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Thursday, February 14, 2013

A Thousand Words

The Kanievskys in happier times - Source Hadrei Haredim
What a great picture. Makes me almost wonder why we don't see more pictures like this. But I already know the answer to that. In the world of the extreme right - there is no such thing as too modest.

Rabbetzin Kanievsky was a great woman. My family had personal experience with her about 3 years ago. Her passing last year was a big loss for Klal Yisroel. I guess greatness runs in her family. Her father was Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv.

I truly believe that this picture gives lie to the ridiculous extremes of Tznius that has become increasingly fashionable in Charedi circles these days. Like a recent picture of the inside of a drawer where women's shoes were photo-shopped out of it. Do we really need to be Frummer than Rav Chaim Kanievsky? 

There seems to be little doubt about the greatness of Rav Kanievsky in those circles. Consider that not only was Rav Elyashiv his father in law, but he is the son of the Steipler Gaon.  

But Yichus is not all that he has. He has written seminal works on Hilchos Shvi'is (Derech Emunah) and many other great works on Halacha and Hashkafa. One does not have to be Charedi to recognize that he is a Gadol BaTorah. 

Many Charedim consider him to be the heir to his father-in-law as the Gadol HaDor. Even though the current fight over who that is - is between supporters of Rav Aharon Leib Steinman and Rav Shmuel Auerbach. 

I am not qualified to judge how great each one of these men are - certainly not relative to each other. But I think it is safe to say he is a peer among the greats of Torah knowledgeable people. 

That his wife actually acted like a wife to him in public instead of hiding behind a Mechitza somewhere should be a lesson to Charedim who just love to hide woman from public view. Look at this man and his wife who were photographed in close contact with each other. Learn from them. One picture is worth a thousand words.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Vintage Wein - Dawn of the Century

Rabbi Berel Wein
This 2009 documentary by Rabbi Berel Wein is - well... vintage Wein! It covers Jewish history between 1900 to 1910. There is some beautiful archival film footage as well as an assortment of pictures from that era. Those images alone are worth the approximately one hour of viewing time.

Hat tip - Professor Yitzchok Levine.