Friday, August 30, 2013

(Rabbi) Miller Mefaresh Mind-numbing, Mass Murder Massacre

























Recently, a posthumous essay written by Rabbi Avigdor Miller ZTL has been published. A Divine Madness, was written circa 1960, but the author for whatever reason, didn't see fit to bring the book to light.

I imagine that the reason might be that the world was still in shock over the Holocaust. Rabbi Miller's strong belief in Hashem, and that the Holocaust was punishment for a nation that the majority had thrown off the yoke of the Torah, was not the kind of talk that Survivors wanted to hear.

Yet time heals many wounds, and now we are in a better position to understand history the further removed we are from the events. The Tochacha clearly says what will happen if we forsake God, and Rabbi Miller is very clear on showing that a Jewish Reformation that originated in Germany, would be put to an end in Europe by the German people. RAM shows how assimilated the Jews had become, and how Hitler's YMSH first laws were promulgated primarily to force a separation between Jew and Gentile.

I understand that for survivors, this book will be a difficult read, but the general thesis, that it was a Divine Madness, is clearly explained in detail. The German people were the most academic, the most cultured, the most refined and modern people of the time. It could have only been a Divine Decree which turned them into killing fiends.

Although I don't really care too much for holocaust literature, (as I have unfortunately had my fill) this book was refreshing in that there are many chapters which detail the history of how the Jewish people from the time of Mendelssohn, moved from following the Rabbis and Roshei Yeshiva to following the Haskalists.

The footnotes are excellent and I recommend this book strongly for anyone interested in an eye-witness (RAM learned in Slobodka from 1932-38)account in what Europe was like prior to WWII. RAM claims that it is a "fairy tale" to think that pre-war Europe was a Gan Eden of learning. Most Jews did not keep Shabbos or attend Yeshiva, but had already migrated to the progressive schools.

A welcome addition to any library.


Update: This is Post #300. Mazel Tov!



21 comments:

  1. Wow. I can't believe you've lasted this long. 300 posts! Congratulations! Glad to see that at least you read the book before posting on it, unlike some other blogger.

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  2. that the majority had thrown off the yoke of the Torah, was not the kind of talk that Survivors wanted to hear.

    its not the kind of talk that G2s want to hear either. Nor should it be the kind of talk anyone with an ounce of Jewish empathy, sorrow and awe should want to hear.

    As for fairy tales what about the self-serving myth with a lot of currency so prevalent today? To wit that somehow our generation is exempt from the ironclad rule of התקטנו הדורות and is the greatest generation to appear in the last 7-10 ?

    How much of Jewish Poland, Galitzia, Belloruss, Hungary, Romania and Latvia did the author witness before the war? How many small shtetlach in the Litvisha countryside? Kovna/ Williamsport/ Slabodkeh is an urbane, cosmopolitan and rather limited sample size.

    The books title is unfortunate.

    The Holocaust may or may not have been A Divine Fury but it was no Divine Madness. This volume OTOH may represent the authors fury or perhaps his madness. I for one think that overconfident pretensions to fully understanding HaShems cheshbonos while still inhabiting this world of lies may be indicative of an unbalanced mind

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    1. Nice to have you back. I would humbly request that you read the book first, if you haven't already.

      As for RAM's thesis, I don't see where it fails. The Tochacha is pretty clear of what happens when the yoke of Torah is removed.

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  3. No reason for humility. I deserve ah patch in punim and your 100% right. I should read the book before voicing opinions about it. but I won't. The thesis aggravates me and I already receive my FRDAR of aggravation from a host of natural sources. No need for a dietary supplement.

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    1. Bray, I also can't stomach any more holocaust books either, and I'm not even G2, but this book is way different. I would say the majority of the book reads like a history book, which traces the origin of Haskala from the early days until WWII. Very informative, and rare to see so much information on this topic in one (Kosher) place. The excellent footnotes are icing on the cake.

      What is FRDAR?

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  4. Ben....

    boyhood hero? Why is this the first I'm hearing of / from you? Why have you never commented on MY blog if I'm such a hero?

