Rabbi Protests Custom of Making ‘L’Chaim’

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whiskeyA prominent rabbi of the Religious Zionist Movement in Israel has criticized the custom of making a l’chaim found in Chassidishe circles. Rabbi Yuval Sharlo, head of the Hesder Yeshiva in Petach Tikva, said “the consumption of alcohol is one of the ‘metastasis’ of the Chassidic world.”

“Although every chossid is used to saying he does not ‘drink’ but is saying ‘l’chaim,’ and with that he turns the drink to a vessel for elevating the soul and connecting with Hashem.

“But, this sentiment is not always perceived that way,” the rabbi claimed. “More than once the drink turns to a legitimate way of life.

“I don’t have to be a chossid to get to drinking and the scope of the phenomenon is the witness for it.”

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15 COMMENTS

  1. I don’t think this man has an inkling of what goes on in the chasidishe circles drinking problems don’t come from the lechiems that the rebba is giving out it comes from a lack of self control which oddly enough is more prevalent in the modern community’s
    He should look in his own backyard and take a look at the drinking and binge drinking problems in the modern orthodox or hesder community as they like to be called and wile he’s taking a look the drug problem will probably jump up and bite him in the face
    And when he’s ready to take a deep unbiased look at the customs of the Chassidim he will be plesently surprised

  2. Reb Zelig Epstein’s z”tl petira was the final nail in the coffin of Litvack’s hashkafa. Now its Yerushalmi, Chassidus, Machshava and let’s drink to that..PLEASE!!!

  3. This thought of his did not have to come from any particular group. There are chasideshe psychiatrists who whave made similar comments, I believe.

    I am not the one to decide what to do, but the man has a right to his opinion. The chasideshe velt and rebbes know that there is truth to what he says, and try to be careful not to let things go to far. In this generation, there is a lot of addiction to various things, and it is too often if not usually not dealt with openly and adequately.

  4. Could he be any less clear? ‘More than once the drink turns to a legitimate way of life’ ?? So he is saying it IS legitimate?? Come out and say whatever you want to say clearly or keep quiet…

  5. It is upsetting to see how people react so forcefully against Rabbis of other communities,each group has their customs,and understandings in judaism,we must respect them unless ofcourse it goes against the Torah,what the Rabbi said I am not the one to comment whether its right or wrong,it certainly does not imply anything against the Torah,but if we degrade him that IS DEFINETLY AGAINST THE TORAH!Lets try to look with a good eye on others,especially now so close to Yom Hadin. With wishes for a KESIVAH VECHASIMA TOVA TO ALL KLAL YISROEL.

  6. One of the more pronounced criticisms that the misnagdim had against the early chassidim was their frequent excuses for consuming alcohol. Rabbi Sherlo is pointing out that it’s about time that this consumption be lessened. Hailigeh minhag? No, an unfortunate minhag, time to get rid of it.

  7. To #11 –
    “But, this sentiment is not always perceived that way,” the rabbi claimed. “More than once the drink turns to a legitimate way of life.
    I don’t have to be a chossid to get to drinking and the scope of the phenomenon is the witness for it.”

    The above sentences do not make any form of grammatical sense and the syntax is all wrong. ‘This sentiment’ is not perceived by whom exactly? ‘I dont have to be a chossid to get to drinking’? What does that actually mean?

    His point is basically, chassidim should watch their drink (hardly radical), but the way he puts it across made my head hurt

  8. Abi geret oif chassidim. Do chassidim drink more than his fellow RZs? Ah nechtiger tug. Let him take a look at the social scene in his own backyard before criticizing ehrliche yidden.

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