Thursday, August 11, 2005

Gedolim vs. Sanhedrin

I was discussing, at a classmate's wedding, whether land can be given back. Reuven stated that "The Gedolim say its yaharog vi'al ya'avor." When I cited Rabbonim who disagreed he was silent. They weren't Gedolim, or at least not his. I realized I was banging my head against a wall. So I showed how his arguments were contradictory, not for him, but for the others at the table.

Using an ill defined term like "The Gedolim" allows the community to insulate themselves. Your Gedolim aren't mine, you're not part of my community. The amorphous, always changing group, allows you to invalidate any opinion you disagree with.

A well defined term, Rabbi X, OU, the Agudah, etc. allows for a broader discussion, a difference of opinion. You know who the members are or who the opinion belongs to. But when you say The Gedolim, all conversation ends. After all, who has the gall to argue with the Gedolim.

Its a defense mechanism and a poor one at that.

And it has to go.

Oh, and the Gedolim said I was right.