Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Anything but Rabbi Nachman


Last night, Jerusalem's Breslover Nanas had a big party at the parking lot across the Supreme Court. I suppose that they were celebrating the Yahrzeit of their Rebbe Israel Odesser who died a while ago and is buried in Jerusalem. 

While passing the event, I was just reminded of a small conversation I had with an elderly Breslover a few weeks ago. The Breslover was from Bnei Brak and one of these hippie artist type. Baal Teshuva and always expressing his Breslov joy. When I asked him if he maybe belongs to the Berland (Rabbi Eliezer Berland, the Baal Teshuva Rabbi in Breslov) or Arush (Rabbi Shalom Arush, another Baal Teshuva Rabbi and a former student of Berland) movement he told me that he is only following G - d. When he said so, he look towards heaven and even pointed up his finger.

In order to go a bit on his nerves I said that I actually prefer the original Breslover movement from Mea Shearim where Rabbi Schechter is the head of the communities. And, as we know, Rabbi Schechter doesn't really allow any newcomer coming too close. This is why Rabbi Berland had enough and founded his own movement. 

The Breslover, however, made a very interesting response:
"I search and prefer Rabbi who uplift me. Who are bringing all kinds of Jews closer to Judaism. But I do not associate with those Rabbis who reject Jews and only concentrate on their own little community".

The Breslover was right and this was his personal opinion about Rabbi Schechter.

Despite our discussion, I started asking myself what it really means being a Breslover Chassid. Isn't the movement today a bit out of control and several Rabbis just took over and do their own "show" ? What about Rabbi Nachman and Rabbi Nathan ? Or are the Schechters, Arushs and others are more important today ?

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