Rabbi Yosef Kanefsky Replaces Original Post On Morning Blessing

Debra responds: Rabbi Kanefsky,

Though you may have changed some of the language of your earlier post, I assume you still hold what you wrote earlier to be true.

Ealier you wrote:

” . . . Simply for lack of male reproductive organs, otherwise qualified women are still barred from the rabbinate, and from many positions of communal leadership. She can be a judge, but not a dayan. A brain surgeon, but not a posek. And often she must content herself with davening in a cage in shul, from where her desire to say kaddish for a parent may or may not be tolerated. This is no way to run a religion that claims wisdom as its inheritance. But every morning in the daily blessings, we unthinkingly mouth the philosophical justification for these demeaning, arbitrary, discriminatory practices . . . ”

So what are your thoughts?

Do you plan on:

A) Pushing for women to serve as rabbis

B) Pushing for women to serve as Dayanim

C) Pushing for women to serve as Posekot

D) Doing away with Mechitzot

Seems to me that you have some serious issues with Orthodox Judaism not being fully egalitarian.

What are you proposing to do about that?

Assuming you’re as passionate about egalitarianism as you write, will simply ommitting one blessing settle the score?

I can’t take you seriously until I see more from you than just leaving out one morning blessing.

If that’s all it will take for you to feel that the egalitarian issues inherent within Orthodoxy have been solved, you aren’t being true to what you have written.

Bruria the Talmudist writes:

“Baruch Atta Adonai Sh’Assani Kir’Tzono”. Bless you God who
made me as he/she wishes.

I love this B’racha. To me it means that I am just as God wanted.
Wow. What a privilege. What a send off to start my day. God must
really loves me. I AM exactly the way he / she envisioned me in the
blueprint. Thank you God! I’ll try to live up to my potential.

I was taught that woman is more spiritual then man, that is why we
are exempt of Mitzvah Sh’HaZman Gramah… Mitzvah that depends
on time. At times… I was worried, perhaps it is a ploy to keep us in
the back seats of the Jewish of community bus?The counter blessing
“Sh’Lo Assani Isha” would always increase my doubts re: our validity
and equality.

In times like this, to find solace I’d embrace this blessing, sousing
myself remembering: I am created as God wished me to be…forget
the rest. I’d get up and march in the route of my saintly mother Z”L
and the rest of the Matriarchs exemplified us.

BUT…It’s time to address those issues.
Time to correct this ignorant, primitive as well as insulting put downs.

For God’s sake and the sake of our daughters…!

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see Amazon.com). My work has been followed by the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (Alexander90210.com).
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