Being Proactive as per Outreach Workers
Posted by: richardmgreen ()
Date: May 28, 2008 09:26PM

One of the things that escapes me and I never discussed it with anyone is how to be proactive vs. reactive when it comes to these outreach workers. In other words, forewarned is forearmed.
Years ago there was a Purim spoof of the Jewish Press called “The Not the Jewish Press,” which had an “ad” in the “Classified section” which said, “Are you afraid of your child’s growing involvement with Chabad Lubavitch? If so, call Congregation Anshe Satmar (“The Congregation of the Men of Satmar” a sect which is a rival Chasidic movement)” I thought it was funny (I never trusted Chabad until I was thrown off balance).
I even thought of running an ad in a Jewish newspaper that’s not orthodox myself with content like this:
Are you afraid of your child’s growing involvement with the Baal Teshuva Movement? If so call, email or write …” And you can email to me through this board. See what I mean here?”
It seems to me that it can be escalated through the synagogues and the Hebrew Schools that when children go to Israel, especially Jerusalem and the Western Wall, they should be aware of the concerted effort these kiruv workers take at attracting non-Orthodox people.
One of the things they tout is how they represent “Torah True Judaism” as per their form of Judaism is the only authentic form of Judaism. The Orthodoxy maintains that they have a continuous and unbroken chain of transmission of the Torah of over 3,400 years since Mattan Torah or the “Giving of the Torah” on Har Sinai or “Mr. Sinai.”
Furthermore they claim that the first Jew was Avraham Avinu “Abraham our Father” and that before him, Adam Harishone “Adam the First Man” was a prophet who knew
G-d too. Noah and his son Shem and The Order of Malchizidek existed after Adam and before Abraham. In other words the knowledge of The One G-d always existed according to the Orthodoxy.
The Orthodoxy also claims that studying the Torah must be done with “the proper commentaries” which includes the Mishna, Gemara (Talmud), the Midrash and all the extra-biblical works that are deemed kosher. The problem is how is one to judge what is and isn’t Torah true.
When I was in the 8th St. Shul one time, I was reading a book in English and the Shamash of the shul asked me if it was really any good. I replied, “If it’s not good then what is it doing in this shul?” Can you understand what I am driving at here? It’s back to what I called a TTO or a Torah True Opinion.
Now, I have studied the Orthodoxy’s claims and I was taught stories contained in the Midrash and have some Talmud and Mishna study under my belt too. My take on a lot of this is that it is all made up because certain claims seem to be quite contrived. Basically, I think it’s a lot of “Torah True Hooey!” Based upon what I have studied which I think isn’t accurate, I don’t need to study these material further.
I grew up in the Conservative movement and my teachers liked and respected me. I was one of the better students. I went to Suffolk Jewish Center based in Deer Park, LI, NY and Rabbi Gabriel Maza, who was one of the comedian Jackie Mason’s brothers, ran it.
My parents wanted to give me a Jewish education that would teach the value of tradition and turn me into a respectable mentsch who would work for a living and not drive them nuts over why they weren’t Orthodox. But in my case it didn’t work.
But when I went to Israel in ’78 and was involved with D’var and the Carlebach movement, it was clear to me that I was not “in” with them. Even Yeshua Witt always gave me that “I am not good enough” attitude.
Once Yeshua saw that I appeared to be growing payos or “curly side locks.” He told me, “I’m so proud of you!” Actually, I just didn’t get a haircut for a while but my father was furious over the whole thing.
My Hebrew skills are not advanced enough even now to read an Israeli newspaper for instance let alone a good website or sefer (“holy book”). And I think my Hebrew School education really wasn’t up to snuff. Solomon Shechter schools, which are part of t he Conservative movement, make the students learn Gemara. But in retrospect, it’s OK because based on what I possess as knowledge, I don’t see any reason to delve further into all of this. Daat Emet in Israel ( can help out with all of this.
When my family got Chabad involved over Hickman, Hecht’s claim was always that I didn’t have a “Torah True” viewpoint and I could not make any comments as per only a Torah True scholar can detect the true from the false.
Now, we have been over that before but what escapes me is that if my father had issues with the quality of my Jewish education and my scholarship and character, why didn’t he take the steps to give me an “authentic” education? The whole issue seems confusing to me. It’s like the quip, “The only shul I don’t go to is Orthodox!”
In my family, the take on it was that my parents didn’t have the energy to keep all the mitzvoth and they didn’t have the money to send me to a yeshiva. That couldn’t have been true because when my parents found out about my being in Hickman’s cult, they sent my sister to Hebrew Academy of Suffolk County.
In fact, once one of my friends from public school wanted me to quit Hebrew School and my father did everything he could to win me back. He succeeded but if he didn’t like the quality of the education and what it produced (namely me) then why didn’t he just do something significantly better?
When I came back from Israel in ’79 and went back to LI, my father was going to a shul run by an Orthodox rabbi who commented to me, “I don’t know about your father, he came from an Orthodox home and drives to shul on Shabbos.” That’s what we needed a lenient Orthodox rabbi. (Actually, my paternal grandfather split from the Orthodoxy too).
It has always appeared to me that the claim that Hecht has to being a Torah True scholar should be examined because he told me that Chabad’s materials aren’t accurate. And people at rival Orthodox organizations have told me not to judge Judaism by a “semi-messianic cult.” So, where does this leave us?
Now I am not stupid, OK. My Jr. High School clocked my verbal reasoning at 97th percentile, which means there are very few people who can outdo me when it comes to thinking (99th is the highest you can go). If all of my psychometric profile scores were at this level, I would have a genius IQ. Furthermore, when it comes to verbal reasoning, I would like to see what Grand Rabbi Schneerson would have been scored at. I wonder who would come out on top, him or me.
This whole thing with “Torah True Judaism” is something I have to take to task. I used to read The Jewish Press regularly and the paper made all kinds of claims as per how many letters are in the Torah and how all the scrolls agree. From what I heard those claims are erroneous. But you don’t have to take it from me, research it for yourself.
Also, there’s a claim that the Torah has 613 commandments (or TARYAG mitzvoth and the Catholics claim a different number. You can research it in the Catholic Encyclopedia). People have subjected Torah scrolls to computer analysis to come up with these refutations to the claims made by the Orthodoxy.
Rick Ross is a leader in the Reform movement and it seems to me that he can be influential in preventing these children from being waylaid in Israel. I don’t’ know what action is being taken to be proactive. Maybe it’s already being done.
And it would also be good to tag up with the Conservative Movement and the Reconstructionist Movement too. The groups have a mutual agenda here: keeping their children for themselves. And making sure that families don’t get ripped apart is a good goal too.
In fact, the Modern Orthodox might also be in line to be helped as these “outreach workers” are from Ultra-Orthodox groups. They might not like being targeted too.
One of the things that should be done is for parents to educate their children about why they are not Orthodox. That would help a lot.
It’s also critical to notice how much the Orthodoxy hates Christian missionaries and calls them “soul snatchers.” It seems to me that the label can be applied both ways.

