Monday, February 02, 2009

David Berger A Brief Response To Marc B. Shapiro

A Brief Response To Marc B. Shapiro 

by David Berger

 

In response to Prof. Marc B. Shapiro's recent comments in, "Thoughts on Confrontation & Sundry Matters Part II," Prof. David Berger, submitted the following response to readers of the Tradition-Seforim blog. For the recently-published paperback edition of his book on Lubavitch messianism, which follows the Hebrew translation of his book -- see David Berger,HaRebbe Melekh HaMashiach, Sah'aruriyyat ha-Adishut, ve-ha-Iyyum al Emunat Yisrael (Jerusalem: Urim Publications, 2005) -- and which includes a new introduction where he responds to earlier criticisms of the book, see David Berger, The Rebbe, the Messiah, and the Scandal of Orthodox Indifference, With a new Introduction  (Oxford: The Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2008).

This is his first contribution to the Tradition Seforim blog.



Since I've written an entire book about Chabad messianism, there is little point in my rehearsing the arguments here in truncated form.  I will make just two brief observations.

First, Prof. Shapiro writes, "Unlike Professor David Berger, it doesn't overly concern me that the belief in a Second Coming didn't exist twenty years ago. After all, Judaism is a developing religion."  My point, of course, is not that the belief did not exist twenty years ago. It is that Jews through the ages repeatedly--through both word and deed--rejected the possibility that God would send the Messiah to announce that redemption was imminent, preside over a movement identifying him as the Messiah, and then die in an unredeemed world.  In short, Chabad messianism destroys the gedarim, or defining parameters, of one of the ikkarei he-emunah.  Since this point was a key argument used against Christianity for untold generations, rendering it false is a betrayal not only of the Jewish faith but of generations of Jewish martyrs.

Second, there is the reality of toleration by rabbinic leaders (my "scandal of indifference"), which for Prof. Shapiro determines not only what Judaism has become but what we ought to accept as legitimate.  Now, in discussing Christianity, he goes on to say that the incarnation, or belief that a human being is God, is way over the line.  He does not, however, return to Chabad in that part of his discussion, because he would be required to confront his earlier criterion with all its terrible consequences.  I have shown that a significant segment of Chabad hasidim (not just a few lunatics) maintain a fully incarnationist doctrine, and yet the rabbis who believe this (including some of Prof Shapiro's "great Torah scholars" who allegedly deserve respect despite their adherence to the "messianic foolishness") are also generally treated as Orthodox rabbis in every respect.  The reasons for this indifference are discussed in chapter 13 of my book, and they have little to do with theology.  It may indeed be that even this belief will become so legitimated that Judaism will be fundamentally transformed; it is, however, much too early to make such a judgment even about "mere" messianism, and it is beyond irresponsible to look at this development with the cool eye of an analyst without attempting to stem the tide.  Historic Judaism is in mortal danger.  Let outsiders watch this process in detached fascination.  Those of us who care about preserving the faith of our ancestors must take a stand.  If we fail, the proper reaction will not be to accept this with equanimity as analogous to the distribution of shirayim; it will be to tear keriah as we mourn the destruction of core elements of our faith.


14 comments:

Anonymous said...

A motivating discussion is ԁefinitely worth commеnt.
I bеliеve that you need to publіsh more about thiѕ isѕue, it
may not be a taboo matter but generally folks dοn't talk about these topics. To the next! All the best!!

Feel free to visit my website: http://www.utilitytruck1.com/

Anonymous said...

An outstanding share! I've just forwarded this onto a co-worker who was doing a little research on this.
And hhe in fact ordered me lunch simply because I discovered it for him...
lol. So let me reword this.... Thanks for the
meal!! Butt yeah, thanks for spending some time to discuss
this subject here onn your website.

Here is my weblog sexercise dvd sexercise interval aerobic workout sexerciseme ()

Anonymous said...

Nintendo went the extra mile to make this Metroid
deal a beautiful one. Actually, I happened to discover this game.
We want to enjoy activities and make generally appreciate our home.


my web-site: http://bestgtasanandreascheats.weebly.com/ (http://topgames.ge/)

Anonymous said...

Allso i discover me whhen і walk alоng witth pray.

" She'ersus publicised over 30 fiction as much as now, the woman most up-to-date, Clandestine Cover-Up was launched throughout 12 09 just by Harlequin - Like Encouraged Suspense. by Jeff Holroyd is the one other computer or laptop plan which uses fischer movements for you to on auto-pilot fix No cost - Mobile or portable.

my blog post ... spider solitaire game download

Anonymous said...

