Deiah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

26 Elul 5778 - September 6, 2018 | Mordecai Plaut, director | Nitzovim-5778 Published Weekly

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At The Center of the Universe
At The Center of the Universe
by Mordechai Plaut

Please note that the next scheduled issue is before Succos. Kesivah Vechasimah Tovah.

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Message for Selichos from HaRav Moshe Hillel Hirsch shlita

HaRav Moshe Hill Hirsch shlita, in a special message he delivered this past motzei Shabbos in anticipation of the Yemei Hadin in the Beis Knesses Yotzei Slobodka in Elad to a massive audience before the recital of Selichos, aroused everyone through his words which encompassed at length the self-improvement efforts preceding the Yomim Noraim. He dwelt upon the need to be prepared for self-sacrifice and to be fortified against being drawn after various enticements which beckon to a person to descend from his spiritual level, for only through great effort and vigil can one be worthy to merit the zchus Ovos which is available at this pertinent time of year, for the very essence of their lives was mesirus nefesh.


Real Progress Towards Kosher Shabbos Electricity

MK Rabbi Yaakov Asher met with local Degel HaTorah representatives from several communities to try to advance the solutions provided in the Electricity Reform that provide for setting up electric generation plants that are fully automatic and kosher for use on Shabbos.


New Strict Smoking Limitations in Israel

This past motzei Shabbos initiated a new law forbidding smoke in public areas. This delineates a very detailed list of new regulations approved by the Knesset Health Committee, which came into effect on September 1st


The Pitfalls of Chareidi Internet Sites

"The Church Bells are Awaiting"

Thirty-nine years ago, on the Tuesday of the week of Parshas Vayera, there was publicized a letter in the handwriting of the Steipler, signed also by HaRav Shach, HaRav Wosner, HaRav Yechiel Michel Feinstein [all zt"l, and lehavdil bchl"ch) HaRav Nissim Karelitz. The letter was directed against one of the newspapers which was the platform for slander and loshon hora and acerbic mockery, constituting one of the major sources of incitement against chareidi Jewry.


Agudath Israel of America Kol Korei about Kaporos

Agudath Israel of America has reissued its announcement about the proper way of bringing kaporos to avoid problems. It was originall issued in 2007 but is still relevant today.



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From Our Archives

Restraining One's Mouth and Desires -- Some Thoughts for Elul

by HaRav Nosson Meir Wachtfogel,zt"l

Profound and important thoughts for Elul.

"It will be when he hears the words of this curse, that he will bless himself in his heart, saying, `I shall have peace though I walk in the stubbornness of my heart,' to add drunkenness to thirst. Hashem will not spare him, but then the anger of Hashem and His jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and Hashem shall blot out His name from under heaven. And Hashem shall mark him off for evil out of all the tribes of Yisroel, according to all the curses of the covenant that are written in this book of the Torah" (Devorim 29:18-20).

Judaism in the Secular Street

by Mordecai Plaut

It is all our fault, they tell us. Listen to Sever Plotsker, a well-known leftist journalist: "Chareidi Jewry lost the Shabbos because it tried to force shemiras Shabbos through power and not via the spirit onto all citizens of Israel. . . . If the religious-chareidi leadership only had the sense to work through darchei noam, with convincing and compromise, shemiras Shabbos would be much more widespread that it is today, but the leadership chose to use its political clout to impose a dati-chareidi lifestyle onto Israel. . . . Thus it lost, and caused heavy damage to the Jewish religion."

A Manifesto For Chinuch In Our Times: An Interview With HaRav Noach Orlowek

By Udi Mor

This period is one in which we have to educate ourselves to come closer to Hashem. Though this interview was originally conducted around Pesach time, it is relevant year round, and certainly at this time.

The Acquisition of Chochmo

By HaRav Aharon Westheim zt"l

"Anyone whose fear of sin precedes his wisdom, his wisdom is enduring" (Ovos chapter 8, Mishna 9). Rabbeinu Yonah has two alternative explanations for this statement. He says as follows: "The tanna is referring to the motives of a person. Someone whose motive in pursuing wisdom is to prevent his soul from sinning, and he indeed acquires wisdom, his wisdom endures. He keeps away from sins, and also fulfils mitzvos as a result of his wisdom and understanding.


Av, 5765 - Kislev 5766 (August-December 2005)

May-July, 2005