Rabbonim Allegedly Ban i-pods

letter picLETTER: The attached submitted letter, allegedly signed by approximately 50 Rabbonim including from Lakewood, says they Assur (ban) all from purchasing, or even using, an i-pod. The letter, which has not been seen hanging in any local Shuls as of yet, says i-pods – which have the capability of carrying movies etc, have been ‘the cause of thousands which have completely left Yiddishkeit’.

The letter is dated from 2008 as well as 2011. TLS-MK.

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  1. We have a “kosher” use for the i-pod. A year ago we purchased one loaded with shiurim given by HaRav Avigdor Miller zt”l. My husband spends an hour or more commuting to work in each direction and this lovely collection has been his companion. It’s been a wonderful investment and if anything, has kept him tied to his learning and Rav Miller’s teachings.

  2. How are they any different than black berrys, every balhabos has one (and thier wives) and im sure many are used for non objectionable material.

  3. While I-pods are a vehicle to further a persons desires for many destructive activities they are in no way to blame for the disinterest too many of our children have in ‘fanatical orthodoxy’ that is being re-invented daily. I think the 50 Rabbonim should get together and sign a kol Koreh against ‘fanatical orthodoxy’ and bring back the beautiful mesorah of 20-30 years ago that allowed the yshivishe velt to grow the way it has. We are destroying lives.

  4. I have a few questions.
    1.) if you haven’t asertained it’s real why bring it up until you do?
    2.) are they also banning digital cameras since you can show movies on them?
    3.) How about smart phones that are found in almost every shul in lakewood? Did the assur having shychus with people that posess them?
    4.) Can you use a GPS or since it updates from the internet is it also assur?
    5.) Do they think they can really roll back the clock? or is it their advisors that inform them of these devices that they don’t know how to use?
    how many teens that went off were interviewed to asertain that the ipod knocked them off yittishkeit?
    7.) It all started witht he home computer. shouldn’t we ban the home computer??
    8.) Why don’t they push the teaching of Torah hashkafa?
    Morai vi Rabbossai: Bans are not chinuch. Perhaps kids are going off because now a days everything is assur. How about teaching them how to use technology responsibly? We are putting our efforts in the wrong places for it continues to backfire but some people never learn. They continue beating a dead horse and in the end people just mock them and stop listening. Did the cell phone ban work in south fallsburg? or did it push bochurim over the brink?

  5. I don’t understand. Isn’t Internet much worse? And either way if a kid wants an iPod there’s no way of stopping him he’ll just get it and hide it???

  6. I just bought an iPod it ONLY has Rabbi Avogdor Millers Shiurim. Am I allowed to use it?

    Instead of banning an iPod why not advocate it’s use, so that they are used for Torah purposes.

    In Europe before the war there was a ban on newspapers. So people who wanted to read newspapers bought the non Jewish newspapers which were the only papers available at that time. Many Jews ended up going off the Derech. A while later Jewish newspapers started to be published but it was to late to save those that were lost.

    We need to embrace technology and use it to promote Yidishkeit.

  7. And on the internet you can also watch movies. And many people also rent movies or go to theaters to watch movies. Do you think banning something is going to stop people from doing it?

  8. i understand why this letter was written but it’s not going to stop a lot of people from using an ipod. people are people and people do what they want. maybe there will be a large amount of people who will obey this letter. but the thing in reality is this: you cannot tell people what to do. i’m sorry but that’s the way it is. i understand if it might steer them off the path but you cannot boss people around. even if you tell people that an ipod is dangerous whose to say they won’t see dangerous images in other areas.
    you can try stopping people from veering off the path, but the world is still moving. there are bad influences everywhere in the world. things are happening all the time. as i’ve said, i understand why this letter was set up.

  9. u can find excuses for everything. and you can knock everything. if youre looking to do whats right… the gedolim know what theyre doing and its for your good.

