Actual Idolatry in Breslov Today! – CORRECTED

In a past book review, I wrote:

The characters keep turning to Rabbi Nachman of blessed memory in what seems mighty akin to prayer. When things go awry some of them “prayed to God and Rabbi Nachman”. When things went well they “thanked both”. Personal Divine providence seems orchestrated a little too strongly by that same human being. Song lyrics are quoted which illustrate this same perspective.

I don’t think I have a problem with Breslov, but if it’s getting distorted into idolatry, I certainly do.

If you have read the original version of this post before, please continue reading.

Critical Update: The original post continued by misquoting the lyrics of an anonymous Breslover song (not quoted in the above book) as though they espoused Avoda Zara, God forbid. In fact, I misheard the lyrics to say this: איש האלוקים, אתה בורא עולם שירד אלינו בסוף כל הדורות… נ נח נחמ נחמן מאומן… when the real words are מתנת בורא עולם… which destroys the whole point of the post.

Facts matter in Halacha and the fact is, the lyrics of the song do not contain idolatry at all!

I wholeheartedly apologize to any relevant parties offended by this slander (‘Motzi shem ra’).

(Although I don’t yet know who they are.)

Without detracting from my remorse, please allow me to relate the background:

This post’s original form entailed several other individuals listening to the song themselves. All listeners are fluent, long-time speakers of Hebrew, with fine hearing. After a generous reader wrote in noting the true lyrics, my volunteers and myself listened once again to the recording, only this time to recognize the discomfiting truth.

My unavoidable conclusion from this incident is this was a rush to judgment. While trying to get a second opinion, I, Hyehudi editor, befuddled others into agreeing with my own Mondegreen.
  • Hyehudi.org has accepted a certain procedural change in an attempt to head off any recurrence.
  • I must now speak and/or correspond with my helpers to correct the false impression.
  • Lastly, after removing the post for investigation, I deem it best the original hyperlink remain as is to counteract any unknown damage.
To sum up: The problem of quasi-idolatrous ideas in Breslov is still real (see the above book review and especially the quotes from the abomination, Eliezer Berland in this trustworthy exposè). Those facts remain unchanged. And yet, there is no evidence, nor any reason whatsoever to assume there is any “actual Avoda Zara” occurring anywhere in Breslov (unlike some other places, sadly).

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