Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Respecting Jewish Women

Thank you Talia Weisberg, creator of Bleep! for emailing this to me.

I recently heard Rabbi Yechiel Spero, a teacher at Baltimore’s Talmudic Academy and author of the popular ArtScroll series Touched by a Story, speak. I was indeed touched by the following story that he shared.

According to her children, Rebbetzin Kanievsky zt”l only got upset two times in her life. One of the times was when someone arranged for her to speak with a group of girls. These girls were very modern, and they were not dressed according to the rules of tznius. She was happy to speak with them anyway, and they met her at the shul where she davened three times a day, every day, outside of her home.

A man walked by and he saw the girls. Horrified at their mode of dress, he started yelling at them, “How dare you come into our neighborhood dressed like that! Shame on you for talking to the rebbetzin dressed like that!”

Rebbetzin Kanievsky started crying, extremely upset, and shouted at the man, “How dare you talk to them like that! You’re being mevazeh a bas Yisrael!” She ran upstairs to her husband, Rabbi Kanievsky, who she never disturbed. She cried and just kept saying, “He was mevazeh a bas Yisrael, he was mevazeh a bas Yisrael!”

I think this story adequately shows that the kavod (respect) of a Jewish woman should not ever be compromised. Whether she’s wearing a burqa or bikini, if she has a Jewish soul, she deserves the same respect. If someone on the level of Rebbetzin Kanievsky had no problem speaking to women not dressed according to tznius, then what right do the rest of us have to judge?

Another message I took from this story is this: you can see when someone is a truly great person by what makes them upset. This is what Reb. Kanievsky got angry about! It bothered her when the girls were not treated with respect. It gives you something to think about-what upsets you? What makes you really angry?


  1. not sure if this has anything to do with this post but i found another blog which i thought might interest some pple; its: http://hurttothecore.blogspot.com/

  2. Beautiful. So beautiful that other people's pain touched her to the core.


You made it to the end of this post! What do you think about it?