Monday, October 29, 2007

Sweet Ma'aseh with Rav Ruderman from Ner Yisroel

I wanted to share this sweet ma'aseh about R' Yaakov Ruderman, z'tl, the former Rosh Yeshiva of Yeshivas Ner Yisroel in Baltimore. I heard this from a Rav who was a Talmid from the yeshiva in the '80s.

He said that every year, when NCSY's Camp Sports would be at Ner Yisroel for the summer, they made a big deal of the guys having a meeting with the, then, Rosh Yeshiva, Rav Yaakov Ruderman. They built up the experience of meeting a great Rabbi and a Tzadik for a while beforehand.

At the big meeting, one summer, the Rosh Yeshiva asked one of the boys in his best English (as his real language was Yiddish), "Vhat do you tink of deh Yeshiva?" The boy answered, "Oh it's great. It's a great place!" The Rosh Yeshiva then followed up by asking, "And vhat is your favorite part of deh Yeshiva? The boy answered that, "Oh everything is so great here. I don't know how to pick out one favorite thing. The whole essence of the yeshiva is great."

The Rosh Yeshiva shook his head and responded, "Nit! Der essen iz nisht der ikar!" "No! The eating (The Yiddish word for eating is "essen" which sounds like "essence") is not the main thing!"

-Dixie Yid

(Picture of Rav Ruderman as a young bachur courtesy of

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Neil Harris said...

Great story.

Avromi said...

As a young boy, my father took me to Camp Agudah where Reb Shneur Kotler zt"l was relaxing on a swing with a sefer. My father was a close talmid of Reb Aharon zt"l, and he introduced us. Reb Shneur asked me, "Voz machts du?" I answered, "Avrom." He then asked, "Vos lernst du?" I responded, "Boruch Hashem." He then gave up. what do you want from a Chicago boy!