The slander at FrumteensWatch continues unabated. Today's lie:
FrumTeens ... takes the astonishing position that whenever somebody learns
peshat wrong in the Chumash, it is kefirah! (check it out here) ...
The fact that Frumteens says exactly the opposite
does not deter this anti-religious rasha.
Posted - 11 March 2005 12:54
You Wrote:1) Apikorsus is
anything that is contrary to the Torah's opinion, regardless of whether it
contradicts one of the 13 Ikarim or not.If I say a wrong Pshat in a Gemora or a
Posuk it becomes unintentional Apikorsus? If so, everyone better stop saying any
Posted - 11 March 2005 13:13
No, it doesnt. Dont worry
about your chidusim - theyre fine (even if theyre wrong).
But your question
is good: When does a chidush (that does not violate the ikarim) become
Any pshat you say that you honestly and objectively, without any
outside influences or negiyos, derived lishmah from the torah, is, at worst a
But an idea that you had preconceived, or that you decided based not
on torah but on science or psychology or some other outside influence, or your
own negiyus, or whatever, if that idea is contrary to the torah, and you try to
fit in your outside-the-torah pshat into the torah, you are in essence twisting
the Torahs words, NOT deriving things from them; you are trying to make the
torah agree with you, NOT you agreeing to the Torah. And so if your pshat is
correct, youre OK. But if its against the torah, youre not a toeah but a megaleh
panim batorah shelo kehalachah. And that is apikorsus.
This answer is in
Rashi. What I wrote was a quote from the Sefer Hachinuch on lo sasuru acharei
levavchem. its quoted by poskim, including the mishna brurah.
Rashi, on the
Gemora in Brachos that the sefer hachinuch is referring to states that apikorsus
in the posuk of losasuru is giluy panim batorah shelo kehalachah - someone who,
loosely translated, creates chidushim that are agaisnt the Torah. Now not every
chidush thats wrong is giluy panim shelo kehalachha. If someone has a
pre-established idea that he created not from the torah but outside of it, in
his own ideology, and then decides to fit the torah into someone that it does
not really say, thats giluy panim batorah. And thats the apikorsus that the
chinuch is referring to.
That, you can do beshogeg or bemazid. You can
purposely fake a pshat knowing its fake, or you can give in to your yetzer horah
to believe something, and then try to fit that belief into the Torah. Thats
meenus beshogeg. Since the pshat did not come from the Torah but from outside
sources, the torah in essence was twisted to fit into some idea thats
actually contrary to torah. If you know your pshat is fake, youre a mazid; if
you think its true, youre a shogeg. But since in both cases the torah was
twisted to fit into some outside idea, the only difference is if you are
knowingly twisting the torah or unknowingly. Thats not the same as looking into
the torah and honestly deriving something mistakenly.
The second case is your chidushim. You may be making mistakes, but youre
not twisting the Ketzos to fit the Corpus Jurus. If youd do that, and you would
twist the torah to say something it doesnt, that would be giluy panim
The chazon ish, when he says this about the chidush he saw in the
sefer, prefaces his remarks by saying "this is the type of idea that the yetzer
horah loves, and it is similar to the yetzer horah of avodah zorah. Even though
the author was a G-d fearing Jew, he worshipped apikorsus unwittingly."
He is saying that this pshat came from a negiyus, derived by non-torah
means and then fit into the torah. Thats what makes it apikorsus. The mechaber
honestly thought that he had a good pshat. Thats why he was a shogeg.
Thus, the Moderator is of the opinion that since Modern Orthodox and Religious
Zionist rabbis have learned the wrong peshat in various aspects of Torah, their
beliefs are kefirah.
Nobody ever said that. Frumteens said that those Modern Orthodox that institutionalized aveiros such as mixed swimming and bitul Torah on the claim that "everybody does aveiros anyway so we are no different" are guilty of Kefirah beliefs, because they are knowingly disagreeing with the Torah. This was demonstrated on previous posts. Zionism being Kefirah is not the Moderator's position but that of the Brisker Rav, Chazon Ish, Rav ELchonon Wasserman and others. They do not need defense.
FTW then shows his ignorance of basic Torah knowledge:
So he is forced into the bizarre position that somebody can believe and
practice kefirah all their life, and yet not be officially called a Kofer!
But obviously, if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and talks like a
duck, then it is a duck. If somebody is held to be believing and practicing
kefirah all their life, it is foolish to maintain that they are not
The position that you can say Kefirah and not be a Kofer is found all over the Gemora Rishonim and Achronim. The Gemora says that Lo sasuru acharei levavchem means if you believe Kfirah you violate this Laav. FTW concedes that this means anything that is against Daas Torah. Yet we know that you're not a Kofer unless you violate the 13 Ikarim. So how can the Mishna Brura expand the definition of Kofer? And why does the Rambam's 13 Ikarim not include "everything that is not Daas Torah"? The answer is that if you disbelieve Daas Torah it is Kefirah, you are over on a lav but you are not a Kofer.
The Moderator also quoted the Chazon Ish saying that you can be a Yorei Shamayim and still believe Kefirah unwittingly. Beliveing Kefirah does not remove you from the category of Yorei Shamayim, and surely does not make you into a Kofer.
And recently Rav Yosef Sholom Elyashev has paskened on the books of Slifkin that they are Kefirah, while at the same time stating that this does not mean Slifkin is a Kofer. Rav Elyashev said, Slifkin could even be one of the Lamed Vav Tzadikim, yet his books are Kefirah.
This is also explained
by the Moderator:
Posted - 10 May 2005 8:48
I cant speak for anybody else, so youll have to ask Rabbi Feldman that question.
However, there is a lot of misunderstanding surrounding this one point: that calling ideas Kefirah does not mean that he who espouses them is a Kofer. I explained this at length... A lot of people still dont understand this.Especially in the Modern Orthodox world I have found this idea to be widely unknown. I have seen and heard throughout my life, when certain ideas are branded Kefirah, people mistakenly taking that to mean that the believers of those ideas are being branded Kofrim.
If you read Rabbi Feldman's letter carefully you will find that nowhere does he quote Rav Elyashev as saying the books are not Kefirah. On the contrary - more than once he quotes Rav Elyashev as saying he had no intention of branding the author a Kofer, yet never did Rav Elyashev say he denies holding the books are Kefirah.
When Rav Elyashev said "I didnt say the author is a Kofer; I just meant that the books are assur to read", he is not saying in that statement that the books are or arent Kefirah. But he is saying that the author is not a Kofer...
He does not quote Rav Elyashev as saying it, and none of the quotes he lists nor the explicit message Rav Elyashev told him to publicize ever addressed the issue of whether the books are Kefirah. They did, however, address and clarify the issue as to whether he said the author is a Kofer. And he did not.Indeed, Rav Elyashev issued a letter shortly thereafter stating that the understanding that he implied the books are not Kefirah was mistaken. He never intended to modify the position of the original letter that he signed, which stated the books are Kefirah, he wrote. He always did and still does hold by the letter that says the books are Kefirah. His only intention was to explain to those who thought that labeling the books Kefirah means the author is a Kofer, were mistaken. One has nothing to do with the other.
Rav Elyashev never changed his position nor modified it. He said that explicitly. Unfortunately, people refuse to acknowledge that in their lack of knowledge, about what Kefirah means, they totally misunderstood - and often misrepresented - what Rav Elyashev said.
In any case, it makes no difference what caused the misunderstanding. Rav Elyashev explicitly clarified his position in writing for all to see, that he always did, and still does, hold that Slifkins books are Kefirah.