August 1, 2003 | Issue 3

The Chassidus for the 21st Century

BROOKLYN, NY — [TheKnish.com] Organizers of the upcoming "Tofu Tisch: A new concept in Chassidus" are complaining that they have been receiving threats regarding the upcoming event. The tisch, to be held in Flatbush at the Agudah of Bay Avenue social hall, will feature vegan friendly foods including tofu and asparagus as well as vitamin supplements. The Friday night session will be followed by a meditation session.

Rav Herschel Anshil Greenseigen, also known as the Toldos Noach Noach Rebbe, vehemently insisted that the shirayim would go on as planned. When asked to clarify his opinions he stated: "Listen, I come from a long line of Yidden that can trace our patrineal lineage back to Noach. My great-great-grandfather introduced the message to the world that animals have to be cared for, not slaughtered, lo aleiunu; those poor things. People think that our Chassidus is liberal/progressive. I categorically deny that. In fact we are the one's who are machmirim in tza'ar baalei chayim and ushmartem meod es nafshosecheim. You don't get any more "meod" than veganism".

Still, heimishe residents of Midwood feel that the event will be desecrating the Holy stature of tisches. "How can you have a tisch without kugel and chulent?" asks Councilman Tzvi Eyal Shechter, one of the most outspoken critics of the tisch. "Where is the novelty in getting vitamins and hearts of palm passed down from the Rebbe hand to hand? And they have the gall to claim that the marijuana that they smoke is permitted on Shabbos since it is being done for spiritual purposes!? This is a scourge that has to be eradicated by any means. Even if it has to go to city hall!"

Meanwhile, many residents of the Modern Orthodox community have a more "pareve" outlook on the potential food fight cooking up. "I think it's just a game of chicken, but no one wants to be the one to flinch," said Yonatan Homberger. His wife Devorah added, "I don't know what all the buzz is about. But one thing I do know is that at least three raccoons must have lost their tails to make that huge shtreimel on his head!"

Rav Greenseigen declined to comment on the shtreimel.

Writer

Pencil Michael, who moonlights as a gothic makeup artist, spends his days contemplating the meaning of life, only to forget and have to start over again the next morning. In between, he finds the time to investigate human interest stories as a correspondent to TheKnish.com.


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