Sunday, November 28, 2010

Video: Bear Vs. Bear on "Did The Avos Keep All Of The Mitzvos"

It all started with a bear and a vort:

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein believes some will read into the video a criticism of the Avos or of Chazal:

My beef with the video is that it was predictable that some people would – quite inappropriately, I believe – see it as a swipe at the Avos, or at those who choose to take the words of Chazal literally unless guided to an allegorical approach by a Torah giant of the past. We ought not to take chances and liberties with the respect owed to the Avos, or to large numbers of yerei’im u-sheleimim. The video was creative, smart, and fun – but I would not have the risked the reaction.
Rabbi Alderstein is reacting in part to an article by Rabbi Yair Hoffman, who finds the video deprecating, mocking and derisive--giving sources to support the position the video opposes.

Rabbi Natan Slifkin has a post in direct response to Rabbi Hoffman:
In fact, the video was not addressing the Gemara, but rather one particular maximalist interpretation of the Gemara, which is that the Avos actually kept all the mitzvos as given on Sinai, such as writing a Sefer Torah. It was not mocking the minimalist interpretation, which explains the Gemara to mean that the Avos were outstanding people, in a way that today would be expressed by keeping the entire Torah. And while I cannot condone disrespect toward any Torah authority, it seems to me that Rabbi Hoffman's disrespect to Torah authorities is far more egregious.

Read the whole thing.

Now I see that Hirhurim has posted a video of his own--based on his post on the background of the understanding of "The Avos Kept All The Mitzvos:

Some of sources the 'bear' names may be difficult to hear, so you should go back to Hirhurim's article.

One point that is made is that the original video creates a "straw bear"--one side of the arguments stands silent in the face of the claims of the other. The fact that 2 bears of arguing over an issue of theology tends to make one overlook that the argument in fact is not a fair one.

Hirhurim's video addresses that imbalance.

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