Thursday, January 28, 2010

Post-Orthodoxy Reconsidered (Interlude)

I had actually intended to delay further writing on this subject until Erev Shabbat. However, looking over the comments at Hirhurim, it is clear that Gil Student and I are treating very different concerns.
He is addressing specific points on the communal agenda in the United States.

I am discussing a different type of Post-Orthodoxy.

I am concerned with its expression through the widespread abandonent of Torah and Mitzvot by the products of the best Religious Homes and Schools in Israel.

I am concerned with its expression through the phenomenon of 'Dati Lite,' and not necessarily because of its dilution of religious observance. Rather, I see it as a direct result of the type of one or two dimensional Judaism that is taught by the rabbinic and educational leadership of our sector of society.

I am concerned with its expression through religious subjectivism; a Judaism that is more spiritual utilitarianism than human self-fulfillment through the Worship of God and the observance of His commandments.

Gil is worried about 'pushing the envelope.' I'm more concerned about the motives for doing so and how the needs of those who are doing so can be legitimately expressed, channelled or guided within the framework of Tradition (and I believe there is much room for that).

As I said, though, all of that will have to wait till tomorrow.


Pierre Sogol said...

I think a point both of you would agree on, despite the different but related concerns - is that the community, leadership and decisors to "creatively confront the challenges". In regard to your concern of a significant number of a generation of Dati Israelis leaving Torah - I can say I have found only one English and Hebrew language source actually articulating what to think of them - and even he stops at the gates of Olam HaZeh;

But in America, the authors of an article in the Jewish Observer from 2007 seem unfamiliar with these sources and actually despairs of applying tinok shenishbah to such people;

Even though doing so goes back to RDZ Hoffman.

Pierre Sogol said...

Of course, R. Amital has also written on those very phenomena you describe in his "Between Religious Experience and Religious Commitment". Most of the essays therein as I recall are from Alei Etzion 11;