  10. Back when I was growing up, there weren’t cell phones, i-pods, smart phones, the Internet, or even fax machines. In the summer my brothers and I would eat breakfast and go out to play for hours on end. We had our friends, our mother knew where we were, more or less, the entire time. She used a conventional phone to check up on us. Nowadays, we freely give our teenagers cell phones which of course many use to text in ways we never counted on, have ipods with movies we don’t approve of downloaded from the Internet. Giving some teenagers their own cell phone is tantamount to offering them drugs. They become so addicted and if you try to take them away? Oy. Such tantrums. Everyone has them so it’s become an entitlement issue. The power lays in the hand of the parents. If you have Internet access at home, lock it up when you are not around. There’s no such thing as an innocent smart phone or I-pod. Just say no. And have the strength to stick to it.

  11. As long as there have been kids there have been tantrums. However, I don’t recall feeling my parents were obligated to provide me with every new piece of technology that came out. Different time, new obstacles.

  12. I’m Pleasethink’s husband (see #5). Having the IPOD with Rabbi Miller’s shiurim loaded on it has been a lifesaver. Commuting well over 2 hours each day, I am able to have some learning, chizuk, mussar and maintain awareness of Hashem, instead of just ‘vegging’ during those rides, listening to talk radio or whatever. I wonder if the Gedolim who signed the letter would make an exception in such a case. They do make an exception for internet for business purposes with careful measures to protect children. So I can’t see why they wouldn’t permit what I’m doing. I am not looking to cheat or for a kula or to defy da’as Torah, but I get so much out of the IPOD, using it for a very good purpose.


  14. i would like to say that people should stop blaming technology for the children leaving Yiddishkeit there are plenty of children that are being rejected from one school or another what do you think is going to happen with a child that is going in to primary or high school but the school says that you are not good enough

  15. Wow-
    After reading all these coments it dawned on me.

    Rabonim write and sign letters for those who have Emunas Chachomim and Emunah P’Shuta. Rabonim sign letters for Bnei Torah to heed their advice. Rabonim sign letters for orthodoxy.

    All you who have ventured your own ‘opinions’ quite obviously are not the target crowd of whom the Rabonim are communicating with. Nor was it for your sake that they published their advice.

    Rabonim are informing those that appreciate and in fact adhere to them. Not you.

    While it is true- your upbringing would have you initially align your thoughts to “want to hear what they have to say” somewhere your upbringing went faulty and you crossed-over into second guessing and questioning and even insolently offering your own advice.

    That is not the way of Emunas Chachomim, Emuna P’Shuta, nor o Bnei Torah. It is surely not orthodoxy. This my friend is not who the Rabinim are for nor on behalf of.

    We, the Orthodox B’nei Torah who cling to Emunas Chachomim completely and fully respect what they have to say. You can all be ‘Chozer B’teshuva.’ There is such a concept. Yet as long as you somehow believe that your out of league comments somehow vie for authenticity and you feel confident enough of posting them, you are surely not amongst those whom Rabonim are here for.

  16. This seems so sad, if its true. The ppl the rabbannim are trying to place the ban on, don’t really listen to rabannim. And the ppl that listen to rabannim don’t have i-pods. And, of course, if u use it for shiurim, they didn’t ban it. Of course, u can do what I did & buy a Sansa from DB electr. No movie capability; no problem.

  17. hey chaim. what happened to your emunas chachomim and emuna pshuta. everyone and thier brother in law knows that these rabonim assered the internet as well as commenting on blogs. so why dont u tell us your story? which path have your veered off too? or did u just take a temporary detour?

  18. While I understand where you are coming from, I doubt that any Rav would agree to your statement. The Rabonnim are speaking to all yidden, even those that ‘don’t want to listen’! The rabonnim care about all jews and don’t differentiate between those that want to listen and those that ‘don’t listen’. such statements imply that if you don’t follow the Rabonnim then you place yourself out of the community and we don’t care about you any more. How wrong is that? Certainly during the 9 days such comments are uncalled for. We must have the patience and understanding for all.

