Sunday, November 19, 2006

Daat Torah

Discussion abounds around "Daas Torah" and this might become my two cents worth. I really just wanted to be able to post some links. Here are links where it's actually acknowledged that there is actual dispute on the part of great minds;

- Jewish Law has several pieces. "Daas Torah" by Alfred Cohen, mostly historical with his own attempts at grasping what is even meant by the term. Here's a response by Yitzchak Kasdan, founder of the Jewish Law website.

-Of course theres the Orthodox Forum volume around rabbinic authority, "Rabbinic Authority and Personal Autonomy".

-A sort- of critique of the views I in part share with others (in the above volume and articles) can be found in "The Charedim; A Defense" by Aharon Rose in the journal Azure. In defining the parameters that define Charedim, I think he addresses only parts of some of the issues and by design leaves out others (it has been remarked that defenses of orthodoxies are often undermined by the traditions they seek to defend). Those Charedi rabbinic authorities that are given the situation of defining Charedim (by Charedim themselves), are considered by many Charedim themselves as defining Yahadut as well! For them, the ideals and presuppositions embraced as ideal by Charedim are considered not merely ideals and presuppositions among many kosher possibilities - they're considered the ideals and norms of all who would claim themselves to be the most "orthodox" of observant Jews. This is no small irony, as "Orthodox" is a Greek term - and as most know, was a derogatory term used on the part of opponents of Torah-Observant ways of life.

More random links;

Da-at Torah - The Unqualified Authority Claimed for Halachists by Jacob Katz.

Emunat Hakhamim by Simha Friedman

An entire issue of Tradition (27:4) was devoted to the general topic of Rabbinic authority.


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