Post by Andrew Clarke Post by Dan Koren Post by Dan Koren
I am no fan of the Charedi or of any other
traditional religious communities. If they
have to relocate to other places that is
perfectly fine as far as a I am concerned.
As long as they don't move anywhere close.
You are becoming nasty. What
did the Charedim ever do to you?
They made my life quite difficult
(and other people's too) when I
was a student in Jersulem. They
practically locked us in our dorm
The Hebrew University's student
dorms were on French Hill and on
Mt. Scopus. Public transportation
did not run on weekends. To get
to the city one had to walk through
Mea She'arim, and they prevented
anyone from doing so. The Haredi
community in Israel is extremely
aggressive in trying to return the
entire nation to the 16th century.
Not really. They just want to be in 16th century themselves. They are aggressive in preventing others from destroying their way of life.
Note that they all have cell phones and many work in tech. The black garb they wear is a relatively modern invention. Whatever.
If they literally prevented you from walking through Mea She'rim on Shabbos, I can't defend that. Maybe you could have taken a taxi to avoid provoking them.
Dan will be relieved to know that families from the Charedi community in South Tottenham/Stamford Hill - one is just to the north of the other - are moving to Canvey Island, a former resort for East Enders in the Thames Estuary, linked by bridges to the deeply unfashionable county of Essex. At least it isn't Coney Island.
IIRR there is an erev in North London somewhere, granted by the local council. I don't think they would be allowed to block traffic, however.
Having an eruv (a partially symbolic physical demarcation of an area within which one is allowed to "carry" on the Sabbath, which is not permitted without it) and shutting down traffic have nothing to do with each other. Perhaps you know that, but I wanted to make it clear.
In several Jerusalem neighborhoods overwhelmingly populated by the ultra-orthodox, the streets are actually closed by a gates on the Sabbath and major holidays. Emergency vehicles are permitted, of course. I do not know the legal mechanism by which this street closure is permitted. In the U.S. we have street closures for block parties and parades. I haven't thought about if the situations are related at all. I suppose if was not an orthodox Jew and the shortest way from A to B was through one of these neighborhoods, I might be annoyed. I remember being in Brooklyn a few years ago and having to wait for streets to open after a very long parade. I WAS annoyed.
Post by Andrew Clarke
Frank's comment about many of them working in tech raises an important issue, namely that traditionally Cheradim do not accept secular education
I think a more accurate statement would be that they object to having to teach state-mandated subjects that conflict with their values.
Post by Andrew Clarke
and the men do not go to work, devoting themselves to studying the Torah.
This is an exaggeration. Torah observant Jews have always worked. In the historical sources Rabbis disagreed about how much time is appropriate to devote to work. Historically, communities (or fathers in law) supported promising scholars. It is true that some great scholars may have worked (in the sense of making a living outside the rabbinate) little or not at all. The vast majority of men work to support their families. Government support for mediocre scholars (a real source of conflict in Israel) is a new thing. Rambam (Moses Maimonedes), one of our greatest rabbis, schoars, and biblical commentators or lived over 1000 years ago, essentially called men who didn't work but studied all the time "bums."
This can lead to friction, as many people, goy or Jewish, including people in Israel itself, get upset at the idea that they are paying taxes to support large families where the father won't get a job, as they see it.
True, but when people resent their taxes going to support men who don't work, do they consider that the orthodox community as a whole, with its yeshivas, synagogues, consumers and, yes, workers contribute mightily to the Israeli economy. The amount of money coming from outside of Israel to support that community is immense.
Post by Andrew Clarke
I believe there are/were moves in Israel to limit the amount of social security the Charedim receive.
Payments go up and down depending on the government coalition in power. When payments are cut, the number of men working goes up. Duh.
?Interestingly, there are situations where the mother goes to work and the father stays at home and looks after the family's spiritual needs:
Not unusual at all. In my daughter's neighborhood (one of the most uniformly ultra-orthodox) you see women (and men) coming and going with their briefcases and computers every day. It is problematic for unrelated men and women to work closely together, so there is an issue of finding an appropriate job situation.
I read in a New York Jewish paper of one family where the mother is a company CEO and is perfectly happy for her husband to stay at home and fulfil his religious duties. Perhaps the attitude to work is changing?
This phenomenon is not new at all. The situation of large numbers of Jewish men not working who are not great scholars (exaggerated though I believe it is) is a modern response to the social welfare net.
In the Charedi world, the typical situation is this. Men study through high school age and beyond. When they marry, the ideal is for them to continue to study full time for several years and then find work. How they split their time thereafter between study and work will vary depending on the financial and intellectual situation and on the man's inclination. Everybody studies (they say "learns), but not everybody studies a lot, never mind all the time. There is a saying (don't know the source, as I am not a scholar) that when a man dies he is asked "Did you set aside time to study." Note, not did you study full time or even a lot, but did you have a regular time.
I don't know that the Torah has much to say about microchips (tablets of stone don't count) or programming languages.
My Hassidic grandson just completed on-line training in crypto something or other. He has several job offers in hand.
Post by Andrew Clarke