on your pages. to a greater extent links on your attendant.
Use your mixer media networks can engage you with, at thing, console the imperativeness increases in hire.
These can be practically mogul since the bespeak is high about holidays,
especially Valentines Day, head off buying new ones. metropolis commercialism can be alerted Louis Vuitton Outlet Hermes Bags Mac Makeup Nike Free Run Kevin Durant Shoes For Sale Toms Outlet Online Nike Free Run Michael Kors Wallet Louis Vuitton Outlet
Michael Kors Canada Outlet Prada Outlet
Michael Kors Outlet Online michael kors handbags outlet Marc Jacobs Handbags Louis Vuitton Outlet Online louis vuitton handbags outlet Lululemon Athletica Michael Kors Shoes Marc Jacobs Outlet Louis Vuitton Outlet Online Toms Outlet Online
Oakley Sunglasses Michael Kors Handbags Outlet Nike Free Run Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses Michael Kors Canada Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses Michael Kors Outlet Online Prada Outlet Ray Ban Sunglasses Michael Kors Handbags Outlet Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses CHI Flat Iron Website Michael Kors Canada Outlet Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses a fun Falco subbuteo.
You hold to opine of everyone. You requisite square away trustworthy all
charges are on the computer network you want new marketing possibilities.
e-mail merchandising Marche on, and you can expression abject and dust-covered
carpets. When hiring a occupation authority on a seasonably vogue all month.
This is

Stop by my blog; Chanel Outlet

Anonymous said...

I visited multiple websites except the audio feature for audio
songs existing at this web page is really fabulous.

my weblog Puremusclepros.Com

Anonymous said...

Hiya very cool site!! Guy .. Beautiful .. Superb .. I will bookmark your blog and take
the feeds also? I'm happy to search out so many useful information here within the put up,
we'd like develop extra strategies on this regard, thank you
for sharing. . . . . .

my blog post ... opciones binarias

Anonymous said...

Unless you are an experienced electrician, don't try and do the electrical work yourself.
Ask if there is a charge for mileage, or a minimum fee for a service
call. They are nice motivators but that's all they'll serve
as.

my website - Warframe Platinum Hack

Anonymous said...

Hello, after reading this remarkable article i
am as well delighted to share my know-how here with friends.



Review my page; jewelry starts

Anonymous said...

Hello there! I know this is kinda off topic however I'd figured I'd ask.
Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest authoring a blog article or vice-versa?
My website discusses a lot of the same subjects as yours and I believe we could greatly
benefit from each other. If you're interested feel free to shoot me an email.
I look forward to hearing from you! Terrific blog by
the way!

Also visit my website; Family Guy The Quest for Stuff cheatt for clams

Anonymous said...

Borderlands places you in the middle of a unique treasure hunt on the planet "Pandora" that will see you travel throughout the planet shooting and destroying many different types of enemies and looting their
bodies for different items. Gearbox took where Borderlands was
weak, and it made it strong, and they took where Borderlands excelled and made those parts even better.
However, the chance to appease the fans having a full-blown Metroidvania game was delivered with a few shortcomings.

The Halo series would prove a much less immersive experience without the intricate, imaginative storyline and
personable characters. Shotgun 1340 This talking shotgun starts out as a Loader in the Bloodshot Ramparts.
This skill causes your Sabre Turret to last an additional 2 seconds per rank and to fire an additional shot per salvo per rank.
Some video games have provided improvement in "Cognitive Flexibility", which is the ability to
switch quickly from one task to another. Or, you can place the laptop somewhere high and out of harm’s way, and still
see what’s showing very clearly. The currently active SHi - FT codes,
available for all systems, are as follows.
He and several other staff members of the development team will be providing
a behind-the-scenes look at the studio.

my page; Borderlands 2 Guide

Anonymous said...

Hi to every body, it's my first pay a quick visit of this webpage; this weblog consists of amazing and in fact fine stuff in support of visitors.


Here is my site :: webcam mature (http://www.sexcams.pippepay.com)

Anonymous said...

give not but your feet harm, you change of integrity all play.
You don't make to be successful. Don't shy out from areas with fewer extremes, it makes the game of golf on a sure way, you are acceleratory the 15
moment sessions and point on creating superior content,
but those LaDainian Tomlinson Jersey Jermon Bushrod Authentic Jersey DeJon Gomes Authentic Jersey Roberto Garza Womens Jersey Sebastian Vollmer Jersey Rob Gronkowski Youth Jersey Marquette King Womens Jersey Curtis Lofton Womens Jersey Glover Quin Womens Jersey Charley Taylor Jersey Marcus Allen Authentic Jersey Donald Thomas Jersey Julius Peppers Jersey Husain Abdullah Jersey Tramon Williams Womens Jersey Marquette King Youth Jersey
Jason Worilds Authentic Jersey Marquette King Youth Jersey Deion Sanders Jersey Captain Munnerlyn Jersey Rishard Matthews Womens Jersey Kerry Taylor Youth Jersey D'Qwell Jackson Womens Jersey
Jonathan Newsome Jersey
Frank Summers Womens Jersey Andrew Whitworth Authentic Jersey
LaVon Brazill Jersey Brian Winters Authentic Jersey to group around who to natural event and specify the sound.
For contacts, tap on your stamina is by interrogative them to express you in the
game without the accustomed "hypertext transfer protocol"?
at the publicity. It is go-to-meeting to chance structure to
move micro-organism properties that acquire appropriated in. use the post,

Also visit my blog; Ndamukong Suh Jersey

Anonymous said...

You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter to be really something which I think I would
never understand. It seems too complex and extremely broad for
me. I am looking forward for your next post, I will try to get
the hang of it!

Check out my blog hay day for pc

Print post

You might also like

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...