Satmar traditionally never joins these events, but they were asked.
      Lets call a spade a spade.
      Lubavitch was not asked, because they are not wanted there.
      Before we can fix the internet problem we need to fix OUR Ahavas Yisroel Problem.

      • I have a HUGE problem, because it seems that the question as to whether “Chabad is attending” was actually asked, if everyone was out of the room, who would know that the Rebbe asked the question? something tells me that there is more to the story.

        Furthermore, the fact that the writer speaks about “Loshan Hora and Rechilus BUT finds it neccessary to add “This is not to say that Rav Malkiel does not consider the meshichist movement to be a grievous error in the direction of a substantial segment of Lubavitch.” is CHUTZPAH PAR EXCELLENCE”. \

      • I couldn’t agree with you more. In spite of the town you were (Not) born in.
        קבל את האמת ממי שאמרו No matter how much they are trying to fudge the facts, or how much of a Gadol each Rosh Yeshiva is, the fact remains that Lubavitch was deliberately not included in the invitation, which is a snub, regardless of how lofty the motives are.

        • #68 is right and that’s why in the spirit of Achdus, no one should attend the Asifa to show solidarity with Chabad, who pursues Ahavas Yisroel.

          By our NOT attending, it will send a clear message that we are protesting the Sinas Chinum which is the direct cause and affect of why Talmidey Rabi Akiva died.

          No one doubts how much Torah the Tamidey Rabi Akiva learned and how many great Chidushim they made but with their lacking in Ahavas Yosroel, they were all wiped out.

          There are now 2 teams of Klal Yisroel:

          1) Those who are in solidarity with Chabad and with Ahavas Yisroel and will refuse to go to the Asifa and avoid the fate of Talmidey Rabi Akiva.

          2) There are those who “Learn a lot” and make many chidushim all day” just like Talmidey Rabi Akiva, who will go to the Asifa, to demonstrate that they are expressing solidarity with Talmidey Rabi Akiva, who were lacking in Ahavas Yisroel and ended up as they did.

          It’s our choice, as to which team to join and as to which way to end up.

          Ubacharata Bachayim!

          • You are a real comedian.

            You write about sinas chinam and how anyone who doesn’t support chabad is like the talmidim of rabi akiva.

            Sort of like “I hate lashon horah and those like so and so who speaks tons of it”.

    7. Like newpapers and radio and tv, internet will eventually be adopted for good things. Asifos do nothing but prove helplessness and powerlessness. Would you rather we be llike the Amish driving horse and buggy and having no telephone or radio? get sed to the new age and use it to further Torah. Postponing the inevitable.

    8. Lame lame…
      If you hold something don’t try to cover it up!!
      Maybe there’s a reason your arguments don’t stand a chance in the public eye.
      Lakewood: it’s time to give it up, chabad is here to stay and there’s alot to be learned from them!!
      Oh, and someone remind the last event of this kind…?

    9. The painful irony here is that the Big Asifa has itself resulted in massive amounts of lashon hora, motzi shem ra, and chillul Hashem – thus acutely illustrating one of the major challenges that the Internet has brought upon us – its sheer freedom of communications and total anonymity.

      • And the sad part is, the same people who are talking badly about the asifa, denigrating our gedoilim, and spreading terrible lashon hora and being motzi shem ra, are the same ones who need the asifa most! These sinners who live their life being mezalzel rabbunim and trying to claim the asifa’s useless, I guarantee you theyre the ones who will never put on filters because theyre allready pulled down into the gutter of the internet shmuutz and don’t want anyone interfering with their sinning. theyre controlled by the yeitzer hora, rachmana ltzlan and they don’t want to be made to feel guilty or to be encouraged to do tshuva. sad. They should go to asifa at least just for the tfillos. Maybe they can be helped.

        • What a stupid comment, almost as stupid as this asifa.

          Typical chareidi stereotyping: The same people talking bad a bout the asifa are the same people who need it. You know this how?

          The internet is an inanimate object. People kill with knives all the time, does that mean you have none in your house and eat with your hands like a pig?

          Where is the asifa to get all the child molesters off the streets? How about the asifa to stop geneivah and all the fraud that goes on?

          This asifa is a scam and only drones with taliban brains will go.

        • Maybe the people who don’t put filters on are the ones who don’t need any filters to stop them form going where they shouldn’t.

          On the other hand, if tzadikim like you need filters to keep you off undesirable websites, what happened to your good old self-control? Do you wear horse-type vlinders when you walk on the street, take a bus or walk into a supermarket to make sure you don’t look at things or people you shouldn’t? If you don’t, why not?

          You have no standing to talk about other people and what they do, what you “can guarantee” is nothing, you don’t know who is controlled by the yetzer horah other than yourself, which is clearly the case to anyone who read your comment.

    10. The whole story makes no sense whatsoever. I don’t believe the Satmar Rebbe asked such a thing and for sure that the Rosh Yeshiva would have ever said such a thing.

      There are remnants who are fighting a fight of the 70s when in fact the war has been over for quite some time.

      • There seems that there is still lingering hatred between R’ Kotler and Lubavitch. It is no secret that there is negative history between Lakewood and Lubavitch, the fact that something like this came out was probably not a mistake.
        I have a hard time believing that all that was said was that Lubavitch never attended these events.
        The fact that R’ Kotler did not come our forcefully and only with a 5 line ambiguous statement that did not deny the allegations, and was not signed only confirms that the bitter feelings remain toward Lubavitch.
        It is horrifying to think that those who many Yiddin look up to, not only do they not combat these negative feelings between fellow Jews, but sometimes also increase the divide.
        Jews are but a small minority in the world, and religious Jews are even smaller, yet there is still terrible hatred between us, if it will be Ahavas Yisroel that will bring Moshiach, it is scary to think about it…..

    11. How did a 4 lined letter turn into a whole article… it seems that rabbi Hoffman would be adding in his own opinions of Lubavitch, that whilst are important to know, should not be written as if on behalf of rabbi kotler.
      And it doesn’t say anywhere that Lubavitch was invited, yet refused. Seems like a big assumption on his part…

    12. Just for the Record..Reb Aron arranged the FIRST tea party for Shulem Rubashkins defense in KJ and raised $133,000 that evening….Yes Reb Aron does have a close friendship with Chabad and also with Rav Kotler…Rav Kotler has been a strong supporter and friend for Both Satmers and he clearly understands the Rebbes position….

    13. ” Official Authenticated Statement directly from BMG Rosh Yeshiva, Harav Aryeh Malkiel Kotler. “
      This does seem like a properly formatted emergency action message
      message is authentic. – I concur, sir.

    14. 1) I see how suddenly Lakewood and Satmer feel a need to respond to websites and blogs.

      2) if Rabbi Kotler is so against Mishchistim why is there a picture of him walking hand in hand with the head mishichest of NJ.

      With that said I do think it was wrong for this supposed statement of him to go viral especially during sefira and that the source was some random blog who heard the info 3rd hand.

