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Rav Noach Weinberg: Torah Revolutionary

(8 customer reviews)

$25.99

Torah revolutionary, visionary of outreach, activist, father figure to thousands, inspiration to tens of thousands — these are but a few of the terms used to describe Rav Noach Weinberg, zt”l.

Rav Noach taught a generation the meaning of “taking responsibility.” First and foremost, that meant taking responsibility for all of the Almighty’s children who were so far from Judaism. It extended to every aspect of the Jewish world that needed leadership and guidance.

Rav Noach lived with the faith that if we show the Almighty that we care enough, He will provide us with the means to repair His world. To that end, he sacrificed his personal Torah learning and time with his family over decades to build Aish HaTorah and to aid hundreds of other organizations.

Scoffed at and dismissed at the outset of his life’s mission, Rav Noach lived to see much of his vision fulfilled, though never to the degree for which he prayed and worked so ardently.

Rav Noach Weinberg: Torah Revolutionary is an inspiring and thought-provoking biography, written by famed biographer Yonoson Rosenblum. This unique work honestly addresses the development, teachings, controversies, and legacy of one of the most powerful and influential Torah figures of recent times: Rav Noach Weinberg of Aish HaTorah.

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Description

Torah revolutionary, visionary of outreach, activist, father figure to thousands, inspiration to tens of thousands — these are but a few of the terms used to describe Rav Noach Weinberg, zt”l.

Rav Noach taught a generation the meaning of “taking responsibility.” First and foremost, that meant taking responsibility for all of the Almighty’s children who were so far from Judaism. It extended to every aspect of the Jewish world that needed leadership and guidance.

Rav Noach lived with the faith that if we show the Almighty that we care enough, He will provide us with the means to repair His world. To that end, he sacrificed his personal Torah learning and time with his family over decades to build Aish HaTorah and to aid hundreds of other organizations.

Scoffed at and dismissed at the outset of his life’s mission, Rav Noach lived to see much of his vision fulfilled, though never to the degree for which he prayed and worked so ardently.

Rav Noach Weinberg: Torah Revolutionary is an inspiring and thought-provoking biography, written by famed biographer Yonoson Rosenblum. This unique work honestly addresses the development, teachings, controversies, and legacy of one of the most powerful and influential Torah figures of recent times: Rav Noach Weinberg of Aish HaTorah.

Additional information

Weight2.89 lbs
Dimensions12 × 12 × 12 in

8 reviews for Rav Noach Weinberg: Torah Revolutionary

  1. Yaakov Meyer

    Incredibly researched and thorough.
    A biography unlike any other I have ever read. Having known the Rosh Yeshiva z”l fairly well, I was overwhelmed at how much I didn’t know about him and is included in this book. A maverick and innovator whose love for Hashem and His people was seemingly without boundaries. This book should be required reading for anyone who cares or wants to care about Klal Yisroel

  2. Aaron Kampf

    An absolute masterpiece! I couldn’t put the book down and have now read it twice. The author captures the very essence of R’ Noah zt”l and it inspires me daily. The gift that keeps giving.

  3. C Cohen

    It is both rare and refreshing to read such an honest portrayal of such a Torah giant. Knowing Rav Noach personally I was apprehensive to read his biography as I was afraid it wouldn’t do him true justice.
    This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to make a difference to the Jewish world. Rosenblum has clearly done his research interviewing many people from across the globe who knew Rav Noach at different stages in his life. He writes about Rav Noach’s early failed attempts at creating Kiruv organisations and how Aish differs from other Yeshivos. This book will help you understand many of the controversies that surrounded Aish, but more importantly the incredible impact that Rav Noach had on the wider Jewish world.
    The historical narrative is both fascinating and easy to read while the portrait it draws of Rav Noach challenges the reader to take responsibility for the Jewish people.
    I’d like to have seen the pictures printed in colour, rather than greyscale, though otherwise a perfect book.

  4. Chanoch Harris

    I’ve read it twice. All my big kids have read it. As a student of Rav Noach’s, I found this to be a wonderful opportunity to revisit his compelling and uplifting legacy. It’s an extraordinary review of the origins and reach of his life’s work. It’s also a moving challenge to live up to the opportunities and urgency of H’s call.

  5. Ephy Greene

    This book helped me get to “know” Rav Noach and the entire Aish enterprise. It was inspirational and informational, bringing me into a world I though I knew, but learned so much more about. I literally did not want to close the book after reading the last page as I didn’t want to disconnect from the life of Rav Noach and his mission. I’m looking forward to reading it again.

  6. Miles Kerr-Jarrett

    For a figure like Rav Noach, who is famous for his incredible impact on the Jewish world in general and the field of kiruv in particular, this biography is testimony that, in this case at least, the truth is even greater than the legend. It’s packed with powerful stories and lessons from the lives of not just Rav Noach but also many of his talmidim, who themselves followed their rebbe’s vision to achieve great things in their own right. Yonason Rosenblum’s writing style is as easy, engaging and enjoyable as always. The book is downright essential.

  7. Ben Rothke

    Rosenblum has written a remarkably insightful and candid memoir about one of the most important Jewish figures of the last fifty years.

    While Rav Noach was one of the earliest founders of the kiruv movement, it must be understood the milieu in which he grew up. He was thinking about kiruv in the early 1950s. This was just after World Word 2 when the notion of bringing Jews back to Orthodoxy was an utter absurdity. His label them as Noach, the meshuggener was certainly a pejorative, but at the time, accurate. Conservative and Reform Judaism were at their apex, and the future of Orthodoxy was in doubt. This chronicle shows how remarkably prescient Rav Noach was.

