Monday, July 12, 2010

Once the Rabbis studied Philosophy and Science

From today's "Yediot Acharonot"

Photo: Miriam Woelke


Parts of Israel's haredi (ultra - Orthodox) society has been questioning its own education system for years. There are Haredim who would like to go tand study at a university; become a doctor or a scientist but Israeli universities don't accept anyone with a Talmud Torah or Beit Yaakov degree. Haredi schools don't teach too much; the girls, however, learn still a bit more than the boys but not enough to enter the academic world.

Last night, the haredi radio channel "Kol BaRamah" referred to the haredi education problem and Knesset member Eliezer Moses (Chassidut Vishnitz) as well as the Meretz politician Horowitz were interviewed. Even Rabbi Moses admitted that most Haredim today have no basic knowledge in general education let alone in science. The left - winger Horowitz said that all Israelis need a basic knowledge in order to find a job.

I am the opposite of Meretz but, in this case, Horowitz is right. Just look at Rabbi Kook, the Vilna Gaon, the Abarbanel, the Rambam, the Ramban or the last Lubavitcher Rebbe. They all studied science and philosophy. Today, many Rabbis claim that philosophy would take religious people away from religion. However, G - d provided each of us with a special talent and we should use it. Why should a haredi woman not 
become a doctor ? Why an Israeli Haredi not a physician ?

People are usually not led away from religion but to me it looks as if certain Rabbis are only interested in keeping their power.


  1. I watched this cool video about the "educational" accomplishments of Israelis--Includes a comparison to the rest of the world. Makes me very proud! Everyone should watch this"

  2. Do you know of The Shmuz there in Israel? In New York it's very popular. Each week, Rabbi Ben-Zion Shafier draws proofs for the existence of G-d out of a piece of nature, a scientific experiment, or something of that nature.