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  5. How could someone know with any sort of clarity the ways of Hashem?

    Maybe it was because we didn't follow Herzl as per Rabbi Teichtal?

    Maybe it was the sinas yisroel that came about because of Teilung and Austritt?

    Maybe because people in the USA were assimilating by sending their children to public school and to college?

    To say that this diatribe was not published until now, as not to hurt the survivors is egregiously false.

    [1] R' Miller's views were not a secret and he verbalized them many years ago and hurt the survivors. I witnessed it.

    [2] There are survivors that are still alive.

    Now I will be politically incorrect.

    I don't think someone who was born and bred in Baltimore,went to public school, Yeshiva College, City College should wade into this issue.



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  6. one more thing

    and someone who did not live through the camps should not give his opinion. He was not there, living six years in an ivory tower environment does not make someone an expert despite his protests of "believe me, I was there".

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  7. How could someone know with any sort of clarity the ways of Hashem?
    By studying his book, which delineates clearly what happens to a people when they throw off the yoke of heaven.


    Maybe it was the sinas yisroel that came about because of Teilung and Austritt?
    Doubtful.

    Maybe because people in the USA were assimilating by sending their children to public school and to college?
    Then it probably would have happened here.

    To say that this diatribe was not published until now, as not to hurt the survivors is egregiously false.
    Agreed. Maybe he never would have published it.

    [1] R' Miller's views were not a secret and he verbalized them many years ago and hurt the survivors. I witnessed it.

    [2] There are survivors that are still alive.


    Now I will be politically incorrect.

    I don't think someone who was born and bred in Baltimore,went to public school, Yeshiva College, City College should wade into this issue.


    Someone with that on his resume, and then became a Gadol by atteding Slabodka and dedicating himself to a life of Torah, is an opinion to be reckoned with.

    Although, as stated above, I can not feel what you feel having been spared for the most part from the Holocaust.

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  8. By studying his book, which delineates clearly what happens to a people when they throw off the yoke of heaven.

    that explains how YOU know it. How does the books author know it? וכי רבי לא שנאה ר' חייא מנין לו ????

    After the original sin Chazal say that HaShem made humanity smaller
    וכיון שסרח הניח הקב"ה ידיו עליו ומיעטו שנאמר (תהילים קלט) אחור וקדם צרתני ותשת על כפיך י
    It seems as though humanity has finally gotten around to returning the favor.

    Maybe it was the sinas yisroel that came about because of Teilung and Austritt?
    Doubtful.


    Smug response. Chaza"l have more traction by me in understanding HaShems ways than the author of a Divine Madness. If they say that Sinas Chinom was the cause of Churban Bayis Sheni why can't it (maybe) have been the cause of Churban Europa?

    Then it probably would have happened here.

    That's funny. Rav Elchonon Wasserman HY"D disagrees. When he adressed the soon-to-be-Kedoshim in fort 9 outside of the Kovna Ghetto (which, incidentally, WAS Slabodka) he opined that they were about to die as korbonos for American Jewry.

    Ben...you have yet to answer my questions.

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  9. To my childhood hero.
    I'm bashful.

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  10. Growing up with Lahger Yidden does that to people.

    Still I'd love to hear from you ChaimG613@gmail.com. If you behave I may even send you an autographed picture ;-)

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  11. Black & white or color?

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  12. Blank. I am a chameleonymous blogger. But the frame is nice.

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  13. You can get a pic of Bray right here on my blog. Bray.

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  14. Adorable, you seem a bit bashful.

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  15. Maybe the Lager Yidden should be G0 and the next generation G1.

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  16. The Lubavitcher Rebbe said that one cannot, and should not excuse the the Holocaust.

    It is something which (along with the rest of golus) we should not ch"v accept or excuse, but demand of the Aibershter that it is enough and we need Moshiach now!

    True, the Aibershter has His reasons, but we cannot understand it. Instead of going to lengths (of any sort), or excusing, we should demand that is should end. Our goal should be to bring an end to all suffering.

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  17. Who said anything about offering excuses?

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