Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Advice or Psak

A newly engaged, and ecstatically happy couple, went to the chosson's rebbe to ask how often they could/should see each other. The rebbe replied that they could/should see each other once per week and speak by phone once per week.

Needless to say, the couple had expected more.

Advice or psak?
If psak, I'd be interested in seeing the sources and hearing the reasoning. But I'm more inclined to think of this as advice. Advice from a rebbe is not binding on those asking. Granted, we might give great weight to the suggestions of our rebbeim, especially those who know us our personalities, and our struggles well. But in the end it is one view, a view that is balanced by the ability of two adults to make their own decisions as well.

I hope the chosson goes to his rebbe to ask whether it was said as advice or psak, along with the reasons. I'm not holding out hope, as such follow up questions are rarely asked. Blind obedience is best, it obviates the need for thought.