    There is the well-known story of Rav Elya Meir Bloch of the Telz Yeshiva, who went into a sefarim store in the Lower East Side in the early 1950s and asked to purchase a copy of Ketzos Hachoshen. The owner gave it to him and told him that it was the last Ketzos that would ever be sold in the United States. The owner was simply echoing the reality of the times. Any rational, i.e., non-visionary, person would have thought the same. Rav Bloch, like Rav Noach, were visionaries. Rav Bloch’s was about Torah flourishing in America, and Rav Noach was about bringing the Jewish people back. Had either of them gone with the times, the world today would be a much darker place.

    As Rosenblum eloquently writes, Rav Noach was not some wild-eyed dreamer; rather he had a laser-focused understanding of the problems facing the Jewish people. An important point he shows is that Rav Noach was not a one-trick pony with kiruv. His laser-focused vision was apparent early on when long before the phenomenon in the Torah observant world of adults at risk was ever a topic. Rav Noach warned that the lack of emphasis in the Torah educational system on the necessary foundations of Judaism would undermine the Torah world from within. The outgrowth of that was Project Chazon headed by Rabbi Daniel Mechanic.

    Rav Noach could have thrown in the towel after his myriad setbacks and betrayals. Furthermore, his surrender would have been fully justified. However, Rosenblum details in chapter after chapter, Rav Noach knew that he was not working for himself, instead for the Almighty and his children, and felt he did not have the right to surrender.

    Rosenblum has written a remarkably candid biography that details the many successes and failures that Rav Noach faced. The title correctly calls him a revolutionary. Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein noted that the Torah prefers evolution, rather than revolution. Nonetheless, be it the Baal Shem Tov, Sara Schenirer or Rav Noach; these revolutionaries knew that taking revolutionary responsibility for the Jewish people meant incurring the wrath of many of those who preferred the status quo, and the approach of sha shtil, makh nit keyn gerider (be passive and do not make noise).

    This is the only biography I have ever read where I knew the subject intimately well. Spending over four years at Aish, the book was a walk down memory lane. While Rosenblum has done an extraordinary job, I am reminded of the events of chapter 3 from the book of Ezra.

    It says that “When the builders had laid the foundation of the Temple of the Lord, priests in their vestments with trumpets and Levites sons of Asaph with cymbals were stationed to give praise to the Lord, as King David of Israel had ordained.

    However, a few verses later, Ezra writes, “many of the priests and Levites and the chiefs of the clans, the old men who had seen the first house, wept loudly at the sight of the founding of this house.”

    To those who knew Rav Noach, walked with him, and spent extended periods with him, the book does not capture the essence of who he was. It does not capture his passion, his exasperations, his sense of urgency, and who he really was.

    This is undoubtedly not Rosenblum’s fault, as the written word simply lacks that capability to detail such a unique personality fully. Words cannot capture the essence of the person such that you can truly understand them from a biography. That may be why the Oral Torah was originally forbidden to be written down because the nature of it simply cannot be put into words. Furthermore, when it is put into words, it loses much of its essence.

    For example., when writing of Rav Noach’s habit of snapping his fingers, it could sound like an odd, almost Tourette-like habit. However, those who walked through the Old City streets with Rav Noach will understand precisely what that snapping meant. Rather than being odd, it was his method to raise his consciousness to be aware of God and was a mechanism to focus and remember the six constant mitzvos.

    If Rav Soloveitchik was The Lonely Man of Faith, then Rav Noach was The Lonely Man of Kiruv. It was a struggle he faced in large part alone. Alone from his family for a large part of the year on fundraising trips, and alone in his struggle to bring back the Jewish people to their roots. Rosenblum does not hold back and writes of the countless antagonists and naysayers that got in his way.

    In the world of biographies written by and for the Orthodox world, this work is unique in its text and approach. Rosenblum does not sugarcoat things, and where Rav Noach’s imperfection needs to be discussed, he details them.

    His research was superb, and the accuracy of the book is due in large part to the assistance of Rabbi Asher Resnick, a long-time and close student of Rav Noach.

    The only error I found was when Rosenblum writes that Rabbi Amram Blau of the Neturei Karta was fluent in English, both spoken and written.

    According to Dr. Motti Inbari, professor of religion at the University of North Carolina and author of The Making of Modern Jewish Identity: Ideological Change and Religious Conversion, which has a chapter about him – Blau certainly did not know how to read English. However, Inbari speculates that he may have known how to speak English because of his connections with the British Mandate and the British government.

    Inbari notes that Blau prohibited his wife from publishing in English because he could not read her papers to review the text for accuracy.

    There nothing not to like in this remarkable and inspirational biography. If I have any complaint, it is that I would have loved it to go on for another few hundred pages. But at 550 pages, the book is certainly thorough and engrossing.

    One is hard-pressed not to find a Jewish community worldwide that has not been a beneficiary of Rav Noach’s wisdom and efforts. Rosenblum has done a superb job in finally bringing the magnificent story of Rav Noach Weinberg to print.

  8. David Markowitz

    There are few books that can inspire, educate and activate as this one. It captures a life and it opens the story of countless others who are actively working to better the world and bring back Hashem’s children thanks to Rav Weinberg. This is required reading for anyone who is serious about being a Jew.

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