  19. “Takanah Sh’ain Hatzibur Y’cholin La’amod Bo”
    Unfortunately, in our times, the more we ban something the greater the pull. We need to put safeguards into place, such as creating an effective filter for iPods/iPhones. As of yet there are very few and they are limited and easy to get around and/or slows down operation greatly.

    To those that are stating that we need emunas chachomim and shouldn’t express our own opinion over that of the signees, I say ask your own Rav and follow his direction. Believe it or not (like I said ask your Rav), many of these public notices that go up are the work of third party groups (well meaning as they are) who go to the Rabbonim expressing concern over a given issue – based on their own feelings on the matter – to which the Rabbonim then respond that it’s a worthy cause. This is not to say that they have emphatically banned something based on their own research of the matter. When they do ban something there is a much greater and more far reaching outcry from the Rabbonim and everyone finds out about it. Not a sign that is placed in few local shuls.

  20. #30. “we bnei Torah”?? You arrogant Baal Gaiva. By you it is OK to FALSIFY rabbonim’s signatures to support your own kanoas!!!

  21. “Trust but verify” these are the words of Ronald Reagan. In other words, it’s important to understand what was decided and with what information it was determined. I can’t imagine Rabbi Miller’s shiurim would be forbidden – they were in tape form for many years and the i-pod is loaded with transfers from those very tapes. Wait to see if there is nuance. Don’t be so quick to jump off the bridge.

  22. Whoever went through all the trouble to get all the rabbonim to ban ipods is clearly misguided.
    Yes there are many things happening here in lakewood, but banning the ipod is like treating cancer with a bandaid .

    We are losing many children daily, and the core of it IS we have neglected a certain element of our society. Lakewood is still dreaming of it thinks that everyone is the cookie cutter type.
    Well the truth IS there are many people living in lakewood that are feeling left out. There are others who are suffering greatly. People get to the root of the problem if you want to deal with it. But banning the Ipod? This person looks to me like he needs a job.

  23. While I agree with you and will listen to the ban, what usually happens is that one persons conjures an agenda in his brain, he goes to all the rabbonim and creates a crisis. Memayla, all the rabbinim sign.this note definitily was not initiated by one rov. FYI. The internet ban. U think kimat every household in my neighborhood is logged on in one form or the other.

  24. Two points. 

    1: Please read  PATHETIC’s post at 3:26 pm. Not everything is black and white. 

    2: Are you the same fellow that was up in arms about the bike 4 chai riders? If so, do you know that they asked a shayluh from a chashuver poisek and he said it was ok. 

    So, you seem to be a bissel hypocritical.  Let me explain: The bike 4 chai riders that listened to their Rabbanim, yet you had a problem with them. 

    Ahy they asked their Rabbanim and with “Emunah P’shuta” went riding even though they knew that the Chaim’s of the world would look to criticize. 

    So, l’maaseh  my friend it is you  that picks and chooses when you listen to “orthodox Rabbanim” and when not.   

    In summary, let each person ask his own Rav his own shaylois and if you are on a higher madreigeh  ashrecha. I am mekaneh your gevaldiger madreigah.   But, please don’t bash others especially if they asked their poskim and they were given guidance and allowed it. 

     And, of course please try to have a good hartz on acheinu Beis Yisrael. We need it. 

    Have a meaningful fast, and be mekabel ahavas Yisrael. (even if you are on a higher dargeh.)
    We need yeshu’ois. We don’t need kitrug. 

    If the Beis Hamikdash was l”o destroyed because of sinas chinam, we need a big dose of ahavas chinam. 

    Let’s all try it. 

    B’surois Toivos. 

  25. A letter should be issued as to what hobbies are permitted for our kids in their extra time. Give kids legitimate stuff to do & they’ll stay on course .

  26. Everyone here who is using the internet knows improper use can lead to terrible things.

    There are no simple solutions to the problems of today.

    It is probably good to ban things, but also to educate ourselves and our children so when we’re faced with challenges, we and they will be strong enough to make the right choices.

Comments are closed.