Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Long live the king/rebbah

Proposed Research Topic: When did Hasidim start hollering "Yechi"? Is is a deliberate aping of monarchists?

And while we're on the subject of monarchies can I say a few things? What qualifies that man in the white robe to serve as the unquestioned, absolute leader of his hasidim? Is he especially intelligent? Does he posses a fine character? Has he done anything to advance the causes of justice or charity? Has he published any Torah? Have his people thrived under his leadership?

How are his successes evaluated? What happens if he makes a mistake or demonstrates incompetence? Can he be checked, chastised, or corrected?  Can he be removed?

At the end of the day, what - aside from fear, superstition and ignorance - compels his people to put their lives in his hands?


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