    15. Lubavitch needs to shape up…the messhichistim will be running Crown Heights and the whole chassidus in ten years if swift action isn’t taken soon. The rest of the klal won’t accept them until the “fringe” (not so much of a fringe anymore) is dealt with.

    16. Those bloggers are terrible, to have a hava amina that ALL of Klal Yisroel would include anyone other than Lakewood, Agudah, and (Boro Park, Monsey, and Monroe) Chassidim!

      • behave don’t protect molesters and abusers.
        Treat scammers, fraudsters, smugglers, people who abuse works and so on as such. Do not make very yid, a tzaddiuk just because he got arrested and convicted. Do not make excuse for them, excuses you would laugh at if a gentile made them

        and the blooger will have every little to blog.

        Most blogger are just exposing the underbelly of the frum world things the rebbies do not want to or cannot deal with so they hide it

    17. Chabad Lubavitch has traditionally not formally participated in such events.

      did we ever have such an event. why didnt they try to approach the rabbunim of chabad maybe in such an important time they would participate ?
      do you believe that the roshei yeshivos would go to chabad rabbunim ?

    18. All these things are being “marbeh machlokes” in Yisroel! Any good that might have come out of this Kinnus will be wiped out because of this (I hope I’m wrong)

      That is the ONLY FACT that really matters.

      Saddly, our manhigim, Rebbes, etc.. are more intentent on their “personal” hold on power then bringing Klal Yisroel together.

      It is a well known fact that if there is Shalom in Klal Yisroel, that ALL can be and will be forgiven. If They would put half the effort into making shalom amongst themselves there wouldn’t be a need for these huge Kinnus Asiefoh.

      They would lead by example and Klal Yisroel would follow.

    19. When is the last time that “such an event” was held, that one can say “that normally they do not partake in these tyope of activities”. To the best of my knowledg this is the first time that such an event is taking place.

      2. Assuming that the intentions of creating this event are to help out the whole of klal yisroel, then lubavitch would be asked to joing this event (with the hope that this time they might just agree to join).
      Eg. If one has a brother that doesn’t useally join parties, one would most definately invite and try convince his brother to join his parents 50th wedding anniversary…

    20. if theres so much hate against it, why not just cancel the whole thing? they already raised much more than the cost of renting the facility, who is getting those proceeds? give it all to the tzedaka and sell your filters elsewhere

      • You are among the ones being mezalzel gedoilim and your lack of Midos shows. And fyi theyre not selliing filters. these are emesdige true yidden (you obviously cant understand the concept) who are volunteering only with the purpose of helping yidden avoid sin. you’d do better to learn from them instead of knocking them. And youre probably one of those people who needs the asifa most.

        • Well I guess the emesdige true yidden you’re talking about dont know what wifi is yet. Anyone who wants to get around a filter is going to, and anyone with the right morals and discipline will avoid it on his own. SUCH AS MYSELF. Aside from the spiritually damaging elements of viewing that type of bad content, it also destroys your laptop/computer. something I dont want to happen. Theres my self-discipline, without any asifa. They are wasting money when people are starving.

    21. What is sad is that these things take us away from anb appreciation of how much Torah is being learned in our times and an appreciation of the Torah of Rav Aharon, Rav Malkiel and Rav Matisyahu..

      • It is important to learn the LESSON of SEFIRAH – even though R’ Akiva’s talmidim were Gedolim in Torah…..they didn’t show enough respect to their fellow Jews and….. It HAPPENED THEN, it can happen NOW! I don’t know the truth here, but just because someone learns or is in position of leadership, doesn’t make them a tzaddik. I’m not saying this to mock leaders chas veshalom, but to prevent people from being disillusioned from Yiddishkeit. Leaders are not perfect, they have their own avodah and nisyonos. We each have the ability to achieve greatness dealing directly with HASHEM. That is something this generation needs to strengthen.

    22. While most everyone agrees the pornography is whats been most harmful part of the internet trapping our brethren and breaking up homes when the wives find it, another very serious and dangerously sinful area is the blogs. You may not take take it seriously and think it’s just harmless entertainment but i tell you for a fact that the zilzul rabbunim you read on the blogs is 100% an aveira and contributing with your own comments is even worse. Do not be mekabel What you read no matter who posted it. that person has issues of his own he’s looking to ease by spreading dirt about others. they will be held accountable for a big share of this terrible aveira of makingg other yidden sin. But don’t add to it. Your oilam haba is at stake.

    23. 1) The blogger who first posted this scurrilous information speaks for no one but himself. He is no one and nothing in Chabad or anywhere else – he is but a mecharcher riv and wannabe “historian.” He is probably unhappy that he was not given a hero’s welcome when he came to Chabad from a family with some vague affiliation with the Ingarisch Chassidish world, so he, like the OTD bloggers, just tries to get attention by being outrageous in fighting battles that do not exist.

      2) Sadly, the Chabad blogs, none of which are officially linked to any Chabad organization, are run by rank amateurs who will regurgitate anything controversial with the word Chabad in it. One blog does a great job covering crime, but takes the rest of its news from wherever it can. The other one is “Chabad lite” and just an ad for its owners’ outside projects. Then, there is the extreme meshichist site that is linked to a man who is reviled in Chabad for promoting violence.

      This was a case of the entire peanut gallery picking up yellow (or brown) “journalism” of the old Chofetz Chaim Shoulson style without checking facts. Bemakoim sheein ish, hishtadel lhiois ISH, not Tzig or Ferd.

          • So a “no one” posts a true story on his website and 5 days latter the skulener rebbe בכבודו ועצמו invites Chabad to the Internet Asifah

            I would say its a very big accomplishment for a “no one”

            Don’t you think?

            • Skulen always had a good relationship with Lubavitch.

              And being invited to this means zero to us.

              If you were a real Lubavitcher and not the baal loshon horo posting under a different name, you would know Chabad has a very different approach to these issues.

              What’s more, these rabbis do not speak for Lubavitch. If RMK mailed an invitation to the leaders of Aguch, whom the Rebbe named in his will that is news. These rabbonim are involved with teaching Chassidus to a particular segment of the Jewish world.

    24. kotler was heard to say “id rather daven beyechidus (alone) than with a lubavitch minyan”.
      the least he cudda done is invite lubavitch and worse case scenario they wudda declined.
      what wud it have cost him?a stamp?a phone call?his honor?
      I want to c a letter asking for forgiveness
      and rabbi hoffman,talk about a one sided letter…

    25. we all know that no matter what internet filter u will have if s/o wants to he will always find a way around his filters The ONLY solution to this problem and all other ones affecting our community is teaching our kids and ourselves Ahavas Hashem Hashem likes us regardless If one will have ahavas hashem he will be able to with stand temptation and if he falls he will know hashem still likes him and will try to get better Filters are a good thing and most definatley needed but w/o a person having ahavas hashem these filters will never protect those that want a way around it Let all the school/yeshivas start teaching the students ikrei emunah ,ahavas hashem and watch our kids GROW and see how many less will go off the derech Schools are afraid they wont have the proper answers BRING IN THE PROFESSIONALS but get the movement started and then there will be NO NEED for any more asifos of any kind

    26. #49 gets it pretty much on the money – the most reviled site is the meshcist site that is just a rotten eye sore whatever.

