By: Nom De Plume  | 

In the Editor's Mail Box (Vol. 1, Issue 9)

To the Editor of the Commentator:

Dear Sir: 

During last year, a wrangle nested between the Administration and some Seniors about a lack of courses in Jewish Philosophy in Yeshiva College. Now that the request has been complied with, a new “Katzenjammer” is heard within the portals of our Alma Mater, raised by the same students, now. Alumni.

The Administration’s decision to engage the greatest living authority on Jewish Philosophy, Dr. Wolfson of Harvard, has nettled the equanimity of the ‘‘vainglorious” to the quick and has afforded them an excellent opportunity to raise an issue a la Rabbi Wise. Opponent of Orthodoxy and disbeliever in divine revelation, tending to corrupt the youth of Yeshiva College, are the two accusations hurled against him. Singularly enough, Socrates was indicted on the same charges in the unenlightened age of 399 B. C.. However, this is not an apology to vindicate the illustrious scholar, as he needs not my meagre defense.

My objective is to point out that there are courses in our curriculum, in the freshman year in the main, whose instructors attempt to show apparent contradictions and deficiencies in the Bible in the light of historical research, scientific data and philological dissertations. I have heard many complaints from students that the harm caused by these ostensibly innocuous discussion is irreparable.

Now, my dear Alumni, why had you not perceived these banalities when you were undergraduates? Why had you not questioned the “religious view” of instructors and others within our midst heretofore? Is mediocrity exempt from censure and only high-class scholarship open to cheap criticism? 

We were all agog when Einstein was presented with a degree by us and no one would have dared to demur were he offered the chair of Physics in Yeshiva College though he believes in the G-d of Spinoza.

For it is obligatory to keep in mind the maxim of Rabbi Meir: “I have found a pomegranate; the interior I ate and the exterior I discarded.” His object was to gain knowledge and to do so he became the disciple of so great an opponent of orthodoxy as Rabbi Elisha ben Abuyah. So we, Yeshiva students, can learn Jewish Philosophy from Dr. Wolfson regardless of his personal views. 

Respectfully yours,