[Avodah] How to Avoid a Chilul HaSheim

Micha Berger micha at aishdas.org
Thu Mar 14 19:31:40 PDT 2019

I have been sitting on https://jewinthecity.com/2019/03/orthodox-jews-heres-how-to-stop-making-a-chillul-hashem/
from Jew in the City for a while. A snippet:

    Orthodox Jews: Here's How to Stop Making a Chillul Hashem
    by JITC Staff
    March 05, 2019

    Baruch C. Cohen, a Los Angeles civil litigation attorney, has taken
    a special interest in creating awareness in the community about
    the dangers of chillul Hashem, which literally means a "desecration
    of God's name" and is used when a Jew does something that bring
    shames to Judaism...
    Whether from in-fighting, condescension towards other Jewish
    communities, or trying to beat the system and take shortcuts, the
    culture of chillul Hashem is rampant in some places. The culture of
    perfectionism is also detrimental. "When people operate with the
    pressure that it's A+ or nothing, they'll also tempt their yetzer
    hara to want to take that shortcut and compromise their values
    because that A+ is the [goal] outcome." This poisonous root sends
    people in the wrong direction. Cohen feels that if the root evils
    are corrected, a lot of the bad behavior will end as well.

    Baruch C. Cohen's Rules for All Orthodox Jews:

    1. The World Does Not like Jews - we do not need to encourage more
       people to dislike us
    2. Wearing a Yarmulke - carries with it an extra measure of
    3. We Must Be More Honest - more careful, more courteous & more
    4. When We Screw-Up, it Gets Magnified - the "Cringe Factor"
       (ie., Frum Slumlords)
    5. Having Good Intentions Is Not a Legitimate Excuse - for breaking
       the law
    6. Bad Behavior for a Good Cause - a lie for a good reason & a
       Mitzvah is still a lie
    7. The US Government Is Not the Enemy - we're not in Europe during
    8. Stop Dehumanizing "the Other" - the victims of fraud are not on
       a lower human level
    9. Stop our Elitist Views - Adopt the Rambam's "Gam Hem Keruyim Adam"
    10. Stop our Inflated Sense of Entitlement - "Es Kumt Tzu Mir"
        self-sabotages success
    11. We Cannot Pick & Choose the Rules We Live by - no smorgasbord

    Baruch C. Cohen's Rules for the American Orthodox Jew:

    1. Keep Your Word - do what you what you say you're going to do
    2. Document Everything - confirm everything in writing
    3. Follow the Rules - be a law-abiding citizen - know the laws -
       serve on a Jury
    4. Don't Think You're Smarter than the Law & Won't Get Caught -
       you will
    5. Myth of Shortcuts - work hard; there's no express elevator to the
       Penthouse Suite
    6. You're Not Right Because You're Orthodox - you're right because
       you're honest
    7. Establish Credibility - "Man Up" & admit when you're wrong
    8. Listen to Your Internal Compass - if it sounds to good to be
       true, it is;
    9. Consult Before Taking Action - not after
    10. Believe in Yourself, Act with Courage & Confidence - but
	never with arrogance
    11. Stop Being Nosy - "but I'm just asking" is no excuse for prying
    12. Give Unconditionally - with no expectation of anything in return
    13. Insert Bais Din Arbitration Clauses in Your Contracts - believe
	in our Torah
    14. Stand up Proudly for Judaism & Eretz Yisroel - never apologize
	about either
    15. Pause, Before Pushing "Send" on Emails and Texts - it could
        save your life

    For more information, email Baruch Cohen at bcc4929 at gmail.com.

I only disagree with the basic presenration.

If we make the need to be considerate to others about chillul hasheim,
we aren't teating people to develop consideration for other people.
But that is a primary value in-and-of-itself, and arguably the highest
primary value, ask Rabbi Aqiva about klal gadol. If not "derekh eretz
qodmah le...Torah" would still say it's the value we have to worry about
it first.

Second, I don't think it can work. If we don't teach people the importance
of consideration in-and-of itself, there is insufficient motive to pay
attention to and hone the appropriate middos. That's just the side-issue,
not the real problem. Allegedly.

What do you think?

Tir'u baTov!

Micha Berger             The mind is a wonderful organ
micha at aishdas.org        for justifying decisions
http://www.aishdas.org   the heart already reached.
Fax: (270) 514-1507

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