      SOmeone mentioned the head shliach meschist in NJ? I don’t believe there are any in NJ but I might be wrong.

    27. There is a legitimate debate within Chabad over the question of whether or not the late Rebbe might return as Moisiach and it is a concept that many have a hard time comprehending. There are also many within Satmar and other chassidus as well as most misnagdim who reject the notion that Rav Schneerson, z’tl, will return as Moisiach. However, this debate is separate from the issue of protection against priztus on the internet. The latter is a much more important question than whether Moisiach is Lubavitch, Satmer, Bobover or Vishnitz.

    28. Well, the fact is – Lubavitch does NOT attend these events! Some individual Lubavitchers might.

      Assuming ANY of this is true, Reb Aron wasn’t too interested either and just mentioned Lubavitch to show that other groups beside his own were not interested.

      R’ Malkiel Kotler and even his father AH were never associated with anti-Chabad sentiment. The irresponsible blogger decided to report a Ponim Chalashos style “I heard it in the mikveh” story to get 15 minutes of undeserved fame.

      Everyone has his job to do and his way of doing it – and that’s that. Only those with time on their hands and not much of a job of their own worry about the next one’s job and how he is doing it.

    29. forget if the rosh yeshiva did make the commant or not why was chabad not asked to join isn’t the point of this ashifa to be all of klal yisroel together instead of each party making their own so we can have the inyan of lech knos es kol hayudim not be mfuzar umfored ben haamimm

    30. There’s is no hatred toward Chabad. I love every single Jew.
      However, if someone bows down to the Rebbe’s picture, believes that he is the Messiah, or that he’s still alive, then that’s NOT JUDAISM , ITS SOMETHING ELSE and its a very big problem.
      It’s time for Chabad to rise up against this , you could do all the mitzvos , but if you believe that hes still alive.or Gd then that’s what Jews for J believe in.and thats a problem.

    31. The statement “did they invite lubavitch ” alludes to the fact that you believe lubavitch does their own thing and is not part of klal yisroel .ask yourself this, was i invited ?the delegation didnt come down to me ?why should lubavitch assume theyre not included in the” everyone” that the advertisements are targeting .the reason why they go to all the other sects is because, if their rabbi is not for it they dont go, and to push the rabbis to be for it ,lubavitch does not have a rebbe now, so they fall into the category of everyone else who didnt get a personal invite (unless you believe the rebbe is still alive)

    32. I’m not a Lubavitcher but I know them well and I respect them all, regardless if they are hidden or public Meshichist.

      Here is the fallacy that people don’t realize. Some people mistakenly think that some Lubavitchers believe the Rebbe is Moshiach and that some don’t.

      I have interviewed many Lubavitchers from both sides and it’s quite clear that All Lubavitcher believe the same thing only that some are proud of what they believe and are not ashamed to admit it openly, while others think that if they keep their belief a secret, they hope to be able to fool someone.

      I respect Chabad’s beliefs and it’s in the Gemara that there is nothing wrong with any group of Talmidim believing that their Rebbe is Moshiach, regardless if he is alive or not. Rabbi Hirshprung Zatzal, chief Rabbi of Canada and many other Gedolim confirmed this.

      Being that we are in the season of of Sefira which calls for Achdus, I would recommend that we all show solidarity with Chabad, by NOT attending the Asifa, unless Chabad is invited and participates (regardless of the Lakewood “apology”). Apologies are irrelevant. Action of Participation, shows the true colors of Achdus vs Racism and Sinas Chinum to Chabad.

      • Your statement about gedolim is false. Except for Rabbi Hirschprung , virtually all gedolim say the idea of the Rebbe being mashiach after he died is absurd and most condem it. You and others can quote your opinion on the Gemara and various ambiguous sources all you want but it is the gedolim who interpret Torah and despite the quotes, they have clearly rejected this idea including Rav Ahron Soleveitchik.

        As to those who say she was physically alive, the doctors certified he was not alive and saw him in the coffin.

        By the way, as to “revealing himself” people believed the same about Elvis, I’m sorry to say. The rebbe was a great man but physically he is dead. Arising at techiyas hamaysim is not part of being moshiach..

        Before you start accusing others of sinas during a sefirah, I would suggest you wait until the facts of this incident are clarified

        • Read #90 above. I am sad to read such postings from ignoramasus. ( def: lacking knowledge) Quoting the word “Gedolim” does not justify ignorance. You ignore the clear words in the Gemarrah as pointed out by #90. (No need to repeat). Except for your Rav Schach, I am not aware of GEDOLIM who were vociferous and so outgoing with venom and Lashon Harah about another Gadol. Pretty much the whole world acknowledges the Gadlut of the Rebbe, except Rav Shach (he is still quoted). I am proud to be a Litvak with great Yichus but I am who I am and not my most recent forefathers. My connection to Chabad is unshakable and I have been involved in working with Jewish youth for over 45 years. When individuals such as yourself stop promoting your personal agenda with is filled with hatred of other Jews, there will be NO SHALOM. You can have all the Kinusos and tehillim gatherings that you want but those of you who Tovel with a Sheretz in your hand, remain the same as before the faulty tevilla. I wish Shalom on ALL OF YISRAEL..Chaim. Toronto.

          • Please explain how the Gemarah in question failed to influence the psak of the Rambam as stated in hilchos melochim as to how to identify Moshiach. It is absolutely absurd to assume the Rambam was unaware of the Gemara when he wrote that if a great dies before building the Bais HaMikdosh, ending the golus and restoring the malchus in Eretz Yisroel, he is not moshiach.

            • I strongly suggest you go back and read your Rambam again, which says ‘neherag’, which means KILLED, not dies… A very big difference.

            • It says “If he does not succeed or he is killed.” The Lubavitcher Rebbe did not succeed in his lifetime, thus he could not have been Moshiach while he was alive. In fact, I would argue he did not even have chezkas moshiach because he did not bring all of k’lal yisroel back to the Torah. (He didn’t even come close. And just because he may have done more than anyone else doesn’t mean he meet the Rambam’s definition only that he came closer to anyone in our time.)

              As for the claim that “No sane Lubavitcher says that the Rebbe is Moshciach Vadia at this time” There are too many Lubavitchers who say just that. If they are not sane, so be it.

