In an interview which was conducted with Rabbi Aharon Kotler, the president of Lakewood Yeshiva, he shatters the myth which is well-entrenched in the yeshiva world: The legendary story about Reb Shlomo Carlebach who was expelled from of the Lakewood Yeshiva and composed the song “Lulaei Torascha” immediately after Rav Aharon Kotler threw him out, while he was still sitting on the steps on the way out of the yeshiva. The grandson of Rav Aharon Kotler zt”l related that “Shlomo Carlebach was never kicked out of Lakewood, Rav Aharon loved him. He was, as we all know, exceptionally musically inclined… I can imagine that at some point in his life his musical interests and drive exceeded his desire to learn in Yeshiva”.
The interview with Rabbi Kotler was conducted as part of the ‘Kikar Global’ project of the Haredi news website ‘Kikar HaShabbat’. The interviewer is Rabbi Benjamin Goldschmidt, Assistant Rabbi of Park East Synagogue in Manhattan. They tell, “This project was established with the aim of introducing the Jewish diaspora to the Israeli Haredi sector. “Religious Jews are a symbol of mutual responsibility and a desire to help each other, which is wonderful, but diaspora Jewry was stigmatized as not really being Jewish”, they say on ‘Kikar Hashabbat’. “But the truth is, of course, diaspora Jewry is a part of us. They are our brothers and sisters, and we have to know the challenges they are facing”.