(c) 2000 Dr Hendel; 1st appeared in Bais Medrash (c) Torah.Org

Date: Sun, 7 May 2000 21:45:45 -0400 (EDT)
From: Russell Hendel <  rhendel@mcs.drexel.edu>
Subject: Re: Oral Torah

With Regard to Amichai Perlman's excellent answer to Adam's question (BM
v2n18) about "why should we follow the oral law if it was only written down
in the first century" (Amichai correctly points out that it was not meant
to be written down) I would like to supplement with the following:

Throughout history people have tried to reduce the myriad of oral laws to
grammatical derivations from the text. We in fact have a very rich
literature of halachic midrash--this starts with the Sifray and is
continued by Rashi and Rambam and later by such giants as Rav Hirsch and
Malbim. Each of these sources (most are available in English) present
beautiful derivations of very obscure laws which follow the principles of
grammar.  In our own time Dr Leibowitz championed a grammatical defense of
Midrash. My own Rashi Is Simple email group (http://www.shamash.org/rashi/)
is attempting to gather all grammatical inferences of Rashi. Bottom line:
Over and above the fact that the oral law was oral it is also logical and
may be derived from the Biblical text.

Russell Jay Hendel; Phd ASA; RHEndel@Towson.Edu
Moderator Rashi is Simple