            • Well said, I agree with you, It clearly states; ALL Klal Yisrael not “some or even “most”..Moreover, T’shuvah does not mean by merely calling yourself Charedi” Orthodox, Chassid,etc., it means as we say …we ALL need to do teshuvah. And on that the Rebbe has never reached out and certainly NOT succeeded, and thus not reached close to the status of “Chezkat Moshiach” (see Kiryat Sefer of the Mabit on the Rambam)

            • I refer you to the meforshei harambam (I apologize that I can’t remember who exactly atm) that ask that in light of that which the Rambam himself writes that Moshiach will not change the derech hatevah, and that there won’t be massive miracles, etc., how can the Rambam then say he must return ALL Jews in teshuvah? That’s against derech hatevah! So they answer that it means that he’ll START THE PROCESS, and make all Jews think about Teshuvah, though he can’t force them all to do teshuvah.

              As for what you say, if he doesn’t finish, well, who said that maybe it’s not part of the process that he goes and comes back? I don’t think the abarbanel, who came after rambam, argues with him. The same goes for all those sources in comment 89 & 90. There doesn’thave to be a contradiction at all, you just want to make one.

            • Please take the time to look up the meforshim so I can look at them as well. Meanwhile, the Rambam is quite clear when he says he brings K’lal Yisroel to observe the Torah. That must be a vast majority, if not all. As to your suggestion that he could die and then come back to finish the process, well there are others at least as worthy who have died and could come back as well, such as Chezkiyahu (who made his generation so righteous that no one saw a rainbow in his time) or Yoshiayu, both of whom had a greater effect on a far larger proportion of K’lal Yisroel than the Lubavitcher Rebbe. If Moshiach can die or come back, there are far more candidates than anyone can count. Ain le’dvar sof.

              As for the poster who stated “it’s very clear that each and every one of the “Ketanim” who accuse chabad of being Apikorsim are really in truth Apikorsim themselves,” I would remind you that Rav Yaakov Emdem held that both Reb Yonosan Eibechutz and Ramchal were apikorsim. Think of all the great misnagdim who held the same opinion of the Chasidim: the Gra, the Nodah be’Yehduda, the Kitzos HaChoshen, etc. Were they also apikorsim?

            • Also, as for that poster that posted about ‘apikorsim’, we just have to all remember that this is a very sensitive issue and MUST be discussed with mutual respect, or not at all. אהבת ישראל לפני הכל.

            • You seem smart, recognize that the Rambam didn’t misuse words or say extra words for no reason- on that note though I am not sure who is Moshiach- I must be honest and not LIE to myself- the Rambam CLEARLY writes killed and not dies- he writes neherag, and again, if u r an honest Jew u must ask urself why? The Rebbe was never killed- so if halacha is still not clear how does that make a meshichist wrong?

          • Clearly you failed to read my post carefully. I suggest you do a little research before you spout off. That the Rebbe is not Moshiach does not disminish that he was a great man. Unfortunately, you are not famliar or more likely refuse to acknowledge the rulings of those such as Rav Aaron Soleveitchik, Rav Ahron Feldman, Rav Yaakov Weinberg the Ungvarer Rov , Rav Schach as well as half a dozen other leaders of our generation which were not attacks on the Rebbe. The maschists rely on their personal interpretations and lash out personally against those great rabbis they disagree with because their whole Jewish identity is wrapped up in this idea as R. Kaminetzky warned.

            p.s. those who say there is a “clear gemorah” don’t know how to learn because the Gedolim reject the simplistic interpretion. In fact I am decended from a Chabad family and my rabbi is Chabad. Fortunately, the Augudas Chasedei Chabad who are supposed to lead the movement , per the Rebbe’s will,
            went to court to throw out the “yechi” nuts who are an embarrassment to Chabad and frum Yidden.
            But such people will never acknowledge their serious error and resort to name calling and disparaging the leaders of our people.

        • Chazal say that Kol Haposel Bemumoy Posel and it’s very clear that each and every one of the “Ketanim” who accuse chabad of being Apikorsim are really in truth Apikorsim themselves

          I’m not even talking about Lakewood – Like father Like son, but look at comment # 104 as a very typical example of all those who’s stomach is not filled with chidushim and not filled with Torah but filled with Sinas Chinum and filled with Apikurses themselves and thats why they accuse others

          # 104 Makes Letzones, Kilachar Yad of Yaakaov Avinu Loy Mes because Yaakov Avinu was also “medically certified” by all doctors that he was dead, yet Chazal say LOY MES

          Now who is the REAL Apikores?

          The Real Apikores is anyone who says that Chazal were not serious when they said Yaakov Avinu Loy Mes and that includes 99% of all Lakewooders, who learn all day and yet Naaseh Loy Sam Hamoves that they are Mecharef and Megadef on Chazal who say that Yaakov Avinu Loy Mes, although all doctors had him medically certified to be dead

          Lakewood will never get it!

          Someone who is a Maamin, like all chassidim, by them it is no Kasha to begin with and as for those who appose true Emuna in Chazal, the Teretz will not help them

    33. I think that after this kinnus there should be another one – maybe in the same place and this kinnus should be a kinnus how to combat loshon hora and rechilus in these turbulent times.

    34. Forget the internet asifa, keep the asifa, but make the asifa for ahavas yisroel, and have chabad and R Kotler sitting side by side and davening to bring Moshiach together!

      • Its hard for Rav Kotler, shlita, to daven for “bringing moisiach” when he is sitting next to the moishiach or his designee Thats is what much of this debate is about (i.e. whether moisiach is/will be a lubavitcher rebbe, a rav from another chassidus or a misnaged).

    35. Lets call a spade a spade. Not all Lubavitch believe the Rebbe is moshiach!!!! The whole mishugas started unfortunatley after the Rebbe ZL had a stroke.When the Rebbe was well no one had the chuztpa to say Yechi . The Rebbe would have put them in there place. Lets be honest the Rebbe was very articulate in what he wanted, by example puting on tefilin with people and other campaigns such as making sure people had kosher mezuzos etc. I chalenge anyone to show me where the Rebbe asked his chasidim to go out and proclaim him moshiach. The meshiachists will brandish a few sichos out of hundreds that might alude according to their convoluted interpatation that the Rebbe aluded to himself being moshiach. The Rebbe zl wasnt bashful if thats what he wanted he would have said clearly I want my Chasidim to say yechi and the whole nine yards. It is very painful to admit when the Rebbe had the incompasitating stroke the chasidim grasped at straws and sang yechi myself included. Today anyone who continues this insults the Rebbe and all that he stands for. In regards to the rally no one knows what was said. What is known is that Lubavitch askonim asked to participate and were turned down.

    36. Let’s take the verbatim of his statement:
      “It was noted” “that Chabad Lubavitch has traditionally not formally participated in such events.”
      “This was chas v’shalom not intended”
      “Any other inference or understanding of what was said”

      So he is a modeh bmiktsas. He said that it WAS noted that Chabad… and their statements about chabad at the meeting weren’t intended… any inference in what WAS said…

      So, let’s stop pretending that Rabbi Kotler didn’t say anything exclusionary of Chabad as he clearly admits he has, he merely claims his statements were much more benign than the blogs first reported.

