A place for English speaking sofrim (scribes), magihim (examiners), rabbis and vendors of Stam (Torah, Tefillin and Mezuzah scrolls) from around the world to communicate, share ideas, ask questions and offer support and advice.
filtered internet does not allow me in
Filtered Internet is obviously necessary, but, why does it need to be pushed with such a conflict of interest?The site shown in the posting says that Ichud HaKehillos founder, Rabbi Nechemia Gottlieb, allegedly owns part of a company that makes haredi Internet filters.That's an interesting way to generate more business.
Firstly, failed messiah is a hate site, I don't think there should be reference to it here...Ther are plenty of other legit news sites covering this story...Regarding the issue, your average sofer sitting and writing for a socher (many of the sofrim in Israeli system) do not need internet and nor is there a reason why they should have - with or without a filter.Regarding sochrim and people who need it for business - a rav should be consulted.Menwhile, to benefit those who use a filter and wish to access this site, please refrain from using any word that a filter may catch - for example we had an issue recently when a member used the word "nake-d eye" without the dash and a few members emailed me that this was stopping them being able to access the site.
The internet issue is complicated and unfortunately was not dealt with properly to begin with. I use the internet (with a filter here in Eretz Yisrael) for communicating via email as well as accessing hebrewbooks.org (together with this blog and few others with valuable information.) Google has also become a good place to search quickly for things in Torah. Mareh Makomos, interesting articles, etc. Many Rabbonim here in Eretz Yisrael have relied on me in the past since I have access to hebrewbooks.org and their online library of over 50,000 seforim. One very chashuva Dayan I know here in Eretz Yisrael walks around with an iPhone with access to email. He uses it to communicate not only with family but for things in learning as well. I see him writing lots of notes on it even in the Beis Medresh (which he is not afraid of using it in public.) I haven't yet joked around with him about if he's matir or not but perhaps the time as come ;).
As an additional comment...I didn't read any of these articles but I don't see how you can pasul a persons Stam or treif up their shechita or say they are pasul eides all because they have internet at home without a filter.."Ha'choshed b'kasherim, loko b'gufu" !!
I am very concerned at the hate sites directed at the internet. The internet is a tool - that's all. It can be used for good - it can be used for bad. If the person is weak in middot and uses it for wrong purposes then that's his lookout and his responsibility. If the person uses it to enhance his study - and Yehoshua brings hebrewbook.org as a perfect example - or to teach others like this site or indeed my own which I've had since 1995 then that's great. It is also a good source of business references and parnassah. Modern technology is not going away and pretending it isn't there just throws us back into the dark ages. Also all embracing statements like all work by a sofer or a shochet is pasul because he does this that or the other is just rubbish. There have been plenty of charedi Jews who have been 'done' for fraud, exploiting their workers etc - does this mean that every mitsvah they ever did was negated? No, we are all a mix of good and bad deeds - most people are beynonim and we all try to ensure that the good outweighs the bad.
Mordechai, whie I agree with you that people are not perfect, there are certain standards that have to be met. A sofer and shochet are supposed to strive for righteousness. So if in the Torah world the internet is frowned apon and considered undesirable, then how much more so those who are supposed to be the elite of this world - sofrim and shochtim. That is the logic behind Rav Wosner's ruling.
But we are using the internet to have this conversation and for each of us to support each other in our STaM queries. I cannot follow the logic here. Not all of the Torah world considers the internet undesirable - Chabad for example maximise the usage to spread Torah messages and learning. Don't get me wrong I have serious issues with the internet - largely around the fact that it is destroying the social nature of community amongst youngsters (Jewish or non-Jewish) as much as the undesirable material it contains but all tools are good and bad. An axe can chop a tree to provide wood to heat a home and furniture to sit upon, as surely as it can also kill a person. Is the axe therefore bad?
Very interesting discussion. I personally side with you, Mordechai, but what I think is happening now is a very strong push by thr Hareidim in order to raise awareness on the dangers of the web. Amd it is the way of chachamim to exagerate a bit in order to make sure people realize that there's a very problem here. Now how you deal with the problem is subject to debate and the Hareidi world is pushing for filter/censorship. That is solution but like you i dont think is the best one.
If I see a sofer davening at 11:00 am in the Belz Shteibelach (lav davka a Belzer, that's just sometimes where I am in the morning learning) should we also pasul his STaM? He's being over on a sif in SA? (All inyunim of chassidus and davening late, along with if there is an ones or not aside.) I know sofrim that do this c'seder for whatever reason. Is this standard though the same or not?
There is "filtered" Internet and there is "censored" Internet. Friends in Israel tell me that their filtered Internet is also censored Internet. Many sites which are perfectly kosher are blocked because they don't fit the "spirit" of whoever is in charge of blocking. One filtering service systematically ignores customer requests to open and allow kosher sites which are blocked.
With all due respect to Rav Wosner (and I certainly hold of him highly) I think he is wrong. The problem in the frum community is they try to make all these "fences for the Torah" which actually drive people away.. I do not see the big deal in having a regular internet (which I do). A "censored" internet does little to make one more pious in my opinion, I know a lot of people who have such things, but are rotten individuals. BTW, sorry about the site, it's the link I got sent and the only link to that story I could find
I certainly agree with Elad that sometimes these fences are driving people away. Especially in Eretz Israel where the non-religious use these instances for anti-religious propaganda through the media. But in this instance, like Eli said, Rav Wosner is trying to raise a certain standard for Jews who are providing "services" for the rest of Am Israel. As this world develops, (and parts of the internet are developing negatively), the Poskim must make more fences to protect and hold the nation as Kedoshim, Maybe he could have insisted on Filtered internet for Shochtim, and Sofrim rather than Posling all their work if they don't have. In any case, actions had to be taken in this area eventually. I'm not sure that the nation should rely on the strength of single individuals in this area. Even though none of us are Mekayem even half of the mitzvot in the Torah, some must make standards for others.
How about a sofer or shochet who lives near the beach, and cannot avoid seeing certain prohibitions, is he also passul?
If we ignore rav wosner's psak about kabala betokef will we listen to this psak????????????????????????????LETS BE BETTER SOFRIM AND BE MEKAYEM BOTH PSAKIM
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