Sunday, May 16, 2010

Tikkun Leil Shavuot in Jerusalem


"Tikkun Leil Shavuot" is a famous tradition on the night of Shavuot. Jerusalem is full of different study offers on Tuesday night. People usually eat their festive meal and then stream out to study somewhere. Within the past few years, the tradition has also become very popular among secular Israelis. Personally, I very much prefer lectures in Hebrew and if possible, something halachic. Besides going to Mea Shearim on Erev Shavuot.

As I have already mentioned, the best Hebrew programmes in Jerusalems are taking place at the Great Synagogue as well as at the Yeshurun Synagogue in King George Street.
The present Chief Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, Jonah Metzger, will speak at Yeshurun, and the former Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, Israel Lau, is going to speak at the Great Synagogue. Not only, as there will be plenty of other speakers but both Rabbis chose halachic issues.

The Menachem begin Center is offering a rather strange lecture as a Tikkun Leil Shavuot. The doctor of sociology, Sima Zalcberg, is going to talk about how, as a university researcher, she smuggled herself into the Toldot Aharon in order to write her doktorat (PhD). This happened some years ago and Ms. Zalcberg describes in her PhD., how she basically lied herself into the group in order to get some invitations for Shabbat. Her subject was "how the Toldot Aharon women shave their hair".

I spoke to Sima Zalcberg on the phone after I read her doktorat and here is the astonishing result:

As I said many times, I am against such Chutzpah using other people for one's own purposes. Furthermore, the lecture itself may give Christian missionaries or other people with negative goals ideas about how to make their way through. Sima Zalcberg has not much to say anyway. Before she actually went to the Toldot Aharon in a rather clumsy way, she read reports of how scientist make their way into African tribes. This says a lot about the quality of her doktorat where she refers to the women in Toldot Aharon as "subjects" and as "uneducated".

For those of you who are seriously interested in chassidic women shaving their hair after getting married:

Most chassidic women do shave their hair (Vishnitz, Belz, Satmar and many others). One doesn't need to sneak into the Toldot Aharon in order to collect information !

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