Thursday, October 08, 2009

The Temple Mount Minimized - UPDATED

So, a...

Prominent rabbi: Jewish visits to Temple Mount a ‘provocation’

A leading Israeli rabbi, Yosef Sholom Elyashiv, said Jews should not visit the Temple Mount and that such visits could provoke bloodshed.

Elyashiv told President Shimon Peres that Jews are forbidden according to Jewish law to ascend to the Temple Mount and that such visits -- which he termed a "provocation" -- could lead to violence and death.

"I have declared this in the past, and I repeat once again my statement," he said. "Beyond the halachic aspect, it is also a kind of provocation of the world's nations that could lead to bloodshed, and this would be one sin leading to another."
[see below for an update on this statement]

And the OU's IPA, dominated by a certain person but I am guessing on this one (as Israel Action already published an academic article with the other point of view expressed). has come out thus:

In this context, it is important to comment upon today's news reports of the conversation between Israeli President Shimon Peres and Torah luminary Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv that took place when the President visited the Rav in his Sukkah.

Rav Elyashiv stated the predominant halachic view that Jews are forbidden to set foot on the Temple Mount. What the news accounts omit is that the rationale for this view reinforces the depth and seriousness of the Jewish connection to that holy site. We are not to ascend to the Temple Mount because we are ritually impure and unable to properly purify ourselves to be permitted and worthy to set foot on that place of holiness.

That's a bit of obfuscation.

All this political rationalization, based on Rav A.I. Kook's dictum that it is davka our standing afar of a site we should be close to is what illustrates our dedication, as Zerach Warhaftig declared in the Knesset debate in June 1967 when the Law for the Guardian of the Holy Places was adopted has been proven useless.

The Muslims destroy, eradicate, cover up, throw stones even when we are not there, etc., etc., etc. As "locusts in their eyes", as the Torah warned us.

There are Halachic solutions. The problem is not Halacha but psychology.




מקור מהיימן ביותר סיפר לי את מהלך השיחה הקצרה שהייתה לגבי הר הבית בין הנשיא לרב.
הנשיא: כבוד הרב מכיר את התופעה של עליית קיצונים להר הבית לשם פרובוקצייה.
הרב אלישיב: זה איסור מוחלט, שכולם טמאי מתים. אין פרה אדומה אין כלום ואם זה מאיים בשפיכות דמים אז אדרבא וארבא.
הנשיא: אולי הרב ישקול להודיע זאת ברבים שוב ושוב.
הרב: מה שעולים עכשיו הם מסתמכים על כתובים אחדים אבל זה לא נכון. אבל מדעת תורה יש שאלה מה מניעת העלייה גורם. יש כיום פנים לכאן ולכאן.

זה הכל ולא דבר מעבר לכך

There is no "provocation" term in this version and it claims that Peres specifically asked Rabbi Elyashiv to proclaim his prohibition but the Rabbi said that those who do ascend, do so because they base themselves on other sources. Moreover, there is a matter of what is caused, from a Torah viewpoint, by preventing ascent. In other words, he admits the whole approach of prohibition may be problematic.


(Kippah tip: DH)


Unknown said...

Perhaps Rav Kook's declaration was from the example of when Jews were FORBIDDEN BY LAW (officially) from even entering Jerusalem (during the time of Hadrian and later in the Christian Byzantine period). At that time, Jews celebrated Sukkot and other festivals on the Mt. of Olives as that was as close as they could get to the Temple Mount. That example of "standing afar of a site we should be close to" surely showed our dedication...

That was then - NOW, we CAN and SHOULD ascend the Temple Mount - to walk, to look, to pray, to celebrate the Feasts of the L-rd.

And it SHOULD be in our hands...

Anonymous said...

You describe yourself as 'a Jew and a Zionist'. Maybe you should be honest and put 'Zionist' first as you're more concerned about staking claim to the land than following the great halachic authorities on not going up to Har Habayit. You must clearly have profound halachic knowledge in that you feel you can question Rav Eliyashiv.

YMedad said...

ah, but being Jewish is automatically a Zionist. as for Rav Elyashiv, who is probably annoying his father-in-law in shamayim, I don't know about 'profound' but the Halacha is quite clear, there are areas within the area we know today as the Temple Mount that are outside the areas that are prohibited. It's quite simple: Har Habayit was 500 square cubits (and within that most of the area could be entered). Today's Temple Mount is at least twice the length north-west and a bit larger east-west. So? As for Tamei-Met, which I guess you'll bring up, check this out, here.

Mati said...

isn't it forbidden to let a foreign entity desecrate our holiest site every day?

Why are we not allowed and they are?