Mincing No Words; Chabad’s Objective & What Sets It Apart

What impact does Chabad at Brandeis seek to have on students?

How are they to live differently as a result?

How is Chabad’s objective different than Hillel, Maor, JLIC or other campus organizations?

Listen as Chanie and Peretz, in their signature style, remove the curtain from this topic.

Listen to this episode

4 Comments

  1. anonymous on 05/28/2019 at 1:59 AM

    Thank you very much for that conversation. It was very enjoyable hearing you guys openly discuss your mission at Chabad.

    My only gripe was with the way the word “independent” was used.

    Is judaism a necessary or sufficient condition for being independent ? It was unclear to me which way you were arguing.

    To me, being independent means doing what seems right to me. To me, not to some majority opinion or minority opinion, or rabbi, or mayan priest, or scientist, but to me – to me alone. Not sure why one needs to follow Judiam to be “independent.” When one is told that by submission to a way of life or ideology he or she exhibits independence It sounds to me like a real bastardization of the word “independent.”

    • Peretz Chein on 06/07/2019 at 1:05 AM

      Thank you for your comment and your thoughtful objection. I understand your point in arguing against using the word independent to describe one’s adherence to a set of rules dictated by others, in fact it seems not only wrong but somewhat deceptive to describe it as independent.

      As you describe it, “independent” would mean doing something that I chose alone, me, without being dictated by others. The truth of the matter is though, if we are willing to be fully honest, we are unable to choose something alone, without dictates from others. As humans we are the sum of our circumstances, experiences and acquired ideas. They make us who we are and dictate what we choose, making us unable to be independent and alone.

      I use the word independent in the context of conducting ourselves in a counterintuitive manner, to rise above our general instincts and our internal gravitational pull to self preservation and gratification. This is different than the understanding of independent to mean to decide from myself.

      That is not to say that simple observance of Judaism achieves that, sadly it can be to the contrary, rather this is what Judaism is engineered to achieve when used as intended.

      Thank you again for raising this point.

      -Peretz

  2. David on 06/18/2019 at 8:48 PM

    Hello, Peretz and Chanie. Thank you for the interesting perspective into what you do at Brandeis. I’m wondering how this goal of achieving independence changes – either in substance or in language – when you’re setting goals with older people. Does achieving independence through Judaism remain the goal forever, or do other goals begin to take precedence? What is your view? Thank you.
    David

    • Peretz Chein on 06/25/2019 at 3:47 PM

      Hi David,
      Thank you for your kind words.
      The question you raise is a very good one. As human beings we are conditioned to be dependent, whether it’s in the simplest form of needing food and shelter or in a more sophisticated form of craving what appears as desirable, like a new car, large house and vacations. Judaism develops within us the “muscle” to be independent from those, and many other dependencies, and in a sense allowing us to become G-d like. The one true independent being. So the goal never changes, it only becomes more sophisticated and nuanced in accordance to our growing life experiences.
      We will be developing this idea further in future podcasts.
      Best,
      Peretz and Chanie

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