Wednesday, October 4, 2017

When a Lulav Is Not Kosher - The Giant "Perfect Lulav" - An Open Orthodox - Lubavitch PR Scam

A Lubavitcher website is reporting a joint effort of an 'Open Orthodox' (OO) spiritual leader from Washington DC, Shmuel Herzfeld, and a Lubavitcher shliach in California, Yossi Cunin, to get a giant lulav for the OO leader to use at his house of worship.

The (Los Angeles) Jewish Journal has as an article by Herzfeld about it, Best of Friends, Best of Fronds: A Lulav Story.

According to the reports the story had a happy ending when the shliach sent the OO leader a giant lulav from his own garden in California.

There appears to be one major problem though. It seems quite clear that the tree the lulav involved came from is not the traditional date palm where lulavim for arba minim come from.

The traditional date palm has a wider, rough trunk, due to persistent leaf bases of dead leaves. The palm involved here, shown in the video at the Lubavitcher website, has a plainly smoother and thinner trunk, and different appearance.

Caveat emptor - buyer beware.

Just because something seems like a cute story doesn't mean it is correct, or על פי הלכה.

A bracha should not be made on that lulav.

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