The letters of our thoughts are the ideas present in our mind before they come to realization . . . Thoughts that are, yet not felt . . . The words of the subconscious . . . of the soul . . .


Wednesday, October 18, 2006

On Kashrus, the Amish, and Zhebin

A Simple Jew deals with "A Chassid In The Workplace Asks For Advice"

Received today via e-mail:

I know you deal with this often, so I wonder what works for you:

Where I work, my coworkers often bring food to work for everyone (when they have a child, or when someone is leaving for greener pastures, etc). Out of consideration for the frum people, they often go to the trouble to get kosher food.... however, the usually get cholov stam or food from a "kosher" place that hasn't got a hashgocha that I ever heard of.

Some of the more modern guys might eat it, but there are a couple of us that won't.

What do you say in these situations? I don't want them to be insulted, so I make light of it - and they don't get outwardly upset at all... but I dunno what they're really thinking. What I cant understand is why they don't ask beforehand, but in any case what do you usually say?
Amongst the many good ideas that have already been given there, I'd like to add my own two Grosze and perhaps synthesize some of the ideas already brought here . . .

I would first follow PsychoToddler's approach by speaking to the other religious workers and working out some common standards for future events.
When speaking to colleagues, however, about one's level of kashrus, be frank.
A Persian Jews once complained about his past experiences with Ashkenazim -in an event for Beit Hachayim Persian Jewish school (Don't ask me why a school is called Beit Hachayim -lit. House of life, but used euphemistically to refer to a cemetery) the Ashkenazim there wouldn't eat the kosher food though it was even Glatt.

I told him that the case may not have been indicative of Ashkenazim, but in any case kosher food effects one's spiritual sensitivity and since it was there desire to remain at the highest, most refined level possible, they were extra scrupulous in their standards -just like an athlete needs special diet to stay fit.

I've always found it ironic how people are willing to except any wild excuse for one's actions outside that of Jewish law.
Dr. Abraham Twerski
tells a story that he once ran into an elderly Jewish man. This man began to berate Twerski for his antiquated Jewish customs and dress, how his visible Judaism sparked anti-Semitism.
Dr. Twerski then responded that he was not Jewish, but rather Amish.
The old man was taken aback, "Oh, you're Amish? Let me tell you how much I respect your tenacity to hang on to your traditions . . ."

Amish vs. Jewish

A Simple Jew also features a review of the new CD The Chabad Sessions . . .

After listening to the samplings from the CD, I must say that I'm quite disappointed . . . While the music itself is nice, the songs, are for the most part, rather unoriginal.
Yes, Keli Ato and Rachamana are great niggunim, but they seem to be on almost every Lubavitcher CD out there . . .
With so many hundreds of Lubavitcher Niggunim (560 of them can be found on 770live), gems waiting to be given a new life, why must we just rehash the same ones, even if they are classics?
I'm waiting to hear such wonders as Der Pilpul, Der Pastuch, Zhebiner Kup, or one of R' Hilel Particher's nigunim.
Not to mention, their Russian seems to be all wrong.

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Yitzchak Goodman said...

Very nice blog, I agree about Der Pilpul, Der Pastuch, etc.--I'd love to hear those recorded with a musical arrangement--and there is no e in the word "realization."

A Simple Jew said...

Thanks for all the links, Mottel!

Mottel said...

Yitzchak, thanks for the good words. Unfortunately I don't know to what you are refering to by saying 'there is no e in the word "realization."' As according to Websters there is . . .

Mottel said...

As for you, ASJ, my pleasure . . . any time!

Yitzchak Goodman said...

Unfortunately I don't know to what you are refering to by saying 'there is no e in the word "realization."

I meant that there isn't one after the z. Look at text right below your blog header.

Mottel said...

thanks . . . 'been fixed