R. Hirsch as a Modern Orthodox Leader
MODERN RABBINIC THOUGHT
ideological team a rabbi belongs to often obscures more important questions
about that rabbis thought and can distract us from our basic responsibility to
talmud Torah. For these
reasons I have left the topic of
However, that being
said, a community needs guiding polestars, and Modern Orthodoxy often lists
Regarding two important issues,
Modern Orthodox communities tend to be open to some level of working
together with other Jewish denominations on issues of common concern, as long as
the Orthodox retain their autonomy over their own religious institutions. In
However, on a host of other issues,
We have dwelt upon this episode in the life of our matriarch [Rivka] not in order to find an apology for her act, nor because of any feeling on our part that we must not allow any shadows to attach to the biographical pictures of our great forebears. We completely disagree with that view. Our ancestors were never presented to us as angelic models to emulate in every respect; indeed, had they been presented to us as angelic creatures, their example for us to follow in our own lives would have been far less ideal and instructive than it actually is
Also, our Sages never turn a blind eye to the shortcomings of our forefathers; they demonstrate how each error of our great ancestors had its own unhappy consequence. The commentators on the Word of God, including, for instance, the Ramban, follow our Sages also in this respect.
Two important letters on the status of aggadot also identify
On the topic of the
science of Chazal,
His attitude to
womens issues should be added to our list.
A man who truly respects his wife will have more to offer her than just trivial talk and idle amusement. He will want to discuss with her the serious concerns of life and will derive enjoyment from the resulting exchange of views and counsel.
An extensive essay on
The Jewish Woman makes
This citation also
indicates a strong sense of the potential spiritual grandeur of non-Jews
another characteristic of Modern Orthodoxy.
We see Avraham, with the pain inflicted by this sign still fresh, sitting before his tent in the heat of the sun and looking out for weary travelers, inviting idolatrous strangers into his house and showing mercy and kindness and the love of God to all his fellow-men without distinction.
Since Torah im derekh eretz is the slogan most commonly
acharon argued that
But the more firmly he takes his stand on the rock of his Judaism, the more fully he is penetrated with consciousness of his own Judaism, the more ready will he be to accept and gratefully appropriate whatever is true and good in other sources according to Jewish standards; in whatever mind it originated, from whose-ever mouth it issued. (Judaism Eternal, vol. 2, p. 223)
For this we require schools, Jewish schools, in which equal attention shall be paid to the old sacred inheritance of the community of Jacob, Biblical and Rabbinic knowledge, and to all that is true, noble and good in European culture. (Judaism Eternal, vol. 1, p. 156)
For these reasons, the educational institution of the Israelite Religiongesellschaft feels convinced that it ought to pay no less attention and devote no less care to subjects of general education than to the specifically Jewish; nay, it regards this care and attention as being from the Jewish standpoint also a sacred duty the fulfillment of which can be of no small benefit to religion itself. (Judaism Eternal, vol. 1, p. 219)
Ironically, it is
actually cultural isolationism that
In a number of articles, Prof. Yehuda (Leo) Levi has argued that
One final quote about the value of world literature should close this debate:
In teaching them the languages of the civilized nations and introducing them to their literature we give them the key with which, when they are grown up, they can gain entrance to the intellectual creations of the peoples and feed and enrich their minds with all that is good and noble and true in the contributions of the noblest spirits to the realm of knowledge. (Judaism Eternal, vol. 1, p. 219)
As we have seen,
 Mordechai Breuer,
 See R. S.
 The letters were prepared for publication by Mordechai Breuer and appear in Hamaayan Tevet 5736, pp. 1-16.
 Collected Writings, vol. 8, pp. 83-136.
 Ibid., p. 135.
 Collected Writings, vol. 4 (NY: Feldheim, 1986), pp. 23-24.
 Judaism Eternal, vol. 2, p. 219.
 Judaism Eternal, vol. 1, pp. 163, 206; Judaism Eternal, vol. 2, p. 235.
 Judaism Eternal, vol. 1, p. 171; Collected Writings, vol. 8, p. 322.
 See his Ha-Rashar Hirsch Ke-moreh Derekh Le-dorenu, Shana Be-shana 5753, pp. 421-432 and Sheela Be-inyan Limmud Chohkmot Chitzoniyot, Hamaayan 5768, pp. 35-42.
 Heretofore, this address
has only been available in the original German. Prof.