Sunday, June 19, 2011

Irrelevant Conclusions

In his latest post Rabbi Slifkin attempts to recruit none other than the Chasam Sofer (CS) in his ongoing attempts to demonstrate the fallibility of Chazal.

He quotes a long portion of the CS from the hashmatos in chelek hey and triumphantly concludes that Sanhedrin is indeed capable of erring in their halachic rulings. Apparently this gives him immense satisfaction. What remains to be understood is why he needed to run to the CS for this revelation. Anyone who was ma’avir sedra this week would be able to glean this "gem" directly from the chumash (Bamidbar 15: 22-26).

For those who did not have time to peruse the CS in question, the CS maintains that the Torah was given by Hashem specifically in accordance with the opinion of the Beis Din haGadol and therefore even if they happened to err Hashem is "behind" their error, meaning, He backs them up. Their opinion becomes Torah; it becomes the Ratzon Hashem. In other words, their opinion becomes the truth! I think Rabbi Slifkin missed this point.

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