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Spiritual Growth for Jews

Have You Won the Chanukah War? How Have Your Prevented Integration from Becoming Assimilation?

Posted on | December 12, 2012 | By Administrator | 7 Comments

As BTs, many of us pride ourselves on how well we have integrated the Chol (secular) and the Kodesh (holy) in our lives. Given that Chanukah was our fight against assimilation, it might make sense to examine our integration and assimilation.

Where does integration end and assimilation begin? How do you draw the line?

How do you prioritize Torah knowledge over secular knowledge?

When do you Google for advice and when do you ask a Rav?

Are you more likely to spend time reading the online news or study Gemara, Halacha, Mishana or Nach?

How much of Western Society is still an essential part of you?

Comments

7 Responses to “Have You Won the Chanukah War? How Have Your Prevented Integration from Becoming Assimilation?”

  1. Shades of Gray
    December 12th, 2012 @ 1:16 pm

    “When do you Google for advice and when do you ask a Rav?”

    To an extent, this is similar to using Google vs. asking a doctor a health question. Before the internet, one can order a publication from Mayo Clinic to get medical or nutritional advice. With the background information, you can ask your doctor a more informed question. Ultimately, you (hopefully) follow the advice of your doctor. With the exsistence of the internet, you can look on a reputable medical website and use it as above. Neither way of research substitutes for personal advice.

    Speaking of Google, these are two MP3’s which discuss this issue:

    “Impact of the Internet on 21st Century Torah”, R’ Mordechai Torczyner, 8/21/12, YUTorah Online

    “Faith Amongst the Faceless: Transmitting Mesorah in a Culture of Social Media”, Rav Yaakov Neuburger, 4/29/12, TorahWeb

  2. Bob Miller
    December 12th, 2012 @ 5:12 pm

    Is using this blog as an information source an indicator of assimilation?

  3. Mark Frankel
    December 12th, 2012 @ 5:39 pm

    I think our topics are more Torah oriented then secular. Don’t you?

  4. Zensci
    December 12th, 2012 @ 8:47 pm

    As with everything in life it all depends on context. I realize many BTs may feel better when things are clear cut even black and white in regards to well….just about everything. It sure is easier. But alas, reality sets in and we all sooner or later discover we live in a world that is a continuum of coloful gray. Thus, the answers to the questions posed in this blog post will significantly vary from case to case.

  5. Shmuel
    December 12th, 2012 @ 9:21 pm

    The “Chanuka war” (the figurative, personal one referred to in the post, not the real one) seemed hard at the time, but now that it’s over and won, I see that it was a piece of cake in comparison with the battle against the yetzer hara –a much more formidable foe than any secular culture or philosophy.

  6. Judy Resnick
    December 13th, 2012 @ 2:12 pm

    I regret to announce the passing of Rabbi Shmuel Elchonon Brog, zatzal, son-in-law of Rabbi Avigdor Miller, zatzal, affiliated for a very long time with Yeshivas Rabbeinu Chaim Berlin in Brooklyn. (R. Brog was my husband’s eleventh grade rebbi back in 1967, and was also at one time the English principal of the Mesivta). The levaya will be today at 2 PM at Chaim Berlin. Boruch Dayan Emes.

  7. Mr. Cohen
    December 14th, 2012 @ 12:11 am

    The moderator said:
    How much of Western Society is still an essential part of you?

    RESPONSE:
    By asking that question, you are provoking Jews to give answers that could be used against them.

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