Brisker Burbles Against the Brain

The Brisker school of Torah is explicitly against trusting our intellect. They say: Don’t ask ‘Why’ but ‘What’. Likewise: “A deficiency of explanation shows a lack in comprehension”.

Rabbi Yitzchak Zev Soloveitchik once said “our” generation was not a “Dor”, but a “dor’aleh”. Of course, this kind of solipsism can and might have been used in (or against), any generation whatsoever throughout history, from Adam to the last man standing. Why the arbitrary cut-off point? Speak for yourself.

For those who think this shows wisdom, Shlomo cries:

אל תאמר מה היה שהימים הראשונים היו טובים מאלה כי לא מחכמה שאלת על זה

Note the hypocrisy: He was not undermining medicine or physics. In all secular arenas of knowledge and endeavor, we are to trust our powers of deduction and speed right ahead. Only when it comes to Judaism are we to cloak ourselves with false humility and shy away from using our God-given brain. The Brisker counsel of despair does not affect sins, only virtues.

By the way, the above “dor’aleh” statement was in reference to the Chazon Ish; after his passing “we” were less than human. But anyone who knows real history knows Rabbi Soloveitchik fought an invisible war against everything about the Chazon Ish and his students, including after his death.

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