    37. lets go back to the begining!
      (Sanhedrin 98b):
      “Rav said ‘If he [Moshiach] is from the living, [then he is] like Rabbeinu Hakadosh [Rabbi Yehuda Hanassi]; if he is from the dead, [then he is] like Daniel, the delightful one.’ ” (also See Maharsha).

      Based on the Talmud quoted above, the Sdei Chemed–an encyclopedic work by the renowned Halachic authority Rabbi Chaim Chizkiya Medini–quotes approvingly (Pe’as Hasadeh, Maareches Ha’alef, 70) a long letter by Rabbi Aryeh Leib Lipkin (grandson of “Hagahos Ben Aryeh” published in Vilna ShaS), where he explains–among other fascinating points concerning the ultimate Redemption–that if we have sufficient merit, then Moshiach will be “from the dead”!

      The Midrash (Bamidbar Rabba 11:3) says that the future Redeemer will be revealed, then concealed, then revealed again. This is quoted by Rabbeinu Bachayei and by the Chasam Sofer on the Torah (both at end of Parshas Shmos). The latter writes: “This is a great test that the Redeemer is concealed [Moshe] . . and so it will be at the time of our righteous Moshiach [that] he will be concealed after [his] revelation, as mentioned in the Midrash.”

    38. From the Zohar (Shmos 8b)
      –as explained in Zohar Harakiya and Shaar Hagilgulim (ch. 13, both by the ARI-Zal, Rabbi Yitzchak Luria, one of the greatest Kabbalists)–it is clear that the man designated to be Moshiach is born naturally in this world, then the soul of Moshiach in the heavenly “Garden of Eden” is bestowed upon him so that he realizes that he is Moshiach, then he becomes concealed, ascending to heaven, and only afterwards is he revealed to the full extent, the whole Jewish people recognizing him as Moshiach.

      Don Yitzchak Abarbanel, who wrote three lengthy works about the Scriptural prophecies and our Sages’ sayings concerning Moshiach and the Geula, writes in Yeshuos Meshicho (Jerusalem, 5753, p.104) that it is possible that Moshiach will be taken from this world and brought into the heavenly “Garden of Eden,” continuing: “You should not find it difficult [to understand] that the King Moshiach will be among those who arise in the Resurrection,” quoting the above Talmudic passage (Sanhedrin 98b) as proof that this can be so. Here we see the same three stages of revelation, concealment and revelation.
      will anyone consider to stop putting on tefillin if goyim start?

    39. Rabbi Hoffman, thank you for a most thought provoking article. It behooves us all who believed this rumor in the first place to look into ourselves and ask ourselves how we were able to believe it. It is a sad phenomenon that we are so accepting of gossip and negativity. As Rabbi Hoffman wrote, it simply doesn’t make sense. Rabbi Kotler is not known for his stupidity. He could never have said such a thing. It is time for the readership of VIN to start being a beacon of positivity and stop all this divisiveness once and for all. Let’s call a spade a spade. The Internet Asifa is being organized to combat a huge huge problem (yes there are many other problems). Let everyone stop looking and analyzing every side of everything around it and focus on the intended goal. Get real people. This is not a filter company marketing technique. That is a very petty thought that I don’t think anybody wants to be accused of making. Does Klal Yisroel have other problems that need to be dealt with (Achdus amongst them)? Absolutely!! Let us join together at Citi Field in solidarity with out rabbonim and gedolim and let’s learn a thing or two. I for one, will. Chazak V’eematz!!

    40. The letter is an outright fraud “ziyuf”. It’s not BMG’s stationary. It’s not proper English. It says nothing of substance. It’s not signed. It should have been a hebrew letter of appology. the Rosh Yeshiva can’t just go against Reb Ahron and Rav Shach. Do they think everyone is so gullible?

      • Old Lakewooder, Since when is Rav Shach the ultimate infinite posek?! There isn’t a single Posek (I.e. Litvaks) that ever held that position, including Rav Sholmo Z Aurbach, Rav Elyashiv, etc. Does Lakewood follow Rav Shach’s ‘derech haLimud’ as well? Well acorrding to your logic, the Hafetz Chayim or Rav Chaim of Brisk should never have met w any chassidim, due to the ban of the Gr”a …And according to your logic…some hold Rav Malkiel is in Cherem as well! (i.e. Cherem Rabenu Gershom – ‘Old Lakewooder’, kindly ask the ‘Old Briskers’, yep, he never divorced his first wife.. and that is real serious stuff…)

    41. I’m not sure what R’ Kotler said but something just seems very fishy to me. I remember a similar incident a couple of years ago where he made a derogatory comment about Dr. Lander ZT”L; and then proceeded with the same damage control. Maybe its just me, but if someone is truly a talmid chochom, he should know that derech eretz and kavod habrios comes before learning. It seems to me that this gentleman is sorely lacking in that department, especially to those outside the “yeshiivish velt”.

    42. It’s not just stereotyping, it’s unwarranted arrogance. How can any chareidi, gadol or not, assume that this asifa is “what I need” when he has no idea what is going on himself. The true purpose of the asifa is to save face for being so profoundly wrong about the Internet to begin with. It’s ridiculous to assume this event will be anything more than a forced software subscription. Will they have a version available for OS/390 as well, or do I have to write one myself? Will the gadol check my code to make sure it’s kosher?

    43. An entire velt of people defend a goniff like Rubashkin pulling out the antisemite card barely 50 years after the Holocaust ends to defend someone who outright befarhesya lied and stole and the organizers of this stupid asifa think the internet is the problem? Doros of kids are hearing how a great yid like Rubashkin is being persecuted so when they grow up they can rationalize money laundering, borrowing against fake invoices, perjury and obstruction of justice, and Google is the enemy?

    44. to #88
      Oh you are correct – I forgot about Carlebach @ Rutgers.
      I totally do not understand the politics but he does not belong in the mechsist fold whatsoever – he is hugely succesful and very able mentch – I can’t imagine him being so shrt-sighted and getting asscociated with the looney crowd.
      But this goes back a few years so I don’t know what hapenned to him – if true is a very sad turn of events.

    45. The fact is correct above that ALL Lubavitch believe that the Rebbe is Moshiach. They differ solely on details…is he really dead, is he alive, is he coming back, was he never gone, should I publicize or not publicize. They are a very very confused group, but with great influence over a certain segment of Jews in the world. They are nice people, and do a lot for frei Jews out there, but you can say the same thing about xtian Zionists as well or Jews for J or any other Evangelical group. I am very conflicted by them, as I see that that are outwordly quite shomer Torah u Mitzvos, but I wonder whether they are truly Apikorsim or even worse chas ve shalom. It makes it very hard to trust them at all. I feel that I can participate with their minyans, but I will not learn with any of them nor ever ask them any shaalos.

