יום ראשון, אוקטובר 09, 2005
Rabbi Arthur Scroll
Publisher, The Siddur
Dear Rabbi Scroll:
I am writing to let you know that I have discovered an error in your siddur.
Between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur your wonderful, and generously endowed publication, calls for us to add this paragraph at the end of the Shmoyna Esray:
"B’Sefer Chaim, In The Book of Life, bracha v’shalom, blessing and peace, u’parnasah tovah, and good livelihood, n’zachair, v’n’kataiv l’fanecha, may we be remembered and inscribed before/by you, Anachnu v’chal Amcha Beit Yisrael, We, All of Us, All of Your People, Family of Israel, l’chaim tovim, ul’shalom, for a good life and for peace."I must say, Rabbi Scroll, when first I saw those words, my skin turned ghost-white, and I let out a scream of incomprehension. All year long we, the Torah True Jews, strive mightily to separate and distance ourselves from those lowlife bums, the rest of God's people, ie: the Family of Israel - and now you want us to pray that they should be included with us in the same Book of Life?
As you well know, the Torah True community has taken many steps to protect itself from contaminatiom. For example: (1) Non Torah True Jews are denied admission to our schools; (2) they are also ignored in the street (if one of them dares to greet us with a shabbos blessing, we reply with the traditional grunt/lookaway); and (3) best of all, we ignore them completely if they enter our shteebles, never extending a hand of welcome, and never God-forbid offering them the amud or an aliyah.
In fact, just last year, my own Torah True community had the opportunity to sanctify God's mame in this regard. Too many of those MO/YU-types had attempted to join our Torah True shteeble, so we responded-- in full and complete keeping with the verse "In the Torah True community hadras melech (the king is glorified)"-- by leaving to start a new shteeble, a shteeble we were careful to make even less inviting and less inclusive.
In light of all this Rabbi Scroll, I think you'll agree that your radical idea about all of us getting put into the same Book of Life is absurd. Therefore, I suggest you consider replacing the offending paragraph with this substitution: In The Book of Life, blessing and peace, and good livelihood, may we be remembered and inscribed before/by you, just us, your special guys, the Torah True Jews, (and for God's sake no one else), for a good life and for peace.
With Torah, Nevim and Ketuvim blessings, I am
Torah True Jew