Sunday, July 17, 2016

Let His Soul Rest

There has been a great deal of discussion on the silly-net about the question of whether Elie Weisel was an observant Jew. I can speak as someone who davened in his shul on Yomim Tovim when he visited Israel. 

First of all, a Yid who went through Aushwitz and still gets up publicly and proclaims ברכו את השם המבורך is much greater than any of the writers or commenters on any silly blog. 

But secondly - and this is the primary point - what is it anyone's business???? What gives any individual the right to pry into anyone else's life? Are they making a shidduch with him? It is important to know whether a potential shidduch or his family are shomer shabbos but that is not the case here. Are they considering hiring him as a Rov? It is important that a Rov be shomer shabbos but that is not the case here. His tortured body and soul returned to the Creator who is the ONLY ONE who has the right to judge him. We have zero justification to pry into the religious practices of another human being unless there is some practical benefit or necessity. People think that the life of public figures is everybody's business but it is not. They are entitled to their privacy no less than we are.

  מה טובו אהליך יעקב - How goodly are your tents O Jacob! Chazal say that what was so good about their tents was that they weren't facing each other so that people couldn't see what was going on in their friends' [is the apostrophe in the right place? Never actually learned these rules.....] tent. Bilaam was impressed that Jewish people stayed out of their neighbors private business. 

The Internet and much of the media is built on sticking our noses into other people's business - sometimes with their consent and sometimes without. 

A better idea - no more blogs [except for the Torah ones], websites or other stupidities. Instead, we have a really fascinating 5 books of Moses, 24 books of Tanach, Shas and commentaries, sifrei mussar, machshava and chasidus. Or you can call or visit your bubby or someone else who would appreciate it. This human predilection to pry into other people's lives is a quality that must squashed.

As for Mr. Wiesel - may his neshama have peace, may he get the reward he deserves for all of the good he did in his life [e.g. he was a big supporter of the mosdos of his friend Rav Menashe Klein ztz"l] and may people learn from him to remember the holocaust. If he wasn't a perfect Jew then Hashem will decide what his judgement is - not us.       

I am reminded of this post.