    46. Some questions;
      How do you know that the Rebbe will not be the Moschiach?
      Can’t you disagree with people without labelling them “apikorsim”?
      Did you have a din torah where you provided Lubavitch an opportunity to present its case that they are not “apikorsim”?
      Is the RCA apikorsim because they say that the Medina is “reishis Tzmichas Geulasenu?
      Is the Yeshiva that flies the Israeli flag on Yom Hatzmoat apikorsim?
      Is the Gomara that says Moshe Rabbenu Lo Mes an Apikorus?
      Is Rabbenu Bachaye an apikorus because he said that al pi kabbalah, Yaakov Avonu is alive in a physical body (for thousand of years) and travels all over the world?
      Is the Lubavitcher Rebbe an “apikorus”, because he said that we are on the verge of the geula, that this is the last generation of golus, that the name of Moschiach is “Menachem”, that the “Nosi Dorenu” is the “Moschiach of the Dor”
      That the Hacchrozo of “Yechi” add life to the Melech?
      Did any of you bother to read the sichos of the Rebbe for 5751 and 5752?
      I am not a Satmar Chossid, or a follower of Rav Kotler but I would not dare to attack them, directly or indirectly; Are you sure that you are safe to attack the Lubavitcher Rebbe?

    47. #115-
      Please revisit the Rambam on Hilchos Melochim and learn it with the Hashmotos;
      It is available in the Mossad Rav Kook edition.
      First, the two examples that the Rambam gives of failed Moschiachs, were because they were “killed” not died.
      Second, The Rambam does not say that if someone who is bechezkas Moshiach passes, that he can not be Moshciach , only that the “Chazokoh” would not apply.

      No sane Lubavitcher says that the Rebbe is Moshciach Vadia at this time, nor that the Geula has arrived; only that based on the Rebbe’s sichos, that when the time comes for the Geula schelemo, which is soon, it will be the Rebbe who will be Moschiach.
      If you disagree, fine, But don’t call anyone names- Learn the Rebbe’s sichos from 5751-52 and you may develop a deeper understanding.

    48. The gedolim saw many generations ago – way before meshichistim showed up – where the chabad chassidus ends up taking a person. It is crucial to be aware of the pitfalls and protest avoda zara. Note: this is only said about chabad and not chassidus in general

    49. Lawrence;
      The Rebbe’s work is not finished; The Gemara says, “ma zara b’chayim, af hu b’chayim” There is almost no Jew in the world who has not been touched by Chabad, and each year more and more Chabad centers open. Since most of world Jewry have the din of “tinok shenishba” who are you to determine how much of clal Yisroel was brought back to Yiddishkeit? Do you know Hashem’s threshold for bringing the Geula? maybe the next karkafta that a shliach puts tefillin on will bring the Geula.

      #123: Who are these “gedolim” who saw “many generations ago” what Chabad will become? How dare you accuse Chabad of avada zora. Check you own tzitzes (kol haposel, b’muma posel)

    50. Technically from a talmudic/halachic perspective you might be right that ‘ein ledavar sof’, but there are plenty of kabbalistic and other sources that moshiach is Moshe rabbeinu, and it states clearly in zohar that ‘ispashtusa demoshe bechol dor’. (For sources that Moshe and moshiach are the same person, see Baal haturim on parshas vayechi 49, 10. Zohar chelek 1 pg 25, 2 And pg 253, 1. Likkutei Torah of the arizal parshas vayechi. for an explanation how this is possible, (zerah dovid, etc.) See likutei sichos chelek 11 page 8.)

      Also, if you read the abarbanel properly, it says he WILL REVEAL HIMSELF AND THEN BE TAKEN AWAY. Who else revealed themselves, at least arguably? Not many historical rabbis. And it’s harder to say that the Rebbe didn’t hint at it or reveal it, than to say he did.

      Also, it must be taken into account that there have been many people who were moshiach (actually, they were technically all the same gilgul), but there can only be one moshiach bepoel. If it can be proven that this is the generation of moshiach’s coming, which already the 5th lubavitcher rebbe started predicting was coming, and the Rebbe goes to great lengths to prove, and as is self evident from the gemmorah at the end of sotah, and kesubos, etc. Then the ‘ispashtusa demoshe’ of this generation has to be moshiach bepoel. It is a separate debate though whether or not the rebbe is the ‘nossi hador’, but for the purpose of this debate we’ll assume he is, since that is what all lubavitcher’s believe.

      As for the Rambam, I don’t have the seforim here, but if I remember correctly I saw it in the Frankel edition, either perek 11 or 12.

      As a post script, there are well known sources (though you’ll have to do a google search on this one, sorry… I think it might be a midrash) , that just like in mitzrayim where 4 fifths of the Jews didn’t believe in moshiach and were… In makkos choyshech, so too will majority of Jews when moshiach comes do the same (although the Rebbe says in a sichah quite clearly that they won’t ch”v be killed). Do you think that 4 fifths of Jews in mitzrayim were reshayim?! No, they were normal people like you and me. That is very possibly what is happening now, וד”ל. אבל צ”ע גדול

      • How do you reconcile your statement that “…it’s harder to say that the Rebbe didn’t hint at it or reveal it [that he is Moshiach] , than to say he did.” with that
        of “Friend of Lubavitch” who states (#119) that “No sane Lubavitcher says that the Rebbe is Moshciach Vadia at this time.”

    51. RET52:
      You write, “Who else revealed themselves, at least arguably?” Dangerous question, since quite a few false messiahs have done just that.

      • Oh yeah, I forgot to say, when I quoted that other chassidim believe(d) their rebbe’s to be moshiach, I was trying to say it’s not unheard of… Veda”l

    52. Firstly, we must establish something here… Let’s word it this way, one might say that the Rebbe is bevadai moshiach, but his intention is not the moshiach vadai of the Rambam, it just means ‘I certainly BELIEVE he’s moshiach’. Friends of Lubavitch is right, no sane person would say that we’ve heard the shofar, or the beis hamikdosh has been built bimkoymo, etc. Etc. Bevadai moshiach…. But not the moshiach vadai of the rambam… It may be playing with words a bit, but I think it’s a fair point…

      Secondly, as for the Rebbe being one of the few who hinted and your reference to lehavdil false messiahs r”l, I take back my statement, because in my rush to respond I forgot that amongst chassidim it’s the exact opposite… MANY MANY groups have historically considered their admorim to be moshiach. Did you know that many admorim wanted to make a pesak din that r’ Yisroel m’ruzhin should reveal himself as moshiach? That reb Nochum chernobyler’s son wrote that his father believed the besht to be moshiach even after his histalkus? That the besht’s son wasn’t by his father’s death bed because he didn’t believe it possible that his father could be nistalek? And the list goes on and on… These things are generally hushed up nowadays, but if you dig, you’ll find it. Especially in Munkatch, by the minchas elozar zt’l, for example. I actually have a kovetz filled with.similar inyonim, including mekoyros, but since I’m away from home I don’t have access to it unfortunately.

