Monday, May 24, 2004

Shaytlach, Observations

I have deliberated avoided discussing the Shaytel Shaylos, as I have nothing much to add. Two observations though:

1) The Shaylah about Shaytach in part is a consequence of keeping a large demographic who you want to be following Halakhah (i.e. women) outside of elite halakhic discourse. Had they been part of elite halakhic discourse, they may have been avoided.

2) It would appear that some commentators only think that the Chassidim were afflicted by the Shaytel Shaylah. Presumably because of the NYT article & pictures of Chassidim burning Shaytels. Of course this is not true. It affected all Orthodox Jews.
However, Chassidim tend to do things in public and with much gusto. Litvish and Modern Orthodox are much more reticent about the public performance of many aspects of religious practice, in this case destroying shaytlach. (Interesting manifestation of this difference.)

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