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Re: Being Proactive as per Outreach Workers
Posted by: richardmgreen ()
Date: October 01, 2008 10:20PM

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

One of the main problems about children going to Israel revolves around what happens when they go to the Kotel Erev Shabbat. It is there that the kiruv workers try to get the tourists away from their families and stay in a yeshiva in Israel.

It seems to me that one way of defusing this problem is for the tour groups themselves to provide a Shabbat dinner. That would reduce the lure of the children having to go to Aish Hatorah, Heritage House, etc.

I had a friend who I knew from high school who was teaching at Aish HaTorah. He pulled the strings to talk to Rabbi Meir Schuster and get me into Heritage House. They looked me over with a fine tooth comb. Luckily, I got in for a short time.

I almost was locked out of the hostel one Friday night and I really had to go to the rest room. It could have been a catastrophe but thank God that they opened the doors up one more time and I got in by the skin of my teeth.

Heritage House told me that I would have to move on soon, but I went before the deadline. I was really floundering around and it was obvious to me that I had no future in the Baal Teshuva Movement.

One of my fellow “inmates,” from the same area I grew up in on LI no less, said that those rabbis “hate everyone who isn’t exactly like them!” Now, I wouldn’t go that far but I will say that they have basically very little respect for the children of non-Orthodox families and they think they are doing a tremendous service to humanity by providing the non-Orthodox children with an “authentic Torah True experience”

The only way to counteract this is to use a good amount of critical thinking skills to analyze what a person actually believes in and simply live their lives in accordance with what they really think is right.

That is what caused me to chase the Jewish dream to the ends of the earth and it is why I went to Israel when I left Hickman’s Ben Yishai cult. I wanted to live in the way I thought was right, but when it became painfully apparent that I never could be a successful BT, I left. But that didn’t happen until Chabad messed me up.

I will be 50 on my next birthday in January. I went to Israel 30 years ago and I can tell you that I am still recovering from my last trip to Israel 13 years ago (which was arranged by the Carlebach movement) as per my nervous breakdown.

This intelligence, which I provide the forum with, is my main focus as per my time every week. It is my passion. If I can help people out and have them manage based on my experience then I will be a happy man one day.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/01/2008 10:40PM by rrmoderator.

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Re: Being Proactive as per Outreach Workers
Posted by: richardmgreen ()
Date: July 31, 2009 10:18PM

Oorah is another outreach organization. See [] for details.

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Posted by: richardmgreen ()
Date: August 02, 2009 02:23AM

Friday, July 31, 2009
My landlord gave me a CD (both audio and video content) called The Shmorg and it is by Oorah Kiruv Rechokim. See [] for their extensive website. It seems that they have been in business since ’80 and they claim an unusually high success rate. Well my family got trashed over all of this.
They say that the key to their success is that they outreach a whole family. I have some questions about all of it.
In ’79 when I came back to the USA after living in Israel, where my last stop was Moshav Me’or Modi’in, I was subjected to the same environment I had at home before I left for Israel after living in Ben Yishai’s situation.
Before I returned, one of the Moshavniks told me, “Well, you worked in the health food factory, you toured with Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach and you learned some Torah,” they seemed to be happy with me. Then after I came back, I still had beard for a while but shaved it one day. I went to see Shlomo in concert and talked to Rabbi Itzik Aisenstadt who told me, (he saw that all of Shlomo’s “good outreach” was being wasted), “Oh, this I don’t like to see.”
At first I was going to a local rabbi who loved Shlomo and I spent a lot of Sabbaths at his home. We sang Shlomo songs and ate together, but after a time I got burned out. I started staying with my parents more and I hated just living in seclusion as my parents weren’t shomer Shabbat (Sabbath observant). We started watching TV together and one Saturday we actually watched a staggering 8 hours worth of professional wrestling. My dad also got fed up of me turning him into his Shabbos Goy and yelled at me over it.
On the site, I put up a short posting about it this morning. I will see how it all develops. Remember these are the kind of Jews that want t o bring the Geulah or “Messianic redemption.” I am fighting them with all my strength.
Shlomo said, “A lot of the people who have a big mouth about the teshuva movement now, should keep silent as they were the ones who made the first BTs miserable.” And he quoted one person as saying, “It is because of us, the fruma yidden (the Orthodox Jews) that there is a teshuva movement.” Shlomo told him to tell his father, “It is despite of you that there is a teshuva movement!”

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