      Since i’ve already dealt with moshiach min hameisim, let’s deal with the other view of lubavitchers.Those who believe that there wasn’t an histalkus, and the Rebbe is alive, one way or another. There are also plenty of mekoyros to prove that this is not outside of the pale of Judaism, but I believe that when you have one good proof, that’s enough. If there are questions afterwards, beseder, they can be answered. But one proof is all that is needed. At the back of Talmud Maseches Avodah Zorah is printed the masechtos ketanos. One of which is derech eretz zutah where it states and lists 9 people who went up to (the loshon is actually ‘nichnasu’) heaven alive, one of them is moshiach. So, of course, everyone immediately asks, but moshiach hasn’t come/happened yet?! So the meforshim there say that it is speaking about the future, which is anyways obvious. In light of the abarbanel and above sources, it is not so strange after all is it? And i’m not even starting with the most popular proof in lubavitch of ‘Yaacov avinu lo meis’.

      So, in conclusion, I think I’ve progenitors what I set out to achieve. There is no heresy in believing the Rebbe to be moshiach. There is no halachic issue. It is based on sources in normative accepted Torah. If anyone wishes to disagree, they’re allowed to. But we’re not heretics. And you can daven in lubavitcher minyonim. And eat their shechitah. And consult their rabbonim in halochah.

      …and include them in any asifos.

      Anyone cab disagree, but remember what I said above in a postscript about the Jews in mitzrayim who didn’t believe… וד”ל

      א גוט יום טוב, חג שמח!
      ובכבוד רב!

      (Oh by the way, I’m not leaving… I just finished my case, feel free to continue this discussion, I enjoy your civility and intelligent responses)

      • You write that “one might say that the Rebbe is bevadai moshiach, but his intention is not the moshiach vadai of the Rambam.” Thank you for the clarification. I think that most of the Torah community would prefer the Rambam’s moshiach, and since the Rambam defines moshiach as an ikkur of emunah, it would be logical to say that the ikkur is to believe in moshiach as the Rambam defines him. As far as your opinion that you are not heretics, I will leave that to others more learned than I.

        As far as your veiled threat about the Jews in Mitzrayim, I suggest you go to the Me’Am Loez who discusses this sorry chapter. The Jews who perished during makkos choshech were those who did not want to leave Mitzrayim. They had become wealthy as slaves and did not want to give up their wealth by leaving. Further, K’lal Yisroel knew that the purpose of geulas Mitzrayim was to accept the Torah, and these Jews did not want to accept the Torah. Finally, at the time they died, the Jews had seen the first 8 makkos (which according to Rabbi Akiva were actually 40 makkos.) They had witnessed nissim and neflaos, and still they wanted to cast their lot with Egypt. That’s a big difference from today.

        • Chas veshalom! Chalilah! I was not making any threats! Just stating a possibility… As for that one part you picked out of all my comments, firstly, I state clearly that the meaning is that people may have a strong belief, they are certain (vadai) in what they believe. I’m just saying that all that is irrelevant, no one believes that the Rebbe iv

        • Oh yeah, and what, may I ask, is wrong with believing the Rebbe to be bechezkas moshiach according to the rambam and according to his ikkarim, which is what lubavitchers believe, not against his ikkarim like you seem to imply?

          • What’s wrong is that by any objective standard, the Lubavitcher Rebbe has not (yet) met the Rambam’s standard for bechzkas moshiach. And you are the one who said that Lubavitchers believe he is moshiach even if he is not bevadai Moshiach according to the Rambam’s standard, implying that there is a standard other than that of the Rambam.

            And by the way, today very few chasidim outside of chabad believe their rebbe is moshiach. What was true 175 years ago is not true today. Maybe this is what the Tzemach Tzedek meant when he stated that the Cherem HaGra did the chasidim a favor by curbing their wildness.

            • That ‘statement’ of the Tzemach tzedek has been proven to be a false statement, sheker, written by the son of the aruch hashulchan, but this is not the time to start getting involved in such irrelevant and unneeded politics.

              As for that which you state, ‘maybe 175 years ago’, firstly, try 80 years ago, Hungary, and sephardim in yerushalayim about the sabah kadishah zt’l, and secondly, it’s irrelelvant how long ago it was. The fact is that it is perfectly acceptable to believe your Rebbe to be moshiach, even after a histalkus (see that which I wrote above about reb nochum michernobyl). And they didn’t stam say things like that, they meant it.

              Agav, I wasn’t even born a chossid, I come from a polish/litvish background, I’m metzeitzei hagr’a in fact. I only arrived to these conclusions through sitting and learning myself, especially the Torah of the Minchas Elozar of Munkatch, who everyone accepts as a major possibly halochah. Go learn his seforim.

              Now, none of the above people don’t accept the rambam or have different klalim from him, what I meant when chassidim say mashiach vadai, it’s a hergesh, not a halachic maimonadeic fact, though there is plenty of Torah to back the hergesh.

              As I stated, with all the mekoyros I’ve bought so far, I believe I’ve proven what I set out to, not to prove or convince anyone of our beliefs, but to show that there is nothing wrong halachically with what we believe. Our shechitah is mehudar and glatt kosher. Oh mohelim are mumchim yirei shomayim. Our rabbonei kehillos and dayanim are as good as any other. And we are all shomrei Torah and mitzvos… And our beards, unlike other so called ‘yirei shomayim’ (see harav wosner’s haskomah to the sefer hadras ponim zokein, the kuntress tiferes odom of the chofetz Chayim, shu’t minchas elozar chelek 2 teshuvah 48, etc. Etc. Etc…)

              HaShem yisborach yerachmeinu veyoylicheinu koymemius leartzeinu bekarov, im moshiach tzidkeinu berosheinu, אכי”ר

    53. 80 years ago people thought the Sabah Kadisha might be Moshiach? Do you have a source for that? As far as claiming that what people believe when they say the Lubavitcher Rebbe is moshiach saying they believe that “it’s a hergesh, not a halachic maimonadeic fact” I’m sorry. I’ve seen too many statements by too many individuals trying to box the Rebbe in to the Rambam’s definition to have to agree. I’ve seen individuals who have claimed that the Rambam’s definition is irrelevant because it doesn’t take into account the sources that aver that moshiach can arise from the dead. However, for all the hergashim you may have, Moshiach is still defined by what the Rambam wrote in the Yad. As far as I’m concerned, if you believe that there can be a Moshiach who doesn’t meet the Rambam’s criteria, you really don’t believe in Moshiach at all.

      By the way, I don’t understand the point about beards. I haven’t cut my beard, even with a scissor, for at least 23 years. (I forgot when I stopped).

      • Due to lack of time, I’m going to answer betachlis hakitzur. A) I said that it’s not a halachic maimonadeic fact that the Rebbe is moshiach vadai, but it may very well be, and I believe it to be, that he is bechezkas moshiach. This is also evident from my previous comments. A debate about this would be rather long, and I have major safrus and semichah tests coming up, so i’d prefer not to, if you’ll forgive me. B) about the Sabah Kadishah zt’l – see the sefer masa’os yerushalayim, but it’s best if you find a old edition, the new edition from hoytzaas seforim ohr Torah munkatch is censored. C) as for what kotler said, I think you probably know that he was a major misnaged to lubavitch, and he made the Rebbe Rayatz cry… And neither did R’ Yoel Misatmar like him very much. So I don’t think he’s a very trustworthy source, at the very least, ‘al tikach shoychad’, in these matters he’s biased.

