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August 05, 1988 - Image 37

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-08-05

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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nuances of his original talk.
He declared himself an oppo-
nent of "the sacred cow of
religious pluralism," while
noting that non-Orthodox
groupings are valid in the
1P-- sense that "valid" derives
_ from the Latin word "strong"
And since objectively these
groups outnumber the Ortho-
dox, they are strong. In addi-
tion, their leaders should be
treated "humanly as in-
dividuals" and should be
_ - recognized "as leaders of
religious groups within the
Jewish community who must
and should be worked with
respectfully?'
According to Rabbi Lamm,
the non-Orthodox rabbis are
indeed "undermining the
Ibrah," but that does not
mean that they are doing so
purposefully. Many of them
are sincere in their beliefs, he
said, hastening to add that
that does not mean they
should be granted rabbinic
legitimacy in the eyes of
Jewish law.
In a lengthy response in the
same issue of the Observer,
Twerski takes Rabbi Lamm to
task for asserting that the
Times report was misleading
and then doing nothing to
"set the record straight." He
portrays : others associated
with modern Orthodoxy, like
Rabbi Nitz Greenberg, presi-
dent oi. the National Jewish
Cent‘ I. for Learning and
Lead'_rship (CLAL), and Rab-
bi E ianuel Rackman, former
pr dent of Bar-Ilan Univer-
sit as espousing views alien
to,1- ,..ulachah and urges Rabbi
Lamm to distance himself
from them.
Twerski suggests that Rab-
bi Lamm may be sending
mixed signals about legiti-
macy and seeking to walk too
narrow a tightrope, bound by
Halachah but willing to
negotiate with those outside
of Halachah.
"If you are to deal with the
Conservative and Reform rab-
binate as the functional
equivalent of secular Jewish
groups, as you suggest,"
writes Twerski, "then it will
have to be spelled out with ex-
cruciating clarity."
In the end, the debate will
surely continue within the
Orthodox community, with
Rabbi Lamm and his follow-
ers seeking to find enough
common ground among the
various branches to be able to
talk to each other, and Twer-
ski and his colleagues ad-
vocating following the true
path "without name calling,
without apology."

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