Thursday, October 08, 2009

This Is Why We Love Chabad

Minute 34 onward from Rabbi Dr. Aaron Rakeffet-Rothkoff's Monday, September 14, 2009 lecture:
    So I asked my host, “What’s the difference between Chabad and Agudas Yisrael? The Agudistim dress in black, the Agudistim have hats; many have beards. Chabad dresses in black, Chabad has hats, unique hats- many have beards. So what’s the difference?” And the words of my host have guided my life subsequently.

    He said to me, “It’s a good question! But I’ll tell you the difference. You’re a Bnei Akivanik, you said. Could you imagine if the Mizrachi built 50 mikvaot? So what wll happen? Agudah will pasul the mikvaot. Agudah will build 50 mikvaot? Mirzachi will invalidate the mikvaot. Chabad will send a letter, the Rebbe will send a letter yasher koach, both to Mizrachi and to Agudah for building 100 new mikvaot together.”

    And I never forgot that answer. To me, that’s genius. Plain and simple. And that’s my attitude.

11 comments:

ari kahn said...

but Chabad would not use all 100, rather they would claim they are not up to their standards and build one more.

Chana said...

Rabbi Kahn,

Could you explain? I don't understand.

Anonymous said...

The Lubavitcher Rebbe Z"TL, had different parameters and dimensions on building a Mikveh. They would only use a non-Lubavitch created Mikva as a last resort.
Still a lovely story.

ChayAiz said...

i think that going three rebbes back in the chabad dynasty, the Rebbe Rashab, had an innovative solution to problems in the details of mikveh building. with the various pits containing rain water and tap water... not sure of details right now. but perhaps this is what kahn refers to.

ChayAiz said...

thank you for sharing this anecdote. typical of the rebbe and beautiful. reminds me...

Toviah said...

The lubavitchers use a mikva with a pit on the bottom filled with Mayim Chaim, a board placed on top of it with a little hole, and they use hashaka to validate all the water on top of the board in the mikva.

R' Shachter said that a lubavitcher onced asked him if he could use a non-lubavitch mikva, or if it would be like using a cadillac as opposed to a junky car. R' Shachter told him that they're both cadillacs, the difference is that one is like a cadillac driven by a lubavitcher and one isn't

R' shachter has an awesome shiur on mikvaos on YUtorah where he tells this story.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to see R' Ari beat me to the punch - I laughed out loud when I read the original post since it's such an unlikely example.

BTW do you see Mizrachiists rejecting agudah hechsher or poskim?

It's a nice story but not one that reflects the underlying reality.

GT
Joel Rich

The Cousin said...

Speaking of Chabad and the Mikva--in attending services at Chabad for Yom Kippur and then the second day of Yom Tov this past week (went to a different shul shabbos)--there seemed to be a lot of emphesis on the topic of the mikvah.

The Rabbi seemed to focus a lot on the topic and subject of the Mikvah during Yom Kippur [it's easy to understand why]. But on Yom Tov, there was also some mention of the Mikvah by the rabbi. Perhaps it's just a coincidence? Or was the Rabbi also trying to advertise the Mikvah the local Chabad center has here?

aaronswish said...

That is a brilliant answer! And totally true.

And R. Kahn is right...

Anonymous said...

Many years ago Rabbi Schachter returned from his summer vacation and gave a "teshuva Shiur" He was livid (maybe really pink) about a number of issues of religious or intellectual dishonesty. Among which was the building of a mikvah in the area of Tannersville by the chabad folks. They had used the existing mikvah for years and suddenly needed to build a new one.

In addition ask some local out of town ortho rabbis about how chabad will often build institutions which compete with theirs for a very small population.

Rabbi Rakeffet is naive about chabad. They cooperate when it's to their advantage and compete when the feel they can beat the existing jewish institutions.

Ex Chabad student

Anonymous said...

This is exactly why I do not love Chabad. Because they are so good at creating stories like this that puts them in such a good light, but when you really look at real world examples and facts, Chabad is only satisfied if something is done the Chabad way.