        Anyway, there’s plenty more but I don’t have time, so I hope I’ve answered you satisfactorily.

      • Oh yeah, as for the comment on beards, I was intending to say that the biggest ‘attackers’ of lubavitch tend to be from the yeshivish/litvishe oylam, and they don’t trust our shechitah, safrus, yiras shomayim… Yet they shave, and don’t even know, let alone listen to their own poskim’s words against shaving, and even using scissors or creams, including the chofetz Chaim, chazon ish, a.kotler and a certain ponevezher rosh Yeshivah… It’s all in the sefer hadras ponim zokon.

    54. I’ll accept what you say about the Tzemach Tzedek’s alleged comment. The Torah Temimah was known for not getting his facts straight (a talmid of Rav J. B. Soloveitchik quoted his rebbe as saying that he was more of a novelist than a historian). However, I’ve know Lubavitcher chasidim who believed it was true, and I’ve heard that Rav Aharon Kotler said the same thing. For my part, the belief that any living person is Moshiach (without come clear evidence as set forth by the Rambam) is dangerous, and that was as true 200 years ago or 80 years ago, as it is now. Claiming someone is fit to be Moshiach is not necessarily improper, even if it’s presumptuous. 30-40 years ago, we hear that kind of talk frequently about the Lubavitcher Rebbe; had it stayed there, you wouldn’t have had the geshrei you hear today. But it didn’t.

    55. The statement that “… And neither did R’ Yoel Misatmar like him [Rav Aharon Kotler] very much” is a bit too simplistic. The Satmar Rebbe differed with Rav Aharon vociferously, but he respected him. At Rav Aharon’s levaya, the Satmar rebbe gave the last hespid. He started with the chazal of why does Parshas Behaloscha say Aharon haKohen lit the menorah when he had been doing it for so long-to emphasize that Aharon haKohen never wavered in his avodas HaShem. So too, the Satmar Rebbe said, about Rav Aharon Kotler.

      If you choose to believe that the Lubavitcher Rebbe could be vadai Moshiach in the future, I will not argue with that. However, he certainly is not Moshiach now, nor was he while he was alive. And it is an undeniable fact that too many who call themselves Lubavitcher Chasidim believe that he was and is vadai Moshiach.

      To believe that he bechazkas Moshiach flies in the face of what the Rambam writes and what the Lubavitcher Rebbe accomplished or didn’t accomplish, as the case may be.

    56. The comment about Rav Aharon Kotler, the Gra, and the Chasidim comes from something that allegedly happened at an Agudah convention in the 1940s. Rav Aharon was sitting next to Rav Mendel Sachs, the Chofetz Chaim’s son-in-law and a major misnaged generally. The convention was davening kabbolas shabbos, and when they came to mizmor le’David, they stood. This not being the Litvishe minhag, Rav Sachs stayed seated but Rav Aharon stood up. “Why are you standing?” Rav Sachs asked. Rav Aharon replied, “What’s wrong? They stood in Kletzk.” The baal tefiloh started to sing Lecha Dodi, and the convention joined the niggun. Rav Mendel rolled his eyes in despair, and Rav Aharon asked, “What’s wrong?” “Singing Lecha Dodi? My shver never did that!” Rav Aharon replied, “So your shver wasn’t a minagen.” Finally, Rav Sachs said, “The Chasidim have ruined everything, and they’ve ruined you, too!” Rav Aharon replied, “Yes, the Chasidim ruined a lot, but since the Cherem haGra, they’ve saved more than they’ve ruined. The Chasidim can never thank the Gra enough for saving them.” I heard the story from someone who heard it from an actual eyewitness.

      • Very nice story, really, but the Tzemach Tzedek didn’t say that.

        As for bechezkas/bevadai moshiach, well… This is a very confusing time for all of us, and I don’t think you can really blame anyone for their opinions nowadays, except outright kefirah, etc.

        I don’t know many lubavitchers who think ‘vadai’ of the rambam, my friends to the best of my knowledge believe ‘bechezkas’.

        Either way, neither belief is outside the pale of normative Judaism as I have (hopefully) proven above.

        And of course, there is no reason for anyone to fight about this at all, ‘divrei chachomim benachas nishmo’im’. And everyone can serve HaShem according to their own derech, etc.

    57. I only quoted the quip about the cherem haGra because I think that believing a living person to be moshiach is wrong and dangerous, no matter who does it. As to what Lubavitchers believe, most of us will just have to rely on what our eyes see and our ears hear. And quite frankly, that’s quite a bit different than what you’ve portrayed. You would like to us to believe that the belief that the Lubavitcher Rebbe is moshiach is not outside the pale of normative Judaism. Mamy of us don’t. Time will prove which view right. At the same time, the opinion that believing the Lubavitcher Rebbe is Moshiach constitutes kefira ikkur is also not outside the realm of normative Judaism. I am not in a position to make such a statement, but I respect those who do. As to who is Moshiach and whether he is alive or dead at this time, I think a quote from the Lubavitcher Rebbe expresses my opinion perfectly, “The Messiah will be a real human being. Don’t translate him as something abstract. He is tangible. He has two eyes, two ears, two legs, two hands and one heart. ” (Interview with Israel Shenker published in the New York Times in 1972 at the time of the Rebbe’s 70th birthday.)

      • Dangerous to believe a living person is moshiach? Have you seen Gemorah Sanhedrin 98 amud 2, where the talmidim argue over which of their rebbeim is moshiach (see rashi there).
        As for what you see what most lubavitchers believe, I believe that what i said is what we believe… Perhaps you just haven’t taken the time to properly listen till now, or just met people who somewhat blindly believe without knowing all the sources.
        And how can you say that there is room to say that such beliefs are kefira, in light of ALL the sources above (especially comments 89, 90), were they all kofrim, ch”v?!
        I have more to say, but I’ll wait for your reply…

        • Forgive my poor understanding of the Gemorah, but I see no such discussion in the Gemorah. I do see a discussion of what Moshiach’s name will be, and I do see Rashi interpret your favorite Gemorah amount Moshiach arising from the dead as reading that if Moshiach is alive, he is Rebbe, and if he had come in the past and had been one who is now dead, he would have been Daniel. And I have looked at quite a few of the sources you and others quote, and as far as I and many others are concerned, they have been twisted to mean what you want them to. As far as all of them being kofrim, I do not believe they say what you say they do, but even if so, Hillel (Gemara 98B) said there will be no Moshiach for Klal Yisroel. Was he a kofer? Different doros have different standards of belief.

          Finally as to what “most Lubavitchers believe,” most of us will have to trust what our eyes see and our ears hear.


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